Monday, May 31, 2010

Eric and Kevin's Graduation Party

When Sharon finally got home from a short weekend in Washington D.C., we took off for her brother Tom's house for a graduation party for Kevin and Eric. Kevin graduated from Gonzaga over the Mother's Day weekend, while Eric graduated from Jesuit high school this weekend. Eric will be going to Gonzaga in the fall.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Memorial Day Party

After finishing up baseball on Sunday, Jack and I rushed home, stopped briefly to change and then went to the Cunningham's. They were hosting a small Memorial Day get together with the Sanborns and one other couple. Jack had a great time playing in the pool and the hot tub with Tim, Cole and two other boys.

A Home Run, Three Doubles, 10 RBIs and 3 runs scored [2010 Outlaws Baseball Tournament #4 Day #2]

Talking to a couple of parents and the coaches on Friday night, I wondered out loud if the Outlaws had enough pitching for the weekend tournament. With Breyton out of town for the holiday and Niko playing with Hard 90 in Redding, it just seemed like they were a couple of pitchers short. These concerns become significant on Sunday.

Jack struggled a little at the plate on Saturday. As we were leaving the park on Saturday, he told me that he was bringing a different bat on Sunday. At the time, I thought that he meant his rec bat. Packing the car on Sunday morning, I realized that he had packed a heavier tournament bat, rather than his lighter rec bat or his normal tournament bat. When I got the heavier tournament bat for him last September, I thought that it was too heavy for him and quickly switched him to a lighter model of the same bat. He has not used the heavier bat in a game since last September. Jack and I had an extended discussion about whether it was a good idea to bring the heavier bat. Eventually, I threw up my hands and let him bring the heavier bat. The choice of bats also becomes significant...

The Outlaws played Hard90 Pastime in the first game of the day. Hard90 has two 11U teams: Hard 90 Pastime and Hard 90 Pastime Premier. Niko plays on Hard 90 Pastime Premier.

At the plate, Jack was 3 for 3 with a sacrifice fly, two doubles, a home run, 9 RBIs and 3 runs scored. In his first at-bat with Cooper on third, Jack hit the first pitch for a long fly ball in left center for a sacrifice fly to score Cooper. With the bases loaded in the second inning, Jack drove the first pitch into right center for a double and 3 RBIs in his second plate appearance. Trevor scored all the way from first. In his third at-bat, with Cooper on second and Trevor on first, Jack crushed the first pitch into right center. The ball bounced to the 300 foot fence. As one of the coaches noted, Jack never slowed down. Jack took a quick peek at where the ball was as he headed towards second and just kept rolling. He crossed the plate standing up. Jack drove the first pitch of his fourth plate appearance into left center for a double and two more RBIs.

Jack did all of this damage on only four pitches. As you might imagine, I got an earful about the choice of bats... I will never be able to talk him out of using the heavier bat.

Jack played first base. He had six put-outs on throws from the pitcher, third baseman and second baseman.

The Outlaws scored in every inning and beat Hard90 Pastime by the score of 17 to 1 in a four inning game.

The Outlaws played the Clayton Valley Rawhide in the second game of the day. To have any chance of advancing to Monday, the Outlaws needed to win this game. At this point, the pitching depth became an issue. The Outlaws started a new player without any tournament experience. 10 pitches later, the Outlaws had given up three runs. By the time, they got out of the bottom of the first inning, the Outlaws were behind by the score of 8 to 0.

At the plate, Jack was 1 for 3 with a double and an RBI. In his first at-bat, Jack ran the count to 3 and 2, fouled off the sixth pitch and then struck out swinging on the seventh pitch. After his success in the first game, he was trying to kill the ball. Jack doubled to right center in his second plate appearance to drive in a run. He went to third on the throw.

This at-bat triggered a great deal of running amok. Although I actually saw him touch first base, the other team claimed that he did not touch first. They threw the ball to first and the field umpire called him out. The Outlaws head coach then claimed that the other team did not correctly appeal that he had not touched first. The umpires called for a tournament director, but there was not one available. After a heated extended discussion, the game continued and Jack was called out. This is the first time I have ever seen a player called out for missing a base. Jack did not take this well.

In his third at-bat, Jack popped a 0 and 2 pitch back to the pitcher.

In the field, Jack played six innings at first base. He had six put-outs on throws from the pitcher, third baseman, shortstop and second baseman. There was one throw from Jeremy at shortstop that he was not able to dig out and get the handle and the runner was safe. Jack committed one error. With runners on second and third, a ball was hit to Jeremy at shortstop. Jeremy initially set to try and get the runner at home, but then turned and threw to first. Jack was watching for the play at home never saw Jeremy throw to first.

Giving up eight runs in the bottom of the first inning, the Outlaws tried to claw their way back into the game, but came up short. The Outlaws lost to the Rawhide by the score of 8 to 5 in sixth innings.

The Outlaws ended the weekend with 1 win, 2 losses and 1 tie. All of the teams were very beatable. The Outlaws were just a little short of pitching and made too many errors.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

2010 Outlaws Baseball Tournament #4 Day #1

The next six weeks are going to include a lot of baseball. The Outlaws are playing in a tournament this weekend, the Angels start the rec league tournament of champions on Tuesday and LYB All-Star team will be playing in the pre-state tournament on the Father's day weekend and the state tournament on the Fourth of July weekend. Jack might play as many as 20 games in the next 40 days.

The Outlaws played two games on Saturday in the A Through Z Memorial Day Celebration Tournament. I scored both games using iScore on an iPad rather than using paper and pencil. Things did not get off to a good start. Sitting in the stands in the first inning, the iPad gave me an error that it was too hot and shut down. I moved into the shade, let the iPad cool down and got going again. At the end of the day, I was pretty pleased with the results.

The Outlaws played the Bay Area Showstoppers in the first game. At the plate, Jack was 0 for 1 with 2 walks, a run scored and a strike-out. In his first plate appearance, Jack walked on five pitches. He stole second and then went to third on Jordan's fielder's choice. Jack ended the inning at third. Jack struck out swinging on a 2 and 2 count in his second plate appearance. In his third at-bat, Jack walked on six pitches. He went to second trying to draw a throw from the pitcher and then scored on Jeremy's grounder to the shortstop when the shortstop overthrew first base.

In the field, Jack played five innings at first base. He had five put outs on throws from pitcher, second baseman and third baseman and a nice catch on a pop-up behind first base. Jack's strength as a first baseman has not been digging the ball out, but he had a couple of nice stops on Saturday. In the fifth inning, he got a throw from Jordan that was in the dirt to his right. Somehow Jack managed to block the throw with his chest as he was stretching, get the ball into his glove and tag the base with his foot. Jack also had an error on a throw from Cooper. It looked like he thought that the throw was going to be high and he jumped up, but then had the ball hit him in the chest and bounce off.

The Outlaws gave up four runs in the second inning on a couple of errors and four walks. They came back to score three runs in the bottom of the fourth. The game ended in a 5 to 5 tie.

The Outlaws played the Bulldogs in the second game. There are so many teams with the Bulldogs name that I am not sure if we have played this team before.

At the plate, Jack was 0 for 2 with a walk and a run scored. In his first at-bat, Jack walked on four pitches. He stole second. Jack scored from second on Jeremy's double. Jack grounded a 3 and 2 pitch to the third baseman and was thrown out in his second plate appearance. Jack struck out swinging on a 2 and 2 pitch in his third at-bat. There was a lot of carping about the strike zone in this game; they felt like the strike zone was shifted 6 inches to the right on right handed batters and the umpire was calling strikes on pitches that were way off the plate.

In the field, Jack played five innings at first base. He had four put-outs on throws from the shortstop and second baseman. Jack had a nice dig on a throw from Jeremy at shortstop that was in the dirt.

