Thursday, January 19, 2012

Football Who Wants To Be Minnesota Vikings Defensive Coordinator?

Here my most recent post at Football Nation, taking a look at the Minnesota Vikings search for a defensive coordinator prior to the reports Indianapolis Colts defensive backs coach Alan Willams will be offered the job.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Football Philadelphia Eagles Offseason Needs/Issues

Here is my latest post at Football Nation, taking a look at the most pressing issues facing the Philadelphia Eagles during the coming offseason.


Barry Larkin: 2012 Baseball Hall of Famer

Can you name the first major league shortstop to have a 30-30 (HR and SB) season?
It was Barry Larkin, who accomplished the feat in 1996 when had 33 homeruns and 36 stolen bases. 

Larkin spent his entire major league career with the Cincinnati Reds from 1986-2004, which has to be considered a feat in this era of free agency and rampant player movement. Prior to that, he was a member of the 1984 Team USA Olympic baseball team.
Prior to his stellar 1996 campaign, Larkin won the NL MVP in 1995 as he hit .319 with 15 HR, 66 RBI and 51 SB. He ranked in the top 10 in the National League in both average and stolen bases in leading the Reds to the postseason that year.

During his 19-year career, Larkin made 12 All-Star appearances, won three Gold Gloves and was a nine-time Silver Slugger. He was also an important part of the 1990 Reds’ squad that upset Oakland in the World Series, as he hit .353 against the A’s.

Larkin received awards for his off the field exploits as well, as he was given the Roberto Clemente Award, given to the player that shows character and gives back to the community, in 1993. One year later he received the Lou Gehrig Award, given to the player that exemplifies courage and integrity on and off the field.

Larkin retired with a .295 career batting average, 2,340 career hits, 198 HR, 960 RBI and 379 SB along with 1,329 runs scored and 441 doubles. He put up good numbers despite being plagued by injuries during his career, as he played in 150 or more games just four times and played 110 or less games eight times. Those of you who are sabermetrically-inclined will note he had a career OPS of .815.

After his retirement, Larkin was hired as a special assistant to the general manager by the Washington Nationals before working as an analyst for MLB Network. He was hired by ESPN in 2011.

Larkin received 86 percent of the vote from the BBWA on Monday afternoon, in his third year on the ballot.

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I am a sportswriter based in Minnesota, and I contribute currently to a few sports related websites. I intend to use this blog to create visibility for my work.