2012: A Look Back
December 31, 2012

It seems like everyone is saying it. “I can't believe the year is over already. It just flew by.” I suppose the older we get, the more it seems that way. 2012 was actually 24 hours longer than 2011, but yet that's not the way we remember it. For me, this year ended on a high note. I got a job in November, attended a wedding this month, and was even able to squirrel away some money for Christmas presents...(continued)

Christmas Eve: The Worst Sports Night of the Year
December 24, 2012

Everyone knows that Christmas has been over-commercialized. Ever since someone tacked up a “Jesus slept here” sign on the manger, or when a frankincense dealer proclaimed that he was the one that sold his product to the three wise men, people have been using a religious holiday for commercial gain. Sports and television are no exception, but for the most part, Christmas Eve has been left alone...(continued)

A Dodgers-Angels World Series. Maybe This Year?
December 17, 2012

With a mall shooting in suburban Portland, Oregon, and the massacre of 20 children and six adults at a school in Newtown, Connecticut days later, I thought I would write about something else. Since the mind can't comprehend why someone would want to ruthlessly cut short the lives of six year-olds, I'll say what maybe one would say when one doesn't know what to talk about...How about those Dodgers, huh?...(continued)

I Went to a Wedding, But Witnessed History
December 10, 2012

I took a very quick trip to Vancouver, Washington over the weekend to attend my friend Kelly's wedding. Kelly and I grew up on the same street, and I have known her her whole life (I'm older). She's the closest thing I've had to a sister, so naturally I wanted to be there when she got married. That's not news, but the historic thing is, Kelly married a woman...(continued)

College Football and a Sweet Sports Weekend
December 3, 2012

I'm a working stiff now, so I'm not quite as on top of the sports world as I have been. That's not a bad thing, but coming off my first full five-day week at my new job, what a sports weekend I got to relax to on my days off...(continued)

College Football Gets Three-Team Playoff
November 26, 2012

As much as I wanted to, I couldn't do it. It would've created more BCS chaos, which is a good thing, but even though who I root for would have no bearing on the outcome, I just couldn't. I couldn't root for USC to beat Notre Dame...(continued)

Marlins Rip Up Team After One Bad Year
November 19, 2012

I haven't been paying a lot of close attention to the sports world lately (with the election, and a new job, and all), but this is the time of year when baseball can make headlines, even though it's the off season. But did I see this right? The Miami Marlins have sent almost all of their best players packing. To Canada...(continued)

The Economy IS Picking Up. Especially For Me.
November 12, 2012

This has been quite a week. Barack Obama has been re-elected President of the United States, Democrats in California picked up a super-majority in both the Assembly and Senate, gay marriage was approved in Washington so my friend can get married, and I was offered not one, but TWO jobs! I should have gone to Vegas...(continued)

Election Eve Jitters: Four More Years?
November 5, 2012

So it comes down to this. After Republican debates with as many as seven candidates, the primaries, the conventions, the Presidential debates, and the “closing argument”, America finally elects a President tomorrow. If you have a definitive opinion, one way or the other, about who should be President, it's nervous time...(continued)

Season Swept Aside With Giants Win
October 29, 2012

Giants fans couldn't have seen this coming. There was no torture. There was no “Fear the Beard”. Sure, they won the division, and humiliated the new free-spending Los Angeles Dodgers, but did anyone expect more than that? Now the Giants are champions, winning the World Series for the second time in three years, and the season is suddenly over...(continued)

Cabrera and Fielder Both Could Have Been Dodgers
October 22, 2012

As Dodger fans sit and watch the playoffs, watch the team that beat them out for the second wild card spot battle the team that beat them out for the NL West play tonight to go to the World Series, one wonders what could have been. If the Dodgers had the new owners in place three months earlier, they could have acquired Prince Fielder. Five years ago they could have had Miguel Cabrera. Both are with the Detroit Tigers this season, four wins away from a world championship...(continued)

A's Amaze, Closers Fail, Yankees Struggle
October 15, 2012

We're only one full round through baseball's post-season, and there's already a lot to talk about. All four League Division Series went the maximum five games, the Reds and Nationals blew late leads, and we may have seen the beginning of the fall of the Evil Empire. All of this in just over a week...(continued)

