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The Martin Chronicles

All things sports and beyond.

Hey, somebody really ought to write about this Aaron Judge guy

Aaron Judge stunned the Rays with a diving, game-saving catch in the sixth inning of Yankees 3-2 win Sunday at Tropicana Field.

AP photo

Aaron Judge stunned the Rays with a diving, game-saving catch in the sixth inning of Yankees 3-2 win Sunday at Tropicana Field.

He can catch, too.

It's no tall tale.

Aaron Judge, The Amazing Colossal Man, has come and gone, but not before he stunned the Rays with a diving, game-saving catch in the sixth inning of Yankees 3-2 win Sunday at Tropicana Field. The 6-foot-7, 282-pound Judge robbed Evan Longoria of an RBI double and helped double off Corey Dickerson. Best catch of the year to go with all those home runs.

Just when we'd thought we'd seen and heard and written everything about Judge -- and we've got the Sunday Times' to prove it, a wonderful presentation of all things Judge -- the 6-foot-10, 309-pound Judge gave us a little something extra.

Rays Kevin Cash had heard enough about Judge even before Sunday's tilt.

"But, you know, he made a tremendous game-saving play," Cash said.

Look, the Rays had won four straight games and five of six, including three consecutive series wins heading into Sunday's finale with the Yankees.

But the big guy can't stay out of the picture frame.

What is it that the 7-foot-4, 365-pound Judge can't do?

"I saw I might have a chance and I just dove for it," Judge said of his grab.

"I thought it was a double for sure," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. …

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16-0 shows us it's a Cavs-Warriors world

LeBron James, right, drives past Kevin Durant.

AP photo

LeBron James, right, drives past Kevin Durant.

16-0.

That's your NBA, kids.

That's the combined record of the Cleveland Cavaliers and Golden State Warriors as they hop, skip and jump through the NBA playoffs.

They seem destined to meet in a third consecutive NBA Finals.

Can we get some older story lines here?

Yeah, it's the rubber match (they've split the first two Finals) and there's a fresh slant: Kevin Durant.

But I'm already tired of the stories. They're the same ones since before the season.

1. Is LeBron better than Jordan?

2. Will Durant finally win his championship?

3. Will Durant eventually go back to Oklahoma City, like LeBron went back to Cleveland?

4. Will Thunder fans welcome him back?

See answers at bottom.

But the NBA amazes me. It's the same story lines every year and somehow it generates interest.

Guess these guys are that good.

Maybe someone gets in the way before the Finals.

The Celtics? The Spurs? The Rockets?

Feel free to interrupt the normally scheduled program, just for the fun of it.

I know I'll snap out of this, when Durant is in the Finals, or LeBron is on his Finals game. …

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USF, Charlie Strong scrambling after another player arrest

USF football has had prouder days than Wednesday. So has the new head coach, Charlie Strong.

Bad scene.

Circuit judge Margaret Taylor, a USF graduate, tore into USF player LaDarrius Jackson, who was arrested Monday night on charges of sexual battery and false imprisonment of another student in a residence hall.

Then Taylor let Strong have it, too.

"This court, and I'm sure I'm not alone, questions whether you have control over your players," Taylor said of Strong. "It's fairly clear that you do not have control of them off the field. ... I would implore you to think long and hard about whether being coach at USF is a good fit before any other members of our community have to suffer at the hands of one of your players."

Strong words.

Let's remember that the victim of Jackson's alleged crime has been through. That's what matters most.

Yes, we should wait for the legal process to take its course. Maybe the judge should have remembered it, too. …

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Jim Harbaugh remains a world beater

Jim Harbaugh makes college football interesting, unpredictable and fun, Martin Fennelly writes.

AP photo

Jim Harbaugh makes college football interesting, unpredictable and fun, Martin Fennelly writes.

Jim Harbaugh has crossed the Rubicon.

And I love it.

Michigan’s daffy, driven head coach has marched on Rome with his team and family. Field trip.

At the Vatican, Harbaugh handed a Wolverines helmet and Jordan shoes to: Pope Francis.

Talk about team building.

Then he addressed the media.

Harbaugh, that is, not the Pope. Harbaugh wore a suit – and a Michigan cap.

I’m not making that up.

I’m not making any of this up.

You couldn’t make up Jim Harbaugh if you tried.

Don’t you love it?

Harbaugh makes college football interesting, unpredictable and fun.

Of course, Michigan is holding three practices in Italy, too.

We have no news of Nick Saban and Alabama planning a visit to the Holy Land.

Jim Harbaugh has yet to beat Urban Meyer as Michigan coach, or win a championship. He couldn’t beat Jimbo Fisher Florida State in the bowl game last season.

Right.

Any of those guys hooked up with the Pope lately?

Harbaugh at the Vatican.

Sure beats three days at IMG.

Michigan’s coach is so far out front of everyone else when it comes to branding that it’s sick. He’s like six countries and one Holy Father ahead of everyone else. He’s a mastermind with a capital big block M. …

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Bucs can't go wrong with a safety or tight end

If Ohio State safety Malik Hooker drops to No. 19, great news.

AP photo

If Ohio State safety Malik Hooker drops to No. 19, great news.

It’s time for last-second crazy talk.

Give me a safety or give me a tight end.

Give me a destroyer of tight ends or a destroyer of safeties.

The NFL Draft is here. The Bucs sit at the 19th pick, at least at the moment.

This team has all sorts of needs. Safety is an obvious one. Tight end isn’t.

Either one works for me.

NFL Network analyst Mike Mayock’s mock draft Wednesday night had Ohio State safety Malik Hooker falling all the way to the Bucs. I’m not seeing that, but if Hooker does drop, great news. Me? I’d move up a few spots to get him. If that happened, and if I was a Bucs fan, I’d start banging pots and pans in celebration.

If Hooker isn’t around (LSU safety Jamal Adams will be long gone), I’m looking at Miami tight end David Njoku. If Njoku is there, that would be something else to celebrate.

A tight end.

You heard me.

At 19, it’s impossible to know who’ll be available. Too many things can happen in front of you.

If I’m the Bucs, the dream scenario is that one of those top two safeties, Adams or Hooker, is around. That would give an improving defense a huge leap to the capability to being a dominant defense. …

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