Posted on: June 1, 2011 11:56 pm

Numbers donít tell the whole story.

At issue: As much as we can break down games into statistics, especially baseball, how limited are numbers ability to tell us about a complete player?

In other words: What players are better than their stats? Derek Jeter in his prime immediately comes to mind. Ben Roethlisberger is another. What other athletes do you think rise about the level of their numbers?

Category: General
Posted on: November 29, 2008 12:51 pm

Hatred Towards Sports Rivals.

Why do we hate? Is it from pure dislike of the rival fans? Or is it because of winning? Winning does fuel hatred!

Why do fans across the country hate the Yankees, Red Sox or Mets? Or all the New York sports teams for that matter? Do rival New Yorkers hate one another so much just because we cheer for the opposing squad? Why hate the Cowboys, Patriots, or Raiders? The Lakers,etc. You get the point!

Speaking from a New York state of mind....I believe everyone not in New York hates the New York teams because we spend money, lure all the free agents, and compete to win. I believe everyone hates New Yorkers because it is labeled by so many the “greatest city in the World”. Is that what fuels the hatred? Just because the city that “never sleeps”, or the “Big Apple”, has so many knick names, does it drive residents from other states insane? New Yorkers are wonderful, passionate, opinionated, and stubborn when it comes to their sports. Just like every other fanatic in the world.  So many of you hate Philadelphians, or Bostonians; why?

Yes, Philadelphia fans threw snow balls at Santa Claus. That was really, really classy. But Rangers fans dressed up like Santa Claus at the Nassau Coliseum and then Islanders fans rumbled with them. I ask again, where’s the love? What is it about the Phillies, or the Eagles that drives Mets and Yankees, or Jets and Giants fans nuts? I realize the Phillies won the NL East this year and last, taking it from a collapsing Mets team. But to hate the fans? I need some concrete information about what makes Philly fans so terrible. They yell, they cheer, they make obnoxious comments at fans that wear the opposing colors of their teams, and they drink plenty of alcohol at the games. News flash New Yorkers, so do we. Do Philly, or Boston fans hate us just as much, or our winning teams?

I honestly believe that because New York wins, opposing fans hate our teams, and then the fans that associate with them. I ask you, do you really care about the Kansas City Royals? What about the San Diego Padres? Maybe you care about the Detriot Lions? I can tell you that it made me sick when the last out was recorded at Shea Stadium and the Phillies won the east again. I hated those Phillies. But, I thought it was amazing to see Citizens Bank ball park rocking into the wee hours of the morning for the World Series and thought, it should have been Shea! When the Red Sox finally won their World Series in 2004 after that endless drought, I am sure all Yankees fans were screaming, “I hate the Sox.” But does the hatred trickle down to the fans that are celebrating something that they deem sacred, that they have waited for during their lives. Listen New Yorkers, we do the same thing!

All in all, hate is a pretty strong word. Mets fans will hate the Yankees because of all the championships. Jets fans will hate the Patriots because they stole Bill Belichick and won all the championships. Yankees fans will hate the Red Sox because Boston is stealing the Yankees spot light, and so on, and so on. Hatred fuels the rivalry. But the passion fuels the hatred.

Posted on: October 30, 2008 9:50 am

The Next Most-Deserving Championship Goes to...

The Phillies ended a 28-year title drought, and a 25-year barren streak for Philadelphia, with its World Series win over the Tampa Bay Rays.

Phils fans deserve this.

What other long-suffering but loyal fan base(s) is most deserving of a title? These are the fans who show up (read: not the Miami Dolphins) and remain vocal yet still get denied year after year.

Oh, and don’t say the Chicago Cubs. Too easy.

You could go with the New York Knicks, and original NBA team that’s won only two titles, in 1970 and 1973.

The Minnesota Vikings’ fans certainly deserve a Lombardi Trophy.

I'll go with the Toronta Maple Leafs in the NHL, the home city of the Hockey Hall of Fame last sipped from the Stanley Cup in 1967.

But what about the city of Cleveland, they deserve a title.

The last Cleveland title came in 1964 when the Brown won the NFL championship.
The Indians last won in 1948.
The Cavaliers have never won the NBA title!
And the NHL Cleveland Barons vanished after two unsuccessful seasons.

Category: General
Tags: Championship
Posted on: September 22, 2008 9:16 pm

The Weekend That Was...

Yankee Stadium closed, in case you haven’t heard.

