Saturday, December 31, 2005
The story of Chanukah, Red Sox style, Parts IV, V, and VI: the Battle for MLBea, the Cleansing of the Temple, and the Turning On of the Fenway Lights
This is a longish one, because of the various things that prevented me from posting before, so I'm saying it includes three parts.
the Battle for MLBea
In recent past years, the Soxxabees would not have been able to enter the city in force, for their numbers had indeed been as sparse as Steinbrennochus assumed. But the success of their guerilla fighting had swelled their numbers as more and more people found the Red Sox cause to be a good one, and the destruction of the troops sent to rout them had hardened the rebels and made them battle-ready.
With the four Soxxabees at their head, the Red Sox people marched upon the capital city of MLBea, bats and balls and other weaponry at hand. Steinbrennochus sent his soldiers out to meet them, and they were surprised, for when they had been told that the Red Sox were marching upon them they had expected a small motley group of shaggy men with old splintering bats and untied shoes.
Instead they found the Red Sox to be numerous and filled with the fervor of a people long and wrongfully oppressed. The Yankee soldiers expected little in the way of discipline, for they could not comprehend how a people could fight as one if they did not share the same rigid hair style, if their robes were worn askew and in a variety of fashions. The Red Sox however were not held in thrall of such external considerations, and fought well, coordinated by the Soxxabees and plunging Steinbrennochus’ men into confusion and despair.
The battle was bloody and long, and many took great hurt in the fighting, and many heroic deeds were done. In the end the Red Sox and the Soxxabees were victorious, and the dead in the street were clad most often in pinstripes.
The Soxxabees gathered from the four corners of the city where they had been leading the people in battle, meeting in front of their main Temple, a large fair building clad in green and known as Fenway. Ortiz’s bat was dripping with Yankee blood, and Wakefield was wiping clean his baseball of destruction. Varitek had received a slight wound on his noble backside, for that was the only part of him that the cowardly Yankee legions would dare attack, fearing a fight head-on after they had seen Varitek unman their admittedly not very manly leader with a simple push of his mighty glove. Luckily for the Red Sox, the posterior part of the Soxxabee’s anatomy was so powerful that no mere Yankee strike could harm it very badly. Youkilis was strangely unhurt, but spoke enthusiastically about his end of the battle.
the Cleansing of the Temple
The four brave Red Sox met and smiled, for the city was theirs, and they knew that the people and Gabatthius would be pleased. Then they looked to Fenway, and their smiles faded, for the clear green façade had been defaced by the blasphemous occupying forces. Upon the walls were scrawled clumsy stripes and interlocking Ns and Ys, and depictions of Babe Ruth’s face, and the name ‘Aaron Boone’ with little hearts drawn around it, and crude graffiti reading ‘Jeter 4eva’, and other such obscenities, unfit for a temple.
They called out to the people, and the people came and saw Fenway, and the joy in their hearts from the victory was dampened, and they were sad, for this was their holiest of holy Temples, and to see it in such a state was cruel indeed.
But the Soxxabees knew that mere sadness was not the way to solve anything (referring in their hearts to the teachings of the old scholar, Millarmonides), and they told the people to get water and rags and whatever they could lay hold of, and they set about scrubbing clean the walls of Fenway. The people were heartened, for it was good to have something to do in the face of such defilement.
The Soxxabees entered into the Temple to behold the damage within. It was in a sorry state, with more graffiti on the inside and on the seats, and giant cardboard cutouts of Yankee soldiers standing on the field, with offerings laid in front of them, and this icon worship was the crudest form of blasphemy. The Soxxabees tore down the cutouts and made a fire of them on the pitcher’s mound, and the smoke of its burning rose high into the sky, cleansing the area, and all who saw it were glad.
There was yet one thing left to do, if the Temple was to be rendered anything like fit again. The lights must be lit, and they must be left on through the nights and the days so that the people could continue to clean and purify the temple, and to show the land of MLBea that Fenway was back in the proper holy hands.
the Turning On of the Fenway Lights
It was not so simple as flipping a switch, though, for the battles had been hard on the land, and the electricity was out. Varitek however was the high priest, or Captain, and knew the ways of Fenway well, and he told the others of the Temple generator, which would supply independent electricity to the place. The four set out to find this generator, for night was falling and the lights needed to be quickly restored.
Long they searched, and finally they found the generator, in a small room, and even this room had been ransacked by the shameless men of Steinbrennochus, and the floor was littered with curious magazines which Wakefield toed into the dark corners so that young Youkilis could not see them. “General Hidekius has been here,” he muttered to Varitek, who nodded gravely and pulled Youkilis away from the magazines.
Ortiz had been examining the generator, and now he straightened up, solemn of face. “Fellow Soxxabees,” he dolorously intoned, “this generator’s been damaged, it ain’t gonna be able to put out more’n a day’s worth of power.”
They all looked at the generator, and saw that it was true. They thought long and hard about how to get more power, but another way could not be found, and Wakefield, the cleverest Soxxabee, looked over the machine many a time before sadly pronouncing Ortiz’s original assessment correct. The Soxxabees knew that their allies in New Hampshire would be coming down to aid them in rebuilding the city and the Temple, and then the lights could be returned to full power, but the time of their arrival was yet 8 days away.
“We gotta turn it on anyways,” young Youkilis said. “The people need to see the lights of Fenway, even if it’s just for a night.” The others nodded in agreement.
“Wish we could find a way t’keep ‘em on ‘til the New Hampshireites get here,” Ortiz said, “but the kid’s right, the people fought hard and we gotta turn on those lights.”
Wakefield threw the switch, and the generator sputtered fitfully before settling into a dull hum, and the Soxxabees could hear the muffled murmur of the people outside exclaiming happily at the sight of the lights of their Temple turning on.
As they walked out of Fenway, the lights burning bright above them, they sighed and shook their heads, for it was sad to think that the lights would not stay on as they should, and they shook their fists at the suffering still being inflicted by Steinbrennochus and his cruel rule, even in his defeat.
Varitek however looked upon the lights and smiled, for they were white and clean in the night, and he said unto the other Soxxabees, “Fear not, and Keep the Faith, and we shall see what we shall see.”
One installment left to complete the story of Chankuah, Red Sox style!
I am officially naming the series of detours and road closings that occur in the city of Boston at night and prevent anyone and everyone from driving out of the city in anything resembling a northerly direction.
They are hereby named the Blue Cats and Red Sox/Cursed to First Detours. Because never in the history of the universe have two (relatively) innocent people been so consistently victimized by a series of road closings.
I escaped the city this time only by ignoring the detour, going in the opposite direction, and ending up in the Ted Williams tunnel... from a completely unmarked access road. Not once in the approach to, or even at the entrance of this tunnel were the words "Ted Williams tunnel" posted anywhere. Not once. I can't get over how insane this is.
