Daily Blog 2.0
NASCAR Update And Other Fast Stuff 8-17-14
Category: Daily Blog 2.0
Tags: NASCAR Watkins Glen Michigan Tony Stewart ALS Bucket Challenge


GET R DUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUNE GABBERS!!!!!! Yep. It's me again welcoming all you Gabbers and others to another one of my NASCAR updates and other fast stuff. I love tractors. Would love to have one but I don't have a farm.  I haven't been down to The Buck to watch tractor sled pulls in a couple years. 

This sure has been a dark and miserable week. I'm still bummed about Robin Williams. There's been so much speculation on why he did it from depression to Parkison's diagnosis to money troubles. To me all these things are nothing to lose hope over. You deal with them. One at a time. It's life. But then again you have those nasty trolls on Twitter attacking his daughter Zelda. What did she ever do to deserve that? She suspended her social media accounts because of the trolls. Twitter has promised to look into troll controls and has suspended a few accounts over this.

We have some really mean ugly black souls spewing their blackness upon the world these days via the web. I watch a lot of You Tube videos and the one thing I hear a lot is the video makers complaining of those troubled individuals and how they go through and delete the negative comments so they don't overwhelm the page. Has the push to be so politically correct caused this negative back lash?

I know I'm sick of being sent to sensitivity, respect, peer to peer coaching and integrity classes at work. I think those classes inflame the situations further. I'm afraid to speak or show any emotions at work any more. Everyone is on hyper sensitive alert. It's almost like the end of the movie Invasion of the Body Snatchers (original movie) where everyone is pointing and screaming at the last remaining human. I feel just like that most of the time. 


One bright spot this week has been the ALS bucket Challenge. Not sure where it started but it's been fun watching the videos. Dale Jr is a Redskins fan. After practice this week linebacker Ryan Kerrigen and WR Pierre Garcon took their ice baths and challenged Dale Jr to do the same. So at Michigan he made a video in the garage area of him getting a bucket of ice dumped on him. He threw down the gauntlet to his crew chief Steve Letarte, Jimmie Johnson and Redskins owner Dan Snyder. Jimmie passed but said he'd write the check. Kevin Harvick made a video of him getting a bucket of ice water dumped on him by his wife. He issued challenges too. Sounds like a fun time.


This week he said he'd love to go through it all again next year. AND Michael Andretti has said repeatedly he'd love to have him come back to drive again. He feels that Kurt would become a favorite. A 6th place finish in a car you rarely drive is pretty awesome if you ask me. It will be great to see if Montoya can get his double set up for next year too. I would love to see both do it. It would be a first in history to have multiple drivers doing the Double at the same time.


So like I said it's been a black week. Young Kevin Ward Jr was laid to rest Thursday and this Saturday the track where he died held a memorial for him and went racing per Ward Sr's wishes. He said his son would've wanted it that way. 

As for Stewart? He's not racing again this weekend. Jeff Burton will be stepping in. And there again it's been truely amazing the hatefulness and spewing of dark uneducated tweets and comments about Stewart and what happened. I know he's cultivated a tough guy image but he's not a homicidal maniac. I've read a lot. Some of those comments almost made me cry. A lot of the comments were from people who race or were there and gave good comments on what happened or how the cars react.

I know that these cars are set up to rock n roll as soon as you touch the throttle. They're light and go 90 to 120 mph. You steer by using your break and throttle together a long with the steering wheel. Most racers love these cars because they're so much zip, bang and drifting wow factor for the money. 

A comment from Cory Sparks a driver a couple cars behind Stewart said," From what I saw, Tony did everything in his power to turn down away from Kevin to avoid him. People say they heard the engine rev up and he gassed it. In a sprint car the only way to steer is with the rear wheel as much as you do the steering wheel. In my opinion what he did was he gassed it to turn down away from him."

