DON'T MESS WITH MACK

Ken Hoffman calls out a radio host's lame Twitter attack on Mattress Mack

Ken Hoffman calls out a radio host's lame Twitter attack on Mattress Mack
Photo courtesy of Gallery Furniture

This article originally appeared on CultureMap.

When you shoot your mouth off, especially on Twitter, it'd help if you knew what, and who, you're talking about. You could catch a lot of hell.

Witness fool radio host Clay Travis, who's known for being purposely outrageous and controversial. Many times, I'll give it to him, he's on the money.

This time, though, he really stepped in it. Here's his misguided Twitter take from a few days ago:

"I find myself rooting for this Mattress Mack guy to lose all of his money because I'm tired of hearing about him. Marketing genius but I want this guy to go bankrupt. I wish he would lose $100 million."

Houston responds

To say he caught some blowback would be putting it mildly. You don't mess with Jim "Mattress Mack" McIngvale in Houston, Texas. (He has reportedly lost millions on betting on the Astros.) Perhaps a friend in the press box should have told him to lay off Mattress Mack. Travis would have been on safer ground attacking Mother's Day or military vets.

Some first responders:

"I know multiple families who lost their homes and belongings during Harvey. He let them sleep on beds in his stores, fed them hot meals and made sure their children had clothes. That's what he's done for this community."

"What the F have you done for yours?"

"It's going to happen to you for wishing it on him."

"Oh, look who has another trash take."

"Do a little research and you might feel differently. Our world needs more Mattress Macks."

"Clay, this ain't it. Mattress Mack is a legend."

"This is the wrong take. One of the biggest philanthropists in Houston."

And the one who said it best:

"You're wishing bankruptcy on the man who bought 100-plus tickets so veterans could go to the World Series, who opened his store to those who needed escape from Hurricane Harvey, regularly supports community charities, provides furniture to families in need. I could go on and on and on. GFY."

(You'll have to google GFY.)

Continue on CultureMap to read about the time Ken Hoffman has a similar fail.

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How significant Astros spring training revelation highlights even more reasons for optimism

The Houston Astros had a very successful season in 2023 which led them back to the ALCS for the seventh-straight season, but despite another deep playoff run, their pitching did regress from the prior year.

While many would point to their historic bullpen in 2022 and say they had nowhere to go but down, that doesn't paint the full picture. It was the starting rotation that really fell off in 2023. Justin Verlander, Framber Valdez, Cristian Javier, Hunter Brown, and Jose Urquidy all saw a spike in their ERAs from the previous season.

According to a recent report from The Athletic's Chandler Rome, we might have an explanation for Jose Urquidy's down year.

The Astros and Urquidy believe he was tipping his pitches. Which would explain why the slugging percentage against his fastball jumped from .482 in 2022 to .632 in 2023.

When hitters know a pitcher is tipping, they often start hunting fastballs. Also, his strikeout percentage went down last year and his walks went way up. He had 2 more walks per nine innings in 2023 than he had in 2021.

Part of that could be him aiming for corners and refusing to give in to hitters because his fastball wasn't performing up to expectations.

His WHIP in 2023 really jumped off the page as well. He finished with a WHIP over 1.4. While his career WHIP is 1.143. That's a huge difference.

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Until last season, Urquidy never finished with an ERA over 3.95. He recorded a 5.29 ERA last year. So when we factor in his shoulder injury that cost him three months of the season, and the fact he was tipping pitches, we believe he's in store for a bounce-back season.

And the Astros are going to need him, especially with Justin Verlander and JP France possibly not being available for the start of the season.

What will the rotation look like early on?

The Astros haven't ruled Verlander out yet, so he could be ready to go. But if not, and we base this off what we saw last season. The rotation will likely include Valdez, Javier, Brown, Urquidy, Ronel Blanco, and Brandon Bielak.

Don't miss the video above for the full discussion!

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