Charlie’s Nickname for Werth: “Jesus”

Charlie calls Werth "Jesus"

I asked a friend of mine, Kristin Sugden, who works on the Charlie Manuel show if she wouldn’t mind sharing her experiences with the Phillies skipper. We both agreed that showing Charlie in a different light could present an entertaining read for the most loyal of Phillies fan. She will be posting quite often about her interactions with Chuck, considering she’s with him a good deal of time. Hope you enjoy.

Clearwater, Fl.

I’m just getting back from my first trip to Spring Training 2010. The Charlie Manuel Show is entering its 2nd season and I’m still trying to find the line between fan and co-worker. As producer of the show I’ve had some amazing experiences, like following around the Skipper a year after they did the impossible. Instead of giving a cliche overview of my 3 day trip, I thought I’d share with the fans the stuff I always wanted to know about Charlie (and what I’m slowing learning).

The first day at Brighthouse field my boss and I sat in Charlie’s office (he’s “Chuck” to the entire Phillies staff). He walked out of the bathroom singing “We are the Champions” at the top of his lungs. Word on the street is that he belts out tunes on a regular basis. We talked about everything from Mike Schmidt to his 2 year long renovation of his new lake house in Winterhaven, FL. He explained how a sink hole is formed and his favorite places to eat around Tampa Bay. Charles “Fuqua” Manuel loves to talk, about anything.

I was standing behind the batting cage at the Carpenter Complex and Roy Halladay took the mound for the first time at training. Charlie walks over to me and starts explaining why the players aren’t swinging at the ball. He said its called “tracking”. They’re looking for the speed and working on their stride. Apparently not every training camp takes this approach. As a girl in the baseball industry I work a little harder (I think) to prove myself knowledgeable about the game. Charlie talked to me as if I was one of the guys. While sometimes it seems like he needs a break from the baseball talk, nothing makes him light up more then asking what he did to get Ibanez back on base or analyzing a player’s swing. The guy loves baseball, he’s down to earth, and does NOT understand the fame that is associated with going to back to back World Series. Well, I take that back, he understands it, but he can do without it.

We spent our trip putting a mic on him to pick up random conversations with players and fans. Before I turned his mic on the first day he says, “Ya know, I am witty, people don’t know that about me.” I think the second season of the show he wants Philadelphia fans to see the real Charlie. He’s not a bumbling fool when the camera isn’t on. He can dish it out just as much as he can take it. Some of the conversations we overheard were his broken Spanish phrases that the Latin American players and coaches are helping him perfect. Charlie can say “I’ll take two eggs over easy with a side of toast” and “you’re a pretty woman”. The most fascinating part of trip, and a testament to his disinterest in fame, was when he attended a sponsor fan meet and greet. There were a few multi-million dollar salaries walking around the room, including the mayor of Clearwater. If I didn’t know any better I would say Charlie was uncomfortable, in fact, he didn’t leave my side. “Do you know anyone in here, I don’t know anyone.” He said laughing (nervously). About 20 minutes later he left, not because he didn’t want to meet his fans (because he is more than a gentleman when he does), I just think he doesn’t need it (the stuffiness that is).

Charlie has a nickname for almost every player, Polanco is “Polly”, Howard is “Howie”, and right now Werth is “Jesus”. He loves his team and if you tell him how exciting it was to watch them play last year, his answer is always the same, “We still have a lot of work to do” or “We want to win games and we know we have a job to do”.  Regardless, it’s reassurance for the Philly fans that his heart is in this and that he knows how much we want it. I have alot of faith in this guy and I hope you do too. I’m going back down March 14th and riding the bus at Charlie’s request. He’s also taking my boss and I out to dinner…a true Southern gentleman. In the words of “David After Dentist”…is this real life?

Signed,

One huge Phils fan

2010 Winter Olympics

That’s a Wrap – American Zach Parise tied the game with 24.4 seconds left in regulation sending the game into overtime. In the extra frame, all-world Canadian Sidney Crosby beat USA goalie Ryan Miller, who played incredible throughout the Olympics, to help team Canada earn the gold medal. With the completion of this game, the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver have come to an end.- (ESPN)

2010 Olympics: The Event I Surprisingly Became Interested In

Charlotte Kalla was pretty dominant in Vancouver

The great thing about the Olympics is that they offer to us a large variety events, that if we didn’t tune into watch, we would probably never have known they existed.

The one event that I became enamored with during the 2010 Olympic games was cross country skiing. I have never been a fan of cross country running, because like most other Americans, I find running to be a tedious and strenuous exercise and when turned into a competition, I just find myself completely disinterested. At first view, I thought cross country skiing was incredibly awkward to follow. When I think of skiing, I picture people going down hill’s, but never up them. During some parts of the events, the skiers are literally running up hill on their ski’s, which makes you wonder why exactly is this an Olympic sport. Continue reading

2010 Olympics: The Most Overly Hyped Olympian

In 2006 there was loudmouth American skier Bode Miller. In 2010, although she never made any outlandish statements nor was she outspoken in anyway, American skier Lindsey Vonn was by far the 2010 Olympic games most overly hyped athlete.

