Thursday, December 31, 2015


We are ready to embark on a new journey. In college football, we await their new playoff system in which fours teams are not complaining about being short-changed in the rankings. The rest will all claim they belong there. Urban Meyer has Ohio St. ready to go. His team is rested and his star running back Ezekiel Elliott is ready too, he just can't drive. He was stopped for speeding, got so many tickets, the cop almost got writers cramp issuing citations. Is he suspended for the Fiesta Bowl? Of course not. This is Ohio St. Laws take a back seat to the "Program." Clemson sent three players home because they failed drug tests. Failed...or got caught?

The NFL completes it's regular season this weekend with a number of teams still fighting for a playoff spot. The rest will be trying to save their coaches jobs. A few will be unsuccessful.
In spite of the NFL continually trying to convince us that they are family oriented, the San Diego Chargers fined all-pro safety Eric Weddle $10,000 and placed him on IR  for watching his 7-year old daughter perform at halftime instead of being in the locker room. In a meaningless game, his team was ahead 23-0 at the time. Bah! Humbug!

The Syracuse Orange lost to Pittsburgh last night and will try again on Saturday against a Miami team whose only loss was by one point against Nebraska. No New Years joy for the Saltine Warriors (Google it).

We've been waiting for Brian Cashman to make a big move and he finally did. The Yanks are the proud owners of a flame-throwing left-handed reliever to give NY the best end bullpen in baseball. They've also acquired a player with a history of women beating. Unfortunately, it's the same person. It will be interesting to see how the NY fans react to him. My prediction? If he strikes out the side in the ninth to save a victory the first or second time out, all will be forgiven.

There may be an additional starting pitcher yet to come, but other than that, the team is complete. Many question marks and few answers. One of the problems is third baseman Chase Headley's defense. He made 23 errors last season when he had never made more than 13 in a season. 11 of his errors were throwing errors which lead some evaluators to think he has the "yips," a mental block when a player can't throw the ball accurately...or at all. Vod refers to that as a"Knob-block" after Chuck Knoblach, who suffered for a long time with that affliction. The good news is that Headley hasn't made any errant throws in months.

In closing, the Chad Picasner at Large team wishes everyone a happy and prosperous New Year.
May all your teams go undefeated  -- unless you're the Boston Red Sox.

"Donald Trump is supporting Pete Rose. I’m going to guess those two met at the barber shop."  -- Brad Dickson
"Mean Gene” Okerlund, the retired rasslin’ announcer, celebrated his 70th birthday at the Waterfront restaurant in Sarasota, Fla. In keeping with the theme, the daily special was sautéed cauliflower ears and pulled hare."  -- Dwight Perry

"Reserve Alabama cornerback has been sent home from the Cotton Bowl by Nick Saban for a “violation of team rules,” Proving once again that coach Saban can be a strict disciplinarian. As long as a reserve player and not a starter is involved."  -- Janice Hough
"The Huffington Post reports a washroom fight broke out among Giants fans during their loss to the Panthers. It all started when someone said the G-Men’s season was down the toilet."  -- RJ Currie
"Just in case Nick Saban’s $6.9 million yearly salary from Alabama isn’t enough to, you know, tide him over, he receives a $125,000 bonus for capturing the SEC title"  -- Bob Molinaro
"ESPN’s Ron Jaworski incorrectly announced that the NFL had overturned Odell Beckham’s one-game suspension. Jaworski was the host of ‘NFL Today, but now he’s the host of the Miss Universe Pageant."  -- Argus Hamilton
"Harlem Globetrotters icon Meadowlark Lemon died Sunday at age 83. Something tells us St. Peter just got a bucket of confetti dumped on his head."  -- Dwight Perry
" The Sports Illustrated Sportsperson of the Year is Serena Williams. Or American Pharaoh if you ask Steve Harvey."  -- RJ Currie
"Nebraska won the NCAA volleyball championship at Omaha’s CenturyLink Center in front of the largest crowd to watch a college volleyball championship game — 17,561. On the downside the CenturyLink Center restrooms could almost accommodate the 561."  -- Brad Dickson

And finally, speaking for all the comedy writers out there:
"As we are about to begin a new year, I’d just like to take a moment to thank Florida. If it wasn’t for Florida I may not have had a career."  -- Brad Dickson


Wednesday, December 23, 2015


...for Cashman to get off his duff and try to swing a trade, is there anything else going on that interests me?

** The Syracuse Orange played a game last night and again, it was not televised here. It wasn't even listed in the paper. Why is that? As sporadic as their play is, it is a Division I  basketball team within 80 miles of Rochester.This is twice this has happened.

** I read that the Nebraska Women's Volleyball team won the National Championship. That brought to mind one of my head-scratching questions: Why do they wear those brief uniforms? It's T-shirts and panties, for crying out loud. Female track athletes wear the same thing except the tops are skimpier. Beach volleyball women wear bikinis - and extremely skimpy ones at that. None of the male participants in these sports dress in a similar fashion. Okay, so TV execs feel that will draw more viewers and I sure like beautiful women, but this is over the top for me. Next thing you know, it will come down to shirts and skins. Let's see ABC put THAT on the Wide World of Sports.

** Just want to make sure nobody misses the Independence Bowl on Saturday at 5:45 p.m. Two teams - Va. Tech and Tulsa - with a total of 12 losses. Odds makers feel neither team can win the game. Not interested? There's the Foster Farms Bowl - Neb./UCLA 11 losses. The Pinstripe Bowl has Duke & Indiana with 11 losses. I think the Oswego High School varsity could give these guys a battle.

** Odell Beckham Jr. of the NY Giants has been suspended for one game for trying to decapitate an opposing player last Sunday. He was called for THREE Unsportsmanlike Conduct penalties during the game. THREE??
Is this Coach Tom Coughlin's new strategy? If you can't beat 'em, beat 'em up? There is no truth to the rumor that Giant players will be armed for the last two games. Maybe the opposing teams should be.

** Why do baseball forecasters love the Boston Red Sox so much? Last year the Red Sox were picked to finish first in the AL East, which I thought was pretty optimistic. The Sox finished last.
This year, FanGraphs again picked Boston to finish first in their division. Okay, this time they did pick up a couple of good players, but it's still the same core players, including two big busts from last year, Hanley Ramirez and Pablo Sandoval. A better team yes, but first place?

Since I probably won't blog again till next week at the earliest, we here at Chad Picasner At Large would like to wish everyone a very safe and happy Christmas.

