Saturday, May 31, 2014

Memorial Day weekend at the Jersey Shore, Manasquan Beach and Pt. Pleasant Beach boardwalk

5/25/14, "Four banner planes fly over the crowd at Manasquan's Main Beach on a near-perfect Sunday of Memorial Day weekend at the Jersey Shore," Star-Ledger

5/25/14, Pt. Pleasant Beach boardwalk: "Hard to imagine any additional people at Jenkinson's Amusement Park early Sunday evening as huge crowds celebrate Memorial Day Weekend 2014 in Point Pleasant Beach. 5/25/14, Andrew Mills/The Star-Ledger"

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Friday, May 30, 2014

Mariano Rivera receives honorary degree from NYU at its Yankee Stadium commencement ceremony May 21

5/29/14, "Mo and heavy hitters team up for N.Y.U.’s graduation," The Villager, Lincoln Anderson

"There was quite a lineup at Yankee Stadium last Wednesday morning — but only one of them was actually a baseball player. 

The occasion was New York University’s 182nd commencement at the House That Jeter Built. Having outgrown its former commencement venue, Washington Square Park, N.Y.U. has held its graduation at the Bronx stadium since 2008.

Around 8,000 students received undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees at the morning ceremony, which was attended by 25,000 guests, as well as alumni, faculty and other N.Y.U. community members.

The star-studded lineup — each of whom received an honorary degree from the Greenwich Village university — included Janet Yellen, chairperson of the Federal Reserve; Mariano Rivera, the Yanks' former relief pitching ace; Elena Kagan, the U.S. Supreme Court justice; Aretha Franklin, the “Queen of Soul”; and Martin Edelman, an international and real estate attorney.

Commencement speaker Yellen told the grads to expect failure as well as success. “Even Ruth, Gehrig and DiMaggio failed most of the time when they stepped to the plate,” she said. 

“My Federal Reserve colleagues and I experienced this as we struggled to address a financial and economic crisis that threatened the global economy.” She praised Ben Bernanke’s leadership of the Fed during the recession.

N.Y.U. President John Sexton and Martin Lipton, chairperson of the N.Y.U. board of trustees, officiated."...image from The Villager


"On Wednesday, Rivera - dressed in purple, not in Yankee pinstripes - received an Doctor of Humane Letters, honoris causa, at NYU's commencement ceremonies at Yankee Stadium. On hand with Rivera is Rachel Robinson, the widow of Jackie Robinson."

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Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Jeter signs for fans in St. Louis

5/27/14, Jeter signs for fans in St. Louis, Erik Boland twitter pic, final 6-0 Cardinals

5/28, Jeter signs for fans in St. Louis, ap

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Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Fifty Cent's wild pitch at Citi Field, Pirates v Mets

5/27/14, 50 Cent's first pitch to open Mets game v Pirates at Citi Field. "GIF: 50 Cent is not good at throwing a baseball," badlefthook.com, SB Nation, final 4-2 Mets, via Drudge

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Jets flyover Atlanta Braves game v Red Sox on Memorial Day

5/26/14, "Jets fly over as members of the U.S. Military hold the American Flag across the outfield, in honor of Memorial Day, before a baseball game between the Atlanta Braves and the Boston Red Sox on Monday, May 26, 2014," ap, final 8-6 Red Sox

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DeWitt and Ozzie Smith present cufflinks to Jeter in St. Louis

5/26/14, "New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter, left, is presented with a pair of cufflinks by St. Louis Cardinals Bill DeWitt Jr., center, and former Cardinals Hall of Fame shortstop Ozzie Smith, right, during a ceremony before the start of a baseball game between the Yankees and Cardinals Monday, May 26, 2014, in St. Louis," ap.
final in 12, 6-4 Yankees

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Fans in St. Louis stand in the rain for Jeter at bat in first inning

5/26/14, "New York Yankees' Derek Jeter prepares to bat as a steady rain falls during the first inning of a baseball game against the St. Louis Cardinals Monday, May 26, 2014, in St. Louis," ap. final in 12, 6-4 Yankees

5/26/14, "New York Yankees' Derek Jeter singles during the first inning of a baseball game against the St. Louis Cardinals Monday, May 26, 2014, in St. Louis," ap,  final in 12, 6-4 Yankees

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Sunday, May 25, 2014

Sir Jackie Stewart describes crash at 1975 Indy 500

Two minute clip, Sir Jackie Stewart commentary begins at :50. Luckily the driver, Tom Sneva, is unharmed. Keith Jackson first :50.

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Thursday, May 22, 2014

Obama visits National Baseball Hall of Fame on May 22

5/22/14, "Obama visit short but sweet for Cooperstown," uticaod.com

"It was a whirlwind visit. President Barack Obama spoke at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown for all of 15 minutes, before he sprinted off to his next engagement. But for the Village of Cooperstown, memories of the visit will last a lifetime."...

