Archives for: 2009, week 13

04/05/09

Baseball's Opening Day.. Creating New Memories, Reliving Times Past

Permalink 09:15:34 pm, Categories: All World All Sports Blogs  

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-Digger's Daily-

Major League Baseball's 2009 Opening Day is finally here!

Opening day has different meanings to millions of fans and players everywhere. New seasons intensify many emotions from pennant dreams to memories of times past on and off the field. Moments defined by "where were you when....?" events that changed or highlighted America's favorite pastime. Some of these historical "Where were you when's...?" include: Jackie Robinson's first game; Lou Gehrig's final game; Bobby Thompson's "Shot Heard Around the World"; 1969 Mets World Series; 1986 Mets Game 6 victory over Boston? Bucky "(expletive)" Dent? Roger Maris' 61st home run? 2004 Boston "Reverse the Curse" Red Sox stunning come from behind 4 games to 3 ALCS win over Yankees on their way to World Series Championship fame and glory. The list is endless.

In days of old, fans huddled around the nearest radio listening to their home team's opening game. Some kids ditching a school day to buy bleacher tickets. Even grown adults calling into work sick.

Today's technologies afford fans diverse opportunities to catch games from local and satellite radio, ESPN, MLBTV, podcasts, local tv etc. Fans no longer need to miss school or work for a front row seat to watch the action.

My all time favorite moment used to be having a catch with my dad. Every opening day we would either stand in our yard or head to local park and play catch. Sometimes it was early in the morning before school or after he returned home from a long day of work... there was rarely a moment either one of us passed up an opportunity to burn a few fastballs at each other.

Those days are long gone. 2009 is a new year, a new season. New memories will be made for millions of fans and players. So go ahead parents... have a catch with your kid(s). In years to come today's memories will become new "where were you when...?" questions.

An exciting season for New Yorkers. Both teams have tremendous brand new state of the art stadiums. Yankee Stadium and Citi Field will be the talk of the town for a new generation of baseball in the Big Apple.

04/02/09

News Makers, Rumors, Champs & More Chumps

Permalink 01:30:00 am, Categories: All World All Sports Blogs  

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-Digger's Daily-

It's been another wild week in sports news with much to discuss. It's been a week of good, bad and ugly. Let's begin with good before taking aim at the rest.

Good
Baseball: A new baseball era is set to begin in New York. The new Yankee Stadium and Citi Field are set to open this weekend with exhibition games. Yanks host the Cubs. Mets take on Boston. Both will be extended spring training games. Stay tuned for detailed blogs covering cost over runs to non-Met Jackie Robinson's tribute.

PGA: Tiger Woods wins his first post-surgery tourney. The worlds greatest ever golfer was trailing by 5 before turning it up a few notches this past Sunday to win the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill (Orlando). In near darkness, he sank a 15 foot birdie put for a comeback victory. Television ratings soared for the first time since his injury.

Boxing: Senator John McCain is leading the charge to pardon former heavyweight champion Jack Johnson who was sent to prison due to romantic ties with a white woman. Johnson became the first black heavyweight champion on Dec. 26, 1908. McCain has issued a resolution seeking presidential pardon. This is long overdue.

Rumors
NFL: QB Jay Cutler and the Denver Broncos are back in the news again. Cutler's fued with new coach Josh McDaniels continues to brew. The latest reports state Denver seeks to trade their disgruntled signal caller. This move would be best for everyone involved since personalities are clearly conflicting. Denver's management has handled this situation terribly. New York sports sections have openly promoted suiting up Cutler as the newest member of Gang Green.

Champs
NCAA Final Four weekend in Detroit will decide this years champ. Michigan State vs Connecticut, Villanova vs North Carolina. The winners will play Monday night in the National Championship Game.

Chumps
Wow. This list keeps growing rapidly. Too many head cases lately (or sports figures not using their heads).
Allen Iverson has never been the poster boy representing a "team player". I'll sum up his entire NBA career in two words: "Ball Hog" Here's a guy who would rather attempt to dribble past three defenders and toss up off balanced shots than dish it to an open teammate. His latest rant is not wanting to play as a backup off the bench. "I'd rather retire.." is his answer. The perfect distraction as Detroit clings desperately to a playoff birth.

