Thursday, June 26, 2008

Sports Fun Wall Stickers

SPORTS FUN Decorative Wall Stickers . Self-stick, removable, and reusable Jumbo Wall Stickers are the easy way to decorate and won't damage your walls!It's so quick and amazing , just peel and stick!Jumbo SizeDecorate in minutes!!Easy to apply.Works best on clean, smoth, dust-free surfaces. Apply even pressure to entire sticker surface. 65 pieces of Peel & Stick technology will adhere to any smooth surface. Easily removable and repositionable. Washable with mild soap and sponge. Safe for use in all rooms including the bathroom. Decorating has never been so easy! Clamshell Packaging.

One thing that really sets me off is when someone is late for an appointment (you'll probably remember me ranting about "Doctor's Offices" not long ago). And it really drives me bananas when the person is unapologetic for being late. To me, being late is a sign of disrespect to the person or persons you are to meet. I believe it was Mahatma Gandhi who said, "Being late is an act of violence, an act of terrorism, because you unnerve people." Consequently I make an effort to keep my appointments and try to arrive on time if not a bit earlier. My friends kid me that I operate on "Tim Time" as I show up earlier than just about everyone else.

Punctuality is a sign of discipline, something we try to ingrain in our youth through school bells. If you're late for a class, you are given a "Tardy Slip" which might carry a penalty of serving in "Detention" (the school's version of jail). Nonetheless, schools are trying to operate on a routine basis and have an agenda to follow in order to properly educate our youth. I cannot imagine a public or private school that doesn't operate according to such structure.

I understand President Bush is a stickler for punctuality, going so far as to lock the door to cabinet meetings when they start. I think it would be rather amusing to see the door handle jiggle from the outside by a Cabinet Secretary who arrived late for a meeting.

Back when I was managing a critical I.T. project, I would start the day with a status meeting with my team of programmers at 8:30am. Inevitably someone would show up a few minutes late thereby holding up the meeting. Being a baseball fan, I would admonish the programmers, "Do baseball players show up at game time? No, they arrive early to stretch, warm-up and practice a little." (In fact, baseball players are fined if they show up late). To overcome my problem, I changed the start of the meetings to 8:00am ("Tim Time") thereby forcing the programmers to show up earlier so we could properly accomplish our work. It's sad that we have to do such tricks to get people to show up on time.

We could also berate people for being late, fine them, or let them go, but more than anything, it bothers me that people simply lack the discipline and consideration for keeping an appointment. Maybe we need to institute some school bells in the work place and pass out some "Tardy Slips." That would be a hoot.

Tim Bryce is a writer and management consultant located in Palm Harbor, Florida.You can find his work on the Internet at:

He can be contacted at:

Copyright 2007 Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Diamond Sac O' Taters Bag of 6 D-OB Baseballs

Heres fantasy football information that fantasy football nuts should print or write down immediately. Dont worry about the Vikings suffering on offense, due to the loss of Randy Moss. In fact, you can outfox your opponents, because of the Moss trade. You see, most fantasy football people will still value Moss to the point of spending a high pick on him, which may or may not work out, with Moss being a Raider. What most fantasy football owners will also do, which will be a deadly error, is de-value other Vikings, because of the loss of Moss.

So, the fantasy football information that most of the fantasy football books will likely overlook is to place a very high rating on Nate Burleson and Marcus Robinson. Watch the running back situation, too, because head coach Mike Tice says the Vikings will emphasize the run next season. Of course, Daunte Culpepper will continue to be a fantasy football stud.

Burleson, though, will be the true steal of your draft. Burleson is entering his third season, when many wide receivers begin to figure out NFL defenses. He went from 29 catches his rookie year to 68 in 2004. His yardage more than doubled from 455 to 1006. Best of all, especially if youre in a basic scoring fantasy football league, Burleson found the end zone 10 times, while playing second fiddle to Moss and Robinson for most of the season.

Consider that Burleson didnt become the number one receiver until about week ten, and his value increases even more, as it is clear that hell be the new number one, with the departure of Moss. Fantasy football players can expect 80-plus catches, 1,200-plus yards and 10-14 touchdowns. Note, the fact that Burleson returns punts increases his chance to reach pay dirt.

Nate Burleson is a true fantasy football thoroughbred. Most fantasy football owners will under value this fine young receiver, assuming hell be available in rounds three or four or even later in smaller leagues. Armed with this powerful fantasy football information, you now know not to wait too long on Burleson. Grab him early, let others scoff at your selection, then sit back and ride his performance all the way to the Fantasy Bowl.

Check out more great information now at Expert Commentary

cf baseball card center

Saturday, June 21, 2008

The Sandlot

The new kid in town gets invited to join a group of baseball players, even though he doesn't know anything about the game.
Genre: Feature Film Family
Rating: PG
Release Date: 11-MAR-2003
Media Type: DVD
Customer Review: .
When ever I watch the Sandlot, I always think of when I was a child and I have this deep attachment to the film. I love it.
Customer Review: I love Sandlot!
The shipping seemed to take awhile, but the product was packed well & brand new!

Happy New Year!

While there is no great way to see exactly what a particular player is capable of (short of inviting)18 candidate players & staging a pick-up scrimmage game), Try this system with the goal of getting the players (& their parents) ready to go home within an hour & a half:

Sign up 20 candidates (or less) per time slot & ask them to show up 30 minutes early to warm up. Make sure an official from the team or league is there to greet them and get them warmed up.Have at least league V.P. along with 2-3 young men (high school players if possible) (NOT team coaches) to assist.

