Thursday, February 23, 2012

Hey, kids, who wants a Zim Bear?

Bobbleheads are a fine giveaway, a nice little gift, if you're one of those people with a basement full of dusty ceramic heads, praying for a retweet by @LunchBoxHero45. In other words, get a life. Bobbleheads have gotten annoying. They break within days. Their cardboard boxes litter baseball stadiums on giveaway day. Kids fight over them. They're all made in China by kids, and I wouldn't want to test the paint. Bobbleheads made a solid run for, oh, 50 years, and there was simply no way to advance the promotional idea -- until this! Say hello to Zim, a creepy Don Zimmer-fied bear to be given away by the Tampa Bay Rays on June 29 against the Detroit Tigers. Mercy.

Random find on the popular Internet

We love Stubby Clapp and always will. When he played for the New Hampshire Fisher Cats in 2004, he'd back-flip over the rubber-crumbed artificial turf while taking the field in the first inning. And now some video excellence to start your day:

More audio excellence from Matt Bonner

We decided NBA veteran Matt Bonner, who lives outside of San Antonio, needs a ranch. Doesn't he? Come on, Red Rocket, buy a ranch. Tim Duncan must have a ranch.

"Nobody has a ranch. That’s something to have if you’re from Texas, like Josh Beckett. He has a ranch," Bonner said on our radio show this week. "Who wants to take care of a ranch?"

You hire people for that. 

"Yeah, but then you have to watch them. It all seems like a big headache to me. No, thanks. I’m from New Hampshire, where we grow up shoveling and raking. That’s enough. I don’t need to be shoveling livestock manure."

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Fundamentals of hitting

As a head coach of the AAU Granite State Gamers 13U baseball team, we talk a lot about being on time and ready to hit. This means having a proper load and developing a rhythm as the pitcher delivers. I like to see hitters stride and get down their front foot while remaining loaded or coiled. As you plant the front foot, practice keeping your front side "closed off" and firm at point of contact. We call this front leg resistance, something I have worked on camps with coach Kenny Joyce of the S.F. Giants. He always says, "Be on time. Be on plane. Be in rhythm." Check it out:

Here is one of our players showing a firm front side and generating a powerful swing by getting that foot down: