Category Archives: Sports

Yankees Set World Series Record.

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 Derek Jeter and Alex Rodriguez struck out three times each in the second game of the 2009 World Series. It was the first time in baseball history that a leadoff hitter and cleanup hitter woofed at least three times apiece in the World Series.

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Melanie Oudin’s Shoes.

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This is simply magic. Melanie Oudin. Shoes she designed herself. Rolling into history at the US Open.

It doesn’t get any better than that.

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Check this out while it lasts.

marlinsnumberone

That is from ESPN’s Power Rankings on the second week of the new season. Rub your eyes all you want, it is real.

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Mark Fidrych will be remembered forever.

(Editors note: I wrote this one year ago when the new major league baseball season was about to begin. Mark Fidrych died today, and in his honor I will re-post it each year on April 13th. Fly on, Bird. Fly on.)

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That was Mark Fidrych at the height of his inspirational Rookie of the Year season. He lit a fuse that exploded all over the baseball world, bringing joy to the masses. He gave everyone a call to arms, celebrating his unique kookiness while performing at the top level of his sport. He was a freak, but he was really, really, really good. He quickly became a star.

It did not last. His body could not keep up with his spirit. For one charmed season, a season that will last forever in history, Mark Fidrych showed us the full potential of the individual. Then he was gone.

Keep an eye skinned. Maybe this is the year someone special will pop up to take his place as the coolest baseball player ever, maybe not. We shall see.

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The Columbus Blue Jackets are in the Stanley Cup Playoffs!

blue-jackets

It took seven long years, but now it has happened. The last NHL  team that had never qualified for the Stanley Cup Playoffs is going to the postseason.

I grew up in Newark, Ohio. Columbus was very close to home. I can hardly believe that there is a major league sports team there, but they are about to make hockey really fun to watch for a month.

Congratulations Blue Jackets. Give us a nice run, we will be following every face-off.

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Squirrel Girl Sports Set?

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Of course it would not be limited to the bushy-tailed wonder that is Doreen Green, but what do you think about a Vs. System Sports Set? All aglow from the Florida Marlins’ smashing success on Opening Day this year, I’m dreaming of some seriously athletic superhero cardboard this morning.

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Sports and spandex seem to be two great tastes that taste great together. Comic books and organized athletics share a love of myth. There would be a massive library of great art, and a natural source of strategy thematics. I would really dig a Vs. System Sports Set, no matter what characters we trot out.

You?

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Another Opening Day in Miami.

Opening Day.

That just about says it all. The dreams, the realities, the hope and the beauty of our fair city on Opening Day. I love you Miami!

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I got my Greatest Hits.

The best thing about memories? They don’t have an expiration date.

It’s a glorious Sunday morning and I just stumbled upon a trading card that will live forever in my thumping little heart. I can still feel the envelope in my hands the day I opened the Congratulations You Won letter.

Thanks Upper Deck, I still got my Greatest Hits.

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Richard Zednik Celebrates Slashed Throat Injury With Killer Game.

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Maple Leafs Panthers Hockey

Wow. Just got back from one of the most emotional and incredible hockey games I have ever seen.

On the one-year anniversary of Richard Zednik’s life-threatening skate-to-the-neck freak injury, our Slovak Supremo scored a game-tying goal to cap a thrilling comeback from 4-1 down in the third period against the Toronto Maple Leafs here at home.

Then he buried the winner in overtime.

What a tribute to the human body and its ability to regenerate. What a tribute to the human spirit. What a thrilling night to be a Florida Panthers fan.

It’s a beautiful thing.

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Upper Deck Stops Producing Vs. System, Florida Marlins Unveil New Ballpark.

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As you have heard, Upper Deck will no longer be producing sets in the Vs. System for the Marvel and DC Comics properties. While there are a variety of factors that led to this decision, it is important to stress that Upper Deck and the Vs. System R&D team tried their best to find a way of reinvigorating and continuing to produce the game, but ultimately we were unable to make this happen. Vs. System is a game that has been important to Upper Deck, as it was our first foray into a high-level hobby trading card game, and it remains a game of which we are very proud.

