Tuesday, 27 October 2009

Yankees look unstoppable

Andy Pettitte

The Yankees won the last of their 26 World series with a trepeat victory in 2000 under Joe Torre. Yankees owner, George Steinbrenner, let Tore go in 2007, going stingy on the contract package, disgraceful but typical Steinbrenner behaviour, dissing Torre's 4 world series, 10 division titles and .606 winning percentage with the Yankees over 12 seasons. Torre now manages the Dodgers and took them to this year's National league championship where they were beaten 4-1 by the current Champions, the Philadelphia Phillies, denying him a match up with the Yankees at the big show. Since the Yankees last won there have been 7 different world series winners, including incredibly both sox and the Florida Marlins.

The Yankees pitching won them the American league Championship series over the LA Angels, with A-Rod steeping up as well, batting .438 with five homers and 12 RBIs, to win his first trip to the big show. Andy Pettitte pitched into the 7th inning to clinch the league and now has the most postseason wins in the history of Major League Baseball with his 16-9 record - during the period from 1995–2009, no major league pitcher has accumulated more victories. Closer, Mariano Rivera, added to his legendary status with two saves in the series, increasing his postseason-record to 37 overall. Starting pitcher CC Sabathia, who won the Cy Young with Cleveland Indians in 2007, won the MVP with two victories. Sabathia, who has a career batting average of .300, wants to hit against former teammate, 2008 Cy Young winner Cliff Lee, in the world series.

The Yankees, who won 103 games this season (.636), have home advantage for the world series which begins on Wednesday, Oct 28. Looking through the lineup, they may just have the best team off all-time.

Friday, 23 October 2009

The sky walker

I've known about Dean Potter as an unreal solo climber and one of the last standing it seems with legends dying off.

  • Derek Hersey, a legend in Boulder, died in 1993, getting caught in a flash rain storm soling on El Cap.

  • Todd Skinner died in Yosemite in 2006 when the belay loop on his harness failed.

  • Michael Reardon was washed away by a rogues wave in Valentia, Co. Kerry in 2007
  • This year one of the alltime legends, John Bachar, died soloing in California at the age of 52.

I heard about a current Channel 4 series, Daredevils this week and last night watched "Sky Walker" online, the episode on Dean Potter Slacklining - walking across a tightrope with no pole or safety line at huge heights.

Sky Walker and other episodes can be watched for another 11 days online with Channel4 on demand available to watch in Ireland.

Sunday, 18 October 2009

Combined ski-wingsuit-base jumping

Extreme sports: the Rise and Fall of Shane McConkey
Observer, 18 Oct 2009

Irish skateboarding

Irish times article from 17 Oct 2009.

Timeline’ is an exhibition of documentary photographs about skateboarding in Ireland by Richard Gilligan. Through a mixture of portraiture, action and small everyday moments ‘Timeline’ gives an insight into life as skateboarder in Ireland from the inside out. Shot over the past 14 years, this show is a visual journey of one photographers view of life both on and off his board.

The exhibition will open Tuesday 3rd of November at PLANE/SITE Gallery on Lad Lane, Dublin 2 at 7pm and will run until Sunday the 8th of November.

Hurling county medal at 48

Damien Fox (48) won an Offaly senior hurling medal with Offaly today as Tullamore claimed their first Offaly title in 45 years as they beat Kilcormac/Killoughey 2-12 to 0-11.

They beat St Ryanagh's and Birr on the path to the final.

Sunday tribune article on Damien Fox on 11 October 2009

October means one thing

Baseball playoffs.

I was hooked when I saw Cecil Fielder (Big. Very big. Positively Fat. Past it. But still well able to hit the ball) hit a home run for the Yankees in the '96 playoffs on the way to taking the World Series under Joe Torre. Now Torre is managing the LA Dogers in the National League Conference finals against the current champions, Philadelphia Phillies.

More so than any team sport, this is a series of man to man confrontations where there is nowhere to hide. This is when true winners stand up and are counted and average players with good regular season stats are found out.

Yankees game 2 against LA Angels started at 1am last night in a cold, wet and windy Yankee Stadium. Great pitching duel was tied 2-2 after 9 innings to send the game into extra innings. Angels get a run in the top of the 11th - then Alex Rodriguez hits the tying run on a 0-2 count in the bottom of the 11th. No scores in the 12th, Angels fail to score in top of 13th.

Bottom of the 13th, Yankees 1 out with runners on 1st and 2nd. Easy hit to the second baseman Izturis should ensure that the both runners advance and batter will be out. However, in a moment of madness, he throws wildly to second base in hope of getting two outs - flies over the shortstop at second and Yankess bring one home. Cue massive celebrations after a marathon 5 hour 10 minute game.

Just one of the fantastic finishes we have seen in the American and National League Championships. Unpredictable, nerve-racking with key games decided both on moments of genius and schoolboy errors. Only pity is the timing of the games - I just tell myself that I'm practicing for the imminent arrival of the baby!
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