world cup

Brazil edt.

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

The World Cup is an exciting time. You can call me one of those band wagon fans, but no doubt I am cheering for TEAM USA all the way. When it comes to soccer I know the rules and I like the game, but I rarely follow what’s going on unless it’s the World Cup. With the World Cup starting today it only seemed appropriate to get you in the know. Whether you’re a novice or notorious World Cup fan, I’ve got you covered on everything you’ll need to know about World Cup.

The World Cup is the most widely watched sporting event in the world, and has been held every four years since 1930, with the exception of World War II. Hundreds of qualifying games are played around the world over the three years leading up to the month-long World Cup.world-cup-2014

Why Brazil?

Every four years, 32 teams from across the globe battle for football supremacy. This year the tournament will be held in Brazil from June 12 to July 13.  Brazil was awarded the tournament by the Federation Internationale de Football Association, or FIFA in 2007.  Brazil has since assigned 12 cities across their country as host cities. A football stadium was built in each city with the minimal seating capacity of 37,000 in Manaus (in Amazon) to 71,000 capacities in Rio de Janeiro.

How are teams selected?

There are 32 teams in the tournament and all, with the exception of the host city (Brazil) must compete in qualification rounds. For the 2014 World Cup, qualifying rounds occurred in 2011 and 2012, where approximately 200 teams from across the globe fought to earn their spot on the world stage.

How does the tournament work?

All 32 teams are assigned to one of eight groups of four (Group A – Group H). Teams are assigned by FIFA and selected in a way where not all teams from one region are put into the same group. Teams must play each member of their group or a total of 64 matches. The top two teams from each group will then move on to the knockout rounds.  Knockout rounds are where now top 16 teams (top 2 x 8 groups) are placed in a bracket format with the top team from Group A playing against the second-place team in Group B and so forth until there are two teams left.  The final game will be played on Sunday, July 13 in Rio de Janeiro.

 Even if you don’t understand soccer, you can feel the excitement of the crowds at World Cup matches.

let’s talk baseball

game 1: World Series, let’s do this!

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

The Church of Baseball

Ladies and gents, welcome to the first day of the 2013 World Series. Tonight, we enter Game 1 as the Boston Red Sox and the St. Louis Cardinals duke it out on the field in a best of seven; winner takes all. Now let’s face the facts: the Red Sox and Cards haven’t faced each other in more than five years (under circumstances that mattered).

As we all know I am not a Red Sox fan, and by any stretch of the means I am absolutely not a Cardinals fan. However, I am a baseball fan. The World Series is always an exciting time for a baseball fan, regardless if your team makes it or not.

Since both teams are very well-rounded, we can expect this to be a long series with many ups and very few downs. The mistakes will be limited on both sides. Both the Red Sox and the Cardinals have proved their record this past summer making it even more evident that these games will keep you on the edge of your seat.

Break-down of the teams

Red Sox

Over all a kick-ass team. They are powerful with offense, disciplined and a have a high rate of reaction to situations. They have an incredible team. There is a the triple threat of Dustin Pedroia (second baseman), Big Papi (David Ortiz, the DH) and Mike Napoli (catcher/first baseman). The Sox have this not so secret weapon, who is a sure thing. Allow me to introduce you to Koji Uehara. Honestly, if any of the games go past the 9th inning I feel sorry for what is coming to the Cards because of the Ninja closer, Koji Uehara.

Cardinals

Randy Choate (LOOGY) he has a niche and a valued unique skill set for pitching, defense in stealing,  and strength. Michael Wacha (pitcher) he is 0 for 26 in a post season. The cool thing about Wacha is he is a rookie who was called up not too long ago, can you imagine being a rookie and pitching in the World Series–mind blown, in my opinion he’s one of the best things the Cards have going from them! Oh and Matt Carpenter, he’s kind of a knockout as well, with hardly ever missing a base post hit– he should be someone the Red Sox are keeping their eyes on. Did you know that the Cardinals ranked No. 1 in the majors with a caught stealing percentage of 40?

Right now, the Red Sox have a 57% change of winning it all. It is very uncommon that the fate will be determined within the first game, but anything can happen. As the Red Sox have a home-field advantage and are the favored team this year–it looks like things could turn out for the best for them. This year’s postseason have been exciting. We have seen David Ortiz and Carlos Beltran put themselves in the center of attention at critical times, and we have seen others pack up their bags for an early vacation. This is the time we get to see who is going to give it there all and contribute to their team. Now is the time when that extra work out, the late night batting practice and the additional hype is going to pay off.

This is the beginning of a beautiful series and I cannot wait to see how it all unfolds. Take a seat and enjoy the game; play ball!

fantasy baseball

“We had some opportunities tonight, but we just couldn’t finish when we needed to. That’s something that luckily we will get a chance to correct [tonight] when we play them again.”-Buster Posey

pocket full of posey

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

With only 24 games left in the season my fantasy teams has come a long way. Let me preface by saying, just four short weeks I gladly took over this sad bunch of guys that was called a team, and now I made them into a majestic group of men.

Finally, making it to tenth place, at a solid 43 points (which my goal was 42 when I took over). I now feel (obviously) compelled to keep them on track. We will be hitting 9th place by the end of the season, I just feel like.

Listen here, taking on a fantasy team, epically baseball is a lot of work. You have to be on your game, and not miss a day. You need to update your team daily (there is never an off day in baseball). It’s a long season, they’re in it for the long-haul, so you should be too. During my short four weeks of managing Pocket Full of Posey (PFP) I’ve made the mistake of not updating my roster three times, and that was a rookie mistake, and I’m practically on the verge of tears when I realize it’s too late.

I want to leave you with a few tips I’ve learned so far.

  1. Scout the minors: keep an eye on the minor leagues–these kids are getting called up like crazy these days
  2. When you have less than awesome Pitchers– steam them
  3. Steaming isn’t just for pitchers–look for players who are playing doubleheaders
  4. No, but seriously: check out the free agents- you can always add a key player late in the season that could make a huge impact
  5. Make sure your team is balanced with HR/RBI batters, and AVG, SB, R batters
  6. Don’t worry if your Catcher isn’t great, and let the rest of your team make up for it (well, they should) *note, obviously my pitcher rules, my whole team is named after him.
  7. Always be reading–you have to do your research, if you want the best team

I know my team will never make it to the top three in this season, but there is always hope for next year. So men: Cliff Lee, Jered Weaver,  Mat Latos, Buster Posey, Bryce Harper–I’ll be seeing ya’ll next year. But until then, make me proud the rest of this season. Let’s finish strong and proud.