Saturday, March 28, 2015

Are the A's Legit?

In the twenty-five days since Cactus League games began, the question has gone from “Who are these guys?” to "Could this Oakland A's club actually contend in 2015?" As the players have gotten to know each other, we've gotten to know them, and at this juncture some things are clear and others are big question marks.

For one thing, Kendall Graveman, Jesse Hahn, and Drew Pomeranz have all pitched well enough to earn a spot in the starting rotation alongside Sonny Gray and Scott Kazmir. If Graveman does get the nod, that means two of the four players acquired from the Blue Jays in the Josh Donaldson trade, Graveman and third baseman Brett Lawrie, will begin the year with the big club. We all hated to see Donaldson go, but this deal may have reaped key dividends for the A's.

What's also clear is that Rule 5 acquisition Mark Canha has pop; yesterday he launched his fourth homer, most of any Athletic this spring. First baseman Ike Davis is hitting .481, and Ben Zobrist looks every bit like the elite ballplayer he is.

Oakland's bullpen, even minus recently demoted Ryan Cook and injured Sean Doolittle, looks solid. Dan Otero, Eric O'Flaherty, and substitute closer Tyler Clippard headline a relief corps that should once again rank among the league's best.

But many question marks remain. Coco Crisp is 35 and needed a cortisone shot last Tuesday. Josh Reddick, who missed 37 games in 2013 and 38  in 2014 due to injury, has been sidelined by an oblique strain. The A's center-field platoon of Sam Fuld and Craig Gentry won't scare opposing pitchers. And it's been three years since Billy Butler, whom the A's will rely on for middle-of-the-lineup heroics, has hit more than  fifteen homers in a season.

It all adds up to a lot of promise, and uncertainty. In other words, it's spring, it's your low-budget Oakland Athletics, and it's a bunch of guys who could gel and excel – or put up a .500 record. One encouraging early-season sign for the A's: they'll face Felix Hernandez only once in April. . . .



Posted by C.S. Soong

Thursday, March 5, 2015


                                   The Warriors Return Home to Beat The Bucks


The Golden State Warriors returned home from a 3 - 3 road trip to defeat the visiting Milwaukee Bucks 102 - 93 last night at the Oakland Coliseum in front of over 19 thousand fans to improve to an NBA best 25 - 2 home record, and a Western Conference leading 47 - 12 overall.

Beginning a stretch that will have the Warriors playing 9 of their next 15 games at home,   the team was lead by Draymond Green’s 23 point, 12 rebound effort on his 25th birthday, and another explosive 4th quarter by Steph Curry who scored 9 of his 12 points in the quarter with a barrage of three straight 3 pointers in just 65 seconds to stretch a three point lead to a ten point lead. Curry finished the game with 19 points to go along with 11 assists. 

The Bucks, who’ve lost 6 of their last 7 games, were lead by 16 points each from forward Giannis Antetokounmpo and recently acquired guard Michael Carter-Williams. Managing to stay close most of the game, Milwaukee actually lead by 7 points early in the third quarter, before being done in by their game high 24 turnovers (including 6 in the 4th quarter) that lead to 28 points for the Warriors. 

Post Game Points: The Warriors have won on Draymond Green’s birthday three straight years.
In the Warriors last two games Shaun Livingston has played against his team of last year, Brooklyn, and his coach of last year, Jason Kidd.

The Warriors host the Dallas Mavericks Friday

---Greg Bridges
    03/05/15

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Why Are The GS Warriors So Good?



In a few days the NBA will come to its unofficial midway point of the 2014-15 Season, which gives us a great time to answer one of the most perplexing questions that has baffled NBA fans around the world, and maybe a few unbiased GS Warriors fans.  Last year  “The Dubs” finished the year with a 51-31 record, and they made the playoffs for the second consecutive year.  However, after the Warriors fell the LA Clippers in 7 games in the opening round of the 2014 playoffs, at the end of the season it was clear that Joe Lacob the ubiquitous owner of the GSW wanted to go in a different direction with his head coach. 

