January is a difficult month for me. Gone are the holidays that distracted me from my baseball-less existence. The cold and dark days serve only as a reminder that the 162 game grind is still far away. And key free agents still don’t have a home!
I enjoy football. I really do. Nothing gets me through the winter quite like watching grown men beat the hell out of each other over an oblong pigskin. But three of the four playoff games this past weekend were over before the fourth quarter even started!
And yes, Derek Rose and the Chicago Bulls certainly know how to take me HIGH-UH; but on Saturday night — when I really needed them to get me through the weekend — the game was over before the second half.
THERE IS NO CLOCK IN BASEBALL.
And where there is no clock, there is only the potential for glory. In baseball, there is no garbage time.
Hate me. Fine. Just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.
Do you remember what you were doing in the 90’s? Specific moments stick out, like the first time I saw the internet, an incident that also went down as the first time the internet ruined the outcome of a sporting event (’96 Olympics). Specific music, like Pearl Jam, Guns n’ Roses and Nirvana, provided the soundtrack. Tragic events also play a role, like when I realized that my tight-rolled jeans were no longer socially acceptable.
Honestly, I have no desire to relive most of these events. If I want to listen to a little GnR, I download them on iTunes. Tight-rolling has gone the way of beanie babies and grunge. And although the internet still manages to find ways to spoil things:
…it has also found ways to redeem itself.
This is why I ask the question, why would people choose to relive the 90’s? Because apparently it’s happening even as we speak:
Oregon isn’t all bad and I’m sure that many wonderful people live there. But why choose Portland? Go north and you’ve got Seattle and their Mariners. Go south and you have San Francisco and their world champion Giants. Portland? Trailblazers. Although if you’re still living in the 90’s, I guess that means you also have Clyde Drexler and a shot at the NBA Championship. Hope this doesn’t come as a spoiler guys, but you’re going to lose to both the Pistons and the Bulls. Damn internets!
And while his latest project may be getting Jake Peavy to respect his own body (regarding injury, not that Jesusy “your body is a temple” stuff), we should all certainly stop to thank the baseball gods that, despite his busy schedule, Ozzie still has time to tweet.
It’s just that… sometimes, his tweets… they’re not easy to comprehend. And that’s where RSBS and our faithful interns get to work!
Let us enter the interwebs to analyze some of Ozzie’s latest…
My dog dh needs a gf he want to be charlie sheen he is desperate lol
March 3, 2011
Translation: I think it’d be funny if my dog did a bunch of coke, assaulted hookers and got fired from the best job in television, ‘cuz let’s face it: self-destruction is hilarious.
Very nice day off great golf 89 finnaly play good any cuestion ask oney lol yesssss
March 15, 2011
Translation: Punctuation? Spelling? I don’t need no stinking punctuation or spelling! Ask one of my delinquent sons!
Nice shot james lol
February 24, 2011
Translation: Bet you wish you had a Derrick Rose, right, LeBron?!?! (this tweet came during one of the Bulls’ three victories over the Heat — right after LeBron threw up a humiliating BRICK towards the end of the game.)
Folks, this is but a small sampling of the logorrheic ramblings Ozzie spews on a daily basis, which is definitely cause to celebrate technocracy. Just imagine if Earl Weaver had a twitter… oh boy.
Hate me, I don’t care. Just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.
And no, silly, this has nothing to do with Estonia joining the Eurozone, though I do admit, that Eurozone has a lot more going for it than just a snazzy name now that Estonia is in the mix! Look out European Union, ‘cuz y’all haven’t seen oil shale til you’ve seen Estonia!
No, what I actually want to tell you about is something I am still rather reluctant to report: I’ve… I’ve been watching… basketball.
I know, I know, I know… I gave up on basketball back before Charles Barkley ate Jabba the Hutt and I never, EVER, had any regrets. It’s an individual sport. A natural obsession for those with ADHD. An abomination of the thinking man’s game.
Yes, I still believe all of the above is true… but, it was a long, arduous baseball offseason for me and I got antsy and I was just begging for something — anything! — to get me to Spring Training and that’s when I saw…
I saw something… something special… something… MAGICAL.
His name is Derrick Rose.
Now I’m not going to go all John Kerry and flip-flop on y’all… but I am going to admit that I am willing to work with this here NBA thing a little bit longer. Because while the Kobe Bryants and LeBron James and Chris Boshes of the world may leave a sour taste in the mouth of public opinion, Derrick Rose is not just a budding superstar beginning to dominate the entire league, but he is also (as far as I can tell) a genuinely nice guy.
People like him. He’s cool. He’s just a kid having fun.
And I was at a game earlier this season where he did this:
I saw that and I just knew. I just knew, this kid is gonna kill the competition. And if you haven’t been paying attention to the NBA this year (again, I don’t blame if you haven’t), he is doing just that. In fact, I liken his domination to that of Albert Pujols: when I watch him play, I feel like I am watching one of the greatest who ever lived.
