Wednesday, April 16, 2014

A's & Giants Beat L.A. On Jackie Robinson Day

Both Bay Area major league baseball teams were triumphant of late, putting to bed their rivals from the south in extra innings.  The San Francisco Giants tied it in the bottom of the ninth, then pitched good enough to survive the L.A. powerhouse lineup for three extra innings before doctor Crawford and his anesthesiologist Hector Sanchez came up with some nifty hitting, extracting in the twelfth the tumor that was the Los Angeles Dodgers.

"When you have a couple of really nice chances and don't score, that can be frustrating," said Giants manager Bruce Bochy, who turned 59 before the game ended (his birthday is April 16). "But the guys kept fighting."

In all it was a surgical procedure that ran well past the midnight hour with the Giants prevailing in game one of a three game series at home.

Final Score
Dodgers 2
Giants 3

Earlier, the Oakland Athletics came up with a run in the top of the 11th inning, putting to bed the evil Angels of Los Angeles- Anaheim. 

It was a game of rallies and the A's would be the ones to see their final rally bare fruit.  Thanks to clutch A's pitching, the visitors from the north held the line just when it seemed to be slipping away in the bottom of the ninth after a two run homer tied it for the Angels. 

"The way I look at it, the longer we go, the better chance we have, because our bullpen's so deep," said A's third baseman Josh Donaldson, who drove in Jed Lowrie from first base with a tiebreaking double off Angels reliever Joslan Herrera in the top of the 11th Tuesday night at Angel Stadium.

It would be left to A's doctors Jed Lowrie and Josh Donaldson to pull them through with clutch hitting performances that sealed the Angel of death's doom in the eleventh inning. 

Final Score
Athletics 10
Angels 9  

Happy Jackie Robinson Day L.A.!

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Pacquiao Answers Bradley, Bradley Answers Critics

Bloodied from an unintentional head butt, Manny Pacquiao regains welter-weight title with unanimous decision over champion Timothy Bradley

Manny Pacquiao is a champion once again, out-dueling Timothy Bradley in an exciting, hard fought 12 round welter-weight battle that had everything except a knockout.

I thought the champion Bradley appeared to be the better fighter early, showing he'd improved since their last meeting and had more power.  But the fast pace and the power punches took a lot out of the champion and facing a challenger like Pacquiao you gotta go the distance.  

Its obvious that Manny is not the same fighter he once was. Not that he lacked the 'killer instinct' but the power to kill and finish off a wounded opponent.  

Even he said he was being careful not to get caught with a punch when he knew he was leading the fight and was trying to end it. Manny couldn't put down Bradley and seldom seemed to have him the champion really hurt.  What Manny did right was land punches and adjust to the bruising style that Bradley tried to impose early.  

All three judges had it for Pacquiao, 118-110, 116-112 and 116-112, as he regained his welterweight world title and handed Bradley his first defeat. also had it for Pacquiao, 118-110.

This title fight, Pacquiao vs Bradley II, was one of the better fights of this year.   It pitted two fighters against one another who had something to prove and/or disprove; is Bradley deserving of the championship title? Has Pacquiao lost his killer instinct in the ring?

I believe the fight answered those questions with a Yes and No.  Bradley proved deserving and Manny disproved his critics, sort of.

The fight gave us boxing fans an edge of your seat excitement that was one punch short of being a classic.  Neither fighter could put together the punches nor land the one big punch that would've made him undisputed winner.  Sure Manny got the unanimous decision winning on all three judging scorecards, but Bradley's style and fatigue played more into the hands of Manny, allowing him to score with quick punches in the later rounds.  Manny won a boxing match, he didn't win a FIGHT!

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

The Intense Ultimate Warrior Passes

Today's news of the death of former wrestling champion James Brian Hellwig, better known as the Ultimate Warrior, is a sad pill to swallow.  It was through cheering on the Ultimate Warrior that I got back into watching wrestling in the wrestle-mania crazed era.

What I liked about Warrior is that he didn't say much, didn't act out much in interviews, but when he came to the ring to fight it was all energy and excitement.  His passion bordered on that of a crazed, caged animal being released into the wild to hunt down and destroy anything in its path.  Warrior was ultimate because he had the muscle and determination to take on anything.  As intimidating and intense as his primal warrior scream was when entering the ring, he always seemed to be fighting for honor and justice. He represented that deep down, ultimate warrior in all of us.

There was rumor in 1991 that the real Ultimate Warrior had died and the new look returning Warrior was a replacement.  I'll admit that the returning Ultimate Warrior seemed a bit watered down and less intense, more commercial than what I'd remembered.  Maybe it was the blonde hair. But nobody could duplicate that gritting mug of the Warrior during his ring shaking, rope rattling battle cry.

The Ultimate fight for me wasn't when Warrior took on Hulk Hogan, defeating him in Wrestlemania IV (1990). Ultimate Warrior would save Hogan's a$$ from a double-team a year later. No, for me it was when Warrior took on The Undertaker with the late great manager Paul Bearer, who passed away a year ago. 

You do remember Bearer don't you?  He was the creepiest manager that ever stood ringside in promotion of a fighter. The Undertaker was gruesome scary, but Paul Bearer and his deathly demeanor was down right spooky to look at. Bearing ashes urn, body bag and all, Paul Bearer was as vile a villain as ever there was. And the Ultimate Warrior tagged and bagged the deadly duo.

RIP Ultimate Warrior 
Hall of Fame Legacy

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

UCONN Women on Top

Unfortunately I missed the NCAA Women's basketball championship game between Connecticut and the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame.  I hear the lady Huskies dominated throughout the game.  It was a match-up that pitted two undefeated teams against one another.  Somebody had to lose, there could only be one Queen crowned and the national championship head piece now sits atop the University of Connecticut women's basketball program.

Congratulations go out to the UCONN lady huskies, Queens of the hard court.

ND 58        

UCONN Coach Geno Auriemma - "I'm probably one of the luckiest people in the coaching profession because I get to coach players like Stefanie and Bria" Hartley, Auriemma said, fighting back tears.  


The madness of march came to a climaxing end with the grace of a flopping flounder, wriggling around on deck of a fishing vessel. The NCAA basketball championship game between Connecticut and Kentucky seemed to me a sloppily played game that somebody had to win. The hustle, bustle and tussle up and down the court made for a game of frenzied desperation.   

I know the young players had come so far and dreamed of this moment in the limelight, but to me both teams stumbled down the stretch toward the finish line.  Maybe it was fatigue, anxiety or both. Whatever the reason for an ugly championship game, it is not for me to analyze. Because in the end it doesn't really matter how you arrive at a championship, only that you get there and win the darn thing.  NCAA, You have a champion, and the University of Connecticut Huskies are that champion.

Congratulations UCONN!

UK 54          
CONN 60    

"Somebody told me we were Cinderellas, and I was like, no, we're UConn," coach Kevin Ollie said. "This is what we do. We are born for this. We're bred to cut down nets. We're not chasing championships. Championships are chasing us."

Kevin Ollie - A Championship Coach

Friday, April 04, 2014

Peabo Bryson (For Mom)


San Francisco Giants Foil Dodgers Opening Day

San Francisco Giants ruin opening day in L.A. as they whip up on the Dodgers 8-4.  The Dodgers might've hit a few out of the park, but it was the Giants jumping on Da Bums early that set the tone for the day. 

The Giants went up 8-0 in the second inning on some opportune hitting and base running.  Even starting pitcher Ryan Vogelsong batted in two runs, but Vogey would leave in the fifth after giving up back to back homers and some runs. New acquisition David Huff came in and settled things down again as Gutierrez, Machi and J. Lopez locked down the Dodgers and secured the victory.

Other newly acquired Giants who contributed in the game were (2B)Brandon Hicks and (LF)Michael Morse.  These guys know how to swing the bat with men on base.  For the record, the Dodgers left 18 men on base to the Giants 7. 

Its so early in the season that you can't read too much into this win. But its good to see that the Giants are hitting the ball good and their pitching is holding up.  Bottom line, they're winning.  And beating the Dodgers in Los Angeles on opening day is a special bonus.  I see good things ahead for the orange and black.  Stay healthy and win series, that's how they'll get back to the big show.  

San Francisco41.800-0-04-13122+9Won 34-1
LA Dodgers42.667.50-14-12320+3Lost 14-2
Colorado23.40021-01-32729-2Won 12-3
San Diego12.33321-20-069-3Lost 21-2
Arizona16.14341-50-12645-19Lost 31-6

Wednesday, April 02, 2014

Best Game Winning Shot Announcer - Tim Roye

Of Course it was a game winning Steph Curry shot, in overtime, who else! 
What a call by Warriors play-by-play announcer Tim Roye; suprise, excitement, passion!

Tim Roye is in his 16th season of handling the play-by-play duties for all Warriors radio broadcasts on KNBR (680 AM & 1050 AM), the club’s flagship station. Roye also continues to host a weekly one-hour program on KNBR, "Warriors Weekly Roundtable," throughout the basketball season as well as the Warriors’ pregame and postgame shows.