Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Anatomy of a Post-Season, in Tweets - SF Giants 2012

image source:

Series conclusion, San Francisco Giants - 2012. While they aren't as detailed as they were in the regular season (too focused on the games to be coherent), here are the tweets I wrote during their post-season run:

National League Division Series versus Cincinnati Reds:
October 7:
(1) would be nice if some of the 45 points Niners got today could be given to the Giants. Big fat goose egg after 4 1/3 innings.
(2) my, that was painful. Big kudos to "Red Sweatshirt" Dude Bronson Arroyo for an awesome pitching outing.

October 9: no broom today. Giants 2, Reds 1. Kept up hope, slim as it may be. Great pitching effort by Ryan Vogelsong to keep Giants in the game.

October 10: as Tug McGraw put it so eloquently, "ya gotta believe." Giants 8, Reds 3. Another great pitching outing from "reliever" Tim Lincecum.

October 11:
(1) Cheering for that 1st Giants run just now was painful. especially for the ears to hear.
(3) WOWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW! Way to go Giants! First NL team to overcome 0-2 deficit to move to NLCS.

October 12:
(1) keep watching over and over Buster Posey's grand slam, especially where Reds' catcher Ryan Hanigan looks away after Buster smacks it out..
(2) pack your bags Giants! Time to come home to the City by the Bay. Congrats to Mike Matheny and the St. Louis Cardinals for a great comeback.


National League Championship Series versus St. Louis Cardinals:
October 16: Stayed up into the wee hours watching video of last night's NLCS game. Scutaro and Vogelsong: quiet, stoic and tougher than nails.

October 17: Holliday-Scutaro collision discussion needs to stop. We all agree it was a late slide. Focus on Game 3, as I'm sure Marco and Matt are.

October 18: Red and Gold score and no longer trail. Black and Orange deficit grows larger. Rally cap time for Giants.

October 19:
(1) agree with Laskey* (Bill Laskey, former Giants pitcher), the throwing error to 2nd base by Cards pitcher Lance Lynn was the pivotal turn for today's Giants win.
(2) did you ever have deja-deja-deja-deja vu? Clutch win SF Giants! Best pitching effort I've seen from Zito as a Giant.

October 21:
(1) and it's Game 7 for tomorrow! Ryan Vogelsong - wow wow wow wow wow wow. Sets new career high (9) in K's.
(2) now on MLB TV for at least the next 2 hours. Can't get enough of Giants win and praise from Mitch Williams (remember '89 NLCS?).

October 22:
(1) rain starting to fall again. It's less than 2 hours before game time! Rain needed but NOT NOW. Go away. Quickly. Please. Pretty please.
(2) In the pouring rain, the Giants win their 6th elimination game to go to the World Series! So happy Vogey and Scoots are in their 1st WS.


World Series versus Detroit Tigers:
October 24:
(1) World Series begins tonight. Words to consider from the esteemed Tigers skipper, Jim Leyland, "It's not who you play but when you play 'em."
(2) 2nd night of terrible bowling, but it also resulted in another Giants blowout. A fair tradeoff ;)
(3) LOVE love Giants starting pitchers have RBI's in 4 consecutive games. See if the mighty Tigers starters can do the same.

October 25: Pitching duel to the end. Way to play small ball, G-men. Mighty Tigers manage only 2 hits. Giants 2, Tigers 0.

October 26:
(1) Vogey, WOW. Again. Bases loaded, 1 out. Then 2 pop flies* to end the inning. As I said about him before, tougher than nails. (correction, one of the outs was a strikeout).
(2) GREAT pitching (Vogey, Romo, Timmy) and defense (Crawford, Blanco), part VIII. Giants win 2-0 vs. Tigers. Now 3-0 lead in World Series.

October 27:
(1) gonna be a battle in the "driving mist" tonight. Reformed nail biters may fall off their wagons. Giants 3, Tigers 3, bottom 6.
(2) throat now cleared, cue music, fat lady is in her slow walk up to the stage...
(3) Tweet # 4100 - Sergio Romo strikes out AL Triple Crown King Miguel Cabrera! Giants 4, Tigers 3, in 10. SWEEP!!!! 2012 WORLD SERIES CHAMPS.
(4) so much respect for Detroit Tigers' skipper Jim Leyland. He said, "Congrats to the San Francisco Giants, This wasn't a fluke."

