Each week, The Reporters put their thumbs out to the good and the bad in the world of sports. This week they discuss the NFL's Draft dodging, Miguel Cabrera's pursuit of history, the man that helped shape the Blue Jays and Canada's place in the Worlds.
Dave Naylor, TSN Radio: My thumb is down to NFL commissioner Roger Goodell who says the NFL has no choice but to move its draft into May. Now, call me a cynic on this one - That it has less to do with dates available at Radio City Music Hall and more to do with television sweeps in the month of May – but most football people are like most football fans. By the end of April, they're ready for the NFL Draft. They don't need more research, study, picking guys apart. This is also bad for the CFL, which already doesn't have enough time between the NFL Draft and the CFL Draft to know which Canadian's may be NFL-bound. They're going to have a hard time getting their draft in between the new NFL Draft date and training camps. So, thumbs down on both side of the border for this move.
Steve Simmons, Sun Media: My thumb is up to Miguel Cabrera of the Detroit Tigers, not just the best hitter in the American League but the best hitter in baseball and, if you look it up, one of the best hitters of all-time. Right now Cabrera is first in batting average, in RBIs, in OPS, on-base percentage and second in home runs. He's coming off the first Triple Crown season since 1967. He looks like he can do the Triple Crown back-to-back. We don't talk enough about this guy. We don't appreciate him enough. We don't celebrate him enough. We should start doing that more with Miguel Cabrera.
Michael Farber, Sports Illustrated: My thumb is up to scouts and one in particular: Epy Guerrero of the Toronto Blue Jays who passed away this week. He was part of the foundation of the success of the Blue Jays franchise. Taking George Bell in the Rule 5 Draft in 1980 from the Philadelphia Phillies? That was the recommendation of Epy Guerrero. Some of the other great players in franchise history: Tony Fernandez, the shortstop from San Pedro de Macoris – that was Epy Guerrero – as was Carlos Delgado. These are the men and sometimes women who provide the foundations for strong franchises. Guerrero was one of the best at his job.
Dave Hodge, TSN: I have no idea if Hockey Canada's moves to replace head scout Kevin Prendergast and goalie coach Ron Tugnutt are justified or will make a bit of difference, but my thumb is up to the organization for admitting that a fourth straight World Championship performance without a medal is not acceptable. We've heard it here that Canadians don't care about anything but the Olympics, and find it easy to ignore the world tournament while they concentrate on the Stanley Cup Playoffs, but Hockey Canada competes internationally with a mandate to excel and to produce the best possible results, so it has to care about and must not ignore quarter-final losses at the Worlds.