Friday, November 16, 2018

Emily Luther Visits Section 36!

Section 36 has another visitor! Emily Luther is a talented singer and a Red Sox fan. You probably remember her from her
appearances on the Ellen show, and The Voice. So, I'm thrilled that she was willing to take the time to visit with us. I’m sure you’ll love reading everything she had to say!

So, let’s see what happens when Emily Luther visits Section 36!

How would you describe your musical style?

I’m considered a Pop artist, but that’s never really resonated with me. I consider myself in the Adult Contemporary genre.

Your career got a boost when your video (with Charlie Puth) covering Adele’s “Someone Like You” went viral. How did that video come to be?
What an exciting time in my life! Feels like a lifetime ago, but I approached Charlie my sophomore year of college, and we had it completed within two days. He posted it on his page at the time, and we woke up the next morning with over a million views. It’s sad that things didn’t work out the way I wanted them to, but life had different plans.

That video led to an appearance on the Ellen show. What was that appearance like?
It was surreal. Ellen and her team were searching for my home phone number to get in contact with me & ended up with my Dad’s number. He called me during a band rehearsal I was in at Berklee, and left a voicemail saying, “Ellen Degeneres just called. Can you call me back?” My Dad was so calm, and I was freaking out.

You have also appeared on NBC’s “The Voice”. What did you learn from that experience?
From the setbacks I had in the industry, I never imagined another opportunity would come up ever again. To have the honor of even auditioning was so exciting. The entire experience made me realize the importance of being yourself & staying true to the artist you are.

What is your favorite thing about performing?
Allison and Emily
Meeting people from all over. I even have a fan from California that flies into my shows, and things like that mean the world to me. Making that connection through music is so powerful.

You represented your home state as Miss Rhode Island’s Outstanding Teen 2009. What made you try for that title?
I was encouraged by a few close friends at the time. I didn’t know a thing about pageants, so I thought I’d give it a shot. I respect the Miss America’s Outstanding Teen organization so much. It’s a great way to earn scholarship money, build confidence & the volunteer work that goes with it makes these young women very well-rounded.

Who is your favorite current Red Sox player? Why?
My grandmother is the biggest Red Sox fan ever! She tells me who to look out for each season. Right now, I’m loving a good #AirBenny moment. Did you see that catch?!

Is there a feature or activity at Fenway Park that you'd like to experience?
Every year that goes by, I keep saying I want my 88 year old grandmother to meet the team & watch a game at Fenway. She talks about it all the time, and I keep saying each year it’s gonna happen…maybe now that its in writing, I’ll get on that ;). 

What is your favorite Red Sox memory?
Winning the World Series in 2004. Our entire family had been waiting on that moment for so long. I think secretly everyone (Red Sox fan or not) was hoping for a win. They deserved it!


I hope she's able to get to that game!

As always, I want to thank Emily for visiting with us. It was great hearing everything she had to say!

As a way to follow along with Emily's music career, I suggest you follow her on both Instagram and Twitter and like her Facebook page! That way you won't miss any of her upcoming shows and appearances. Trust me, you'll be glad you did.

Thanks again for the visit Emily!

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Managing Expectations

Last night, as you probably heard, Major League Baseball announced their manager of the year award. And, as you probably heard, Alex Cora finished second in the voting. This really annoyed me.

No, not because I think he should have won, even though he should have. The actual winner of these awards is becoming less important to me as time goes by. Being "in the conversation" is what's important, more than whoever happens to get more random-feeling votes. He had a great year. We all know that. We don't need a trophy to prove it. (Although, the World Series trophy certainly implies it.)

No, my problem is that he finished second, and not first or third. Either of those would have at least made sense. 

If he finished first, you would reward the manager who won the most games with the manager of the year award. That certainly makes sense. After all, the whole goal is to win the most games.