" According to the N.Y. Daily News, November ended an NFL run of over six years with at least one arrest per month. I’ll say this for Roger Goodell, he really is a man of convictions."  -- RJ Currie
"When diving for a loose ball, LeBron James crashed into Ellie Day, wife of golfer Jason Day, who’s OK after being taken away on a stretcher. To prove NBA superstars usually get the calls, she was whistled for blocking."  -- Brad Dickson
"Rockets wing Trevor Ariza lost a shoe in Tuesday night’s game, so Nuggets guard Will Barton picked it up and threw it off the court — earning himself a technical foul for delay of game. Apparently that’s one traveling violation that NBA refs will call."  -- Dwight Perry
"The Broncos’ are struggling on offense. Omaha has gone back to mostly being a city in Nebraska."  -- Dan Wetzel,
"Drew Brees tonight became the 4th QB in NFL history to throw for 60,000 yards. What might be as astounding, he did it without throwing against the Saints’ defense."  -- Janice Hough
"Baseball pariah Pete Rose, banned for gambling, lost his longshot bid for reinstatement. I wonder how much money Pete lost on that one."  -- Tim Hunter
"The Golden State Warriors of the NBA finally lost a game this week. The Harlem Globetrotters sent them a sympathy card."  -- Tony Chong
"A Minnesota mom sank a half-court shot at Bethany Academy in Bloomington. She got $4,000 off her daughter’s tuition and a contract offer from the Philadelphia 76ers."  -- RJ Currie
"The 3-10 Cleveland Browns have clinched a losing season yet again, for the eighth season in a row. In other words, they’re the NFL equivalent of Aunt Myrtle’s perpetually re-gifted fruitcake."  -- Dwight Perry
"The only way the NY Giants are making the playoffs is if the NFL taps Steve Harvey to announce the post-season matchups."  -- Marc Ragovin
 "New Mexico is playing in the New Mexico Bowl. “We got a bowl bid? Wow! Where are we going?” “Down the street.”  -- Brad Dickson


Sunday, December 13, 2015


...but the fun continues.
**The Cubs keep piling it on. They have signed the best free-agent position player available - Jason Hayward - for $184 million over eight years. That's $23 million a year and normally you'd say wow, but now it's run-of-the-mill. It's seems that Theo Epstein has brought the Red Sox tradition of  "If you can't win it, buy it" to the windy city. Right now, you'd have to say the Cubbies are the favorites - as long as no one gets hurt.

**When I was a kid, back in the 50s and 60s, professional basketball was the best basketball on the planet and it conformed to the rules. I used to listen to the Syracuse Nationals on the radio and rooted for players like Larry Costello, George Yardley (the NBA's first bald-headed player), Dick Barnett and, of course, Dolph Schayes. Dolph passed away this week at age 87. Most sports fans have heard of Danny, his son, but in his day, Rudolph Schayes was the man. At 6 ft. 8 in, 200 lbs, he was a power forward and I mean power. He averaged 18.4 points/game and 12 rebounds in his 15-year career. He could drive to the basket and was so hard to stop that he actually scored over 2000 more free throws than goals. But his real forte was the two-handed set shot usually from a very long distance. It's been over 50 years, but I can still hear the radio announcer calling that shot.
"Rudy, a bomb from 30 feet!"      (pause)        "Swish!"

**ESPN the Magazine had an article this week that indicated that the Heisman Trophy winner can be directly connected to a part of the country that he played in. The number one area was the southeast. There were many fine candidates this year including Chris McCaffrey from Sanford and Clemson QB Deshaun Watson. The winner was Derrick Henry from - you guessed it - Alabama. 

** Brian Cashman says he's not done dealing. Don't you think it's time he got started? He's trading away pitchers like he's overloaded with them. Gone is Adam Warren and Justin Wilson and he's dangling Andrew Miller for all to see. In return, all he's gotten is two minor league pitchers. They are supposed to be premium prospects  but totally unproven. There better be some good presents under the Yankee Christmas tree in the next couple of weeks or Cashman may have to start wearing disguises. Maybe San Diego Padre's uniform would work.

**How bad are the Philadelphia 76ers?  Mike Lupica said it best on the Sports Reporters this morning.
"After 24 games into the season, the 76ers have exactly one more win than the people on this set." 

"A new video shows FSU QB Sean Maguire throwing a football over the stadium wall from the parking lot. Well, the 49ers’ Colin Kaepernick could potentially do that too, the only question would be if he might completely miss the stadium."  -- Janice Hough"
"Cleveland Browns coach Mike Pettine said “repercussions would be harsh” if Johnny Manziel acts out again. Very harsh. The Browns are planning to remove the snow tires from Manziel’s party bus."  -- Brad Dickson
"Monday, Dec. 7 was the darkest day in Seattle in nine years, according to the Cliff Mass Weather Blog. What, you mean it wasn’t Feb. 1 — the day the Seahawks threw away the Super Bowl?"  -- Dwight Perry
"Concerning the mental acumen of persons who use his mythical football predictions for gambling purposes: You probably think khakis are what you need to start a car in Boston."  -- Jack Finarelli
"In the wake of Kobe Bryant’s retirement, don’t look for a symbolic passing of the torch, possibly to Steph Curry—Kobe was never good at passing anything."  -- Bill Littlejohn
"Although it was close early, and Tony Parker took the entire night off, the San Antonio Spurs ended up beating the Los Angeles Lakers 109-87 on ESPN tonight. A great game for those who enjoy watching a cat playing with mice."  -- Janice Hough
"What’s the difference between Dez Bryant and Kobe Bryant? One receives passes but doesn’t pass, the other plays for the Dallas Cowboys."  -- RJ Currie
"Larry The Cable Guy criticized Husker coaches on Twitter. I think he’s upset that with all the close losses, the 2015 Huskers’ team motto was “Almost Git R Done.”  -- Brad Dickson
"The 1-23 76ers host the 24-1 Warriors on Saturday, Jan. 30. No truth to the rumor that they’re billing it as S&M Night."  -- Dwight Perry



Thursday, December 10, 2015


The Silly Season
Trades galore - money flowing like water - sports writers suffering from Carpel Tunnel Syndrome trying to write about all the moves. Sometimes, General Managers want to move players so bad, they don't even care about what they're getting back.