The Outlaws pitcher hit three batters, walked two and committed a couple of errors in the second inning and the Outlaws gave up six runs. The Outlaws ended up losing the game by a score of 7 to 3.

The Outlaws ended the day with 1 tie and 1 loss. They play Hard 90 Pastime and Clayton Valley Rawhide on Sunday.

Ten Years Ago Today - Building the Elk Grove House Pic #10

In January of 2000, Sharon and I sold the house in Shingle Springs and started the process of building the house in Elk Grove. Over a three plus month period, I took pictures of the house as it was built.

The tenth picture shown below was taken ten years ago today.

The series of pictures that I have posted so far can be found here.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Laguna Youth Baseball 11U All Star Tournament Team

Jack and I went to an organizational meeting for the Laguna Youth Baseball 11U All Star Tournament Team. The team will be playing in the pre-state tournament in the middle of June and the state tournament in early July. If the team won the state tournament, it would advance to the regional tournament in Utah in late July.

Jack was offered a spot on the team in 2008 and then played with the 2009 team. It is interesting to me how much the team has changed over the last three years; this year's team has only five players who played on the team two years ago.

2008 9U Laguna Youth    2009 10U Laguna Youth   2010 11U Laguna Youth
    Tournament Team         Tournament Team         Tournament Team

     Josh Congress           Josh Congress           Josh Congress
       Niko Dugay              Niko Dugay              Niko Dugay
    Cooper Renteria         Cooper Renteria         Cooper Renteria
     Jeremy Wackman                                  Jeremy Wackman
    Trevor Zscheile         Trevor Zscheile         Trevor Zscheile
                             Breyton Borja           Breyton Borja
                             John Heringer           John Heringer 
                             James Kitchell          James Kitchell
                             Jordan Linford          Jordan Linford
                                                      Jacob Lopez
                                                   Greyson Pulsipher
                                                      Mikael Shaw
                                                     Joseph Walker
    Cameron Johnson         Cameron Johnson
    Matthew Logoteta        Matthew Logoteta
     Patrick Stahl           Patrick Stahl
      Jason Jones
      Ian Madison
      Amaury Reed
      DeAndre Wilt
                              Louie Hosmer
                              Wesley Lopez

Thursday, May 27, 2010

iScore for the iPad

{updated 5/31/2010 - I scored four of Jack's tournament games during the Memorial Day weekend and, except for an initial unexpected problem, was very pleased with the results. I will put together a longer review in the next two weeks.}

When Jack started playing tournament baseball almost two years ago, I started keeping my own scorebook so I would have a clear idea of what happened afterwards. I had never scored baseball games before this. About a year ago, I started keeping the book for the Laguna Cal Ripken 10U All Star team. This morphed into keeping the scorebook for the Outlaws tournament team and then Angels rec team. I also started building box scores and summary statistics from the data.

In February, someone came up to me at one of the Outlaws tournaments and asked me if there was an electronic replacement for the pencil and paper scorebook . While I had looked at two different applications on the iPhone, it just seemed too difficult on the small screen. I had a chance to try iScore on the iPad in the last two weeks and it looked like a more workable solution. I did a dry run transcribing Wednesday's Angels and Blue Jays game to get comfortable with the application and was very pleased with the results. I am planning to use it score the Outlaws tournament games this weekend.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

2010 LYB Major Angels Game #16

The Angels played their sixteenth and last game of the 2010 Laguna Youth Baseball Major regular season. They played the Blue Jays. The Angels beat the Blue Jays by the score of 9 to 2 about three weeks ago. There are lots of connections between these two teams; each team has four players that have played together on the Gunners and Outlaws tournament teams over the last two years.

At the plate, Jack was 1 for 3 with a walk, a run scored and 2 RBIs. In his first at-bat against Josh, he hit a 1 and 2 pitch back to Josh and was thrown out at first. With Zach at third and Greysen at second and one out, Jack hit the first pitch back up the middle in his second plate appearance. The ball caromed off of Josh's leg into left field. Two runners scored. In his third plate appearance, Jack hit a 2 and 2 pitch off Jeremy deep into right center for an out. Batting against Cooper in his fourth at-bat, Jack fell behind 0 and 2. He fouled off the third pitch and then took four straight balls to draw the walk. Jack scored from first on Dominic's single.

In the field, Jack played four innings at third base and two innings at first base. This is probably the most uneven game that I have seen Jack play in the field during the rec season. In the first inning, Cobie made a great throw to Jack at third that would have gotten Jeremy trying to steal, but Jack could not hold on to the ball as he tried to make the tag. Fortunately, it did not cost them a run. On the next pitch, Jack made a nice play ranging to his left to field a grounder and make the throw to first for the third out of the inning. In the sixth inning, Jack handled a throw from the pitcher for a routine out at first. The bottom fell out in the seventh innning. On a dropped third strike, Dominic made a throw to first that Jack probably should have been able to handle, but did not; the runner was safe. Two batters later, Jack did not handle a throw from third and the runner was safe at first. These two errors allowed two unearned runs that ended up being the difference in the game.

Not to make excuses, but Jack was sick and missed the Outlaws Clinic on Sunday and school on Monday. He is still not 100%.

It was a tight exciting game. With the score tied 5 to 5 at the end of sixth innings, the teams played a seventh inning. The Blue Jays scored 4 runs in the top of the seventh to go ahead 9 to 5. The Angels came back in the bottom of the seventh. With two outs, Niko singled. Niko scored on an infield error by Jordan that allowed Greysen to be safe at first. Jack walked and Dominic singled to score Greysen and Jack. Ben hit a grounder to short and was safe on an error by Jeremy. With the Angels trailing 9 to 8 and with runners at first and third, Breyton hit a grounder to Jeremy at short and was thrown out by a step or two to end the game.

With the Angels making 6 errors (the most of the season), they lost to the Blue Jays by the score of 9 to 8 in seven innings. The box score is here and the game log is here. The Angels ended the regular season with 13 wins and 3 losses.

The tournament of champions starts on Tuesday, June 1. The tournament is double elimination. Due to my experience with the PAL JV basketball play-offs this year and the Angels draw in the tournament, I am not particularly optimistic.

2010 LYB Major Angels versus Blue Jay Box Score

May 26, 2010 - Blue Jays versus Angels
Game Log


.                       1    2    3    4    5    6    7    R     H    E
     Blue Jays          0    1    3    0    1    0    4    9     9    2
     Angels             0    2    2    0    0    1    3    8    11    6

  #  Hitter            POS    AB    R    H   RBI  BB   SO   SAC   HBP  #P
  4  Niko              6/2     3    2    1    0    1    1    0     0   17
  2  Greysen          4/6/8    4    1    1    0    0    2    0     0   20
 22  Jack              5/3     3    1    1    2    1    0    0     0   17
 28  Dominic           8/2     4    1    2    2    0    1    0     0   12
 26  Ben              1/3/5    3    1    1    0    1    0    0     0   14
  8  Breyton        3/7/8/5/1  3    1    1    1    1    0    0     0   13
 16  Anthony          9/4/1    3    0    2    2    0    1    0     0   13
 10  Cobie            2/1/4    1    0    1    1    1    0    1     0    8
 30  Austin           7/3/9    3    0    0    0    0    3    0     0   14
 24  Braden            4/7     2    0    0    0    0    2    0     1   14
 14  Zach             5/7/9    3    1    1    0    0    1    0     0    7

                              32    8   11    8    5   11    1     1  149

2B: Anthony

Greysen reached base on an error by the third baseman, while Ben reached
on an error by the shortstop.

