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December 27, 2014 / 5 Tevet, 5775
 
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘league’

Turkey… Goes Turkey (Video)

Monday, October 22nd, 2012

In Turkey, the referee attacks the player.

Seems in August, one soccer official decided enough was enough. During a low-league soccer match in Turkey between Altinorduspor (red) and Pazarspor (blue), a Pazarspor player was preparing to take a free kick when one of the linesman suddenly ran out onto the field and socked an Altinorduspor player right in the face.

Why? Who knows?

And you wonder why they can’t get the Marmara affair straight?

Visit My Right Word.

Israel And The World Baseball Classic

Wednesday, September 12th, 2012

For the first time, Israel will participate in the qualifying round of the World Baseball Classic.

That’s the good news.

The bad news concerns the dates they’ll be playing in Florida. Earlier in the year it was thought the early rounds would start in other countries before moving to Florida in November. Assuming Israel would still be in the WBC games, the Florida site would be Roger Dean Stadium in Jupiter.

That would have been great for me, as my winter dugout in West Palm Beach’s Century Village, near the Aitz Chaim shul, is not too far of a drive from the Jupiter ballpark. But September replaced November and the dates don’t make it easy for us even though the site is the same.

Team Israel makes its debut on the day after Rosh Hashanah, Wednesday, September 19. If Israel beats South Africa it moves on to the winner of the France/Spain game on Friday (Yom Kippur is the following Tuesday evening). So the schedule wasn’t made for us.

To qualify for a spot on the team, a player just has to have one Jewish grandparent. Three former Jewish major league players, Brad Ausmus (Jewish mother), Shawn Green and Gabe Kapler will be wearing the Israel uniform. (None of the trio chose Jewish spouses.) Green and Kapler will serve as player/coaches while Ausmus will manage the team.

After the regular major league season and postseason games, Ausmus hopes to lure big league stars such as Ryan Braun and Ian Kinsler (Jewish fathers) to Team Israel. If T.I. survives the November rounds in Taiwan and Panama, it would get a shot at the big March series in the World Baseball Classic at Miami’s new retractable dome home of the Marlins.

* * * * *

I’ve been hearing from many citizens of Red Sox Nation. All liked the mega-trade with the Dodgers and the brooming of close to a hundred million a year in salaries.

Boston can rebuild quickly, Jewish Press readers say, if they sign the right free agents this winter with the freed-up money while prospects received from the Dodgers get more minor league seasoning. It should be a very interesting off-season for Boston fans.

But the question remains: Will Bobby Valentine be back to manage the new-look BoSox next season?

Another question: Why did the Dodgers add all that payroll due Adrian Gonzalez, Josh Beckett and the injured Carl Crawford? Answer: The name recognition of the additional stars will help fill seats and drive up the price the Dodgers can command as they negotiate a new multi-year cable contract for the left coast.

Speaking of new cable contracts, ESPN’s contract with Major League Baseball doubles the amount the sports cable network will be paying over the next five years. The good news for fans is that there will no longer be blackouts in cities when the home team plays. Those of us who live in areas with good teams that pop up often on ESPN games couldn’t see them play, and we were fed other programming.

But how is ESPN going to pay for it? The bad news is that we can expect cable rates to go up.

Irwin Cohen headed a national baseball publication for five years before moving to a big league front office position where he earned a World Series ring. The author, columnist, lecturer and shul president, may be reached in his dugout at irdav@sbcglobal.net. His column appears the second week of each month.

What I Did On My ‘Mancation’

Thursday, August 9th, 2012

Last year I told you about my “mancation” (men only) to a city to check out its Jewish community and major league team and ballpark. Last year it was Pittsburgh and Cincinnati; this year’s first “mancation” destination was Cleveland.

Actually, it was a two-parter. We left Detroit and headed south on I-75 and one hour after we’d departed from my dugout we arrived at Toledo’s beautiful downtown Fifth Third Field, the home of the Triple-A Toledo Mud Hens of the International League. After watching the late afternoon game, we headed east on the Ohio Turnpike and arrived in Cleveland about two hours later.

The Cleveland Indians were part of my childhood in the early 1950s. Cleveland was the closest big league city to Detroit and I could pick up their ballgames on the radio and listen to their play-by-play man, Jimmy Dudley, one of the best ever to sit behind a microphone.

The Indians were the team of Al Rosen, the slugging Jewish third baseman, and general manager and part owner Hank Greenberg. My yeshiva classmates also followed the box scores daily to see how Rosen was doing, especially in 1953 when Rosen was trying for the triple crown (leading the league in three categories, batting average, home runs and runs batted in). Rosen finished the season with 43 homers and 145 RBI, good enough to top all others, but his last at-bat of the season was an infield out, leaving him with a .336 average for the year, a fraction of a point behind the American League batting champ Mickey Vernon of Washington. Vernon’s teammate was conveniently picked off base before he could bat. Who said life was fair?

