Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Linkage

Some things to occupy your browser. Your enjoyment may vary.

Josh Hamilton is a great story for a baseball. He's also a former Renegade. Sean McMann links to a Guideposts story (with main offices here in Carmel, NY).

I did a terrible job with the NHL Draft. I knew it was coming up but, with the trip to Richmond approaching, didn't worry about it a whole lot. The Islanders had the first pick (and basically brought out the brass band). Sean Kilkelly breaks it all down.

I compared the Isles to another New York-based organization in an email to a friend. I will not do so here, out of respect. He said it was a low blow.

By the way, things are awfully quiet in Queens these days, no? I'm not gloating - it's the stupid Subway Series, not the World Series. The Yankees have to beat the Mets right now. It's otherwise inexcusable. Speaking of interleague play, the great Jim Kaat says it's time to put it away. Amen.

Kitty also praises the Great Mariano. 500 saves and clearly the greatest of all-time. No disrespect to anyone else.

PeteAbe also has some kind words for Mo.

By the way, I often get accused of wearing pinstriped-colored glasses. So be it, I'm comfortable with what I know and who I am, but if Darryl Strawberry honestly thinks his '86 Mets were better than the the '98 Yankees, then tell me why virtually every panel rates the '98 team in the top five teams ever? If not for some shoddy play by the Red Sox in game 6 of the '86 Series, the Mets are a memory and the Sox get their elusive ring. The Yankees needed so such moment in '98 en-route to 125 wins.

No link here. I just wanted to say that.

The Yankees are actually doing the right thing (!) in gathering opinions on improving the new Stadium. That's a start.

To finish, since no celebrities died today (to my knowledge), have some Michael Jackson junk.

No need to thank me.

So We're Back

As I mentioned last night, we're home from Virginia. I say this with much sadness, as coming home from vacation always means returning to reality. Of course, it can also mean saying goodbye to friends and places that we enjoy. Yesterday was no different.

Sean and I began the day early enough. Rebecca had predicted that, since Rose and Lilah needed to be up early to get to camp. Jon had to head to work. So to us, it was no big deal. After all, we had left New York at 5:06 on Friday morning.

We had spent Sunday night just riding around the city, so that Sean could see Monument Ave. light up (it's one of the most beautiful stretches of a street that I've seen). Of course it would be best to be there in the dark but it's hard to keep him out that late in the summer, as he needs his sleep. Still a dad can make an exception, no?

Breakfast needed to be the first order of the day. Sean had wanted Krispy Kreme, and I was in no position to argue. Sure, I didn't get my big Southern breakfast but that's show biz - another reason to come back to "River City." It's to the credit of all involved (mostly Jon and Rebecca) that we kept things affordable, and that included eating at the house. Admittedly, that's normally verboten in the "Rob Adams Vacation Handbook" but this wasn't entirely an ordinary trip.

We enjoyed our doughnuts and Sean got his fix of watching them being made before hitting the road for some more views of Richmond from several different angles. Yes, multiple road pics will surface one day. We departed R-Va around 10:00 AM.

Next stop: Washington, DC. Sean has been interested in seeing the Lincoln Memorial with all of the buildup to the latest "Night at the Museum" movie. We first visited the Marine Corps Memorial in Arlington (still stunning), which helped give Sean his first views of the city. Then we crossed the Teddy Roosevelt Bridge and shockingly found a parking spot in East Potomac Park. It took a 10-minute walk to get to Honest Abe. I first visited DC in 1984 (I was 15) but, like Sean, always was fascinated by Washington. It still inspires and leaves one in awe.

Pictures are coming - especially the completely hysterical shot of Milk Dud the Second at the Lincoln Memorial. He would be a stuffed guinea pig named after the one in Sean's first grade class. Seriously.

Despite fairly warm temperatures, we walked to the Vietnam memorial, then made our way to the World War II memorial before arriving at the Washington Monument. Ever the bridesmaid, I still have never been inside the tall structure and I knew I wouldn't get there on this day either. This was also about the point that Sean had just about had his fill of Washington. We returned to the car...slowly.

I drove him past the White House (as close as one can get in 2009) and showed him some of the Smithsonian but he had decided that he was ready to head for home. I guess I was also so we made our way out of the District so that I could catch a glimpse of Nationals Park (and eventually RFK Stadium).

Traffic wasn't great and we didn't even come close to making the time that we made heading south. In all, we wouldn't get home until 8:30 that night - struggling through Philadelphia and working our way through Bucks County to avoid tolls and heavy traffic on the New Jersey Turnpike.

On the subject of avoiding tolls, I also have decided that the state of Delaware won't be getting $4 from me to travel Interstate 95 for the foreseeable future. It's bad enough that Maryland rips drivers out of $5 heading north and there really isn't a convenient way to dodge that way, but Delaware's is inexcusable, and easily passed. You lose a few minutes in the process but it this hideously awful economic time, it's worth it.

Today we went and saw the new "Transformers" movie. I can think of worse ways to waste a few hours.

Stop It! No More Celebrity Deaths!

Ed. Farrah. Jacko. Billy (not Willie).

Now Fred Travelena?!

Is my youth dying in front of my eyes?

Well, then again, Billy Mays wasn't part of my youth. Fair enough.

By the way, Michael Jackson is now a zombie. Thought you would appreciate that.

Yes, we're back from Virginia. I'd like to get back really...really soon (did I make that clear enough?). Great to be with Jon, Rebecca, Rose, and Lilah (Sean really hit it off with the kids) and my accommodations were delightfully comfy. It's a great city and area - and I can't stress that enough. Lots of reasons to want to return. More if and when I have the energy, along with lots of photos (not counting the 250 or so road shots).

Sunday, June 28, 2009

This Week Just Gets Weirder

Ed McMahon. Farrah Fawcett. Some guy named Michael Jackson.

Now BILLY MAYS.

That's the only way to write his name as he always SCREAMED IT!

I think I like staying in Richmond, being a kid playing on big inflatable blowup kid toys with the kids (Kangaroo Jac's), walking around a kid's zoo and gardens (Maymont), and eating yummy burgers and fries (Five Guys).

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Dispatches From Richmond: Donuts!

Sure, Richmond has Krispy Kreme (woo hoo!) but only Richmond has Country Style Donuts.

The Richmond Times-Dispatch discusses them here. They're a few miles off either Interstate 95 or 64, on US Route 60 at 4300 Williamsburg Rd but they're worth the trip.

It's like a time warp. The building, the decor, the regulars - all from another time.

Sean and I will no doubt hit KK's before we leave Monday, but these donuts were really good and the atmosphere was unmatched.

The rest of the day was quite active yet leisurely. We walked across the pedestrian bridge (which is suspended from the Robert E Lee Bridge) to explore Belle Isle in downtown R-VA. The James River was so low today that we were able to walk out onto the rocks and put our feet in the water. We could have even brought our bathing suits and jumped in, as others were doing.

Then it was back to the stately 1927 house that we're staying in. It's so wonderful and comfortable, and Jon and Rebecca have done a great job of decorating. The kids were able to hit the slip and slide, and I...well...took a nap. On the floor. And it was nice.

We're off to a movie now at the legendary Byrd Theatre. Maybe some ice cream as well. All in the cool area known as Carytown.

Hello From Richmond

After a long day, Sean and I settled into our friends house (you know, Jon from R-VA, USA) in Richmond, VA (hence the R-VA).

Sean was awesome for a little boy who has never made that kind of drive. He was awakened at 4:45 AM, in the car by five, and was largely patient the whole way.

For the record, we drove away at 5:06 AM and crossed the Richmond city limits at 12:15 PM. Now if you remove the stops and account for the time we sat in construction traffic south of Washington, I would say we made it in about six hours and thirty minutes.

Sean was so great that we made it all the way from Carmel to the first rest area in Maryland on Interstate 95. He watched a movie, ate Smarties (!) and sometimes talked to me. I was able to interest him in the same things that mesmerized me in the car - the Delaware Memorial Bridge, Baltimore tunnels, the city skylines of both Charm City and Washington (thought tough to see through the fog) and so on. He rarely lost his patience.

