• Author:
  • Published: Oct 21st, 2013
  • Category: NFL Football
  • Comments: Comments Off on Choosing The Right Practice Batting Cage

Choosing The Right Practice Batting Cage

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English: The batting cages for the Colorado Ro...

English: The batting cages for the Colorado Rockies at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Many parents, coaches, amateur adult players and pros wonder what the best dimensions are when they are looking to buy a practice batting cage. Most good batting cages are a minimum of 70 feet in length, 12 feet in height and 14 feet in width. This allows both left-handed and right-handed batters to use the cage in comfort without having to move the plate around. Players also don’t have to worry about injury on the back-swing or about damaging the net during practice.

When you want to choose the right size for mostly personal and family use, measure the distance between the plate and the mound for the different people who will be using it. You don’t have to make this a complicated process either. If you start to feel overwhelmed, just ask your customer care agent for recommendations. Pro mound to plate distances are often as small as six inches. For amateurs, you might want a bit more distance, like anywhere from 38 inches to 60 inches.

For baseball and softball batting cages, 70 feet is a good length. This will give you room at the pitcher’s end, where you can store equipment like ball carts, machines and portable mounds; and give you a lot of room to comply with the distance regulations for space between the batter and the pitcher. Standard width range is good at 12 to 14 feet.

For kids and players shorter than 6 feet tall, you can go with a smaller width of 12 feet. However, just keep in mind that with teens and junior high school aged players, arm lengths can vary significantly, and bat lengths can as well.

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  • Author:
  • Published: Jul 15th, 2013
  • Category: NFL Football
  • Comments: Comments Off on A memory of my Dad

A memory of my Dad

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Dad being awarded his Military Hall of Fame metal

My Dad being awarded his Military Hall of Fame metal.

As many of my regular listeners know, my Dad passed away on this date a couple of years ago.  One of my thousands of fond memories of him revolved around my birthday and the baseball All Star game.

 

Every year from the time I was 10 until I graduated high school at 17 Dad and I would go to a Cubs-Reds double header that was always around my birthday and just before the All Star break.  I was the only one in a Cubs cap.  The Reds were always better and beat the Cubs with ease.  In part that is what prepared me to be a Cleveland Sports fan.  Somehow I always cheer for the losers.

 

After the games we would go to a restaurant and have a good meal.  While we were always very close, this time together during a work day seemed to be special to me.

 

While this post may seem a bit self-serving, I ask your indulgence.  My point here is that we never know as parents what will sick in the minds of our children.  It is also that when a parent or grandparent is involved in a special memory for you, you should take the time to tell them and thank them. 

 

I was very fortunate that I always had a great relationship with both my parents.  I never went through the phase of believing I was smarter than they were.  I talked to them several times a day. 

 

On the night before Dad died we spent almost the entire evening talking over old times.  We both knew he was near the end.  While I miss him so very much, I am so glad we had so much time together.  I just wish I had been half as good a Dad to my kids as he was to me.

 

That’s what I think.  Tell me what you think.

 

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He edits http://fryingpansports.com.  He has also published several novels on and a non-fiction work at http://www.merriam-press.com/.  Follow him on twitter @NNRonDSN to get the schedule of Special News, Notes and Rumors broadcasts.  You can hear the previous shows on http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/.

He also edits .  

To keep up with the News, Notes & Rumors podcasts, follow me on twitter @NNRonDSN.

 

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  • Author:
  • Published: Mar 12th, 2012
  • Category: Baseball
  • Comments: Comments Off on 4 Ways to Enhance Your Spring Training Baseball Experience

4 Ways to Enhance Your Spring Training Baseball Experience

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It’s that time of year again! It might still be snowing in some parts of the country, but residents in Arizona and Florida are pulling out their short sleeves and flip flops for another round of Spring Training baseball. The regular season won’t start until the end of March, but in the meantime, players and fans alike are warming up in the Cactus and Grapefruit Leagues.

If you’re planning a trip to either of these locations to take in a game or two, here’s some tips to maximize your experience:

Pick a team. Sure, it can be argued that a baseball game is largely about the experience and not so much about the slow-moving game in front of you. But even if that’s true, it’s more fun when you’re invested in one of the teams playing. If you’re stuck in Florida and your team is in Arizona, go ahead and pick a second favorite for the time being! Unless you’re feeling antagonistic, your best bet is to pick the team of the stadium you’ll be attending — wouldn’t want to cause any of the stalwart fans to get feisty!