What a season. Thank you San Francisco Giants, for making 2012 another World Series never to be forgotten. I've never been prouder to be a Giants fan.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Anatomy of a Season, in Tweets - SF Giants 2012

image source:

Last night, the San Francisco Giants won their seventh consecutive post game to sweep the Detroit Tigers in the 2012 World Series. As Giants fans like me never tire of hearing, this is the second World Series the Giants have won in 3 years, capturing their first title in San Francisco in 2010.

A typical baseball season is long and difficult. Probably the 2 biggest setbacks of 2012 - the season-ending injury to closing relief pitcher Brian Wilson, and the drug suspension of left fielder Melky Cabrera seemed to make the Giants resolve to play well only stronger.

I set up my Twitter updates to appear on this blog and Facebook. What astounds me is many of these tweets describe what the Giants did amazingly well throughout post-season. Here's the 2012 regular season (taken from my Facebook timeline), in tweets:

April 13:
(1) awesomely, stupendously, masterful, dominating 1-hit, 11K shutout by Giants opening day pitcher Matt Cain.
(2) watching encore presentation of SF Giants home opener. Face hurts from non-stop smiling of 1962 team escorted by current Giants players.

April 16: what should've been caught in right centerfield turns into a double. Top of 1st not even over and Phillies have 4-0 lead over Giants.

April 17: didn't start out well, but Giants pull it out with a 4-2 win over the Phillies. Nice D to end the game, Brandon Crawford.

April 21:
(1) Buster Posey shoots down 2 Mets runners in bottom of 8th inning. Giants just need to score some runs, down 4-1 going into 9th inning.
(2) full count, 2 outs in top 9th, Brandon Belt hits high fly ball in centerfield falls for double. Game tied! Giants 4, Mets 4 ***(final score Mets 5, Giants 4).

April 25: congrats to Pablo Sandoval for tying the Giants franchise record for consecutive hits at 18 games. Vamos Papi!

April 28: bottom 7th inning: Brandon Belt doubles to hit in Melky Cabrera and Nate Schierholtz to get Timmy L & SF Giants win, 2-1 vs. Padres.

May 8:
(1) top 2nd inning. 2 pitches, 2 hits, 2 runs. And off Clayton Kershaw. SF 2, LA 0.
(2) unlike last night, great pitching and defense to a get a big 2-1 V for Ryan Vogelsong 2-1 and BEAT LA.

May 12: Matt Cain, star of the game: 2 hits, 2 RBI's, takes out the D'backs shortstop as a baserunner, pitches 6 innings for a 5-2 W vs. D'backs.

May 24: Giants 12, Marlins 3, top 8th. So glad to see Ryan Vogelsong get run support long overdue for his awesome pitching.

May 25: Melky Cabrera's 41st hit (HR) for the month of May is only 8 hits from tying club record of 49 held by Willie Mays.

May 27: SF Giants Melky Cabrera now has 45 hits in May, tying Matt Williams. Needs 4 hits in 4 days left to break club record by Willie Mays.

May 29: another awesome outing by SF Giants pitcher Ryan Vogelsong: 7 IP, 6 hits, 3 BB's, 8 K's. Shame that it's another no decision.

June 3: Speed, pitching and defense. Giants now only 3 games back and nipping at the heels of the Dodgers.

June 4: Cubs' shortstop Starlin Castro brain fart, another Vogel-strong effort and defense gets the Giants a win 3-2 and series sweep.

June 7: Giants overcome 4 errors and take 2 of 3 from Padres to win 8-3. Next up, Texas Rangers.

June 13: MATT CAIN - WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! PERFECT GAME! Giants beat Astros 10-0. CONGRATULATIONS!

June 14: encore showing of Matt Cain's perfect game now on. Only saw final 3 innings last night.

June 19: another pathetic effort by the 76th highest paid athlete as listed by Forbes. Not even 2 innings and Angels have a 5-1 lead.

June 22: Timmy redeems himself with a no-decision with a come from behind win for the Giants in top of 9th vs A's to win 5-4.