Around 12:14 PM he began a chant of "Are we there yet?" and I let it go, until I counted down...5...4...3...2...1...and said "yes" with an emphatic first pump as we drove past a sign that read "Richmond City Limits."

We went downtown and visited the gorgeous Main Street Station, a building that I always wanted to step inside anyway. While in there (I was prepared to waste some time as we arrived super early), Jon sent me a text telling us to come meet him at his job west of the city. So after a quick lunch of Hardee's (I want things on vacation that I can't get at home, so no freaking McDonald's!), we met up with him at the incredible CarMax headquarters.

By the way, there's a hiring freeze there. sigh...

We followed Jon home to his house where wife Rebecca and children Rose and Lilah joined the party, had a quick dinner at Moe's (woo hoo!) and let the kids play and get acquainted. Yep, they're now best friends.

By the way, I heard waaaay too much Michael Jackson music and talk to suit my taste. And it's only just begun.

I took about 100 road pics or so!

The Yankees won. Let's face it, they should, considering the Mets are the walking wounded.

I am writing from a comfy mattress situated in the dining room. Can't think of too many other places I'd rather be.

Yeah, it's hot. Not complaining though.

Seems like it's going to be a heck of a weekend with lots of promise!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Farrah Fawcett Died Today...Anybody Else?


Yep, we had the poster. It belonged to my brother.

For the record, I liked Kate Jackson. I think my father liked Jaclyn Smith.

That's about all the news that I'm aware of today. Anything else go on?

Oh. I guess there was this.

I've already heard somebody compare it to the JFK assassination. And with that, my worst fears begin...

You Can Admit It

WNEW's blog put together five classic rock bands that you pretend to hate.

With these five, I'd have to admit that I don't often have to pretend - especially with Boston and Styx (can we have a moratorium on "More Than a Feeling?"). And domo arigato Mr. Roboto? Yikes! Bon Jovi is a like-hate thing. I don't really have anything against REO Speedwagon.

Really, let's face it, after their first album or two, they probably ceased to be classic rock. Or...if they're classic rock, then so are Huey Lewis and the News. I mean, "I Can't Fight This Feeling" is as syrupy (and more so) than "Stuck with You." I mean, bring on the pancakes!

I'm sure we could get a list going of guilty musical pleasures (mine always seems to begin with Hall and Oates). I'm sure my iTunes would reveal many others, as I don't pretend to be musically cool and like bands that only can be liked while sucking down half of the marijuana output in this country.

I'm not naming names.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Going to Baracklyn

For one night, Brooklyn had a new moniker.

Baracklyn.

I'll keep politics out of it, as I thought it was a fairly inspired piece of promotional work by the Brooklyn, sorry, Baracklyn Cyclones, who opposed the Hudson Valley McCains (not really).

Most of the Baracklyn stuff occurred during the pregame, beginning with a bobble head. No, I didn't get one - the media doesn't get swag unless we try, and I didn't have time to try thanks to the Van Wyck Expressway and the Belt Parkway. I got to the ballpark just past 6:00 PM; enough time to eat chicken (that's what I'm told it was) and get my lineup together. I wasn't happy with my prep, to be honest.

They had a Barack impersonator and other goodies. Well played, Cyclones.

The Gades lost, 7-3. They're now 0-2 with me behind the mic. Geoff and I continue to build our chemistry and it's getting pretty good.

Gotta run. I'm writing from Brewster Honda and my car is ready!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Camarda Park Opens; Speakers Still Talking


Saturday was the annual picnic for the Carmel Sports Association baseball teams. Our group (featuring the T-ball, soft toss, and instructional teams) were the first up.

The gathering was meant as a chance to show off the brand new Paul A. Camarda Park; a place that the hamlet of Carmel could call their own after years of playing games on the fields at Carmel High School and going to parks in Mahopac (within the Town of Carmel). It was a big deal.

Honestly, they should have held the picnic at Sycamore Park in Mahopac. Camarda Park was not ready for prime time.

The Journal News gives their take here (get there before they take it offline). Oh, and if they had turned the camera to the left, Sean and his cousin Kendall would have been in the shot. Oh well - they're famous enough.

Parking was a problem - enough so that some left for fear of their car getting hit before their son received their trophy (or at least that's what I was told). Rain was a huge problem, and the tent that was erected just wasn't big enough to cover everyone. Workers were still touching things up.

Then there was the ribbon-cutting ceremony.

See, here's the problem: when you build a playground, kids want to play on it. So some (and their clueless parents) began to climb on it. They were told that they weren't allowed there until the ribbon had been cut (I guess some were oblivious to that big blue ribbon that was lined across it).

Instead of having people gather at 11:30 and, due to the rain, starting the ceremony at 11:30 or 11:45, those in charge didn't start until after 12 - the scheduled start time. Then they gathered every kid - first to have them yell into a TV camera, then to stand there and wait while the politicians spoke.

And spoke.

And spoke.

Then they introduced a few more politicians, including those who are no longer in office.

And they spoke.

And spoke.

Big businessman Paul Camarda's speech, while touching, was long. He felt he needed to thank everybody possible. OK, that's fair. Problem is, the raindrops intensified as his tears flowed.

It's bad enough that the whole scene got under my skin, but the ultimate indictment came from the kids, who began to chant "cut the ribbon." They had been standing there, trying to be polite for what seemed like 45 minutes (though it might have been a half hour).

OK Rob, so what would you have done? I would have either A) scheduled the ribbon cutting for another time (or had the ribbon cutting but moved the baseball picnic to Sycamore Park) or B) Cut the ribbon, let the kids on the playground, then went ahead with the speeches. The latter would have been more appropriate but then nobody would have listened.

The baseball ceremony needs a little help as well but is well-intended. It's just chaotic. Maybe tables should be assigned for teams - that would be a good start. Commissioner Mike Berg does a great job with the league, so don't blame him. Maybe a picnic committee should be formed.

After the ceremony, I had several parents come to me, wanting their child to get their trophy and get the heck out.

As we've all learned, we (the adults) are the ones who screw things up. Politicians standing there with their pasted-on phony smiles only serve themselves and big business. A ceremony like that in the rain only proved that the gathering was selfish. The kids wanted to play. So LET THEM PLAY!

Tax breaks? Jobs created? Life made better?

No, no, slightly.

I'm pleased Carmel has a park, though I am slightly worried about the location on Seminary Hill Road, which is narrow and windy. Still, so long as people drive safely, it will be fine. When completed, the park will be great, and is off to a nice start. There's still work to be done, including the addition of a pavilion. It's wonderful (though the parking is a concern for events like Saturday).

Now they talk of building a cultural center of sorts for concerts and so on. We once had one, when the Mahopac Farm Playhouse was in business. Great idea. I figure it will take 10 years or so to make that happen (that's about how long it took for Camarda Park to come to fruition).

Of course, congratulations to all of the players (you remember them? They're the reason for all of this), and specifically to our 2009 Carmel Soft Toss Philles. I'm very proud of Andrew, Christian, Trevor, Ethan, Matthew, Tyler, Troy, Clark, John, AJ, Ryan, Joey and, of course, Sean for their effort and progress. As I always tell them - keep practicing!



I apologize for the quality of the video, but here is Sean's trophy acceptance speech that he made back at home.

HI-OH! Ed McMahon Dead at 86.

Start lining up the guests for the Tonight Show reunion in the sky!

Ed McMahon has passed away.

I thought of writing this as a "Carnac the Magnificent" bit but some people are too sensitive and others wouldn't get the reference.

Anyway, farewell, king sidekick.

Sad Story From the World of Golf


Beth Smith, the wife of longtime PGA Tour pro Chris Smith was killed in a car crash in Indiana on Monday night.

Read more here.

