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Sports Then and Now



Waiting For The Weekend: Michael Crabtree Finally Makes a Good Decision 0

Posted on October 09, 2009 by Dean Hybl
Michael Crabtree will finally start spending time on the field with his teammates instead of in meetings with his agents.

Michael Crabtree will finally start spending time on the field with his teammates instead of in meetings with his agents.

Boy there sure is a lot going on in the sports world this week. Yet, when I look at what to write about I’m almost paralyzed by the choices. Sort of like looking at the dessert aisle at an all-you-can-eat buffet; so much to choose from you just don’t know where to start.

Michael, Thank You For Joining Us
I don’t know about you, but I’m so glad that Michael Crabtree finally came to his senses and took the multi-millions of dollars the San Francisco 49ers have been offering him for months.

I have read several defenses of him saying that Michael is a good guy and was just trying to make sure he got what he deserved. Hey, he very well be the nicest guy since Harry Truman, but in this case he was just trying to be greedy.

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Twins Playoff Diaries: Minnesota Magic in October 0

Posted on October 08, 2009 by JA Allen
The Twins celebrate following their dramatic 12-inning win over the Tigers.

The Twins celebrate following their dramatic 12-inning win over the Tigers.

Baseball is simple and timeless – there is a man, a ball, a bat and unending athleticism.  American baseball strategy has not changed that much in the past 100 years.  Pinpoint execution and smart play are the keys.  Always has been – always will be.

So at the end of a long season in 2009 the Minnesota Twins faced the Detroit Tigers for all the marbles in a one game tiebreaker to determine the American League Central Division champion for the privilege of playing the Yankees in the ALDS.  You had to expect one helluva game.

No disappointment there.  It was a classic.  Like alternating hotrods driving to the edge of a cliff, stopping on a dime as one wheel hung over the edge – playing chicken in the dome with the playoffs waiting just out of reach over the chasm.

At the end of each Detroit at-bat the Twins pulled themselves back from the precipice to begin another run at the win.  Exhilarating stuff in the claustrophobic dome with the hankies flying and fans swooning in anxiety.

The coaches dueled on the sidelines with bunts and bullets, pinch hitters and runners and bullpen substitutions without reservation because unless they won this one, there would be no tomorrow.

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Playoffs Reminder: “There’s No Crying in Baseball!” 4

Posted on October 08, 2009 by Don Spieles
According to Jimmy Dugan, "There's no crying in baseball!"

According to Jimmy Dugan, "There's no crying in baseball!"

According to the American Film Institute, their list of top 100 movie quotes of all time includes (at number 54), “There’s no crying in baseball!”  This gem, uttered in “A League of Their Own” by Peaches coach Jimmy Dugan (played by Tom Hanks) has also become a favorite of sportscasters and fans alike.

Apparently,  few of the players currently on postseason rosters have yet to see this very entertaining and informative film.

First, Cole Hamels.  Last year’s World Series MVP really wants to get back to the big show again this year.  In the process, he’s annoyed about the afternoon game times that the Phillies/Rockies matchup has garnered this week.

“I don’t think it’s fair. I definitely don’t think it’s fair for the fans. I understand TV ratings, but at the end of the day, most players would rather play when they’re most comfortable, and that’s kind of what we’ve been trained to do, and I think it’s more fair for us than really the TV ratings.”

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American League Division Playoffs: Twins Looking To Surprise the Yankees 4

Posted on October 06, 2009 by Dean Hybl

The Twins will look to continue their late season magic against the Yankees.

The Twins will look to continue their late season magic against the Yankees.

In a battle between two Cinderella’s, I guess it is fitting that the Minnesota Twins came away with the victory in their final season playing in the infamous Metrodome.

Of course they really don’t get much of a reward – or time to rest – as they now must quickly travel to New York City to face the Evil Empire known as the New York Yankees.

While the Twins have known for minutes that they would be continuing their season well into October, the Yankees have been preparing for the postseason since taking over first place in the American League East in mid-July.

Posting the best record in baseball at 103-59, the Yankees went 41-17 over the last 58 games and didn’t lose three in a row until the last days of the season.

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Waiting For The Weekend: Did You Say Playoffs? 0

Posted on October 02, 2009 by Dean Hybl
Justin Verlander and the Detroit Tigers are are looking to complete the 2009 playoff picture.

Justin Verlander and the Detroit Tigers are are looking to complete the 2009 playoff picture.

The first few weeks of October are always great sports weeks as between the Major League Baseball playoffs, college and pro football, the NASCAR Chase and the starts of hockey and basketball seasons there is more than enough to keep every sports nut happy.

Did You Say Playoffs?
While we have known most of the teams participating in the playoffs for several weeks. The Minnesota Twins and Detroit Tigers have kept things interesting in the AL Central.

Even if Minnesota doesn’t make the playoffs, they should get credit for doing more with less than any other team in baseball. Now that the Oakland A’s have hit the skids the last couple years, the Twins have emerged as the most consistent contender among the teams generally seen as the “have-nots” in baseball.

Remember at the start of this decade when the buzzword was contraction and many thought the Twins should go?

With their new park scheduled to open next year, look for the Twins to remain competitive. Of course, a new stadium doesn’t necessarily guarantee that you will be competitive on the field (just ask fans of the Pirates and Reds), but for a management team that is among the best in the league, the potential of having more resources could make them really dangerous.
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  • Vintage Athlete of the Month

    • Dale Murphy: A Hallmark of Excellence
      July 2, 2024 | 1:53 pm
      Dale Murphy

      The Sports Then and Now Vintage Athlete of the Month was a standout player of the 1980s, remembered not only for his exceptional skills on the field but also for his exemplary character and sportsmanship.

      Born on March 12, 1956, in Portland, Oregon, Dale Murphy’s journey to becoming one of the most respected players in baseball history is a testament to dedication, perseverance, and a genuine love for the game.

      Early Career and Rise to Prominence

      Murphy was drafted by the Atlanta Braves in the first round of the 1974 MLB Draft. He made his Major League debut on September 13, 1976, at the age of 20. Initially a catcher, Murphy transitioned to the outfield early in his career, where he would solidify his place as one of the premier outfielders of his era.

      Read more »

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