Can the Mets hang on with that bullpen?

USA wins the Ryder Cup

Did the Dolphins really do that to the Patriots?

Giants and Bills remain among the dwindling ranks of unbeatens.

What stood out for you this sports weekend?

Category: General
Tags: Sports
Posted on: September 7, 2008 1:44 am

Letters from Iraq.

Taking a step back from sports here for a minute...I got this letter from a friend of my over in Iraq, and after talking with him through email I got his blessing to share some of what he wrote.

First the background:

My buddy Jeff joined the Army Reserves after high school, did his basic and AIT (advanced individual training) like most Soldiers, was a member of the 451st Civil Affairs Detachment. He put in his time and was honorable discharged. During those years he focused on his education and civilian career.

He finished community college and moved out on his own. He was working two jobs and was continuing with his higher education. He had nothing! His second job was just a temporary job, it was supposed to only last for one month. But, the company noticed him and hired him on permanently. Soon after, he said after making some contacts, his hard work paid off and they promoted him as an executive manager.

He worked really hard, met the right people and was in the right place at the right time. He became a workaholic! His new position allowed him the car he wanted to drive and to live comfortably.

He said "I began to neglect the balance in my life, something was missing, but I could never  place it. I was never satisfied. The job, the money, I was always striving for something bigger and better." He went on to say "My lust for more started to push people away and I began to take things for granted."

Until an unexpected letter changed his life.

A letter arrived one day notifying him that he had been activated to go to Iraq. This letter came in the mail that would change everything. He had been in the inactive ready reserve, but was called up when his unit was activated. He didn't even know what the IRR was! In his eyes, in one day he lost everything just as fast as he'd gained it.

From executive manager, to a civil affairs specialist in the U.S. Army on his way to Iraq!

He said the most challenging aspect has been coming from a position of being in charge to becoming a specialist taking orders. But he understood it, and he knew his role.

His role for the past six months has been interacting with the Iraqi people. As a civil affairs specialist, his job is to visit with citizens on a daily basis assessing their needs and feelings. "It was a culture shock!" he said. "The level of poverty here is just beyond belief. Everything we take for granted back home, these people they wish and they dream about it."

Today he says his time in Iraq has had an impact on his life, and has affected him in a way he never thought it would. "We've been hit here a couple of times, and it's made me appreciate life." The deployment has brought him closer to his family and friends. But, he says it's hard at times trying to explain what life is like here in Iraq. "You try to tell them, but you can't describe what your eyes see over here."

He still views himself as a motivated, successful young man going in the same direction, upward.  What he has seen and experienced in Iraq has taken the blinders off, made life just a lot more balanced. "I don't take things for granted any more." he said.

Jeff expects to be home soon in a few months and he said his experience here has helped him understand that balance in life is important.

Category: General
Posted on: August 20, 2008 4:11 pm
Edited on: August 21, 2008 2:19 pm

AAAAAAAAAHHH Good Afternoon Everybody!

I've been on vacations so I'm a little late with this story. But they say better late then never...

The flagship station for Mets' baseball just took a blow, as it was revealed on Thursday that the Mike and the Mad Dog show will not be renewed. I am not sure how the listeners of WFAN and Mets fans feel about the show - after all, it was the Mets' station, neither of them are Mets fans, and both of them had visible contempt for the panicky Mets fans who would call in to complain about Willie and the team in mid-April.

Somehow I'd often end up listening to the show if I were in the car, despite the fact that there's a commercial about every three minutes, most of the callers are fools, and Mike and the Dog aren't much better. Both Mike and the Mad Dog were against moving Joba Chamberlain from the bullpen, failing to realize that a decent starter is more valuable than a lights out 8th inning guy. Both thought that Luis Castillo was a great second baseman. Both were against Lastings and Reyes for their demonstrative celebrations. Mostly, they were no fun, and a lot of fun to listen to anyway - where else could you hear discussions about Mickey Mantle and Willie Mays in December?

They will be missed. I'm curious how Mets fans felt about them, though.

Chris Russo left WFAN on August 14, 2008. Russo signed a five-year contract worth about 3 million per year with Sirius XM radio to headline a new sports talk channel called "Mad Dog Radio" on both Sirius and XM satellite radio.

Mike Francesa signed a five-year deal to stay at WFAN and continue to host the afternoon drive-time show called "Francesa On The Fan".
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or