Archive for Derek Jeter

Choking in the Big Apple

Posted in NFL with tags , , , , , , , , , on September 29, 2008 by nathanelwell

FLUSHING, NY – In true “flush your season down the toilet” fashion, it’s no surprise that the New York Mets lost Sunday to the Florida Marlins, losing a playoff spot for the second straight year.  The Milwaukee Brewers defeated the Chicago Cubs, as they should of, since they pitched CC Sabathia, and therefore picked up the NL Wild Card.  They will face the Philadelphia Phillies in the NL Division Series and will most certainly get swept.  The ironic thing regarding the Met’s loss is that last year, they also lost the last game of the season, also against the Marlins.  Its no doubt that the entire Mets team will be having nightmares about fish for the entire off-season.

The only good news for the Mets in this game was that they only lost by 2, whereas in 2007 they lost by 7 runs to the Marlins after Tom Glavine only lasted just over 1 inning.  The New York Mets are surely destined for a complete rebuilding year.  Omar Minaya, GM for the Mets, will most likely be on the chopping block for creating such a high payroll and to come up empty handed.  The New York Mets payroll is bigger than every single playoff team this year: the Angels, Twins/White Sox, Red Sox, Devil Rays, Cubs, Brewers, Phillies, and Dodgers.  It comes in at a whopping $138 million ++.  That is larger than the Brewers and Devil Rays combined.  Their payroll is even $100 million larger than the Florida Marlins, and the Marlins ended up having the last laugh.  Perhaps the US government will need to bail out the New York Mets finances after this year.

Neither the New York Mets or the Yankees made the playoffs this year, which is only a good thing in my opinion.  ESPN will not be able to find anything to talk about, and David Wright will need to be content with being outside of the limelight for once.  What will be the offseason plans for some of New York’s finest baseball players?  Below I have taken a stab:

Alex Rodriquez: Will decide to follow Madonna on her “Sticky and Sweet” U.S. Tour.  Just saying the name of Madonna’s tour makes me want to hurl.  And he will cry and blow his nose with two different $100 bills simultaneously.

Pedro Martinez: Will fly to Asia and receive a right arm implant.  He has thrown a combined 8-7 record over the past two seasons with close to a 4.00 ERA.

Derek Jeter: Will try to find a way to explain to the baseball world why he is not totally overrated.

Joe Torre: Will be laughing in LA since he has brought the Dodgers to an NL West Title, and is seeing the NY Yanks faces plastered against the playoff glass window.

Jerry Manuel: Will wish he is back coaching with the Chicago White Sox.

Omar Minaya: Will be looking for a new GM job.

Thats about all I can say with this post.  Back to watching Da Bears!!

The Generous Giving of Professional Athletes

Posted in Sports off the field with tags , , , , on June 14, 2008 by nathanelwell

It seems like nowadays there are so many negative things floating around in the press regarding professional athletes.  Whether its substance abuse, domestic disputes, or marital unfaithfulness, pro athletes have been scrutinized and over-scrutinized for their off-the-field actions.  Don’t get me wrong, if pro athletes make poor decisions, they naturally should expect to be in a fish bowl.  But in this day and age of poor decisions and bad choices, what positive can we make of it?

Professional athletes and philanthropy are a combination that you’ll rarely read about in the newspaper.  Whether it is the conscious decision of a journalist to ignore it, or whether it is the athlete’s personal decision to give quietly, philanthropy in professional sports is often overlooked.  Even if we have trouble swallowing the fact that professional athletes can make up to $27.5 million per season (choke…cough…ALEXRODRIQUEZ…choke) we neglect to realize that they may actually be using that money towards something worthwhile.  So with that said, today I decided to highlight some athletes who have chosen the philanthropic road.

Lets start with David Robinson.  Most of you will remember him as an NBA basketball player for the San Antonio Spurs.  What you might not know about David Robinson is that he and his wife founded a school in San Antonio called the Carver Academy.  The Carver Academy was created to make a productive environment for children, to give them a family like setting to learn and ultimately be fed into the nation’s most competitive high schools.  To date, David and his wife have given over 11 million dollars to the Carver Academy.

Tony Hawk, professional skateboard “artist” started his own foundation in 2002.  After receiving thousands of letters from kids who had nowhere to skateboard, he decided to start a foundation that would provide funding to build skateparks around the country.  As of this year, the Tony Hawk Foundation has given over $1.5 million towards creating skate parks for kids.

 Whether or not you are sick of hearing about his memorable “play-off flip” against the Oakland A’s, or his tumble into the stands after catching a foul ball, Derek Jeter, shortstop for the New York Yankees, also has paved the way as an individual dedicated to philanthropy.  In 1996, Derek Jeter founded the Turn 2 Foundation, which focuses its efforts on “creating and supporting signature programs and activites that motivate young people to turn away from drugs and alchohol and “Turn 2″ healthy lifestyles”.  To date, the Turn 2 Foundation has awarded $8 million in grants towards children in New York City, Western Michigan, and Tampa, Florida.

These athletes are just three examples of the thousands of athletes out there who give to various charities and causes.  Let this article be a reminder to all of us sports fans that there may be a side of professional athletes that we never think of in philanthropy and giving – and maybe ultimately we will be motivated to give to similar charities.  Not only can giving help others, but it ultimately will help ourselves more than we think…