We’re dealing with some wintery weather here in Tennessee in recent days. Where I’m located, there really wasn’t enough snow to be a factor, but other areas were inundated. It reminded me of something I saw a couple of weeks ago online.
So what do you do with a baseball stadium during the winter months?
The folks in Cleveland figured it out. It’s called Cleveland Snow Days.
They installed an innertube luge run, an ice skating rink and a snowball tossing area along with some other nifty stuff during the weeks before and after the holidays.
Even cooler is that the baseball dugouts were warm-up areas for the chilly visitors. How awesome would that be to hang out in the dugout? Pretty awesome if you ask me.
It brought people back to the downtown area during a time when foot traffic and visitors are at a minimum. Very smart.
And it looks like it would be fun.
So until the first pitch of spring, here’s to Cleveland and their winter baseball wonderland.
Posted in baseball, nature, sports, weather
Tagged baseball, Cleveland, Cleveland Indians, Cleveland Snow Days, fun, ice skating, Indians Snow Days, luge, MLB, snow, weather, winter, winter fun, winter in Cleveland
It’s been a busy seven days in the sports world.
Spain has been crowned the new top dog in soccer. Major League Baseball held its Midsummer Classic and lost two of the Big Apple’s favorites. And of course, the NBA was turned topsy turvy by the announcement of the forming of the 3-Heat.
It was a week ago that LeBron James went from being the lone wolf in Cleveland to just one of the guys in Miami. King James ended his free agency by joining Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh, turning his back on his home team Cavs and the chance to be “the man.”
I understand the lure of winning rings and appreciate the desire to be on a winning team. I get playing night after night with your best buddies, but personally I think becoming a part of a trio dilutes James’ chance to ascend above every other player. Now, instead of one “King,” we have three stars.
Michael Jordan didn’t bolt from Chicago after the Bulls were trounced in the playoffs those first few seasons. The Bulls didn’t rush out and try to sign Charles Barkley or Karl Malone.
Instead, they drafted a lanky kid out of Central Arkansas. When he was selected, nobody expected Scottie Pippen to grow into the perfect accomplice to Jordan, but he did.
LeBron may have lost as many fans as he made with all the hoopla prior to the switch to the Heat. I know I was turned off by the deafening crescendo of media noise leading up to his primetime special. Yes, there was interest in whether loyalty would win out over playing in a state with no income tax, but we really didn’t need a 24-7 accounting of his every waking moment.
The Heat have definitely improved their chances of taking the title from Kobe and the Lakers, but we’ll see if there are enough shots in a game to satisfy the Heats’ new superstars.
Then on Tuesday, baseball lost an icon. New York Yankees owner George Steinbrenner succumbed to a heart attack.
As much as LeBron flipped the NBA script with his free agency, Steinbrenner changed baseball with his decision to buy the best players available.
I was just a kid back in ye olden days when the lure of cold hard cash first put many of my favorite players in pinstripes. As a fan of the Oakland A’s then, it was hard to watch former A’s Reggie Jackson and Catfish Hunter end up in New York. I guess that’s how Pittsburgh Pirates fans feel in this day and age.
After buying the Yankees in 1973, Steinbrenner with his famous altercations with managers and players became as synonymous with his team as any player on the field. Heck, he even became a pop culture star when George Costanza had frequent encounters with The Boss on television’s “Seinfeld.”
Dying only days after legendary Yankees announcer Bob Sheppard, it was fitting the 80 year old passed away on the day the All-Star game was played. He wouldn’t have wanted it any other way.
Posted in baseball, basketball, nostalgia, Pop Culture, sports, television
Tagged 3-Heat, baseball, basketball, Chris Bosh, Cleveland Cavaliers, Dwyane Wade, free agency, George Costanza, George Steinbrenner, King James, LeBron James, Miami Heat, Michael Jordan, MLB. Catfish Hunter, NBA, New York, NY Yankees, Oakland A's, Pittsburgh Pirates, Pop Culture, Reggie Jackson, Scottie Pippen, Seinfeld, sports, television, The Boss, Yankees, Yanks
I wrote a column for my non-digital gig about how much I really don’t enjoy fireworks like 85 percent of the rest of the good ol’ US of A.
Chicks Queens dig the longball, not the exploding fireball.
Here ya go.
