Archive for December 11th, 2008

11
Dec
08

Wanna Buy Me a Present?

On December 20th, Bonhoms will hold its annual Ferrari and Prestigious Italians auction event in Gstaad, Switzerland.

The final highly publicized auction of 2008 promises another extraordinary collection of Italian automobiles, headlined by two historically important competition Ferraris from the Estate of the late well-known French collector Antoine Midy.

The 1955 Ferrari 121 LM Spyder by Scaglietti was raced by the late Phil Hill in both the 1955 Le Mans 24 Hours and the Venezuela Grand Prix. Also from the same collection is the 1951 Ferrari 212 Export Spyder by Carrozzeria Motto, which won 2nd in class and finished 3rd overall in the 1954 Mille Miglia, driven by Piero Scotti.In addition to the extraordinary Italian car line-up, a Ferrari motorcycle will also be offered for sale. Built by David Kay Engineering as a tribute to the great Enzo Ferrari, the one-off motorcycle bears the famous prancing horse badge. The highly reputed MV August expert David Kay received complete approval and good wishes for the project from Enzo’s son Piero Ferrari.

Ignoring the fact that that town needs to move some of its vowels around, the cars at this auction are GORGEOUS! Buy me one. Preferably this one:

1951 Ferrari 212 Export Spyder – Estimate $2,315,000 - $3,145,000.

1951 Ferrari 212 Export Spyder – Estimate $2,315,000 - $3,145,000.

11
Dec
08

Shiancoe is Ready for His Close-Up

The story making the rounds everywhere after Sunday’s NFL contests was the accidental, or not accidental, penis showing of Vikings tight end Visanthe Shiancoe on live television. Fox has issued an apology, Shiancoe was less apologetic, after all, it was HIS locker room. Now, his oopsie has turned into a new career opportunity for him, porn! Not an industry to pass up an opportunity to get some of the moment publicity, Black Ice productions have offered a “exclusive performance offer” to Shiancoe to star in one of their films.

“From what we’ve seen, there is definitely a career for Visanthe in the adult industry, if he’d like one,” said Black Ice general manager Tony Santoro. “We would welcome an opportunity to align ourselves with a world-class athlete of Viante’s stature.”

Don’t worry, Black Ice, makers of such fine cinema as Bubble Butts Barbeque 2 have done their research into Shiancoe and don’t believe that there are any morals clause in his contract that would prevent him from participation. “Whether or not Visanthe will be interested in our offer – or if the league will intervene – remains to be seen,” said Santoro. “It’s worth a shot, as this would definitely be something that the fans will want to see.”

Of course, even if Shiancoe were to accept I have a feeling that Roger Goodell would have something to say about this. Although, this wouldn’t be the first time an NFL player was involved in a porn.

[AVN via Fan IQ]

11
Dec
08

On the Baseball Transactions

Yesterday saw a flurry of activity on the baseball front and I got opinions about it.

First off, of course, the biggest news was the Yankees coming to terms with the biggest free agent available CC Sabathia. While everyone is making a big deal about the 7 year $161 million contract, the thing that is being ignored is the player opt-out option after year 3. Keith Law was the only one I saw who commented on how stupid this was for the Yankees. This opt-out clause really just makes this a 3 year deal because if he’s pitching well, there is no way that CC doesn’t opt out to add a few more years and a whole lot more dollars on top of the $100 million he’d be walking away from. Or, if CC has been struggling and is on the decline, THEN and really ONLY then would he opt to stay because the market wouldn’t be as robust for him. So, really, this is only a 3 year $t61 million contract, which, is still a great deal for both player and team, but the only way plays this whole 7 year contract out is if CC gets hurt or experiences a super drop off in talent. Regardless, for the Yankees this deal HAD to be made and Sabathia instantly upgrades their rotation which was their biggest hole. I’ll grade this one a A- only because it really is only for 3 years.

The Mets went into Vegas and will walk out having pulled off a three-way with a big Putz involved and drastically improved their team. The signing of K-Rod is fine, I think he’s going to continue to decline but with only a three year contract the deal works out for the Mets. That said, I think that they’ll see as the season goes on that JJ Putz is the better closing option. However, I also believe that Putz will be used in the more leveraged innings in the 7 or 8 and that while he won’t be picking up the saves he’ll be the more valuable reliever while K-Rod racks up meaningless save numbers. Unfortunately for Putz, the big money goes to the guy with the save numbers. Regardless, this trade helps the Mets in a myriad of ways, not least in just getting Aaron Heilman OUT of the bullpen, I can’t wait to see him fail in AL. Sean Green replaces Joe Smith with no real drop-off and now the Mets have the best 8-9 inning guys in the game, at least on paper. I think they’ll miss Endy Chavez because he ended up being useful part for them, when healthy because he could play all three outfield positions well. They should be able to replace his production relatively easy though.

