Friday, October 29, 2010

TOP FIVE BASEBALL MOVIES OF ALL-TIME

After posting my list of favorite comedy movies of all-time last week I received a lot of emails asking me what are my top five favorite baseball movies of all-time. My list is a little different than most people, and I know I'm going to get yelled at for not included a couple of the most popular baseball movies of all-time, but it's still OK. So once again, here we go!

1) Major League & Major League 2
I've decided to put both of these movies together on the list because I really can't decipher between the two. I actually wanted to put it on my top comedy movies of all-time, but apparently I've taken one too many fastballs to the dome and forgot. There are so many quotable lines in this thing I could go through a whole season and not have to use the same line twice. What an awesome pair of movies.

2) A League of Their Own
I almost wanted to put this movie at #1, but decided to put it just below. Jimmie Dugan is my favorite and funniest sports character of all-time, and hey, I'm no sexist, but who would have thought they could make a baseball movie with women players this damn good. I know I didn't! But it happened, and I'm glad it did.

3) Bull Durham
You can see that I am biased towards comedies. Bull Durham is not only funny as hell, but I think they hit the baseball part of the equation right on the head. I've played with Crash Davis types, I've been teammates with characters like Nuke LaLoosh, and you don't have to search very hard to find your Annie Savoys of minor league baseball. They just do a great job of making a really funny, yet serious baseball movie.

4) Rookie of the Year
Listen, Little League was one of my favorite baseball experiences of my life, and the Major Leagues isn't too bad either. Take both of them and combine them into one movie and I'm going to watch it and like it. I'm not going to lie, I usually wouldn't like a baseball movie that so unrealistically has a twelve year old as a big league pitcher, but this movie is so damn funny I'll make an exception.

5) The Sandlot
I know, I know. How could I not put The Natural or Field of Dreams in here. I agree, they are both awesome movies, and definitely some of the best baseball movies ever. But for some reason I would watch The Sandlot over both of them if I were bored and had all three DVDs to choose from. I guess I just can't get over my crush of comedies. The sandlot just reminds me of playing pick-up baseball as a kid, and it's funny as hell. I had to put it in my top five or I'd be lying.

Just missed the top five

The Natural, Field of Dreams, Angels in the Outfield, Little Big League, For Love of the Game, The Rookie

Leave your top five baseball movies of all-time in the comment section below. Thanks!


LEAVING ARIZONA

Hello everybody. Today is a good day. I have officially finished all of my rehab work in Arizona and will be jumping on a plane tomorrow back to the great state of Massachusetts, right in time for the below freezing temperatures that are probably right around the corner. It's a good thing I didn't waste any of my days sitting by the pool getting a tan out here, because I'll be wearing a t-shirt, sweatshirt, and a pullover in a few weeks. (Actually, no its a cardigan but thanks for noticing! Yeah, killer boots man!)

Since I've been getting a lot of emails lately asking me how things were going and why I hadn't made a video in a while, I thought I would make one last night letting everyone know what I had been up to the last few weeks. So here you go! I hope everyone enjoys the weekend and I'll talk to you all from the east coast.


Wednesday, October 27, 2010

QUESTIONS ABOUT GETTING STRONGER

I've been receiving a lot of different emails lately from high schools players all over the country asking me advice on strength training, so I thought I'd take a few minutes today to answer a few of them. Here is a list of the some of the questions I've read over the past month or so, and they all have the same concept in mind. "What is the best exercise for gaining power?" "What supplements should I take to get stronger?" "How can I gain power to hit more home runs?" "What are the best strength exercises the Padres have you do for hitting more home runs?"

I have already answered all of these questions personally, but I wanted to give my thoughts on the idea of gaining power in the weight room, and what I've learned over the past few years of working out, because I know from the emails a lot of kids are looking to add power to their game. Also, let me preface this with saying, I am not a strength and conditioning specialist or anything like that, I'm just giving you my opinion on what I've done personally over the years.

The first thing to understand is, there is no one exercise, or best exercises, or super exercise, that will single-handedly increase your power and home runs. Do I think dead lifts should be a major part of an athlete's workout and are great for developing power? Absolutely! How about squats? For sure! Medicine ball training? Without a doubt! But, I don't think there is one exercise that will magically make you hit 30 home runs and 50 doubles a year.