As of the time of this posting, I actually do not know if Beth made it out of the city alive. I was already driving safely up route 1A when I called to see how she was faring, and she was still circling in the detours. This was slightly after 2 am.
The Chanukah story shall resume later today (i.e. not in the wee morning hours but not at night, obviously, it being New Years Eve), and will conclude over the next couple of days. I'm sorry for the hiatus, but the Alamo Bowl really upset me quite a bit (Jere, Twitch, you both suck. Tons), and then tonight I was being fed absurdly good food by Kristen and catching up with the other people present, because us Red Sox bloggers are neat like that.
If you're really upset about not having the story to read for a couple days, in other words, you should go find a Cornhusker to blame.
Thursday, December 29, 2005
The Alamo Bowl, an object/cost analysis:
Michigan sweatshirt untainted by past losses: $20
Plane ticket home to watch game with family: $340
TexMex food for the entire family: around $35
Completely fucking incompetent Sun Fucking Belt officiating crew: THE GAME. AS IN, THE COST WAS THE GAME. FOR MICHIGAN.
MASTERCARD. THANKS PANTSLOADS YOU USELESS RHEUMY-EYED WEAK CONFERENCE TIMEOUT STEALING FUCKUPS.
The Chanukah Story, Red Sox style to continue tomorrow, when I will hopefully not feel like killing things with my teeth.
Wednesday, December 28, 2005
The story of Chanukah, Red Sox style, Part III: the Rebellion Begins
The Soxxabees soon learned that their numbers were small compared to the troops of Steinbrennochus, who had his men well-armed and richly clothed besides, so open warfare was not yet possible. They sent bands of men to skirmish against the Yankee battalions, often led by Ortiz, who had no greater pleasure in life than taking a pitcher in the employ of Steinbrennochus right out of the park. His slugging prowess was great indeed and many a soldier perished from the terror of his mighty bat.
Those who had been Red Sox people but had converted to the ways of Steinbrennochus out of seduction or fear began to drift back towards their Red Sox ways. They were sympathetic with the passionate rebels working out of Florida, for their ideals were humbling and admirable, and their devotion strong. Some snuck into Florida to bolster the forces of the Soxxabees, and many purchased pink bandwagon fangirl tshirts to fund their noble effort from afar.
At first Steinbrennochus was able to ignore the small skirmishes his soldiers got into on the outskirts of his lands, but as the Red Sox guerilla missions met with ever-increasing success, the Red Sox fighters grew more bold, and made advances which Steinbrennochus could not ignore, sometimes sending small bands into the very city to wreak havoc there.
And yet Steinbrennochus was complacent, having grown bloated with his wide kingdom and great success. He gathered his lieutenants about him and said, “Worry not, loyal soldiers, for these are mere peasants cowering in the wilds. They have not our numbers nor our resources and they grow bold from simple foolishness.” He ordered a small group of soldiers to go to the place where the Red Sox were hid, and to destroy them.
This the soldiers set out to do, and they were not able, for when they reached the spring training facility they found there people in far greater numbers than they had expected, more organized, more purposeful, and at their front four strong and powerful men (or three strong and powerful men, and Youkilis) whom all were willing to follow.
The group of soldiers was killed, and Steinbrennochus sent another small band of soldiers out after them, and they too met a bloody end at the barrels of the Red Sox bats and the tips of the Red Sox cleats and on the seams of the Red Sox baseballs. For Ortiz had but to raise his mighty bat and the Yankee soldiers fled cowering, pinstriped robes soiled; and Wakefield threw baseballs that dipped and dove and none knew where they were and the soldiers found themselves smashed upon the skull without even knowing from whence came that ball that smote them; and Varitek put on his glove and beat the general shit out of people; and Youkilis walked all over them with his cleats of terror.
And the Red Sox people were energized by the might of their leaders, the noble Soxxabees, and they thought to liberate their land from the iron and pagan fist of Steinbrennochus.
Steinbrennochus however remained at his ease, for he still thought the Red Sox weak and no match for his richly appointed Yankee followers. He continued to defile the Red Sox land with his priests and his blasphemous icons and his decrees against facial hair.
The Red Sox people however rose up, and Varitek spoke unto them, and he said, “My people, we shall retake our land and cleanse it of these swine, I swear it by this goofy hockey-style 'C' upon my chest” and the people cheered, and Gabatthius nodded sagely, with his foot in a big aircast, for it was right. The people took up arms and prepared to march upon the city.
Next time, Part IV, where the Soxxabees Storm MLBea!
Again, I seem to be posting these all late... but tonight I went to see Brokeback Mountain with some folks (it was very good). Tomorrow as you all should know is THE ALAMO BOWL, featuring Nebraska vs. THE UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN, so I have only this to say:
GO BLUE GO BLUE GO BLUE GO BLUE GO BLUE
GO BLUE GO BLUE GO BLUE GO BLUE GO BLUE
GO BLUE GO BLUE GO BLUE GO BLUE GO BLUE
GO BLUE GO BLUE GO BLUE GO BLUE GO BLUE
GO BLUE GO BLUE GO BLUE GO BLUE GO BLUE
GO BLUE GO BLUE GO BLUE GO BLUE GO BLUE
GO BLUE GO BLUE GO BLUE GO BLUE GO BLUE
GO BLUE GO BLUE GO BLUE GO BLUE GO BLUE
Monday, December 26, 2005
The story of Chanukah, Red Sox style, Part II: Rise of the Soxxabees
Although the numbers of those who had been seduced by the slithery words of Steinbrennochus were many, there were still some Red Sox who refused his ways, and many who had been turned to Yankeeism found their sympathy with the remaining true Red Sox growing, due to the brutishness of Steinbrennochus’ insistence that all play his type of baseball, and his habit of attempting to violently silence all who refused.
One day a soldier of Steinbrennochus came upon a true and loyal Red Sox priest, who had traveled far (even unto the farthest eastern lands) and seen much in his days, and thus was accorded great wisdom and standing among the Red Sox, and great favor among them as well, although this priest remained always humble and spoke little of his virtuous ways, earning him yet more love from his people. This fine man’s name was Gabatthias Kapler, and verily his robes were tight across his mighty chest.
The soldier, who was sniveling and weak of chin, and soft about the middle, came up to Gabatthias all a-swagger and said to him, “Hark! I am a soldier in the powerful army of King Steinbrennochus, may the gods forever keep his pockets lined, and you can call me Posada. I see from the high socks you wear with your robes that you are a priest of the Red Sox persuasion.”
