Wakeup Call: LeBron back to Cleveland? Dream on

Wakeup Call: LeBron back to Cleveland? Dream on
March 10, 2014, 7:00 am
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Here's your wakeup call -- a combination of newsworthy and/or interesting tidbits -- for Monday, March 10:

BASEBALL

The Yankees are looking to dump Ichiro, and what better place for an old, shell-of-his-former-self icon than the Phillies? (NBC's Hardball Talk)

The Braves channel their inner Kevin Bacon -- "Be calm! All is well!" -- after their projected Opening Day starter, Kris Medlen, strains his forearm and has to leave his start against the Mets. (AP) 

The latest Cuban defector signs with the Cardinals. (AP)

Clayton Kershaw's not only going to Australia with the Dodgers -- that was up in the air for a while -- but he'll be the Opening Day starter. (Yahoo! Sports)

He's been mulling one-year offers from the Blue Jays and Orioles, but now Ervin Santana reportedly gets a three-year proposal from the Twins. However, he says he'd prefer a one-year deal. (Hardball Talk)

When it comes to the Santana negotiations, don't ask Dan Duquette because he doesn't "know what's real and what's not real." (CSN Baltimore)

Just like the Marlins weren't too happy with the lineup the Red Sox brought to Jupiter, Vin Scully, of all people, chides the Giants for keeping Opening Day starter Madison Bumgarner back in Scottsdale to face a “futures” team of prospects while using minor-leaguer Edwin Escobar in Glendale against the Dodgers. (CSN Bay Area)

Old friend Jorge De La Rosa -- remember, he was part of the package that got Curt Schilling to Boston -- will start the opener for the Rockies. (Hardball Talk)

They may be multimillionaires, but they're still kids at heart. (Yahoo! Sports)

COLLEGE BASKETBALL

Detractors point to the schedule: 113th-toughest in the nation. Supporters point to the record: 34-0, the only undefeated team heading into the NCAA tournament. And so the debate rages about No. 2 Wichita State, the newly crowed Missouri Valley Conference champions. (AP)

As for the Shockers, they have one message for the haters: Bring it on. Because, in the words of center Chadrack Lufile, "Wolves do not fret over the opinion of sheep." (Yahoo! Sports)

And that goes double for whoever printed up the MVC Championship T-shirts. (NBC's College Basketball Talk)

Other teams getting their tickets punched yesterday: Mercer, which wins the Atlantic Sun title . . . (AP)

. . . and Coastal Carolina, the new Big South champ. (AP)

Maryland makes its last regular-season game in the ACC -- the Terps are headed to the Big Ten next year -- a good one, upsetting No. 5 Virginia. (CSN Washington)

No. 7 Syracuse rights the ship with a victory at Florida State. (AP)

Coach Bo Ryan goes into his Mickey The Dunce routine when asked about No. 9 Wisconsin's chances for a top seed in the NCAA tournament after its upset loss at Nebraska. (AP)

That win may have punched the Huskers' ticket to the NCAAs. (College Basketball Talk)

One bubble team that had a bad day was St. Joseph's, which lost to La Salle. And coach Phil Martelli says he has "no idea" what the loss did to their tournament hopes. (CSN Philly)

Remember last week, when everyone was talking about No. 22 Michigan State surging into the dance? Never mind. (AP)

See, here's the problem with No. 8 Kansas saying Joel Embiid needs four weeks off to rest his ailing back: The season only has four weeks left. (College Basketball Talk)

GOLF

If there's anyone out there not willing to give Patrick Reed credit for winning at Doral, no problem. He's got things all taken care of in the patting-myself-on-the-back department. (Yahoo! Sports)

Other, less boastful winners Sunday: Inbee Park in the World Ladies Championship . . . (AP)

. . . and Chesson Hadley in the Puerto Rico Open. (AP)

Tiger Woods' back issues aren't going away. (Yahoo! Sports)

HOCKEY

King Henrik makes his 300th career victory one to remember, as he shuts out the Red Wings. (AP)

Lundqvist's namesakes are on quite the roll. (AP)

The Blues' shootout win over the WIld puts them in first place overall in the NHL. (AP)

Kari Lehtonen's "not doing that well" after suffering a concussion Saturday night, according to the Stars, so it looks like Tim Thomas will get some playing time in his new home. (AP)

Rostislav Klesla's picking up his ball and going home. (AP)

PRO BASKETBALL

The Cavs think they have a legitimate chance to lure LeBron James back to Cleveland this offseason. The writer of the piece thinks the Cavs are "delusional." (NBC's Pro Basketball Talk)

The Eastern Conference is bad enough. But now its two best teams, the Heat . . . (AP)

. . . and the Pacers, are on losing streaks. (AP)

So maybe the Bulls will step into the breach. (NBCs Pro Basketball Talk)

Joakim Noah's father, former tennis star Yannick Noah, is pretty excited about the Bulls' surge in general and his son's leap into superstardom in particular. So, Yannick, here's your boy's advice: "Just drink a brewski. Just chill." (Both stories CSN Chicago) 

As bad as things are for some of those Eastern powers, things could be worse. I mean, look at the Thunder; they actually lost to the Lakers. (AP)

Did Nerlens Noel spill the beans about his return date? (CSN Philly)

A Republican legislator in Minnesota defends an anti-NBA Tweet that many are calling racist. (AP)

PRO FOOTBALL

There were a lot of things the Lions didn't do during WIlliam Clay Ford's 50-year stewardship -- like get to a Super Bowl, or get to an NFC Championship game, or win more than one playoff game, or avoid the nearly impossible in the parity-is-everything NFL by being terrible for decades -- but his legacy goes beyond a half-century of miserable football. Or at least it should. (Yahoo! Sports)

Michael Bennett apparently is poised to join his brother Martellus in Chicago. (NBC's Pro Football Talk)

Donte Whitner is mouthy, self-centered, and plays borderline dirty. No wonder the Jets are interested. (CSN Bay Area)

Antonio Cromartie gives "a big up to The Jets Fan base" on his way out the door. (Pro Football Talk)

Matt Schaub doesn't think he'll have to give a big up to The Texans Fan base, despite the nearly unanimous consensus that's his days there are over. (CSN Houston)

Jared Allen to the Vikings: "I'm out. 'Bye." (Pro Football Talk)

Karlos Dansby turns down a two-year offer believed to be worth between $10 million and $12 million from the Cardinals, which means he expects to find more on the open market. (Pro Football Talk)

Here's a surprise: Rashard Mendenhall is retiring at age 26. (AP)

Jah Reid becomes the third Raven to be arrested this offseason. (CSN Baltimore)

SOCCER

The opening weekend of the MLS season emulates the NBA: West is best. (NBC's Pro Soccer Talk)

TENNIS

Elena Baltacha, a former Top 50 player, says she has been diagnosed with liver cancer at age 30. (AP)