 Therefore, in the amount of time that it takes John Boehner to hope on a tanning bed for a touch up, Lacob fired Mark Jackson, and hired 5 time NBA Champion Steve Kerr as Head Coach, to the tune of a reported 5 Yr. 25 Million Dollar Deal.  Thus far Joe Lacob looks like a genius, because the Warriors have been the best team in the NBA at the All-Star Break.  The Warriors have an NBA best 39-8 record, and at times they are so good it’s boring. 

 On a few occasions watching “Golden St.” play, amounted to, watching the Harlem Globetrotters play the Washington Generals, because the games were so lopsided. Many of the games have essentially been over in the first quarter, and even the most casual basketball fan can discern, that the Warriors are playing on a different level on most nights this year. 

 Nevertheless, the “eye test” in and of itself doesn’t answer the question of why the GS Warriors are so good this year.  For that answer you have to look no further than their league leading team assists ranking, the GS Warriors average 27.2 assists per game, compared to their opponents nightly total of 20.00 per game.  This means that the Warriors are potentially outscoring their opponents by a minimum of 14 points per contest.  To add further context to why assists are so important to the overall success of the team, one needs to only envision all five players moving in unison as one entity.  This action creates scoring opportunities for all 5 players, and it implies a selfless mentality on the team, that presumably manifests itself on and off the basketball court.

Also, the underlining message that the Warriors are sending the rest of the NBA with their style of play, is that they are playing a smarter and more cerebral brand of basketball that not only shows up on the scoreboard, and in the box scores, but it is also aesthetically pleasing to watch in person and on TV.  The sum up, the Golden St. Warriors have been more successful this year, because they are playing more unselfishly than last year’s team, which can partly be explained by having the best assist average per game compared to all other NBA teams.  Nevertheless, it’s a long way to the finish line, and only time will tell, if the Warriors can sustain their excellent level of play, for the rest of the season on into the playoffs.  

For Sports and Politics,

Frankred     

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

SEAHAWKS ARE THEY A SALE OUT OR JUST GOT THEIR BUTTS BEAT?


NEW ENGLAND
SUPER BOWL XLlX, 2015 IS HERE AND GONE AND THE NEW ENGLAND PATRIOT WON THEIR FOURTH SUPER BOWL AND LET'S NOT FORGET THAT DIAMOND RING.

WEB PIC
MILLIONS OF US SAT AROUND THE TUBE AND WATCHED ONE OF THE MOST EXCITING GAMES OF THE CENTURY, AND IT WAS.


RICHARD SHERMAN

WHAT IS SO DISTURBING BESIDE WATCHING RICHARD SHERMAN SCREAMED LIKE HE LOST HIS MIND.
IS THAT WHEN IT CAME DOWN TO THE WIRE AND THE SEAHAWKS HAD THE BALL IN THE  4TH QUARTER , SECOND DOWN AND AT THE ONE YARD LINE FOR THE TOUCH DOWN.

LOCEKETTE AND  BUTLER

RUSSELL WILSON THREW THE BALL TO LOCKETTE ,IT WAS INTERCEPTED BY BUTLER
AND IT WAS ALL OVER.




QB RUSSELL WILSON




WILSON WALKED OFF THE FIELD  WITHOUT EVEN  A  GOOD BYE TO HIS FANS.


WHY DO YOU THINK THAT HAPPENED DID THE SEAHAWKS THEW THE GAME?



 SO MANY  WONDER?

MARSHAWN LYNCH
 LET'S TAKE A CLOSER LOOKED, MARSHAWN  LYNCH CARRIED THE BALL MOST OF THE TIME DOWN THE FIELD,  DURNING THE GAME,WHY WOULD WILSON NOT THROW THE BALL TO HIM?

MY THEORY IS

ONE- LYNCH CONTRACT IS UP AT THE END OF THE YEAR AND HE WILL BE A FREE AGENT? 
MAYBE THEY DID NOT WANT HIM TO BE OFFERED 
MARSHAWN LYNCH
LOTS OF MONEY FOR WINNING THE SUPER BOWL TOUCHDOWN WHEN HE START LOOKING FOR A NEW CONTRACT.( AHA MOMENT)

TWO- THEY DID NOT WANT ANOTHER BLACK MAN TO HAVE THAT MANY ENDORSEMENTS, LIKE NIKE AND EVEN BEING ON THE WHEATIES BOX. 
TOM BRADY

THAT WOULD SURE HAVE SENT TOM BRADY INTO A COMA.







