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AZ Front Row Issue 5 Mike Leake

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AZ Front Row Issue 5 Mike Leake Powered By Docstoc
					Lt. Welterweight Sensation
                 Publisher
                  Johnny Ramirez
                          editor
                    Omar Marquez
 Managing editor
                       Andrew Bess
Marketing director
                    Carlos Santana

   Public relations
           director
                TAnAe STewARd

         art director
                    Marwan Shahin
  PhotograPhers
                  Obed Gonzalez
                 Mustafa Johnson
                    Izzy Vasquez
        ProMotional
           director
                           Blair Kane
graPhic designers
                  Marwan Shahin
                 Mustafa Johnson
                             PS3
                      writers
                  Andrew Schmidt
                    Robert Cantor
                 Alexis Rodriquez
                 Jerry Olibarria Jr.
                    Albert Alvarez
                Alejandro Serrano
                      Sam Alvarez
                      Jeff Hidalgo

                     address
              130 n. Central #205
               Phoenix, AZ 85004




        coVer art bY
      Marwan shahin
    coVer Photo bY
nector MarMolejos

  Copyright 2010 by Az Front Row Magazine.
    All rights reserved. Reproduction or trans-
     mission of any part of this publication
           is strictly prohibited without written
  per-mission by OJC Enterprises Inc. The
     publisher is not responsible for the return
      of unsolicited materials. The opinions
    expressed herein are exclusively those of
     the writers and do not necessarily reflect
      the opinion of the publishers or Az Front
                                  Row Magazine.
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                             field box


Spring Fever:
                                                                                                                               By omar marquez




Five CaCtuS League StorieS to
FoLLow thiS Spring training SeaSon
 As temperatures begin to increase out in Phoenix, Ariz. once again, it’s that time of year for hot dogs, crackerjacks, peanuts, and vendors yelling out,
 “lemonade like grandma made” as Cactus League baseball officially begins throughout the Valley.

 For over 50 years, America’s pastime has been a tradition in Arizona, and the origin of the Cactus League camps trace back to the Valley as far as the
 early 1920s. Amateurs proving themselves, veterans seeking a second opportunity, heroes begin to unfold, and plenty of MLB history has been birthed in
 the Cactus League. In 2011 the legacy continues.

 With the first week of play already in motion, below are a few stories worth following this spring.




ArizonA D-bAcks: new Manager
kirk gibson brings an old fashion
MentalitY to a Young ball club
After jumping into another season of turmoil,
the D-backs demanded that it was time for
change as they fired GM, Josh Byrnes, and
manager A.J. Hinch during the middle of last
season, leaving baseball’s former Iron Man
and D-backs batting coach, Kirk Gibson as
acting interim manager.

Many critics doubted Gibson’s capabilities to
lead a club claiming that he was too playful
and not serious enough with the players, but
shortly after he had taken over, the change
that he brought to the once pessimistic ball
club was more than noticeable. In the end,
Gibson proved all naysayers wrong, and his
actions displayed that he was the right man
for the job. So it was no surprise that when
Towers was promoted as the franchises’ new
GM back in September, that the “interim” la-
bel was being dropped from his position, and
Gibson was announced as the new manager
of the D-backs.

So far his young ball club has embraced his
leadership, and the former All-Star has al-
ready implemented an old school approach
throughout the club. While a more formal
dress code for players has already been en-
forced for players, Gibson nods the enforce-
ment, and has stated that he wants players            other technology that Gibson and his former        As the D-backs approach the season with a
to focus more on the game. Within recent              baseball patrons didn’t have, to be utilized       young ball club still searching for its identity,
weeks it’s been reported that he wants items          less throughout the clubhouse this season.         Gibson brings the experience and mentality
such as cell phones, iPods, laptops, and                                                                 to help this young bunch find its way.
                          field box

Los AngeLes DoDgers: Matt keMP
PrePares for a bounce-back season
Last season Matt Kemp stole the spotlight       Don Mattingly, who is known to have a good
from Manny Ramirez as he was the talk of        relationship with the promising center fielder.
Dodgertown, but the attention was not ex-       He also begins the spring stint with new first
actly the type of publicity that he was aim-    base coach, Davey Lopes. During his time
ing for. From Dodgers’ GM, Ned Colletti,        with the Phillies, Lopes helped the club lead
bashing him openly to the media last May,       in stolen base percentage in all of baseball
to his ongoing behind-the-scenes feuds with     from 2007 through the 2010 season, and he
coaches, Larry Bowa and Bob Schaefer,           is expected to push Kemp to reach his full
many speculated that the five-tool player       base stealing capabilities.
would be dealt at the trade deadline. But the
Dodgers organization made it crystal clear      Following his first week of Spring Training
that they were being patient, and that their    workouts Kemp stated that, “he’s looking
young star was staying put. And towards the     forward to the new season,” and with the
final days of the season, despite the irrele-   speed, defense and power threat in Matt
vance of his squad and a playoff race, Kemp     Kemp, the former Golden-Glove winner has
looked as if he had finally gotten his game     the potential to become one of the best out-
back to the swing of things.                    fielders in the game. If things can remain
                                                constructive out in Los Angeles, Calif. and
As this Spring Training season kicks off,       if he can avoid all injuries, Kemp may just
Kemp enters with a new manager,                 have the best season of his career.




sAn FrAncisco giAnts:
tiM lincecuM and Matt cain
baseball’s new dYnaMic duo.
                                                From Koufax and Drysdale, to Johnson              Together they have brought the city of San
                                                and Schilling, the National League has had        Francisco its first World Series Champion-
                                                its share of pitching duos that have argu-        ship ring, and with both hurlers under club
                                                ably been some of the best in MLB history.        control for a few more seasons, Northern
                                                In today’s post-steroid baseball era, out in      California might just have this decade’s most
                                                the Bay Area of San Francisco, Calif., Tim        elite pitching duo.
                                                Lincecum and Matt Cain are carrying the
                                                torch and proving that they’re the most dom-
                                                inant one-two combination in baseball today.

                                                Last season the two-time All Star, Tim Lince-
                                                cum posted a 3.49 ERA and led the National
                                                League in strikeouts with 231 for the season.
                                                Besides being nominated to an MLB All-Star
                                                game for consecutive seasons, when Lince-
                                                cum won his first Cy Young Award in 2008
                                                he was the first second-year pitcher to win
                                                the award since Doc Gooden and Bret Sa-
                                                berhagen in 1985.

                                                Matt Cain ended the 2010 season with a
                                                3.17 ERA and 177 strikeouts in 33 appear-
                                                ances last season proving that his success
                                                a year prior wasn’t luck but merely skill. Dur-
                                                ing last postseason, the 26 year-old became
                                                the fifth pitcher in MLB to pitch at least 20
                                                innings during the postseason without allow-
                                                ing any earned runs.
                           field box

MiLwAukee brewers:
Prince fielder’s last season
as a brewer?
Although the Brewers were unable to lock
in their All-Star first baseman Prince Fielder
to a contract extension, they were fortu-
nate enough to work out a one-year con-
tract agreement for 2011. So what does this
mean for both parties?

Fielder will be headed towards free-agency
after this season, and it’s apparent that he’ll
be in another destination besides Milwaukee
for 2012. Before spring training, Fielder has
already stated that he doesn’t want his free-
agency to become a distraction for his team-
mates, as they have a chance to take part
in a pennant race this season. The Brewers
made headlines when they added another
ace to their rotation by acquiring AL hurler,
Zack Greinke during the offseason. With
Rickie Weeks, Corey Hart and Ryan Braun
in the line-up, this season could be one of
the best that Milwaukee fans have experi-
enced in a while.

In his six-season career, the son of Cecil
Fielder has hit .279/.385/.535 with 536 RBIs.
Within those six seasons he holds a Home-
Run Derby title, a Silver Slugger Award, and
he’s made two All-Star appearances. Fielder
is the caliber of player that any organization
would love to have on their team, but for now
he’s got one more year left on the team that
he’s currently known for as their franchise
player.




chicAgo white sox: adaM dunn’s
transition to dh role
During the offseason the slugging first base-     hoping to squeeze out of Manny Ramirez
man, Adam Dunn stated that he did not want        at the end of last season. And with spring
to sign with an AL club and transition to a       training workouts already in motion, there’s
DH. But things changed quickly, especially        plenty of talk circulating that the big donkey
with the right contract offer.                    is transitioning well into his new role.

