The Track

first_imgI am sitting here watching horse racing on TV. This is the best way to do it, because you can pick your horses, make your imaginary bet, and at the end of the day never lose money. However, when you have tracks like Indiana Live near Shelbyville, it is very nice to go to such a beautiful facility and bet a few bucks on your favorite horse. Local owners, like Doug Wilson and Ron Fledderman, both have run horses at this track. They keep this track extremely clean, the Club House is attractive and roomy, the food is good, and you have monitors at your table to watch the horses run. If you prefer, you can enjoy the races trackside without going to the Club House. I am waiting to see what River Downs is developing, because all summer they are building a new racino–track and casino combined. Everyone says it will be a show place. I still like to watch those beautiful thoroughbreds come thundering down the stretch. We are fortunate to be within driving distance of some of the top tracks in the nation including Keeneland, Churchill Downs, Turfway, and the two already mentioned. If you like harness racing, there is the Anderson, Indiana, race track.last_img read more

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Why J.J. Redick left the Clippers for the 76ers

first_img“I’m coming off, basically, the four best years of my career,” he said of his Clippers tenure, when he averaged 15.8 points on 46.6 percent shooting in 266 games. “I wanted to thank all of the Clippers fans, Doc, Steve, the entire staff and, of course, my teammates.”Redick referred to Doc Rivers, the Clippers coach, and Steve Ballmer, the team’s owner.“The relationships I built over the last four years have been absolutely incredible,” Redick said. “I’ve literally made lifelong friends in L.A., and I’m very appreciative of my time there. I know maybe some Clippers fans and some NBA may be wondering why did I not go back.“Or probably, there are some ignorant people out there that are questioning my loyalty. Going back to the Clippers was, honestly, just not an option. I kind of figured last summer when they signed Austin and Jamal back, they basically had guaranteed $25 million in salary for this upcoming season.“And I knew they weren’t going to commit financially long-term to having a third shooting guard at a high rate. It’s just unrealistic. You can’t have $30 to $40 million at one position, especially when you’re going to have two or three max players on the team.” J.J. Redick knew his days with the Clippers were numbered last summer, when they signed fellow shooting guards Jamal Crawford and Austin Rivers to new contracts. Lawrence Frank, the Clippers’ vice president of basketball operations, confirmed it during a phone call June 29.Redick explained his departure from the Clippers and his decision to sign a one-season, $23-million contract July 1 with the Philadelphia 76ers in a new version of his podcast Thursday. Redick also said he turned down a more lucrative offer to join former Clippers teammate Chris Paul with the Houston Rockets.Paul did his best to recruit the 6-foot-4 Redick with a phone call in the days before free agency began, but Redick ultimately signed with the rebuilding 76ers instead of the Rockets, explaining he believed it was a better fit for him in Philadelphia than in Houston.Redick led off his podcast with a parting message for Clippers fans. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorcenter_img Frank delivered the news officially during what Redick called his “break-up call.”last_img read more

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Dodgers have no preference for first-round playoff opponent

first_img“We really don’t care who we face, and I’m pretty sure every team feels the same way,” Dodgers first baseman Adrian Gonzalez said, summing up clubhouse sentiments.Not even a preference?“There isn’t,” he said. “You can’t choose who you play because the minute you choose who you play, you lose to that team.“It’s that simple.”Said shortstop Hanley Ramirez: “This is the big leagues man, everything’s going to be tough.” SAN FRANCISCO >> Does the Atlanta Braves pitching staff worry the Dodgers more than the St. Louis Cardinals bats?Does Cincinnati Reds first baseman Joey Votto scare them more than Pittsburgh Pirates outfield sensation Andrew McCutcheon?All four of the Dodgers’ potential first-round playoff opponents present unique challenges, but is there any one team in particular they’d least like to see in the postseason?Those are some  of the burning questions that may make for hot topics on message boards and talk radio, but which the Dodgers insist they simply aren’t asking.   First base coach Davey Lopes downplayed the importance of playoff matchups even more forcefully.“The important thing when you’re playing is to get to the playoffs, everything else is irrelevant,” Lopes said.“(The media) is going to determine on paper what the better matchup is, but players don’t do that. They’re ready to play against anyone. Any team that’s in the playoffs that doesn’t feel that they match up with anybody else shouldn’t be in the playoffs.”AN important nugget of franchise playoff history supports Lopes’ assertion.On their way to their last World Series appearance in 1988, the Dodgers beat a New York Mets team in the league championship series that they were 1-10 against during the regular season.“Believe me, you’re playing at a different emotional level (in the playoffs) than you are in the regular season,” Lopes said. “It doesn’t make a difference if you’re hot right now, it’s what you’re going to be doing next week” that matters.For what it’s worth, the Dodgers are a combined 11-14 against their four potential playoff rivals.They’ve fared worst against Atlanta, going 2-5, best against Pittsburgh (4-2), and are close to even in head-to-head meetings with St. Louis (4-3) and Cincinnati (3-4).The Dodgers may not know where they slot in the playoffs until Sunday. St. Louis (94-65) leads Atlanta (93-65) for the top seed by a half-game. The Dodgers trailed the Cardinals by two games going intoWednesday’s game against the Giants.“I look at it more like if we go out and play well and play up to our ability and our guys do what they’re supposed to do, I feel like we’re capable of beating anybody, so I’m not so much concerned right now, but once we get into it we’ll definitely be looking,” Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said.Mattingly said he’s more interested in individual matchups gleaned over a long time frame than head-to-head meetings between teams that may not reflect how well teams are playing right now.The Dodgers played all their games against Atlanta before their historic turnaround that started on June 21. They were swept in a three-game series at Atlanta in May in which they were playing especially dreadful ball.“Momentum plays a huge role, so in a short series it’s all kind of a crapshoot,” Mattingly said.“Every team that’s in there is going to have confidence, every team will have won and will have celebrated and will think they have a chance, so it truly will be a matter of who goes out there and performs.”center_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorlast_img read more

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