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I promise you that in the weeks to come I will share with you some of  my childhood memories of watching the New York/ San Francisco Giants Single A, Springfield affiliate. I may also entertain you with a recollection or two of freezing in the Eastern States Expo Coliseum while watching the Eddie Shore owned Springfield Indians, as well as produce a postmortem of the Red Sox 2014 season. But not just yet, as first there are a few  items I feel the need to revisit.





Other then perhaps a possible comment or two regarding Derek Jeter‘s last games in Boston, I figured that I was pretty much finished writing about the Yankees captain. However, the recent Keith Olbermann rant, and subsequent firestorm it created, has drawn me back in one last time.  Now, Obie and I are both left of center type guys, who tend to agree on a great many things, (except the DH. I’m for it, he’s not) but this one time I think he’s missed the point that, essentially, the value of a player like Jeter is far too difficult to quantify in a meaningful way through statistics alone. Granted, the stats he quoted about his issues as a shortstop could be used to support my contention that he should have moved to third base, but the stability he gave that franchise has meant that, like Tom Brady for the Patriots, that his team had to always be considered a contender. Besides, Obie is obviously a Mets fan, as no Red Sox fan would have bothered looking those stats up to use against Jeter. In the years to come, the lasting memory Red Sox Nation will have of Jeter will be that time he bloodied himself diving into the stands to catch a foul ball. That’s the kind of thing Boston fans value, and will remember.





I don’t think that anyone who follows professional sports, and specifically pro football, believes for an instant that the NFL is in any real danger of fading from the scene. Let’s face it: it’s the perfect game for television, and as such, will likely always have a grip on the American public. But at the same time, the arrogance the league displayed in the handling of the Ray Rice case, as well as a growing list of other matters, has taken some of the shine off the brand and should slow their drive to be a $25 billion a year industry; A drive that has shown little regard for the long term health and well being of their players. Add it up. The league’s failure for years to deal with the long term effects of concussions, their push for an 18 game season, the plan to put a team in England even with the obvious logistical issues, the moving of the draft to May to draw more attention despite how it impacts preparing rookies, the fact that 78% of NFL players are bankrupted within two years of retiring, all these issues run the risk of adversely effecting the quality of the game, and the lives of the men who play it. Maybe, all the recent controversy will in the end, force the owners to stop and give more concern to the well being of the players and their families. We can only hope…





I’m giving the Patriots just two more weeks to strengthen the play of their offensive line, or else I’m withdrawing my prediction that they’ll win the Super Bowl. Their inability to deal with the four man rush of the Oakland Raiders was, to say the least, disconcerting. I don’t think the Pats have a game left the rest of the season against a team that doesn’t have a strong defensive line, so if Tom Brady is going to survive, their play has to improve. If you didn’t watch the game and only saw Brady’s stats of 24/37, 234 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT, you might have thought he had a decent game. If you watched it, however, you know that he was harassed and punished on a fairly regular bases. I am particularly baffled by the weak play of tackles Sebastian Vollmer and Nate Solders. They are veteran guys, but have not been playing like it. Since Logan Mankins is not coming back through that door anytime soon, they had better start communicating more effectively with each other, and soon; hopefully by Monday night. If they don’t, Brady is going to wish that he wasn’t in Kansas anymore…or ever again.

Jerry Ballgame

About Jerry Ballgame

The personification of "old school", Jerry Ballgame was born in the shadow of Dr. Naismith's peach basket, and baptized in that "Dirty Water." Designated by his "Uncle" Ted, to keep an eye on things, he's here to tell everyone what his view is like from the Hub of the Universe.

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