Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 66

On He Got it Right
This is something I didn’t think could happen. As surprising as this may be, he’s right! Yes, I totally agree with House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH) who (in a recent speech)  said, “It’s time to put grown-ups in charge.” Again, he is right! So, Mr. Boehner, when are you resigning as House Minority Leader?

Although Ruth Marcus takes Mr. Boehner’s speech to task in this column, I most appreciate her last sentence.

Democrats — and the country — would benefit from a responsible opposition party. I’m still looking for evidence of one.

On the Latest Primaries
While some boast about primary wins by Palin-endorsed candidates, I ask this critical question: Can these candidates capture enough votes from the center to win the seat? Time will tell, but I say no.

On the College Football
Hey hey … college football is around the corner and Alabama is ranked #1. Who did they beat to earn the top spot?

On Tiger and the Ryder Cup
Tiger Woods has not earned enough points for an automatic selection to this year’s Ryder Cup team. Would I make him a captain’s pick? At this point, absolutely not. His swing is out of whack and his mind is all over the place. I know that he’s off to a great start at the Barkley’s, but I don’t think he is reliable at this time.  Captain Pavin announces his picks Sept. 7th, so maybe I’ll say more before then.

On those Storm Names
On Thursday, Frank reached hurricane strength in the Pacific. The National Hurricane Center provides this interesting list of storms names. I didn’t realize geography made such a difference!

On the Passing Space Station
Wednesday night I observed the Space Station pass directly over my house. Being one remembering the earliest days of the manned space program, I thought it was cool. For we in Cincinnati, it passes again Thursday and Friday night.

On the Reds
To the dismay of some national pundits, my Cincinnati Reds continue to hang in there. Let’s see … they rank high in batting average, runs scored, fielding, and pitching (since mid-June). Although the trip to SF was horrible, mirrors or not, they are real at to this point in time.

On Honoring 4192
Much to my surprise, and to the chagrin of former MLB Commissioner Fay Vincent (his comments), Commissioner Bud Selig granted approval to the Reds to honor the 25th anniversary of Pete Rose breaking the all-time hits record. Not only that, he approved Pete’s on-the-field participation.

I realize that Fay Vincent is a crank who only gets media attention on the Rose issue, but is this the first step for the Reds to eventually retire number 14?

I continue to maintain that I can accept no Cooperstown induction. I can accept no involvement with an MLB team. However, as I said in this popular April 13, 2009 post, I cannot accept the Reds not being able to retire #14, let alone Pete not being in the Reds HOF.

On a Cincinnati Addition
Kings Island, an amusement park just north of Cincinnati, announced this week a new ride for 2011 – the 301 ft tall WindSeeker. See the animation for something I don’t think I could ride.

On Catching Up with Sports

My goal this week is to have to post each day. Doing a collection of thoughts on a topic will hopefully help me get back in the groove after being 0 for June. Sports is today’s topic.

Tiger Woods has been an unbelievable dominance in his sport, but now, he seems to be a mere shell of himself. I’ve always said that talent differences at that level are small, and many small factors contribute to differences. In Tiger’s case, he held a strong mental edge over his competitors. To me, it sure seems that he has lost that mojo, thus is currently just one of the guys.

MLB just announced the All-Star team. Let me get this straight – (through Saturday’s games for your position), having the following rankings is NOT good enough to make the team: Runs (1), Hits (4), HR (2), RBI (3), Total Bases (2), AVG (1), OBP (2), SLG (1). The selection process is simply pathetic. How else can Joey Votto’s omission be explained? By the way, not since 1952 has a NL player who is in the top 5 in AVE, HR, and RBIs not made the team … and Votto’s stats are better than top 5!

My Cincinnati Reds have been a pleasant surprise. As I stated in my Opening Day analysis, right-handed hitters would be the key … and these guys have responded to date. Rolen, Phillips, Cabrera, and Gomes have led the way. Bullpen has been a surprise letdown, but they are getting better.

Count me in as one of those who hate seeing college football realignment. Good news is that the talk as calmed down … well for now … but remember, it’s not over. No matter how you cut it, it’s all about money and the rich getting richer. Although the Big 10 still can’t count, at least they have company in the PAC 10 and the Big 12.