     Pitcher         IP     H    R   ER   BB   SO   HBP   ST   PC
 26  Ben              2     2    1    1    1    2    1    22   38
 10  Cobie            2     2    3    1    3    5    0    27   51
  8  Breyton          1     1    1    0    0    0    0    11   18
 16  Anthony          2     4    4    2    2    2    0    36   55

                      7     9    9    4    6    9    1    96  162

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Pony Express Carson City

Pony Express
Carson City

See this location on Yahoo Maps in Flickr
See this location on Google Maps

This marker is located Located at 228 South Carson Street, Carson City, Nevada. The GPS coordinates for this location are N 39° 09.760 W 119° 46.030.

A list of Pony Express Waymarks that I have visited can be found here. You can log your visit to this landmark at waymark.com.

Pony Express Carson City
Pony Express Carson City


Located just 73 feet north was the office of the Pony Express for its entire 19 month history. The stables were located just west on the NE corner of Curry (Ormsby) and Third Streets.

The original telegraph was in Fleishhacker's store at the NW corner of Carson and Musser. It was moved to this corner in August of 1861 in Treadwell's store and next to the Pony Express office.

The first eastbound trip of the Pony Express left from San Francisco, California at 3:45 p.m. on April 3, 1860. It arrived here on the evening of April 4 at 8:30 p.m.

The first westbound trip left St. Joseph, Missouri on April 3, 1860 at 7:15 p.m. It arrived here on April 12 at 3:30 p.m. Carson City was now only 9 days from receiving eastern correspondence.


Pony Express Carson City

Starbucks iTunes Pick of the Week - Band of Horses - On My Way Back Home

The complete list of Starbucks iTunes picks of the week is here!
Starbucks iTunes Pick of the Week - Band of Horses - On My Way Back Home #fb

Code Expiration: August 20, 2010

Monday, May 24, 2010

ESPN 30 for 30 - Straight Outta L.A.

I watched Straight Outta L.A. This is the fourteenth installment of ESPN's 30 for 30 film series.

The film looks at the intersection of three events: the NFL Raiders years in Los Angeles; the rise of Gangster Rap and hip-hop in South Central L.A., particularly the group N.W.A.; and how the Raiders Silver and Black gear came to be associated with the Gangster Rap movement. The Raiders played in L.A. from 1982 to 1994—just 13 seasons—but during that time, the team’s colors, aura and superstar players became a phenomenon.

Straight Outta L.A. was produced by Ice Cube. The film is very much his personal story. Ice Cube is a die hard Raiders fan and a founding member of the N.W.A. Ice Cube states that he had a lot to do with making the Raiders the cultural phenomenon that they became.

The film includes a recent interview with Al Davis. In high definition, Al Davis is scary looking; he looks like something out of a zombie horror movie.

Straight Outta L.A. replaces Run Rickey Run as my least favorite film in the series so far. Although the storyline about the Raiders was interesting, I was not that interested in the Gangster Rap segments.

The film is available on Amazon.

I am looking forward to the next 30 for 30 titled June 17, 1994. On this date, Arnold Palmer played his last round at a U.S. Open, in Oakmont, Pa., the FIFA World Cup kicked off in Chicago, the Rangers celebrated on Broadway, Patrick Ewing desperately pursued a long evasive championship in the Garden and Donald Fehr stared down the baseball owners. All of this was a prelude to O.J. Simpson leading America on a slow speed chase in a white Ford Bronco around Los Angeles. This film premieres Wednesday, June 16.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

2010 Petersen Shootout Day 3

Larkin and I were up and moving fairly early on Sunday morning. After breakfast in the hotel, I made a couple more quick stops at local waymarks before heading home. I was surprised to find more than a little snow on Pioneer Trail in South Lake Tahoe. Going down the grade into Horsetail Falls and Strawberry, I came upon a large group of touring bikes. This section of the road also had quite of bit of snow and ice. The touring bikes were moving along at about 15 miles an hour with their flashers on trying to not lose control; this did not look like a fun time. Leaving Carson City about 8:00 a.m., I was home by about 10:40 a.m.

I spent part of the weekend scratching my head about the economics of the golfing package. It seemed like a deal that was too good to be true. For $285, we got two rounds of golf, two nights of lodging double occupancy, a prime rib dinner with drinks and wine, two breakfasts at the hotel, drink tickets, a shrimp cocktail and a player's card for the hotel casino worth $!0. Combined with the fact that I held my own gambling on Friday night, I feel like I came home with found money.

Although I think that the group has been bigger in the past, it included about 20 guys with various ties to Rod and his brother, Scott. Larkin and I both enjoyed the weekend and it is definitely an event that we would try to attend again next year if we are invited back. When I went to the Outlaws baseball clinic Sunday afternoon to drop off some food, I harangued several of the others Dads about missing a great weekend.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

2010 Petersen Shootout Day 2

Larkin and I had breakfast at the hotel. Afterwards I wandered down the street and walked around the state Capitol building to find a couple of waymarks. Rod left a portfolio at the golf course the previous day and asked us to run out there and pick it up for him. We were surprised to find a dusting of snow on the course. There was enough snow that the course was closed and they were hoping to open for play by noon.

From there, we headed to the Silver Oak Golf Course. It was cold and windy, but at least there was no snow on the ground. It seemed colder than the previous day. I started the day with more layers of clothing than the previous day. Going to the driving range, I literally felt like I could not swing the club or hit the golf ball.

Larkin and I played in a foursome with Rich and Rob. In one of those small world stories, Jack actually played a year of soccer with Rich's son (RJ) in 2006. I started out horribly. After about the second hole, I took off one layer of clothing and then started to hit the ball pretty well. I had a stretch of 6 holes on the front nine where I was very pleased with how well I played. It was an interesting front nine. The holes were very spread out across the hillside. Eventually, the cold and the wind got to me. By about the fifteen hole, I was ready to be done. I started putting layers of clothes back on... Playing a shamble format (playing the best tee shot), I ended up with a 47 on the front nine and a 54 on the back tee for a total of 101.

There was a group dinner scheduled for Saturday night at Red's Old 395 Grill right across the street from the hotel. Two guys rolled in late and ended up sitting by themselves at a table near the group; they instantly became the butt of a running joke the rest of evening. Walking back to the hotel after dinner, it was snowing pretty hard.

After dinner, the group adjourned to Rod's hotel room. They had each of the people who were making the trip for the first time introduce themselves and tell a joke. I improvised one of Tomasin's little johnny stories that I could remember the punch line for. One guy then played guitar with two guys singing along and another guy playing the air trombone for probably about an hour. They were making up songs for the group's antics and doing impressions, including a Barry Gibb song straight out of a SNL skit and Sean Connery singing Jim Croce songs. I have honestly not laughed so hard in a long time.

When this was over, most of the people down to the casino and bar in the hotel. We had gotten a player's card with a $10 credit in our package when we checked into the hotel. I sat and played video poker for about half an hour in the bar, I ended up being able to cash out and walk away with about $4 of the $10 credit. Larkin, Rich and I had a long discussion trying to come up with the right adjectives to describe the crowd in the bar (it was lady's night), but ultimately failed. Larkin and I wandered back to the room and crashed relatively early.

Golfing at Silver Oak

Friday, May 21, 2010

2010 Petersen Shootout Day 1

One of the dad's (Rod) from Jack's tournament baseball team puts together a golf weekend in Nevada every year. When Rod started talking about the trip in November last year, I put down a deposit and talked Larkin into being my wingman.

I took off early Friday morning to meet up with the group at the Genoa Lakes Golf Club Resort Course in Nevada. After hitting on the driving range, we teed off a little after noon. Larkin and I played with Alex and Simon. It was very cold and very windy. With the wind gusting at 20 to 30 miles an hour, the windchill was below 32 degrees. I spent most of the afternoon trying to keep warm and loose without much success. Both Larkin and I were playing in shorts! Alex and Simon decided to quit after 9 holes and Larkin and I created a fivesome with Rod, Rob and Rich.

It actually started to snow when we were on the seventeenth tee. I was having trouble seeing with the snow blowing in my eyes.

