Thursday, November 26, 2009
Getting ready for our day, I did some searching for some scriptures appropriate for Thanksgiving and came across the following 2 from Colossians:
Colossians 3:15 Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.
Colossians 4:2 Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.
Today, I am thankful that God sent his son Jesus to die on the cross for us, to take away our sins, to save us from hell. I am also thankful for a beautiful and wonderful wife, 2 healthy children, all the rest of our family and our friendships. I am thankful for being part of a bible believing church that is not ashamed to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ. I am blessed beyond belief and give all the thanks to my savior Jesus Christ.
Here's hoping your Thanksgiving Holiday is a blessing for you!
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Look up Colossians 3:20-21 in your bible.
Pray about Colossians 3:20-21 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: Have you ever been mad at your parents because they made you do something you didn't want to do? Maybe you feel like your parents have mistreated you and at that moment you feel like you don't love them. Or maybe, it's much more than just one incident, have your parents gotten a divorce and you only live with one parent right now? When these things happen, it's hard to feel love for our parents. Scripture tells us, very plainly, that we should love our parents because it pleases the Lord.
Your Challenge: Today, simply stop what you are doing and go tell your parents that you love them. Give them a big hug and tell them you love them because the bible says that loving them pleases God.
Saturday, October 17, 2009
Look up John 17:11 in your bible.
Pray about John 17:11 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: Have you ever been on team? Maybe in sports or in a team working on a project together at school? If the team works hard together and everyone is in it for the same goal, you have a better chance of success. You don't win every time, but you are okay with that because you tried your best and the team worked together. Family relationships are a lot like a team. If everyone is working hard, sometimes you have failures, but you are in for the long haul... forever actually, and you can have a great family life if all members have that attitude.
Your Challenge: Think of one area in your family life where you don't agree. Use today to pray about that area as many times as you possibly can, all day long. Ask the Lord during these prayers to tell you about anything you might be able to do to help bring more unity to your family.
Look up 1 John 3:16 in your bible.
Pray about 1 John 3:16 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: On a baseball team, there is a term called a sacrifice bunt. A player gives himself up by bunting the ball in a position that will almost surely get him out, but the goal is to help advance the baserunner so that he is closer to scoring a run. The player is willing to sacrifice himself for an out, so that the team has a better chance to score a run. I'll bet this is a hard concept for you to understand. As a child, you are taught many times to win at all costs, winning is most important and don't ever give in. However, the bible teaches sacrifice in our lives and relationships.
Your Challenge: Ask your parents or brother or sister today what one of their needs is from you. Maybe they need you to help out around the house. Maybe your sister needs help with her homework. Maybe your brother needs help cleaning his room. Commit to help them and sacrifice yourself to help them achieve what they need.
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Look up Ephesians 6:7 and Colossians 3:20 in your bible.
Pray about Ephesians 6:7 and Colossians 3:20 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: What is your motivation for following your parent or teacher's instructions? I'll bet at some point, your parents have probably said, when you asked why you had to clean your room, "Because we are your parents and we told you to do it." That probably wasn't very motivating was it? Well, it's the same way with love. If we love our family and friends just because we are supposed to, it's hard to do, that's not good motivation. But what if we change our motivation? What if we love in the same way God loved us, by sending his son to die for us. What if we put all our effort into loving someone out of love for God instead of just because we are supposed to?
Your Challenge: Before you see your mom and dad, pray for them and for their needs. When you see them, simply tell them how much you love them and then do something to show it to them... in God's love, with all your effort. Then, go to God again in prayer, thanking him for the privilege of loving your parents unconditionally, the same way He loved us.
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
Kelly had actually said all during the Rays season how much she wanted to go to more ball games (Yes, I do have the most amazing wife in the world). So, I decided to surprise her with a quick trip to New York to see the Statue of Liberty and catch the 1st Yankees playoff game at the new stadium.
I want to challenge you husbands on something... although your wife may say that you don't need to do anything big for her, don't believe it. She is just such a nice and caring wife that she probably doesn't want to tell you what to do!!! Realistically, you cannot do big things all the time, but your wife deserves something big and unexpected every once in a while. It doesn't have to be an expensive trip to New York to sweep her off her feet again. In fact, I was pretty cheap on this trip because the flight was covered with frequent flyer points, the hotel was covered with points and the Yankee tickets were acquired through a special contact I had.
Just surprising your wife by scheduling a babysitter on your own and taking her out to a nice dinner and movie will do the trick. Think about it guys, what extra effort can you put forward to make your wife feel like the princess that she really is.
Until next time... In Christ,
Look up Psalm 25:20 in your bible.
Pray about Psalm 25:20 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: Do you wonder why your brother or sister or friends at school just don't do the right thing? Do you ever say to yourself, "I can do better than them." That's not encouraging, that's discouraging. You cannot show true love if you have unrealistic expectations for someone that you discourage.
Your Challenge: Today, tell someone that you love how much you are sorry for the unrealistic expectations you have placed on them. Tell them you will encourage them instead of putting them down and discouraging them.
Monday, October 12, 2009
Look up Romans 2:1 in your bible.
Pray about Romans 2:1 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: Who is responsible for your actions? Not your mom or dad, not your sister or brother and not your teacher at school. You and only you are responsible for your actions. Today, our world makes it way too easy to blame someone or something for the things we do that are wrong. To truly love like the bible wants us to love, we need to take responsibility for our actions.
