Thursday, September 30, 2010

Make 'em jealous

I was going to call this post "Your sports claim to fame" but not all of us really have one, like my buddy AA, whose "claim to fame" triggered this idea.  So the idea here is to have you tell us about the most famous, infamous or memorable game(s) you've attended and or that mean the most to you.
I would encourage you to make a mention of those games in the comments to this post as an introduction to writing a complete post yourself, so that people can more appropriately comment on your claim to fame.
If you'd put "attending games" in the labels box below, that would enable us to have all of them in one category.  Also, it would be a great way to bring back something some of us used to do on our old message board, which was to tell us about attending games right after you do so, so that we can live vicariously through you.
One of the things I'm most proud of as a fan is being able to say I've seen events in many historical venues that no longer exist -- Boston Garden, Maple Leaf Garden, Montreal Forum, Memorial Stadium in Baltimore, saw the very last Nascar race at Riverside Speedway, Tiger Stadium, Yankee Stadium, Capital Center, LA Forum, The Salt Palace and RFK.  (I know, some of these still exist but they're not used for the purpose that made them famous).  Does seeing the Rolling Stones at Olympic Stadium in Montreal count?  Many of these involving treasured roadies with my brother.
Probably the most personally memorable game I attended was:  I was at the LA Coliseum on Jan 5th 1986 to see the Patriots upset the heavily-favored Raiders in a second round playoff game on their way to their first Super Bowl appearance.
Most famous, or infamous:  I was in attendance at the Daytona 500 in February of 2001 when tragedy struck.  If you're a sports fan, you know what happened then.
Personally infamous:  I wanted to take my daughters to see the Celtics and I wanted to be able to say I'd seen Michael Jordan play.  March 10th 2002 with my daughters and brother at the Fleet Center, Celtics vs Wizards -- he didn't play!
Milestones:  I was at The Big A in Anaheim on July 27, 1986 for the Angels and Red Sox, the very first game in history where both starting pitchers were 300 game winners, Tom Seaver vs Don Sutton.  Curt Schilling's 200th win, at Fenway on May 27, 2006.
Personal honorable mentions:  My grandparents came out to visit me when I lived in San Diego County and, being huge baseball fans, I wanted to take them to a game at Jack Murphy Stadium.  That game was played on Sept 28, 1987, a game in which the SF Giants clinched the National League Western Division in a 5-4 win.  My very first game at Fenway Park (wish I had this ticket stub) sometime in 1971 with my grandparents and one of my uncles.  Father's Day at Fenway with my daughters, June 15th 2003 (their first trip to Fenway).  Weekend on the infield of the Coke 600 in Charlotte, May 24th and 25th 2003 with my bro and good friend Jim (thanks Jim!)  July 29th 2008 at Nationals Park, where my buddy George, an underdog to 8 year old boys, was voted Fan of the Game.  The above-mentioned Yankee Stadium (and very late night Times Square) trip with my Bro, Cuz and two of my best friends.  And finally, June 23rd 2009 for the Red Sox first visit to DC in nearly 40 years, along with several of my best friends.
So let's hear about your treasured memories attending games.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

NFL Picks Week 4

Got the bad week out of my system.  Now it is time to pick some winners.  Although has some of these lines set to where I don't know which way to go.

San Francisco at Atlanta (-7.5):  I cannot pick San Francisco because of their body of work right now.

Cincinnati at Cleveland (+3):  I have a gut feeling that Cleveland will win this thing, but noting tangible.

Carolina at New Orleans (-15):  A classic Clausen vs. Brees shootout?  No.

Seattle at St. Louis (E):  Take the Rams at home.  Bradford is looking good.

NY Jets (-5) at Buffalo:  Possible trap game for the mighty Jets.

Detroit (+16) at Green Bay:  I still contend that Detroit is a decent team.

Baltimore (E) at Pittsburgh:  The Ravens defense is way better than Tampa's.

Denver at Tennessee (-7):  CJ2K better start getting yardage if he has any hope of 2,500 yards.

Houston (-3) at Oakland:  Texans bounce back after the Dallas defeat.