The upper deck first-base side at Cleveland’s Progressive Field offers great views of the city’s downtown area.

The Rosen era ended when he retired after the 1956 season, but the soft spot for Cleveland remained. My first two trips to Cleveland were not to see ballgames, but to see Telshe yeshiva. Our yeshiva took us for visits on Thanksgiving weekends in the ’50s. Forty years later my daughter would marry someone in the Telshe Kollel and Cleveland became a regular destination and I got to see several games in Cleveland’s huge lakefront Municipal Stadium before the Indians moved to a new home on the other side of downtown.

Municipal Stadium saw the Indians’ last game in 1993. The big stadium also hosted the NFL’s Cleveland Browns. The stadium was eventually razed for a new football-only stadium after the Indians moved to a baseball-only park called Jacobs Field, after the owner of the baseball team. Under new ownership, “The Jake,” as it was fondly called, became Progressive Field.

Our first stop on this “mancation” was to a suburban kosher eatery before checking into a Beachwood area motel. The following morning we davened at the imposing Young Israel of Beachwood on Green Road. After a full breakfast in one of the area’s bakeries, it was one to Wickcliffe for a quick visit to the Telshe yeshiva campus.

Then we motored back to Cedar Road, which connects the suburbs that house Cleveland’s Orthodox communities (Beachwood, University Heights and Cleveland Heights), and headed to Progressive Field, only a few blocks from the heart of downtown. The three of us agreed that not only is Cleveland a nice place to visit but a good place to live as well. Good shuls full of nice people, good places to eat and affordable housing. Plus, the city boasts good museums and medical facilities.

About three hours after the last out was recorded we were back in our Oak Park, Michigan homes.

Cleveland is a much longer drive for most of you, but you’ll find it’s worth it.

Author, columnist, public speaker Irwin Cohen headed a national baseball publication for five years before working in a major league front office where he earned a World Series ring. The president of one of Detroit’s leading shuls, Cohen may be reached in his dugout at irdav@sbcglobal.net.

Christiane Amanpour on Mount of Olives Plus Nachum Segal on Kosher Hot Dogs and Israel

Wednesday, August 1st, 2012

Christiane Amanpour (CNN and ABC) vists Yishai Fleisher  on the Mount of Olives.  Listen in as Yishai and Christiane discuss Jewish life in eastern Jerusalem, why many Jews feel it is important to return to Israel, and more.  Then Yishai talks with Nachum Segal on JM in the AM (New Jersey)  kosher hot dogs in major league ballparks versus struggling to support Israel.

Cleveland Just Missed Its Chance to Own 3 Major League Jews

Thursday, July 26th, 2012

The Cleveland Jewish News Les Levine is bemoaning the fact that Jewish history was not made this week, because had the (Jewish) heavens gone a little bit differently, Cleveland could become the first American city with three Jewish major leaguers playing at the same time.

All season the Cleveland Indians and the Chicago White Sox have been on a seesaw in the race for the American League Central Division title, with the Detroit Tigers not too far behind, Levine writes. Then the White Sox acquired Kevin Youkilis from the Boston Red Sox.

A native of Cincinnati, Ohio, Kevin Edmund Youkilis was drafted by the Boston Red Sox in 2001, after playing college baseball at the University of Cincinnati. Known for his ability to get on base, Youkilis has earned the nickname “Euclis: The Greek God of Walks.”

He is also a three-time MLB All-Star, two-time World Series Champion, and winner of the 2008 Hank Aaron Award.

Youkilis is the son of a Rumanian Jewish jewelry wholesaler, described by his son a “well-known third baseman in the Jewish Community Center fast-pitch softball league.”

By not acquiring Youkilis, Levine points out, the Cleveland teams missed out on a local “Jewish trifecta that may not have ever taken place in any city with three pro franchises. The Cavs have Omri Casspi, the Browns have second-round pick Mitchell Schwartz, but the Indians came up short in their quest for Youkilis.”

Just one thing I must point out: Over here in Netanya, where I live, our local major league soccer team Maccabi Netanya is comprised almost entirely of Jews. In fact, it’s when the team acquires a non-Jew that it makes headlines. Like Muhammad Kalibat, who scored 5 goals last season. I hope they keep him — he was on loan from Maccabi Haifa. It’s kinda’ fun.

We finished in 4th place last season. Not too shabby.

