Also in the Aug. 15 Issue: No. 3 MLB Draft Pick Trevor Bauer Will Not be Babied, Why Jay Cutler is Misunderstood, Why a Die-Hard ‘Bama Fan Allegedy Poisoned Toomer’s OaksPosted: August 10, 2011
Why the No. 3 Overall MLB Draft Pick, Trevor Bauer, Won’t Be Babied
You Can Call Jay Cutler Arrogant and Stubborn, But Don’t Say He’s Not Tough
Why Did a Die-Hard Alabama Fan Allegedly Poison Toomer’s Oaks?
In addition to senior baseball writer Tom Verducci’s cover story on Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia, this week’s Aug. 15 issue—on newsstands now—includes:
Trevor Bauer Will Not Be Babied – Lee Jenkins (@SI_LeeJenkins)
Young power arms are frequently coddled, but that’s not for Trevor Bauer, the Diamondbacks’ first-round pick (No. 3 overall). Bauer throws at least six days a week with baseballs, weighted balls or medicine balls. He longtosses 380 feet, even before starts. On his first warmup toss between innings, he crow hops across the mound and unleashes a fastball more than 100 miles per hour. The results speak for themselves: This past season at UCLA, Bauer led the NCAA in strikeouts and held opposing hitters to a .154 batting average. More remarkably, his last nine outings were all complete games and in only one did he throw fewer than 130 pitches. After each of them he was out longtossing the next day (page 36).
During his pre draft interviews Bauer says he told team representatives: “This is what I do, it’s what I believe in, and if you let me stick with it, I’ll pitch in the major leagues for 20 years. Some [teams] were open. Some weren’t. But they needed to know what they were getting into.”
To read the full online version of Trevor Bauer Will Not Be Babied, click here.
On the Tablets: Arizona will likely call up Bauer when rosters expand on Sept. 1—not just to get him some experience but also to, hopefully, have him make an impact in October. Here are hot spots of five late-season call-ups who influenced a pennant race.
YOU’RE WRONG ABOUT JAY CUTLER – MICHAEL ROSENBERG (@Rosenberg_Mike)
The notion that he is not tough is befuddling to Bears quarterback Jay Cutler. After all, he was sacked 52 times last season, including nine in the first half of a game against the Giants in which he suffered a concussion. Before that he played the entire 2007 season for the Broncos with undiagnosed type 1 diabetes, losing 33 pounds over the course of the season but still starting all 16 games. Cutler’s high school coach, Bob Clayton, says (page 42): “He might be arrogant, might be a little stubborn, he might not have good body language—say what you want, but don’t say he’s not tough.”
Says Cutler of the criticism: “[It] definitely bothered [me] some. But I think with the media markets these days, and the competition in that market, papers are dying, people are looking for stories.”
To read the full online version of You’re Wrong About Jay Cutler, click here.
SOMETHING WENT VERY WRONG AT TOOMER’S CORNER – TOMMY TOMLINSON
A die-hard Alabama fan named Harvey Updyke is scheduled to stand trial in October for poisoning Toomer’s Oaks. Special contributor Tommy Tomlinson spoke with Updyke and some of his family members in an effort to understand why he would do this. Updyke’s son, Bear Bryant Updyke, defends his father when he says (page 58): “I’ve been in the military. I’ve seen people die. If the trees die, I will feel bad, yes, but I’m gonna get sleep. If he is rightly convicted in a court of law … punishment fits the crime, that’s all I’m asking for.”
Says Updyke, when discussing his son’s confusion over why his father might go to prison: “He keeps telling me, ‘These people are acting like this is a tragedy.’ And I just say, Well, yeah, it is.”
To read the full online version of Something Went Very Wrong at Toomer’s Corner, click here.
On the Tablets: Tomlinson joins media writer Richard Deitsch (@richarddeitsch) on the Sports Illustrated audio podcast.
TIGER WOODS: Another False Start – Michael Bamberger
After Tiger Woods fired caddie Steve Williams, his former looper didn’t wait around long to find a new boss. This past weekend at the Bridgestone Invitational, Williams was on Adam Scott’s bag, and helped Scott take home the title. Afterward Williams called it “the most satisfying win I’ve ever had.” At the tournament, Woods said of the firing, “I thought it was time for a change. [Williams] has helped my career, and I think I’ve helped him as well.” One hopes that Woods and Williams can remember the good times they had before their split (page 48).
To read the full online version of Another False Start, click here.
On the Tablets: A montage of video highlights from Woods’s and Williams’s 12-year partnership.