Each candidate is to hit two ground balls at the shortstop position. The candidate fields them both & throws to 1st base

Each candidate is to hit two fly balls to approximately short left-center field. Both flies are fielded & throws are made to 2nd base & then to 3rd base on respective catches

The candidates are asked to report to the dugout for batting five at a time, with the remaining 15 or so to stay in the field to "shag" the hits. Each is given seven pitches from a pitching machine: the first two are bunted & the remaining five are hit "swinging away". After the last pitch, whether hit or missed, the candidate is requested to run the bases. The candidate returns to the field to "shag" the hits & to allow all candidates to rotate through the hitting cycle

At the end of the tryout, the candidates are asked if they pitch and/or catch.

With the fact in mind that these are still kids, we have our tryouts on consecutive Saturday mornings. This allows those who may have had a "bad day" on their first tryout to come back for a second chance. Only one tryout is mandatory to attend. If the candidate feels his/her best performance was done at the first tryout, there is no requirement to have them return for the second.

This tryout system will give you results equal to having a long involved 2 hour plus work out involving additional base running and pitching. Pitching and catching tryouts can be performed at a later date. It will eliminate long lines and bored players.

Players should workout prior to their scheduled tryout time. Going on the field cold, lowers your chances of performing well. Many young players feel nervous, which is natural. Prepare for your tryout as you would a game. This way, you can combat the nerves, because you know that you are ready to play.

With spring coming up quickly, it's never too early to plan ahead. Youth Baseball Coaches who plan ahead will benefit when spring hits and you start to run out of time. I hope you find this article of help. Come on spring!

Coach Chip

Hello My name is Chip Lemin. I'm a long time youth baseball coach who loves to promote this great game of baseball. Promoting sportsmanship in this game is something that really needs I feel. I have a free e-course that will give you some solid coaching information along with great help on the inter-personal relationships we must have to be good youth baseball coaches.
Things such as parents, travel baseball, getting parents to help out, how to communicate better to parents and players, just to touch on a few. This course will help to organize practices like an elite coach. How to motivate players and other coaches with your positive attitude. It really is not very hard to be a great coach when you know what to do. Best of all you will learn how to have fun with these great kids that you have the privilege of coaching. Do yourself a favor and check it out, it's free,you will get 1 part every couple of days in your e-mail. Coaching can be fun and rewarding if you have a plan in place first, and you have an idea what you are doing.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

2008 Topps Baseball Cards Complete Set (Series 1) - 330 Cards - Loaded with top superstars & teams!

Customer Review: Another Solid Set From Topps
The 2008 Topps Baseball Series 1 card set is a nice addition to the longtime tradition of baseball card collecting. Collecting baseball cards is just as much a part of Americana as the game itself. The standard card for the 2008 edition of Topps Baseball features primarily action shots (just a few posed shots) on the front of the card with each player's signature, team name in team colors, and the Topps logo and players printed name in silver. The back of the card features the player's complete stats as well as their position and basic info such as birth date, throwing and batting arm, etc. League leader stats are printed in red and in italics, and there's always a fun tidbit of information on the player if there's room to spare. Inserts included this year are Own The Game, Year In Review, 50th Anniversary All-Rookie Team, two Mickey Mantle subsets, Presidential Stamps, the obligatory relic and autograph cards as well as other insert sets. Heck, there's even a Campaign 2008 set that some might be in the hunt for. Overall this is a nice set from Topps. I do think that they went a bit overboard with the Campaign 2008 set, but some folks might just enjoy that.

The New York Yankees and New York Mets signed Alex Rodriguez and Johan Santana this off-season, respectively, to huge contracts that will make each superstar rich beyond any of our wildest dreams. The reality is, the New York Yankees and New York Mets will not make them rich-you will! Still like your team's deal?

It is not just the New York Yankees and New York Mets. Any of your favorite baseball teams paying for high-priced baseball talent, this story is about your team, and the effect of these huge salaries on your wallet.

To read about the contract of a Johan Santana, Alex Rodriguez or any other big-money baseball player, is on the surface to say, "Great, my team made a big move. At least it's not my money." Whoa, not so fast. The reality is that it is your money. How? Any time you pay for a ticket to the game where the price has increased, you help pay their salary. Any time you sip from the cup of beer at the game where price have gone up, you help pay their salary. Any time you bite into the hot dog at the game where prices have increased, you help pay their salary.

Is it fair for a baseball player or star athlete to make exponentially more money than a teacher, a repairman or anyone else that helps us live our lives in a more immediate manner? Fair, my friends, has nothing to do with it. Economics 101-the law of supply and demand. The fair value of something is the exact amount that someone is willing to pay for it.

Alex Rodriguez and Johan Santana are merely playing the system for what it is worth, getting the most money from the New York Yankees and New York Mets that their agents can draw.

In reality, we would do the same whether we openly admit it or not. When we go into our reviews at work, we look to improve our state, and deservedly so. We work hard, are loyal, and have only so many opportunities to reap any kind of reward.

MLB, its Owners, its players and machinery are out for one thing and only one thing above all else. That is, to make money for itself and its players. How does it do this? By getting money from its fans.

So the New York Yankees signed Alex Rodriguez to a long-term, huge contract. Better believe that your ticket prices, beer, hot dogs, gear and cable bill are headed North accordingly. So, in the end, it is you that pays Alex Rodriguez, or Johan Santana, or whichever high-priced star happens to play at your favorite stadium.

As a New York Yankees fan, New York Mets fan, Los Angeles Dodgers fan or wherever, you want your team to win. To win, you have to pay high-priced players. The question is whether you mind paying more for a better product?

When you buy a television, you expect to pay more for a better brand than Joe Schmo's TV brand. We don't think of it in those terms but it is the way that it is when you the fan shell out money to be a part of sports. You want to follow a competitive team? Then you will shell out the bucks, out of your own pocket, to compensate your favorite team in return for a better product. Fair? Fair has nothing to do with it...never does.