This is a story that hits close to home for some of us at WGCH. Chris Smith was a frequent guest on "Tee Time" in the early part of this decade, especially on our annual show the night before the Classic tournament at Westchester Country Club teed off. Chris was always a great guest - personable, funny, and outgoing. Off the air, he brought a great Midwestern sense of humor, and talked openly of his love of the St. Louis Cardinals. He and I actually talked about going to a Yankees-Cardinals game in New York (which turned out to be Roger Clemens 300th win).

In 2002, the stars aligned for Smith, who had struggled to keep his tour card. Using tips that he worked on with my "Tee Time" co-host, Michael Breed, Chris was able to win the Buick Classic - as I had predicted he would. Each day, he gave Sean Kilkelly and I few minutes of his time to say hello and would let us interview him whenever we wanted. It was that kindness that led him to mention us during his live interview with the Golf Channel following his win at the Classic, and to make sure we were his first destination following the press conference.

That's where Beth Smith came in.

She talked off the air with us about Chris, the dream of finally being a champion, her family, and the life of a golfer's wife. She remembered Chris talking about all of us, and hearing some of the tapes that we had made.

She was a total delight.

I am shocked and saddened by this awful news, and I think I can speak on behalf of all of us who were around WGCH back in those days when I offer condolences to the Smith family, and hope for the best for Chris and Beth Smith's two children.

I also hope the family finds strength. Life truly is rarely fair.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

One Broadcast Down...

One of the last things Geoff Brault (Gades voice, 2009) said to me today was,
"If you blog of me, blog well."
Well first of all, I totally appreciate the Bull Durham reference. But regardless, don't worry, Geoff. You're safe.

The guy lets me come into his booth and call nine innings of baseball (six color, three on play-by-play). What's not to like?

I take this stuff seriously. At WGCH, there's no question that I run the show but I gladly share the load with everyone. So when I go into another persons booth, I am hyper-sensitive and respectful. If I step on them, I get annoyed at myself, as I worry that I've annoyed them or make us sound bad. To be honest, I'm not sure I ever truly relax in these situations.

For Geoff and I, things seemed to be smooth. Sean Ford and I had the same kind of adjustment way back in the summer of aught-one. Geoff laid down his format (cool) and we went from there. We agreed that, while we're both pros, we want to keep it light. Do I think we were as light as we could be today? No - there's no question I was feeling him out, and he might have been doing the same. Where's the line? We'll answer that over the next couple of months.

With Sean, there was no line. He let me be as goofy as I wanted, and not once did he ever say "you went too far." Most of the time, he was the straight man, but he could drop a good line just as quickly.

Still, Sean wasn't in the booth today, though the lessons that he taught me were always prevalent.

An unexpected thing happened in today's booth, and it was the perfect testament to how Geoff and I will work. Rain had not really been a threat (despite warnings in the morning). So of course - it rained! In buckets! Hey, look - an ark!

OK, just kidding. Yet it was the kind of rain that had movement (like a good two-seam fastball). It came right into the booth, and right onto my computer, and our radio equipment. So we did everything in our power to close-up the windows of the press box, all while I was calling the play-by-play. Sure, the listener knew what was cooking but we kept calling the action as we went along. We're not going to get any medals for it, but the point is that we were honest and professional, and lighthearted as well.

And so we go from there. Geoff paid me what I thought was a very high compliment after the game, though I'm not going to share it here. Let's call it "inside radio" stuff.

On the field, it was a mixed bag. Good early (2-0 after one, and should have been more, save for a nice defensive play) and not-so-good in the middle. When it was all over, the Aberdeen Ironbirds (you remember them, right?) had come away with an 8-3 victory.

The Gades get back to it tomorrow as they host Brooklyn for the beginning of a three-game "commuter" series (meaning everybody sleeps in their own bed at the end of the night).

Of course, hit up the Renegades website for more.

One last thing - Sean joined me at the game today. See, here's the thing - I know that it was Father's Day, and I was sensitive to that, and to Sean's feelings. I would not have called the game if Sean didn't want me to. But he was a big reason that I wanted to get back to the Gades. He loves it and, obviously, so do I. So it was a blessing to have Sean in the stadium. He ran the bases after the game (and honestly, how many kids get to do that while their dad describes them doing so on the radio?), and we walked on the field - past the bullpen and clubhouse. He even got an official New York-Penn League baseball out of the deal.

So father and son spent the day together, with the most American of things, baseball, serving as the backdrop. Plus my mom was involved, so it was a generational thing. Sure, I'd love it if my dad was still alive (he would have loved being with us), but that's just not the case, so the fact that my mom was able to spend the day with Sean and I was just as nice.

Check This Out

This is from Mick. Pretty cool.

Happy Father's Day! Now go have a catch with your son (through the rain drops). I doubt it's going to happen, but I'm going to call the Renegades-Aberdeen Ironbirds game today at Dutchess Stadium.

Go here and hit the "Listen Live" button.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

And The Shark Has Been Jumped

"Scrubs" was a great show.

Was.

Four of the main cast members will make "guest appearances" (including Zach Braff) as the show's setting moves from Sacred Heart Hospital to a classroom.

Oh well.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Renegades Media Day


I've been with the Renegades since 2001 (on and off) and amazingly, I've never attended media day. I broke that streak today when I stopped by Dutchess Stadium this morning.

This is as most the team made their way in from the clubhouse.


Director of Media Relations Rick Kubitschek addresses the assembled media to introduce new manager Brady Williams, and discuss the many great promotions the team will do this year - like Ball-Less Baseball, when men aren't allowed in the Stadium for the first five innings. Seriously.

I did a few interviews, including second baseman Tyler Bortnick (#16 in the picture above - click on it for a larger version). He was very polite and called me "sir." I'm so freaking old.

(insert emoticon here)

I'm hoping to air the interviews tomorrow on "The Press Box" as I continue to highlight things around minor league baseball. The team has vowed to get me guests whenever I want.

Today was also my first chance to officially meet new Gades "voice" Geoff Brault. Geoff (in the light blue polo in the above picture) and I seem to have hit it off well - now I'm anxious to see how we do in the booth. I'm only scheduled to do five home games this year (June 21, July 7, 8, and 10, and August 9) but pretty much have the run of the road games if I wish, and Geoff has even offered to let me (and maybe Sean) crash with him. I can't quite predict how many road games I will do yet. I'm hoping to get back to Aberdeen for sure, and Brooklyn, hopefully Staten Island as well. I might try another day-trip to Oneonta. I'd like to go to Vermont and Jamestown also, but those trips could be tall orders. I might need some company on the road.

Who's up for it?

The reason for the lack of home games that I'll do is simple: Geoff did exactly what I would do (and do in the WGCH booth). Geoff selected two interns (Dustin and Matt) who will split up being at the stadium at the number two announcer, and being back in the studio. That was along the lines of my plan. Let's just say Nick Fox, Nick Angotto, Matt Hamilton, Sean Kilkelly, and others would have had open invitations to join me in the booth (Zach Fisher, Eric Loh, and on and on). We would have had a blast.

In this setup, I'll do whatever home games I can, along with some road games. I'm also looking to do some wireless microphone stuff on the nights I'm not in the booth, but we'll see. In many ways, I feel like the old guy among the college-age men (I'm approximating, of course) but I have such a passion for the game and broadcasting as well, so why not join up for another year?

Besides, Sean loves it. He was heartbroken when it looked like I wouldn't be with the team again this year.

Speaking of Seans, I'd like to say that while I'm happy to know Geoff and hope we have a great '09 season, I am going to miss working with Sean Ford. I'll stay out of the politics of the business and purely say that Sean was incredible to me. He was extremely supportive, and truly considered me his partner in the booth, though he was always the "voice" of the Gades. Sean and I had a chemistry that was rare, and I don't doubt I'll be fine with the new team; it's just different and that's fine. Sean was beyond gracious, allowing me to call games immediately after we met. He and I remain friends, and I look forward to welcoming him on "The Press Box" to get his take on the Red Sox and such.

Life, baseball, and such go on. Here's to the 2009 Renegades.

Comparing Reading to Bridgeport

Goodbye, Bluefish?