Buy some gear. Whether you just picked a team to root for or you’ve been cheering for the same one since before you could walk, you need to look the part of a true fan. The good part about Spring Training tickets is that they are often cheaper than regular season tickets, so you can afford to splurge on an overpriced jersey and official hat. Not ready to drop that extra cash? Check out local grocery stores or do some shopping online. You can often find look-alikes without the official label, which works just as well for most people.

Get the hot dog. This one goes without much explaining — a baseball game isn’t a baseball game without a hot dog. So bring some cash with you, flag down that vendor and get the works! Your heartburn might regret it later, but you’re bound to love every bite of it in the meantime. And you’ll always have the good memory of a true American experience!

Lodge strategically. If you’re coming from out of town just to attend some games, don’t waste more time than necessary with public transportation or car rentals. Instead, pick a hotel near a stadium so you are within walking distance. If you want to attend games at multiple locations, scout out a hotel somewhere in the middle. If you plan to spend an entire week and want to bring the family or a few friends, it might be your best choice to look into local timeshare properties. Contact local property managers in AZ or FL to get a feel for some of your best options.

Katie Hawkes is a freelance blogger for Real Property Management East Valley, a property management company in Gilbert AZ and all nearby cities.

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Bissell Pro-Cycling Team Taking on the Amgen Tour Again

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Bissell Pro-Cycling Team Taking on the Amgen Tour AgainIt’s cycling season again in many countries and it’s the time of year where cyclists are training and gearing up for the Amgen Tour of California. The tour is set to include the fairly new Bissell pro-cycling team that was formed in 2008. This year the team are preparing to compete in the annual race.

Bissell Pro-Cycling Team

The entire team is currently based in Santa Rosa for training. It’s an extremely exciting event that annually takes place in the breathtaking Santa Rosa location, which also known for its perfect racing and training terrain. The Bissell team have entered this event every year since the crew formed and they’ve proved to be serious contenders on the cycling circuit. They won the best continental team of 2011 and scooped the NRC team standings. It seems that the Bissell team have a reputation as being a very ambitious team that often wins thanks to their aggressive tenacity.

Amgen Tour

The Bissell pro-cycling team will be challenging some serious terrain in the 2012 Amgen Tour. Tour designers have said that this year may prove to be the hardest thus far. There are seven stages that are guaranteed to take anyone’s breath away. Even the most hardened cyclists who compete in Amgen every year may be looking at quite a challenge.

The first phase of the race is the Coleman Valley ascent. Phase two will take cyclists to Bonny Doon Road which will take them to Mt. Baldy and Big Bear, but not summit. Mount Diablo has been included in the race route this year and fans are pretty excited about it. Here’s to hoping the Bissell pro-cycling team stick with their honoured tradition of ensuring they have at least one team member in every pack leading up to the leaders of the race.

There will be time trials in between the third and fourth phases but that should be a cinch for the Bissell team. The real trying cycling comes into the picture when teams have to complete two mountain top finishes at Big Bear and Mt. Baldy.

The tour starts on May 13, 2012, but the Bissell pro-cycling team members, managers and directors will be available for interviews and photo opportunities. This is the perfect time to meet and greet some of the brilliant Bissell cyclists such as Frank Pipp, Chris Baldwin and Carter Jones who was part of the USA Team. The Bissel Pro-cycling team is set to show some serious cycling tenacity again this year. Good luck to them.

Vida Denning is a keen writer that doesn’t cycle half as much as she used to. Her exercise now entails dancing around the living room with her kids while they use the vacuum cleaners. She’s also tried steam cleaning machines but they aren’t great dancing partners.

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The Top 10 Iconic Sportsmen of the 20th Century

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Baseball player Babe Ruth

Image via Wikipedia

10. Michael Schumacher (Motor Racing)

Forget the collisions and the controversies; it is without doubt that this seven time Formula One champion has to make it into the list. Considered one of or the best driver in History – the man who manage to turn round the formula one fortunes of Ferrari and the only driver to go an entire season with a podium finish at every race in the year 2002

9. Michael Jordan (Basketball)

Basketball player turned Baseball turned Actor – Michael Jordan may have not been all that great at the latter occupations but he was one hell of a Basketball player. The 6ft 6” giant dominated the sport and led his team the Chicago bulls to three Championships. Didn’t do too well at the Baseball thing but we all admired him for his Talent and the fact that he was in Space Jam.

8. Babe Ruth (Baseball)

Babe Ruth – the most famous Baseball player that has ever lived could in some people’s eyes be one of the most iconic sportsmen. With a career that spanned from 1914 – 1935 and hitting 60 home runs in a season a record that stood for 35 years, this American legend was two time all star legend and a seven time world series champion.