In December, Dunn signed a four year deal         If he can adjust to the position mentally, then
worth $56 million with the Chicago White          Adam Dunn might just become one of the
Sox bringing the slugger to the American          greatest DHs that the White Sox have seen
League for the first time in his career. Dunn     since their former veteran slugger, Frank
has had six consecutive seasons with 40 or        Thomas.
more home runs and the former first base-
man averages about 100 RBIs a season.
With Dunn’s capabilities, the White Sox are
almost guaranteed the big bat that they were
                                     field box

                                Spring training
                                SCheduLe
                                                              2011 TENTATIVE SPRING TRAINING BASEBALL
                                                    2011 TENTATIVE SPRING TRAINING BASEBALL SCHEDULE SCHEDULE
                                                                                                For updates: www.CactusLeague.com www.CactusLeague.com
                                                                                                                      For updates:


      SUNDAY                        MONDAY
                                  SUNDAY                        TUESDAY
                                                              MONDAY                            WEDNESDAY
                                                                                             TUESDAY                         WEDNESDAY
                                                                                                                                THURSDAY                      FRIDAY
                                                                                                                                                          THURSDAY                 SATURDAY
                                                                                                                                                                                 FRIDAY         SATURDAY
                                                                                                                                                                          FEBRUARY      FEBRUARY
                                                                                                                                                                              25                      25 26
                                                                                                                                                            AZ @ SF - Scottsdale         SF Scottsdale
                                                                                                                                                                                    AZ @LAD- @ LAA - Tempe         LAD @ LAA - Te
                                                                                                                                                                                        COL @ AZ - Salt River     COL @ AZ - Salt
                   FEBRUARY                   FEBRUARY                                                                        MARCH                   MARCH
                   27                         27 28                           28 1                            1      2                        2 3                         3 4                          4 5
LAA @ LAD - Glendale        LAA @ LAD - Glendale
                                 CWS @ LAD - Glendale     CWS @ LAD CWS - Glendale
                                                               MIL @ - Glendale          MIL @KC @ LAD - Glendale
                                                                                                CWS - Glendale                 SEA @ Glendale
                                                                                                                          KC @ LAD - CWS - Glendale SEA @ CWS -CLE - Goodyear COL @ CLE - LAD - Glendale
                                                                                                                                                           COL @ Glendale               CIN @ Goodyear         CIN @ LAD - Gle
CIN @ CLE - Goodyear              CLE - CIN - Goodyear
                            CIN @CLE @ Goodyear           CLE @ CIN - CLE - Goodyear
                                                                LAD @ Goodyear           LAD @ CLE - CIN - Goodyear
                                                                                              CWS @ Goodyear                                                  MIL - SEA - Peoria
                                                                                                                         CWS @ CIN - MIL - Maryvale OAK @ CIN @ Maryvale
                                                                                                                               OAK @ Goodyear                                        CIN @ SEACLE* - Goodyear CWS @ CLE* - Go
                                                                                                                                                                                       CWS @ - Peoria
  OAK @ CHI - Mesa                @ CHI - Mesa
                              OAKSF @ MIL* - Maryvale      SF @ MIL* @ SEA - Peoria
                                                                  TEX - Maryvale           TEX CHISEA MIL - Maryvale
                                                                                               @ @ - Peoria                      TEX* Maryvale
                                                                                                                          CHI @ MIL - @ CHI - Mesa          TEX @ - Mesa
                                                                                                                                                       TEX* @ CHIOAK - Phoenix     TEX @ OAK MIL - Maryvale LAA @ MIL - Ma
                                                                                                                                                                                        LAA @ - Phoenix
  SD @ SEA - Peoria                SEA Peoria
                              SD @MIL* -@ CHI - Mesa        MIL* @ CHI OAK - Phoenix
                                                                CIN* @ - Mesa                    OAK - SD - Peoria
                                                                                         CIN* @COL @ Phoenix                COL @AZ @ Peoria
                                                                                                                                   SD - SD - Peoria          SD @ Peoria
                                                                                                                                                        AZ @ SD -AZ - Salt River    SD @ AZ -@ CHI - Mesa
                                                                                                                                                                                           SD Salt River          SD @ CHI - Me
 SF @ AZ - Salt River              SEA @ River
                             SF @ AZ - SaltSD - Peoria       SEA AZ @ COL - Salt River
                                                                 @ SD - Peoria                  COL - OAK - Phoenix
                                                                                          AZ @CLE @ Salt River                  SF @ - Phoenix
                                                                                                                          CLE @ OAK COL - Salt River  SF @ COL - SF* - Scottsdale MIL @ CLE* -@ SEA - Peoria
                                                                                                                                                           MIL @ Salt River               SF* Scottsdale        CLE* @ SEA - Pe
 KC @ TEX - Surprise         KC @COL @Surprise River
                                  TEX - AZ - Salt          COL @ AZ - Salt- River
                                                                CHI @ SF Scottsdale            SEA @Scottsdale River
                                                                                         CHI @ SF - AZ* - Salt            SEA @ AZ* - TEX*River
                                                                                                                               CLE @  Salt - Surprise        CHI @- KC - Surprise
                                                                                                                                                      CLE @ TEX* Surprise           CHI @SFKC -OAK - Phoenix
                                                                                                                                                                                            @ Surprise          SF @ OAK - Pho
                                  KC @ TEX - Surprise       KC @ SD @ Surprise
                                                                  TEX - KC - Surprise          AZ* - SF - Scottsdale
                                                                                           SD @ KC@ Surprise                     SF @ LAA - Tempe
                                                                                                                          AZ* @ KC - Scottsdale        KC @ LAA@ TempeTempe
                                                                                                                                                            CWS - LAA -             CWS TEX @ AZ - Salt River
                                                                                                                                                                                         @ LAA - Tempe          TEX @ AZ - Salt
                                  OAK @ LAA - Tempe              CIN* @ Tempe
                                                            OAK @ LAA - LAA - Tempe       CIN* LAA @ TEX - Surprise
                                                                                                @ LAA - Tempe              LAALADTEXCIN - Goodyear LAD @ CIN - LAD - Glendale
                                                                                                                                                          SF* @ Goodyear
                                                                                                                               @ @ - Surprise                                            COL @ KC - Surprise
                                                                                                                                                                                  SF* @ LAD - Glendale          COL @ KC - Sur

