October 8, 2010 |
The Reds are an interesting bunch. Especially Dusty Baker. The man is an odd cat - or dog, rather. He's more of a dog guy, as it turns out. This week, in the run-up to the National League division series, the Reds' manager happily offered some fascinating personal information. Among the revelations: a detailed recap of a scrap he got into with an unruly crew of Canadians during the 1981 World Series - a brawl that rendered him one-handed for days thereafter because he ostensibly mashed a few of our northern neighbors into creamy poutine.
September 29, 2010 |
NEWARK, N.J. - One day after saying that Michael Leighton would return to practice Thursday, Flyers general manager Paul Holmgren revealed Tuesday that his No. 1 goaltender would be sidelined for at least a month with a bulging disk in his lower back. In a conference call with reporters, Holmgren also said that forward Ian Laperriere would be out indefinitely with post-concussion symptoms. On Monday, Holmgren said that an MRI exam had shown that Leighton had a lower back strain.
September 16, 2010 |
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. - During Game 3 of the Phillies-Marlins series that concluded Wednesday night, the press-box announcer's microphone sputtered. The only clearly audible words that emerged were "seven-thirty. " Perhaps only here, in the sporting morgue that is Marlins baseball at Sun Life Stadium, could listeners not be certain whether he was citing the game's starting time or its attendance. The funereal baseball atmosphere in South Florida can be odd and off-putting at any time.
September 13, 2010
WHEN STEWART BRADLEY got to his feet after going headfirst into teammate Ernie Sims' knee, he immediately staggered and fell back to the turf at Lincoln Financial Field. Who on the Eagles' sideline saw this happen? The Eagles would not answer the question yesterday afternoon, hours after both Bradley, their starting middle linebacker, and quarterback Kevin Kolb were allowed to re-enter the team's 27-20 loss to the Green Bay Packers after suffering concussions. Bradley missed about three plays near the end of the second quarter, returned for a couple more, and then did not appear to participate on the Packers' final drive of the half.
July 30, 2010 |
As far as the merger of hype and Philly sports goes, you'd have to put the Spectrum farewell toward the top of the list. When Comcast-Spectacor finally finishes with its interminable goodbye and levels the building in 2021, it's going to be epic. In Philly, we do hype better than most. If you listen to some of the fans and media, Kevin Kolb is already being fitted for his Canton-issued jacket, and Evan Turner will resurrect a lifeless franchise with one of Allen Iverson's tension sleeves tied behind his back.
June 11, 2010 |
At some point, usually around the seventh inning, the official paid attendance for that game is announced in the press box. For the Phillies lately, that's followed by a brief addendum. Last night, for example, it would have been something like: "That's the 71st consecutive sellout at Citizens Bank Park. " And isn't that what all pro sports franchises aspire to? It's a good thing, right? Well, mostly. But, believe it or not, there can be some drawbacks to being so wildly popular that every game plays to a full house.
June 5, 2010 |
James van Riemsdyk bit the bullet for two games in the Stanley Cup finals. Last night, van Riemsdyk spit out that bullet and returned to the lineup for Game 4, retaking his spot as the youngest player in the series. Flyers coach Peter Laviolette swapped van Riemsdyk with Dan Carcillo, the player who replaced him for Game 2. Van Riemsdyk, 21, was forced to watch Games 2 and 3 from the press box - the first games he had ever missed as a healthy scratch. "It was tough," van Riemsdyk said.
May 28, 2010
I miss the Spectrum. Sure, the Wachovia Center is a beautiful place, full of the glam and bling and sparkly things you need these days to keep fans happy. And I'm sure the place will be a madhouse if the Flyers win the Stanley Cup next Friday after Game 4 or on June 9 after Game 6. But it won't be like it was in the Spectrum back on May 19, 1974, when the Flyers beat the Boston Bruins, 1-0, in Game 6. I wasn't there for that game. But I spent seven seasons in the 1990s watching the Flyers from the press box, and I can tell you the Spectrum had these tentacles that wormed their way into your heart.
May 28, 2010 |
BARRY ASHBEE was standing in the Spectrum locker room after the Flyers upset the Bobby Orr-led Boston Bruins to win their first Stanley Cup in 1974. Ashbee, a ramrod straight defenseman, wore sunglasses to protect his right eye, damaged when a puck shot by Dale Rolfe of the New York Rangers struck him in a semifinal game. As his perspiration- and champagne-soaked teammates celebrated, Ashbee said softly, "You might never see another bunch like this. " Pausing, Ashbee said, "I don't cry much, but I was in tears the last minute-and-a-half.
May 8, 2010 |
Phillies manager Charlie Manuel will not manage Saturday's game against Atlanta in order to attend to a personal matter, a team official said Friday. It is just the second time Manuel, who is in his sixth season as manager, will miss a regular-season Phillies game. Bench coach Pete Mackanin will manage the team in Manuel's absence. Manuel, 66, said the personal matter is not related to his own health. Since spring training began, Manuel has constantly said he has more energy after losing nearly 50 pounds in the last year.