Week 17 Wrapped From Northwest

AnquanBoldinTW

This week has been a slow week for me on the blog because I have been on vacation. I decided to take a drive up from the SF Bay Area up to see some friends in the Seattle, WA area. It was clear that we would have a unique opportunity to watch football on rival’s home field and that we would NOT be very welcome.

Nonetheless, my friend and I pulled out our Niner jerseys and headed to a bar. We chose the Dub Pub in Kirkland, WA and were actually pleased with the establishment itself. It was large and had a lot of televisions showing the games so it did not matter where you were located in the bar, you could see the games.

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O’s Have a Change of Heart?

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Earlier today, as reported on ESPN.com by Mike Oz, the Baltimore Orioles were supposed to be holding a press conference to announce Grant Balfour as their new closer, but following his physical, the deal that was agreed to earlier in the week appears to have been called off. 

It was reported the issue is with Balfour’s shoulder. Balfour, 35, saved 38 games for the A’s last season. Baltimore is looking to replace Jim Johnson, whom it traded to the A’s earlier this offseason.

The Balfour news is the second blow to the Baltimore bullpen Friday. Left-hander Troy Patton was suspended 25 games by MLB after testing positive for an amphetamine and thus violating the league’s drug policy.

Grant Balfour is considering filing a grevience against the Baltimore Orioles.  Does Grant Balfour have legitimate grievance against Orioles? He will most likely seek a second opinion from a doctor outside the Baltimore Orioles organization and if the doctors determine he’s healthy, Balfour will surely have a valid case against the O’s.

The Worst Teams Of All Time Part 39. The 1976 Montreal Expos

I remember the Expos (now the Nationals) and how bad they were. In my opinion, it was management that was the problem because they always had talent on the field. Maybe not a complete team of talented players but they had great players throughout their history. Though they had some heralded veterans that already made a name for themselves, they were considered an advanced farm system at the major league level that produced great talent.

Just to name drop a few that went on to have strong if not great careers (mostly for other teams)….

Andre Dawson – Was one of the few that played in Montreal for many years. He spent his first 11 years with the Expos before going to the Cubs for the next six. Also played two seasons with Boston and Florida before retiring after a great 21-year career (no championship).

Gary Carter – Another HOF player that played with the Expos for his first 11 years before getting shipped off to the New York Mets. He was able to win a World Series Championship with the Mets in 1986, in the unforgetable series against the Red Sox where Bill Buckner botched the grounder to first base.

Tim Raines – Had many of his best years (12) with the Expos but is still better known for his days with the New York Yankees where he won two World Series Championships.

Andres Galarraga – Spent his first 7 years with Montreal before going to Colorado. He is best known for his days in Colorado and Atlanta, specifically 1994-1998 where he hit 31 or more homeruns including three years in a row of 41+ homeruns.

Marquis Grissom – Had many great years in Montreal but it was not until he was sent to Atlanta that he made his mark in the mid/late 90’s with the great Atlanta Braves teams that competed for glory on an annual basis, including a World Series Championship in 1995.

Pedro Martinez – Pedro actually did not start off with Montreal, he came over from the Los Angeles Dodgers in a trade (for Delino DeShields) and had three average years. On his fourth year, however, he came into his own. He went 17-8 with a 1.90 ERA including 13 complete games and 4 shutouts. It was also his first Cy Young award. After the season, he was moved to Boston where he played for seven years and, though he played for other teams before retiring, it was his mark on the Boston Red Sox team that will be remembered. He went on to have a HOF career which included eight All Star appearances, three Cy Youngs Awards (7 nominations) and a World Series Championship in 2004 with Boston. This was the year that they beat the Yankees and lifted the dreaded “Bambino Curse”. But for me, he will always be remembered as the player that threw a 72-year old man to the ground. During a bench clearing brawl between the Redsox and Yankees (during 2003 ALCS), bench coach Don Zimmer was so upset with the Sox’s Pedro Martinez’s head hunting that he charged right at the pitcher, and Pedro threw Zimmer to the ground.

Larry Walker – Had six solid years with Montreal before moving on to Colorado where he had his best years. Some can say it was Colorado which inflated his number, others could mention PEDs/Juiced era, but he did win an MVP with the Rockies.

Vladmir Guerroro – Had eight great years for the Expos and put up big homerun numbers. He did however have great years with the ANA/LAA Angels where he won an MVP.

Tim Wallach – One of the era’s forgotten talents, Wallach (Expos 1st round pick in 1979) earned five All-Star berths and four Gold Gloves during his 13 years in Montreal, where he remains the franchise’s career leader in games played (1,767), at-bats (6,529), hits (1,694), total bases (2,728) and doubles (360).

Dennis Martinez – Martinez’s career sparkled upon donning an Expos uniform after spending his first ten seasons with Baltimore, capturing 100 wins while recording a solid 3.06 ERA in his eight seasons up north. Though his stay with Baltimore was shaky where he had mostly below average stats, he did have a strong season in 1981 where he went 14-5 with a 3.32 ERA. Also, he won a World Series Championship with Baltimore in 1983 even though he did not contribute during the postseason.

jsportsblogger

This series of articles will celebrate (or laugh at) some of the worst professional sports teams of all time. I will focus on teams within my lifetime so expect the worst from the 1970s to present day.

Montreal Expos

1976 was a special year for the city of Montreal. The Summer Olympics came to the city, marking the first time the Olympiad would be hosted by a Canadian city. The city’s beloved hockey team, the Montreal Canadiens resumed their dominance of the National Hockey League, winning the first of their four consecutive Stanley Cups in 1976. Finally, Montreal was still considered Canada’s largest city in 1976, but was soon usurped by Toronto.

But if there was a blight to the largest French-speaking city outside of Paris, it was their baseball team. The Montreal Expos were horrid that season finishing with a record of 55-107, 46 games behind the first place Philadelphia Phillies.

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How Will 49ers Survive Loss Of Bruce Miller?

CBS Sacramento

By Jerrell Richardson

Few teams rely on their fullback like San Francisco. Bruce Miller, the 49ers fullback, has played an integral part in the team’s success this year, and the news that he is out for the rest of the year – and most likely the playoffs – is not good. Miller has not only been responsible for clearing running room for Frank Gore and the other running backs, but he has also been asked to help out in the passing game with protection and is the team’s third leading receiver. However, the 49ers should not only be able to survive this latest setback, but could even be more explosive as a result.

Best Fullback in the NFL

How big of a role has Miller played in the San Francisco offense this season? The converted defensive end has been on the field for 60 percent of the 49ers snaps this season…

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Special Events Planned At Candlestick Park Before Demolition

CBS San Francisco

SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – The 49ers and the city of San Francisco are planning a grand send-off for Candlestick Park as the stadium is set to host its last NFL game Monday night, the 49ers final regular season home game against the Atlanta Falcons.

“We’re going to try to give her a good send-off. I don’t want to spoil any of that for the fans that might be listening,” said 49ers Vice President of Stadium Operations and Security Jim Mercurio. “We’re planning to do some pretty special things, some great tributes.”

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And the send-offs won’t end on Monday night. Phil Ginsburg, General Manager of the San Francisco Recreation and Park Department, said several events are scheduled between now and when Candlestick closes to the public in the fall of 2014.

“One will be a community event, we’re…

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