Presidential Debates Need Mute Button
October 8, 2012

In some ways you had to feel sorry for Jim Lehrer. In other ways, you couldn't stop yelling at your television. As the moderator of the first Presidential debate Wednesday night, the host of PBS' Newshour couldn't get in a word edgewise. He was the one who was supposed to be running the show, and yet it was like he was a greeter at Walmart on Black Friday. I have an idea on how to fix that...(continued)

“Real Refs” Return; Baseball Winds Down, Heats Up
October 1, 2012

I had just finished publishing last week's fabulous Emmy column when I thought I'd check on the score of the football game. 12-7 Green Bay over Seattle with less than a minute to play. Other than having the Packers defense in my fantasy league (but I had already clinched a victory to go 3-0) and my dislike for Seahawks (and former USC) coach Pete Carroll, I really had no rooting interest, but I decided to watch the end of the game to see what would happen. By now, you all know the story...(continued)

Emmy Still Loves Modern Family (and Jon Stewart)
September 24, 2012

It seems like when I don't write about sports in this space, the topic is usually awards shows. ABC broadcast the 64th Annual Prime Time Emmy Awards last night with Jimmy Kimmel as host. So yes, I watched...(continued)

Dodgers Can Thank Bud For Still Being In It
September 17, 2012

Two and a half weeks to go in baseball's regular season, and the Los Angeles Dodgers can still make the playoffs. Despite losing eight of their last eleven games, they are only one game out. I'm sure thank you notes are in the mail to commissioner Bud Selig, who was insistent on adding two playoff teams this year...(continued)

Politics and Sports for $1000, Alex
September 10, 2012

Clint Eastwood talked to a chair, Bill Clinton is the most fired up man in America, and football is now underway. There was plenty of tennis in New York, and oh yeah, the Giants and Dodgers faced each other over the weekend. Lots of random thoughts and comments...(continued)

Dodgers Couldn't Win For Vin
September 3, 2012

It looked like a great way to get an early start on the Labor Day weekend. It was Thursday night at Dodger Stadium. Ace Clayton Kershaw was getting the start on the mound against Arizona. All the recent acquisitions were in the lineup. And thanks to a late afternoon cloudburst, there was even a rainbow ending right at the scoreboard. What could be better for Vin Scully Bobblehead Night?...(continued)

Diary of a Mega-Trade
August 27, 2012

The Los Angeles Dodgers and Boston Red Sox pulled off a blockbuster trade Saturday—a nine-player deal with Boston dumping over a quarter of a billion dollars in salary, but vastly improving L-A. The Red Sox sent first baseman Adrian Gonzalez, outfielder Carl Crawford, pitcher Josh Beckett, and reserve infielder Nick Punto to the Dodgers in exchange for first baseman James Loney, minor leaguers Allen Webster and Ivan DeJesus Jr., and two players to be named later, reported to be top prospects Rubby De La Rosa and Jerry Sands. I imagine the phone call between Dodgers General Manager Ned Colletti and Red Sox GM Ben Cherington going something like this...(continued)

Now, Back to the Game...
August 20, 2012

After 11 weeks of broadcasting summer collegiate baseball, overlapped at the end by exhaustive (and exhausting) hours of Olympic coverage, I can now turn my free time attention back to baseball. It looks like I got back just in time, too. This has been quite a week. Just a dozen random notes and observations...(continued)

Good Show, London. Jolly Good Games.
August 13, 2012

The late International Olympic Committee president Juan Antonio Samaranch used to close every Olympic games by declaring that they were the “best ever”. Current IOC leader Jacques Rogge doesn't do that (and he shouldn't), but the Games of the Thirtieth Olympiad in London, England were pretty darn good. Thanks to my TiVo, I watched every hour of NBC's primetime and late night coverage, and on Saturday and Sunday, I watched as many of the team sport finals as I could. 17 nights, so a long list of thoughts and observations...(continued)

Gold Sox Wind Down with No-Hitter
August 6, 2012

The 2012 season has ended for the Marysville Gold Sox, but it went out with a bang. Sunday was the final night, but people who were at Saturday's game will remember it for a long time. Center fielder Tito Quińones (Eastern New Mexico) sang the national anthem before the game, then hit a grand slam for his only home run of the year. Also, starting pitcher Nick Hudson (Cal State East Bay) hadn't given up a hit yet at that point, and didn't the entire night. Hudson was mobbed at the mound when he completed the no-hitter...(continued)

