Posts Tagged ‘Baseball’

First Post of 2010! I Win!!

April 20, 2010

For those of us fortunate enough to experience the first 6 innings of Doug Fister’s amazing pitching performance, we can count ourselves ROBBED! Robbed, dear friends, of an all-but-guaranteed complete game no-hitter…..robbed of this by none other than S&T writer Double L. Allow me to tell you a story of betrayal……
 

[**A quick note: Before we navigate the perils of space and time to prove that Double L screwed everything up, it will greatly enhance your reading journey to have an accurate picture of what I look like. Imagine if George Clooney and Leonardo DiCaprio had a baby, then that baby somehow made a baby with the baby of Brad Pitt and Ewan McGregor…..and when THAT baby grew up it had a baby with Tom Selleck (for moustachey goodness) and was also all super-ripped and had like, laser eyes and, ummmm, robot hands and stuff……well that would be me. Also, I have the tail of a lion. So now that you have the proper frame of reference, let’s travel back to yesterday…a simpler time…**] (Our time travel will be aided by the coolest homemade  compilation of Back to the Future screengrabs known to man…and it’s FRENCH….Retour Vers le Futur indeed!!!)


 
After cleaning up the house at the request of my lovely roommate (wife), I grabbed a delightful beer and landed my awesome ass on the couch just in time to catch the last few innings of the game. Watching Fister work fastball after fastball to the lowly Orioles lineup was both fun AND exhilarating. That’s when it happened……the ding of the iPhone text message…the name “Mollin Mennett” (name changed to protect stupid Collin Ben….dang it) appeared with an ominous message below: “DOUG EFFING FISTER!”…..Within three seconds of reading this message, Nick Markakis drove a ball right back up the box into center field breaking up the no-hitter. Lucky for our own Double L, he wasn’t in range of my laser eyes…or whatever awesome power I gave myself in the above description which I am too lazy to revisit in order to stay consistent….because if he WAS within range I would have toasted his brains via his rectum (Rectum? Damn near killed’em! …..er, sorry). As ANY baseball fan knows, you get passed the 5th inning with a no-no, you DON’T TALK TO ANYBODY for fear of jinxing the outing. Well looks like Jerky McAss-Hat missed the memo. This is why the blame falls squarely on his dainty, lady-like shoulders….right where the straps of his training bra sit. I know you all are as livid as I am, so I am taking this opportunity to give you a voice to speak out against the atrocities committed by Double L. Use the comment section to call him all sorts of names and draw dirty pictures of him and John Goodman together……..have at him, for he RUINED THE NIGHT.

(PROOF BELOW)

The M’s are Doin’ Work

December 16, 2009

In case you haven’t heard, the Mariners have been doing some work so far in this baseball offseason.  Today they finalized a deal that sends 3 minor leaguers, who are decent but not all that good, to the Phillies for Cliff Lee.  CLIFF FREAKIN’ LEE! Two years ago he won the Cy Young and this year, he not only was almost as good during the regular season, but he absolutely dominated a ridiculous Yankee lineup in the World Series.  And Lee is cheap, earning only 9 mil this year.  He is a free agent at the end of the year, but teaming him with Felix Hernandez gives the Mariners the top 1-2 punch in the Majors this year, if not beyond.

And in order to make the push for the playoffs, the M’s last week signed Chone Figgins to a 4 year $36 mil deal.  As much as I hate Figgins because of his time with Angels, I’m quite happy he’s coming to the M’s.  He’s one of those players that teams love to have and hate to play against, being a bit of a pest.  But I mean that in a good way.  Having him and Ichiro at the top of the lineup gives them two of the best table setters in the business.

In addition, with the Mariners signing Figgins and the Red Sox signing John Lackey away from the Angles, the Halos are certainly going to be hurting. The Mariners might even be the favorites to win the AL West right.  How awesome is that?

The question is what happens now?  The M’s probably still need to add at least one more bat.  There has been some talk of Adrian Gonzalez of the Padres, which would be incredible.  But there are other options if the team doesn’t want to give up the prospects that is would require to get the first baseman.  As is stands, the Mariners have added at least 7 wins to their true talent level in the last few weeks and, if you are an M’s fan, you have to be ecstatic.  Next season is going to be awesome.  Maybe there will be more tickling.

