This tweet on Oct. 3 by Oakland Athletics pitcher Pat Neshek put a lot into perspective:
Please pray for my family.Tonight my wife & I lost our first & only son 23 hours after he was born with no explanation.— Pat Neshek (@PatNeshek) October 4, 2012
Gulp! Sigh! Pit in stomach! Sadness ensues!
It’s the worst nightmare for any parent. Even those who are not parents can understand the incredible grief that comes with this type of heart-wrenching story. We're reminded again that sports might be a fabric of our society, but there are things bigger and more important than the outcome of a game.
Here are some tweets after Pat did the unthinkable and pitched against the Detroit Tigers in Game 1 of the ALDS just three nights later:
Fox Sports: MLB - @MLBONFOX
“One of the most inspirational moments in sports!”
Chris Rose - @ChrisRose
“My heart hurts watching Pat Neshek pitch, knowing what he and his wife went through this week.”
Curt Schilling - @gehrig38
“My ankle was a scratch compared to what Pat Neshek just did, not even in the same universe. God Bless him and his wife.”
Brett Anderson - @BrettAnderson49
“Regardless of the outcome... one of the most inspiring things I’ve seen on a baseball field was @PatNeshek pitching in a game today.”
Brody Brazil - @brodiebrazilCSN
“Thanks to @PatNeshek tonight, for providing one of the most inspirational moments I’ve ever seen in sports.”
Tuesday Trivia is a weekly feature of the Daily Chomp. Answer this week's question, then check back next week for a new question and prize.
Mike Ricci has always been a fan favorite in Teal Town with a gritty playing style and fierce competitive attitude. Ricci played sixteen seasons and over 1,000 games in the NHL with over 500 of those games with the Sharks. During his seven seasons with the Sharks, Ricci set a then-record for consecutive games played of 228. Ricci has been an essential part of San Jose's success and was on the team in 2004 for its first trip to the Western Conference Finals. Today Ricci is still part of the San Jose staff as a development coach. In this role, Ricci, works with Head Coach Todd McLellan and his staff to provide on-ice instruction and assistance when the team is at home and will also work closely with Scout Bryan Marchment, visiting and working with the Sharks prospects in Worcester and various junior teams.
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As the Director of Broadcasting I am often asked the question of how does a telecast get on the air? So consider this Hockey Broadcasting 101.
We work very closely with our television partner Comcast Sports Net California during the NHL season. First bit of work is to rent a state-of-the-art mobile production truck. These trucks are TV control rooms on wheels. Priced well over $2 million, these trucks work almost every day between our games and those of the A’s, Giants, Warriors, NCAA events and NFL.
For a 7:30 PM Sharks game, things get started around noon. The truck is parked and powered just outside HP Pavilion. Around 1:30 PM the freelance crew of approximately 20 arrives on site. The Bay Area sports production crews are among the very best in the country.
Next work is to unpack the truck and run camera, video and audio lines. Every building in the NHL has pre-installed cables in order to connect the truck to camera positions and announce positions. For a typical home game we sport five hard cameras in the bowl as well as a handheld, four robotic and two fixed/locked cameras.
Camera 1 is a ‘tight follow’ camera at center ice. Camera 1's job is to stay as tight as possible with the puck. This is a primary replay angle.
Camera 2 is our ‘game’ or primary game coverage camera. Camera 2's job is to cover the game action loose enough to include the puck and a number of players around it. This is the look that you see on-air 90% of the time.
Camera 3 is a high slash, or corner position. This camera shoots even wider than Camera 2. We call this the ‘telestrator look’ camera. This provides color commentator Drew Remenda with a wide angle for use with the Fingetworks telestrator as he draws circles, arrows and lines to teach the game. Also if all else fails, this angle shows ‘everything’. This camera is seldom taken live during action.
My name is Freddie Hamilton and I'm a forward for the Worcester Sharks. I was a fifth round draft choice by the Sharks in 2010. This is my first season in Worcester and I hope to be able to update you through this blog every couple of weeks on the team's performance and my individual progress.
We had our first exhibition game last night. I was really excited. It was our first game against another team and everybody was really excited. We’ve been having a really good week at camp. It was nice to be able to play a few scrimmages before the game to get used to the speed of stuff. I felt pretty good out there.
I don’t think anybody was too anxious, but they were more excited. Our hard week of training brought us in with great shape. We have a really good team. It was just nice because everyone wanted to play against someone else and not their own teammates. It was a lot of fun out there.
We came out of it with a victory and it’s obviously a lot more fun when you win. Everybody’s happy. Even though it was an exhibition game you still want to win.
I haven’t really had much time with camp, but Worcester is a really nice city. The downtown area is great. Most of my time has been spent at the team hotel or the practice rink. But in my short time so far, I’ve really enjoyed it here.
So this is just a short introduction and I hope to check back in through the Daily Chomp in a couple of weeks.
