Sunday, September 3, 2017

Could Jersey Girl be behind Aaron Judge slump?

Aaron Judge may not have launched a home run since Aug. 16 against the Mets, but on Saturday night the Yankees slugger was spotted seemingly hitting one out of the park across the street from Citi Field in a couple of other arenas — namely Arthur Ashe Stadium and love.

Judge was shown on the big screen at the U.S. Open during Rafael Nadal's match against Leonardo Mayer after the Yanks beat the Red Sox, 5-1, earlier in the day and, for once lately, he wasn't striking out. In fact the big guy seemed to be going long with an attractive young woman at his side.

The young lady is Jen Flaum, a Franklin Lakes, N.J. native, self-described Yankees fan and recent University of Michigan grad, according to the NY Daily News. It is not known how long the pair have been keeping company.

What is known is that Flaum, whom both Judge and the Yankees(huh?) follow on Instagram recently posted a photo of herself at Yankee Stadium with the caption, "I got 99 problems but A. Judge ain't one."

A post shared by Jen Flaum (@jflaumy) on

Now before anyone jumps to conclusions about Judge's awful slump, stalking or his new companion's effect on his game — the Olivia Munn Curse so to speak — let's allow the relationship to run its natural course. We all know one hit leads to another.

And while Judge may not have have Derek Jeter's five World Series rings, it sure looks like he is learning to play the former Yankee great's notable off-field game.

Wonder if his gift bags come with one of those white wigs and a foam gavel?

Saturday, September 2, 2017

Eli Manning and Tom Brady postgame chat has fans thinking of third Super Bowl rematch

Eli Manning and Tom Brady are a couple of NFL warhorses who share a pair of epic Super Bowl match-ups on their distinguished resumes. The two future Hall of Fame quarterbacks also seem to possess a mutual respect for each other after the Giants' two dramatic victories.

Once again they met on the field — albeit a more serene environment — after they both sat out Thursday's preseason finale at Gillette Stadium, but it was their little postgame chat which has fans seeing something bigger.

"I didn't tell you this summer, but congrats on last season on the championship," Manning told Brady in the exchange. "It was awesome. It was a great game. Fun to watch. I'm proud of you."

And it was what was said as the two players headed to their respective Giants and Patriots locker rooms that has fans envisioning a third Super Bowl meeting in the future.

"See you down the road, I hope," Brady said.

"See you down the road," Manning replied.

The two teams do not meet in the regular season leaving only one option at seeing you down the road — meaning Super Bowl LII in Minneapolis. 

Talk is cheap but, whether or not you believe Manning's optimism or Brady's sincerity, a third meeting is quite a possibility for the two contending squads.

Monday, July 31, 2017

Chris Christie holds onto nachos while Cubs fan loses his nuts in stadium confrontation

By Tony Mangia

It doesn't really matter if you consider Chris Christie a bully, a blowhard, a traitor, a fathead or — worst of all — a Cowboys fan, you have to admit that, unlike the oozing cheese on a warm tray of nachos, the round mound of New Jersey doesn't melt when the chips are down.

On Sunday the unpopular governor showed that double-wide side when he got in the face of a Chicago Cubs fan during a game in Milwaukee — all while never releasing his precious grip on a bowl of the gooey snack he was carrying.

The nachos-toting Christie was walking down the aisle at Miller Park when a Cubs fan who had nothing better to do than razz the rotund Christie by yelling out at the not-so-hard-to-miss politician.

And his comments had nothing to do with down in front, side, rear or section 215!

So, in his typical brash Jersey style, an intense stare-off between the blustery Guv and suddenly not-so-big-mouthed fan was on. 

“When he initially was going up the stairs I yelled his name,” Cubs jersey-wearing fan Brad Joseph told WISN-TV in Milwaukee.

“He was quite a bit past me, and 30 feet away I yelled his name and told him that he sucked . . . I called him a hypocrite because I thought it needed to be said.”

That's when, according to Joseph, Christie turned back toward him and got in his face while firmly clutching that tray of nachos with one hand.

“First he told me, ‘Why don’t you have another beer?’ which I thought was a decent come back, and I thought that was kind of funny,” he told the station. “Then he started calling me a tough guy.”

Christie, who was at the game visiting his son who works for the Brewers, was also heard on the video sarcastically telling the guy “You’re a big shot!”

While Joseph wilted like a soggy bag of fries on a Seaside Heights boardwalk, Christie kept his all-you-can-eat gaze on the now suddenly timid Cubbie before waddling away. 

Whether suitable or not, politicians should be used to comments in all public areas but, in Christie's case, feedback seems to be off limits when the feedbag is on.

Friday, July 28, 2017

Aaron Judge chips tooth during Yankees' walk-off celebration

Brett Gardner did it all during the Yankees’ 6-5, extra-inning win over the Rays on Thursday night... including a little inci-dental work on the side.

After tripling in the ninth and scoring the tying run to keep the Yankees alive before ending the game in the 11th with a walk-off line drive homer into the right-field seats, Gardy might have also chipped the tooth of Aaron Judge during the celebration at home plate.

