Saturday, August 22, 2015

Fab five together at Yankee Stadium for Jorge Posada induction to Monument Park

8/22/15, Fab Five together for Jorge Posada induction to Yankee Monument Park: l-r, Andy Pettitte, Mariano Rivera, Jorge Posada, Derek Jeter, Bernie Williams. final 6-2 Yankees over Indians

Above, 10/16/2003 ALCS game 7, elimination game, bottom of the 8th, Posada 2 run double to tie the game. Yankees win in 11, 6-5. Winning pitcher, Mariano Rivera

8/22/15, Yankee Stadium today

More photos of Posada, Thank-you Jorge Posada


Added: 10/16/2003, team lifts Mariano Rivera after 2003 ALCS game 7. With score tied 5-5 v Red Sox, Rivera pitched scoreless 9th, 10th, and 11th innings. Yankees won in bottom of 11th, 6-5. sending the team to the World Series. Winning pitcher, Mariano Rivera

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Monday, August 17, 2015

Charleston survivor and college baseball player Singleton surprised by Yankees Gardner, Rodriguez, and Betances, on Today Show, later took BP and threw first pitch at the Stadium

8/17/15, "WWE’s John Cena helps Yankees surprise son of Charleston shooting victim," Washington Post,

Monday on the “Today” show, several members of the New York Yankees surprised a young man who has had more than his share of heartbreak, with WWE’s John Cena sitting in as co-host.

Chris Singleton, a 19-year-old college baseball player, lost his mother on June 17 when a gunman opened fire on a prayer group in church in Charleston, S.C., killing her and eight others. Since then, his maturity and message of compassion have left an impression.

On Monday, Alex Rodriguez, Brett Gardner and Dellin Betances came onto the “Today set (watch the video here) to greet Singleton, an outfielder at Charleston Southern University, and give him tickets to Monday night’s Yankees game, at which Singleton will throw out the first pitch.

“When something like this happens, you never think it would happen to you, so I think everybody praying for me has allowed me to be this strong,” Singleton told Tamron Hall and Cena....

Update, 7:15 p.m.: Singleton did, indeed, throw out the first pitch at Monday’s Yankees-Twins, and he also got his name shouted out during a traditional “roll call” by the stadium’s “bleacher creatures.”
Charleston survivor Singleton at Yankee Stadium

Before that, the college baseball player took batting practice and hit a home run, according to team officials. He was in the same batting group as Gardner, a South Carolina native who played at the College of Charleston."

Image caption: "Chris Singleton is taking
his swings with the @Yankees during BP." Yankee PR Sept. via Washington Post. final 8-7 Yankees over Twins in 10 innings

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Saturday, August 01, 2015

Jersey Shore welcomes American Pharoah to Monmouth Park in his first race since winning Triple Crown, extra NJ Transit trains running to Monmouth Park Sunday, August 2

7/31/15, "Want to see American Pharoah at Monmouth Park? Here's what you need to know," AP, Oceanport, NJ, via 7online.com

Courier Post

"American Pharoah took an easy tour of the track at Monmouth Park on Thursday morning, another step toward the $1.75 million Haskell Invitational.

The Triple Crown winner is the overwhelming 1-5 favorite in a field of eight 3-year-olds for the race, which will be American Pharoah's first since he swept the Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont Stakes and became the 12th Triple Crown winner and first in 37 years.

American Pharoah will leave from the No. 4 post following Thursday's draw and be ridden by Victor Espinoza. He is owned by Ahmed Zayat of Teaneck, New Jersey, and trained by Bob Baffert.

A winner in seven of eight career starts with more than $4 million in earnings, American Pharoah is not taking on the most formidable field. Upstart, who ran 18th in the Kentucky Derby in his last start, is the second choice at 6-1, and will be ridden by Monmouth favorite Joe Bravo.

The colt was taken for a slow, one-mile jog on his first trip over the surface for Sunday's race. American Pharoah stepped out on the track shortly after 7:30 a.m. and hugged the outer fence down the backstretch and grandstand rail, where fans gathered to snap cellphone shots.

Back at the barn, he alertly posed for photos after receiving a bath on the warm morning under the supervision of Jimmy Barnes, Bob Baffert's assistant trainer.

"He had a very high energy level this morning," Barnes said. "We couldn't be happier. The first day, we usually do something very light and we gave him a good look at the place."

Barnes said American Pharoah would have a more vigorous gallop Friday morning.

"He's a very well-mannered horse," Barnes said. "It makes it very easy to travel with him and experience new places."

And if you want to see American Pharoah run the Haskell Invitational at Monmouth Park, the New Jersey Department of Transportation and New Jersey Transit have announced plans to help move a record number of attendees expected to turn out to see the Triple Crown winner this Sunday, August 2.

"With record crowds expected to come out to see Triple Crown winner American Pharoah at the Haskell Invitational this weekend, NJDOT and NJ TRANSIT have developed a plan to move people in and out of Monmouth Park as safely and efficiently as possible," NJDOT Commissioner and NJ Transit Chairman Jamie Fox said. "We are adding additional trains dedicated to fans departing after the race, and implementing traffic management plans with local law enforcement to keep traffic moving on Route 36 to the Garden State Parkway."