Tim Parry says the team could learn from what is going on in Reading.

Report: Fans Pelting Cops With Bottles at Lakers Parade

Oh yeah, let's blow $2 million bucks so thugs and punks can throw bottles at the police.

I hope the report is erroneous but it's coming directly from the parade route.

Classy.

UPDATE: To be fair, I've heard nothing further, so it seems to have been either erroneous or isolated.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Linkage

Wow - I'm on a roll lately.

Jeff Pearlman (Mahopac grad) wrote a mighty good post on his blog about fathers and the lack of respect we get. You can probably guess that this struck a serious nerve with me.

Woo Hoo! Eight million people watched Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Finals.

We don't do a lot about politics on this blog (I try to stay neutral and independent) but I found this list interesting. That is all. It is amazing the hand-wringing that goes on.

Just lower gas prices. Let's start there.

Listen up, LA. I actually heard somebody try to call you the best sports town in America. Um...no. Certainly not when you behave like this.

Give me New York. Boston. Phila. Chi-town. The 'Burgh.

Oh, and if your mayor had any marbles, there wouldn't be any dumb-ass parade. You don't deserve it until you figure out how to act. I hate those things anyway (and have never attended one).

Bryce Harper appears to be wicked talented. Great. So much so that he's not even going to graduate from high school, skepping his last two years. He's dropping out and will get his GED instead. Then he's going to Junior College.

Wow. Just wow.

And if this baseball thing doesn't work out, then what?

The Luis Castillo dropped pop fly has become the stuff of legend, of course. With that said, I have some videos for you.

1) This person was filming but stopped aiming at the field when A-Rod popped up.


2) This person caught some of the action.


3) Here's how it was called by Michael Kay, Gary Cohen, John Sterling, and Howie Rose. Nicely done by all.

Rule 55 Re-explained

During our Sunday "Breakfast and Baseball" trip, Sheryl, Tim, Jason and I got to talking about el blog-o-rific. Sheryl inquired as to what Rule 55 was. I explained why it was created but as I got to thinking about it, I don't think I ever truly discussed its meaning here. So let's review the genesis (the Peter Gabriel years...ha) of the one thing this blog has created.

First of all, "Rule 55" is copyright 2008 Rangers In Exit 55 (or whatever Sean Kilkelly and I want to name our company). All rights reserved, except in Alaska and Hawaii, or something like that.

Unless you're new to the blog, you know that things have at times been a wee bit stressful. As the stress began to build, I often wanted to write about it here. Eventually I realized that was poor form and thought better of it. Most of the time, it related to something bad and personal-related. It could be work, a friend, my family, or something else that would grind my gears.

You can probably guess what it was about most of the time.

So I began to post videos as a way of saying that I had something to say but that "If you can't say something nice, don't say nothing at all."

Thanks, Thumper...

It could be seen to those in my inner-most circle (my family and my closest friends) as a cry for help - but only occasionally. Sometimes I did it in the hope that someone would send me an email, drop me a line, stating point of view (sorry, that's "When I'm Sixty-four" by the Beatles). It was my own sort of Bat Signal.

Most of the time, it was used to vent.

It didn't have a name; it was just something I did. Sean Kilkelly took note of it and one day decided to invoke it. In doing so, he gave it a name. I loved it, and said so.

And Rule 55 was born. A collection of samples are here.

Of course, it wouldn't be right if I didn't post a video (not truly a Rule 55 moment, but I feel I most do so anyway). Heineken is lately putting out some good commercials. I like this one.

I would have posted the walk-in fridge/closet one, but I couldn't find it in English.

One More Movie Line

I forgot to include this in my writeup about the other best movie lines, but I think a few have been left out, especially off our last post.

I think "I'm afraid you're just too darn loud" from Back to the Future, by the noted thespian Huey Lewis (and how he didn't get nominated for an Oscar is beyond my comprehension) is an underutilized line. Still, the band received a nod for "The Power of Love" though it didn't win (and considering the number of times I heard Lionel F'ing Richie on Sunday only raised my blood pressure, as the former Commodore won said Academy Award).

But one of the great lines, like the many brilliant ones from so many other movies is:

"Do You Like Huey Lewis and the News?" - American Psycho

Of course, I can't embed it. Typical.

Something From Aqua NOT Called "Barbie Girl"

Come on, admit it. You remember "Barbie Girl", a poppy confection that was all over the radio in 1997. I remember laughing to the song, and even singing the male parts with two people who were very important in my life.

OK, I was married to one and the other was her sister (who was at times almost like a best friend - we were that close...sigh).

Digressing, and not wanting to jump into Rule 55 territory, let's move on.

So the gang over at Stuck in the 80's pointed out that the band has a best of (wait, what?) and a new song, called "Back to the 80's."

I couldn't help but watch the video to see what it was all about. I wasn't planning to write about it, or post the video, but then...at the start of the second verse...it hit me like a hammer!

Co-lead singer Lene Nystrøm Rasted sings, "When Huey Lewis was the News", and I stopped the video and started typing. I needed no more. They chose to recognize the mighty under appreciated HLN and that was enough for me.

Enjoy (and it just might get stuck in your head...don't say I didn't warn you).


Oh and since I wrote, "it hit me like a hammer" above, I guess I must tell you that's a reference to...wait for it...a Huey Lewis and the News song of the same name. The original video is here (embedding not allowed, natch). It's such a 90's video. Whatever. So let's embed a live performance!

The boys are playing in the area this summer and I can't quite convince myself to go alone (I have the same issue with Bruce, by the way). Sigh...again.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Movie Quotes...Lots of Them! (and a Rare NSFW Warning)

As you probably know, I love a good quote - be it from TV, songs, or movies. Here we have "The Other Best 100 Movie Quotes of All Time" and as you can see when you click on the page, they know how to pick some good quotes. I mean, what more can one ask but a picture from Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy. It's as if Nick Angotto did the list!

It's not perfect (what list is?) but it does the trick of going for quotes that are off the beaten path. My one complaint is, as you'll see, it goes heavy on multiple quotes from the same movie, including Anchorman. That's not a crime, but I would have preferred a little more variety. Then again...

“They’ve done studies, you know. Sixty percent of the time, it works every time.” — Anchorman

Of course, that doesn't make any sense.

By the way...News Team! Reassemble!

Probably won't be any good, but one can hope. Dare to dream, no?

Oh and if you want the standard classic movie quotes, go here, but be aware that this page is probably NSFW (that's Not Safe For Work, peeps).

You stay classy.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

On Facebook

I'm always there, and it just got easier to find me. Go to http://www.facebook.com/steelyankee and you will find me.

And K-Rod's still a punk.

Catch "The Press Box" tomorrow as we will discuss the Lakers, Phils/Sox, Yanks/Mets (15-0 today), the Penguins and the Cup, the Reading Phillies and more.

Fred said something about the Lakers winning and him writing on the blog. Don't know what that's about...

Memories


15 years ago.

Wow. What a night. Sean Kilkelly put this up on Facebook today and I thought I'd put it here also. I was at my buddy Scott's house that night. Though not truly a diehard, I loved it, and I loved watching everyone react. It made me even hungrier for a Yankees championship, and I thought we'd have one that October. Then people got greedy and we waited until 1996.

That's a lifetime ago, friends. Much has changed since.

By the way, I read that Sidney Crosby didn't immediately shake hands after winning Lord Stanley's chalice the other night. What's up with that?

ZZZZZZzzzzzzz...NBA...


This is Four-Legged Fred, Rob's trusty, amazingly handsome cat writing. Rob would have written this post himself, but he fell asleep, and as he was doing so, he asked me to fill in.

First off, it's nice to meet you all. Can anybody change my litter box, or get me a bite to eat?

Never mind.

The reason for this post is to tell you that the NBA (The Necessarily Boring Amusement league) season is over. The LA Lakers beat the Orlando Magic in five games, just as Rob predicted. I (and Rob) don't care what the Colin Cowherds of the world say. Despite occasionally being interested in it, the NBA is boring, with largely uninteresting players. We'll take college hoops and hockey for winter sports.

