Monday, July 21, 2008

Quiet Ambassador: Pee Wee Reese Story

(2) They're good communicators, especially under pressure. It is often the catcher who calms his erratic or fading pitchers by calling for a quick conference on the mound. Knowing when to call the time out, and what to say during it, are really important skills. Corporate managers who know when to give their people an impromptu break, or who sense when something subtle is askew, are some of the most effective mentors.

(4) Their heads are always in the game because they're part of every play. They're alert and always vigilant.

But they, like most catchers, were adroit students of the game.

Managers - Think Like A Catcher!

Dr. Gary S. Goodman is a top trainer, conference and convention speaker, and sales, customer service, and negotiation consultant. A frequent expert commentator on radio and TV, he is also the best-selling author of 12 books, more than 1,000 articles and several popular audio and video programs. His seminars are sponsored internationally and he is a faculty member at more than 40 universities, including UC Berkeley and UCLA. Gary's sales, management and consulting experience is combined with impressive academic credentials: A Ph.D. from USC, an MBA from the Peter F. Drucker School of Management, and a J.D. degree from Loyola Law School, his clients include several Fortune 1000 companies.

It's easy to think of catchers as the samurai of baseball.

(1) They take total responsibility for the game, suggesting pitches to pitchers, those that are most calculated to retire hitters. They even position fielders, because they sense where the ball is most likely to be hit.

I don't know what my manager saw in me, but in Little League, he converted me from being an infielder to a catcher. Possibly, more than anything else, the training and experience I got, then and at higher levels of baseball, enabled me to become and effective corporate manager and independent consultant.

They don armor before going into combat and they withstand a pummeling by opponent after opponent, without expressing a hint of discomfort.

They strategize, incessantly, and with every pitch and nuance they detect, their game plans adjust.

Are you looking for the Best Practices in Negotiation™, in sales, customer service, or telemarketing training? Contact us.

Managers should emulate catchers, if only because catchers, as a general rule, become great managers.

So was Joe Torre, as I recall.

The man who took over for departing Yankee manager Joe Torre, Joe Girardi, was a catcher.

It may be too late for you to change your Little League position, but it's never too late to study catchers and the managers they become, and above all, to learn to think as they do.

In 2007, the two gentlemen voted Managers of the Year by Major League baseball, had been catchers in their playing days. They didn't post remarkable batting averages. In fact, their career averages were about .237, which isn't very good, at all.

(3) Constantly, they see the big picture. Only catchers can eyeball every other player on the field, simultaneously.

Why do catchers make such fine managers? Five reasons:

And they are constantly WATCHING, whether it is a slight change in the orientation of their pitcher's throwing arm or the warm-up swings of an unknown adversary in the on deck circle.

Baseball - Rawlings Pro Flare Solid Pants

Rawlings Pro Flare Solid Pants Pro Styling! Rawlings Pro Flare pant has the styled look all the pro players are wearing. It has a loose baggy type fit in the thighs and a "flared" opening a - Softball Pants

The New MLB Drug Testing Policy

The new policy was brought about by threat of legislation from Congress. Under the policy tougher penalties for steroid use are implemented. Under the new policy the players are to be tested during their spring training along with at least one additional test during the regular season as well as being subject to random testing throughout the regular season.

Under the previous policy testing was also conducted on a much less frequent basis. Testing was conducted at the beginning of spring training with no additional testing through the regular season other than random testing. Under this policy, it was quite possible for a player to only be tested once from the beginning of spring training throughout the regular season.

The policy stipulated that players who tested positive for steroid the year prior to the new policy taking affect would be treated as first time offenders under the new policy if they should test positive again.

If youve been following the news lately, no doubt youve heard about the new MLB drug testing policy. While you may have heard about the policy you might not understand the specific implications of the policy and how it may affect your favorite players and teams.

The policy also takes a stab at possession of illegal steroid use in addition to use of illegal steroids. Players convicted for the possession of illegal steroids are subject to a 60-80 game suspension for the first offense and 120 games to one year for a second offense. A lifetime ban is on the table for a third offense. Players who are convicted of steroid distribution face tougher suspensions for the first offense and are subject to a lifetime ban after the first offense.