Route 36 is the primary access route to Shore destinations in Long Branch and neighboring towns. With the large crowds expected for the Haskell, Route 36 and neighboring roads are expected to be congested and have delays, particularly Sunday evening after the race. Motorists should plan extra time for arriving and departing Monmouth Park.

"In addition to our regularly scheduled trains stopping at Monmouth Park, NJ Transit plans to operate unscheduled trains to help facilitate the movement of people safely out of the park," Executive Director Veronique Hakim said.

Read more about his arrival


To assist fans getting to and from the event, every local NJ Transit train on Sunday will stop at the Monmouth Park Station. After the race, four additional trains will be dedicated to fans departing Monmouth Park heading toward Newark, and one additional train will be dedicated to fans heading south toward Bay Head. After the regularly scheduled 6:09 p.m. northbound train leaves, the additional trains will be moved into the station one at a time. Once a train is full, it will depart and the next train will be moved into the station. The extra train heading southbound is expected to depart after the regularly scheduled 6:34 p.m. train.

If capacity allows, the Summer Shore Express trains heading to New York Penn Station also will stop at Monmouth Park. However, if the Express train picks up passengers at Monmouth Park, it will become a local train making stops at each station.

Riders are advised to purchase roundtrip tickets in advance because there are no ticket vending machines at the Monmouth Park Station, and they should be prepared for longer than average wait times. In addition, NJ TRANSIT customers should be aware that the Monmouth Park Station is not ADA accessible, and no open containers of alcohol will be permitted on the trains.


In order to ease congestion for motorists leaving the event, NJDOT will close one through lane of Route 36 westbound and the right-turn lane onto Oceanport Avenue north to keep traffic departing Monmouth Park moving freely onto Route 36 westbound toward the Garden State Parkway in an effort to minimize delays. NJDOT will be working with local law enforcement, which will be manually controlling traffic signals before and after the race, to help keep traffic flowing and to minimize congestion.

Variable message signs will notify motorists of the exercise while it is underway. Motorists are encouraged to check NJDOT's traffic information website 511nj.org for real-time trAvenuel information.


Motorists are advised that Oceanport Avenue between Port Au Peck Avenue and the Main Gate of Monmouth Park will be closed to all vehicle traffic from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Detours will be in place, but it is advised to plan alternate routes to avoid the large pedestrian flow, and additional vehicle traffic in and out of Monmouth Park. Motorists will also encounter delays on Port Au Peck Avenue near the New Jersey Transit Railway line and the Picnic Area entrance to Monmouth Park. This area of Port Au Peck Avenue is subject to closure anytime between 7 a.m. and 4 p.m.

Heavy traffic congestion will occur on surrounding roadways from 8am, due to the inbound flow of traffic into the Track. This heavy inbound flow should last most of the day into mid afternoon.

At 4 p.m. Port Au Peck Avenue will be closed to all traffic from Myrtle Avenue to Oceanport Avenue. Detours will be in place to direct motorists to utilize Asbury Avenue and Bridgewaters Drive for crosstown travel.

Note: The posted speed limit on Asbury and Bridgewaters Drive is 25mph. This speed limit will be strictly enforced.

Parking vehicles on roadways near Monmouth Park will be prohibited. No Parking signs will be posted on those roadways around Monmouth Park. Vehicles parked illegally will be ticketed and towed.

Following the running of the Haskell Race at 5:50pm, a heavy outbound flow of pedestrian and vehicle traffic will enter surrounding roadways causing heavy traffic buildups in the area.

During this outbound flow the following roadways will be closed:

Oceanport Avenue between the Main Gate of Monmouth Park and Port Au Peck Avenue.
Oceanport Avenue northbound from the West Long Branch Line to the Main Gate of Monmouth Park. Port Au Peck Avenue between Oceanport Avenue and Myrtle Avenue (near the New Jersey Transit Rail line.)

Port Au Peck Avenue eastbound from Oceanport Avenue to East Main Street
Eatontown Blvd southbound between Wolf Hill Avenue/Port Au Peck Avenue and Crescent Place.

Main Street between Oceanport Avenue and Wolf Hill Avenue. (Residents will be allowed to enter Main Street to travel to their residences).

East Main Street southbound from Lake Drive to Port Au Peck Avenue.

Roadways that will experience heavy traffic flow will be Port Au Peck Avenue from Myrtle Avenue to Eatontown Boulevard (County Rt 537), Eatontown Boulevard from State Highway 36 to Wyckoff Road/Broad Street in Eatontown, Main Street, Monmouth Road (State Hwy 71), and Oceanport Avenue near the Racetrack, and Oceanport Avenue from Port Au Peck Avenue to the Little Silver Line.

Drivers travelling on State Highway 36 will experience heavy traffic flow from Monmouth Park westbound to the Garden State Parkway. Drivers are encouraged to use alternate routes and plan for extra time when traveeling in the area."