                        6                       6     7                         7 8                           8 9                             9 10
                                                                                                                               SD @ LAD - Glendale    SD @ LAD - Glendale
                                                                                                                                                                         10 11                        11 12
 KC @ CWS - Glendale   KC @ CWS - Glendale                                                                                                                                            TEX @ CWS - Glendale TEX @ CWS - Glen
                            CLE @ Goodyear
CHI* @ CIN - Goodyear CHI* @ CIN -CWS - Glendale               COL* @ Glendale
                                                          CLE @ CWS - CWS - Glendale COL* @ CWS - Glendale
                                                                                             SEA @ LAD - Glendale        SEA SF @ CINGlendale
                                                                                                                               @ LAD - - Goodyear          CHI Goodyear                   CWS
                                                                                                                                                     SF @ CIN - @ CWS - Glendale CHI @@ CLE -- Glendale 2pm @ CLE - Goodye
                                                                                                                                                                                    LAA          Goodyear LAA
  LAD @ CHI* - Mesa          @ @ CIN - Goodyear
                        LADMILCHI* - Mesa                 MIL @AZ @-CLE - Goodyear
                                                                  CIN Goodyear          AZ @SD* @Goodyear
                                                                                              CLE - CLE - Goodyear             @ @ - Goodyear
                                                                                                                         SD*COLCLE MIL - Maryvale COL @ MIL @ CLE - Goodyear SEA @ CLE - Goodyear
                                                                                                                                                            SEA - Maryvale
                                                                                                                                                                                       AZ* @ MIL - Maryvale    AZ* @ MIL - Mary
  OAK* @ SD - Peoria           LAA @ Peoria
                        OAK* @ SD - CHI - Mesa                  LAD @ - Mesa                    KC - CHI - Mesa
                                                             LAA @ CHI MIL - Maryvale LAD @ MIL @Maryvale                       @ CHI CHI - Mesa
                                                                                                                             KC CLE @ - Mesa           CLE @ CHI @Mesa- Maryvale OAK* @ MIL -CHI - Mesa
                                                                                                                                                           OAK* - MIL
                                                                                                                                                                                         CIN @
                                                                                                                                                                                                Maryvale
                                                                                                                                                                                                                 CIN @ CHI - Me
                             SEA @ OAK - Phoenix
MIL* @ OAK* - Phoenix MIL* @ OAK* - Phoenix                SEA @ OAK - SEA - Peoria
                                                                  SF @ Phoenix                  SEA - SD* -
                                                                                          SF @CIN @ Peoria Peoria               @ SD* - Peoria
                                                                                                                           CINLAA* @ SEA - Peoria          LAD @ Peoria
                                                                                                                                                      LAA* @ SEA - OAK* - Phoenix LAD @ OAK* SEA - Peoria
                                                                                                                                                                                               - Phoenix
                                                                                                                                                                                        OAK @                   OAK @ SEA - Peo
                            LAD @- COL - Salt River
CLE @ COL - Salt River CLE @ COL Salt River               LAD @SD @- OAK River
                                                                  COL Salt - Phoenix           OAK - Phoenix
                                                                                        SD @MIL @ AZ - Salt River              @ @ Salt Phoenix
                                                                                                                          MILKC*AZ -OAK -River              KC @ COL - Salt River
                                                                                                                                                     KC* @ OAK - Phoenix           KC @ COL - Salt River
                                                                                                                                                                                      SD @ COL* - Salt River SD @ COL* - Salt
 SEA @ SF - Scottsdale      TEX - SF - Scottsdale
                       SEA @ SF @Scottsdale                    CHI @ Scottsdale               COL* - SF - Scottsdale
                                                          TEX @ SF - COL* - Salt River CHI @CWS @ Salt River                  CWS* - TEX - Surprise CWS* @CIN @ Surprise
                                                                                                                         CWS @ SF@ Scottsdale                TEX - TEX - Surprise  CIN @ TEX - Surprise
                                                                                                                                                                                      LAD* @ SF - Scottsdale LAD* @ SF - Scott
 MIL* @ TEX - Surprise        AZ @ - Surprise
                       MIL* @ TEX KC* - Surprise            AZ @ CIN @Surprise
                                                                  KC* - KC - Surprise   CIN @ KC @Surprise
                                                                                             OAK - TEX - Surprise               @ @ - Surprise
                                                                                                                          OAKKC*TEXLAA* - Tempe       KC* @ LAA*@TempeTempe
                                                                                                                                                              AZ - LAA -             AZ @ LAA - Tempe
                                                                                                                                                                                       LAD* @ KC - Surprise    LAD* @ KC - Surp
   AZ @ LAA - Tempe          KC* @ Tempe
                         AZ @ LAA - SD - Peoria            KC* @TEX @ LAA - Tempe
                                                                   SD - Peoria           TEX @ LAA - Tempe
                                                                                               COL @ LAA - Tempe            CWS* LAA - - Salt River CWS* @ AZ - @ SD - Peoria
                                                                                                                           COL @ @ AZ Tempe                  SF Salt River          SF @ SD - Peoria
                                                                                                                                                                                     AZ* @ COL* - Salt River AZ* @ COL* - Salt R
                   13                         13 14                           14 15                         15 16                           16 17                        17 18                        18 19
CWS @ LAD - Glendale CWS @ LAD CWS - Glendale
                            SD @ - Glendale               SD @TEX @- LAD - Glendale
                                                                 CWS Glendale             TEX @ LAD CWS - Glendale
                                                                                               SF @ - Glendale            SF @ AZ @ -LAD - Glendale
                                                                                                                               CWS Glendale           AZ @ LAD -@ CHI - Mesa
                                                                                                                                                            CIN Glendale           CIN MILCHI - Mesa
                                                                                                                                                                                       @ @ LAD - Glendale MIL @ LAD - Gle
                            OAK @ Goodyear
LAA* @ CIN - Goodyear LAA* @ CIN - CLE - Goodyear         OAK @ CLE - CLE - Goodyear
                                                               MIL @ Goodyear                   CLE - AZ - Salt
                                                                                         MIL @LAA @GoodyearRiver              CLE @ CIN River
                                                                                                                          LAA @ AZ - Salt - Goodyear CLE @ CIN @Goodyear
                                                                                                                                                            AZ - SEA - Peoria      AZ COL @ - Peoria
                                                                                                                                                                                      @ SEA CIN* - Goodyear COL @ CIN* - Go
 KC @ MIL - Maryvale   KC @ MIL - -Maryvale
                               CHI SEA - Peoria                    SEA - CHI*
                                                             CHI -COL @Peoria- Mesa        COL @@ CIN- -Mesa
                                                                                              KC CHI* Goodyear                                                                           CHI Salt - Peoria
                                                                                                                         KC @CWS*- @ MIL - Maryvale CWS* MIL @ COL - Salt River MIL @ COL -@ SDRiver
                                                                                                                              CIN Goodyear                @ MIL - Maryvale                                     CHI @ SD - Pe
   CLE @ SD - Peoria         @ @ - Peoria
                         CLECIN SD COL - Salt River       CIN @ COL -@ SDRiver
                                                                  LAA Salt - Peoria         LAAMILSD -SEA - Peoria
                                                                                                @ @ Peoria                     CHI @ Peoria
                                                                                                                          MIL @ SEA - OAK - Phoenix       LAD @ Phoenix
                                                                                                                                                      CHI @ OAK -SF - Scottsdale LAD @ SF -@ OAK - Phoenix CWS @ OAK - Ph
                                                                                                                                                                                       CWS Scottsdale
 COL @ OAK - Phoenix        MIL @ Phoenix
                       COL @ OAK -SF - Scottsdale         MIL @ SF @Scottsdale
                                                               CHI* - OAK* - Phoenix          COL @ TEX - Surprise
                                                                                         CHI* @ OAK* - Phoenix               CWS* - COL - Salt
                                                                                                                         COL @ TEX @Surprise River CWS* @ COL - Salt- River
                                                                                                                                                           CLE* @ KC Surprise          CIN* - AZ - Salt
                                                                                                                                                                                  CLE* @ KC@ Surprise River  CIN* @ AZ - Salt
 CHI @ AZ - Salt River       LAD - Salt River
                       CHI @ AZ @ TEX - Surprise           LAD @ TEX @ KC - Surprise
                                                                OAK* - Surprise           OAK* @ KC - Surprise                LAA @ SF - Scottsdale  LAA @ SD - Scottsdale
                                                                                                                                                            SF @ LAA - Tempe            KC @ Tempe
                                                                                                                                                                                   SD @ LAA -SF - Scottsdale KC @ SF - Scott
  SEA @ LAA* - Tempe    SEA @ LAA* - Tempe                      SF @ AZ - Salt River      SF @ AZ - Salt River                 TEX @ SD - Peoria      TEX @ SD -CWS - Glendale OAK @ CWS @Glendale
                                                                                                                                                                                        SEA - TEX - Surprise
                                                                                                                                                        OAK @ Peoria                                         SEA @ TEX - Su
  SF @ TEX - Surprise   SF @ TEX - Surprise                                                                                   SEA @ KC - Surprise                                        CLE Goodyear
                                                                                                                                                          @ @ CLE* - Goodyear TEX @ CLE* - @ LAA - Tempe
                                                                                                                                                     SEATEX KC - Surprise                                     CLE @ LAA - Te


                    20                        20 21                           21 22                         22 23                           23 24                        24 25                        2526
LAD @ CWS - Glendale             @ CWS - Glendale
                            LAD OAK @ LAD* - Glendale OAK @ CHI @ - Glendale
                                                              LAD* LAD - Glendale         CHI @ LAD - CWS - Glendale LAD @ CWS -LAD - Glendale
                                                                                              LAD @ Glendale               COL @ Glendale                  SD @ - Glendale
                                                                                                                                                     COL @ LAD CIN - Goodyear         LAA - CWS - Glendale LAA @ CWS - Gl
                                                                                                                                                                                  SD @ CIN@ Goodyear
 AZ* @ CLE - Goodyear            SEA @ Goodyear
                             AZ* @ CLE -CIN - Goodyear SEA @ CIN@ Goodyear
                                                             OAK - CIN - Goodyear              KC @ Goodyear
                                                                                         OAK @ CIN -CLE - Goodyear    KC @ CLE @Goodyear
                                                                                                                           TEX* - CIN - Goodyear           CLE @ Goodyear
                                                                                                                                                     TEX* @ CIN -MIL - Maryvale       SEA @ Maryvale
                                                                                                                                                                                 CLE @ MIL - MIL - Maryvale   SEA @ MIL - Ma
 CIN @ MIL - Maryvale            TEX @ Maryvale
                             CIN @ MIL -MIL - Maryvale  TEX @SD @- MIL - Maryvale
                                                              MIL Maryvale                      OAK Maryvale
                                                                                          SD @ MIL - @ CHI - Mesa      OAK @ CHI - Mesa Mesa
                                                                                                                             CWS @ CHI -                    SEA* @ Mesa
                                                                                                                                                       CWS @ CHI - CHI - Mesa           LAD @ Mesa
                                                                                                                                                                                   SEA* @ CHI - SD - Peoria     LAD @ SD - Pe
   SF* @ CHI - Mesa              COL @ - - Scottsdale COL @ CWS @ SEA - Peoria
                               SF* @ CHISFMesa                 SF - Scottsdale                  CIN @ Peoria
                                                                                           CWS @ SEA - SD - Peoria      CIN @ SD - SEA - Peoria
                                                                                                                              KC @ Peoria                  LAA @ Peoria
                                                                                                                                                        KC @ SEA -OAK - Phoenix         OAK AZ - Salt
                                                                                                                                                                                  LAA @KC @ - PhoenixRiver     KC @ AZ - Salt
   SD @ SEA - Peoria              CLE @ Peoria
                               SD @ SEA -KC - Surprise        CLE - AZ - Salt
                                                         CLE @ KC@ Surprise River         CLE @AZ @ Salt River
                                                                                                AZ - TEX - Surprise         OAK - AZ - Salt
                                                                                                                       AZ @ TEX@Surprise River               AZ - KC Surprise
                                                                                                                                                      OAK @SF @ Salt -River        SF @ KC - Surprise
                                                                                                                                                                                      CIN @ SF* - Scottsdale CIN @ SF* - Scot
 AZ* @ OAK* - Phoenix              OAK* LAA - Tempe
                             AZ* @CHI @ - Phoenix        CHI @ LAA -KC - Surprise
                                                             LAA @ Tempe                        SF @ LAA - Tempe
                                                                                         LAA @ KC - Surprise                CLE @ Tempe
                                                                                                                        SF @ LAA -SF - Scottsdale     CLE @ SF -CWS - Glendale
                                                                                                                                                          AZ @ Scottsdale              CHI - Glendale
                                                                                                                                                                                AZ @ CWS @ TEX - Surprise      CHI @ TEX - Sur
 LAA @ COL - Salt River      LAA @ COL - Salt- River
                                 CWS @ SD Peoria        CWS @ SD - Peoria                    SEA @ COL - Salt River SEA @ COL -@ LAA - Tempe
                                                                                                                             MIL Salt River                @ @ - Tempe
                                                                                                                                                       MILLADLAA SEA* - Peoria   LAD @ SEA* - Peoria
                                                                                                                                                                                     SF* @ CLE - Goodyear    SF* @ CLE - Good
OAK* @ SF* - Scottsdale     OAK* @ SF* - Scottsdale
                                LAD* @ AZ - Salt River LAD* @ AZ - Salt River                                              SD @ TEX* - Surprise           TEX @ COL - Salt             COL - OAK - Phoenix
                                                                                                                                                     SD @ TEX* - Surprise River TEX @COL @ Salt River        COL @ OAK - Pho
  TEX @ KC - Surprise         TEX @ KC - Surprise