Penalties for amphetamine use are slightly less severe than for steroid use. Mandatory follow-up testing is dictated for the first offense with a 25 game suspension for the second offense. An 80 game suspension will be given for the third positive test and at the fourth offense the penalty is left up to the Commissioner, which could include a lifetime ban.

Under the previous policy, penalties were much less severe. For example, for a first offense a player would be subject to a 10-day suspension and then 30 days for a second offense. A third offense would rate a 60 day suspension. The new policy calls for a 50 game suspension for the first offense and a 100 game offense for the second offense. For a third offense the player will receive a lifetime ban. Additionally, after the first offense the player will be subjected to amphetamines testing as well as steroid testing. This is the first time the problem of amphetamine use will have been addressed by a policy with MLB. Under the old policy a player could not receive a lifetime ban until he had been hit with at least a fifth offense.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

(6) Six Packs of 2008 Topps Opening Day Baseball Retial Packs - (6 Packs - 6 Cards/Pack & 1 Piece of Gum) - Baseball Cards

(6) Six Packs of 2008 Topps Opening Day Baseball Retial Packs - (6 Packs - 6 Cards/Pack & 1 Piece of Gum) - Baseball Cards EXCLUSIVE! Look for a a chance to win a trip to the 2008 World Series!

He is a star in the making.

Fantasy Football Fans will want to remember the name Deion Branch. When preparing for your fantasy football drafts this summer, don't let the New England receiver slip too far in your ratings or in your round-by-round projections.

If you have 12-16 teams in your league, look to nab Branch in the seventh or eighth round. He will be a steal here, but if you wait longer, you may let an amazing sleeper get away. Branch is just the type of player that the men in my novel, The League, look to steal in their drafts.

Branch is small but quick, as evidenced by his 13-yard-per-catch career average. This was just his third year in the league, and he is certainly a star on the rise.

Branch's 35 catches and four touchdowns in 2004 may make him barely visible on many people's radar screens. Others may look for him to slip into the lower rounds, because of these modest numbers. Don't make this mistake.

Only the most astute talent evaluators will remember that Branch missed seven games. Even they, however, will remember his stellar performance in the Super Bowl, which earned him MVP honors. He tied a Super Bowl record with 11 catches for 133 yards. More impressive were his circus-style catches.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

What I Know and Remember About Baseball - The Eyes Have It

Eating carrots to develop good eye sight is sound advise. Unfortunately there is a little more to developing how your eyes move in relation to playing Baseball. Albeit there are many persons with natural ability use their eyes in tracking there target, still the normal reaction is to move the entire head and in the worst case, the entire body.

Sit for a moment and pick two objects 5 to 10 feet away from you about 6 to 10 feet apart. You should be able to comfortably see both at the same time. Now pick one to focus on. As quick as you can, turn your head to the second object and note the time it takes to select it. Now, start with your original target, hold your head still and move your eyes only to the second target. Unless you have quick twitch muscles throughout your body like a Barry Bonds, you should have noticed that it takes much less time to move your eyes than it does your head. That is because your eyes can move up to 5 times faster than your neck.

The speed at which you tract a target relates to your brain how much information you gather about the target and the perceived speed of the target. Occasionally experts will discuss how great baseball hitters and fielders see the ball well enough to slow it down. By allowing your eyes to make the most of the movement you gather more information and the perceived speed slows down. You now have the information to react sooner, get into position quicker and let your developed eye - hand coordination complete the desired result.

Focus on the object, in our case a baseball, is easier and far more comfortable when you have given some time to teach your eyes what you expect of them. Active vision training is not difficult. As players progress and the speed increases, active vision is essential for the next phase, prediction.

When a pitcher hurls the ball at 90+ mph there is only a fraction of a second with which to pick up the ball and determine where to swing the bat. Some have theorized that the last two one hundredths of a second, when the ball meets the bat, even the best players cannot see that moment. So how do they hit it? The information presented by their vision helps their body predict where the ball will be. More information, better prediction, better batting average.