7. Lance Armstrong (Cycling)

Lance Armstrong was considered to be at deaths door at one point when he was diagnosed with Cancer in 1996. However after a long arduous recovery the man went out to do something even more miraculous and win the Tour De France, Seven Times fro 1999 to 2005. So astonishing was his recovery and competitiveness that many accused him of taking performance enhancing drugs.

6. Jesse Owens (Track and Field)

Jesse Owens was technically the first Person to defeat Hitler, not in War but at track and Field. This great runner specialised in Long Jump and the Sprints, and he showed his dominance in the 1936 Berlin Games. Owens went on to win four Olympic Gold’s at these games which became a very poignant moment as this was suppose to be where Hitler was to show off his superior Aryan race.

5. Sir Steve Redgrave (Rowing)

If you have been knighted by the Queen and are considered one of Britain’s greatest Olympians then you definitely are one of the most iconic sportsmen.  Sir Steve’s credentials are truly amazing, five consecutive Olympic Gold Medals from 1984 to 2000 means he is one of only four Olympians to do it and on top of that three commonwealth game wins means he is truly one of the best sportsmen of our Era.

4. Don Bradman (Cricket)

The original master of Cricket batting – Don Bradman was quite simply the best batsmen in Cricket to ever walk the Earth and his stats definitely back it up. The Australian had a Test batting average of 99.94, and the only reason that he never had 100 as his average was due to the fact that on his last game, he was out first ball; the reason he gave to his colleagues when he came back to the pavilion was that he had never hit his first ball for 6 and wanted to try it.

3. Jack Nicklaus

Now I could of said Tiger Wood however with Nicklaus’ who won 18 major trophies over a career of 25 years and a recode that tiger still has to beat and at the moment does not look like doing, is why he makes it into this list. A great golfing legend that opted not to play tournaments so that he could concentrate on Majors has a tremendous golfing record.

2. Pele

Regarded across the world as one of or the greatest footballers of all time and was voted the Football player of the century by the IFFHS and voted by the Ballon D’or committee as the player of the century. In his career he scored 760 official goals, 541 in league championships, making him the top scorer of all time. In total Pelé scored 1281 goals in 1363 games.

1. Muhammad Ali

“I’ll Show You How Great I Am” Were wise words that came from Muhammad Ali and boy did he!! With a great boxing record, and involved in some of the best boxing matches between Joe Frazier and George Foreman Ali was a three time World Heavyweight boxing Champion and in 1999 he was given the title of “Sportsmen of the Century”

 

Written by Annabel, Event Organiser for Chillisauce, specialising in Hen party ideas

 

 

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  • Author:
  • Published: Dec 13th, 2011
  • Category: Baseball
  • Comments: 1

MLB Games Tryouts

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Where is the scout?

NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 22:  Major League Base...

Image by Getty Images via @daylife

This is the question that many parents and young aspiring baseball players ask during spring season as they get ready to go to the ballpark with dreams of having multi-million dollar bonuses in their heads. What many of them fail to realize is that the interest of these scouts is not merely a game of waiting, not is it something to be ignored. The jocks who throw great pitching during their high school practices can just sit around in their basements and play video games and still the scouts may find them. As for a lot of people, you need to go after them and practice hard. This is where the trout for Major League Baseball will come in.

Tryout is a word that often proves to be misleading because it implies the fact that the scouts choose specific players that they want, sign them, and then put them into the system of the minor league. However, from the standpoint of MLB Games tryouts, these are just opportunities for them to check out the young players who will be joining the selection for the player drafts. Most organizations make use of tryouts in the hopes that they can find some kids that would be worth adding to their roster of players. They will them check them out in the months that will lead up to the subsequent and next drafts that would be conducted.

Those who have qualified for the first year draft for players will include all the high school graduates chosen who have not yet been to college, college players who have already finished their junior year, all of the junior college athletes, and all other players that will turn 21 years old within 45 days from the date of the scheduled draft. Seniors who are in their fifth year will not be subject to the draft and they are free to sign in whatever organization that they want after they have completed their final college classes. Many of the Major League Baseball camps for tryouts are open for players with ages of 16 to 23.

In some cases, a player will be sign

ed out of a certain tryout, but this does not really happen often. But if you sign with a certain MLB organization in a Major League Baseball tryout, it only happens in one of these two situations:

  • The player has already attracted the interest of people from the organization ahead of time, but he sustained an injury, then he shows up to a tryout for Major League Baseball and proves that he can play 100%.
  • The Major League Baseball organization is very keen on the area on low minors like pitching with the left hand and a player arrives with an exceptional talent that will fill up the specific void.
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