I ended being pretty happy with my play. I shot a very liberal winter rules 54 on the front nine and 53 on the back nine for a 107 total.

We headed to the Best Western Carson Station Hotel and Casino after we finished up the golfing. After getting settled in the room, I took a hot shower to get warmed up. Larkin and I then headed down to the casino and grabbed a burger and a complimentary shrimp cocktail for dinner; Rod had been raving about the cheeseburgers.

From there, a big group jumped into a van and went to the Casino Fandango to gamble. At some point, most of the group, including Larkin, headed back to the hotel. I stayed with three other guys and played blackjack for almost 2 1/2 hours. After all of that time, I ended up down about $7; I consider that a moral victory. Eventually, the remaining group caught a van back to the hotel. I crashed in the room a little after midnight.

Golfing at Genoa Lakes Resort


Golfing at Genoa Lakes Resort, originally uploaded by heringermr.

2010 LYB Major Angels Game #15

The Angels played their fifteenth game of the 2010 Laguna Youth Baseball Major season. They played against the A's. The Angels lost to A's less than a week ago. The Angels will play the A's again in the first game of the TOC.

I was in Nevada playing golf and missed this game. I hate it when I don't get to see Jack play. It is usually difficult to figure out when happened by talking to Jack and Sharon. This time I have the box score so I have a better overview of the game.

At the plate, Jack was 0 for 1 with 3 walks and one run scored. In his first at-bat, Jack walked on 6 pitches. He advanced to second and third on passed balls. Jack was thrown out at home on Dominic's grounder to the pitcher. Jack walked on five pitches in his second plate appearance and ended the inning at third base. In his third at-bat, Jack walked on five pitches again. He scored from first on Dominic's double. Jack flied out to right field on a 0 and 1 pitch in his fourth plate appearance.

In the field, Jack played four innings at third base. He had one grounder hit to him and he threw the runner out at third. The scorekeeper also gave Jack an error in the fourth inning, but he does not remember handling the ball.

With the A's walking 16 batters, the Angels won by the score of 17 to 3 in five innings. The box score is here and the game log is here. The Angels now have 13 wins and 2 losses for the season.

2010 LYB Major Angels versus A's Box Score

May 21, 2010 - A's versus Angels
Game Log


.                       1    2    3    4    5    6    R    H    E
     A's                0    2    1    0    0    X    3    5    4
     Angels             4    4    7    2    X    X   17    8    1

  #  Hitter            POS    AB    R    H   RBI  BB   SO   SAC   HBP  #P
  4  Niko              6/1     3    3    2    2    1    0    0     0   17
  2  Greysen           4/6     3    2    1    1    1    1    0     0   14
 22  Jack               5      1    1    0    2    3    0    0     0   18
 28  Dominic           8/2     3    1    2    5    0    0    0     0    6
  8  Breyton           1/8     2    1    0    0    1    0    0     0   11
 16  Anthony          9/5/4    0    1    0    0    3    0    0     0   15
 26  Ben                3      2    0    0    0    1    0    0     0   10
 10  Cobie             4/2     3    0    1    2    0    0    0     0   12
 30  Austin          7/3/8/9   3    2    1    0    0    0    0     0    9
 24  Braden           2/4/9    0    3    0    0    3    0    0     0   15
 12  Richie             7      2    1    0    0    1    0    0     0   11
 14  Zach               8      1    2    1    1    2    0    0     0   15

                              23   17    8   13   16    1    0     0  153

2B: Dominic

Niko and Austin reached base on errors by the shortstop, while Greysen
and Richie reached base on errors by the pitcher.

     Pitcher         IP        H    R   ER   BB   SO   HBP   ST   PC
  8  Breyton          2        1    2    0    1    1    0    20   32
  4  Niko             2        4    1    1    2    3    0    26   47
 16  Anthony          1        0    0    0    0    1    0     7    8

                      5        5    3    1    3    5    0    53   87

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Ten Years Ago Today - Building the Elk Grove House Pic #9

In January of 2000, Sharon and I sold the house in Shingle Springs and started the process of building the house in Elk Grove. Over a three plus month period, I took pictures of the house as it was built.

The ninth picture shown below was taken ten years ago today.

The series of pictures that I have posted so far can be found here.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

2010 LYB Major Angels Game #14

The Angels played their fourteenth game of the 2010 Laguna Youth Baseball Major season. They played the Marlins. The Marlins are coached by the coach (Greg) of the Gunners tournament team that Jack played on from July 2008 to July 2009. The Marlins have two players that played with Jack on the Gunners and the Outlaws (Matthew and Patrick), plus a player from the 2009 10U All-Star team (Wesley). Coming into this game, the Angels had 11 wins and 2 losses, while the Blue Jays had 9 wins and 3 losses.

At the plate, Jack was 2 for 3 with 2 RBIs. In his first at-bat against Patrick, he hit a 2 and 1 pitch back through the pitcher's mound and up the middle for a single. Jack went to third on Dominic's single, but ended the inning there. He popped a 1 and 0 pitch up to the first baseman in his second plate appearance against Patrick.

The Marlins have the hardest throwing pitcher in the league, Erek Bolton. They use him as a closer and have him pitch the last two innings of their games. I have got to invest in a radar gun. With the Angels holding on to a 3 to 1 lead, Bolton started the fifth inning. He struck out the Angels first batter, but then hit the second batter in the shoulder. It was a scary moment; I initially thought that the batter had been hit in the face. While he throws hard, Bolton is a little wild. With one out, the lead-off batter struck out looking. Greysen then drew a walk on six pitches. Jack came to the plate with two outs. The runners advanced to second and third on a wild pitch. Protecting the plate on a 3 and 2 count, Jack pushed a soft line drive down the first base line. Slicing away from the right fielder, it would have been a fairly spectacular catch. Two runs scored and Jack motored into second.

In the field, Jack played five innings at third base. For the third straight game, he did not have anything hit to him in the field.

For the third time this season, the Angels' pitchers threw a combined no-hitter. Ben, Cobie and Niko struck out 11, walked three and hit two batters.

Giving up one unearned run in the bottom of the first on a hit batter, a walk and a throwing error, the Angels scored three runs in the third and two runs in the fifth to win game by a score of 5 to 1. The box score is here and the game log is here. The Angels now have 12 wins and 2 losses for the season.

2010 LYB Major Angels versus Marlins Box Score

May 19, 2010 - Angels versus Marlins
Game Log


.                       1     2    3    4    5    6    R    H     E
     Angels             0     0    3    0    2    0    5   10     1
     Marlins            1     0    0    0    0    0    1    0     1

  #  Hitter            POS    AB    R    H   RBI  BB   SO   SAC   HBP  #P
  4  Niko              6/1     3    1    1    0    0    1    0     0   13
  2  Greysen           6/8     2    2    1    1    1    0    0     0   14
 22  Jack               5      3    0    2    2    0    0    0     0   12
 28  Dominic           8/2     3    0    2    2    0    0    0     0    6
  8  Breyton          9/7/3    2    0    0    0    1    2    0     0   17
 16  Anthony         5/9/8/4   3    0    1    0    0    1    0     0   12
 26  Ben              1/6/3    3    0    1    0    0    1    0     0   10
 10  Cobie              2      2    0    0    0    1    0    0     0   11
 30  Austin            3/9     2    0    1    0    0    1    0     0    9
 24  Braden            4/9     2    0    0    0    0    1    0     0    5
 12  Richie             7      2    1    1    0    0    1    0     0    6
 14  Zach              7/9     1    1    0    0    0    0    0     1    5

                              28    5   10    5    3    8    0     1  120

2B: Jack

Ben reached base on an error by the third baseman.

