Welcome to ‘The Show’ – A Battle of Old Rivals

Behind the Dish with Mimzy

Burlington Beers 13 – Burlington Bears 3

Finally, a Tier 1 game.  I had one scheduled earlier on, but mother nature decided I had to wait.  On twitter, and in early executive meetings, Tier 1 began to be called, ‘The Show’, as Tier 1 represents the best baseball talent that the GHBL has to offer.  Well…. supposedly so.  After using ‘The Show’ as a reference to Tier 1 on Twitter, I received mixed reviews.  Some guys asking the question, “how can it be called The Show, if we play at some of the diamonds that we do?”.  Others played along, and MLB patches, along with small stars are currently being ordered, and will be sewn on all players’ jerseys in Tier 1 next year.  If you are lucky enough to be called up to the majors, err, excuse me, Tier 1, sadly, you will need to buy an MLB patch…

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1) Hitting a Baseball

Many studies, both scientific and experimental, have proven that hitting a baseball is the most difficult sporting feat to accomplish with success. At the professional level, the very best in the world make contact for a ‘hit’ (single, double, triple, or home run) 3-4 times out of 10 at bats.

Considering that a major-league pitch can reach speeds of more than 95 mph, hitters have only 0.4 seconds to find the ball, decide where the ball is going and swing the bat.

Pitchers are armed with an assortment of pitches to raise the difficulty level even further. Common pitches include:

Fastball: Can be thrown a few different ways to create movement, depending on how the pitcher holds the seams of the ball.

Change up: looks like fastball, but comes in deceivingly slower

Curve ball: just like the name, with a tight spin making it curve en route to the catcher & batter

Slider: similar to the curve ball, but thrown harder and slides more level and further than the curve

Knuckle ball: Thrown with limited spin, creating an unpredictable, moving trajectory

Sinker: Front spin makes the ball drop

Screw ball: After you laugh due to your perverted sense of humor, this pitch is thrown with opposite spin of the curve ball, making it move away or in on the batter

 

We’ve all watched a Fast & the Furious movie, and afterwards felt like driving our family sedan around the neighborhood like Paul Walker. Sorry if you feel that poor tasted joke is too soon, but let his horrible, devastating story be a lesson. Although an incredible waste of fossil fuel, car racing is a challenging sport privy to professionals, not for your everyday ‘Wanna-be-Andrettis’.

Skilled drivers encounter a host of problems, but rounding the corners of the track is equivalent to having three 300-pound linemen pushing you for three of the four hours it takes to conclude a race. Plus, you have dozens of competitors driving 200+ km/h trying desperately to beat you to the finish line. As per the video accompanying this post, it’s a dangerous game… I mean, sport. Along with the gridlock in China’s largest cities, we can blame F-1 & Nascar for a large percentage of emissions leading to global warming. Hopefully soon, Solar Panel Car Racing will be mainstream.

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Picture courtesy celsias.com

 

Pole vaulting is a challenging practice of redirecting kinectic energy from the runner’s approach speed, vaulted upward with the aid of a long fiberglass pole. To do it (successfully, opposite to the failed attempt in the video), athletes need enough or more than enough speed for the sprint, upper and core body strength for lift-off, and flexibility to bend the body over the bar successfully. What’s even more challenging is the opportunity to even attempt pole vaulting; a rare sport; if even a sport at all.

4) Driving a long, straight golf shot

 

For those who have never tried it, driving a golf ball far and long seems to be an easy thing… until you try it. Even the very best, most talented, highest earning professionals have varying degrees of trouble with it. There are countless mechanical intricacies regarding a golf shot: stance, leg width, knees bent, arm positioning, head down, club angle, club face positioning, hip-turn timing, etc. The smallest error in any of these could/will lead to mistakes making flush, accurate contact with ball; or missing the ball on the tee all together.

5) Returning a Tennis Serve

 

Traveling at over 130 mph, a tennis serve by today’s top tennis players is traveling at 185 feet per second. At that speed, a player trying to return the serve has a half second to react and return the serve. Nearly impossible when trying to fathom the need to put a racket on the ball at an accurate enough angle to have it fly over the net and land within the ‘in play’ lined boundaries. Tennis is one sport that I regret not attempting earlier, and will challenge myself to try this summer.

Group Counseling/Rejoicing for Toronto Sports Fans

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Photo courtesy PuckDaddy, Yahoo Sports

 

In a recent study conducted by ESPN, Toronto was voted the ‘worst, most neglected’ market in regards to fan passion and loyalty vs. team performance. A pinch of insult, & a punch to our gut. Aside from our beloved, but relatively irrelevant Argos and Rock, we haven’t experienced a championship since 1993, when then Toronto Blue Jays defeated the Philadelphia Phillies in 6 games. Joe Carter with a home run to left field!! Marilyn was there!!

The Maple Leafs haven’t fought to the finals, let alone win the Stanley Cup, since 1967.

The Toronto Raptors, since their inauguration in 1995, have only won 1 playoff series. ONE!

Toronto FC, with an unprecedented fan base army of marching, singing, drumming lunatics, have yet to make the post season since their first season in 2007.

Yes, plenty of reasons to complain. But, I digress. By nature, I’m an insanely scoped optimist; not only in regards to my sports soulmates, but life in general. An element of realism needs to dilute from time to time.

I ask you, the Toronto sports fan, to share the GREATEST & MOST HEART WRENCHING sports moments in your lifetime. Every sport or team is  worthy of discussion (Toronto Lynx anyone?).

Based on responses, we’ll rank the 5 most euphoric and 5 most self-destructive, depressing Toronto Sports moments.

Please comment below!

Thanks in advance!

*Highfive,

Mike Cornack, #8

 

Figure skating carries with it an artistic element, which is a disservice to how incredibly athletic and difficult the tricks and jumps are to perform. Executing a ‘quad toe loop’ requires a skater to balance height and rotation while skating on a metal blade a 1/4 inch wide. During a successful quad jump, the skater reaches heights of 18 inches above the ice and experience 300 pounds of centrifugal force, all while spinning four times in just over .5 seconds. Respect Kurt, Elvis, and Patrick. Respect.

To me, this could easily be the #1 most difficult task in sports. But, given that most two legged humans can run, it fails to top the list. Plus, its a competition of whose the best at exercising. Running a 40KM race is both mentally and physically demanding. Runners, including elite marathoners, often suffer from nagging injuries in the lower back, knees, shins, ankles, Achilles’ tendons and feet over their career. As seen in the attached video, marathon runners endure 8 polarizing stages throughout a race. Despite all of the pain, anguish, and borderline self-inflicted torture, most runners will say the reward of finishing a marathon justifies the pain.

The Tour de France covers more than 2,500 miles in three weeks and requires a variety of cycling skills that must be performed at levels far beyond those of recreational riders. On flat stretches of the course, tour riders must maintain speeds more than 30 mph for hours on stretch. During mountain climbs, cyclists must be able to ride up mountain roads with grades as steep as 15%! The attached video shows an ascension where riders reach upwards of 100 KM/H! Its undoubtedly a tough race; so much so that performance enhancing drugs seemed to be the only circumventing solution to its mastery (*cough, Lance Armstrong)