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Sunday, December 15, 2013

Ryan Freel was suffering from CTE

Former baseball star and Jacksonville native Ryan Freel was suffering from a degenerative brain disease known as chronic traumatic encephalopathy when he committed suicide last year, his family announced Sunday at a mass honoring the Englewood graduate.

The report from the Boston University Center for the Study of Traumatic Encephalopathy and Sports Legacy Institute was presented to Freel’s mother and stepfather, Norma and Clark Vargas, and to representatives from Major League Baseball on Dec. 11 at the winter meetings in Lake Buena Vista.

There, evidence confirmed that Freel was suffering from Stage II CTE when he committed suicide on Dec. 22, 2012. The family learned of the findings on the same day that MLB announced that it approved a ban on home-plate collisions.

Freel, who retired in 2010 following an eight-year career in the majors, was reported to have suffered “nine or 10” concussions in his career. Clark Vargas said that the report on Freel will be published in a medical journal early next year.

“It’s a release in that there was a physical reason for what he did,” Clark Vargas said. “On the other side for me, Ryan fell through the cracks.”

Freel became the first baseball player to have his brain studied by the leading Boston University Center for the Study of Traumatic Encephalopathy, and first to be diagnosed with the incurable disease that has been found predominantly in the brains of athletes who participate in contact sports such as football and boxing.

Thanks to CK.

Repoz Posted: December 15, 2013 at 11:16 AM | 113 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: history

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Page 2 of 2 pages  < 1 2
   101. Joe Bivens, Minor Genius Posted: December 17, 2013 at 06:46 AM (#4619414)
I think that last post is a good reason to FLIP the page.
   102. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: December 17, 2013 at 07:07 AM (#4619415)
Well, it's all gay all the time now in the US, so hopefully people will stop complaining about the past soon


Where do you live and how gay is it outside?.
   103. Random Transaction Generator Posted: December 17, 2013 at 10:40 AM (#4619507)
Ray (RDP) Posted: December 16, 2013 at 11:45 PM (#4619364)

Well, it's all gay all the time now in the US, so hopefully people will stop complaining about the past soon.


That may be the most awkwardly phrased "coming out" statement I've ever read. ;)
   104. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: December 17, 2013 at 10:49 AM (#4619517)
Where do you live and how gay is it outside?


Well, it's raining men. You do the math.
   105. Joe Bivens, Minor Genius Posted: December 17, 2013 at 10:50 AM (#4619518)



I found it foolish.





   106. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: December 17, 2013 at 10:57 AM (#4619525)
I think that's too simplistic an approach to focus on how revenue is generated versus how much cultural impact and interest is associated with the sport. Boxing has been focused almost entirely on PPV since the 1980s and you can't tell me Mike Tyson was anything less than one of the most recognizable and discussed athletes in the world during that period, bringing home more money in a single night through that PPV model than any baseball player makes in a year. Everyone (I don't literally mean everyone but you get my drift) knew who Evander Holyfield was. Everyone knew who Sugar Ray Leonard was. Boxers had cultural impact. "Did ya see the fight last night" was a completely unremarkable thing for people to say at work.


If you move exclusively to PPV, you're eating your seed corn as far as new fans are concerned. You may be able to maintain a reasonable revenue stream, but you're never going to be any bigger than you already are, and it'll be extremely hard for you to break new stars into the mainstream. How many Americans do you think could pick Andre Ward or Timothy Bradley out of a lineup?

The UFC is struggling with the same thing right now. All the names and champions from their era of expansion are aging or retiring, and they haven't established the next generation (with the exception of Jones) as bankable stars.
   107. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: December 17, 2013 at 11:07 AM (#4619533)
If you move exclusively to PPV, you're eating your seed corn as far as new fans are concerned. You may be able to maintain a reasonable revenue stream, but you're never going to be any bigger than you already are, and it'll be extremely hard for you to break new stars into the mainstream. How many Americans do you think could pick Andre Ward or Timothy Bradley out of a lineup?


Hmmmm, I may have heard this argument before.

The UFC is struggling with the same thing right now.


Well the UFC isn't exclusively on PPV, it's on several cable channels routinely, with a title bout on as recently as last Saturday night in fact. The UFC is a niche sport now but it I don't think it's use of PPV to generate revenue is in itself proof of that. That's the only point I was trying to make.

All the names and champions from their era of expansion are aging or retiring, and they haven't established the next generation (with the exception of Jones) as bankable stars.