Gabatthias coldly stared at the soldier Posada. He had no use for pathetic men with oversize-bravados. He wished the annoyance would go on his way and leave him in peace to walk amongst his people and dispense his wisdom and lend a gentle helping hand as needed.
Posada, however, sneered at the Red Sox people and had no respect for their priests. From his pockets he whipped out two rolled-up posters, which he unfurled and attached to the nearest wall. One bore a face thin and ratlike in appearance; the other had a roundish nose and appeared as a drunkard.
“Come now, priest,” Posada jeered, gesturing at the posters. “I have set up idols of the gods Dimaggio and Mantle for you, you should be down on your worthless knees thanking me for bringing True Yankee Baseball History™ to your sad little land. You must make prayer over these icons and sacrifice a promising young minor leaguer to them, the rest of the Red Sox will follow your lead, and the will of Steinbrennochus shall be done.”
But Gabatthias was Red Sox through and through, and he refused to bend knee to Posada or the crude icons, for it was not the Red Sox way to worship these icons, nor to wantonly denude the farm system. When he saw that his demands would not be met, Posada grew angered, and his giant ears flapped ragefully in the wind. Gabatthius took hold of his sturdy bat and with it he beat the shit out of Posada, until the King’s man was lying broken and quite dead upon the ground.
Gabatthius raised his bat into the air and spoke to the Red Sox people, and he said, “Whoever is zealous for the Red Sox, and maintaineth the Red Sox ways, let him (or her) follow me!” The Red Sox people cheered mightily and followed him out of their temples and homes, to secret themselves in a place where they might not be found, namely, the spring training facilities in Florida.
Four teammates of Gabatthius were with him, and he gathered them around. “Teammates,” he said, “I am hurt in the leg, I cannot fight against this Yankee scourge as much as I would like. Fucksticks.”
“Fear not, O wise priest, teammate and friend!” the teammates cried in unison. “For we shall lead the people in the fight against Steinbrennochus and his foul troops, as we are young and unhurt and we shall take your name of Hebrew Hammer, and we shall bastardize it into Hebrew, and we shall take the Hebrew word for ‘hammer’ and bastardize that into ‘Maccabee’, and since we are after all the Boston Red Sox we shall call ourselves the Soxxabees.”
These brave freedom fighters were, as has been said, four in number, and they were known by the names of Varitek, the calm captainly Soxxabee; Wakefield, the eldest and smartest Soxxabee; Ortiz, the most powerful Soxxabee; and Youkilis, young and brash and actually Jewish.
Tomorrow, the Rebellion begins!
Sunday, December 25, 2005
If you thought you were getting away without a special Chanukah event here at BCRS you, my friends, were sadly mistaken.
Last year we did the 8 Days of Jewish Baseball (still found on the sidebar if you wish to revist them), and for something similar you can visit Roar of the Tigers every day this Chanukah, as I'll be writing up the 8 Nights of Jewish Tigers. Night One you might recognize as one of the ballplayers profiled last year (Al Levine), but as I can only think of 3 recent former Tigers who are Jewish, we'll be delving into historical fun soon enough.
Fear not, however, Red Sox fans who don't give a kreplach about other teams! I have a holiday event that will be going on over here 'specially for you.
This year, we will be telling the story of Chanukah... Red Sox style! Oh yes. Each night of Chanukah I will post another installment in the story.
Tonight we start off with The Cruel Reign of Steinbrennochus.
Many, many years ago, in the land of MLBea, an evil king named Steinbrennochus ruled. Steinbrennochus was a cruel leader, oppressing the Red Sox people as a matter of course. He did not share in their beliefs, holding fast instead to a polytheistic religion whose gods had barbarous names such as Money, Free Agents, Greed, Turtlenecks, and Derek Jeter. Not content with his own group of followers, he wanted the Red Sox people to give up their own traditions and customs, and to allow themselves to be subsumed by his odious culture.
As all dictators do, he detested the freedoms of those around him, specifically the Red Sox people, and wished to squash them. He passed bans on their ancient and beloved customs, such as the melodious singing of Sweet Caroline or the broadcasts of their worthy priests, Don and Remy. He took from them the channel of NESN and the Whiner Line. He would not let them study their holy books, outlawing the possession of official Red Sox scorecards and Faithful.
Instead he put forth edicts requiring the people to sing songs of his own liking (foul heathen tunes like "New York, New York") and forcing all to watch terrible things like the YES network. His own priests he promoted and put in charge of leading services which all were required to attend, so that all his subjects were forced to hear the deranged ramblings of Michael Kay and the ear-splitting homerish shrieks of John Sterling.
The might of Steinbrennochus was great, and his armies were legion. Some of the Red Sox were swayed by the chintzy glamor of the city which housed his palace, the power of his offense, and the gold he showered upon his favorites. They renounced their Red Soxdom and followed the ways of Steinbrennochus. They dressed in starched, pinstriped clothing and their hair was close-shorn, and in their eyes were tiny little dollar signs.
Sometimes even prominent members of the Red Sox community felt the pressure of Steinbrennochus and weakly succumbed to his will. Chief among these were the craven Roger Clemens and Johnny Damon.
And yet, even in the midst of this dark time, there was hope for the Red Sox believers! That hope came in the form of a band of four brave teammates who stood together against the tyrannical ways of Steinbrennochus and formed the fighting rebel group who came to be known as the Soxxabees.
Tune in again tomorrow night for Part II of the tale, Rise of the Soxxabees.
Thursday, December 22, 2005
Oh Johnny, it's going to be awfully hard for you to get the stink of WHORISH GREED out of your hair. That stuff stays in worse than the special aromatic Mark Bellhorn smoke.
But you're going to have to cut your hair, aren't you? SHEARING THE LOCKS OF JESUSOSITY IN THE NAME OF COLD HARD (or, in this case, thin and crinkly) CASH. Your newly stripped scalp will shiver away from the New York air, which is rich in the way that Upton Sinclair thought of rich city air while writing The Jungle, and you will catch debilitating head cold after debilitating head cold until you yearn for the halcyon days when the headaches were low and soothing after another collision with your big green vertical friend.
What happened to integrity, Johnny? Why, it went skipping away, far away from your innermost core like a darkly sulky Nomar from the cold Boston benches, as soon as you gazed upon the bulbous fungal nose of Joe Torre and said to yourself, "Hey, I could look at that sometimes and not want to make a fried mushroom appetizer snack out of it." NO RANCH DIPPING SAUCE ALLOWED IN THE NEW YORK DUGOUT, JOHNNY, not since that one time with Giambi and his untimely attack of the munchies.