Would there be an increase in caring if the Knicks returned to form? Well does a cat bathe himself? The answer is "yes" but only around the New York area. And if Stuart Scott took his "BOO YA" act somewhere else, we'd shout cries of joy (I'd probably meow). Beyond that, who cares?

HEY! ROB! Anything you want to add?

Nope, still sleeping. I'm guessing he's dreaming about the 15-0 whooping the Yanks put on the Mets, and the potential whooping Brian Bruney could have put on that litter head K-Rod. Bruney's right. The act was old when it began (and I think Rob would say the same goes for Joba).

But what do I know? I'm just a cat.

Well nice talking to you. Gotta go now. There are mice to hunt for. They're quite tasty. A little Frank's Hot Sauce and you've got yourself a party!

Breakfast, Baseball, and other Things That Begin with B

Back in 2007, Jason Intreiri, Nick Angotto and I famously traveled to Florida to broadcast the Greenwich-Naples game on WGCH. For some reason, I promised myself that I would visit a Waffle House in the Naples area for breakfast. Jason agreed and was soon hooked (and I recall Nick found it mighty taste as well).

The legend grew from there. I continued to rave about it, but lamented how far it was from the home base to the nearest location. One day, we said, we would return to the Waffle Houses of Pennsylvania, Maryland or other lands far from home.

Tim Parry hopped on board and brought along friend Sheryl Rosen. Jason Intrieri was happy to return, and provided our wheels (a big thanks to my good friend). But it couldn't just be breakfast. We had to make it interesting.

So...how about some baseball!?

Initially the idea bounced between a game in Lehigh Valley, as their IronPigs were hosting the Charlotte Knights. Sheryl was especially fond of the idea of buying a t-shirt that said "IronPigs" on it. I favored the idea of going to see the Scranton/Wilkes Barre Yankees but figured I wouldn't make a big deal about it. In the long run, it made no difference. The I-hams (cute, no?) were nearly sold out and the Yankees just didn't seem to excite. So we came up with Plan B - The Reading Phillies. The Phils were hosting the Harrisburg Senators and giving away a cool camouflage hat.

Our plan was set.

I'll spare you the gory details (it's been a long day and I'm fried). Tim had car problems (that's why Jason drove), we had rain in the morning, and other minutiae like that. What mattered was that we arrived at that oasis of breakfast heaven just after 10 AM...

I think we all agreed that it was worth the trip. Our cardiologists might not agree. This, incidentally, is the location on Airport Road in Allentown.

They take cleanliness seriously here!

Onto Reading for some baseball, and bonus baseball at that! Thanks to rain, the Senators and Phillies needed to finish up their previous game, suspended after nine innings tied at one. The Senators would win in 11 innings. The Phillies would win the regular game, using some late heroics to do so.

Full disclosure: we were gone by the end. It had been a long day and we feared the traffic and drive that awaited, so we were gone by the 7th inning stretch.

FirstEnergy Stadium is a gem. Open for baseball in 1951, the stadium is proof that what is old can be new again. A recent article called it the 3rd best in Minor League Baseball, and it would be hard to argue.

This is the courtyard area in back of the stands on the first base side. All the necessary items are there - play area, mini golf(!), autograph area, and lots of food (including one dollar hot dogs on this day). This is what Yale Field could have looked like, and the way all franchises should go - this shows local flavor, and lots of character.

Among the other bargains? How about a free program, with scorecard? It's small, but big enough to do the job. There are plenty of amenities everywhere. We wandered the whole place. We stood in the left field stands during the pregame.

I'd love to go to a night game there as well. I imagine it would be a nice place to spend a summer evening.

You couldn't go wrong. Our seats were down the first base line, next to the bullpen in the second row. They cost $11. You didn't want to leave your seat (they were long rows) and admittedly, the guys in front of us didn't seem too fond of our loquaciousness.

Whatever. Maybe we seemed like out of towners (we did).

The stadium has a pool in the right field corner, and picnic areas on the third base side. In short, it mixes the old with the new, but it doesn't feel like an old ballpark in terms of comfort.

Oh and Tim had one of those days. The team's masterful in-game entertainment crew shot off squishy balls and T-shirts. Tim got one of each, and was nice enough to give the ball to me to bring home to Sean, who also got a commemorative cup and a hat (both courtesy of Jason). Jason also posed for a picture with a player, center fielder Quentin Berry.

The rest of the pictures are here.

Incidentally, I took some road pics as well (including one from inside the ballpark today) and will upload them soon. I've got a mother load to put up!

I didn't quite think the day would go so efficiently and so quickly, but somehow we were back in Greenwich by 7:30 and I was home just after 8:00. No, we didn't go to the Reading outlets (that's OK) but it just goes to show that Reading, PA is very reachable from Carmel, Greenwich, and other parts of the metro New York area. The trip can be done in about three-and-a-half-hours.

A great day. Minor League baseball rocks (and breakfast was mighty good too).

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Saturday Night's Alright for Something

Another Saturday night at home. No complaints. Sean will be with me for the next two weekends and we have parties, Father's Day, baseball (more about that at another time), and Richmond, Virginia to tend to.

As for today...

We started with the Phighting Phreaky Phunky Phillies of the Carmel Sports Association Soft Toss Division. Sean might have had his best hit of the year. He's a work in progress but I don't mind if he's having fun (or phun). Here's the rub though. He has to move up to the instructional division next year and if he doesn't improve a little, I'm not sure how much fun he'll have. But we'll worry about that next year.

There are some kids on that team that I would love to coach for a long time. A couple are just really respectful, good kids with nice talent. The best ballplayers? Maybe and maybe not. But they are just a joy to coach.

We posed for pictures and called it day, and I was able to move on to my next stop - Cardinal Stadium in Greenwich for the annual Red and White spring football game. For what it's worth, the Red beat the White, 16-14, with a safety in first quarter serving as the difference. I saw things on the field I liked and saw other things that I didn't. Same can be said for the broadcast booth. We'll work out the kinks by September 16th.

David Josephson was my player of the game. A tackle in the end zone for a safety, other fine defensive plays, and two interceptions. Other notable performers were Peter Cavini, Evan Kavanagh, Jack Zimmerman, and Colin Dunster.

And one more thing. Without placing any pressure on him, I just think senior quarterback and quad-captain Mike Lefflbine is going to have a monster year. Just a hunch.

And still one more thing. Why is it that the denizens of Cardinal Stadium (and other stadiums) are so harsh to the help in the booth? The regular staff wasn't there today (except for us) but a fill-in took care of the scoreboard. Basically he was doing GHS a favor, but he got attacked for putting up the wrong score initially, and for issues with the time. He said he'd never do it again. I don't blame him.

Staying on that topic - and I love this - why do people think that we, or more specifically, I, am responsible for the scoreboard, the music choice, the music volume, the public address announcing, and the quality of food and merchandise choices, along with the play calling?

(OK, maybe not the food, goods, and plays)

When the scoreboard was not up to standards, people were looking, and SCREAMING, at me! Of course, I just laugh at them. Still, I can remember one parent in particular who called me out - by name - because there was music playing over the loud speaker as the band came in.

Sheesh!

One more time, and repeat after me. I'm a broadcaster (Rob's a broadcaster). I have nothing to do with the scoreboard, PA, and music (Rob has nothing to do with the scoreboard, PA, and music). I don't even work for GHS (Rob doesn't even work for GHS).

Thanks. Don't we all feel better?

Watch...it will happen again on September 16th.

Now I move onto tomorrow. Jason Intrieri, Tim Parry, Sheryl Rosen and I will be grabbing breakfast at a Waffle House (probably in Allentown, PA) then taking in a Reading Phillies game. Have to admit, I'm pretty pumped. This will probably be the first of a lot of minor league baseball for me this summer. If the trip is a success, maybe we'll do it again (maybe Aberdeen or somewhere else later in the year?).