Arrival 7/31/15 Atlantic City airport, ap

First image, "American Pharoah is at Monmouth Park," courierpostonline

Second image, 7/31/15, "Triple Crown winner American Pharoah arrives at the Atlantic City airport en route to the Haskell Invitational. AP," via philly.com

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Monday, July 27, 2015

Happy Birthday Arod fan sign in Texas

7/27/15, "Looks like we're not alone in wishing a happy 40th birthday!
twitter, NY Yankees at Texas Rangers 

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Rain-delayed baseball games, social justice, among possible exhibits at Climate Museum planned for NY City. Visitors will be invited to contribute to imagined CO2 solutions by for example taking a semester off college-AP

7/20/15, "State board grants provisional charter for NY Climate Museum," AP, Jim Fitzgerald

"The plan for a museum in the city that would focus on climate and climate change, with exhibits that could relate to health, social justice and rain-delayed baseball games, moved a step forward Monday, officials said.

The state Board of Regents, meeting in Albany, approved a five-year provisional charter for the museum, Regents spokesman Tom Dunn said.

The vote means "there is absolutely going to be a museum," said Miranda Massie, executive director of the Climate Museum Launch Project. She said the museum is now "empowered to hold collections in trust for the public."

Supporters say it would be the nation's first climate museum.

The idea for the museum came to Massie, a former public-interest lawyer, after Superstorm Sandy, she said.

"It seemed like such an obvious thing for us as a city and a people to have," she said. "We have a museum of Tibetan art, a museum of mathematics."

The emphasis will be on solutions, not death and destruction, Massie said.

"Our point is to get people active and engaged on climate in a way that recognizes that if we come together we can solve the problem," she said.

Museum-goers will be encouraged to contribute to solutions, Massie said, "from half an hour of making phone calls to taking a semester off college to reduce the carbon footprint of a middle school."

"We have to act quickly and we have to keep it up for the long term," she said.

Massie acknowledges that not everyone accepts climate change as a fact but says all are welcome. "You can be skeptical, but if you come in with an open mind you can be a part of a climate-engaged population," she said.

It may be five or six years before a grand opening at some new building in Manhattan or Brooklyn, but Massie said the museum will be in front of the public much earlier with pop-up exhibits and education programs. An "interim museum" could be in place in 2½ years, she said.

"All of that will test ideas and build momentum," she said.

Also on the short-term agenda is a design competition for the eventual museum space, even before a site has been found.

But the next step after Monday's Regents approval is some fundraising, she said." via Free Republic

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Monday, July 20, 2015

Record rains in California July 19, 2015, first Los Angeles Angels rainout in 20 years, first San Diego Padres rainout since 2006

"Saturday’s rainfall broke records in at least 11 locations, including five places that had the most rain ever recorded on any day in July."... 

San Diego Padres tarp, 7/19

7/19/15, Remote part of I-10 collapses amid heavy rains in California," AP, A. Dalton, T. Abdollah, Los Angeles

"An elevated section of Interstate 10 collapsed Sunday amid heavy rains in a remote desert area of California, cutting off traffic between the state and Arizona and leaving a driver injured.

A bridge that carries the eastbound interstate about 15 feet above a normally dry wash about 50 miles west of the Arizona state snapped and ended up in the flooding water below, the California Highway Patrol said, blocking all traffic headed toward Arizona.

The westbound section of the freeway remained intact, but traffic was being stopped while it was inspected for safety, and a pair of small nearby highways that could possibly serve as detours were also closed.

One driver had to be rescued from a pickup truck that crashed in the collapse and was taken to a hospital with moderate injuries, the Riverside County Fire Department said. A passenger from the truck was able to get out without help and wasn’t hurt.

“The 10 is a dire situation,” California transportation spokeswoman Terri Kasinga told the Riverside Press-Enterprise....

The rains came amid a second day of showers and thunderstorms in southern and central California that were setting rainfall records in what is usually a dry month.

Rain fell Sunday afternoon in parts of Los Angeles County’s mountains, the valley north and inland urban areas to the east. The city also was expected to get a late repeat of Saturday’s scattered showers and occasional downpours as remnants of tropical storm Dolores brought warm, muggy conditions northward.

“We have a chance of some more heavy rain in LA County this evening, thunderstorms, lightning, possibly some localized street flooding,” said National Weather Service meteorologist Joe Sirard.
The showers forced the Los Angeles Angels’ first rainout in 20 years and the San Diego Padres’ first rainout since 2006.

Saturday’s rainfall broke records in at least 11 locations, including five places that had the most rain ever recorded on any day in July, Sirard said.

July is typically the driest month of the year in Southern California. Because of that, Saturday’s 0.36 inch of rain in downtown Los Angeles exceeded the 0.24 inch recorded July 14, 1886, which had been the wettest July day in nearly 130 years.

The record is especially significant, Sirard said, because downtown Los Angeles has the longest recording climate station, dating back to July 1, 1877.

Saturday’s storm brought flash floods and power outages and turned Los Angeles County’s typically packed coast into empty stretches of sand when the threat of lightning forced authorities to close 70 miles of beaches.

AJ Lester of the Los Angeles County Fire Department’s Lifeguard Division said he has been in touch with weather officials and was tracking rain reports.

Signs warned beachgoers to avoid storm drain flows into the ocean because of Saturday’s sometimes heavy rain. The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health recommends people avoid swimming within 100 yards of a storm drain for 72 hours after heavy rain.

