Thursday, April 22, 2010


*channeling Hunter S. Thompson and his disregard for proper capitalization*

There are a lot of things being said about the Ben Roethlisberger Situation. Pretty much all of it is Mumbo Jumbo Looney Tunes Bullshit, & it's hard to determine what Is and what Is Not true.

Well, since this is a Blog, I'm not going to pretend that what I'm saying is anything other than an Opinion. Perhaps an informed, intelligent Opinion, but an Opinion nonetheless.

With that in mind, here are some Things I Think About This Situation:

- Ben Roethlisberger was suspended for four to six games for not committing a crime, according to the Laws of the United States Justice System.

- Being a Disrespectful, Entitled Asshole is not a crime.

- The National Football League is in the business of Making Money, & not in the business of Morality.

- The Pittsburgh Steelers are in the business of Winning Football Games, & also not in the business of Morality.

- Roger Goodell has decided that suspending Ben Roethlisberger for being a Disrespectful, Entitled Asshole is the Morally Right thing to do.

- Art Rooney II has decided that trading Ben Roethlisberger, who has won two (2) Super Bowls & restored the Steelers' franchise as a football powerhouse, for being a Disrespectful, Entitled Asshole is the Morally Right thing to do.

That is all ye know, & all ye need to know.

All the rest of it is just another chapter in the never-ending "Society holds professional athletes to unreasonably high moral standards & charges them with being role models whether they want to be or not" saga.

There is no doubt that Ben Roethlisberger is a world-class Swine. But his behaviour was being implicitly tolerated & accepted by the very same fans, organization and league that are now selling him up the Three Rivers.

As the old saying goes, you can't create a monster & then whine when he stomps on a few buildings.


April 22, 2010

Monday, April 19, 2010

Ike Davis Is White, Brandon Morrow Is Not So Bad, And Boston Is In Trouble

Only one of those statements is 100% true. If you're from Bahston, one of them is 100% false, but fuck those Massholes and their upcoming Jersey Shore ripoff show.

Anyway, the Mets called up Davis, their highly-touted 1B prospect, and promptly inserted him into the starting lineup (where he went 2-for-4 with an RBI), because the trio of bums who've patrolled the position (Mike Jacobs, Fernando Tatis, Frank Catalanotto) have combined for an Overbay-esque .180 AVG with one homer. (That said, the Jays should definitely kick the tires on Jacobs if he hits the waiver wire; you don't hit 32 homers in the major leagues by fluke.)

But the real story here, as mentioned in the header, is that Ike Davis is not a strong safety in the NFL, or a rotation player in the NBA. He is a white baseball player, and has got to be the first white baseball player named Ike in the history of the game.

So good luck, kid. You'll need it at Citi Field.

Some good news out of Blue Jay land, as Brandon Morrow finally showed everyone what he's capable of, taking a no-no into the 6th against the Royals and striking out eight batters through seven innings.

Needless to say, a welcome change from his first two dreadful outings, and all of a sudden a Romero/Marcum/Morrow/Eveland rotation looks pretty nasty (what kind of Jays fan would I be if I didn't wildly extrapolate?) and leaves Brian Tallet as the no-brainer odd man out whenever one of the dudes who is either injured, rehabbing or getting seasoning in Vegas returns. (UPDATE: Tallet's next start is being pushed back due to a sore forearm; hopefully until the 5th of fucking NEVER, amirite?)

And finally, back to Boston. After being swept at the hands of the Rays, the BoSox sit at 4-9 and are tied for the 2nd worst record in the American League.

They were booed early and often during their 8-2 loss to Tampa on Patriots Day, and understandably so: they were 0-for-30 with runners in scoring position in the series, and the rotation has been pounded to the tune of 26 runs in 26 2/3 innings of work in their last five starts.

David Ortiz looks lost at the plate, Jacoby Ellsbury is banged up, and Victor Martinez and Kevin Youkilis are struggling to hit their weight.

Hopefully Theo Epstein was following the Boston Marathon, because he could probably put a bunch of Kenyan distance runners out there and get a better result.

Sure, the Sox won't be this terrible all year, and almost certainly won't finish 4th in the East. But the Yankees are the Yankees, the Rays look scary, and the Jays love to beat up on Boston.

