Up here in the northeast, we love our baseball. But the weather is not always cooperative. A few weeks ago, I organized a little get together for a number of my friends to go to Citi Field opening weekend. But it was the first week of April, in the northeast, you can never predict what the weather will be. It was slated to be raining, possibly even snowing, with temperatures approaching the low thirties. I tried to get counsel from anyone who would listen. Do we go to the game? Or just eat the tickets and hope for a rain/snow out.
“You have to go to the game! How could you not? You call yourself a fan?”
I am a fan, just not a great one in the rain in the snow. So we all decided to hope for the best, stay in, and hope and prey the skies would open and release hell to justify our decision. But the opposite happened, it didn’t snow, it didn’t rain, the game went on, and we lost not only the tickets…but a little bit of our dignity. And we learned a very valuable lesson:
Don’t try to go to games in April.
But now it is May and with the warm weather (whenever it decides to show up to our region) comes a better opportunity and a better experience at our local stadiums. What that also means, is now we all can head to the ballpark and try out their newest food creations. Whether you are heading to New York, Boston, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh or Baltimore, you will have some new plates to sample. Here is what you should check it out:
Fenway Park: Lobster Roll
Photo Credit: Luke O'neil/Vice.com
There is only one way to describe the Fenway Park’s Lobster Roll. Its wicked awesome.
While most baseball fans typically do not identify seafood as apart of the traditional ball park staples, the Lobster Roll at Fenway is paving a new way for baseball foods. Served up with a side of potato wedges, this Lobster Roll should have all fans forgetting about their
Citi Field: Dan & John’s Wings
Photo Credit: Dan & John's Wings
Remember when you would go to an ice cream stand, and you could order a scoop or two of your favorite ice cream into a little plastic baseball helmet, of the team, of your choice? It was one of my greatest memories of my childhood! But I am adult now, and I can’t eat ice cream like I used to.
Instead I need something adult-like, and I want it to go into an actual size helmet. Not a mini.
Thankfully at Citi Field, they have answered my call, and opened up late last year, Dan & John’s Wings. You can get an order of wings in a large Mets helmet with a side of blue cheese and celery to satisfy your adult urges.
So in case you didn’t get a chance to try out their wings last season, get to Citi Field now to try out some wings, by a couple of guys who know how to make them (one of them is actually from Buffalo…so that’s gotta be something).
Yankee Stadium: G.O.A.T. Burger
Since the opening of the new stadium back in 2009, the new Yankee Stadium has been credited for having some of the widest arrange of foods you can eat at the ball park. From your traditional favorites, like burgers and hot dogs, the Yankees have opened up Sushi concessions, Mexican cuisine and even Thai Food. The Yankees do have a rather large fan base, so it makes sense for the Yankees to meet the needs of their fans. But the Yankees were really missing a ballpark meal that really personified…New York. Ladies and gentleman please meet the G.O.A.T. Burger
Photo Credit: Yankees
For our elderly readers, G.O.A.T. does not mean this burger is made from goat meat. The Greatest Of All-Time Burger is loaded with New York favorites. A burger with crispy bacon, american cheese and New York’s favorite deli meat, pastrami. Finally Yankee fans no longer have to decide between a burger or a New York Deli sandwich.
Citizens Bank Ball Park (Phillies): Sonoran Dog
The Phillies have got off to a great start this season, and have pleasantly been one of baseball’s best surprises this season. What is equally surprising is how they took an old ball-park favorite, the hot dog, and added a new spin on it. The Sonoran Dog is a new addition to Philadelphia this season, it is an all-beef hot dog wrapped in hickory bacon and topped with refried beans, tomatillo salsa verde, onions, tabasco mayo on a Liscio’s roll.
(Photo Credit: Michelle Caffrey/NJ.com)
PNC Park (Pirates): The Cracker-Jack and Mac Hot Dog
The Pirates have some of the most glutinous food creations of all-time. Mega-sized burgers, quadruple stuffed grilled cheese sandwiches, and now Pittsburgh once again attempted to raise its game by introducing the Cracker Jack and Mac Hot Dog. It is, exactly how it sounds, it is a hot dog piled with macaroni and cheese, cracker jacks, caramel sauce and jalapeños. In order to soak up all of the sauces the hot dog provides, a traditional hot dog bun is swapped out for pita bread. If anyone has ever imagined what it would taste like when you put together a hot dog, cracker jacks and mac and cheese, you know can get your answer.
