White Sox and Tigers Get Ready for a Motown Showdown

Bring out the big guns this weekend boys! After a disappointing series in Baltimore, the White Sox have headed to Motown to take on their ferocious conference rival Detroit Tigers. This series is crucial as the Tigers trail the AL-Central leading White Sox by three games and are vying for the conference crown this season.

Both the White Sox and Tigers are coming off losing series, so we’ll call it a wash. The Tigers haven’t been playing their best ball lately – they were swept in three games by the Royals, whereas the Sox came into their roadtrip after a 6-0 homestand against the Yankees (swept the Yanks for the first time in 21 years) and the Mariners. If Detroit takes advantage of their home field advantage (which they’ve done this season – Chicago is winless in four straight at Comerica Park) they could pick up some serious conference ground. In other words, the White Sox need to take this series in Detroit to prove they’re the big dogs in the ALC.

Here are the three top “musts” the Sox must do to keep those Tigers in check.

1. Pitching

Detroit has their three big mound guns going Friday through Sunday with Doug Fister, Max Scherzer and Justin Verlander. Chicago’s big guys need to show-up and shut-out – I’m talking to you Jake Peavy, Francisco Liriano and Chris Sale. Peavy has the honor of opening the series and starting things off right. This Tiger offense is powerful, the Sox need to maintain and tame it. Also, the bullpen needs to be one their best behavior. No hiccups allowed.  Addison Reed (who’s really performed like a vet when called upon), Nate Jones, Brett Myers, Matt Thornton and Jesse Crain all need to be ready for tight situations.

2. Heat-up the bats

Detroit has some of the heaviest hitters in the league (Miguel Cabrera and Prince Fielder to throw out some names) and Chicago’s offense needs to heat things up a bit. After some slumping in the Orioles series, the Sox need to see a resurgence from Paul Konerko and Adam Dunn. A.J. Pierzynski has been having a career year and seems to have hit his first major funk of 2012 – let’s put a kabosh on that right now. Also, they need their lead off men to get on base, we’re looking to you Dewayne Wise and Kevin Youkilis.

3. Attack with the gloves

Defense is something a professional baseball team can take for granted – especially with the Tigers. Gordon Beckham and Alexei Ramirez have been making some incredible moves throughout the infield, don’t stop now! The Sox have to allow the Tigers 3 outs and that’s all folks. If Chicago makes defensive errors and allows Detroit freebies to get on base – they can say goodbye to the top spot in the ALC.

Give them hell White Sox! Make it a showdown in Motown to remember.

Top Reasons Women Should Play Fantasy Football

Fantasy football gives you abs like this girl – just kidding

As a brand new NFL season approaches, fantasy football (ff) fanatics all over the country are coming out of the woodwork from their long off-season lulls and preparing for their annual fantasy football drafts. They spend hours studying statistics (much harder than any of them did in college) searching for potential sleepers and busts. Each week they’ll clock countless hours cheering on their players and after 17 weeks of competition, a fantasy champion will be crowned – virtual gridiron glory.

Who are the majority of these fanatics? Men. According to the Fantasy Sports Trade Association, over 23.4 million people play fantasy football, and women only account for approximately 20% of that number. So get off the sidelines and jump into a fantasy league this season! Honestly, what do you have to lose? Now don’t go joining some league that costs $150 to enter as a rookie or anything! You still have some time left as the last day to draft is next week! Get your ladies together or take a leap into a COED league and give it a shot!

Here’s a little fantasy football 101 for any newbies: http://www.drfootball.com/startingleague.htm