Your Challenge: Today, take time to pray about the things that you have done wrong recently. Ask for God's forgiveness and then go to your parents, family members or teacher and admit the things you have done wrong. Do it with sincerity in your heart. Ask them for forgiveness.
Wednesday, October 7, 2009
Look up 1 Corinthians 13:7 in your bible.
Pray about 1 Corinthians 13:7 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: Do you have any bad habits? Bad habits suck away our love from the ones we are supposed to love. Maybe your bad habit is talking to your parents in a disrespectful way. Maybe your bad habit is that you don't do things the 1st time you are told. The bible says that Love always protects. We can protect the love we have for our family and friends by getting rid of bad habits. Bad habits make it harder to see when we need to love each other more. They blur our vision when it comes to love.
Your Challenge: Today, choose to remove a bad habit from your life. When you remove this bad habit, replace it with love for a family member or friend.
Look up John 13:35 in your bible.
Pray about John 13:35 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: Have you ever had trouble saying that you "Love" your mom and dad or your brother, sister or a friend? Maybe they hurt you by being mean to you or hurt you in some way. The bible tells us in John 13:35 that people will know we are His disciples, Christians, if we love one another.
Your Challenge: Today, go to your family member or friend who you recently had a hard time loving and tell them that you love them no matter what, even when you are mad at each other, you will always love them.
Monday, October 5, 2009
Look up Isaiah 58:11 in your bible.
Pray about Isaiah 58:11 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: Have you ever tried to do something on your own, without any help from your parents maybe, that just didn't work out? Maybe you were trying to do your homework and told your parents that you didn't need any help, but later wished you had asked them to help because it was too hard and you really needed them to help out? That's how it is with God. He is offering us help in every area of our lives, but too often, we try it first on our own, fail, and the go running to God for help. We will love the important people in our lives better, stronger and more faithfully, if we first seek God to be the center of our lives.
Your Challenge: Make a promise to God that you will start each and every day, on your knees, praying to him. Right when you wake up, get out of bed and get down on your knees and ask Him to be a part of everything you do that day!
Thursday, October 1, 2009
Look up 1 John 4:7 in your bible.
Pray about 1 John 4:7 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: Have you ever failed at anything? Maybe you got a bad grade on a test? Maybe had a bad baseball or soccer game? Have you ever thought about failing at love? You are probably asking me right now, what in the world are you talking about? Well, what I want to tell you is that cannot love someone like your parents or brother or sister with only your strength. You can love them even better if Christ is in your heart and he is helping you love. You probably think that you can love them a whole lot with your own strength, but if you let Christ live through you, the love you give will be even greater.
Your Challenge: Think back over the previous Love Dares that you have done. Were some harder than others? Maybe you were trying to do those with your own strength instead of praying first to ask God to help you love even more. Pray right now and ask Him to show you areas where you love even more with his strength there to help out.
Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Look up Proverbs 3:13 in your bible.
Pray about Proverbs 3:13 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: Do you understand why your friends or relatives act the way they do? Maybe your mom and dad would like you to always clean your room because their parent always asked them to have their room clean. Maybe your friends aren't allowed to watch a certain t.v. show because their parents don't allow it. You see, we all act certain ways because of the influences on our lives. I'm sure you are exactly the same way.
We should seek to understand those that we love. We should seek to learn as much about them as possible so that we can love them even more.
Your Challenge: Ask your mom or dad if they would be willing to sit down with you today and discuss the following questions with them.
- What is one thing that you ask me to do because you did it when you were growing up?
- Can you explain to me why there are certain movies, t.v. shows, songs or video games that you don't want me to listen to, watch or play?
- What is one thing I could do a better job at?
Look up Proverbs 17:9 in your bible.
Pray about Proverbs 17:9 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: Who's your best friend? Who do you feel the closest to? Maybe your mom or dad? Maybe a brother or sister? Maybe a friend who you enjoy playing with after school? These are the special people in your life. One day, you will have a friend that decides to ask you to pray for them, if they haven't already. Take this very seriously. They are so close to you that they trust that you will pray for them, don't take this lightly.
Your Challenge: Today, ask your closest friend or family member if they have anything that you can pray about for them. Also, if you want them to pray for you, ask for that as well.
Monday, September 28, 2009
Look up 3 John 2 in your bible.
Pray about 3 John 2 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: Throughout this study, we have been teaching you lots of new words. Today, I want to tell you about the word intercede. If you intercede for someone, it means you step up and do something for them. It means you get in the middle of something and help them out. It means you pray for them. In fact, intercede is a related to the word intercession which literally means to pray to God on someones behalf.
Your Challenge: Today, pray for your mom and dad. Pray for their heart. Pray that they do all they can to be the best parents in the world. Love them by praying for them as many times as you can today!
Friday, September 25, 2009
Look up Ephesians 6:2 in your bible.
Pray about Ephesians 6:2 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: The bible says we should honor our father and mother. To honor them means to respect them, to listen to what they say and to love and care about them. Honor is a word that is very powerful. The hard part is to honor someone when you don't really feel like it. If your parents have been nagging you about cleaning your room, you don't really feel like honoring them do you? That's when love takes over, we honor them because we love them.
Your Challenge: Today, choose a way to show honor and respect to your parents. It may be opening the door for your mom or helping them unload the groceries in the car. It might be helping your dad with chores in the yard. It might be just asking if there is anything at all you can do for them.