Why They Are Going to Suck – Brewers Edition

April 9, 2009

Next up in the aggravatingly boring National League Central is the team formerly known as the Seattle Pilots.  Many of you already know this, but in 1969 Bud Selig “acquired in bankruptcy court” (meaning stole from a poor soul who was having trouble making ends meet) Seattle’s Major League Baseball franchise and promptly moved them to Milwaukee.  Bud then changed the name to the Brewers to better take advantage of the city’s rich cultural history of beer brewers and drinkers.  He used Milwaukeeians’ love for beer in the same way he used players love for being the best and cheating to get there, to make more money.  More than 40 years later, he claimed that he had done all he could to rid baseball of steroids when it was in MLB’s financial interest to let Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa “save” baseball after the ’94 strike.  You can see the slight conflict of interest there.  While Bud is no longer the owner of the Brewers, let be known that it was in Milwaukee where he began his conniving ways. 

sausage-raceMilwaukee is doing it’s best to challenge Miami as the fattest city in the nation.  Not only do the people of Milwaukee enjoy a cool refreshing beer, one of their most beloved events is the between-inning sausage race around Miller Park.  What better way to promote good health than to watch 5 people dressed up as types of meat run around, trying not to fall down.  Fun fact: after every Brewer home run, their mascot, Bernie Brewer slides a yellow plastic slide.  He could just take the stairs but he’s too hefty for that, too much of a work out.  And which Brewers player led the team in home runs last year? Prince Fielder, who is not a small man but is a big fan of donuts.  prince_fielderMilwaukee certainly has an attraction to great, big fat people.

Last year, the Brewers made the playoffs for the first time since 1982, but it’s going to be a rough summer this time around.  They should be decent offensively, if Prince can stop drooling over those delectable pastries, but their rotation is going to be terrible.  Their top two pitchers from the end of last year, CC Sabathia and Ben Sheets, are no longer with the team.  After Yovani Gallardo, they have Dave Bush, Jeff Suppan and Braden Looper.  Ouch.  They seem to have an affinity for Cardinals’ cast offs.  Let’s hope they don’t sign Jeff Weaver anytime soon. 

brewers-mascotFinal prediction:  Nothing is going to save the team from this terrible rotation which, in turn, will drive the Milwaukee faithful to drink even more.  But, Brewer Fans, the Brew Crew will hit a lot of home runs, so get used to seeing this guy in your drunken stupor.

Why They Are Going to Suck – Yankees Edition

March 30, 2009

This year the Yankees have all the hallmarks of collapsing under the weight of their $200 million+ payroll.  Let’s just count the ways they are going to fall on their face this season, shall we?  I don’t really want to talk about A-Rod, but it’s hard to ignore him.  From his steroid use (in the robotic interview where he confessed, he claims to have only taken them during the 2001-2003 seasons…umm, sure…), to his crazy narcisism arodkiss(just look at the photo shoot from Details magazine), to his dating a “madame”  (apparently, he actually dated a female pimp for about a year) and his current injury issues (he’s expected to miss about a month of the season), he’s just a walking whirlwind of bad PR.  And that is just the stuff that has come out in the last two months.  You don’t think that’s going affect his teammates?  I would beg to differ.  Fun Fact: Alex is hitting .271  with 7 homeruns and 17 RBI in 147 postseason at bats.  He’s not terrible, Yankees fans.  You might want to lay off him a little.  He’s going through a tough time right now and could really use your support. 

Next, let’s talk about the Yankees big free-agent signings.  First, Mark Texieria.  Can you say overrated?  They brought Mark in to replace Jason Giambi at first base.   Jason, along with his truely awesome ‘stache, has left for a team that obviously has the resources to pay him what he’s worth: the Oakland A’s.  I’m not sure how the Yankees expect Mark to replace him, especially defensively.  Jason is just a vaccum at first base; nothing could get by that guy.  Mark has some big shoes to fill.  Next is CC Sabathia; there’s absolutely no way he doesn’t get hurt.  In the last 2 years, including the playoffs, he’s thrown 513 innings.  ccsabathiaListed at 290 pounds (yeah right, at this point he’s probably more like 340), it’s amazing he can even walk around, let alone pitch while carrying that child.   His arm has got to be about ready to give out; that or his knees, or his heart.  Last we have AJ Burnett. There is a reason he’s last: he’s a whiney crybaby who will have no effect on the Yankees’ chances this season.  First of all, he will probably get hurt; he’s been on the DL ten times in his nine-year career.  And if he doesn’t get hurt, he won’t be able to handle the presure of pitching in New York.  He’s this year’s Sidney Ponson, only at 13.2 times the price.