5/22/14, "Obama visits Baseball Hall of Fame to promote tourism," CBSNews.com, Stephanie Condon

5/22/14, Pictures of Pres. Obama at National Baseball Hall of Fame


Ed. note: The white strip you see defacing this post is courtesy of my longtime google hackers.

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Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Jeter signs for fans on his last trip to Wrigley Field

5/21/14, Jeter signs for fans in Chicago on his last visit to Wrigley Field, Erik Boland twitter. Yankees v Cubs

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Obama still can't throw a baseball correctly

5/20/14, "Obama Still Can’t Throw a Baseball Correctly," Washington Free Beacon, A. Stiles





"After more than five years in office, President Obama still can’t throw a baseball like a normal adult male, a Free Beacon analysis has found.

Obama’s lack of basic motor skills was on display Monday evening at a Little League game in Washington, D.C. He looked like he was trying to shot put a hacky sack, or something.

The Little Leaguers were not impressed, the Associated Press reports:
Shocked parents reached for their smartphones to snap a quick photo, but not all of their kids were as impressed. Some held back, unsure of who Obama was, as their parents tried to lure them back onto the infield to join the president.
“Daddy, let’s just play,” said one young boy, pulling his father by the hand.
The “pitcher in chief” even got a chance to try out his arm, tossing the ball from near the pitcher’s mound to 10-year-old Danny Ringel, who plays for the Tigers.
The “pitcher in chief” has struggled for years to master the simple art of throwing a baseball correctly. In fact, it’s possible that his form has regressed."...top image AP. via Mark Levin twitter

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Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Perhaps Dellin Betances in 2014 could be what Mariano Rivera was in 1996 a year the Yankees finished 9th in AL scoring but won with a bullpen formula-Joel Sherman

5/19/14, "Betances, Warren too vital in Yankees bullpen to plug rotation," Joel Sherman, NY Post

"Now that Dellin Betances and Adam Warren have established they can pitch in the majors, temptation will rise to consider them for the rotation. Particularly with the Yankees starters going through a Masahiro Tanaka and the Pips phase.

But if the 2014 Yankees are going to be special, it is going to be because a deep, talented bullpen compensates for that rotation. Their winning formula is to grab a lead and dominate late. If they need a road map, we suggest checking 1996.

Some myth has formed around that 1996 squad since it triggered a dynasty. In reality, that club was ordinary in many ways. It finished ninth in the AL in scoring, fifth in ERA and 10th in defensive efficiency (the number of balls put into play registered into outs).

In a vacuum, that defines, at best, a borderline wild-card contender. Not a division winner, much less a World Series champ.

What those ’96 championship Yankees had, though, was a great endgame. Their closer, John Wetteland, was exceptional and their setup man, Mariano Rivera, should have won the AL MVP — because there simply was no one more valuable.

Rivera began that season as a mop-up man and the Yankees were 1-5 the first six times he pitched. But Joe Torre recognized the excellence and began using Rivera in high-leverage situations, often for multiple innings, and the Yanks were 46-9 when he pitched thereafter.

That historically feels like the year in which illegal-performance enhancers reached a critical mass.

The 2,742 homers hit in the AL in 1996 and the .795 OPS remain league records despite all the runaway offense that would follow. Rivera held the AL to a .486 OPS — that was 64 points better than any pitcher who threw 100 innings and yielded one homer in 107 2/3 innings. Yep, he threw 107 2/3 innings [regular season], averaging more than five outs per appearance.

Those Yankees, like this current group with Tanaka, had just one sturdy, excellent starter in Andy Pettitte. Rivera, working exclusively in relief, was fifth in innings. David Cone — like CC Sabathia now — missed considerable time. So did Jimmy Key (whose arm was flagging like that of Hiroki Kuroda). The ’96 Yanks needed 12 starters, tied for the third most in the AL (the current Yanks have used eight, tied for third most in the AL).

The 2014 Yankees — harkening to their ’96 predecessors — rank seventh in runs in the AL, eighth in ERA and 11th in defensive efficiency. Again, that should mean barely contending. But these Yankees lead the AL East. That reflects, yes, the flawed competition. But also the terrific work of the pen. The Yankees are one of two AL teams with three relievers (10 appearances minimum) with ERAs under 2.00 (Betances, Warren and David Robertson).

They hope Shawn Kelley (back) returns from the DL next week. At that point, Warren could be moved to the rotation. Brian Cashman said the front office has engaged in many conversations about using Warren to start. The lure is understandable — a starter always feels more valuable than a reliever.

But Warren — even if successful — becomes like everyone but Tanaka in the rotation, which is to say a five- or six-inning starter. It underscores that the Yankees don’t just need a strong pen, but a deep one to cover a bunch of innings in a quality way and avert burnout.

One of Joe Girardi’s strengths has been his bullpen orchestration (the 3.60 ERA since he took over in 2008 is third best in the AL). So the front office has faith he could get the best out of what he is given and in Danny Burawa, Jose Ramirez, Diego Moreno and Branden Pinder, the organization feels it has four Triple-A candidates who are major league relief possibilities.