“All storm drains flowed out yesterday, but it hasn’t rained much this year, so that doesn’t bode well for the water quality,” Lester said Sunday.

Warnings were also in place for high surf and strong rip currents on all south-facing beaches, including Venice, Santa Monica, Malibu, Zuma, Newport and Huntington, Lester said.

Meanwhile, the summer storm has helped firefighters advance on two wildfires that broke out Friday. Muggy, moist conditions were expected to persist through Monday." via Drudge

Image above from San Diego Padres twitter, 7/19/15

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Friday, July 17, 2015

When asked how he could've been as a closer, Pedro said, “I won’t tell you I could be Mariano Rivera because Mariano was the best I’ve ever seen doing that” NY Post, 7/17/15

7/17/15, "Pedro Martinez: ‘60 percent’ of major leaguers used PEDs," NY Post, Dan Martin

"Pedro Martinez will be in Cooperstown this month to be enshrined in the Baseball Hall of Fame, but he knows one of the teammates who helped him build his legacy — Manny Ramirez — is unlikely to follow him there.

The former Red Sox slugger, who also tormented pitchers with the Indians, was suspended 50 games in 2009 for violating Major League Baseball’s drug policy. But Martinez, on a Thursday conference call, made sure to mention he wasn’t singling out Ramirez.

It wasn’t just Manny,” Martinez said of the use of performance-enhancing drugs. “Probably 60 percent of baseball was doing that.

Martinez said Ramirez, now a coach with the Cubs, would be forced to pay the “consequences” for his actions.

“It’s unfortunate for the Dominican Republic, it’s unfortunate for his career and actually for himself,” Martinez said. “Because Manny probably loves the game more than anybody else that you can think of.

Not that he’s complaining about unfair competition. In fact, Martinez seems to relish having pitched during what is deemed the height of the steroids era.

“I wouldn’t want it any other way,” Martinez said. “There’s no crying.” But he expects the ramifications, as far as entry into Cooperstown, to continue.

“Manny has a great attitude,” Martinez said. “He’s very well-liked by a lot of people. He’s a great teammate. He has so many things going in his favor, but he’s going to have to carry the consequences that many more have had to carry. I don’t condone anybody doing anything bad as far as cheating the game.”

Martinez had high praise for someone who almost certainly will get the call in a few years, Mariano Rivera.

Asked if he could have been as good a closer as Rivera based on the results he had coming out of the bullpen with the Dodgers in 1993, Martinez demurred.

I won’t tell you I could be Mariano Rivera because Mariano was the best I’ve ever seen doing that,” Martinez said, then pointed out he had some success in the role with Los Angeles that season, picking up two of his three career saves.

“I’ll never know,” Martinez said." Mariano Rivera, Baseball-Reference

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

American flag at 2015 MLB All Star game in Cincinnati

7/14/15, "Still amazing each time I see it." Eric Karabell ESPN twitter. 2015 MLB All Star game

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Todd Frazier, from the Jersey shore to MLB

7/13/15, " Jul 13 Media: say someday he'll write a book on his path from Jersey to MLB." Reds twitter

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Saturday, July 04, 2015

Brian McCann brings late night fireworks with 12th inning walk-off home run, 7/3/15, Newsday back page

Sat., 7/4/15, Newsday back page, "McCann's 3-run walk-off blast lifts Yanks in 12th...Late-night FIREWORKS!" Final 7-5 Yankees over Rays

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Teammates greet Brian McCann at home plate in the bottom of the 12th

7/3/15, "New York Yankees' Brian McCann, right, jumps into a crowd of teammates who greet him at home plate after McCann hit a three-run home run against the Tampa Bay Rays in the 12th inning of a baseball game, Friday, July 3, 2015, in New York," AP. Final 7-5 Yankees over Rays

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Wednesday, July 01, 2015

Reds fans have snow cones during 7th inning stretch

7/1/15, " 5h5 hours ago A 7th inning stretch means a snow cone break on this warm, sunny day! lead 2-1 over the Twins." VoteReds Twitter. Final 2-1 Reds over Twins

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Young Houston Astros fans at Minute Maid Park for game v Yankees

6/27/15, "Young Houston Astros fans watch from the stands before their game against the New York Yankees at Minute Maid Park on June 27, 2015 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)," final 9-6 Yankees over Astros

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Andy Pettitte throws bp in Houston for Yankee visit

6/25/15, "Maybe the best starter in a Yankee uniform today," Andrew Marchand twitter. Yankees at Houston Astros

6/26/15, "HOUSTON, TX - JUNE 26: Former Astro and Yankee pitcher Andy Pettitte throws during batting practice prior to the start of the game between the New York Yankees and the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park on June 26, 2015 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)" final 3-2, Yankees over Astros

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Tarp on the field, Phillies at Yankees

6/23/15, "Menacing skies over Yankee Stadium," Baseball Tonight, Phillies at Yankees

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Saturday, June 20, 2015

A nice night in the Bronx, Arod gets hit #3000

6/19/15, Arod hits #3000, Tigers at Yankees, final 7-2 Yankees, getty. Alex Rodriguez, Baseball-Reference. Hit #3000 was also regular season home run #667. ESPN says it wasn't much of a home run: "Rodriguez's home run traveled 373 feet to right center of Yankee Stadium. The ball would have died short of the wall in any other park."

