Grant José No Quarter

Today, kids and adults across the country are calling into work or school sick, conveniently allowing them all to watch Opening Day of baseball. I myself spent many an April 1st (or March 31st,) my favourite national holiday, home “sick” watching the Tigers. Of course, in those days, the Tigers played at The Corner and hadn’t entered their winning drought. But today has special significance beyond Opening Day, and not just because the Tigers enter as heavy October contenders, despite bullpen issues. Today is also the eve of José Canseco’s new book, Vindicated: Big Names, Big Liars, and the Battle to Save Baseball, a book no one should read.

Vindicated follows 2005’s Juiced, José Canseco’s exposé on many high-profile steroid users in baseball, himself including. He accused players he directly injected/supplied, suspected due to enlarged physiques, and those he suspected due to “c’mon, they’re probably doing steroids.” The gossip novel, full of innuendo, pointed fingers, and flimsy hearsay was meant not shine a light on the steroid problem in baseball (like Game of Shadows slightly dubiously did in 2006,) but to put the former All-Star—who couldn’t buy a spring training invitation in 2005—back into the spotlight.

Just in time for baseball season...

...a bunch of great baseball movies: Major League is #10 on Baseball Almanac's Top Ten List. Other favorites are Bang the Drum Slowly, Eight Men Out, Field of Dreams, and The Natural. Bull Durham tops this and many other lists.'s "Page 2" Readers wax nostalgic as they recall their top 10 best moments in baseball movies. For a wider selection, try the top 100 baseball movies according to the Boston Men's Baseball League.

Whirly Ball!

Whirly BallWhirly Ball

Ann Arbor has its very own Whirly Ball center! This game looks like a blast. It's basketball, but played while riding around in a bumper car. This sport is proof in action that exercise doesn't have to be boring, it can be a ton of fun. The library has all sorts of books on funky sports, including Jump Rope!, The Complete Idiots Guide to Pro Wrestling, and Boomerangs; How to Make and Throw Them.

Cradling, Clamping and Scooping

These words have their own meaning in the world of lacrosse and if you would like to learn more about a sport where players don helmets, pads, gloves, wield a stick and use a rubber ball that feels like a hockey puck, pick up a copy of Inside Lacrosse at the Downtown library.

If you're already a big fan, but unfamiliar with this title, it's oversize format is loaded with news about pro, college and high-school teams, player profiles, interviews, fitness instruction, strategy, technique instruction, "stringing and dyeing" your stick, and fantastic photos and illustrations.

Oh yeah, you can also check out their website.

Cradling, Clamping and ScoopingCradling, Clamping and Scooping

So Many Games, So Little Time


Congratulations to many local basketball teams, Pioneer, Huron, and Gabriel Richard boy's teams who have lead in their b-ball conferences, and for Gabriel Richard who is still in the game and will be heading to the Breslin Center on March 13!
On the heels of the high school season is the post-season play of colleges across the country.
While you're filling out your brackets and waiting for the next game, you may want to try Can I Keep My Jersey?, or Game of My Life remember J-Mac who rained down 3's; it's his story. Also, brand new Basketball Skills & Drills can give you a start for your next season.

The Coach Calls it Quits


Bobby Knight announced his retirement last night after winning more games than any men's coach in major college basketball history and collecting three NCAA titles. Arguably the best hoop strategist ever, Knight was the subject of the best basketball book written, A Season On the Brink. Sadly, his temper on and off the court caused him to leave his beloved Hoosiers behind for Texas Tech but his legacy of graduating players and playing by the book earned him his rightful place in the Basketball Hall of Fame.

Happy Birthday Ernie


It's not spring until you hear Ernie Harwell open the baseball season with ...

For the winter is past,
The rain is over and gone;
The flowers appear on the earth;
The time of the song of the birds has come,
And the voice of the turtle is heard in our land.

Ernie turns 90 on Friday, Jan. 25th. Both the News and Free Press have done nice articles on Ernie. Here's hoping Ernie opens many more Tiger seasons.

The Goose is Golden


Goose Gossage entered the National Baseball Hall of Fame today, joining 285 other greatest of the great in America's pastime. Gossage joins the Pride of the Yankees and the Bambino and way too many others from the team we all love to hate.

Say It Ain't So Joe


Former Senator George Mitchell has released the long-awaited Report to the Commissioner of Baseball on the use of illegal steroids and other performance-enhancing drugs. "Those who have illegally used these substances range from players whose major league careers were brief to potential members of the Baseball Hall of Fame," Mitchell said. Many top players are named in the report including Roger Clemens, Andy Pettitte, Mo Vaughn and Gary Sheffield. MLB as well as media websites like CNN, NPR and the New York Times are providing extensive coverage.

It's Hockey Time


Head down to Veterans Memorial Sports Complex this Sunday, Dec. 16, 10:00 a.m. - 1 p.m., to see the visiting Chinese professional hockey team take on some of Ann Arbor's best players. Admission is FREE! The team from Harbin City, Heilongjiang Province are mainstays of Team China. As soon as the hockey's over get your skates on for Frosty on Ice, a fun time with Frosty that includes skating, candy canes, pictures and more.

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