“Fireworks on the Fourth eventually all fizzle out”
I’ll admit from the start that I’m not one of those black powder geeks who spend half of their gross income buying Black Cat firecrackers, bottle rockets in bulk and colorful bombs purchased under a striped tent along the roadside in the hot and humid weeks leading up to the Fourth of July.
Fireworks are just too short-lived for me to enjoy. I like my excitement in a more long-term format. The quick KABOOM and sudden splash of color across the night sky is undeniably both attention-grabbing and beautiful, but I still usually find my mind wandering before the acrid smell of the accompanying black smoke wafts into sniffing range.
Maybe that’s why I’m a baseball fan. The long 162-game season sets a pace a languid turtle could love. No clock limits the time it takes to settle the final outcome and record those 27 outs in a winning effort. Even at the midseason all-star break, the team at the bottom of the standings still has a chance to scratch and claw back into title contention.
Some fans complain the length of the game has stretched out to an interminable span, but I appreciate the longer games. It just gives me more of a chance to explore the sights, sounds and smells of the ballpark like a bloodhound on the trail of an escaped serial killer.
For me, people-watching during the game is probably more eye-catching and interesting than any fireworks display shooting streaks of flame and color across the evening’s ebony sky. Whether it’s the super stat guy who keeps score — noting every pitch, base hit and error — or the Little Leaguer staring at his idol’s every move on the diamond, swinging a tiny bat and mimicking the stance of his favorite player, I appreciate all the fans in the stands.
I also prefer my fireworks on the field. Be it a well-turned double play with the second baseman leaping and pirouetting to make the throw to first while avoiding the sliding runner or a pitcher dropping a curve ball off the table as the batter’s knees buckle, baseball is a beautiful thing.
And hey, they actually have fireworks at a lot of baseball games. None to me are more spectacular than the ones ignited immediately after a home run blasted over the fence by a player from my favorite team.
Now, don’t let me your ruin your fondness for fireworks, whether they are the hand-held sparklers, the rat-a-tat-tat basic firecracker or the bombastic big blasts. Set them off, light up the sky and enjoy this Independence Day weekend.
Posted in baseball, freedoms, holidays, sports, work, writing
Tagged 4th of July, baseball, fireworks, Fourth of July, holidays, home runs, homers, long ball, sports
So I spent the majority of Monday on a day long drive from the office to a tennis match to another tennis match to a softball game and back to the office.
It was a long day, nearly 200 miles and several different towns and cities.
I spent most of it by myself in the car. Part of the time driving I was on the phone, but most of it was just good old me, myself and I.
During the course of the day I saw tears of sadness and exhaustion followed by tears of joy. The joyful emotion came not from an athlete but from a parent.
I saw heavy, black thunder clouds that transported tornadoes that ripped up a few communities I didn’t drive through.
I saw a coyote trotting through a field. I don’t know its destination, but I believe it was racing to find a safe spot ahead of the storm.
I saw a rainbow.
I think it was some sort of vision quest day.
Posted in animals, freaky animals, ITISY, nature, road trip, sports, Too much info, travel, weather, work
Tagged coyotes, emotion, rainbows, road trip, sports, storms, vision quest, weather
Happy Friday everyone!
I know this is a commercial for Gatorade, but I can’t find a video version of the song without it, plus I still dig watching Muhammad Ali strut and do his shuffle.
The song is by Kermit Quinn.
Posted in commercials, Feel Good Friday, food, music, nostalgia, sports, television
Tagged beverages, commercials, Evolve, Gatorade, Gatorade commercial, Gatorade Evolve commercial, Gatorade G Series, Gatorade Revolution commercial, Kermit Quinn, Kevin Garnett, Michael Jordan, Muhammad Ali, music, Peyton Manning, Serena Williams, sports, television, Usain Bolt
Tiger Woods has now officially apologized in front of the cameras for his personal indiscretions.
In honor of that, how about a song with Sorry in the title not once but twice.
You’ll have to watch it multiple times to actually meet the equivalent number of apologies necessary for each and every one of Tiger’s affairs.
Nothing says “Sorry” like a bunch of orange-clad Filipino prisoners dancing in unison with teenage girls on hand to watch. I’m a bit confused by the young female audience.
For more information about the prison dance routines, visit Byron F Garcia.
Posted in dance, golf, music, ouch, Pop Culture, sports, weird
Tagged Byron F Garcia, dancing, Filipino dancers, music, prison dancers, Sorry Sorry, Tiger apology, Tiger Woods, Tiger Woods apology