Tagged: Athletics

Bring On the Myth of Billy Beane

Some have described my baseball fanaticism as sociopathic in that I find great delight in the destruction and demise of my rivals.

Yeah?  So?

That’s why I’m super excited to hear the Cubs rumor-mill sound off on a possible Billy Beane signing as the next Northside GM.  Like a sick unempathetic psychopath, I enjoy watching the Cubs die a long, painful death.  So bring on the Beane!

The notion that Beane is this magical franchise-saving GM is nothing short of a mirage.  If you pick through the mountains of excellent work at PoNY you will find plenty of detailed examples why.  But for now, I will just focus on one: during his tenure in Oakland (1998 to present) he hasn’t won anything.  And if you’ve paid attention to the Oakland A’s the last five years you’ve probably noticed that those teams have been ATROCIOUS.

Yes, going back some years the A’s captured the AL West Division title four times (2000, 2002, 2003, 2006).  But since when does being the best out of four teams and nothing else get you all the accolades of a champion?  The dude is a flop!  His teams are flops!  And his club has no fans!  Wait til he has to deal with an angry mob of 40,000 Chicagoans in that dump of a stadium as it shakes back and forth, falling apart!

So, you know what to do, Ricketts… bring on the BEANE!  We Cardinal fans are lickin’ our chops!

Don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.

Peace,

Jeff

The Filibuster

arod_adjusting_cup.jpgThe player formerly known as Alex Rodriguez will soon hit his 600th Home Run.

Who Cares?

 
Mike 
Brooklyn Trolley Blogger
_______________________________

Not me.

I could care less, Mike.

And that’s… sad.  Sorta. 

To be honest, I’m so over it — all of it… the steroids, the scandals, the lying, the cover-ups, the BALCOs, the blue sweaters.  Yes, there comes a time when even extreme baseball purists like myself have no choice but to let…

…go.

Because baseball’s numbers will never be the same.  Never.  Long gone are the days when a digit might suggest greatness.  The hallowed marks of achievement died sometime in the late 80s, when a clubhouse party at the Coliseum consisted of needles, juice and dudes gettin’ jacked.  They killed it — they murdered the prestige.  It’s all dead now.  The numbers will never be as important as they were before PEDs, before Barry, before A-Rod. 

I’ve finally come to terms with that. 

And I’m also happy to say that the desacrilization of baseball’s numbers won’t kill the game

I used to think it would.

It hasn’t.

And it won’t.

Which is exactly why baseball is the grandest game on the planet.  It has withstood wars, betting scandals, collusion, labor disputes.  Its integrity has been challenged.  Its image has been smeared.  On many occasions, it has even been left for dead.

But it always comes back to life.  And it comes back to life bigger, better, stronger.

Hank Aaron.  755. 

Roger Maris.  61.

Those are the ones we choose — collectively, as a people, as a community — those are the ones we’ll remember. 

The other numbers?  I couldn’t tell you how many homeruns Barry Bonds hit in his career.  I couldn’t tell you because I don’t care.  The public doesn’t care.  We don’t care.

And that’s a beautiful sign that baseball has moved on, beyond the numbers; because, let’s face it: sometimes, you just have to move on.

In our case, we are all very lucky, because we get to move on together.

I’m right on that, Mike.  Just don’t hate me ‘cuz of it.

Peace,

Jeff

***SEND US YOUR FILIBUSTERS****

Something on your mind?  Want to see Jeff and Al sweat (separately, not together, eww)?  Think you got a real stumper?  Send us your Filibuster question(s) by commenting or emailing them to us at kraulung@gmail.com. 

***Videos of Al in a speedo, dry humpin’ reporters at Hedonism II also welcome.

The Filibuster

Jeff!!!  I loved your pictures from Nats park and I’m psyched that you
got to see Strasburg.  I also saw that you’ve been to Sox park and
Wrigley recently.  What’s your favorite ballpark that you’ve already
visited and which place would you like to see the most?

Caitlin
Manassas, VA
____________________________________

All Star Weekend 7.13.2009 068.jpgAfter a fiery, bloody internal debate that lasted well over an hour, I finally decided not to begin addressing this query by postulating what one would find if he/she were to actually venture to Manassas, VA… ‘cuz I’m pretty sure one can find Man-assas (a$$e$?) anywhere… including  ballparks all across US America.

ZING!

Still got it, folks.

Okay, maybe not.

But it doesn’t matter… and neither does the ballpark, Caitlin.  What matters is the game.  Sure Busch hosts my boys, Wrigley’s nostalgic, Nats Park has Ben’s Chili Bowl and Sox Park is a good place to pick up Latin Queens; but to be honest, I can find something positive about any and every ballpark I ever go to.  And I’ve been to many.

My favorite random ballpark story is the one about the Oakland Coliseum.  I happened to be in San Francisco on business.  It was a Saturday night and I had nothing to do, so I hopped on the BART to Oakland, walked up to the ticket counter at the Coliseum and said, “I got forty bucks. Where can I sit for that?”

“In a good seat, Honey.” said the kind ticket lady.

