3 Jul

Community Sports Notes & Announcements

To submit events

E-mail announcements to sportsdesk@registerguard.com. Items may be delivered or mailed to The Register-Guard, 3500 Chad Drive, Eugene OR 97408; or faxed to 541-687-6674. Announcements should arrive by Thursday noon for publication the following Monday. Because of limited space, notices can be published only once.

2 Jul

US presidential candidate announcements

ON JUNE 15th Jeb Bush officially entered the race for presidentas a candidate for the Republican Party. Although this comes 512 days before the general election he is a latecomer to throwing his hat into the ring (Scott Walker has also yet to declare). Ted Cruz kicked off this year’s season of presidential announcements back in March. Why do candidates announce so early?

Before the 1970s campaigns tended to be shorter. Candidates often announced only a few months before election day. Campaigns grew longer after the Democrats rewrote their party rules to give more weight to primary elections in the states rather than secretive negotiations at the nominating convention. This forced candidates to make their pitches directly to ordinary voters, which takes longer. The Republicans followed suit.

The “invisible” primary campaign lasts even longer than the official one (indeed, Mr Bush has been unofficially campaigning for the past six months). The candidates had already attended a number of events in Iowa, the first state to vote in the process of nominating candidates, before officially announcing. Mr Bush will start a book-signing tour in Iowa on June 17th, which he hopes will give his campaign in the state a bit of a boost. The RealClearPolitics polling average has him at only 9.2% in Iowa, behind Scott Walker, Marco Rubio, Rand Paul and Mike Huckabee. Mr Bush is doing much better in New Hampshire, which holds the second contest in the nominating process, and it is there where he will be heading after making his candidacy official.

Mr Bushs entry into the race was swiftly followed the day after by Donald Trump, who has come close to running before on several occasions, notably in the 2012 election.

1 Jul

Blame umpires, not Tabata for Scherzer’s lost chance at perfection

Max Scherzer was robbed. It’s not often you can say that about a pitcher that just threw a no-hitter to pitch his team to victory, but it was true of Nationals ace Max Scherzer on Saturday. Scherzer had a perfect game through 8 2/3 innings when pinch-hitter Jose Tabata stepped to the plate to bat for reliever Vance Worley, representing the potential 27th out of what would have been just the 24th perfect game in major league history and first since Felix Hernandez’s in August 2012. True to form, Tabata came out swinging, fouling off Scherzer’s first two pitches to put Scherzer just one strike away from perfection. Trying to get the aggressive 26-year-old Venezuelan to chase, Scherzer threw a slider in the dirt and a 97 mile per hour fastball up out of the zone. Tabata took the first and checked his swing on the second to even the count at 2-2. He then fouled off three more pitches before Scherzer came back inside with a slider. Rather than evade the pitch, however, Tabata dropped the pad on his left elbow below his waist directly into the path of the pitch, breaking up the perfect game with a hit-by-pitch.

It shouldn’t have been allowed. Per Major League Baseball’s official rules, a batter is entitled to first base when “he is touched by a pitched ball which he is not attempting to hit unless … the batter makes no attempt to avoid being touched by the ball.”

Tabata not only made no attempt to avoid the pitch, he made a very deliberate attempt to be hit by it. For comparison’s sake, the image on the left below shows Tabata taking the slider inside for ball one earlier in the at-bat. The image on the right shows him being hit by the pitch. Note how Tabata is jumping back and out of the way of the pitch on the left, a motion which caused his upper body to drop slightly from his ready hitting position, but still left his elbow above his belt buckle. On the right, he is doing something different entirely. He’s sticking his padded elbow in the way of the pitch.

1 Jul

Mondelez Redefines The Online Shopping Experience Using Innovative Retail …

Mondelez International has launched a break-through mobile marketing initiative, Shopper Futures, which brings together ambitious entrepreneurs and retailers to help transform the consumer retail experience.  The project pairs Mondelez Internationals brands with entrepreneurs who are developing the technology and mobile solutions to solve pressing retail challenges.

The initiative builds on the aim of its original mobile counterpart, Mobile Futures, its 2012 initiative to pair its brands with select start-ups to accelerate existing mobile innovations and incubate new ventures.