Soon, real baseball games will begin and my full attention will be focused on the boys of summer; but I can honestly say, for the first time since the Clinton administration, I will definitely be checking in on the Bulls’ playoff progress.
Don’t hate me. ‘Cuz I’m right.
PS, If you want to see three minutes and forty-four seconds more of Derrick Rose magic, check out this vid!
In honor of my ongoing series, “Posts that have absolutely nothing to do with baseball except for the tangential mention of the word ‘Baseball’ in them,” I bring you today’s entry. At least this one has something to do with sports.
Hey, it’s a step in the right direction. And it’s even kind of Christmasy. Not only that, it could be fun to try at a baseball game. Imagine getting every fan in attendance to agree to be silent up until the home team scores their first run of the game. As a side note, I recommend that Pirates fans choose a slightly different idea. That could be a very silent night otherwise.
And so in this Podcast…
…the fullest, rawest, most awe inspiring podcast yet, RSBS convenes as Jeff, Allen, Johanna and special guest Mark Piebenga from Second City all come together for one rip-roarin’ time! Among the topics of conversation (sponsored by Lifestyles and encouraged by Miller Lite) are strains to one’s right glute, burning one’s hand on the hot stove, hiding one’s pain with the NBA… and much, much more!
All to make you smiley face!
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For more on Mark’s work on RSBS‘ Ninemen’s Morris series, check out this story then click on the Ninemen’s Morris tag at the bottom for more early 20th century hilarity!
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Subscribe to the RSBS Podcast by clicking *HERE*
Subscribe via iTunes by clicking *HERE*
*Special thanks to our PodMaster Keith Carmack. You can check out Keith’s wicked podcast and his subsequent film projects at Undercard Films. The dude has mad skillz, so you might wanna pay attention. Do it! Now!
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Recorded Wednesday, November 17, 2010
Look, don’t get me wrong, folks. As an adamant stickler for tradition and a lifelong, self-confessed purveyor of pomp, it is widely known that I don’t take to change too well, especially when it comes to my precious national pastime. Indeed, I take pride in knowing that the game I watch is the same game my dad watched, the same game his dad watched, and his dad before him.
In baseball, there is no cavernous divide between generations. No peach baskets. No leather helmets. No prerequisites of toothlessness. No. Not in baseball. The baseball game of the early 20th century is the baseball game of the early 21st century. And that, dear readers, is a beautiful thing.
But what isn’t beautiful is always being late to the party. The NFL, the NBA, heck, the NHL… all three leagues had their very own networks before MLB finally made the move for its own. David Stern has taken the NBA all over the world with wild success — and the NFL has somehow convinced us all that from Week 10 to Week 17, we just GOTTA have a game on Thursday night!
One could even say that baseball’s public eye mediocrity is perhaps rooted in its stuckupedness — a trait that I am guilty of championing.
Alas! A chance for redemption!
Did you know there’s a friggin’ Lingerie Football League!?!?
I just found out about it. But I’m a fan. Big time.
And since (as far as I can tell) it appears the NFL has nothing to do with the league, I see an opportunity for Major League Baseball to finally make its mark as a trailblazer in the alternative sports industry. Ah, yes… I can see it now… during the cold, wintry months… 9 beautiful women versus 9 beautiful women… positioning fields in comfortable, indoor stadiums… whilst in… their underwear (if you could see me you’d see me smiling right now).
Damn it, SELIG! Are you listening?!?! I’m trying to sell you a goldmine here! And have you seen the price of gold lately?
Hate me ‘cuz I’m addicted to the female form, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.
Both my co-blogger and I are fond of running. It’s a great way to stay in shape and clear your mind at the end of a long day or even longer week. But it has its dangers:
Running, despite it’s bloody nipples and shin splints, is generally safe. If you want to get really serious about injuries, just look at football, basketball and hockey. I winced this past Sunday as Austin Collie took a cheap shot to the head and felt a little sick as the play was reviewed multiple times while he was strapped down and carted off the field. That’s no joke.
In fact, it really seems that baseball has the least amount of catastrophic injuries when it comes to major sports. Sure, pitchers undergo an unenviable amount of wear and tear but when injuries arise, it’s usually the result of chronic, repetitive motion as opposed to some sort of instantaneous blowout like you see in football or hockey.
Obviously much of this lack of catastrophic injury comes from the fact that there is very little person to person contact in baseball. When players collide, it’s usually an accident. Or the Mets attempting to play the outfield. Football and other sports demand a level of violence that baseball just doesn’t approach.
