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Can Wedge still save his job?

July 26, 2009
By ED PUSKAS Tribune Chronicle Sports Editor

Random thoughts while wondering how Tom Watson lost the British Open on a putt I could've made:

INDIAN SUMMER: Don't look now, but the Indians appear to have begun a modest second-half run.

All of a sudden, they're getting good starting pitching from guys not named Cliff Lee and some of the slumbering bats - most notably that of Jhonny Peralta - have come to life.

It's too little and too late, of course. But it does remind us a little of last season, when the Indians made a couple of deadline deals (see ya, CC Sabathia and Casey Blake) after a terrible first half, suddenly started winning games and finished 81-81.

Even if the Tribe stays hot for a while and makes a run at .500 this season, should it be enough to save manager Eric Wedge's job? Perhaps not. And even if Wedge comes back, a strong case can be made that some major changes will be made on his coaching staff.

PLAYING PUTT-PUTT: Remember, I said I could've made that putt, not that I would have made it.

No offense to Stewart Cink, who did what he had to do, but what a letdown after a four-day buildup to what could have been the feel-good story of the year.

Watson, 59 and with an artificial hip, was an 8-foot putt from becoming the oldest man to win a major tournament.

I watched the finish in a bar and restaurant on waterfront in Portland, Maine. There were about two dozen people crowded into a corner, watching as Watson struck the putt. Every one of us seemed to realize in an instant it had no chance.

I knew then the tournament belonged to Cink.

Jack Nicklaus was 46 when he won the Masters in 1986. That was a huge deal, so imagine how monumental a moment it would have been had Watson held on at Turnberry.

I'd always respected Nicklaus, but as a kid, I always rooted for Watson when the two went head-to-head. Their 1977 "duel in the sun" at Turnberry went Watson's way, but Nicklaus was best golfer in the world in the late 1970s.

A decade later, Nicklaus was well into the down side of his career, but that magical weekend in Augusta was a terrific reminder of what he could do and what he meant to golf.

Watson didn't win last week, but staying at or near the top of the leaderboard that entire weekend at Turnberry was an incredible accomplishment for a guy who became eligible for the Senior Tour almost a decade ago.

LIKE A VIRGIN: It's hard to believe a reporter asked Tim Tebow if he was still a virgin during the Southeastern Conference media day festivities last week.

Does anyone care? Is it anyone's business? What does the sex life of a quarterback - or lack thereof, as Tebow admitted with a laugh - have to do with the Florida Gators' prospects this season?

That was another example of the erosion of common decency and respect that has taken place over the years.

Another was the now-infamous Erin Andrews video. Here's hoping those responsible are identified and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

epuskas@tribtoday.com

 
 
 

 

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