I Say Old Chap, Let The Games Begin
July 30, 2012

With the games of the thirtieth Olympiad now underway, and over 60 hours of coverage on several different NBC properties available each day, I've decided that my Olympic fever has to be limited this year. I'm pretty much going to try to watch the prime time and late night shows, and whatever they show during the day, I'll just have to miss. Also, I have re-activated my TiVo, so I can tape the tape delay (and fast-forward through the commercials). All that being said, here are some random observations about the first weekend...(continued)

Olympics, Penn State, Baseball, and Other Stuff
July 23, 2012

Do you have Olympic fever yet? Don't look now, but in just a few days, the torch will run its last relay, the cauldron will be lit, the parade of nations will be paraded, and the competition will be underway. I will get the bug, I'll be excited to see if Ryan Lochte can beat Michael Phelps, if Usain Bolt is as fast as he used to be, and the quadrennial crash course of how to play team handball. I'm not there yet, but I will be...(continued)

Boring All-Star Game, but NL Will Take It
July 16, 2012

Let me get this straight. If somehow the Dodgers make it to the World Series, they'll have the Giants to thank for getting home-field advantage? Well, three Giants anyway. Melky Carera was the MVP of Tuesday night's All-Star game in Kansas City, Matt Cain was the winning pitcher, and Pablo Sandoval had a bases-loaded triple. The Dodgers (or any other National League team for that matter) could also simply thank Justin Verlander...(continued)

All-Stars, Wimbledon, Lakers, and More
July 9, 2012

With baseball's All-Star game in Kansas City Tuesday, the Home Run Derby tonight, Wimbledon now over, and some recent NBA news, some random thoughts about all of the above...(continued)

He Freed The Slaves, and Killed Vampires!
July 2, 2012

Curiosity killed me. I knew nothing about it. I had to see it. I laughed at the concept. But Tim Burton produced it. It couldn't be that bad could it? Besides, good or bad, it would be material for this column. So I did it. I plunked down $5.25. I saw Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter...(continued)

Okay LeBron, You Got Your Ring
June 25, 2012

The NBA season is over, and King James finally got his crown. Good for him. Now please leave us alone. The Miami Heat defeated the Oklahoma City Thunder in five games to take this year's basketball championship, and the first since the joining of the “Big Three” of LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, and Chris Bosh...(continued)

Suspenseful Sox Streak Snapped
June 18, 2012

They say you can't win them all. It turns out they were right, but folks around here were starting to wonder. The Marysville Gold Sox finally had their long winning streak come to an end, losing Sunday to the Redding Colt .45s 6-4. The collegiate wood-bat summer club won its first 15 games of 2012, after winning its final 20 in 2011. 35 games in all, in a winning streak that lasted 345 days...(continued)

Kings Win Stanley Cup!
June 11, 2012

It was a little disappointing when the Los Angeles Kings didn't win game four of the Stanley Cup Finals to sweep the New Jersey Devils, but then they went and lost game five, which was something I should thank them for. I didn't get to see the fifth game because I was working (haven't been able to say that in a long time), but the Kings loss meant a game six this evening, and I got to park my keester in front of the television to watch franchise history...(continued)

Gold Sox Baseball: These Guys Can't Lose
June 4, 2012

The Marysville Gold Sox have been underway for two weekends now, and they haven't lost a game. Not only are they 8-0, but the team has won 28 straight dating back to last season. Even though this year's squad is almost entirely different as the 2011 team (with a few returnees), the 2012 Gold Sox seemed to have picked up where the '11ers left off...(continued)

A's Fans Should Be Ashamed For Not Going
May 28, 2012

I suppose you have to admit it, that at least by today's standards, the Oakland Coliseum is a dump. It's the last multi-purpose stadium that was built in the 1960s and the last to house both an NFL and MLB team. There's no kids play area, party porch or a giant baseball glove above left field, but that doesn't mean it isn't a bad place to watch a ball game. You don't have to pay for all those frills, either—ticket prices are pretty cheap...(continued)

2002: The Year Marysville Baseball Forgot
May 21, 2012

The Marysville Gold Sox begin play this week, and the organization even has a big anniversary celebration planned. Kind of. The franchise is commemorating its tenth anniversary. Sort of. For the season opener Thursday, part of the program includes a tribute to the 2003 team. But the tenth anniversary? Not really...(continued)

