NFL, NBA or MLB: live and on TV: what do you chose?

Ok, I’ll ask a question:

on television, you get to watch ONE regular season game: MLB (major league baseball), NFL (pro football) or NBA (pro basketball).
Which do you choose? Assume that all are equally meaningful games.

Now same question, but this time, you offered a ticket (with companion of choice) of similar level to MLB, NFL, or NBA. Assume equally meaningful games, pleasant weather, etc.

January 6, 2017 Posted by | baseball, basketball, football, NBA, NFL | Leave a comment

Thank you Chiefs ..for a great season

Workout notes: 4 mile run in 43:50, 2 mile walk afterward (got to 5.4 miles in 1:05, walked 5 laps in 9:30 on the track) I am cutting down.

Baseball notes: the Peoria Chiefs lost a heartbreaker 4-3 to get swept in the opening playoff series by the Clinton Lumber Kings.
Ultimately the difference: the Mariners (the parent club) kept the Lumber Kings together whereas the Cardinals promoted the Chief players as soon as they showed that the time was right. Of course, minor league IS a developmental league and if circumstances warrant, a team that is good in the first half of the season can not be as good in the second half.


These were the free playoff t-shirts that they gave out.


Yes, the opposing pitcher brought a 1.58 ERA to the game and was pitching 3 hit ball (with many strike outs) through 6 innings, and it was 4-0. But after I took this selfie…
I saw why it is now a “6 inning game” for the pitchers. BAM….double, homerun, homerun…it was now 4-3 in the 7’th and the Chiefs had hope!

The pitcher had finally tired. But they had good relief pitching and the Chiefs couldn’t close the gap until…maybe

9’th inning, still 4-3, 2 outs. Then we had a double by a pinch hitter and a walk. Hmmm…then a long hit and the pinch runner was waved on but as he rounded third, I saw the throw and said “he is going to get thrown out”..and he was. The typing run was stopped right at home plate and the game was over.

It is sometimes a game of inches. It wasn’t boring though.


It was a fun season. I am already looking forward to next year….but first some FOOTBALL. 🙂

September 9, 2016 Posted by | baseball, running, walking | | Leave a comment

Why I think that the election remains boring…

Workout notes: weights only; pull ups (5 sets of 10), bench press: 10 x 135, 5 x 185 (good), 9 x 170 (lazy), 10 x 135 incline, military: 7 x 50 dumbbell standing, 15 x 50 seated, supported, 10 x 40 standing. Rows: 3 sets of 10 x 50 (single arm), rotator cuff, squats (many sets, some free, some with 25), abs: 2 sets each: 12 twist crunch, 10 yoga leg lifts, 10 moving half bridge. Rotator cuff and headstand; I got up easily today.

For some reason, I am feeling rested though I am not sleeping much.

Baseball: I saw the second to last regular season Chiefs game last night;

homerandme. I got a selfie with Homer, the Chiefs mascot. I am on the right. 🙂

The Chiefs lost 2-1, but I saw a spectacular throw from the right fielder to deprive the Snappers of a run.

Election President Obama’s approval continues to follow President Reagan’s.


So while the race has tightened just a bit, Clinton remains a heavy favorite. This is reminding me of a mix of 1988, 2008 and 2012.

I still say that this year’s map will look a lot like the 2008 or 2012 one.

September 2, 2016 Posted by | baseball, weight training | , | Leave a comment

Uncertainty …

Workout notes weights only; I was going to walk but I ended up thinking that I needed some rest.

pull ups: 15-15-10-10 (good)
rotator cuff
squats: a few weightless sets
bench press: 10 x 135, 4 x 185, 8 x 170
incline: 10 x 135
military: 2 sets of 10 x 45 standing (dumbbell), 15 x 50 dumbbell (seated, supported0
rows: 2 sets of 10 x 110 machine, 10 x 50 (single arm) dumbbell
2 sets of: 12 twist crunch, 10 yoga lifts, 10 moving half bridges
headstand (easy today)

It seems that on most days, I have a few exercises where I feel good, others where I am “meh”. Today, pull ups were very good. Friday: bench press was good.

Uncertainty Ok, I am 57 years old (minus one day) and I’ve never trained for a marathon at this age. I get the sense that I am saturated with training, and I should probably start a loooong taper..a very gradual taper. Yes, the first marathon is 4 weeks away, and I do have some more 15 milers planned. And yes, I’ll be walking during my marathons; these will be “run/walk”. My days of “racing” these bad boys are over.

And the uncertainty extends to teaching as well. I am always wondering “how much detail do I provide” in a first course? Too much: loses all but the best students. Too little: I end up shortchanging the students. This is the challenge of teaching “a first course”.

Baseball: what a fun season. I saw more games last weekend; yesterday’s was rained out but there is a double header tonight.




The Chiefs have split with the Bees: they won 3-0 on Friday, getting all their runs in the 3’rd inning, and fell 7-5 when the Bees hit the ball very well (2 home runs). And there is this aspect of minor league baseball: some parent clubs have decided to keep their minor league teams more or less intact. On the other hand, the Cardinals have been promoting many Chiefs; hence the team you see in the play offs might not resemble the one that got there. It should be interesting.