Baseball vision training does not have to be a grueling process. Simple exercises such as sitting still and tossing a ball in the air and catching it while keeping your head still is an excellent beginning. Then move on to standing with the baseball going higher. Mix it up with left to right movement bearing in mind to track the ball with your eyes only.

An advanced drill that is a lot of fun is to place a ball on three feet of string. Have your player lie flat on their back in a room where you can control the light. As a pendulum, swing the ball back and forth and give the catch command at which point your player grasps the ball quickly with both hands. To add difficulty, swing the ball then have your player close their eyes for a swing or two then give the command. Need more challenge, turn off the light and add a strobe light, laughter will ensue, but it really does work.

Vary the challenges of the drills and the speed of the strobe lights.

For those of the practical persuasion, visit a batting cage. Stand outside the net and mid length of the cage and have your player track the baseball from the machine to the plate. You can seehow the longer flight to follow enables a longer task to work from.

Baseballs, batting cages, rain dripping off the gutter even house flies; the act of being still and letting your eyes do the work will develop the players vision. The more they see, the easier everything becomes.

Mr. Dowdy is the father of 3 and after re-entering competitive baseball with his oldest frustration of finding suitable glove is what lead him to become an Official Distributor for Kelley Athletic Click now for a free catalog or sign up your e-mail for special offers.

You can also visit the Hirsch Group site more news/tips/articles on the subjects of baseball, construction, building codes and more that most will find a quick way to fall asleep.

Thanks for reading my article!

Each 2007 Topps Chrome Baseball Cards Box contains 4 random MLB trading cards per pack and 24 packs in display box.Each box will contain 2 Autographed Rookie cards 2 box loader cards and either a parallel or insert card in each pack. 361 card set with 251 veterans, 55 Rookies, 24 Award Winners and 31 Autographed Rookies (approx 2 per box). White Bordered Refractors-- 330 cards numbered to 499-- 31 Rookie Autos numbered to 200. Refractors-- 330 cards -- 31 Rookie Autos numbered to 500. "Generation Now" 41 cards, "The Mickey Mantle Story" 30 cards, "Mickey Mantle HR History" 29 cards-- all these inserts are available as white refractors numbered to 200 and refractors numbered to 500. 2 Hobby Exclusive box loader packs -- pack 1 will contain either a "SuperFractor Parallel" 1 of 1, a "Red Bordered SuperFractor Parallel" numbered to 90, or a "Printing Plate 1 of 1" including autographed versions--- pack 2 will contain 2 "Arod Road to 500" cards.
Customer Review: I'm in love with Topps Chrome!
I got hooked with Topps Chrome when I bought a few boxes of 1998/99 basketball, when Tim Duncan, Chauncey Billups and others were rookies. I am now into baseball cards much more than basketball,and 2007 Topps Chrome baseball is still a great product! I love the refractors, the signatures and the whole look of the product. Price is very reasonable, too. And being a Red Sox fan, there are some great Sox rookie cards!

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

2008 Upper Deck Series 1 Baseball Cards SUPER STAR PACK - Mini Box (75 Upper Deck Series 1 Cards PLUS Special Pack) GREAT VALUE!

Each Super pack will include 3 card SUPERSTAR pack which will feature autographed SUPERSTAR parallel

Are you shopping for a gift for a female friend or loved one? Well, if you've got a bit of cash to spend, you would probably do well to look for gifts in the fashion area, and there are few things that are more fashionable than an authentic and genuine Coach handbag.

Coach handbags are a very coveted and desired item. Why are they so popular? Well, Coach is an established brand name manufacturer of fine handbags, luggage, and carrying accessories. Coach products run a little on the pricier side, but there are many places where you could purchase them for a slightly discounted price. Before we discuss where you can go to for Coach deals, let's talk about the history of Coach products.

They have been around for more than half a century in the United States of America. The legacy of Coach all started in Manhattan, New York. I bet you wouldn't have the least idea of what the object was that was the inspiration of the first Coach handbag. Well, believe it or not, it was a leather baseball catcher's glove or mitten. The craftsmanship of earlier leather baseball gloves does have a resemblance of Coach leather handbags in its grain and color and stitching. The next time you get a chance to examine an authentic Coach leather handbag or other type of accessory, try examining it to see the similarities between it and a leather baseball glove.

