Warriors

Urban: MLB Power Rankings -- Giants take step back

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Urban: MLB Power Rankings -- Giants take step back

Aug. 8, 2011

URBAN ARCHIVE
AUG. 1 RANKINGS

Editor's note: Mychael Urban's MLB power rankings -- detailing who's hot, who's not, a little why, a little how, and what it all means.

Mychael UrbanCSNBayArea.com
1 (1)
Philadelphia Phillies (74-40) One loss since Hunter Pence came aboard? Be afraid. Very afraid.2 (2)
Boston Red Sox (70-43)Good thing ESPN lets us know theyre a big deal. Who knew?
3 (3)
New York Yankees (69-44)As nauseating as it is at time, the AL East really is a riveting deal.
4 (6)
Atlanta Braves (66-49)Sixty-six wins and second place. Wild Card nightmare for NL.
5 (7)
Milwaukee Brewers (65-50) Winners of nine of 10; time to give front office big love.
6 (4)
San Francisco Giants (63-52) Yes, the Phillies pitchers are good. Yes, the Giants hitting is that bad.
7 (5)
Texas Rangers (64-51) Here come the dog days in Arlington. Does the pitching wilt?
8 (9)
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim (63-52) Pitching isnt the problem here. Can they score with any consistency?
9 (8)
Detroit Tigers (61-53) Its almost as if theyre winning the Whos the least bad? division.
10 (12)
St. Louis Cardinals (62-53) Road record is impressive; back of rotation and middle pen, not.
11 (11)
Arizona Diamondbacks (62-52) Just cant take advantage of Giants recent struggled. Bad sign.
12 (14)
Cleveland Indians (56-56) The slide has started; dont be surprised to see it end in fourth place.
13 (16)
Chicago White Sox (55-58) Sounds crazy right now, but cant you see them getting into this?
14 (15)
Tampa Bay Rays (59-54) Going absolutely nowhere and just lost series to As. Still a solid club.
15 (17)
Toronto Blue Jays (58-56) Ricky Romero quietly having a year thatll make him rich soon.
16 (10)
Pittsburgh Pirates (52-59) Oh, boy. Here we go. Ten losses in a row? Great story gone bad.
17 (13)
Cincinnati Reds (55-59) Not a horrible team, but they never put all phases of the game together.
18 (18)
New York Mets (56-57)Still going to give contenders trouble despite already making tee times.
19 (19)
Florida Marlins (55-59) They hit a little, they pitch a little, they lose a lot. Makes no sense.
20 (22)
Minnesota Twins (51-63) Scuffling in a big way again. Looks like they wont join party after all.
21 (23)
Washington Nationals (55-59) Last place in NL East would be a contender in NL West. Wow.
22 (20)
Colorado Rockies (53-62)Double-digit deficit in division? Pre-season predictions were SO off.
23 (24)
Oakland Athletics (51-63) Where was all this hitting in the first half? Theyre interesting again!
24 (21)
Los Angeles Dodgers (52-61) Why they didnt sell anyone off given theyre finances is baffling.
25 (27)
San Diego Padres (51-64) Theyre going to be a thorn in the Giants side down the stretch.
26 (25)
Kansas City Royals (49-65) Theyre building something there. You have to squint to see it.27 (29)
Seattle Mariners (49-64) The epic losing streak made them seem a bigger joke than they are.28 (26)
Chicago Cubs (49-66) Lovable losers yet again. But dont take em for granted, contenders.
29 (28)
Baltimore Orioles (44-67) The farm system, according to scouts, does not paint a pretty picture.30 (30)
Houston Astros (37-77) Hunter Pence will be sending postcards from various playoff cities.

What's on your mind? Email Mychael and let him know. He may use it in his Mailbag.

Poole's 2017-18 NBA predictions: It's the Warriors ... and everyone else

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USATSI

Poole's 2017-18 NBA predictions: It's the Warriors ... and everyone else

WESTERN CONFERENCE

1) Warriors: Rave all you want about Steph and KD and Klay and the incredible offense, but the foundation is the hyperactive, highly intelligent defense.

2) Rockets: Behind James and CP, they will score and score often. They will be better on defense. This will push them, for the second time in 20 years, past the Spurs.

3) Thunder: Russ, PG and Melo all together in GM San Presti’s petri dish. There will be fireworks, and it shouldn’t take long to see if they’ll be beautiful or destructive.

4) Spurs: LA is plodding, Kawhi is limping and Tony P is at least two months away from being a ghost of his former self. This is Pop’s biggest challenge.

5) Nuggets: Millsap is going to help this team. A lot. If Joker stays healthy and the point guard play is solid, they could make a run at a top-4 seed.

6) Timberwolves: Thibs has gathered many pieces, some good and some duplicative. Why does this feel like a salad mixing old avocados and tomatoes with fresh lettuce?

7) Clippers: CP3’s absence gives this bunch a strange look, like a room without a roof. Not much to be ‘Happy’ about, though, except what The Logo can do for the future.

8) Trail Blazers: Points are going to come, but can anybody play D? Some team has to earn the 8-seed and I like the work Dame, CJ and Nurk put in late last season.

9) Pelicans: Boogie and The Brow. This could be epic, or epic fail. Only if Jrue stays healthy and Raj plays young (good luck with that) can this squad make some noise.

10) Jazz: Gordy and G-Hill are gone. Exum may miss the season. Coach Quin is solid, yes, but how far he can go if the second-biggest paycheck is going to Aussie Joe?

11) Grizzlies: Gonna miss oldes Zach and Vince and also The Grindfather, the best nickname in the league, in his element. Glory days are gone, so invite the dawn.

12) Mavericks: Someday, maybe 25 years from now, Cubes will let Dirk limp his way to the Hall. Until then, it’s mediocrity and less. How long will they pack the house?

