Sunday, March 30, 2014

Opening Day and some athlete sightings

Major League Baseball's Opening Day is at hands, folks. This season makes me sad, in that it will be Derek Jeter's last, but as a fan of the New York Yankees, I'm also very curious to see what this season brings, with the so many changes that occurred, player-wise, during the offseason. At the very least, I'm hoping for an improvement on last season...making it to the postseason would be nice. Also, since I had a newborn last spring and summer, I didn't make it to any games last year...hoping to get to Yankee Stadium as least once this season. Gotta see Jeter playing in person at least one more time!

Anyway, here are a couple of photos I took at Vision Expo East yesterday - Clay Matthews of the Green Bay Packers made an appearance. Yummy. He could definitely make you a Packers fan, ladies, if you're into the eye candy in sports, ha ha.

Photo: Saying hi to Clay Matthews
Clay Matthews of the Green Bay Packers at Vision Expo East 2014.

Of course, as a Yankee fan, I was most excited to find out that former closer and living legend Mariano Rivera was making an appearance. I didn't get to see him pitch in person during his last season last year, so it was kinda cool to get to see him again, and so close up! Pretty cool, and definitely the highlight of my day! :)

Photo: Now, Clay Matthews is a good looking fellow, but this was the athlete I was really psyched to see
Mariano Rivera at Vision Expo East 2014.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

End of an era: 2014 to be Derek Jeter's final season


If you haven't heard yet, Derek Jeter, longtime shortstop for the New York Yankees, officially announced today that he will retire from professional baseball at the end of the 2014 season. Am I surprised? Not really. Jeter will turn 40 years old this June, which is an old man in baseball years. He was plagued by injuries last season. All his cohorts from the 1990s-2000s championship era have retired. He's devoted almost 20 years to the game, to his team, and to his fans. I completely understand. After Mariano Rivera retired last season, I had a feeling this year would be Jeter's last.

I understand, but does that mean I'm happy? I'm happy for him, yes; now he can do the other things in his life that he wants to do. He can focus on himself and what he wants, not what the Steinbrenners want, not what the fans of New York want. But I'm sad for me. I love Jeter. I grew up with him - I started watching the Yankees as a way to stay connected to home when I was in college in Washington, D.C. in the late 1990s, when Jeter was fresh blood and the Yankees were amazing. I've been a fan of the team and even moreso of him ever since. When he leaves, the old guard will be gone...which in a way, might be exactly what the Yankees need. A fresh start. A chance to rebuild. A time to let new fresh blood become a part of history. (Hint, hint, Yankees management - can we cool it on the aging, fading former superstars? Let's take a few years to rebuild with some young, fresh, homegrown talent and do Jeter and his predecessors proud!)

So yeah, I love Jeter. He's an amazing ball player. And he seems to be a class act. In New York, it's tough to know when to stay out of the limelight, know when to speak up and what to say. It's easy to piss your fans off but so easy to win them back over again. He never courted controversy or the headlines; he always seemed to show good sportsmanship both on and off the field; he seemed to love to play the game; and he seemed to love his fans.

I will always count myself lucky that I got to see Jeter play in person at Yankee Stadium. I wasn't able to get to any games last year but this being Jeter's last, I'll have to make sure to make it to at least one more game. Just to say goodbye. :)

Thanks, Derek, for playing the game right, representing your team right, bringing us so many World Series championships but always staying humble, and for loving your fans right. Best of luck to you in this upcoming season, and with whatever you choose to do with your future.

Love, a Jeter fan girl, always and forever

Monday, February 3, 2014

Super Bowl is super lame...


That was not what I was hoping for.

As it turns out, maybe it was a good thing I spent the entire first half running after my 10 month old daughter, missing pretty much everything on the tv - by the end of the very first play, Super Bowl XLVIII was over.

While it was very nice of the Denver Broncos to replace their regular team that got them to the big game with a bunch of pee wee players who had apparently never stepped onto a football field or held a ball, I guess I was hoping for some kind of actual competition. I had high expectations for a game boasting the best defense versus the best offense, but what we got was boring and disappointing. While I was rooting for the Broncos, I'm not upset the Seahawks won - they played hard and obviously wanted this win, and they did it all tied as the youngest team to win the Super Bowl. I'm upset - and I would venture to say that even some diehard Seattle fans are with me here - that this game was so lopsided. When you're playing a team like the Broncos and a QB like Peyton Manning, you want to beat them when they're at their best. You want them to play hard and play well, and still stick it to them. To have them not even show up cheapens the victory a little. That's my humble opinion. Obviously, wearing my Peyton Manning jersey is a jinx and not good luck - I've learned my lesson now. It's just, the Super Bowl is practically a national holiday, the chance for everyone to have fun and party, and it was just a huge let down. Which, after a year of sports letdowns, I guess I shouldn't be surprised by - well, so endeth the 2013 season, for real now. On the plus side, my daughter had a blast playing with new friends, oblivious to the horror show happening on the tv. And tIt's snowing outside now, six inches and counting - the world is beautiful and clean and bright. Let's hope this weather washes everything clean of 2013 sports so we can start fresh and new in 2014.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Super Bowl XLVIII is today!