June 27:
(1) Timmy L so far: 5 IP, 3 H, 1 BB, and best of all, 6 K's. Looking more like Vogey's chat in Oakland helped. Giants 2, Dodgers 0.
(2) SFGiants SWEEP Dodgers with 3-0 win today & tie for NL West lead. Dodgers score ZERO runs in series. Zito, Vogey, & Timmy!

June 28: FOUR CONSECUTIVE SHUTOUTS! SF Giants' Madison Bumgarner pitches 1-hit shutout to defeat Cincinnati Reds 5-0.

July 10:
‎(1) 2 SF Giants (Cabrera and Sandoval), 2 hits, 5 runs. NL 5, AL 0 after 1st inning.
(2) The Melkman Cometh, part II. Top of 4th inning, 2-run HR.

July 14: "There's the beer truck, Mikey..." - Duane Kuiper. Referring to Pablo Sandoval's run home to win in 12th inning vs. Astros.

July 17: Giants get 18th shutout of the season and win 9-0 versus the Braves.

July 20: Freak's mojo is back, got his 2nd consecutive win. Giants 7, Phillies, 2.

July 24: awesome Angel Pagan catch to double up Padres to end their inning sparks SF Giants to a walk-off win 3-2.

July 30: Giants have to play catch up again. Mets retake lead in top of 10th inning. Relievers aren't relieving very well.

July 31: Hunter Pence, newest SF Giant. Best of luck to Nate Schierholtz.

August 15: Man, this sucks beyond belief. IMO, Gregor Blanco in left field. Sandoval bats 3rd.

August 18: missed 3 innings of Giants-Padres game. Turn on TV, score is 1-1, Zito pitching. Hang up laundry, Padres now up 4-1. Figures.

August 22: Melky Cabrera, Bartolo Colon. As Yogi Berra once said, "it's deja vu all over again".

August 28: LA Dodgers lose, SF Giants win - now 3 game up in NL West.

September 3: magnifico Marco! Walk off single earns SF Giants 4 come from behind in last 6 wins. Vamos Gigantes!

September 7: Marco and an Angel in the outfield. Giants 5, Dodgers 2. SF Giants now 5.5 game lead in NL West. Sweet.

September 8: Oh Pablo. As the 3 hitter on a team that hits few HR's, take a few pitches. DP's you hit into stat may exceed your RBI total.

September 9: wow, miracles do happen. Pablo Sandoval just walked. He must have read my tweet from yesterday :)

September 11:
(1) tonight, Madison Bumgarner, struggling Giants pitcher and sometime power hitter. Swats a 3-run HR to tie Rockies 4-4, bottom 4th inning.
(2) SF Giants overcome 4-0 deficit to win 9-8 against Rockies. Dodgers lose. Giants now 6 game lead in NL West. Magic number - 16.

September 15: D'backs look like Rockies tonight. And congrats to Angel Pagan for breaking Giants club record for triples.

September 20: Nats 4, Dodgers 1, top 7. Subliminally whispering through the TV, "numero tres numero tres numero tres".

September 21: Vamos Papi! Vamos!

September 22:
(1) SF Giants magic # is now 1 and now lead Padres 5-1. Maintain lead for 3 more innings and G-men become 2012 NL West champs.
(2) even my web browser (Chrome) knows. Typed in "S" and the 1st website to show up is

Tweets on Giants post-season up next.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Ryan Vogelsong, 2012 World Series, Game 3, Comerica Park, Detroit, MI

source: Lance Iversen, San Francisco Chronicle

Tonight, Ryan Vogelsong won his first World Series game. It was his second consecutive start where he failed to yield a run. It wasn't one of his best starts, but as he's done in the past, he got himself out of trouble 3 times.

Vogelsong's won 3 of his 4 post-season starts. The only start where he didn't get a decision was his first post-season start in Game 3 in the National League Division Series against the Cincinnati Reds. His pitching effort is pivotal because he allowed only 1 run and left the game with the score tied 1-1. The Giants go on to win the game 2-1, and save themselves from being eliminated. From there, the Giants win the remaining 2 games in the series to advance to the League Championship Series.

Back to tonight's game. The San Francisco Giants defense (led by left fielder Gregor Blanco, 2nd baseman Marco Scutaro and shortstop Brandon Crawford) played a huge role in maintaining the shutout, winning 2-0 to the Detroit Tigers, the same score as it was in Game 2.

