Friday, August 31, 2007

Second-hand news.

One quick post before I'm off to Chicago this Labor Day weekend, for those of you who haven't yet subscribed to Baseball Prospectus. Will Carroll reports that "As expected, Manny Ramirez will miss about a week, but won't go on the DL. The Red Sox don't just seem calm about this, they almost seem disinterested." When YES showed Manny sneezing and wincing afterwards at the game yesterday, it's was not a good sign: this brightens my day up a bit.

Brewers are under .500. Man. Looks like all the urine-stained pants of Milwaukee are just due to overconsumption of shitty beer, not pennant chasing.

Happy end of summer madness, all. It's gonna be a good September.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

GAMES 133-134: And let us never speak of that series again.

Just leave New York. Don't think about how Roger Clemens shut the lineup down even when he couldn't find the strike zone and Chien Mien-Wang then confirmed with even more no-hit innings that yes, it's not you, it's us. Don't think of how wasted Curt Schilling's outing was, or how if it wasn't for Kyle Farnsworth (best picture ever of him here) we would have been shut out twice, having wasted our offense on the White Sox. Don't consider the fact that a sweep was the ONLY outcome that could constitute genuine failure, and just like that, it's 5 games again and Yankees fans are taunting me all around my cubicle. And don't let me keep thinking just how long indefinitely is. Just leave this magical city. There's nothing for you here right now:

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

No Context Necessary #6

GAME 132: The Legend of Joba Chamberlain!

Good game last night: Andy Pettite remains the Yankees' best starter, Daisuke frustrated the hell out of me with that first inning but settled down thereafter and was just left in a little too long, and my feeling that this was the game of the series the Sox were going to lose came true, but when you're 7 games up, you can concede when the better team for the night won. The Yankees capitalized on their opportunities. They were the better team.

I actually listened to the last few innings on the radio because I was tired, have no TV at home, and didn't really feel like buying another beer to hang around the Boulevard Tavern for the last innings after the Damon home run. As such, I didn't actually see Joba Chamberlain get himself in and then out of trouble with that tremendous fastball/slider combo (I have watched him pitch before, for the record, and yes, his stuff is filthy), but did hear John and Suzy repeatedly talk of this as another inning in "the legend of Joba Chamberlain."

Legend? Legends aren't true, usually involve people who are long dead, and are retold in shitty CGI. Joba Chamberlain has pitched a grand total of 10 innings, two less than there were labors of Hercules. Those ten innings have included 17 Ks, and yes, this kid could be good, but Legend, John and Suzy? Combined with a new annoying catchphrase ("Nice job-a, Joba!"), the evidence seemed to point to a foregone conclusion, namely, Sterling's douchery. What legend?

But lo, my ceiling opened and from the skies came a scroll. This is the true legend of Joba Chamberlain. Read only if you dare tempt that the prophecies may not come true:

...and O!, in a summer where the actress Julia Stiles doth star in a fine 111-minute chase sequence so too there will come a Pitcher of similar heavy brow, a mammoth being, a paragon of action and masculinity, a human manifestation of a large Plate of Ribs, a Native American playing the American Pass-Time.

He could hurt a Horsed Hide through a ring of arrows and past the behemoth David Ortiz, or at least cause the beast to hit a weak fly out! Woe to the three-headed Beast Eric Hinske, the snarling but Docile J.D. Drew, and all the other Monsters of the Eastern American League, for this Fire-balling Hero Slayed them all, for upwards of One inning every two days!

Away, you Banshee Blue Jays!

To Hades, you Devilish Rays!

Begone, Bloated Boston and Diseased Baltimore!

And the Bronxians did rejoice, and Wankerias, Royal Jester, did add a new Pun to his list, which his most ardent and true audience, himself, did find much delight in. Young Joba was slain fighting a mighty dragon and the Bronxians still finished Two Games behind Neptune's warriors but a Legend was Born!

And they lived happily until they died. Which was five minutes after this sentence was typed.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

The Sterling Variations: Melky Cabrera

When Melky does good:

Sweet Mother's Melk!

Cabrera could have settled for second, but he Melk-ed that one for a triple! Oh my!

And Cabrera is now 3-3 today against Bartolo Colon. He sure can Melk that cow!

Melk does a body good! (As some lucky friend of A-Rod's friend will find that out after the game!)

When Melky does not do good:

Strike three, and Melk has been skimmed by Escobar. He's been feeding him nothing but formula today.

