Thursday, March 26, 2009

Ricky Lately ... with the SB Buzz

When your married compromise is a big part of the equation. My wife lets me watch ESPN, SNY, YES and a lot of other bullshit that I like and she hates without complaining. So it's only fair that I watch shows that she likes once in a while. She loves HGTV, Ghost Hunters, The Real Housewives of Orange County and Chelsea Lately. I mostly hate these programs, but I do my best to watch at least a few minutes with her now and then as part of the marriage give and take thing. However, I must admit when it comes to Chelsea Lately I'm completely sold. Yes I know it's a quote unquote "a girl show" on the E-Channel but she's brilliant, hilarious, and great late night TV.Chelsea along with her midget sidekick Chewy
give you the buzz/scoop on Hollywood. I usually hate sensational Hollywood TV shows but Chelsea’s is different. Her clever wit, charm and great attitude poke fun at show businesses making her a good watch and very interesting. She keeps the fake glitzy superficial entertainment world completely Real. She's excellent.

So in the spirit of the great Chelsea Lately I'm going to give you the softball buzz that I've seen and heard in Match 2009 as we head into the season.

True E Softball Story: Softball Economy
Softball Buzz:
Times are hard. League Fees are due. Corporate sponsorship is down. A lot of players god forbid now have to pay league fees out of their own pocket. Economist say that in recessions people continue to spend on liquor and cigarettes instead of necessities like food and water, my guess is that most mid level to lower players will pay and the elite softball players/pitchers will still get a free ride.
Translation some sucker will foot most of the bill.

True E Softball Story: Wall Street Lives
Softball Buzz: I'm not talking about the big companies that reside downtown I'm talking about the Wall Street Softball League WSSL Despite the economy, my sources say they have 8 teams and are keeping this 49 year old league (est. 1960) alive. I say good for them and good luck to my old school friends Willie J and Pete Martinez. I have many good and bad SB memories of this league and would hate to see it go down.

True E Softball Story: Bailout Plan in Chelsea
Softball Buzz: Keep Hope Alive!!!The long standing and highly competitive legendary Chelsea Lob Ball league was in trouble. High Costs and diminishing teams had this NYC softball turf institution on the ropes. Word is they now have 7 teams and Dio and Juan have the league coming back for more. Good job.

True E Softball Story: Bob is Homeless but still in business
Softball Buzz: The Charter league, run by Bob Morello, on 54th street's Dewitt Clinton Park ,needs to find a new address for another month or two as Dewitt Clinton Park (formerly known as Donde Caja La Vaca") is still under repairs. Bob is in negotiations with the parks department to find a temporary home until the new turf field is done.

True E Softball Story: When Will 54th Street be Ready??????
Softball Buzz: Sources say June 1st, but with construction you know the old line from the movie Money Pit "TWO WEEKS" applies.

True E Softball Story: Gunny's Saturday League
Softball Buzz: Conflicting reports everywhere. Some people say 6 teams, Some say 9. Gunny was seen on the lower east side weeks ago putting up flyer's old school style. The jury is still out, but he was quoted as saying his pot is $5,000. Stay tuned.

True E Softball Story: What Recession?
Softball Buzz: Business is better than ever for Gunny's former partner Steve Jimenez as Steve's Saturday league 20 teams, enthusiasm, and improved competition.
Steve is continually trying to improve his product. If Steve focuses on properly communicating prizes and playoff structures he should have a banner year. If not, his reputation could suffer.

As for another league that doesn't seem to be feeling the pinch according to sources is the corporate monster that is Yorkville sports. Al Morales still has plenty of teams, he just has to find a way to squeeze them all in as 54th street is unavailable . Then again its not like Yorkville cares, they didn't even finish their fall season last year. Why should they care, they have a monopoly on the fields.

True E Softball Story: Park's Department
Softball Buzz: Still as difficult to deal with as ever. The government can't even handle field permits and these are the guys we are asking to fix the economic mess?