Indianapolis (-8.5) at Jacksonville:  Manning to Collie will be called often in this game.

Arizona at San Diego (-9):  This is about the 4th game where I have flipped my pick.  Rivers and company eliminate most of the turnovers and win big.

Washington at Philadelphia (-7):  McNabb wants revenge, it will not happen in this spot.

Chicago (+4) at NY Giants:  If I were a Bears fan, I'd be doing the Rodeny Dangerfield "I get no respect" act with this line.

New England at Miami (E):  I still believe that the Fins are the best team in the AFC East.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Results Of NFL Picks: Week 3

This week was a great reminder of why I do not bet on football games.  We did not have a great week picking games this week.  6-10 record for the week.

Tennessee (+3) at NY Giants:  Win. 29-10.  The Tom Coughlin Watch Is On Yet Again.

Cleveland at Baltimore (-12):  Loss. 17-24.  How does Baltimore only score 24 points?

Dallas (+2.5) at Houston:  Win. 27-13.  Roy Williams showed up this game.  

Detroit (+13) at Minnesota:  Loss 10-24.  No calls going the Lions way this game.

Atlanta at New Orleans (-3.5):  Loss.  27-24 OT.  Garrett Hartley might have kicked himself off the Saints.

Pittsburgh (-1) at Tampa Bay:  Win.  38-13.  Who would have thunk that Charlie Batch would have a big game.

Cincinnati (-3) at Carolina:  Win.  20-7.  Winning ugly is the norm for the Bengals.

San Francisco (-1) at Kansas City:  Loss.  10-31.  49ers are the most overrated team going into this year.

Buffalo at New England (-15.5):  Loss.  30-38.  Pats defense makes everybody look good so far.

Philadelphia (-2.5) at Jacksonville:  Win.  28-3.  Jack Del Rio should have taken the USC job last offseason.

Washington (-3.5) at St. Louis:  Loss.  16-30.  I think I overestimated the 'Skins.

Oakland at Arizona (-4.5):  Loss.  23-24.  The Gradkowski way.  Keep your team close and lose in the final minutes.

San Diego (-5.5) at Seattle:  Loss.  20-27.  Looking like the Bolts are regressing this year.

Indianapolis (-5.5) at Denver:  Win.  27-13.  Year two of McDaniels in Denver is off to a rough start.

NY Jets at Miami (-1):  Loss.  31-23.  Jets are 2-0 in AFC East.

Green Bay (-3) at Chicago:  Loss.  17-20.  I know the Packers have green and yellow as their colors, but that doesn't mean you want yellow on the green grass as well.

Week 3 Breakdown:  Record:  6-10.  Favorites:  4-9.  Road Favorites:  4-4.  Home Favorites:  0-5.  Underdogs:  2-1.  Home Underdogs:  0-0.  Road Underdogs:  2-1.

Overall Record:  29-18-1.  Winning Percentage:  61.5%  Favorites:  17-16-1.  Road Favorites:  13-5-1.  Home Favorites:  4-11.  Underdogs:  12-2.  Road Underdogs:  3-1.  Home Underdogs:  9-1.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

NFL Picks Week 3

Tennessee (+3) at NY Giants:  The Benching of Young will motivate him.

Cleveland at Baltimore (-12):  I hate taking double digit favorites, but with the Browns, I'll make the exception.

Dallas (+2.5) at Houston:  I smell an upset here.  Big D might actually run the ball this game.

Detroit (+13) at Minnesota:  I would take the Lions even up.  I see an 0-3 start for the Vikings.

Atlanta at New Orleans (-3.5):  Brees has to start becoming hot one of these games.

Pittsburgh (-1) at Tampa Bay:  Take the under for this game.

Cincinnati (-3) at Carolina:  Welcome Jimmy Clausen.  Hopefully you will impress your next coaching staff.

San Francisco (-1) at Kansas City:  Samurai Mike needs to get his team a win.

Buffalo at New England (-15.5):  Quarterback change won't work in Carolina.  Why expect different results here?

Philadelphia (-2.5) at Jacksonville:  Vick the starter.  Jacksonville defense better have track shoes on.

