Saturday, March 5, 2011

Guesses... Gaffes.... and Glory

The Sun sparkles across Arizona and Florida as 2011 Spring training Cactus and Grapefruit Leagues heat up. We have made it out of the deepest month of Winter and enter in to March Madness!

Oh! As a great ‘mood’ lifter while reading, please go to the link below:

‘Glory Days’ The Boss!

The storylines… The action… The Charlie Sheen sound bites! March has shot out of the gates faster than a bulls stampede in Pamplona! I can’t recall if Phil saw his shadow; regardless, guesses, gaffes, and a story of lost glory heat up media sites spanning around the globe!


Cardinals Ace Adam Wainwright appears to be out for the year leaving St. Louis hanging adrift beginning the 2011 Season. Although Manager LaRussa has disclosed a spot ‘open’ for an upcoming pitcher in their farm system, I cannot stop contemplating the thought of Cardinals front office dispatching Scouts over to Arizona to sniff out a trade. San Francisco comes into Spring Training top heavy with pitching talent. No! I am not suggesting any of the pitching gods that assaulted the Phillies and Rangers in last year’s post season… But there is a heavily paid leftie desperately wanting to prove his worth (his name might start with a Z, and SF wouldn’t mind having some financial breathing room to acquire offensive depth threat), a veteran hoping to crack in to the starting line up (Bochy calls him Soup), and a handful of  lively arms itching to come up to the ‘Show’ (Vogelsong and Verdugo look promising). Needless to say, It wouldn’t surprise me to see a trade comment appear in a later post.

Read more about Wainwright’s possible fate, as well as breaking news out of Giants camp that both Zito and Bochy have poo-pooed as hearsay-

Hank Aaron and Pete Rose were not shy in disclosing their hopefuls for the 2011 Fall Classic…  With that in mind, I want to extend my appreciation and gratitude towards hammerin’ Hank and Pete for not allowing the hype currently being shoved down our throats from everywhere on the ‘ordained’ line ups of Philadelphia and New York … San Francisco pads their line up with a slimmer Panda (Pablo Sandoval), an upcoming first baseman, Brandon Belt, and returning from injury Mark Darosa eager to prove his worth.  Boston improves their 2011 bid with adding Adrien Gonzalez, and everyone coming into camp (for the most part) healthy (injuries plagued Red Sox all Season long in 2010 with Youklis going down, Lester out, and Dave Ortiz not so Big Papi). It’s been 99 years since these teams saw one another post Pennant. How about THAT Hype?!  

Finally, I am attempting my wits at the ‘guessing’ game! I took a risky plunge today (not really holding a job in the industry, but definitely have the drive and desire) and submitted an application for an promotion ‘Dream Job’ to follow baseball for the 2011 Season! I like to insert a quote I heard recently that Sir Charles Barkley uttered, “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take”… I’m taking a ‘shot’ (it may be in the dark, but everyone that has made it has started in the same place, the obscure). Enjoy part 2 of my essay question reply –

2011 MLB MVP Predictions

If you asked 500 MLB enthusiasts about guestimating 2011 MVP, you will receive 500 varied answers backed by a spackle of reasons…

Needless to say, I did have some frontrunners I was eying… And then I viewed stats. I know, I know, one must NOT measure a player on paper…. Or should you? I do believe it’s a mixture of paper, potential, and placement. Two names keep popping up in my gut and (gasp)…. I will ride them through the 2011 Season…

Face it, we all have biased tendencies; with that in mind, I turn my attention following echoes of a couple baseball heroes  placing their  2011 Fall Classic predictions in print-  Hank Aaron and Pete Rose are pretty secure with their anticipation in seeing Boston Red Sox and San Francisco Giants in 2011 World Series… If so, my picks for NL and AL MVP will be contending too.

Adrien Gonzalez was a monster signing for Boston, and possibly the missing ingredient leading them back to the playoffs. Adrien's stats have been on the rise and I anticipate his BA bumping above 300, now that he will be hitting in the middle of an explosive Boston lineup. What is that stat that Billy Bean points out? Vorp is it? Adrien has been consistently progressing annually playing for mediocre clubs with a batting average of .284, a slugging percentage slowly moving in right direction in low 500s, and OBP approaching 400. He has made the All-Star team 3 times, 2 golden gloves, and NL Player standout 4 times already. If all plays out as expected, Adrien and Boston will be smiling in October.