I knew this is what I saw when I tried to explain the video. I thought he was using a combonation of the brake and gas but apparently only the gas. In another video it was put in slow mo and you can see the kid grab the wing of the car. This was just a really unfortunate turn of events. A young kid with hormones a blazing thought he was going to show everyone he wasn't taking crap from that NASCAR driver Tony Stewart.

In reality he should've been looking to Stewart as an opportunity to show case his abilities to race with the big dawgs. After all he wanted to make it to the World of Outlaws. In that series as in NASCAR Nationwide, if you want better sponsorship or a better ride or to move up to Cup you get noticed by running up front and or beating the Sprint Cup interlopers on race day. Too bad this young man didn't see it that way.

Going forward I hope the parents find peace and understanding. I hope Stewart finds peace as well. I know he's deeply effected. Maybe something good could come from all this.

Dirt tracks around the Nation are instituting no getting out of the car rules. NASCAR has re-instated theirs. You may not exit the car unless it's on fire, smoke in the cockpit or fuel is leaking before the emergency crew gets there. It's a start.



The Dinger wins. And what a trip it's been from a great ride at Penske to a drug test failure to a new ride on a lesser team. The single car team under dogs won. It was a battle between the Aussie Ambrose and the Dinger. Several restarts almost ruined his win. He even led 30 laps. The most of any one. The last time the #47 car saw a victory was back on March16, 1986. Jack Beebe owned the Buick that Morgan Shepherd drove to victory in Atlanta. 

Gordon was dominating the race when electrical troubles shut his car off and he ended his day 4 laps down. The Dinger got lucky.

7 laps in Harvick was in the pits because a bag full of bean bags used to bring the car up to weight came out from under the seat and got lodges under his pedals. This resulted in a $25,000 to crew chief Rodney Childers for not securing them properly. I thought only The Danica needed extra weight because of her small stature. If you picked her for your fantasy league last week you were rewarded with a 21st place finish. 

Lap 56 saw Newman go hard into the railing taking #95 McDowell with him. Both cars destroyed. Dale Jr claimed that car for his race car graveyard in his woods. This resulted in a 2 hour red flag while they fixed the railing.

With 9 to go Johnson goes around that makes it 3 weeks in a row the Danica finishes better than him. Scary.

All in all, a good race. Ambrose and the dinger gave us a great show. Congrats to the Dinger.

Top 15 finishers - Allmendinger - Ambrose - Ku Bu - Larson - Edwards - Logano - Harvick - Biffle - Kenseth - Vickers - Dale Jr - Kahne - Truex Jr - McMurray - Mears


Ok. Lots happening here. Ryan Truex who races in the #83 BK Racing Toyota wrecked big in practice. He was sent to the hospital and declared unfit to drive due to a concussion. JJ Yeley will sub for him.

Brother Martin Truex Jr was with his long time girlfriend Sherry Pollex while she recieved treatments for her ovarian cancer. He missed qualifying and practice. Matt Crafton of the truck series helped with practicing the car.

Michigan is a 2 mile track but it's fast. Usually long green flag runs that turn it into a fuel mileage race. They can go 5 wide at spots and they do. This track eats motors too. Last year Jimmie and Gilliland lost motors. 

Last years top 15 finishers - Logano - Harvick - Ku Bu - Menard - Bowyer - Ambrose - Kahne - Burton - Biffle - Edwards - Montoya - Keselowski - Newman - Stewart - Kenseth

Gordon - Has the pole again this week with a speed of 206.558 mph. Hendrick power. Top 10

Biffle - One of the fastest in practice. Top 10

Logano - Last years winner. He starts 2nd today. Barring any catastrophies...top 10

Ambrose - Is good at this track and usually finds himself in the top 10 at the end. I say yet again.

Larson - The rookie with the mostest. Top 10.

Ku Bu - Last practice speeds of 203.109 and 16th starting spot. If he don't self destruct...Top 10

Harvick - If the crew don't screw up, if he don't wreck and the levee don't break...top 10

Dale Jr - Starts 25th. That's a tall order to ask for a top 10 here but he's been extremely consistent this year. Gotta give it to him.

