Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Boomer's Diamond/Gridiron Notes: Things to look forward to in the upcoming months

If the NBA, NHL, or College Basketball isn't enough to keep you busy till spring, here's the Countdown to Opening Day for the 2013 MLB season. On top of that, while you wait on your favorite teams first pitch, here are a couple items in the upcoming months in the world of baseball & football to keep you occupied till then.

February 11th:
The "unofficial" beginning of the 2013 MLB season as pitchers & catchers report down south for the start of spring training. As we all know that pitchers, and catchers need a little more additional time to prepare for the grind of a 162-game season.

February 15th:
Voluntary date in which all non-World Baseball Classic position players can be invited to begin spring training. Trust me, I would rather be heading to spring training then playing in the WBC.

February 20th:
Mandatory date by which all non-WBC players must report to their respective teams for spring training. Also, the date that players, who play for the Twins, Astros, Marlins, Cubs, Padres, and Rockies, have that awkward moment, when they realize that they play for those doormat organizations.

March 2nd-19th:
World Baseball Classic involving sixteen teams from around the world on four continents. Here's hoping the USA squad puts on a solid showing, and that none of the MLB players injury themselves, while participating in this tournament. USA! USA! USA!

March 31st:
Opening Night, Texas Rangers at Houston Astros, 8pm EST on ESPN. The Astros in their new-lookin uni's host in-state rival, the Texas Rangers, in the first game between the two teams as divisional foes. The Houston Astros start their first season in the American League (West division), after sending the past 51 seasons in the National League. Rosters around the MLB are trimmed down to 25 players.

Big brother, John (right) meets little brother, Jim, at mid-field
following the conclusion of Super Bowl XLVII.
Despite the disappointing final result, Super Bowl XLVII was a pretty entertaining football game, putting a cap on the 2012 NFL season. The game had a little bit of everything, head-to-head brother's match-up (probably won't ever see that again), the final game of Ray Lewis' NFL career (I guess that was the only positive you could take at the end of this one), a 34-minute blackout in the Superdome (seriously, who turned out the lights?!?, and an incredible comeback that fell a mere five-yards short of becoming the greatest in Super Bowl history. Well, if you are like me, you already are having some sort of football withdraw, but all is not lost with these football related events happening in the upcoming months.

February 20th-26th:
Scouting Combine, over in Indianapolis, as the NFL runs potential draftees' through a number of drills, some that are football-related, and one's that are not so football related. All 32 NFL teams will have a representative there, looking to find that next diamond in the rough, to led their team for year's to come.

April 25th-27th:
2013 NFL Draft, New York City, the weekend that will change the life of a select number of potential NFL players (oh, around 250), as they wait around in the greenroom, at home with family and friends, or out on the lake fishing. While you as a fan, hope, pray, etc. that your team lands the next stud of the NFL (or at least that position player, your team desperately needs) and not the next NFL bust, to be named later. With the first pick of the 2013 NFL Draft, the Kansas City Chiefs select...

And I know how much we all like to to follow Todd McShay's and Mel Kiper, Jr.  with their Mock Draft(s).