Tuesday, March 31, 2009

The "It's about friggin' time" Story of the Week

... which can be found, in its entirety, here.

In short, the Hockey Hall of Fame has finally amended its bylaws to smooth the road for the induction of women into the Hall. This has been a long time coming, and the list of women who are worthy candidates is a long one. Given the length of the list, I'm not entirely sure that I understand why 4 men will be inducted each year and only 2 women, but we'll call this a step in the right direction.

Monday, March 30, 2009

The Aura of Inevitability

Yesterday afternoon at the Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill, I just knew it.

I knew it as soon as Tiger dropped the birdie putt on 15. This was the classic Sunday Tiger that we've missed so much in the last nine months. There was the stagger, the stare, the intensity, and the inevitability.

And with the daylight fading faster than Sean O'Hair's hopes, he sealed the deal with another 15-foot birdie putt on 18. And then, the fist-pump.

I sure am looking forward to the Masters in a couple of weeks!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

On the World Baseball Classic

So, the 2nd World Baseball Classic wraps up with another win for Team Japan in extra innings over South Korea.

I got the chance last night to watch just a couple of innings of the final game, and I thought it to be tremendously exciting and vibrant baseball. The opportunity to watch two Asian teams play each other underlined some of the differences between the way that these teams play ball and the style I'm used to seeing in the Majors. Meaning no disrespect to MLB, I see an extra element of energy and excitement in the way that the Asian players play baseball. It is as if the players are all on tightly coiled springs, and when the springs release, the vivacity with which the play unfolds is intoxicating. This energy manifests itself throughout the play... the hitting, the pitching, the running, the defense... It all happens so fast, and so explosively, that you can't be perfectly sure you've seen what you thought you saw.

It's an interesting parallel against the largeness and the power that so dominate the western style of the game nowadays. The fact that Japanese speed and finesse easily defeated US power in the semifinals puts the American baseball purist in a difficult position. Tommy Lasorda, for example, is not taking the picture well.
"Can you believe this? Look at the score. I feel so bad about this," Lasorda said. "We had high hopes. This is the second time we were supposed to win. We taught these people the game."
At the very least, fans of the MLB style of play can comfort themselves that the winning hit in the final came off the bat of Ichiro, a familiar figure for whom American baseball can take some partial credit.

Update: What he said.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Bye Bye Curt!

And one of baseball's most polarizing figures says goodbye, finally.

Schilling is an interesting figure for many reasons: the immense talent, the flare for the dramatic, the chip on his shoulder, the fantastic pitching in big games, the unwillingness to choose his words carefully.

I used to read his blog, but to be honest, I got a little tired of reading Schilling on Schilling. His writing tone always came across to me as slightly defensive, even when there was no cause to be. I think that's the tone that wore on people, eventually.

I did think it was amusing that his retirement comes with "no regrets." If I'd been paid $8M last year to do nothing, a regret might be hard to find for me too.

Friday, March 20, 2009

From the Press Tent at golf.com

www.golf.com

England's Prince William has revealed the source of the "Harry Potter" scar on his forehead on a BBC television show. According to the Golfonline UK, it was caused by a flying 7-iron, although he didn't say who threw it.

The royal was hurt when goofing around on a putting green at the tender age of ten, when he was hit with a golf iron.

In a feature on the BBC's Newsround programme, the Prince compared the mark with that of fictional teenage wizard Harry Potter, who also has a scratch on his forehead.

"I call it that because it glows sometimes and some people notice it – other times they don't notice it at all," said William.

"We were on a putting green and the next thing you know there was a seven-iron and it came out of nowhere and it hit me in the head."

The moral of the story? Duck.

And now you know.

Phil's Fashion

A recent shopping trip with my husband for a new suit gave rise to a rant on this look from Phil Mickleson. I've seen him sporting the "all black with white accessories" look a couple of times now, and I don't think it really works.

There is no doubt that Phil is a lot fitter now than he used to be. He has slimmed down, and toned up, and is looking pretty good! Even the man-boobs are a thing of the past! But Phil ain't in 6-pack category yet, and still has a bit of a gut. The effect of this white belt on the all-black background is akin to pointing at it with a large arrow and screaming, "THIS IS MY GUT!" "LOVE HANDLES HERE!" "SPARE TIRES R US!"

It's only one small step from tying a large red ribbon around his middle.

Camillo or Sergio can pull this off. Sorry, Phil.

Otherwise, loving the all-black look!

Friday, March 6, 2009

Sadness

... for one of hockey's great families.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Picture of the Week

Charlie Riedel/Associated Press photo

Best and Worst Uses of Television for Sports

BEST: Curling.

And no, I'm not joking. Curling is a fantastic sport for television. The view of the playing surface is wonderful, there are opportunities to hear the players discuss strategy and the pace of play is pleasant. I think that one of the measures of a good televised sport is how well the broadcast increases the accessibility of the sport for those who may be unfamilar with it, and TSN's coverage of curling in Canada has increased the popularity, familiarity and relevance of curling for Canadians in spades.

WORST: Trade Deadline Day Coverage.

ZZZZZZZZZZzzzzzzz...... It's worse than the 6 hours of pre-game show we get for the Super Bowl.