Plus it's still April, so, you know, optimism and all that.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

The Jays Have Their Scapegoat

Lyle Overbay is terrible. How terrible?

Here are some of the players hitting "better" than Lyle Overbay:

Lou Marson CLE - .091 AVG in 2010 (2-for-22), .218 career AVG
Jeff Clement PIT - .103 AVG in 2010 (3-for-29), .222 career AVG
Brandon Wood LAA - .105 AVG in 2010 (4-for-38), .178 career AVG

Lyle Overbay - .080 AVG in 2010 (4-for-50).

Horrendous. Overbay is making $7 million in 2010 and he can't even hit the weight of one of the Olsen twins.

The worst part? Coming into today, Overbay was in the top 25 in the majors in at-bats, which essentially means he has the lowest possible average in the most possible chances given to a player sucking this badly.

Of course, the reason he's getting these chances is because the Jays have no one to replace him. Randy Ruiz is a part-time player at best and Brett Wallace isn't ready.

But if it wasn't apparent before that the Blue Jays have the absolute worst starting first baseman in the league, it certainly is now. I'd rather have the Marlins' Gaby Sanchez (he's hitting .308!), Oakland's Daric Barton (.317!), or heck, even Seattle's Casey Kotchman (.229).

Unfortunately, because Cito Gaston fills out his lineups like he's in a weekly fantasy league (once on Mondays, good for seven days) don't expect to see Overbay on the bench anytime soon:

"I don't think sitting him is going to help him at all. He needs to get out there and just keep battling and hope something turns around."
Translation: get used to seeing Overbay's awful bat (and terrifying face) in the five-spot for the foreseeable future.

Seriously, that face will haunt my dreams.

Friday, April 16, 2010

I Like This Fred Lewis Guy Already

You may have heard by now that Fred Lewis is the newest member of the Toronto Blue Jays. What you may not have heard is that you heard it from him first.

This screenshot is of Lewis' Facebook page, about an hour or so before any media outlet reported the news.

I like his moxy. He's not gonna let some crotchety old beat reporter or hot-shot Twitter-phile beat him to the punch. If he's this fast in the social media world, imagine him on the basepaths!

He even changed the little info box on his profile page to read "Blue Jays Outfielder Fred Lewis Is Nothing, But A STUD!" THAT'S GREAT HUSTLE!

Lewis is clearly happy to be out of San Fran and in Toronto (for some reason), so let the man have his moment of glory, before he realizes he's a bench player for a team that can't draw more than 10,000 fans for any game that's not Opening Day or against the Red Sox or Yankees.

Plus check out this glowing endorsement from Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos:

“What he’s done in the past, having been an everyday player before, those are the guys ideally you’d like to fill your bench with, guys with experience. Those are better bench players. We felt it was an upgrade maybe over what we have currently.”
Suck it, Jeremy Reed! See you in Vegas at the end of the month.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

As Usual, Hunter S. Thompson Had This Shit Figured Out Ten Years Ago

Hunter S. Thompson was a man ahead of his time. While journalism was still revered as a noble and upstanding pursuit, Thompson was calling out both athletes and politicians on their bullshit, getting smashed at the Kentucky Derby and running around Vegas drugged out of his mind, in an effort to get the most sensational and therefore "real" story possible.

So it should be no surprise that he had a solution to the ever-growing problem of baseball games taking goddamn forever to play, and that it is wholly representative of the "Gonzo journalism" he popularized in his heyday.

In his November 6, 2000 "Hey Rube" ESPN column, Thompson outlined his plans to redesign and shorten baseball games, in three easy steps:

ELIMINATE THE PITCHER: This will knock at least one hour off the length of a game... Pitchers, as a group, are pampered little swine with too much money and no real effect on the game except to drag it out and interrupt the action.

Works for me. Pitchers are far and away the major source of my frustration with the game (especially the ones currently on my fantasy team). The good Doctor proposed that a pitching machine would pop up from the mound, provide an automatic pitch (dialed to the exact specifications of the catcher), and then sink down into the mound to open up the infield. Open it up for what, you ask?