Technology has had an undeniable impact on the consumer path to purchase, said Laura Henderson at Mondelez International. Through Shopper Futures, were collaborating with the brightest minds in the industry and start-up world to shape the future of retail, both in store and online. This time around, were focused on solving real shopper challenges in our snacking categories and unlocking new opportunities for growth.

In other recent developments, Mondelez has launched a global partnership with Irish retail technology firm ChannelSight to help accelerate e-commerce growth across its brands portfolio.

The new agreement will help to maximise commerce sales opportunities across the groups digital media touchpoints, such as brands product pages, social media, video advertising and CRM campaigns.

Over the coming months, Mondelez will add buy now buttons to owned, earned and paid media platforms across 25 markets, linking to over 130 retailers websites, to make it easy for consumers to both find and buy Mondelez products online.

After a successful pilot phase in 20 markets with over 100 retailers, the company is now rolling out the technology into additional regions and markets with brands such as Oreo cookies, Cadbury chocolate and Trident gum.

ChannelSights Buy Flow technology will simplify the consumer-buying journey by directly transferring users to Mondelez products at key retailers websites. The innovative technology helps capture data and actionable insights to provide a deeper understanding of media effectiveness, how consumers engage with brands and what drives them to a purchasing decision.

In addition to simplifying the path-to-purchase experience for consumers, ChannelSights technology also creates opportunities for retail partners by driving highly qualified traffic to their websites, triggering planned and impulse-shopping transactions.

This partnership is a crucial step in our journey to help accelerate growth through e-commerce, said Bonin Bough, chief media and e-commerce officer at Mondelez International. By turning more of our branded content into buying opportunities for consumers, well also continue to improve our return on investment, and this will help fuel growth for our power brands.

The partnership enables Mondelez to get more insights into consumer behaviours, preferences and motivations and leveraging this intelligence in e-commerce is indispensable, said Cindy Chen, global head of e-commerce at Mondelez International.

Were excited to further deepen our successful partnership with Mondelez International. Our market-leading platform sets the standard for in-media purchase-enablement technology for large brands, said John Beckett, chief executive of ChannelSight.

Mondelez recently rolled out a new e-commerce solution for its Tassimo brand to provide a seamless experience for all consumers, regardless of their location.

 2015 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news.

30 Jun

Rewinding USA’s 2-0 win over Colombia in Women’s World Cup elimination game

The knockout round continues Monday in the 2015 FIFA Womens World Cup as the US team battles Colombia with the chance to advance to the quarterfinals.

The game begins at 7 pm Central Time, and Ill be providing live updates as the favorite Team USA plays the Colombians in a must-win game.

Coming into tonights game, the US won the so-called Group of Death in group play with a 3-0 win over Australia,a 0-0 draw with Sweden and a 1-0 win over Nigeria. While emerging victorious, the Americans have not looked invincible; it will be interesting to see if they have a stronger presence into tonights game.

The Colombians are currently ranked 28th in the world, and look to tonights game for a little bit of vengeance. (They have been doing some trash talking leading up to the showdown.)

Refresh often for updates throughout the game, and join in the conversation in the comments section below.

FINAL: The US wins, 2-0, over Colombia and now advances to the quarterfinals against China on Friday, June 2.

The two goals came from Alex Morgan and Carli Lloyd.

The US was clearly helped by the red card on Colombia, which ejected goalkeeper Perez and forced a cold goalie to come in. And helped also by a penalty kick for the second goal.

The defense was stellar yet again for the US The red, white and blue havent given up a goal yet in the 2015 Womens World Cup.

8:50 pm: The games final. USA wins 2-0 over Colombia.

8:46 pm: You can say what you want about the US offense (that its one-dimensional, not aggressive enough, etc.), but you cant deny this defense. Theyve yet to give up a goal in the World Cup.

8:40 pm: Heres a look at Lloyds penalty kick goal that put USA up 2-0.

8:36 pm: Another couple of good looks on the goal from the US, especially from Johnston. Shes tricky at the goal, and missed wide by not much.

