Daily Archives: April 22, 2012
Sunday April 22, 2012
Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Writer and @chuckbooth3024)- I was fortunate to talk with Paul Swaney about Comerica Park recently. Amongst the ball park chaser community (or any sports community for that matter), Paul Swaney has come to the forefront as one the top stadium reviewers for all of sports in the world. Paul had a vision of starting a website to chronicle his own sports venue experiences. He thought of this as soon as his son was born. Since then, he co-founded the stradiumjourney.com website and they have since gone into publication as a magazine. Paul has made it his full-time job to provide information on hundreds of sporting venue’s around the globe. Get to know this man and website because he is going places with his new venture. I asked Paul Swaney to be part of my featured profiles of ‘The Fastest 30 Ball Games’” and am pleased that he accepted my invitation.
CB: “Welcome to the Comerica Park Expert interview Paul, please about yourself and then give us a bit of background information on your life as Tigers fan?”
PS: “I grew up in Northern Michigan, and the Tigers were definitely the first team I really loved. I remember watching the Tigers in the 1984 World Series, one of my first sports memories. The following season, my dad, my brother, and I traveled to Tiger Stadium. I remember the excitement I felt as the Tigers clashed with the Red Sox on a sunny September afternoon. The dark blue of the stadium, the green of the field, and the energy of being in a large urban setting for the first time of my life are still vivid memories.” Read the rest of this entry
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The debate for whether or not Jack Morris belongs in the Baseball Hall Of Fame has heated up to an ALL-Time high with the big vote going down tomorrow. 575 members of BBWAA fraternity will decide whether or not the big man from Minnesota will enter one of the hardest Hall Of Fame’s to enter in pro sports (if not the hardest). Morris will need a 75% (432 Minimum Votes) of them to write down his name on their ballot for enshrinement into Cooperstown. Last year, Morris received 66.7 % of the writers votes in his 13th year of eligibility. He will have his name on a 14th ballot this year. He has been trending up in recent years, so if he can improve with the same amount of 2011-2012 jump of (+13.2%), then he will make it in. If he fails to reach the Hall this year, 2014 would be his last year of eligibility for the BBWAA Vote. He could still make it via the Veterans Committee after that.
Jack Morris was a winner, a true throwback pitcher who came after hitters with reckless abandon. He pitched based on what the score was – and had no personal regard for his own personal statistics. It is this very reason why the debate has hit epic proportions on social media hubs, amongst bloggers, former players, analysts, broadcaster and statisticians. I intend to prove the case for the guy in a manner that will have some similarities to other pieces you may have read, yet promote a big look into the numbers that I have been bouncing around in my head for months. I even have had a #JackMorrisAwarenessWeek on Twitter and have been having feuds with people on the other side who don’t think he belongs in Cooperstown- while I have been Retweeted by his biggest supporters. Let the battle lines be drawn!
Sunday April 22nd, 2012
Sam Evans: Most major league teams have played about fifteen regular season games so far. Fifteen games are not enough to tell who is going to have a breakout season, but these games do matter just as much as games in September. Some players have gotten off to hot starts by showing their power as evidence by insane home run totals. Let’s take a look at the MLB home run leaders and see if they will be able to keep it up.
Matt Kemp, Nine Home Runs: Matt Kemp is on a tear through his first fifteen games. He is currently on pace for 97.2 homers if he were to play all 162 games. Last year, Kemp hit thirty-nine homers despite being surrounded by a weak lineup and playing half of his games in the spacious Dodger Stadium. As corny as it sounds, he has told the media that he is motivated by his 2011 NL MVP snub. If that what it takes to get him to play on this level, the Dodgers should pay off writers to not vote for Kemp after this year. In all seriousness, Kemp is going to have another amazing year. As crazy as it might sound, fifty home runs is not out of the question for Kemp in 2012. Read the rest of this entry
Saturday April.22, 2012
Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Writer and @chuckbooth3024 on twitter)- I found Ben Wahrle’s website over a year ago. All of his MLB Park write-ups are highly detailed as you can find on the web. This young man has a strong future ahead of him in this business. I recently had a chance to interview Ben about Milwaukee, tailgating and other traditions at Miller Park.”
DB: “Welcome to the MLB Reports Miller Park Expert Interview Ben. Please tell us about yourself and then give us some information on your life as a Brewer fan?”