                   27                         27 28                          28 29                         29 30                         30 Tickets available agencies:
                                                                                                                            Tickets available through these ticketthrough these ticket agencies:
 CLE @ LAD - Glendale        CIN @ Glendale
                         CLE @ LAD -CWS - Glendale          CIN CWS Goodyear CIN              Cubs Intrasquad - Mesa Cubs Intrasquad - Mesa
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field box
You walk into a bar and overhear          one of the greatest left-hander’s the     them who would you rather have in
the drunkards at the far end chat-        game has ever seen.                       a must-win scenario: the guy who
ting about baseball and compar-                                                     pitched in a subpar conference or
ing who was better in their heyday        It takes a great deal of hard work to     the one who pitched in the Pac-10,
with the local broadcasted baseball       get to the big leagues and while both     guaranteed they elect to have Leake
game playing out in front of them.        Strasburg and Leake have accom-           has their pitcher.
The names of Willie Mays and Ken          plished that goal, what gives? How
Griffey Jr. fly by together, then some    can Leake be compared to Stras-           Leake was named to the All-Pac-10
more random names: Sammy Sosa,            burg?                                     First Team each year in college,
Joe DiMaggio, Randy Johnson,                                                        he also won several other awards
Sandy Koufax, etc.                        Leake has put himself through more        including the National Player of
                                          of a battle to get to where he is to-     the Year award from the American
But then some really contemporary         day.                                      Baseball Coaches Association his
names start dropping: Dontrelle Wil-                                                junior year.
lis before he put on a fat suit and       “Being at ASU you face the tough-
Brandon Webb before he got hit with       est competition I’m not saying all        “It was a matter of focusing and
the injury stick each year.               the guys were good that we faced,         learning every year, with the help of
                                          but you just kind of learn the hitters,   the coaching staff and with (Coach
Then Mike Leake of the Cincinnati         pick them apart and when you end          Murphy) and everything kind of
Reds compared to Stephen Stras-           with a sub-two ERA, I think you did       helped me mature and progress as
burg? Yes, the same Strasburg             pretty well,” said Leake. “(At ASU)       the year went on,” he said.
that was taken number one overall         you come in and just try to focus and
and held out until high noon to get       work hard, I think you kind of just let   The talent is clearly in favor of Stras-
signed by the Washington Nationals        the actions speak for themselves,         burg, but it’s apparent that Leake
to a record amount of money. Yes,         too.”                                     is doing more with less. Without
the same Strasburg who struck out                                                   a truly dominant pitch and a mod-
14 Pirates in his major league de-        Leake played three seasons for the        est strikeout rate of just over five
but while touching 100 mph several        Sun Devils before bolting for a pro-      strikeouts per nine innings, Leake
times throughout the night. Yes, that     fessional career, but not after he left   works especially hard at staying
guy who is being said to be the best      his mark in the maroon and gold.          ahead of the curve and keeps op-
pitching prospect if not just in the      In his career at ASU, Leake went          posing batters from figuring him out.
last 20 years – then ever.                a combined 40-6 with a 2.91 ERA
                                          while Strasburg went 22-7 with a          “That’s why he’s a number one draft
Seriously? How do you even put            1.77 ERA over the same three sea-         choice, number one and number
those two guys in the same cat-           sons.                                     two, that’s why he’s going to be a
egory? Most everyone knows who                                                      good pitcher,” said Reds manager
Stephen Strasburg is, but hardly          “I think I gained the most my fresh-      Dusty Baker in an interview last year
anyone knows who Mike Leake is.           man year just because I was a young       during spring training to reporters.
In fact, more people know about his       guy and we had a lot of juniors that      “He can make the adjustment batter
teammate Aroldis Chapman than             I looked up to and learned the most       to batter instead of inning to inning –
they do of the former Arizona State       from just from watching them and          pitch to pitch almost.”
Sun Devil.                                seeing how they carried themselves
                                          on and off the field,” Leake said.        Baker also said in spring training
So how is Mike Leake even compa-                                                    last year that Leake is a very mature
rable to that of the Stephen Stras-       Then when Leake became one of             young man and that he has the tools
burg? Well, for one, Leake went to        the leaders of the team during his        to become a successful pitcher in
a more competitive school for base-       junior year, he held batters to a .191    the bigs to ultimately make the rota-
ball and was coached by the great         batting average and had a 1.71 ERA        tion.
Pat Murphy, who when he resigned          compared to Strasburg holding op-
from ASU was the defending three-         ponents to a .171 batting average         “We’re not going to put any pres-
time Pac-10 Coach of the Year. The        and a 1.32 ERA. But at this point,        sure on him, we’re just going to let
Hall of Fame great, Tony Gwynn            when the numbers are so low and           him pitch and let him mature,” said
coached Strasburg at San Diego            close like that it’s hard to find the     Baker.
State University and while not to dis-    defining points that make someone
count the hitting guru he is not a Hall   better than the other. The case can       The Reds gave Leake his opportu-
of Fame coach, yet.                       be made that Strasburg was better         nity on April 11, 2010, which was al-
                                          from the raw numbers aspect, but if       most two months sooner then when
Before this charade continues to un-      you take into account the quality of      Strasburg got his chance. Against
fold, Strasburg is not just some other    opponent that Strasburg faced com-        the Chicago Cubs Leake struck out
pitcher. We look at him more intent-      pared to Leake, the edge goes to          five batters, giving up only one run
ly than we did with Mark Prior who        the former Sun Devil pitcher.             on four hits in a no decision. When
burst onto the scene as a young,                                                    Strasburg did get his chance on
talented pitcher as well. In fact, we     Any manager in the big leagues            June 8 against the Pirates, the Ste-
probably pay as close of attention        would love to have a talent such as       ven Strasburg struck out 14 batters.
to Strasburg as we did to a young         Strasburg in their possession to un-
Randy Johnson, who by the way is          load every five days, but if you asked    Still, it wasn’t for another eight days
after Strasburg’s first start that Leake
lost his first decision, in his 13th start
of the season. Though, after that
point, the Reds began to limit their
young star giving Leake fewer starts
spacing out his appearances by a
few days before ultimately shutting
him down due to a shoulder injury in
late August.

Strasburg, too, was shut down due
to injury last season. As a rookie,
Leake was the first player to skip the
minor leagues since Xavier Nady
did it in 2000, not even Strasburg
was giving that opportunity. Leake
managed to go at least six innings
without allowing more than three run
per outing 10 times in his first eleven
starts. During that stretch Leake
sported a fashionable 2.22 ERA.

However, like Strasburg, Leake hit
the rookie wall and had to watch the
end of the season from the bench
after being shut down. It was an ex-
perience that Leake said he’s never
been through. He is determined to
improve on his rookie campaign that
the Reds and other baseball people
saw promise in.
“There’s always room for improve-
ment, I feel like last year was good
but for me it wasn’t, so its kind of a
bittersweet feeling so I look forward
to this year and get a chance and go
back about it,” said Leake.