Fans of MLB do have a choice, and the power, to put the brakes on high-priced contracts, such as Alex Rodriguez and Johan Santana's. The reality though, is a stark one for true fans. The answer is to stop paying.

The New York Yankees, New York Mets, Chicago Cubs and every other MLB team pays attention to one thing and one thing only-how much cash is rolling in.

Stop following the Los Angeles Dodgers or Boston Red Sox with your wallet, and there will be less to pay the players. Less to pay the players, the less salaries will be. Less fannies in seats, the lower ticket prices will become. Supply and demand.

The reality however, is that MLB knows this will never happen. In the wake of strikes, steroid scandals and such, MLB still enjoys record attendance throughout the United States. As a MLB fan, you cannot have it all. If you want to follow MLB, be ready to pony up cash. The closer you want to follow, the more cash you will need.

Alex Rodriguez, Johan Santana and the others do not care about how much you have to pay. They care about how much they can make during a limited MLB career. It is a Catch-22, but fans will continue to come, continue to pay, continue to harbor some resentment.

MLB fans-the reality is this is the going rate to have access to the Boston Red Sox, New York Mets or whichever team you follow. You cannot have everything. You can have your favorite team, on a competitive level which is expensive, but in the end it will be your cash bankrolling the winning, creating the competitive atmosphere that you are then able to follow. Is it worth it? Only you can decide for yourself. Until now, the answer among MLB faithful is a resounding, yes.

cf baseball store

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

DeMarini Voodoo (-12) Baseball Bat - 2008 Model

Safety is your number one concern when playing baseball and it's paramount that the batting helmet used be well made and meet the safety standard to protect the batter's head from an impact. Once you have chosen a batting helmet, you may want to customize it and that's easier than you think.

A batting helmet, like most helmets; is good for one major impact only. After that the helmet could contain microscopic cracking that will interfere in the ability of the helmet to protect the batter's head from an injury from a flying baseball or other risk faced during play. If you're going to custom paint your batting helmet, just remember it won't be a forever kind of thing as far as wearing it.

Many amateur teams paint their own matching batting helmets to get something uniquely "them" and also something that shows unity as a team. There are painted batting helmets that have flaming skulls, baseballs with growling faces and even depictions of famous players in action painted directly on the helmet. And those are just helmets to be actually worn and used, other helmets that are used in collections are sometimes painted very elaborately with logos and other insignia to show devotion for a favorite baseball team.

When you choose to paint a batting helmet, avoid sign paints which will adhere to almost any surface, but most contain lead and you don't want that anywhere near your body. Instead use lead-free paints and after the paint is completely dry, give it a couple of coats of clear coat. The clear coat will lock in the paint job and keep it nearly nick free by protecting the paint.

Nine times out of ten it's best not to try to paint over a batting helmet that has already been painted and sealed with a clear coat finish. If you do manage to get to the paint to stick - it will probably peel off in chunks not long after you begin using the batting helmet as the clear coat has no "tooth" in other words, the paint needs a slightly roughed up surface to stick to, and it won't get that with a surface that has been clear coated.

How you want to apply the paint will be up to you. A finely bristled paint brush will do the job, or if you're good with an airbrush, you can get some amazing effects for the helmet through the use of different tips for the way the paint is sprayed. At most hobby stores you can purchase beginner air brushing kits that consist of a host, a sprayer (to apply the paint) and it's powered by an aerosol can. Attach the sprayer brush to the hose and the hose to the can and release the pressurized air and you'll be in the business of painting a batting helmet.

If you want to make an unusual gift for your favorite local team or you want to give someone a gift that is very unique, consider getting a batting helmet for the baseball/softball enthusiast on your gift list and make them a batting helmet that will be head and shoulders above the rest in uniqueness.

Rick Grantham is the owner of the site BooYah Village He has written numerous articles on sporting goods, sporting tips, and fan gear.

cf baseball store

Monday, June 16, 2008

Plug' N Play 16 Bit Wireless Baseball With 17 Games - Black/gray

Originally, I was going to write two articles, i.e., separate lists of underrated and overrated athletes. I decided, however, against these two articles for several reasons: 1) they have been done before; 2) these lists seem very subjective; 3) I am not a big fan of overrated lists; and 4) it is often unclear how an athlete is actually "rated" by so-called experts, other players, coaches, serious fans, and casual fans. All sports fans have seen lists of underrated and overrated athletes in newspapers and sports magazines, and a quick search on the internet will produce access to several more lists. Several of the lists (or at least part of the lists) I thought were very inaccurate, and the fact that some athletes show up on both (!) lists confirms this. After all, logically, one of the lists has to be wrong (maybe both are wrong -- who knows). Now, I do not know for sure if the lists are inaccurate because I do not know for sure exactly how accurately any athlete is actually rated by the public. In addition, how an athlete is rated can be different, depending on who is doing the rating. For instance, experts, players, coaches, serious fans, and casual fans may all rank an athlete's abilities differently. So, when someone says that some athlete is underrated or overrated, I think it is important to ask three things: 1) underrated or overrated by whom?; 2) how do we know for sure if they are overrated or underrated?; and 3) if an athlete is underrated or overrated -- how did he or she get that way?