But that is guesswork. The Yankees know Warren, Betances and Robertson are as strong a final three as there is. Cashman did say Betances is not under consideration to start, since the organization has come to believe he is a big man who cannot maintain his delivery well for 100 or so pitches.

And with or without Warren remaining in relief, Betances has become vital. He is offering a pen dominance not seen by the Yankees since Joba Chamberlain’s 2007 breakout. Even in a year of mass strikeouts, Betances’ 15.5 Ks per nine innings are two more than anyone else (minimum 20 innings).

But there are no restrictive Joba Rules. Betances has been used to get at least six outs in each of his last three outings and more than three outs in 11-of-17 overall. In 1996, Rivera pitched at least two innings in 35 of his 61 appearances— and the Yankees were 28-7 in those games.

Rivera was 26 then, a failed starter who found the role of his life. Betances, a failed starter, is 26 and began this year doing mop-up."

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Michael Kay still can't broadcast inside Yankee stadium on game days, that privilege has been reserved for Yankee radio broadcasters since 2002-NY Radio Message Bd.

5/12/14, "Michael Kay still can't broadcast inside Yankee stadium on game days," NY Radio Message Board

"Posted by Kevin Canessa Jr. on May 12, 2014 at 14:57:06:

I apologize that this is coming several weeks into the baseball season, but it really just hit me today since Mike Francesa is broadcasting inside Yankee Stadium today for Mets-Yankees.

Despite Michael Kay and Don LaGreca having their show now on YES, they're still not permitted to broadcast from inside the stadium (per LaGreca), presumably based on the radio agreement with CBS / WFAN.

I really thought that with YES simulcasting the show, that might have changed. But it hasn't. Was this a deal maker with WFAN and the Yankees?

I know it may not seem like much, but all these years later, it just seems bizarre the Yankees play-by-play man cannot broadcast his radio show on the TV network owned by the team, inside the stadium.

Is this just not a big deal? Am I over-reacting by thinking this is absurd all the years later?"


"Posted by Vince V. on May 12, 2014 at 15:29:51:

In Reply to: Michael Kay still can't broadcast inside Yankee stadium on game days posted by Kevin Canessa Jr. on May 12, 2014 at 14:57:06:

It has nothing to do with the TV broadcasts, it's entirely related to WFAN/CBS Radio wanting broadcast radio exclusivity on site during game days.

It's been that way for 10+ years - the Yankee rights have been within the CBS Radio family since 2002, when ESPN Radio was just starting in NYC.

As for being a big deal - I think in some ways it is. For example I do not think there's a $ figure that CBS/WFAN would be willing to take to allow Kay/ESPN Radio to broadcast from inside the stadiums on game days.

And as much you say "hey it's the Yankee PBP man's show" the fact is that it's HIS radio show, OUTSIDE his Yankee broadcast responsibilities, on a COMPETING station of the Yankees radio rights holder.

No rights holder would want to just give away that kind of access to the competition."

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Monday, May 19, 2014

If NFL doesn't renew DirecTV Sunday Ticket package, AT&T has right to walk away from DirecTV deal

5/19/14, "The NFL Could Dismantle AT&T's $49 Billion Purchase Of DirecTV," BusinessInsider.com, Steve Kovach

"The NFL could dismantle AT&T's $48.5 billion purchase of DirecTV.

According to a clause in a regulatory filing for the purchase, AT&T has the right to walk away from the deal if DirecTV can't renew its agreement with the NFL for its Sunday Ticket package. (Hat tip to Bloomberg's Jon Erlichman for spotting it.)

Here's what the clause says:

The parties also have agreed that in the event that DIRECTV's agreement for the "NFL Sunday Ticket" service is not renewed substantially on the terms discussed between the parties, the Company may elect not to consummate the merger.

NFL Sunday Ticket lets you watch every NFL game live. It also lets you stream games over the internet to your tablet, phone, or laptop. The service costs $330 for an entire season.

On a call with analysts this morning, DirecTV's CEO Michael White said negotiations with the NFL are going well and should clear by the end of the year, well before the merger with AT&T is expected to go through.

"I'm still highly confident we're going to get out deal done," White said. "Discussions are very positive with the NFL."

As Re/code's Peter Kafka noted on Twitter, the NFL deal simply gives AT&T a potential out. If DirecTV can't get the NFL to agree to continue Sunday Ticket, there's still a good chance AT&T will want to continue the acquisition." via Free Rep.

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Sunday, May 18, 2014

Fans try to catch Teixeira home run ball

5/17/14, Mark Teixeira home run ball is seen below fan in grey t-shirt. The ball went into the stands then bounced back onto the field near Pittsburgh Pirates right fielder Jose Tabata during the first inning of Pirates-Yankees game at the Stadium, ap. Final 7-1 Yankees.