Look up Ecclisiastes 9:9 in your bible.
Pray about Ecclisiastes 9:9 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: What's your favorite food? Is it pizza? A chocolate bar? Whatever your favorite food is, you take "delight" in eating it. That means that you love it and truly cherish the time while you are eating it. You just want more and more. We should love others in the same way. Maybe you haven't been too nice to a family member or friend lately and they need to be love on a little bit today!
Your Challenge: Today, ask someone from your family or a best friend if they want to spend some time together. Tell them they get to choose what you guys do together. They will cherish the time spent together and love will truly delight in your time together.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
Look up Mark 3:25 in your bible.
Pray about Mark 3:25 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: Do you remember the last really big argument you got into with someone? I'll bet it had some loud yelling and screaming, pouting, hurtful words and maybe even crying. God does not say that we will not get into arguments, but he does say how we should act when we get into arguments. We should stay calm and be careful not to say something that could really hurt the other person's feelings.
Your Challenge: Today, make a list of 3 rules that you will obey during arguments. They might include things like:
- I will not yell during an argument
- I will not say hurtful or mean things
- I will not cry
- I will try to understand the other person's feelings.
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
Look up Philippians 2:4 in your bible.
Pray about Philippians 2:4 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: Do you always want to win? Do you try your best in school or sports or even just little things around the house? It's good to try your best, but did you realize that sometimes you can win by losing? This is a really hard concept, but sometimes the best thing if you are in an argument with someone is to take a deep breath and let them win, let them be first, let yourself be willing to serve... that's what Jesus Christ did. He put His own life behind all of our lives by dying on the cross for our sins.
Your Challenge: Demonstrate love by willingly choosing to end an argument with someone by saying, "Okay, you win, I am putting your needs or wants first."
Monday, September 21, 2009
Look up Ephesians 5:28 in your bible.
Pray about Ephesians 5:28 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: Do you know what it means to cherish something? It means to love it with all your heart. You love it so much that you cannot do without it. In fact, you would do anything at all to keep it. We should cherish our family. After our relationship with God, our family should come next. You should cherish your family, doing anything at all to make them happy.
Your Challenge: What do your parents need today? What about your brother or sister? Do something for that that says, "I cherish and love you!"
Friday, September 18, 2009
Look up Romans 5:8 in your bible.
Pray about Romans 5:8 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: Read the following 2 definitions:
- Unconditional - Not limited
- Agape - Unconditional Love
Your Challenge: Do something out of the ordinary today for someone. Maybe you can do the dishes at home. Ask your mom if you can help fold the laundry. Clean your brother or sister's room for them as a surprise. This shows Agape Love... doing something just because you love them, not asking for something in return.
Thursday, September 17, 2009
Look up 1 Peter 5:14 in your bible.
Pray about 1 Peter 5:14 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: Do you know what it means to make a good impression? It means that someone really likes you the 1st time they see you. It also means that when you greet someone, do it nicely with a smile on your face. When an adult talks to you, smile, use your manners and speak clearly to them. That will make a good impression!
Your Challenge: When you see your parents, teacher or friends today, make it a point to greet them with a big smile on your face and show God's love through making a good impression!
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
Look up Solomon 8:6 in your bible.
Pray about Solomon 8:6 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: Do you ever wish that you had a bigger house? What about wishing your mom and dad had a cooler car? Maybe some of your friends have a pool and you don't have one. Or maybe they have some newer video games or a nicer bike and you'd like to have those things. These are all feeling of jealousy and the bible says that true love is not jealous and that Christians should not be jealous of what others have.
Your Challenge: Remember your lists from yesterday? The ones that had good and bad qualities of someone you love? Take the list with the bad things and crumble it up and throw it away!
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
You can also access her webpage by clicking on the following link: http://www.erinbethea.com/ as well as her wikipedia page by clicking here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erin_Bethea
Monday, September 14, 2009
Look up 1 Corinthians 13:7 in your bible.
Pray about 1 Corinthians 13:7 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: Think about a person that you love a whole bunch. It might be your mom, your dad, a brother or sister, a grandparent, maybe a friend, a teacher. It doesn't matter who they are, think of someone you love very much. Now, think about all the great things about that person. Don't you love to think about all the great thing that person does? Maybe they help you whenever you are in need. Maybe they always hug and kiss you. Maybe they love to spend time with you. But, what about the things about that person you don't like too much? Maybe they are really strict. Maybe they sometimes embarrass you in front of your friends. True love says that you need to spend more time thinking about the good things that person does than the bad. True love says that you need to tell that person how great they are!
Your Challenge: For today, make 2 lists. One list has the good qualities of a person you love very much, the other list has the bad qualities of the same person. Tell that person today one thing from the good list and make them smile. Keep both of these lists sealed in an envelope because you will need them later.
Sunday, September 13, 2009
I hope the 1st five days of your Love Dare with your children was great. As a reminder, please subscribe to the blog to receive the daily updates Monday through Friday of each week.
Day Number 6 - Love is not irritable
Look up Proverbs 16:31 in your bible.
Pray about Proverbs 16:31 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: Do you know what it means to be irritable? Very simply, it means to be in a bad mood and let it show to others. Many times, we are irritable towards those that we love the most. People with the love of Jesus in their hearts remain calm at all times and are patient. One major reason that we become irritable is because we are being selfish about something. Remember back to Day Number 3 when we defined how true love says "Yes."