Well, now that you know a part of the history of Coach, where can you go to purchase these great designer accessories for less? Well, there are a few good in-store sales at certain times of the year, however there is a place that you can access from the comfort of your own home that can lead the way to great deals. The answer is the internet. Many online stores offer competitive pricing on a wide range of products including Coach handbags. If you would like to find great deals, try doing a Google search for the specific model or type you are looking for.

Coach Online Outlet Store features nearly every product that Coach makes. You'll be able to find Coach handbags and accessories for less than retail prices.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Champion Sports Youth Baseball/Softball Uniform Belt

This Champion Sports youth uniform belt for baseball offers a comfortable elastic construction with durable, full-grain leather tabs. It measures 1.25-in wide and is sized 18 in - 32 in.

Certification marks are required on all non-wood bats used in high school baseball play. This certification mark called a BESR-Ball Exit Speed Ratio requirement applies to all high schools which belong to the National Federation High School Association.

There seems to be something strange about the Certification rule. Is this BESR certification requirement based on a guarantee that the bat is safe for use?

Does the rule accomplish a specific intent? Correct the misapplication if the reading of the BESR certification does not state the certification ensures the bats maximum of 97 miles per hour BESR. Is this to be interpreted to mean that the bat is certified tested to stay intact up to the maximum of a BESR of 97 miles per hour. All bets are off if the ball exit speed ratio reaches 98 miles per hour?

In essence the bottom line might be for what purpose does this BESR certification marking on every non-wood bat do for the bat the player or the game of baseball?

The manufacturer of non-wood bats does this certification testing for every bat and placing the certification mark tested to a maximum BESR of 97 miles per hour ensure the bat is safe?.

Do the bat production standards being utilized by the manufacturer dictate that such certification is required?

The average pricing structure for new non-wood bats is at a significant level in comparison to used bats. Is it prudent to assume the certification markings on used bats are as valid as the BESR certification on the original new bat?

Does the National Federation High School Association have any statistics which they could share that supports the real and true value of the BESR certification rule? Based on casual observation with no statistical backup data from the outside simply surmising the value of this BESR rule it appears to be an added cost with no return value.

Disregard my thought process if for some reason such an observation concerning BESR certification requirement is off base and the rule serves a fortunate and common need.

The subject of BESR certification it appears is not something for which the general public and even the baseball fans, parents or players even have an inkling.

BaseballFarming is for real so an Introduction to the concept of baseball farming which includes ideas on strategies, training, and winning! by Major Wiley B. Channell USMC (ret) is available at:

Baseball Lingo is real baseball talk by the baseball world. You can become fully up to speed walk the walk and talk the talk by visiting us at:

A special invitation for you from Major Wiley B. Channell USMC (ret) to come visit and read the five pages which is my take on the five essential elements of hitting a baseball at:

If you enjoy your visit with us at baseballfarming then tell a friend and you too come back to visit often.

Monday, June 23, 2008

SNK Arcade Classics Vol 1

Celebrate the history of SNK with the ultimate collection of arcade classic hits. 16 NEOGEO games on one UMD for your Sony PSP. It's a comprehensive stack of popular SNK games. It's a must-have addition to any arcade fan's collection! Re-Live the classics of gaming in these amazing titles from SNK. The list of classics are Art of Fighting, Baseball Stars 2, Burning Fight, Fatal Fury, KOF94, King of the Monsters, Last Resort, Magician Lord, Metal Slug, Neo Turf Masters, Samurai Shodown, Sengoku, Shock Troopers, Super SIdekicks3, Top Hunter, and World Heroes.And you don't even need a roll of quarters!
SNK Arcade Classics Volume I
Metal Slug

Metal Slug
View larger.

View larger.

