Hit and Run: I Was There Edition

I moved and changed jobs almost simultaneously this spring. As a result, I’m off the academic schedule for the first time in over a decade and it’s throwing off my whole concept of summer. So Tuesday night I went to check on the Cardinals score and discovered, to my dismay, that they had just finished one of the two games they are playing in NYC that I could actually attend.  Luckily, they were playing the Mets, which isn’t exactly a tough ticket to get at the last minute these days. So Wednesday night, my boyfriend and I headed out to Citifield, where around the actual game action, my blog post wrote itself.

First off — paper all star ballots!  Nostalgia!  Also, once we had established that I somehow didn’t have a writing implement in my purse, we discovered that the plug end of a pair of headphones is actually the perfect tool for punching the holes out of the ballot.

allstarballot2013

The hardest part about filling these out was trying to remember who was on the disabled list, particularly in the AL. (That’s not a Yankees joke — entirely.)  Then we put them in the ballot box to be buried under everyone’s 35-per-person internet ballots. I’m still looking forward to the All-Star Game if only because I was out of town when it was at old Yankee the last time, and since both the marathon and Fleet Week were canceled this past year, we’ve been lacking in the crowds-of-people-in-uniforms-descending-on-the-city-to-be-ogled department.

kiddannouncement

Just before the 7th inning stretch, this happened.  The crowd seemed primarily delighted, with an undercurrent of bemusement.  I certainly think Kidd can handle the in-game/practice side of coaching, but I’m a little unsure how the front office/roster building side is going to go, especially with a front office that can be …mercurial.

The scoreboard proved a great source of entertainment throughout the game.  The consensus in our section was that Matt Holliday has the saddest media photo ever.

sadmattholliday

My boyfriend’s comment: “That’s totally an ‘I’m going to go 0-4 and we’ll lose by 5,’ face.”  So perhaps he’s not sad, he’s just psychic.

Also appearing on the CitiField board, periodic Stanley Cup Final updates!  I didn’t get a picture, but the updates piqued my interest enough that even though the 2 hour and 40 minute game time got us home well before 11, we then stayed up past 1 watching the 6th longest Stanley Cup game in history.

2013 NHL Stanley Cup Final - Game One

Happy Friday! Anyone else going to a game this weekend?

What I’m reading this week

So I know there are apps and other ways to handle “clipping” things from Twitter and your mobile phone, but when I am scrolling through and see a link that intrigues me, I just email myself the tweet. There’s no need to remember to check another app or anything like that – I’m in my inbox a hundred times a day. It’s a little old-school and probably a little silly, but it’s my comfort zone and I’m owning it.

Anyway, I realized this week I’d sent myself quite a few links, so I thought I’d pass along some of the stuff I found interesting recently:

This ESPN piece trying to understand Italian soccer, hooligans and racism is just beautifully written. The subject matter is baffling, but this is a read that’s totally worth your time. Long form journalism at it’s finest.

Carlos Gomez is having a heck of a year and he’s played enough places that I think you’ll find this interesting: if you hit a ball to center field in Miller Park, the odds are not in your favor that you’ll actually get a hit. According to ESPN.com, of 35 balls hit to straightaway CF, just one of them resulted in a hit. Carlos Gomez has caught 97% of those balls. The major league average is 78%.

But you already knew Gomez was a plus (plus) defender. This year (and the end of last season) he has also figured out how to hit for power. Turns out, his coaches just didn’t know how to harness all his skills before and were pigeonholing him as a ground-ball hitting speedster. 

Did you watch the USWNT play Canada two weeks ago? I have re-watched this Alex Morgan goal a ton of times and I’m still in awe of her first touch. Also, the first few “not touches” if you know what I mean

If you didn’t read this amazing profile of Britney Griner, you should. Great insight into a ground-breaking woman. I don’t watch basketball, but she will always get a hearty “you go girl” from me .

Deadspin ran this excerpt which tells the tale of meeting and hanging out with Muhammed Ali, which on it’s own is just stupendously cool. But then it led to commentors telling stories of randomly meeting with Ali and then I had many warm fuzzies.