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Saturday, May 17, 2014

Zoilo Almonte gets first John Sterling home run call of 2014, "It's the mark of Zoilo!"

5/17/14, Left fielder Zoilo Almonte hit his first Yankee home run of 2014, Pirates v Yankees at Yankee Stadium, third inning, score 2-0 Yankees. Final 7-1 Yankees. John Sterling's call:

"Here is Zoilo Almonte, he's O for one on the year, a switch hitter hitting left, and Volquez' pitch is swung on and hit in the air to deep right, it is high, it is far, it is gone! How da ya like that! Zoilo Almonte homers deep in the right field seats! It's the mark of Zoilo! He homers to deep right, and the Yankees take a three nothing lead."


"The Mark of Zorro" is of course the story of the masked avenger who has saved the day for generations.


John Sterling's 2013 call for Zoilo Almonte was different:


6/21/13, Zoilo Almonte  hits his first Yankee and ML home run in bottom of 6th, Yankees v Tampa Bay Rays. This is John Sterling's tag:

"You know what Tampa is saying...curses, "Zoiled" again....Zoilo Almonte hits his first major league home run..."

(photo link for second photo is active, the other three links are dead)

6/21/13, Almonte curtain call, final 6-2 Yankees, McIsaac/Getty

6/21/13, Zoilo Almonte curtain call, getty

6/21/13, Almonte greeted in dugout by Cano and others after first home run. final 6-2 Yankees, ap


6/23/13, Almonte hits double v Tampa Bay Rays, final 3-1 Tampa Bay, getty

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Cubs fans battle global warming in Chicago

5/1/14, "A fan has his umbrella flipped inside out by the wind during the fifth inning of a baseball game between the Chicago Cubs and the Milwaukee Brewers on Friday," in Chicago. final 4-3 Brewers, ap 

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Friday, May 16, 2014

Bill O'Reilly chats with Derek Jeter at Yankees-Mets

5/15/14, Bill O'Reilly chats with Derek Jeter at Yankees-Mets pre-game at Citi Field in Queens, Kenny Ducey twitter pic, via Erik Boland twitter. Final 1-0 Yankees. Four out save for David Robertson, entered with runners on first and third in the 8th, one run lead, facing David Wright whom he got to ground out. 

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Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Who's on third? Maybe nobody due to baseball's shifting defenses-NY Times, Waldstein

5/12/14, "Who’s on Third? In Baseball’s Shifting Defenses, Maybe Nobody," NY Times, David Waldstein

Granderson, 5/12/14
"For more than 100 years, baseball looked pretty much the same from the grandstands. There were three players spread in the outfield, a pitcher on the mound, a catcher behind the plate, and four infielders neatly aligned, two on each side of second base.

But a radical reworking of defensive principles is reshaping the way the old game is played, and even the way it looks. If you cannot find the third baseman, he might be the one standing in shallow right field. The second baseman? That’s him on the other side of the diamond, next to the shortstop.

Some baseball positions as they have long been known are changing before our eyes. The cause is the infield shift, a phenomenon exploding this year as more teams are using statistical analysis and embracing a dynamic approach to previously static defenses.

Now, armed with evidence that shows how a batter has a propensity to hit the ball to certain parts of the field, teams will position their infielders accordingly — at times taking them far from their traditional spots.

1866, Atlantics v A's
“The shift is on the verge of becoming the norm,” said Joe Maddon, the manager of the Tampa Bay Rays and one of the early leading proponents of the shift. “When you’re not shifting now is almost going to be the anomaly defense.”

From 2010 to 2013, infield shifts steadily increased, according to research by Baseball Info Solutions, which tracks every shift and the number of runs it saves. But from 2013 to this season, the rate of shifting in the major leagues has mushroomed.

Last year there were 8,134 shifts on balls in play. Through the weekend, teams had already shifted 3,213 times, putting them on pace for nearly 14,000 for the season. Teams that shift regularly are lowering opposing teams’ batting averages by 30 to 40 points on grounders and low line drives.

“You do it because it works,” said Mark Teixeira, the Yankees first baseman. As a batter, he has been a victim of the shift for the past few years, perhaps explaining, in part, why his batting average went from .290 over his first four years in baseball to .249 since 2010, when teams began shifting on him regularly.

Ben Jedlovec is the senior vice president for product development and sales at Baseball Info Solutions, a company that was started by John Dewan, the author of the book “The Fielding Bible.” 

The company tracks every pitch and every play and provides software and tools to about two-thirds of major league teams.

“There’s no end in sight,” Jedlovec said about teams’ willingness to employ the shift.

At first, the natural targets of the shift were sluggers like David Ortiz, Jim Thome, Adam Dunn and Ryan Howard — all big left-handed hitters who regularly pull the ball to the right. Now, with statistical analysis influencing more managers’ decisions, even lightly regarded hitters like Kelly Johnson of the Yankees might see fielders shifting against them, and more right-handed hitters are seeing the shift as well.