SEAHAWKS COACH PETE CARROLL













I DO NOT KNOW WHY. ALL I  DO KNOW IS CARROLL MAY BE A DUMB BEHIND TO MAKE A CALL LIKE THAT.




NOW I'M MAD AND I'M WRITING
IN ALL CAPS, WHAT IS GOING ON?

                                                         YOU DECIDE, BECAUSE I CAN'T.



Friday, October 17, 2014

Better Still Wasn't Good Enough

The Oakland Raiders played their best game of the season Sunday facing longtime division rival San Diego Chargers, but in the end the results were painfully familiar as the Chargers prevailed with a 31 - 28 victory to spoil the debut of Raiders interim head coach Tony Sparano.

Raiders rookie quarterback Derek Carr threw for a season best 282 yards with 4 touchdowns and zero sacks, including a 77 yard scoring pass to Andre Holmes during the game’s first minute. Holmes would prove to be a valuable target for Carr throughout the game, finishing with 121 receiving yards and 2 touchdowns. Darren McFadden gave a major contribution, leading the Raiders ground game with 80 rushing yards. 



A balanced Raiders offensive attack gave Oakland its first second-half lead, 21-14, since last Thanksgiving Day’s game versus the Dallas Cowboys. However the unrelenting Chargers kept pace behind quarterback Phillip Rivers, who threw for 313 yards with 3 touchdowns, and rookie running back Branden Oliver who turned in his second consecutive game of 100 plus yards on the ground. The Chargers eventually took the lead for good on a 1 yard touchdown run by Oliver with 1:56 left in the game. 


The Raiders effort to come back was ended when San Diego’s rookie cornerback Jason Verrett intercepted his first pass of the season on Derek Carr’s deep attempt to wide receiver Brice Butler with 1:13 left in the game and Oakland needing only 1 yard for a first down. 


Although the game ended with yet another loss for the Raiders and dropped them to 0-5, the team’s effort on the field was notably more improved than in their first four games. Yet, as Coach Sparano mentioned in his post game press conference there are no moral victories. 


The quest for the first win of the season for the Oakland Raiders continues this Sunday when they face the NFC west leading Arizona Cardinals.


Greg Bridges 10/12/14
photos by G1Rhythm for Reflections In Rhythm




Wednesday, October 15, 2014

CHILD ABUSE OR DISCIPLINE ?
For 8 weeks now there have been conversations going around in the NFL about domestic abuse cases. Football players getting arrested, some have been kicked out of  the National Football League.  The NFL Commissioner, Roger Goodell, got on national T V and said he is cleaning out his house and the league will not tolerate domestic abuse and some of it is rightfully so.  

