Thursday, June 27, 2013

2013 Wimbledon: The Unthinkable!


AP Photos

Is this for real?

2-time champion Rafael Nadal and 7-time champion Roger Federer OUSTED in the first and second round, respectively? 


Tuesday, June 25, 2013

CONGRATS to the Chicago Blackhawks

Stanley Cup Final: Chicago Blackhawks vs. Boston Bruins
Blackhawks win series, 4-2

AP Photo
Forward Patrick Kane hoists the Stanley Cup for the second time in four years.

Read more, here.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Strong Debut For Puig

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There's no question that Los Angeles Dodgers rookie sensation Yasiel Puig is off to a blazing-hot start. How hot? In his first 17 games, Puig is batting .455 with 6 homers and 12 RBIs. He has at least one hit in 15 of the 17 games and has had 11 multi-hit games.

Amazingly, in his first 15 major-league games Puig had 27 hits and 5 home runs. Why is this amazing? Well, according to the Elias Sports Bureau, Puig is the first player in the Modern Era (since 1900) to have that many hits and home runs in his first 15 games. In 113 years of baseball, Puig is the only man to do it. Now that's amazing.

So yes, the Cuban sensation is off to a blazing-hot start. The only downside to his phenomenal start is, well, the Dodgers are 7-10 in his 17 games. They are 30-42 overall which is a major disappointment for a team that was expected to do so much this season. Sure there's plenty of baseball left to be played but from the looks of it-- the 2013 Dodgers-- are looking more and more like a bust.

Friday, June 21, 2013

2013 NBA Finals: CONGRATS to the Miami Heat!

Miami Heat vs. San Antonio Spurs
Heat win series, 4-3

AP Photo

Back-to-Back and counting for the King!

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Was there ever any doubt?!

Thursday, June 20, 2013

2013 NBA Finals: Ray Allen: Mr. Clutch

Miami Heat vs. San Antonio Spurs
Series tied, 3-3

"Ray can be 0-for-99 in a game, and if he gets an open look late, it's going down.” - LeBron James


If the Miami Heat go on to win the 2013 NBA Finals, Ray Allen will forever be remembered for the clutch 3-pointer he buried (late in the 4th quarter) of Game 6 to tie the score 95-95 and force overtime. Not only did the best 3-point shooter in NBA history save the game for the Heat, he saved the series and the season.

It's safe to say-- Miami dodged a major bullet in Game 6 but they managed to steal (103-100) what seemed like a sure victory for the Spurs and force a Game 7. As LeBron James put it, "we live to fight another day." 

It's also safe to say-- this is not good news for the Spurs. Their Game 6 collapse will go down as one of the biggest "choke jobs" in NBA Finals history. Can they mentally recuperate from this heartbreaking loss?

As for the Heat, they are known for their Big 3 (LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh) but Allen (a former member of Boston's Big 3) is perhaps Miami's most lethal weapon in this series.  Again, not good news for the Spurs who (literally) gave Miami another day to fight. Not good.

On to Game 7!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

The Iron Horse

June 19, 1903 - June 2, 1941

Played for the New York Yankees (1923-1939)

Inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1939

Friday, June 14, 2013

2013 NBA Finals: The Big 3 Live!

NBA Finals, Game 4: Miami Heat 109 - San Antonio Spurs 93 
Series tied, 2-2 

AP Photos
Chris Bosh, Dwyane Wade, LeBron James: 85 points, 30 rebounds, 10 steals. 

"When those guys are playing like that, you better be playing a perfect game." -Spurs coach Gregg Popovich

Miami Heat fans finally got what they were promised out of the Big 3 as LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh performed magic in Game 4 of the NBA Finals to even the series against the San Antonio Spurs and regain home court advantage. This was a do-or-die game for Miami and the Big 3 stepped up to the challenge. They combined for 85 points which was more points than what the entire team scored in the embarrassing Game 3 loss.

With the win Miami avoided falling to 1-3 in the series with one more game in San Antonio. Instead the series is even and the pressure is now on the Spurs.

The Heat also played masterful defense throughout the entire game, especially in the second half. They held point guard Tony Parker to 0 points in the second half which (pretty much) nailed San Antonio's coffin. One thing is certain about these Spurs-- where Tony Parker goes, they go. Stop Parker and the Spurs have no chance. Miami did just that.