     Pitcher         IP    H    R   ER   BB   SO   HBP   ST   PC
 26  Ben              2    0    1    0    1    4    1    27   39
 10  Cobie            2    0    0    0    1    3    0    17   26
  4  Niko             2    0    0    0    1    4    1    22   33

                      6    0    1    0    3   11    2    66   98

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

ESPN 30 for 30 - The 16th Man

Sharon, Jack and I watched The 16th Man. This is the thirteenth installment of ESPN's 30 for 30 film series.

The film examines the events in South Africa leading up to and culminating in the 1995 Rugby World Cup. It touches on Nelson Mandela's release of prison, the end of Apartheid and the first democratic elections, while focusing on how Nelson Mandela used the Springbok Rugby team to bring the country closer together.

Morgan Freeman's voice over is superb. The footage from World Cup games is captivating.

This is the best of the 30 for 30 films that have aired so far. I strongly recommend it.

The film is available on Amazon.

The 16th Man is also available on iTunes.

Tomasin and I toured Ireland, Wales and England during the 1991 Rugby World Cup. As well as playing some rugby matches against local teams, we attended the semi-final game between Australia and New Zealand in Dublin, the consolation game between New Zealand and Scotland in Cardiff and the championship game between Australia and England in London.

Starbucks iTunes Pick of the Week - Josh Ritter - Southern Pacifica

The complete list of Starbucks iTunes picks of the week is here!
Starbucks iTunes Pick of the Week - Josh Ritter - Southern Pacifica #fb

Code Expiration: August 13, 2010

Monday, May 17, 2010

American Cancer Society Golf Tournament

I played golf in the American Cancer Society Golf Tournament at the Serrano Country Club. The foursome included the CEO and COO of Sutter Physician Services and a doctor. It was not a very good day for golf. It sprinkled off and on over the first nine holes and then rained hard for two holes before letting up.

I have not picked up a club since last August. As you would expect, I was wildly inconsistent; I had a few very nice shots and a number of really horrible shots.

This will serve as a nice warm-up for the weekend. I am playing golf for two days with a group of about 20 people. The outing is organized by one of the coaches of the Outlaws, Jack's tournament baseball team.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

autumn songs



Morgan's new album, autumn songs, is available at:

http://morganheringermusic.bigcartel.com/product/autumn-songs

This second season-themed album charts the autumn of 2009 spent getting to know New York City.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

2010 LYB Major Angels Game #13

The Angels played their thirteenth game of the 2010 Laguna Youth Baseball Major season. They played against the A's. The Angels will play the A's again Friday and will face them in the first game of the TOC. There are two players on the A's who Jack has played with on the Outlaws: Trevor and James. Additionally, there is one player on the A's who will be on the 11U All Star team: Mak.

At the plate, Jack was 0 for 1 with a walk, a hit by pitch and a strike out looking. In his first at-bat, Jack was hit square on the hip by a 1 and 2 pitch. With Jack on first and Greysen on second, Dominic hit a slower roller to James at second base. Jack stopped and made James chase him back to first to get him out. If he hadn't, James would have doubled Dominic off first.

With the count full, Jack struck out looking in his second plate appearance on a pitch that was way off the plate outside. After the game, Jack walked up to me and the first thing he said was "in the words of Big Papi, if I was a left hander, that pitch would have hit me in the ribs." Yes, Jack watches too much SportsCenter. Whenever I see a young umpire behind the plate, I know that the strike zone and the game is going to be an adventure. All of this became significant at the end of the game...

Jack walked on four pitches in his third at bat in the bottom of the sixth. In spite of a sore hip, he stole second and then went to third on Dominic's infield out. Breyton walked and stole second. With the Angels trailing by the score of 4 to 2, Anthony came to the plate with two outs. Anthony has the second best batting average on the team and the best slugging percentage. Running the count full and then fouling off a pitch, Anthony struck out looking on a pitch that was way off the plate to end the game...

In the field, Jack played four innings at third base. The coaches sat him an extra inning while he was icing his hip after he got hit by the pitch. For the second straight game, Jack never handled the ball; very odd.

The Angels lost the game by the score of 4 to 2. The box score is here and the game log is here. The Angels now have 11 wins and 2 loss for the season.

This is probably the most interesting box score of the season.

2010 LYB Major Angels versus A's Box Score

May 15, 2010 - A's versus Angels
Game Log


.                       1    2    3    4    5    6    R    H     E
     A's                0    1    0    2    1    0    4    2     4
     Angels             0    0    0    1    0    1    2    2     2

  #  Hitter            POS    AB    R    H   RBI  BB   SO   SAC   HBP  #P
  4  Niko             1/6/2    2    1    0    0    1    0    0     0    7
  2  Greysen          6/5/8    2    0    0    0    1    1    0     0   15
 22  Jack               5      1    0    0    0    1    1    0     1   14
 28  Dominic           8/2     3    0    0    0    0    0    0     0   10
  8  Breyton         9/7/3/1   1    1    0    0    2    0    0     0   11
 16  Anthony         5/9/8/4   3    0    0    0    0    1    0     0   18
 26  Ben              6/1/3    1    0    0    0    1    0    0     0    7
 10  Cobie             4/1     2    0    1    0    0    0    0     0    8
 30  Austin            3/9     2    0    0    0    0    1    0     0    8
 24  Braden           2/4/9    2    0    0    0    0    0    0     0    3
 12  Richie             7      2    0    1    0    0    0    0     0    5
 14  Zach              7/9     2    0    0    0    0    1    0     0    7

                              23    2    2    0    6    5    0     1  113

Anthony reached base on an error by the pitcher.  Braden reached base 
on an error by the second baseman.  Niko reached base on an error by the
shortstop.  Austin reached base on an error by the right fielder.

     Pitcher         IP     H    R   ER   BB   SO   HBP   ST   PC
  4  Niko             2     1    1    1    4    4    0    23   44
 26  Ben              2     1    2    0    0    5    0    29   43
  8  Breyton          1     0    1    1    4    1    0    10   28
 10  Cobie            1     0    0    0    1    1    0     6   14

                      6     2    4    2    9   11    0    68  129

Working with Coach Boyle at the Bat Cave

Thursday, May 13, 2010

2010 LYB Major Angels Game #12

The Angels played their twelfth game of the 2010 Laguna Youth Baseball Major season. They played the White Sox. The Angels beat the White Sox by a score of 4 to 3 in early April.

At the plate, Jack was 2 for 3 with a walk, two RBIs and two runs scored. In his first at-bat, he drove the first pitch into right field for a single. Jack scored from first on Dominic's single to left center.

Jack walked on four pitches in his second plate appearance to bring in a run. Dominic doubled to put him at third. Breyton was hit by a pitch to load the bases.  While Anthony was batting, I watched Jack walk back and forth on the third base line measuring the pitcher and the catcher. Jack made a decision on his own to steal home. When the ball was thrown back to the pitcher after the third pitch, Jack broke for home and was safe at the plate.

Jack came to bat for the second time in the third inning for his third plate appearance. With the bases loaded, he drove to a 3 and 1 pitch deep into the hole on the left side, Zach scored and Jack was safe at first. Jack ended the inning at first base. With the game out of hand and the coaches encouraging the Angels batters to swing at anything close, Jack popped up a high pitch to the first baseman in his fourth at-bat.

In the field, Jack played three innings at third base and one inning in left field. In a somewhat bizarre game, he never touched the ball.

Leading 2 to 0 after two innings, the Angels sent 19 batters to the plate in the top of the third and scored 14 runs. All twelve of the Angels players scored at least once in the inning.  As a side note, with Austin pitching an inning of this game, ten of the twelve players on the Angels have now pitched at least one inning.

The Angels won the game by the score of 17 to 1. The box score is here and the game log is here. The Angels now have 11 wins and 1 loss for the season.

