Changing Doppler With The Seasons

This is a sad year for the Phillies. In baseball terms, they suck. They’re getting older (not that there’s anything wrong with that), slower and less able to hit for power. The pitching staff has been so weak at times I expected walk-ons from the stands to toss a few innings.

We’ve seen them at Dodger Stadium and Angels Stadium. They’ll be in San Diego soon. It’s driveable. Maybe. But why?

Our attention now turns to the Eagles. There are high expectations for this team. I’ve heard it before, but never as positively as now.

Kiss of death? Probably.

To mark the changing of the season Doppler has lost her worn out Phillies tag and gone green!

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It’s Deja Vu All Over Again

“It will happen,” I said at the time to anyone who asked, “when I grow a second penis.” I actually didn’t say penis.

Our governor, Hartford’s mayor and a bunch of other prominent Connecticut residents were played. When all was said and done they looked naive and foolish.

PatslogoI remember the fall of ’98 like it was yesterday. Robert Kraft, owner of the New England Patriots, spent the summer flirting with Connecticut. He was using us to make his ‘real girlfriend,’ Massachusetts, jealous.

Gov. John G. Rowland of Connecticut and the owner of the New England Patriots scheduled a news conference at the Capitol today to announce an agreement to move the National Football League team from Massachusetts to downtown Hartford, a spokesman for the Governor said this morning. – NYTimes 11/19/98

“It will happen,” I said at the time to anyone who asked, “when I grow a second penis.”

I actually didn’t say penis.

Our governor, Hartford’s mayor and a bunch of other prominent Connecticut residents were played. Kraft saw us as bumpkins. We were.

By the way, I will never root for the Patriots as long as Kraft is associated with it in any way. I am still bitter. It may have been good business, but it was bad faith.

los-angeles-angels-of-anaheim-logoWhere were we?

Oh, yeah… I’m reminded of the Patriots story because of something going on down here. The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim are going through contentious negotiations over the team’s lease with Anaheim, their stadium’s owner.

Angels owner Arte Moreno wants the Moon and the stars. The City of Anaheim doesn’t want to get fleeced. The prevailing wisdom is the current lease has been a lot better for Moreno than Anaheim.

Now, Moreno has pulled a Kraft!

Angels owner Arte Moreno met with officials from the City of Tustin last week to discuss the possibility of building a new baseball stadium, a team spokesman confirmed Saturday.

One potential site would be the decommissioned Marine Corps Air Station, which would be accessible via the 5, 405 and 55 Freeways and is across the street from the Tustin Metrolink train station. LATimes 2/15/14

Tustin is the next city north from here. It is not the only stranger being kissed while Anaheim looks on.

Amid tense negotiations with Anaheim, the Los Angeles Angels baseball team has said it talked with FivePoint Communities, the developer of homes surrounding the Great Park in Irvine. What kind of talk, no one knows – or will say in much detail. OCRegister 5/2/14

I could walk to the games! We’re around a mile northeast of the park.

I’ll grow a second penis before any of this happens.

Moreno is playing hardball, but he doesn’t want to move ten miles farther from Los Angeles. The Angels are best served staying right where they are with a little stadium upgrade. It’s all about money.

I hope Anaheim remains firm.

Southern California’s Palace Of Baseball

We brought a picnic of leftovers! OMG! All sorts of goodies from Sunday that made it into a soft sided bag and past security. The Foxes dined at the park!

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As Phillies fans, Helaine and I were excited by the chance of seeing West Coast games in person. Last night was a first chance. We dropped Doppler at the sitter and headed up ‘the 5’ toward Chavez Ravine. Phillies versus Dodgers.

LA has traffic. Get used to it. It took 1:20 door-to-door. I can live with that.

IMG_20140421_181714-w1400-h1400Helaine got us great seats down low just up the line from first base. We had an unobstructed view of everything. It was a little tough to judge inside/outside pitches, but other than that, perfect.

We came early. The park is different when the teams are on the field taking batting and fielding practice. We watched A.J. Burnett walk up to the fence, sign autographs and take pics with fans.

Did he have to? No. Class act.

