Archive for the ‘ Dailies ’ Category

Barry Bonds Fans: 3 Generations

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Well, Barry didn’t do it today, but then again, yes he did. What Barry did was bring excitement and thrills and sold out baseball’s best and sexiest ballpark.

The game was a classic, as the Giants came back in the bottom of the ninth from three runs down to beat the hated rival, "Los Angeles Dodgers."

My father and my boys loved the anticipation of history being made right before our very eyes.

We enjoyed the game with our friends the Conways along with Google‘s David Lee…

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…and his lovely wife pictured here:

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Baseball is truly a family sport. Long live the game!

Willie

–Hammertime

Rule 714: ESPN

Major League Baseball is making a mistake. Not celebrating 714 does more hurt to the game, than help. No one is asking MLB to be judge and jury. If you don’t celebrate the second greatest achievement in baseball history, then number 3 (Babe Ruth) becomes a fading memory. Who cares about number 3?

The swing is the thing! Barry’s beautiful swing combined with his laser eyes and hand speed are extraordinary. There are stronger players in the game, but they lack the skills of Barry. We are not celebrating are supporting the use of drugs. On the contrary, I am celebrating that swing, his skills and knowledge of the game.

Rule 714 (don’t celebrate a scapegoat) is going to bite baseball in the butt! Already the legend of the Babe is taking a beating. Now your (MLB) blatant attempt to protect the legend of a hitter who wasn’t even the best in his time (Negro Leagues, Blacks were excluded from playing) is being called to the carpet by many. I like The Babe. I love and hate the Yankees. Love the tradition, hate when they beat my A’s and love and respect George.

Set aside judgment, and celebrate the greatest feat in sports in the last 50 years. Imagine if baseball had decided to support Barry Bonds. The game would have won new fans and would be the hot topic of today, in a positive light. We can always debate performance enhancing drugs and who did or didn’t take them and what effect it had on the numbers and the game. We then can decide the penalty and how to uniformly apply it.

However, what we are witnessing is once in a lifetime. Let’s enjoy this magnificent achievement and allow the world to celebrate with us. Abandon Rule 714. Lift up the game! It’s not too late. Go to the mound and make a change.

I tip my hat to ESPN. They are walking the tightrope with the best of them. MLB should take notes. While it’s clear they don’t support Barry, they are acknowledging and celebrating the moment in a way that only ESPN could do. Masterful to say the least.

The "Bonds on Bonds" show is fair and balanced. I couldn’t believe that some analyst didn’t want Barry to have a platform to offer another perspective of who he is. That is typical of agenda-driven journalism that will soon be replaced by community-driven journalism that will offer the voice of the people, not these one-sided attacks to create perception, that offer no counter perspective.

The executives at ESPN held to their guns and deserve accolades for their courage. I applaud them and ESPN. Rule 714 has no place in sports reporting.

Now let me add a little more ice around these two bottles (714 and 715, respectively) that I will soon pop.

A’s Days

Life as a former Oakland A’s batboy during the dynasty.

Down the left field line

Getting a lead

BP with Braves at Spring Training

Baseball Photos

Me and the wonderful world of baseball. You can find more of my photos on my Google blog as well.

713!!! Go Barry

Barryhits713With his lovely mother in attendance, Barry Bonds hit a majestic shot in Philly on Sunday that — in spite of what came out of their mouths (the sounds of shock and awe) — made you as a baseball fan marvel at that beautiful, historic, explosive swing and ponder the thought of how could a man who only sees two hittable pitches a game have the patience and eye to select the pitch that he could drive out the park and then execute it. Steroids can’t do that. By the way I’m recruiting a bunch of gym rats, all confessed steroid users, and I’m starting a new major league team, any chance we’ll win a game? Forget about it!

I’m proud of the strength of Barry’s Mom as she sits and endures the hate and envy that is showered on her son and yet she maintains her poise and dignity. I know her heart hurts for her son and wonders why he has been made the major league scapegoat. I want her to know that I am preparing to celebrate 714 and 715. I will pause and acknowledge how far we have come as a country. I will remember the civil rights activist and Dr. King. Jim Crow and gentrification will cross my mind. I’m a child of the Sixties so I’ve lived through a unique period in American history. I will think of Jackie Robinson, Willie Mays and Hank Aaron.

Then will come a giggle and a laugh as I see the Babe’s face. The Babe and I will have a good laugh together because the Babe lived life to the fullest and he would have grabbed a couple of women, a six pack of beer and a half dozen steaks and invited Barry out for a night on the town. The Babe loved hitters. Barry Bonds is arguably the greatest hitter ever!