To go back to last season the Reds
would only have to go toe-to-toe
with the consistently good St. Louis
Cardinals, again. Then, again, have
some sort of trash talk coming from
Cincinnati to the Redbirds to ignite
the team for the stretch run and,
again, ultimately run away with the          “I’m going to bring back the same          the Reds are more than happy with
division. Except this year, Leake            mentality [and] I’m never going to         their young arm.
will be on-hand for the Reds to help         let that go. I’m always going to be
give his team a shot in the arm to           determined to get better and learn         The young arm that they hope soon
improve on last season’s postsea-            each year or each pitch,” he said.         heals and can get back on a regu-
son appearance.                              “Next year, I’m just going make sure       lar schedule to help prove the notion
                                             I don’t slack with anything and make       that no matter how much raw talent
“It was bittersweet, I mean it               sure I keep on track with all the re-      you can have, that working hard and
would’ve felt a lot better if I felt I was   habbing and focusing on picking the        going through tough challenges like
a major contributor as far as being in       batters apart; all the things that I did   he did at ASU will help you more in
the postseason,” said Leake. “Being          really well at ASU that I kind of lost     the long run.
out the last month I felt like I still had   a little bit.”
things to do and improve on.”                                                           Perhaps those patrons at the far
                                             So, going back to the conversation         end of the bar knew what they were
Leake said that he has worked hard           at the bar, Strasburg or Leake? The        talking about when they compared
this past offseason to regain the            decision isn’t so easy anymore when        Leake to Strasburg. It looks like
form he had in Tempe for the Sun             you take into account how much of          they’ll continue to watch both ath-
Devils and that this season he is de-        a gamer Leake is and how hard he           letes to see how Leake develops into
termined to show he can be a reli-           works, you know that                       a Major League pitcher compared to
able arm for the whole season.                                                          his former childhood teammate.
                           field box

BounCe BaCK:
                                                                                                                       By omar marquez
                                                                                                                     photo By BLair Kane




indianS’ CatCher CarLoS Santana
awaitS the new SeaSon aFter having
a night to rememBer and one to Forget.
The night of June 10, 2010 was supposed to
be just another day in the Minor Leagues for
Carlos Santana. Santana, who at the time
was the catcher for the Cleveland Indians’
Triple-A club, the Columbus Clippers, was at
home hoping to get some rest that evening
when he received a phone call that would
change the rest of his life.“I couldn’t even
sleep,” recalls Santana. “It was a night that I
will never forget.”

From being drafted by the Los Angeles
Dodgers when he was 17 years-old to be-
ing traded to the Cleveland Indians, Car-
los has been groomed into a professional
ball player during his six seasons in the
Minor Leagues. The Indians’ top prospect
was admired and earned a name for him-
self through his strength, agility, consistent
power, and switch-hitting capabilities. San-
tana ended his career in the minors hitting
.290/.401/.499 and he put up 69 home runs.

“I got better and better every year that I
played in the minors, and as I played various
positions, I gained more experience and I re-
alized that behind the plate was my strong-
est position,” states Santana.

Once Carlos reached the majors, he pros-
pered just as scouts and analysts ex-
pected. Upon being called up he batted
.260/.401/.467 with 22 RBI and six homers
in just over a five week stint, and he provid-    the young catcher’s dream had immediately         be able to get better and back to top shape.“
ed a big bat to the Indians’ line-up which was    come to an end.                                   In just six weeks in the majors, the once
in desperate need of power.                                                                         top prospect displayed what he was capa-
                                                  “I clearly remember that moment,” he              ble of, and with the new season less than
Just after the moment he awaited his entire       recalls.“I wasn’t sure if I was going to be       two months away, Santana looks forward
life, the day that every professional baseball    able to play the same again because it was        to playing his first full season in the big
player fears was just around the corner.          a hard impact. I didn’t have any idea how         leagues. He’s also ready to put up a fight
                                                  long it would be before I returned. It was a      along with his teammates this season as
On August 2, 2010 while the Indians were          tough moment for me.”                             he acknowledges that he needs to remain
facing the Boston Red Sox at Fen Way Park,                                                          healthy in order to keep his ball club afloat in
Santana was defending home plate during           With Spring Training around the corner,           the American League Central Division. And
the seventh inning while Red Sox outfielder,      Santana is ready to put the 2010 season be-       with Grady Sizemore slated to come back in
Ryan Kalish was gunning towards home              hind and he’s looking forward to 2011. He         mid-March, the Indians are relying on their
plate hoping to score. Santana, on the other      plans to take it a bit easy this spring in Good   veteran and young star to keep them in the
hand, was attempting to block the plate with      Year, Ariz. And his main focus is to regain his   thick of the ALC race.
his left leg as he reached for his teammate’s     health. When asked if he feels that his knee
throw from right field. Unfortunately Kalish      is fully rehabilitated the young catcher hinted   “I know that I need to remain healthy in order
had other intentions as he tackled Santana        that although he’s currently in condition to      to fully contribute to this ball club, and I’m
and the result was a collision that would         play, he’s not fully recovered from last sea-     also aware of everything that I need to do
leave the rookie out for the remainder of         son’s incident either. “I’m not at 100 percent,   for our ball club to have a good season. My
the 2010 season. Within the blink of an eye       but I feel like going into Spring Training I’ll   team is counting on me.”
                           the sidelines


where did it aLL
                                                                                                                 By andrew SChmidt




go wrong?
A quick look back at the Arizona Cardinals
2010 season would suggest they were
doomed from the start. When the anemic
offense wasn't scoring enough, the defense
was allowing opponents to run up the score.
Perhaps the biggest disappointment came
from the veteran players who failed to step
into a bigger role during the harder times of
the season. There's little behind their losing
season that would suggest otherwise. Yes,
the vets failed to take charge of the situa-
tion, but is that merely a scapegoat to a big-
ger reason? Could the coaching staff be to
blame? Throughout his tenure in Arizona,
Ken Whisenhunt has instilled confidence
in both his players, and the fans. "In Whiz
we trust", has been the motto the fans have
lived by, and up until this past season it
made sense. The " Same ol’ Cardinals" man-
tra that echoed throughout the desert was
wiped away with three consecutive seasons
with a record at or above .500. Throw in a
first Super Bowl appearance in franchise his-
tory and it's clear why Whisenhunt has been
so beloved during his first three seasons in
Arizona.
                                                  was heavily pursued during the offseason by
Yet through all the turnaround this past off-     the Cardinals, leaving the fans in confusion    Fast forward five months to the aforemen-
season, he insisted that everything was           yet again.                                      tioned quarterback controversy surrounding
okay well before the year began. Even after                                                       Matt Leinart and Derek Anderson, and the
Kurt Warner walked away from the game,            It began with the severe turnaround that        effects of losing a Hall of Fame quarterback
Whisenhunt expressed his faith and con-           struck the Cardinals, their fans, and their     were clearly exposed. Substituting Ander-
fidence in the Cardinals controversial back       front office during the 2010 offseason. Four    son for a man that holds the top three pass-
up -- Matt Leinart. This newfound confidence      Pro Bowl players took their talents elsewhere   ing yardage games in the Super Bowl was
was clear when Leinart was named the start-       in 2010. It was a blow that Rod Graves and      the first mistake. After all, did anyone miss
er during the Cardinals offseason activities.     the Bidwell’s could do little to avoid. Kurt    Anderson's production with the Cleveland
Players and coaches alike supported the de-       Warner was the first to go. Shortly after the   Browns the previous two seasons? He was
cision and embraced Leinart in the starting       Cardinals Super Bowl run, Warner toyed          booed out of Cleveland and welcomed in
lineup.                                           with the idea of ending his glorious career.    Arizona with open arms. His presence was
                                                  Instead, he suited up and gave it another go    new but his play on the field was a repeat of
Little did Leinart and the rest of the team       with the Cardinals. He may have been a year     the past. Overthrown passes, partnered with
know he would later fall at the wrath of the      removed from retirement, but his passion for    puzzling decisions were only the beginning.
Cardinals head coach. When he reportedly          the game is why he decided to make another      Anderson's inconsistency and inability to de-
couldn't wrap his mind around the offensive       run in 2009. Warner played admirably that       velop chemistry with the receivers took one
playbook, Leinart was released from his du-       season, but when he was severely knocked        of the highest scoring offenses the last three
ties -- ending his career in Arizona. Had Lein-   out of a divisional playoff game against the    seasons, and made them a laughing stock
art stayed, no one could have predicted how       New Orleans Saints, the retirement life with    throughout the league. Granted, Anderson's
he'd fair at the helms. That unknown is what      his wife Brenda and their seven children was    protection was rarely evident, but with a Pro
bothered the fans and left a feeling of won-      a no-brainer. Warner broke the hearts of        Bowl receiver to throw to in Larry Fitzgerald,
derment quickly afterwards. Standing in his       thousands of Cardinals fans, but the love for   the excuses can only get so far.
place stood Derek Anderson. Shortly before        his family and his health was enough to hang
he became the Cardinals starter, Anderson         up the cleats and put on the dancing shoes.     After Warner departed, long-time receiver
                                                  But that's a story for another day.             Anquan Boldin was the next to go. Boldin's
                            the sidelines