Keselowski - Starts 5th. Top 10

Edwards - Starts 3rd today. He's on a mission. Top 10

The Danica - Starts 14th today. Last year she was 21st and on the lead lap. Pretty good pick for this week.

Burton - Subbing for Stewart in the 314 if you need a semi cheap pick in your salary cap league. 

Johnson - Starts 30th today. Don't know what's going on with Jimmie but he's scaring me. 

Kenseth - Hamlin & Ky Bu are mired in 18th 21st & 24th. Ooo yuck

So it's to Michigan we go. Wishing all the Gabbers safe travels and happy grillin'. Did you here football is back? Not a rumor. It's true. Got to get my draft picks organized. Take care all.

And I'm outta here.....








Bad Penny is back, 8/16/14
Category: Daily Blog 2.0

Folks, let’s call last week what it was, a bunch of crap.  The death of Robin Williams, Ferguson, Social Media blowing up with hatred and ignorance and bullshit, insufferable talking heads everywhere spewing non-sense so much more so than normal, the ongoing Tony Stewart crap, and a sports talk media trying to lecture MLB on how to improve (yeah, like they have any business giving anybody  improvement advice).   

 “Gooooooooood-byyyyyyye Vietnaaaaam! That's right, I'm history... I'm outta here. I got the lucky ticket home, baby. Rollin, rollin, rollin'... keep them wagons rollin', rawhide! Yeah, that's right... the final Adrian Cronauer broadcast... and this one is brought to you by our friends at the Pentagon. Remember the people who brought you Korea? That's right, the U.S. Army. If it's being done correctly, here or abroad, it's probably not being done by the Army.”

--Robin Williams as Adrian Cronauer (Good Morning, Vietnam), 1987

In this quote, “the people” in this quote is quite simply the media.  We can debate how Williams died and the other entire BS the media wants to yap about, but I choose not to do that here, only to say that he was one gifted entertainer, and that is how I will choose to remember him.  Well that, and his support of the military.  Hey Robin, In this world of foolishness and taking ourselves way too seriously, despite your own demons, you showed us through your humor that perhaps we should step back and just laugh, be silly on occasion, and more than that, be decent to one another.  Hey Robin, may you find peace!  May we in our lifetimes find peace, happiness, and a wonderful world:

Music.  Joe Bonamassa is starting to grow on me.                                  

Oh, sports?  Let's try some Baseball...

Baseball in general.  Hey, where has the art of the stolen base gone?

MLB – San Diego Baseball Franchise.  I was looking for something to write about baseball and I noticed this quiet little corner of MLB down in SD.  They’re 57-63 as of Friday, 7-3 in their last ten.  Here is a team that has played 120 games as of Friday, yet only five players have appeared in 90 games or more, and two more that have played 80 or more?  How the hell are they playing just below .500 ball with that kind of inconsistency?

It sure ain’t hitting: they’re dead last in team BA with a .226, and RBI’s (60 behind the two tied for second worst), and ranked #28 in HR.  In fact their RBI total is so bad, it is 102 RBI’s behind the MLB average (469 to SD’s 367).  The only guy who even remotely is having a good season is Seth Smith hitting .291 with 12 HR and 38 RBI.  Can somebody put out an APB for Jedd Gyorko (.196 BA, 7 HR, 36 RBI) and Yonder Alonso (.240 BA, 7 HR, 27 RBI?). 

Pitching?  Guess who is #2 in MLB in ERA?  Yep, San Diego at 3.06 (Seattle is #1!).  They’re also in a three way tie for #3 in Avg (.234), #4 in HRs given up (86), #6 in WHIP, and #10 in team Strike outs.  Former Oakland A Tyson Ross is 11-10 with a 2.63 ERA with 160 SO and a .228 average, but Jesse Han is 7-3 with a 2.52 ERA with an average of .189 with a very low walk count and he holds it down into at least the 6th but mostly the 7th innings.