Melk just hasn't been himself the last ten games. Call him Malk.

Monday, August 27, 2007

GAMES 128-131: Bloodied sox.

"Twelve hours of my life I wasted and I'm never gonna get back," said Ozzie Guillen after the BoSox's doubleheader sweep. Said quote was also the highlight of the weekend if you were a White Sox fan; my God, did this team really win the Series in '05? There are sweeps, and then there are series where you let the other team score double-digit runs every game while never scoring more than 3 runs. And that's some My Lai shit. Pass the gauze.

Thanks, Detroit. Tony Massarotti sez the AL East is over, and though it probably is, the coming Sox-Yankees series shouldn't be considered as merely an important series for the AL East's sake. It's an opportunity to help put Seattle in the Wild Card, to see Mets caps rule the city in October, and to see my Yankee fan friends...I can't even fill in that blank. I've seen my
Yankee fan friends in grief, of course, but that grief always at least came in October...what is it like to not make the playoffs 14 years after the last time it didn't happen? (1994 not qualifying as a season.) How will their pinstriped hearts react? Do they sag like heavy loads? Or do they just explode?

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

"Thank God for Mo Vaughn!"

The tradeoff for Mo Vaughn's disappointing Mets career continues to be better for the city of New York than any MVP season. (See the Outside the Lines video in the middle of today's Diamond Daily, under "Heart of Gold." Thanks to Jim, again.)

Thursday, August 16, 2007


I could have sworn I just heard Suzy Waldman, in the middle of the WCBS 880 broadcast of the Tigers mutilating and doing other bad things to the Yankees, that Suzy said the word "Jeterian."

Normally, this is where I might say something like, "I might have heard that, but I mighta been sniffing glue." And then I heard John Sterling call Bobby Abreu "as sweet as candy" quite clearly. And then I only wished I was sniffing glue.

UPDATE: John Sterling sez several innings later, as Fernando Rodney comes in for the Tigers:

"Now here is a Rodney who gets respect!"

Listening to John Sterling is like a lot of embarrassing moments in life. It's funny later, but pretty painful in the moment.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007


"Man, all he's doing is sitting around on his ass." (On his father Bobby, as he lay dying from cancer.)

(Barry Bonds. He doesn't want to hear about yer cancer, ya lazy bastard. And why did you shave your head?)

The Sterling Variations: Hideki Matsui

When Hideki does good:

Hideki hi-decks that one out of here!
Domo arigato, Hideki ari-got it!
Moshi moshi and sayonara! Hideki moshi moshi MASHED it!
A Hiroshima from Hideki!*
Banzai! Hideki threw himself into the left field wall with no concern for his life, taking one for the Emperor!

George is calling himself the emperor now?

As you would know if you had any rudimentary understanding of Japan, Suzy, I'm referring to Emperor Hirohito, Suzy. The allegiance the Japanese people still have for him being, of course, the reason we can't trust Japs. (beat.) Everyone knows that!

Fifteen seconds of dead air pass.

When Hideki does not good:

And now Hideki is jawing with the umpire. I wonder if something is getting...Lost in Translation?

God, I hate this job.

Woman, don't make me turn your microphone off again like I did for the first 40 games this season.

I'll be good.

*Look, the man does say "An A-bomb from A-Rod." And I like going too far, damnit. (See new comment on "The Sterling Variations: Derek Jeter.")

GAME 118: Love of my life since 1995.

I know I loves you, Wake. Winner of 7 of his last 9 starts (and with the weird kinda amazing distinction of getting a decision every time out, which combined with poor run support some games and the fact that a bad knuckleball start is a BAD start swells his ERA and makes his W/L of 14-10 look much worse than it should), Tim played tourniquet last night, and really had to with James Shields on the mound. Tampa Bay is gonna be better sooner than we think. But we've been saying that for 3.5 years. As long as they don't get good any time soon, maybe it'll be Galaga "Challenging Stage" time. But Scott Kazmir's a-coming.

Monday, August 13, 2007


I never stop looking for things to try and make myself better."

(Barry Bonds. Never stopped looking for things to try and make himself bigger. Er, better.)


"You're talking about something that wasn't even illegal at the time. All this stuff about supplements, protein shakes, whatever. Man, it's not like this is the Olympics."

(Barry Bonds: not at all physically transformed since when he was a rookie.)

