Things Look Great for Texas in 2016

crowleysoccer/ March 11, 2016/ Sport/ 0 comments

It’s almost time for baseball season again.  I’m always excited for opening day. I think this is going to be an extra special year for the Rangers.  Last year they appeared to be going nowhere but went on a second half surge to win the division.  This was fresh off a season in which the Rangers went 67-95 and missed the playoffs for the second year in a row. Us Rangers fans were probably a little spoiled by the teams back-to-back World Series runs in 2010 and 2011, even if we never could actually bring home the trophy. This year the division is going to be tough.  Sure the over under win total for Texas sits at 86.  But, the Houston Astros are right there at 85.5.  Seattle has a posted number of 83.  The LA Angels should bounce back and are expected to win 82.5 games. There isn’t a division in baseball that’s deeper than the AL West.  The Oakland Athletics are the only team with a projected record of under .500, but we all know how Billy Bean somehow works his magic and gets that team to contend. For the Rangers to succeed in 2016 they can’t get off to a slow start.  They are going to need Adrian Beltre healthy.  He had some health issues for the first time since becoming a Ranger.  He’s a premiere player at the hot corner and we need his bat in the lineup. The Rangers need Rougned Odor to be the star he’s supposed to be.  He’s only 22.  Last year he played in 120 games, had 16 home runs, but only batted .261.  In the minors he never hit for a real high average, but had decent pop for a second basemen and could steal some bases. They need Yu Darvish back to form, and they need Cole Hamels to be an ace.  Camels started 12 games for Texas last year and maintained his 3.66 ERA the he had with the Phillies.  Of course he was coming off a 2.46 ERA showing in 2014 so it was a bit of a letdown. This team has a lot of talent and now has a history of success.  The Houston Astros are young and hungry, but they haven’t learned how to win yet.  However, this team is seen as having more potential.  The World Series odds show the Astros at 18/1 while the Rangers are only 22/1. I still think Texas makes the playoffs this year, but how much longer can they hold off Houston?

Healthy Food Choices For Athletes: There’s a Difference Between…

crowleysoccer/ January 16, 2016/ Health, Nutrition/ 0 comments

Lately there has been a good amount of confusion swirling around certain foods that potentially leave eaters thinking they are healthy, when in fact, the opposite is true. The following are a few closely related, yet frequently mistaken foods. They are in many ways the Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde of food – one is genuinely healthy, the other only seems so. There’s a difference between… Whole Wheat and Whole Grain These two food twins – separated at birth – are among the most widely confused for each other. I can’t tell you how many people I come across that say, “This bread is much healthier, its whole wheat,” or “I just had a sandwich on whole wheat, aren’t I healthy?” No one likes to rain of a good parade, but healthy whole-wheat parades are, unfortunately an illusion. In almost every way whole wheat is just the same as sourdough, ciabatta, or any type of white bread – none are proven to be healthier. They all have one primary commonality – their grains are not intact. When it comes to eating bread – Whole GRAINS are an essential part. Some bread companies will even say they are whole grain, or misleadingly use the word “grain.” The healthiest loaf of bread is the one that has visable WHOLE and intact grains on and inside it. Remember this the next time you enjoy a slice of your favorite bread – whole grain is a must! Almond Butter and Peanut Butter  Although both peanut butter and almond butter can be considered healthy under the right circumstances, almond butter is always a better option, in my opinion. Many types of peanut butter, including Skippy and Jif, have hydrogenated oils and other harmful ingredients that you really do not want to mess with. Additionally, all peanut butters often carry a potentially harmful carcinogen, called Aflatoxin. Although almond butter can be a bit pricey, your health is always worth the extra dollar or two. Cow’s Milk and Coconut Milk  Did you know that humans are the only mammals that continue to drink milk after infancy? In my opinion, drinking milk as an adult is entirely unnecessary, I wouldn’t go so far as to call it harmful, but there are certainly better options. Anyone who says you won’t get enough calcium or protein if you rid your diet of milk, is full of it! Look at all the lactose-intolerant people, have they withered away and died on us? Nope. In fact, they are probably better off with their involuntary diet change. Alternatives to cow’s milk like almond milk and coconut milk are just as nutritious (if not more so) and feature significantly less calories per service. Cow’s Milk (fat-free) – 90 calories per 8 oz serving Almond Milk (unsweetened) – 35 calories per 8 oz serving Coconut Milk (unsweetened) – 60 calories per 8 oz serving