Jim Valvano once said in his ESPY acceptance speech that everyone should do three things each day.

“To me, there are three things we all should do every day. We should do this every day of our lives. Number one is laugh. You should laugh every day. Number two is think. You should spend some time in thought. Number three is, you should have your emotions moved to tears, could be happiness or joy. But think about it. If you laugh, you think, and you cry, that’s a full day. That’s a heck of a day. You do that seven days a week, you’re going to have something special.”

I would venture out on a limb and even add one more to his list. I would add that we should all try to learn something new every day. It fits in nicely with the thinking aspect of his advice. That being said, I kind of like learning new things and letting you know what I’ve learned each day. Yesterday I did some more learning and I’d like to share what new information I’ve come across.

  1. Kosuke Fukudome wants anyone who may have doubted him so far to know that he’s capable of giving them the finger. - In case you missed it yesterday, Lou put Fukudome in the second spot in the lineup and he silenced doubters (all six of them) by going 3 for 3 with a home run and a couple of RBI. I mentioned yesterday that I hope people curb their critique of this guy until we really have a chance to see what he’s capable of. Let’s amend that and just say we want him to just be successful out of the gate so there is no worry about heckling.
  2. Carmen Pignatiello is becoming my choice for the second lefty out of the pen. – I’ve been a fan of Piggy since I had a chance to talk with him when he was in AA. He likened himself to a player in the mold of Jamie Moyer, which he credited as the reason why it would be harder for him to get a job in the Majors. No one wants a soft-tossing lefty out of the pen. People want flame throwers. If you take a look at the career numbers in the minors, you see an ERA of 3.67 and a WHIP of 1.27. He does soft toss it, but he does create a good amount of strikeouts and limits his walks. He gets lefties out, which is what we’re looking for. If he can continue to do what he’s done so far, I want him as my second lefty out of the pen on opening day.
  3. Kevin Hart deserves a spot in this bullpen, regardless of what it means for roster shuffling. – Hart came up last year and did extremely well in limited action. He’s come back out this year and done very well so far. When you look at what we’re currently projecting for the roster, we lack a long man. Hart can fill that role, but it probably means a guy like Jason Marquis or Sean Marshall, both of which would be better served as starters, are not in the pen to start the season. For Marshall that would mean pitching in Iowa’s rotation. For Marquis that means a trip to the waiver wire or a trade (most likely).
  4. Sam Zell cares about the team…even if only for the purpose of maximizing the money generated from a sale – Tom Waddle and Mark Silverman had Crane Kenney on the show today and asked him questions about the possible sale of the team by Zell. They asked questions about if Zell would simply pocket the money that would be generated by the sale of the naming rights to the stadium. Kenney defended his boss, as any good employee would. However, what he said I actually believe. He mentioned how he had talked with the Tribune in the past about making improvements to the field and was always shot down. He talked about how when he brought the proposal to Zell with the preface that it wouldn’t add anything to the revenue generated, Zell said that if it was good for the business, it needed to be done. I know a lot of fans are souring on Zell in the early going for the ghastly thought of renaming a stadium, but when you look at the bigger picture, he’s not going to ultimately do anything that will bring down the overall value of the franchise. He’s still planning to sell this team, which means he has every intent to make that sale as profitable as possible. That being said, decisions will be made with all factors being considered.
  5. Brett Farve retired. - It’s about freakin’ time!!!

On a side note, the concept of Five Things I Learned should probably be credited to Dave over at The Hardball Times, who probably stole it from someone else.

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Joe Aiello is the founder of View From the Bleachers and one of the lead writers as well as host of VFTB Radio. Growing up in Chicago, he fondly remembers attending games in the bleachers before that was the popular thing to do. Currently Joe resides in North Carolina with his wife and three kids. Connect with Joe via Twitter / Facebook / E-mail