Washington (-3.5) at St. Louis:  Another long year for the Rams.

Oakland at Arizona (-4.5):  Heckyl and Jeckyl teams.  Let's give Derek Anderson the benefit of the doubt in this game.

San Diego (-5.5) at Seattle:  The Vincent Jackson sideshow won't distract the Bolts that much.

Indianapolis (-5.5) at Denver:  Look for another big game from the Colts running game.

NY Jets at Miami (-1):  This game could go either way to me.

Green Bay (-3) at Chicago:  The only thing that scares me with this pick is Julius Peppers.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Results Of NFL Picks Through Week 2

Week 1 I went 11-4-1.  This week, I did just as well.

Buffalo at Green Bay (-13.5)  Bills 7, Packers 34.  Win.  Is there any hope for some offense in Buffalo?

Pittsburgh (+5) at Tennessee  Steelers 19, Titans 11.  Win.  Who needs Big Ben?

Kansas City (+1) at Cleveland  Chiefs 16, Browns 14.  Win.  Will Mangini be the 1st Head Coach to be released this year?

Philadelphia (-4.5) at Detroit  Eagles 35, Lions 32.  Loss.  Ignore the Eagles QB controversy.  Their defense isn't as good as years past.

Miami at Minnesota (-5.5)  Dolphins 14, Vikings 10.  Loss.  If you are the Vikings, why are you saying that your offensive line is going really well?

Arizona at Atlanta (-7.5)  Cardinals 7, Falcons 41.  Win.  Falcons play Saints next week for control of NFC South.

Baltimore at Cincinnati (+1)  Ravens 10, Bengals 15.  Win.  Flacco and 4 INTs cause loss.

Chicago (+9) at Dallas  Bears 27, Cowboys 20.  Win.  So far, so good for Lovie and Martz.  No so for Phillips and Garrett.

St. Louis (+3) at Oakland  Rams 14, Raiders 16.  Win.  Another quarterback controversy in Oakland?  Who will win: Al Davis or Tom Cable?

Seattle at Denver (-3)  Seahawks 14, Broncos 31.  Win.  Sad story out of Denver about 2nd Year receiver committing suicide on Monday.

Jacksonville at San Diego (-8)  Jaguars 13, Chargers 38.  Win.  Chargers need the holdouts to ensure a Super Bowl run.  

New England (-2.5) at NY Jets  Patriots 14, Jets 28.  Loss.  Now we get to hear all about how the Jets are great yet again.

Houston (-1.5) at Washington  Texans 30, Redskins 27 (OT).  Win.  Offense, Offense, Offense.  That is the Texans mantra, apparently.

NY Giants at Indianapolis (-5)  Giants 14, Colts 38.  Win.  Colts still have a high octane offense that will power them through.

Tampa Bay at Carolina - Update:  Tampa Bay (+3.5) at Carolina  Buccaneers 20, Panthers 7.  Win.  Bucs defense starting to look good again.

New Orleans (-4.5) at San Francisco.  Saints 25, 49ers 22.  Loss.  Reports of 49ers ascendancy greatly exaggerated.

Week 2 stats:  12 Wins  4 Losses.  Taking Favorites:  6-4.  Favorites At Home:  5-1.  Favorites On The Road:  1-3.  Taking Underdogs:  6-0.  Home Underdogs:  1-0.  Road Underdogs:  5-0.

Overall:  23 Wins  8 Losses 1 Tie.

So far, I believe that I am doing OK.  I am hoping to bring up the overall record to over 80% Wins by the end of the season.  Now if I were actually betting on these spreads...

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Great interview with Ken Burns and Lynn Novick

Thank you Tim Goodman and the San Francisco Chronicle for this excellent interview.  It's an hour long and the first half deals entirely with the steroid era.  What I appreciate most is the willingness to talk openly and not prevaricate...this is their opinion; let's talk about it, whether you agree or not.
If you listened to the interview, I'd love to hear your comments.
Like the rest of you, I cannot wait for "The 10th Inning" to come out.
(You can click on the title of this post to get to the podcast or use this link)

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

NFL Picks Week 2

Holy Buckets, Batman!  I went 11-4-1 for week 1 of my picks.  San Fran, Dallas, and San Diego disappointed me as Road favorites.  Saints pushed against Minnesota.  And Denver came close against Jacksonville.  So Week 2 is upon us and injuries are starting to show in the lines of the games.