When it comes to weight training, there are two things that I believe are most important when it comes to adding strength. Hard work and consistency. There are thousands of different workouts out there. Millions of different trainers. I get asked over and over again, what the special exercise is? What does the Padres workout plan look like? How can I add power for next months tournament? Honestly, if you want to get stronger, take your main exercises, put an amount of weight on the bar that is challenging but not impossible, and lift it. If you bust your butt, continue to lift heavier weight, and consistently stick with your program, you will get stronger, especially if your a young kid in high school and haven't really been involved in a regimented training schedule before. It will take time, and a lot of dedication, but if you stick with it you will see your strength, power, and baseball game improve.

I know everyone claims to have the magic formula, the special workout plan, the secret ingredient to get you so strong and powerful colleges and professional scouts will be banging down your door. Everyone wants the special supplement to make you look like the Incredible Hulk. Don't get me wrong, there are some absolutely great strength coaches out there with great routines that will definitely take your game to the next level. And if you have the opportunity to take advantage of one I say go for it. I have seen big improvements in my game since joining Catz Sports Performance. But not everyone has the luxury of being able to train with a strength and conditioning coach. That doesn't mean you can't get stronger. When I was in high school I worked out with a buddy of mine at a local gym in our town. We did some research online and put together a program of the core exercises and went at it. We loaded the bar and did Squats, Dead lifts, RDLs, Chin-ups, Rows, Dumbbell Chest Press, etc. Each time we went to the gym we tried to do better than the time before. Before I knew it I went from 180 pound senior in high school with zero career home runs to 215 pounds two years later and almost twenty (nothing to brag about, but better than zero!) Of course, it isn't all about getting big and strong. Make sure you continue to stretch, foam roll, and do some speed and agility training. But, if you are on your own I'm telling you, the biggest thing is to bust your butt and stick with it and you will get stronger.

Monday, October 25, 2010

TOP FIVE COMEDIES OF ALL-TIME

I got asked a few days ago, "what's your favorite comedy of all-time?" Man, that's a really tough question. With the thousands of movies that I've watched, it is really tough to come up with pick as #1. I sat down and thought of it for a few minutes and decided to come up with a top 5 instead of a #1. These could probably be mixed around into any order, but this is what my top 5 favorite comedy movies list looks like with a brief reason why:

1) Dumb and Dumber
Probably my favorite movie of all-time. If you put a gun to my head and demanded I give you my top comedy of all-time I'd say, "Get that damn gun away from my head!" and then I'd say, "Dumb and Dumber." I can vividly remember the first time I ever saw this movie, and the 500 times since, and I still laugh just as hard as the first time I watched it. Just a classic, and one of the greatest movies ever made.

2) Billy Madison
I am a huge Adam Sandler fan. He is probably my favorite actor of all time, and I've seen just about every one of his films. Although his new stuff isn't as great as his old stuff, I don't really think it's possible. He probably had the best run of funniest movies ever created, and most of them are on my list.

3) Tommy Boy
If Adam Sandler is my favorite actor of all-time, Chris Farley is # 1B. I can just look at this dude and start laughing. It's a shame he passed away at such a young age, but even though his career ended way to soon I still think he's one of the best of all-time.

4) The Wedding Singer
Here we go again! Another classic, and one of the funniest movies of all-time. I know people are going to say I've got way to many Adam Sandler movies on here but I can't help myself. I still think this movie deserves to be up here.

5) Happy Gilmore
I think its about now that you realize how big of an Adam Sandler fan I am.
One of the most epic movies of all time. You can drop any line from this movie to just about anyone and they know exactly what your talking about. Just an awesome movie and I got to put it in my top 5.

Just missed the top 5
There's Something About Mary, Wedding Crashers, Meet the Parents, Big Daddy, Ace Ventura Pet Detective

Let me know your top five comedy movies of all-time in the comment section below!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

SIGN OF THE WEEK

"Just when I thought you couldn't possibly be any dumber, you go and do something like this..."




Thursday, October 21, 2010

THEY GOT GUNS AND SHIT

Hey guys what's going on today? I just finished spending about four hours or so over at the field working on my wrist. I've received a bunch of emails lately asking what I've been doing to help my wrist heal and get back to playing again. Each day I basically do the same thing while over there.

They first use an ultrasound machine on me every morning for about ten minutes. You really can't feel anything happening to you while its on, but apparently its breaking up scar tissue around the incision. I then get a message on my scar. This is used to do the same thing as the ultrasound, break up scar tissue and help me with gaining mobility back in my wrist that I lost from the surgery and being immobilized for two weeks in a cast. After this, we go through some joint mobility exercises, where they move my wrist around in all different directions to get some more flexibility, followed by stretching exercises. It is amazing how much better I am moving my wrist around after about seven days of working on it. I am back to about 100% mobility right now. After a few more minutes of this, I'll throw an ice bag on for about twenty minutes, before being able to start stretching, running, and lifting with my lower body. That whole process will take about another two hours or so. And that's it. This has pretty much been my schedule for the last two weeks. I think I have another few days of this before I'm able to move on to some other stuff.