ALL BASE-RUNNERS MAY RUN TO ANY BASE (but not backward) -- First to Third, Second to Home, etc. And with NO PITCHER in the game, this frantic scrambling across the infield will be Feasible and Tempting.

Oh, for that. Between the chaos going on in the infield and the customizable pitch-bot, the catcher becomes the most important player on the field, throwing runners out and dictating the exact pitch needed in every situation (which a real pitcher provides about 2% of the time).

This is all well and good, but what of the length? And how the hell do we keep score of this madness?

LIMIT ALL GAMES TO THREE (3) HOURS: Like football and basketball and hockey, the Baseball game will end at a fixed time. THE SCORE, at that moment, WILL BE FINAL, based on an accumulation of TOTAL BASES IN 3 hours.

Delicious. Try and tell me you wouldn't watch that. DON'T LIE TO ME!

You can read the full article in all its glory and wild genius here, or listen to Hunter's widow Anita read it aloud in the video above.

We miss you, Hunter. Mahalo.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

The Entire World Conspires Against Ricky Romero

Last night, Blue Jays ace Ricky Romero found himself six outs away from the first Jays no-hitter since Dave Stieb and his sexy stache-mullet combo blanked the Indians in 1990.

And then the collective baseball gods rose up and said, "Nay."

Since I was raised Catholic and know that God works in mysterious ways, I'm not surprised that the baseball gods also subscribe to this doctrine, revealing their dastardly plans in reverse.

First, the man who ended the no-no bid was none other than Alex Rios, the former can't-miss-but-did-miss prospect who the Jays unceremoniously dumped on waivers, who crushed a mistake changeup from Romero into the left field bleachers (Hey, I thought he didn't give a fuck) for a 2-run homer.

Then, upon closer scrutiny of the guy on base for the Rios blast, it was shown that White Sox catcher A.J. Pierzynski had duped home plate ump Tim McClelland into thinking he had been hit on the foot by Romero's pitch in the dirt, when clearly that was not the case.

Pierzynski is well known as one of the dirtier players in the game, but he got away with one despite his past history, which forced Romero to pitch from the stretch and may have served to rattle him somewhat.

And finally, no story of deception and sabotage would be complete without the "we got a man on the inside" angle, played in this case by new Jays starting catcher John Buck (What kind of name is "John Buck" anyway? He's gotta be a double agent).

Buck was discussing Romero's outing with pitching coach Bruce Walton (which is a no-no, pun not intended) when he glanced at the scoreboard.
"I kind of looked up there I was like, 'Oh my gosh, they don't have any hits,' " Buck said.
And all was lost.

Still, a superb outing from the kid, who clearly has the goods to be the best Jays lefty since Jimmy Key.

And uh, not to jinx it or anything (see what I did there?), but a 6-2 record for tops in the AL East? I'll take it!

(Just get me to the World Cup, Jays, that's all I ask...seriously.)

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

NHL Considers Expansion To Africa

OK, not really. But hey, at least we can take solace in the fact that hockey jerseys are keeping people clothed.

Hockey night in Liberia: NHL jerseys everywhere in war-torn nation

"We don't know the game," Joe Peters admits, wiping sweat off his cheek. "But the jerseys are very fine. Very high quality."

Unlike the game, most of the time.

I propose we send more jerseys to these people in need. It would give us a great opportunity to rid ourselves of the offensive and douchebaggy jerseys that plague our sports community, while at the same time doing a great service for people who lack basic clothing.

The main offenders:

1) The "non-traditional name on the back" jersey

You, sir, are an idiot. I don't care what "The Goose" means; you just look like a tool.

2) The "traded player" jersey

So your favourite player was traded. Get over it. In this modern age of sports with huge contracts and free agency and crooked agents, one must be loyal to a team, not a player. So stop wearing that jersey: he's never coming back, because he hates you. Exception: Wayne Gretzky Oilers jerseys.

3) The "non-traditional colours" jersey.

Sweet Christ, that is hideous. This applies to you, ladies: that pink Pens jersey is not cute, it makes you appear even more stupid and slutty than you probably already are.

Please, people, I implore you: do the right thing, and get that fucking monstrosity off your back/out of your closet and help a fellow human being out.