The Front Row with JASON ELLIOTT August 19, 2012 - Coeur d'Alene Press: Sports

The Front Row with JASON ELLIOTT August 19, 2012

Let the debates begin

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Posted: Saturday, August 18, 2012 12:00 am | Updated: 11:52 am, Fri Nov 16, 2012.

Sometimes sports can leave you speechless.

Other times, they just make you wonder what if?

IN A perfect world, a starting pitcher might get more than one run to have a chance to win a baseball game.

Unfortunately for Seattle pitcher Felix Hernandez, that doesn't always happen.

What Hernandez has endured in Seattle is nothing short of amazing.

Against some of the best lineups in the league, Hernandez goes out and often time shuts them down, giving his team a chance to win each time he takes the mound.

Along the same lines, he's probably lost more than he'd deserved to win at the same time.

As the game and celebration wound down on Wednesday's perfect game, a running joke was started about how that might look if Hernandez was to complete that feat in a Yankee, Red Sox or other jersey.

That idea, as odd as it sounds, might not be that far off.

His contract is up in 2014, and while the team's general manager tweeted on Thursday that he'll never trade Felix - I can't say I believe him.

He traded Ichiro, didn't he?

And despite a winning streak here and there, if the team continues to finish last - that general manager might not have much choice in Hernandez's future, as he might be fired anyway.

The team has traded its superstars when they've been nearing the end of their deals - so why not him?

Hopefully it doesn't happen, because at least for a little while, there was some attention paid to teams in the northwest.

Which hasn't happened in a long time.

FOR THE last six weeks or so, a few members of the men's USA basketball team have talked about how they'd beat the Dream Team of 1992.

The ‘92 team, which included Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Larry Bird and Spokane native John Stockton among others, never really were challenged on the way to a gold medal.

This year’s team had a few close calls — but still was able to win gold as well, with players including Kobe Bryant, Kevin Durant and LeBron James.

The closest was on Sunday in the gold medal game, when they beat Spain 107-100.

When trying to judge both teams, they’re filled with Hall of Fame players and in their prime, are the best players in the game.

If it came down to a game between the two, in their prime, I’d take the Dream Team over this team.

Too much talent and height might be the biggest difference in that game.

CHANCES ARE that neither Hernandez will be traded, nor we’ll ever figure out which Olympic team was better.

While the idea of seeing both things happen might sound appealing at the moment, that’s not something I’d want to see anytime soon.

Especially Hernandez, because for once — there was something perfect about going to the ballpark again.

Jason Elliott is a sports writer for the Coeur d’Alene Press. He can be reached by telephone at 664-8176, Ext. 2020 or via email at

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