**Red Sox traded INF-OF Garin Cecchini to Milwaukee for cash considerations.  Gee, not even a specific amount?
**The Rockies traded RHP Luis Perdomo to San Diego for a player to be named or cash considerations.  Yeah, anybody that's handy or look, just send me a few bucks instead.
**San Diego acquired OF Jabari Blash from Oakland to complete an earlier trade.  C'mon, we must have been involved in a trade sometime.
**The Cubs traded Starlin Castro to the Yanks for Adam Warren and a player to be named later, presumed to be Brendan Ryan. How's that supposed to make Ryan feel? He's such a secondary part, they don't even name him in the trade.
**Cincinnati designated LHP Jayson Aquino for assignment.  Yeah, we're getting rid of him, we just haven't decided how.
**Milwaukee announced the names of four coaches for next year.  Nobody will trade with us so we'll just hire coaches.

The Orioles, who made an offer of $150 million over seven years for Chris Davis, have pulled back the offer. I guess the check didn't clear. 

This weekend, ESPN will publish an article naming winners and losers among the teams. I wonder is Scott Boras is eligible?

College Football Bowl Games 
There are actually 43 bowl games this year and 84 teams. And EVERY ONE is on national TV, as many as six in one day. There are five other days when there are four or more on.There are so many, they're running out of names. They're running out of teams, too. It used to be, if your record was 10-3, you had a chance to be in a bowl. Now, at 5-7, you're in. The Liberty Bowl features two teams with 11 losses between them. The Independence Bowl teams have 12 losses.
If the local team can't get an invitation, no problem. Start your own bowl. The Military Bowl in Annapolis has Navy in it. Big surprise there. The Texas Bowl has Texas Tech, the Miami Beach Bowl (in Miami, of course) has South Florida. The New Mexico Bowl has New Mexico. You get the idea, right?
Naturally, you'd expect that money would play a big part in the bowl lineup. There's the TaxSlayer Bowl in Jacksonville. You would have to assume that some accountants were behind this one.
There's the Belk Bowl. What's a Belk? Anyone know? Yeah, me neither. Since no one knows, maybe the teams are the Hoyas vs. the Nittany Lions. We don't know what they are, either.
There is the Russell Athletic Bowl. That's got to be tough to get sponsors for that one. "C'mon. Don't you want to be an athletic supporter?"

"A man in Lincoln, Neb., has started a magazine about prison convicts. We already have that, it’s called Sports Illustrated"  -- Brad Dickson
"One of Google’s computer-driven cars was pulled over in California for going too slow. To mark the occasion, they christened it Danica Patrick."  -- RJ Currie
"Douglas Tompkins, 72, who founded North Face clothing, died of hypothermia after his kayak capsized in southern Chile."  -- Janice Hough  [This is a true story - CP]
" Jahlil Okafor of the 76’ers reportedly tried to use a fake ID at a Philadelphia bar in October. The bartender became suspicious when the name on it read ‘Johnny Manziel’"  -- Bill Littlejohn
"A 19-year-old named Bud Weisser was arrested for trespassing at the Budweiser brewery in St. Louis. Coincidence? Every Jack Daniels in town is suddenly under police surveillance in Lynchburg, Tenn."  -- Dwight Perry
"The Steelers' Antonio Brown performed something that's being called a "crotch leap" into the goal post after scoring a touchdown. For some reason I doubt lots of players will be emulating this."  -- Brad Dickson
"Russian hockey player Sergei Gusev just finished a six-month ban for doping. You may recall Gusev: last winter playing river hockey he got a breakaway and wasn’t seen for three days."  -- RJ Currie
"The Phillies have traded their closer, Ken Giles, to the Astros. Well, at least this means Giles might actually start having some games to close."  -- Janice Hough
"It is reported that Manny Ramirez has three sons also named Manny. A reporter called the Ramirez house for comment, but after speaking to three Mannys he still hasn’t gotten hold of the right one."  -- Brad Dickson


Sunday, December 06, 2015


It seems other sports felt left out, so they're getting involved, too.

College football
Iowa (Annie-O's favorite team) lost it's bid to the 'Final Four' and it's undefeated season in a loss to Michigan State. Stanford won big so Janice Hough should be very happy.
So now it's up to the selection committee to irritate at least three teams by not including them in the playoffs. The other Bowl game participants should be announced in a few days , too. That's when I go to work.
The It's-Just-Wrong Dept
Color man description: "He's got to go vertical there."  Translation: He should have passed.

College Basketball
Syracuse lost big. Sure, the scoreboard said 79-72, but the Orange were out of it after 4 minutes. Every game, their outside shooting gets worse and worse. I think they called two timeouts to see if the balls were over-inflated. Unfortunately, they weren't.
Michigan State beat up on little Binghamton College, a small school in the southern tier of New York State. The final score was 76-33. I think MSU played two coaches and a fan for the final 10 minutes.
Louisville 111, Grand Canyon 63. Grand Canyon's defense was so bad, Louisville scored 6 points before the opening tip. The final score was this close only because three Cardinals changed uniforms to play for the Antelopes in the 2nd half. Is Louisville's home court really called KFC YUM! Center? Come on. Are the two locker rooms called 'Wings' and 'Thighs?'
It's-Just-Wrong Dept. 
"He sang the nylon song."  Trans: He scored.

The 'One Dumb Owner' ranks are swelling. The SF Giants have signed Jeff Samardzija for 5 years at $90 million per year. Jeff's not completely pleased since he didn't reach the $100 million mark.The San Fran newspapers can't be too happy either. No matter how they spell Jeff's last name, it will still look misspelled.
We have a winner. If you thought David Price's $31 million per year was outrageous, check this out. Zack Greinke (32 yrs old) will be paid $34.3 million for 6 years. Since he averages 32 starts a year, it means he will make more than one million dollars every time he starts a game. That's about $11,000 per pitch.
Okay, who's next?

Buster Olney has finished his ranking of the top ten players at each position (all MBL), based on input from players and evaluators.  Catcher evaluations include all aspects of catching (including preparation) and hitting. The Yanks Brian McCann was ranked #9. Interestingly enough, Toronto's Russell Martin (former Yank) was #3 and Francisco Cervelli (again, a former Yank) was #4. Maybe 'interesting' isn't the right word.

Pro Football
It's Sunday and pro football day around the country where we watch some 1200 athletes try to avoid a concussion. Which reminds me of one suggestion I read a while ago about how to avoid serious injuries on the field: Make it illegal to wear helmets. Obviously, it will never happen, but think about it.

