Showing posts with label Baseball. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Baseball. Show all posts

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

LOST: Week Off

There is no new episode of LOST this week, and despite my mild panic attack, I'm doing ok. Only five total hours left in the show, and honestly, I have no idea how it's going to end. Will it all be a dream? Will we literally find out where the island is between Heaven and Hell? Is it a purgatory type place, and if so, what the hell are commercial airlines doing plotting a course over it?

So instead, let's combine my love of LOST with my love of baseball and field a team:

1. Miles Straume - RF - Maybe it's because he's slick and talks to dead people, or maybe he's just Asian like Ichiro, but Miles is hitting leadoff for me. Considering the amount of times he's narrowly escaped sure fire death traps (the Incident, and the Smoke Monster in the Temple to name a couple) I have to imagine he's wily enough to steal a few bags for the team.

2. Jack Shepherd - SS - I'm pretty sure Matthew Fox played WR in college, which leads me to believe he'd be another decent table setter who is also athletic enough to handle short. Think of him as my Derek Jeter. A born leader who occasionally allows others to have the limelight, but everyone really knows who the real leader and star of the team is.

3. Sayid Jarrah - 1B - Sayid is a torturer. He will find your inner most fears and inflict pain upon you- just like Albert Pujols. As a Cubs fan, and can say I've taken my fair share of punishment inflicted by Fat Albert, and I'm pretty sure it feels similar to the pain Sayid's victims experience.

4. James "Sawyer" Ford - 3B - Sawyer is hitting clean up for me. He seems like the kind of guy who will come up in the clutch, psych other teams out, and pretty much use any tactic necessary to gain an advantage. I'm fairly certain he would walk across Dallas Braden's mound as well.

5. John Locke - LF - Ok, obviously we're talking about him "on island" because, while I am all for equal opportunity, I don't believe a guy in a wheelchair is going to be fielding very well in Left Field (well, unless we get Joe from Family Guy who plays a mean infield as well.) John will be right at him in the lush green outfields, and it will be his "destiny" to take as much HGH as possible and break home run records.

6. Kate Austen - CF - Kate is a badass tracker who loves to "run." I'm banking on her "running down" some long fly balls to sure up the defensive outfield. I'm hoping that she's up for hitting line drives or laying down a sacrifice ever so often. She is a beard-less Johnny Damon with a much nicer rack.

7. Michael Dawson - 2B - I'm going out on a limb on this one. I like Michael's commitment (i.e. he'll shoot two innocent women if they get in the way) but if his fielding breaks down to him yelling, "WAAAAAAAALT!" then our team is screwed. C'mon Mike- keep your head in the game!

8. Hugo "Hurley" Reyes - C - Pudge Reyes might be double the size of Bengie Molina, but I think he'll bring a calming presence to the team, and by default might truck someone trying to score at home plate (which would be awesome.) I won't expect much from him offensively, but as long as he keeps the team light-hearted and motivated, I think he'll succeed in this position.

9. Martin Keamy - SP - Look, I know what you're thinking- "This guy murdered Alex, and blew up the freighter- what is he doing on your team?" This guy is crazy in the head, will not take crap from anyone, and might take the phrase "he has a rocket arm" literally. It's this kind of crazy that's going to win us ballgames. As long as he doesn't try to shake down Sayid's brother during the game, we'll be fine.

BENCH (Quick rundown)

Charlie Pace - No drug addict is going to be effective (or legally playing.) Kick the habit and we'll talk.

Desmond Hume - Love his heart, but he keeps losing concentration and thinking he's somewhere else. He's only good for a pinch hit here and there.

Sun and Jin - Still trying to work out a deal with their Korean team... we'll see if we can sign them without Sun's father trying to murder the entire executive team.

Charles Widmore - This fool drops bombs! He's in!

SETUP PITCHER - Ana Lucia. I don't know why, but I just have a feeling that she would not allow any runs to score. If they came close, she'd find them in a dark alley and kill them.

CLOSER - Mr. Eko. If this guy isn't going to be a power hitter for me, then let him be the closer. He'll close the door on not most, but ALL games. Note to manager: remind Mr. Eko NOT to bring machetes to the mound.