Lakers? Clippers? Nah, It's About the Kings
May 14, 2012

I'm writing a hockey column. I never thought I would write a hockey column. I never planned on writing a hockey column, but I also never thought the Los Angeles Kings would still be playing hockey at this time of year. While the Lakers and Clippers needed seven games to get through the NBA Playoff's first round, the Kings are in the NHL's Final Four...(continued)

There's A Whole Other Twitterverse Out There
May 7, 2012

I like to think that I like to try new things, especially when it comes to technology. But the truth is, I guess I don't. It took me awhile to join Facebook, but now I don't know how I got along without it. So, a year and a half after Facebook, I've decided to tweet. It's quite interesting, and fun...(continued)

It's Playoff Time, But They Started Without Me
April 30, 2012

Derrick Rose gets hurt, Rajon Rondo bumps an official, Andrew Bynum has a triple double, and the Clippers mount a 27-point comeback. I didn't see any of it. With the Lakers not favored to do much, and the upstart Clippers fizzling out at the end of the regular season, I wasn't exactly geeked for the NBA Playoffs. Maybe this is a wakeup call...(continued)

Baseball Start Off With Great Ceremony
April 23, 2012

Dodger Stadium turned 50 earlier this month, but it has nothing on Fenway Park. Boston's venerable home of the Red Sox celebrated its 100th birthday on Friday, and it was quite a party. Every living former Red Sox player, coach, and manager was invited to attend, and over 200 showed up. There were Red Sox for fans of every age to appreciate...(continued)

Scully Back To Work; Mom Lets Birthday Go By
April 16, 2012

PALMDALE-If you had to miss a week of work with a bad cold, chances are not many people would care. If you were lucky, you might get a card, or at least a 'welcome back' when you return. When Vin Scully misses a week of work with a bad cold, not only is everyone in Los Angeles concerned, but it becomes national news. Of course, broadcasting Dodger games isn't just any job, and Scully isn't just any employee...(continued)

MLB Free Preview Great Way To Start Season
April 9, 2012

It was a beautiful Easter Sunday in Marysville—a high of 73 degrees and virtually no wind. The only reason I know this is because I took a 2-minute walk down the street to the convenience store to load up on more snacks before the next baseball game started. Baseball 2012 is underway, and thanks to television, for the first week you can watch every game. Every, single, game...(continued)

Five Nice Things About Frank McCourt (As We Kick Him Out The Door)
April 2, 2012

My fellow Americans, our long regional nightmare is over. And while at the same time as paraphrasing Gerald R. Ford, we can also paraphrase the man he was talking about. Dodger fans don't have Frank McCourt to kick around anymore. Finally, after a process that seemed to take forever, the Los Angeles Dodgers have been sold...(continued)

'Times' Now Charging Web Readers
March 26, 2012

First, Comcast Cable took away TruTV just in time for the one weekend all year I would watch it, and now the Los Angeles Times has decided it doesn't want me to read its website. Well, just like the cable guys, they want me to read it, they just want me to pay for it. For years, internet content from newspapers has been free, but that is starting to change...(continued)

Fisher Gone, Tourney and Baseball Heating Up
March 19, 2012

Fans of the Los Angeles Lakers and even the players knew a deal was coming before Thursday's NBA trade deadline. And even with that knowledge, both were blindsided. Again. Point guard Derek Fisher, a Laker for 13 years with five league championships, was traded to the Houston Rockets for a guy named Jordan Hill. The 37 year-old Fisher is indeed slowing down a bit, but has still been a key part of the franchise. Now dispatched, dumped. Just like that...(continued)

Comcast Makes Madness Maddening
March 12, 2012

When the new television deal began last year, true college basketball tournament fans rejoiced. You are now able to watch every single game live, and choose the ones you want to see, instead of depending on CBS to hopefully regionalize the game to your area. Now Comcast Cable is becoming a party pooper. TruTV, which is one of four networks to televise the early round games (with CBS, TBS, and TNT), has been taken away. Those with the “expanded basic” service can't see the games, unless they upgrade to Comcast's “digital preferred” tier, which is nine dollars a month more...(continued)

March Is Here, Baseball's Back, Kings Are Staying
March 5, 2012

October is probably the best sports month, but March has to be a close second. The arrival of Spring Training, college basketball's March Madness, and the NBA getting ready for its stretch run. After a post-Super Bowl lull in February, and the weather warming up, the sound of a baseball game on the radio after a four-month hiatus gets the blood flowing, and makes one want to get back outdoors again...(continued)