tenacity and passion won over the fans              per game, while the 27 points allowed were         ment, re-signing this unit is the best possible
during the Cardinals losing years. When             the third most. Davis' bags were packed well       scenario. The front office still believes that
Whisenhunt arrived, Boldin's role lessened,         before his release when this offseason offi-       Faneca can play at a Pro Bowl level, but his
and the anger toward his contract at the time       cially began; it was only a matter of time for     production last season would say otherwise.
reached a peaking point. Boldin requested           the Cardinals front office to pull the trigger.    Regardless, Rex Hadnot has starting experi-
a trade, and his wish was granted when the          With Davis gone and Ray Horton now run-            ence and Levi Brown is a possibility to slide
Baltimore Ravens made a deal not worth              ning the show, the league may finally see the      into protection at guard. Russ Grimm and
passing on. With Boldin out of the lineup, the      potential in the Cardinals defense.                the coaching staff can still shuffle the unit to
depth behind Fitzgerald was exposed. Steve                                                             their liking.
Breaston, Early Doucet, and the Cardinals           In the NFL, the quarterback is viewed under
rookie receivers could not fill the void.           a microscope, while the defense is the sole        If the front office can focus solely on one po-
                                                    reason for the points allowed on the score-        sition in the first round of the draft, it's likely
As bad as the offense fared in 2010, it was         board. The position that often isn't viewed        that they'll make a smart decision. The teams
the defense that delivered the crushing blow        under the stat sheet is the play by the of-        that have numerous holes to fill in the first
to the season. Part of the reason the de-           fensive line. The Cardinals have showcased         round often don't fill any at all. The Cardinals
fensive unit was out of sync was the loss of        one of the leagues worst offensive lines           eyed a defensive tackle and a linebacker
linebacker Karlos Dansby and safety Antrel          during the last decade. One thousand yard          last season and found their guys in the first
Rolle. Both left for bigger contracts and new       rushers haven't been welcome in Arizona,           two rounds. If history can repeat itself, the
beginnings. As a result, Kerry Rhodes was           while pass-protection is something of the          Cardinals will shore up a tremendous need.
abruptly added to the lineup, while rookie's        unknown. It's fitting that during the Cardinals
Dan Williams and Daryl Washington were              worst season since 2006, the offensive line        At this point in the offseason, the turnout for
forced to play a bigger role. Be that as it may,    performed poorly yet again. In 2010, Cardi-        next season is foggy. Negotiations between
the defense still featured the likes of Dar-        nals' quarterbacks were sacked 50 times --         the league and players union have made
nell Dockett, Adrian Wilson, and Dominique          an astonishing stat considering Hall of Fame       progress at a snail’s pace, and if worse
Rodgers-Cromartie. That in itself added to          offensive lineman Russ Grimm runs the unit.        comes to worst, multiple positions to ad-
the pain of watching the talent that was left                                                          dress will be the least of the Cardinals prob-
on the field after every loss. What became          Despite the addition of Alan Faneca dur-           lems in 2011. The CBA agreement however,
more dreaded was the play calling. Defen-           ing the 2010 offseason, the Cardinals line         is out of Ken Whisenhunt’s and the rest of
sive coordinator Billy Davis -- in his second       couldn't live up to the expectations. Now          his team's hands. His sole responsibility is
season as the Cardinals defensive play-call-        with Faneca contemplating retirement, and          to turn the team around and never allow
er -- confidently kept his faith in his defensive   Deuce Lutui and Lyle Sendlein becoming             what happened last season to occur again.
philosophy. At times, the Cardinals became          possible free agents, this unit is once again      With the draft and free agency less than two
predictable, out of sync, and out of position       on the fritz. With the fifth overall pick in the   months away, Arizona will be one of the bus-
to make the plays they needed to make. The          draft, a quarterback, linebacker, and offen-       iest teams in the league. They need it, and
373 total yards allowed were the fourth most        sive lineman are all in dire need. At the mo-      the fans are hungry for another winner.
                           court side

                                                                                                                     By JeFFery hidaLgo


patChing up the paC-10




In 2011, everyone from Jay Bilas to Jim          towards the top. Arizona is the only ranked      and has re-established the university as one
Rome will tell you that this is a rebuilding     team from the Pacific-10 Conference at no.       of the nation’s basketball powerhouses in
year for the Pac-10 men’s basketball con-        10 and will ultimately receive a three or a      the process.
ference. Even though the criticism may be        four seed in this year’s NCAA Tournament.
partly true; the top teams in the league like                                                     Meanwhile, the Big East and Big 12 confer-
Arizona, Washington and UCLA never got           Williams is a tremendous talent for Arizona.     ences are asserting their dominance. There
the memo.                                        He’s quick from the outside and volatile on      are five Big East schools in the top 15 and
                                                 the inside, moving swift and finishing strong.   many expect that ten teams from the con-
The west coast’s power conference earned         He is a key contributor and the main reason      ference will ultimately be selected for the
its downtrodden reputation this season           for his team’s success thus far.                 postseason. The Big 12 boasts two top five
when Washington was the only ranked team                                                          teams in Kansas and Texas, number three
in the AP preseason Top 25. They would           The storm came and went in Arizona; the          and five respectively, that have great odds
only accomplish a no. 13 ranking before los-     coaching controversy has settled. Sean           to cut down the nets in April.
ing enough games to eventually be removed        Miller has bounced back with the basketball
from the NCAA’s short list of the basketball’s   program better than ever and this trend is       The Pac-10 will be lucky to send three tour-
elite.                                           set to continue as Arizona’s recruiting class    nament teams this season. Though Wash-
                                                 for next season is currently ranked eighth in    ington failed to live up to early expectations
Right around the time Washington fell, Ari-      the nation by ESPN analysts. The superior        of winning the Pac-10, Isaiah Thomas and
zona and their destined NBA-lottery pick         abilities of Williams and the shorthanded        the Huskies have still found a way to pick up
forward, Derrick Williams, went on an eight-     coaching brilliance of Miller has elevated the   wins and remain on the tournament’s bub-
game winning streak and sprinted straight        Wildcats onto the national stage once again      ble. Other bubble teams from the Pac-10
                           court side




include UCLA and Washington State.               is it more likely that the east coast basketball   sons affected a number of the teams, but the
                                                 bias has been in full effect for several years     prolific Pac-10 players that have left early for
Washington State and their star forward          now?                                               the NBA have hurt the conference as well.
Klay Thompson have slipped down in the
rankings as of late, but the Cougars remain      Unfortunately, an east coast bias is unlikely.     When we take a glance around the NBA:
clawing for tournament contention. They          Just last season, the Pac-10 sent only half        there is Kevin Love, Jrue Holiday and Rus-
play relentless, but they still may need the     as many teams (two) to the NCAA Tourna-            sell Westbrook from UCLA, Landry Fields
Pac-10 Tournament Championship to earn           ment as our neighbor, the Mountain West            from Stanford, James Harden from Arizona
their bid in March.                              (four). The mid-major conference is also           State, Chase Budinger, Jordan Hill and Jer-
                                                 likely to send more tournament teams once          ryd Bayless from Arizona, and OJ Mayo, Taj
Not surprisingly, UCLA has been picking up       again this year, quickly becoming the domi-        Gibson and Demar DeRozan from USC that
a lot of the slack around the league this year   nant Division-I basketball conference on the       had all left early with at least a season still
and continues to knock on the door of all the    west coast. The Mountain West contains             left on the college basketball table.
top 25 polls. The Bruins have won some           the likes of Jimmer Fredette and BYU, sixth-
quality games this season including an 86-       ranked San Diego State, Utah State and             The reality of all those early departures
79 win over BYU on December 18, who’s            UNLV.                                              happening in only a couple of seasons un-
now ranked seventh nationally.                                                                      questionably had a negative impact on the
                                                 The Pac-10 also had the same amount of             conference’s competition as a whole. None-
It was only three years ago that from 2006-      teams in the Big Dance last year as the            theless, games will go on as scheduled and
2008, UCLA Coach Ben Howland had                 Western Athletic Conference and the West           we must have faith that the league’s west
reached the Final Four in three-consecutive      Coast Conference. In a league like the Pac-        coast power conference can bounce back
seasons. Then, the season following that         10 that boasts such perennial powerhouses          to the glory days when it was the nation’s
remarkable run by the Bruins, an over-           as UCLA, Arizona, USC, Stanford, Washing-          prominent basketball league.
achieving Arizona team reached the sweet         ton and California, the current trend for the
sixteen as a 12-seed. While just last year,      conference is discouraging.                        Despite its slow start, the top Pac-10 teams
Washington reached the sweet sixteen as                                                             are still entirely capable of making a tour-
an 11-seed.                                      Yet, there are plenty of reasons why it has        nament run and even winning the National
                                                 lost some of its allure. Not only has a large      Championship. That would certainly shut up
So it may be true that the west coast’s power    coaching turnover from the past few sea-           the non-believers.
conference has been lackluster as of late, or
               2011 NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship
                                                ®
Second Round   Third Round        Regional      Regional        National                  FILL OUT YOUR BRACKET                         National       Regional       Regional    Third Round        Second Round
MARCH 17-18    MARCH 19-20        Semifinals    Finals          Semifinals                NATIONAL BRACKET DAY                         Semifinals        Finals      Semifinals   MARCH 19-20          MARCH 17-18
                                                                                                 MARCH 14
                                  MARCH 24-25   MARCH 26-27     APRIL 2                                                                  APRIL 2    MARCH 26-27    MARCH 24-25
                                                                                                 First Four
                             16                            16                                                                   TBD                          TBD
                                                                                                   First Round*
                                                                                                   MARCH 15-16
                             16                            16                                                                   TBD                          TBD
                                                                                                     Watch On
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6                                                                                          Final Four ®                                                                                         6
11                                                                                                  HOUSTON                                                                                     11
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                                                                                             National                                                                                           10
                                                                                           Championship
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                                                                                     Watch the tournament on these networks
                                                                                         or online at MMOD.NCAA.COM
6                                                                                                                                                                                               6
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3                                                                                                                                                                                               3
14                                                                                                                                                                                              14
                                                                             MY CHANNELS – Write in your channels to find your games
7                                                                                                                                                                                               7
                                                                                     * Winners   will advance to Second Round
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15                                                                                                                                                                                              15
                           court side

the BreaKdown,
                                                  By JeFFery hidaLgo



BeFore the BraCKetS
Get your pencils and erasers ready. March
Madness is upon us. Whether your favorite
team is underrated, undefeated or overrat-
ed; none of that matters when it comes to the
NCAA basketball tournament.