BW: “I am 19 years old and currently working as a professional pizza chef at a local pizzeria. I have been to 24/30 current MLB ballparks. My goal is to make to every MLB ballpark. On average I go to 28 games at several different ballparks a year. I am die-hard Brewers fan and have been to every home opener the last 6 years. I always try to make it to at least 4 Brewer road games.”
DB: “You have been to many of the MLB teams parks Ben, what is your favorite park outside of Miller Park?”
BW: “Fenway Park- The atmosphere and the surrounding area is like nothing else around in MLB. The crowd seems like it is into every pitch. As soon as you walk into Fenway Park or Wrigley Field as a baseball fan you admire the history of the park.”
DB : “Talk about what inspired you to create www.benwahrlebaseballparks.com?”
BW: “As I was going to more baseball games I wanted a way to track all the games and ballparks I had been to. It was also a great way to show my friends, family and the public about each park. My site has a lot of great detail and stories. It also shows my upcoming trips, and every time I go to a game I keep track of each player’s statistics.”
DB: “Miller Park is on everybody’s short list for the best tailgate ballpark in the MLB, what can you tell us about these pre-game rituals?”
BW: “It is a party like atmosphere whether it is opening day or the 40th home game of the season. Everyone enjoys the time with their friends by grilling out and playing beanie bag toss.”
DB: “What advice would you give for somebody experiencing Miller Park for the very first time?”
BW: “You have to tailgate at least once at Miller Park. Lastly if you go to a “hot” game make sure you buy parking in advance.”
DB: “What is your favorite method of transportation to Miller Park?”
BW: “Miller Park is very easy to get to unlike some parks where you have to take a train, cab or a bus. Miller Park is right off the interstate, so everyone drives to the park.”
DB: “What is the food like at Miller Park? What is your favorite ballpark food there?”
BW: Over the last couple of years they have done a great job of adding different foods like garlic fries, pasta, and many different kinds of sandwiches. My favorite ballpark food at Miller Park has to be the loaded nachos or the honey roasted nuts.”
DB: “What is your favorite all time game that you have been in attendance for at Miller Park?”
BW: “Hands down it is the Carlos Zambrano no-hitter vs Astros in 2008. In Houston a hurricane occurred, MLB decided to locate the game to Miller Park. I remember going to the game and it was supposed to be a home game for the Astros but I would say about 90% were Cubs fans. This was a home game basically for the Cubs.”
DB: “Bob Uecker is one of the best radio personalities in the game. In your own words, how does the city of Milwaukee like him?”
BW: “He is an inspiration to this city, the fans adore him for what he has done. Over 50 years in the booth is a great accomplishment.”
DB: “With Prince Fielder leaving, the Brewers were lucky that Ryan Braun did not have to miss the 1st 50 games for the PED scandal. Does this give the Brewers a chance to contend in the NL Central now?
BW: “I think all the facts need to come out first before we decide Ryan Braun guilty. Obviously no one can replace Prince and what he brings to the team day by day. Aramis Ramirez can make up some of the production. Ramirez had a terrific year last year hitting .306 with 26 home runs. This central division is wide open. The Brewers still have a good rotation in Yovani Gallardo, Zack Greinke, Shaun Marcum and Randy Wolf. Also the bats of the NL MVP Ryan Braun, Aramis Ramirez, Corey Hart, and Rickie Weeks. Even though the Cardinals lost the best player in the game- Albert Pujols , they are getting Adam Wainwright back. They will have a David Freese for a whole season with Matt Holliday. The Reds are another team with good pitching. The starters did not do a good job last year for the Reds. Acquiring Mat Latos was huge for the Reds this offseason. The Reds lineup has a lot of depth with Jay Bruce, Joey Votto, Scott Rolen, Brandon Phillips, Drew Stubbs. Overall I still like the Brewers chances of getting back to the postseason.”
***Thank you to our Miller Park Expert- Ben Warhle for participating in today’s article. If you would like to read more about Ben and his baseball travels click here ***
***Thank you to our Baseball Writer Chuck Booth for preparing today’s feature on MLB reports. To learn more about “The Fastest 30 Ballgames” and Chuck Booth, you can follow Chuck on Twitter (@ChuckBooth3024) and you can also follow Chuck’s website for his Guinness Book of World Record Bid to see all 30 MLB Park in 23 days click here or on the 30 MLB Parks in 23 days GWR tracker at the Reports click here. To Purchase or read about “The Fastest 30 Ballgames Book, ” please click here ***
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