Welcome to the new morning post concept, which I’ve decided to call “The Cooler.” It works on three levels (in my head), but I’m not going to explain them because there’s nothing worse than explaining why you think you’re clever. Let’s just say these are five things you might want to discuss around the water cooler (1) to make you feel cooler (2) even as I act as the cooler-downer of hot takes (3). Here we go:
*ESPN’s David Schoenfield takes a look at the American League Central and concludes that the division has a chance to be one of the worst in MLB history in a long time. Cleveland leads at 24-24, while the Twins are just 1.5 games back. It gets a lot worse from there.
How bad is it? AL Central teams are just 54-98 when playing against teams outside the division. The Twins are a prime example, having gone 6-2 against division foes (they’ve only played the White Sox and Tigers so far) and 15-22 against everyone else. It’s still early, of course. Both Cleveland and the Twins had greater expectations this season and could rebound from slow starts. If they don’t, though, this could indeed be one of the worst divisions in history.
*The Twins face the Mariners’ James Paxton in the first game of their series in Seattle on Friday night, which is as good an excuse as any to remind you that the last time Paxton pitched against the Twins it was home opening day at Target Field and an eagle landed on him.
*Former Twins pitcher Bartolo Colon turned 45 (!) and the Rangers celebrated by smashing his face into a cake.
Birthdays get better with age…and cake. #BigSexy
— Texas Rangers (@Rangers) May 24, 2018
*Before he was injured late in the Rockets’ 98-94 win over the Warriors, giving Houston a 3-2 lead and pushing the defending champs to the brink of elimination, Houston’s Chris Paul knocked down a huge shot over Steph Curry and celebrated with … um … I guess that’s a shimmy?
*In case you missed it Thursday, both Jimmy Butler and Karl-Anthony Towns landed on the All-NBA third team. There are just five players on each team, meaning they were deemed two of the 15 best players in the NBA. Only two other teams had two players named All-NBA: the Warriors (Kevin Durant and Steph Curry) and the Thunder (Russell Westbrook and Paul George).