I don't often say this [although Annie-O says I should], but I was wrong about Dickson's "Bottom Ten" being over with. A computer glitch prevented me from seeing it.
1. UCF (0-12): Any player who signs a letter of intent with UCF must undergo concussion protocol.
3. Eastern Michigan (1-11): Midway through this season the Eastern Michigan Eagle mascot flew south for the winter.
5. North Texas (1-11): I’m trying to confirm the North Texas quarterback missed the last game after phoning in and claiming he had a dentist appointment.
The Syracuse football team earned Honorable Mention this week.
Next week: The final standings

"Wednesday night, an 8-year-old boy heading to a CenturyLink Center restroom at halftime was invited to join the Creighton basketball huddle. Heck, with the typical lines for CenturyLink Center restrooms, he had time to play the second half."  -- Brad Dickson
"To honor Steve Nash’s induction into the Phoenix Suns’ Ring of Honor, Suns players wore socks with Steve Nash’s face on them. Can’t wait to see what the Red Sox come up with for Curt Schilling Induction Day"  -- Dwight Perry
"NFL’s cunning plan of removing one Brady target per week until he has no one left to throw to finally pays off"  -- Fark,com
"Kobe Bryant has announced that he will retire after this season. I wonder how much collectors will pay for his last “air ball”  -- TC Chong
"Zack Greinke signed a 6 year, $206 million deal with the…. Arizona Diamondbacks? Well, maybe Greinke figured he would do better without all that post-season pressure."  -- Janice Hough
"Timofey Mozgov, the Cavaliers’ Russian center, shot 0 for 3 in his only scoreless outing of the season against the Wizards last Tuesday.In other words, nothing but nyet."  -- Dwight Perry
" Browns quarterback Johnny Manziel was demoted to third string after a “party video” of him surfaced on YouTube. My reaction: good thing there was no YouTube when Paul Hornung, Joe Namath and Jim McMahon played."  -- Brad Dickson
"Outfielder Nori Aoki says he signed with the Mariners to win a World Series. That’s like going to the moon for water."  -- Chris Hill via facebook
"BBC News reports Bertie has fought off all challengers to earn the title of world’s fastest tortoise. Anyone else just think of the NFC East?" -- RJ Currie


Friday, December 04, 2015


Die-hard Yankee fans (like me) feel bad when the dreaded Boston Red Sox pull off a coup like signing a true ace (D. Price) to a contract. We wish that Brian Cashman would go out and sign a couple of big names, too. But he won't, and why? Because the Yanks are beginning to have a farm system with some potentially great players. We saw two of them this year make significant contributions and we were told that there are two more that could make a big splash this year - Aaron Judge and Gary Sanchez.

In the Arizona fall league, the Yanks have another power pitcher learning his trade that has superstar potential. His name is Domingo Acevedo. He's 21 years old, 6 foot 7 inches tall and throws 100 MPH. Even his teammates are stunned watching him pitch.

So Brian, don't sign players that require you to give up draft picks. We want to see more of these kids. So thank you Sabathia, Tex, A-Rod and Beltran. We appreciate what you've done in the past but lets see some players approaching their prime instead of those past it.

The effect of David Price's contract  
Does a pitcher who lost 13 games last year with an ERA of 4.96 and a WHIP of 1.30, warrant a $100 million contract? Well that's what Jeff Samardzija is supposedly asking for. In 8 years, he's won a total of 47 games. I like his potential and he is only 30 years old, so 3 years @ $8 million a year would be okay. Beyond that....

Around the horn
If you look at just the score, Syracuse lost a tough game in overtime Wednesday night to Wisconsin. The true story is that Wisconsin exposed some very bad weaknesses of the Orange. They were out rebounded so badly, I don't even want to tell you the numbers. They missed 9 of 20 free throws and they shot horribly. Boeheim was right; when they shoot well, they can beat anybody. When they don't, they currently have no other aspect of the game to fall back on.

Rodgers to Rodgers touchdown wins the game for the Packers last night. The game should have ended when Aaron Rodgers was sacked by Devin Taylor, but...he grabbed Rodger's face mask and the Packers got a free play even though the clock said the game was over. 61 yards later, it was. The longest game winning touchdown in NFL history.

Buster Olney is ranking the top ten players at each position. So far, he's gone thru starters, relievers, first base, 2nd base, 3rd base, SS and left field. Dellin Betances was the #4 reliever and Brett Gardner, the #8 left fielder. Doesn't look too good for New York.

"Understand that Zack Greinke is choosing between competing offers from the SF Giants and LA Dodgers. Now, it’s a big decision. But regarding a bidding war that comes down to money -once you have $200 million, even with California tax rates, can’t you buy anything you ever wanted? And feed your family to boot?"  -- Janice Hough
" Tiger Woods does not know when he will return after his latest back surgery. Eldrick’s back may eventually heal, but that “Nike logo 9 iron” brand will be forever embedded in his backside."  -- Tony Chong
" On the way to Arrowhead Stadium, the Buffalo Bills' team bus broke down. Normally when this happens it's in New England after Tom Brady and Belichick let the air out of the tires."  -- Brad Dickson
"Headline in the Detroit Free Press: B1G awards: Michigan’s Jake Butt named Tight End of the Year."  -- Dwight Perry
" Reuters reports an Indiana Labrador shot its owner in the foot. Not to be outdone, New Orleans claims a team of Pelicans keep shooting themselves in their own feet"  -- RJ Currie
"The next "Star Wars" film takes place so far into the future that the Golden State Warriors have lost a game."  -- Brad Dickson
"A miracle has occurred, the 76ers won a game and are now 1-18. Since they play in the NBA’s Eastern Conference that means Philadelphia should be right in the playoff hunt."  -- Janice Hough
"Russia has handed marathon runner Maria Konovalova a two-year ban for using performance-enhancing drugs. Coincidence? The last time she raced, she lapped the field five times."  -- Dwight Perry
"Too bad that tonight’s NFL game wasn’t a playoff affair, otherwise it would be forever remembered as “The Motown Miracle”.  -- TC Chong
"Scientists analysed over 2000 singers and songs to find the most feel-good song ever sung. Not under consideration: the Carl Lewis rendition of the Star Spangled Banner."  -- RJ Currie


Wednesday, December 02, 2015


Scott Boras must be in Uber-agent heaven. The Boston Red Sox signed David Price to a seven-year deal worth $217 million. That's $31 million a year. It doesn't matter who Price's agent is, this deal raises the bar for all the other free agent pitchers that are available. There's Wei-Yin Chen, Johnny Cueto, Zack Greinke and Scott Kasmir to name a few. They were all going to get big money anyway but now they'll be asking super big money. It's one thing to pay a position player to a long term deal for big dollars. Even at 40 years old, A-Rod is still productive. Okay, maybe not $27 million productive, but productive. How's that compare to CC Sabathia? Pitchers are much too fragile for these types of contracts. Maybe this will work out for Boston, but it's been proven that you can't buy a pennant. Seven players - Hanley Ramirez, Pedro Sandoval, David Ortiz, Clay Bucholz, Dustin Pedroia, Rick Porcello and Craig Kimbrel - will cost the Sox $98 million alone. And three of them are pitchers.
But let's not forget, the Yankees have the same problem: Five players (Teixeira, Sabathia, Ellsbury, Tanaka and Alex Rodriguez) will make more than $110 million combined next season.