(Major League Baseball: it ain't the Olympics.)

Update: Regular bar and grill patron Jim sent me the tasteful version of his rookie card below. He sure was wiry.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

GAME 115-117: Goddamn that Canuck.

He's saying "I deserve to die by knife to the head" if that's illegible. I'm too pissed off to perfect that quote balloon in MS Paint right now. Fuckity fuck fuck fuck.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007


"My grandmother wants me to get her some wheelchair that drives like a car. Why do I need to get her some wheelchair when she's gonna die anyway?"
--The all-time MLB home run king, as quoted in the New York Times Magazine.

(Barry Bonds: He knows when it's time for grandma to die.)

No more magic.

In deference to common sense and the Yankees' continuing run against the American League (even if it is largely against the have-nots), there will be no more premature mention of magic number about these parts.

Not a fun couple of games, as the Red Sox blow two leads to the Angels. Half-assed analysis:

Game 1) Why have Gagne, Okajima, and Papelbon if you don't want to use them, with or without the lead? Why is my dread of Julian Tavarez returning? Why does Manny have to be thrown out of a game that ends with Brandon Moss striking out, with runners on, in his place?

Game 2) Repeat much of 1, as the relievers put this game out of reach. Hidden goat: Manny Delcarmen, who allowed all his inherited runners to score like a trust fund baby spending someone else's inheritance. See where these two games have left me? Making worse analogies than ever!

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Becks, Rod, and Jeter: World-beaters.

Beckham meets the Yankees. But are these photographs real, or do Beckham, Jeter, and Rodriguez (especially Rodriguez) actually look like cardboard cutouts? Because that itself would make Fathead a more verite product than I imagined. But you're still a fucking moron to pay $99 to put this on your wall:

Double demerit points if you're out of college and own one. Get a life.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Do you know....Coco Crisp? (MAGIC #45)

Did you know...

Covelli Crisp got his nickname from his grandmother (who called him Co, being too near death to waste time with two more syllables) and his sister and godbrother (who were making fun of his ears, reminiscent of the cereal box above)?

He and his wife are either deaf or strongly not English, and his child is paying the cost?

"We were watching Harry Potter, and the girl's name is Hermione. We thought they were saying Amailee. I wrote it down because my wife, Maria, was pregnant. When the credits rolled, we realized we were way off, but Amailee stuck. We even liked it more since it was different than the movie."

As a former New Haven Raven, he is one of too few players/people who still remember the team's existence? And when said team moved to New Hampshire, they nearly went with THIS team name?

His bat is finally starting to catch up with his glove?

Jacoby Ellsbury in his few games in the majors this year has a better VORP than J.D. Drew? (Just happened to find that in seeing Crisp's numbers. His value over any guy off the street, by the way, is a differential of 14.3 runs, not bad considering how he started.)

The prospect we traded for Coco is engulfed in the suck?

He'd like steroids testing to be more like DNA testing on a daytime talk show? (And who WOULDN'T?)

"You ever see Maury Povich, when they're talking about baby daddies and all that kind of stuff?" Crisp said. "They get the lie detector test and they're like, `Are you the father?' That's what they need to do. We need to actually see if they are the father or if they're not the father. The lie detector test."

His father was a boxer nicknamed Sugar Crisp? And his blind diabetic dockworking uncle is known as Post Waffle Crisp Cereal?*

The man in the Moose costume's a dead man?

*One of these ain't true.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Sometimes, it's polite to boo.

From the AP wrap-up of the wild White Sox-Yankees game:

"Making his last start before turning 45, the Rocket pitched a perfect first inning before the White Sox got to him with a series of singles and doubles that eluded fielders. When Torre replaced him with left-hander Mike Myers, the fans at Yankee Stadium booed loudly, but the boos faded to polite applause by the time Clemens trudged to the dugout."

Loud boos, becoming sortapplause. That's not polite. That's pussy.

The Sterling Variations: Derek Jeter

Jeter does good:

Don't hate the Jeter, hate the game!

Derek Jeter, world beater!

Derek Jeter, establishing his credentials for this year's Nobel Peace Prize!

Way back, it is GONE! A homerun for Derek Jeter that he probably hit for some kid with cancer!

Derek Jeter, continuing to heal New York's 9/11 wounds while bringing a tear to America's collective eye with his scintillating play! Wow!

Jeter does not do good:

(None. When has THAT happened?)

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