Gardner was mobbed by his teammates as he crossed the plate and Judge could be seen being hit by a helmet and reaching for his mouth before jogging off the field alone while the rest of the team still celebrated.

Judge looked a little upset and annoyed as he sought medical attention.

No one, it seemed, was willing to take responsibility for the bopping helmet which ended up smashing Judge in the chin but, with mostly everyone at least six inches shorter than the big guy, it's no wonder it happened.

“It wasn’t my fault,” Gardner said following the victory. “I threw [the helmet] on the ground.

“He’s too big to get hurt by something like that,” the outfielder said. “I think he’ll be all right.”

After the game ended, team personnel could be seen on the field, presumably in search of the tooth fragment.

“We don’t know who hit him,” Clint Frazier said of the already gap-toothed Judge. “We’re trying to find somebody. But the tooth broke in half.”

Judge has managed to smile through a mini-slump since the All-Star game, but here's to hoping this accident doesn't change that attitude.

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Aaron Judge hits Statcast-breaking home run nearly out of Safeco Field

Aaron Judge broke out of his nearly two-week home run slump in a spectacular way against the Seattle Mariners Friday night.

The big guy's three-run bomb against Andrew Moore in the fifth-inning — his first homer since July 7 — and 31st overall — landed at the back of the second deck in left field of Safeco Field helping lead the Yankees to a 5-1 victory over the home town Mariners.

Judge's powerful blast went so far it reportedly broke Statcast, which couldn't even get an immediate measurement of the moonshot. The Mariners estimated the ball traveled 440 feet — a conservative guess at best if you went by the reaction of the crowd or announcers.
Judge came up to the plate in front of a mostly cheering crowd of 34,073 and crushed the 2-1 breaking ball from rookie Moore three rows from the top of Safeco's left field’s upper deck. 

According to a Mariners’ official, nobody has hit a ball out of Safeco Field during a game since it opened in 1999.

But this was about as close as they come. Ask Statcast...well maybe not.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Rays' Logan Morrison angry about Yankees' Gary Sanchez being invited to Home Run Derby

Logan Morrison sounds a little peeved that two New York Yankees players will be jacking balls over the fence at next weeks' Home Run Derby during the All-Star Game festivities in Miami while the Tampa Bay Rays' first baseman might be sitting at home swatting flies.

Morrison, who is tied for third in the majors with 24 home runs, doesn’t think Gary Sanchez is deserving of a spot at next week’s Home Run Derby especially when the Yankees are already sending MLB's home run leader Aaron Judge.

“Gary shouldn’t be there,’’ Morrison told the Tampa Bay Times. “Gary’s a great player, but he shouldn’t be in the Home Run Derby. I remember when I had 14 home runs,’’ Morrison said. “That was a month and a half ago.’’

Sanchez does have a less than spectacular 13 homers this year, but remember the Yankees catcher spent a month on the disabled list.

Morrison, however, wasn’t suggesting that he should take Sanchez’s spot.

“It’s not even about that,” he said. “(Royals third baseman Mike) Moustakas should be there.

“I’m not disappointed. It’s par for the course. I play for the Rays. I get it. They can’t even get my picture right. When they put my name up there, they put Corey (Dickerson’s) picture up there ... on MLB Network.’’

It is somewhat unfair that the Yankees did get two players competing in the contest although Morrison would even have to admit that Sanchez is a real bomber. The Yankee slugger averages a true home-run distance of 420.9 feet — second only to Blue Jays' Kendrys Morales and even further than the powerful Judge.

So while Morrison does have a valid argument, it's time for him to put on his big boy pants and worry about making the AL All-Star squad via the Final Vote.

That is, of course, if they get his name right.

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Tim Tebow adds wall crashing catch to his minor league highlight reel

Tim Tebow continues to simultaneously blur and highlight his reputation as minor league baseball's most intriguing player — making it hard for anyone to hate the guy.

Since being called up to the New York Mets' Single-A St. Lucie team — and on the same day Mets GM Sandy Alderson admitted Tebow was more of a gimmick than a latent talent — the former NFL star is starting to look like he deserved the promotion even though it might be better suited to the gridiron than the diamond.

On Friday night, a day after Tebow homered in his second game, the bruising outfielder went Wildcat and can now add a wall crushing catch to his baseball reel.
Alderson was pretty blunt on the Tebow signing claiming the Mets didn’t sign the former quarterback and Heisman Trophy winner because they saw some hidden talent in him. It wasn’t a “baseball decision,” as Alderson said at the time.

“Look, we signed him because he is a good guy, partly because of his celebrity, partly because this is an entertainment business,” Alderson said. “My attitude is ‘Why not?’ ”

Despite his paltry .220/.311/.336 stats and only three home runs in 64 games with Single-A Columbia, Tebow was conspicuously promoted last week. 

Tebow went 0-for-2 last night but, like Alderson said, it's all about the show.  And if the losing Mets continue to be as entertaining as they are now, expect to see Tebowing (remember that?) at Citi Field this fall.