- True Love looks for ways to say "Yes." It means that you are not selfish and you look for a way to say yes to someone else instead of thinking of yourself."
Let Jesus' love shine through and do away with being irritable!
Your Challenge: For today's challenge, make a list that includes any irritable behaviors you have had this past Saturday and Sunday. Maybe you didn't use proper manners with an adult? Or maybe you are holding a grudge against your brother or sister or a friend for something they did to you. Pray about the list and ask God to help you improve in those areas. You may need to apologize to someone on your list. Ask God for the strength to give them a hug and apologize.
Thursday, September 10, 2009
Look up Proverbs 27:14 in your bible.
Pray about Proverbs 27:14 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: Do you know anyone who has been rude to you? How did it make you feel? Maybe they said something mean or ignored you. Maybe you asked them for help and they didn't help you. Have you ever been rude to someone? There is a good chance that at some point you have been rude to you parents or brother or sister. No one enjoys being around a rude person. Love is the opposite of being rude. Love helps you mind your manners. If you remember any time recently when you had trouble with your manners, maybe you need to love more and try to get rid of all rudeness in your life!
Your Challenge: This may be a tough challenge for you. Today, go to your parents or teachers and ask them to tell you three things that you have done that are rude or disrepectful. Then, promise to pray about those things and work hard to replace rudeness with love.
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
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Look up Psalm 139:17-18 in your bible and read it to yourself.
Pray about Psalm 139:17-18 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: Thoughtfulness is sort of like not being selfish, but taking it one step further. Thoughtfulness is not being selfish and putting that into action. Being thoughtful is recognizing when someone needs a kind word or help with something. Don't you like it when your mom or dad offers to help you with your homework? How about when you learned to ride a bike? Did someone help you? If so, they were being thoughtful. We all like it when our loved ones are thoughtful towards us.
Your Challenge: The challenge today is very simple, but it will mean a lot to the person who you are thoughtful towards. Simply go up to your parents, grandparents, brothers or sisters, or even a friend and ask them how they are doing and if there is anything you could do for them.
Look up Romans 12:10 in your bible and read it to yourself.
Pray about Romans 12:10 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: True Love looks for ways to say "Yes." What does that mean? It means that you are not selfish and you look for a way to say yes to someone else instead of thinking of yourself. An example might be when your parents ask you get your bath and get ready for bed. You may want to finish watching t.v. first, before taking your bath. That would be selfish of you. If, however, you immediately said "Yes" and got your bath done and pajamas on, you'd be showing love and respect for your parents.
Your Challenge: Continue your Love Dare from the 1st two days where you didn't say anything mean or disrespectful to your parents or brother or sister. In addition, your challenge for today is to say "Yes" even when you really don't want to. Put your parents, grandparents, teachers or maybe your coach before your own needs and follow directions immediately, with a smile on your face.
Look up Ephesians 4:32 in your bible and read it to yourself.
Pray about Ephesians 4:32 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: Love makes you kind. And kindness makes other people like you. When you are kind, people want to be around you. Don't you like to be around kind people? Think about your best friend, is he or she a kind person? They probably are. You wouldn't want to play with them if they weren't kind to you.
Your Challenge: Continue your Love Dare from yesterday where you didn't say anything mean or disrespectful to your parents or brother or sister. Also today, do something nice as a surprise for a family member or a friend. You might draw them a picture, write a note, make them a craft or even do a chore like cleaning your room without being asked. The important thing is that you do something kind as a surprise!
Look up Ephesians 4:2 in your bible and read it to yourself.
Pray about Ephesians 4:2 and ask God what he is saying to you through the scripture.
Read the following: No one likes to be around an impatient person. It causes us to act in foolish ways. Whenever we are impatient and angry, it simply causes more and more anger. Patience stops anger immediately. If we are patient with each other, then we can't be angry! That's awesome isn't it!
Your Challenge: For today, be patient with each other and your parents. Be so patient that you don't say anything mean or disrespectful to each other or your parents.
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
Wow, what a video. Hope you enjoy it as much as I did.
Until next time,
Why do I bring this up? Well, there is a high school player here in the Tampa area that just threw his fourth straight no-hitter. His name is Patrick Schuster and he plays for Mitchell High School. Of course, in high school, there are often inflated batting averages, miniscule ERA's, crazy strike out totals, etc. However, 4 no-hitters in a row must be a national record, right? No so fast, the national prep record is 6 no-hitters in a row. Mitchell will be going for the record as the district playoffs start soon. Good luck to him.
What do you think about other records that may never be broken? Here's a quick list I came up with:
- Ty Cobb's career batting average of .367
- UCLA winning 7 consecutive NCAA men's basketball titles
- New York Yankees total of 26 World Series titles
- Wilt Chamberlain's total of 100 points in one NBA game
- Byron Nelson's 11 straight wins in PGA tournaments
Until next time,
Monday, April 20, 2009
Saturday, April 18, 2009
Maybe this is why I wouldn't be a good MLB manager. I would try to tweak things too much, but this just seems obvious to me, what about you?
Put Bartlett in the leadoff spot and Aki 2nd. I think Upton is pressing too much in the leadoff spot. he has a couple of hits, and 2 of them are surprise bunts down the 3rd base line. Bartlett is a machine right now and I always thought Aki was probably better number 2 hitter than leadoff anyway.