“Baseball isn’t big on change,” said Dewan, who began advocating defensive shifts about 10 years ago. “But once other managers and teams saw the Rays doing it successfully, perhaps they didn’t feel as if they were going out on a limb so much, and wouldn’t be criticized when someone happens to get a hit against the shift.”

Following the Rays, the Houston Astros have embraced the shift with zeal, from the depths of their minor leagues up to the majors. As of the weekend they had employed 368 shifts, more than one per inning and far more than any other team, even the Rays.

“It’s an epiphany,” Maddon said. “I much preferred it when all the other teams didn’t want to do those things.”

The Astros began employing the shift early last year. But the pitchers objected, saying they did not feel comfortable with a defense overloaded to one side of the infield and a gaping hole on the other. The Astros’ management backed off, but it did not give up.

In spring training, the Astros’ general manager, Jeff Luhnow, and his coaching staff came armed with data, presented it to the pitchers and discussed why they wanted to embrace the shift. That analysis included a look at the improved defense of the Pittsburgh Pirates over the previous two seasons.

The Pirates had mostly the same infielders those two years, and in 2012 they turned 339 double plays, 13th in the National League. But in 2013, with the shift, they turned 419, the fourth most in the league. Their pitchers’ earned run average dropped to 3.26 from 3.86.

The Astros pitchers were persuaded, and Baseball Info Solutions estimated the shift had saved them 11 runs so far this year. Houston now uses the shift all the way down to its Class A club. “We’re confident that it’s helped us get more outs than we would have without it,” Luhnow said.

Recent Yankee shift v Mariners
The Yankees are second to the Astros with 223 defensive shifts in 2014. They were already steadily increasing their shifts over the past few seasons, but during the off-season their quantitative analysis department, headed by David Grabiner and Michael Fishman, was assigned to the matter.

They eventually proposed a comprehensive plan that now has players in the majors and the minors shifting like never before.

But as much as the shift is blossoming this year, it is hardly a new phenomenon. There is evidence of the shift going back more than 130 years. Artwork suggests that before the 1880s, basemen would stand on top of the bases. According to Tom Shieber, a historian at the Baseball Hall of Fame, that was because of different foul-ball rules that made first and third basemen responsible for greater swaths of foul territory.

Once those rules changed in the mid-1880s, players took up the now familiar positions. But even back then, there were innovators. Shieber said that one of his colleagues at the Hall of Fame, Bill Francis, recently discovered evidence of an infield shift in a June 25, 1870, account in The New York Clipper of a game between the Atlantics of Brooklyn and the Cincinnati Red Stockings.

“The Cincinnati fielders moved about in the field, according as the different batsmen came to bat,” the Clipper story said, noting that it was innovative.

The most famous shift of the 20th century was used by Cleveland Indians Manager Lou Boudreau against Ted Williams, the Boston Red Sox left-handed slugger, in July 1946, although there are accounts of a shift against Williams dating to 1941.

An earlier Williams, Cy, was a victim of the shift in the 1920s, and in Japan teams used the Oh-Shiftu against Sadaharu Oh in 1964.

In his memoir, Boudreau said the shift was about not only defense but also the batter’s psychology. Maddon agreed.

You are trying to split someone’s desires, his concentration, his thoughts,” Maddon said. “It’s a psychological ploy as well. They grew up looking out from the batter’s box and the infield had a certain look to it. Now when you look out there, people are in different places. How’s that going to affect you in that at-bat?”

What are the risks of shifting? “None,” Maddon said.

Some might disagree. Last year at Fenway Park, Robinson Cano bunted toward an empty third base against a Boston Red Sox shift and ended up with a double. But Maddon pointed out that if Cano or any other dangerous hitter preferred to bunt, that was O.K. with him. Better a bunt than a home run.

Dewan, the head of Baseball Info Solutions, said said his company did not recommend shifting in the outfield because the data suggested that even pull hitters tended to hit the ball in the air to the outfield either straight away or even to the opposite field roughly 54 percent of the time. And the risks can be too great. A ball that lands against a shifted outfield could conceivably go for an inside-the-park home run by the time anyone runs it down.
Dewan also did not recommend shifting the infield too often with men on base because it could leave fielders out of position to cover bases. In a recent game at Angels Stadium, the Yankees could not cover first base on a bunt because the second baseman was shifted too far up the middle.

Luhnow, the Astros’ general manager, said that as teams saw more of the shift, they might discover ways to beat it. Bobby Valentine agrees. When he managed the Mets in 1999, he had his infielder run to set positions as the pitcher was delivering. He said that could be put into use by teams who want to disguise their defense until the last moment, much like a football team hiding its blitz.

“Someone will come up with something new,” Valentine said. “It will probably be Joe Maddon.”"