13) Suns: They’re young and tantalizing. They may be good someday, but for now it’s the Desert Day Care center, with Papa Earl trying to keep the peace and survive.

14) Lakers: The Ball family is in the house, and Lonzo brings the promise of joy. They’ll be more half-watchable this year, because you don’t wanna see this D.

15) Kings: Titanic may be rising from the deep. Nice idea, adding old heads to work with youngsters De’Aaron, Skal and Buddy. But the Kangz are in the wrong division.

EASTERN CONFERENCE

1) Celtics: This could take a few weeks. That five-game homer, post-Thanksgiving, should be the time for Kyrie, Gordy & Co. to go to work. What you got, Coach Brad?

2) Cavaliers: This is the year LeBron reaches the dark side of the mountain. That’s trouble for The Land. They could win 55, which is about how many games he’ll play.

3) Wizards: It’s time for John Wall to prove it, to take the Wiz to unfamiliar heights. If Brad Beal can stay on the court (that’s asking a lot), they’ll breathe on the Cavs.

4) Bucks: The D improved when Young Jabari went down, and he’ll be out until February. Hmm. OK. It’s close-up time for the Greek Freak. Can anybody make a J?

5) Raptors: The guards can score but can’t/won’t defend. How much does Serge have left? They’ll have it rough unless the big addition, CJ Miles, has a career year.

6) Heat: Love the Dragon. Love/hate Dion and Hassan. Don’t like much of the rest of the roster, though. Coaching truly matters with this bunch, and they have a fine one.

7) Hornets: A 35-win team in the West, which translates to 44 in the East. Malik Monk is OK, but Kemba’s the engine. It’s a low bar for Dwight. Can he reach it?

8) 76ers: Young Ben, aka Fresh Prince, is our pick for Rook of the Year. We like Saric. We believe JJ will help. But this is about The Process. If he plays 50 games, they win 38.

9) Pistons: Avery B will help the D, but until SVG finds a taker for Reggie J, the playoffs are MIA. Stanley J has skills. It’s time for him to show it.

10) Nets: Hello, D-Lo. We see you, Mr. Crabbe. The clowns won’t be so funny this season. Coach Kenny has ’em playing hard and fast. They can go from 20 wins to 30.

11) Magic: Other than AG’s hops, Jonathon Simmons’ grit and Mo Speights’ smile, there is nothing to see here. This club is 20 percent highlights, 80 percent yikes.

12) Pacers: After making the playoffs in six of seven seasons, you flip four of your top six scorers, including PG. What the . . .? It’s Lottery Time in Indy.

13) Knicks: New York works its rump off to make its teams relevant. The Knicks don’t care. KP6 is saddled with a frat-house clothes hamper of an organization.

14) Bulls: They’ve demolished the franchise MJ made famous and slithered into the basement once occupied, seemingly for decades, by the Sixers. We’re thinking 12-70.

15) Hawks: Baze and Schroder are the best Travis Schlenk has on a team that could go 0-for-the-West. We’re thinking 10-72, only because the least of the East is so junky.

--

WESTERN CONFERENCE FINALS

Warriors over Rockets in 5

EASTERN CONFERENCE FINALS

Cavs over Celtics in 6

NBA FINALS

Warriors over Cavs in 4

Shanahan showed patience with Beathard; Will now have to show more

Shanahan showed patience with Beathard; Will now have to show more

Kyle Shanahan is, self admittedly, not a patient person. As he watched quarterback C.J. Beathard run the scout team over the last couple of weeks -- how he visualized an unfamiliar play, went through his progressions and handled the defensive coverages -- the head coach saw rapid improvement every day. But he suppressed any urge to play the rookie before he was ready.

“I tried to wait for the right time for him and the right time for the team,” Shanahan explained.

Down 14-0 to Washington halfway through the second quarter with starter Brian Hoyer struggling, Shanahan knew Beathard’s time had come.

“I felt the team needed it right then,” Shanahan said. “It also made me more confident to do it because I thought he was ready for it, also.”

Moments after the game was over, Shanahan named Beathard the starter. Watching the game tape on the flight home only bolstered his decision.

“By no means was he perfect, missed a couple of things, but that always happens,” Shanahan said. “I thought he came in there, didn’t hesitate, competed. The moment was not too big for him. Made a few plays in rhythm, made a few off schedule plays and was a big reason we got back in that game.”

Beathard led the 49ers on two scoring drives and finished 19-of-36 with 245 passing yards, a touchdown and an interception, though it came on fourth-and-20 on his final pass attempt of the game. On his 45-yard touchdown pass to Aldrick Robinson, Beathard extended the play when the fifth year receiver wasn’t where he expected him to be.

“He was supposed to go to the post for a certain coverage, and they had a busted coverage, so he just hung out there which is why C.J. didn’t see it right away,” Shanahan explained. “We had enough protection where he could take a couple more hitches. He drove the pocket and saw where Aldrick was, and he didn’t hesitate. Made that throw with that arm strength.”

Shanahan smirked at his not-so-subtle dig at those who questioned Beathard’s arm strength during the draft process. He sees a quarterback who can make all the throws, and make them from the pocket, and scramble when he needs to. All he needs now, Shanahan contends, is experience.

“It’s about playing in the game and reacting to defenses, reacting to coverages, reacting to adjustments. He’s going to see a lot of things he hasn’t seen before, and that will change each week. It will probably change each quarter.”

Helping Beathard continue to grow through those experiences will require patience, but in this situation, it’s the kind the head coach can handle.

“You’re never going to get a quick answer. You see over time, but he’s got the ability to do it. He’s got the mental toughness to do it. I think he will get better the more he plays.”