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Don’t forget to visit the ‘Hank Greenberg in 1938’ page: Update

Posted on: May 23rd, 2017 by Ron Kaplan

For occasional updates on author appearances, interviews, and book reviews.

Toda raba.

 

Jewish Sports Roundup: Games of Nov. 28, 2017

Posted on: November 29th, 2017 by Ron Kaplan No Comments

NHL

Josh Ho-Sang contributed his eighth assist in 14 games to help the NY Islanders (15-7-2) beat the visiting Vancouver Canucks, 5-2. The pass led to Calvin de Haan’s first goal of the season and gave the Isles a 2-1 lead in the first period. Ho-Sang didn’t take any shots on goal in 16:51 of ice time.

Zach Hyman notched his ninth assist as the Toronto Maple Leafs (16-9-1) beat the host Calgary Flames, 4-1. Hyman had five shots on goal in 19:05.

Michael Cammalleri took one SOG in 14:15 as the Edmonton Oilers (10-13-2) fell to the visiting Arizona Coyotes in overtime, 3-2.

Brendan Leipsic took one SOG in 16:22 as the Vegas Golden Knights were shut out by the visiting Dallas Stars, 3-0.

No MOT-involved games schedule for tonight.

NBA

Omri Casspi and the Golden State Warriors were off yesterday. They visit the LA Lakers tonight.

 

 

Jewish Sports Roundup: Games of Nov. 27, 2017

Posted on: November 28th, 2017 by Ron Kaplan

Once again, Omri Casspi was the starting string forward for the Golden State Warriors (15-6), playing a season-high 30 minutes. Unfortunately, the team suffered their first loss with him in that role, dropping a 110-107 affair to his former team, the visiting Sacramento Kings. Casspi scored nine points with four rebounds and one assist.

In the only NHL game involving a MOT, Jason Zucker gave the Minnesota Wild a 1-0 lead over the host Winnipeg Jets, but it didn’t hold up; the Jets buzzed Minny, 7-2. It was Zucker’s 13th goal of the year. He had 15:39 of time on ice.

Sad news: Nate Ebner, who surprised everyone by making a 14-yard run out of punt formation in New England’s win over the Miami Dolphins on Sunday, will miss the rest of the season due to an injury he sustained on that play. Ebner, 28, has regularly received accolades for his selfless play on special teams. Here’s hoping he can make a full recovery.

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Former NFL OL Geoff Schwartz is now a commentator. Here he weighs in on the problems with  brother Mitchell‘s KC Chiefs

Staying with football, what should UCLA QB Josh Rosen do: jump into the NFL Draft or wait one more year? Rosen has been taking his lumps lately, both physically and in comments by those who question his toughness.

 

Korner Review: The Jewish Baseball Card Book

Posted on: November 27th, 2017 by Ron Kaplan

If you’re looking for the perfect gift for the Jewish sports fan, you can’t do much better than The Jewish Baseball Card Book, by Bob Wechsler.

Image result for the jewish baseball card bookBased on the popular Jewish card sets produced by Martin Abramowitz (who helped on the project along with Peter McDonald), this coffee table edition features photos and brief stories about every JML from Lipman Pike through Alex Bregman, presented by the year of the athlete’s debut.

You might remember Wechsler from his previous contribution to the religion’s sports library, Day by Day in Jewish Sports History. He does his usual great job of mining for little gold nuggets in the genre. (Full disclosure: he’s one of my go-to guys whenever I have a question about an athlete’s identity or other Jewish-related sports puzzlers.)

As you might imagine, it’s hard to find cards for many of these MOTs, especially those who barely had a cup of instant coffee in the big leagues. That’s what makes this volume stand out. In addition to the pages on “regular” Jews, the writers have included a section on “Jews by Choice,” which includes such notables names as Elliot Maddox and Joel Horlen, among others.. There’s also a chapter on Jews who have appeared in Topps regular sets, along with the numbers of their cards, a sort of checklist without the standard checking part.