First image: "The Mets’ Curtis Granderson hit a single against the Yankees’ shift on Monday at Yankee Stadium. Credit Tim Clayton," NY Times 

Second image: "The Atlantics of Brooklyn and the Athletics of Philadelphia in 1866 had infielders play nearer the bases. Credit Photography Collection, The New York Public Library," via NY Times
Third image: "The Yankees deployed an infield shift recently against the Seattle Mariners. Credit Barton Silverman," NY Times

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Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Who cares about "journalists?" Why does "CBS New York" think anyone cares about them?

"Many players, journalists and fans embraced the moment and supported Sam. But, as expected, others found the moment unsettling and inappropriate."...

5/12/14, "Former Giant Derrick Ward Rips Michael Sam, ESPN For Televised Kiss," CBSNewYork

"You’ve probably seen it. If not, you’ve definitely heard about it. Michael Sam became the first openly-gay man to be drafted by an NFL team on Saturday when the Rams took him with the 249th pick in the seventh round.

Upon hearing the news, the former Missouri standout kissed his boyfriend, Vito Cammisano. It was televised for the world to see.

"Many players, journalists and fans embraced the moment and supported Sam. But, as expected, others found the moment unsettling and inappropriate."...

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Monday, May 12, 2014

Jeter gives pink bat to small boy in Brewers stands on Mothers Day

5/11/14, Derek Jeter gives pink bat to small boy at Milwaukee Brewers stadium while awaits his at bat in the 4th on Mothers Day, ap. final 6-5 Brewers over Yankees.

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Saturday, May 10, 2014

Minnesota ACLU sues city over assembly and sign restrictions that may be limited due to MLB 15 day control of area around All Star Game

5/8/14, "ACLU Sues Minneapolis Over All-Star Game Ordinance," AP via Star-Tribune

"Organizers of a one-day street festival in Minneapolis sued the city Thursday, saying an ordinance that limits events around the time of Major League Baseball’s All-Star game in July is unconstitutional.

The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court by the American Civil Liberties Union of Minnesota, claims the city ordinance gives MLB the authority to approve activities in certain areas for 15 days surrounding the July 15 All-Star game.

Organizers of the One Day in July Street Festival [planned for July 19], which will commemorate the 80th anniversary of a deadly Teamsters strike in 1934, say MLB shouldn’t have control over their event....

The ordinance, adopted Feb. 21, says the city won’t issue permits or event licenses between July 5 and July 20 in a geographic area that includes all of downtown Minneapolis without additional approval from MLB. The purpose of the ordinance, according to the resolution, is to keep the focus of the All-Star game on baseball and “to prevent ambush marketing activity and other activities with the potential to distract from the event.”

City spokesman Casper Hill said these types of zones are typical, and a requirement for cities to host the All-Star game. He said Minneapolis has created similar zones for past sporting events, such as the NFL’s Super Bowl.

The lawsuit seeks a court order that would declare the ordinance unconstitutional and bar the city from enforcing it. ACLU attorney Tom Hamlin said the lawsuit is not aimed at shutting down the game itself.

Hill said Thursday city officials were checking to see if they had received the lawsuit. It names the city, the mayor and the police chief as defendants.

The lawsuit claims the ordinance violates the First Amendment for several reasons. Among them: the resolution is too broad, it imposes a content-based, viewpoint-discriminatory prior restraint on speech and it gives MLB unbridled discretion over speech-related permits.

The lawsuit also says the ordinance has had a chilling effect because organizers fear arrest, and they are considering canceling the festival, planned for July 19.

Plaintiffs do not wish to subject their speech and expressive activities to Major League Baseball’s review and approval,” the lawsuit states.

In 1934, Minneapolis police shot 67 striking truckers, killing two. The festival, which is also meant to honor the right to organize, would include signs, banners, street merchandise, food service, parade, speeches and live music. Similar festivals were held in 2004 and 2009."

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Friday, May 09, 2014

Fan on field in 6th at Brewers Stadium v Yankees, wanted to hug Jeter

5/9/14, In the sixth inning "a fan rushed the field and tried talking to Derek Jeter at shortstop at Miller Park in Milwaukee Friday night, Brendan Kuty/NJ.com"


5/9/14, Brewers fan on field approaches Jeter, AP

5/9/14, "Some guy went up to Derek Jeter on the field and got tackled by security," tiaahernandez twitter pic, via nj.com. "Derek Jeter: Fan who ran onto field wanted hug." final 5-3 Yankees over Brewers.

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Thursday, May 08, 2014

Derek Jeter gets first John Sterling home run call of 2014 and last of his career at Angels Stadium...'El Capitan'

5/7/14, Derek Jeter hit his first home run of 2014 in the second inning in Anaheim in his final career trip to Angels Stadium. This is John Sterling's call:

"The 0-one, swung on and hit in the air to deep left center field, and Green back on the track--she's gone! Derek Jeter hits one over the left center field wall...How da ya like that! He gets honored and he homers...El Capitan! He hits his first home run of the year and the Yankees take a 6 nothing lead."
Final 9-2 Yankees.