The Red Sox have also signed one of the Yankees more productive players from last year: Chris Young. The Sox already have 6 outfielders on their roster and this just adds to the log jam.

So the Silly Season is off and running and the Winter Meetings don't even start for another five days.
**The Orioles have traded for Mark Trumbo who can hit home runs but needs a daily introduction to his glove. His on-base percentage is extremely low, too. The O's first baseman last year, Chris Davis is a similar player - home runs but not much else. Davis is a free agent who figures to cash in on his 47 homers last year, so Trumbo is a hedge against the loss of Davis.
**The Indians signed a contract with Joba Chamberlain. They have promised him that there will be no midges in the stadium next year. I guess if you wait long enough, items will show up in a contract that you wouldn't believe.
**The San Diego Padres have unveiled new uniforms for 2016. It won't help; they'll still be recognized.
**David Price is now one of FOUR players making $30 million or more a year. Some evaluators think that Zack Greinke may be the fifth. They believe he may get $165 million over 5 years - $33 million a year.

It appears that the "Bottom Ten" item that Brad Dickson publishes every week is gone until next year. Too bad. It was always good for some of the best lines I've read all year.

Phil Mushnick, columnist for the NY Post, hates when football analysts fracture the English language with "colorful" terms for standard plays. This what he terms, " When I nod my head, you hit it."  Here are a few of his favorites (?):
 "lost his eye-discipline"  (Translation: He lost the ball)
 "He has arm-talent."   (He can throw hard)
"willing to run downhill"  (he tries to gain yards)
"not put the ball on the ground"  (Don't fumble)
"has had some off-the-field issues"  (He was arrested)
 "He found a receiver in space"  ( he was open)

I believe there are 80 bowl games this year.  I'm sure there will be some interesting names involved. I will keep you informed.


"According to a study, the Buffalo Bills have the drunkest fans in the NFL. You think there’s a lot of competition for that Super Bowl trophy."  -- Brad Dickson
" LeBron James is saying now that he regrets that he didn’t meet Kobe Bryant in the NBA finals. Well, yeah, who wouldn’t want to have played Kobe’s Lakers lately in the NBA finals."  -- Janice Hough
" Browns coach Mike Pettine suggested a successful NFL QB needs to make sacrifices, which Johnny Manziel doesn’t understand. I’ll say. If Manziel was a kamikaze pilot, he’d already have flown 39 round trips."  -- RJ Currie
"Imagine Johnny Manziel, sitting there, taking classes for three years at Texas A&M. Yeah, neither can I."  -- Phil Mushnick
"Cowboys QB Tony Romo is out for the season after breaking his collarbone for the second time in nine weeks. In other words, he has a snap count of two."  -- Dwight Perry
"Russia suspended one of its own women distance runners for performance enhancing drugs. For the Russians to do this, she must have had PEDs oozing from her ears."  -- Brad Dickson
"So let me get this straight, the NFL rules say SOMEONE has to win the NFC East?  -- Janice Hough
"Buffalo’s team bus broke down en route to Arrowhead Stadium on Sunday, laying claim to the NFL’s first stalled drive of the day. The Bills, simply out of habit, emerged from the bus in punt formation."  -- Dwight Perry
"Ex-Yankee great Derek Jeter retired with 260 major league home runs. Or 261 if you include getting engaged to SI Swimsuit Issue cover girl Hannah Davis."  -- RJ Currie


Saturday, November 28, 2015

Just for Chad

"I'd say that it's hard to believe that he would take these positions, but his history makes you realize that this is nothing unusual for him."

Of course it's not unusual. Anything and everything Roger says or does in relation to the NFL, excuse me, THE National Football League, has been certified, approved and in the sole best interests of his employers, the owners of NFL, excuse me, THE National Football League, teams.

Roger, the individual, is irrelevant, replaceable, obedient, loyal and willing to hold any position when instructed to do so by ownership, even when the position flies in the face of logic, science, ethics, morality... 

Blaming Roger easily dismisses Kraft, Jones, Pegula, Irsay, Snide(r) and the rest of the pack from scrutiny. 

Make fun of the straw man. Slay the Judas goat. Remain stupid. 

And according to 'Mr. America's Team', " Who doesn't like watching an almost human  pinochio use his lying nose to check 32 prostrates?"