2010 LYB Major Angels versus White Sox Box Score

May 13, 2010 - Angels versus White Sox
Game Log


.                       1    2    3    4    5    6    R    H   E
     Angels             1    1   14    0    1    X   17   13   3
     White Sox          0    0    1    0    0    X    1    6   0

  #  Hitter            POS    AB    R    H   RBI  BB   SO   SAC   HBP  #P
  4  Niko              2/6     3    1    2    3    1    0    0     0   14
  2  Greysen          6/4/9    2    1    1    2    2    0    0     0   13
 22  Jack              5/7     3    2    2    2    1    0    0     0   12
 28  Dominic           8/2`    3    1    2    2    0    0    0     0    6
  8  Breyton           3/8     2    1    0    0    0    1    0     1   14
 16  Anthony          4/8/1    2    2    1    0    1    0    0     0   12
 26  Ben              1/5/6    3    1    2    2    0    0    0     0    9
 10  Cobie             4/1     3    1    1    1    0    0    0     0   10
 30  Austin           3/7/1    2    2    1    0    0    0    0     1    9
 24  Braden          8/7/9/2   1    1    0    0    2    0    0     0   16
 12  Richie             7      2    2    1    1    1    1    0     0   13
 14  Zach              9/1     1    2    0    1    1    1    0     1   12

                              27   17   13   14    9    3    0     3  140

2B: Niko, Dominic, Anthony


     Pitcher         IP     H    R   ER   BB   SO   HBP   ST   PC
 26  Ben              2     2    0    0    0    3    0    22   30
 10  Cobie            1     1    1    0    3    1    0    10   27
 30  Austin           1     1    0    0    2    0    0     7   13
 14  Zach             1     2    0    0    0    1    0    10   18

                      5     6    1    0    5    5    0    49   88

Ten Years Ago Today - Building the Elk Grove House Pic #8

In January of 2000, Sharon and I sold the house in Shingle Springs and started the process of building the house in Elk Grove. Over a three plus month period, I took pictures of the house as it was built.

The eighth picture shown below was taken ten years ago today.

The series of pictures that I have posted so far can be found here.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

California Historical Landmark #403

Jack and I stopped at this waymark on the way back from skiing at Sugar Bowl.

Emigrant Gap
California State Historical Landmark #403

See this location on Yahoo Maps in Flickr
See this location on Google Maps

This landmark is located at the Emigrant Gap Vista Point on Interstate 80 in Placer County, California. There are 20 other California State Historical Landmarks in Placer County. The GPS coordinates for this location are N 39° 17.957 W 120° 40.370.

You can log your visit to this landmark at waymark.com.

California Historical Landmark #403

The spring of 1845 saw the first covered wagons surmount the Sierra Nevada. They left the valley, ascended to the ridge, and turned westward to old Emigrant Gap, where they were lowered by ropes to the floor of Bear Valley. Hundreds followed before, during, and after the gold rush. This was a hazardous portion of the overland emigrant trail.

California Historical Landmark #403

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

The City & The City

In April, I finished reading The City & The City. Perusing the list of Hugo and Nebula awards winners, I saw that this book was nominated for 2009 Nebula Award for Best Novel. I was familar with the author China MiƩville, but had never read any of his books. On a whim, I ordered the book from Amazon. In April 2010, the novel was named a 2010 Hugo Award nominee in the Best Novel category.

When I ordered the book, I did not realize it is essentially a detective story, but with an unusual twist. The murder is set in the fictional twin southern European cities of Beszel and Ul Qoma. The two cities coexist in the same physical location, separated by their citizens' determination to see only one city at a time. Citizens in each city are raised from birth to "unsee" the other city. Ignoring the separation between the two cities, even by accident, is viewed as a crime.

The author does a nice job of executing a very original idea. Although not the more traditional science fiction novel I was expecting, I enjoyed the book and would recommend it.

Starbucks iTunes Pick of the Week - Court Yard Hounds - Skyline

The complete list of Starbucks iTunes picks of the week is here!
Starbucks iTunes Pick of the Week - Court Yard Hounds - Skyline #fb

Code Expiration: August 6, 2010

Monday, May 10, 2010

ESPN 30 for 30 - Run Ricky Run

I watched Run Ricky Run. This is the twelfth installment of ESPN's 30 for 30 film series.

In 1998, Ricky Williams won the 1998 Heisman Trophy as the most outstanding player in college football while playing for the University of Texas. As coach of the Saints, Mike Ditka traded all of his draft picks so that the New Orleans Saints could draft Williams in the 1st round (5th overall) of the 1999 NFL Draft. Williams played three years in New Orleans before being traded to Miami. After two productive years in Miami, Williams tested positive for marijuana in May 2004 and faced a four game suspension. Instead of serving the suspension, Williams announced that he was retiring from football.

At this point, Williams invited a journalist to tell his life story. The journalist spent the next five years following Williams and chronicling his odyssey. The film is the result of this effort.

Williams returned in 2005 to play with the Dolphins. In April of 2006, Williams was suspended for the entire 2006 season for testing positive for a drug other than marijuana. He played the 2006 season with the Toronto Argonauts of the Canadian Football League.

Following another failed drug test in early 2007, he returned to play one game with the Dolphins in November and was hurt in a Monday Night Football game. Williams had productive seasons with the Dolphins in 2008 and 2009. In 2009, Williams reached 1,000 yards rushing in Week 15 and set an NFL record for longest span between 1,000-yard seasons at 6 years.

More than half of the film explores Ricky Williams' life off the football field. It includes interviews with both of his parents and look at his childhood. The film examines his interests in holistic medicine and yoga. Williams studied Ayurveda, the ancient Indian system of holistic medicine, at the California College of Ayurveda during the fall of 2004 in Grass Valley, California.

This is my least favorite of the 30 for 30 films to date. Williams is so shy and soft spoken that it was hard to get him to tell his own story. While it provides a glimpse into his life, I did not feel like I had a better understanding of Ricky Williams at the end of the film; I did not feel any connection to him or vested interest in him.

The film is available on Amazon.

Run Ricky Run is also available on iTunes.

Sunday, May 09, 2010

Iron Man 2

With Sharon in Spokane for Kevin's graduation from Gonzaga on Mother's Day, Jack and I went to see an early show of Iron Man 2 at the IMAX.

It is not as good as the original. Part of the problem lies in the fact that the visuals are not as original the second time around. Nevertheless, I enjoyed the movie. I almost always get a kick out of watching Robert Downey Jr. Mickey Rourke is also interesting as the villian. It is hard for me to connect Rourke with the actor that he was 15 to 20 years ago. Seeing Rourke in this film reminded me that I need to go back and see him in The Wrestler.

Saturday, May 08, 2010

2010 LYB Major Angels Game #11

I had this date circled on the calendar for the last six weeks. The Angels played their eleventh game of the 2010 Laguna Youth Baseball Major season. They played the Blue Jays. The Blue Jays are coached by the three coaches (Scott, Rod and Alan) from the Outlaws tournament baseball team that Jack plays on. The Jays have four players from the Outlaws: Josh, Cooper, Jeremy and Jordan. The Angels also have four players that have played with the Outlaws: Jack, Niko, Breyton and Greysen. Tim Sanborn plays on the Blue Jays. Coming into this game, the Angels had 9 wins and 1 loss, while the Blue Jays had 6 wins and 2 losses.

At the plate, Jack was 2 for 2 with one walk and three runs scored. In his first at-bat against Cooper, with Greysen breaking for second, Jack drove the first pitch through the left side for a single. He eventually came around to score on Dominic's double. Against Jeremy, Jack walked on seven pitches in his second plate appearance. He scored on Ben's single. In his third at-bat with Jordan pitching, Jack drove a 1 and 0 pitch into right center for a single. He scored on Dominic's single.