5/7/14, Gif of Jeter's first home run of 2014, via SB Nation. Top of second in Anaheim v pitcher Hector Santiago, score becomes 6-0 Yankees over LA Angels

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Jeter in the 8th in his final trip to Anaheim

5/7/14, Derek Jeter in the 8th inning of his last game in Anaheim, score 8-1 Yankees, getty. Final 9-2 Yankees.

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Angels give Jeter pinstriped paddleboard

5/7/14, Angels players Kendrick, Trout, Pujols, and Weaver present Derek Jeter with farewell gift of pinstriped paddleboard, LA Angels twitter pic


5/7/14, Derek Jeter accepts paddleboard from LA Angels players Jared Weaver, Howie Kendrick, Mike Trout, and Albert Pujols, in his farewell trip to Angels Stadium in Anaheim, Calif., getty

5/7/14, Angels pitcher Jared Weaver presents farewell paddleboard to Derek Jeter, USA Today Sports, A. Fielding

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Wednesday, May 07, 2014

Gif of first Jeter home run of 2014

5/7/14, Jeter's first home run of 2014, SB Nation gif. Top of second in Anaheim v pitcher Hector Santiago, score becomes 6-0 Yankees over LA Angels

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Derek Jeter first home run of 2014

5/7/14, Jeter's first home run of his final season, in Anaheim, Yankee MLB video, top of second, score becomes 6-0 Yankees over LA Angels

5/7/14, Final first home run of the season by Derek Jeter, mlb fan cave twitter pic, v Anaheim pitcher Hector Santiago

5/7/14, Jeter's first home run of 2014, SB Nation gif. Top of second in Anaheim v pitcher Hector Santiago, score becomes 6-0 Yankees over LA Angels

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Brian Roberts gets first John Sterling home run call, 'Bye Bye Brian'...Update, Brian Roberts homers in Baltimore, 7/11/14

7/11/14, Brian Roberts hit a solo home run in his first at bat back in Baltimore. John Sterling kept the same tag:

"He is Bye Bye, Brian...he homers to right."...


5/6/14, Brian Roberts hit his first home run as a Yankee in Anaheim v the Angels, top of the 9th, with score tied 3-3. Following is John Sterling's call:

"Roberts has an RBI single in 3 trips, swings and hits one to deep right field! That ball is high, it is far, it is gone! Brian Roberts homers over the high score board wall! Bye Bye, Brian! He homers, a first home run as a Yankee, and the Yankees take a 4-3 lead." Final 4-3 Yankees over Angels.

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Monday, May 05, 2014

Norman Rockwell painting of Red Sox "The Rookie" in the Locker Room being shown at Fenway Park May 5 prior to auction at Christies in NYC

4/29/14, "Peter Rockwell, son of painter Norman Rockwell, points to his father's 1957 painting "The Rookie (Red Sox Locker Room)" on display at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston for six days in Boston, Massachusetts April 29, 2014, before being offered at auction at Christie's May 22. The painting, which appeared on the cover of the March 2, 1957 "Saturday Evening Post," includes former Boston Red Sox players Ted Williams (top center), Jackie Jensen (bottom center) and Bill Goodman (R) as well as local high school student Sherman Safford who Rockwell asked to pose as the Rookie. Christies estimates the value of the painting to be $20-$30 million. REUTERS/Brian Snyder"

5/5/14, "Rockwell painting of Red Sox being shown at Fenway," AP

"A Norman Rockwell painting of Boston Red Sox players is being shown at Fenway Park on Monday before it is taken to New York City to be auctioned.

The painting, "The Rookie (Red Sox Locker Room)," appeared on the cover of the March 2, 1957, issue of the Saturday Evening Post. Christie's is offering it May 22 with a pre-sale estimate of $20 million to $30 million, which the auction house says represents that highest auction estimate ever for Rockwell.

The painting shows pitcher Frank Sullivan, right fielder Jackie Jensen, catcher Sammy White, second baseman Billy Goodman and Hall of Famer Ted Williams. The seasoned, confident players are seen facing an awkward newcomer arriving in the locker room for spring training — dressed in a crumpled suit and a battered bowler hat while also clutching a suitcase, baseball bat and gloves.

On Monday, Sullivan and Rockwell's model for the rookie, Sherman Safford, will be with the painting at Fenway.

Safford was a high school athlete from the western Massachusetts town of Pittsfield when he was asked to model for Rockwell. Williams, nearing the end of his career, was the only player who did not pose for the painting in Rockwell's hometown of Stockbridge, and the artist had to rely on baseball cards and photographs for the details of his face.

The anonymous owner acquired it in 1986, and it has remained in the same private collection since then.

The painting was exhibited for six days at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston until Sunday. It was previously on show there in 2005 and 2008, following World Series victories by the Red Sox.
In December, Rockwell's 1951 "Saying Grace" sold at Sotheby's for $46 million. It set an action record for the artist."

