Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Hee Haw

Well here I am in Banff on a Tuesday just before game 7 of Capitals/Flyers and Sharks/Flames. Capitals have momentum and I did predict they would win earlier so no sense changing now. This Green kid is something else. Look for him to make the 2010 Olympic squad.

I was lucky enough to attend game 6 at the Saddledome on Sunday night. The sea of red and noise in Calgary rivals that annoying singing the Habs fans tend to do to often. The sea of red experience however was awesome. I only saw one San Jose sweater on the fans in attendance. Tonight the Sharks have to find a way to create some offense. Flames stayed out of the box on Sunday and have a great chance to upset the Sharks.

Frank Thomas - sorry to see him go - yes he could not play defensively and yes his batting average was terrible - however he did have an intimidating presence and I will miss him.

Off to Wild Bill's to check it out for the July Peak trip - supposed to be a great restauruant/bar and they will have the games on tonight.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Spring is here

Finally some good weather - first outdoor BP on Wednesday, pool getting drained, people out jogging. Updates - Raptors struggling to play well at start of games. We'll get sixth overall and then play Orlando in the first round. We can beat them with our depth but our D needs to come out stronger.

Habs over Bruins in five - I'm not as confident - Savard sucked it up and is playing well. Bruins have grit - if they win game four, this is any one's series
Will the Senators win one? What's with the attempt to pump up the crowd with some type of warrior before tonight's game and then the Mountie singer (again)?
Capitals and Rangers will win
Wings coasting - San Jose - gulp what was that fold yesterday - great hits on Patrick Marleau and he showed resilience in coming back. Stars looking good is a real surprise. Minnesota will bounce back on the road with a split in Colorado.

Jays need to get more consistent hitting. D and pitching has been really good to date. I heard Alan Ashby, one of the Jays radio play by play announcers, declare that he thinks Aaron Hill will win the AL batting crown this year. I'm not sure I share his optimisim - let's see if he can hit 300 first. Vernon is going to have a huge year.

Our local Slo Pitch League is hosting a tournament in Burlington May 31 and June 1. Details will be on the SPO site soon http://www.slopitch.org/home.php

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

NHL Playoffs

First Round Predictions: Montreal over Boston in 5 games. Bruins hustle, play strong D, have a whacky goalie and can't score enough. With Marc Savard hurt, they will struggle. Pittsburgh over Ottawa in 5. Of course Pittsburgh threw their final game. Everyone wanted to play the imploding Senators. Have I said before that Alfredson got what he deserved?

Lots of people think that Washington will fold in the playoffs - well they won't. Ovechkin is going to keep pumping in the goals and Phili is a team that is still a year away.

That leaves the Rangers knocking off Devils in six. Devils simply can't score enough and Rangers have size and skill to cause some real problems in the playoffs this year.

In the West I am not predicting any first round upsets. Detroit will coast. San Jose and Calgary will beat each other up and look for Patrick Marleau to continue his resurgence. Minnesota will surprisingly knock off Colorado in 5. This will be the end of Peter Forsberg so enjoy his last series. A lot of people are talking Dallas to knock of Anaheim. Personally I can't see it - they struggled down the stretch and miss Zubov on the PP.

Check back in 10 days to see next predictions.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Baseball Beginnings

I attended the home opener vs Red Sox on Friday night. Nice win by Jays. Lots of Red Sox fans there and frankly they should be a little less cocky. Low and behold at Sunday's game, Patti and I sat in a heavily populated Red Sox section. Beckett started and had a lot of zip on his fast ball. Blue Jays showed a lot of patience and eventually wore him down. After his second consecutive walk he was pulled and the Hurt hit a grand slam on his first pitch. This is when many of the Red Sox fans started to leave -I find it hard to believe that so many would come up from New England.

If they are Toronto area residents, they should consider getting on the band wagon for the Jays - they run well, play solid D, have great pitching and hitting should be enough to keep them going.

Chants abounded - Go Home Boston - and the crowd was really loud. John McDonald made his first start and completed one of the nicest plays you'll ever see from a short stop. Next play he and Vernon collide on a short fly ball - both down for a while but able to continue.

Manny Ramirez - I watched him make several half hearted defensive plays this weekend. I'm glad he's with the Red Sox - he epitomizes the "idiot" label.

The crowd is a lot more energized this year than the last couple. I think the Jays will continue to get strong starting pitching, good defense and hopefully timely hitting from the Hurt, Hill and something out of third and catcher positions.