Buffalo at Green Bay (-13.5)  Pack will light up the scoreboard via Air Mail.

Pittsburgh (+5) at Tennessee  These games are usually nail biters.

Kansas City (+1) at Cleveland  Mike Holmgren needs to continue building the Browns via the draft.

Philadelphia (-4.5) at Detroit  I wouldn't be surprised if Detroit actually won the game.

Miami at Minnesota (-5.5)  AD and Farve will score points in this game.

Arizona at Atlanta (-7.5)  Has anybody seen Matt Ryan lately?

Baltimore at Cincinnati (+1)  Palmer and the boys should rebound after the debacle in New England

Chicago (+9) at Dallas  Julius Peppers, meet Tony Romo.

St. Louis (+3) at Oakland  The Black Hole should represent the entire Raiders organization.

Seattle at Denver (-3)  Seattle blows out San Fran.  Let down against the Broncos.

Jacksonville at San Diego (-8)  Maybe Rivers will fire up his teammates this week instead of the opponent.

New England (-2.5) at NY Jets  Revis and the Jets talk will come back to bite them this week.

Houston (-1.5) at Washington  Skins got lucky against inept Cowboys offense.  Not this week.

NY Giants at Indianapolis (-5)  Peyton losing 2 in a row?  Nope.

Tampa Bay at Carolina - No Line as of this blog post due to Matt Moore's unavailable status for the game.  I will take the team that is getting points, no matter who it is.

Update:  Tampa Bay (+3.5) at Carolina

Thursday, September 09, 2010

NFL Picks Week 1

I figured that I would do NFL picks against the spread this year.  And I might as well do it here on BoSox Tavern.  Let's see how bad I am at this.

Minnesota at New Orleans (-5)
Oakland at Tennessee (-7)
Detroit (+7.5) at Chicago
Denver (+1.5) at Jacksonville
Carolina at NY Giants (-7)
Cleveland at Tampa Bay (-2.5)
Miami (-3) at Buffalo
Indianapolis at Houston (+2)
Cincinnati at New England (-4.5)
Atlanta at Pittsburgh (+1)
San Francisco (-3) at Seattle
Green Bay (-3) at Philadelphia
Arizona (-3) at St. Louis
Dallas (-3) at Washington
Baltimore (+2) at NY Jets
San Diego (-4.5) at Kansas City

Teams with the point spread after their name is who I am predicting to cover the spread.  For example, I am picking the Chargers to beat the Chiefs by more than 4.5 points.  I am picking the Ravens to either win or lose to the NY Jets by less than 2 points.  All odds are from

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

NFL season prognostications

Since I don't do fantasy anything, I thought it might be fun for us to put our picks on the record, more for bragging rights if someone gets lucky rather than being wrong, which we all probably will be.
Prognosticate as much as you'd like.  I'm going to go on record for playoff teams and the Super Bowl match-up and winner.
AFC East -- Patriots (maybe a homer pick but certainly not a stretch...fuck the Jets)
AFC North -- Ravens (sorry, G)
AFC South -- Colts
AFC West -- Chargers
Wild Cards -- Bengals and Texans
I'll just say Chargers and Colts in the conference final; and while I'll be pulling for the 'bolts, I suspect it'll be the Colts

NFC East -- Cowboys (booooo!)
NFC North -- Packers (you're welcome, Rick)
NFC South -- Saints
NFC West -- 49ers (doesn't that division suck)
Wild Cards -- Giants (double boooo!) and Vikings (I wanted to go with Atlanta but their D sucks)
Packers and Cowboys, I guess (who dat dissin' the Saints again?)

I really wanted to "give 'em what they want" but I'm not sure about the Cowboys. 
Colts over Packers in the Super Bowl.  (Steph, if you're smiling about this, I'll be questioning your loyalty)