Or, if you oddly wanted to punish Cora for having expensive players you could vote for Melvin and Cash. They won many games with a very low payroll. Which is a great job by them, as long as you equate "payroll" with "talent". After all, the Rays had the Cy Young award winner this season, and A's fans tell me Matt Chapman is like a god or something. So, just because they're not paid very much doesn't mean they aren't highly skilled. Conversely, just because the Sox pay a lot for players doesn't mean they're awesome. After all, a chunk of the Sox payroll is going towards Hanley Ramirez, Dustin's Pedroia's corpse, and Pablo Sandoval. Players that Cora couldn't use much if at all because they weren't on the team for most of the season. (Frankly, Cora should win the award just for having dealt with Pedroia all season.) But, I digress. If you want to vote the award as sort of a win per dollar calculation, Cora wouldn't be your top choice.

But, then, why did he finish second? 

So, he finished behind a guy who won a lot despite his payroll, but ahead of a guy who won a lot despite his payroll. Which is it? Are we penalizing talent, or rewarding it? Did Cash get screwed because he didn't make the playoffs in a division with two 100-win teams? Were the extra seven wins in a weaker division so much better for Melvin? What the hell is a possible explanation to vote Boone over Cora?

So, I don't mind stupid reasons, as long as their somewhat valid. If you want to say an MVP has to come from a playoff team, fine. You'll be stupid, but that's fine. Just always only vote for players from playoff teams. If your Cy young has to have a lot of wins, that's fine. It's a stupid qualification, but go ahead. Just always use that criteria. If your manager of the year needs to have a low payroll, fine. You're a fool, but fine. Just always reward guys with low payrolls.

Otherwise it looks like you're just making things up.

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

I Like the Future with Devers at Third

I'm sure I'm not alone in admitting that over the last five years, I've watched the 2013 World Series DVD once or twice or 36 or 1000 times. In all those viewings, one thing stands out to me. The praise heaped on a young Xander Bogaerts. If you don't remember, he played a big role in game 3, the game that was eventually given to the Cardinals thanks to a blown interference call. But, that call wouldn't have been needed if it weren't for Xander. In the eighth inning, Bogaerts was at the plate facing Trevor Rosenthal, the Cardinals dominant reliever, with the tying run on base. Xander didn't try to do too much. He didn't let the moment get the best of him. He simply grounded a pitch up the middle for the game tying RBI.

As I've been watching highlights of this 2018 championship postseason (as we all have been, right?) I've noticed something. Just how often Rafael Devers was doing something clutch. The 22-year old never let the moment get ahead of him either. He just kept producing. Not enough to win the MVP, or even to really stand out in our memories. But, like a machine he contributed whenever he was needed.

A simple ground ball RBI in the first inning of ALCS game two to extend an early lead in a game the Sox needed to even the series. Another one in the top of the first in game five, making sure the Astros knew they would be in trouble. An amazing game-opening three run home run off Justin Verlander to drive in the winning runs in the game five clincher. When he was needed, he produced!

More of the same in the World Series. An RBI in game one to give the Sox an insurance run. And most important? The go-ahead RBI in the top of the ninth to complete the comeback in the crushing game four.

Just based on the World Series alone, he would have been impressive. Add in the rest of the playoffs, and the kid had himself an October.

So what? He had a good month. 

Well, when you're 22 and suffer from inconsistency, every little bit helps. Every time he can look back and say "this is nothing compared to facing Verlander, I can do this" is one more time he can settle down and let his talents take over. And when you're talking about a season, or a career, that can add up to a lot.

So, will he struggle next year? Sure, maybe. Will he start off slow? Could be. But, has he show us, and himself, that he has the ability and mental state to pull himself out of slumps? Absolutely.

And that is just huge.

Monday, November 12, 2018

November Sale!

It's November, how about another sale?!?

That's right. The Section 36 is on sale now! Today through Sunday check out the store to see low low prices on your favorite gear. Need something warm as the weather turns cold? Need a perfect gift for your favorite someone? Just want to treat yourself? Go check out the deals now!

So, head over right now and select something that you like. But, don't delay. Remember, the sale only runs through Sunday! That's right only a few days before prices go back to their regular levels.

And, as always, when you do get an item, send me a picture wearing it for me to share with the world! The blogFacebook, and even Instagram!

Like Bernadette did to show off how amazing this tank top looks on her.

This tank is 27% off!

Or Phil did.

This tank is also 27% off!