I’m surprised that the return for a 14 game winner in the AL East is only Matt Joyce, but that’s what all the Rays got for Edwin Jackson from the Tigers. Matt Joyce I think can hit 20 homers in a platoon role, which is valuable, but I thought that Jackson, despite being erratic had more value. However, I like this move for the Rays who needed to move a starting pitcher no matter what in order to clear space for future ace David Price. They add a cheap platoon player to help fill their void in right field and still have money theoretically to add a solid bat for their DH slot. I still think Giambi might be a perfect fit there, or maybe Adam Dunn, although I doubt the Rays will want to go as high as needed for the salaries. Also, keep an eye on Pat Burrell maybe taking a job there on a 1-2 year deal.

The continued pursuit of Mark Texeira is certainly more interesting now that CC is off the board. I hope it means that the Yankees are out of it, but one never knows, they may make a late push like they did on Johnny Damon. Rumors are that the 4 teams who are really in on Tex, the Angels, Orioles, Red Sox and Nationals have all made contract offers to him, with the Nationals supposedly offering a 8 year $160 million deal. I’d have to believe that if the Red Sox offered the same contract that he’d take theirs over the Nats because there is no chance that, even with Texeira that the Nats are close to competing for the next 4-5 years, which would be essentially the situation he was in in Texas. Since before he was traded from the Rangers, now three teams ago, he reportedly turned down a 8 year $140 million offer, I have to believe that at least the possibility of winning is one of his criteria for a new employer. Certainly with the Angels and the Red Sox he has that. Clearly the Orioles and Nationals do not, although he is from the Baltimore area so that may trump that issue. Regardless, I think before Christmas that we will see Texeira at a press conference with Theo Epstein holding up a Red Sox jersey and signing on the dotted line for something like 8 years $180 million. As much as I don’t want to see Mike Lowell leave this year, Texeira is simply too valuable of a long-term player and someone I think the Sox could sorely use. I think Lowell will play well over the remaining 2 years on his deal but that the long term interests of the Sox point to Texeira. I just hope this doesn’t screw up the arrival of my man Lars Anderson.

I like the reported deal for Melky Cabrera for Mike Cameron, although it apparently has hit a snag and now may not happen. Since Melky is incredibly overrated this represents a good deal for the Yankees to get rid of him while getting a very strong defensive presence out in center. I do like that part of the issue that the Yankees had in sending Melky back to the minors last season was his lack of patience and his inability to get on base, with a career .268/.329  average and OBP when Cameron’s career numbers with over 10 more major league seasons are .250/.340. Basically it is a lateral move, albeit one that will feature about 15 more homers from the center field position with Cameron.

11
Dec
08

Unmentionable Gift Ideas!

Great, somehow I totally screwed this up and this post never got posted. I only just noticed. Sigh. It’s probably completely outdated but, I liked it, so I’m putting it up anyways. This was supposed to go up on December 5. Fuck! I’m an idiot.

Want to give a unique gift to your favorite sports fan this holiday season? Forget bobbleheads or a new jersey. Sportsworld, a Saugus, Massachusetts-based sports memorabilia company has a series of auctions on eBay for which you’ll want to break out the checkbook.

Need a gift for your boyfriend who just loves to be dominated by muscular women? Sportsworld has just the right thing for you: Alex Rodriguez’ game-worn (XL) underwear!

arod1Unfortunately for all those fem-A-Rod fans, these have been washed. Sigh. Fortunately, the bidding hasn’t gotten out of control yet, with a high bid as of this posting of only $177.

Maybe you’re not shopping for such a fey sports fan and you want to get some memorabilia from someone a bit more rough and tumble. Perhaps something from the type of man whose beard alone convinces you that he should never be left alone with children and that at any moment he could snap and go off on a 6 state ax-murdering spree is more your speed. In that case, never fear, Sportsworld has you covered with your very own pair of Kevin Youkilis underwear! And the auction doesn’t note whether the underwear has been washed or not, so if you’re lucky they just might come with special Youk Musk!

youk1
Apparently there’s no love out there for Youk’s unmentionables though as the auction right now is only at $50. C’mon people, the Greek God of Walks’ Elgin Marbles brushed up against this fabric, I know there is a recession but dig deep in those pockets!

There’s a chance that sweaty athletic men aren’t your thing. Perchance you’re buying for a more analytical, intellectual type of sports fan. The type of fan who loves to check the pitch count and can talk for hours about the tilt of a slider versus a curve. Don’t worry, Sportsworld also has you covered with your very own pair of Red Sox pitching coach John Farrell’s undies! Finally! I’ve been clamoring for YEARS for more undergarments from major league coaching staffs and now finally, my prayers have been answered.

farrell1Not only did Farrell’s little general butt up against these briefs, but the thrifty shopper will notice right now that the high bid is a mere 10 dollars, give your favorite Red Sox fan a unique piece of history without breaking the bank. They’ll never know the difference! And again, there is no mention of these being washed (I guess the Sox are less concerned with hygiene) so there’s that too.