In the minor leagues, they seem to have a ton of pitching prospects, but not much else.  Their #1 prospect is a catcher struggling to hit in the minors, and at #6 seems to be some promise OF Rymer Liriano whose hitting .291 in 115 games down on the farm.  Other than that, everybody in MLB.com’s top ten is a pitcher and/or sitting at AA or below.  No real hope anytime soon.  Hell, I had to dig to #14 to find Reymond Fuentes at AAA batting .294 in 88 games.  No power, but he has more SB than most which isn’t much.

So what does San Diego do?  Well, considering Petco’s dimensions, they seem to be doing what they can, but with all the pitching talent they have stocked up on, it may not be a bad idea for them to start looking at going after some sticks.  

Oh, and to the San Diego Baseball franchise deserve props for?  Yeah, providing tix in the stadium for USN and USMC boot campers to attend a ball game.  Marching in and out of that place looks pretty cool.


Friday's Freakout with IHM
Category: Daily Blog 2.0

  Well folks, it's Friday morning and we have no post on the 2.0 side yet, so I'm going to go ahead and leave this here for a while...

  Football is on the way back in, with the NFL Preseason in full swing and college football just a few weeks away from kicking off. I don't know about you all, but I can't wait to see some games that count!

  With college football ready to have it's first playoff this year, which four teams do you see representing which of the power conferences? We all know no small schools are going to make it to the dance... but which big boy conference makes it there? Which ones get left out?

  Looking at the big programs and the schedules they have in front of them, I see Alabama, Florida State, Oklahoma, and Stanford all taking a spot in the Football Final Four. That's right, no Big Ten... sorry guys. Ohio State loses one or two games, and Sparty does the same. As much as I'm rooting against Alabama and Florida State, I think they both run the table and take the one and two seeds. Oklahoma also runs the table, and Stanford takes the Pac-12 with one loss. Looking at the matchups, Alabama tops Stanford, and Oklahoma tops Florida State... then Oklahoma tops Bama to win the first NCAA Football playoff.

  So what are your picks, Gabbers? Be sure to let me know in the comments below.

  In Major League Baseball, Bud Selig's successor was named yesterday. It's the MLB COO Rob Manfred... who actually has a pair as opposed to Selig. Manfred wanted to go after Bonds, despite the absence of protocol between the Unoin and League, and force the Union to back up a cheat or allow a suspension to happen... but Selig opted to back out. Personally, I hope Manfred takes the Union to task every time it is possible.

  So with a new commissioner in place, I have this question for you... if you were named MLB commissioner, what rules do you change? What new rules do you put in place? Here's my list, but be sure to let me know what you would do in the comments below...

1. DH in both leagues. I know, I know, we want pitchers to be held accountable for beaning players, but I'm getting to that later on. Meanwhile, I'm not a fan of watching pitchers hack away when we could easily add a hundred points to the batting average of every #9 spot in baseball by getting rid of pitchers hitting. Sure, it's fun when a pitchers ends up getting a hit, but even a blind squirrel finds a nut now and then.

2. If a pitcher plunks a batter and it results in injury, that pitcher is suspended as long as the hit batter is out. If there is no injury, take your base and STFU!

3. Only one Wild Card spot... the one game playoff is stupid and minimizes the regular season.

4. Best record gets home-field advantage. Same as with the one game playoff, having an exhibition for the fans determine something as important as home field in the World Series is just fucking ridiculous and minimizes the importance of the regular season. Stop the madness already.

5. Pete Rose, Shoeless Joe, etc., are all forgiven, and all eligible for the Hall of Fame. A new wing is dedicated to those who cheated or did something stupid to shame the sport... a Hall of Shame wing if you will. Displays will include one of Rose's betting slips, one of the needles Brian McNamee had laying around from his "buddy" Roger Clemens, Barry Bonds' caps from his days in Pittsburgh and his days in San Fransisco laid next to one another so the difference is clear, Mark McGwire's bottle of Andro, which was displayed prominently in his locker during the HR chase of '98... and so much more. Let them in... just don't forget what they've done to tarnish the sport.

