Enter the Warzone, light reading for light-headed readers.
▪ The seven words you’ve waited all winter to read: Pitchers and catchers report to spring training.
▪ Please tell us Major League Baseball, experiment or not, isn’t serious about starting a runner at second base in extra innings.
Next thing you know, college football will give teams the ball at the opponent’s 25-yard-line to begin overtime.
▪ Future MLB headline: A’s win in 10th on two routine groundouts.
▪ Does anyone out there really believe the Giants will head into Opening Day with either Mac Williamson or Jarrett Parker starting in left field?
Put your hand down, Bobby Evans.
▪ A beardless Brian Wilson is trying to make a comeback as a knuckleballer. Good for him. Let’s hope Wilson also loses the ridiculous persona he had during his years with the Dodgers.
I can already see myself out there, throwing up some waffles
Brian Wilson, knuckleballer in training
▪ In three games against Oklahoma City, Kevin Durant is averaging 34 points and 9.8 rebounds while shooting 60 percent from the field.
Pretty good for a cupcake.
▪ Sorry Jeffrey Loria, Jimmy Haslam, Dean Spanos, Daniel Snyder and Jed York. None of you are the worst owner in professional sports. Jim Dolan has officially lapped the field.
▪ So far, so good for the new 49ers regime. Novice general manager John Lynch and head coach Kyle Shanahan both came across extremely well during last week’s official intro.
For the first time in a while, there’s hope.
▪ After looking like a near lock, the Raiders’ move to Las Vegas now seems destined to be relegated to the dustbin of “What if?” relocation history.
Moral of the story: Don’t be so unnecessarily greedy.
▪ While nice the Raiders gave head coach Jack Del Rio a contract extension, not sure it was necessary. Let him win a division title or playoff game first.
Much more important would be signing Derek Carr to a long-term deal.
The Bulldogs hosted a Junior Day on Saturday and have already made a slew of scholarship offers for 2018.
▪ More signs things are not the same around Fresno State football: The Bulldogs hosted a Junior Day on Saturday, inviting high school players from across the Valley, and have already made a slew of scholarship offers for 2018.
Huge change from the previous two coaching staffs.
▪ To make a return trip to the NCAA Tournament, Fresno State needed a top-five finish in the Mountain West standings (to avoid that opening-round game) and arrive in Las Vegas relatively healthy for the conference tourney.
Suddenly both of those aims look iffy.
▪ Yes, we’ve seen Rodney Terry teams extricate themselves from dire situations before. We saw it last season. But it’s hard to see the Bulldogs doing much in March without Karachi Edo and Cullen Russo.
We just have to keep plugging.
▪ People who use words like “wasted” and phrases like “flushed to the ocean” when they see water being released through Friant Dam into the San Joaquin River only show their fourth-grade understanding of ecology.
▪ For no particular reason: Kent Hrbek
▪ Ronnie Rivers has a long ways to go before surpassing his dad on the football field. But the son is already better at one thing: bass fishing.
Our source on this: Ron Rivers himself.
“He’s way better,” the elder Rivers said after watching his son compete in Sunday’s Manchester Center Central Valley Open at Pine Flat Lake, hosted by the Roosevelt High bass club.
▪ Before signing with Fresno State, Ronnie Rivers rushed for 2,239 yards and scored 33 touchdowns as a senior at Freedom-Oakley. Before that, Rivers and partner Roy Asi took second place at last year’s TBF/FLW High School Western Regional Championships at Clear Lake.
Rivers didn’t fare nearly as well Sunday but sounded happy just to spend a day out on the water. Especially since the 5-8, 170-pound tailback (same height as Dad, just 35 pounds lighter) recently received his offseason workout plan from the Bulldogs strength and conditioning staff.
“It’s 30 pages long!” he said with a smile and shake of the head.