Monday, February 28, 2011


In a conversation with Dwight Perry about Duke Snider yesterday, he said, " He had the misfortune of playing center field in New York when Mays and Mantle did; a very, very good player in his own right.
In any discussion of the three centerfielders, that is the accepted analysis. I believe that stems from the ultimate record of the three of them, but few realize that Duke was older and peaked just as the other two were getting started. In his hey-day, 1953 - 1957, Duke was their equal if not their leader.

Batting average : Duke - .311, Mays - .323, Mantle - .324
On-base pct. : .407 .397 .444
Home runs : 207 163 171
RBI's : 585 418 517
Lets not forget he was also a superb outfielder with a strong arm and hit 11 homers in 6 World Series.

Holmes blew a five-hole lead to Watson over the final eight holes at the Match Play Championship?
It's a mystery to everybody.

Greg Cote on Miami's hockey team, the Panthers, poor TV ratings:
"The good news? The Panthers occasionally narrowly outdraw the test pattern and the whining siren of the Emergency Broadcast System."

• Scott Ostler of the San Francisco Chronicle, on injury-prone A's pitcher Rich Harden: "If you put an arrow pointing to each of his injuries, Harden would look like General Custer."

I'm outta here

Sunday, February 27, 2011




Now there's only one great New York centerfielder left. Goodbye to the Duke, a classy opponent, you couldn't root against.

Mike Pauldine - Willy Mays
Chad Picasner - Mickey Mantle
Dave Segal - Duke Snider

We argued many a night sitting in a darkened Kingsford Park diamond, and actually, you couldn't go wrong with any one of the three.



Yeah, I'm still around. It's been so long since I last posted, that I had to sign in again. I couldn't even remember my password.

"Clueless" Bud Selig has named him Vice-President of Baseball Operations. If the job involves anything besides sitting at his desk with his arms folded and a dead-man stare, Joe is going to need help. He did say he was going to use "his staff" as much as possible, which probably means a full time job for Scott Proctor. I hear Scott again has the full use of his arm after Torre tried to wear it out with two different teams.

Being ranked in the top 10 in college basketball has put a bulls eye on the backs of those teams. Kansas, Texas, Ohio St., Pittsburgh and now Duke, have all taken it on the chin while holding the first spot in the rankings. Famed bracketologist, Joe Lunardi, is said to be resting comfortably in his home wearing a coat with the sleeves that tie in the back. It is interesting that all the number one teams lost on the road. And you're not allowed to play at home in the NCAA Tournament.
Syracuse has a chance to be one of the top four teams in the Big East and draw a double-bye in the Conf. Tournament, but they need Louisville to lose two more games (Pittsburgh today and then @ W. Virginia), which could happen.
I watched the Duke-Va Tech game last night, and after the Hokies won, there was another court-storming. We've seen these before, but by the time the Va. Tech fans were done, the court was literally covered from corner-to-corner and basket-to-basket. That's one of the reasons that I think college basketball is one of the most exciting sports around.

There was an article in the Roch paper today about a basketball ref who is deaf. He doesn't have to listen to the crowd (or the coaches) calling him names, however, we probably miss a couple of technical fouls during the course of the game. I don't think the deafness is any problem, especially when you consider that there seem to be a number of refs out there who are blind.

Actually, it's too early to say anything but "Nice statue of George out there, boys." Between that and the billboard-sized plaque in Yankee Stadium, George may be out of mind, but he'll never be out of sight.

Supposedly, Selig's crack committee on the state of baseball is talking about changing the alignments of the divisions. One suggestion is four 7-team divisions with Oakland and Tampa being "absorbed". This would combine the current American and National leagues and eliminate the designated hitter. I don't see either of those two things happening.

It's called "Breaking Brad," and it's published daily instead of weekly. I love it; you can't get too much of his humor.
In a 24-hour period, the Nebraska state patrol confiscated 641 pounds of marijuana along Interstate 80. Officials knew something was up when during the prior 24-hour period food orders at restaurants along I-80 were up 6,000 percent.
A 78-year-old Wyoming man was arrested for skiing uphill. Prosecutors are recommending probation and that he be ordered to stay away from caffeinated coffee.

I'm outta here.

Sunday, February 20, 2011


***MISTAKE #1***
Notre Dame versus West Virginia at Morgantown. Not my favorite town, but WVA coach Bob Huggins is a trip. The refs called a charge on a Mountaineer drive to the basket which was clearly a blocking foul. Huggins had to be physically restrained by TWO assistant coaches from going after the ref, and as they say in West Virginia, " hisself a technical." Not two minutes later, on the other end, Notre Dame star Ben Hansbrough found himself on the receiving end of a charge which the refs called a block. Bye-bye Ben and hello big "T" to ND coach Mik Aoki, who attempted to throw the ref out of the game. It didn't take though. All in all, an exciting game completely mis-handled by the refs. When both coaches get called for a technical foul within two minutes, it's a pretty good sign that the Zebras have lost control.

