I'm looking at the Home page of "Bleed Cubbie Blue". It tells me there are 53 more days until spring training and 85 days until Opening Day, 2007. But, if I look at AustralianOpen.Com, it tells me there are just 8 days until the Tennis Season starts again.
I know, I know, this is a Baseball Blog. But if you are bored, and want to see some sports action, why not consider turning on the Australian Open and watch some tennis. It starts on Monday, January l5th and runs for two weeks.
There's a guy out there named Roger Federer who is on pace to become the BEST tennis player ever.
Let me give you some perspective on this player.
He's only 25 years old and has won 44 Singles Titles, 9 of them are Slams. (Slams are played on four surfaces: rebound ace, clay, grass and hard courts) Last year, he was one victory short of winning the Grand Slam which means all four Slams. A guy named Rafael Nadal got in his way at the French Open, but that's another story.
Every time he steps onto the court these days, he is making history. He's the first player since l960-61 to reach 6 straight grand slam finals. He's the first player to win Wimbledon and the US Open three consecutive years.
In 2007 he will break the record for the most consecutive weeks at #1, 161. He will have the longest winning streak on hard courts, 56(2005-2006 season), longest consecutive winning season on grass, 48 (2003-present) and has won the most consecutive singles titles, 24 (2003-2005 season).
The only surface he has struggled on has been the Clay at Roland Garros (French Open) going down twice to Rafael Nadal, (last year he played in the finals) a clay court specialist. But even Nadal will tell you that Roger is the best on "every" surface.
His first title came in 2003 when he won Wimbledon. He got down on his knees and cried. He has since won three more Wimbledon titles. His home country, Switzerland, gave him a cow after he won the first title but I'm not sure he cried then.
In 2006, his best year to date, he won $8,343,885 and his total lifetime winnings are: $28,576,458. Of course a tennis players salary is determined each year by "performance"... what a concept.
Right now, Roger is just five slams away from Sampras's old record. Most tennis people tell you that Federer will break that record, it's just a matter of time.
So, if you do choose to watch Federer, you might say, "what's the big deal" and that would be because he makes it look so damn easy. He hits shots that you would never even think possible. He hits with power but also has the fine and delicate touch of an artist. His serves do not overpower you, but he's the kind of guy you would like playing for you in a clutch situation. His second server percentage (you only get two serves) is 59% and he wins 69% of break points. That's like having your pitch hitter going out there and getting a hit 70% of the time in a clutch situation. It just doesn't get a whole lot better than that.
So, if you have the chance and the inclination, watch this guy play, you won't be disappointed and you will see tennis history being made.