Rafi Hecht Accepting the Ice Water Bucket Challenge

Now challenging: David Uzan, Pinny Gildin, Alex Noudelman, Ian Korman, Jim Bensimon and Avraham McGowan. You have 24 hours to do it or donate $100 to ALS research.

ALS (Amytrophyl Lateral Sclerosis) a.k.a. Lou Gehrig‘s Disease progressively eats away at the nerve cells in the spinal cord and brain, rendering those nerve cells and associated muscles useless, affecting speaking, swallowing and breathing. This leads to a horrible death. We all hope that a cure will be found soon.

I purposely wore my Yankees cap and held a baseball bat to further emphasize the point.

One of my wife’s grandmothers had this disease and indeed, it’s horrible when you are essentially trapped inside your own body that doesn’t want to function. May her Neshama have an Aliya.

I just donated my $18 to the Shirat Devorah Fund, looking for a cure on ALS in the name of Devorah Schochet, a 39 year old mother of four with this condition. May she have a refuah shleimah b’karov.


Four Reasons Pat Venditte Needs to Join the New York Yankees


Pat Venditte made headlines as being the first modern-day switch pitcher in professional baseball to pitch like that regularly. Greg Harris switched hands once, but it was moreso as a stunt.

Pat Venditte needs to come up. Now. He’s currently enjoying his second stint at AAA Here are four reasons.

1. The Yankees Rotation is Understaffed


C.C. Sabathia is out for the year. Masahiro Tanaka is out for a good chunk of time. Some starters have come out from the minor leagues and performed quite well, but the bullpen is a big question mark. Pat Venditte can help neutralize the staff with pitching to batters from either side.

2. His Switch Pitching will Sell Tickets


Say what you will about not being a sideshow attraction, but the fact is that having a switch pitcher on your ballclub is something incredibly unique, which will undoubtedly sell tickets.

3. His Stats Defy His Raw Skills


Have you ever seen the movie Moneyball? The movie exposed Billy Beane’s brilliance in looking at raw stats. Pat Venditte is far from a dominating pitcher, yet has shown that he can compete on an extremely high level. Click this link to review his stats.

4. He’s Almost 30, with a Family


Even baseball players need to eat. Minor league players earn ridiculously low wages with the vague promise that everything they toil for will be made up at The Show. Give the guy his chance. He wasn’t even invited to Spring Training this past year.

I for one say that Pat Venditte needs to come up. Now. Who’s with me?


Jimmy Kimmel Mean Tweets – Dikembe Mutombo as Cookie Monster

Cookiemonster2_FBI normally don’t watch Jimmy Kimmel, and for that matter I don’t remember ever hearing Dikembe Mutombo speak. When Mr. Mutombo appeared on “Mean Tweets #2 – NBA edition” I was on the floor laughing!

Here is the clip of Mutombo:

[jwplayer mediaid=”2944″]

Also, here is the entire clip from Jimmy Kimmel’s YouTube channel:

Some more Dikembe Mutombo clips


Ichiro Suzuki Won’t Get 3,000 Hits

Flickr-8763282990There. I said it: Ichiro Suzuki won’t get 3,000 MLB hits. Not at this pace anyway.

Don’t get me wrong: I love Ichiro and want him to reach that milestone. He deserves it.  However, the Yankees, traditionally chock loaded with stars, have been forced to reduce him to a role player in late innings at this time. In all fairness, they tried to put him in every game. But if you look at the stats, it’s interesting: in 20 games so far he has had a total of 39 at bats, averaging less than 2 at bats per game. In those 39 ABs he has 13 hits, translating to a .333 average. That’s very good even by Ichiro’s standards, and his on-base percentage looks like old times.

However, this also means that he won’t get the recognition he deserves, reaching the league leaders in hits and batting average like he should (too few at bats). At this pace, assuming that no outfielder gets injured to open a spot for him, he will end up at, say, 150 games, at 300 at bats, or essentially a half season worth of at bats. That leaves him up at 99-100 at bats, which will put him at 2,800 MLB hits. And, his skills won’t improve at this point of his career. He may end up at 2,700-2,800 hits, which is a shame since he’s so close, yet so far away.

I get it, though: Ichiro wants to win a World Series with a contender, hence the sacrifice in at bats and starting position. If he doesn’t, will he be second-guessing himself for wishing to be traded to the Yankees?