How a person ranks another person's ability in something, sports or otherwise, is always subjective. The likes, biases, and prejudices of the person doing the rankings will inevitably affect how they rank someone or something. This factor, coupled with the fact that it is often very unclear how a specific athlete is actually rated or whose rating we are talking about, makes a specific individual's list of underrated and overrated athletes practically meaningless. Harsh, but true. We need to have an accurate ranking of an athlete's abilities (based upon lots of informed votes), PLUS lots of lists of underrated and overrated athletes totaled together (again by informed people) before we begin to have any underrated and overrated lists that have any accuracy. (Numerous people are necessary to do the rankings and lists so that people's likes, biases, and prejudices will offset each other.) Now you know why I have never been a big fan of overrated lists -- they are often unfair and inaccurate. The same could be said, of course, about underrated lists, but at least those lists are meant as a compliment and not as an insult.

As noted above, how an athlete is rated can vary, depending on which of the five groups listed above is doing the rating. An athlete, for example, could be rated much higher by other players in the athlete's sport than they are by casual fans, and vice versa. Hence, assuming we figure out what an athlete's "true rating" actually is, some athletes could actually be overrated by some groups and underrated by other groups. What a mess! But, let us say that we actually get an accurate rating of an athlete's abilities and we agree, somehow, that our perceived ranking is a combination of the five groups above. Then, why do some athletes inevitably end up underrated and others end up overrated?

Not surprisingly, the answer to this question is not clear, however, (and also not surprisingly) I do have some theories. It is first important to note that athletes in team sports are more likely to be underrated and overrated than athletes in an individual sport. This is because an athlete's accomplishments in an individual sport stand on their own more clearly than an athlete's accomplishments in a team sport (for obvious reasons).

I think athletes get overrated when one or more specific things occur. First, when an athlete played a decent percentage of his career in a large market, especially New York. Large markets have greater media coverage, hence, the athlete's accomplishments become well-publicized. (If you are dying for examples, okay, but keep in mind I am not a big fan of labeling athletes as overrated.) Joe Namath, Joe DiMaggio, and Phil Rizzuto come to mind. (Although Joe Namath is talked about as being overrated so often and is on so many peoples lists, I wonder if he is starting to become underrated by some people. Just a thought -- I do not know if this is true.)

Second, when an athlete played on numerous championship teams. Same theory, the playoffs and championship games always get more publicity and, most importantly, television coverage. Incidentaly, this happens most often in basketball and, to a lesser extent, with the quarterback position in American football. At first, it may seem to be just the opposite, because in basketball, more than any other team sport (at least in the U.S.), a great player can influence his team's chances of winning a championship. However, sports fans are aware of this, hence, they put more emphasis on the number of championships won by a great basketball player when evaluating how great the player's career was. And sometimes, they put too much emphasis on this fact. An example of this is Bill Russell. While he may not be overrated if you polled all basketball fans (especially younger ones who might actually underrate him), the people who still think he is the greatest basketball player of all time because of his 11 championships (the most in NBA history) are overrating Russell and overemphasizing the championships his TEAM won. Michael Jordan (6 championships) is the greatest basketball player of all time, and it is pretty clear. The bottom line is that championships are won by teams, not individuals, and a single player can only influence the outcome of a game only so much.

Players only have so much control (before free agency, practically none) over how much talent is on the teams that they play with throughout their career. In baseball, a player has very little control over whether his team wins a World Series (although this would not be true if starting pitchers were physically capable of pitching every day). However, sometimes people forget about this fact and can overrate a player who played on a lot of championship teams (again, DiMaggio and Rizzuto are good examples). A quarterback in football, because of the uniqueness of the position, has a lot of influence over the outcome of a football game. However, he is still only one of 22 players on the field at any given time and plays less than 50% of the time. Contrast this to basketball, where a player is one of only 10 players on the court at any specific time, and a star player usually plays around 80% of the game (i.e., 40 of 48 minutes), often more in important, close playoff games. In addition, a star player in basketball may sometimes take one-third of his team's shots during a game and has to play both offense and defense. Hence, it is safe to say that a great basketball player has more influence than even a quarterback in football over whether his team wins a championship. Individual football players who do not play the quarterback position usually do not have a lot of influence over whether their team wins a championship, however, there are exceptions. A great quarterback's legacy is routinely judged by how many Super Bowls (or NFL championships for pre-1966 quarterbacks) "he" won. But, sometimes quarterbacks are given too much blame when a game is lost and too much credit for their teams winning NFL Championships (although probably not Otto Graham -- see below), especially Super Bowls, because of the almost unbelievable publicity and worldwide coverage of these games. (In addition, quarterbacks get more MVP Awards in Super Bowls than they deserve, because sportswriters and sportscasters get blinded by the importance of the position.)

Third, an athlete played well in the clutch, especially in championship games. While this is undeniably an important trait in any great athlete, sometimes these feats can overshadow an athlete's otherwise inconsistent career. An example of this is Reggie Jackson, who is overrated by the non-serious baseball fans.

Fourth, the athlete is currently playing. Obviously, because their feats are still fresh in people's minds and they were seen by everyone (i.e., the people currently doing the ratings), young or old.

Fifth, an athlete is physically attractive. No explanation is necessary here unless you are under the age of six, from another planet, or a Paris Hilton fan.

Sixth, the athlete has a charming personality. Almost everyone overrates people they like in life, and that includes athletes.