I don’t feel bad being so hard on a fellow American due in part that she won a gold medal in her first event of the 2010 games (Ladies Downhill), but Vonn garnered so much media attention leading up to the Olympics that when you look at her overall performance in Vancouver, that it’s hard to be completely satisfied. For anyone else, medaling in two out of five events would be considered successful, but for the woman that Sports Illustrated donned as the “Greatest Female Skier of All Time”, her three DNF (did not finish) leave a lot to be desired.

With all of the media attention that Vonn was receiving, the rest of her teammates, most notably Julia Mancuso, felt as though they were being left out of the spotlight. Mancuso stated Vonn’s persona had gotten so huge that if she had a bad day, the rest of the American team had a bad day as well, which was certainly not the case. This is an individual sport, Lindsey Vonn crashing in three out of her five events affected only herself. Unless, of course, you’re talking about that time that her crash in the Giant Slalom forced Mancuso to re-start, which certainly didn’t help Vonn’s standing in the eyes of Mancuso.

Winning two medals is certainly a great accomplishment, but for Vonn, expectations were that she could win five gold medals during these games, a claim that she said was unreasonable. However, she did say that medaling in four events was the most realistic possibility, but that unfortunately didn’t happen as well.

So for Lindsey Vonn, the 2014 games in Sochi, Russia will be another chance for her to compete for yet another gold medal, but unlike this time hopefully, God willing, she will be fully healed, fully rested, and more focused on a consistent all around Olympic games.

The Final Day of the 2010 Vancouver Olympics

The 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver come to an end today with the men’s hockey gold medal game between the United States and Canada. The North American border rivalry is expected to go above and beyond the television ratings from the 2002 gold medal game between these same teams, which has been recorded as the most watched Olympic event in the history of the games, both Winter and Summer.

For 16 days, if you’ve been fortunate enough, you’ve seen some of the worlds best athletes compete on the biggest stages that their sports have to offer. The Olympic games are so incredible because they introduce us to a whole other world of elite athletes that we aren’t accustomed to seeing. In a world where the NBA has become almost unwatchable at times due to selfish and uninspired play, it’s nice to tune into the Olympics where obvious appreciation, of teammates, of countries, is shown on the faces on these athletes.

I’ve heard a lot of people say these Olympics have been “terrible” and that nobody was interested, but if the International Olympic Committee has gone on record to say that these games will be the most watched Olympics games in history, then I can’t help but assume that those people with those reactions just haven’t given them a chance. I never thought that women’s cross country skiing could catch my attention, but after these Olympics I can probably tell you all about Charlotte Kalla from team Sweden (Alright, maybe not a whole lot) or men’s cross country skier Petteh Northug from Norway and his loud mouth. Did you know that he once made the King of Norway wait for him? Crazy!

So throughout the day, I’ll be posting the definitive moments from the 2010 games, through my eyes. They are surely to be unbiased as possible, mainly in part that while I was rooting for my own country, that I appreciated the performances by athletes from different countries.

Again, if you haven’t watched any of the 2010 games, today is your last chance. The gold medal game between the United States and Canada is slated to begin at 3:15 EST.

Go Merica’

National Disaster Alters Plans For Chilean Olympians

Due to last night’s 8.8 magnitude earthquake in Chile, the countries Olympians will skip the closing ceremonies in an attempt to get back to their homeland as quickly as possible to be with their family and friends.

Chile has had three representatives during the Vancouver Olympic games: Noelle Barahona, Maui Gayme, and Jorge Mandru, all of which are Alpine Skiers.

At last check, the tragic event has left 147 dead, however this number is unfortunately expected to rise.

Currently, there is a tsunami warning going on for most of the countries in the Pacific, but most notably, the state of Hawaii is expected to get the worst of what’s expected to come.

I would suggest turning on CNN to follow along with the tsunami coverage, but the way the reporters are discussing this event is an absolute joke. I’m hearing “Hawaii Five-O” references when discussing a potential city crippling national disaster and then at different points you would think this is some sort of entertainment event, with the reporters sharing some laughs, over what? I’m not sure. It’s rather embarrassing if you ask me. So tune into CNN at your own discretion.

Hopefully this potential disaster passes through without any serious damage, but with the way reports are going, it doesn’t seem like that’s possible.

Chile’s athletes, coaches to skip closing ceremony – (Sports Illustrated)

Men’s College Basketball

Upset in Knoxville – The #2 ranked Kentucky Wildcats traveled to Thompson-Boling Arena where they were upset by the 17th ranked Tennessee Volunteers. J.P Prince (20 points) and Scotty Hopson (15 points) paced the Volunteers, who snapped the Wildcats eight game winning streak. Super-frosh John Wall led the Wildcats with 19 points. – (ESPN)