That was my first intro to The Stacks at Deadspin. Talk about a rabbit hole. Do yourself a favor and go for a scroll. So much good reading.
Former Badger Hockey player Hilary Knight is probably my all-time favorite. Hard to explain, but I’m still heart-broken she never won the Patty Kaz, especially because her taking time off to play for the US in the 2010 Olympics likely had something to do with that. In those same Olympics it was said she likely has the best shot in the game – she was a Junior in college at the time. Anyway, she plays in the Canadian Women’s Hockey League and won their inaugural season MVP. Here’s an interview with her.

In the only vaguely sports related department:

There’s a gorgeous old hotel in Downtown Milwaukee that most visiting sports teams stay at. It’s supposedly haunted. The stories are apparently varied and widespread enough that ESPN the Mag did a story about it. Read all about the Pfister.

I’m a Twitter fiend. I’ll admit it. Yet there is only one account I check in on multiple times daily to make sure I haven’t missed anything – @DUPorterhouse.
Porterhouse is the live bulldog mascot of Drake University in Iowa. He’s a rescued bulldog, winner of the Most Beautiful Bulldog Contest at Drake and very, very photogenic. He’s also an advocate to help end puppy mills bc his native state of Iowa has so many of them.
His mom started him a Twitter account and well, she’s just really good at it. There are tons of adorable pictures and cuteness and Porterhouse consistently makes my day better. He goes to their basketball games and leads them onto the court by chasing the ball. He’s just great.
Seriously, though – here’s a pic of him in Shrek Underoos. Tell me that doesn’t make the whole world better.

From the “not at all about sports” filesL

If you’re a Mad Men watcher and haven’t watched Sunday’s episode, this piece contains spoilers, so be warned. But even if you don’t watch Mad Men, this is a spectacular piece from Tom and Lorenzo that gives a very detailed and interesting cultural look at what it was to be a gay man in 1968.

Brooks Laich Melts My Heart

Brooks-Laich-First-Pitch-20-of-24-607x404

Chris Gordon/Russian Machine Never Breaks

So this happened on Monday. I absolutely love when my sports worlds collide, but I especially love it when my hockey world meets my Baltimore world. Being that my hockey team resides in a different city than my own, I love seeing the Caps doing things in Baltimore.

Continue reading

How to Deal

AdamLevineTheVoice

This is how I deal with bad sports: Adam Levine.

Like Lady Bee, I’m still reeling from watching my beloved hockey team, the Washington Capitals, crash and burn on Monday night. It’s so bad, that I can’t even watch hockey. I know, it’s really bad. Since I’m used to this annual heartbreak, I can’t understand why, this year, I’m so depressed about it.

It’s not like the Caps don’t do this to me every single year. This year I was so indifferent about hockey. I was mad about the lockout, but as a season ticket holder, I was excited to get back to Verizon Center and spend time with my hockey family. That was what I looked forward to: happy hours, victory beers, inside hockey jokes, good times with friends and making fun of our players – not so much the hockey.

Continue reading

Back on the NHL Wagon

You win, Leafs. I mean, you didn’t last night, but in the battle for winning me back over? I’d say you win.

gardiner

Jake Gardiner made it fun to be a Leafs fan for a few minutes Monday night.

So remember last fall when I was pissed off with the NHL? And my utter apathy when it returned earlier this year? I truly managed to go an entire (shortened) season without watching a complete game. I ignored favourite hockey blogs. I occasionally snubbed Sportscentre. I shrugged when I heard the Leafs may possibly be in playoff contention. I watched people who swore up and down on social media that they’d never forgive the NHL forgive the NHL and tune in with days of the league’s return. I was teased by my friends. “You’ll be back,” they said. Continue reading

Hump Day Hottie: 2013 NHL Playoffs

David Steckel HOT

Steckel wants to know who you got in the Stanley Cup Playoffs?

It’s that time of year…finally! We weren’t sure if we would even have the NHL Playoffs this year, but here we are. While other sites try to compile their own lists of the hotties of the NHL, we know our hockey here, so you can trust us.

As an added bonus, we’re even providing a preview of sorts for those who have checked out on the NHL so far. So strap on your skates and don’t ice the puck…

Continue reading

Cosmo Thinks They Know NHL Hotties…AGAIN

Colorado Avalanche v Minnesota Wild

Hey Cosmo, Over here! Did you forget about me and my Minnesota Wild teammates?