8:30 pm: Rapinoe comes out and gets a huge reception from the US crowd. Christen Press comes in (quite important, since she may start for Rapinoe against China next game).

8:26 pm: That Lloyd goal was big.

8:24 pm: Wambach comes out of the game and gets a needed rest. Morgan Brian comes in.

8:21 pm: Colombia gets a yellow card, and Lloyd takes the free kick. She fakes out Castano, and gets an easy goal. US now up 2-0.

8:13 pm: Heres a look at Alex Morgans goal.

8:08 pm: GOAL!!!! The US finally gets a goal and its 1-0. Alex Morgan gets the goal, after goalie Castano blocks it but it goes off her hands and back into the net.

8:04 pm: Abby Wambach will try a penalty kick with a new Colombian goalie in the game. And she misses!! Thats a huge miss for the US; a perfect chance to get ahead in the game.

8:02 pm: This could be huge as the second half starts! Alex Morgan goes in to the goal, but is tripped by the Colombian goalie to keep her from scoring. Perez gets a straight red card, and is out of the game.

8:00 pm: And were underway for the second half!

7:57 pm: Clearly the most important play of the game so far came just minutes in, when Abby Wambach knocked the ball into the goal but the score is waved of for offsides. Clearly, the US needs to start quick in the second half–and make some goals.

7:55 pm: One of the highlights from the first half was the ball-handling skills shown by Lady Andrade of Colombia. (Can we give some respect too to her name?)

7:47 pm: And its scoreless, 0-0, at halftime. This is not the way the US wanted this match to start out. It will be interesting to see what adjustments are made.

7:45 pm: People are not happy with this ref. Shes not afraid to pull out the yellow cards, and you can see that its starting to affect the players a bit.

7:41 pm: Another yellow card on US, with Rapinoe getting called out. Thats a tough one.

7:38 pm: Colombia gets a couple of short corner shot chances, but Rapinoe comes up big on defense. Then they get a free kick opportunity that is blocked by Solo.

7:36 pm: Were in the 37th minute and still scoreless.

7:34 pm: Rapinoe had a chance on goal, but it went wide.

7:32 pm: Colombia definitely looks confident. They are playing aggressively.

7:31 pm: Possession continues to favor the US, but theyre going to have to take advantage at some point.

7:30 pm: That was a good sign, as US had some crosses there in front of the goal. Colombias Perez made another good block to keep the US out.

7:22 pm: Johnston is unable to get a good shot of in front of the Colombia goal for US Ball knocked out for a corner. US needs to be more aggressive closer to the goal.

7:20 pm: Whos supporting the US tonight?

7:18 pm: Were in the 20th minute and its still 0-0.

7:16 pm: Lauren Holiday is yellow-carded, which means shell sit out the next game if USA advances.

7:12 pm: US has had some shots on goal, which is a good sign.

7:05 pm: Colombias looking confident so far. And the US needs some offensive productions from its stars tonight (theyve scored just one goal in last two games).

6:52 pm: Its almost game time. Who you got?

6:50 pm: Wonder what the team listens to get fired up in the locker room before the game? Todays playlist includes Shut Up and Dance, Fight Song, and Bad Blood among other current hits.

6:45 pm:Who is already in the quarterfinals? China, Germany, France, Australia and Canada have already won their round of 16 matches. If the US wins tonight, theyll play China on June 26. So, yes, this game is huge.

29 Jun

brick-and-mortar retail takes on e-tailers

Dubai:

The UAE’s brick-and-mortar retailers are mounting an all-out assault against the price advantage that e-tailers have had. In a marketplace where freewheeling consumer spending has come down appreciably, the big retail chains are scoring some direct hits with their high-profile promotions and super-sweetened offers.

With the exception of apparel, retailers are using the bait of extended payment plans to entice shoppers to buy from them. Such offers now cut across multiple categories to include everything from tech gadgets and home appliances to furniture (Home Centre’s running a 0 per cent payment scheme) and gold jewellery. Just about everything is available on a monthly plan keeping the budget-conscious buyer in mind. The number of such schemes have shot up quite markedly in recent weeks.