Kudos to the LeBron-Wade-Bosh regime!

Thursday, June 13, 2013

How Good Is Matt Harvey and How Bad Are The Mets (Part 3)?


Just when you thought things couldn't get worse for Matt Harvey-- who is (perhaps) the best pitcher in the major leagues and is playing for (perhaps) the worst team in the major leagues-- here's the pitching line from today's game against the St. Louis Cardinals:

St. Louis
A. Wainwright (W, 10-3) 7.0 4 0 0 2 6 0 1.01 2.18
T. Rosenthal 1.0 1 0 0 0 1 0 1.00 1.64
E. Mujica (S, 19) 1.0 2 1 1 0 1 1 0.64 1.82

 NY Mets
M. Harvey (L, 5-1) 7.0 5 1 1 1 7 0 0.91 2.04
S. Rice 0.2 2 1 1 0 0 0 1.40 4.40
L. Hawkins 0.1 2 0 0 0 0 0 1.56 4.21
J. Edgin 1.0 1 0 0 0 1 0 1.76 7.94

The way this kid has pitched he should be (something like) 11-0 on the year but the anemic Mets have LAID AN EGG in almost every one of his starts so far this season. Run support is almost nonexistent for the hard-luck Harvey. A total disgrace to say the least!

Read "How Good Is Matt Harvey and How Bad Are The Mets (Part 1)" HERE.
Read "How Good Is Matt Harvey and How Bad Are The Mets (Part 2)" HERE.

How Good Is Matt Harvey and How Bad Are The Mets (Part 1)?
There's no question that New York Mets ace Matt Harvey is one of the best young arms to come along in a long time. The 24-year old right-hander has a spotless 5-0 record with a 2.10 ERA in 13 starts thus far this year. But his record is not indicative of how good he really is because, well, his team just can't muster more wins for him. Harvey leads the team with 10 Quality Starts but has posted 8 no-decisions in his last nine starts. In other words, he has pitched well enough to win but his run support is atrocious.

During his 8 no-decisions in 9-starts span, Harvey has posted a 2.66 ERA which is historical. Here's how ESPN via the Elias Sports Bureau summarized it:

Matt Harvey started Saturday's game, and allowed one run over seven innings before leaving with an injury. While Harvey kept his record intact - he has not been the losing pitcher in any of his 13 starts this season - Saturday's game marked the eighth time in his last nine starts that he had no decision. Harvey's sequence marks the 29th time in major-league history that a starting pitcher has reached no decision eight times within a span of nine straight starts within one season (with no relief appearances during that streak); that was most recently done by Roy Oswalt four years ago. But Harvey's 2.66 ERA over those nine starts is by far the lowest in any of those 29 sequences; the previous low was a 3.07 ERA by Cincinnati's Erik Hanson from June 12 to July 28 in 1994. (Like Harvey, Hanson was 1-0 with eight no-decisions over that span.)

The fact that the Mets rank 25th in the major leagues in runs scored is (most definitely) a detriment as to how good Harvey really is. What a shame!

Sports Illustrated
Read "How Good Is Matt Harvey and How Bad Are The New York Mets (Part 2) HERE.

How Good Is Matt Harvey and How Bad Are The Mets (Part 2)?
Here's another interesting (New York Mets) stat, according to ESPN via the Elias Sports Bureau:

The Marlins nipped the Mets, 2-1, in 20 innings on Saturday, in what was just the 47th of the more than 200,000 games in the history of Major League Baseball to reach the 20-inning mark. The Mets had played the last such game, a 2-1 victory over the Cardinals, in 20 innings, also on a Saturday afternoon, a bit over three years ago. But that's the Mets' only win in the five games of 20-plus innings that they have played; in fact, Saturday's loss left the Mets with a share of the major-league record for losses in games of 20-or-more innings; the Braves and the Red Sox have also dropped four games of that length.