Here is a recap of the Tigers' scoring threats:

Jam I: Bottom 1st inning:
Tigers center field Austin Jackson grounds out. Left fielder Quintin Berry walks after a full count. 2012 American League Triple Crown King 3rd baseman Miguel Cabrera then hits a single. 1 out, 2 on base, 1st baseman Prince Fielder hits into a 4-6-3 (Scutaro-Crawford-Belt) double play to end the inning.

Jam II: Bottom 3rd inning;
Tigers catcher Alex Avila strikes out. 2nd baseman Omar Infante singles. Center fielder Austin Jackson gets an infield hit. 1 out, 2 on base. Berry ends the inning by hitting into another 4-6-3 double play.

Jam III (Vogelsong's biggest jam) Bottom 5th inning:
Tigers shortstop Jhonny Peralta lines out to Giants 3rd baseman Pablo Sandoval. Avila and Infante both hit singles to right field. Austin Jackson walks after a full count. With the bases loaded, Quintin Berry strikes out and Cabrera pops out to Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford to end the inning.

Relief pitching by 2-time Cy Young Winner Tim Lincecum (2 1/3 innings) and Sergio Romo (1 inning) close out to end the game. Giants are now up in the World Series 3-0 to the Tigers.

All of this information can be read from a gazillion news sources, but I'm writing it for my blog because I don't want to forget what happened tonight. I don't want to forget Ryan Vogelsong's incredible story and what his pitching has done for the San Francisco Giants. It's the tale I want to tell to wide-eyed kids 10, 20, and 30 years from now.

Game 4 begins tomorrow. As it was in 2010, apologies to the rest of the baseball world for making the games look so one-sided. The Giants will approach this as they did when they were down 0-2 to the Cincinnati Reds and 1-3 to the St. Louis Cardinals, one game at a time. There's still work to do. Maintain the great pitching and defense. Stay tuned.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Ryan Vogelsong, resiliency continued

Source: Brant Ward, San Francisco Chronicle

On September 24, I blogged about the resilience of San Francisco Giants pitcher Ryan Vogelsong. In his first National League Championship Series game against the St. Louis Cardinals, he pitched 7 innings, walked 2, struck out 4 and gave up only 1 run, giving the Giants their first win, 7-1, in the series.

Tonight, Vogelsong got his second NLCS win with another stellar performance. As he did in Game 2, he pitched 7 innings and gave up 1 earned run. He walked only 1 and struck out 9 batters (a career high). The Giants win their second consecutive NLCS game, 6-1, to tie the series 3-3 with the Cardinals and force a final and deciding seventh game tomorrow night.

In 3 post-season appearances, Vogelsong has pitched 19 innings, gave up 11 hits, yielded only 3 runs, walked 6 and struck out 18 batters. Regardless of tomorrow's outcome, Vogelsong has been a dominant presence. This is someone who was pitching in Japan 3 years ago and released by 2 teams in 2010 before re-signing with the San Francisco Giants in 2011.

Ryan's journey continues to amaze me. Hollywood couldn't have scripted it any better. Go GIANTS!

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Weber Cup XIII (2012)

source: Weber Cup 

This weekend, bowling's Weber Cup (similar in format to golf's Ryder Cup) is taking place at the Barnsley Metrodome in South Yorkshire, UK.

UPDATE - OCTOBER 14, 2012 - USA wins all 6 matches to win Weber Cup XIII, 17-7.

2012 Weber Cup bowlers:
Team Europe: Osku Palermaa, Mika Koivuniemi, Dom Barrett, and Stuart Williams.

Team USA: Chris Barnes, Mike Fagan, Tommy Jones and Bill O'Neill (same as 2011).

At the end of today's competition, the United States leads Europe 11-7. The first team to reach 17 points wins the cup. Here's a summary by year:

2011 - USA 17, Europe 15
2010 - Europe 17, USA 13
2009 - Europe 17, USA 11
2008 - USA 17, Europe 13
2007 - USA 17, Europe 15
2006 - USA 18, Europe 17
2005 - Europe 18, USA 16
2004 - Europe 18, USA 11
2003 - Europe 18, USA 14
2002 - USA 18, Europe 13
2001 - USA 18, Europe 13
2000 - USA 18, Europe 11

In the past 12+ years of competition, USA has a slight edge, winning 7 times. Europe has won 5. Viewing for this year's matches is yet to be announced. I usually find these available on YouTube 2-3 months after the actual competition. 