AND WHAT IS THE PRICETAG ON GIVING UP EVERYTHING THAT IS GOOD AND LOVING IN YOUR LIFE IN FAVOR OF OVERWHELMING WAVES OF EVIL AND THE STENCH OF SOUR OLD MAN THAT PERMEATES A GERIATRIC LOCKERROOM? $3 million, apparently, that being the difference per year between the last Red Sox offer and the accepted Yankee one.
But what is the pricetag on happiness, Johnny? THERE IS NO PRICETAG ON HAPPINESS. Just ask A-Rod about happiness while he stands in front of the clubhouse mirror with tears and mascara running down his cheeks in a dramatic Rocky Horror smear. But don't stand too close or look too sympathetic when you ask, unless you want to make him seek comfort and to experience the Super Secret Yankee Initiation, and Michelle won't like that, Johnny.
Actually, she might, I have no idea what works for Our Lady of the Frontal Flotation Devices and fear that if I did know, I would want to cry and remove my brain from my own cranium with nothing but a pair of salad tongs and a zesty serving of determination.
You will quickly learn that your beloved habit of being naked in the lockerroom as much as possible simply cannot fly here, both because the air conditioning is kept on full blast year-round in order to keep Bernie Williams (with whom you will have all kinds of fun, the both of you reminiscing about the good old days when you could throw a ball at least as far as halfway towards the infield from the wall) in as perfect a state of cryogenically frozen effectiveness as possible, and because the watery, wandering fisheyes of Randy Johnson will unnerve you in ways that Kevin Millar's jocular jock-grabbing never did.
What japes and hilarity you'll have in your new home! You will laugh about Idiots, and a roomful of pinstriped moneybags will stare at you blankly until one says, "Oh, no, we traded Womack." You will make a joke about your Queer Eye experience and Jeter will storm out of the room, angrily blinking back tears of manly jealousy that you have been so lucky as to feel the fashionable caress of Carson Kressley's rhinestone-laden hand and he, Derek fucking Jeter for god and Steinbrenner's sake, has not been given this blessing.
The boos whenever you play the Red Sox will be as a balm to your simple soul, especially when you see the small children, ages 7 and under, sobbing hysterically in the stands, their faces streaked with coaly ashes, their tiny child hands rending their #18 jerseys while they wail in mourning. Fangirls will fall to their knees and tear at their bleach-dry hair, calling out their inexpressible sadness unto the heavens, an entire drawerful of pink and white shirts useless now and totally not even good for winter layering because no, dude, you like, broke their hearts.
Have fun drawing straws for who gets to hit leadoff with Jeter, and by 'drawing straws' I mean of course the Yankee version, which involves what your cricket-playing counterparts would call 'competitive bumming', and there are no winners in that game.
Perhaps you can gain a couple hundred pounds so that a nice insulating layer of blubber can further cement your status as the next Rogers Clemens, only with a fifth of the talent, if that.
In short, Johnny Damon, YOU SUCK.
Saturday, December 17, 2005
Quick break from finals studying (aaarrrgh) to bring you this.
A school in Michigan has their 5th and 6th graders making crappy computer animations. They're all funny in an awkward way (a lot of them seem to involve stick figures saying 'ouch'), but the best by far are the ones who take full advantage of the assignment to create a little propaganda.
Goodbye State, a simple yet elegantly rendered notion.
Mighty Michigan, a race between the flags of the two schools where Michigan clearly reaches the top of the hill first and the State flag is tagged with the 'loser' label.
Michigan on fire, which is either done by a State fan, or is a commentary on the barbaric ways of State fans. I can't tell. I do like how the figure appears to be wearing not just any State hat, but a State trucker hat.
And Football score, which seems to be an illustration of an armless Garrett Rivas.
You don't get 5th graders making animations like that about BC and BU, now do you?
edit: Unrelated to anything but my own madness, but I have to say it.
DEAR COCA COLA. POLAR BEARS AND PENGUINS DO NOT LIVE IN THE SAME PART OF THE WORLD. YOU ARE ANIMATING LIES IN THE WINTER HOLIDAY SPIRIT. PLEASE STOP. YOU MAKE BIOLOGY PEOPLE WANT TO RIP THEIR EYEBALLS OUT AND THROW THEM AT THE TV.
AND IF THEY DID LIVE TOGETHER, WHICH THEY DO NOT, THE POLAR BEARS WOULD EAT THE PENGUINS. SO YOU CAN TAKE YOUR CLASSIC GLASS BOTTLES, AND YOU CAN SHOVE THEM. I know I shouldn't care, but what can I say, the constant blaring of Christmas music everywhere puts me into this sort of mood.
edit II: This is possibly the best thing I've seen in University public buildings. That's the UGLi (Undergrad Library) and the Fishbowl in Angell Hall. I only wish I'd seen it in person.
Friday, December 16, 2005
Do you know what's on ESPN2 at 3 in the morning?
The National Scrabble Championships.
These are the important things you learn during finals.
I left it on until its thrilling conclusion. Despite the fact that it was televised scrabble, I can state with authority that it was still several orders of watchability-magnitude better than poker.
Mike Myers is a Yankee all official-like, by the by. A 2 year, $2.4 mil contract doesn't seem too onerous, I wonder why we didn't bother to match it, given the fact that we should know by now that we can't really have enough arms. Myers is exactly what he appears to be: a deadly force against lefties who can't face a right-hander, ever. Which is limited, sure, but there are plenty of opportunities to use a guy like that, and now the bloody frelling Yankees are going to be throwing him out there against David Ortiz all next season, and I Don't Like It.
Plus I rather liked Myers, and am irritated at having yet another player I enjoy rooting for go to them this offseason. Thanks, Mike. Thanks, Farns.
Thursday, December 15, 2005
Honestly now. I trot off to wrap up finals (final critiques, actually... I still have two final tests next week) and when I come back I find that we've traded Dougie and his Rolly Bag, we've sent Edgar packing and gotten one of the best prospects in baseball as a result, we're making eyes at the Rocket, and somehow the thing that makes me say "Oh frell" loudest is the fact that Bill Mueller is a Dodger.
The stupid thing, of course, is that I've assumed Mueller was gone pretty much since his free agency took hold. To be quite honest, I was surprised at how well his knee held up last year, and I think the Sox were too, to some extent. And, of course, the dorktastic majesty that is Kevin Youkilis can only be held back for so long now, right?
I don't think I wanted to believe it, though. Every logical part of my brain knew that Mueller was gone, had him written off the team, but as long as he wasn't signed with anyone... well, he wasn't gone just yet, you know? Call it selective denial if you like.