In the field, Jack played sixth innings at third base. In the second inning, Jack handled a routine grounder and made the throw to Breyton at first for the out. In the fifth inning, Josh walked and stole second. The throw from the catcher trying to throw Josh out went into centerfield. Breyton was backing up the play in the centerfield. With Josh trying to advance to third, Breyton threw a strike to Jack at third base and Josh was out by at least ten feet. In the sixth inning, a ball was thrown back into the infield after a single. The ball sailed over the pitcher. The runner at second broke for third on the overthrow. Niko tracked the ball down and threw it to Jack at third to get the runner.

The Angels scored 3 runs in the top of the first and never looked back. They won by the score of 9 to 2. The box score is here and the game log is here. The Angels now have 10 wins and 1 loss for the season.

2010 LYB Major Angels versus Blue Jay Box Score

May 8, 2010 - Angels versus Blue Jays
Game Log


.                       1    2    3    4    5    6    R    H    E
     Angels             3    0    4    0    2    0    9   11    1
     Blue Jays          0    0    0    0    2    0    2    4    2

  #  Hitter            POS    AB    R    H   RBI  BB   SO   SAC   HBP  #P
  4  Niko             1/6/2    3    1    1    0    1    0    0     0   11
  2  Greysen           4/6     4    1    1    1    0    0    0     0   18
 22  Jack               5      2    3    2    0    1    0    0     0   10
 28  Dominic            8      2    2    2    2    1    0    0     0   19
  8  Breyton          3/8/1    1    2    0    1    2    1    0     0   14
 26  Ben               6/1     3    0    2    2    0    0    0     0    8
 30  Cobie             2/4     3    0    1    2    0    0    0     0   10
 30  Austin            7/3     1    0    0    0    2    1    0     0   15
 24  Braden            9/4     3    0    0    0    0    1    0     0    8
 12  Richie             7      3    0    0    0    0    2    0     0   14
 14  Zach               9      3    0    2    0    0    0    0     0    9

                              28    9   11    8    7    5    0     0  136

2B: Dominic, Zach

Greysen reached base on an error by the third baseman.  Breyton reached
base on a dropped third stike.


     Pitcher         IP     H    R   ER   BB   SO   HBP   ST   PC
  4  Niko             3     0    0    0    2    3    0    28   41
 26  Ben              2     2    2    0    2    5    0    25   40
  8  Breyton          1     2    0    0    0    2    0    12   13

                      6     4    2    0    4   10    0    65   94

Friday, May 07, 2010

Ten Years Ago Today - Building the Elk Grove House Pic #7

In January of 2000, Sharon and I sold the house in Shingle Springs and started the process of building the house in Elk Grove. Over a three plus month period, I took pictures of the house as it was built.

The seventh picture shown below was taken ten years ago today.

The series of pictures that I have posted so far can be found here.

For the first time in seven weeks, the outside view of the house has not changed much.
Nevertheless, the inside has changed a lot. The electrical and plumbing were finished and
the house was sheet rocked. You can see the sheet rock in the garage…



A view from the loft down into the bonus room
over the garage (Sharon's head in the lower right corner)

Kite Surfing in Asia

On the way to school yesterday, Jack and I listened to a PRI's The World Geo Quiz podcast titled Kite Surfing in Asia. It made me smile thinking about the afternoon that Pat Funk, Sharon and I spent on that beach in Boracay watching the kite surfers.

My pictures and journal from that day can be found here.




View Larger Map

Thursday, May 06, 2010

Pony Express Five Mile House

Dedicated in the last month, this is an interesting marker. There is a California Historical Marker less than a mile to the northwest that also marks the Pony Express Five Mile House. Based on the description on this marker, the California Historical Marker is in the wrong place!

Pony Express
Five Mile House

See this location on Yahoo Maps in Flickr
See this location on Google Maps

This marker is located Located at 7716 Folsom Boulevard, Sacramento, California. The GPS coordinates for this location are N 38° 33.020 W 121° 24.810.

A list of Pony Express Waymarks that I have visited can be found here. You can log your visit to this landmark at waymark.com.

Pony Express Five Mile House


Sam Hamilton carried the first eastern Pony Express mail into Sacramento at 5:30 P.M. on April 13, 1860. The following day the Sacramento Daily Union Newspaper reported that Hamilton said his last relay station for a fresh horse before arriving in Sacramento was at the "Five Mile House".

The old road from Sacramento to Placerville went out "J" Street to the American River and followed the river east for about ten miles before heading to Placerville. It was replaced in 1856 by a new road to the south that followed the now operating Sacramento Valley Railroad. This new road would become today's Folsom Boulevard.

The "Five Mile House" on the old river road was closed in 1856. Another "Five Mile House" was built here on the new road. This site would serve the Pony Express.


Pony Express Five Mile House
Pony Express Five Mile House

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

2010 Laguna Youth Baseball 11U All Star Tryout #2

Jack went to the second tryout for the 2010 Laguna Youth Baseball 11U All Star team on Sunday afternoon.

After the first all star tryout last weekend, someone asked me what I thought of the quality of the kids. I noted that since March 2008, Jack has played in about 120 baseball games.  About 60 of those games have been travel ball tournament quality games. Of the 30 kids at the first tryout, probably ten of them have as much or more experience.

My point with this rambling is that it is very difficult for boys who only play a couple months of rec baseball games in the spring to match up with the boys that substantially more game experience under their belt. Galdwell makes the point in Outliers that opportunities and repetitions make people successful. While there were half a dozen boys at the tryout who probably have the physicial tools to compete at this level, they just have not had enough repetitions to compare with the players who in some cases have played tournament baseball for more than three years.  This gap will only continue to get bigger over the next couple of years.

After the tryouts were over, I rolled the pitching machine out and Jack hit about 200 balls. With Breyton hitting one over the fence off of Scott during the scrimmage at tryout, Jack was determined that he was going to hit one out too. Much to his dismay, he was only able to hit about half a dozen off the centerfield fence.

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

ESPN 30 for 30 - Silly Little Game

On Sunday April 24, I watched Silly Little Game. This is the eleventh installment of ESPN's 30 for 30 series.

Silly Little Game looks at the root of fantasy sports. Modern fantasy leagues can be traced back to a group of writers and academics in New York City who formed a baseball league in 1980 called The Rotisserie League.

At the beginning of the film, a definition of fantasy is displayed and one of the lines reads "60% to 70% of this film." The film relies heavily on the reenactment of some of the original events with actors.

When it first aired, Jack watched it while I was cooking dinner. Jack spent 1 1/2 hours in March drafting a fantasy baseball team and is currently very passionate about his fantasy baseball team. Watching Silly Little Game out of the corner of my eye I thought that some of the scenes were extremely hookey.

When I finally sat down to watch the film, it was not quite as campy as I feared. The interviews with the original participants in the The Rotisserie League were good; they were very articulate and good story tellers.

This is probably my least favorite of the films aired so far. While it is an interesting story, I think that they should have shortened it, cut out some of the reenactment scenes and focused on the interviews.

The film is available on Amazon.

Silly Little Game is also available on iTunes.

Starbucks iTunes Pick of the Week - Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings - Better Things

The complete list of Starbucks iTunes picks of the week is here!
Starbucks iTunes Pick of the Week - Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings - Better Things #fb

Code Expiration: July 30, 2010

Monday, May 03, 2010

2010 LYB Major Angels Game #10

The Angels played their tenth game of the 2010 Laguna Youth Baseball Major season. They played the Diamondbacks. The Angels beat the Diamondbacks by a score of 14 to 2 in early April.

At the plate, Jack was 0 for 1 with a walk. He walked on 4 pitches in his first plate appearance. In his second at-bat, Jack struck out swinging on three pitches against Rideout.

Jack had a very nice game in the field. He played two innings at third base and three innings at first.

At third with runners on the second and third and one out in the second inning, Jack had a hard grounder hit at him that took a big hop into his chest. While struggling to find the handle, he trapped the ball against his upper body with his bare hand and his glove hand.