Dearest Cosmo:

STOP NOW. JUST STOP. First of all, we started these hot guys in sports lists way before you did. Also, we’re actual female sports fans, so we, you know, watch games, monitor players and, for the most part, know who to watch for in a game.

I’m not saying that this new list of “NHL Playoff Hotties” is completely bogus, but you clearly don’t know what you’re doing. Granted, you did manage to include some obvious hotties, i.e. Henrik Lundqvist and Kris Letang, who you somehow forgot to include in your original list that we also called you out on.

Continue reading

Hockey Gifs Galore!

BladesofSteel

Hi, my name is Raven, and I’m addicted to HOCKEY GIFS!! Seriously, .gifs in general are the best thing the internet has invented. Somehow, the stupidest of moments caught on tape can bring such joy to my life. Recently, I was introduced to Tumblr, a.k.a. the home of .gifs. It’s such a wonderful place where I’ve found so many many many awesome .gifs. I, of course, love the hockey ones, specifically any featuring Washington Capitals players. So without further ado, I bring you some of my favorite hockey .gifs.

Continue reading

Supporting women’s athletics, not just paying lip service (Go Badger Women’s Hockey!)

I’m absolutely loving this column Val Ackerman is doing over at ESPNW where she is speaking to prominent male sports executives about the future of women’s sports. It’s at once fascinating, heartening and upsetting. Her most recent is with recent Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke. Burke is probably best known around these parts for his no bigotry stance – he’s one of the few high-level executives out there consistently saying all the right things about why skin color, sexual orientation and really anything other than your athletic ability shouldn’t matter on the playing field.

Ackerman talks to Burke about the rapid growth of women’s hockey. I’m a huge women’s hockey fan and supporter and this was the first I’d heard that Burke was, as well, so I’m always happy to hear that high level men’s execs are also behind the women. I started wanting to break down some of the things Burke says, but ultimately, this quote of his is really what it comes down to for me:

Don’t just say you support Title IX, don’t just say you support women’s athletics; buy a ticket, bring your family. Buy a sponsorship on a team, put some money behind this thing, help it grow. If you really believe in women’s sports, there’s an opportunity to show it in a very direct way. Fans vote with their feet. Show up at a game.

– Brian Burke

I can’t stress enough how important this is and I’m going to go ahead and call each and every one of your out. When was the last time you went to a women’s college or professional game? Do you donate to your local college’s scholarship programs? Buy season tickets? Go to a game? Even at the high school level? Do you support fund raisers or pay admission?

If you do, do you drag your friends along? Do you extol the virtues of your favorite game or team? Do you introduce your friends and family to a sport or team they’re not familiar with and get them as excited about it as you are? Do you take your sister or niece or grandkid to as many different sports as you can and foster their love in a way that we didn’t get when we were little?

Because I didn’t used to do that and this year I made a concerted effort to change that. I’ve always been a hugely vocal supporter of Wisconsin women’s hockey, but I’d never put my money where my mouth was before now.

Follow the jump for more on Badger women’s hockey, Team USA and $5 world class talent
Continue reading

Hump Day Hotties: NHL Trade Deadline

RyanMiller

Did you know that the Sabres acquired the draft pick they used to draft Ryan Miller from the Florida Panthers in 1999? Well, now you do.

To commemorate today’s impending NHL Trade Deadline, I’m celebrating what used to be my favorite day of the year (it’s been uninteresting the past couple seasons) with some NHL hotties that have been dealt at the trade deadline over the past few seasons.

Continue reading

Throwback Thursday: Miracle on Ice

Miracle on Ice Sports Illustrated

I meant to post this last week, but it’s better late then never.

We’ve been doing a bit of spring cleaning around the house, and I was crawling around the attic and stumbled across this copy of Sports Illustrated from March 3, 1980. It was randomly sitting on top of a few boxes, calling my name from across the room.

My dad has been collecting SI since the 70s, and every issue of the magazine since then is somewhere in my house. After finding this issue, I’ve decided to search for some iconic issues and start framing them. Wish me luck!

