First of all, congratulations to my buddies in New York who are Jets fans. You won! Only one more to go until the World Series Super Bowl! I’m not a football fan, as I’ve said many times, but I know how exciting it must be to be thisclose to a championship.
I spent a very rainy afternoon with friends watching the Golden Globes. Normally, I love this show because – unlike the Oscars – actors are more inclined to say and do silly, spontaneous things, rather than step up to the mic with a rehearsed speech and thank their agents. But today’s show was as soggy as the weather here in California. Jokes fell flat. Nobody wore anything particularly outrageous. And James Cameron, who won Best Director and Best Picture for “Avatar,” felt the need to tell us he had to pee. I was glad Sandra Bullock won for “The Blind Side,” a movie I recommend to my football fan friends. But I couldn’t help but wonder about Kate Hudson. As a cast member of the musical “Nine,” she was a presenter and walked the red carpet. Was she pining for A-Rod or has she moved on with someone else? All I know is that her dress looked like a wedding cake.
Her movie was shut out of the awards. Poor thing. And she worked so hard to get in shape for the show.
Shame on you, A-Rod. She was there for you when you were in the spotlight. The least you could have done was be there for her. You’re heartless!
The good news was that Mo’Nique, Meryl Streep and Robert Downey, Jr. won awards – deservedly; “Precious,” “Julie and Julia” and “Sherlock Holmes” are all worth seeing. Jeff Bridges won too, for “Crazy Heart.” I haven’t seen that one yet, but he lives here in Santa Barbara and is, according to everyone who knows him, one of the nicest, most down-to-earth guys around. Congrats to him!
I was wondering when the Red Sox would start to stir.
The slumbering team from Boston wasn’t about to stay quiet forever (not counting Boof Bonser). So what if their Lowell deal seemed stalled and their overtures to Bay were rejected? We knew they wouldn’t spend this off-season sitting around talking about the good old days.
So they got Lackey for five years. He’s a good pitcher and he’ll make their rotation stronger and it sounds like the perfect signing. But I never did like Big John and now the “B” on his cap will make the rivalry that much more intense. Besides, he was destined to wear red for the rest of his career.
The Sox also made a deal with Mike Cameron, whom the Yankees talked about acquiring last year and the year before that but never did. The 37-year-old outfielder is said to be a terrific guy in the clubhouse, but is he really an upgrade over Bay in left?
I guess we’ll find out this spring when the two teams face off to open the 2010 season. If tradition continues, they’ll kick our butts the first couple of times around and we’ll kick theirs later in the year and it’ll be another fight to the finish. But if you ask me, the team to watch will be the Mariners. What have they been smoking?
Sure, the Phillies put the Halladay saga to rest and the Angels picked up Godzilla, but the Mariners, having already signed Figgins, ended up with Cliff Lee. I mean, seriously. The AL West just got a whole lot more interesting. Of course, while all this was happening today, US Weekly reported that A-Rod and Kate had broken up. Talk about a kick in the gut. I not only went to see her movie over the weekend but gave her the She-Fan Award for Best Girlfriend! How could she? How could they?
Speaking of movies, I escaped all the baseball news this afternoon and went to see “The Blind Side.” I’m not a football fan, but this true story, based on Michael Lewis’ book, was inspiring and Sandra Bullock was terrific. If you haven’t seen it already, it’s worth a look.
First it was the weather. I know, I know. I live in California, so I can hardly complain when I don’t have to deal with freezing temps and snow and all the stuff that’s going on in the rest of the country. But pouring, soaking, drenching rain is not good for a girl’s hair if she’s got places to go and people to see.
Then it was the screening of “Nine.” I was late getting there and was stuck sitting near the back of the theater.
The movie itself was entertaining. With a cast of Daniel Day-Lewis, Sophia Loren, Nicole Kidman, Judi Densch, Penelope Cruz, Kate Hudson, Marion Cotillard and Fergie, how bad could it be? Everybody does a good job, and the scenery in Italy is beautiful. (Plus Daniel D-L drives a cool Alfa Romeo.) “Our” Kate is impressive in her small part, and I felt very proprietary of her when she showed up onscreen. I even whispered to my husband, “Look! It’s sort of like watching A-Rod!” Speaking of my husband, he said after the movie, “I liked it except for the singing and dancing.” LOL. Here’s the trailer.
After the screening, there was a reception at a private home for director Rob Marshall and a “special guest.” As I posted yesterday, I was hoping the guest would be K-Hud. Well, there WAS no guest. I still don’t know who it was supposed to be, but the person canceled. Maybe it was Kate and she, too, was having a bad hair day?