Now onto some other news. If you guys saw my video I made a few days ago, you know that I was talking about UFOs and people calling into the police to report what they saw. If you didn't see the video, here it is so you have an idea what I'm talking about.





If you really don't feel like watching it that's OK, I was pretty much just wondering why people call in and report UFO sightings so frequently. Well, the funny thing is, right after I put up that video my roommate told me that there was a UFO sighting in Richmond, Virginia where his family lives. He had no idea that I had just made a video about my feelings on UFOs, so I thought it was kind of ironic. He said that hundreds of people saw the mysterious flying object, and that many of them called in to report it. A lot of them also filmed the event. We decided to search the internet and see if we could find anything on it. There are actually a good amount of videos of that night on there. Here is one of the videos we found on Youtube.




Now I still don't believe that this is a UFO, but I must say, it does look pretty interesting, and I can see why people would be curious about it. With this being said, I still wouldn't grab my video camera at 2 AM and go video tape it. I still want to know who is up at 2 AM looking up in the sky to see this thing in the first place. Let me know what you guys think of the video, and if we are all doomed.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

INTERNET TOUGH GUYS

One of my favorite new hobbies, since I live in a hotel with no car to leave, is to go on Youtube and read the comments to the millions of videos posted daily. I'll find an amazing video of some kid with talent I could never even imagine possessing in a million years, and watch someone write in the comment section, "not impressive, was able to do that when I was four years old." I'll watch a video of Aroldis Chapman of the Cincinnati Reds throwing a 104 MPH fastball and read, "I'm 11 and throw 98." I'll watch Usain Bolt run a 9.69 second 100 yard dash and see, "I ran that in high school, but broke my legs and had to retire." I'll watch a clip of a rainbow colored unicorn that can fly and see, "really not that cool, I have a polka dotted dog that can talk." Now I'm sure there are some very talented people out there that can throw things really hard, run extremely fast, and possess animals with super talents. But on the Internet, and especially Youtube, everyone seems to be wicked awesome. So this, my Youtube friends, is for you.


Other than being amazed by these comments, life is pretty simple these days. I have continued to head over to the complex and get my rehab work done every morning. My wrist is definitely getting better with each passing day, and I'm hoping I can start lifting some weights and maybe even start swinging a bat in the next week or two. In the mean time I'll keep watching Youtube clips, making my own videos to display the true amount of boredom I experience each day, and continue to make sure I don't do anything stupid to slow down the healing of my hand.

Also, I just had a contest on Twitter where I gave the winner a pair of my Nike batting gloves, so if you want in on the next one, follow me at http://www.twitter.com/mattantonelli9

Sunday, October 17, 2010

THINGS THAT DRIVE ME NUTS

Since arriving in Arizona, there have been a few things that are driving me crazy lately. Maybe I'm just a little cranky from flying all the way across the country while making three stops along the way, or maybe these things really are annoying as all hell. Let me know what you think.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

MAIL BAG

Matt from California asks:

I've always wondered what a day is like during the off-season for a professional baseball player. Could you go through your normal day from the time you get up to the time you go to bed. Thanks and good luck with your recovery!

Thanks for your question Matt. This is a really interesting questions because a lot of people assume that when I'm not playing baseball during the off-season that I spend all day laying around on the sofa doing nothing. Now I won't lie, the off-season is definitely a lot more relaxing than during the season, and I do have a good amount of time to sit around the house, but I still stay pretty busy throughout the day. I'll give you a typical Monday, lets say in November. I am a creature of habit, so a lot of the things I do on Monday, I will do on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, including eating a lot of the same exact foods. Here we go.

I usually will wake up around 9 AM and head downstairs to eat some breakfast. I will eat two bags of oatmeal, Apple Spice and Cinnamon Swirl. While I eat I will watch some television, almost always SportsCenter and CNBC. When I'm done eating I'll take a quick shower and then throw a bagel into the toaster to eat on my drive to working out. I seriously eat the same thing every Monday through Friday for breakfast, all off-season long. At 10:15 AM I jump in my car with my bagel and a bottle of water and eat while I drive 30 minutes to Needham, Massachusetts for my workout. I will arrive around 10:45, stretching out and using the foam roller for 15 minutes until my workout starts at 11 AM and runs to around 12:30. I'll usually stretch and foam roll again for 15 minutes and then drive home around 1 PM after talking for a few minutes. I always will eat a protein bar or protein shake, depending on how I'm feeling on the drive home.

