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updated: 4/3/2014 9:20 PM

Prediction: Masters winner will be first-timer

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  • Tiger Woods listens to a question during his news conference at the 2010 Masters golf tournament in Augusta, Ga. Woods will miss the Masters for the first time in his career after having surgery on his back.

    Tiger Woods listens to a question during his news conference at the 2010 Masters golf tournament in Augusta, Ga. Woods will miss the Masters for the first time in his career after having surgery on his back.
    Associated Press


Before we get started here, let's check in with Arsenio and see what he has lined up for tonight's show.


Just not the same:

Love him or hate him, having Tiger Woods in the field just makes a golf tournament more of an event.

Not that The Masters isn't an event without him -- it absolutely is -- but man, it will be weird not seeing him roaming that luscious Augusta layout next week.

And Phil makes two?

It sure doesn't sound good for Lefty, who pulled out of last week's Valero Texas Open after wrenching a muscle in his right side.

And now, instead of resting up for The Masters, he's gonna try and give it a go this week at the Houston Open, "sore" right side and all.

That doesn't sound like a good plan, but I'm not a doctor and I don't play one on TV -- plus he shot an opening round 68 Thursday -- so what do I know?

Wide open:

With no Tiger and a potentially injured Phil ... good luck making your Masters picks.

I've been saying all along it's gonna be a first-time winner this year, even before the two big guys were hurting.

Now I'm feeling much, much better about it.

Don't know who exactly who, but I'm thinking the winner will come from the trio of Jason, Ricky or Rory.

The numbers:

305 games.

200 victories.

Not too shabby, Tom Thibodeau.

Early impressions:

Well, I used to do a pretty good Ed McMahon and once in a while I'd pull out the rarely-used Robert Wagner (terrrr-rifffic!), but those aren't the impressions I'm talking about here.

Rather, I'm referring to new Cubs radio analyst Ron Coomer.

It's early, but so far so good. Friendly, funny and fitting in really well alongside Pat Hughes.


Has there ever been an analyst here with a more pronounced Chicago accent than Coomer?

And yeah, it drives me nuts when people say we have accents, but I've heard it enough to finally accept that we do.

Even though I still think most of us don't.

What in the world am I talking about?

Who woulda thunk?

Alejandro De Aza and Emilio Bonafacio?


That's the only way I can describe video of Don Baylor breaking his femur while catching a ceremonial first pitch earlier this week.

If you haven't seen it, watch at your own risk.

Interesting trend:

First it was Santa Anita then Del Mar. Now comes word this week that the folks at Keeneland will also be converting their synthetic main track to a dirt surface.

The quote:

"Keeneland's mission is to provide the highest level of racing possible, and in order to accomplish that goal going forward, a dirt surface is preferable," Keeneland president and CEO Bill Thomason said in a statement released Wednesday.

Think that says it all.

The question:

With all these major racetracks opting out of synthetic surfaces, might there be another track -- one that we're all familiar with -- trending the same way?

I honestly don't know that answer, but a guy can dream, right?

Random question:

Why is it that after a soaking rain like the one we just had, my thoughts drift to what the turf at Soldier Field would play like right about now?

And we all that answer, don't we?

Pick it up, kid:

The more you read between the lines of Joel Quenneville's assessment of Teuvo Teravainen, the more you get the feeling that Q senses the 19-year-old isn't quite ready to be a part of the Hawks' playoff run this year.

Hope I'm reading it wrong because this kid could really be something.

Get the decaf!

Jared Allen's pumped!!

And after listening to him Monday, I'll admit he's got me a little pumped now as well.


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