Now, everyone adjust their Google Maps coordinates to San Francisco. Coming off monster rookie numbers, the fresh-faced ‘nothing phases me’ kid, Buster Posey, keeps getting better! In a spring training game this week, he blasted a ball out of Scottsdale Stadium where if it weren’t for the grassy knoll in dead center, it would’ve reached San Francisco Bay!  The ‘joy’ of Georgia has NO drawbacks, giving us more than any hype. Posey was called up in May 2010 to replace an aging Benjie Molina (traded to Texas). There was concern if a 21 year-old ‘wet behind the ears’ kid would be able to command one of the best starting rotations in baseball. He guided Lincecum, Cain, and Bumgarner past expected winners of Halladay, Oswalt, Cliff Lee, and Leiter. Opposing managers think twice about stealing. 

Posey put up .297 in his first post season appearance; his OBP approaching 400, Slugging in 500 range, and for our Sexy stat, OPS is over 800! Buster began with .315  BA in 2010 Spring training, and ended the with .305 in 108 games. Folks, Buster is currently batting .667 at Spring warm ups… Need I say more? #28 should be the poster boy wonder of MLB! He was star struck and honored to co-host the World Series trophy trip back home to the Polo Grounds in New York with Willies Mays, where PS  46   now stands.  Buster and San Francisco know a target is on their backs defending the World Series championship, and have their game faces on. The 2010 NL Rookie may not realize he’s an MVP… Everyone else knows it!


As BYU dismisses their Star Center for obstructing the school’s ‘Honor’ Code (consensual sex with his girlfriend), Sports Illustrated publishes a disturbing trend of crime among college athletes.  I love what Len Berman pointed out in his top 5 ( earlier this week when he commented if more college teams implemented BYU’s Honor Code, there might not be any athletes left to play!

I am saddened that I will have to wait another week to wake up at God knows what hour to watch my Formula1! The Season was to commence March 13, only to be deferred due to a little Social Unrest in Bahrain… Fernando Alonso was rearing to get his 10th Formula1 season started too! It has been rescheduled to the end of the year Calendar… Well, pending protest outcome… Keep your fingers crossed for Formula1, Fernando, and people of Bahrain!

Follow the story, one of my favorite sports, and websites!

It would not surprise me if the Colombian soccer player who kicked the opposing team’s Lucky Charm Owl ends up a bit roughed up himself. It truly sickens me to share (the owl did not survive its injuries, going into shock after surgery), but it’s outrageous picking on innocent creatures!!! He was only fined $560 and suspended for two games… Needless to say, ‘Hooters’ won’t be sponsoring the team any time soon… No respect for an elegant feathered creature!

Finally, this is just INSANE… Wait, it’s Alabama… Some sick ‘Roll Tide’ crazy fan thought he would get the sweetest revenge in poisoning a famous legendary grove of trees near Auburn’s Campus (and mentions it with his real name on Radio! You can’t make this S up!). Really??? Now we are so sick we are going after the very plants that assist in providing us oxygen? Damn… we NEED to turn our education system around and FAST!


I thought long and hard about this next story… and quite honestly, I have to place this next controversial piece in ‘Glory’. Although moral values are going down the drain, I have to give respect and props to BYU. The University and team could’ve easily looked the other way regarding their Star Center. BYU Men’s Basketball team was poised to be one of the #1 seeds in upcoming NCAA Tournament of 64. Each person attending BYU  signs a binding agreement to abide by the rules every Latter Day Saint is required to follow.  It’s a frustrating pill for many to swallow around the nation, but I think many secretly wish other colleges had similar ‘Honor’ Codes… (Uh-hum scroll back up to the gaffe mention on college athletes and crime)

Kareem Abdul Jabaar is making headlines in a wonderful documentary, “On the Shoulders of Giants” about the African American players who paved and shaped what we recognize today as the NBA and an opportunity for an amazing game to change lives. Don’t miss great history!