Thursday, May 28, 2015

Back In Time For Baseball Finals, Masters Track

I left California a little more than a week ago with the sun shining. I didn't see the sun until Memorial Day when I returned to our state.

In between I was attending to family business in Louisiana and Kansas, dodging rain drops. I did take a moment, thanks to my sister, to attend a Royals/Cardinals game at Kaufman Stadium in Kansas City, but it rained lightly throughout the game.
Display honoring Hall-of-Famer George Brett at the Kansas City
Royals' Kaufman Stadium

What impressed me so was the quality of entertainment a major league baseball game brings, not just some quality baseball. Plus, I walked through the Royals' Hall of Fame. It had their 1985 World Series Championship trophy in there along with displays honoring their retired jerseys - former manager Dick Howser, thirdbaseman George Brett and secondbaseman Frank White.

Brett was probably one of the two top lefthanded hitters ever, the other being Ted Williams. Playing in Kansas City perhaps lost him the fame he was owed.

White won a ton of Gold Gloves while Howser was their manager in their glory days in the 1980s. I remember seeing Howser play third base for the Yankees in 1968. He used to saw off the top of hit bats.

The 2015 edition of the Royals are quite good, but I wonder a bit about their starting pitching.

Congrats To Sheldon, EG Softball

While I was gone I missed Sheldon's big win over Vacaville in the Sac-Joaquin Section's Division I championship game. What was so impressive was how well balanced the Huskies were this year and just about everyone will be back next year. They'll have to rely on some young talent in the circle, yet with Joe Jacques as the pitching coach, we know there will be a quality pitcher that will step up.

Elk Grove won an amazing 26 games this year and with the quirky playoff system instituted this season, they were in the Division II playoffs. They were plenty of good teams in that bracket in this year's playoffs, especially Benicia.

Royals' Three retired jersey - Brett, Howser and White
Elk Grove didn't have the answer on how to stop the defending D-2 champions. Benicia defeated the Herd twice in the playoffs to grab its second straight championship. Elk Grove lost only four games this season - three of those to Benicia.

What impressed me was how good Elk Grove's batting lineup was. From top to bottom everyone hit the ball well. The Delta League champions will likely be right back in the playoffs again next year.

Masters Track Starts Tonight

My wife and I took a bicycle ride this evening and I could hear the public address at Herd Stadium. It was the preliminaries of the Sac-Joaquin Section's Masters Track and Field Championship.

I am covering Friday night's finals and figure to watch plenty of locals try to finish in the top three of their event, which would qualify them for the CIF State Track and Field Championships next week in Clovis.

Watch the girls' 100 and 200 meters where both Cosumnes Oaks senior Natsumi Mcgee and Pleasant Grove sophomore Rae'vyn Lawleer will be competing. Also, it's likely Sheldon and Franklin will finish high in both the boys and girls 4x400 meters and the 4x100 meters.

Phillip Fayne of Franklin, the Division I champion in the high jump, should finish high enough to qualify for State.

I'll be tweeting local results Friday evening, so follow me here or @EGSportsCorner.

EG vs. St. Mary's Baseball

It seems like every time Elk Grove's baseball team makes the Section Championship series, it's St. Mary's awaiting. The Stockton Catholic school seems to figure out how to eliminate all other south Section teams and play in the best-two-out-of-three game series against the North champion just about every year.

This year the Herd has the experience - and with Chris Martin's recovery from tendinitis - the pitching to sweep the Rams, who are making their seventh straight Section finals appearance.

Wierder things have happened but behind Martin and Ty Madrigal, I just don't see EG losing this series. If they do win it will be the school's eighth Section title in baseball, number six for Coach Jeff Carlson.

And, congrats to Bradshaw Christian for winning its third straight Div. VI title last weekend.

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