With the runner charging from second, Jack swung around, sweeping his glove hand out to tag the runner. Standing behind the pitcher, the field umpire called the runner out.

Continuing to spin completely around in a circle, I saw him from my vantage point behind home plate set himself, pull the ball out of his glove and throw the ball to first, but the runner beat the throw.

Now for the rest of the story...

After the inning was over Rod (Greysen’s dad) came over and told me that Jack never had the ball in his glove. Talking to Jack after the game, the ball was in his bare hand against his chest. After the sweep tag on the runner, Jack said he pulled the glove hand back to chest and put the ball into the glove as he was spinning. He essentially had his back to both umpires at that point.

From the vantage point of both the umpires and I, all we saw was the sweep tag, Jack spinning in a circle, him setting his feet, pulling the ball away from the glove with his bare hand and making the throw to first…


At first, Jack had two put-outs. In the fourth, he took a throw from the second baseman for the put-out. With the Angels holding a small lead in the top of the sixth, Jack made a couple of great plays to help end the game. The number three D-Backs' hitter drove a ball to the left side; Greysen was playing short and went deep into the hole for the ball. Greysen's throw to first was late and high. Jack jumped straight up to just barely snag the ball in the webbing of his glove to keep the runner at first. With the runner advancing to third on two steals, the D-backs clean-up hitter than hit a 3 and 1 pitch right down the first base line. Jack almost plucked the ball out of the air a couple inches above the ground, but could not quite hold on to it. He calmly picked up the ball and stepped on first for the out. If Jack does not knock the ball down, a run scores, the batter gets at least a double and the tying run comes to the bat.

With the game tied 3 to 3 in the bottom of the fifth, the Angels scored 3 runs and went on to win by the score of 6 to 3. The box score is here and the game log is here. The Angels now have 9 wins and 1 loss for the season.

2010 LYB Major Angels versus Diamondbacks Box Score

May 3, 2010 - D-Backs versus Angels
Game Log


.                       1    2    3    4    5    6    R    H    E
     D-Backs            2    0    1    0    0    0    3    5    1
     Angels             2    1    0    0    3    X    6    6    2

  #  Hitter            POS    AB    R    H   RBI  BB   SO   SAC   HBP  #P
  4  Niko              6/1     2    2    1    0    1    0    0     0    7
  2  Greysen          4/8/6    3    2    2    0    0    0    0     0    6
 28  Dominic           8/2     3    1    1    2    0    0    0     0    9
 16  Anthony         9/4/8/5   2    0    0    0    0    1    0     0   11
 26  Ben               1/5     3    0    1    1    0    0    0     0   12
 30  Cobie            2/1/4    3    0    0    0    0    0    0     0    7
 30  Austin           3/7/9    2    1    1    0    0    1    0     0    4
 24  Braden           9/2/8    2    0    0    0    0    1    0     0    6
 14  Zach             4/7/9    1    0    0    0    1    1    0     0    8
 12  Richie            7/4     1    0    0    0    1    1    0     0    9
 22  Jack              5/3     1    0    0    0    1    1    0     0    7

                              23    6    6    3    4    6    0     0   86

2B: Niko

Greysen reached base on an error by the third baseman.

     Pitcher         IP     H    R   ER   BB   SO   HBP   ST   PC
 26  Ben              2     2    2    2    0    3    1    24   38
 30  Cobie            2     2    1    1    1    0    0    18   25
  4  Niko             2     1    0    0    0    5    0    21   30

                      6     5    3    3    1    8    1    63   93

Sunday, May 02, 2010

Hiram Johnson Booster Club Crab Feed

Leaving Jack with Eric, Sharon and I went with Phil, Marlene, Deborah and John to the Hiram Johnson Booster Club Annual Crab Feed on Saturday night. The event was held at the Courtyard D'Oro in Old Sacramento.

After the event was over, Phil, Marlene, Sharon and I were wandering back up the Firehouse Alley heading towards the cars when Sharon noticed a place called the Back Door Lounge.  We stopped for a drink and headed up staying for quite a while.  After calling Brun to wish him happy birthday, Sharon said that she was pretty sure that this was one of Hugh's favorite spots in Old Sacramento.

We had a very nice evening.

Saturday, May 01, 2010

2010 LYB Major Angels Game #9

The Angels played their ninth game of the 2010 Laguna Youth Baseball Major season. They played the Red Sox. In a game that Jack missed while we were at Spring Training, the Angels beat the Red Sox by a score of 16 to 6 in the first game of the season.

At the plate, Jack was 1 for 2 with a strike out, a walk and two runs scored. In his first at-bat, he fouled off a 1 and 2 pitch and then struck out looking. After not striking out in the first seven games, Jack has struck out looking in each of the last two games. He is more than a little frustrated with the inconsistency of the strike zone. Jack walked on five pitches in his second plate appearance. He and Greysen scored on Anthony's single.

Against probably the best player on the other team (Santos), Jack had another interesting at-bat in his third plate appearance. With the bases loaded and one out (Austin, Niko and Greysen reached on walks), Jack ran the count to 3 and 2. He fouled off the 6th pitch and then blooped the 7th pitch down the first base line for a single and two RBIs.

Jack is a little frustrated with his hitting right now. Unfortunately, he is taking it out on everybody around him.

In the field, Jack played two innings at first base, two innings at third base and an inning in left field. At first, he had two put-outs on throws from the second baseman and shortstop. Jack also had an assist. On a ball hit weakly on the right side, Jack went after the ball. The second baseman covered the bag and Jack flipped the ball to him for the put-out.

With Jack playing third in the fourth inning, the catcher (Cobie) made a strong throw trying to get a runner stealing third. Jack took the high throw and made a nice looking sweep tag. The runner had slid head first on the outside of the bag. Jack's sweep tag caught the runner's arm and lifted it off the bag. The umpire called the runner out.

The Angels won the game by the score of 15 to 2. The box score is here and the game log is here. The Angels now have 8 wins and 1 loss for the season.

2010 LYB Major Angels versus Red Sox Box Score

May 1, 2010 - Red Sox versus Angels
Game Log

.                       1     2    3    4    5    6    R    H    E
     Red Sox            0     1    0    0    0    1    2    3    2
     Angels             0     1    8    6    0    X   15    8    2

  #  Hitter            POS    AB    R    H   RBI  BB   SO   SAC   HBP  #P
  4  Niko             6/1/2    2    2    1    2    1    0    0     0   16
  2  Greysen         4/6/8/7   1    2    0    0    2    1    0     0   15
 22  Jack             3/5/7    2    2    1    2    1    1    0     0   17
 28  Dominic           2/8     3    2    1    2    0    0    0     0    6
 16  Anthony          9/4/1    3    2    3    3    0    0    0     0    9
  2  Breyton          8/9/3    1    2    0    0    1    0    0     1    9
 26  Ben               5/6     2    0    1    2    0    0    1     0   12
 30  Cobie            1/2/4    3    0    0    0    0    0    0     0    5
 24  Braden           2/4/9    3    0    0    0    0    3    0     0   16
 30  Austin            7/3     0    2    0    0    3    0    0     0   16
 14  Zach              5/7     3    1    1    0    0    1    0     0    9

                              23   15    8   11    8    6    1     1  130

2B: Niko, Anthony

Niko reached base on an error by the shortstop.  Dominic reach base on
an error by the centerfielder.


     Pitcher         IP     H    R   ER   BB   SO   HBP   ST   PC
 10  Cobie            2     1    1    1    0    2    0    23   33
  4  Niko             2     0    0    0    1    5    0    16   25
 16  Anthony          1     0    0    0    0    2    0     7   12
 24  Braden           1     2    1    0    0    0    0    14   21

                      6     3    2    1    1    9    0    60   91