MANAGER - Jacob (duh?)

Opposing Manager - The Man In Black (unfortunately he's left with Ben Linus, Mr. Friendly, Claire, Rose and Bernard, Richard, and Phil from Dharma security to make up his team. Good luck broseph!)

So there you go, that's my line up. This is what happens when LOST isn't on... God help this blog after the show is over.

Monday, April 6, 2009

A Case of the Mondays

Well, this was a lazy weekend! But here's all I can come up with-

- I'm still beyond stoked about Jay Cutler. After watching the press conference, I'm sold on him. Looks like game three of the preseason will be pretty awesome (Bears @ Denver.)

- I saw Martin Sexton at Harlow's. He is very good live. Excellent guitar player and very soulful vocals. The unfortunate thing was that I wasn't very familiar with his catalog, so it was harder to get into, but I am going to try and listen more.

- Finally watched "Twilight." It wasn't my favorite movie, but it wasn't as bad as many of the haters will lead you to believe. I'm not going out of my way to recommend it, but overall I was entertained.

- Drafting Derek Lowe for my fantasy baseball team is going to work out just fine. He pitched a savage game against the defending champs tonight. He was extremely efficient and his sinker caused the Phillies' hitters to beat the ball into the ground. Cannot wait for the Cubs' first game tomorrow.

- Last, I watched a special on CBS before the Michigan State/UCONN game Saturday about college athletic program budgets and corporate sponsorships. They were talking all about how corporate sponsorships have a place in collegiate athletics as long as it is tasteful, yada yada yada. Immediately following this special, was a trailer/commercial for the new Terminator movie where they superimposed some of the Final Four players into terminator robots. Wow. I'm not necessarily in favor of paying college athletes, but you've got to be kidding me. Don't feed me bullshit about being tasteful then show me a trailer/commercial/game preview like that. It's like Michael Moore showing us a prologue to his movies of him counting his millions of dollars.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Squib Kicks

This week of NFL action had multiple games come down to last second field goals, touchdowns, and an overtime.

Bears/Falcons - This was a crazy game. To be honest, the Bears were completely outplayed and almost won the game. They were as good at stopping the Falcons at third downs as Hugh Grant is at stopping himself from cheating on Elizabeth Hurley (and we know how that worked out.) Yet, Kyle Orton led the Bears down field and scored with 11 seconds left in the game. They squib kicked to the Falcons, which was as good of an idea as fourth installment of Indiana Jones. The Falcons subsequently got the ball on their own 45 yard line. With 6 seconds left, Matt Ryan completed a 25 yard pass to Michael Jenkins out of bounds with 1 second left on the clock. Jason Elam kicked a field goal and that was that. Game over, Bears.

As a side note, former Ravens coach, Brian Billick, was announcing the game and he called Kyle Orton "Kyle Boller" at least three times. I wonder if Billick wakes up out of a nightmare, sweaty, yelling "BOLLER!!!" I bet he does.

Houston/Miami - The Texans won their first game of the year by beating the Dolphins on a last second QB sneak by Matt Schaub. I didn't watch the game, but what the heck is up with QB's named "Matt" getting it done today?

Minnesota/Detroit - Vikings beat the Lions on a last second field goals. This leads to two questions: How the hell are the Vikings tied for first in the NFC North? (ANSWER: That division is awful.) AND How on earth did this game get decided on a last second field goal? (ANSWER: Both the Vikings and Lions are also awful, but the Lions are just a little bit more of a pathetic football team than the Vikings.)

Cowboys/Cardinals - Easily the best part of the game was when Cardinals' coach, Ken Wisenhunt, called timeout right before the Cowboys last second field goal. The Cards blocked the field goal and were running it back for a touchdown as the refs blew the whistle and informed everyone that the Cardinals had called timeout. Cowboys try again, and kicker Nick Folk makes the kick. For a split second, I actually wanted the Cowboys to win. That wore off quickly and I'm glad they lost on a blocked punt returned to the end zone. The Cardinals are for real (pause... NOT! Their division also is awful!)