  1. Something to look forward to each week:
    As fall approaches and our summer Fridays cease to exist, playing fantasy football gives you an extra little pep in your step throughout the week to compliment those pumpkin spiced lattes.
  2. Learn the game:
    Women rarely have the opportunity to play the physical sport of football and thus never truly learn the inner intricacies of the game. Although fantasy is absolutely not the “real deal” it gives women a reason to pay attention to the league, learn the importance of positions, and ultimately have an overall better understanding of the guys out there throwing around pigskin each weekend.
  3. Draft Day Adrenaline Rush:
    Watching the clock tick down to the final seconds before your draft begins gives you that brief adrenaline rush that’s good for the soul. Everyone wants to draft the best compiled team. Waiting and grabbing your next best player keeps your blood flowing and your heart pounding.
  4. The perfect excuse for a Sunday-Funday:
    Since you’ll draft players all over the NFL you’ll need access to multiple TVs playing all of the football games to keep an eye on your favorite guys. Obviously your favorite sports bar is the best place for this type of viewing! Bring on 17 weeks of Sunday-fundays!
  5. Football knowledge gives you the upper hand man-hunting:
    For all you single ladies looking to mingle, sports knowledge – specifically football facts are a huge turn on for guys. They eat it up! Even for you committed ladies, your man may get a little extra sparkle in his eyes if he hears you yelling about your running back fumbling the ball on a Sunday afternoon (or Thursday night and Monday night).
  6. Be included in the office chit-chat:
    The workplace is generally the perfect place to create a league. As most of the men in the office are probably fantasy participants, being in your own league will give you reason to chat it up with your male co-workers. Who wouldn’t want to be the bad-ass chick gaining popularity with the male population in the office?
  7. Release your competitive prowess:
    Women can compete with the best of them. Give us the tools, stats and rankings (which online fantasy programs do so well) and I bet we can come up with some rather successful teams. Who doesn’t like to win? And honestly, so much of fantasy has to do with luck rather than strategy. You could spend hours researching stats, but if your main quarterback goes out in week one with a broken hand – you’re studying is screwed.
  8. No commitment issues – there’s an APP!
    It’s so easy! You don’t even have to lug your computer around anymore you savvy smartphone users! With just a few taps of your finger you can switch and swap out your players each week right from your phone and watch all your points accrue on game-days.
  9. You only live once:
    In this beautiful experience we call life, I think it’s important to try as many things as we can at least once. This is your chance to give FF a shot!
  10. You might actually enjoy it 🙂

EGHS Football Makes CSN’s Top 20 List

Coach Larry Calhoun and his varsity team – courtesy SunTimes Media

Attention all Elk Grovians: Grenadier football is looking fierce in 2012! Comcast Sportsnet Chicago announced their Top 20 High School football rankings and EGHS came in at #13. As an alumna of Elk Grove High School I instantly felt a sense of pride – I like to consider myself an older wiser *Grenadier at heart.

The Grenadiers got off to quite the start last Friday under the varsity lights when quarterback Adam O’Malley threw five touchdowns and the Elk Grove football team trounced over Highland Park 40-6.  O’Malley finished the game 12-for-16 for 248 yards and one interception – not perfect, but pretty damn good.

QB Adam O’Malley throwing a bomb during the first half of the home opener – courtesy SunTimes Media

“It was kind of a magical night,” O’Malley told the Daily Herald. “The offensive line gave me a lot of time and my receivers kept getting open. They made me look good.”

The win was the first for Elk Grove coach Larry Calhoun, who’s Texas charm seems to be  fitting well with the varsity boys. Calhoun, previously a high school coach in Texas, took over in mid-June after previous head coach Brian Doll departed to promote football in Europe. Luckily, the “getting to know yous” were accelerated when Elk Grove won the Wheaton Warrenville South 7-on-7 tournament qualifying the team for a national tournament in Alabama in late July – ROAD TRIP. The tourney gave Calhoun, his coaches, and the team to get better acquainted in a short amount of time.  It didn’t take long for the student body to welcome coach Calhoun as they embraced him immediately by waving a Texas state flag and chanting his name on Friday night.

EGHS Celebrating the win – courtesy SunTimes Media

After last Friday’s home opener it looks like the Grenadiers might have made a name for themselves in the IHSA. If you find yourself in the village on a Friday night, it might be time to pay a visit to your high school alma mater :-).

Here are your 2012 Grenadiers at a glance:

Coach: Larry Calhoun (first year)
Last year: 10-2, 5-0 (East champs, 7A quarterfinalist)

OFFENSE

Pos. Name Ht/Wt Yr.

QB Adam O’Malley 6-1/180 Jr.

RB Travon Royal 5-8/165 Jr.

T Jake Radtke 6-3/235 Sr.

G Brandon Soriano 5-11/260 Jr.

C Anthony DeBell 6-0/210 Sr.

G Josh Palframan 5-9/235 Sr.

T Dan Egan 6-3/250 Sr.

WR John Eul 5-11/160 Sr.

WR Kishan Patel 5-11/165 Sr.

WR Mike Bishoff 6-2/190 Jr.

WR John Pass 6-3/185 Jr.

DEFENSE

Pos. Name Ht/Wt Yr.

DL Dan Egan 6-3/250 Sr.

NT Johnny Assimakopoulos 5-11/210 Jr.

DL Jake Radtke 6-3/235 Sr.

LB Mikey Maize 6-0/215 Sr.

LB Alfonso Lavin 5-10/200 Sr.

LB Mike Bishoff 6-2/190 Jr.

LB Luke Dybicz 6-0/160 Sr.

CB Kishan Patel 5-11/165 Sr.

CB Luc Dimaso 5-6/155 Sr.

S Matt McKenna 5-10/150 Sr.

S Travon Royal 5-8/165 Jr.