What I love about the cover is how simple it is. No headlines, no descriptions, no words. Just the pure joy of a couple amateur hockey players beating the best hockey team in the world.

Hump Day Hottie: Joey Crabb

JoeyCrabb1

Another hockey post? Yes. Another hockey post. And it just so happens that Mr. Crabb is also a Washington Capital. Deal with it. I haven’t actively been scouting hotties lately, and Crabb sorta fell in my lap since it feels like I’m at a Caps game every other night. But he’s kinda pretty, so enjoy!

Continue reading

What fresh hell is this: NHL realignment

 photo Ryan-Kessler-Vancouver-Canucks-15fe.png

No matter how I feel about the NHL, I can’t stay mad at this guy. (Source: Burnaby Beacon)

I’m sure there’s some sort of valid reason for this based on, I don’t know, a desire to keep the NHL “fresh” and “relevant”? On Tuesday reports surfaced of the proposed realignment for the league: a return to four divisions, seven or eight teams per division, new playoff format, same number of teams getting in (the top three teams in each division along with four wild cards.)

My reaction is mixed (never mind that I still haven’t watched a single NHL game this shortened season. No longer bitter, just uninterested.) I’m personally fine with the altered playoff format and the idea of a few wild card slots. The idea of four divisions, however, falls flat with me. What’s wrong with keeping it at six? I’m old enough to remember when the NHL was a four division league, but it was a much smaller league than it is today. How do you foster an effective division rivalry when your division is eight teams wide? Or does that even matter in the 2013 NHL?

This is still a proposal and subject to approval by the usual suspects. But what do you think? Does this realignment make sense to you?

Hump Day Hottie: Hockey Players with Pets

Troy Brouwer Puppy

Troy Brouwer and one of his famous beagle puppies, Ari.

Who doesn’t love a cute picture of a puppy or kitten? Who does’t love a picture of a hot hockey player? OK, how about if you combine the two? That’s a recipe for swoon. (Well, at least it is for me.) Yesterday, I stumbled (or Tumbl’d?) upon an awesome Tumblr account dedicated to this topic: Hockey Players with Pets.

Here are some of the highlights from the blog:  Continue reading

Highs and lows on talking about women’s fandom

You may have already heard about the piece the Rangers posted on their fan site this morning called “A Girl’s Guide to Watching the Rangers.” The piece was so awful and ill-received, they pulled it within about an hour. You can still read the full text here.

We’ve seen this sort of mysogynistic crap on the internet before, but never before has it been Tweeted out by a professional team. My guess is that the fan site did this and the parent company knew nothing about it, but that’s not really an excuse. Clearly they’re going to have some content review policies put in place.

This BuzzFeed reaction piece is pretty great, if only for the tweets they include that show some pretty darn smart (and snarky) Rangers fans reacting to this drivel.

I was all set to spend my lunch hour penning my own reaction when MaggieSox sent me the link to this piece over at Stanley Cup of Chowder that ties together all kinds of lady fandom issues into one really well-written package. Forget whatever crap I’d have given you – read this instead.

Really, I was going to past a few of the better parts here for you, but I ended up copying most of the text, which ain’t right, so just do yourself a favor and go read it.

I commented over there and I’ll re-post it here:

I’d like to say that there’s no reason you couldn’t substitute any sport’s fandom into this piece and not still get the point across. Female baseball, football, soccer … fans go through the same “prove yourself” mentality.

Texy has it right in saying that we have to stop hating on each other – how can we ask guys not to judge us when we’re judging the hell out of each other?

And I’ll admit this was a hard thing for me to come to terms with, especially when it comes to the pink hat crowd – I always felt like I was justified in my anger because they were making it harder for me, a “real fan.” But we all started out somewhere – I know I’m hardcore, but I certainly didn’t come out of the womb spouting about crappy PP or WAR. So now I try to be open-armed to all the ladies who want to watch and I’ll do my best to make them feel welcome and help explain anything I can.

 

Maggiesox is the one that’s always telling me I can’t judge on the pink hatters and I’ve spent a long time defending my right to find them problematic, but really she’s right and I need to learn to be accepting of all female fans. They’re not giving me a bad name and there’s nothing wrong with the way the find their way to fandom.

