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Goodbye, football; let's get ready for baseball and a stellar year of golf

On Sports
Rochester Business Journal
February 8, 2013

Now that the fantastic football season is over, how do you feel? Bummed out? Bored already?
Hey, I totally understand! No more head-on collisions, no more 108-yard kickoff returns, no more interceptions, no more boogying in the end zone and no more blown calls that would've changed the outcome of Super Bowl XLVII-that's 47 for you non-Romans.
To be honest with all y'all out there, I'm ready for a break from our brain-damaging national pastime. Yes, I did watch the Super Bowl. I've never missed one, and I won't miss it next year. I wasn't emotionally involved, but I was pulling for the 49ers for two reasons.
One, I became a 49ers fan when Joe Montana led them to four Super Bowl wins, and how do you not love San Francisco, the City by the Bay? If you've never been there, you probably can't answer that.
Two, I've never forgiven Art Modell for packing up and taking the Browns out of Cleveland, moving the team to Baltimore back in 1995. At least he couldn't call them the Browns, and Cleveland came back with the Browns in 1999.
Oh, well, the Ravens earned it, I guess. The team with the most points at the end of the game is declared the winner.
Now, though, with all that manhood brutality behind us, we will move into the real seasons-at least my real seasons: golf and baseball!
The PGA Tour is off and running-make that driving and putting-and next week, Major League Baseball teams will hit the field to start spring training for the 2013 season, which begins March 31. Our Rochester Red Wings will open their season April 4 in Buffalo, with the home opener April 6 at Frontier Field. I don't know about you, but I can't wait!
Meanwhile, back on the first tee, 2013 just might be pro golf's most exciting year in a while-and yes, even right here in Rochester. We have two major pro tournaments, the LPGA Championship at Locust Hill CC and the PGA Championship at Oak Hill CC.
Sorry, but if you don't play the great game, you won't appreciate it or what lies ahead on the PGA Tour links.
No. 1 on the list is Tiger Woods, and the first question is "Is Tiger back?" Well, it depends on what his driver and putter have to say. But they have spoken already. He has won his first tournament, and by four shots-the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines.
The word is that he won't play again for another month, however, which makes no sense. Don't bother to ask him, though; he would probably say, unless he was on TV, "None of your business."
Will Tiger win another major championship or two this year and pull within two or three majors of record-holding legend Jack Nicklaus' 18? There are those convinced he will and others who say no way.
Tiger majors or not, though, with Phil Mickelson back on his game-at least for now-and No. 1-ranked Rory McElroy coming back to defend his PGA Tour money-winnings title, who knows what will happen? With apologies to Hogan, Snead, Palmer, Nicklaus, Trevino, et al, it should be a fantastic golf season. And as I say every year about this time, the Masters is only two months away!
Ah yes, and baseball! It's not as popular as football anymore, probably because baseball players aren't out there to show the world they are real men. They can't even hit each other with bats! You know, no brutality allowed.
As much as I hate to admit this, I am inching toward becoming a New York Yankees fan. Sorry, Red Sox! I have immense respect for Derek Jeter, which I hope is not because I don't know him. He has been a class player forever, and last season he batted .316, a great year for a guy who'll be 39 in June.
Then there's Alex Rodriguez, whom I hope the Yankees will tell to hit the road. Despite the stuff he supposedly had taken to turn him on at the plate, he was pretty much a flop in 2012, batting .272 with only 18 home runs. And in the postseason he hit a measly .120 and struck out 12 times. Talk about overpaid!
I just hope the Red Sox bounce back from their awful 2012 season, but I won't hold my breath. They were 24 games under .500 and finished last in the AL East, so the bottom line is they can't get any worse.
Yankees, Red Sox, whatever-I can't wait for baseball to get here, along with some warm weather. Optimism is gushing from Frontier Field, where our Red Wings finished at .500 for the first time since 2008. It will be great to get back there without a winter coat and watch the Red Wings make a serious run at the playoffs, which I think they will.
I am convinced there is a great, lucky '13 ahead!

Rick Woodson's column appears each Thursday on the Rochester Business Journal website at His book, "Words of Woodson," is available at Listen to his weekly program, "The Golf Tee," at 9 a.m. Sunday on WHTK-AM 1280 and FM 107.2/1/132/8/13 (c) 2013 Rochester Business Journal. To obtain permission to reprint this article, call 585-546-8303 or email

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