Archive for February, 2009

Play ball!

Wednesday, February 25th, 2009

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It’s hard to imagine, especially as I write this post with cracked, dry knuckles, that preseason baseball is really here. The White Sox, along with 13 other teams, play exhibition games in the Arizona heat, rounding out what is known as the Cactus League. And while exhibition games are notorious for being snore fests, they do signal us that warmer days are ahead, particularly for those like us in Chicago who are still having to deal with the occasional single digit morning temps. Today, the Sox take on the Los Angeles Angels, a game that will be broadcast on Sox radio 670 The Score.

Interesting tidbit about the Angels, did you know that the Angels played their first season as a baseball team in Wrigley Field? No, not the Friendly Confines stadium, but the original Wrigley Field, in Los Angeles! Yes, you read that correctly. The original Wrigley Field was built in 1925 for the Los Angeles Angels when they were a mere minor league baseball team. OK, so Wrigley Field in Chicago was built before the one in L.A. You got me there. However, the park in Chicago was at that time called Cubs Park while the one in L.A. opened up with the name Wrigley Field. So, technically, the park out in L.A. is the first park with the Wrigley Field moniker. Since the park was so close to Hollywood, the park was used a lot for television and the movies. Take a look at this great ad:

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My favorite use for the park was for the Home Run Derby program. Check out this episode of Hank Aaron vs. Duke Snider! Host Mark Scott even asks Snider what he feels about the Dodgers moving from Brooklyn to Los Angles. Does he really want to know the answer to that question? Speaking of home run derby, this is also pretty awesome.

Back to the White Sox. The South Siders have moved their spring training from Tucson to Glendale, Arizona. The new stadium, Camelback Ranch, is the largest in the league with a 13,000 seating capacity. Along with the Sox, the L.A. Dodgers will also be called Camelback home until the first of April. I have to say, it sure looks nice:

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Okay, one last word about baseball. Not only am I planning on watching baseball this season, but I’m also challenging myself to reading one baseball book for each month of the duration of the season, including two months for the preseason and one for postseason. Interestingly, my first book starts off with the White Sox in spring training during the 60’s. Total, there are nine (get it) books I plan to have read by October. Here is my planned reading schedule:

Inning 1: The Summer Game by Roger Angell
Inning 2: The Boys of Summer by Roger Kahn
Inning 3:Ball Four by Jim Bouton
Inning 4: Shoeless Joe by W.P. Kinsella
Inning 5: City Baseball Magic by Phillip Bess
Inning 6: Veeck as in Wreck by Bill Veeck
Inning 7: The Natural by Bernard Malamud
Inning 8: Eight Men Out by Eliot Asinof
Inning 9: Autumn Glory by Louis P. Masur

Since I haven’t been reading regularly this might prove to be quite the on taking. Play ball!

Bad Snow!

Saturday, February 21st, 2009

Bad Snow

OK, even I’m getting a bit tired of all this snow!

Hank Hill visits Memphis!

Sunday, February 15th, 2009

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For those not in the know, one of my favorite shows is King of the Hill. Unbelievably, the show has been on air for 13 seasons. Even more amazing is that it’s still as funny as it was when it came on air back in 1997. At least, I think so. So tonight, you can be sure that I’ll be in front of the television watching episode #244, titled “What Happens at the National Propane Gas Convention in Memphis Stays at the National Propane Gas Convention in Memphis.” I can’t wait!

If you are reading this after the fact, check it out here.

Happy Friday the 13th!

Friday, February 13th, 2009

Did you forget that Friday the 13th (Part III) was actually a cheesy sitcom from the 80’s? Proof?

Have a Super (Bowl) Day

Sunday, February 1st, 2009

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Did you know that before the Cardinals moved from St. Louis to Arizona in `88 that the team called Chicago home for the first 60+ years of their existence? It’s true! The Cardinals started in Chicago as The Morgan Athletic Club in 1898. The team soon changed their name to the Racine (after a street name in Chicago) Cardinals, even borrowing used uniforms from the Univeristy of Chicago. In 1920, the team payed their $100 due to become a charter member of the National Football League. Around this time, the team changed its name once again to the Chicago Cardinals and started playing their home games at the White Sox stadium, Comiskey park. In 1947, twenty years before the creation of the Super Bowl, the Cardinals won the NFL Championship against Philadelphia 28-21. The next year, the Cardinals had an even better season than the year before, but lost a rematch with Philadelphia in the championship game under blizzard weather conditions 7 – 0. However, today the team is probably most known for losing 29 straight games, finally breaking the streak with a win over the Chicago Bears. In 1960, the team left Chicago for the Gateway City, St. Louis. Check out more Chicago Cardinals history here.

Below, the 1947 NFL Champs:

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