It was a welcoming opportunity this week when 60 Sharks employees, myself included, were invited to volunteer at Second Harvest Food Bank and Sacred Heart Community Service in San Jose.
I have helped out at Second Harvest before so I was looking forward to something different at Sacred Heart. It turned out to be a fun, eye-opening and enriching experience.
My assignment was to work at the checkout counter in the clothing store. It was set up just like a retail clothing store the only differences being that all the clothes, new and used, had been donated and there was no charge whatsoever to the customers. My job was to count the garments or shoes selected (five per family member) and then bag them up.
Being that it was a Monday morning, the store was busy. While there is no charge for the items, customers are allowed to visit the store only twice a month. So when the first of the month falls on a Monday, the line is long. There are many people in need of these clothing items.
Sharks fans, the results are in for the Sharks Territory fan photo contest!
For the past 19 weeks, the best photos of the week were posted on the Daily Chomp blog. Fans voted on their favorite photo each week and prizes were given to the winners. Now, after your votes on the best photo of the offseason, the results are in and the winner is Reid Kaneshiro!
Congratulations to all the Sharks Territory photo finalists and to Reid Kaneshiro who will receive the Grand Prize – a team signed, full size Sharks Territory sign plus two tickets to a 2012-13 game!
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Sometimes, it’s the simple things that make us the happiest, even if we savor those simple things from a seat 3,000 miles away from the action.
In the particular case of hockey, I’m talking about the commencement of training camp for the American Hockey League’s Worcester Sharks at the DCU Center in Worcester, Massachusetts. For those of you who are wondering, it is 3,120 miles from HP Pavilion to the DCU Center, which is a 48-hour drive if you can skip all food, sleep, and trips to the rest room. By the way, the drive does require tolls, so perhaps we should add an hour to the trip to allow for time to count change. Start your engines!
While it may seem a world away, head coach Roy Sommer and associate coach David Cunniff have been conducting Worcester’s training camp, and it is there where some of those simple things that make us all happy are going on. I’m talking about the irresistible feeling of drawing cold rink air into one’s lungs, accompanied by the sounds of pucks thwacking into sticks, skates cutting their way through the ice, and punctuated by the wonderful sounds of those skates shaving up ice as players start and stop their way through a practice or, very shortly, an actual game.
Worcester will hit the ice in pre-season action beginning this Thursday, when they take on the Connecticut Whale at the Hart Center, home of Holy Cross college hockey. Then on Friday, it’s a trip to one of the most traditional spots in the AHL, Springfield, for a pre-season game against the Falcons that will be on WTAG Radio for all of us to sample.
There are 35 players in training camp at the moment, and there are a few interesting stories to monitor closely. Here are just a few:
Freddie Hamilton: A draft selection from 2010, Hamilton is projected to be one of the top forward prospects in the Sharks Organization. He scored 35 goals last season for the Niagara IceDogs of the OHL, the team that went all the way to the league final round before losing in the J. Ross Robertson Cup series to the London Knights. It’s going to be very interesting to see how Freddie adjusts to professional hockey.
Matt Tennyson: He was born in Minnesota, but Pleasanton is his hometown and the Sharks were his favorite team growing up. Tennyson played defense at Western Michigan University where last year his coach was former St. Louis Blues and Los Angeles Kings coach Andy Murray. He showed some promise in a limited stint in the AHL last year after the conclusion of his collegiate career, and he’s ready to build on that this fall.
At the press conference announcing the new rule Commissioner Branch noted that over the last five years, 92% of the leagues players have been involved in less than 10 fights.
However there were 25 players last season that had 11 or more scraps. Four players had 15 fights and the leader of the pack was the Windsor Spitfires, Ty Bilcke who had an amazing 37 bouts.
David Branch has been very proactive trying to make his league safer and protect his players. They were the first in Canada to implement a zero tolerance policy for head shots. The OHL and particularly Commissioner Branch received both praise and criticism for that policy.
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Sharks fans, here are your finalists for the Sharks Territory fan photo contest!
Every Wednesday for the past 19 weeks, we posted the best 3-5 photos of the week on the Daily Chomp blog. Fans voted on their favorite photo each week. The winner of the week's best photo won a mini Sharks Territory sign autographed by their favorite Sharks player. Now, the 19 weekly winners will square off for the best photo of the offseason and the Grand Prize - a team signed, full size Sharks Territory sign plus two tickets to a 2012-13 game!
Read the rest of this blog entry and vote on the Sharks Territory Finals >>
Sharks fans, are you traveling this offseason? Then make your destination Sharks Territory!
Every Wednesday between now and September 19, we will post the best 3-5 photos of the week on the Daily Chomp blog. Fans will vote on their favorite photo each week. The winner of the week's best photo will receive a mini Sharks Territory sign autographed by their favorite Sharks player. Then, the 19 weekly winners will square off for the best photo of the offseason and the Grand Prize - a team signed, full size Sharks Territory sign plus two tickets to a 2012-13 game!
Read the rest of this blog entry and vote on this week's finalists >>