As for the game last night, fun too watch. Finally saw those resilient Rays from last year that refuse to lose.
We will be at Saturday night and Sunday afternoon's game, so it should be a great weekend!
Until next time,
Thursday, April 16, 2009
So, step in from the balcony, don't jump yet... everything will be okay.
"But as we contemplate and fret over this and this, there's one other number worth keeping in mind. One year ago today, Wheeler was the losing pitcher in a 6-5 setback at Minnesota. The loss dropped the Rays 6-9 overall, last place in the American League East. Things didn't turn out so badly, did they?"
Until next time,
Wednesday, April 15, 2009
I don't think you have to pressure your brain too hard based on the picture to the left to figure out one part of my plan... Percival has to go. While I love what he stands for, since his leg injury last year, he doesn't have the leg power and drive to throw the heat past hitters any more. In his heyday, and even at the beginning of last year, he was in the low to mid 90's with his fastball, but most importantly, he had movement. Today, he hit 91 twice on the gun, but they were flat pitches. Now, you might counter that today Mariano Rivera wasn't even hitting 90 on the gun, but he is throwing almost exclusively a cutter which has tons of movement.
Anyway, here's the plan:
- Percival to AAA or release him
- Sonnanstine to middle or long relief
- Balfour to closer
- Price comes up from AAA and becomes the 5th starter.
Now, if I might, a little sour grapes. I was one of the few people who was not happy about the Jackson for Joyce trade. I think Jackson could have still helped this team. Joyce just doesn't strike me as a player who was going to get much playing time. Especially now that they have sent him to the minors. So, the Rays effectively gave up Jackson, who tied for the team lead in wins last year and arguably had some of the best stuff on the staff for a AAA player. Okay, I'll step down off my soapbox now.
Closing thoughts today - I think the AL East teams are going to beat up on each other the entire season. Much more than last year. I don't expect the Red Sox to stay in the cellar, and I don't expect the Blue Jays and Orioles to stay at the top. It's going to be tight the entire season, which is why, if the Rays need to make a move, they should do it early because a game or 2 lost in April, might show up at the end of the season.
Until next time,
Apparently he is headed home to California to deal with a private family issue. Full story can be found by clicking on this link.
Hope all is well with the family Evan...
Until next time,
Maybe we were lulled into a false sense of security after last year that the relievers would always hold the opponents and as soon as we hit the bottom of the 9th, this team would deliver some magic?
I am still very happy with the team, except for one area... strikeouts at the plate. There is only one team in the bigs with more strikeouts than the Rays total of 72. That's the Indians with 79. Also, the Rays are tied with the Nationals at 72. Granted, the Rays have the 4th highest batting average in the majors after 8 games, but they are averaging 9 K's / game, a little too high in my book.
I fully expect Sonnanstine to pitch a gem this afternoon and for the Rays to take 2 of 3 from the evil empire.
Until next time,
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
If you didn't get a chance to make it to the Trop last night, I hope you watched on tv. The raising of the banners was very moving. The military presence throughout the banner ceremony was something to see, especially the military rappelling down from the rafters while the banners were being raised. The national anthem being played by local jazz prodigy B.K. Jackson. Old Glory taking up the entire outfield. What a night, and that's before any baseball was evening being played.
As the game began, the Rays set the tone early and often by taking walks, laying down bunts, stealing bases, hitting homers, playing defense and generally just playing baseball the "Rays Way." A couple of key points from the game in my opinion were Scott Kazmir getting a 2nd strong outing in a row with a low pitch count and the return of B.J. Upton. I am sure there are not many other centerfielders in the game that could have made the catch that B.J. did early in the game on the long drive by Xavier Nady. Click here for a link to the video on MLB.com.
In addition, Carlos Pena is certainly breaking out of his early little slump. He had 3 hits and 6 RBI's last night. The Rays also used the home field advantage last night. There were several plays where the ball just seemed to bounce the Ray's way, including 2 towering infield pop ups that were misplayed by the Yankees as the ball got up into the roof at the Trop.
Now, to look at this from another angle, while the Rays won 15-5, the Yankees were not at full force. I have no idea what is wrong with Chien-Ming Wang, but this is certainly not the same player who won 19 games two seasons in a row and was 8-2 before his injury last year. He is obviously not fully recovered as of yet. Also, the Yankees spending spree on Mark Texiera got a big scare with his left wrist injury and absence from the lineup. Reports are, however, that an MRI showed that it's not too serious. Even though they weren't at full strength, any win against the Yankees feels good... especially when you have 9 runs against them by the end of the 2nd inning!
To wrap up, all in all, a great home opener, lots of action, looking forward to tonights game when Matt Garza will be facing A.J. Burnett.
Until next time,
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
Monday, January 5, 2009
Interesting signing by the Rays today. Certainly fills the need for a right handed bat. He was of course a liability in the field, but the Rays have him penciled in at DH. He has averaged almost 28 HR's a season for 9 years with the Phillies as well as almost 92 RBI's. Would immediately become the teams 2nd best power hitter behind Pena and dwarf the Ray's DH production from 2008. The negatives are the batting average and strikeouts, but putting him somewhere around 5th or 6th in the lineup looks pretty nice. What do you think?
