Thursday, March 26, 2009

There's no crying in basketball, either

You've probably heard something about a crazy college basketball tournament being held right now, and even if you're just a little bit in to college b-ball, you know they're down to just 16 teams.

Anyone remember what happened in the tourney in 2006, particularly in the game between UCLA and Gonzaga?

Adam Morrison cried.

See the final moments of the game below:

Please note that I did not make any of the comments you see pop up in the video.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Don't call it a comeback

We all have dreams as little kids. Some little boys want to be astronauts or superheroes, while little girls have aspirations of becoming ballerinas or princesses.

Former major league pitcher, Dennis "Oil Can" Boyd, always dreamt of the day he'd be playing semi-pro baseball. Seriously.

An article in the Vancouver Sun reports that Oil Can Boyd will be making a return to professional (somewhat) baseball with the Ottawa Voyageurs of Canada's Can-Am Baseball League at the ripe old age of 49.

Boyd claims to have said, when he was 10 years old, that when he's 50 he'd like to still be playing baseball, if not professionally then for a semi-pro or local team. I guess dreams really do come true if you're willing to go to absurd enough lengths to achieve them, but he seemed to have set his aspirations kind of low. I'm only 26 and have already reached the "local team" level of baseball.

Boyd says he just wants a chance to show he can "throw 100 pitches for 30 starts and dominate." Easy there, killer. I'd hardly call a once-MLB caliber pitcher striking out guys in the Can-Am league dominant, regardless of age.

See the full story here.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Rookie of the Year

I was watching the age-old classic, Rookie of the Year, the other day and thought to myself, This bad baseball movie is loaded with bad baseball action... so I'll do a movie-in-pictures entry on my bad baseball blog!

The basic premise: Henry, a little leaguer with no talent whatsoever, trips on a baseball while chasing a pop fly at his school (while trying to impress a girl). He falls hard on his shoulder which requires some sort of surgery (I'm assuming this - the movie conveniently skips through the whole healing process). The hitch? The tendons heal too tightly, so when he goes to throw a baseball, his arm snaps forward so quickly that whatever he's holding rockets out at an absurd speed.

This is almost too ridiculous to put in to words. I liked this movie a lot as a 10 year old, but I'll admit that it hasn't aged well. I didn't get the idea to take screen shots until Henry was discovered by the Cubs (after throwing a home run ball back onto the field from the centerfield bleachers), so that's where we'll start it off. So make some popcorn, sit back, and watch a slideshow of the mid-90's classic, "Rookie of the Year."

First off, I present to you Henry Rowengartner, elementary school (or middle, I don't think it specifies, but he builds a small motor boat with his friends throughout the flick, so I'm assuming he's at least 12). Nothing like the look of joy and bewilderment from a kid just called up to the big leagues:

Silly Henry doesn't know how to use a rosin bag, so when he picks it up, chalk flies everywhere... HA HA! Stupid rookie!

The big leaguer cameos don't come until later in the movie (keep reading, you'll see 'em), but what are the chances this guy would be randomly selected for steroids testing? None whatsoever.

OK, got the first inning out of the way, time to screw around in the dugout! Because jumping from little league to the majors should only take five or so minutes to adjust, right? Rally caps!

Hey, its "Janitor" from the television show, "Scrubs". He's the firstbaseman, if you're wondering...

Pitching is easy, but this the National League, rook - you gotta bat, too. But Henry is scared, so he doesn't get anywhere near the plate... HA HA HA! So funny...

Brush back pitch. Couldn't the Cubs have used smaller lettering to make "Rowengartner" fit better on the jersey?

Now the hilarity really begins. Henry gets on base! ALL of the nerves from the at-bat are apparently gone, because he wastes no time in taunting the pitcher. "Pitcher's got a big butt!" Oh man, I bet that pitcher was pissed...

The guy following Henry in the batting order hits a ball in to the outfield gap, but since he's so fast - and Henry is so slow - they run around the bases next to each other. Both are safe! Cubs go up two runs!!

OK, time for the MLB cameos. Henry strikes 'em all out! First up, Bobby Bonilla!

Pedro Guerrero, yerrrrrrrr ooooouuuutttt!

And then he gets a pre-steroids (waaaaay pre-steroids) Barry Bonds swinging. Nice pitch, kid.

So the movie goes on, Henry strikes out everyone he faces, blah blah blah. His corrupt manager (his mom's boyfriend) sells him to the Yankees (doesn't go through, not explained why - probably because it's not allowed?) and convinces the Cubs to rid themselves of former ace pitcher "Chet Stedman." Stedman is upset, Henry distracts himself by playing his Gameboy.

Fast forward a bit: Cubs are in the playoffs, just a game from clinching the National League pennant. Henry slips on a ball between innings (because remember, that's how he hurt his arm in the first place), and re-injures his shoulder. Nothing drastic, other than he can't throw hard any more! OH NOOOOOO!!!! What should we do Chet??