Sat., 6/20/15, Newsday back page, Arod "3000 hit clubbed"

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Sunday, June 07, 2015

Triple Crown American Pharoah Jockey Victor Espinoza throws first pitch at Yankee Stadium

6/7/15, "Triple Crowns, first pitches does it all." MLB gifs. LA Angels at NY Yankees, final 6-2 Yankees. 6/6/15, "Belmont Stakes: American Pharoah wins Triple Crown! Jockey Victor Espinoza and trainer Bob Baffert react," nj.com

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Friday, June 05, 2015

Enjoyed the west coast but nothing beats coming home-Erik Boland

6/4/15, "Enjoyed the West Coast as always but nothing beats coming home," Erik Boland twitter. 6/5/15, Angels at Yankees

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Tuesday, June 02, 2015

Fans in Seattle try to catch Teixeira's fifth inning grand slam

6/1/15, "Seattle Mariners right fielder Nelson Cruz (23) looks up as fans reach for the grand slam ball from New York Yankees' Mark Teixeira in the fifth inning of a baseball game Monday, June 1, 2015, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)," Final 7-2 Yankees over Mariners

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Baltimore Orioles Youth Baseball Day

5/31/15. "Youth Baseball Day! Baltimore Orioles twitter, Rays at Orioles

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Fab Five in the Bronx to celebrate retirement of Bernie Williams #51

5/24/15, "The Fab Five NY Yankees," Bernie Day twitter. Bernie Williams #51 retired to Yankee Monument Park in the Bronx. From left, Andy Pettitte, Jorge Posada, Mariano Rivera, and Derek Jeter join the ceremonies. Bernie Williams, Baseball Reference. Ceremonies prior to game Texas Rangers at NY Yankees

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Friday, May 22, 2015

Frank Deford on Gaylord Perry

5/22/15, "Frank Deford and Jim Kelly on Brady," Rush Limbaugh

RUSH: "Earlier this week, I think it was actually Wednesday on NPR's Morning Edition, there was a report from Frank Deford, who is the sports commentator there. He may still be at SI, I don't know...He did a report on New England quarterback Tom Brady and his suspension.

DEFORD:  In hindsight, all of us made a terrible mistake in looking upon someone like Gaylord Perry, he the pitcher infamous for loading up his deliveries with what we quaintly call foreign substances, as a sort of a sassy picturesque figure who was merely tilting at the windmills of authority. Nonsense. Perry and his ilk didn't abuse baseballs. They abused baseball.

RUSH: Okay, now, need to put this in some kind of context. For those of you who are too young, Gaylord Perry, who I actually met, Gaylord Perry was a famous pitcher. His brother was Jim Perry.  He pitched for every team in the league, it seems like, and he closed his career out with the Kansas City Royals when I happened to be there. He was traded to the Royals by somebody, maybe Texas, I forget who, and the first day he shows up he's got, honest to God, two lion cubs with him, in cages, and he bought 'em for security on his North Carolina farm.

I said, "What do you need lions for?"

He said, "I gotta protect, there's all kinds of bad people down there and these lions will keep 'em away.

They were cute little lion cubs, and he let 'em out of cage. They were running the locker room.

They're not harmful at that age. They were tiny....But he was known for loading the ball up. Spitballs, they were called. Vaseline, anyplace you could hide the substance on your uniform. If you know what you're doing, it doesn't take much. You put it on the right spot on the baseball, if you can throw the baseball hard enough, what will happen is the bottom will drop out of it. At home plate the illusion is it's dropping straight down. It's obvious when somebody can throw a spitball and has done one well because you can't make a ball do that other than with a foreign substance.

Joe Niekro was a guy who did this. He had a knuckleball, but he also had foreign substance on the ball. I'll never forget, he got caught. He got caught and the home plate umpire charges out to the mound and Niekro says, "I didn't do anything!" and he starts emptying his pocket and all this stuff comes out. (laughing) A fingernail file, he was scuffing up the baseball. All kinds of stuff that he was putting on 'em just came out of his pocket and he tried to act like no, I wasn't, it was just there. It was it is funniest thing....

Anyway, as you can tell, Gaylord Perry back in his day was treated as an artist. I mean, the media marveled at his ability to cheat just like they marveled at Bill Clinton's ability to lie. But, now, Deford is coming here and telling us he now feels guilty about that. In his advanced experienced age, looking back on things, he now realizes it was improper to think it cute or clever and harmless.  We thought that this guy was, you know, a sassy, picturesque player, larger than life, could do things with a baseball. We all knew it but we all looked the other way because it's just what we did, but now we know he was abusing baseball.

So Frank Deford is saying for all sportswriters that we have realized our error. And what made us realize our error was watching Tom Brady do the same thing, by deflating the footballs. He's not abusing the footballs. He's abusing football....