PRO BASKETBALL: LITHUANIA CALLING – LUKE WINN (@lukewinn)
The ice age could be coming to the NBA, but in the Baltic nation of Lithuania hoops could not be hotter. With a population of only 3.2 million, the nation’s top five world ranking is astounding. And for the first time in 72 years, Lithuania is gearing up to host EuroBasket, the biennial continental championship. With six new arenas being built and nearly 110,000 tickets sold, the tournament is inspiring Olympic-sized enthusiasm. Arvydas Sabonis, who will become the first Lithuanian to be inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame this Friday, says (page 52): “We are a small country, and basketball is the way for us to show the world that we are here.”
To read the full online version of Lithuania Calling, click here.
On the Tablets: Video highlights of both rising star big man Jonas Valačiūnas at the U-19 world championships and soon-to-be Hall of Fame inductee Arvydas Sabonis at the 1986 world championships.
SCORECARD: DANGEROUS MINDS – PABLO S. TORRE (@SIPabloTorre)
In the first seven months of 2011, half a dozen athletes—ranging from an Austrian Olympic judoka (Claudia Heill) to an erstwhile Pro Bowl safety with the Bears (Dave Duerson)—have taken their own lives. Writer-reporter Pablo S. Torre writes that each of these suicides shows how little has been done to address mental health in sports overall. Says Antonia L. Baum, vice president of the International Society for Sports Psychiatry (page 12): “These cases remind you that no one is immune, that a sound body does not mean a Teflon mind. And that when it comes to the stigma around psychiatric illness, the athletic arena remains one of its biggest fortresses.”
To read the full online version of Dangerous Minds, click here.
POINT AFTER: NO LOSS FOR WORDS – JOE POSNANSKI (@JPosnanski)
Marv Levy, whose Bills lost four Super Bowls from 1990 to 1993, has written a novel about, well, whether someone fixed the Super Bowl. Between the Lies will be published Sept. 1, and Levy repeated to Posnanski over and over (page 64): “I can’t emphasize this enough. I want this book to have literary value. Please include that. Literary value…. All my life, I’ve been writing things down. Plotlines. Character names. I would put them in a folder. I always knew that at some point in my life I wanted to write.”
For the scholarly Levy, it’s the best example of living a full life without regret. He also says: “You asked me, Would I be happier if we had won any or all of those four Super Bowls? And my answer is yes. And yes. And yes. And yes. I’ll never really get over it. But I can’t change it.”
To read the full online version of No Loss for Words, click here.
THIS WEEK’S FACES IN THE CROWD (page 20)
- Taylor Rivera-Silva (Vienna, Va./James Madison High) – Lacrosse
- Zak Hattori (Las Vegas/Silverado High) – Bowling
- Katie Harrison (Noblesville, Ind./Noblesville High) – Softball
- Geno Yauchler (Winter Haven, Fla.) – Hydrofoil
- Lanie Nacol (Santa Rosa, Calif./Montgomery High) – In-line Speedskating
- Tim Locke and Kyle Bishop (Waterville, Maine/Waterville High) – Baseball
Follow Faces in the Crowd on Twitter @SI_Faces
INSIDE THE WEEK IN SPORTS (page 22)
- The NFL: Snack on This – Even three years removed from his last snap, Plaxico Burress insists he will still feast on opposing secondaries. (Ben Reiter, @SI_BenReiter)
- Baseball: Coming Soon – There’s a new beast of the AL East on the way—not this year, but in the not too distant future. (Joe Sheehan, @joe_sheehan)
- Olympic Sports: Opening Shots – Ten boxers emerged from the Olympic trials and—thanks to a new coach—they’ve got a fighting chance in 2012. (Chris Mannix, @ChrisMannixSI)
THIS WEEK ON THE TABLETS
- SI Digital Bonus: A Rose by Any Other Name – Senior NFL writer Paul Zimmerman profiles Steelers linebacker Jack Lambert in this piece from the July 30, 1984 issue. Lambert is not known as a sweetie, but he sure knows the sweet smell of success.
- On the Road with Peter King – Watch the latest video postcards from King’s long, strange trip around training camp.
- Dream On, Philly – In light of Andy Reid labeling his 2011 Eagles as the Dream Team last week, SI looks at everyone it has affixed the label to—from the 1992 U.S. Olympic men’s basketball team to O.J. Simpson’s lawyers.
- Bubba Smith, 1945–2011: Video reflections of the former giant and, later in life, loveable actor.
- Off the Record – This week’s must-see moments in sports video.