I'm going to miss him, of course, for every possible reason. In a town where the media can drive you insane or highlight preexisting insanity, he was calm and level and just about as Professional as it's possible to be, Billy Ballgame in name and attitude indeed. Those dives at third, maybe not the most elegant or athletic in the league but surely up there in sheer lack of fear... the way he always seemed to smack the Yankees around when it mattered most... his propensity for hitting with the bases loaded (batting .526 with the bases loaded in '05, OK, yeah, I love that a bit)... the high socks and the bubble gum and the inside jokes some of us share about him that can't be addressed here due to the fact that they would disturb, well, all the rest of you...
The way you could love him equally for his switch-hitting ease of bat handling and the way he made you* thank the heavens for tight baseball pants at the very same time...
He's not even leaving Boston with the usual accompaniment of bitterness, because if there's a Boston sportswriter out there that can find something to be bitter about with Mueller, we may just have to raise them up as the pinnacle of insane Boston sportswriting. If that sentence doesn't make sense, it's because it's 4 am and I've been using some very pungent Prismacolors on my lithography prints.
Of course he'll remain one of my favorite players, because how could he not? I'm crazy like that, admittedly... if I still have a Dave Roberts alert on my Gmail account, what's it to you, eh?
As I've probably mentioned before, I've got a bunch of baseball cards of players I particularly like tacked up along the top shelf of my desk. Bill Mueller's shiny red Upper Deck card is resting between two older, matte Score cards... Terry Francona in early-90s Brewer pinstripes and a bat-wielding Barry Larkin. I suppose it can now join them in a line of cards depicting things that will never again come to be.**
Oh, and for the record, about the Manny rumors? As with anything involving Manny and trades these days, they are all fruitless until proven otherwise so far as I'm concerned. He's just been the subject of so many of them, for so long, that I take note of them and then let them wash over my brain and out.... um, the back of my brain. The occipital lobe, if you will.
And um, yeah, Edgar? Right then. We've got who playing shortstop now, exactly? Because Hanley, er, Marlins? Yes, Marlins. Right then. Tell me how this one is going to go, o glorious Jed and Ben, two-headed Managing Beast. I'm fascinated, really.
Also, Loretta for Mirabelli strikes me as a good move on the face of it, but I fear for Wake, I really do. I don't trust him one whit with 'Tek anymore as anything other than an emergency stopgap, nor do I think that 'Tek should have to deal with catching a knuckelballer on top of all the other things he's got to worry about. Not to mention the fact that 'Tek is getting older and a scheduled, assured rest every 5 days would probably go down a storm. I just, I don't know, I'm sure Loretta will be about 5,000 times more valuable offensively than Dougie ever was, but for the love of butterfly balls, it's not everyone who can successfully, or mostly successfully, handle a knuckler. Bleargh. I guess we'll see. I don't want to think about it too much, because that's the fast-track to madness.
In case you can't tell, I don't really want to talk about the Lions right now, except to say that at least we took the broken-down trainwreck that is Brett Favre to overtime on national television. Where we promptly lost, because that's how we do, but hey, the nation didn't have to see another Thanksgiving, am I right? Right?
THEN WHY DOES IT FEEL SO WRONG?
That's rhetorical, by the way. Rhetorical, and probably the markers talking. I'd open a window, but it's bloody cold out. Thusly, it is now time for some random stuff I've been meaning to bring up.
I would like to bring your attention to what is possibly one of the best Tigers threads I have read in a long, long time, containing everything you ever needed to know about The Man, The Legend, Mr. Kenny Rogers himself. It's all true. Honest.
For absolutely no good reason, other than a general liking for the Mariners (I think they're my AL West team. Can I do that? It's only a half-assed kind of interest, I promise), I'm going to be watching this pretty closely next season. First catcher out of Japan. It should be interesting to see how well he translates into the MLB; he was quite good overseas.
I can't be the only one completely nauseated by this:
Torre doesn't phone every free agent the Yankees engage. His firm but soothing voice is saved for the players the Yankees want and who might require prodding. more such joys from the article here
I mean, blimey, I know it's the Post, but surely that's crossing some journalisitic line or other. It reads like a blogger making sarcastic fun of the Yankees . Firm but soothing? Laying it on a bit thick there, aren't you, kiddo?
In case you missed it, and you shouldn't, because it's truly a thing of beauty, Beth has some fun with the RoethlisBurger and his crazed internet-savvy*** fan base. Steelers fans are bloody whacked, my friends. Also, the Burger loves his dog. His name is Zeus.
Mer just recently mailed me a torn-out article from a local magazine (local for her, anyhow). Just a short little blurb, but it had a photo of Dhani Jones, whom I love to an absurd degree, sporting one of his natty bowties and talking about lingerie. This is so awesome that it deserves its own mention in the blog.
Ann Arbor is Overrated mentions a class with a shit ton of my friends in it. The best bit is, I really like the professor, and had wanted to take this class (we all have to take these abominations called outreach classes, and there are a small number of outreach classes you can choose from each semester), but it didn't fit into my schedule and I was thus saved from the experience of performing puppetry on public buses, something which I would have detested with the fire of a thousand suns. Instead, I got to spend the semester agitating for clemency for female prisoners in Michigan-- this was the project that culminated in us having a rally on the steps of the State House in Lansing.
The moral of the story is that I just want to take a fucking drawing class for once, you know? I've about had it up to my painfully artsy glasses with concept, especially when at least half the art school has only the most rudimentary grasp of things like 'human anatomy' and 'ability to draw a fucking piece of fruit'. I DON'T CARE IF YOU'RE A PHOTOGRAPHY MAJOR-- YOU SHOULDN'T BE IN AN ART SCHOOL IF YOU DON'T HAVE THE MOST BASIC OF BASIC DRAWING SKILLS. THAT IS THE POINT, YOU KNOW HOW TO DO ALL THE BASIC STUFF, AND THEN YOU SPECIALIZE. YOU DON'T COME IN AND SAY YOU'RE A PHOTOGRAPHY STUDENT BECAUSE YOU DON'T EVEN KNOW WHICH END OF THE PENCIL TO HOLD. I understand that not everyone is an illustrator. But the basics, OK, everyone should know the basics first, and then decide that drawing is not for them, or painting is not for them, or clay is not for them, or aaarrgh.
I'm too old-school for this curriculum, which is sad in a demented number of ways, not least of which being the fact that we barely had an art program in my high school, so I never got the constant access to supplies and models and instruction and things that many of my peers did.... some of them had AP Art! AP Art! I can't even wrap my mind around a serious art program like that in a high school. Maybe this is why I place a much higher value on ACTUAL ART SKILLZ YO instead of wonky concepts, having only been exposed to them because I sought them out in local college classes over the summers, but then again perhaps it's a sign of something else and dear god I went into the Curriculum Rant. I'm sorry. I could go on about this forever. Didn't mean to get into that, won't happen again, etc.
Back to the important bits.