True E Softball Story: Career Change??
Softball Buzz: Inwood Hall of Famer Gilbert Gonzalez has spoken about wanting to retire and become a commissioner. Besides the fact that he is still stud player, Gil won't quit just yet b/c he thinks the Park's Department politics is a tougher game. Oh yeah, after he told me wanted to retire he ran like 2 miles after practicing softball for 1 1/2 hours.

True E Softball Story: Big Apple League
Softball Buzz: Still going strong with 12 teams. Their has been a lot of mergers and recruiting wars going on as Working Class and Pipe fitters have under gone radical changes, while the Bombers are rumored to be on a recruiting rampage. The Bombers have bulked up their offense with former Working Class and Diesel players and are rumored to sign more illegal slinger pitching. Bomber manager Rudy appears to be going after big time illegal pitching even with Cedric and supposedly Langer in the fold. Cedric will most likely never leave Rudy, but maybe Langer is on the move. In any case, Softball Beast Miranda of Clemente fame who throws side arm like Dan Quisenberry is rumored to be on their radar .As for 2007 BAL Champion, West they are now called Hell's Kitchen. I am the general manager, and honestly I have no idea what will happen. Right now everything is on paper. The softball gods don't care about paper.
Perhaps, Hell's Kitchen and other Big Apple teams will get a clearer view of their 2009 prospects on April 5th when scrimmages will take place on the Great Lawn, Unfortunately, only 2 fields are currently available. Hopefully, Diesel and Hell's Kitchen can figure out a way to play 2 games as it would be nice to see who is on my team before the season starts.

True E Softball Story: Looking for Team
Softball Buzz: Softball legend Jimmy Meyers is looking for players on his Central Park 2pm Tuesdays league. If your interested contact Jimmy at his email Jimmy is a great guy and I highly recommend playing with him if your schedule can swing it. I wrote about the lack of player development and opportunities the other day, this is a ground floor opportunity to get out there and play. Do It if you can.
True E Softball Story: Never Say Never
Softball Buzz: Jimmy Meyer's longtime softball teammate Richie Christy is back from the dead, I uh mean Staten Island. Richie has been showing up to tournaments, scrimmages,and hanging out again with his softball buddies. I hope it lasts as Richie is a very good player who is a lot of fun to hang out with. NYC Softball is better with him than without.

True E Softball Story: Speaking of Players on Milk Cartons
Softball Buzz: Johnny Castillo. I haven't spoken to John in over 2 weeks, but when I did speak to him he said he's doing well, gaining weight, and playing ball again in the Dominican. I'll keep you posted on this, but softball needs Castillo back, say what you want but he's hardly boring

True E Softball Story: Softball Sleeper
Softball Buzz: If fantasy softball existed Tommy Colon would be my sleeper. In the couple of weeks that I've played this winter/spring, the most improved player I've seen is Tommy "Spider" Colon. His swing look very fluid and he has demonstrated very good bat speed. He's being used in the middle of the Westlander lineup and is showing improved confidence. I've actually been a a big Tommy fan for years as his hard work combined with his humble personality makes him a joy to play softball with

True E Softball Story: How is Ricky Balboa doing?
Softball Buzz: When I started my diet on February 3rd I weighed 228lbs. Make no mistake their has been No Easy Way Out and as MR. T warned
their has been a lot of PAIN!!!!
When I first started dieting I felt like Apollo looks in this picture below

beaten and in disbelief how how hard this fight would really be.Today thanks to diet, exercise, a supportive wife and the Flu I weigh 209 lbs, 4 pounds short of my goal. Almost there, hell I think I will aim for 200 lbs now. Of course this will not help in me in softball at all except maybe I'll be able to keep score faster :)))

Anyway, that's all for the SB buzz for now stay tuned, good luck this season, and check out Chelsea Lately she's funny (unlike my nerdy softball self) . Holler!!!!!!!


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