[Sportsworld]

11
Dec
08

College Athletes Get Free Stuff

The one thing that is nice about the approximately 4000 college football bowl games is that each player involved gets a gift basket, just like the Oscars! Due to NCAA rules, the packages cannot exceed $500 in value but that doesn’t mean there can’t be some really good stuff. Thanks to Sox and Dawgs via Awful Announcing, the complete list is available here. Some highlights include:

Las Vegas Bowl (BYU vs Arizona)
Gifts:
Wii System bundle package, Oakley Holeshot Three-Hand watch, Oakley Hijinx sunglasses, hat

Alamo Bowl (Northwestern vs Missouri)
Gifts:
Sony 80-gigabyte PS3 system with game, Fossil watch

Insight Bowl (Kansas vs. Minnesota)
Gifts:
Vizio 26-inch LCD HDTV, Bulova watch, Hat

Sugar Bowl (Alabama vs Utah)
Gifts:
Sony MP3 Walkman, Sony Blu-Ray player, Timely Watch Co. watch, New Era cap

Not too shabby. Sure for the big time players I’m sure they’re already getting nicer things via their future agents an boosters, but if you’re the 95 guy on the roster, who plays once every 6 games and otherwise just gets to stand in uniform on the sidelines, this is a pretty awesome deal for you. Dammit, why wasn’t I ever a major football conference player, I could totally use a new 26 inch HDTV. Readers, I expect you all to contribute and buy me one. Do it now.

11
Dec
08

A Terminator Met Doppelganger

In the first Terminator movie, Michael Biehn gets sent back in time by his best friend John Connors to protect Connors’ mother, (and then ultimately nails Connors’ mom and becomes his best friend’s dad, because that’s not totally weird,) from a Terminator machine that is trying to kill Sarah Connors. David Wright, even with his chipmunk voice is one of the most marketable players in baseball, in addition to being incredibly good on the field. Earning his second straight Gold Glove/Silver Slugger combo pack while being by all accounts a stand-up guy and possibly nailing Erin Andrews. He’s why I like Mets games. Also, David Wright is one of those people who looks incredibly weird to me whenever he doesn’t have a baseball hat on, like his head is kind of weird shaped without the hat on. At least to me. Anyhoo, the two share quite the resemblance, as pointed out by reader youppi, and so, for your doppelganger enjoyment, check ’em out and then vote in the poll below so that these doppels can join the other doppelgangers we’ve assembled HERE.

wrightbiehn

11
Dec
08

Drugs Invade the World of Chess

Drugs are everywhere in sports, with athletes constantly seeking that little extra edge over their opponents. However, maybe I’m naive, but I never expected to hear about a drug scandal in the world of championship chess. I didn’t even know they were testing for drugs there! On November 25, after losing to Gata Kamsky during the Chess Olympiad in Dresden, Germany, Vassily Ivanchuk, the third-ranked player in the world and a Grand Master for over 20 years refused to provide urine for a drug test. Under the rules, a refusal to test is considered a positive test and Ivanchuk could be subject to a two year ban.

Ivanchuk  has been given the name “Big Chucky” by his fellow chessletes because

after losing a game, he goes into the forest at night and howls at the moon to drive out the demons. Because he walks around in shorts in freezing temperatures. Because he likes to sit in dark rooms. Because he usually looks at the ceiling instead of the board during a chess match. Because he tries to fold the oversized winner’s check handed out after a tournament down to pocket size. And because he, as World Champion Visvanathan Anand says, lives on “Planet Ivanchuk.”

The other players are outraged over the incident, and the resulting insinuation that any of them are doping, believing it is insulting to their honor. According to the World Anti-Doping Agency chess is considered a “low-risk” sport and no one as yet has actually been convicted of doping.

Among the substances being tested for are prescription drugs like Adderall and Ritalin, which makes sense. The reason the World Chess Federation has testing is that there is a movement to have chess included as an official Olympic sport. First of all, is it a Summer or Winter event? Does it matter? Second of all, if baseball is no longer an Olympic event, there is NO way chess should be considered one. IT ISN’T REALLY EVEN A SPORT! Don’t get me wrong, great chess players are impressive, but they certainly ain’t athletes…

As for Ivanchuk, there is a loophole that may help him out. Under Article 6, Paragraph 1a of the World Chess Federation’s rules, a player must be acquitted if he can prove that he is neither guilty of the offense nor that he acted negligently. Since Ivanchuk is known as a space cadet and in his own world, that may actually help him. When asked about the incident this week, while he was winning a tournament in Spain Ivanchuk had this to say, “What happened in Dresden is total insanity, but these kinds of dramas happen in our world,” he says. “I simply left after the match. I didn’t listen to the man who was speaking to me. I had never seen him before. In fact, to this day I don’t know who he is.”




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