Maybe this also explains baseball’s unfortunate drop in popularity. What used to be our national pastime has not only fallen behind NASCAR in viewership, it has also become a sport where we rarely compete for the top place. Sure, we’ll always play in the World Baseball Classic but that’s mainly because so few countries can even field teams. Clearly we can’t compete at the same level as the Japanese, the Dominicans or even our own territory, Puerto Rico.
Maybe it says more about us as a country, though, that we prefer sports ruled by mindlessness and brutishness to sports like baseball and running where the mental aspect is almost as important as being able to physically perform. Or maybe it just illustrates how we feel about bloody nipples.
Wow. Baseball is really over. I’m feeling a little lost here. Should I
turn to football, alcohol or the annual Victoria’s Secret holiday
special for comfort?
For serious though, anyone who knows me knows to be very, very cautious this time of year… for the sudden drop of the best baseball teams on the planet playing for a title to absolutely no baseball games at all can be beyond devastating.
I ain’t gonna tell on myself, but if you refer to the sheer number of world catastrophes that have taken place during the month of November over the last several years, you’ll understand exactly what I’m trying to say.
So. How do we cope?
Football helps. But not if you’re a Bears fan. So, yeah. I’m screwed there.
Hockey helps. No. That’s a lie. Hockey doesn’t help. At all.
My pal Johanna (from the RSBS podcasts) is trying to get me into the NBA… he’s been quizzing me on my basketball knowledge. My only problem is that the last time I paid any attention to the NBA, Charles Barkley and Shaquille O’Neal were in their primes (and half their current sizes!) so I’ve got a lot to catch up on. Apparently Dwight Howard and Juwan Howard are not the same person.
And beer. Yes. Beer will help. A lot. Especially if you mix beer and vodka and gin with Johnnie Walker… and a few bottles of Ambien. After that cocktail you won’t even remember to watch the Victoria Secret Holiday Special, let alone care about it.
And if everything goes according to the above plan, you can eliminate most of the doldrums tha traditionally take place between Thanksgiving and President’s Day. By then, Cliff Lee will be in pinstripes, Jayson Werth will be in pinstripes, and Carl Crawford will be in pinstripes!!!
So join me, Ben… join me, dear readers galore… and let us ride off into that fabled sunset known as off-season delirium. It won’t hurt. I promise.
Don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.
As is tradition here at RSBS, The Filibuster will now go on hiatus until pitchers and catchers report in the spring, leaving more room for the avant-garde ridiculousness you’ve come to expect from us over the years. Of course, come February we’ll announce its return; in the meantime, we would like to heartily thank all the strangers, friends, relatives, morons, geniuses and fellow bloggers who have sent in Filibuster questions during the 2010 season. Without y’all, it’d just be Al and I talkin’ to ourselves (BORING!)… so thank you, thank you, THANK YOU!!!
When people mention the Pittsburgh Pirates, you assume that nothing good can follow. But there are exceptions to that rule, at least if you believe Time magazine. Two weeks ago Time not only said the Pirates are doing something right, they also said the organization is an example to be followed.
It’s no secret that MLB spends a lot of money looking for fresh talent overseas. Many of the greatest players in the game today and in the past are products of that search. MLB has harvested the fertile fields of the Dominican Republic, Venezuela and Curacao (just to name a few) to give us players like Big Papi, Johan Santana and Andruw Jones. That is not going to stop.
But Time raises the alarmist cry, decrying the conditions in the DR and castigating teams for not providing the same level of living standards the writer claims exist for young players in the US. At the same time, the article gets a little schizophrenic, insinuating that the DR will go the way of PR if baseball decides to treat them the same way it now deals with the territory. The article claims, “After the U.S. commonwealth became subject to the draft in the (sic) 1989, the
number of Puerto Rican signees remained flat, while those in the D.R.
What I read in that, though, is that despite Puerto Rican players now going through the draft, the number entering MLB each year stayed constant. If anything, that seems to imply that the system worked. Puerto Ricans still made it to the majors, they just followed a route that ensured they got their fair share. And if you can play, you’re going to get paid.
Look, it’s no secret that many kids see sports as a way out of a bad situation. That’s just as true in the US as it is in the DR. But do we crucify Nike for running basketball tournaments in the inner city where they can then get their hooks into promising young talent? Do you think Coach K runs a basketball camp each year out of the kindness of his heart? Both Nike and Krzyzewski realize that most of those kids are never going to make it, even at the collegiate level. And it’s not like they’re taking care of them when the inevitable happens and the dream of an NBA career shatters.
This is how sports operate. They offer the hope of a better future but that future is only available to a very select group. What happens in the DR is sad and most of these kids will never end up making it. But it’s even more sad that the government of the DR can’t provide basic services to its citizens and MLB is supposed to step in and fill the gap. At least baseball offers them a dream. That’s a lot more than the Pirates offer their fans.
Special thanks to L for the article