Seventh, an athlete is smooth, stylish, or just plain exciting to watch when he plays. This one, I think, is more complicated than it appears. Generally, when an athlete is pleasing to watch the person watching will like that athlete more and subconsciously rate him or her a little higher than he or she should be rated. However, when an athlete goes beyond stylish and into the realm of fancy, i.e., a "hotdog", now that athlete becomes overrated by the casual fan because that fan thinks, "wow (!), if he can do that he must be great." This concept becomes more complicated in the case of a very exciting player who is not necessarily fancy, but just very gifted athletically. The serious fan, in an attempt to display his perceived superior intelligence and knowledge, sometimes AUTOMATICALLY thinks of this type of athlete as being overrated because he "knows", more so than the casual fan, that being an exciting player to watch does not make that athlete great. The truth is actually somewhere in between, depending how fundamentally sound and consistent the athlete in question is when he performs. When an athlete is fundamentally sound and his stylish play does not affect his performance, I think the athlete becomes underrated by some serious fans who are misguided, but well-intended. For example, people who are not Michael Jordan fans think he is overrated because they think the casual fans overrate him because they were influenced by his spectacular dunks and drives to the basket. However, people who follow basketball closely know that Jordan was extremely fundamentally sound and probably the most consistent player in the history of the NBA. Hence, Jordan, ironically, is actually underrated by some people. However, an athlete who is fancy and not fundamentally sound deserves to be labeled as overrated. I do not know which athlete is the best example of someone who is overrated because they had "flash without substance", so I will just leave that thought up to you.

Eighth, the player excels offensively, and in relevant sports, is not a good defender. Lots of examples of this one -- fans and the media love players who score.

I refrained from giving you a definitive overrated athletes list for the reasons stated above, but I will talk about someone else's underrated list, because at least this is a positive list and, more importantly, the athletes on the list provide good examples of why and how athletes become underrated. (With the exception of Alex Rodriguez, all the athletes below that I use as examples were on the list.) ESPN Classic's "Who's #1: Most Underrated" series came out in 2006, and they listed and profiled 20 athletes, with Stan Musial coming in first and Otto Graham second. There were 9 baseball players, 4 football players, 3 basketball players, 2 boxers, 1 tennis player and 1 golfer. Notice that 16 of the athletes came from team sports and only 4 from individual sports (see above). Also notice that there are 9 (!) baseball players on the list. I do not think the only reason for this is because baseball is popular in the US -- otherwise there would probably be an equal number of football players (or close to it) on the list. I think it is because, as I alluded to above, baseball players have very little influence over whether their team wins a World Series. Hence, a baseball player could be truly great and not win any championships (unlikely in basketball). No championships, no publicity, and ultimately, no full appreciation of the player's talents.

Athletes get underrated when one or more specific things occur. (Not surprisingly, most of the reasons are the opposite of the reasons why athletes are overrated.) First, they play most or all of their career in a small market, and as a result they get less publicity and are seen by fewer people. Examples include baseball players Stan Musial and Hank Aaron, and basketball players George Gervin and Bob Pettit.

Second, they did not play on any (or maybe on only 1) championship teams for reasons already discussed. The same 4 players are still good examples and there are many more.

Third, a player does not perform well in the post-season and/or in the clutch. It is even worse if the athlete plays in New York, for example, Alex Rodriguez . While the player deserves to be criticized for not performing well at these times, sometimes the criticism is so intense that the player's career regular-season accomplishments start to become overlooked.

Fourth, the athlete played a long time ago and/or in the sport's infancy. It is hard to know for sure how great someone was if you never saw them play. Or, in some cases, never even heard of them. Good examples of this are football players Otto Graham and Don Hutson, baseball player Lefty Grove, Musial, and Pettit.

Fifth, a player is physically unattractive. I will leave any examples up to you for this one.

Sixth, the player had a not-so-charming personality. Again, this one is on you.

Seventh, the player was not-so-pleasing to watch. Players who are workmanlike and are not particularly stylish almost always get underrated, since they do not draw attention to themselves. Many of the players listed above would fall into this category, although certainly not Gervin or Rodriguez.

Eighth, a player is known more for his defense than his offense. Defense just does not get as much publicity and is not as glamorous. For example, basketball player Joe Dumars.

It is tough to know for sure if an athlete is actually underrated or overrated, and if he is, then why. Perhaps this article will clear things up a little. Or, perhaps not.

Mark D. Hauser

cf baseball store

Sunday, June 15, 2008


This is the world's first headphone that utilizes 6 independent sound chambers to create rich 6 channel surround-sound effects. Every other headphone in the market today claims to be 5.1! Don't be fooled by those "virtual" 5.1 headphones! You deserve REAL 5.1 channel headphones! ESound brings "virtual reality" to reality! LESTEN TO BELIEVE...

Have you ever noticed a lot of the top athletes in other sports are very good golfers. Quarterbacks in football are good golfers. Case in point: Tony Romo, who is the quarterback for the Dallas Cowboys is a very good golfer. He missed qualifying for the U.S. Open and the Byron Nelson golf tournaments by only a couple of strokes. Pitchers in baseball are very good golfers as well. Another case in point: Rollie Fingers, who is a retired pitcher qualified for next year's Senior Tour.

The reason athletes in other sports are good golfers is because the golf swing, when executed properly, is a natural athletic move. What is a natural athletic move? A quarterback throwing a football, a pitcher throwing a baseball, hitting a baseball, a forehand in tennis, and a hockey player shooting a puck are all natural athletic moves. The golf swing shouldn't be any different. The problem that most middle and high handicapped golfers have is trying to make a "golf swing" instead of a natural athletic move which other athletes make in their sports.

Try this image and feeling out next time you practice or play. You can even practice this in your garage or yard without hitting balls. Do you remember skipping stones across the lake when you were a kid? How about throwing a ball side arm? Go ahead, get up right now and mimic one of those motions. Did you notice anything resembling a golf swing...? If you made a natural motion of skipping a stone or throwing a ball, you made a motion of a correct golf swing. You also made a natural athletic move.