Bay Area Teams - give me a reason to talk about you, and I will. Until then, you're out of the blog. Do something about it Al Davis or Mike Nolan.

Baseball is trucking along with the ALCS at 1-1 and the NLCS at 2-1 (advantage Phillies.) I really don't care who wins, I guess maybe the Phillies or Rays, but let's be honest, I can hardly watch baseball without seeing flashbacks of the Cubs kicking the ball all ove the infield. Ahhh... I just felt a shiver up my spine...

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Moneyball and the San Francisco Giants

Bay Area baseball is in dire straits right now. The A's traded fan favorites Nick Swisher and Dan Haren in the off-season, and it is very likely that Rich Harden and Joe Blanton will be gone by the trade deadline (how is Eric Chavez still on the team?)

However, the team across the Bay is even worse. They are the worst team in baseball. I'm pretty sure that me, three friends, and the starting five from the Women's Olympic Basketball team could generate more offense than the Giants. Matt Cain and Tim Lincecum are the bright spots in this otherwise dismal team.

For years I've thought that A's general manager Billy Beane was really smart, but I couldn't stand him getting rid of players too early that the fans know and love. But really, look how all of them have panned out:

Jason Giambi - Caught with steriods, the Yankees would rather not have him.

Migel Tejada - Caught with B-12 (aka steriods) and abilities have really declined. The Astros traded for him before the Mitchell report came out, and might regret it once he's brought up on perjury charges.

Mark Mulder - Never pitched as well for the Cardinals as he did for the A's. Currently injured for the last two years.

Barry Zito - Lost 5 mph off his fastball and doesn't look to have the control he once had on the A's.

Eric Chavez - The only guy they've retained and he's always injured and his skills are clearly declining.

Tim Hudson - Still a great pitcher for the Braves.

The A's have stayed competitive by shrewdly trading or not re-signing players to get younger players with more upside. The Giants NEED to take a look at the A's and mimic them for at least a couple years. Here's what I would do:

TRADE MATT CAIN AND TIM LINCECUM FOR "CAN'T MISS" OFFENSIVE PROSPECTS.

I totally agree this is crazy-talk for most Giants fans, but here's the logic. You only have Cain and Lincecum for a certain amount of years (and once it gets to arbitration, they'll only get more expensive.) Unless you can convince one of them to sign a 12 year deal, they're not doing any good pitching to 3-1 losses every game. Also, they'll never re-sign with your team if you can't give them offense. Cain was by far the most tough-luck losing pitcher of 2007. He's on track to go the same way this year. They clearly can't sign enough players to jump-start their offense, so how else will they get players who can hit?

The Giants also just hosted the All-Star game, brought all the big name players to their park, and showed them one thing: AT&T PARK SUCKS FOR HITTERS. Good luck getting offense now.

Signing Aaron Rowand isn't that bad because he can show young guys how to play hard, but please Brian Saben, NO MORE OLDER PLAYERS. If you're going to go young, then go young!!! Don't trade for Joe Crede. Don't sign Vlad Guerrero next year. Don't try to trade for Godzilla Matsui. Please, trade either Cain, Lincecum, or both and stock up the farm system. Feel free to get rid of Brian Wilson too if you need to. I mean, you did once trade Joe Nathan, Francisco Liriano, and Boof Bonser to the Twins for a bag of Doritos.

On a tangent, how did you trade Francisco Liriano? The marketing of Francisco on the San Francisco Giants alone makes him a keeper. Anyway, that was one of the worst trades ever.

Are you still not on board? How about the Orioles? They traded Erik Bedard for a bunch of great prospects. They are 6-1. The Marlins traded Miguel Cabrera and Dontrelle Willis for prospects. They are 4-3. The Giants have kept their pitchers (who wants Alex Rios now?) and they are 2-6 (barely, how the Padres didn't pull that out tonight, I have no idea.)

