FALCON POINTS

Baseball Twitter loses its mind over the silliest things - collisions and juicy balls

Justin Verlander. Bob Levey/Getty Images

The All-Star break has come and gone, and baseball is set up for the second half of the season. The Astros are well on their way to another postseason run, and as they continue to get healthy, the post-All-Star break should be an easy coast to the wire. Yes, they need another starting pitcher before the playoffs, but the odds are good they will make a move.

But in the silly season of summer, the slowest time of year, baseball Twitter is losing its mind over goofy topics, and the Astros are at the center of both.

Overreaction to a play

You can tell the sports world is slow when Jake Marisnick is a topic for two days. If you have not seen the play, well, you have been living under a rock. The overreactions were instant. "Dirty player!" if you aren't an Astros fan. "He did nothing wrong" if you are. Almost every take was overly simplistic and patently biased. People had their minds made up and used whatever they saw to back up their argument. That unfortunately is the way of the world.

Did it warrant endless debate where everyone had to have an opinion? Of course not. Was it intentional? Probably not. But there is no way of truly judging that. Was it the right call? Yes. Should he get suspended? Possibly. You can not intend to hurt someone, but actions matter. Could it have been avoided? Maybe. The guy who drinks a fifth of Jack Daniels and gets in his car does not intend to slam into a minivan, either. But there is punishment. A play might not be intentionally dirty, but it can still be dirty.

Still, it is absolutely ridiculous to look at a bang bang play in slow motion and determine intent. An athlete has less than a second to make that decision in real time. You have 20 seconds in slow motion hindsight. Does it mean you should not have an opinion? Of course not. But bumper sticker takes and ripping anyone who disagrees? Save that for our uplifting political Twitter.

I do get where it comes from. There are a lot of hot take TV screamers making a lot of money doing the same thing. So many people feel the need to parrot the takes or take the opposite side. We have lost the "debate" part of debates.

Regardless, MLB should make a decision and move on and Twitter should find something else to pontificate about. Oh, wait...

Your balls are juiced

Justin Verlander started the discussion on juiced up balls by calling out MLB. "It's a (bleeping) joke," he said.

Verlander is refreshing. He speaks his mind, and is not afraid to take a stand, even if it is something you disagree with. It is much better than athletes who give stock answers.

It started a debate on whether or not he was correct. Several players disagreed, including his own teammate, Carlos Correa, the victim of a vicious massage assault.

Does it really matter? Home runs sell tickets. Just look at the steroid era. And if you don't believe there are PEDs out there that can't be masked or have not been discovered, then you are just naive. If they have juiced the balls? Fine. There are other, more detailed possibilities. But let's not worry about stuff like that, right?

If these are the topics that people are concerned with...It's time for a change in your life. Go on a date. Watch Stranger Things. Get out of your parent's house and go do something fun and put the Twitter machine away for a while. Don't turn simple comments or actions into endless debate. Be more than a Fortune Cookie philosopher or have better than a bumper sticker hot take.

What's next?

I get things are slow. But by now, we should have all moved on. Yet here I am writing about it. I can't wait for football season, when we can dive into real takes.

Like "was that really targeting?" "Did he intend to hurt the player?"

Oh, wait...

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It's Draft SZN! Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images.

On Thursday June 22, the NBA will hold their annual draft. With the Rockets owning the number four overall pick, you'd think things would be looking up for them. However, in a draft where the top three players are all expected to be immediate impact guys, the drop begins where the Rockets are selecting. Armed with some young talent, cap space, and a new head coach, the Rockets are looked at as a team on the rise. But what will help contribute to that rise?

When you have assets, you have options. There are three main options I see here for the Rockets with number four: keep the pick and select the guy you think will work best moving forward; trade up to select the guy they feel they missed out on that isn't a punk Frenchie who dislikes Houston; or trade the pick for an established star. The other option is trading the pick for a good player and a future pick/s. Let's take a look at the options:

Option 1: Keeping the pick means you're drafting the leftovers. Those leftovers start with Amen Thompson. He's the guy I believe can come in and help sooner rather than later. At 6'7 and 215 pounds, he has an NBA body. His skill set can come in handy because he's played point guard. This team could use a true point guard, but Thompson isn't exactly a traditional point. He has the size of a wing player, which allows him to see over the top of the defense. His outside shooting is abysmal and needs a vast improvement. To me, adjusting to life as a pro without his twin brother Ausar, another good draft prospect himself, will be difficult. Overall, I believe he's the guy to take at four if they decide to stay.

Option 2: Trading up to get Scoot Henderson or Brandon Miller may prove to be difficult. Both teams picking ahead of the Rockets have their point guards. Charlotte wants to find Lamelo Ball a running mate and have their eyes rumored to be set on Miller. Portland is trying their best to keep Dame Lillard happy. The Rockets would be best served to trade with either team willing to move down for whatever they offer, provided it's worthwhile. Portland was just in the playoffs the last few years and aren't as far out as some would think. They're the ones I'd eye to trade with. Speaking of Portland and Dame…

Option 3: The Rockets need a point guard and Dame may be looking to get out. Help them start their rebuild and bring Dame to Houston. Or, how about the Jaylen Brown rumors? Fred VanVleet has a player option for next season, then becomes an unrestricted free agent. There are a few options of finding veteran help around the league, especially at the point. Problem is, are any of these team willing to take the Rockets' offers? It'd start with number four, and include other assets as well. This option makes sense if the organization believes the roster, with whatever vet addition they make via trade, is playoff ready.

Option 4: The last option I thought about is to trade the pick for a first rounder in next year's draft and a decent player. I see this as a last resort of sorts. But only if they do not feel comfortable with whatever player they may take. That, and if they want to save cap space for next free agency period. Not having a first rounder next year isn't as bad as one might think. The team will need to make the necessary moves this offseason to ensure that won't be an issue next draft. FOMO is real, especially when a team is rebuilding and can't use one of the best/cheapest forms of acquiring top talent.

I talked with my good friend “TC.” The guy loves basketball and even hips me to a bunch of stuff. He wants them to move up in the draft for Scoot or Miller. While he is a James Harden fan, he doesn't necessarily want him back. He wouldn't mind it, but it's not his first option. I've spoken with a lot of native Houstonians about this. They all want a winner sooner than later, but have different philosophies on how to get there. Personally, I say options two and three are my faves. Trade the pick for help, rookie or vet, and go from there. I guess we'll have to wait three more weeks before we find out. Or will we…

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