Even rarer than Jews on American baseball cards? Jews on sets produced in foreign countries. That’s here, too, along with the beloved “error cards” that usually have the wrong photo attributed to a player.

The book concludes with a checklist of cards issued prior to 1988. Why that date? Because that’s when the industry exploded, with several companies competing for the collectors’ dollars, making the undertaking of finding every single card a bit more arduous.

All in all, this is a must-have for those who love the very narrow theme. Remember, Hanukka is just around the corner.

Check out Peter Ephross’ recent article in Tablet. He tells a more sentimental story than my “just-the-facts” rendering. Ephross was the editor of Jewish Major Leaguers in Their Own Words: Oral Histories of 23 Players. There’s also this from the Jewish Baseball Museum and this one from JewishBaseballNews.com.

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JML Update, Hot Stove League (11/27/17)

Posted on: November 27th, 2017 by Ron Kaplan

The winter meetings are scheduled for Dec. 10-14, at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort in Orlando, Florida. But rumors have been swirling for weeks with lots of supposition about the 2018 homes for several of the MOTs.

Danny Valencia and Craig Breslow are free agents. I imagine the former, who has some pop (although he has played for many teams in a short amount of time), will get picked up by some ball club. Breslow, however, even though he’s a loogy, is getting on in years (he turned 37 in August) and has had some health issues over the past couple of seasons.

Add the New York Mets to the list of teams that might be interested in seeking the services of Ian Kinsler. So far I’ve read about the Angels, Giants, Dodgers, and cardinals in the mix.

Ryan Braun‘s name has been bandied about as well (Giants and Dodgers), although he seems content to finish his career with the Milwaukee Brewers.

Joc Pederson: does he have a future with the Dodgers?

Good to see that Kevin Pillar is staying in shape, even though he might not be with the Toronto Blue Jays come next year.

I was feeling pretty good about Alex Bregman and the Houston Astros’ World Series win until Ted Cruz got involved. It’s okay when we say it, Senator, not you. Hat tip to FOK (friend of the Korner) Maxwell Kates of Toronto, who sent in this story about how “Jewish Astros Leave Mark on Local History.” The piece originally appeared in the Pecan Park Eagle on Nov. 26.

Still feels a bit strange to say “Manager Gabe Kapler.” But unlike Brad Ausmus, who inherited a good team and failed to keep things going, Kapler is starting out with a poor team, so he has nowhere to go but up.

 

 

Jicemen and Jewps

Posted on: November 27th, 2017 by Ron Kaplan

Omri Casspi has started three of the last four games for the Golden State Warrior (all as a strong forward and all resulting in wins, it’s worth pointing out). Here’s the breakdown:

  • Nov. 19: 118-110 over the host Brooklyn Nets — 12 points in 23 minutes with eight rebounds, one assist, and two blocked shots.
  • Nov. 24: 143-94 blowout against the visiting Chicago Bulls — six points in 25 minutes with four rebounds, four assists, one blocked shot and two steals.
  • Nov. 25: 110-95 over visiting New Orleans — nine points in 25 minutes with four rebounds, two assist, and two blocked shots.

Playing in the NBA has it drawbacks, however. Casspi is unable to play for Israel in the qualifiers for the 2019 Basketball World Cup.

The Warriors are 15-5, second in the Western Conference.

Over on the ice…

  • Michael Cammalleri, Edmonton Oilers, has two assists in six games since coming over in a trade from the LA Kings. Edmonton is 9-14-2, seventh in the Pacific Division of the Western Conference to one in seventh
  • Jason Demers, Arizona Coyotes (6-17-3, 15th/last in the Western Conference with the worst record in the league): 26 games, two goals, eight assists.
  • Josh Ho-Sang, NY Islanders (14-7-2, fifth Eastern Conference): 13 games, two goals, six assists. Slowly making a name for himself.
  • Zach Hyman, Toronto Maple Leafs (15-9-1, fourth in Eastern Conference): 25 games, five goals, seven assists.
  • Brendan Leipsic, Vegas Golden Knights (15-6-1, second in the Western Conference): 14 games, no goals, seven assists.
  • Jason Zucker, Wild (11-9-3, 11th in Western Conference) 23 games, 12 goals, seven assists. Luke Kunin  was sent back to the minors on Nov. 21. He appeared in 14 games for the Wild with two goals and two assists.
 

