Category: Baseball


$38.1 million might not seem that high. But for actor Tom Cruise, “Obliviion” opened to that number and it’s a significant one. That’s Cruise’s highest opening for any movie since “Mission Impossible III” way back in 2006. There’s a little asterisk here because “Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol” would have been higher, but the studio showed it in IMax a week earlier than its wide release date, but this is still big. The film, which also stars Morgan Freeman, is also a solid opening for director Joseph Kosinski (“Tron: Legacy”). Of course, it didn’t have any new competition, which allowed “42”, with Harrison Ford, to earn $18 million. The Jackie Robinson biopic now has earned $54.1 million.

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

Critics may not have been in love with the film, but the Jackie Robinson biopic “42” performed well. The film opened at No. 1 earning $27.7 million, by far the highest opening for a baseball movie. And it received an A+ score from audiences, meaning it could have great legs. The film stars Chadwick Boseman, Harrison Ford, Nicole Beharie, Christopher Meloni, Andre Holland, Lucas Black, Hamish Linklater, Ryan Merriman and T.R. Knight,

“Scary Movie V” opened in second place with less than half the opening weekend of “Scary Movie 4”. Despite featuring Charlie Sheen and Lindsay Lohan, the film opened to $15 million, even lower than Marlon Wayans “A Haunted House”.

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

New trailer for “42”

On the heels of a featurette released earlier this week, here’s the second trailer for “42” starring Chadwick Boseman and Harrison Ford.

The film is about Jackie Robinson and also stars Christopher Meloni, Jon Bernthal, Alan Tudyk and John C. McGinley.

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

 

Featurette on “42”

Here’s a featurette on the upcoming film “42” starring Chadwick Boseman and Harrison Ford.

The film is about Jackie Robinson and comes out this April. Looks like one to check out!

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

Let me preface by saying this first before people start sending me hate mail or something. This isn’t me saying I’m against African Americans, it’s not me trying to be racist, or anything of the sort. But, quite frankly, some of the coverage about Jackie Robinson Day disgusted me and I’m glad some others are speaking up as well.

Here’s a link to a great Yahoo Sports article. First, let me start by saying I wish I could have seen Robinson play. He was one of the best baseball players ever. He paved the way for everyone from Frank Thomas to Prince Fielder to become some of the game’s biggest stars. But, let’s be frank here. The so-called “decline” in African American players in the MLB…shouldn’t be a big deal. If African Americans want to do something else than play baseball who cares? If they want to play a different sport or decide to, unlike so many professional athletes today, go to college and study for what they want to do, whether it be a doctor, lawyer, journalist, computer technician, engineer, whatever, who cares? Shouldn’t we be supporting people to follow what their dreams are? Just because a person is African American, why should we make a big deal that they aren’t playing a particular sport? That’s pretty much like saying we should be shocked that an Asian American isn’t in a math-related field. I’m glad Marion Byrd spoke up. Just wish America could get past this. I realize it’s “the way of the world” but it doesn’t make it any less frustrating that we still are so…blinded by racial stereotypes.

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

It’s that time of year again. Spring. The weather will get nicer. What better way to spend an afternoon than taking in a Wolf Pack baseball or softball game? I’ll admit, the softball, though few would hardly call me being overly nice to them in articles, holds a special place in my heart. Aside from the volleyball team, it was the  softball team that was really my first beat when I started writing for the Sagebrush back in 2008-09. There was nothing like getting out of class, sitting at the ballpark on a sunny afternoon just taking in a game.

Yet, perhaps its time for a change to the baseball and softball programs. I know head coach Gary Powers has been every bit as much an institution for Wolf Pack baseball as Chris Ault has been for football. But, it’s clear that in recent years, Nevada hasn’t been able to compete. And it’s had good players like Brock Stassi and Nick Melino. I’m not saying the team should have won WAC championship after championship, but it should have been far more competitive than it was.

The softball team…head coach Matt Meuchel has had his time. There needs to be some changes. Look, I understand that Meuchel had the benefit of Brittany Puzey and some other players his first year. And I know that it takes some time to get your system in. But, come on. I know the Sagebrush just ran a column that this team is close and that if a few bounces had gone its way, it’d have a much better record.