Strangely, home teams have lost two-thirds of the games of 20-plus innings that were played to a decision: teams playing at home are 14-28 in those games, with five ties.
AP Photo

Matt Harvey and Jose Fernandez, the starting pitchers in the Citi Field marathon, have matched up twice this season: the Marlins won in 15 innings on April 29 and in 20 innings on Saturday. Only two other pairs of starting pitchers have matched up in a pair of games lasting 15-or-more innings in the same season - and the most recent of these cases came 129 years ago! In June of 1884, Charles (Old Hoss) Radbourn of Providence and Boston's Jim Whitney each went the distance in games of 16 and 15 innings played just eight days apart; and in 1876, the first year of the National League, Bobby Mathews of the New York Mutuals and Louisville's Jim Devlin went them one better, going the route in games of 15 and 16 innings played just two days apart, on July 8 and July 10, some two weeks after the Battle of Little Big Horn (also known as Custer's Last Stand).

129 years?! My goodness! How much BAD LUCK can this kid Harvey possibly have?

Is his team the "Amazin' Mess"?

You Betcha!

Read "How Good is Matt Harvey and How Bad Are the New York Mets (Part 1) HERE.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

TSC Salutes Rafael Nadal

Rafael Nadal is the first man in tennis history to win 8 titles at the same Grand Slam event.

2013 Roland Garros: The Final: Title No. 8 For The King of Clay

AP Photo

AP Photo

AP Photos/Getty Images


Saturday, June 8, 2013

2013 Roland Garros: Serena Williams: French Open Title #2, Grand Slam Title #16


AP Photo

Once again World No. 1 Serena Williams proved to be too much for World No. 2 Maria Sharapova as she dethroned the defending French Open champion 6-4, 6-4 to capture her second title at Roland Garros (2002, 2013). Sharapova is now 0-4 on the year against Serena.

The French Open title was also Serena's 5th overall title in 2013. 

For her career she has now won 16 major titles, putting her in exclusive company with the greatest of the game-- only Steffi Graf (22), Chris Evert (18) and Martina Navratilova (18) have won more major championships. But considering her current dominance there's no question she will be climbing up the ladder and quite possibly break Graf's record. It's not out of the realm of possibility.

Click HERE for more on Serena's conquest.

Friday, June 7, 2013

2013 Roland Garros: The Semifinals: The King of Clay Lives On!

6-4, 3-6, 6-1, 6-7, 9-7

Getty Images
The highly anticipated semifinals match between World No. 1 Novak Djokovic and 7-time champion Rafael Nadal was exactly as advertised-- an epic battle between two juggernauts. It was a gut-wrenching, four and a half hour battle that saw the 7-time champion barely defeat the world number one player in 5 hard fought sets. Both men played pristine tennis and in the end Nadal was (maybe) an inch better than Djokovic.  

This was a true clash of the titans to say the least.

For Nadal, he now moves on to his 8th French Open final where he'll await the winner of the other semifinals match between No. 4 David Ferrer and No. 6 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga. With no disrespect to Ferrer or Tsonga, the Nadal-Djokovic clash was without a doubt the biggest match of the tournament. In the eyes of many it was the French Open final.

Nadal is now an eye-popping 58-1 in his French Open career and will seek his 8th title at Roland Garros which will make tennis history.

As for Djokovic, he will have to wait another year to seek the only Grand Slam title that has eluded him. There is no doubt he will be back!

AP Photo
But for now the stage (still) belongs to the King of Clay....

For more details about the match, read here.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

2013 Roland Garros: The Final: No. 1 vs. No. 2

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Defending champion Maria Sharapova is returning to the French Open final. Sharapova outlasted World No. 3 Victoria Azarenka 6-1, 2-6, 6-4 in the semifinals and will now clash with World No. 1 Serena Williams in the final.

Getty Images

The red-hot Serena crushed 2012 runner-up Sara Errani 6-0, 6-1 in the other semifinals match, setting up a No. 1 vs. No. 2 final's match-up. For the year Serena has an overall 36-3 match record thus far, 22-0 on clay and has won 5 tournaments in a row. She is 3-0 against Sharapova, which includes victories in the finals in Miami and Madrid.

There is no doubt Sharapova will have her hands full against the dominant Serena. Will the final at Roland Garros be the place where she breaks her losing streak against the almost-unbeatable American? We shall see....

2013 Roland Garros: The Semifinals: Clash of the Titans


Getty Images