JFL, Week 12

Posted on: November 27th, 2017 by Ron Kaplan

Catching up with myriad topics including Week 12 in the NFL:

Nate Ebner and the New England Patriots improve to 9-2 (first in the AFC Eastern Division) by almost doubling up on the visiting Miami Dolphins, 35-17.  Ebner appeared on just two special teams play (7 percent), but caught a pass for 14 yards lining up in a punt formation. He picked up the first down but unfortunately was hurt on the play and might be done for the year.

Center Ali Marpet was also injured in the game between his Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-7) and the host Atlanta Falcons, who emerged victorious, 34-20. Marpet sustained a knee injury in the second quarter and came out of the game but returned in the second half.

Mitchell Schwartz appeared on all of his team’s offensive plays plus two more (7 percent) on special teams. The KC Chiefs’ woes continue as they lost to the visiting Buffalo Bills, 16-10. KC is now 6-5 but still leads the AFC West.

Apparently, Gabe Marks –signed by the NY Jets as a free agent but limited to the practice squad — is calling it quits, giving up on an NFL career. Marks, a standout at Washington State University, doesn’t even get to join this group.

A bad day for the Jews with the pigskin all around: Josh Rosen was also hurt as UCLA beat California 30-27. Rosen came out of the game late in the second quarter after taking another hard hit, the last of three sacks he received. I wonder what, if any, effect this will have on the NFL scouts?

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JFL, Week 11

Posted on: November 23rd, 2017 by Ron Kaplan

Just wanted to get this out of the way because I didn’t have a chance to post earlier this week and the new week starts today.

Mitchell Schwartz once again played every down on offense (75, plus another 3/12 percent on special teams) as the Kansas City Chiefs continued to have troubles, falling to the lowly NY Giants in overtime, 12-9. Despite the loss, the Chiefs remain in first place in the AFC West (6-4) only because evr4yone else in the division is stinko. Even though he’s not on the active roster, Adam Bisnowaty participated in the Giants’ food drive recently.

Nate Ebner appeared on 15 plays (68 percent) for the New England Patriots, who beat the “home” Oakland Raiders in Mexico City, 33-8. The Patriots are 8-2, tops in the AFC East.

Ali Marpet and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat the host Miami Dolphins in an intrastate battle, 30-20. Marpet appeared on all 66 plays at center and another three (10 percent). The Bucs are 4-6, last in the NFC South. Like, Bisnowaty, Marpet took part in his team’s food drive.

Josh Rosen got a lot of attention as UCLA took on USC last week, as a predictor of where he might end up in the draft. Unfortunately, the Bruins lost to the Trojans, 28-23. Rosen hit on 32 of 52 pass attempts for 421 yards with three touchdowns and one interception for a surprisingly low quarterback rating of 58.7. Have to admit, I’m not conversant on how that stat is composed, but I know it’s not very good. Still, there are those who think he did better than his opposite number. Unfortunately, coach Jim Mora was fired after the loss, much to the disappointment of Rosen and his teammates.

 

 

JML Update, Nov. 17, 2017

Posted on: November 17th, 2017 by Ron Kaplan

I mistakenly said these were the winter meetings. In fact, their the general manager meetings. I guess it’s like spring training; they’re getting a feel for what the real WM portend.