Until next time,
Sunday, January 4, 2009
One of the points where I think he shows a little bit of ineptitude regarding preparation is that he says it's harder to prepare defensively for the QB's in the big 12 because you go in knowing they are going to throw 40 or more times than it is to prepare for a QB who is only going to throw 15-20 times. Seems to me it would be easier to prepare for a big 12 team that was fairly one dimensional and threw that many times than to prepare to a dual threat like Tebow and the rest of the balanced Gator's attack.
I hope he has just made Tebow a little more mad and thrown more fuel to the fire.
Just my two cents... Until next time,
Until next time,
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
This graph depicts the S&P's annual returns, plotted by the frequency of occurance in ranges such as 0-10%, 11-20%, etc. As one would expect, the majority of the years fall into the 0-10% range. There were only 5 years each that fell into the 41-50% and 51-60% bracket.
Now, for the sobering statistic, until 2008, there was only 1 year each in the -31 - 40% and -41-50% columns. There was only 1 year in history with a loss greater than 50%. 2008 is currently sitting at -39%. The graph below was created a week or so ago before the S&P had a recent run up of about 130 points. Regardless, we could be looking at a historical 1 year annual loss for the S&P.
Until Next Time,
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
Let's break down each of these...
Milton Bradley is a career .280 hitter with 6 teams in 11 seasons. He has long had anger management issues, but during a lunch with the Rays this past week, Maddon feels as if he has outgrown and was quoted as saying "people grow up, people change." Last year was his 1st season as an all-star, but his splits for the season showed a major drop-off in the 2nd half of the season due primarily to an injury. He could certainly shore up the DH and RF spots, but to be honest, he could probably explode at any minute. My take - PASS.
Giambi posted pretty good power numbers last year with a low batting average of only .247. Then again, oddly enough, Pena only hit .247 as well. His average has been in decline, but the power has stayed fairly consistent regarding homers and RBI's. For some reason I have always liked Giambi and feel like he might have another season or 2 in him. He is dependable in the DH spot and would be able to fill in for Pena here and there at 1B. Of course, the steroid allegations are going to follow him wherever he goes, but I believe he's a good guy. In fact, I met him once at a Chili's in Tampa, he was very cordial to my family. My take - Risky, but make a low offer and see if he takes it.
Delmon Young - This is really an interesting one. The guys has some character issues and was occasionally disruptive. I thought that was one of the reason's why they jettisoned him to the Twins last year? That deal was a big one for the Rays as they got Jason Bartlett and Matt Garza out of it. Sure, Delmon hit .290 last season, but for a guy that played in 152 games, he only hit 10 HR's with 69 RBI's. The rumor is that the Twins are not looking for starting pitching and a 3rd team would have to be involved, possibly the Rockies. The Rays would send either Edwin Jackson or Andy Sonnanstine to the Rockets, who would send 3rd baseman Garrett Atkins to the Twins and send Young back to Tampa. The upside here is still pretty high, but here's my take - Only do this if you can guarantee I won't look back years from now and analyze the trade based on the combination of both deals. What I mean is, I don't want Delmon to stink it up and then say it was basically a deal where we lost Sonnanstine or Jackson for Garza and Bartlett, catch my drift?
Now, here's my suggestion for the Rays... GO AFTER BARRY BONDS! That's right, I said it, go sign Barry Bonds. If you are willing to bring one or more of the 3 above into the fold, why not go get the most feared slugger of our era. Steroids or not, the guys is an on base machine and would be more than willing to DH if any team would just sign him to a deal. He said last year he would play for the league minimum and donate a substantial portion to charity. The guy doesn't want money, I don't think he cares about any more records, he wants a ring. He has had a few lengthy layoffs with the knee injury from 2005 where he only played 14 games then not playing at all last year. He turns 45 in July, but for some reason, I think he could post stats from the DH position that would blow away the guys listed above. Plus, think of the opportunities to drive in runs if he is always on base ahead of Pena, Longoria, etc. Lastly, Friedman and Maddon would have him sign a clause or something in his contract that doesn't allow big comfy recliners in the locker room. My Take - take a flyer and see what happens, it would probably be cheaper than any of the 3 above and would put more butts in the seats!
Until next time,
There are 2 videos, one unedited and one that was edited. Both are below. Also, go to Youtube and click on the link to watch in high definition, much clearer if you have the bandwidth.
Unedited Original Footage
Until Next Time,
Friday, December 5, 2008
And here are the videos/pics for each one:
10. Sean Taylor on Brian Moorman - 2006
9. Hines Ward on Keith Rivers - 2008
8. John Lynch on Chris Henry - 2006
7. Roger Craig on Tim Krumrie - 1989: Current Kansas City Chiefs defensive line coach Tim Krumrie overcame a tremendous leg injury during Super Bowl XXIII that could have ended his career. In a nose tackle with the Bengals, Krumrie was kneed by Roger Craig, causing a shattering of both his tibia and fibula. Though video footage of the hit is rare, it’s regarded as one of the hardest – and most graphic – hits in football history. At risk of going into shock, Krumrie initially refused to leave the locker room after he was carted off the field. He had surgery to implant a 15-inch steel rod into his leg.
6. Bart Scott on Ben Roethlisberger - 2006
5. Tanard Jackson on Dallas Clark - 2007
4. Lawrence Taylor on Joe Theismann - 1985
3. Sheldon Brown on Reggie Bush - 2007
2. Darrell Reid on Chris Henry - 2007
1. Jack Tatum on Darryl Stingley - 1978: Darryl Stingley’s tragic story is necessary to mention in discussions about both the worst NFL hits in history and the most serious injuries. A running back with the Patriots, Stingley was paralyzed on a shot from Jack Tatum’s forearm during a preseason game. The hit broke two vertebrae in Stingley’s neck, making him a quadriplegic. Though no penalty was ever called on the play, it’s considered controversial because of the way Tatum hit Stingley to the head. Stingley died in 2007 at the age of 55, due to complications of quadriplegia.