Ten minutes later I’m sitting behind homeplate on the first tier above ground level and I can hear Nick Swisher’s awful jokes with my own ears.  Ten minutes after that and I have a Fat Tire in my hand (at the ballpark!) and a few hours after that I was sufficiently drunk off the seductive elixir of the game itself.

And that can happen anywhere.

Though there is one place in particular that I just gotta go to, before it goes back to just hosting football games:

chewbacca at ballpark.jpgI doubt you can blame me.

Hate me ‘cuz you’re anti-Sith, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right. 

Peace,

Jeff

(Chewbacca image via 9GAG)

“No Man Knows the Day or the Hour” Except Maybe Tupac

sky god.jpgWhy anyone gifted enough to become a Major League Baseball player would ever give it all up to pursue a priesthood that follows an entity as tangible as the tooth fairy is certainly a question I cannot answer.

Perhaps Grant Desme can.

Because after a promising minor league career in the Oakland A’s organization, Desme got a call from God (I hope it wasn’t a collect call ‘cuz gee whiz the sky is way high up and way far away!) and now he’s leaving baseball all together… to become a priest.

Yeah.  Okay.  Have fun with that, dude.

If you can, Mr. Desme, please hurry up and learn all there is to learn about the church so you can answer the questions this guy can’t:

First of all, Tupac did know he was gonna die.  He also knew he was gonna die young.  He said it many times.  And it’s on the internet.

Secondly, being a black man does not automatically make you an authority on Tupac.  I am white; but I know more about Tupac than I do about myself.  So eat it, pal.

And finally, if you have watched “all the videos on Tupac” you would know that Tupac prophesied  his own, early, tragic death… that he and Jesus are in the same category (both saviors to many, both prolific speakers, both attained mythic status), only we have more proof that Tupac rose from the dead than we do Jesus.

Grant Desme, you have a lot of work ahead of you in setting the story straight.  Good luck, and hopefully we will all meet up at that great “gangsta party” in the sky.

Don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.

Peace,

Jeff

P.S. I really appreciate the idea of you all helping me find a woman to take out on a date. That is very kind of you; maybe I should help Allen find a boyfriend on the internet. It’s been a while since he’s dated a real nice guy, you know, so maybe I should help him out. I mean, that’s what friends are for.

Ninemen’s Morris: Napoleon Lajoie is a French Ninny!

Upstart to Cobb Little More Than A Baltimore Chopper

Team Named After Hubristic Canuck

Passerby: “Lajoie’s Kin Helped the Limeys Torch the Library of Congress!”

– – –

Silas red quigley Dear Rumpus-Rouser:

LAJOIE! You seek a
moral standard bearer, and you choose LAJOIE!?

Across the gentle
waves of the republic, there are two creeds that rankle the populous more than
any other, two regimes that chafe the ankles of freedom like Monte- Cristo’s
manacles.  They are, of course, none
other than the French Empire (Marquis de Lafayette excepted!) and the
British Commonwealth (royalist buggery!).  The French Canadian Lajoie manages to
encompass both!

Lajoie, having
illegally jumped leagues in 1901, and then sold by Connie Mack to the Cleveland
Nine, proceeds to win a newsmans raffle and the club winds up nomened with his
prenom!  This crafty Francophile’s
arrogance is matched only by the girth of the president of the republic.  His league-jumping garnered this
double-crosser unable to cross the
Pennsylvania state lines, and veritably forfeiting the
‘Naps’ games to the A’s!

“But hark,” you say,
tremulously caterwauling, “is he not a batsman beyond compare?  Did he not compile a batters-average that
same year of .427?!  And much of that
against the finest orb-slingers of the day, besting even the mighty Three
Finger Mordecai Brown!”

Still your knocking
knees!  His average this year?  Scarcely kissing .325, and his Cleveland Naps
langour at the bottom of the standings, skulking about the sous-sol like the
ghost of Washington Irving.

I brush your charges
aside as a horsefly from a mule’s fetlock. Ty Cobb’s Tigers pistol-whipped
Connie Mack’s White Elephants in four games at the close of August, and now the
American League is chasing their tail.  
The pennant may not yet be stabled, but those boys firmly grip the
reins.

Ty-cobb September sees those
mighty
Michigan maulers sitting prettily atop the table,
with Cobb clubbing .380.  And seek you
long the long ball!?  Cobb leads the
league, walloping more “all-baggers’ than anyone else in the game.  He may hit ten of them!  What be that French Canadian’s count to
date?  Nil!

But the Naps have
produced one a great wonderment this year – the first unassisted triple play,
by Neal Ball, on July 19.  Never seen
before, Ball’s Triumph saw him gather in a liner, step on the second bag, and
apply a tag to the fleet-footed fool from first.  This feat of derring-do will most assuredly
never be replicated, even in a hundred years’ time.

On a sidenote, I wish to thank you, Mr. Thune, for the olive-branch
gifting of the crate of yellow bananellas. 
As you say, they are a delightful taste and texture, evoking an erotic
south seas sustenance.   Perhaps in this
move to purchase the Filipinos our ebullient executive has given an
uncharacteristic boon.


