Archive for the Sports Category

Ali Home For Sale

Posted in Development, Economics, Louisville History, Louisville News, Real Estate, Sports with tags , , , , , on August 27, 2012 by othersideoflife

(Picture of Muhammad Ali’s boyhood home from the Courier-Journal.)

The Courier-Journal is reporting that Muhammad Ali’s boyhood home in West Louisville is now for sale:

Two “for sale” signs have popped up in the front yard of the small white house on Grand Avenue where boxing great Muhammad Ali — known in those days as Cassius Clay — grew in western Louisville.

The home, which was recognized as Ali’s boyhood home with a historical marker in May, is described by the plaque as the place “where young Clay’s values were instilled.”

The sale price of the house was not listed on the for sale signs and a message left at the number listed was not returned. The Jefferson County Property Valuation Administration values the property at $23,260.

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer said Sunday that it is too early to know what role the city might have as the house is sold, but he plans to be involved in the process in some way. He even hinted at the possibility that the home could be transformed into more of a tourist attraction.

“I would hope that we would find some reasonable way to make (the house) a part of our history here where people can visit more formally than they do right now,” he said. “The city would be interested in making sure that it falls into the right hands and there’s a partnership there in some way.”

Sounds like a bargain, that despite the home’s historical significance, it needs some work. Here’s hoping that, if it ends up being bought by a private party, the proper renovations will be carried out and, at some point, it could help drive tourism to an otherwise-overlooked part of the city.

UPDATE, 8/28/2012: The Courier-Journal has published an updated story on the Ali Home, with some interesting new details. First, apparently Ali’s family isn’t interested in buying the home:

The 1920 one-story at 3302 Grand Ave. in western Louisville, appraised at $23,260, is in such bad condition that “we probably would not be interested in buying it,” said Lonnie Ali, the wife of the three-time heavyweight boxing champion.

“It would be nice if someone were interested,” she said in an interview Tuesday, adding that she feared that any hint of the family being a potential buyer would drive up the price. “It is going to be a very important piece of real estate for Louisville and as a tourist attraction.”

According to the Ali Center, an anonymous donor is interested, but with no more information to divulge.  Additionally, check out the last sale price of the house, from 1998:

The house, which was last sold in 1998 for $2,500, is owned by a Southern Indiana couple, Steve and Kassandra Stephenson, according the Jefferson County PVA website. Their asking price couldn’t be determined.


Frank Evans, R.I.P.

Posted in Baseball, Kentucky History, Louisville History, Louisville News, Obituary, Sports with tags , , , , , on August 10, 2012 by othersideoflife

(undated picture of Frank Evans from the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum.)

The Courier-Journal is reporting that Frank Evans, former Louisville Redbirds coach and Negro League phenom, has died:

Frank Evans, a former coach for the Louisville Redbirds and a former Negro League Player, died Aug. 3 in Auburn, Ala. He was 90 years old.

Evans worked under manager Jim Fregosi in 1984 and 1985 when Louisville won consecutive American Association championships.

Evans’ playing career spanned from 1937 through 1965 as an outfielder, first baseman, and catcher. He played for the Memphis Red Sox, Kansas City Monarchs, Detroit Stars, Cleveland Buckeyes, Birmingham Black Barons, and Philadelphia Stars.

Some choice quotes from Evans about his career in baseball are at his player profile page at the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum site:

“We took a lot of abuse, stuff that people wouldn’t know about these days, but we were one family. We were the nice guys who finished last except on the field.”

Evans said that the big losers in those days were the white baseball fans. “They didn’t know what they were missing. They talk about all the great hitters – Babe Ruth and Mickey Mantle. They don’t ever talk about Josh Gibson, the greatest home run hitter of all time. Josh could hit a home run with one hand. I was there. I saw him do it. They talk about the great base runners, but they don’t talk about “Cool Papa” Bell, the greatest of them all. They talk about the great pitchers, but most of them never saw Satchel Paige . I admired him because he threw strikes. He was always around the plate. He had absolute control, and he did it for more than 50 years.”

Evans was a journeyman who played catcher, first base, outfield, and, occasionally, pitcher. However he was well-known around baseball for being one of the best hitting instructors of his day.

Worst. Coach. Ever.

Posted in Crime, Sports on December 5, 2008 by stateofthecommonwealth

Seriously. Fire this guy, now.