I'll get home around 1:30 and drink a glass of chocolate milk before I jump in the shower. At 2 PM I'll eat my lunch, usually a turkey sandwich with some Doritos. Every now and then, depending on what I had for dinner the night before, I'll heat up the leftovers and have that for lunch. It is usually always chicken or steak. I'd say I eat the turkey sandwich and Doritos 90% of my lunches. I'll eat while I watch television, again usually SportsCenter and CNBC. At 3PM I'll drive about 10 minutes to an indoor baseball facility where I will hit, throw, and field for about an hour. Usually around 4 PM I'll give a baseball lesson or two until about 6 PM. I'll jump back in my car and head home where I will sit down for dinner, again usually chicken or steak. After dinner I'll head back in the shower and finally take a seat on my sofa around 7 PM.

It's around this time that I will get on my computer and check my email and answer some Twitter replies and Facebook messages. Every other day I'll write a new blog post, or maybe make a video if I'm in the mood. Depending on the night of the week, the Celtics will just be about to start, and I rarely miss a game during the season. After another victory by the C's, I'll grab a snack. I always finish the night with a bowl of cereal, Special K with berries. I'll then probably read a book before I head up to bed around 12 AM. I'll watch some television again while I start to fall asleep. The TV will go off around 1 AM so I can get my eight hours, before I'm back up at 9 AM to get my day going again.

This is almost exactly how my day goes from Monday to Thursday. Obviously there are small things throughout the day that I will do differently, but I'm serious when I say that besides a few very tiny changes, this is how every one of those days goes. The difference with Fridays is that I will usually go out to eat at night, followed by a movie or something else to get me out of the house and enjoy the coming weekend. Saturdays and Sundays are what I consider my off days. I don't really workout, except for the occasional Saturday morning, when I'll run to the gym quickly to do an arms and abs workout. Big Arms, Big Paychecks is still the motto I like to live life by. I suggest you try it out. Sundays are of course dedicated to football.

And that's it. I know you probably think it looks pretty boring, but I use the week to get everything done that will help me improve my baseball skills and the weekends to sit back and relax or go out and enjoy myself. I like keeping a pretty set schedule so I know what I'll be doing or eating in advance. That probably makes me a little weird, but it works for me. I hope this helps you out and answers your question, and thanks again for writing in!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

I'M BACKKKKKKK

Well, I'm back. Back in good ole' Peoria, Arizona. It feels like I was just here only a few days ago, but it has actually been almost two months since I was rehabbing from my first surgery and attempting to get back on the field to finish the season.

I flew in last night, arriving around 10PM. It wasn't the easiest travel day of my life, but I eventually made it. I left Logan International Airport in Boston at 7AM and took the five and a half hour plane trip to Phoenix, Arizona. I quickly switched planes and continued for another hour to San Diego, where I jumped into a taxi and headed over to see our hand doctor. After a quick meeting with him I jumped back in a taxi and back to the airport, where after a two hour delay jumped back on a plane back to Phoenix. In all, the total trip took about fifteen hours, and finally getting into bed last night felt a lot like Christmas used to when I was 24 and would wait anxiously for Santa Claus to come down the chimney and eat my reindeer shaped sugar cookies I baked for him. Needless to say I was pretty excited.

This morning I woke up and quickly jumped back into my normal routine of heading over to our Spring Training complex for rehab work. As of right now, the game plan is to work on gaining back some mobility in my wrist, and also work on loosening up the scar tissue that has developed. Doesn't sound like the most exciting stuff in the world, and it isn't, but it is definitely the first step to getting me back to doing my normal stuff baseball wise. Right now the plan is continue this process for the next four weeks or so, but I'm hoping that my hand will start to recovery quickly and I can be back to lifting weights and doing baseball stuff a little sooner. Time will tell.

Being integrated back to "hotel life" isn't the easiest adjustment, but if I made it through the first few times without developing any new mental disorders or eating any of my limbs off out of boredom, I guess I can do it again. That is honestly the toughest part of the whole process. I am at the field from about 9 AM to 1 PM, so I have to find things to keep me occupied for the other 10+ hours. It gets tough to do without a car, kitchen, or XBOX. I brought a few books out, and will be watching the MLB playoffs and of course the NFL on Sundays and Mondays. I wish there was a way to recapture my five year old mentality when GI Joe's and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle figurines could keep me occupied for days on end. Maybe I'll walk over to Toys R Us tomorrow.