6. No more writers voting for the Hall of Fame. Living Hall of Fame players/coaches/contributors will determine who joins their ranks... not the idiot sports writers who have made a joke of Hall of Fame voting in recent years.

  That's what I've got right now folks... be sure to add more rules in the comments below! Thanks for reading, and rejoice... it's Friday people!

Talking Sports
Category: Daily Blog 2.0
Tags: MLB Trip


Our travels were long on Friday; the Mrs. dropped us at Boston’s Logan Airport at 8:00, Daughter was going on a college tour she needed to be there before 10. We took the quick flight down to Newark. From Newark we boarded a prop jet (my ass is still vibrating) . We landed in an airport in the middle of the woods, a ride on the 28X to Liberty and Wood ave and we were there.. We stayed at the Marriott on Penn Ave just a short walk over the Clemente Bridge up to PNC Park (lot Gabbers at PNC this week).

PNC Park lives up to all the hype, just a gorgeous ballpark. Seats are comfortable and the sightlines are great. The park is esthetically eye pleasing with it's architecture and yellow brick. the staff is friendly and it is very clean. It was a great expierence for me and the boys. Remember I'm used to America's Most Beloved and Uncomfortable ballpark . This is amajor league ballpark with a bit of aminor league feel to it and it works big time.

We saw the Pirates play the San Diego Padres and they were two good close games the Pirates winning 2-1 on Friday night and the padres winning 2-1 on Saturday Night. All the scoing in both games was done in the first inning. Friday night Jayson Nix played outstanding defense at 2nd base and Andrew McClutchen replacement who was playing right Gregory Polanco was outstanding and one of the newest exciting players in all of baseball is Josh Harrison. The one thing that stood out in both games were throwing errors mainly either on a steel or the flip on a double player they had to be 4 of them in the two games.

The boys had a ball. It was funny when we took off out of Newark the boys were sitting on the wrong side of the plane and missed the statute of liberty (something I think is still a great American landmark that just makes me proud to be an American everytime I see it.  Ok wiseass I know the French Gave it to us). Little Lanz says to me hey dad there is Metlife Stadium and there is the Jets practice facility. I say how do you know? he says because it says J_E_T_S in big green letters.

What I found amazing was people go to the ball game by boa,t and I’m not talking Kayaks. I’m talking some really nice boats, they tailgate on the riverwalk and then go to the game. It’s pretty cool. The people that we encountered were all very nice and very friendly and yeah we left anything Red Sox or patriots home. We did find it funny we had two older couples sitting near us Friday night from Pittsburgh the folks in front us were from Connecticut and had sign saying we are here to cheer all the ex Yankees and Mets. So they start the wave and one of kids in his 20’s scratches the back of his poster ?tag Ban the Wave, we got a good laugh out of that someone said not bad for Yankee and Mets fans and I had to speak up "you have Red sox fans here too" . The guy from Pittsburgh just groans, it was funny as hell.

We arrived in downtown Pittsburgh at about 3:30pm on Friday and couldn’t believe how quiet it is compared to Boston on a Friday at that time- the City is a mess with gridlock and all that stuff, just a lot of hustle and bustle and people.

My favorite person we encountered on the trip was a vendor working at the Primatti’s Brother stand in PNC Park. Older probably in her 60’s Black women just doing her job just full of personality. She handed girl like 5 sandwiches and 4 drinks and the tray was going to spill she looks at the boyfriend and says get in her and help her baby. It was like she was talking to one of her grand kids. She was just awesome.

Saturday Night was Fireworks Night and they did an awesome display from the River and then they shot some off from the top of a couple of sky scrappers it was awesome.

