Sunday, May 29, 2005
“Somewhere, Dmitri Young is putting on his doo rag and having himself a good laugh.”
The quote's from a poster over at the NYYFans game thread, after Paul Quantrill was beaten bloody by the Boston bats (alliteration!). He had 8 runs scored against him, including a grand slam courtesy of the resurgent Edgah, who just happened to be the very first batter that Pauly Q faced (bases loaded courtesy of Mike Stanton). Sweet. Very sweet.
Why so sweet? Come now, I should hope that your memories are not so short.
*insert happy, vindictive sigh here*
Today was a fun game, with a fun score of 17-1, so it led to some fun quotes!
"I threw a lot of pitches -- and not too many quality pitches. Must have been tough to watch... Tomorrow is a new day. I'm looking forward to that day, because this is a very disappointing one for me." --Carl Pavano, the hapless Yankee starting pitcher. Color me unsympathetic (a sort of dull sepia tone, I'd imagine). He hung both the Sox and the Tigs out to dry with his free agency dance, so screw him and his hand-picked Bronx home. Every time he does poorly in New York and the media rips him he can reflect that he's in a steaming pile of excrement of his own making. I wish him nothing but the choicest of failures out there*.
The in-game interview of Terry Francona by Joe Buck--
Buck: “I think last year we had a game, a blowout like this [broadcast on FOX] and you said it was bad for ratings..."
Tito: “We were losing."
Buck: “Yes, you were behind..."
Tito: “You know what, this time to hell with your ratings, we’re up.”
This caused both Joe Buck and Tim McCarver to cackle heartily, but the real beauty of it was the fact that the previous half-inning they had interviewed Joe Torre, and he had just rolled out the boring old expected platitudes about how Pavano didn't have his best stuff and A-Rod is the bestest ever. They interview Tito and he cracks sarcastic jokes. I love it.
Speakin' of McCarver, I'm relatively certain he called Robinson Cano 'Bronson' at least once during the game (which is ironic, since he is occasionally incapable of calling Bronson 'Bronson'). He also gave us the following delightful quote: “There are a lot of things in baseball that are questionable, but Bernie Williams’ dignity is not," which, er, OK. I think that any dignity Bernie may or may not have possessed was lost by association with that comment.
“This game reminds me of a trip I made with my parents up to the foothills of Tennessee. We were driving along, and there by the side of the road was a dead squirrel.....it had been run over by an automobile. Someone cared enough to get it out of the road, but still.....it was dead.
Moral of the story? We're that dead squirrel right now.” –-NYYBombshell, just another enjoyable quote from the NYYFans board. Although, for the record, if you see a squirrel that's clearly been run over but is on the side of the road and not the middle, odds are not good that someone went and moved it. It probably was flung there by the force of the car that hit it. Still a beautiful analogy when applied to today's game, from the Yankee perspective.
“We're down 16 but I'm grateful that we don't have a rally monkey.” –-wexy, the same. (S)He makes a good point. The Yanks may have been beaten like a dugout fan in the vicinity of Kyle Farnsworth today, but I will give them this much: at least they don't have a rally monkey**. Like (apparently) Bernie Williams, they can therefore claim to still have some tiny scrap of dignity.
No, you know what, McCarver is 100% wrong, Bernie Williams has absolutely no dignity left. And I do mean absolutely, positively, none. Mad props to whoever set it up so that in addition to this musical masterpiece you are recommended to check out 'Basic Training: True Homosexual Military Stories', though, that was a truly inspired bit of internet use.
I suppose that's about it, except to note that the Tigs won again today, finally giving JJ some run support. Of course they did it against a rookie pitcher, but still, this means that no matter what happens tomorrow (later today) they take the series, which has got to be heartening. Rangers next, and they did well against the Texan brigade earlier, so we'll see. The spark in the offense is just waiting to be fanned into full flame. I'M FANNING FRANTICALLY OVER HERE, GUYS, but I can't do it all myself, you know.
On a completely random note, I wanted to bring this up a bit ago. Lookout Landing had a neat interview with one of the Mariners' top minor league outfielders, Chris Snelling. He's been having a great year, and seems like a really smart kid, but what struck me from his interview was this one line:
The byproduct of a lot of strikeouts, I think, is a lot of walks, and vice versa.
Pretty level-headed and aware, for a minor leaguer. And, I might add, it sums up Mark Bellhorn to a T. Just thought it was worth noting.
Speakin' of minor leagues, John Sickels asks: Who would you rather have, Hanley or Pedroia? With cats!
I honestly don't know who I'd prefer (although the correct answer, obviously, is 'both'), but I can't be the only one who cringes violently whenever they hear Hanley described as 'toolsy' or 'a tools guy', right? Maybe it's the Moneyball in me, but jeez. I know what it means, but you never really know what it means, if, uh, you know what I mean. I know he's the most exciting player, Hanley is, but it's so hard to project how he'll actually do, especially if he is in fact subjected to the projected move to center field.
I also think everyone who compares Dustin Pedroia to David Eckstein is looking just at his stature and is selling his offense short, but what the hell do I know, I'm just an art/zoology geek.
Oh yeah, and Todd Walker's back for the Cubs. Good for him. Let's hope for his sake (and theirs) that he can stay out there.
edit: OK, I remember what I wanted to say, and since I had a cappuccino with dinner and am therefore PAINFULLY AWAKE I may as well say it. This is sort of brought on by the latest post over at the Soxaholix, but it's been something that's haunted quite a few of my baseball-related convesations lately.
Moneyball, as I (the baseball idiot) understood it was not saying that a team filled with guys who relied heavily on on-base percentage would win a ton of games. The whole point of Moneyball is that OBP guys will get you wins in the most cost-effective way. A good Moneyball team won't necessarily beat up on the Yankees; a good Moneyball team would score more runs than the Yankees per dollar spent.
Moneyball, in the true sense of the concept, does not translate into wins. It translates into runs produced cheaply. So a team like the A's might not win the division, but if they're good in a Moneyball sense, they'll score more runs with their cheap players than many other more pricey players on other teams do. Their Moneyball players aren't going to be better than A-Rod or Pudge, but they might be better for the money spent on them.
I'm not sure I stated that very clearly, but it's a misconception (that Moneyball teams are automatically unsuccessful if they don't have crazy amounts of unexpected wins) that's been nagging at me quite a bit. Moneyball's not, at its heart, about on-base percentage. It's about, well, money. Everyone seems to forget that.
That said, the A's suck right now.
*I am a happy fun flowers-and-puppies kind of person! :D :D :D Yaaayyy for teh love that fills my heart!!!11!
**For the zoological dorks in the audience, I'm almost dead certain that the Rally Monkey is a white-faced capuchin monkey, Cebus capucinus. Uh, I'm not sure why I felt it was important that you all know this right now, but in some unfathomable cosmic way, it is.