The team ace says, "Keep him in!" And yeah - that's Gary Busey. Never take advice from Gary Busey.

Good thing major league hitters can't adjust to change ups they know are coming. Henry's only got one pitch in his aresenal to end the game: the floater. How does the game end?

Cubs win! Cubs win! The Cubs are going to the World Series!!

Uh oh... the production budget ran out! How would the Cubs fare in the World Series without Henry? Could Chet Stedman carry the team by himself? Apparently:

Stedman (Gary Busey) ends up as the coach of Henry's little league team, and Henry robs a home run to end a game. He reacts the same as when he clinched the NL Pennant and flashes the World Series ring for all to see.

The End.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

The Boz is back

Every now and then, for fun, I click on the "College Football" news link on various major sports websites during college football's offseason.

There's rarely any major news, other than the occasional Lane Kiffin foot-in-mouth press conference, but it's a sport littered with bad headlines. For example, if you visited Wednesday, March 11th's ESPN College Football page, you'd find headlines such as:

"Ex-TCU player Hobbs gets 10 years in prison"
"Michigan St. player pleads guilty, suspended"
"Mizzou settles O'Neal wrongful death lawsuit"
"Ole Miss signee Hornsby facing two charges"

Yeah, pretty bad.

But one headline stood out among the others, if for no reason than it brings up funny memories of one of the biggest flops in NFL history:

"Ex-OU star Bosworth charged with drunk driving"

The Boz is back!! The dude's crazy. He once referred to the NCAA as "National Communists Against Athletes." He sent letters to numerous NFL teams stating that if they drafted him, he wasn't showing up. The Seahawks drafted Bosworth and signed him to what was - at the time - a record 10 year, 11 million dollar deal. He sued the NFL for the right to wear #44, his college number, and lost. He retired after three seasons due to a shoulder injury. He was a commentator for the short-lived (and previously blogged about) XFL.

And most recently, on March 6, 2009, Brian Bosworth was arrested for drunk driving on his motorcycle in Los Angeles, California.

Just another highlight on Bosworth's extensive resume.

The point of this entry? Nothing, I suppose. But when you think of bad athletes, Bosworth is easily one of the first to come to mind.

Monday, March 9, 2009

United they'll fall

Remember the XFL, the hideous joint venture between NBC and the World Wrestling Federation? Remember its Saturday evening games? Remember "He Hate Me"?

Apparently, Michael Huyghue, commissioner of the soon-to-be United Football League, doesn't remember how horribly the league bombed after one miserable season. Because if he did, there is no way the UFL would be on anyone's mind.

The NFL is huge, and nobody will dispute that. But spin off leagues don't work, especially not in these rough economic times. Arena Football couldn't sustain itself (the AFL has canceled its 2009 season), nor could NFL Europe. When people are forced to be tight with their money, sub-par "professional" sports have no audience.

Back to the UFL...

The league plans to begin its season in October 2009 with a total of four teams. Yes, just 4. As in, the same amount of teams in the NFC East. As in, far too few to have anything resembling a season. How is this seriously going to work? The season's first game will double as conference championship week, with week two being their version of the Super Bowl. Either that, or the teams will have to play each other five times (which they will - current plans are for a six game schedule).

Originally the league had planned to start in August '09 but pushed its start back to October to allow more time to attract owner-investors, negotiate TV broadcasting deals, and build league branding. In other words, there is no interest whatsoever, but somebody with deep pockets really thinks this thing will work.

Vince McMahon thought the same about the XFL - ask him how that turned out.

The league's motto is "Where Future Stars Come to Play". But the only thing you can count on seeing are "Guys you sort of remember being decent in low college ball." I know I'm not the only one envisioning Michael Vick's name all over the UFL record books.

Visit the official website of this disaster here.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

For Sale By Owner

I'm not a real estate expert, but I do know one thing for certain about the housing market: now is not the time to sell. But don't tell that to Manny Ramirez.

He's selling his Boston area condo for $8.5 million dollars, almost three million MORE than he paid for it in 2001. Nothing like another case of "Manny being Manny".

I'm in the process of buying a house myself, and I haven't seen one single place selling for more than the purchase price. Heck, I've hardly seen a single place being sold by the actual owner - nearly everything out there, at least in my part of the country, is a bank owned foreclosure or short sale.

This certainly isn't the time to go investing in a condo - they're the first properties to be affected by economic downturns and usually the last to recover.

Manny's selling agent. Michael Doherty, calls this place "... the most magnificent apartment in Boston by far." It better be for that kind of money. I'm nowhere near Boston so I won't be checking out Manny's place any time soon, but if you're in the area and looking for an absurdly overpriced condo, check out the official listing and make an appointment.

The only catch? Manny won't accept any reasonable offer.