Anyways, I hope everyone has a great week and if you have any ideas of exciting things to do to keep me alive let me know, I will gladly take your advice. I shall talk to you all later. Goodnight!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

WHY YOU GOING TO THE AIRPORT, FLYING SOMEWHERE?

Hey guys, how is everyone's weekend going? Other than exploring different alternatives to deal with the passing on of Randy Moss, I haven't really done too many excited things over the past few days. I have started working out again, but I'm still not ready to do upper body activities. I could probably do them fine if I tried, but I figure I'll give it a few more days before I start. I've got spare time. I've been doing a lot of speed and agility drills and lifting with my lower body. I've also been listening to my doctor, and squeezing tennis balls during the day. It is pretty damn exciting, let me tell you.

Going forward, I found out that I will be flying out to San Diego on Monday to meet with our team doctors. They want to see how my hand is healing. It actually feels 100% better than it did only a few days ago. I'm starting to feel like I didn't even have any surgery on it to begin with. I think in a few more days it will feel like new. Monday should be an adventurous day. I fly from here to Arizona at 7AM. I then switch planes and fly to San Diego to see our doctor. After the visit with them, I head back to the airport and jump on a plane back to Arizona. Looking at the bright side, I guess I'll rack up on some air miles. I'm looking forward to getting the doctor visits over with, especially when they are 10 hours away. It will be a good day when I can focus solely on baseball and not on injuries. Hopefully that day is right around the corner.

As far as today goes, my Patriots are off which puts a real damper on the weekend. The one thing I do have is my fantasy football. Things have not gone well for me so far, but I still have time to turn things around. This is the worst season I have ever had in my life when it comes to fantasy. I would love to see Randy put up 2 TD's this Monday night. If he does that I'm definitely heading out to buy a Vikings jersey.

I hope everyone enjoys their Sunday and I'll talk to you all later.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

FAREWELL RANDY MOSS

Everyone is well aware of the man crush I have developed for Randy Moss, former New England Patriot and now member of the Minnesota Vikings. I thought we could take a look back to the extremely tight bond between him and myself over the years. It will be tough to see him back in the purple and yellow, but time heals all wounds, so I'll eventually be OK. It's tough for me to watch this, but I hope you Enjoy.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

GET THIS OFF OF ME!

Hello everybody, how are we today? I finally got this stupid cast off of my hand, so I am back to being able to type without an problems. It feels so refreshing to be able to do things freely with both hands again.

I went into the doctors today around 3:00 PM for him to cut off my cast and take my stitches out. This is the second time in only a few months where I underestimated the effects that surgery would have on me. When I had my first surgery on my hamate bone back in April I thought I would take my cast off and be able to do everything I had down before being injured without any problems. Well, we all know how that went. Now after this surgery, which is considered a minor surgery, I took my cast off and again was expecting to be able to move my hand and wrist around without any problems. Well, once again, it is not as easy as I would have thought. It is crazy the amount of scar tissue that builds up from surgery. My wrist looks pretty gross when you look at where they cut me to get the cyst out. I don't have very much range of motion in my wrist right now, so I will spend the next few weeks stretching that out and getting it back to normal.

As far as the rehab goes for this injury it is pretty basic. Over the next few weeks I will be working on getting my grip strength back by pretty much just squeezing and grabbing things. It really isn't rocket science or anything. I'll probably grab a tennis ball and squeeze it throughout the day while I'm watching TV. Once I am able to get my grip strength back I will be able to move onto some heavier weight lifting so I can start preparing for next season. As of right now the doctor wants me to not pick up a bat or do any swinging for about six weeks. I am hoping by that time I am back to 100% and ready to swing without any problems, pain, or setbacks. Man, would that be a great feeling. I have received a lot of questions lately asking if I will be in San Diego rehabbing, or if I will be out in Arizona at our spring training complex. As of right now I am not totally sure what is going to happen just yet. I will probably find out within the next few days what is going to happen.

Since I've had a long day of doctor visits I am going to head off to bed and get ready to get back at it tomorrow. I have a day planned of running and lifting with my lower body since I haven't been able to do anything over the past two weeks with my cast on. I can't wait to get back to moving again. I hope everyone has a nice day tomorrow and a good rest of the week, and I shall talk to you all later. Good night!


Sweet battle wound huh? What a badass!