So that is the context, Deford admitting latter career guilt over not taking seriously the damage to the game that guys like Gaylord Perry were causing. And then he continues now with what it all means with what Tom Brady is doing."...image above of Gaylord Perry from Rush Limbaugh

5/20/15, NPR: The Other Sacred Thing Tom Brady Squashed: Sportsmanship - Frank Deford

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Fine dining at Washington Nationals stadium

5/20/15, "Dinner Date!" Washington Nationals twitter. Yankees at Nationals

I'm not sure exactly where the above tables are at the stadium. Commenters discuss how you might get seated at one of them. More on Nationals stadium dining options:

9/13/13, "High-End Dining At D.C.’s Nationals Park Is A Hit," Forbes Travel Guide, Mary Beth Albright

"The food scene at the park has consistently been a hit. People buy standing-room tickets at the stadium just to take in the diverse and delicious dining options. “We look at our business as a restaurant business,” says Catherine Silver, executive director of guest services for the Nationals. “We create a memorable gourmet meal, and you’ll be shocked to find that you’re in a ballpark. Our partner, Levy Restaurants, works with the Kentucky Derby and the U.S. Tennis Association, but Levy started in the restaurant business, not concessions, and they still run restaurants.”

The food is paramount at Nats Park, from the Taste of the Majors concession stand that offers food inspired by the opposing team (think fish tacos for the San Diego Padres) to the Red Porch Restaurant, where any ticket holder can dine on oven-made flatbread pizza and house-smoked meats from a table overlooking center field....

Located directly behind home plate, President’s Club seats are actually closer to the batter than the pitcher is. Tickets come with a view of the batting cage and in-seat beer, wine and food service. And there’s serious foodie action happening inside the dining room, too. The executive chef’s buffet rivals D.C.’s best; the four themed tables include a farm-to-fork spread with dishes spotlighting local cheese, meat and produce.

“Both the stadium and Levy are LEED Certified, so sustainability is key for us,” Silver says. The other three tables focus on a revolving theme, from Asian night to a blue crab concept. “The chef switches up the menu for season ticket holders who might eat at the Diamond Club several nights in a row during a series. The servers get to know season pass holders and will prepare custom food for their dietary issues or children. Whatever they want, we will find a way to prepare it.”

In its cherry-walled, chandeliered dining room, the President’s Club also boasts an antipasto bar, housemade gelato and a standalone sweet shop (all included in the $300 or so ticket price, depending on the game). In the mood for concession fare? Hot snack tables with favorites such as nachos and tempura shrimp are set up throughout the game, as is a bar with all-inclusive beer and wine. Not bad for a night at the park watching the Nationals take on division rivals the Atlanta Braves (September 16 through 18) and Miami Marlins (September 19 through 22).

A more casual but still exclusive option, the PNC Diamond Club is only for Diamond seat (sections 119 to 126) season ticket holders. It includes all-inclusive food and beverage and a patio with behind-the-plate views. For individual ticket holders in the Diamond sections, the Diamond Lounge is a step back from the Club, with the same all-inclusive dining plan but a separate tented lounge and patio overlooking the Navy Yard. Both levels come with in-seat service.

Keeping the Nattitude going after the season’s end, the stadium can cater events for all sizes. In addition to weddings in center field and bar mitzvahs in the bullpen, Nats Stadium recently hosted a retreat for all of the Democratic senators and President Obama.

“We served them all three meals here that day, and no one could believe they could get this gourmet food at the ballpark,” Silver adds. “We even did different tables with regional cuisines, a table with Southern food, food from California… The senators were all joking and debating that their home state’s food was the best.”"

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Yankees last in 2015 road attendance through May 15. SF Giants are first, Cubs second, Colorado Rockies third-NY Times

5/16/15, "Yankees’ Road Show Isn’t Pulling in Fans the Way It Has in the Past," NY Times, Billy Witz (5/17 print ed., pg. SP5, NY edition), Kansas City, Mo.

"Michael Pineda seemed on the verge of wiggling out of a jam Friday night, when the Royals’ Omar Infante belted a 1-2 pitch into the left-center gap in the sixth inning. His race to third base was accompanied by an unusual road soundtrack for the Yankees this season — an energetic roar from a near-capacity crowd.

The Yankees may be baseball’s marquee franchise, with their record 27 World Series championships, a rich history and a fan base that has tentacles reaching every pocket of the country.

But this season, the Yankees have been baseball’s least popular attraction. Entering Saturday, the Yankees were last in road attendance, averaging 22,820 fans.

It may be unlikely that the Yankees will remain at the bottom for a variety of reasons, but the drop-off is jarring, given that they have led the major leagues in road attendance in four of the last five seasons. Their road attendance since 2001 has not been below 33,000, or fifth over all.

There seem to be several contributing factors for the drop. With the retirements of Derek Jeter and Mariano Rivera in the last two seasons, the Yankees lost two widely popular and respected figures who were the last links to their dynastic years. Jeter’s jersey was highest-selling jersey in baseball over the second half of last season.

“People would come just to see them,” Yankees pitcher C. C. Sabathia said.

They have also missed the playoffs the last two seasons, and despite their despite their strong start, they were widely viewed as a team in transition, one with too many veterans past their prime serving as placeholders until prospects were ready.

Alex Rodriguez’s return from a yearlong suspension might have provided the Yankees with a villainous character on the road. But unlike Barry Bonds in the early 2000s, Rodriguez is no longer such a dominant player that he is an attraction unto himself.