In no way am I suggesting that we're looking at a Marlins/Orioles World Series, but I think they are more competitive than the Giants right now. To add to and sum up my idea for the Gigantes:

- Cut payroll temporarily to 50 million and mimic the A's "Moneyball" style.
- Trade Cain and Lincecum in separate deals and raid other organizations "can't miss" prospects (offense and pitching because you will need a couple pitchers to make up for losing Cain and Lincecum.)
- Play your young players. No one wants to watch Ray Durham. Get the young guys in there.
- Field a competitive team and then bring payroll back up and sign a couple players. Who knows, maybe you go get Cain or Lincecum to come back once you're more competitive.

Well, let's see some action Sabean. You better do something quick or else you'll be out of a job.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Savages of the Day


Ah, what a beautiful opening day. Besides the Cubs losing to the Brewers, I enjoyed it thoroughly. My fantasy team is kicking ass (107 - 37 so far this week.) My pitchers all had quality starts (C'mon Angels, where's the run support?!) My hitters are hitting consistently. Here are my picks for SAVAGES OF THE DAY. Each award is judged solely on my opinion of what a savage is, and what level of savagery a particular player displayed.

Jake Peavy - This guy started off the season in fantastic fashion. 7 INN, 4 K, 3 H, 0 R. Jake, you're so damn good why don't you relax and have a drink? In fact, drink an entire bottle! Since I'm in a keeper league, no one will even sniff this guy for years. I won't trade him or drop him at the end of the season. It's perfect.

Carlos Gomez - And to think I didn't believe the Mets gave up much to get Johan Santana. Apparently this guy is a baller. He gets on base, swipes bags, and produces runs. The Twins will not be that great this year, but they can definitely be a competitive pain in the ass for contenders. On a side note, for all you SF Giants fans, this is the exact type of player that your team needs to be somewhat decent. Dave Roberts isn't getting it done- and neither are any of the young'ns that the Giants will run out there this year.

Kouske Fukudome - WOW. The Cubs may have lost to the Brew-Crew, but I think it was overall a great day. Zambrano pitched well, Marmol looked awesome, and even Wood didn't pitch awful (despite the way it looks in the box score.) But NOTHING was as good as Fukudome properly striking balls all over the field. 3 for 3 with a single, double, walk, and 3 run homer to tie the game in the ninth. It is very exciting to think about how good this guy could be. Unfortunately, Cubs fans will boo him tomorrow if he strikes out once. I probably could write a completely separate blog about the pathetic Cubs fans that boo players and give Cubs fans a terrible rep throughout the sporting community. Oh, well. For now- FUKUDOME!

The Kansas City Royals - Clearly over-matched by the over-hyped Detroit Tigers, the Kansas City Royals exposed the Tigers weakness on the first day of the season- their bullpen. What a talented team the Tigers are, but they might end up finishing second in their division if they can't get their relief pitching together. I predicted them to win the division, but I'm not so sure anymore. They'd clearly be in much better shape of Zumaya hadn't gotten hurt, but I'm not telling you anything you didn't already know. The Royals came up big yesterday, and they should enjoy their one day in first place. They earned it.

Honorable Mention: The Weather Systems in the Midwest and East, Brad Penny, and the Washington Nationals.

Opposite of Savage Mention: Joe Morgan's Commentary, Eric Gagne, and Mark Hendrickson's opening day start.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Let's Play Two In Japan!

So the Oakland A's and Boston Red Sox played the first two regular season games in Japan the last two days. They split with the A's winning today 5-1 and Rich Harden (as seen next to my brother Jamal- I mean, Chris) looked filthy. I really hope that guy is healthy this year. He's a hell of a pitcher to watch when he's on (I have the same sentiment about current Padre Mark Prior.) Ultimately it was good to see boxscores on the internet (and fantasy points for my team by Papelbon and Blanton) but my biggest gripe comes with what happens now. Both teams go back to the States to play exhibition games (Red Sox v. Dodgers and A's v. Giants.)