Or Holly did with her cozy new hoodie.

This hoodie is 21% off!

Or Nicolette did with her great t-shirt!

This t-shirt is 30% off!

But, first you need to buy something you like. There's a lot to choose from.

What will you get?

Friday, November 9, 2018

Nicole Pallozzi Visits Section 36!

Section 36 has another visitor! Nicole Pallozzi is a frequent traveler, a Red Sox fan, and the current Miss Rhode Island USA.

I’m excited that she was willing to take the time to visit with us, and become the first Section 36 visitor wearing a Miss USA organization crown. I’m sure you’ll love reading everything she had to say!

So, let’s see what happens when Nicole Pallozzi visits Section 36!

How did you celebrate winning the Miss Rhode Island USA crown?
I celebrated my big win by having a pizza party with all of my close friends and family that attended the pageant! I am very thankful to have such an encouraging and patient support system that have been there for me in the audience for the past five years.

Is there a specific goal you'd like to accomplish during your time as Miss Rhode Island USA?
Throughout my reign as Miss Rhode Island USA 2019, I hope to continue volunteering with Best Buddies and the Special Olympics. I started volunteering with Best Buddies in High School where I would visit Meeting Street School in Providence, RI with fellow classmates. Here we would do arts and crafts and play games with children of all ages and abilities. I also volunteer for the annual Best Buddies Telethon. My Uncle Mickey inspired me to get involved with this organization because he was born with cerebral palsy and even though he cannot walk or talk, he has never let his disability define him as an individual. He inspires me everyday to live life to the fullest and to never take anything for granted. He recently motivated me to get involved with the Special Olympics where I was able to watch him cross the finish line in his electric wheel chair race and win first place!

What part of the upcoming Miss USA competition are you most nervous about?
I am honestly so excited for this opportunity to compete at
Miss USA that I am not currently nervous at all! During this past Miss Rhode Island USA pageant, I was the most relaxed and confident that I have ever been on stage. I truly took in every moment of the competition and gave it my all. I do not want my nerves to get the best of me so I am planning on going into the national competition as relaxed as possible. I have dedicated five years of my life for my Miss USA moment, so I am going to go out there and have the time of my life!

What is your personal fitness routine?
I have been working with my two amazing trainers, Scott and Courtney, for almost two years now. In preparation for Miss Rhode Island USA, I trained with them 2-3 times a week and followed a balanced nutrition plan. Throughout my journey with them, I have in total lost thirty pounds and my body fat has gone from 24% to 12%! I have learned that loving yourself if the greatest revolution. I have learned to truly trust the process and to admire the beauty of others without questioning my own. They have taught me what my body is fully capable of and have molded me into the best version of myself. I’m very excited to see how we’re going to transform my body for Miss USA!

On a trip to Las Vegas, you were able to jump off the side of a building! What was that experience like?
This past May, I went to Las Vegas with my family after graduating from The University of Rhode Island with a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Business Administration. While in Vegas, we walked all the way to the Stratosphere, which is the tallest building on the Las Vegas Strip at 856 feet. When I learned that I could actually jump off of the building, I made the spontaneous decision to give it a go while my family watched from the bottom. I would consider myself an adrenaline junkie and have always loved testing my limits. Jumping off of the Stratosphere was both thrilling and breathtaking! I would 100% do it again. 

You've been able to do quite a bit of traveling. What has been your favorite place to visit? Why?
During my junior year at URI, I studied abroad for a semester
in Florence, Italy where I traveled to 6 countries and 21 European cities! Throughout my time abroad, I fully immersed myself into the Italian culture by studying the language, taking cooking classes, visiting local museum’s, and I even rode a Vespa throughout Tuscany! I also had the opportunity to go paragliding in Switzerland, white water rafting in Croatia, and climb Mt. Vesuvius. Throughout the midst of all of the captivating sites, alluring cities, hidden gems, and incredible food, I learned how much this small, beautiful world has to offer and am excited to see where my future travels take me! Overall, Florence was my favorite place and I am thankful to consider it my home away from home.