Like the WM, there’s no shortage of rumors. Now it seems the LA Angels are interested in Ian Kinsler, who was included in this list of the 15 Tigers most and least likely to be traded. Fifteen? That’s more than half the team. Seems they can’t make up their minds though: ”

 

Jice update, November 15, 2017

Posted on: November 15th, 2017 by Ron Kaplan

An all-too-infrequent update about what the Chosen Frozen are up to:

  • Michael Cammalleri, So much for that homecoming. The LA Kings traded Cammalleri to the Edmonton Oilers yesterday for Jussi Jokinen. The deal was made on the same day this article came out.  He goes from a team in first place in the Pacific Division of the Western Conference to one in seventh (7-9-2). Cams had three goals and four assists in 15 games for the Kings, averaging 12:38 minutes of time on ice.
  • Jason Demers, Arizona Coyotes (2-15-3, eighth/last in the Pacific Division with the worst record in the league): 20 games, two goals, six assists.
  • Josh Ho-Sang, NY Islanders (9-6-2, fifth in Metropolitan Division of Eastern Conference) was recalled from the Bridgeport Sound Tigers on Veterans Day and provided immediate results, scoring a goal to help the team beat the visiting St. Louis Blues, 5-2. Unfortunately, he’s questionable for tomorrow night’s game after missing practice yesterday due to an illness (the NHL is so sketchy with its injury reports). Let’s hope he can stick around awhile this time. Ho-Sang has appeared in seven games with the lone goal and four assists.
  • Zach Hyman, Toronto Maple Leafs (12-7-0, second place in the Atlantic Division of the Eastern Conference): 19 games, four goals, six assists.
  • Luke Kunin, Minnesota Wild (8-7-2, fifth in the Central Division of the Western Conference): 14 games, two goals, two assists.
  • Brendan Leipsic, Vegas Golden Knights (10-6-1, second in the Pacific Division): eight games, no goals, four assists.
  • Jason Zucker, Wild, is on a tear, having scored seven goals in his last four games including a hat trick to provide all the scoring in a 3-0 win over the host Montreal Canadiens last Thursday. He also scored the only goal in Saturday’s 1-0 win over the host Philadelphia Flyers. All that scoring netted him NHL First Star honors for the week. And as if all this wasn’t enough reason to celebrate, Zucker and his wife Carly just became first-time parents on Oct. 27. Mazel tov. Overall, Zucker has 10 goals and five assists in 17 games.

Image result for jason zucker

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JML Update, November 14, 2017

Posted on: November 14th, 2017 by Ron Kaplan

The winter meetings begin today so it might not be too much longer before we learn the fates of players like Ian Kinsler, Craig Breslow, Danny Valencia, and perhaps even Ryan Braun.

I’m not looking for an immediate move re: Kinsler; neither are the Tigers, apparently.

Could Braun and Toronto Blue Jays super-defender Kevin Pillar be swapping team colors?

Alex Bregman continues to enjoy the adulation that comes with being on a world championship team. As a celebrity, he gets to weigh in on some strange issues.

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Alex Bregman, right, at a recent LSU football game.

Joc Pederson isn’t doing so badly himself either, even if there are some who think the Los Angeles Dodgers’ outfield is too crowded and he’s the one who should be traded.

In fact, what a great week it was during the World Series for past and present Jewish ballplayers and their fans, according to Steve Wulf on ESPN.

Big fish, small pond? Max Fried is the ninth-best prospect for the Atlanta Braves, the organization that is ranked second-best in the game.

Brad Ausmus “passed” on interviewing for the Yankees slot and reports indicate he wants to take some time off from managing. Sorry, but if no one invites you, can you decline an invitation?

And finally, guess who’s back in the Fuld. Our boy, Super Sam. (oooh, sorry) who joins fellow MOT Gabe Kapler on the Philadelphia Phillies. Fuld, who has been out of action for the past couple of seasons due to injury, decided to retire as an active player. He’ll be working on analytics for the Phillies front office.

 

 

 
 
   
 

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