 

On a personal level, I am very dedicated to the Vs. System game for a great many reasons. Initially, I began my affair with Vs. System as part of the terrific player community. The fans of this game are among the most staunch and dedicated that I have known in my twenty years of gaming. From writing articles and blogs, to making fan sets, to playing in organized play events, I have seen each fan carve out his or her personal niche in the community, and in doing so, contribute to a whole that is far greater than the sum of its parts. The fervor of the Vs. System community was brought into focus with the “fan-made” Marvel Universe expansion, where I personally saw fans’ passion for this game reaching new heights. Their part in creating what turned out to be one of the best-loved sets for any trading card game is something that you, the fans, have much to be proud of. Even though there are no planned expansions in the immediate future, I hope that the game lives on at your kitchen tables or favorite local hobby store. This is a game that I know I will still be playing in the years to come.

 

But it is not just the fans that make the game great. Many game designers and developers have had a hand in the creation of this terrific game. In particular, I would like to mention Mike Hummel, who played a leading role in the design of the game, and David Humpherys, who has led the development of the game almost from day one. But in addition to these people, there are so many people behind the scenes, such as the artists, graphic designers, product and project managers, editors, writers, and judges that have come together to make such a huge undertaking as Vs. System possible. Their efforts spanning 25 releases, over 4,000 cards, and almost five years can be seen in every single card. I would love to mention each and every individual who has been involved in publishing this game, but it would literally take multiple pages. Know that for our part, Upper Deck is still making great games that the current and future generation of gamers can enjoy!

 

We have all grown with this game, and the experiences we have had making and playing it will last forever. Remember to have fun and play fair!

 

Good games,

Ben Seck

Vs. System Lead Designer

 

Yes, it is true. Upper Deck is no longer producing Vs. System cards. I know in my heart of hearts that our community of players will grab the baton and run with it, so make sure you stay tuned to this station for future announcements about the New Era of fan-based creativity and competition. The game will never die. Of that, I am sure.

 

And yes, it is true. The Florida Marlins released the first sketches of our new Miami party place on the very same day.

 

Onward!

 

 

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Team Mexico Employs Voodoo Doll In Quest For Victory Against United States Soccer Team.

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MEXICO CITY (AP)—Mexican soccer fans are turning to voodoo to beat the United States, with help from an American electronics company.

The teams meet Feb. 11 in Columbus, Ohio, in the first game of the final round of regional qualifying for the 2010 World Cup. Mexico has not beaten the United States on American soil in 10 years.

An advertisement in the sports newspaper Record on Tuesday invited fans to clip coupons and redeem them at their local Radio Shack store for a voodoo-doll likeness of a U.S. player. The hope was that a little black magic might help Mexico break its decade of futility.

“Help end the losing streak so Mexico advances,” the ad read.

An illustration showed a pair of scissors slicing off the leg of a doll in a U.S. jersey that was bruised, crying out in pain, leaking stuffing and stuck with pushpins.

“We imagine a group of young people gathered around the TV supporting Mexico and applying punishments to our rivals so that the team can qualify,” Record said in a statement.

Daniel Paz, marketing manager for the newspaper, told The Associated Press the promotion was a lighthearted attempt to make next month’s rivalry game more enjoyable for fans.

“It’s a toy,” Paz said. “There’s no intention of being anything serious.”

I know two things when it comes to Sports Hexes.  First, you don’t ever telegraph your play. This thing could backfire, big time. Two, those dolls will be worth a pretty penny on ebay.

The game is two weeks away, in Columbus. Should be a hoot.

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Barack Obama loves the Rays.

What perfect timing.  From an awesome article by Scott Helman on boston.com:

Thanks, senator, we really needed a reminder.

Barack Obama is campaigning today in, of all places, Tampa, where Red Sox fans’ hearts were broken last night in a season-ending Game 7 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays. Oh, well, we pushed them to the brink, right?

As if the dateline from Obama’s event wasn’t enough salt in the wound, he chose a half-dozen Rays players to introduce him, including relief pitcher David Price, who closed the door on the Sox in the late innings. The players basked in their win, and helped Obama make a pitch for early voting, which begins today in Florida.

“Give it up for the Rays!” Obama said to cheers after giving high-fives and hugs to Price and his cohorts.

Oh, and if you didn’t think this was torture enough, this all happened at (gulp) George Steinbrenner Field in Tampa, the winter home to the New York Yankees.

“I have said from the beginning that I am a unity candidate, bringing people together,” Obama said. “So when you see a White Sox fan showing love to the Rays, and the Rays showing some love back, you know we’re onto something right here.”

Obama joked that he was going to get a mohawk, in solidarity. “My political advisers said they weren’t sure how that was going to play with swing voters,” he said.

He doesn’t have enough hair for a proper mohawk, but he sure was in the right place at the right time for some good lovin’.

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