Frankly, I have to disagree with that theory. Sports isn’t about moral victories. It’s not about saying “Well, they just got unlucky.” No, in sports, you make your own luck. If the Wolf Pack had played well enough to win all those games, it would have won most of them. You know what separates the great teams from everyone else? They can win the close games. They don’t let bad luck bring them down. They don’t need people to make excuses for them. The move to the MWC is a new beginning next year. And, I think Cary Groth has to think about making some big changes.

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

According to an espn.com story, Major League Baseball is close to announcing the expansion of baseball’s playoff field to 10 teams.

Commissioner Bud Selig said he hopes the move will allow more teams to be in the playoff race longer.

This is one of the dumbest moves baseball is doing. By expanding the field in most years, you’re taking all the drama out of the regular season. That great end last year with teams collapsing and others surging? Under the proposed rule, that wouldn’t have mattered because everyone would have gotten in.

Baseball’s regular season already suffers from a severe lack of drama. This will just make the last couple months pointless as almost every year we know who’s going to get in by August. And that was before this move was being considered.

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

Interesting article from the Wall Street Journal, which you can read here. The article compares a player’s salary in relation to what the average salary was of all other athletes at that time in their sport. Some names you’d expect and, some that you wouldn’t. You guys should check it out.

On a broader note, it does show the discrepancy even among athletes. Players like Alex Rodriguez or Joe Montana of course are going to get lots of money. But they make so much more even than the average baseball or football player. And, if you really look at list, you’ve got to wonder, how many of those players were really worth it? Sure, you’d be pretty safe arguing Michael Jordan was, but a lot of those players, let’s be honest. Their track record wasn’t that good.

It does beg the question, if you were starting a team in any of the four major sports, which, if any, modern athletes would you pay that kind of money to lead your team?

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

Don’t look now, but the Nevada baseball team’s season is already under way. The Wolf Pack was picked to finish fourth in the WAC. Does it stand a chance?

Pitching

Tom Jameson will lead the staff. Jameson, who was named to the Preseason All-WAC team, is 1-1 on the season this year. However, look for Timothy Culligan, Troy Marks and Danile Levine to have to play strongly as well. If they can, the Wolf Pack’s rotation will be deep, but the Wolf Pack does need a second and third starter to establish itself.

Batting

Second baseman/shortstop Joe Kohan is one of the few veterans in the lineup this season. So far, he’s stepping up to the challenge in the first four games, batting .571 with four Runs Batted In. Obviously, it’s still too early to tell, but if Kewby Meyer, Brett Jones and Jay Anderson can continue to be solid bats, Nevada could have a very dangerous lineup. One thing to keep an eye on, who can emerge as the deep hitter. I know the new bats cut down on home runs, but, the Wolf Pack needs a batter or two capable of going deep.

Infield/outfield

New faces are the theme this year for Nevada. The question will be how quickly can the new faces step into the roles left from last season’s departing players. Head coach Gary Powers will have his work cut out for him if the team’s going to make a serious run. But, with young players at key positions, like shortstop, I have my doubts that the team can raise its level of play fast enough.

Prediction

Overall, the Wolf Pack has the talent to be a middle of the conference team. However, I don’t see this team capable of making a run at the WAC title.

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

Here’s the problem I have with the MLB season. One, the regular season is way too long. People get excited for opening day. And then? I stop paying attention until September. Why? Because a 162-game season that results in maybe two teams fighting for one last playoff spot for the final month of the season (like this year in the AL and NL). Then, its playoffs are in the middle of football season. I think it’s true for most of America Saturday is a college football day, Sunday is NFL day and Monday night is football night. Which leaves the MLB playoffs with what?

It’s an afterthought in the sports world. Who cares when Derek Jeter and Alex Rodriguez and the Yankees lose in the first round? Who cares when the other teams, maybe with the exception of Philly, barely got any prime-time coverage during the season, so no one really knows or cares about those teams? Who cares when there’s no transcendent baseball stars? The MLB would do well to make some big changes. Otherwise, it will continue to be nothing more than a minor distraction for sports fans.

To make matters worse, baseball wants to add a wild card team. If that had been in effect this season, there would have been no great drama at the end of the regular season. In fact, the regular season would be come even more meaningless than it already is.

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.