Glad To Have You Back Billy. We Missed You
February 27, 2012

After years of over-thinking the concept, and trying to skew to younger demographics, the Academy Awards finally got back to its roots. For the first time in eight years, Billy Crystal hosted the program, the ninth time he has taken on that role. For those of us that like Crystal at the helm, we got exactly what we expected. He opened the telecast with a montage where—thanks to movie magic—he puts himself in Best Picture-nominated clips. First he's in black and white as The Artist, mouthing “No I Won't Host” to eating a piece of tainted pie from The Help, to kissing George Clooney on the mouth...(continued)

Lin-Sanity, 'Busters, Grammys, and Other Stuff
February 20, 2012

A question to my Asian-American family members and friends, is this photo offensive? Even if you do not follow sports, you may have by now heard of Jeremy Lin. Even if you do follow sports, you probably didn't know who he was until a couple of weeks ago. After bouncing around, trying to make it in the NBA, Lin was named starting pointing guard of the New York Knicks, and led the beleaguered franchise to seven straight wins. The term “Lin-sanity” was born, and the story has taken off like a rocket...(continued)

Top 12 Valentine Songs For Singles
February 13, 2012

With February 14th upon us, any single person will tell you. Valentine's Day sucks! All those couples out there are all “I love you”. “No, I love you more” Tra la la la la. Meanwhile, single people are home watching Family Guy reruns. Okay, I'm really not that bitter, or that miserable. But, instead of a dozen roses, here's a Top Twelve list of Valentine's Day songs for single people. I have all of these songs in my collection, so I am quite familiar with them. If you want the drama of the countdown, scroll down slowly. Enjoy!...(continued)

'Who Cares' Super Bowl Has Great Finish
February 6, 2012

Going into the game, I figured a New York-Boston Super Bowl would be like a regular season Yankees-Red Sox game. Sure there would be drama, but in the end, who cares? Not much of us cared during the first three quarters, but there was definitely drama at the end, and one of the best-ever Super Bowl conclusions...(continued)

Tennis, Oscars, Politics, and Other Stuff
January 30, 2012

Please pardon me if I ramble more than usual this week, but I'm still on Australia time. I didn't take a 20-hour flight to the land Down Under, but I stayed up late and watched a lot of tennis. A lot of great tennis. The night sessions of the Australian Open begin a little after midnight in California, and the night sessions feature the greatest matches, so you know if you want to see the whole thing (and I don't have any place to go, so why not?), then you know you are going to be up awhile...(continued)

These People Want To Own The Dodgers
January 23, 2012

Today is a big day on the "Get Frank McCourt Out Of Town" Countdown Calendar. Opening bids for sale of the Los Angeles Dodgers are due. McCourt has an agreement with Commissioner Bud Selig to have the sale completed by April 30, so that means if all goes according to the timeline, the McCourt nightmare will be over in 98 days, and we could know who the new owner is before the first pitch of the 2012 season. Over a dozen potential bidders have identified themselves as being interested, and there could be more. McCourt's asking price for the team and the stadium could exceed a billion dollars...(continued)

A Kinder, Gentler Gervais Hosts Golden Globes
January 16, 2012

If you are a fan of awards shows, you have probably become a fan of two people. You want Billy Crystal to host the Oscars, and Ricky Gervais to emcee the Golden Globes. For different reasons, of course. Crystal is witty, charming, and endearing, while Gervais takes more of a scathing tone, although in a witty, charming, and even endearing way...(continued)

BCS, NFL, and CNN Highlight Year's First Week
January 9, 2012

This just in. Alabama has won the rematch. The Crimson Tide has shut out LSU 21-0 and claimed College Football's National Championship. Perhaps it was a rematch that shouldn't have happened. LSU was a 9-6 winner in overtime in November, but the Tide, despite not scoring a touchdown until late in the game, dominated to win the title...(continued)

Enough Messin' Around. Get to Work!
January 2, 2012

A new year is here, and for many of us, one of the things we'd like to do in 2012 is get a job. I'm one of those people. I haven't had full time work in over two years, and that has to change over the next 366 days—sooner rather than later. I have applied for many jobs during that time period, but I have been picky. That has to change too...(continued)

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