Photo Credit: @darrenrovell
Camden Yards (Orioles): High Heater Burger
Camden Yards has always been considered one of the classic destinations for any and all baseball fans. Its scenery is second to none, and its an experience that all fans of the game, should have. And if 2016 is the year you decide to take a voyage to Baltimore, then try out their new High Heater Burger.
(Photo Credit: Orioles)
It consists of two beef patties, sautéed jalapeños, pepper jack cheese, smoked bacon and chipotle aioli. Simple ingredients for a terrific burger.
Could DeShaun Watson be the first player in the 2017 NFL Draft?
Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports
Had enough NFL Draft talk?
Yeah, I know…
Therefore, its never too soon to look at next year’s crop of prospects and begin to ‘mock’ where they could end up.
But what can be gained by mocking next year’s prospects? The real purpose of this mock will be to introduce the players in college football that we all should pay attention to this fall. We can also get an idea of what kind of draft we could see next April as well. For example, in this year’s draft there was a ton of talented youngsters in the trenches. In the 2016 draft, 12 picks in the first round were either offensive or defensive lineman, seven picks were in the secondary, four were receivers, three quarterbacks and one Ezekiel Elliott. This year’s 2017 draft will once again have numerous offensive and defensive lineman and secondary player to choose from, but the real story could be the number of running backs that go in the first round. The last time three running backs were selected in the first round was 2010, and we could once again see that in 2017 with the likes of Leonard Fournette, Dalvin Cook, Nick Chubb and Samaje Perine entering the mix.
What about the quarterbacks of the draft? Are there any signal-callers in college that could alter the fate of an NFL franchise, for the better? As of now, there is not many. 2013 was the last year there was only one quarterback taken in the first round (E.J. Manuel to Buffalo), and there is a good chance we could see that again in 2017. DeShaun Watson, quarterback of the Clemson Tigers, is the early favorite to be the top selection in the draft, but there are still many that question his abilities on the NFL level. Thankfully he and others will have the entire 2017 year to cement his first round status.
1) Cleveland- Cam Robinson, OT, Alabama
2) San Francisco- DeShaun Watson, QB, Clemson
3) Miami- Leonard Fournette, RB, LSU
4) Detroit- Jabril Peppers, CB, Michigan
5) Atlanta- Myles Garrett, DE, Texas A&M
6) Cleveland- JuJu Smith, WR, USC
7) Denver- Tre’Davious White, CB, LSU
8) Tennessee- Adoree Jackson, CB/WR, USC
9) San Diego- Roderick Johnson, OT, Florida State
10) Kansas City- Davon Godchaux, DE/DT, LSU
11) Washington- Dalvin Cook, RB, Florida State
12) New York J- Jamal Adams, S, LSU
13) New Orleans- Malachi Dupre, WR, LSU
14) Tennessee (from St. Louis)- Mike Williams, WR, Clemson
The criticism must have gotten to Dragic yesterday because it was the Goran Dragic show in Miami.
After not showing up for the first few games it was Goran Dragic that closed out an easy victory in Miami for the clinching game in this best of seven series. He lead the Heat with 25 points and never looked back at for what sure would have been an issue if he didn't show up in this series.
It was a valiant effort for the Hornets but they didn't have enough in the tank and their age really showed today against the savvy Heat. Kemba Walker was non existent. He even looked like his mind wasn't on the game. Walker had nine points, which was less than half his yearly average. He also had three turnovers to go with his poor offensive display. Dragic picked him a part on both ends of the floor and he didn't look like the leader he had been all year long. There isn't much to ask for from the rest of the team. They have done a good job at putting together an average Eastern Conference team, but once again their depth and age showed against the Heat. Thus, concluding their season in the first round. Next year will have more of a bright side.
Side note: Imagine if the Heat had Chris Bosch, well he might be returning shortly.
Brilliant end to the third quarter last night for Derozan.
Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports
Pacers vs. Raptors
Demar Derozan. Thankfully he showed up providing 30 points for the Raptors or this would have been the most pathetic series in the first round. Well let's be real, it was. Luckily for the Raptors they won and now have a chance to restart against the Heat. The Pacer can go home and begin to re-think their off season strategy for rebuilding. In conclusion, hopefully the Raptors can give us a better show in the next round. They have the home court advantage against the Heat, which may come into play if they grind out wins, like they did against Indiana. If not, they are going to have to expect even more from Derozan and some kind of consistency from Kyle Lowry.
Check for weekly NBA updates every Monday. See you then.