*For all you non-eghs followers a Grenadier was a specialized soldier in the mid-to-late 17th century used for the throwing of grenades, these soldiers were chosen from the strongest and largest men. As time progressed the grenadiers were considered the most physically powerful soldiers and would lead assaults onto the battle field.

Derrick Rose – The Red Knight

I think Chicago fans are done eating hot dogs and watching baseball games. With the quickly approaching fall months comes the NFL who’s shortly followed by the NBA (when they’re not in a lockout of course). This NBA season Bulls fans will need more patience than ever as their rock star Derrick Rose is rehabbing his season ending knee injury. The video above is rather creative and sets Rose’s road to recovery to the trailer of the The Dark Knight. Lebron James takes on the character of Bane – aka the villain and Chicago’s reckoning – but in the end Rose will rise again. I have to admit it got me a little pumped for the NBA again!

Check it out 🙂

What’s in store for Urlacher in 2012?

The Chicago Bears were full of smooth moves this off season making improvements to the team’s offense, but it looks like things are a little shaky on the defensive end coming into the 2012-2013 season. Eight-time Pro Bowl selection Brian Urlacher, the heart and soul of the Chicago Bears defense, is still suffering from a knee injury he faced last season. After all the excitement from the offensive Cutler-Marshall duo wears off, should Bears fans be a little worried?

Last Tuesday Urlacher had arthroscopic surgery on his left knee – AKA a left knee scope. Now we’ve learned that Urlacher didn’t necessarily wait until the last minute to relieve his knee pain. According to a Chicago Tribune report, Urlacher traveled to Europe earlier this offseason for a “non-invasive treatment” on his left knee. This treatment is known as Regenokine injection therapy and has been utilized by other athletes such a Kobe Bryant and Alex Rodriguez. What’s the catch you ask? The procedure has not been approved by the Food and Drug Administration  so it’s not “up for discussion” just yet.

The middle linebacker and the Bears are still targeting the Sept. 9 opener against Indianapolis for his return, but is this the best idea? The Bears organization keeps emphasizing the importance of the first game of the year – why rush Urlacher back on the field before he’s absolutely ready (especially when the Bears should be able to beat the Colts without their Pro Bowl Linebacker)? Does Lovie Smith’s defense only work if all four Pro Bowl defensive players stay healthy and on the field?

Urlacher acknowledged that the knee could be an issue all season adding, ‘‘I don’t see it getting any better during the season. We have to manage it, my reps in practice, and then get through Sunday.’’

Right now, fill-in middle linebacker Nick Roach can play the position capably. The key to the Bear’s success defensively will highly be influenced by the pass rush. In the preseason game against the Redskins we saw an example of some sultry pass rushing when Israel Idonije forced Robert Griffin III to fumble and Julius Peppers recovered the ball. If the big men up front get a ferocious rhythm going, our defense can survive while Urlacher recovers.

Knee injuries are no walk in the park and should always be taken seriously. Ultimately, it’s most important that Chicago brings Urlacher back slowly and the team tries to overcome his absence in the meantime. We gotta be cautious! We need the big man for some Bears playoff wins!

Nike Releases Most Overpriced Shoe Yet: The Lebron X

YIKES! The latest shoe in the Lebron James sneaker line is setting Nike records. With a retail price set at a whooping $315, the Lebron X is the first of its kind to be priced over the $300 mark. Who in their right mind would pay $315 for a Nike gym shoe?!

Bron Bron debuted his new kicks in team USA’s Olympic gold medal game in stylish fashion, and now Nike has announced they can soon be yours too for such a reasonable rate. To make a comparison, some previous styles such as the LeBron 9s sold for $170 – still a pricey amount, but much more manageable.

According to The Wall Street Journal, Nike attributes the price hike to rising labor costs in China and an increase in cotton prices. The Lebron X comes with all the latest technology, including the Nike+ system, but it’s tough to imagine what exactly necessitated a $145 price hike. It seems like they’re just testing the waters to see just how far they can go with their “high-end” shoe lines.

For $315, these shoes better transform you into a basketball god, make you jump 10 feet in the air and dunk from the free throw line – otherwise no dice.

Chicago Luvabulls Hosting Open Auditions in August | SportsDivas Inc.

 

Calling all Sports Divas that love to dance and dig the Bulls! It’s that time of year when the Chicago Luvabulls will hold auditions for its 2012-13 team. These lucky ladies get to shake their stuff at all Chicago Bulls home games next season, as well as make numerous appearances at special events and charity fundraisers throughout the year. If you’re an interested dance machine, head on down to the United Center on Saturday, August 25.

Click here for more details!

Chicago Luvabulls Hosting Open Auditions in August | SportsDivas Inc..