SNK ARCADE CLASSICS: VOLUME 1 will include the following SNK games:

  • ART OF FIGHTING - The first game in SNK's second fighting-game franchise, set in the same universe as FATAL FURY. It was the first fighting game by SNK to feature the character designs of former SNK illustrator Shinkiro, who would go on to do the character designs for the later Fatal Fury and The King of Fighters games.
  • BASEBALL STARS 2 - The sequel to SNK's popular baseball arcade game. Players can create leagues of up to 125 games (6 teams playing each other 25 times) and view statistics such as League Standings, Average, Home Runs, Runs Batted In, Earned Run Average, Wins and Saves. Players can fire players and upgrade them using the same 15-point system introduced in the original Baseball Stars.
  • BURNING FIGHT - New York detectives battle organized crime in this fighter. Duke and Billy, two popular and renowned New York City Police detectives, are hot on the trail of a dangerous Japanese crime syndicate. Their investigation has led them to the mean streets of Japan where they meet a police officer and martial arts expert named Ryu. Ryu agrees to join the NYPD detectives as they track down the crime syndicate bosses and end their reign of terror once and for all.
  • FATAL FURY - First released in 1991, FATAL FURY introduced the two-plane fighting system. The main fighting game feature that the original Fatal Fury was known for was the two-plane system. Characters would fight from two different planes, and by stepping between the planes, attacks could be dodged with ease.
  • KING OF FIGHTERS '94 - The first game in the popular KING OF FIGHTERS series. King of Fighters '94 introduces the series' signature 3-man team system. Instead of a simple one-on-one, two round fight system, a player chooses a team of three characters, then determines the order to play them in. Each fight consists of up to 5 rounds, and each round ends when one of the two fighters is knocked out; the remaining fighter stays and faces the opponent's next character. A fight is won when one of the two players loses the last of their three fighters.
  • KING OF THE MONSTERS - In KING OF THE MONSTERS, giant monsters fight for power in epic battles. Players get to choose any one of six monsters (four in the ports) for battle, and two players can join forces to fight the monsters together. Battles end when one of the monsters is pinned for a three count or if time expires (in which case the player loses)
  • LAST RESORT - A challenging futuristic shooter. The gameplay was heavily inspired by R-Type and its system of pod attached to the player's ship. Its first level remained memorable for its homage to the futuristic Neo-Tokyo depicted in the anime Akira.
  • MAGICIAN LORD - Players help the wizard Elta save his homeworld in this platformer. The player controls the wizard Elta, the last magician lord, on his quest to save his homeland from the evil Gul-Agieze who plans to resurrect the god of destruction using eight tomes of mystical power. As Elta the player must battle through eight levels to find each of the tomes before he can reach the final battle and seal away the evil god once again.
  • METAL SLUG - This run-and-gun side-scroller was the first in the popular series. It's widely known for its sense of humor, extremely fluid hand-drawn animation, and fast paced two-player action.
  • NEO TURF MASTERS - A golf game which debuted on the Neo Geo Pocket Color in 1999. The game included a VS mode and three single player modes, as well as having six players to choose from. You played in one of three countries, USA, Japan and Germany.
  • SAMURAI SHODOWN - Set in the 18th century, SAMURAI SHODOWN features bladed-weapon combat and an international cast of characters.
  • SENGOKU - In SENGOKU, players face off against undead feudal Japanese armies.
  • SHOCK TROOPERS - In this run-and-gun adventure, players save a scientist and his granddaughter from the Bloody Scorpions.
  • SUPER SIDEKICKS 3 - A soccer game featuring teams from all over the world.
  • TOP HUNTER - Bounty hunters protect colonists from space pirates in this futuristic action game.
  • WORLD HEROES - This classic fighter pits players against historical figures in a tournament enabled by time travel.

"With 16 of our most beloved games, SNK ARCADE CLASSICS: VOLUME 1 is a must-have addition to any arcade fan's collection," said Ben Herman, president of SNK PLAYMORE USA CORPORATION. "It's the most comprehensive SNK compilation to date."