OK, I'll just say it. I'll be back with the Renegades again. Keep your browser locked here for the schedule and stories from the New York-Penn League.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Mets Win...Wait, WHAT?!?!?

(REUTERS/Ray Stubblebine)

It was over. A-Rod had failed and the boo birds were ready to attack.

Then it was over and the Yankees had won.

It was an up and down game. The Mets had built up a comfy lead, the Yankees took it back, the Mets again took the lead (against Mo) and that took us to the ninth inning.

On came K-Rod. Derek Jeter reached with a one-out single. Johnny Damon struck out on a 3-2 pitch out of the strike zone (oh did I react to that). Then they walked Teixeira, eventually intentionally. Up came A-Rod.

K-Rod against A-Rod.

Normally I wish for a hit - that would tie it. Tonight though I got greedy; such is my dislike of the Dodgemets (that might be my new name for them) and more specifically, K-Rod.

I asked A-Rod to hit it to the f'ing moon.

But K-Rod, after falling behind 3-0, got A-Rod to pop up to the outfield grass. Jeter and Teixeira were running on contact with two outs. I knew it was over but yet, I watched the way second baseman Luis Castillo was dancing around on the grass, trying to settle under the call. So I thought, maybe...

He tried to catch it with one hand (are my Carmel Phillies reading this?) and he...dropped...the...ball.

In came Jeter. That tied it, but Teixeira, running all the way, slid in with the game winner.

One question: why did Castillo throw to second base after he dropped the ball?

Whatever. Game over. Losing streak over. I danced around the living room. Being alone in the house can have its advantages.

Yeah yeah yeah, I could have been there tonight. It's OK. I still hate the Subway Series, so I'm content to have watched it from here.

City of Champions


The billboard on the Pennsylvania Turnpike said, "City of Champions", a tribute to the 1979 Pirates, winners of the World Series, and the Steelers, who were on their way to their fourth Super Bowl trophy.

A new sign can be erected.

Tonight, the Pittsburgh Penguins won the Stanley Cup with a 2-1 victory in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Finals. This, of course, coupled with the Steelers' victory over the Cardinals in Super Bowl XLIII, gives Pittsburgh quite a special year.

Evgeni Malkin rightfully won the Conn Smythe Trophy.

Detroit fans are booing at the Joe. Wow.

Sydney Crosby has just raised the Cup. There's nothing like it in sports.

I'm not talking about baseball. I'm in denial.

Mets lead Yankees 2-1, and I Sort of Don't Care

Sorry, it's Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final. I don't care that much about Bud's Folly playing in the Bronx tonight.

It's not to say that I'm not annoyed - I am - but I hate interleague play and I despise the Subway Series. That's kind of why I'm home tonight watching the Cup on TV. Kris (my cousin, not...never mind) was able to get rid of our tickets, so I opted to chill tonight. I went to Sears to get a new headlight for my car (I just replaced it back in September....GRRRRR) and a battery for the garage door opener. Then I had dinner in the Danbury Fair Mall and watched the people.

Then I came home...replaced the headlight...and began to prep for the Red and White Game - tomorrow, live at Cardinal Stadium in Greenwich and on your radio at 1490 AM and online at WGCH.com!

So I'm content.

No score in the hockey game.

And Mark Teixeira just hit a two-run homer. 3-2 Bombers. Long way to go.

So I've got that going for me. Which is nice.

Hold on...not done. Joe Girardi, please please please be quiet. Who cares if Brad Penny threw at A-Rod? To me, it was a non-issue. Girardi wasn't complaining but he was accusing. I think Joe needs to focus on the lousy bullpen and the fact that they're playing with no heart against the Red Sox. And Jonathan Paperblon got fined for slow play? Holy cow, what is the world coming to?

GHS Football Schedule Update

Schedules are always subject to change. A cap tip to Greenwich assistant coach Kerry Gavin for pointing this out. The opening game of the 2009 season has been switched from Thursday night, September 17 to Wednesday night, September 16, as the Cardinals host Norwalk at 6:00 PM.

More details as necessary! Don't forget, the Red and White game comes your way, LIVE, tomorrow at 1:50 PM.

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Alone On A Saturday Night

Earlier tonight, I posted one of my self-deprecating, snide Facebook updates. It said
Rob Adams is officially a loser. Beautiful day...nothing to do...no money to do it with. So I'm watching the Yankees, and that's not going well either. Sigh.
I called myself a "loser" in the humorous sense. But a few friends showed some concern.

I'm not saying people shouldn't be concerned about me. Oh there have been some really dark moments. There have also been some sad moments. Everytime I say goodbye to Sean is sad. That's just the reality of my life. Best to say no more.

No pity needed - just stating the facts.

Anyway, in this case, I'm fine. I coached the Phillies this morning, went to the Greenwich Home Run Derby (congrats to the winners), had lunch there, stopped by the WGCH offices, ran to the Danbury Fair Mall to see if I could look into getting my iPod fixed (sure...if I wanted to wait almost two hours), and came back home. Then I watched the Yankees lose (I HATE using Mo in tie games), slept for a few minutes, and realized that I'd have another lonely night. So I wrote what I wrote on Facebook, dealt with the fallout (minimal), washed my car, talked to a neighbor, and came back in, where I'm now writing and watching the Penguins and Red Wings.

I also wrote the D-Day post here and listened to some of the fascinating audio.

All in a day, I guess.

Oh, and I'm eating dinner now.

I forgot to watch the Belmont. Jeez, I am a loser.

It's a joke. Kidding!

Seriously, this might have been the least intriguing Triple Crown season.

My buddy, Tommy Dee, does a great job running the Knicks Blog. Don't kid yourself, it's big time stuff. Here are his thoughts about AAU hoops.

I just mentioned a basketball blog. I better mention Chuck Costello's, lest he gets upset.

He likes the page clicks. Plus he's filling in for me this Monday on "The Press Box." I hope he also keeps June 26, 29, 30, July 3 and 24 open.

Just sayin'.

I don't have the time (and the talent) to make tomato sauce, but does anybody know of a jarred sauce that doesn't, you know, suck?

And doesn't cost a King's ransom?

I honestly don't remember this. A M*A*S*H* spinoff about Radar? Thank goodness I don't remember it.

Happy birthday, Tetris!

4-0 Red Wings, second period. Not much excitement here.

Oops. 5-0. *sigh*

Remembering D-Day


Friends, I know moments like September 11, 2001 are so close to our hearts because it wasn't that long ago. Well-meaning folks want the US Government to make 9/11 a national holiday.

I mean no harm here, but we must also remember days like Pearl Harbor Day (that's December 7, 1941 if you're scoring at home) and D-Day.

D-Day happened today - June 6 - in 1944. It was among the bloodiest days in the history of the world, with approximately 10,000 allied soldiers killed or wounded. That includes American, Canadian, and British forces.

If you've seen Saving Private Ryan (and if you haven't, shame on you), the opening scene is the storming of Normandy. This is from the History Channel.

Incidentally, the National D-Day Museum in New Orleans is among the two or three best museums I have ever been to. It has since been rebranded as the National World War II Museum. Please take some time out from Bourbon Street and Pat O'Briens to stop by this amazing place.

There is plenty of D-Day stuff online to satiate your inner historian. For those who don't know such things, remember: TV was truly in its infancy. Those who lived through it got their news via the printed word and the radio.

Go here and you can listen to CBS Radio's coverage. If you want to hear NBC then go here. There were only three networks then - CBS, NBC Blue and NBC Red. You'll notice they back then, instead of "Eastern Standard Time", broadcasters used "Easter WAR Time." Beyond that, you'll notice the lack of information that was initially available. Again, everything is either via phone calls or telegrams.

You've probably all heard the famous NBC three chime signal, but did you know that a fourth chime was used on D-Day? The fourth chime was used in moments of importance, as a signal to key staffers to phone in immediately. The first time it was used was in 1937, when the Hindenberg burst over New Jersey.

Plenty more here. Or here. Or here.

I can't even imagine what it must have been like. Just Google "D-Day on the Radio" and you'll find a treasure trove of goodies.