I understand it has to do with scheduling and not wanting teams to get rusty, but once you start the season, why backpedal to meaningless games? It has to be tough on a team to mentally start playing serious and then go back to games that don't count. Don't get me started on the ridiculous Hall of Fame game in the middle of June that Cubs and Padres are playing this year (for the last time, thankfully). I'm sure it's exactly what those teams wanted to do on their day off. Play a meaningless games where the starters will get one at bat and get subbed out, use up a pitcher for no reason, and not get a full day's rest.

Baseball is a tough sport because of how many games they play. Growing the business is fine, but they've got to figure out a better way to schedule these things. By the way, why didn't the Mariners go instead of the A's. I know the A's have Kurt Suzuki (born in Hawaii) but come on- Ichiro versus Dice K would be the match-up that would set Tokyo on fire (from the hype, not a gigantic mythical monster.) Did the Mariners vote to not go over there or something? I would think MLB would offer that team the moon and the stars to get that epic battle. Not to mention the Mariners will most likely be better than the A's this year anyway.

Overall, I like the expansion of the game, but the scheduling leaves a lot to be desired. Keep tinkering with it and get it right. Now if only the World Baseball Classic wouldn't ruin all the players next year...

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Cubs Still Have Wood

So the Chicago Cubs named their closer yesterday and Kerry Wood gets the nod over veteran reliever Bob Howry and young flame-thrower Carlos Marmol. And as disgusting as it is, I agree with the decision. However, while I might agree, I also don't think it will actually work out.

Kid-K (who will be 31 in June) has never quite lived up to his potential. The Cubs organization fell in love with him the day he struck out 20 Houston Astros in 1998. Unfortunately he had Tommy John surgery the following year. It took him a few years to regain his Rookie of the Year form. Since then, he has never won more than 14 games in a season, and has been hampered by injuries.

Now Woody has moved to the bullpen and is the closer. There's no one in the world that wants him to succeed more than me, but forgive me for being pessimistic. He has thrown very well in Spring, but I'm certain the daily grind will eventually get to his arm, or his legs, or his back, or his pride, or his left rear molar, or maybe he'll get turf toe. There's an injury looming, and if not, the Cubs will find another excuse as to why they won't win. I loved watching Wood and Prior taking the hill in Cubs pinstripes, but I need some more durable, consistent pitching. It's fun to see 96 mph fastballs with movement cut over the black of the plate, but not when the pitcher's arm falls off after the game and has to be reattached.

I've seen so many stories about the Cubs 100 anniversary of winning a World Series (back to back World Series Championships to be exact) but the former Chicago Colts and Chicago White Stockings need to not worry about all the pressure that comes along with the supposed Curse of the Goat. It's hard for anyone to win a World Series (ask the Yankees these days) but it's even harder when you concentrate on a 100 year old ape (or Goat, I suppose) staring you straight in the face. Cubs fans, please chill out, drink your Old Style, and stop booing your own players every other inning. Let Wood do his thing (I'm not sure if that is pitching or getting injured) and let the players know you support them. Kerry Wood will probably be a bust in his role of closer, but if not, that's a huge bonus (because you know he'll be waaaaaay better than Ryan Dempster if he can stay healthy). I just can't buy into the hype of "This Will Be the Year!" because it doesn't help me enjoy the overall season. Woody and the rest of the Cubs just need to chill out, be happy Michael Barrett is gone, be sad that Ron Santo has no legs, and remember that they get paid ridiculous amounts of money to play a game- not to feel pressure from drunk d-bags in the right field bleachers. Enjoy playing the game. It's not World Series or bust as many people might make you believe, but I'll right there celebrating if you manage to pull it off.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Random Thoughts

Ah, so my blog is still not as organized as I want it to be. Ideally I'd like to get regular subjects for every day of the week. It also makes it tough that readers can't count on me to stick to one subject. Is it sports? Is it music? Is it pop culture? Who knows?