I HAVE NEVER BEEN MORE TERRIFIED OF KYLE ORTON IN MY WHOLE LIFE. And, I mean, seriously, terrified. Why is Brian Hickman Nightcrawler from X-Men? What is going on here, people? I just don't understand!
All of them here. If you have the courage.
*If you= "female or so-inclined male"
**Also in this line is a card of Brandon Inge in his catcher's gear. Chalk that one up as 'Things we Hope Will Never Again Come to Be'.
***A relative term.
Friday, December 09, 2005
Winter meetings make my brain hurt.
Update on all that jazz hopefully sometimes late-ish tomorrow, I'm too worn out right now, what with the prints to finish and the video to finish and the stupid outreach crap to finish and the amount of time I spent hooked up to an IV in University Health Services yesterday. Don't ask. The Art School is Trying to Kill Me Episode No. 11ty Thousand.
I'd just like to note quickly that my final video is on the Detroit Tigers (I would've done Red Sox, but I wouldn't have been able to get enough footage stuck out here). Anyways, my mother mailed me the VHS tapes of the entire 1984 World Series, and as I said before I stuck in Game 5 the other night and watched it the whole way through so I would have an idea of what footage I wanted to rip onto miniDV (and, subsequently, my computer).
One of the best things about the game was that the play-by-play announcer was Vin Scully, one of the most celebrated baseball announcers of all time, surely, but someone whom I just don't hear all that often.
If I ever had any skepticism about his worth as an announcer, it was washed away when he made this announcement with one out left in the top of the 9th inning:
"The way this crowd is goin' we're just gonna be quiet and let you enjoy it."
And he did. There was no noise at all except for the crowd and the crack of the bat and the rising roar when Larry Herndon charged it down and caught it in left field for the last out of the Series. There was no "and he has it", no "and there it goes". There was no call of the final play. It being the 80s, there were no graphics on the screen either.
I almost cried, it was so beautiful.
Then of course the crowd rushed the field, and the announcers both came back on air to say the Tigers had won the World Series, and I was forcibly reminded of one of my friends at GVSU, whose parents always told her that she had been conceived later that night, after they'd both rushed the field at Tiger Stadium. Which is sort of a disturbing thing to tell your child, but anyways.
The way that last play was treated was just so... so sublime, that that was all I needed to understand every bit of love ever thrown Vin Scully's way.
So, all the moves will be addressed soon. I just wanted to throw that out there.
Tuesday, December 06, 2005
Best moment of the game? The camera cuts into the partially empty stands. There's a youngish fan running up and down the stairs, through the rows, high-fiving laughing and cheering Lions fans as he goes. He's holding aloft a small square of brown, clearly cut from a paper bag. Hand-printed letters in marker spell out "FIRE MILLEN!" Everyone's laughing, even the announcers.
The kid is jogging up some more stairs when a burly Ford Field security guard wraps him up like Shaun Rogers, tackling him to the stairs.
The kid was just on the late news. "I think if it was a "I Love Ford Explorers" sign I'd been holding, I woulda been OK."
So yeah, that was the highlight.
Also fun was a third down play, with a little over goal to go (figure like 12 yards). Garcia rolls back, scrambles frantically for a while, and absurdly overthrows Roy Williams in the endzone. The announcers' take on this play:
*quietly* "How 'bout just a fade route?"
Oh, and when we were driving down the field in the waning minutes? I found myself literally thinking, "Wait, do we even have a two-minute drill?"
Which is really the whole season right there, you know?
Anyways I was up until 5 am last night writing papers (evolutionary biology yay! analyzing the reliability of mainstream media in french yay!) so coherence will end somewhere right around here.
I love Reggie Bush as much as the next alive person who watches football. Really. He's awesome. He's the shining golden baby unicorn of football, too pure for us filthy mere mortals to sully with our jaded eyes. And stuff. And see this is a blog, I can say things like that.
Some crazy shit, however, was uttered by the announcers during the USC/UCLA game (aka the Game With Those Teams from California That I Don't Really Give a Shit About Except for Hating USC Because of That Rose Bowl and Also Because Barry Zito Pretends He Went to College There Even Though He Was Definitely Only There for Like Two Years or Something). All of the following were phrases used in the context of describing Reggie Bush.
"...like a wisp of shadow in the flower garden." Used to describe Reggie running through a patch of defenders.
"It's almost, Keith, like he's playing a game of Quidditch, that's how he runs."
Announcer 1, upon seeing some stat or other about Reggie's yardage: "Not sure what you say when you see a stat like that."
Announcer 2: "If you're one of the coaches in his future, you swallow hard."
What does this mean?? Reggie Bush is a delicate shadow of a flower who handles the Quaffle and makes old men swallow hard? I just do not understand California college football.
Because it shouldn't be suppressed: Steelers fan writes bad poetry.
If I was writing a poem about the Pittsburgh Steelers it would be a haiku and it would be this:
not a food item even
in yellow towel.
If I was writing a poem about the Detroit Lions it would be a haiku and it would be this:
Why the short passes?
What did we do? Rory must
sob inside big head.
Daunte Culpepper at the Lions game on Sunday: suit, tie with light and dark purple squares, very sharp.
Braylon Edwards, who'd been looking so promising for the Browns, exploded his knee (ACL), probably knocking him out for the rest of the season. Aww. What can Brown do for you? Stink up your life, apparently, be you player or fan.
When it is 4:30 am and you've got some NFL Films production on ESPN about guys switching jersey numbers and you start giggling hysterically, that's when you know you've been up for way, way too long.
Everyone is better than me Part Eleventy Thousand:
Billfer interviews Dan Dickerson, play-by-play announcer for the Tigers. Part I and Part II. I hate to get sappy about this, but in Part I he includes a quote which is possibly the single truest thing I've ever heard anyone say about baseball. He was talking about (of course) Ernie Harwell, and the best piece of advice that Ernie gave him.
It really goes back to some advice Ernie gave me early in my career, when in 2001 the Tigers started 9-23, and that was supposed to be a pretty good team with the Juan Gonzalez trade and the deals they made. I said “How do you do this?” This was my team, they are 9-23 and I was down. He said “Remember, every game stands on its own.” That advice was very simple but it really stuck. You might see something you’ve never seen before, you might see a great individual performance, you might see a great game between two bad teams. And it’s true, it sounds so simple and I think all fans realize that, and that’s why you have fans at games.
That's why you have Tigers fans, and that's why you have so many Red Sox fans, even though the team only just recently started with this winning business and yeah, you know what, that's exactly it. That is EXACTLY it. Anyways, go read the rest of Bill's interview, it kicks all of the ass, as is his wont.
Oh, and Talking Chop interviewed John Schuerholz who, if you live under a rock, is the GM of the Atlanta Braves. He sounds kind of depressed about not resigning The Farns. This is only Part I, apparently Part II is to come later. Go see.
