It’s not Smoak and mirrors.
As a matter of fact, Justin Smoak is on his way to an All-Star berth, and he made sure everyone knew it with his 22nd dinger of the year. Not only did he extend his career-best homer tally, but the mash broke MLB’s single-month home run record.
The 30-year-old Blue Jays first baseman is having his best year as a big-leaguer, hitting .299 with 22 home runs and a .960 OPS, tallying in his early at-bats on Friday. Smoak, originally a Ranger, has played with the Mariners and now the Jays in his career.
Still, conspiracy theories remain: Is MLB winding the baseballs tighter? Or is there something less nefarious at work here? Such as launch angles, exit velo, and all the other sexy Statcast stuff MLB is starting to push now.
So maybe Carmelo Anthony is ready to team up with one of his Banana Boat buds. That was the word early Monday from ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, who reported that sources told him Anthony is now willing to waive his no-trade clause for a move to the Cavaliers (where he’d finally get to play with King James) or the Rockets (where he’d get to play with Chris Paul but also for Mike D’Antoni).
Woj reported the Knicks probably wouldn’t be able to get much in return for Anthony, who’s, um, steering this boat. New York doesn’t want to take back power forward Ryan Anderson in a trade, Woj added.
Just last week, Anthony’s estranged wife, La La, said Anthony didn’t want to leave the Knicks because he wanted to be close to his son. What has changed, other than Phil Jackson being forced out of the Garden? Like most of this Melo drama, that’s not clear.
The Raptors are in trade discussions with the Pacers that involve sending guard Cory Joseph to Indiana, according to ESPN. Joseph, 25, averaged 9.3 points per game last season.