Hammer Ball

Arod

One month into the season and things are just beginning to take shape. The Barry Bonds watch, hunt, chase, and escapade has cooled while Barry takes a break and adjust to this new unprecedented level of pressure. Mind and body go hand in hand.

Meanwhile, the game moves on. Alex Rodriguez is swinging a hot a stick and is hovering around the .300 mark. Some things never change. Yankee fans are lucky to have a front row seat of yet another future Hall of Famer. Alex is the complete package. Look for the Yankees to catch fire this month. Spring is slowly moving toward summer and some players only get it going when it’s warm baby! I feel ya. The White Sox seem to have picked up where they left off. It’s too early to run away with it but the swagger is right. Vazquez is looking strong and was near flawless in his two-hitter this week. The Sox have won 9 of their last 10 games.

KingcrabBoston threatens an early season run for the stretch. We all know, you wake up one morning, it’s July and you wonder, "How did we get 10 games out?" Red Sox fans are hungry for another shot at it. Believe me, once you taste victory you begin to crave it. It is an acquired taste. King Crab anyone?

The A’s and Angels hook up this weekend and the series will produce the early season favorite for the AL West crown. My bet is the A’s will win the series and the AL West this year. The A’s pitching once again is the advantage. Look for Zito to get in rhythm in May.

The Mets sure look impressive. This is going to be a highly contested battle in the NL East. While the Mets are marking their territory, the Braves pitching is locking in. We have all the classic makings of a great Bonds_1divisional rivalry. Former teammates and the north versus the south. Southern hospitality versus the big city slickers. The Mets and Braves is baseball at its summertime best.

The Cubs are in striking distance early on and should give Houston all the fight they can stand this season. Look for others to step up while Lee recovers. The Cubs will be there fighting it out in September.

The Giants will win the NL West. While Barry is mending and finding his groove, the Giants still occupy the top spot. I don’t see the other clubs having the eye of the tiger that it takes to whip veterans when it counts. They don’t won’t it. So the Giants will gladly take it.

Question, when will the NL managers get the guts to pitch to Barry Bonds? They say he’s old and on the decline. OK, then pitch to the man!!

More from me >

Barry Bonds Watch / Barry and the Babe

BondsWith every sweet or painful swing (depending on the eyes of the beholder) of Barry Bonds‘ Hall Of Fame bound bat, America will be forced to look directly into the mirror. There is no avoiding the reality of the cultural divide. How this historic moment is viewed, and the opinion of the viewers will cause a room to go silent like verdict day of the OJ trial. You will witness anger and iniquity. Friends will stop talking for a season. Multicultural bowling teams will be missing members on league night, who won’t to avoid discussing the topic of Barry and the Babe. I am pained that the game I love, respect and was reared in, will now come under attack.

Baseball was already suffering from it’s inability to capture the imagination of the minority youth of today. While it’s worldclass leading and cutting edge video on demand website and services deserves the highest accolades, it’s old-fashioned, out-of-touch, old-media marketing approach to the minority youth of today needs an update. I love baseball and I hate to see the game suffer. The old "sports" media guards will push the envelope to the detriment of society. Old wounds will be opened and fresh blood will flow from the new cuts that will be made. I always laugh and wink at the shallow opinion pieces that are written as fact, that underestimate and insult my intelligence.

Bittersweet is this season. I walked the stadiums of baseball America in the ’70s as a kid. I flew on private chartered jets with the fighting, moustache gang Oakland A’s. We were a family. Cubans, Dominicans, Latinos, Italians, Irish, Europeans, Caucasian, African Americans, **** and Gentiles. This was my life. I will not sit idle while new journalist who are in need of a ratings bump, and a book sale, taint the game and divide America. I said in my earlier open letter to Barry Bonds that this is not about steroids and I stand by that statement. The real question is, Is It Worth It? What will be accomplished by making Barry Bonds the proverbial scapegoat?

Man, buy me some peanuts and cracker jacks, I don’t care if I ever get back! I miss Harry Caray! I miss the innocence and warmth of the seventh-inning stretch. I miss catching foul balls and bat day. I miss cap day, and yes I miss hot pants day! The Oakland A’s actually had such a day! I miss heckling the pitchers! And swing batter swing! I miss George and his Yankees, and Reggie Jackson and the All-Star blast! Come on guys, go report on wrestling and "Leave My Game Alone"!

But noooo! U want me to talk steroids, drugs, and racial divide. I could have stayed home and watched a good movie. Have U forgotten that baseball is entertainment!