Beyond March Madness

On January 22, 2015, in Uncategorized, by admin

We are deep into the conference portions of college basketball seasons.  March Madness is still far away. There is a lot of basketball to be played. But this year, I am looking beyond March Madness.  Oh, I will participate to the extent possible, probably throw back a few beers at the local Twin Peaks, and maybe go to a conference tournament due to its favorable location. Gone this year will be the trips out of town following March Madness; there is simply too much going on. I am already looking to baseball season.  Baseball is the only sport I religiously follow at the professional level…….I follow two teams.  One of these teams stem from my roots and has fed me a feast of humility over the years.  The other had some success, but could not close the deal when they had the opportunity. I follow the Texas Rangers.  Had season tickets a few years back when I lived in the Dallas area. Their heyday came a few years back when they lost to St Louis in the World Series, the loss squarely pegged on the inexperience of this years closer, God help us, Neftali Feliz.  Well a few years pass, a few trades and a few “indiscretions” from the manager, things have changed a lot.  So I would rather focus on my top team…..yes those loveable losing Cubs. Last year, after ten years on the waiting list for season tickets, my name is called. About 6 grand apiece for tickets on the third base line, 17 rows up and under the Wrigley cover (if any of you have not experienced Wrigley Field, put it on your bucket list. Or even, just visit the surrounding bars of Wrigleyville. Such an experience). With 12 large, could I make my money back assuming I would make maybe 3 games all year and maybe give 8-10 games away to family?  I chose to pass.  Hello 40,000 waiting list once again.  I will be dead and in hell when my time comes up again. Painful as it was, I probably would have lost money last year.  The Cubs were awful. But, I would have the same seats again and for years to come until I gave them up.  This year, well my friends, is the year of the Cubs.  Mark it. With a proven name coach and a spend plan that has increased significantly (and I am happy to say their own people brought up through the system now have great contracts….rewarding excellent  performance), I am taking the Cubs to win the division.  Will they get to World Series or win? Well, likely not since they are not used to winning in pressure situations, kind of like my Rangers as discussed above. I wonder what the odds are  in Vegas for the Cubs to win World Series?  Common my right bearing Facebook friends, you know who you are, message me and let me know. I am in.  I will place a good bet for this…..whatever.  At the end of the day, If I am right, I will be crying in my rigatoni that I do not have those seats for the season tickets. For if I am correct here, what was around $76 a game face value, will likely sell for $150-250, depending upon the visiting team. Oh well, I knew it could be an opportunity, but there was pain along the way to get to the payoff.  Who know Theo Epstein would make such brilliant moves on the offseason.  Well I should have, after all, he is the one that manufactured the Boston Red Sox teams out of their drought.

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World Series Musings

On November 2, 2010, in Other Interests, by admin

With the 2010 world Series unfortunately behind, it is now time to look towards the season….basketball.  But first, I wanted to muse a bit about the results of the 2010 world series.  I am a Texas Rangers fan. So naturally it pains me to see the loss in game five last night in Texas Rangers stadium, (actually, Ballpark in Arlington). Lets start with San Fransisco.  Hats off to them. They played deserving of this series.  Their story is a good one, one that we all should feel good about in that this was a team tagged together by mid season changes, waiver claims, and no names doing a great job on the big stage.  You could see it in their eyes when they batted. There was shear determination in nearly every player who stepped up to the plate. Rangers? not so much. I also wished to express my appreciation that the Rangers did not loose to a team of, well, whatever you wish to call the Yankees….insert it here . Four letter words allowed.  San Fransisco is what I would consider a friendly team, and I am glad a good group of guys (and some characters) won it.

But focusing on the Texas Rangers, it again pains me to say that I just do not think they were ready for the biggest stage. The top hitting team in baseball was held to just a little under 2.5 runs per game.  SF pitchers were good, but not that good.  Our guys did not have the look.  They looked clueless many times, if not scared. Fortunately, our starting pitching, for the most part was good. Lee pretty much did what he is paid to do. CJ Wilson, well, he did well also, with the exception when the Texas Rangers did not play well behind him, then he would fall apart…..as Washington would say:  “that just what CJ do”. Tommy Hunter did not do well overall, but you know, in the end, his performances were not that bad if the offense had a clue. No run support equals game loss.  The math works every time.

But in the end, my hats are completely tilted toward the Texas Rangers.  “White Lines” Washington said it best after the second loss in SF.  He said that if you would have told me that we would be in the World Series, down 2-0 at the beginning of the season, would you feel good about that?  I would. Washington said.  You know, I completely agree. I have never been one for being satisfied with a consolation prize, but in the end, this team was special, and they a had a mi-rad of stories of their own. There was no real leader on this club.  While most sports analysts would question whether this was good or not, I believe this team was, well, a team. They played the season as a team.  They had many a screw up, yes. And with my own lack of patience throughout the year, I called for Washington’s head several times. But, he got them there.  And the NY series for the most part was a total pleasure to watch with all of the aggressive Texas Ranger baseball inserted that helped them win a bunch of games in the regular season, then pummel the best two teams on paper throughout the playoffs. Hats off to them.

I believe the team is swelling with potential. Great new ownership. OK. Cliff Lee is probably gone. Really, I do not think he was that good in the club house.  If the Stankeys want him, well, it is his loss. Maybe he should think long and hard going to play in the streets of NY….it is a frigin long way from Benton, Arkansas.  Do you sign Vlad again, hell yes. In fact, I believe this team has a future no matter what the player moves are, because, while they failed on the big stage due to lack of experience, they have hit a home run in team chemistry and getting the most out of the farm system. In the end, two teams with very reasonable payrolls played the 2010 World Series.  Ok. The other team won.  But I appreciate San Fransisco, and I appreciate the Texas Rangers for all they did this year, and what I firmly believe, will continue to do in the future.

Maybe its time to get season tickets again……..

And to follow up on the opening line of this post, I will review the Number Two ranked Baylor Lady Bears in a following post.

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Had The Wrong Drug, Version 2

On March 19, 2010, in Uncategorized, by admin

So to follow up yesterday’s post, today the Dallas Morning News reports of an aledged attempt at blackmail on the dirt that is the Washington story. So the plot thickens. Of course, as stated yesterday, the media vultures are out in full force turning over every stone. But suffice it to say, it just continues to look questionable on the “one time judgement” error of Washingtons cocaine use. If this news bullet keeps flying, Wash will not be with the Rangers for too long. It is a scandel the organization, and its new owners can ill afford toderail the promising season. Will be interesting.

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