NEWS

TJ Martinez: Rockies look like contenders

TJ Martinez

Just three months ago, the world's No. 1 golfer, Tiger Woods, was involved in a sex scandal (more on that later), Major League Baseball was reeling from the steroid scandal, the NFL was on the verge of a lockout in 2011 and no one was watching the NHL. It's funny how things cha ... wait a minute ... I guess much hasn't changed since then. But anyway, we do have a new Super Bowl champion, NCAA basketball champion and America owned the Olympics - take that Canada. But in this humble sports writer's opinion, all of those events pale in comparison to MLB opening day.

The Rockies were strong out the gate, defeating the Brewers 5-3 Monday. Rockies ace Ubaldo Jimenez was dominant in his first start of the season, striking out six in six innings and allowing one run on eight hits. His fastball was in midseason form, clocking in the high 90s, but even more impressive was his control and ability to pitch to contact when needed.

Centerfielder Carlos Gonzalez and third baseman Ian Stewart got off to stellar starts. Gonzalez was four for five and scored two runs while Stewart was one for three with a two run bomb in the second inning, off Brewers pitcher Yovani Gallardo.

The Rockies, who were picked by most sports publications to win their first division title in team history, look to be well on their way. If they can stay healthy and they're younger players continue to develop through out the year they could challenge the Phillies for the NL pennant in October.

Shanahan has his quarterback

In the most surprising move of the NFL offseason, the Philadelphia Eagles traded Donovan McNabb to the rival Redskins. This should be a match made in heaven for McNabb and new Redskins head coach Mike Shanahan. The last time Shanahan coached a quarterback in his mid 30s who couldn't win "the big one" was in '95, when he became the Broncos head coach who just happened to have John Elway at QB. All he and Elway did was win two Super Bowls in four years.

For the Eagles, this is the second time the Eagles have traded a hall of fame quarterback to the Redskins in the prime of his career, remember Sonny Jurgensen?

No sympathy for Woods

I may be alone in this, but I'm not buying Tiger Woods' apologies. Everything he says and does seems too calculated.

"I hurt my wife, my kids, my mother, my wife's family, my friends, my foundation and kids all around the world who admired me." Now look up to the camera, 1 ... 2 ... 3 ... and continue prewritten Ari Fleischer speech.

What's next, Tiger? Are you going to start masquerading your wife around Augusta or jump on Oprah's couch like Tom Cruise? Quit being a corporate puppet, Tiger. Instead of scheduling press conferences and interviews to answer questions on your terms, play golf!

TJ Martinez writes for the La Junta (Colo.) Tribune-Democrat