Ray Rice KO his woman in the elevator of a hotel and try to drag her cold limp body out of the doors and it was all caught on tape, but in the case of Adrian Peterson, he has been suspended from all Vikings activities since his indictment on the accusation that he took a switch off a tree and spanked his four year old son with it.
When do we draw the line  from child abuse and discipline. This whole Peterson issue has extended  above the sports arena and everyone and their mother is talking about it.  Adrian Peterson told police he grabbed a tree branch, removed the leaves and whipped his son so many times he lost count -- and what it means not just for Adrian Peterson, but for us. Because some of our parents punished us with switches, belts or even using their hands, we were spanked and we spanked. How far is too far when we stop using our hands and start using objects such as a gun or an iron cord. Dose it mean,  if our child steals from a store we give them time out and  have a stern talk with them. Will that build character and give them a chance to take responsibility for their own actions, or would they remember that spanking every time they sit down for the next two weeks.
It's has been know in the African American communities that this  is the condition that we are use to  when it comes to disciplining our children. However there are African American leaders speaking out, saying it was wrong back then and its wrong now, that this  oes across all racial lines, ethnicity, religious backgrounds, and it has been passed on to us from slavery to handle difficult situations by whipping people, and we need to put an end to it.
Is  Ariana Peterson  wrong for hitting his 4 year old child with a stick, I may have to agree with it just a little.  The child is four years old and I know children's understanding of things in today's world is far greater than when we were growing up, but the child is four years old, it can be intimidating for a big human-being like Adrian standing over a 4 year old with a stick in his hands ready to chastise him. It probably looked like a tree to the kid and if Peterson is wrong than maybe the NFL is wrong as well  for trying to parent another human-being child. 
 Where is it written in NFL hand book that your employer has the right to get in your family  issues and raise your children the way they see fit. Adrian Peterson has his hands full from the death from his two year old son at the hands of his  ex-girlfriend's boyfriend and now this. Wow, this man can not catch a break. The question should be what is  the mother of the children doing about all of this. I think the best way to handle this situation is for Adrian Peterson to get some real help in dealing with his issues of the lost son two years ago and the disciplined action of his 4 year old child and  to make amends to get his life back on track.

 Good Luck Peterson

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Exhale. And Now, Oaktober?

They had to do it and they did. Despite all the recent frustration and ineptitude and heartache, and despite going an embarrassing 16-30 since August 10, Oakland's 4-0 win over the Texas Rangers clinched a postseason berth on the regular season's last day.

After 162 games, fifty-one series, eleven road trips, and eleven home stands over twenty-six grueling weeks, the A's today grabbed the American League's second and last wild-card spot. They face the Royals in Kansas City's Kauffman Stadium on Tuesday evening; the winner goes on to face the Angels in a best-of-five division series that begins on Thursday.

Sonny Gray bookended the season in impressive fashion. Back on opening day
doesn't March 31 seem like it belongs to another era? Gray threw six scoreless innings. On Sunday, he allowed just six hits en route to a complete-game shutout. That means at least two things: the A's can feel good about (finally) doing everything right in a decisive, lopsided win; and manager Bob Melvin can draw upon a rested bullpen in Kansas City.

And then there's the fear factor, or rather the absence of one, perhaps, beginning today. The A's no longer have to fear a humiliating collapse. All signs pointed toward a gigantic, unprecedented late-season swoon, but Melvin and his men gutted it out and persevered. The process was excruciating and often dispiriting, but that particular ordeal is over, and the A's are, and can proudly think of themselves as, a playoff team. Now the page turns and a new kind of season begins
albeit one that hinges on Tuesday's all-important showdown.

Further thoughts:

* Complain all you like about the one-game wild-card playoff, but the fact remains: if the pre-2012 wild-card system were still operative, Oakland's season would have ended today. (Back then, only one wild-card team from each league advanced to the postseason.)

* The A's won't have to square off against the Detroit Tigers, who have eliminated the A's from the postseason each of the past two seasons, until (potentially) the ALCS. That's got to be a welcome change. Time to let some other club – i.e., the Orioles
try to figure out that pitching staff.

* The flight from the Arlington area of Texas to Kansas City is only ninety minutes, and the two cities are in the same (Central) time zone. So the A's don't have to deal with a long flight or jet lag. Every little thing counts.

* Why does it always seem like AL clubs get less rest than their NL counterparts in the postseason? The NL wild-card game won't be held until Wednesday. Oakland's Josh Donaldson, for one, certainly could have used that extra day's rest.

* Jon Lester, the Athletics' glittering if controversial mid-season acquisition, starts on Tuesday. He'll have more of an impact on that game than Cespedes, if he were still around, would have. While I don't think a dominating performance by Lester will move fans who hated the trade to suddenly embrace it, it will no doubt quiet the naysayers.

* James Shields, the Royal's scheduled starter, is a right-hander. The A's have not fared well against left-handed pitching. Against Shields the A's can and will play their bevy of left-handed sluggers: Adam Dunn, Brandon Moss, Stephen Vogt, and the red-hot Josh Reddick.



Posted by C.S. Soong