Archive for August 12th, 2009

12
Aug
09

I Believe the Children are Our Future

Sometimes I worry for the future of America and the world based on the time I spend around children. However, whenever things get too bad something always comes along to refresh my faith. This time, it was this 10 year old Broncos fan who wants to make August the National Jay Cutler Burn Jersey Month.

Finally, a cause I can get behind!

12
Aug
09

They’re Friendster Friends Too

The friendship between Bill Belichick and Jon Bon Jovi was on display at yesterday’s Patriots training camp and it always makes me laugh. Can you imagine two more disparate people?

What do they talk about? Can I hang out too?

6_wiggs__1250080396_2339[Boston.com]

12
Aug
09

Daddy Got a New Pair of Shoes

airwalksWhen I was in middle school I was friends with the skater kids, although I was not one myself. I’m not so good with the skateboard — although I can rollerblade like nobodies business… sigh.

I never owned a pair of Airwalks, considering buying them akin to becoming a full-on poseur, which I think we all know I’m not. Being a high-powered blogger though, occasionally offers come along to try out new items to pass along to you, my loyal readers. I was approached regarding Airwalk’s new line, from streetstyle icon jeffstaple and asked if I would check them out. Hey, I like free stuff, so I did it, poseur-dom be damned. Besides, I’m in my mid 20s, I’m not threatened by skater kids anymore…

Now, I’m a fiercely loyal person, when I finally switched back to sneakers after 4+ years of Birkenstocks only — I know, I know, I’m the fucking COOLEST! — I opted for New Balances and haven’t looked back. For the last 6 years whenever I’ve bought new shoes, they’ve been NBs, hell, I even always buy them in the same store!

These new Airwalks though are totally boss. They’re comfortable as hell, look super styling and I’ve already received compliments on them from 2 girls. So, eat it world!

I picked the “Heaven” a “California-inspired casual slip-on,” and they’ve proved their mettle already. One of my bigger disappointments though is that they aren’t making a guys version of these totally ridiculously awesome hi-tops. Girls only for now. Sigh. I’m also pissed that these shoes weren’t available for me to get, because they’re totally sick and I want them, and definitely would have chosen them instead.

Fortunately, these shoes are available as of yesterday exclusively at Payless stores nationwide for $30-$50 so, run out and get yours today. There will also be some special, limited-edition versions that will be released later in the fall so, I guess keep an eye out?

12
Aug
09

Welcome Back Chris!

08FAs part of some organizational restructuring, the Milwaukee Brewers sent struggling shortstop JJ Hardy to Triple-A, released third baseman Bill Hall and fired pitching coach Bill Castro. Having been with the big league club since 1992, through multiple anemic managers, Castro had outlasted everyone, until today. He’ll be replaced on the bench by Triple-A pitching coach, former Brewer “great” and owner of one of the more improbable no-hitters in MLB history, Chris Bosio.

Quite the interesting move for a team trying to contend for a playoff spot. Dropping a shortstop who has 50+ HRs over the last 2 seasons is quite a gamble, regardless of how well prospect Alcides Escobar has been playing.

Then again, this is the same team that appeared out of nowhere to grab CC Sabathia and fired their manager with only 12 games remaining in the season en route to their first playoffs appearance in 26 years. I guess, in Doug Melvin we trust?

12
Aug
09

High School No-Hit Whiz Signs With Arizona

patrick-Schuster-3Some news about an old friend from ESPN’s Keith Law, whose player evaluations I trust implicitly:

Arizona also signed 13th-rounder Patrick Schuster for a $450,000 bonus. He made news this spring after throwing four straight no-hitters in high school, but he projects as a good organizational pitcher and not a major league prospect.

If you don’t remember our earlier stories on young master Schuster, you can reread them here and here. Enjoy!

[ESPN]

12
Aug
09

Baron Davis’ Laptop Gets Got

121108_alba_400X400Baron Davis has been the victim of laptop theft and his lawyers are getting out ahead of any possible use of the “private images” that were on the computer. Davis’ attorneys sent out letters threatening legal action to various news outlets if they use any of the personal photos, video or audio on the computer. According to the lawyers the photos and videos  “depict, among other things, a variety of private images of our client, his associates and his colleagues,” wrote lawyer William J. Briggs, II. Davis “had a reasonable expectation of enjoying total privacy with regard to the images,” Briggs added.