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Sunday, May 04, 2014

Mariano Rivera Avenue in the Bronx to be named May 5

5/5/14, "River Avenue and 161st Street in the Bronx - right outside Yankee Stadium re-named "Mariano Rivera Avenue!" " Bruce Beck

5/2/14, "Street outside Yankee Stadium renamed 'Mariano Rivera Avenue, on Monday,"  bronx.ny1.com

"On Monday, River Avenue at 161st Street in the Bronx will be renamed Mariano Rivera Avenue in honor of the retired closing pitcher....It's only the second time a New York street has been named for a living baseball player. The other was Willie Mays Drive in Harlem." image, NY1
it's only the second time a New York street has been named for a living baseball player.
The other was Willie Mays Drive in Harlem.
- See more at: http://bronx.ny1.com/content/news/207996/street-outside-yankee-stadium-to-be-named--mariano-rivera-avenue--on-monday#sthash.XRU3CgaB.dpuf"...image NY1
The name that struck fear into the hearts of Major League batters for 18 years will soon hang on a street sign outside Yankee Stadium.
On Monday, River Avenue at 161st Street in the Bronx will be renamed Mariano Rivera Avenue in honor of the retired closing pitcher.
Organizers said it's the start of a campaign to improve the neighborhood around the stadium.
- See more at: http://bronx.ny1.com/content/news/207996/street-outside-yankee-stadium-to-be-named--mariano-rivera-avenue--on-monday#sthash.XRU3CgaB.dpuf
Street Outside Yankee Stadium to Be Named 'Mariano Rivera Avenue' on Monday - See more at: http://bronx.ny1.com/content/news/207996/street-outside-yankee-stadium-to-be-named--mariano-rivera-avenue--on-monday#sthash.XRU3CgaB.dpuf
Street Outside Yankee Stadium to Be Named 'Mariano Rivera Avenue' on Monday - See more at: http://bronx.ny1.com/content/news/207996/street-outside-yankee-stadium-to-be-named--mariano-rivera-avenue--on-monday#sthash.XRU3CgaB.dpuf
Street Outside Yankee Stadium to Be Named 'Mariano Rivera Avenue' on Monday - See more at: http://bronx.ny1.com/content/news/207996/street-outside-yankee-stadium-to-be-named--mariano-rivera-avenue--on-monday#sthash.XRU3CgaB.dpuf
Street Outside Yankee Stadium to Be Named 'Mariano Rivera Avenue' on Monday - See more at: http://bronx.ny1.com/content/news/207996/street-outside-yankee-stadium-to-be-named--mariano-rivera-avenue--on-monday#sthash.XRU3CgaB.dpuf

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Evan Longoria has most home runs in new Yankee Stadium among visiting players as of 5/2/14

5/2/14, "Fact: Evan Longoria comes into the game with the most homers in new Yankee Stadium (12) than any other visiting player," Erik Boland twitter. Final on May 2, 10-5, Rays over Yankees, Longoria 3 hits

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Star Wars character Chewbacca attends batting practice in Cincinnati

5/2/14, Milwaukee Brewers center fielder Carlos Gomez poses with Star Wars character Chewbacca during batting practice before game v Reds in Cincinnati, AP. final 2-0, Reds over Brewers

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Negro leagues players honored before Giants v Braves on May 3 in Atlanta

5/3/14, "Members of the Negro League baseball teams from years past are honored before the start of a baseball game pitting the San Francisco Giants against the Atlanta Braves, Saturday, May 3, 2014, in Atlanta," AP, Amis photo, final 3-1, Giants over Braves

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Friday, May 02, 2014

Tampa Bay Rays Balfour pitches two saves in one day v Red Sox, both were one-run games

Closer Grant Balfour of the Tampa Bay Rays pitched two saves in one day on Thursday, May 1, 2014 in Boston v Red Sox, 2-1 and 6-5. He entered with a one run lead in each game. In the second game, he gave up a lead off double to Shane Victorino who was moved to third on a groundout by David Ortiz. Mike Napoli was called out on strikes, Grady Sizemore walked, and Xander Bogaerts was called out on strikes to end the game.

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Thursday, May 01, 2014

Jacoby Ellsbury hits his first home run as a Yankee and gets his first John Sterling home run call. 'Ells...buries it'

Sunday, July 6, 2014, Yankees at Twins, Ellsbury hit a three run home run in the top of the second. John Sterling's call in part:

"Everything's Jake with Jacoby"


Thursday, May 1, 2014, Mariners at Yankees, in the first inning, CF Jacoby Ellsbury hit his first home run as a Yankee. Following is John Sterling's call: 

"The two-one, hit in the air to deep right field, that ball is high, it is far, it is gone! His first home run as a Yankee, Ellsbury...Ells----buries it in the right field seats. There's a jack by Jacoby, and it ties the game at one."

Final 4-2 Mariners.

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