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Valentine's Views: Derek Jeter, Rajon Rondo, Tiger Woods, LA Lakers

Tiger Woods hits a shot on the 17th hole during the final round of the 2011 Masters Tournament at Augusta National Golf Club on April 10, 2011 in Augusta, Georgia.  (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
Tiger Woods hits a shot on the 17th hole during the final round of the 2011 Masters Tournament at Augusta National Golf Club on April 10, 2011 in Augusta, Georgia. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
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Let's tour the sports world on a Sunday morning and see what there is to talk about.

Derek Jeter hit a double off the top of the left-field wall during the New York Yankees' 7-5 loss to Texas Saturday night. Big deal? Well, actually it is since it is only Jeter's third extra-base hit of the season and probably the hardest ball he has hit all year.

Many have written Jeter off already after last season's career-worst .270 batting average and this season's slow start. Mike Lupica of the New York Daily News says it is too early to do that, and points to Boston's David Ortiz as his example.

I might agree with the Lupica that it is too early to write off Jeter. He still might be able to hit .285-.290, but Ortiz is a poor comparison. At least when Ortiz runs into the ball he can do damage. Jeter's slugging percentage of .282 shows how much he has lost, and several of his base hits are balls that have been hit so weakly they were unplayable.

Jeter will never be great again. At least this year, though, I still believe he will find a way to contribute.

News Item: Rajon Rondo is pretty good, even with one arm

What Rajon Rondo did Saturday night for the Boston Celtics was nothing short of amazing. Coming back to play, and play well, after dislocating his elbow in a collision with Miami's Dwayne Wade, was incredible. Rondo was playing one-armed, and protecting that left elbow at all costs, but he played a key role as Boston won, 97-81, to get back into its series with the Heat. Miami leads 2-1

News Item: The Lakers are falling

Down 3-0 to the Dallas Mavericks, the Los Angeles Lakers are falling ... and I doubt anyone who isn't a Lakers fan will care. Kobe's got enough rings, and so does Phil Jackson. It's different to see a flustered Phil on the sidelines screaming at his players -- and practically punching Pau Gasol -- rather than sitting smugly and impassively.

News Item: Tiger Woods to play Players Championship

I was glad to see this. When he hurt his left knee and right achilles -- again -- at The Masters you had to wonder when he would play again.

I will admit that I have always been a Woods' fan. I admired the unparalleled greatness when he was at his best, which we will never see again from Tiger. I hope, though, that injuries and his personal trangressions have not robbed him of so much that he is unable to break Jack Nicklaus' record of 18 major titles.

In some ways, the fact that he isn't the Tiger of old makes the chase more interesting.

News Item: Justin Verlander pitches second no-hitter

Remember the days, New York Yankees fans, when the Yankees tried to make Joba Chamberlain a starting pitcher because they thought he could be the next Verlander? Well, that never materialized. Question, though. Is Verlander, who has two career no-hitters and regularly throws 100-101 mph to go along with a wicked curveball, this era's Nolan Ryan?