August 29, 2016 Posted by | baseball, education, walking | | Leave a comment

driving a lot and trying to run

Whew. I went on the treadmill to try to get some running at a non-survival pace. 20 minutes of 5.2-5.5 (every 5 minutes), 10 at 6.7, 10 at 6.8, (39:45) then walked to get to 54:55 (5 miles). I was drenched with sweat.

Yes, I shuffled a slow 5 yesterday. Trying to snap out of the “driving a lot” mode is tough; I can feel for the trucker who wants to stay in shape.

I did watch a baseball game last night; the Chiefs lost to Cedar Rapids 4-1.



The Chiefs lost talent to promotion but the new players have some time to jell with the rest of the team in time for the playoffs.

I also caught some boxing on replay; I watched the super heavyweight quarter finals; though the fighter from Nigeria lost, I think that he has talent that a trainer could bring out. And I saw a replay of the gold medal match in the heavyweight category; I think that the decision was highway robbery.

August 18, 2016 Posted by | baseball, boxing, running | , | Leave a comment

Columbus adventure photos

These are just photos for my non-Facebook friends.

Baseball the night before
There was a small crowd (2-3 k?) to watch the Chiefs lose to the Timber Rattlers 6-5. But the game was entertaining and I caught a cool rainbow.




The drive over: featured a 3 hour delay because I-74 was shut down (ALL lanes) about 60 miles west of Indianapolis. We were kicked off onto a small 2 lane highway.


Yes, it was truck, truck, truck, truck. The trucks have taken all of the joy out of driving anywhere.

Columbus Day One
I was there for a math conference and I caught some sights while walking:



I walked about 10 km on my “self tour” which took me to the ball park and back to my car….and through the Ohio State campus:






The ball park was nice (Huntington Park); there were 10K people at the game, which was exciting.




August 5, 2016 Posted by | baseball, photos, travel, Uncategorized | , , | Leave a comment

Baseball adventures….

Workout notes: day one in Columbus: first 3.12 on the treadmill (30 minutes); 11 minute warm up mile, followed by “barely under 18” minute 2 miles, plus enough to get to 30 minutes.

Later: I did a “sort of tour, sort of walk” to see some of the Ohio State campus.

Screen shot 2016-08-04 at 11.59.13 PM

This route ws 5.67 miles to get to the stadium; the rest wss getting to the car from the stadium.

This morning, I slept in and walked 5 miles over lunch (got VERY sweaty; died when I got into the air conditioned conference building afterward. It was 5.3 miles at 15:11 mpm (clock kept running as I waited at cross walks).

Screen shot 2016-08-05 at 4.25.40 PM

There is something I like about “almost urban” distance walking. I walked with a purpose, but I did stop at stoplights and one does have to watch for cracks in the sidewalk and other hazards.

The Peoria Chiefs lost to the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers 6-5 on Tuesday night. It was a rough start for the Chiefs. A hit put a runner on base but a pick-off took him off. The next batter was hit by a pitch and the next two batters hit back to back home runs! So, it was 3-0 Rattlers right at the start. Peoria did rally to take a 4-3 lead later in the game. But in the 7’th the Rattlers had three doubles which lead to a 6-4 lead; Peoria made it 6-5 in the bottom of the 8’th but couldn’t get closer.

This game featured a bit of everything including a balk and a spectacular run-down out when the Peoria catcher caught a Rattler runner leading off second base by too much.

Last night, the Columbus Clippers beat the Indianapolis Indians (AAA ball) 9-7, in a game that was delayed by 50 minutes due to rain..and went on for 3:20 or so. Still a crowd of 10,000 showed up.

The pitching was dreadful; between the two clubs there were 16 walks and 22 hits.

The first inning: the Clippers starter allowed hits and walks; he gave up one run and loaded the bases. He was relieved, and the the reliever gave up a grand slam home run on..either the first or second pitch. 5-0, right at the start!

But the Clippers fought back; it was 6-4 after two innings with the Clippers getting 1 run in the first and 3 more in the second. Finally in the 5’th, the Clippers took a 7-6 lead. Never mind that; in the top of the 8’th Indianapolis tied it, but left a lot of runners on base. The Clippers got 2 back in the bottom of the 8’th and then held on.


The fielding was better than class A; the hitting appeared to be better. But the pitching was disappointing; too many walks.

August 5, 2016 Posted by | baseball, running, walking | , | 1 Comment

Chiefs weekend and other stuff

Workout notes weights only today. I went at a leisurely pace.
rotator cuff
squats: 4 sets of 10: (0, 0, 45, 65), goblet 4 sets of 5: 35, 50, 50, 50
pull ups: 10-15-15-10 (switched grip in the 3’d set after 10)
bench press: 10 x 135, 4 x 185, 10 x 170
incline press: 10 x 135
military press (dumbbell) 8 x 50 standing, 15 x 50 standing (seated, supported), 10 x 40 standing
rows: dumbbell, 2 sets of 10 x 50 single arm, 10 x 110 machine.
abs: twist crunch, yoga leg lifts, 2 sets each (12, 10)

Chiefs games I saw a couple this weekend; once with Tracy and Barbara, once with Barbara. The Chiefs beat the Timber Rattlers 1-0 and 5-2.