What is your favorite part about watching the Red Sox at Fenway park?
My favorite part about watching the Red Sox at Fenway park is the excitement and energy at the ballpark! In June, I attended the Sox vs. Mariners game with my older brother and had so much fun from singing Sweet Caroline, enjoying a Fenway Frank, and of course seeing a Sox win.

Is there a feature or aspect of a game at Fenway that you'd like to experience?
I would love to throw the first pitch at Fenway Park! I have been athletic my entire life and would frequently play baseball in my backyard with my cousins. Throwing the first pitch at Fenway would come first circle the little girl who was just having fun.

Who is your favorite current Red Sox player? Why?
Mookie Betts is my favorite Red Sox player because he is a team player and has been consistent in his performance throughout the entire season!


I hope she finds a way to throw out that first pitch!

As always, I want to give huge thanks to Nicole for doing this interview. I also want to thank her for providing so many great pictures to accompany the interview, especially the ones wearing that great t-shirt. They make it a lot more fun for everyone, don't you think?

As Nicole continues her time as Miss Rhode Island USA, I encourage you to follow her on her official Facebook page. It’ll be worth your time!

I also want to wish Nicole the best of luck when she competes for the Miss USA! It would be amazing to have a Section 36 visitor take home that title! 

Thanks again Nicole, and good luck!

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Four More Years!

As I'm sure you've all heard by now, David Price declined to exercise his option so he will be with the Red Sox for the remainder of his contract. (Quick side note. I'm amazed the “opt outs” have become so standard in contracts since they're so one-sided towards the player.) As you might expect, I'm excited about the idea of having Price for another four years.

I was never one of the people who considered this a three year contract when he signed it. I know there were a lot of those. “This is a good signing if you consider it a three year deal, and assume he opts out.” Because, if he was amazing enough to opt out, you had to assume the Sox would have to spend the same money or more to get him back, or sign his replacement. So, when I liked the deal when he signed it, I still like it now. (With the same caveat. If the Sox can't sign Mookie and Xander to extensions because of this, I'm not a fan.)

Some people certainly wondered if he would ride his playoff success off into the sunset. Frankly, that probably wasn't very realistic unless he wanted to take a pay cut to do so. I'm not sure anybody would hate it here that much. And, even if he had been tempted to do so, his playoff performance probably changed his mind. If you're going to make the money here, why not try Boston while holding all the cards? If you can make it through three years of being a “bust” in some people's eyes, I bet you can make it through four years as a World Series hero.

Hopefully this will help get Price off on a better foot as well. (Although, frankly I doubt it.) If the championship afterglow buys him some good will, I think he’ll be able to take it from there. Naturally, some media members are using this decision as an excuse to be really awful towards Price. After all, now he’s staying here knowing full well what it will be like. So, apparently, playing in Boston means being hounded mercilessly so if you choose to play under those conditions, you can't complain no matter how awful the EEIdiots are. They're just looking for ways to be awful to him at this point.

David Price reminds me of the couple you see at weddings who took dance lessons the month before. You see them on the floor mouthing the beat to themselves, and moving robotically following the steps they've memorized. Clearly they know “how” to dance, but they're not “dancers”. Price seems like that when he deals with the media. It seems like his agent told him how to deal with Boston media, gave him some tips and techniques...but it's just not “him”. So he tries to joke with the media like Pedroia does, but it falls flat. He tries to be honest like Papi did, but it doesn't work. He tries using clichés like everyone else, but it comes off unbelievable. He's trying to be someone he's not. Hopefully by sticking around, and having that shiny new ring, he'll be able to be himself. Because, it seems like he's a pretty likable guy. His teammates adore him, which is probably all he cares about.

So I'm looking forward to more chances to have Sale and Price at the top of the rotation. I'm looking forward to seeing how a relaxed and confident Price performs. I'm looking forward to seeing if the media members realize they're the only one who dislike Price. (I'm not holding my breath on that one) I'm looking forward to getting the Price the Red Sox signed.

Because that will be a lot of fun.

Friday, November 2, 2018

Jayden Moffa Visits Section 36!