Sometimes I wonder why I bother with this blog thing, but then I remember. I mean, the internet needs someone to Photoshop an 'L' onto the front of Jeff Garcia's jersey.
Did I mention my final project for video class? It's about the Tigers. My mother just mailed me the entire 1984 World Series on tape so I can rip some of it and maybe use it in my stuff (my professor's all about appropriation). Before MNF tonight I wrote up a scorecard, put in the tape of Game 5, and watched it. And scored it. It was probably the coolest thing I've done all semester, which should tell you something about what a wicked cool college student I am.
In related news, Lou Whitaker was really quite cute, Lance Parrish probably would've been if it wasn't for the unfortunate mustache, it's kind of scary seeing Tram young when you know what he looks like old, Goose Gossage sure did stink up that game didn't he?, in fact all the Padre pitching was pretty much atrocious, not to mention those uniforms, and GIBBY! OMFG GIBBY!
Also, computer ads from the 80's are hilarious.
And yes, I did watch that Eagles/Seahawks game tonight, although only God and the All-Seeing Mama McNabb know why.
Here is the bit where I answer your questions, in the form of responses to keywords that people have been using to find my site lately.
is veritek leaving the red sox? No. He has a big fat contract. And learn to spell his name.
john keating fsn detroit. There you are.
oakland raiders fans. Are fucking insane. I love looking through tags on Flickr. This is what I find when I look for 'raiders'. Scary Raiders fan. A dog with a balloon who is a Raiders fan. Gorilla Rilla, presumed Raiders fan. And, of course, the quintessential Raider Nation photo.
pet bandannas boston red sox. It seems like a good idea. I don't know how reliable this site is, but you can dress your small dog (or probably cat) in a Red Sox tshirt, or perhaps something pink, if you want all the other dogs in doggie day care to rag on your dog for not being a real fan. (PS Don't buy them the pink tshirt. I think it's probably animal cruelty under some statute or other.)
kyle farnsworth shirtless. Oh honey, I wish. Does this help?
pant balling games. I almost don't want this to be a typo, because the idea of games based upon the rapid and skillful balling-up of pants is too glorious. Joe Paterno would absolutely clean up at this.
john grabow. I know! Isn't he awesome??
hats for clowns song. An internet classic! May it never grow old and/or die. Still one of my favorites.
nook logan groupies. God I hope so. That's all I have to say about that.
Saturday, December 03, 2005
Jeez, what is this? I turn around for a minute to cook up some final projects and papers, and when I turn back the stove's flared up and my Manny's gone and gotten all crispy underneath.
Seriously, I know I've been remiss, and now the hot stove's, well, hot. I could describe what final projects and papers have been doing to me, but probably none of you want to hear about it. Suffice it to say that video takes a really really long time to do well (even if going through reams of footage about the Detroit Tigers is REALLY fun), and it is not fun writing papers in a language with which you are only verbally comfortable.
So I will momentarily disengage my brain from the inner workings of Final Cut Pro to have a look at what's been going on in the glorious world of baseball wheeling and dealing and DEAR GOD IS IT SPRING TRAINING ALREADY I CAN'T TAKE MUCH MORE OF THIS.
Red Sox acquire Josh Beckett, Mike 'The Albatross' Lowell, and Guillermo Mota from the Marlins for Hanley Ramirez, Anibal Sanchez, Jesus Delgado, and Harvey Garcia.
I've had a lot of time to digest this one, and like a termite with a mandible full of cellulose, I have taken that which was at first unpalatable and found it to be mildly nutritious. I will admit that my initial reaction to the trade was along the lines of "What Hanley what what what Anibal Sanchez not the farm no it's the dreaded gutting noooooooOOOOOooo!" But the stathead sorts were so happy about it, and, well... unless they were really going to move Hanley to center, which seemed sort of unlikely from what I had heard, he was blocked by Poor Edgar Renteria anyways. Sanchez I still think has the potential to be pretty effective, but I don't know how soon he'll show it. The other two guys... I could pretend to know anything about that, but that would be a filthy stinking lie.
So here are my concerns with this one:
--Beckett's ability to remain healthy. Blisters, yes, but wasn't he also out for a good chunk of time with tendinitis in his shoulder? That worries me, as it's a chronic sort of thing. And on a completely illogical note, it seems that if a pitcher is prone to some sort of injury, they'll get it with us. We just don't get lucky, lately.
--I don't care what any of you say to me, Mike Lowell is a big fat feathered sea-faring bird, and I don't mean a penguin.
--Hanley turns out to be just as good as management had billed him, and we regret selling him off for the rest of history.
I don't really have anything to say about Mota... good or not, at the rate we're going, we just need warm bodies in the bullpen. So far as I know, Mota fulfills that requirement.
Red Sox get Jermaine Van Buren from the Cubs for cash or a PTBNL.
Color me pleasantly surprised, at least for now. If the Cubs do end up taking a player, my reaction to this move will depend on who they take. But on the face of it, I think it's a good pickup. Van Buren was killer as a reliever in AAA last season, and he didn't have a nervous breakdown or anything when they brought him up to the majors for a few games. The Cub Reporter says he's got a low-90s fastball, a passable slider, and a jerky drop-down motion... that last does concern me a little bit, I don't like kids with jerky motions in the minors, it just makes me too nervous about potential injury risks, but overall I think we've got a pretty good pitcher here.
My hometown gets like 2% more famous.
Peter Woodfork is hired as assistant GM of the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Dick Jauron is made interim head coach of the Detroit Lions following the (rightful) firing of Steve Mariucci.
Go Big Blue!
Kyle Farnsworth signs a contract for 3 years, $17 million with the New York Yankees.
GodDAMMIT, Kyle. Didn't you want to be a closer? Didn't you get harassed by the Chicago media back in the day? Didn't you have a really good chance to, even if you didn't want to go back to Detroit, stay with your home team, the team you grew up rooting for? This is a stupid move on his part. He'll be 30 in April, if he wants to close he should be closing NOW, in his prime, not down the line. And he's a tempermental dude (to put it mildly), the first bad outing he has, the media is going to tear into him, and he is probably not going to deal with it gracefully.
Randy Johnson shoved a camera man. Farnsworth would probably rip his camera out of his hands and beat him over the head with it until the camera broke, or the offending head. Whichever came first.
White Sox acquire Jim Thome and cash (towards his contract) from the Phillies for Aaron Rowand, Gio Gonzalez, and Daniel Haigwood; White Sox resign Paul Konerko to a big fat contract.