On top of all that, the Yankees are opening a new stadium this season, where ticket prices are just astronomical.  $26,000 per seat for season tickets?  Good luck in this economy.  And they still have Hank “Seriously, He’s Crazy” Steinbrenner running the show.  He’s bound to get in fights with players and coaches; it is his destiny.  So let’s go through the list: Crazy star who will drag everyone down with him? Check.  Overpaid free agent signings who are likely to get injured?  Check.  A new stadium that is pricing out normal fans to the point where the stands will be half empty?  Check.  And an owner that is just waiting to jump down their throats if the team starts off rocky? Check.  Sounds like a recipe for a great year.

Final Prediction:  the Yankees will suffer though another year of missing the playoffs after both the Red Sox and the Rays trounce them, going 78-84.  On the bright side, they might do better that the Orioles.

Why They are Going to Suck – Rays Edition

March 24, 2009

If there is one foregone conclusion this season, it’s that the Tampa Bay Rays are going to be atrocious.   Fun Fact: their strongest and most ardent supporter is this guy:  dick-vitale2As you can see from Dickie V’s face, he’s already prepared for the heartache that is going to befall him this summer.  Mr. Vitale has been a season ticket holder since the Rays inaugural season in 1998, and has stuck with them through an incredible decade of horribleness.  From 1998-2007, not only did no team lose more games, but only six teams were within 100 losses of them.  Obviously, a winning tradition had been building at Tropicana Field; however, last year they broke through with their first winning season and a trip to the playoffs.  Way to go, I guess, but it’s not that hard to win when you have been stockpiling number one picks for ten years.  But good for them, every team deserves a break once in a while.

Unfortunately, it’s not going to continue this year.  Their manager, Joe Maddon,  is cleary either crazy or dumb.  I mean, just look at the team slogan he came up with last year: 9=8.  The man can’t even do simple math.  It supposedly refers to nine players playing together to make one of the eight playoffs spots, but I think the Rays are going need someone around that knows that 9 does actually equal 9.  It’s going to be hard to overcome his ineptitude for another full year.

Also, building any momentum for the year will be difficult with the weight of all the bandwagon fans still hanging on from last year.  Throughout their history, the Rays have had trouble drawing fans, and those that did come were mostly transplanted Redsox or Yankees fans that wanted to see some sort of baseball, no matter how awful it might be.  Last year, though, people kept coming out of the woodwork so that their ranks swelled to abnormal proportions.  Many fans tried to show their support by getting the ridiculous “Rayhawk.” rayhawk1Even a few female fans got the Rayhawk… only, they got them, you know, down there.  What are all these band-wagoners going to do when the Rays suck this year?  There’s no chance the Rays can keep up their winning ways.  I mean, they beat both Redsox and Yankees last year.  That has to be a fluke, right?  No one has done that in 10 years.  They have a few good players, like BJ Upton, Evan Longoria, Carlos Pena, Carl Crawford, Akinori Iwamura, James Shields and Scott Kazmir, but come on, that’s not enough to compete.

dropping-ballFinal Prediction:  This year the Rays will fall back to the dregges of the AL East, going 78-84 and, once again, stuggling to find fly balls.