OK, I figured. No She-Fan Cam interview. At least there will be some excellent hors d’oeuvres at the reception. Wrong! I do not consider these “excellent hors d’oeuvres!”
It wasn’t until I was about to leave that I spotted a waitress with a tray of shrimp. Bad timing on my part. When I got home I went to the mail box in the torrential rain and found a summons for this.
I’m as eager to serve my community as the next person, but I’m so not interested in having to appear for jury duty on January 6th – the day after my root canal. (I’m not kidding.)
After I dried off, I went to the computer and checked for Yankees news. While I’m not surprised that the Yanks didn’t try to hang onto Wang (as of this writing), I’m sad about it. He had those two great seasons and I was hopeful he’d bounce back in 2010. Maybe he will with another team. Bye, C-W, and thanks for the memories.
And finally I didn’t win the Yankee Blogger of the Decade poll over at “It Is High.” (Last I looked it was a very close race between LoHud and River Ave Blues.) I didn’t expect to beat out the big boys, but it would have been fun. Thanks to everybody who took the time to vote for “Confessions.” You guys are the best. I’ll be a gracious loser and say I’ll be very happy if I take home the bronze.
Congrats to the winner – and to “It Is High” for getting all that traffic on their site!
Since it’s Saturday night, which is traditionally known as “date night,” it’s time to turn our attention to the celebrity whose romantic interest in a Yankee helped both the player and the team win the championship this year. No, I’m not including Madonna, since she and A-Rod were over their little whatever-it-was before the season started. I’m not considering Joanna Garcia either; for starters, she’s not A-List enough, plus Nick Swisher isn’t the reason the Yankees won #27. What I’m saying is that this is a two-horse race.
And so, without further ado, here are the nominees for the 2009 She-Fan Award for Best Celebrity Girlfriend.
– Minka Kelly, Girlfriend of Derek Jeter –
Minka followed on the heels of a long list of Jeter conquests, but she’s lasted longer than any of the others, which proves she has staying power. She was at the Captain’s side at the finale of the old Stadium, and she’s been rumored to be his fiancee. But can she pass the She-Fan Award test?
1) Did she wear Yankees gear proudly? Yes.
2) Did she show up at the games with her Yankee’s family members? Yes.
3) Did she exhibit genuine excitement and pride when her Yankee played well? Yes.
4) Did her Yankee have a great 2009 season? Yes indeed.
And now for our other nominee…
– Kate Hudson, Girlfriend of Alex Rodriguez –
Kate followed on the heels of Madonna, as previously mentioned, as well as assorted actress/models with whom A-Rod was photographed after his divorce from C-Rod. She was rumored to have moved in with Alex in New York, but is currently on the circuit promoting her new film “Nine.” Can she pass the She-Fan Award test?
1) Did she wear Yankees gear proudly? Not that I noticed.
But she sat next to someone who did – and she sat with Amber Sabathia and Michelle Damon, neither of whom wore Yankees gear either.
2) Did she show up at the games with her Yankee’s family members? No. But she showed up with her own family members.
3) Did she exhibit genuine excitement and pride when her Yankee played well? Yes.
4) Did her Yankee have a great 2009 season? Oh, yes.
The envelope please.
And the winner of the 2009 She-Fan Award for Best Celebrity Girlfriend is…
***** Kate Hudson *****
Yes, Jeter made the bigger splash. (How often do you break Lou Gehrig’s record and become the first Yankee to be honored as SI’s Sportsman of the Year?) But how much did Minka have to do with that? Jeter would probably have hit .334 if he’d been dating Miss Piggy. Kate, on the other hand, went to Texas, Philly and other cities where the Yanks played. She hung out with the wives, was on the field for family day, brought her own family. And A-Rod thrived despite all the adversity early in the season. He certainly had his best post-season ever. And tell the truth: doesn’t Kate look like a lot more fun than Minka?
Congratulations, Kate. You and A-Rod may not last another month, but you helped us Yankee fans out this year and we’re grateful.
Oh, wait. Kate would like to accept her award with her mom by her side. Very sweet.
Enjoy, both of you!
It turns out we’re not the only ones who’ve gone back to real life now that the season has ended. Only in Kate Hudson’s case, it’s “reel life.” Opening Christmas Day is “Nine,” the movie musical based on the Tony Award-winning Broadway show. It was directed by Rob Marshall, who also directed “Chicago,” and it stars Daniel Day-Lewis, Nicole Kidman, Penelope Cruz, Judi Dench, Sophia Loren and, yes, Kate, who is said to be terrific in her singing and dancing number.