I’m still annoyed at all the folks that won’t just wear their team’s colors (I’m looking at you, orange Yankee hat-wearing dude), but ultimately if they want to spend $40 on that hat, that’s their prerogative, right?

On objectification and hypocrisy

715685483This image is apparently on the front of a Lululemon store – a store where many women go to find workout clothes – in response to the end of the NHL lockout.

Lululemon is a purveyor of women’s workout clothes. They sell men’s clothes, too, but they’ve enjoyed tremendous growth recently and seem to be the go-to spot for women runners and those who practice yoga and need $98 yoga pants.

A quick Google search will bring you all kinds of questions about the company and its former CEO (who’s now chairman), which I didn’t even know when I thought to write this post.

I did want to ruminate about whether the above window display was appropriate. Apparently “hockey butt” is a thing (researching this post was all kinds of educational) and athletic women will use it themselves to describe their physique, which can be hard to clothe and fit.

Regardless, I was just thinking that if a store known for dressing men had said this about women athletes, we’d all be pretty upset.

And I’m aware that this blog spends plenty of time ogling male athletes, so I don’t really have a leg to stand on. And as a whole, I’d say we Ladies… try hard not to force controversy, stir the pot or otherwise look for problems where their aren’t any. But I still thought it was an interesting discussion point to have.

On the completely superficial/semantics side, while hockey player’s behind might like nice in their jeans  – on the ice, in their breezers, I’m pretty sure we’re not getting a good view of that. So whether or not the NHL has games is really irrelevant to my ability to check out pretty glutes, right? If fact, when they were locked out, they likely spent more time in street clothes…. you see where I’m going.

I just think that if I take a hypothetical that has female tennis players locking out and then returning to the job and Athlete’s Foot had a window display celebrating the return of tennis that mentions the short, tight skirts or tight, tennis hiney, a large to-go would ensue.

In the interest of not being hypocritical, I feel like we need to at least talk about whether or not this is a problematic display, right?

So what do you think? Am I stirring up issues that don’t exist? Or should be we be at least a little upset with this public display of objectification?

 

Cosmo Picks Hot NHL Players, We Disagree

Phil Kessel over David Steckel?? What was Cosmo thinking??

Phil Kessel over David Steckel?? What was Cosmo thinking??

Take a look at “The Hottest Players in the NHL 2013” according to Cosmopolitan Magazine. I don’t entirely disagree, but there are much better options out there. They did the same thing in 2012, and the picks are less offensive, yet still missing the mark. Continue reading

Advent Calendar of Hotness Day 23: All the Staals

Since we’re all missing the NHL and I’m running a little late with this post, Christmas Eve seems like a good day to give you Ginger dreams.

Mama Staal done us right by producing not one, but four adorable hockey hotties to make your spirits bright.

One again, SquareHippies.com gets the credit for most of the below images.

Staal-Brothers-jodan-staal-11515597-850-566
Continue reading

Advent Calendar of Hotness Day 18: Troy Brouwer

PUPPIEStroybrouwer

This guy is one of my favorite hockey players ever, and, surprisingly, I’ve never featured him here on Ladies…, but that’s about to change. Welcome to Ladies…, Troy Brouwer. You are now officially a hockey hottie!

Continue reading

Advent Calendar of Hotness Day 16: Viktor Stalberg

I hope I’ve provided you plenty of time to take in the deliciousness that Buff and GM have served up these last few days. Let’s wind up the weekend with a handsome Swede: here’s Chicago Blackhawk forward Viktor Stalberg. I’m still not speaking to the NHL, but I’ll lift my posting ban on all things related to the league since it is the season of giving. Also, Viktor is a former Leaf, sent to Chicago in 2010 in the Kris Versteeg trade. SO THANKS AGAIN FOR THAT, BURKIE! Go right ahead, trade ALL of the handsome Leafs!

Photobucket

I can’t resist a man in knitwear.

Continue reading

Advent Calendar of Hotness: Day 6

Image

Warning: hot goalie without a mask!