Full-time golf instructor and coach with The First Tee in Nashville, Tennessee.For more information go to

Friday, June 13, 2008

Spalding 15175 Multi-Sport Return Throw System

Want to improve your throwing and catching? Spalding's 15175 Multi-sport Return Throw System can help you to get better because it's ready to practice whenever you are. This multi-sport return throw system is 59-inches tall and 44-inches wide, with a one-inch, welded steel frame. This return throw features adjustable, steel-frame legs that allow multiple angles of return, so you can practice catching fly balls, grounders, and everything in between. The all-weather, nylon net is secularly attached by bungee cords, assuring a superior return, and it features an adjustable strike zone. The return throw also comes with four ground stakes for added stability and even folds up for easy storage.

Customer Review: Very Happy With This Product
I haven't used one of these ball returns since I was a kid, but I wanted my 7-year-old son to have an opportunity to practice like I use to. I was hesitant about ordering this, because surely it couldn't be as good as the one I use to have. Boy, was I wrong. This is a great ball return and is quite sturdy. Be prepared for the dreaded "some assembly required." The directions are far from good, and I eventually resorted to using the picture on the box for reference. But after it was assembled, it became fun to use and we look forward to many practice days ahead. I would highly recommend this.
Customer Review: Great for young aspiring athletes!
I purchased this for my grandson who is 5-1/2 and loves playing T-ball. It has helped him learn to be ready when the ball comes back to him to catch and he can play by himself without having someone else throw the ball to him. It is very sturdy and easily assembled.

If you a contemplating coaching little league baseball or you are already involved it is always good to step back and review your program and decide if you are still on track. I always remind myself that i am here for the players, after all this is all the the kids not the adults!

It is good to decide why you are coaching little league baseball or why you want to? In order to be successful in little league baseball a coach must have a plan and stick to that plan. Practices need to organized with the idea of keeping it snappy and interesting for the players. how do you do this??

Don't stay to long on the same drill! I can't stress this enough. Coaches always want to see there players perform a certain drill to perfection, that's great but if you stay on the drill too long players lose interest. I'm helping a guy who is the manager of a Major boys little league baseball team that my son was just drafted onto.

Just the other night we were doing a drill were 2 coaches hit balls at shortstop and 2nd base. This is a great drill however i felt like we stayed too long with it because the kids couldn't get to 10 in a row with out throwing the ball away or making a fielding error! You can always tell when they loose their focus. it should be 10 minutes no longer and then you say to them that will come back to that the next practice.

In order to get the most out of your players you have to keep in mind that they are young and to keep it fun and keep moving through the drills.

Another point to focus on is covering things that will happen in a game situation. Are you stressing things that will happen most of the time. Force outs, where to throw the ball from outfield in certain situations. Stress to your young players to always ask themselves if the ball comes to me what am I going to do with it??

Don't waste time on a situation that is not likely to come up very often. Remember we Don;t have a lot of time so make the most of it!

Getting back to a organized practice, always talk to your players just before practice starts about what they are going to learn today! Once practice is over go over what you worked on and then ask them what they learned. Coaches, remember long after the game is over players will remember how they were treated not what the score was.

For more information contact me at 406-542-1723

Stephen K Reynolds is publisher of the LSR Unlimted "Free" newsletter which focuses on helping newcomers & seasoned pros learn the secrets to marketing in the ever changing world of the internet! He also is a coach in youth baseball in Montana. working on the Internet allows him the freedom to coach little league baseball. For more information on this e-mail


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Baseball, The Nicaraguan Way

Well over a hundred years ago, baseball achievements and Nicaragua seemed unrelated concepts. The game of cricket was the popular sport in Nicaragua. Most of it had to do with the British occupying the Atlantic Coast in the late 1800s, but that soon changed when a man by the name of Albert Addlesberg who convinced a couple of the teams that baseball culture was taking over throughout the world. America had already seen some spectacular baseball achievements from around their country, and Addlesberg wanted the same in Nicaragua, even flying in the equipment from Louisiana.

However, Nicaragua didn't have its first official game until 1891 when Granada played against Managua. Fifty-one years later, the national stadium was built, and today holds as many as 40,000 fans to watch baseball games their national team plays. A team that is known around the world today as a national powerhouse used to be nothing more that a mixture of players who didn't even hail from the country itself.

While Nicaraguan players like Dennis Martinez and Marvin Bernard found their way into the major leagues, the style of play is a little different then how it is played in the States. You won't find many Nicaraguan players that run out infield grounders, that's an easy play for the opponent. Baseball in their country is more about pride, and the love for a game that all players feel they were born to do. It's not about the million dollar paycheck, but more about a tradition even at a younger age where everyone plays on Sunday.

A notable difference has to be the respect for the umpires. In the years before, it was normal for umpires and players to argue, but it used to escalate into fighting and everyone realized it wasn't healthy for the game. So today, you will find that if a questionable call arises during the game, temper tantrums are nowhere to be found, and the game just moves along. It has become a style that people know as Nicaraguan baseball.

There are a few other things that distinguish their style to America. For instance, the side-arm or three quarters pitching motion is the normal teaching in Nicaragua. Then of course, the team chemistry when a meeting is held on the mound is a customary measure of its own. You will find that the entire team, especially after the sixth inning, all players on the field will be involved with the meeting. Not like the U.S. where players are singled out, and unless you're the catcher or trying to be a team player, no one else listens in. You almost never see outfielders come to the mound for a meeting.

Even though these are just a few of the ways that baseball is played in Nicaragua, their baseball culture is one of a kind. We've only seen a handful of their players come to play professional ball in the States, but the ones that did have certainly made an everlasting impression. Sometimes it's not always about all the baseball achievements that a player accomplishes that make him a hero. No, sometimes it's just getting to the major league level, letting your other countrymen know the dream is possible.