– – –

Written by
Silas ‘Red’ Quigley
Editorial correspondent for the Boston Wax-Intelligencer.  Editor/Publisher of various workers rights
publications, sporting weeklies, and Ladies Garment Journals.  As a youth he was attache to Henry Chadwick (claims to be the
uncredited co-creator of the box score).

For more on the nature of Ninemen’s Morris, please click *HERE*

Ninemen’s Morris: A ‘Nap’-Man rises to defend his Chief! Joy in Lajoie, and all-aboard Taft’s Raft!

alabaster eastman thune.jpg

Nitwittery! 


You,
sir, have undone your intellectual suspenders and dropped your common
sense trow to reveal a posterior so pock-marked with mind-munge, it
almost goes so far as to not even warrant a rebuttal, but rather a
pity-whistle played on Lazarus’ last gummed-up flute!!!

 

How dare you, sir, speak so ill of the President?  And
how dare you, sir, compound your heresy with a trumpeting of some
apparent virtue found in the Christ-abandoned dung-ball indulged by one
Ty Cobb?

 

First — to speak to your treason ‘gainst this fair nation, this journalist
need only offer his own recently penned exercise in pith:

 

“Clean plate, cleaner conscience! Surplus of pounds, Surplus of President!”

 

You harangue our dear leader because of his weight, calling him similarly soft on foreign policy.  While
there is no denying that the aforementioned Taft’s Raft better be
well-built, such ballyhoo and whatnot attacking the man’s actions in
relation to lands beyond the hallowed borders of this nation resolve to
cockamamie in the ears of the simplest of troglodytes!  Here is one very simple counterexample to your nonsense:

 

The man bought the Philippines.

 

philippines.jpg

For
those dear readers who aren’t familiar with this delightful land, the
Philippines are a mystical chain of islands situated abroad, in the
giving waters of the South Pacific Sea.  These islands are known for their cash crops and their sanctimony.  Holiness runs rampant, as evidenced by their previous owners, the Roman Catholic Church.  I have heard nothing but pleasurable reviews of a local vegetable, the “bananalla,” which I have yet to enjoy for myself.

 

Taft
negotiated the purchase of this land from Pope Leo XIII (please hush
the nonagenarian barbs… obviously old age contributed to his lopsided
dealings), and served as governor of the land for a year by three.  How
serves you that for foreign policy!!! This new acquisition serves to
establish our nation as a stern presence in Asia’s left underarm,
virtually guaranteeing that no surprise threat is ever imposed upon us
by any nearby nation (a bite of the thumb to you, Japan!).

 

(It should be noted that the bananalla is a fattening food.  Perhaps that explains our captain’s rounded countenance?)

 

Point being made, on to our beloved game…

 

Cobb?

 

Has the liquor done its wilting?

 

You speak poison with forked tongue!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

Using
Cobb as any sort of exemplary model for any sort of proverbial
‘job-well-done’ speaks to not only a general misunderstanding of
competence, but also a general disregard for the plight of man!!!

 

Cobb is a beast.  A walking ape who lost his fur, a salamander grown too big for his swamp.  He
struts about puffing his chest, intimidating all those who crossed his
crooked path with the threat of a spike or, worse yet, a studded
knuckle to temple.  But ultimately… what is the threat?  The Tigers have failed to capitalize on his gaudy numbers, and in the end… what are we really playing for here?  To trumpet Cobb is to trumpet ungracious loss.

 

The ‘Georgia Peach’ say you?  I
prefer to call him the ‘Georgia Thief,’ for the taking of unwarranted
bases is, in this journalist’s opinion, ball-play that isn’t becoming
of even the most common of gentlemen.

 

And so, dear reader, let me turn your attention elsewhere.  Perhaps to an old standby?  Perhaps to a man who plays the shared agreement between two opposing groups of like-minds with a modicum of class?

 

nap lajoie.jpg

Napoleon ‘Nap’ Lajoie. 

 

Connie
Mack’s pride has displayed numbers that make dear Cobb’s corn hop back
onto the stalk, and his demeanor has been that of a dandy sans
foppishness.  His swing reminds me of my first-born’s
first words — a pleasure to watch and even better to hear, and his play
about the infield is the equivalent of your Cobb.  Throw
in a lollipop for the gilded statesman’s son down in box two, and we
have ourselves the wood-wielder of, by and for the people.

 

Dare I suggest that a gamesman’s rivalry is afoot?

 

The ball is in your general vicinity, ne’er-do-well.

 

PS.  Wagner?  We are in agreement.  The man is weak about the knees, and he looks about with the shiftiest of eyes.

– – –

Written by

‘Alabaster’ Eastman Thune
Former editor of the “Follies and Whatnots” section of the Chicago Inter-Ocean. 



Currently unemployed.

“Alabaster” is known for coining the popular quip:  “An Irishman and
his whiskey are like the Father Sky and his Sun – you are guaranteed
that the latter will show up in the former each day of God’s blessed
week.”

For more on the nature of Ninemen’s Morris, please click *HERE*