Author: Varner, Marty

Our Local Guys

Last Tuesday, the San Jose Sharks lost 2-1 in a hard fought game 7 to the Kings to be eliminated in the 2nd round of the NHL Playoffs. This is not a surprise, but what is a surprise is how well the Bay Area teams as a whole are performing this year. Except for minor glimpses the last ten years has been dominated by Shark success while the other teams have been rebuilding, but now it seems like the tables have turned because the four other bay area teams: Giants, 49ers, Warriors, Aís, are all playoff contending teams. Fans canít wait to see what they are capable of as time goes by.

The most successful team recently has obviously been the San Francisco Giants. They have won the World Series two out of the last three years and did it in very different ways. The first one was on the back of their pitching including the Cy Young winner of 2011, Tim Lincecum. Last year it was off the bats of Pablo Sandoval, Marco Scutaro and Buster Posey who all excelled on getting the biggest hits of the game in order to secure victories until they eventually swept the Tigers. This year has had its adversity. Vogelsong is now lost for a big chunk of the season and Lincecum and Cain are struggling. But the bats have looked better than they have in the past years because of the season Hunter Pence put together, they we werenít expecting after how he played last year where he didnít show a lot of pop in AT&T Park. Even though the NL West looks tough now, it is obvious that Giants have the best roster and the championship pedigree to take the division.

The San Francisco 49ers are what many consider the front runner to win the Super Bowl because of their incredible balance. Even though they lost a few players like their hard hitting safety, Goldson, the team still possesses the top defense in football. They also acquired Boldin who will give the team the deep threat for the phenom quarter back Kaepernick, and will take pressure away from the 49erís work horse running back, Frank Gore. The 9ers also gained the championship experience that is so important for a team. It was a factor for the Ravens championship last year. Out of all the Bay Area teams this one is the most talented, respected, nationally noticed, and probably the most likely to win a championship in their new seasons.

My personal favorite of the local teams is the Golden State Warriors. Every Warrior fan knows that this team has always had the talent offensively, but never the determination and discipline to ever make a run. But Mark Jackson changed everything. He gave a message to this team that they took to heart and anybody can see it in their play. No matter how they are shooting you can always see the players getting in front for charges and skying for rebounds. They also have the two best shooters in basketball. Steph Curry is a future 1st or 2nd team point guard as soon as a drops his turnover average because there is no way to cover him. He has the ability to slip through or fade behind bodies, and there is no way to block it with that wicked quick release. The other half of the splash brothers is Klay Thompson who can either hit the spot up 3 or a three off the dribble. He is also six foot seven, which gives him the ability to post up 90% of shooting guards. This creates mismatches for the Warriors rookie phenom Harrison Barnes. The Warriors almost beat the Western Confrence champion Spurs this year, who knows what else they can accomplish?

The Oakland Aís are the cinderella of the Bay Area teams. Nobody thought anything of their minimal play role last year, and they were able to make it to the playoffs. They were able to do this with terrific young pitching they received from brilliant trades, and from clutch hitting that resulted in a majors best 13 walk off wins last year. And this year is no different even though they are second in their division to Texas; they have a better record than the Giants and are poised to make a run.

Everybody make sure to go to the CBA Fatherís Day Bluegrass Festival in Grass Valley, California on Fatherís Day weekend. There will be tons of pickiní along with bands such as Rhonda Vincent & the Rage and Michael Cleveland & Flamekeeper!

Posted:  6/1/2013

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