(CBSSports.com) "The Swedish tennis federation was fined $25,000 on Thursday and the city of Malmo banned from hosting Davis Cup matches for five years because of the decision to play Israel behind closed doors. The Davis Cup Committee also said Sweden will lose its choice of venue if a similar situation happens again, and the country will be required to guarantee that future matches will be open to the public. Sweden hosted Israel last month in the first round of the Davis Cup, losing 3-2. The best-of-five series was played behind closed doors because city officials said they couldn't guarantee security at the venue. Critics, including the Israeli team, said Malmo was caving in to threats of violence from anti-Israel groups." So, what happened here? Did the Swedes refuse to protect Israeli players with a security detail? Was this political payback from a government which condemned Israel's recent self defense Gaza incursion?

WR Dante Stallworth turned himself in after killing a pedestrian while driving drunk in Miami. Stallworth told officers he flashed his lights and honked his horn in an attempt to warn Reyes (pedestrian). I guess this drunk bozo never thought of slowing down, stopping or swerving to avoid the poor soul who's now dead. He's facing up to 15 years in prison if convicted.

(www.allworldallsports.com)

03/31/09

Baseball Economics: Will MLB Survive Our Recession Storm?

Permalink 05:00:00 am, Categories: All World All Sports Blogs  

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-Digger’s Daily-

Will the current U.S. economic downturn sweep across baseball diamonds? Can team owners survive when gate receipts are certain to be far less than previous boom years? Small market teams could be in for a very challenging time. Owners victimized by ponzi schemes, stock market failings or floundering assets from personal business ventures could reshape baseball in 2009.

In good years, it’s been the small market low budget teams singing the blues. This season, they might be winners while the free spending teams take heavy hits on the chin. During recent prosperous years teams never worried about high ticket prices, concessions, television contracts, ad revenues and player salaries. With tempers suddenly flaring towards executives with big salaries and a new inexperienced President waging war on corporate America… will Major League Baseball suddenly fall under anti-trust regulation for the very first time?

Imagine this… if our Treasury Secretary is granted special powers to take over troubled businesses will a failing sports organization be seized? Probably not, but, we’re living in different times nowadays. Our country is being quickly changed into a government owned society. AIG, banks, insurance companies, health care, automotive industry and soon to be more corporations taken over by politicians who weren’t able to regulate during up years.

The steroids era has Congress looking closely at how baseball operates on a daily basis. What will happen if the Florida Marlins, Cleveland Indians or Seattle Mariners struggle? Imagine if one of the games big time franchises suddenly has trouble making ends meet due to wild salaries paid to players and personal fortunes lost (Yankees, Red Sox or Mets)? Would the power hungry single party government try to wrestle control away from owners? Or, demand baseball’s exemption status be revoked? A far fetched thought indeed.. except for exemption status.

How will civil disobedience groups treat baseball players and owners? Corporate executives have faced a heavy backlash as citizens around the world rage in fits of protests to death threats. There’s a tremendous protest about to take place in London as world leaders gather for a G20 economic summit. Sports figures making millions could suddenly find themselves staying out of public view after games instead of living it up in host cities.

Of course, this brief blog is a bit of imagination running as I type. Or is it? Bar talk is already buzzing on this topic and it extends well beyond baseball in sporting circles.

(www.allworldallsports.com)

03/30/09

Tiger's Back! Ratings Skyrocket!

Permalink 08:00:00 pm, Categories: All World All Sports Blogs  

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-Digger's Daily-

Good news for golfing fans... bad news for the field of PGA free swingers. Tiger Woods is back. The worlds greatest ever golfer was trailing by 5 before turning it up a few notches Sunday to win the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill (Orlando). In near darkness, he sank a 15 foot birdie put for victory.

Many of the television viewing audience was unaware of how dark it actually was when Woods winning putt sank into the 18th cup just after sundown. Tiger displayed his patented celebratory fist pump and leg kick with his first post operation victory.

"NBC Sports said the final round drew a 4.9 overnight rating with a 10 share. According to Nielsen Media Research, that's the highest rating of any golf tournament since the U.S. Open in June. The Bay Hill rating was up 23 percent from last year and attracted more viewers than the British Open and PGA Championship last year when Woods did not play because of knee surgery." (ESPN.com news services).

As more and more sports fans conserve their hard earned money it's a safe bet tv viewership in all major sports will rise. Astronomical ticket prices for 2009 baseball games in New York are cost prohibitive for most families. Two new vastly over budget stadiums are set to open in a few days. Ticket prices are out of sight for those wishing to have decent seats in either ballpark. Throw in inflated concession prices and it might be cheaper to take a vacation than attending a game. (More on the new Yankee Stadium and Citi-Field later this week).

(www.allworldallsports.com)

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