IMG_20140421_193333-w1400-h1400Speaking of which, thank you Dodger Stadium for being a class act too. Every employee we came across was helpful and friendly even though we were wearing Phillies gear. Maybe baseball realizes at the current cost for tickets we deserve to be treated well.

The stadium itself seems to be in pristine condition. It’s cool to see the zig-zag roof over the bleachers and hexagonal scoreboards, now in sparkling high def color. There are more advertising signs than in ’62, but this isn’t a 21st century glitter palace.

IMG_20140421_180820-w1400-h1400We brought a picnic of leftovers! OMG! All sorts of goodies from Sunday that made it into a soft sided bag and past security. The Foxes dined at the park!

The Phils opened with two runs in the first and never looked back. The Dodgers looked lackluster–like patsies on this night. It got chilly toward the end. We were prepared.

380828_20140421_184132-97324829.jpg_1024x1024Nice place to see a game. We should do it more often. Angels Stadium is even closer.

How I Met Jerry Coleman

jerry coleman baseball cardJerry Coleman died today. Seven decades in baseball. World Series MVP as a player. Broadcaster. Manager.

I met Jerry in the late 70s. I was working in Philadelphia radio and our helicopter traffic guy, Walt McDonald, knew Jerry from San Diego. Could he arrange for me to watch a Phillies/Padres game from the broadcast booth as Jerry did play-by-play?

Done.

I headed to the Vet a few Saturdays later and was escorted into the booth directly behind home plate. I was a little overwhelmed. Jerry Coleman was a big deal former major leaguer with a very distinctive voice. There was no mistaking whose hand I was shaking. He didn’t pass unnoticed in a baseball stadium.

The Padres took an early lead, but between innings Coleman explained how the Phillies looked like they’d figured out the Padres pitcher, who was beginning to tire. I saw none of this, but nodded anyway.

Next inning the Phillies blew it open! The Padres pitcher was chased, just as Coleman predicted and when he predicted it.

Both Jerry Coleman and his broadcast partner, Dave Campbell, were gracious that afternoon. It was my own personal reality show to take in and remember.

Over 35 years later, I still remember. It still makes me smile. I am one of many who will not forget Jerry Coleman.

The Season Begins For The Phils

“This game is really long.” That was Helaine a few minutes ago.

Baseball games usually run about three hours. The Phillies’ season is only an hour and a half old. Just four innings into 2013 and there’s already trouble.

Cole Hamels, the Phillies ace, has given up four runs to the Atlanta Braves. Philly bats have been mainly silent.

I’m willing to watch for love of the game alone, but I’d much rather follow the Phillies on a pennant chase.

Last year’s injuries have healed. Only Carlos Ruiz is missing tonight, suspended 25 games after failing two drug tests for Adderall.

I know, there’s plenty more baseball tonight and all season. It’s just too easy to be a pessimist after last year. And there’s no doubt, when it comes to baseball pessimism rules!

Gotta run. The Phils just loaded the bases. Maybe I’m writing too soon?

Time For Baseball

IMG_0577 MLBTVReal baseball begins Sunday night. Warm weather is nearly here.

Once again we’ve signed on with the MLB computer package. That puts the Phillies on all our devices.

In 2010, Helaine watched Roy Halladay’s perfect game as we drove up the Pacific Coast Highway toward Santa Barbara. We’ve got devices!

It’s surprising how many spring training games were on TV this year and how few were on radio. Every day it’s tougher to make a buck in radio.

Live sports on TV still does very well. Without live sports cable would be dead.

I’m watching MLB TV now. The Padres are visiting the Texas Rangers in San Antonio. This is a replay from Saturday afternoon. It’s just random noise made more interesting by the play-by-play guy, Dick Enberg.

If you follow sports you know Dick Enberg from the NFL. For the past few years he’s been doing the Padres’ broadcasts and he’s great. Thorough. Smart. Witty.

Wikipedia says he’s 78. You’d never be able to convince anyone listening that’s true.

H and I enjoy baseball. We’re scared it’s going to be a very long season for Phillies fans. We’ll still watch.