Saturday we walked all around Pittsburgh and had lunch at the Jerome Bettis Grill kind of the only reason we had lunch there because it was the Jerome Bettis Grill. We also walked around Heinz Field and the science center, They have an very nice Law Enforcement memorial just across from Heinz Field. A nice tribute to Police officers killed in the line of duty, Sunday the boys saw a two huge freight trains which we don’t see too often in Boston. They couldn’t believe how long they were, stretching three bridges one going east on going west. That was our weekend adventure..

The boys and I got home about 9:30 Sunday night. They had Hockey Camp on Monday. Got home early enough to watch the last half hour of Mondays camp . they were dragging their ass on their skates. The camp is run by BU goalie coach Mike Geragosian. Mike looks at me and says they will sleep well tonight I said they sure will.

Looking for a hardy volunteer to take my Thursday spot next week I’ll be away. (Thanks to IHM for volunteering).

Boys outside Console Energy Center Big Statute of Mario Lemeuix

Outside the Penguins Admin Offices

OK I Know it was a Baseball Trip

Heinz Field

OOps Baseball

Boys with the Pitt Panther

I Know baseball

Boys across the Alleghany River Guess what's in the Background

Boys on the Clemente Bridge

Big Statute of Clemente

The #1 Jersey seen at PNC Park more Clemente Jersey's followed by McClutchen

Big  Statute of Stargel

(lots of Big Statutes)

Found Lots of Fountains and Big Statutes in Pittsburgh

Big Fountain at Point State Park

Buzz from the Bleachers
Category: Daily Blog 2.0

Welcome to Wednesday, Gabbers. The wife and I are coming back from a great vacation to Michigan. It’s always great to go back home. We also take advantage of the lower gas and grocery prices. We got to Michigan and found gas 50-60 cents cheaper than back home.


The taste of home kept coming when we got back to PA. We brought back our bit of wedding cake. We heard many horror stories of terrible/inedible year old wedding cake. We ate it when we got home since it had been about 5 months. Besides, we still have our bottle of Jim Beam single barrel for the real one year anniversary. The good news is the cake was still great.


We also had a Pirates-Tigers game to go to. It was our first trip to PNC. PNC is a pretty little ball park. It’s a block from Heinz Field and right on the Allegheny River. Our seats were down the third baseline in the top section, which gave us a nice view of the river and downtown. It’s smaller than Comerica, with a lot less seats. They have a wall of fame and a statue of Honus Wagner outside of the T Station entrance. They also really go with the Pirate theme, especially on their scoreboard.

You may have heard JV got schlacked. You may have noticed reports of shoulder soreness. TO my eyes, he just didn’t have the same stuff. He missed low al night. The velocity was still in the 90s, but he never really reared back and brought anything speedy. He was a lot different than the other times I’ve seen him in person.


We got beat. The Royals overtook us that night. The wife and I still had fun. Travis Snider hit a home run and we got a coupon for a free Denny’s grand slam. The usher even gave us an extra couple of coupons. The little girl behind us loved the fireworks and had a great time. We were also far from the only Tigers fans. When we got a lead in the first inning, you could hear let’s go Tigers chants. You didn’t hear many more after that.


Next time we’ll be part of the larger crowd. We debated wearing our Tigers shirts again, since the Pirates did so well when we wore them.


So, social media is a part of sports now. It lets people feel connected. Marketing has also moved to social media. This has sparked an interesting experiment called #askinsertcompanynamehere. McDonalds tried this and was thoroughly made fun of during the whole event. The NFL tried it and got nothing but crap. Florida State decided to try it. Worst of all, they decided to try it with Jameis Winston.


#askjameis was a trending topic Sunday night and things started out bad and kept going that way. Winston was put to task for everything from the rape charge to the crab legs he stole. The university set up their biggest star for public ridicule and thought it would be a good idea. Clearly, they don’t know Twitter. Here are just a few reactions:


Stay tuned August 30, to see all the crab themed mockery by OK State fans.

That’s it for this week. Thanks as always for stopping in. Wedding vacations are never as restful as you’d like. I need another break.

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