Why They are Going to Suck – Marlins Edition

March 13, 2009

Continuing our trip around the League of Ineptitude, our next stop is the Florida Marlins.  The Fish play in Dolphins Stadium, perhaps the worst stadium to watch a baseball game that has ever been constructed.  Just look at it;  it’s ugly and orange and devoid of any personality.    marlinsYou couldn’t pay me to watch a game there and, apparently, Miamians feel the same way because when this picture was taken there was an actual Major League Baseball game taking place.  This game between the Marlins and Nats drew 400 people.   400 people!  To a regular season game!  Seriously.  One guy got thrown for heckling the ump.  You could hear the namecalling on TV.  Fun fact:  The Marlins are the first Major League team to have a cheer/dance team.  Can you imagine trying to get excited to cheer for a team that is drawing 400 fans?  And think about the actual cheering; there would be an echo like the Grand Canyon.  Just brutal.  The add campaign this year is “It’s where you wanna be,” following the two previous years of “You Gotta Be Here” and “You Gotta Be Here 2008.”  I think it’s time for something a little more original, like “Come to a baseball game.”  The people of Miami might need a hint as to why they want to be there.

The problem is that the baseball being played isn’t likely to draw anyone, so they might just want to give up.  Their starting rotation consists of Ricky Nolasco, Josh Johnson, Chris Volstad, Anibal Sanchez and Andrew Miller.  Has anyone besides their moms ever heard of these guys?  And the Marlins best player, Hanley Ramirez, might be the second worst defensive shortstop in the majors, behind only the wizard of fielding that is Derek Jeter.

And why are they so terrible on the field?  Their owner, Jeff Loria, is working on single-handedly killing his second franchise now, after  wrecking everything that was good and pure about baseball in Montreal.  Jeff must have some blackmail-worthy pictures of  Bud Selig (sick) because, after murdering the Expos, Bud decided to give him another chance to suck the life out of a fan base when he gave him the Marlins.  And Jeff is doing a pretty bang up job.  So far, he’s sold off every player that has come through the system that has any remote value as soon as they are able to ask for more money.  And he’s doing his best to eradicate any good will the team might have by demanding that a new stadium be built by the taxpayers.  Just awesome leadership there.  But there is one reason to come to the game – you can get one of these cute little Marlins plush bear.  That will make up for it.

player-bear

Final Prediction:  The Fish have some good building blocks for the future, but their “frugal” owner is just going to ship off the best parts anyway. So due to the less than passionate support they will receive, the Marlins will again finish right around .500 and in the middle of the pack in the NL East.

Why They are Going to Suck – Nationals Edition

March 10, 2009

nationals-suck

Howdy, y’all!  I’m Double L, formerly known as “didhejustsayfunkybuttloving”.  Yeah, that nickname wasn’t really doing it for me anymore (and my mother was none too fond of it), so I decided to mix things up a little.  But I’m not here to talk about me.  I’m here to rip on the Nationals!

Ugh… I don’t even know where to start.  The Nationals remind me of an episode of the Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson that aired a couple of years ago, at about the time Britney Spears completely lost it and shaved her head.  Ferguson, in his handsome Scottish brogue, said that he couldn’t bring himself to make fun of Spears becasue he would have felt too bad.  He added that he would never make fun of anyone who couldn’t defend themselves.  His pity for her was greater than his desire to make fun of the poor, borderline-psychotic girl.  I wish I felt the same way about the Nationals.  Unlike Mr. Ferguson, I have no sense of moral values whatsoever, so watch in wonder as I craftily tear apart this garbage heap of a team.

Adam at the Bat?

Adam at the Bat?

I don’t think I have much to say about the players themselves.  The team made a big move this offseason by picking up Adam Dunn, who will surely turn the Nats into NL contenders… for the lowest team batting average.  The guys is a lifetime .247 hitter, and has averaged a whopping 180 strikeouts per season.  That would be a solid K’s average for a starting pitcher, but not necessarily for a starting first baseman.  Granted, he has averaged 40 home runs a season throughout his career, but those monster home runs will become significantly less valuable when the Nationals can’t get any runners on base for Dunn to drive in.  Whenever I consider Dunn’s homer-to-strikeout ratio, I can’t help but think of Casey at the Bat.  In fact, if you put a handlebar mustache on Dunn, you can see a striking resemblance to Mighty Casey.

Screech: WTF?

And then there’s the retarded new mascot, Screech.  The only thing dumber than this is the lowly Oklahoma City Thunder mascot, Rumble the Bison.  I mean, the goal of any mascot is to either (a) incite fear into the hearts of the other team, or (b) appeal to its team’s fanbase.  Unfortunately, Screech fulfills neither of these two roles, and is destined to simply bring shame and embarrassment to our nation’s capitol.  Honestly, Screech Powers (Saved by the Bell, anyone?) would have been a better mascot than this annoyance of a baby owl thing.