Who will advance, and how will you fill out
your bracket? An early round upset is inevi-
table, we all know that. The trick is in your
selection process and betting strategies.

The casual fan will simply select the better
seeds to advance, while others will go with
their gut and choose underdogs to win. The
more novice pollsters may base their predic-
tions on which universities have the most
agreeable team colors or mascot. No matter
how it’s done, each individual will most cer-
tainly have a legitimate shot at winning their
office or online pool.

Sure, the selection committee already did all
the work and has ranked the teams for you,
but the bracket never unfolds as it should.
Anything can happen, and this year is no dif-
ferent.

When picking upsets, historically, the
12-seeds have had the most success of
all, winning 27 times in the first round since
1985; and boasting an impressive 14-12 re-
cord in the second round. All put together,
the lower 13-16 seeds rarely advance past
the first round and have only won five sec-
ond round games since 1985. Also intrigu-
ing, the 9-seeds have by and large defeated
the 8-seeds in the opening round, 46-38.

On any given day, any team can win. Though
it is true that a lowly 16-seed has yet to top-
ple a number one seed in the first round of
the tournament; the unpredictable, erratic
manner in which the brackets always unfold
leaves leeway for anything to take place.

How could we forget when Villanova won the
National Championship in 1985 as an eight-
seed? Or Kentucky winning it all as a six-
seed in 1988? How about Mike Bibby and
fourth-seeded Arizona hoisting the NCAA
Trophy after defeating three number one
seeds en route to a 1997 National Champi-
onship?
                           court side




The tournament always has a way of sur-          West Conference, where their starting five      the postseason is St. John’s. Despite their
prising folks.                                   consists of four seniors and one junior. Sav-   18-9 record, St. John’s has beaten the likes
                                                 vy veterans can make a big difference late      of fourth-ranked Pittsburgh and top-ranked
In 2008, it was the first time in the tourna-    in the game.                                    Duke at home this season. With the addition
ment’s history that all four number one                                                          of a talented coach as Steve Lavin, the Red
seeds actually advanced to the Final Four.       Then there’s the old adage that defense         Storm are poised to make a run this year.
Such is how it’s supposed to break down,         wins championships. The defensive-mind-
yet the reality of such top seeded dominance     ed teams have a much better chance to           Another sleeper squad that deserves some
is unlikely. There are always a few favored      advance than the prolific, high-powered of-     tournament attention is the Running Rebels
teams that lose along the way.                   fenses you see on highlight reels.              of UNLV. Their a fundamental team with a
                                                                                                 tremendous upside, competing against the
When filling out your brackets this year, ana-   The top five defensive teams in the nation      likes of San Diego State and BYU all sea-
lyzing and deducing which teams are wor-         should have no trouble advancing in the         son, nationally ranked sixth and seventh re-
thy, keep in mind that there are three key       NCAA tournament. If the shots are not fall-     spectively.
characteristics of an honestly capable na-       ing, a great defense can still find a way to
tional championship team.                        win the game, at any cost. If you’re search-    Locally, Arizonans are discouraged that
                                                 ing for a defensive sleeper pick this season,   ASU will not be dancing this postseason, but
A championship contending team is led by         the Alabama Crimson Tide are third in the       cross state rivals at the University of Arizona
an experienced and efficient coach. A great      nation for opponent field goal percentage at    have a great opportunity to reach the Final
coach will motivate his kids within the mo-      37-percent.                                     Four once again. They’re led by their sec-
ment, and will have them prepared to win a                                                       ond-year Head Coach Sean Miller and the
high-pressure tournament game.                   This season, for the first time the NCAA        most versatile power forward in the nation,
Year in and year out, coaches of this caliber    Men’s Selection Committee will choose 68        Derrick Williams.
take their teams the distance. It’s almost a     teams to compete, the most sizable upgrade
given that Tom Izzo’s Michigan State Spar-       in the tournament’s history since the NCAA      The college basketball landscape provides
tans will do well, having advanced to the Fi-    upped the ante from 48 to 64 teams in 1985.     for the shocking upsets and inspirational
nal Four six out of the last 12 seasons. Or      31 teams will receive automatic bids for win-   bracket buster teams- you’ve just got to find
Coach Mike Krzyzewski of Duke, who has           ning their conference, and 37 teams will be     them.
tallied an NCAA record 77 tournament wins        chosen at-large by the committee.
as head coach.                                                                                   So when the 2011 NCAA brackets are made
                                                 The tournament’s vast, diverse field allows     official on CBS Selection Sunday March 13,
Even more crucial than the coach, are the        for mid-majors and lesser known schools         you’ll be ready. Do thorough research, and
players. An experienced roster can go a          to contend for a national title. Though it is   choose winners wisely. At the end of the day
long way. A team that is familiar with the       unlikely that Cleveland State from the Ho-      though, don’t forget that it’s just all for kicks
hustle and bustle of the NCAA tournament         rizon Conference will go to the Final Four,     and giggles because whoever you pick, they
is much more likely to handle the pressure       they may be a good first round upset choice     won’t win anyway.
well and do all the necessary things to win in   because of their tremendous backcourt led
such a captivating moment.                       by senior Norris Cole.

The most experienced tournament team this        Another team that has slipped under the ra-
year will be Utah State out of the Mountain      dar but could certainly do a lot of damage in
                         court side
                                                                                                                                  By J.d. Cortez


nBa trade deadLine 2011:
traCKing the LuSt oF the deaL
If the 2010 NBA offseason orgy of free agent signings sent your head spinning in confused disbelief, it was only a
foreshadowing of the 2011 trade deadline, which kept the masses glued to their twitter pages. In all, there were 14
deals made. Some franchises were looking to clear salary and rebuild. Meanwhile, others sought to load up for the
post-season push. Here we examine the most significant deals and the potential implications to the franchises and
players involved.




the                                                                                                  But to write off the Nuggets at this point is a mis-

bLockbusters                                                                                         take.




                                            Denver nuggets AcQuire:

                                              * Danilo Gallinari, Forward
                                              * Wilson Chandler, Forward
                                              * Raymond Felton, Guard
knicks AcQuire:                               * Timofey Mozgov, Center
                                              * Kosta Koufos, Center
 * Carmelo Anthony, Forward                   * Knicks first-round pick (2014 or later)              nets AcQuire:
 * Chauncey Billups, Guard
                                            Thank goodness the 'Melodrama is over. Carmelo             * Deron Williams, Guard
                                            Anthony wanted to go to the Big Apple, and he
                                            got his wish. At first glance it would appear the
                                            Knicks are the big winners. But that might not be
                                            the case. There is no arguing Carmelo Anthony is
                                            an excellent NBA talent, but the real question is
                                            how the Knicks are going to adjust midseason to
                                            a new PG, and two men who need the ball in their
                                            hands. Is NY big enough for Amare and Carmelo?
                                            Can Mike D'Antoni adjust the offense on the fly?
                                            In the Rockies, many have written off Denver. But
                                            the Nuggets just may be a better team without
                                            Carmelo. Seriously. Wilson Chandler brings his
                                            16 and 6 per game in place of Anthony, while Ty
                                            Lawson most likely moves into the starting point
                                            guard role. Billups was clearly slowing down, and
                                            while Felton will never get to his level, he is a bet-
                                            ter than average playmaker that can hit the open
                                            Jump shot and run a team. Aaron Affalo is going
                                            to have to play a larger role in the offense, and
                                            Danilo Gallinari will help spread the floor. How the
                                            new pieces will mesh with the rest of the Nuggets
                                            is anyone's guess.
                              court side



                                                                                                            Portland bLAzers AcQuire:

                                                                                                              * Gerald Wallace, Forward

utah JAzz AcQuire:                                                                                          The Blazers lucked into this one, relieving Michael
                                                                                                            Jordan's franchise of payroll while shedding dead
  * Devin Harris, Guard                                                                                     weight off the roster. Wallace is a solid player, but
  * Derrick Favors, Forward                                                                                 one has to wonder what the Blazers are think-
  * Two 2011 first-round picks                        oklahoma city                                         ing. Nicolas Batum is averaging career highs,
  * $3 Million                                        thunDer AcQuire:                                      and after shipping out Pryzbilla and Cunningham,
                                                                                                            the Blazers only have the aging and oft injured
One cannot help but think Jerry Sloan is on some        * Kendrick Perkins, Center                          Camby along with the young and oft injured Oden
beautiful white sand beach with a margarita in his      * Nate Robinson, Guard                              as the big men in the middle. Oden is out for the
hand laughing. After reports surfaced that Deron                                                            season, and Brandon Roy may be back, but he
Williams influenced management to show his             This is a good deal for both sides. The Celtics      will never be 100 percent. Wallace will add some
coach the door, the Jazz showed Williams New          gain flexibility with the addition of Green to go     offensive flash, but whose going to help LaMarcus
Jersey. Devin Harris is not Deron Williams and        small and spread the floor. OKC may have made         Aldridge clean up the boards and clog the middle?
never will be. But the Jazz have gotten rid of a      a huge jump in the Western Conference with
headache and picked up some solid young talent
in Derrick Favors, along with two first-round picks
                                                      the acquisition of Perkins who can now help the
                                                      Thunder match up with the size of San Antonio,        the
in the upcoming draft. Perhaps the Nets know          Dallas, and the Lakers. Both Green and Perkins        entertAining:
something the rest of us don’t, because Williams      were headed into free agency this offseason, and
can walk after next season, and his comments          both expressed interest in testing the market. With
thus far after the trade have not exactly resem-      Perkins and another acquisition, Nazr Moham-
bled that of a happy man. Mikhail Prokhorov may       med, the Thunder have a couple of strong enforc-
have to part with some serious rubles to keep Wil-    ers to take the pressure off of Kevin Durant and
liams in town. The Jazz have struggled on and off     Russell Westbrook. Further, the Thunder have the
all season, and currently are sitting on a fat five   cash and desire to keep Perkins in town. This deal
game losing streak. With a shell-shocked team,        could turn the Thunder into a popular sleeper pick
unhappy fans, and a brand new coach, a betting        to do damage in the West.
man would put money on the Jazz sinking out of
the Western Conference playoff picture.



                                                                                                            Los Angeles
                                                                                                            cLiPPers AcQuire:

                                                                                                              * Mo Williams, Guard
                                                                                                              * Jamario Moon, Forward




                                                      bobcAts AcQuire :

                                                        * Joel Przybilla, Center
boston ceLtics AcQuire:                                 * Dante Cunningham, Forward
                                                        * Sean Marks, Center
                                                        * Two first-round draft picks and cash
  * Jeff Green, Forward
  * Nenad Krstic, Center
                                                                                                            cleveland
                                                                                                            cAVALiers AcQuire:
                              court side

                                                       the
  * Baron Davis, Guard
  * 2011 first-round pick                              PeriPherALs:                                             * Kirk Hinrich, Guard
                                                                                                                * Hilton Armstrong, Center

In a way, getting shipped to the Cavaliers has to
make one feel sorry for Baron Davis. However, the
same can be said about anyone getting shipped
to the L.A. Clippers. Apart from two players, Eric
Gordon and Blake Griffin, the Clippers aren't
good. This was a typical Donald Sterling cost cut-
ting move, eliminating the $28 million owed to
Davis over the next two seasons. Jamario Moon
is an expiring contract after the season and Mo
Williams has player options of $8.5 million the next
two seasons. The Cavaliers, are of course, going       rockets AcQuire:
to win a title before the Heat, right? Dan Gilbert's
squad gets a lottery pick with which to rebuild the      * Hasheem Thabeet, Center
franchise decimated by LeBron James' departure.          * DeMarre Carroll, Forward                           washington
                                                         * 2011 First-round pick                              wizArDs AcQuire:
                                                       rockets AcQuire                                          * Mike Bibby, Guard
                                                                                                                * Maurice Evans, Forward
                                                         * Goran Dragic, Guard                                  * Jordan Crawford, Guard
                                                         * Suns first-round pick                                * 2011 first-round pick

                                                                                                              Should we care? Mike Bibby has gone from one
                                                                                                              of the top five point guards in the league to John
                                                                                                              Wall's personal tutor in a matter of only a few
                                                                                                              years. Hinrich is an improvement on both ends of
                                                                                                              the floor for the Hawks, but Atlanta needs much
                                                                                                              more than 11 and four if they hope to make a deep
                                                                                                              playoff run.




hornets AcQuire:

  * Carl Landry, Forward
                                                       Memphis
                                                       grizzLies AcQuire:

                                                         * Shane Battier, Forward
                                                         * Ishmael Smith, Guard

                                                        The Rockets get rid of an expiring Battier contract
                                                       and gain a first round pick to rebuild a struggling    Phoenix suns AcQuire :
                                                       11th seed in the West. Meanwhile, the Grizzlies
                                                       add defense and veteran leadership in Battier            * Aaron Brooks, Guard
sacramento                                             while hoping to withstand the absence of Rudy
kings AcQuire:                                         Gay for the next four weeks. But Battier is no-        Both point guards needed a change of scenery.
                                                       where near Gay's level. Thabeet is an insurance        Brooks became second fiddle to Kyle Lowry, while
  * Marcus Thornton, Guard                             policy should Yao Ming never return from his vari-     the Suns finally lost patience with Goran Dragic.
  * Cash considerations                                ous injuries, but he most likely will never approach   The deal as it stands is most likely a wash for both
                                                       Ming's brief dominance around the league.              squads. Brooks may be the better player now, but
Carl Landry adds some more beef and inside                                                                    Dragic has the tools to be an All-Star. The Suns
presence to the Hornets second unit when David                                                                lose defense in Dragic's departure, but will see
West rests, although he's underperforming at 11.9                                                             more offensive production from Brooks in their
and 4 per game. Thornton gives the Kings flex-                                                                second unit.
ibility in the back court (Tyreke to shooting guard,
anyone?)



                                                       hAwks AcQuire:
        court side

phoenix SunS CeLeBrity Shootout
u.S. air wayS Center   photoS By oBed gonzaLez
court side
                            RINGSIDE

ChaSe “CheCKmate’’ CorBin
                                                                                                                        By aLBert aLvarez


and Friday night FightS
Any true boxing fan that follows the sport
knows that the city of Philadelphia has pro-
duced many great boxers. To most box-
ing fans, the first names that fly out of their
mouth first when asked about Philly fighters
are: Bernard Hopkins, Eddie Chambers, and
Steve Cunningham. But the history of great
Philly fighters goes much farther than that.

Sonny Liston, Gypsey Joe Harris, Tommy
Loughran, Jeff Chandler, Meldrick Taylor,
Bennie Briscoe and the great Joe Frazier,
just to name a few, are Philly-bred fighters
that have contributed many great years to
the sport of boxing. It’s no coincidence that
when Sylvester Stallone wrote the screen-
play for Rocky, it was featured in the City of
Brotherly Love.

Enter Chase ‘’Checkmate’’ Corbin - a 24
year-old boxer who was born and raised
in Philadelphia but for the past year and a
half has been calling the city of Phoenix his
home. Chase first began boxing at age 16
and has been in love with boxing ever since.
As an amateur, Chase compiled a very im-
pressive 21-3 record and two Philadelphia
Golden Glove titles.

In January of 2009, Corbin turned pro and
later that year he made his boxing debut
by smashing Michael Gallegos within three
rounds in front of a boisterous crowd at the El
Casino Ballroom in Tucson, Ariz. Chase has
been checking chins ever since he first put
on a pair of gloves and hasn’t looked back.
Corbin now holds a 5-0 undefeated record
and is currently being trained by Jeff May-
weather - the uncle of the great Floyd May-
weather Jr. - and former professional boxer.
Jeff is considered one of the most intellectual
characters within the sport of pro-boxing.
                                                   Philly to Phoenix? Corbin responds, ‘’ I just     fluence of his favorites, Chase sees himself
In talking with Chase, you’ll realize that he’s    wanted to be in a different atmosphere,           as an entertainer that just wants to give the
well familiar with the history of the sport -      I came out to visit my sister out here and        crowd a good show.
something that you don’t see very often in         I instantly fell in love with the weather, the
younger fighters. In a recent conversation         people, and the experience I get from spar-       This April, Chase will be able give Valley
with Chase, he said that Tommy Hearns was          ring all the tough Mexican fighters out here.’’   fight fans a preview of what he has to offer
his favorite boxer because Hearns entered                                                            the sport. He’ll be fighting in Phoenix at the
the ring with a cold stare down and carried        Upon viewing Corbin’s work in the ring, you       Madison Event Center on April 8 against the
that kill or be killed mentality. Chase went on    see a strong massive welterweight (147            dangerous, Martin Vierra to launch off the
to say that right now the state of Arizona is in   pounds) with power in both hands, and with        new Friday Night Fights - brought to you by
desperate need of getting some entertaining        a strong will to succeed. Standing six feet       Sonoran Capital Group in association with
boxing fights back to the valley and that is a     tall, his height advantage is sure to strike      Face to Face Events. The fight card will fea-
void which he is hoping to fill.                   fear in all of his opponents. Chase also          ture a handful of fights as well as two top
                                                   mentioned that as a youth he loved Prince         ranked USA amateur bouts. For more infor-
So why did he pack his bags and head from          Naseem Hamed and Roy Jones Jr. because            mation on the event visit:
                                                   of their “entertaining styles.” Due to the in-    www.facetofaceevents.net.
       P H O T O G R A P H Y: B r a n d o n S t e e d | S t e e d f l i c k s . c o m
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