Still, the decline is jarring.

“It would surprise anyone,” Royals center fielder Lorenzo Cain said. “They still have a really good team, regardless of Jeter being gone. They’ve got some guys that can definitely play baseball, and that’s all you can ask as a fan.”

Attendance figures can be somewhat tricky, since they generally reflect tickets sold or distributed, not the actual numbers of fans in the seats. The Yankees have seen a negligible dip in their early-season home attendance, fewer than 1,000 total fans through the same number of games (17) from last year. 

Road attendance reflect the vagaries of the schedule. While it is not surprising that the defending World Series champion San Francisco Giants are leading baseball in road attendance, or that the Chicago Cubs, with their prospects bright and their diaspora of fans, are second, it would seem surprising that the Colorado Rockies are third.

Through Friday, the Rockies had the fewest wins in baseball, but of their 19 games away from home, they had played five games against the Los Angeles Dodgers, who led baseball in home attendance, and three against the Giants, who were third.

The schedule has not helped the Yankees. They have played a heavy dose of night games in cold-weather cities — Boston, Baltimore and Detroit, where one game was played during a brief outbreak of snow flurries. They have also played two series in Tampa Bay and another in Toronto, cities that are generally lukewarm to baseball.

The atmosphere for the most recent series at Tampa Bay was particularly abysmal. The Yankees, because there are so many transplanted New Yorkers in the area, which is also their spring training site, have enjoyed solid support there. But the four-game series drew 44,937 fans in all — fewer than the Yankees played before at home on opening day.

Pitcher Adam Warren said he prefers to pitch at night, when the crowds are typically bigger and more boisterous. But most Yankees said it did not matter. And with so many recent newcomers from places like Arizona (Didi Gregorius), Miami (Nathan Eovaldi and Garrett Jones) and San Diego (Chase Headley), some players are not accustomed to regularly playing before large audiences.

“We try to concentrate on the things we can control,” outfielder Carlos Beltran said. “All those things we don’t think about.”

At the moment, that would include getting their offense going and winning games. The Yankees lost their fourth game in a row Friday night, a season high, before winning Saturday, 5-1.

If there was a consolation on Friday, at least they lost in an engaging environment. The fans in Kansas City have taken to their team, which came close to winning the World Series. The Royals’ home attendance is up more than 10,000 per game since last season, by far the biggest jump in baseball.

“Friday night. Baseball season. Fireworks,” Sabathia said Friday night. “That’s what it’s about. If we start playing well, if we start winning, people will come.”"


Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Friday, May 08, 2015

John Sterling call of Alex Rodriguez home run #661 and Newsday back page, 5/8/15, Watch out, Babe

5/7/15, Following is John Sterling's call of home run #661 by Alex Rodriguez. Orioles at Yankees, Thursday, May 7, 2015, bottom of the third, score tied 2-2. Final score, 4-3 Yankees. During the broadcast John and Suzyn talked about it being #661, but the record wasn't mentioned within the call which I recorded as it was played back on Yankee radio post game:

"The one-one, swung on and hit in the air to deep left center field, away back goes Jones, in deep left center, that ball is....gone! Alex Rodriguez hit one into the loading dock, just to the left of Monument Park, a long home run. In fact, it's an A-bomb from A-rod! Alexander Emmanuel Rodriguez homers and the Yankees take a 3-2 lead."

Image caption: "New York Yankees designated hitter Alex Rodriguez takes a curtain call after hitting his 661st home run and surpassing Willie Mays on the all-time home runs list in the third inning of a baseball game at Yankee Stadium in New York, Thursday, May 7, 2015. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)"

Fri., May 8, 2015, Newsday back page after Arod #661

Arod also has 13 post season home runs.

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Wednesday, May 06, 2015

NASCAR driver Clint Bowyer tosses first pitch in Kansas City, Cleveland Indians v Kansas City Royals

5/6/15, " 1h1 hour ago

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Friday, May 01, 2015

John Sterling's call of Alex Rodriguez' 660th regular season home run, May 1, 2015 in Fenway Park. Newsday back page, Say Hey-Rod

5/1/15, John Sterling's call of Alex Rodriguez 660th regular season home run, 8th inning, score tied 2-2 v Red Sox in Boston:

"And the 3-0, swung on, driven to deep left, it is high, it is far, it is gone! Alex Rodriguez pinch hits a home run, his 660th home run, to tie Willie Mays for 4th place on the all time home run list. What an ultra dramatic moment! An A-bomb from A-rod! And the Yankees take a 3-2 lead."

5/1/15, "New York Yankees pinch hitter Alex Rodriguez hits a solo homer in the eighth inning of a baseball game against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park in Boston, Friday, May 1, 2015. Rodriguez has now tied slugger Willie Mays with 660 career home runs. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)," Final 3-2 Yankees over Red Sox in Boston. It was the first pinch hit home run of Arod's career. Arod has 13 post season home runs.

5/1/15, "New York Yankees pinch hitter Alex Rodriguez is congratulated by teammates at the dugout after he hit a solo homer in the eighth inning of a baseball game against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park in Boston, Friday, May 1, 2015. Rodriguez has now tied slugger Willie Mays with 660 career home runs. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)" Final 3-2 Yankees over Red Sox in Boston. It was the first pinch hit home run of Arod's career. Arod has 13 post season home runs.