Friday, November 27, 2015


Happy Thanksgiving everyone. Haven't posted in a while, I've been busy (doing what I don't know). Lotsa things happening in the world of sports, so lets take them one at a time:
Yankees make a big move
No, wait, they didn't. Unless you consider the acquisition of Aaron Hicks, a fourth outfielder, a big move. For him, they had to give up John Ryan Murphy. I like Murphy, but the Yanks have what they consider to be a plethora of good catchers.
Of course, as usual during the "Silly Season," New York is listed as a potential landing spot for every major free agent. They probably won't make any kind of big move for two reasons: 1) they're still trying to pare their payroll because of the big contracts they're locked into for players no one would be willing to take off their hands. 2) Other than a starting pitcher, they have no position for any major free agent that's available. In fact, we may see a couple long time Yankees moved - Bret Gardner and/or Adam Warren. There is also a remote possibility that Rookie sensation Greg Bird may be packaged and sent somewhere, but they would have to be overwhelmed to move him.
Rumors abound at the Winter Meetings
This is normal and a few signings or trades do take place, but it usually takes one big name to sign to open the logjam and set the market. The Meetings don't start for another nine days, so I doubt there will be any major moves until then. Normally the agents try to play clubs off against each other to get the biggest contracts. This is called the "Scott Boras Gambit," because he figures that if he waits long enough, some team will panic and offer some outrageous sum. Unfortunately, this usually works.
By the way, Boras still insists that Jose Fernandez will have some kind of pitch count ceiling next season, regardless of what the Marlins say.
There is parity in the NFL
Outside of five or six teams, no one has a really good record. In fact, the Indianapolis Colts (AFC South) ans The NY Giants (NFC North) lead their divisions with 5 and 5 records. We could have a few teams in the playoffs with records of .500 or below. This isn't parity, it's mediocrity.
Sad news
The family of the recently deceased Frank Gifford allowed the medical community to examine his brain and they discovered CTE, (Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy), a brain disease linked directly to brain trauma. thought by many to be caused by trauma resulting from concussions. Further tests are forthcoming.  NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has acknowledged the situation which is quite a change from his previous stances: CTE doesn't exist. - It isn't caused by concussions. - There are no concussions in football. I'd say that it's hard to believe that he would take these positions, but his history makes you realize that this is nothing unusual for him.
College Basketball
The Syracuse Orange basketball team plays for the championship of the Battle 4 Atlantis Tournament in the Bahamas this afternoon. They're are only 5 games into the season, but the Orange do look like they have some talent. Surprising? Yes, a little. Boeheim explains it this way: "When we hit our shots, we win. When we don't, we could lose to anybody."            I better write that down.
College Football
There are 12 teams in D-1 football with one loss or less and at least 9 wins, with 2 teams at 11-0. So when the CFP selection committee finally chooses the four teams that will play for the championship, there will be at least eight other teams screaming foul. This should be lotsa fun.
Wisconsin Badger fans pelted their own cheerleaders with snowballs, driving them off the field. Sometimes the cheerleaders are the most entertaining thing on the field, but when your team is 8-3, how can you be bored with the game?
Brad Dickson' Bottom Ten
 2. Eastern Michigan (1-10): The Eagles used the bye week to prepare to lose really good to Central Michigan Friday.
 3. Kansas (0-11): KU fell to West Virginia 49-0. The Mountaineers had three 100-yard rushers. Four if you count the dean of the College of Agriculture.
 4. Wyoming (1-10): Well, things could be worse in Laramie — no wait, they couldn’t.

Just for Vod
 To my limited knowledge, Lebron James did nothing to upset me this week. I guess the uniform issue has been resolved (in all likelihood in King James' favor).
In spite of my dislike of the NBA, I could watch highlights of Steph Curry all day.
Temper, temper
Milwaukee Bucks coach Jason Kidd has been suspended for one game without pay for aggressively pursuing and confronting a game official, slapping the ball out of his hands and not leaving the court in a timely manner upon his ejection. Now THAT would be entertaining.

"National Geographic picked Winnipeg as one of the world’s Top 20 Best Trips of 2016. Unless you’re looking for professional football."  -- RJ Currie
"During a timeout in a game vs. the Lakers, a Golden State fan hit a free throw, a mid-range jumper and a half-court shot. The Lakers are now being out-shot by Golden State fans."  -- Brad Dickson
"I could’ve scored 80 tonight,” said the Lakers’ Kobe Bryant after scoring four points on 1-for-14 shooting in a 34-point loss to the Warriors Tuesday night. “It wouldn’t have made a damn difference.” Though it would’ve been fun watching him take the 280 shots he would’ve needed to do it."  -- Dwight Perry

"There is a glut — as in 40 — of college bowl games this season: “The only reason to watch the majority of those bowl games is if you are in a hospital bed with an IV-drip and sensors to monitor your vital signs and you cannot reach the remote to change the channel and the nurses are busy."  -- Jack Finarelli, The Sports Curmudgeon
"This Thanksgiving, President Obama may pardon a turkey, the Cowboys and the Eagles"  -- TC Chong
" The Saints fired defensive coordinator Rob Ryan after three seasons. He wasn’t even there long enough to get a haircut."  -- Brad Dickson
"76ers rookie Jahlil Okafor apparently knocked a guy out in a street fight in Boston last night. Of course Okafor should know better. But hey, it might be the only win he can remember this year."  -- Janice Hough
"Color blind viewers said they couldn’t decipher the difference between the all red and all green uniforms worn on last Thurs night’s NFL Bills/Jets game. “Why didn’t I think of that?said Broncos QB Peyton Manning after he threw four interceptions on Sunday."  -- TC Chong
"Agent Scott Boras told the Miami Marlins that his client, pitcher Jose Fernandez, needs to be placed on an innings limit. Boras somehow neglected to mention imposing a corresponding pay limit, of course."  -- Dwight Perry

"To persons who use my mythical football predictions for gambling purposes. If stupidity were an Olympic event, you would be Mark Spitz."  -- Jack Finarelli
"The Saints have surrendered an NFL-worst 424 yards and 31.5 points per game. I thought ‘defensive indifference’ occurred only in baseball."  -- TC Chong
"President Obama pardoned the White House turkeys named Honest and Abe. Someone called "Hey Honest!" and the only one in Washington D.C. to turn around was the turkey."  -- Brad Dickson
"Floyd Mayweather expressed sympathy for Ronda Rousey by saying “A true champion can take a loss and bounce back.” The guy was 49-0. How would he know?"  -- RJ Currie


Thursday, November 19, 2015

Who's In Charge - Part III

No, the ‘lesson’ for or from the best player in the league isn’t, “Do whatever you want.” The lesson from LeBron was his shirt was too tight. The lesson from the Cavaliers’ ownership is that they are smart enough and have egos small enough to admit a smart, informed, influential  person into their decision making group - even though, oh my god, he’s a player! 

The lesson from C. Picasner is that he will take a minor “incident”, that is LeBron James ripping the seams on the sleeves of an overly tight T-shirt style basketball jersey to allow more freedom of movement and turning that into a rationale for denigrating an extraordinary talent, teammate and successful businessman.


Not sure given his proclamation that, “I have no interest in professional basketball.” Taking him at his word, apparently, then, his only interest was in ripping James. 

Monday, November 16, 2015


Vod is right. LeBron is a great player who can do it all. There isn't a team in the NBA who wouldn't want him to play for them. So I guess the message is, if you're the best in your sport, you can do whatever you want. The rules are for everybody else. Of course, this is the league where the rule against hanging on the rim is never enforced, where walking is never called, they never heard of palming the ball and offensive calls don't exist. So start playing 'shirts and skins' for all I care.
Which is why I have no interest in professional basketball.

The management of the Miami Marlins has decided that THEY are in charge of their baseball team. Scott Boras has gotten involved with the way the Marlins are handling their best pitcher, Jose Fernandez. He wants some kind of innings limit placed on him, to "protect" him. Marlins president, David Sampson, has told the media that they are in contact with the team doctor concerning the welfare of Fernandez, and he has no intention of talking to or listening to Boras' opinion on the subject. They will do what's best for the team and Fernandez. He also said if Boras is so enlightened on the care of pitchers and running a team, he should go out and buy his own team and then he will discover exactly what's involved with running a franchise. No love lost here.