If you are seated next to a man in a purple suit and top hat, please run away from him because Willy Wonka should not be on any flights due to prior convictions.
Nice huh... thought that might give you a laugh this afternoon.
Until next time,
Tuesday, December 2, 2008
If you love numbers and historical analysis of the markets, the following New York Times article had tons of great info.
Click here for the article.
Until Next Time,
Monday, November 24, 2008
Thursday, November 20, 2008
The stakes are high. The Detroit automakers employ nearly a quarter-million workers, and more than 730,000 other workers produce materials and parts that go into cars. About 1 million more people work in dealerships nationwide. If just one of the automakers declared bankruptcy, some estimates put U.S. job losses next year as high as 2.5 million. I honestly don't know how I feel personally about these bailout packages. Undoubtedly we all know someone whose employment might be affected by these companies (not just Auto Manufacturers) going out of business. However, the interesting thing is the corporate greed that manifested itself in the hearings earlier this week when the CEO's of GM, Ford and Chrysler made their way to capitol hill to plead their case.
Think about this... there are 24 daily non-stop flights from Detroit to the Washington DC area, but these CEO's each took their own private jets. Even if they flew 1st class on commercial flights, which would still be despicable, at a cost of somewhere north of $1,000, it would still dwarf the cost of the private jet flights which were estimated at anywhere from $10,000-$30,000 EACH.
The following is an excerpt from an article in the Washington Post (full link here) that is just one more example of why these guys and their companies don't deserve any help whatsoever!
So it was hard to feel sorry for the executives when Rep. Peter Roskam (R-Ill.), late in the hearing, reminded them again that "the symbolism of the private jet is difficult," and mischievously asked the witnesses whether, in another symbolic gesture, they would be willing to work for $1 a year, as Nardelli has offered to do.
"I don't have a position on that today," demurred Wagoner (2007 total compensation: $15.7 million).
"I understand the intent, but I think where we are is okay," said Mulally ($21.7 million).
"I'm asking about you," Roskam pressed.
"I think I'm okay where I am," Mulally said.
And don't even think about asking him to fly commercial.Until next time
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
On fears primarily related to the impending auto industry collapse, the Dow closed below 8,000. This is the lowest point since March of 2003. Same for the S&P 500.
I read an article in the most recent Time magazine regarding a possible collapse by GM. If GM were to fail, it would not affect just the 200,000 or so employees of GM, but could expand to approximately 1.2 million jobs. This is because of the extensive supply chain of parts and other jobs related to GM. With the economy continuing the way it is, I sure don't know of any of my friends out shopping for new vehicles!
Hang in there folks, until next time,
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Here's a link to the story on TBO.com.
Until next time,
Rays Manager Joe Maddon was named AL Manager of Year today by the Baseball Writers Association of America. Here's a link to the article on MLB.com.
Continuing the theme from Evan Longoria's unanimous selection as Rookie of the Year, Maddon was only 1 vote short of a unanimous selection as Manager of the Year. The only other manager to get a 1st place vote was Ron Gardenhire from Minnesota.
Until next time,
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
I love these type of articles. They look back over the history of companies and dig into significant times in the company's growth. Because of Microsoft Windows celebrating 25 years yesterday, November 10th, Time.com has provided a look back at the top 10 Microsoft moments. Here's a link to the very insightful article.
Because of all the stock splits, the adjusted stock price when the company went public on March 13th, 1986 was only $0.0955. Based on today's stock price of $20.84 that is a 21,722% increase! That's even with the stock down over 60% from it's all-time high in December of 1999. No wonder Bill Gates is one of the richest men in the world!
Until next time,
Monday, November 10, 2008
Despite missing 30 games due to a broken wrist he suffered on August 10th after being hit by a pitch, he led all Major League rookies with 27 home runs and a .531 slugging percentage. In addition, he led the American League with 85 RBI's, 60 extra base hits and 238 total bases.
Evan had 2 walk off homeruns during the season and 3 in one game on September 18th against the Twins. He played excellent defense throughout the season, finishing with a .961 fielding percentage, 6th among American League 3rd basemen.
Let's hope the awards continue with Joe Maddon's being named Manager of the Year!
Until Next Time,
Friday, November 7, 2008
This is a really unique website where you search for tags of photos posted on flickr. A huge globe is then represented, or possibly other globes with related tags.
I searched for our hometown, Plant City, and here's what I got.
Until next time,
Monday, November 3, 2008
Sunday, November 2, 2008
Jacelyn: G-ma, have you voted yet?
G-Ma: Yes, I voted early.
Jacelyn: Who did you vote for?
G-Ma: I voted for McCain.
Jacelyn: I like him too, more than Obama.
Jacelyn: He just looks like a President, the other guy doesn't.
There you have it folks, the best reason yet that I have seen to vote for John McCain and Sarah Palin!
Until next time,
Friday, October 31, 2008
Until next time,
After a couple of days of recovering from the World Series, I am going to shift gears a bit for the next week or so and go into political mode here on the blog.