Customer Review: Great Collection - Eagerly Awaiting Vol. 2
While the goal here seemed to be to represent SNK's past hits, rather than those that have aged well, this is a nice compilation. The graphics are good, everything controls well (unless you have an original model PSP, as the d-pad inability to perform the complex movements for special moves holds true here, and, while initial load times are quite lengthy, once a game is loaded, it rarely needs to access the disc again, except for some of the newer, more complex titles, like Metal Slug and Shock Troopers. Basically, they are the arcade games, for better or worse, which means there aren't any enhancements (aside from viewing options and the ability to save checkpoints). So the collection will live or die based on the games themselves. Some highlights: Art of Fighting / Fatal Fury / Samurai Showdown / World Heroes / King of Fighters '94 - all are the first entries into SNK's multiple fighting series. Still good games today, but their sequels generally superior. King of Monsters - Wrestling game with giant monsters fighting in Japan's major cities. Trashing the cities during your attempts to take down your rival is fun, but the gameplay is pretty shallow, and huge sections of the city are out of bounds, so the intact buildings sit there and taunt you. Magician Lord - Fun, fantasy-themed platformer, which time has been surprisingly kind to. Metal Slug - Humorous, side-scrolling shooter, inspired by Contra. Best game on the disc; a classic, though nothing has changed from the previously released Metal Slug Anthology version. Shock Troopers - Commando rip-off. Fun, and has a nice level branching system, but not as polished as Metal Slug. Baseball Stars 2 - The many baseball games released after this makes the flaws stand out more than ever, but considering the varying quality of many of those baseball franchises, you could do a lot worse. Last Resort - Total rip-off of R-Type (even has similar looking enemies) down to the high difficulty, but still fun if you liked that series. Overall, a good compilation. Many notable games were missing, such as Nam-75, Crossed Swords, Ninja Combat, Robo Army, Cyber Lip, Mutation Nation, and Super 8 Man. Also, many of these games, such as Art of Fighting, Fatal Fury, Samurai Showdown, King of Fighters, and World Heroes, have sequels that essentially add content and tweak the gameplay, rather than revamping everything, so these are already obsolete. Still, a good value, and a quality collection.

The 2008 Major League Baseball season is officially underway, and it is ironic that an obscure statistician from Kansas is making the news, one who was ridiculed for many years. Today he is a chief decision-maker for the world champion Boston Red Sox, having gaining notoriety throughout professional sports - and acceptance to his metrics continues to grow.

On CBS 60 Minutes, Morley Safer interviewed Bill James, a baseball writer and historian who has written more than two dozen books devoted to baseball statistics, highlighting his unique approach - known as Sabermetrics: the science of why teams win or lose games.

A fair comparison can be made to the retail auto sales and service industry: It's the numbers, stupid.

Bill James helps the Boston Red Sox decide which players to keep, who and whey they play and who gets traded-away in the off-season, in order to improve the team's statistical chances of having a winning year. He also helps them grow champions. But it wasn't always that way.

Working as a night security guard in Kansas during the late 1970's, James began studying box scores (arguably similar to an RO Analysis). He soon published "The Bill James Baseball Abstract" in 1977, by challenging baseball's typical metrics of what determined a great player. He argued that it was not wins or losses (for a pitcher), nor hits, home runs nor batting average.

Instead, he created statistical innovations (the new metrics) such as:
  • Runs Created: Put simply, hits and walks divided by plate appearances.
  • Range Factor: The defensive contribution of a player, assists and putouts divided by games played.
  • Defensive Efficiency Record: The percentage of balls in play that a defense turns into an out.
  • Win Shares: A comparison of players at different positions.
  • Pythagorean Winning Percentage: The relationship of wins and losses to runs scored and allowed.
  • Major League Equivalency - A metric that uses minor league statistics to determine how a player is likely to perform in the majors.

For most of his career, Bill James ideas were either been ignored or rejected by major league baseball teams. Most teams preferred to follow the maxims that were created decades ago, as well as their gut instincts.

The Red Sox hired James in 2004. Using his ideas, they have won two World Championships. In our constantly changing industry of customer counts and sales and dollars made, perhaps we need to take a step back and look at new and innovative ways to measure our success, and that of our people.

In these challenging times, it requires different thinking along with different processes, to become a world champion.

Think about it.

cf baseball store