Today my Santa Barbara Film Festival Cinema Society group sent out invites to the December 12th screening, which will be followed by a Q&A with Marshall and possibly some cast members. Will Kate be coming here? And if so, is there any way on earth I won’t annoy everyone in the audience by asking her about A-Rod instead of the movie? She didn’t seem too pleased to be answering A-Rod questions in this MTV interview.
She was more relaxed fielding softballs from Mary Hart on ET.
I’ll probably have to drag my husband to see the movie (he hates musicals), but I’m looking forward to it. Here’s the trailer. I was amazed when I heard Kate singing. Minka Kelly, eat your heart out.
Will A-Rod be at the premiere, doing the red carpet thing? It could happen.
Since the Yankees didn’t fly home from Minny until today, I took the opportunity to spend a little quality time with CC’s wife Amber. She met me at our usual spot, a cafeteria near Newark Airport, and we chatted about the Yankees, her husband, my husband, and, of course, the upcoming ALCS. She hasn’t changed that much since I first spoke to her during the off-season when CC was still deciding whether to sign with the Yankees.
OK, yes she has. She’s changed a lot. Moving to New York has turned her into a different person.
But she’s still very entertaining company, and she didn’t hesitate to share, which is crucial when it comes to girlfriends. Here’s an excerpt from our afternoon together. It sounded to me as if CC, like any successful pitcher, has a plan for facing the Angels.
The Yankees’ regular season came to a close with a 10-2 drubbing of the Rays. Call me a romantic sap, but I do love happy endings. And here’s why it was a happy ending today for the Bombers.
* AJ gave up two runs (one earned) in his final tune-up.
* Joba looked like the old Joba in his one inning of relief.
* Mo retired the side in order in the ninth, so he’s ready to go.
* Jeter had a couple of singles and Damon had a couple of doubles. Even Molina had a double and he can’t hit to save his life.
The season concluded with such a happy ending vibe that I won’t even mention how Joe Maddon walked Mark Teixeira in the sixth, loading the bases. Did Joe do it to keep Carlos Pena tied with Tex for the most home runs in the AL? Oh, wait. I wasn’t going to mention it.
The intentional walk brought A-Rod to the plate for the second time in the sixth. He’d already hit one home run in the inning. Would he hit another? A granny? Absolutely.
Talk about a happy ending. A-Rod missed the month of April, rehabbing from hip surgery, and then came back to the team on May 8th and lined a homer off the Orioles’ Jeremy Guthrie.
His first pitch of the season = homer.
His last pitch of the season = homer.
Not only did he break an AL record with his seven RBIs in that sixth inning, but he broke a major league record by tallying 30 homers and 100 RBIs in 13 seasons. And yes, he also tied Mark McGuire with HR # 583. Happy ending.
(OK, who knows about the last pic. Those two could be broken up by the time I finish posting. The main thing is that the Yankees finished at 103-57 for the best record in baseball.)
Now the Yanks fly home to await the winner of Tuesday’s deciding game between the Tigers and Twins. Which team will be their opponent? Who will be the leading characters in the ALDS? How will the plot twists go? What will the cliffhangers be?
A wise person (can’t remember who) once said, “Baseball is a soap opera with box scores.” My sentiment exactly.
P.S. To celebrate the Yankees’ great season, Kevin at Zell’s Pinstripe Blog has gone through the vault and rounded up every SI cover to feature a Yankee or Yankees related theme on it. Here’s the link. If you’re a Yankee fan, it’s definitely worth a look.
Yes, the subjects are unrelated, but I’m killing two birds with one stone in this post.
First, the Yankees. Their thrilling 3-2 victory over the Rays was yet another example of the 2009 team’s “comeback-y-ness.” I mean, Nick Swisher hitting a walkoff homer in the bottom of the ninth – his second dinger of the night? This from a guy who couldn’t buy a home run in the Bronx? Crazy but true.
And Chad Gaudin going toe-to-toe with David Price in a pitcher’s duel for six innings? Also crazy but true.
Gaudin was great and made me eat crow because I kept saying how bad he is.
With the Yanks up 2-0, he ran out of gas in the seventh, allowing a homer to Longoria. I kept wishing Girardi hadn’t brought him back out for the inning, but he found himself in a jam, and it took Marte, Bruney and Coke to get him off the hook.
Then came Huuuuuuughes in the eighth. Mr. I-Haven’t-Given-Up-a-Run-in-12-Outings surrenders a home run to Bartlett to tie things up at 2-2? Yet again, crazy but true.
Which brings us to the ninth. Mo did what he does best: shut down the opposition. And then Swisher did his thing – from the other side of the plate this time. Having so many switch hitters on the team is a such an advantage.