I make no excuses for the fact that I am a conservative republican and support McCain and Palin for this election. However, that being said, I am intrigued by the rhetoric from both sides in this campaign. Barack Obama reminds me a lot of Bill Clinton. While conservative republicans certainly didn't agree with many of the views of Clinton, he was a smooth talker who could make you believe almost anything. That's what we have to be careful about with Obama. He is very smooth as well, has a calm, cool demeanor about him, but when you take a look at the issues at hand for conservative Christians in this election, he fails on almost every issue. Here is a summary from the Christian Coalition Voter Guide for the 2008 Presidential Election. You can find more info and the entire publication at their website by clicking here. Clicking on the image below will give you the full size view.
The question you must ask yourself, is, "Does my one vote count?" Yes, it most certainly does! The following video may help you understand the impact you could have on this election.
Until next time,
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Oh yeah, why did Fox have to show the last pitch 9 times for each of the fielders to show them running to the mound, that was a bit excessive don't you think? :-)
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Click here for the article.
You can see me at about 6 to 8 seconds in. I have on a white Longoria jersey, on the aisle. The homer went just to my right. You can also see me at about 40 seconds. Then, at 48 seconds, I'm right behind the guy in a plaid shirt on the left of the screen. About 51 seconds, Kelly comes into plain view.
You see what's happening don't you... the ball is starting to bounce back the Rays way again. All season long, this team of destiny has had things happen that just defy a little bit of logic and allow them to win. Here's another example. In a game with horrible conditions, Pena and Longoria have started hitting again, Upton is running out ground balls and stealing bases in a mud pit.
Now, we are setup for the latest hero, David Price, to finish out game 5. I fully expect him to be the new "starting" pitcher when the game resumes. Then, back to Tampa for game 6 and 2 very favorable pitching matchups for the Rays with Shields and Garza as the Rays become the 5th team in history to come back from a 3-1 deficit to win the World Series!
Monday, October 27, 2008
- Is it because the normally accurate Andy Sonnanstine started walking more people in one game than he typically does in 4 or 5 games?
- Is it because the historically potent offense we saw in the ALCS against the Red Sox is now a blubbering mess, striking out and not getting big hits when they need them?
- Is it because they are down 3-1 and going up against a pitcher who has won his last 4 postseason starts?
- Is it because an ESPN writer named Gene Wojciechowski was quoted in his column today saying, "As much as it pains me to say it, the Tampa Bay Rays are cooked, finished, done, toast, history. The only way they win this World Series is if Bud Selig declares the Philadelphia Phillies, I don't know, academically ineligible"
- Is it because we are starting to doubt Joe Maddon and his decision making prowess?
Whatever your reason for your panic, some of which are probably very valid, I leave you with the following list of 10 teams that have come back from a 3-1 deficit to win a postseason LCS or World Series. Also, take a look at the teams, I am 100% sure the media and lots of fans had given up on them. What are you going to do tonight? Give up, or cheer your team to victory so we live to play another day?
- 2007 ALCS Red Sox come back against the Indians
- 2004 ALCS Red Sox come back against the Yankees
- 2003 NLCS Marlins come back against the Cubs
- 1996 NLCS Braves come back against the Cardinals
- 1986 ALCS Red Sox come back against the Angels
- 1985 ALCS Royals come back against the Blue Jays
- 1985 WS Royals come back against the Cardinals
- 1968 WS Tigers come back against the Cardinals
- 1958 WS Yankees come back against the Braves (Milwaukee)
- 1925 WS Pirates come back against the Senators
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Can you believe there was a World Series game at the Trop last night? What an atmosphere. I noticed lots of folks were upset and discouraged with the loss. What a short memory we have Rays fans! Remember game 1 of the ALCS? The Rays lost to Dice-K and the hitting looked anemic. The Phillies gave us Cole Hamels and again, due to good pitching, hitting was less than exciting. There were a couple of good points, actually three... Aki had 3 hits, Zobrist got on base and scored a run and Crawford hit his 1st post season homerun. Other than that, everyone else put up an zeroes.
I fully expect the Rays to come back tonight and post some big numbers. Then, go to Philly and try to take 1 or 2 games to get homefield advantage back. I am thinking this is going to be a 6 or 7 game series. You have to think the Phillies will probably win the games that Hamels starts.
Sorry for the somewhat short post today... but I have to get some work done today!
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
On a separate issue, I also wanted to ask you to compare the following pictures. My buddy Smitty thinks I looks a lot like Scott Kazmir. Even some of our friends who we sit near at the games thought I was his brother. What do you think? I included a couple of my pics for comparison. Oh yeah, Scotty's picture is 1st.
Now that we are off topic and talk has shifted into sneaking into sporting events, how many of you have heard of Barry Bremen? Here's a link to his page on Wikipedia. Barry has snuck into all sorts of sporting events over the years. From his Wiki Page: From 1979 to 1986, Bemen posed as a Major League Baseball Umpire in the World Series (maybe we'll see him tomorrow), a player in the MLB All-Star game, a player in the NBA All-Star game, a referee in the NFL, a professional golfer, an emmy award winner accepting an award on someone else's behalf and my personal favorite, a Dallas Cowboys Cheerleader!
That's it for now, look for an in depth analysis soon on the series and our real chances.
Monday, October 20, 2008
I zoomed into the both dugouts as we had friends sitting behind each dugout.