One thing most ladies have been missing this year is hot hockey players. Stupid NHL lockout. But we here at Ladies… would like to fix that with a little hockey hotties action. As a hockey-crazed lady, I’ve really missed my live hockey, but tonight I will finally see my first live hockey action of the season starring this man: Braden Holtby

Continue reading

Lady Bee’s 2012 Holiday Gift Guide: The Best of Down Goes Brown

A quasi-regular feature for the month of December in which Lady Bee provides you with gift ideas you won’t find in the Williams-Sonoma catalog.

Photobucket

If you love NHL hockey, and you have a sense of humour (seems required these days if you subscribe to the former), then chances are you are quite familiar with the excellent hockey blog Down Goes Brown. Brown, or Down, or…well, anyway, his parents and spouse know him as Sean McIndoe. He’s pulled together a compilation of his best work on the blog in The Best of Down Goes Brown, which was released this fall. Continue reading

Know what, NHL? I really think it’s over between us.

Photobucket

I’ve been thinking about this post for several days now. It took me a while to think of what I wanted to say, because part of me – the awkward teen who used to watch Canadiens games with her little brother on a black-and-white TV in our basement – really didn’t want to admit this. But it’s true.

The NHL is dealing with another lockout. And I honestly don’t give a shit anymore. Continue reading

Five for Friday: Superstar Owners

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos

Smoldering Justin is everybody’s favourite Justin

Remember when Justin Timberlake was a musician? Neither do I. But according to this report, he’ll soon be adding “Memphis Grizzlies co-owner” to his list of roles which currently include actor, SNL quasi-regular, and Jessica Biel arm candy. That’s great. So instead of recording a followup already to 2006’s Futuresex/Love Sounds we’ll have to settle for seeing his mug at Grizzlies games.

(Hey, it’s a good pop album.)

Timberlake isn’t the first celebrity investor to pour truckloads of cash into a sports franchise, however ill-advised it can be. Here’s five more that come to mind:
Continue reading

So You’ve Got an Olympics Hangover

Maybe this was your first Olympics with access to NBC’s online feeds (or perhaps you are a lucky Canadian who can access live events all the time).  Maybe you coincidentally happened to have 14 days off work (counting weekends) during the 17 days of the Summer Olympics.  Maybe you are now exhibiting symptoms such as disorientation with your sudden abundance of free time, queasiness when watching sports where anthems are played before the game begins, and a compulsion to introduce Olympic athletes into only tangentially related topics (such as, say, Usain Bolt in a conversation about stealing bases on a Cardinals broadcast).  You may be suffering from an Olympics Hangover.  And, like those other types of hangovers, there are various methods for dealing with it.

Continue reading

Hit and Run: In a New York Minute

Photobucket

39, and yet he still does this. (Photo: AP)

Sweet American Jeebus. Because having two aging outfielders simply wasn’t enough for the Yankees, they shipped two prospects to Seattle today in exchange for one Ichiro Suzuki. Classic Cashman for you: just when you think he isn’t going to make a move in late July, this happens.

A part of me didn’t feel the move was necessary. The Oakland series notwithstanding, the team has played well in the absence of leftfielder Brett Gardner, who is now out for the season. But the Yanks do miss his stolen bases, of which Ichiro has 15 this season. That’s more than Andruw Jones and Raul Ibanez combined.

So YAY, WE HAVE ICHIRO! Although I feel for Mariners fans, who have had the pleasure of seeing him play in Seattle his entire MLB career.

Ichiro isn’t the only pro athlete packing his bags for the Big Apple… Continue reading

Sports and Media Pop Quiz!

OK, lovely readers.  I, an American resident with broadband internet but no cable television, was following four major sporting events last night.  Which one of the following was I NOT able to follow through live internet streaming?

A. 

St. Louis Cardinals versus Houston Astros: In which the Cards got a much needed win, despite 3 errors, thanks to a brilliant fielding play by Daniel Descalso.

Continue reading

Three Day Weekend Sports Extravaganza!

With apologies to the Canadian residents among us, we are standing at the brink of not just a three day weekend, but a three day weekend of potentially epic sporting events. This includes at least one (and possibly two) Rangers-Devils playoff games, which means there is a Henrik Lundqvist picture in this post! Come look at the games you can stay up late to watch and not have to worry about being groggy at work the next day.

Continue reading