***MISTAKE #2***
In the Pittsburgh-St Johns game, another barn-burner, an apparent non-call by the refs with less than 2 seconds left, allowed SJU guard Dwight Hardy to drive the baseline and score the winning basket with a reverse underhand scoop. Great play but it appeared that his last step was clearly on the end line. This made for better drama, though.

On as sad note, it looks like Detroit Tiger star Miguel Cabrera has slipped off the wagon. Cabrera, who had alcoholism problem in 2009, appeared to have licked the problem last year, having his most productive season. Last week, he was arrested for DUI in Florida, actually taking a swig of booze in front of the State Trooper. Not exactly the brightest thing you could do. I hate to see gifted athletes have this kind of problem. I wish him luck.

I haven't posted lately because I've been under the weather. No, it isn't because of Annie-O's cooking, it was a cold.


Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Spring Training Update

Another Yankee First!

More catchers than pitchers in camp.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day

The greatest love is a mother's, then a dog's, then a sweetheart's. Polish proverb

A man in love is incomplete until he is married. Then he is finished. Zsa Zsa Gabor

How did sex get to be dirty in the first place? God must have been a Republican. Will Durst

If you want to read about love and marriage, you've got to buy two separate books. Alan King

Trust your husband, adore your husband, and get as much as you can in your name. Advice to Joan Rivers from her mother

Bachelors should be heavily taxed. It is not fair that some men should be happier than others. Oscar Wilde

Sunday, February 13, 2011


Don't look for too much insight into the teams yet. This early in Spring Training there will be a lot of players with 3-digit numbers on their backs.

So the Super Bowl broadcast caught Cameron Diaz feeding popcorn to A-Rod. Big deal. It isn't like they caught him licking the butter off her fingers. Actually, the person most upset about this is A-Rod himself. Wake up, Alex. You're a million-dollar ballplayer, sitting in the stands with a beautiful movie star at one of the biggest sports events of the year. What did you think they were going to show? John Madden stuffing a hot dog in his mouth? Nope! Not even if Madden accidentally bit off a finger at the same time. A real possibility, by the way.

There were so many, it could take longer than the pre-game show to list them all.

From Janice Hough: "Only 363 days until Super Bowl XLVI. (Feb, 5, 2012) I hear the pre-game show starts next week."
From Argus Hamilton: "There were no cheerleaders at this year's Super Bowl: because Ben Roethlisberger's restraining order says 500 feet."

Even though she's a former Mickey Mouse Club Mouseketeer, blowing the words to the National Anthem is probably what cost Christina Aguilera the "I'm going to Disneyland" commercial.

Cowboys owner, Jerry Jones, couldn't get anything right for the SuperBowl event. First, his Cowboys didn't make it, then he lost 1250 seats that were purchased, because he didn't get clearance from the Fire Marshall resulting in numerous law suits. Lastly, he cost taxpayers over $450,000 by having four Navy F-18s fly over the game. The problem? The retractable roof was closed and no one in the stadium saw them.

...but It might not be. From Brad Dickson:
"Wake Forest baseball coach Tom Walter donated a kidney to one of his players. The NCAA promptly opened an investigation and on Friday banned Wake Forest from postseason play and ordered that the kidney be returned to the coach."
With the NCAA, you can't be sure.


Friday, February 11, 2011


The sports columns are filled with all the various possibilities that we might witness this season. There aren't even that many actual predictions other than the Red Sox are the definite favorites to win the AL East. Some time in the next couple of weeks, the writers will publish their predictions as to the order of finish in each league. Until then, we'll have to put up with the "space-fillers," such as the one in Buster Olney's blog today: What was the actual game being shown on the TV in the movie "A Few Good Men?" Answer - Twins/Orioles, 6/17/91. Now we'll all sleep better.

...anybody that's available or who may become available. It doesn't matter who, according to the sportswriters. It's just easy to mention the Yanks simply because they can afford anyone. Other teams can kick the tires on a player and no mention is made, but if the Yanks even LOOK at a player, why it's becomes front page stuff. There is one exception: Albert Pujols. Everyone is convinced that the Yanks have no interest in him, and they're probably right.
You have to wonder what's going on there, since St Louis seems to be dragging their feet in the negotiations. Pujols wants it settled by 2/16 or he going to go to free agency at the end of the year.

Ross Ohlendorf won his arbitration case against the Pirates, getting a raise to $2+ million from $439,000. I think if I'm the Pirates front office, I'd be a little concerned about the process: Ohlendorf's record was 1-11.

Pujols is reportedly asking for a 10-year contract at $30 million per year. He probably deserves it, but he's going to have to eat his popcorn by himself: he's not A-Rod after all.