Just my opinion:
There will be a discussion at the Winter Meetings in December about the use of replay. It seems that replay has spawned a use that no one thought about when it was instituted, especially when it's used to check on runners popping up after sliding into a bag and coming off the bag for a millisecond. This is when the talk runs to the so-called "spirit of the rule," which is as slippery a slope as I've ever heard. I have no particular love for Joe Torre, but he's made a good point here. 
 "I always thought baseball was such a simple game to play," Torre said with a grin. "Before replay, we accepted the imperfections of our game. And now since replay, we're impatient with a play that may be missed."
Another point: is it possible that umpires have become less careful (?) about their calls, since replay will correct any mistakes they make and no one berates them because they got it wrong? 
Also to be discussed is giving the umpires leeway to allow the proper number of bases a runner can advance after fan interference, correction of calls with replay, etc. This should have been corrected years ago. Back in the 50s & 60s, the number of bases allowed was at the discretion of the umpires. I was not aware that they had changed it. 

Individual awards for this past season: 
The Gold Glove awards were announced this week. Eric Hosmer of the Royals won it for first basemen. He's a terrific fielder, but I have to say that you could line up all 30 first basemen and I take Mark Teixeira without even looking at the other candidates every time. The man is a vacuum at first base and I hope he was overlooked because he missed over 50 games because of injury. And you're right, I'm prejudiced.
Brian McCann won the Silver Slugger award for catcher. He led AL catchers in homers and RBIs, but not in other categories, so I'm not sure exactly what determines the winners here. 

Every year, there is talk about certain pro basketball teams "tanking" (losing on purpose) in order to get a higher position in the draft. You never hear about it in baseball, but isn't that exactly what teams do all the time when they trade off their best players for future draft picks, stripping the team and insuring a terrible season? That's what the Atlanta Braves are doing right now and what analysts think Cincinnati will start doing soon. The idea is that you stock your farm system with a lot of good young prospects and be able to produce a powerhouse team in 2 or 3 years that will be a contender for a while. Oh, and the players will be a lot cheaper too, but that's not the reason (wink-wink).

My favorite placard on College Game Day: "Couldn't think of anything"
Brad Dickson's Bottom Ten: 
 1. UCF (0-10): The Knights didn’t play this week. Either that, or school officials were too embarrassed to report the score.
 6. Charlotte (2-8): The 49ers’ season reaches its nadir with a loss to UTSA. Can we check to see if Charlotte’s two wins this season were over accredited programs and not intramural teams?
 7. North Texas (1-9): The Mean Green lost 24-0 to Tennessee. Desperate to not run up the score in the fourth quarter, the Vols played some people who were tailgating next to the stadium.
 10. UCF (0-10): UCF is having a season so miserable it merits a second mention in this week’s Bottom 10.

"Sacramento has passed a law that will see sleeping or snoring people kicked off public transportation. So much for taking a bus from Kings games"  -- RJ Currie

"Officials called the Gonzaga-Pitt season opener in Japan at halftime due to a slippery playing surface. In other words, they scheduled two basketball teams — and a hockey game broke out." -- Dwight Perry
" A Baltimore Ravens fan mourned the team’s record earlier this season by eating six purple crayons. I’m just glad he didn’t resort to something dumb."  -- Brad Dickson
"A 12-carat Blue Moon diamond sold at auction for $48.5 million: “OK, what’d Kobe Bryant do this time?"  -- Ian Hamilton
"Former heavyweight champ Mike Tyson endorsed Donald Trump. Tyson joins Trump’s biggest group of supporters: “People Who Have Been Hit in the Head a Lot."  -- Conan O'Brien
"Bartolo Colon is so old, when he walks into the dugout he asks; ‘Now why did I come in here?"  -- Alex Kaseberg
"Danica Patrick  told USA Today she’d rather be called pretty than sexy. Fair enough; at least she doesn't have to worry about being called champion."  -- RJ Currie
"We have good outside shooters. Unfortunately, we play our games indoors."  -- Stony Brook head coach Steve Pikiell
"Cowboys coach Jason Garrett says Dez Bryant should have handled Thursday’s tirade directed at the media differently. but “I believe that 100 percent of our guys do things the right way about 98 percent of the time.” Did they legalize marijuana in Dallas and not tell us?"  -- Janice Hough


Thursday, November 12, 2015

Only God Can Make a River, but Only Man Can make It Burn

Chad asked, “Who’s in charge here?” in his LeBron James mini-rant. Thank your favorite deity it is the most basketball-knowledgeable person in Cleveland and, arguably, currently the best player in the NBA.

LeBron's on-court skills are on display for all to see and appreciate. Less visible but more significant is the level of respect he receives from his peers. Not only is he recognized as a force of nature on the court but as an extraordinary teammate in the locker room and, off the court, a great ambassador of the game and Cleveland. 

Cleveland ownership and fans recognize what a powerful force James is in enticing other high quality players to come to Cleveland, aka The City of Light, The City of Magic - Home to the Cuyahoga River that inspired the line, Only God can make a river but only man can make it burn.

I’m sure Knick fans, among oh so many others, would love to have LeBron as the answer to “Who’s in charge here?”

Sunday, November 08, 2015


This is that lull in the sports world (for me at least), when I have to watch sports that don't really interest me. Things like college football and pro basketball. Oh sure, there is a lot of athleticism involved and I do end up watching some of them and even enjoy a good portion. I'll start to get interested in pro football a little - the NY Giants at least - until they're out of it, then, well, there's always movies.
There was an interesting highlight on ESPN this morning, Arkanasas Coach Bret Bielema's post-game interview after his unranked Arkansas team upset #19 Ole Miss in as exciting a finish as you'll ever want to see. So was the interview.

We watched some college football the other day and Annie-O asked me who I was rooting for. I just shrugged and she said, "Me neither. It's kind of a relief to just watch and NOT get emotionally involved, isn't it?"  She was right. It was nice to be able to think, "Good hit," followed by "Nice defensive play," for the same situation. And my opinion of the strategies were much more dispassionate than when I tell Annie-O that "Joe Girardi's parents were never married." 

