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Growing up, my brother and I had a real passion for the game of baseball.  During our childhood we inherited our dad’s team, the Dodgers as our own.  My favorite Dodger player as a kid was the “penguin”, Ron Cey.  It was his power and solid defense I came to appreciate.  Cey was a perennial Dodger all-star from ’74-’79.  I cheered along side my dad when the Dodgers were finally able to overcome the hated New York Yankees in ’81 after losing to the Bronx Bombers back to back in the  ’77 and ’78 World Series’ and then beating the heavily favored Oakland A’s in ’88 (queue Kirk Gibson WS home run trot).

Double fist pump!

When I moved to Newport Beach in ’97 my allegiance to the Dodgers was altered.  I began following the Angels who trotted out the likes of Garret Anderson, Tim Salmon, Darin Erstad, Chuck Finley and my favorite Angel until he left the club in 2005, Troy Percival.  Percival was introduced late in the game with Godsmack’s “Keep Away” blaring over the stadium speakers, a kick ass way to come into a game IMO.

The Angels were generally a pretty mediocre team in the ‘90’s.  That was until Mike Scioscia was brought in to manage the team in 2000, a former Dodger player and member of the L.A. championship teams in ’81 and ’88.  Mike brought in several former Dodger players onto his coaching staff including, Mickey Hatcher, Alfredo Griffin, Ron Roenicke and Bud Black. This made the transition from a Dodger fan to an Angel fan pretty transparent.  These were all guys I grew up watching in Dodger blue who went on to win World Championship rings with the Dodgers and were now coaching my new home town team, the Angels.

Scioscia turned the team around pretty quickly winning the 2002 World Series against the heavily favored San Francisco Giants led by a juiced up Barry Bonds.  That was a magical year for the Halos, I was fortunate enough to attend World Series games 2 and 7 in Anaheim. Percival got the save in both games.  It was an experience I’ll never forget, jumping around in the stands after that final out in game 7 was exhilarating.  High fiving other fans as the trophy was brought onto the field and given to Mike Scioscia.  The Anaheim Angels were World Champions of Major League Baseball.

The Angels have had continued success behind Scioscia winning the AL West 5 of the last 6 years but coming up short in the LDS and ALCS.

I  was given a $100 Ticketmaster gift card a while back and finally got around to using it.  Two seats in the club level on the 1st base side at Angels Stadium for opening day 2010 against the Minnesota Twins, April 5th.  The Angels start the season with a 6-3 win over the Twinkies including homeruns by our newest free agent acquisition DH Hideki Matsui, first baseman Kendry Morales and catcher Jeff Mathis.

Here’s to hoping the Halos can regain the magic of that 2002 season and bring home another trophy to Anaheim.

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Failure

Poker is so brutal; many disappointments and unexpected letdowns.  After relentless torture, you flop the nuts and play cautiously.  This comes from experience.

What other game is like that?

Many approaches are taken.  Raise/re-raise then bet some more, bet/call, limp/call, limp/shove or just fold and GTFO.

Coin flips, 60/40 races and the ol’ two outer suckout.  When I suckout, I should take a screenshot. I wonder how much I would’ve lost/won if I called or shoved way behind.  I’ve done it many times but, I’ve also made some tough folds.  Maybe it all would’ve evened out.  A mysterious joke really.

Random thoughts from a tilted mind.

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Sputtering about

I’ve been struggling for several months with the motivation to play focused and disciplined online poker.  There always seems to be some distraction keeping me from putting in the hours I should.  But now that football season is over and the Bolts discovered another epic way to implode, I really have no excuses not to bang away at the tables.

A few months back I mentioned some interest in grinding 45 man sngs.  These can be very profitable although mind numbingly boring.

A recent sharkscope chart:

I’ve been dabbling in MTT’s again without much success and find myself getting frustrated after losing a bunch of consecutive races.  Yesterday, I lost 10 of 12 flips and shut things down.  In one flip, i flopped a set with presto only to crash and burn to runner/runner broadway.  Standard, I know.