The other news I wanted to share is that 20th Century Fox has bought the movie rights to my 2005 novel “An Ex to Grind,” a romantic comedy about a high-powered Manhattan financial planner who has to pay alimony to her slacker ex-husband, a former wide receiver for the NY Giants. Fed up, she hatches a devious plan to get her ex out of her life for good – only to decide she wants him back.
You can read about the novel here and watch me talking about the story here. To be produced by Laura Bickford, who produced such films as “Traffic,” “Che” and the recent “Duplicity”…
and Julie Yorn, who produced “Bride Wars” co-starring A-Rod’s squeeze Kate Hudson…
the movie already has two stars “attached,” which means that if they approve the script they’ll sign on for the film. Playing my heroine would be Cameron Diaz.
And in the part of the ex? Benecio Del Toro.
A funny note on all this. Apparently, Benecio wasn’t comfortable playing a pro football player because he’s not a big guy, so he asked the producers, “Would it be OK with the author if we made the ex-husband a baseball player instead?” A baseball player? Uh, yeah. I think so.
I’ve had eight books optioned for films over the years, and none of them ever made it to the screen. But I have a really good feeling about this one. And if it does happen? I hope everybody will go see it!
Well, that’s what Yankees beat writer Peter Abraham called it on his blog. Taking nothing away from the excellent performance by Scott Kazmir, tonight’s game at the Trop was a sloppy one by the Yankees, who fell 6-2 to the Rays and looked as if they’d been out partying last night.
Good pitching and defense? Not in evidence. CC struggled through five-plus and only intermittently had command of his pitches. Wasn’t he supposed to be a great second-half guy? He seemed pretty lost out there.
Both Jeter and A-Rod made throwing errors, and I can’t remember the last time that happened. Matsui got picked off of first base, and I can’t remember the last time that happened either. And Swisher? I’m sorry, but he’s just not the player I want in right field everyday. Sure, he comes up with the occasional brilliant catch, but most of the time he’s – how can I put this delicately – cringe worthy.
Would Eric Hinske be that much worse? Would Shelley Duncan? Would this kid?
I’m missing Bobby Abreu right now, wall phobia and all. Are you hearing me, Cashman?
I was delighted that Girardi finally allowed Mark Melancon to appear in public; it was starting to feel as if he’d contracted swine flu like Vincente Padilla and been shuttled off to an undisclosed location.
Speaking of maladies, what awful news about Wang. Shoulder surgery tomorrow? Out for the rest of this season and possibly next? Talk about a blow.
And what about Aceves, the guy we’ve been counting on in the pen and maybe in the rotation too? Now he tells the Yankees he has shoulder pain? How long has that been going on? I understand the whole spiel about athletes playing through injuries, blah blah, but did he think that keeping his “arm fatigue” quiet would make it go away? The strategy didn’t exactly work for Bruney.
OK. I’ll take a deep breath here.
Much better. It’s just that things have been going so well for the Yankees that I was hoping everybody would stay healthy and we wouldn’t have any big surprises and…
Would you listen to me? I’m acting all sky-is-falling, and it’s ridiculous. Baseball is nothing if not full of surprises. And with the trade deadline creeping up, there are bound to be more of them.
He threw 98 mph. He didn’t walk a single batter. And he struck out eight en route to the Yankees 9-1 victory over the Mets. He also had an RBI single and scored during the Mets’ error-filled meltdown in the second. I could feel the ground shake as he chugged home. He’s as big as The Fridge, isn’t he?
Anyway, it was a masterful performance, marred only by Sheffield’s blast, and I hope he doesn’t catch the bug that claimed Jeter, the birthday boy, who was scratched from the lineup with a bad cough.
Other than CC, the hero of the night was Brett the Jet, who is insanely fast and could probably win a race with this guy.
Five-for-five with a homer, a triple and a stolen base? How hug-worthy was that?
Damon continued to excel (great dive/slide on that catch of Cora’s pop up in the first).
Cano played good ball in spite of his various ailments. And Pena had a couple of doubles, subbing for Jeter. But how about A-Rod. He’s looked like a different player in the last few games. Maybe it’s the day off he had during the week or the hip that’s finally healing or the fact that Kate Hudson is following him around the country and bringing him luck instead of jinxing him.
All I know is he made several nice plays at third and passed Reggie on the all-time home run list.
I wonder why the Mets’ defense goes all loosey-goosey when they face the Yanks. That second inning was like a bloopers reel. Maybe it’s because of their lame old theme song. Here’s Bob Costas singing it. Not good at all.
P.S. I’m sad about Nady. I thought he’d have a big year for us. And now he’s done.
Goodbye, X-Man. It was fun while you lasted.