Section 36 has another visitor! Jayden Moffa is a singer, a baseball fan, and (for another week or so) the current Miss Laurel
Photo by Michelle Fisher Photography
Summit. I’m thrilled she was 
interested in visiting with us to discuss those topics, and a few more. I’m sure you’ll love reading everything she had to say!

So, let’s see what happens when Jayden Moffa visits Section 36!

How did you celebrate winning the Miss Laurel Summit title?

Lucky for me that the venue I won at was very close to home. (I'm talking like 7 minute trip MAX!) So I was able to go home and relax and really enjoy the evening. The next day I celebrated with one of my favorite desserts, double chocolate cake! 

What was most surprising about your time with the Miss Laurel Summit crown?
When I took on the job this year, I knew I really wanted to go big or go home. I got involved with a statewide program here in Pennsylvania called BrainSTEPS (Strategies Teaching Educators, Parents, and Students) I started a college speaking tour with this group and I was grateful that I did. During my reign I spoke at over dozens of high schools and colleges about the importance of concussion awareness. What really took me by surprise was how many students and adults opened up to me about their personal stories and issues with traumatic brain injuries. I was left speechless and sometimes in tears because of others similar stories, but I was also humbled by the fact that I was able to listen to them and guide them to help. 

What was you favorite thing that happened to you while wearing the Miss Laurel Summit crown?
I truly can not count how many appearances I made during my
reign because I think it was at a record high! One of my favorite memories while wearing the Miss Laurel Summit Crown would have to be at my 3rd Annual Children's Miracle Network Golf Outing. While raising over $6,000 for CMN I was able to enjoy the day golfing (One of my favorite hobbies) all while in a sash and crown! It truly was a great day. Oh and I also got to meet Miss America 2018 Cara Mund! She signed my sash!

How did you select your platform, Concussion Awareness through BrainSteps?
Choosing my platform to be Concussion Awareness Through BrainSteps was pretty set in stone because of the traumatic brain injuries that I suffered through. My first concussion went undiagnosed for over 14 months and I now suffer with a learning disability as well as a loss of depth perception in my right eye. I struggled tremendously in high school and going into college. It was only fitting that I used my struggles to now be my voice and platform. 

As a talented singer, what types of songs are your favorite to sing on stage?
I truly love anything big and showy. I tend to take on songs that are sassy and show lots of personality. I am always down for channeling my inner Celine Dion, or Whitney Huston. 

What is your personal fitness routine?
As a lover of all things sweet, my personal fitness routine has to
dominate all of that. My boyfriend is a State Trooper, so he usually ends up putting me through a pretty hefty workout. I am at the gym 6 days a week with a pretty set plan. Monday: Back and Biceps. Tuesday: Chest and Triceps. Wednesday: Legs. Thursday: Shoulders. Friday: Arms. Saturday/Sunday: Free Workout. I have learned to really love lifting because I feel very empowered. When the weather is nice I am all about going for a hike at Laurel Summit State Park, which just happens to be my title! 

Who is your favorite current Red Sox player? Why?
Mookie Betts!! He is extremely active off the field with multiple charities which is an amazing quality for a MLB player. I have Mookie to win the AL MVP award this year. I think he is one of the best all around players in baseball right now, great defense and great hitter! 

As a Pirates fan, you've been able to watch many games at PNC Park. What is your favorite feature of that ballpark?
PNC Park is known for having a beautiful view of the city skyline. This is one of my favorite features of the ballpark! There are also some pretty great places to eat, in and around PNC! 

Would you ever want to see the Pirates play the Red Sox at Fenway Park?
I think a trip to Fenway Park could surely be in my future travels.. but I would be cheering "Lets Go Bucs!"


If she makes the trip, I'm sure she'll have an amazing time!

As always, I want to give huge thanks to Jayden for doing this interview. I also want to thank her for providing so many amazing pictures to accompany the interview. They really add something extra to the post.

As Jayden wraps up her time as Miss Laurel Summit, I encourage you to follow her on her official Miss Laurel Summit Facebook page and Instagram. It’ll be worth your time! And, since she'll be turning over her crown so soon, you should also follow her personal Instagram to make sure you don't miss a thing.

Thanks again Jayden!

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