Catching Up With Post-Thanksgiving News

Posted in Economics, Food, Kentucky News, Labor, Louisville Music History, Louisville News, Music, Sports, Transportation on December 1, 2008 by stateofthecommonwealth

Last week was as slow as molasses, bringing a well-reserved respite to us few news junkies in the Louisville area, but only one day into this week brings a spate of local news, not all of it good. So forsaking the single-news post format, we bring you a run-down of what’s in the news today. Without further ado:

(bankruptcy chart from the Courier-Journal.)

Local Bankruptcies Have Risen Sharply (C-J) – Pull quote: “In the New Albany and Louisville divisions of federal bankruptcy court, there have been a combined 8,661 company and individual bankruptcies so far this year — an increase of 23 percent from a year earlier.”

TARC to Study Commuter Rail (C-J) – Pull quote: “The Transit Authority of River City plans to spend as much as $150,000 to hire a consultant and study the possibility of establishing commuter rail service between Louisville and points southwest of the city, including Fort Knox.” Nice follow-up from this story: Not that we’re holding our breath…

Australian Brett Dean Wins the Grawemeyer Award (C-J) – There’s a video clip of part of the first movement on the right panel of the C-J‘s online story.

Century-old Mazzoni’s Closes in Middletown (C-J) – What a shame. Frankly, we’re not surprised given the tough economy’s effect so far on local independent restaurants (ie., a bunch have closed), and the relative remoteness of the location. Restauranteurs and other retailers need to reinvest in closer-in parts of Louisville, in our opinion.

Obama Effigy-Hangers’ at UK Headed to Grand Jury (Bluegrass Beat blog, part of the Herald-Leader) – Indict ’em, Dan-o.

The Mayor Held a Press Conference This Morning, Everything’s Getting Cut (The ‘Ville Voice) – Ouch.

But Mayor Jerry, Why Aren’t The Books Open to the Public? (Louisville History and Issues) – We’d like to join the chorus of voices asking why Louisville Metro’s books aren’t on the record, for the public to peruse. To us, having the financial records of the city open to its citizens is a no-brainer. Democracy doesn’t work without transparency, Jerry.

This Is Our New Favorite Web Site:

Posted in Louisville News, Media, Sports on November 10, 2008 by stateofthecommonwealth

Much in the vein of another one of our favorites, Fire Joe Morgan, comes Fire Kragthorpe Now. We especially like the desperation of the “now” in the title. Not that firing Kragthorpe, say, today will prevent the Cards from losing their last two games to Cincinnati and West Virginia, but we do appreciate the sentiment.

UPDATE: That great Kragthorpe image from has been axed. Boo.

Cards Win First Round of Big East Tournament

Posted in Happenings, Louisville News, Sports on November 6, 2008 by stateofthecommonwealth

(U of L’s J. T. Murray, bottom, and Gerard Voutier from the C-J.)

In soccer, that is. We thought we’d cover this sports story since, well, it’s been a long while since we’ve talked about anything sports-related, and we figure everyone needs a nice break/change from election coverage to boot.

Unfortunately, we forgot the the University of Louisville Cardinals men’s soccer team was actually playing West Virginia last night, but that’s okay since the result turned out fantastically (from the Courier-Journal):

The Cardinals beat West Virginia 2-0 in the first round of Big East Tournament at Cardinal Park thanks to an own goal in the 71st minute, when a cross by U of L’s Zachary Hernan deflected off Mountaineers midfielder Gift Maworere into his team’s goal.

“Sometimes you get a lucky bounce, and we got one,” said Hernan, a junior midfielder.

The Cards tacked on an insurance goal in the 89th minute and advanced to the Big East quarterfinals.

The Cards will play Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana on Saturday at 7 PM in the quarterfinals.

Churchill Downs to Host Breeders Cup 2010

Posted in Churchill Downs, Economics, Horse Racing, Louisville News, Sports, State of StateoftheCommonwealth on October 8, 2008 by stateofthecommonwealth

Finally we’re getting to update State of the Commonwealth, after computer issues the past few days. And in our first update there’s the good news that Churchill Downs will host its seventh Breeders Cup in the fall of 2010 (from a Courier-Journal article that’s light on details):

The Breeders’ Cup World Championships will return to Churchill Downs in 2010, officials from both organizations confirmed this morning at a news conference.

Churchill will play host the cup for the record seventh time and the first time since Breeders’ Cup went to a two-day format last year. The event will take place Nov. 5-6of that year.

If you’ll recall, Churchill was claiming last year that the Breeders Cup when held at there didn’t typically earn more revenue than any other racing Saturday during the Fall Meet. Yeah, right, sure, that’s believable. Anyway, we’re glad that the event is coming back to Louisville.