With the World Cup approaching the end, I can let it pass. On the plus side, I admire the player’s physical stamina and footwork. On the negative side, the game is boring, players faking fouls is much worse than basketball, and fans “negative” reaction to those of us who just don’t get into the World Cup is the topping on the cake.

I was a Fantasy Baseball player at The Sporting News, but they decided to discontinue the service this year. Although I’ve been too busy, I still miss it.

Welcome back SnatchSports.

On Stay Out of the News

The news is full of people. First, everyone not only has their preference of news channels, news watchers also have their favorite broadcasters. On the other hand, think about the people in the news. The news is full of the rich, the famous, obnoxious politicians, arrogant athletes, and village idiots; then sprinkled with good Samaritans and the needy.

I am not a fan of Republican House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH) or Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), but they maintain positions that are in the news. Although I cannot stand to hear either of them, both are news worthy.

On this post, I ask this question: Who are the people in the news that you wish would go away? No wish of ill or harm, just get out of the news!

Here is my list, so who are yours?

Tiger Woods – I play golf; enjoy watching golf, and a Tiger fan. Because he made bad decisions, his personal life has its share of struggles. Given all the problems in this country and in the world, I wish he would be out of the news – well, at least until he returns to golf.

Pat Robertson – The man simply has the propensity of saying stupid things at the wrong time.

Rosie O’Donnell – Oh please, not her again.

Rush Limbaugh – He can say all he wants on his radio show because I do not listen. I even wished him well during his health issue. Otherwise, stay out of the news!

John Edwards – Currently, the undisputed #1!

On Opinions in the Shorts, Vol. 19

On Wondering Where
I’m sure you’ve been wondering about whatever happened to Doogie Howser? For those eager to know, I found this post from Maxi.

On Dancing with the Stars
Some aspects of the first half rounds of Dancing with the Stars can be painful as the teams segregate themselves into the haves, have nots, and the maybes. As demonstrated this week, the risk of audience participation is an interruption in the pecking order as a “maybe”, comedian David Alan Grier, is bounced at the expense of have-not Steve-O staying. Hopefully, Steve-O’s time will run out next week.

On Gary First, then Pumping Gas … and finally Tiger
Sure it’s Masters week and the buzz is about Tiger, but cheers to Gary Player who announced he’s playing in this 52nd and last Masters. He’s a great champion, a statesman for the game, and a class act. Here’s a post.

Here’s an interesting story of a gas station owner playing in the Masters.

Earlier this week I saw a great segment about Tiger Woods using a software analogy … unfortunately I couldn’t find the video.

  • Tiger 1.0: The one who burst on top the PGA scene
  • Tiger 2.0: The one who restructured his swing, and then took his swing to another level
  • Tiger 3.0: The one following knew surgery proclaiming a new and improved Tiger who has yet to reach his peak

On a Ceremonial First Pitch
Having Captain Sullenberger throw the ceremonial first pitch was great – only to be topped by the person who came up with the idea for number 155 for his uniform number. A tip of the cap to the Giants organization!

On Baseball’s Civil Rights
The Cincinnati Reds will host this years’ Civil Rights Game on June 20 against the Chicago White Sox. MLB has chosen Henry Aaron, Muhammand Ali, and Bill Cosby as this year’s honorees.

On Italy
My thoughts and prayers go out to the people affected by the recent earthquake in Italy.

On a Classic Chuckle
A chuckle from a classic scene to send you into the weekend. Have a good and safe weekend.

On the Masters

amen_corner1This has been a big week in sports: MLB’s Opening Day, the ultimate end on the Road to the Final Four, the Frozen Four starts tomorrow, and ultimately, the beginning of one of golf’s great tournaments – the Masters.

The Masters is the first golf major of the PGA year. Fortunately it’s not about Augusta National’s members, but about a tradition, a place, its beauty, and a course offering the risk-reward axiom on most approaches to the protected green with the glass-like surface.

Each year – the same course, the same challenges, and the same reward in the end, plus some memorable moments. Whether being Nicklaus’ unbelievable win in 1986, or the thrills that Tiger continues to give us, below I offer links to this tradition as well as a few great moments. Enjoy.

Amen Corner picture is the property of the Masters

  • A Short History, including much info in the sidebar.
  • FAQs: After some of the initial information, the FAQ page offers some interesting tidbits.

A Masters Tribute to a Song

Nicklaus at 16

Then at 17

A Tiger MomentMaybe THE Moment … well at least for now