Oriole GM, Andy MacPhail, asked a group of law students what was the worst baseball contract ever. He finally got the answer he was looking for: A-Rod's $252 million deal with Texas. His point was that A-Rod did all you could expect from a player during his stay there, but...and it's a big but, the team wasn't able to improve and the attendance did not increase. What's the point of giving a player, any player, an extreme contract if it doesn't pay off in the end. You especially need to increase your revenue stream and one major player won't do that for you. How do you do it? Put a WINNING team on the field, he said. Seems like a good point.

Now put that theory to work for the Yankees. They supposedly have a very good core of minor league players and a major league roster that's very old. If you start trading these youngsters away to get some stop-gap superstar, you're just continuing the pattern. Maybe the Yanks should stand pat and hold onto these highly rated kids to replace the veterans instead of mortgaging the future for another veteran. But they won't.

"During the Penguins-Islanders game, the two goaltenders got into a fight. This was the first NHL game to end with a final score of 39-38."


Sunday, February 06, 2011


The game isn't until 6:00 PM, but the pregame show(s) are in high gear. Everyone is making predictions, of course, with the split pretty even with a small edge to the Packers. Earlier in the week, it seemed weighted more heavily towards the Pack, but with all the hype for both teams, true perception of the abilities of both teams tend to blur.
Not that I'm the prognosticator that the Little Watootsie is, but Picasner is going with the Steelers, 28-24.

The Pro Football Hall of Fame election results were announced and congratulations to those elected. I have but one question: How could Deion Sanders make it but not Andre Reed? If we were choosing up sides, I'd pick Andre three times before I'd let myself get stuck with Neon Deion. He was fast and talented but I think you could add up his career total tackles and not get to double figures. This is football, after all.


Saturday, February 05, 2011


Citing a lack of "hunger," Andy said goodbye to baseball. Well, that sure puts a hole in the Yankee's roster. That's two veteran pitchers that have retired while still on top of their game: Pettitte and Mike Mussina. At least 'Moose' left after achieving a personal milestone - a 20-win season, but Andy reached no such personal level and leaves himself well short of the stats needed to be elected into the Hall of Fame. Who knows? Maybe the fire is smoldering deep inside and we'll see him in June or July. I doubt it.

Pedro Martinez has the "fire," just no suitors. Martinez insists he's ready to give it another go. Yeah, right. You really can't sit out for a year at age 39 and expect to be able to perform at the ML level. Adios, Pedro.

***IF YOU CAN'T BEAT 'EM,...***
...try a smaller pond. The Yanks might not have the pitching to get into the playoffs, but it looks like the Triple-A affiliate, Scranton-Wilkes Barre, might just have a powerhouse. Adding to the trio of supposedly sure-fire pitching stars, the Yanks have signed two former ML pitchers, Freddy Garcia and Bartolo Colon, to minor league contracts, with the idea that they toil away in the minors till someone gets hurt and fails at their shot in the big time. Now they've inked two former ML infielders to minor league contracts: Ronnie Belliard and Eric Chavez. It's as though Cashman has no idea what to do with his money.

At least the Syracuse Orange can still beat the teams they're supposed to beat. Let's see what happens when Georgetown comes to the Carrier Dome next Wednesday. I had trouble listening to the announcers the whole game. The analyst sounded just like Joe Morgan. I kept waiting to hear how the 1974 Cincinnati Bearcats basketball team was the best ever.

There's supposed to be a football game tomorrow. Must be an important one since the pregame shows start at 6:00 AM. The game itself is scheduled for 6:00 PM. This is like a telethon. Maybe Terry Bradshaw will bring his banjo. What? You say he can't play? That's all right, he can't talk either. Hasn't stopped him so far.


Wednesday, February 02, 2011


In the Yankees' case, it's Pitchers, Catchers and Wheelchairs.

The Yanks have two spots open in their starting rotation (assuming Burnett lasts the season) and they have this to choose from:
** A 24-year old rookie with 42 innings of ML experience, Ivan Nova
** A 30-year old journeyman, Sergio Mitre, whose best asset is Brian Cashman's undying love
** 30-year old Mark Pryor, a former phenom who hasn't pitched in the Big Leagues since 2006
** 37-year old Bartolo Colon whose fork and spoon move faster than his pitches
** 36-year old Freddy Garcia who at least had a decent year in Chicago last year.

In another example of his cost-cutting policy, Brian Cashman has announced that negotiations with Tom Seaver to be the #5 starter, have broken off since the Yanks refused to match his Social Security payments.

The Tampa Bay Rays have announced that they have signed "The Idiot" and "The Quitter." Actually, that's not fair: Johnny Damon isn't really an idiot. On the other hand, Janice Hough is starting a lottery where fans can post the actual day that Manny Ramirez decides he doesn't want to play for Tampa anymore. She says she hasn't had a guess that would get to the start of the season yet. Manny has already started. At a press conference he turned to Damon and said, "You play 100 games and I'll play 62." To which management replied, "62 days? Well, so far it's a good deal."