Florida State House Candidate Apologizes to the ADL

Sunday, July 15th, 2012

A son of Holocaust survivors, who is running for reelection in the Florida statehouse, has apologized to the Anti-Defamation League after labeling the group “despicable.”

The ADL had criticized Sheldon Lisbon after he sent out an email to supporters in June with the subject line, “A vote for Shelly Lisbon is a vote for the Jewish community,” according to the Miami Herald.

In a response letter to Lisbon, the ADL wrote that “appealing to voters along religious lines is divisive,” according to the newspaper. Lisbon then told the editorial board of the Miami Herald that the ADL’s comments were “despicable.”

Lisbon, who had sent the email to members of his synagogue, is challenging state Rep. Joe Gibbons, who is African American, in the state’s newly drawn District 100. Redistricting put the two in the same district.

The new district puts only 43 percent of the voters in Broward County, the rest being in Miami-Dade County. The state’s Democratic primary is Aug. 14.

In an email to the Miami Herald Thursday night Gibbons wrote, “I used a term that is far removed from what the ADL represents. What I did was totally inexcusable and as a son of Holocaust survivors who was born in a Displaced Persons camp in Germany, my statement was reprehensible.”

The Delmon Young Saga

Wednesday, July 11th, 2012

Every time Delmon Young come to bat, gets on base or makes a play in the field, we are reminded of his anti-Semitic rant in New York back in April.

As you recall, an inebriated Young encountered four tourists from Chicago giving money to a panhandler wearing a yarmulke and sporting a star of David around his neck. According to police reports, it was about 2:30 in the morning outside of the New York Hilton where the Tigers team was quartered when Young yelled anti-Jewish epithets and tackled one of the tourists, who suffered a minor elbow injury.

Young ran into the hotel and made his way up to his room. A security guard called police who arrested the 6-foot-3, 240-pound ballplayer in his room.

Tigers president and general manager David Dombrowski was traveling with the team at the time and was informed of the situation. He rushed to Young’s room, talked to the police and summed up the situation later to the media.

“He [Young] was apologetic at that time, although not in a very good state.” Dombrowski said. “Later on, he reached out to me and the organization so I know that he’s very apologetic and knows there is no excuse for what he did.”

The police took Young to Roosevelt Hospital where he sobered up and was charged later with second-degree aggravated harassment, which includes assaulting or threatening to assault someone “on the basis of the victim’s race or religion.”

Major League Baseball suspended the Tigers left fielder/designated hitter who is earning a whopping $6.75 million this season despite being a mediocre player who did get hot right before this week’s all-star break. The seven-day suspension cost Young approximately $258,000 in lost wages. Young does have an anger management problem. While playing in the minor leagues six years ago, he was suspended 50 games for throwing a bat at an umpire who had called him out on strikes.

The Tigers are Young’s third major league team in six years and he’ll be on his way again after the season as his contract is up and he’s a free agent. The incident will cost him dearly as many teams will shy away from him. Besides, he’s a below average fielder and runner and is a liability when stationed in the outfield. And he’s proving to be just an average designated hitter.

After his arrest in New York, Young issued an apology. More likely the Tigers public relations department wrote an apology attributed to Young:

“I sincerely regret what happened last night. I apologize to everyone I affected, the Ilitch family [Tigers owners], the Detroit Tigers organization, my teammates, my family and the great Tigers fans that have supported me since day one. I take this matter very seriously and assure everyone that I will do everything I can to improve myself as a person and player.”

Young is undergoing treatment in an alcohol program. The Tigers allowed Young to talk to the media after the suspension and here’s some of the things he said regarding the incident:

“I made a lapse in judgment, but I can tell you that I am not anti-Semitic.” He added that “being perceived as an anti-Semite is hard to deal with. That’s the toughest part, being branded as a racist or bigot, especially when that’s just not true. I have a lot of diverse friends and live in a diverse area.”

Diverse friends? Diverse area? What does that mean? It could mean that some are single and some are married; some are Republicans and some are Democrats. Anyway, I’m not convinced. Something about Jews or something Jewish caused Young to go ballistic.

We should know a bit more on August 2 as the case was adjourned until then to give Young’s lawyers more time to prepare his defense. In the meantime, a Detroit area Reform rabbi not known for wearing a yarmulke but known to be a Tigers season ticket holder, is buddying up with Young and advising him about Jews and Judaism.

Young’s agent, who is Jewish, should be busy this off-season trying to find a new team for him to sign with. One thing’s for sure: he won’t be earning what he’s earning this season.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/sports/baseball-insider/the-delmon-young-saga/2012/07/11/

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