The UFC built itself along the WWF's model and had WWF-like success. Now that they've cannibalized all of the other players in the industry they're forced to come to terms with the barren landscape of what's left. I don't think it's beyond the pale to suggest the UFC sees its biggest star as Dana White, the smarmy stooge for ownership who has continuously interjected himself into everything UFC-branded for over a decade.
   108. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: December 17, 2013 at 11:50 AM (#4619579)
Hmmmm, I may have heard this argument before.


Heh, fair enough.

Well the UFC isn't exclusively on PPV, it's on several cable channels routinely, with a title bout on as recently as last Saturday night in fact.


If they were on better cable channels, I think that'd be a viable path (like the NHL on USA), but FS1 and FS2 have basically no market presence. They're kind of trusting Fox to build FS1 up in the future... we'll have to see how that goes.

The UFC built itself along the WWF's model and had WWF-like success. Now that they've cannibalized all of the other players in the industry they're forced to come to terms with the barren landscape of what's left. I don't think it's beyond the pale to suggest the UFC sees its biggest star as Dana White, the smarmy stooge for ownership who has continuously interjected himself into everything UFC-branded for over a decade.


I'm worried that this is true.

The UFC seems to try and work the "grudge match" angle a lot more often than I'd like. I think that's a carryover from the wrestling model, where you've got a heel and a face in the Platonic ideal of a match. But I think that when most casual fans see a guy like Chael Sonnen acting like a stupid racist caricature to troll for attention, they think, "Man, what an ####### - another reason not to care about MMA," not "Man, what an ####### - can't wait to pay $50 and see him get his butt kicked this Saturday!"
   109. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: December 17, 2013 at 12:02 PM (#4619592)
Well the UFC isn't exclusively on PPV, it's on several cable channels routinely, with a title bout on as recently as last Saturday night in fact.

If they were on better cable channels, I think that'd be a viable path


Geez that last card was on FOX, their 9th to-date. I mean, ouch.

The UFC seems to try and work the "grudge match" angle a lot more often than I'd like. I think that's a carryover from the wrestling model, where you've got a heel and a face in the Platonic ideal of a match. But I think that when most casual fans see a guy like Chael Sonnen acting like a stupid racist caricature to troll for attention, they think, "Man, what an ####### - another reason not to care about MMA," not "Man, what an ####### - can't wait to pay $50 and see him get his butt kicked this Saturday!"


Chael Sonnen isn't just a blowhard, he's a ripoff artist. In a way I can't blame Chael though, because his outrageous behavior reminds me of Tito Ortiz being similarly obnoxious a decade ago - the UFC does a terrible job of promoting their fighters, so they have to find a way to promote themselves.
   110. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: December 17, 2013 at 12:36 PM (#4619623)
Geez that last card was on FOX, their 9th to-date. I mean, ouch.


They only get a few FOX cards a year, though. And even on the FOX cards, the prelims are stuck off in the cable ghetto.

In a way I can't blame Chael though, because his outrageous behavior reminds me of Tito Ortiz being similarly obnoxious a decade ago - the UFC does a terrible job of promoting their fighters, so they have to find a way to promote themselves.


Yeah, if the UFC did a better job of promoting their fighters, they wouldn't need to rely on that kind of gimmicky crap.
   111. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: December 17, 2013 at 02:28 PM (#4619703)
Yeah, if the UFC did a better job of promoting their fighters, they wouldn't need to rely on that kind of gimmicky crap.


The UFC is in the business of promoting the UFC. Their business model is built around the actual fighters being irrelevant and easily disposable.

If the UFC was built like a legitimate sport we'd have seen Anderson Silva fighting Georges St Pierre years ago - Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier got more guaranteed money to fight in 1975 than anyone in the UFC has ever received to-date, *before* inflation is taken into account.
   112. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: December 17, 2013 at 02:33 PM (#4619710)
The UFC is in the business of promoting the UFC. Their business model is built around the actual fighters being irrelevant and easily disposable.


I've never understood why they're so quick to cut fighters who lose a fight or two. Don't they understand that it diminishes the accomplishments of the fighters who won those fights if (by extension) they were performing against guys who weren't UFC-caliber fighters?

(I mean, I get that the answer there is money. I just feel like it's incredibly short-sighted.)

If the UFC was built like a legitimate sport we'd have seen Anderson Silva fighting Georges St Pierre years ago...


I more or less agree, with the caveat that St. Pierre has never sounded all that into the idea.
   113. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: December 17, 2013 at 02:43 PM (#4619718)
I more or less agree, with the caveat that St. Pierre has never sounded all that into the idea.


Wave a $10 million guarantee under his nose and he'll be banging on Anderson's door in the middle of the night, screaming, "I am not impressed with your excuses!"
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