According to Ajai Kumar Dayal, Head of TriDayle Consult, while the practice of payment via instalments have been around for some time, “It just gets emphasised a bit less or more depending on the general economic climate.

“It works in three ways — the retailer has a tie up with a bank who provides the finance with the interest burden being borne by the retailer instead of the customer,” said Dayal. “So, for the customer it becomes a zero-interest purchase against his bank account or card limits.

“In some cases, the retailer provides the finance to the customers. In this case, they usually get an insurance cover against defaults, bearing the cost of the premium themselves.

“The third route is where the retailer undertakes the risk, betting on the probability of low defaults. Since there will usually be a lot of small-amount customers, defaults will probably be limited in number and size.”

In the state the local retail sector finds itself in now, retail chains are focused on making sure their stocks do not pile up significantly and add to their costs. If by offering split payment plans, they can effect a transaction, all the better.

E-tailers are starting to take notice that selling at a markdown to what is available at the physical stores on its own will not do the trick for them. Or to the same extent that this used to in the past.

Some e-tailers are offering instalment-based purchases, but this “remains an exception”, said Haneen Dabain, founder of Pricena.com, a price comparison portal. “The main problem holding back wider online-[based] financing solutions is that still more than 80 per cent of such shopping transactions are done through cash-on-delivery [which means all of the payment has to be made in full].”

Another weapon in the brick-and-mortar retailer’s armoury is the promise of fulfilment of warranties. “Consumers are wary of purchasing a product without a warranty and this point has become evident to online retailers who are starting to offer better services and after-sales,” said Dabain. “But we think there’s still room for improvement.

“To appear more attractive, some e-tailers are offering a price stripped out of the warranty, leaving the consumer with the option of purchasing the warranty separately at an extra charge.” [But for many retailers, warranties are an easy way to pad up their margins]. “Although the average cost of a warranty for a manufacturer is typically 2 per cent of sales, some stores do not shy away from trying to make a profit off the warranty surcharge, sometimes marking up the price by more than 10 per cent,” said Dabain.

“A small number of e-tailers are offering extended warranties as an additional way to increase profits.”

These days, e-tailers are also more than willing to do away with the freight charges to win over customers.

“Out of the 73 online stores on Pricena, only six do not offer free delivery. All of the remaining stores offer free delivery beyond a certain order amount, typically above Dh200-Dh300.

“In electronics, the typical margin for a retailer is about 8 per cent, and the average delivery cost is about Dh20 within Dubai. So any order above Dh250 is profitable for the retailer.

“In fashion the typical margin is 40 per cent, and any order above Dh50 is profitable for the retailer. We’re talking gross margins here, so excluding all other fixed costs.”

But, often, ‘free’ delivery charges need not be as straightforward as it seems. “Consumers should take into account the total price when comparing as some e-tailers can offer free delivery as a way to attract buyers but will actually pass on the cost of delivery in the product’s price,” Dabain said.

28 Jun

Cubs protest after umpires insist on continuing game amid Wrigley o..

CHICAGO — The Chicago Cubs played Mondays 4-2 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers under protest after several lights went out at Wrigley Field, though the umpires insisted on continuing play.

With the Cubs hitting in the bottom of the sixth inning and storms in the area, there were several power bursts that caused a few lights to go out. After a 10-minute delay and several conversations between the umpires and both managers, the game was continued, but not before Cubs manager Joe Maddon indicated his team would play under protest. A few minutes later, all the lights went back on.

I didnt like the idea that we had to play against a guy that is really, really, really, really good, Maddon said. And you have to see spin and you have to read everything. I did not like the fact that we had to go out and play without all the lights on. Just be a little more patient and wait for the lights to go on.

27 Jun

Local Sports Announcements for June 23

Recent

  • UPDATE: Butte man, 25, dies from apparent fall from third-story balcony; no foul play suspected
  • Idaho man jailed in Butte after allegedly stabbing his dog
  • Smoke inhalation possible cause of mans death in Butte this morning
  • Whats Happening: Park grand opening, gun show, house tour
  • Caverns state park plans host of July 4 week activities