It sounds like Rowand was upset to be leaving Chicago ("This is a tough time for not only me, but my family -- to leave a place that we've grown to know as home and where my heart is...To leave somewhere where you are so happy being is a very tough situation. Ultimately, baseball becomes a business, and this just serves as a friendly reminder." article), and it sounds like the ChiSux are aiming to go ahead with Brian Anderson as their center fielder. He hit OK in AAA last year, and I guess they've been touting him around as the center fielder of the future anyways.
Thome... well, it'll depend on whether or not he can get healthy, which is a pretty big question, if you ask me, which you didn't, but I say it anyways. He'll have to DH anyways, so good ol' Frankie Thomas is pretty much cut loose, and Jurassic Carl may be on his way out as well.
If Thome is healthy and slugging like he generally does, if Brian Anderson works out, if Rowand continues to show that 2004 was a fluke and continues regressing back to his career average, then this will have been a pretty good move.
Signing Paul Konerko was smart, the lucky bastards.
New York Mets trade Mike Cameron to the Padres for Xavier Nady; Mets trade Mike Jacobs, Yusmeiro Petit, and Grant Psomas to the Marlins for Carlos Delgado; Mets acquire Tike Redman from the Pirates for cash (no news on whether or not a bucket of balls was involved in the trade); Mets sign Billy Wagner to a 4-year, $43 million contract.
Christ, did I miss anything?
I only have this to say. I honestly thought the Mets were going to be contenders last season. Now, maybe these moves are the ones they need to put them over that hump (Nady and Redman are both very smart and underrated signings so far as I'm concerned. I would've liked to get Nady, and I've always been irrationally high on Tike Redman), but until they prove otherwise the Mets may have slid themselves into Blue Cats territory last season.
By which I mean that, like the Lions, it doesn't really matter who they have on the team, because they're still the Mets (or Lions), and magical new ways will be found to lose games regardless of personnel.
Also, I think we can start looking for the implosion of Pedro's shoulder either late next season or the season after it.
Blue Jays acquire Red Sox Killer John McDonald from the Tigers for cash; Blue Jays sign BJ Ryan to a 5-year, $47 million contract.
They had sent McDonald to the Tigers last year for cash because they needed roster space. I liked the dude, as he seemed genial enough, and I was torn about seeing him play at Fenway... he had a lot of family and friends there, and he also for some obscure reason seemed to hit really well against the Sox. Possibly because he had a crowd there.
All I have to say about the BJ Ryan deal is that it is what they had to do in order to sign him in this market, but it is also batshit insane. Mariano Rivera is the freak, not the norm. There's just no way that, in the ideal baseball world of my brain, relievers of any sort should be signing for more than two or at most 3 years. Is it possible that Ryan will remain healthy and good over 5 years? Yes. Is it likely? Very shaky and tentatively hesitant yes.
That said, if Halladay is healthy for all of next year, I aim to worry my pants off every time we play the Jays. I got to see him pitch in Fenway before he got hurt last season. Sometimes I still wake up in a cold sweat at night, the image of his curiously ruddy facial hair dancing before my terrified eyes. He was scarygood on the mound.
Phillies sign Tom Gordon to a 3-year, $18 million contract; pick up schlubs Julio Santana and Sal Fasano from the Brewers and Orioles respectively.
I think 3 years is too long for someone as old as Flash is, but that's just what they had to do in this retarded free agency market. I guess you can't fault them for that, unless of course you're a Phillies fan, in which case I'm sure you've already thrown a battery or two at your computer screen.
Marlins trade Luis Castillo to the Twins for Travis Bowyer and Scott Tyler; as mentioned above, also lose Beckett, Lowell, Mota, Delgado; loss of AJ Burnett imminent.
I would really, really hate to be a Marlins fan right now. I can only think of two Marlins fans I know personally, and that's my grandfather and my uncle Richard, so Grandpa, Uncle Richard, I'm real sorry.
Seriously. There's nothing else anyone can say about this stuff, except to seek out Marlins fans they may know and apologize to them. Um. You guys got Hanley? He's flashy and fun? Yusmeiro Petit's gonna be kickass, so you've got that going for you.
Chipper Jones restructures contract, gives up millions of dollars (potential savings for the Braves of $15 million over 3 years) because he is just that fucking awesome.
Also because he wants to stay in Atlanta and at the same time make it more possible for the team to make good signings.
Allegedly the restructuring was at his suggestion, not the team's request.
There's not much else you can say to that, except that it makes The Farns look even worse... he was one of the players (the other being Furcal) that the Braves would have hoped to resign using the money freed up from Chipper's restructred contract.
Rumors: Manny-for-Bobby Abreu; Pudge-for-Kris Benson.
I don't like either one of them. In brief:
Manny for Abreu just doesn't sit right with me. Obviously there's no comparison to Manny as a hitter, but Abreu is still handy with a bat in his own right (even if he did have a bit of an off-year last season in average). That I acknowledge. But with Ortiz sticking around, I don't know why we'd want another power lefty to hit in front of or behind him.
I understand that there have been massive issues with Pudge in the clubhouse. I understand that we need pitching. However, I do not think that Kris Benson is the answer. If people rag on poor Joey Harrington for not being man enough to play in Detroit, imagine what they'd do to a mediocre pitcher named Kristin. More importantly, however, getting rid of Pudge would mean that the Tigers would need a catcher. And unless they can pick up a Molina (something about which I am not at all sanguine), that would mean something I fear and despise would come to pass.
Click for big.
Please, everyone, have a heart. Join the Concerned Citizens. Feel free to take and spread the banner, by the by. We must do all we can to stand in solidarity for the continued presence of Mr. Inge at the hot corner.
If I've missed something major, feel free to poke my brain about it, as I'm sure I've got a baseless opinion on it that the internet is just bursting to know. Oh, and I've been planning to restructure the links and such along the sidebar for ages now... they're hopelessly outdated, and there are tons of new sites I've been meaning to put up and feel horrible that I haven't linked to yet. For instance, fans of the RantBlog will be pleased and excited to note that supergenius Billfer of the Detroit Tigers Weblog has started a new site specifically for tracking and discussing the goings-on of the sports blogging world. It's called BaseBlogging and it's very shiny and lovely and he used one of my photos for the banner, so it's got that going for it.
See, there's loads more sites I need to tell you lot about as well, and I've got new icons set to go for the new sections and everything, but due to the evils of higher education I probably won't be able to get any of it up until winter break. So I ask you, reader, to suggest sites. Red Sox sites you like that I haven't got linked already? Tigers sites? Michigan sites, Lions sites? I'm also putting up a random teams section, since lord knows I've got a bunch of other team sites I read anyways, so suggestions on any sports blogs (especially baseball blogs, though) that you think I ought to know about would be most welcome. Comment or email, you know how it goes.