Final Prediction: Despite the historic acquisition of Adam “When Will He Ever Be” Dunn, the Nats will finish last in the NL East with a record of 60-102 (a half-game better than they finished last season; I’m giving them the benefit of the doubt here).

Baseball Time

March 6, 2009

budselig

Baseball season is here! Well, spring training and the World Baseball Classic, at least. This season promises to bring fantastic amounts of excitement, tantamount to the excitement of a knife fight between a million bears on motorcycles during a hurricane named “Hurricane Ditka.” So to kick it off in proper fashion, we here at StuffandThings will be posting our 1st annual “Why They Are Going to Suck” baseball team-by-team preview; and just for added mystery and intrigue, there are going to be quite a few hands in the pot on this one. You should hear from everyone here at S&T at some point during the next…..um……however many baseball teams there are……days. So, thanks for reading, and get ready for some actually consistent posting, because we all know “posting on a blog sporadically is the fastest way to lose your already limited readership”…..Abraham Lincoln said that…..so get ready for copious amounts of mental stimulation in the form of profound observations, tired one liners, lots of ………., and (as always) some light scatological humor sprinkled in for good times.

Doody sprinkles….that is all.

Baseball Stuff! I’ll be Hideo Nomo You Can Be Jose Canseco!!!

June 10, 2008

                        Congrats are in order as Ken Griffey Jr. hit the 600th homerun of his career yesterday against the Florida Marlins. Griffey becomes only the 6th man to achieve this feat and, though it has felt like he’s been knocking on this door forever, he can now finally rest in his accomplishment. The pitfall most people stumbled into in judging Jr.’s place in history is wondering what he could have been and not appreciating what he is, one of the greatest power hitters in the history of the game. For almost any kid growing up in the Seattle area in the ’90s “The Kid” represents what got most, if not all, of us interested in baseball. From his often emulated swing that has been described as “flawless” and “majestic” to his spectacular defensive play in centerfield, Jr. embodies all that is good in baseball. He did it the right way, and that is more than can be said for almost anyone else from his era. In a baseball culture, where we have become incredibly skeptical and fearful in celebrating the home-run, this accomplishment has not received the fanfare it deserves. For all that he has done for baseball, this guaranteed first ballot hall of famer deserves all the thanks in the world and is worthy of the adulation he is due for this incredible milestone he has reached…..So congrats and thanks for helping get Safeco built so the current Mariners could defile it with their losing and pants pooping.

The Geriatric Free Agent Market….40 is the New 90

April 22, 2008

   

                 There has been a lot of talk around Seattle urging the Mariners front office to acquire the Big Hurt, Frank Thomas. The 100 year old DH was hitting a measly .167 before parting ways with the Blue Jays on Monday. The argument against Frank is that out in the free agent market still exists a player with more power and power from the left side at that which is a must have for the Mariners to make the playoffs this year. That man is the villain of all baseball villains, Barry Bonds. Both Thomas and Bonds have a history of being problematic players off the field but I feel like Barry has a little more left in the tank but really its like choosing between a giant douche and a turd sandwich. The right move to make is to look internally for a solution and leave the old timers to their steroids and golfing. Baseball, other than pitching, is becoming a young mans game. The amount of early 20’s players making an impact on the big league level has increased substantially over the last few years. An internal solution is totally possible too; Baseball America rated the Mariners farm system as the 12th best in the major leagues and highlighted the offensive power they have throughout. Though he is right handed, one guy scouts have been especially bullish on, is left fielder Wladimir Balentien. M’s skipper, John McLaren sent him to AAA to start the season because he wanted him playing everyday but he could provide some pop to a lineup lacking just that. (He recently hurt his knee and had to be helped off the field. The extent of the injury is not known as of yet. An MRI is forthcoming.) Another option is to bring up highly touted catcher and possible DH Jeff Clement. So, since the Mariners front office tends to read these articles I will throw my 10 cents (most people have 2 cents….my opinion is 8 cents better) in. Find an internal solution and leave the pudgy has-beens alone. Peace.