Sunday, April 04, 2010

Twenty Things I’m Hoping To See This Baseball Season:

  1. Someone on the MLB Network, when discussing an aging, no-field, no-run swing-from-the-heels hitter who’s got fading doubles power and slider bat speed, to say “He’s not a professional hitter, because he can’t hit.”
  2. One last moment in the sun for Matt Stairs, the Wonder Hamster
  3. Craig Calcaterra finally snapping and going totally Sneakers on Jon Heyman in an attempt to prove that Scott Boras is feeding him faulty intel directly. Presumably, this ends up with Derek Zumsteg demanding a Winnebago, Marc Normandin asking for the phone number of the attractive MLB.com sysadmin who helps bust them, and Sean Casey shouting “We’re MLB Network! We don’t DO that sort of thing!”

  1. Prince Fielder and Ryan Howard doing a double steal during the All-Star Game.

  1. Six or seven pitchers from Jim Rice’s heyday going public with a statement to the effect of “That dude? We never actually feared him. It was Dewey Evans who scared the piss out of us.”

  1. Charlie Haeger winning double-digits worth of games.

  1. Alex Gordon beating the snot out of the ball, just to shut everyone up already.

  1. ESPN promoting a game that doesn’t have the Yankees, Red Sox, or some combination thereof in it.

  1. Tim McCarver criticizing Derek Jeter. Just once.

  1. Jeffrey Samson and David Loria to fall through some sort of interdimensional wormhole that lands them in the Miami where Burn Notice is real, just in time for them to accidentally rear-end cranky superspy Michael Westen.

  1. Jamie and Frank McCourt to realize they’re both looking like complete asses. As they sit down to discuss how best to resolve their divorce quickly and with dignity, they reminisce over the wonderful time they had in Brussels on their honeymoon, fall madly in love all over again, and have enthusiastic makeup sex on Bert Fields’ desk. Then, united in purpose, they go get a real starting pitcher for the Dodgers, knocking Vincente Padilla – not Charlie Haeger – out of the rotation.

  1. A Charlie Zink sighting.

  1. Someone in the Kansas City front office to say “You know, it’s kind of weird that a dermatologist knows more about running our baseball team than our GM does.” Ideally, the next step is to hire said dermatologist.

  1. Vernon Wells, BJ Upton, Nick Johnson, Josh Hamilton, Milton Bradley, and Manny Ramirez to all play like we’ve seen them play at their best.

  1. Manny Ramirez to admit the whole “Manny being Manny” thing has gotten old, and that reporters really should come up with a new shtick. Conversely, I’d also go for Manny thinking he’s the reincarnation of the Atlantean priest Klarkash-Ton, and taking batting practice in ceremonial robes from the cat-haunted city of Ulthar.

  1. Carlos Marmol, Joba Chamberlain, Phil Hughes, and CJ Wilson pitching lights out, as a response to their managers no longer jerking them around.

  1. Someone doing a Real Genius on Dusty Baker to convince him that God wants him to start using pitch counts. Then they can use a giant laser to fill the Reds’ dugout with popcorn.

  1. The ghost of the billygoat to manifest at third base at Wrigley during a twi-night doubleheader with the Cardinals in order to call out Jay Mariotti for one too many phoned-in bullcrap columns. Unfortunately, nobody’s seen Mariotti actually at Wrigley since June of ’96, so the goat dissolves into a blob of ectoplasm that later causes Aramis Ramirez to slip and fall. Ramirez blows out a hammy in the incident, his replacements don’t hit a lick, and the Cubs miss the playoffs by one game.

  1. A home run ball hit by a White Sox player knocking unconscious the next reporter to claim that Ozzie’s guys play “small ball” in a home run park so egregious, Joey Gathright can swing from the heels there. I of course wish no permanent harm to come to said reporter, but if there was a residual inability to say the words “productive out”, “pitching to the score”, or “gritty gamer”, I wouldn’t be too upset.

  1. Jayson Werth yelling “Captain Caaaaave-mannnn!” every time he hits a home run. Hey, it could happen.

Friday, April 02, 2010

We Love You, Joe/LeBron/Anybody

One of the things fans in the rest of the country hate about New York fans is their open, entitled speculation about when the biggest stars on other teams are going to come play in New York because New York "deserves" them. (The irony of pairing this with bitching about competitive imbalance has thus far escaped most of Pinstripe Nation.) Case in point: Ian O'Connor's navel-gazing masterpiece on ESPN New York, as self-absorbed a piece of tripe as anything the Curly Haired Boyfriend horked out in the Boston Globe. In it, O'Connor pats Cleveland on the head and then explains why LeBron has to come to New York because, well, he has to come to New York and lots of New Yorkers say so.

I can only assume that O'Connor had a Joe Mauer version of this piece ready to go, and then hastily rewrote it when Super Joe signed with the city that apparently didn't deserve him quite as much.

I Don't Think Carolina Gets All The Calls...

...but tonight's NIT finals really should have been A10 vs. A10.

And the fact that the Heels couldn't close the deal on Dayton - Dayton! - should really scare all those suits at CBS who foresee a tournament that doesn't go chalk every year.
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