July 26, 2006
Jake Gyllenhaal:
Reportedly will play Lance Armstrong in the movie being made about Lance's life. So THAT'S what was going on in their awkward "moment" during the ESPYS.
The Lead Item
Two Words For You:

I can't think of a kiss in sports as symbolic as A-Rod kissing Andy Phillips last night since Isiah and Magic kissed in the NBA Finals.

Set the mood for the smooch: The Rangers stadium team put the "Kiss Cam" on A-Rod, presumably in irony. A-Rod then leaned over and kissed his teammate on the top of the head.

And the crowd cheered.

After boos the rest of the series, it might have been the first sincere cheers A-Rod had heard in weeks.

And that was from Texas fans, who might hate him even more than New York fans do right now. No, wait: That's not possible.

Think Yankees fans would have laughed? Maybe at A-Rod, but certainly not with him.

On the other hand, think A-Rod would have tried that at the Stadium? No way. (If at all, he undoubtedly would have whiffed on the approach.)

Consider that: Things are so bad that A-Rod has to go on the road (to a place he's loathed, no less) to find any support and have some fun.

A-Rod sounded so happy (maybe it was his 2 runs scored in a Yankees win); it's all the more evidence he is better off out of New York.

Five-plus days left to trade him...

MLB Hit List
Here comes Minnesota: Now just 1 game behind the White Sox for 2nd place in the AL Central (and, more important, the AL wild-card lead) after Santana beat Contreras. Fear the Twins right now.

(Quickie readers believe: The Twins led yesterday's poll asking which AL team will win the wild card. White Sox 2nd, Yankees distant 3rd.)

How's it taste, Detroit? Cleveland chased All-Star starter Kenny Rogers with 7 runs in the 1st inning. Wasn't that Detroit's thing?

Anibal Sanchez beat D-Train's record for Marlins consecutive scoreless innings by a rookie (23) in a terrific win over the Braves (1 R, 3 K, 0 BB, 7 IP).

Soriano Watch: The stat about Jim Bowden floating around is he has talked to 27 teams about Sori. Still nothing enticing enough to deal?

Dodgers trade Perez to KC: What's more being treated like "trash": To not play for L.A. or to be shipped off to the Royals purgatory?

AI: No trade!
AI won't be traded. Dud.

After all the buildup and getting themselves ready, I expect most Sixers fans will be kind of disappointed. I know I am.

The team has gone as far as it will ever go with AI. While every other team in the East seems to be getting better, Philly is standing still.

Schilling and Halladay: AL aces rack up their 13th wins
Carlos Zambrano: Cubs only bright spot wins 8th straight
ACC: Cuts deal to have football champ play in Orange Bowl
Johnny Damon: Sits out 2nd straight game with bad back
Nomar: Out for 4-5 days with knee sprain from Monday
Ramonce Taylor: Texas RB transfers after off-field issues
I'm a big believer in the idea that all fans want is hope, which means progress every season. If you're stalled, it's time to rebuild.

NFL Camping
Continuing Quickie coverage of the opening of NFL training camps, with the shallowest preview you'll find anywhere. Today:

Rams (St. Louis)
Subplot: New head coach Scott Linehan wants to differentiate himself from the Martz Era? Expect a "physical" camp.

Bears (Bourbonnais, Ill.)
Subplot: Watch for foreshadowing of controversy at marquee positions RB (Benson vs. Jones) and QB (Grossman vs. Griese).

USA Hoops Cuts
When Adam Morrison was cut from the USA Hoops squad, do you think he cried?

He and Luke Ridnour should have known they had no hope of making the team.

The fact that Shane Battier made the cut to 15 players is amusing. (If Battier were a UNC guy, think Coach K would have even brought him to camp?)

I picked my 12 for the Worlds in yesterday's Quickie. Battier, Kirk Hinrich and Antawn Jamison appear to be practice bodies who won't make the cut from 15 to 12 next month.

This cut was pretty clean. Things will get way more interesting when the final choices have to be made for the '08 team for Beijing.

Consider the players not available for next month's Worlds: Kobe, Billups, Marion, Pierce, Redd. Any of those will make the Olympic team ahead of most of the other 15 still on the roster.

CFB Media Daze: Big 12
Dan Hawkins is a breath of fresh air at Colorado. The perfect anecdote from Big 12 media day was that Hawk said he'd let star kicker Mason Crosby try to break the all-time field-goal distance record (67 yards). Can't wait to see what other fun he breaks out to change the culture at CU.

Danica Stays in IRL
Danica and Marco sitting in a tree...


As long as Danica is sidestepping NASCAR super-fame for the "gas ceiling" of IndyCar, at least she paired up with the biggest last name (Andretti) in the sport -- not to mention next-biggest first name (Marco).

As far as IRL cachet goes, only Danica herself is a bigger star than the 19-year-old Andretti progeny.

Jockey Apologizes
Yes, but did Paul O'Neill actually apologize to the horse or simply to the masses of bewildered fans and analysts who ripped him for head-butting it? Tell the horse you're sorry.

Football Minor League
I'm intrigued by the "All-American Football League," a spring minor league that will affiliate itself with colleges and their conferences and stock teams with players of regional interest.

If nothing else, its schedule uses an interesting window to satisfy currently untapped fan interest in football from post-draft until mid-June. Using regionally known players on each team is smart, too.

Meanwhile, the NFL and the league's participating players benefit: What better way to scout undrafted free agents than to watch actual competition (or, as a player, to showcase yourself for the NFL by playing)?

You might ask: Who wants to watch draft leftovers? If it's a player you know from your local college or conference, you might care a little more. Also, the league can position itself as the "Ultimate NFL Tryout."

This might just work...

Roger Clemens:
If he weren't making a jillion dollars per start, you might feel bad for the guy. Another outing, another shutout ... for the OTHER team's pitching.
Today on ESPN.com
Quickie Live
Page 2 Index
MLB Short Hops
Best NFL Camp Sites
Napa: Bring on the pinot!
Eastern Wash in summer
Annual trip to Wisconsin
"Bourbonnais": Best name?
Going to Disney World!

Huge college hoops recruiting coup for UCLA, landing 6-9 prep star Kevin Love from Oregon. Averaged 29 and 17 last year en route to a state title.

Italy Soccer Scandal: On appeal, Lazio and Fiorentina avoided relegation; Juventus still off to Serie B but will have less of a point penalty.

If you're a Longhorns fan, the new UT media guide sounds like a must-have: 3-D images on both covers. CFB media guides are an arms race.

The Chargers opened training camp for rookies Monday, but didn't sign 1st-round pick CB Antonio Cromartie until yesterday. Watch that knee...

Bengals give OT Levi Jones a $40 million extension. In the local paper, the headline was "Bengals lock up Jones." Was that supposed to be irony?

Apparently, congratulations are in order for A.J. Hawk and Laura Quinn on their nuptials. Even more appropriate here, given it was a "quickie" thing.

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