So take a moment, on this 65th anniversary of one our most crucial days, to remember the brave souls who fought hard for our freedom.

Friday, June 05, 2009

The Ghost of Ed Kranepool

Mahopac's own Jeff Pearlman not only name drops a hometown reference (which he often does) but he also writes about the latest woes of the Mets.

Read it here.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Basketball...ZZzzzzz, Hockey...Not So Much

I just finished watching the enjoyably game four of the Stanles Cup Finals. The Penguins used a flurry of goals in the second to beat the Red Wings, 4-2. The series is now tied at two games each.

Then I flipped to game one of the NBA Finals. As I write, the third quarter has ended and the Lakers have a 24 point lead.

I'm now going to bed. Colin Cowherd can run his mouth about how great the NBA is (it is, but stop preaching). I'm bored.

Thanks for reading.

How Did I Miss This?

I had no idea. This is the story of the flea market held inside the former Shop Rite at the old Dutchess Mall in Fishkill, NY. I made countless visits to the Dutchess Mall, so this is just scary.

My Dream Broadcasting Team

I've seen dream teams put together so many times that it got me to thinking - who would be my dream team of broadcasters in sports? If I was the Sports Director of the ~R.O.B.~ Network, and we had the rights to whatever sports I wanted, who would be on my staff?

Most of these will probably not surprise you. There are really no rules to this - I can pick anyone in the history of sports broadcasting, dating back to Harold Arlin on KDKA in August, 1921 (he called the Pirates 8-5 win over the Phillies). I'll pick a play-by-play voice and an analyst. Where applicable, I can add a studio host or sideline person, or third analyst. In other words, it's my staff so it's up to me. With that said, let's go.

Baseball - Let's get the easy one out of the way. You knew my lead announcer would be Vin Scully. He's the best ever, in any sport. Duh. The color analyst would be Tony Kubek. Utterly brilliant in his analysis and uncaring if offending. He easily ticked off George Steinbrenner, and Kubek was a former Yankee. He's getting his due, as the winner of the 2009 Ford Frick Award.

Of course, Scully never works with an analyst, unless he was calling network games. Incidentally, if Scully's not available, Red Barber (Vin's mentor) gets the call. Then Mel Allen. It's tough to not go with Bob Costas but I think he'll be our host and interviewer. Jim Kaat will also be available for analysis.

Football - I could go with Pat Summerall and John Madden (I mean, they were together for a long time) but I'm staying loyal to the team I grew up with: Dick Enberg will call the action and Merlin Olsen will analyze it. The former Father Murphy actor enjoyed such a truly brief run in the booth (roughly 1977-1989). He's missed. Summerall and Madden are probably my "B" team." (Notice no "Monday Night Football" guys) By the way, we need a pregame show, and folks, this is where we need Brent Musberger, if only so he can say "You are looking live..."

Basketball (NBA) - The play-by-play part is easy: Marv Albert. As much I like Mike Breen, Marv is the best ever. The struggle here is with an analyst. I've enjoyed Doug Collins work, and I still like Clyde Frazier. I've also enjoyed the Czar of the Telestrator (Mike Fratello). I'm going to go with Doug Collins, but might rethink this one.

For some reason, I feel compelled to put Pat O'Brien here as a pregame host.

College basketball - Dick Enberg's work load will increase. He gets the nod to call the college game. Keep Jim Nantz available. Now this gets dicey, because the best college broadcasting team - ever - was Enberg with Al Maguire and Billy Packer. The thing is whether or not I could deal with Packer on this staff, but I think Maguire evens it out. So OK.

Hockey - One of the easier calls for me. Though I grew up with Jiggs McDonald on Islanders 'casts, and have high regard for several others, the late Dan Kelly gets the call. John Davidson will work with Kelly to do color. They will be great together, as will Mike "Doc" Emrick, who will do whatever he wants.

I invite our neighbors to the north to tell me otherwise (and I've never heard Foster Hewitt's work).

College football - Keith Jackson was Mr. College Football. I'm going to give him the edge, and pair him with his old partner, Frank Broyles. But if they even so much as slightly screw up (not likely), Don Criqui and John Brodie will be available (if only for the way they called the Miami-Nebraska '84 Orange Bowl).

Tennis (we'll have the majors) - Dick Enberg again, with Bud Collins. Keep John McEnroe around as well. Pat Summerall can help if Enberg's schedule gets crazy.

Golf (again, the majors) - This is where Jim Nantz can shine, but Jim McKay will be available. Summerall, Scully, and Verne Lundquist each get holes as well (I want Verne just for a "yes SIR!"). I need an analyst though. I'm going with Ken Venturi. I'll be selfish and add my friend and former "Tee Time" co-host Michael Breed. He can walk the course as a reporter.

By the way, since it's my staff, and I can do so, we'll provide some high school sports. Of course I'm calling the play-by-play! Sean Kilkelly will work with me, but so will Mark Rosen, Ricky Fritsch, Matt Hamilton, Mark Smallwood, John Spang, Tommy Dee, Zach Fisher, Nick Angotto, Tom Kane, Rob Crowley, Chuck Costello, Jason Intrieri, Bill Brehm, and Nick Fox (with Tim Parry as our lead blogger). And the Maloney's (Dave Sr. and Jr.) will be on standby. In other words, almost anybody who has worked with me on WGCH (I know I'm missing some names).

And Sean Ford will handle our minor league baseball coverage.

We haven't put a bid in for the Olympics yet, but if we do, and we need a miracle, then I'm sure Al Michaels will be a phone call away.

So there you go. Have at it.

And it's all subject to change!

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Is Jorge Posada a Hall of Famer?

It's a question I've quietly pondered for just a moment, but it's one that Jonah Keri breaks down quite nicely. Have to admit that it's a compelling argument.

Of the Yankees from the late 90's into the early part of the 21st Century, we know that Derek Jeter and Mariano Rivera are no-doubt locks for the Hall. Bernie Williams isn't close enough for me. Mike Mussina merits a look but likely won't get the nod (by the way, I will raise a better case for Moose if Bert Blyleven ever gets in). I want to see how Andy Pettitte finishes his career but as of right now, my answer is "no."

Then there's Roger Clemens. Oy.

Of course, Wade Boggs is in, but let's be fair. His numbers were earned with the Red Sox.

After reading this article, it seems to me the late 90's Bombers could have three heading to Cooperstown (four, if you count Joe Torre).

Posting Numbers

I just noticed that I only posted 21 items in May, my lowest total since November 2008 when I only did 17.

Sorry, folks. It speaks to the internet problems that I had in the month of May, combined with other pressing issues. And then there's the thing where I wonder who's really reading, just like who's really listening to the show. That does happen occasionally.

So that's that. I'm trying to be better (and having a working internet connection helps).

In the meantime, check out this awesome home movie footage of baseball from 1929 and 1930. It's a silent film, so keep that in mind. You may also consider this a Rule 55 item, just because.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

OK, We've Got a Series

Sergei Gonchar made it possible with a power play goal at 10:29. Initially, the Penguins power play looked pathetic, but they got the job done, plus an empty-netter from Maxime Talbot.

4-2, Penguins. Red Wings lead the series, two games to one.

Gonchar wears number 55, by the way. I like that.

Evgeni Malkin is playing like a monster. That's good because Sidney Crosby has done nothing, though he did have an assist tonight. I give more credit to the Red Wings for shutting down Crosby though.

Oh, and the Yankees won again. They kind of don't suck lately, if you haven't noticed.

Zach Duke outdueled Johan Santana? Is that a mistake? A typo?

Lakers in five. Hope I'm wrong.

Some Linkage

First and foremost, please welcome back Mr. Tim Parry! The FCIAC Football Blog rides again! Tim had such big plans for his blog but it grew to the point where it might have been too much for one person. I'm happy to see him get back to basics. We'll see what I'll contribute to the blog and anything else.

This is just dumb - clearly where Deadspin is just wrong. Mike Breen is the best basketball broadcaster alive, but I guess the boys at Deadspin just want Gus Johnson.