Considering Baron’s longtime friendship with his high school teammate Cash Warren — better known as Mr. Jessica Alba — I can only hope that there are thousands upon thousands of naked pictures of her on the computer and that someone is willing to buck the lawyers and deliver them to the world.

Please?

[The Smoking Gun]

12
Aug
09

Drew Brees is Good at Football

While I argue that calling Drew Brees the “NFL’s BEST quarterback” is a case of hyperbole running wild, this video of him is pretty fucking awesome. As part of the show Sport Science, Drew Brees was pitted against Olympic archers in an epic battle of accuracy from 20 yards.

The archers manage a meager 50% bullseye hits in their attempts while Brees steps up and demolishes them. The video is a little long, but you can do it, it’s worth it if only for the awesome slow-motion shots of Brees throwing a ball. I also learned something interesting, did you know that SOME wobble in a football toss is not only good, but NECESSARY? See, the Internet IS useful.

[NY Times]

12
Aug
09

Remember These Uniforms?

Of course, the White Sox shorts uniforms make this list, despite used for like 3 games, they remain one of the worst things to ever happen on a baseball diamond. I will say that I really like the old-school pillbox Pittsburgh Pirates hats and uniforms, but I think I’m in the minority there…
bucky-dent-white-sox-shorts

[Sports Illustrated]

12
Aug
09

Triple-A Team Takes Home “Ballpark of the Year” Award

dsc06037For the 10th year in a row, Baseballparks.com gave out their Ballpark of the Year award for the best new baseball stadium to open this season. Despite spending over a billion dollars each, neither New York team factored in the final verdict.

Taking into account the best combination of design, site selection and fan amenities, this year’s winner was, of course, the Huntington Park the new home of  the triple-A affiliate of the Cleveland Indians, the Columbus Clippers.

“I think this year’s award is even more special than in the past,” said webmaster Joe Mock. “First, this is the tenth straight year we’ve presented this honor. Second, we’ve never seen so much competition for the award.”

Among the nominees were 3 spring-training parks, both New York stadiums, the renovated Royals stadium and five minor league venues.

“When you consider that the Mets’ and Yankees’ new parks were eligible and over two billion dollars were spent building those two, then it’s an understatement to say that there was stiff competition this season,” Mock noted.

This has to especially burn the Yankees since up until this season, the Columbus Clippers were THEIR triple-a affiliate, and this makes only adds to their recent lack of championships.

“To receive this award in a year when there were no less than a dozen new facilities brought on-line, and two of them major league facilities at that, is rather overwhelming and humbling,” said Ken Schnacke, President and General Manager of the Clippers. “This award is a tribute to all the outstanding partners who were a part of our design and construction team; and it was the complete cooperation of this team and our entire community that made our vision become a reality.”

Veteran ballpark reviewer Charlie O’Reilly of Rutherford, NJ has attended games at nearly 350 different pro ballparks, and he was anything but shocked to learn the news. “I can see why Huntington Park was chosen for this award.  It has received rave reviews, and when I visited it, I was really impressed with how the designers created a very accessible space with great views from everywhere in the park, including windows to watch the game from the street a la AT&T Park in San Francisco.  The removable batter’s eye is like nothing I’ve ever seen.  It’s one of the many novel design elements in the park.” O’Reilly’s ballpark reviews can be found here.

The fans have noticed the delightful new ballyard, leading the minor leagues in attendance with a 9,487 per game average, with over 531,312 Clipper-maniacs passing through the gates with 14 games remaining in the season.

Past winners of this “coveted” prize include AT&T Park in San Francisco, Pittsburgh’s PNC Park, Petco Park in San Diego and last year’s winner, Arvest Ballpark, home of the Northwest Arkansas Naturals.

Alas, the success of the ballpark hasn’t translated to the product on the field; the Clippers are in last place with a .426 winning percentage and are 17 games back from the lead.

[Baseballparks.com]

12
Aug
09

The Steelers Take Some Time to Play With Assault Rifles

steelerswithgunsReportedly, three years ago the Pittsburgh Steelers phoned the Pennsylvania State Police for some “gun safety instructions” which led to 14 members of the team heading to the Greensburg barracks. There, the troopers and the Steelers players took out the illegal assault weapons from the evidence room, some ammo and had a fun ol’ time.