Rush Poker has been a real shot in the arm.  Although the beats can come fast and furious,  I’ve found i’m able to let them bounce off me because I really don’t have much time to dwell on them.

Bodog is running a new promo for sports fans Feb 15- Mar 14.  Cash in 3 single table sng’s a week and you’re entered into a drawing to win tickets, airfare and accommodations to the SuperBowl, NBA Finals, NHL Stanley Cup finals and the World Series.  They’re also kicking in $500 spending money for each event.  It’s a pretty awesome package.  Get more details on the Bodog Ultimate Sports Fan Experience.  They’re also running two $5k freerolls for players who qualify during this promotion.

Full Tilt is kicking off FTOPS XV today.  I doubt I’ll be playing any events but I’ll definitely be grinding satellites.

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Rush Poker

Full Tilt poker has introduced a sick twist to online poker, the game we love to hate.  This bastardized version of online cash game crack is “Rush Poker”.

Before Rush Poker, you’d see an average of approximately 65 hands per hour playing at a 9-handed full ring cash table.  Now with Rush Poker you can see over 4x as many hands.

I found it somewhat difficult to keep up with more than two Rush Poker cash tables going.  I also had two other standard tournament/sng tables up at the same time.  But even if I had shut those down, I could see myself having trouble keeping up with more than three Rush Poker tables running simultaneously.

And yes, they have Omaha HI Rush Poker tables. :puke:

Full Tilt is crushing the rake on these new games.  Rush Poker is a great way to accumulate rakeback.  It definitely makes accumulating points for Iron Man and TrulyFreePokerTraining much easier.

Full Tilt is running their double guarantees this week (Jan 25th-31st).  I was hoping to see some overlays but they’re easily meeting and exceeding their guaranteed prize pools.

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Poker post

got my money in good and junk kicked for the umpteenth time.

Happy New Year all! Be safe and prosper.

Please let our hands hold up in 2010.

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OC –> CLE –> LAS

We’ll be collecting frequent flyer miles over the next couple weeks.  Not as many as some tournament reporters/writers but a few thousand anyway.

We’re off to CLE tomorrow to visit with Tina’s family, exchange x-mas gifts and go to the Browns / Charger game on Sunday.  Originally, Tina said she’d be sporting Brownie garb but finally converted from what is Cleveland sports despair to SoCal sports where winning is a reality (Bolts/Lakers/Angels/Ducks).  The Chargers haven’t won a SB but are on their way to winning their 4th straight AFC West title and KO’d Indy from the post-season each of the last two years.  They aren’t the discombobulated franchise that is the Cleveland Browns.

Norv > Mangini

We return Monday night, regroup for a few days, then repack and head to Vegas Saturday morning.  Our flight is expected to arrive at 12:30pm PST and the ’09 WPBT Winter monkey shove contest is expected to start at 1pm.  I’m hoping they allow late registration until the 1st break like most casinos.  If so it will still be close, rushing from McCarran to Paris Hotel to checkin/drop off bags and cab over to Caesars.

I haven’t signed with any of the last longer blogger dream teams at this point for that reason.  If someone wants to add me to their team with an alternate, let me know.

See some of you in Vegas next weekend.

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Precious Moments

You ever think to yourself,

“why do i do stupid shit?”.

I limp or call when I should raise.  I check when I should bet.  I call when I should fold.  I raise when I should check or call. I re-raise when I should just GTFO.

Luck is such a HUGE factor in this game, I need to bet when I get lucky and think I’m ahead, and bet big enough so it’s not a no-brainer call.  Why give brain dead button mashers a chance to catch up on the cheap?

I’ve really been rethinking my pre-flop/post-flop tendencies.

A session doesn’t go by that I don’t want to kick myself in the balls for doing something stupid.

Happy Turkey and Football Day! The absolute best holiday of the year.

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