I will say this, with Fantasy Baseball coming up, I may update my progress in the Pete Rose Gambling All-Stars Keeper League. My keepers this year are Jake Peavey, Jon Papelbon, Brad Penny, Ryan Braun, Troy Tulowitski, and Adrian Gonzales. More on that closer to the draft (3/9). Instead, here are some random thoughts/opinions I have on different topics:

- Roger Clemens is lying his ass off. So is Barry Bonds. They'll both get off without jail time even if they're found guilty. I have to think that our tax dollars would be better served on improving the educational system, cleaning up the environment, or making more consistently good episodes of Family Guy. I also don't even care to put an * next to all of their records. Get a testing policy in place and for the love of God, MOVE ON!

- Couldn't care less about the US Government investigating the NFL/the Patriots. Taping signals is no big deal. That's why they create signals- to disguise calls. Baseball teams try to steal signs constantly, and when they're caught someone gets buzzed by a fastball. Football can institute the same kind of self-policing. I'll agree that taping a practice is pretty low, but I can't imagine taping a walk through would have much impact on a game. Maybe I'm wrong, but I still over this as well.

- Jack Johnson's new album is ok, but no terribly different that anything else he's done. I doesn't quite do it for me.

- Predictions for the MLB Season (I might edit this if any major injuries occur during spring training):

NL Division winners: Mets, Cubs, Diamondbacks NL Wild Card: Padres

AL Division winners: Angels, Tigers, Yankees AL Wild Card: Red Sox

- I'm really pumped to watch Semi-Pro this weekend. Combining Will Ferrell and ABA Basketball just seems like a great idea. Plus Will Arnett could be a huge wild card in that movie.

- Band I've been meaning to check out, but haven't yet: Rogue Wave

- Democratic Presidential Debates are boring, but probably better than Republican Presidential Debates if those existed this year.

- These videos are hilarious:





- Warriors fans are so starved for a championship that most of them are unrealistic about how good the team is.

That's all for tonight. I'm really excited for baseball season and spring in general. Stick with me while I make this blog more coherent. Until then, check out the new link on the side "Stuff White People Like."

Monday, February 18, 2008

President's Day: A Holiday For Sleeping In

My President's Day Holiday started off like every other President's Day- I woke up at 12:15pm Pacific Time. Once I popped my ridiculously jacked up back, I sat down for a breakfast of toast and Crystal Light. While eating, I watched the Andy Pettite press conference where he answered question after question after question. He came off very likable and honest. I think it's funny that many people who follow the steroids scandal want to make good guys or bad guys out of the figures involved. This really isn't a black and white issue. I can easily see where Pettite is coming from. He did something he didn't think he'd get caught for, then realized it was a mistake, and is honest and forthcoming about what happened.

While there is no real excuse for taking steroids or HGH, it is important to keep in mind that these ballplayers are playing baseball for their job. How many people have taken a long lunch, left a little early from work, copied just one homework assignment, or done something they weren't supposed to and gotten away with it? Most people have. Still, when you get caught, honesty is always appreciated even if consequences are levied anyway. My opinion on the whole thing is that we, the public, have no idea how deep this steroid problem goes, but if juiced pitchers pitch to juiced hitters, everyone is essentially even. The numbers can still stand. There's no sense in ex-sponging records or seasons, and asterisks are ridiculous. Let's make sure the current drug testing is in place and MOVE FORWARD.

Then I went to Safeway for some grocery shopping. I just moved to downtown Sacramento in late December, and I've realized that part of the utility of living here are the crazy people. I began my trip getting smaller items- lunch meat, bread, cheese- nothing special. I walked away from my cart to get milk, and all of a sudden I hear a cart near mine jolt forward. Upon looking over, it was actually my cart that was being taken. It reminded me of Dane Cook's joke about why you never leave your cart while shopping. Someone my see and think, "JACKPOT! THAT'S EVERYTHING I WANTED!" Fortunately, the guy was just a weirdo and not a thief. He quickly viewed the items there and realized his mistake. I just shrugged it off and continued shopping.

Overall, a decent day of rest, but a little weird.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Has Anyone Ever Done That?!

With Glenallen Hill offering an apology for steroid use today, I thought we'd take a look back at one of his proudest moments.

I love when Chip Carey yells, "It's got to be the shoes, it's got to be the shoes!" Hmmm... seems like it was not the shoes...

Oh well, it's still a helluva homerun.