“It’s a state police firing range used for state police to train. When we’re there, it’s downright military,” said one state police official, who requested anonymity. “But at this event, it’s chaos. Everybody’s throwing contraband assault weapons around like they’re toys; it’s like they’re having G.I. Joe tryouts. Not only is this totally unethical, but it’s totally illegal.”

The State Police insist that nothing was amiss in their actions, saying they do these kinds of events regularly and denied that the Steelers players used ANY of the seized weapons.

“This was a good-faith gesture to ensure that they [Steelers] knew how to operate firearms safely,” Lt. Myra Taylor said. “We do this with a number of other community groups – Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, citizen police groups.”

harrisongunsUnfortunately for the troopers, anonymously distributed photographs from the event show the players shooting M-16s and other handguns and rifles at targets in the barrack’s firing range. All around the players are the smiling happy faces of troopers, instructors and barracks superiors.

While Taylor insisted that the guns were “personal weapons owned by others,” there appears to be evidence tags visible on at least one assault rifle that a player is holding.

In addition to all that, the players violated basic safety rules, under the eyes of the instructors and supervisors, shooting without ear or eye protection. Later, in posed photographs the players are seen pointing their guns at their teammates’ heads, which must do wonders for team chemistry.

Among the players pictured were now-former Steelers Joey Porter and Najeh Davenport, and still current Steelers such as last year’s defensive player of the year James Harrison, Ike Taylor, Max Starks, James Farrior and Brett Keisel were also clearly seen. Other players were in attendance but due to the poor quality of some of the photos were difficult to identify.

The Steelers have not commented on the story.

[Philly.com]

12
Aug
09

College Will Learn Her Good Knowledge

Fans in Minnesota love them some Bert Blyleven and it is a point of honor to get him to “circle” you with his telestrator during the game broadcasts. This one fan managed to get on TV, but probably didn’t deserve to be. I just hope her time in college helps her in the task of learning proper spelling…

twinssignShe clearly spent a significant amount of time on the sign, yet NO ONE noticed before that she had a blatant misspelling? Or does she just have bad friends?

12
Aug
09

Don’t Mess With James Johnson

56858961

James Johnson is now one of my favorite NBA players. Drafted #16 overall in this year’s draft, the sophomore from Wake Forest checks in at 6’8″ 235 pounds, making him quite the sturdy power forward. What makes him so exciting to me though starts with this video of him break-dancing while at the rookie photo shoot.

Pretty nice, nothing extraordinary but still dope. Then I found out that Johnson is from Wyoming and I’m more intrigued. Next I learn that he is one of 9 children, that his father Willie is a 6th-degree black belt who used to win karate tournaments under the nom de guerre Tuqik (pronounced Too-Quick). Pretty awesome! But wait, there’s more! Of the 9 children in the family 8 of them are black-belts (including James), with the sole exception his 10 year-old sister Kiandra who is merely a blue belt. Slacker. Add in that James’ mother, Vi, began street fighting as a leader of the Krook City Bloods before switching to tournament fighting, going as Vicious and winning 5 national titles and you have the makings of a totally bad-ass and fun family.

James doesn’t just do all his bruising on the basketball court though, he has a 20-0 record as a kickboxer where his fighting nickname is  “Little Ali” and when he was 18 he fought 31 year old Damond Clark in a MMA fight. That contest lasted all of 90 seconds with Johnson CRUSHING Clark.

Fellow Wake Forest alum and New Orleans Hornets superstar Chris Paul was giving Johnson some ribbing for his fighting telling him,

“I keep hearing about your fighting, but you’re way too big to be a fighter.” Johnson told Paul to stand still directly in front of him, and said, “I’m not going to kick you; I’m that good.” Then he did a roundhouse kick within inches of Paul’s face, causing Paul to step back and say, “O.K., I believe you.”

Basketball may be Johnson’s new career, but “I’m not done fighting,” Johnson said in an interview in 2006, “I think about fighting all the time.”

In the meantime, I’ve found me a new binky. Mental note, keep out of a bench-clearing brawl with the Bulls…

[The Sporting News and Cagewriter]




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