The second game was especially interesting. The Timber Rattlers hit the Chiefs pitcher at first. But they lost a run when, on a fly ball to the outfield, the runner was called out because he failed to tag up properly.

The Chiefs got 2 two-run home runs, though the 20 year old pitcher for the Timber Rattlers did well until he got tired. The Timber Rattlers got a solo home run of their own.

There were some anxious moments in the top of the 8’th when the Timber Rattlers loaded the bases with no outs (walk, single, error) but then the Chiefs relief pitcher struck out the side.

Of course, you need to see my “selfies”; in the first I DO look like a goat. In the second, I am pouting because Barbara’s Facebook photos are *always* better received than mine.



August 1, 2016 Posted by | baseball, weight training | | Leave a comment

Minor League Baseball, blank slates, and brats

Well, the Chiefs had a 6 game home stand against the Lansing Lug Nuts (Eastern Division leader) and the Great Lakes Loons. The Chiefs went 5-0 and I saw all 5 wins (double header on Thursday, Saturday, Sunday, Monday). The scores: 3-2, 1-0, 4-3, 5-2, 4-3. Great baseball!

Today’s game showed some of the peculiarities of minor league baseball. The Loons races out to a 3-0 lead and their starting pitcher gave up 1 hit and 0 runs through 5 full innings. But by then, he had the pitches that the Dodgers (the parent club) wanted him to have, so in came the first relief pitcher.

The Chiefs got a walk and 2 hits and 2 runs, though, to be fair, an error really caused at least one, if not both runs. With a runner at first breaking on “hit an run” the batter singled to right field. The ball rolled under the glove of the right fielder which enabled the base runner to score and the batter to reach 3’rd base. A shallow single scored the next run.

And the game continued into 11 innings where the Chiefs got 2 on base (2’nd and 3’rd)..and though there was one out, the Loons elected NOT to load the bases. It didn’t matter as a single brought in the winning run.


The crowd was sparse; not many kids groups showed up (due to an initial threat of rain and rain earlier in the morning?). You have a few groups, retirees, students and lazy professors.



Yes, though player development (and talent evaluation) is the primary goal of the minor leagues, the teams enjoy winning.

Blank slate
Many seem to believe that a human is a blank slate, to be molded by parenting and the environment. My dad believed this too; he started to pitch baseballs to me early on. He figured that I would become a baseball player (or football player) IF only I tried hard enough.

Of course, the “blank slate” belief is nonsense. Yes, hard work is a necessary ingredient for excellence, but it alone is insufficient. The talent needs to be there to begin with.

I asked my wife of 20 years “do you think there is anything I could have done to reach this level (“low A baseball”). She said “no.”

But that didn’t stop me from dreaming.

I remember the summer before my 10’th grade year. We’d sometimes go to the softball diamond with its 230 foot fence and do “home run derbies” with a baseball (baseball: Dozer Park is typical with its 315 down the foul lines, 400 dead center).

We thought we were bad asses because we’d sometimes hit one over. And high school girls would sit in the stands…we’d try to show off for them.

But we weren’t bad asses; we were merely brats. 🙂

July 18, 2016 Posted by | baseball, social/political | , | Leave a comment

Attitude …

This “incident” gives you an insight to where I am in terms of attitude.

As I finished my set of incline bench presses, I saw that a young man was using the 50 pound dumbbells. I thought “great…I can use 45 dumbbells instead”….and I was *disappointed* when I saw that he was finished with them. I really didn’t want to push myself with the 50’s.

Today: weights only.
rotator cuff
squats: 10 with 0, 10 with the bar (45 lb.), 5 with 75, 5 with 95, goblet style: 5 with 35, 5 with 50
pull ups: 15, 16, 10, 10 (good)
bench press: 10 x 135, 4 x 185, 8 x 170
incline press: 10 x 135
military (dumbbells), 8 x 50 standing, 15 x 50 (seated, supported), 10 x 40 standing
rows: 2 sets of 10 x 50 dumbbell (single arm), 10 x 110 machine
abs: 2 sets of: 10 yoga leg lifts, 12 twist crunches
1 set of 24 supine crunches, 10 vertical crunches
head stand: a bit less steady than Friday but ok.

Weight: 194 on the house scale upon waking up.

Baseball: The Chiefs won 5-2, getting great hitting and decent pitching. At this level, there is some personal drama though. One player got demoted, one released and one brought up to the Chiefs. That is what this is about: preparing players to play with the Cardinals, but, well, it isn’t going to work out for about 90 percent (or more) of them. But hey, they are getting the chance to try.



July 18, 2016 Posted by | baseball, weight training | | Leave a comment