Okay everybody - tonight at 6:30 p.m. on Fox, the Seattle Seahawks, the best defense in the league, will take on the Denver Broncos, the best offense in the league in the Super Bowl. There are many reasons to watch - the game, of course, if you're into that sort of thing, ha ha; the commercials, the only time I will ever say that; the halftime show, which I'm not usually interested in but this year is Bruno Mars, who I love love love; and the social aspect, if you're going to a party with friends or even just hanging out with a few people...oh, and the food. Super Bowl parties usually have awesome snacks. Put your diet aside for the day! :)

I will be rockin' my Peyton Manning Colts jersey. My 10 month old daughter was clapping when the ESPN commentators were talking about the Broncos. That will make her Uncle Al very happy. Hopefully the top defense versus top offense thing will give us a well-played, exciting, awesome game. I think we're all rooting for the Broncos in my household though if the hubby decides to root for the Seahawks, we can bet a nice homemade dinner, which will be fun (if I win, that is!) So no matter what you do or who you're with, have fun.....and go Broncs!

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

More football reading before the Super Bowl...

This is another story for anybody who's not that sure if they like football, not so sure they understand football, know they want nothing to do with the sport - a beautifully written essay by Aly Semigran on the show Friday Night Lights, which was about small town Texas high school football, but really about so much more. I was also never really into the high school football culture and was also reluctant to watch this show at first, but when it was on top of its game (pun intended), which it usually was, this was one of the best shows on television - you fell in love with the characters, and they made you kinda sorta fall in love with football. So, read the story at Television Without Pity here, and then even if you're not convinced that football is for you, don't worry about the Super Bowl - go and watch Friday Night Lights instead!

Go now - go! :)

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Less than a week until the Super Bowl, y'all...

I've been ignoring a lot of big sports news out there - Alex Rodriguez's suspension from the 2014 MLB season, Dennis Rodman defending his new bestie Kim Jong Un. It's been crazytown overload. I actually get a sports break for the most part from now until April because I don't watch basketball or hockey but this Sunday is the Super Bowl of sports events - the Super Bowl. Yes, it's that time of year again. This year, the big showdown will be between the scrappy Seattle Seahawks and the heavyweight Denver Broncos. I used to hate the Super Bowl because I didn't like watching grown men cry whenever they lost it but now I love it - the social aspect if you choose to go to a Super Bowl party, as well as the fun of the game. Some years, of course, I get more invested than other years. Last year, I wasn't rooting for anyone until I realized I got a rush of excitement every time the Ravens scored...that's when I knew I at least had a preference. Obviously, whenever the New York Giants make an appearance, this fan girl goes wi-i-ild. This year, I have no horse in the race yet again. Of course, it kinda rocks that it will be played at MetLife Stadium at the Meadowlands, home of the New York Giants and New York Jets - at least we're representin' somehow! But this whole postseason wasn't about rooting for anybody, since my team embarrassed me so terribly during the year that they had no chance of showing up - basically it was about rooting against Tom Brady. But actually, I should amend what I just said - there was no TEAM I was rooting for; I am, however, a huge Peyton Manning fan. So it was sweet sweet SWEET when he and the Broncos showed Brady and the Patriots what to keep things straight, I am not rooting for the Broncos in this Super Bowl. I am rooting for Peyton Manning in this Super Bowl. I even have a jersey to wear to prove that - I'm going to wear my Peyton Manning jersey on Sunday. It's a Colts jersey. So yes, I hope the Broncos brother-in-law will be over the moon if they do...he may never come back down. But I hope they win so that Manning wins. And then I will happily embrace my sports respite until baseball starts back up in April.

Wait...the winter Olympics start in about a week, don't they? I don't usually care if there's no one big name competing but I think my 10 month old daughter is totally going to love the colors and music and movement of figure skating. But after that, THEN, I will enjoy my sports respite...unless the Knicks or Islanders or Rangers make a playoff run.

It never ends, does it? :)

And for anyone who doesn't really understand football who might need a bit of a primer before Sunday's big game, here's a fun little British instructional video on the ins and outs of American football...

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

This New York sports fan puts 2013 behind her, looks forward to 2014

2013, as I have stated before, was a terrible year for New York sports teams. I'm glad to be able to (almost) put it behind me. I'm looking forward to a fresh start with all my teams in 2014. Until then, though, what do we have to distract us...we have the Winter Olympics coming up in a few weeks. I don't usually get into the Olympics too much unless there's a big storyline going on, a la Michael Phelps or the Tonya Harding-Nancy Kerrigan rivalry. My 9 month old daughter however recently enjoyed watching Blades of Glory with Jon Heder and Will Ferrell so I imagine she'll like the costumes, music, and movement of actual figure skating. We also have the NFL playoffs. I don't have any teams to root for, but there are two quarterbacks in it who I love - Aaron Rodgers on the Green Bay Packers and Peyton Manning on the Denver Broncos. Of course, I rooted for both of them last year in the playoffs and jinxed them into losing, so I'm not going to say I'm rooting for them or that I want them to win...just sayin' I like 'em.

A happy, fun, and most importantly, a safe New Year to you all - may we all have a good year in sports to look forward to in 2014!