Is Richard Brodsky a guy who wants to be like Chuck Schumer? A politician with a pulpit (that is, the media) and a little too much time on his hands, so he'll do frivolous subpoena-issuing, looking like a Mets fan who seems hell-bent on bringing down the Yankees.

Brady Anderson is defending Peter Angelos? I lost what little respect I had for Angelos in the way he handled the Cal Ripken streak (wouldn't use replacement players because of impact on the Streak, then droned on at the ceremony for the Streak).

Let me say that again: Brady Anderson is defending Peter Angelos? That sentence is just hysterical!

JD Wins the Foster Hewett Award! Brilliant! One of the best analysts that hockey has ever seen.

Sean Kilkelly also writes about the potential for Woodstock 2009 to take place in Central Park. OK, I guess, but can't we just go back to Yasgur's Farm? Oh, and spare me with the current acts. Most of them...well...suck anyway. Take Sean's advice and go find the originals who still have their wits about them.

We've already seen disastrous attempts in 1994 and 1999. They were both a joke. Let's get back to peace and love and Richie Havens. The Who are still around as well. Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young. You get the idea.

Nice peace about Jim Kaat - a brilliant pitcher who became an even better broadcaster. I'd like to see "Kitty" win the Ford Frick Award, baseball's equivalent of the Foster Hewitt Award.

If forced, I'll take Brian Billick over Matt Millen or Joe Theisman to replace Cris Collinsworth in the NFL Network booth. Otherwise, I'll listen with the sound down and that's a shame because I'll miss out on the good work of Bob Papa.

Charles Costello and I have been friends for about a decade now. His deadpan sense of humor never fails to get me (I'm gullable). He did it again today, if only for a moment.

Chuck will fill in for me next Monday on "The Press Box" when I'm playing shankapotamus on the golf course.

Go Penguins (if only so we can have a series)!

It's Warm - Think High School Football!!

In my last post, I mentioned the upcoming Spring football game (Greenwich's annual Red and White Game), hopefully to be broadcast LIVE on WGCH. What I failed to mention was that the 2009 schedule is out!

For the Cardinals, the schedule looks like this (subject to change):
Thu., 9/17 Norwalk Home - Cardinal Stadium 6:00 PM
Fri., 9/25 Stamford Away - Stamford High School 6:00 PM
Sat., 10/3 Harding Away - Hedges Field 1:30 PM
Fri., 10/9 Danbury Home - Cardinal Stadium 7:00 PM
Fri., 10/16 Trumbull Away - McDougall Stadium 7:00 PM
Fri., 10/23 Central Away - Kennedy Stadium 6:00 PM
Fri., 10/30 Westhill Home - Cardinal Stadium 7:00 PM
Fri., 11/6 New Canaan Home - Cardinal Stadium 7:00 PM
Fri., 11/13 St. Joseph Home - Cardinal Stadium 7:00 PM
Thu., 11/26 Staples Away - Staples Stadium 10:00 AM

A few thoughts.
- WEE! Trips to Trumbull and Bridgeport on Friday nights!
- In fact, TWO trips to Bridgeport (one on a Saturday)!
- Going to Harding High means several things: 1) the field, which is the last grass one in the FCIAC to my knowledge. 2) the press box, which I haven't broadcast a game from since 2001. Thus that brings me to 3) the concrete stands, where we will most likely do the game from (weather be damned!), 4) probably not having a roster until right...at...kickoff, and the most positive thing of all 5) public address announcer Ernest Parker, who, if he's willing, will be a guest on the broadcast this year. He'd make a great interview.
- Trumbull. Oh, Trumbull. Such a nice facility. But the press box. Oh, the press box. And the cell phone signal. Only St. Joe's (in the same town) and Ridgefield are worse. And I gather we get to visit St. Joe's next year. Sigh.
- BOYLE STADIUM! I said Boyle...freaking...Stadium! Those bleachers...that press box...the proximity to the field (yeah the field is rough, but I'm just a broadcaster!).
- Kennedy Stadium. House of horrors (2003 Class LL Championship Game). The press box is a mile from the turf, but they do have those delectable chili dogs. Prediction! Jason Intrieri will be at that game. Eric Graf is the AD there, and a great guy, but sometimes the message doesn't reach the right people that we'll be there to call the game and there's always a slightly over-officious soul there to try and throw us out. But these well-meaning folks exist in several places.
- I enjoy going to Staples. Gives me a chance to see Mike Zito and Coach P. Good people. They don't love Greenwich but I get that. Just remember - I'm just a broadcaster.

As for your 2009 broadcast team, it seems pretty clear that our core is set. It will be:
- Yours truly, embarking on my 10th season calling GHS football. My partner in that first year is the same one I'll have in my 10th...
- Sean Kilkelly, who will do color with me once again.
- Nick Fox, who will patrol the sidelines (most likely, though we need to figure out a relay system for road games).
- Rob Crowley, who will shift to the studio and host the festivities from there.

I suspect we will add possibly one more person (I'd love to have two sideline people, but only if we have two sideline mics, and right now we only have one). That person will handle our stats.

With all of these Friday games, that should open me up for things on Saturday! Maybe we'll get some Brunswick games back on, or return to doing some Westchester games (Rye, Harrison, Port Chester, etc). Of course, I could just go watch Ricky Riscica play at Marist instead or coach Todd Cayea and his Carmel Rams.

Coach Cayea's son Trevor plays for the CSA Phillies. Sean Adams plays for the CSA Phillies (and his dad is the coach) Coach Cayea and his wife have been a huge help to me this season, and I look forward to watching the Rams play.

Anyway, we'll get through the spring game, head into summer, and August (practice) will be here before we know it!

Home Run Derby Time!

Greenwich High School's baseball team just finished their season at 10-11 with an 8-2 loss to Cheshire in the first round of the 2009 Class LL State Tournament.

Probably a disappointing end to the careers of their three fine captains - Ricky Riscica, Jeff DeVico, and Adam Fanchella - along with the other seniors on the '09 squad.

Of course they still have the team banquet to look forward to (yes, I'll be there) along with something new: a home run derby.

Teams have to raise money for ancillary items - new batting cages, scoreboards, potential trips (like Cooperstown, for instance) and so on (I'm just throwing things out here but hopefully you get the idea). Even in Greenwich, these things don't just magically show up.

I know you all think that but you're wrong. At the public school level, there are still struggles, and Greenwich has their regular working-class folks. OK, enough socioeconomic blabbering.

The point is, the team will hold a home run derby on Saturday, June 6th. Registration begins at 9:00 AM and it's only $20 to participate. Lunch is included for the participants.

As for me, I have to coach the Carmel Sports Association Soft Toss Phillies that morning, but am going to get down to the Big G around Noon. I don't think I have any official duties that day (but don't worry, Nancy Riscica won't hesitate to put me to work if I'm needed!!), so I'll be there to watch.

Next Monday is the annual GHS Football Golf Tournament and yep, I'll be lugging the Big Bertha out for another pathetic show (Bob Small, Tony Savino and Sean Kilkelly will be along to bail me out). At this point, I've earned a rep for being fun on the golf course, providing a frosty beverage, and for generally sucking. But I've got personality, and personality goes a long way!

Whilst I'm on this roll of high school meanderings, it appears that next Saturday (June 13th), at 2:00, the Red-White Game will take place at Cardinal Stadium. This, for those of you who don't know, is the spring football game. It's serious stuff but also fun. And several of the past years, the fun has been broadcast over radio station WGCH. It's looking quite possible that the same situation will exist.

I will let you know for sure when we know that we'll be carrying it (or if we won't). I will also let you know in the next few days about another broadcasting situation (or two) that has (or have) arisen. Not that it's going to make me any money but if you know me, then you know I want it (or them). Can't say anything now.

The Beatles are a "Rock Band"


If only I had the time and money for such extravagances. I'd love to hear Sean try to sing "Yellow Submarine" and "Octopus's Garden", his two favorite Beatles songs.