Now it's time for The Silly Season, when all the baseball rumors surface, some though-provoking, some realistic, most wishful thinking, but in the long run...all Silly. We can discuss these as they surface. In the meantime:

The world of the professional athlete
What do you do if you don't like your teams uniform? You could complain, - probably won't help - or you could lobby to be traded to someplace with a "cooler" uniform. Unless you're LeBron James, or should I say, King James? He decided he didn't like the sleeves on the Cavaliers uniform, so he tore them off. In the middle of the game against the Knicks. I also read the he initially approved the uniform (I can't believe I just wrote that) before Cleveland dared change it. Now I believe we will see sleeveless uniforms in Cleveland from now on.    Who's in charge here? (As if I didn't know.)

Dallas Cowboy Greg Hardy goes whippy on the sideline, shoving a coach and yelling at teammates, during the game. Worth a suspension in my book, but in owner Jerry Jones' book.  Much worse is the fact that pictures finally showed up about Hardy's domestic-violence incident from 2014. Hardy allegedly began hitting his girlfriend Nicole Holder, throwing her into a bathtub, dragging her on the ground, and later slamming her onto the couch with the guns, then choking her. Jones did nothing about all this, calling Hardy " of the real leaders."                                   That big blank space here was while I was getting up off the floor. The Players Union was no better, getting the original 10 game suspension reduced to 4 games.  Somehow Hardy got the Domestic Violence charges expunged, and after all, he is "a real leader."

Fame is fleeting (not a Yogi-ism ) as some baseball players found out this past World Series. Nobody could get out Daniel Murphy of the Mets earlier in the playoffs, but during the World Series, you'd have to say he was less than ordinary. The jokes have already started ["Daniel Murphy went Halloweening and did well, but then he began dropping all his candy"]
Yoenis Cespedes hit like Babe Ruth during the Mets stretch run, winning games with his bat and with his glove.  Then the World Series began and he played like Ruth Bader Ginsberg. In retrospect, he was hurt during the series. I don't think free agency is going to be as big a payday as these two guys were expecting. 

Which brings up another point. Met Manager Terry Collins was so bad managing during the Series, that I almost began to appreciate Joe Girardi.   Almost.  He let Cespedes hit after he fouled a pitch off his knee. The guy couldn't walk, let alone run. He could have hit the ball off the left field wall and still been thrown out at first. Where's the upside of the that decision? He let Matt Harvey talk him into letting him go out for the ninth inning of a shut-out in a game the Mets absolutely had to win. Okay, maybe that had some value, but when Harvey couldn't find the plate with the first hitter, he let him stay in again and the rest is history. Well, Collins did get the team to the World Series so now the Mets have to keep him. 

I never realized this. No baseball player has ever accepted the 'qualifying offer' that teams can offer potential free agents.Sometimes this works, sometimes it doesn't. Let's see what happens this year.

An article on line this week revealed how Tom Brady spends his millions. Why did that need a whole article? Have you seen a picture of his wife?  

"Cincinnati is 8-0. Who’d a thunk the Bengals would lead the NFL in any category but arrests?"  -- Janice Hough

"On Miami’s eight-lateral kickoff return to beat Duke, every Hurricane player who counted all the laterals received three credits in math."  -- Brad Dickson
"How did the San Antonio Spurs manage to sign All-Star forward LaMarcus Aldridge: “I was there. I was involved. I spoke. I begged. I got on my knees. I offered my children. Things like that."  -- Coach Gregg Popovich
" Who’s announced more GM recalls in Detroit this century — the auto maker or the NFL team?"  -- Dwight Perry
"Ex-Louisville assistant basketball coach, Andre McGee, allegedly paid for stripper parties on campus for freshmen and recruits. Nobody noticed because they were busy at stripper parties for sophomores, juniors and seniors."  -- RJ Currie
"Ohio residents voted down a referendum to legalize marijuana. Which means there is still no legal way to enjoy a Cleveland Browns game."  -- James Corden, CBS

"The Fox broadcast booth for the World Series included Pete Rose and Alex Rodriguez. Which raises the question: How’d they miss John Rocker?"  -- Brad Dickson
"Speaking of drinking, has anyone noticed the color of Denver coach Gary Kubiak’s hair? I wonder how many bottles of Grecian Formula he drinks in a day?"  -- TC Chong
"In recalling his role in one scene in the 1967 film “The Dirty Dozen”: “Got it in one take. I didn’t want to hit that concrete too many times.”  -- Former Brown great, Jim Brown
" Does anyone doubt that if Greg Hardy had a real job instead of playing for the NFL, that he’d be in jail now?"  -- Janice Hough
"Suspended FIFA president Sepp Blatter reportedly has said “he doesn’t feel he is out of his job.” No surprise. He probably doesn’t feel he is out of his mind either."  -- RJ Currie
"The Chinese Communist Party has banned golf, excessive drinking and adultery. In that order, I assume?"  -- Brad Dickson
"The folks voting in the college football polls are pulling their votes out of their ears. The polls mean nothing; the voters do not know which team is the #9 team in the country any more than a politician knows truth from falsehood."  -- The Sports Curmudgen


Friday, November 06, 2015

A Four-Season Sport in the Finger Lakes

Many people regard golf, if at all, as the mindless pursuit of knocking a little ball into a slightly larger hole cut into manicured short grass somewhere up yonder. Theirs is not a wholly inaccurate, although simple, definition of the game. The error is the inclusion of ‘mindless’.

Golf requires the full engagement of the mind to best identify the results you want to achieve and all of the elements required to reach those results; and then the real fun begins, executing the shot.

Golfs inherent beauty is in the personal engagement, performed outdoors and always alone, even if playing in a group There are no teammates to pick you up when you fail, no umpires or referees other than yourself to call fouls and the varying physical conditions each successive shot presents guarantees constant challenge. 

Most mornings, Laura, my wife, goes to the gym. I head to the course to walk at least nine holes every day.

November in the Finger Lakes is one of my favorite times to play. When temps are in the high 40s to mid 50s, the wind blowing a little harder and when any given day might include a mix of sun, clouds, rain and snow, you never have to worry about tee times, slow play or greens left pock marked by irresponsible players. Play at whatever pace you like .Take the time to enjoy the wild fall skies and landscapes that still retain fall color. 

The fair weather players were out this week with temps in the 70s. November, thankfully, returns on Sunday sending the faint of heart back inside . There are still a few hardy people who understand that golf is best played out of doors, where there is weather. You know, that stuff you encounter when you walk the dog. 

Bob the Golfer, Tony and Smoker Jim, MowerMan and Norm will play until the real ‘end of season’. All that it takes to enjoy golf as a four season sport is the right gear and a keen sense of humor. 

A little madness helps.