If you're interested in getting a taste of what the Weber Cup is like, it can be found on my blog entry on March 29, 2012. I've also attached a different 2011 match here:

Sunday, October 07, 2012

Women's Bowling Outside the United States

As I've mentioned in previous blog entries, whenever there's new video of bowling tournaments (particularly outside the United States), I get very excited. A few weeks back, YouTube featured video from DutchBowlingTV the 2012 Women's European Championships held in Tilburg, Netherlands this past June.

The video I've posted below is the women's championship match between Germany and England. While it isn't the PBA, I found these matches fun and exciting to watch. They remind me of the college bowling matches I've seen on ESPNU and on the CBS Sports Network.

Women's 2012 European Championship - Germany vs. England

The next video attached is an ongoing series found on YouTube under "P-League", full name: Bowling Revolution P-League. As described in Wikipedia, "..a series of women-only bowling tournaments, developed solely for television. The tournament is open only to selected members of the Japan Bowling Association (JPBA), and amateurs who qualified during the open auditions. "

The "P" in P-League has 5 different meanings: Pretty, Power, Passion, Performance and Perfect. Something for all female athletes, even league warriors like me, always strive to be.

I found out about these videos about 3 years ago from the same dear friend who got me to see the documentary "A League of Ordinary Gentlemen" and has followed bowling a lot longer than I have.

When I first saw the videos, I thought these were fluff pieces to get men to watch (which no doubt they will). My friend said the videos were great in showing him the fundamentals necessary to stay consistent in bowling. After watching several videos on my own, I have to agree.

P-League (Japan)

Even though there hasn't been a regular U.S. women's tour since 2003, seeing videos like these confirm competitive bowling for women does exist, and seemingly quite well.

Wednesday, October 03, 2012

Tony Reyes Memorial Services - Sunday, October 7

It's going to be an extremely busy weekend for the Bay Area. Activities include baseball's Oakland A's and San Francisco Giants in the playoffs, Hardly Strictly Bluegrass festival in Golden Gate Park, Fleet Week, Italian Heritage Festival in North Beach, America's World Cup series races, and a 49ers home game.

If by some small chance, you're a bowler in the San Francisco Bay Area and NOT busy, a memorial service for Tony Reyes (details listed above) is taking place at San Jose State University.

My Wednesday league at Classic Bowling Center in Daly City is selling raffle tickets until Wednesday, October 10. Proceeds will also go to the Reyes family. Tickets are 3 for $5 or 8 for $10. Prizes include a San Francisco Giants XL jacket, Storm Bowling ball roller bag, and a Brunswick Karma bowling ball. The raffle drawing will be held on Thursday, October 11. You do not need to be present to win.

For all SF Bay Area residents: regardless of what your plans are this weekend, traffic is likely to be heavy with all that's going on. Stay safe, drive defensively, and please, please DO NOT TEXT while driving.

Tuesday, October 02, 2012

Tony Reyes Fundraiser - Sunday, October 14, Bel Mateo Bowl

As I shared on my Facebook page, if there any San Francisco Bay Area bowlers that are interested, Bel Mateo Bowl is hosting a fundraiser for the Reyes family on Sunday, October 14 at 6 p.m. Check-in time is 5:30 p.m.

Tony and co-owner Lindsey Wong operate a pro shop inside 4th Street Bowl in San Jose. I found out tonight Tony was very much involved in youth bowling. This is not a USBC event, so non-league bowlers are welcome to participate. The fundraiser is limited to the first 90 bowlers and spots are filling up quickly. 

If you are unable to attend, but want to donate, please make your check payable to the Tony Reyes Memorial Fund and mail it to: 
4th Street Bowl
1441 North 4th Street
San Jose, CA 95112

Bel Mateo Bowl
attn: Craig Gabriel
4330 Olympic Ave.
San Mateo, CA 94403

My Monday night league teammates and I will be there to bowl. Hope you can help and/or see you there.

UPDATE - October 8, 2012 - As of tonight, there are still about 40 slots still available for Sunday's fundraiser at Bel Mateo Bowl. This is a great excuse for those of you in the area and/or haven't bowled in awhile to come out for a worthy cause.