Sat., May 2, 2015, Newsday back page, "Say Hey-Rod"


From Boston Globe:

"Tazawa made his major league debut at Yankee Stadium on Aug. 7, 2009, and allowed a walkoff home run by Rodriguez in the 15th inning."...

5/2/15, "Alex Rodriguez’s homer in eighth topples Red Sox," Boston Globe, Peter Abraham

Two above photos from Boston Globe, 5/1/15


5/2/15, Arod takes BP in Boston: "Alex Rodriguez taking batting practice hoping to hit 661 this afternoon," Baseball Tonight twitter

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Yankee fans ask Tampa Bay Rays De Jesus for third inning foul ball he caught

4/28/15, "New York Yankees fans ask Tampa Bay Rays David DeJesus (7) for the ball after he made a catch in foul territory on a ball hit by New York Yankees Brian McCann in the third inning of a baseball game, Tuesday, April 28, 2015, in New York," AP. final 4-2, Yankees over Tampa Bay Rays

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Wednesday, April 29 game between Chicago White Sox and Baltimore Orioles will begin at 2:05pm and will be closed to the public

4/28/15, "Tomorrow’s game between the Orioles and the Chicago White Sox will begin at 2:05 p.m. ET and will be closed to the public." Baltimore Orioles Twitter. Baltimore Orioles Press Release

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon

Monday, April 27, 2015

Governor of Maryland declares State of Emergency at request of Baltimore's Mayor. White Sox-Orioles game postponed

4/27/15, At the request of Baltimore's Mayor, the Governor of Maryland, Larry Hogan, has declared a State of Emergency in the State of Maryland

4/27/15, "Orioles postpone game against White Sox amid violent protests in Baltimore," Washington Post, Kelyn Soong

"Amid the violent protests that erupted Monday afternoon in Baltimore, the Orioles announced that Monday night’s game against the Chicago White Sox has been postponed.

The decision, made after consultation with the Baltimore City Police Department, came less than an hour before the game was slated to be played. Fans arriving at the game were met with extra security and could only enter through Gate H and Home Plate Plaza.

MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred, who was at Camden Yards for a planned visit, said “it’s possible these games could be played elsewhere.”...

[Live updates: Riots in Baltimore]

Tensions arose after the funeral of Freddie Gray at a Baltimore church Monday afternoon, where thousands had gathered to pay their respects. Gray, 25, died in police custody on April 19 and his death has become the latest flashpoint in the debate over police treatment of racial minorities.

The initial violence began about four miles from the stadium in Northwest Baltimore and the team has been consulting with Baltimore Police throughout the day, according to the Baltimore Sun. As a precaution, all gates except Gate H and Home Plate Plaza have been locked."


4/27/15, "Son of Orioles owner Peter Angelos tweets perspective on Freddie Gray protests," Washington Post, Cindy Boren

"The son of Peter Angelos, the Baltimore Orioles’ owner, expressed frustration that the message sent by protests over the death of Freddie Gray was overwhelmed by the temporary lockdown of Camden Yards during the Orioles’ game Saturday night.

John Angelos, the Orioles’ executive vice president and second-highest ranking official, pleaded for a bit of perspective in a series of tweets that revealed compassion and an awareness of the community in which he lives. (The tweets, in response to a fan named Brett, are combined here.)
Brett, speaking only for myself, I agree with your point that the principle of peaceful, non-violent protest and the observance of the rule of law is of utmost importance in any society. MLK, Gandhi, Mandela and all great opposition leaders throughout history have always preached this precept. Further, it is critical that in any democracy, investigation must be completed and due process must be honored before any government or police members are judged responsible.
That said, my greater source of personal concern, outrage and sympathy beyond this particular case is focused neither upon one night’s property damage nor upon the acts, but is focused rather upon the past four-decade period during which an American political elite have shipped middle class and working class jobs away from Baltimore and cities and towns around the U.S. to third-world dictatorships like China and others, plunged tens of millions of good, hard-working Americans into economic devastation, and then followed that action around the nation by diminishing every American’s civil rights protections in order to control an unfairly impoverished population living under an ever-declining standard of living and suffering at the butt end of an ever-more militarized and aggressive surveillance state.
The innocent working families of all backgrounds whose lives and dreams have been cut short by excessive violence, surveillance, and other abuses of the Bill of Rights by government pay the true price, and ultimate price, and one that far exceeds the importances of any kids’ game played tonight, or ever, at Camden Yards. We need to keep in mind people are suffering and dying around the U.S., and while we are thankful no one was injured at Camden Yards, there is a far bigger picture for poor Americans in Baltimore and everywhere who don’t have jobs and are losing economic civil and legal rights, and this makes inconvenience at a ballgame irrelevant in light of the needless suffering government is inflicting upon ordinary Americans.
One of the main entry points into the ballpark was closed because of protests shortly before the game and after the game fans were not permitted to leave Camden Yards for about 30 minutes because of “an ongoing public safety issue.”"

Stumbleupon StumbleUpon