The last time the Giants won the World Series, they weren't the San Francisco Giants, because they were still playing on the Polo Grounds in Harlem. Now, a new city can celebrate their victory. Sports writer Jeff Beresford-Howe reports from California.
The San Fransisco Giants beat the Texas Rangers last night 4 to 0, giving them a 3-1 series lead. Takeaway sports contributor Jeff Beresford-Howe wraps up last night's game.
The San Francisco Giants are one game away from the Bay Area’s first ever world championship.
Well, wait, yeah, not the first. The 49ers have won five, the A’s have won four, the Raiders a couple and even the Warriors won once. (If you’re under 40, I know that last one seems a little insane, but you could look it up, as they say.)
It just seems like the Giants are first because no one who lives in the Bay Area has ever seen anything like this. The coolest, most progressive city in the United States has gone crazy for the Giants.
Tonight will see the beginning of a World Series matchup no one predicted. The San Francisco Giants will face the Texas Rangers. At the center of the game will be an epic face-off between pitchers Cliff Lee and Tim Lincecum. They have established themselves as two of the best pitchers in the game, and both men have a tremendous amount of respect for the other's pitching style.
Sportswriter Jeff Beresford-Howe takes you through five erroneous assumptions you may have heading into this year's World Series.
Watching the selection show for baseball's All-Star Game on TBS Sunday, I thought of Billy Martin. Talking about Reggie Jackson and George Steinbrenner in 1978, the irascible and perhaps drunken Yankees manager said, "One's a born liar and the other's convicted."
Martin was spot-on about Yankees owner Steinbrenner, who was convicted for his part in the sleazier side of Richard Nixon's '72 campaign operations. Jackson, the story goes, pissed Martin off in a public disagreement over whether Mr. October was bunting on his own in a game. ... (continue reading)
Bad news for all of you singing Ole Ole. Soccer – hell, that isn’t even the real name of the sport – is never going to be a big deal in the United States.
Why? Let me dive to the turf screaming and clutching my leg while I explain why.
“Major League Soccer” (MLS) isn’t major league. It isn’t even much of a minor league. Figure the English Premier League as the majors, along with La Liga in Spain. Italy and Germany would be the equivalent of Triple-A baseball. Holland, France, Brazil, Mexico, they’d be Double-A. The Central American leagues, Japan, they’d be Single-A. Then maybe put “major league soccer” in there at low Single-A. Do you think baseball would be successful in the USA if the best thing you could see was the Charleston Bats vs. the Asheville Tourists? Or hockey would work here if all we had to look forward to was the Fresno Falcons vs. the Long Beach Ice Dogs? A league whose champion couldn’t win a single game in the English Premier League is not going to excite the American imagination. The league is so bad that the best American players would rather sit on the bench for Hertha Berlin or Manchester City than play regularly for the San Jose Earthquakes or the Chicago Fire. (What? There’s no team called the New Orleans Katrinas?) ... (continue reading)
Leadership in baseball changes about as often as it used to in the Kremlin and still does in Zhongnanhai. The last time there was turnover on the player’s union side was 1983, when a callow, aggressive lawyer named Donald Fehr took over during a virtual state of war between the men who own the teams and the men who played ball for them.
Fehr announced his retirement on Sunday after twenty-six years running the union. From a competitive point of view, there’s only one way to judge his tenure: a thorough success probably unequalled in the history of labor and certainly in the history of sports labor. The war that Fehr inherited is over. The owners, led by Bud Selig, have surrendered after Fehr spent two decades performing a work stoppage and salary structure whoop-ass on them. The man retires undefeated. Selig may hold the formal title of commissioner of baseball, but he is now widely considered secondary in power and authority to Fehr. Mike Weiner, a lawyer and Fehr protégé, the George H.W. Bush to Fehr’s Ronald Reagan, will be the new head of the union. Weiner is a kinder, gentler kind of guy. He wasn’t a principal in the union during the years in which the union struggled to become established as a serious player in the sport and doesn’t seem to carry the scars that Fehr does.
Weiner, however, has some serious cleaning up to do from parts of Fehr’s legacy, which goes a lot deeper than the issue of collective bargaining wins and losses.Continue reading
However it turns out – and these things have a way of getting weird when the Washington Nationals are involved – Stephen Strasburg is in for one hell of a ride. He became the number one pick in the major league draft, the first Must Pick guy in its 43-year history. He’s the Lew Alcindor and LeBron James, the O.J. Simpson and Payton Manning, the Guy Lafleur and Sidney Crosby of his sport, the guy a GM has to draft unless he’s interested in explaining to his team’s owner why the fans are burning him in effigy.
What those guys have in common is that these theoretical no-brainer picks by the Bucks, Cavs, Bills, Colts, Canadiens and Penguins turned out to be no-brainers in practice, too: they all became superstars.
Everyone’s excited about Strasburg. (See a detailed description of why in my earlier blog post.) He throws in the 100s, with a breaking ball in the high 80s. He’s whipsmart, tall and athletic and he’s still filling out. There’s never been a complete package quite like him, but does that mean the Nationals are going to make the World Series in five years? That Strasburg can start dusting his shelves right now so he has a nice, tidy place for his multiple Cy Youngs? ...(continue reading)
Take a look ahead at the '09 season, with a list of predictions for the finish of each team, a quick summary of the team's prospects, and a round-up of what they're doing to entice cash-strapped fans to spend at the ballpark.