Discover more about baseball training achievements on baseballtrainingsecrets.

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Thursday, June 12, 2008

BMW Roundel Logo White Baseball Hat

BMW structured 100% cotton twill cap.BMW roundel logo on the front.Six-panel cap with Velcro closure at back.One size fit most.High quality brand new official BMW product.

Coaching Youth Baseball is a great experience for men and women to be involved in. One of the awesome things about being involved in it is the opportunity to be around young people and motivate them to be their best.

There are tons of books and materials on youth baseball so i wont try to re-invent the wheel here.
I just want to hit on some things that need to mentioned. Keep it simple!! The majority of reasons why teams aren't as good as they could be is because they don't do the simple things!

Coaches want to be smart and try to employ strategies that are just to sophisticated for young players especially for 9-10 year olds. Stick to the basics ground ball practice, fly balls, throwing fundamentals, basis pitching mechanics.

Incorporate games into the drills that way kids can see the result of why they need to use a technique correctly. Keep it light and fun that way your players keep coming back for more.

Remember long after the games are over the players will remember how they were treated, not what the score was!! Here is one for you Dads... Your Son or daughter will never be as good as you Thought you were!

Another important key is using stations, less standing around. lets face it there is never enough time as it is. The secret is to make good use of your time while you have your players.

Bottom line have fun with this great game and enjoy your time with the players it goes by very quickly!!

Stephen K Reynolds is publisher of the LSR Unlimted "Free" newsletter which focuses on helping newcomers and seasoned pros learn the secrets to marketing in the ever changing world of the internet! For more information on this e-mail



Major League Baseball 2K8

It's 2008 and it's time to hit home runs as 2KG Major League Baseball 2K8 brings you your best season ever. Thrilling features have been added to make this season more exciting. Are you out or in? Joe Morgan is announcing 2K8! Play ball!
Team play is more expansive as there are 90 minor-league teams added to the game, including authentic uniforms, many authentic minor-league stadiums, and a few generic ones as well. 2K8 also features a new baseball-card system, in which you can earn players' cards by completing certain tasks. You can then sell duplicate cards for credits to buy new card packs, which consist of 10 cards and may include a stadium or special team. But by far the coolest part of the card system is the online card battles. When you have enough player cards to fulfill the requirements of a full team, you can then combine your cards to create a team and take head-to-head against other gamers' card teams online. An entirely new and unique pitching interface which is unlike anything that's been done before. The main input comes from the right analog stick. The execution involves matching a gesture to throw the desired pitch. This enables a lot more granularity from the input than a digital face-button approach.
Revolutionizing your control of the 5 tools in baseball are brand new pitching, fielding and base running controls and completely overhauled batting interface. Featuring a totally unique trading card mode, robust Minor League system, all-new Signature Style animations for 2008, and more! 90 Minor League teams available in both Franchise and Exhibition modes Over 1 MILLION online gamers in the 2K community for head-to-head games
Customer Review: MLB 2K8 (Wii)
The game arrived earlier than I was told and was in perfect condition. It was the lowest price available and probably one of the best sellers.
Customer Review: Three steps away from great
Okay, if you're reading this review after having read a whole bunch from a lot of sites, including Amazon, you are probably as confused as I was before I picked this game up a couple of weeks ago. Well, I will try to be as up-front as I can about this game and hope that my comments help you decide to buy it. I titled the review "three steps away..." because the game is just that: GOOD, but not quite at "great" yet. The basics: Batting: This is only difficult if you can't get the hang of Wii Sports. It's all about timing. Hitting in a specific direction has never been easier, and I love the ease of bunting and hitting fly balls. (A) Pitching: I actually really enjoy the pitching. It is also timing based, but the fact that this sports game uses the Wii-mote effectively is a big plus. I also like the realistic movement on MOST pitches. There are a couple that move too much for a low-caliber pitcher, but nonetheless, pitching is solid. (A-) Fielding: The fielding controls are a little sensitive, but not unreasonable. I found myself diving when I didn't want to once or twice, but climbing the wall and sprinting when necessary are still pretty easy to accomplish. (B-) Depth: The lack of complete minors rosters is a bit frustrating. I am a fantasy baseball fan, so I'm seeing a few guys hit the majors right now that aren't in the game. BUT, for the most part, the rosters are okay. Some complain that trades weren't accounted for, but not having Santana on the Mets, while frustrating, isn't earth-shattering. The game modes are solid, but the lack of minors involvment is tough to have missed. I also enjoy the trading card system, which is NOT in this game. (C) So, the "three steps" are: - Graphics: No, this Wii isn't as advanced as 360 and PS3, BUT it should look better than PS2, right?!? - Depth: I think the lack of minors and trading cards is acceptable for the first year of this game, but I hope it makes it into 2K9 and beyond. - Fielding: The fielding is a bit choppy and inconsistent at times. This is the only gameplay gripe I've found, and it's not a huge one. I'd grade MLB 2K8 as a B-. I think the game is good, not great. I think that this first effort is a baseball sim that isn't complete. If they can get the graphics slightly better, add some depth, and tweak the minor gameplay issues, it will be an "A" game.

There are very few things more frustrating to an athlete than than to struggle at the plate as a hitter and not understand where the problem stems from. When I work with hitters, I focus on perfecting the functions of lower body mechanics because of the affect the lower body has on the upper half. Trying to solve upper body hitting mechanics without addressing the lower half first is like attempting to build a house beginning with the second story prior to building the basement - it doesn't work too well.

Some of the common mistakes that can be ironed out with some common lower body baseball drills are:

1. Collapsing of the backside (shoulder dipping)

2. Front side (hip) flying open

3. Hunching over the plate (upper body)

4. Hands extending away from body through swing

Here is what to check for as you work with the lower body mechanics of your athletes during some baseball drills.

As the hitter shifts some weight onto his back leg (the load) prior to the pitch, look to see if that weight continues to stay on the back side as the swing begins. Many hitters have the problem of letting their hips slide forward towards the pitcher during the beginning stages of the swing. This problem (often called floating) can be a major cause of some of the above problems.

Because I understand that visualizing the process I'm referring to in text can be tricky, there are a couple videos posted on my blog that will illustrate a proper trigger and lower body mechanics. Upon entering my blog, click on hitting on the left hand side of the screen and you will be able to view that will illustrate what I've written on.

Nate Barnett is owner of BMI Baseball and is based out of Washington State. His expertise is in the area of hitting, pitching, and mental training. Coach Barnett's passion is working with youth in helping expand their vision for their baseball future. After finishing a professional career in the Seattle Mariners Organization, Nate pursued his coaching and motivational training career coaching both high school and college baseball. His website, launched last year, contains information and videos on various baseball drills and mechanics as well as an instructional blog designed to aid in the development of well rounded baseball players.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Champion Sports Adult Baseball/Softball Uniform Belt

This Champion Sports adult uniform belt for baseball offers a comfortable elastic construction with durable, full-grain leather tabs. It measures 1.5-in wide and is sized 32 in - 46 in.

Runners on second and third. The pitch is low and outside and passes the catcher. The scramble is on and the catcher recovers the ball quickly to find the third base runner half way to home plate. Catcher makes a throw to third as runner retreats only to have the ball bounce off the batters bat which is on his shoulder.

The hundred dollar question here is did the batter commit interference? There are several answers to this daunting question.

First, was the Batter still in the batters box?

The batter is not required to leave the batters box on a passed ball unless a teammate is attempting to steal a base, then the batter is required to move out of the defenses way. So, in part 1 of this play, the batter moved correctly and there is no interference.

Has the Batter moved out of the batters box?

In our scenario his teammate is attempting to steal home plate, but then retreats after the catcher recovers quickly. So, on the retreat is the batter to return to the batters box? No, the batter should stay where the ended up on the initial play of the passed ball and steal attempt.

Did the Batter move to serve an intentional purpose?

If it is obvious, which I believe would be difficult if not impossible to distinguish, that the batter aligned himself to force the defender to work around his position to make the throw to third. It is unlikely that this can be determined, but if so, then yes, it is interference.

Was the Batter responding to instructions from the Umpire?

Particularly in little league where players, bless their hearts, follow instructions from the Umpire without giving it a second thought, Umpires often give instructions as a good intentioned part of the learning process.

Unfortunately, any Umpire giving any instruction removes the player being instructed from any liability or penalty arising from that instruction. During the course of any game, Coaches are to instruct and Umpires are to rule on what the Players do.

If we change our scenario slightly, the runner at third has a good lead, but does not attempt to steal home plate and is walking back to the base with his back to the catcher.

With the Batter still in the batters box, there would be no interference as the Batter is protected by being in the box.

Should the Batter leave the box, then his has committed interference as there was no play at home plate and the Batter had no reason to leave the batters box.

If the Batter following the Umpires instructions, then there is no interference as the Umpire is interfering with the game.

Was the batter intentionally getting in the way of the defender, then yes, it would be interference.

What is most important to remember is that the call on the field is up to the Umpire. They can only call what they witness. To argue what they witness does nothing but waste time and frustration everyone.

What you can argue are the rules and how they are applied to an event the Umpire witnessed.

For a complete call, the Umpire must have taken note that the runner attempted to advance on the passed ball. This is the critical moment of the decision as it results in two significantly different decisions.

Players must also be aware of their responsibilities. In our fist scenario, as the runner made an attempt then the Batter moved correctly. The latter found the Batter at fault.

Mr. Dowdy is the father of 3 and after re-entering competitive baseball with his oldest frustration of finding suitable glove is what lead him to become an Official Distributor for NW Kelley USA Click now for a free catalog or sign up your e-mail for special offers.

You can also visit the Hirsch Group site more news/tips/articles on the subjects of baseball, construction, building codes and more that most will find a quick way to fall asleep. You can even stop by the Hirsch Group Blog for current events

Thanks for reading my article!

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Monday, June 2, 2008

Peterson's "Super 16" Baseball Scorebook / Softball Score Book

The Peterson's Scoremaster "Super 16" Score Book is a 9" x 12" hardback baseball/ softball scoring book. It can provides scoring capabilities for up to 25 games (when recording both teams), 16 batting positions per team and a substitution slot for each of the 16 batting positions. Each page is equipped with pictorial scoring examples for easy to learn examples. The scorebook also features an area for prefigured batting averages. The Peterson's "Super 16" simplified scorebook also features: lineup cards, average chart, team schedule, instructions, season summary, and a team roster. Coaches and parents alike can use the Scoremaster as a reference of stat sheets to accumulate game by game records on each player. There are 4 pages in the back of the scoring book, each page has 12 perforated tear-out line-up sheets to hang in the dugout. Overall, the Peterson's Scoremaster Score Book is more than perfect for any baseball or softball team, especially Travel Teams.
Customer Review: Didn't hold up well under wet weather
This is a portrait layout scorebook which IMHO isn't as user-friendly as a landscape. It is helpful if you have large rosters and there is a continuous batting order (little league), but that's about the only plus I can see. The boxes are almost too small to use. The printed page ink ran in the rain, and the pages don't dry out very well afterwards. If someone opened the book to a blank page and the page got wet to any extent, it was unusable even when dry. Maybe some people like this style and brand, but I think there must be better.

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