I loved Cecil Fielder. He may have been a crappy father but during a period when the “Bless You Boys” had become more of a curse than a prayer, he was a bright spot in an otherwise dull lineup. When his boy came up and then became a star with the Brewers, it was fun to watch but I had a hard time really getting into it because, well, he was a Brewer, not a Tiger. But that has all changed.
I don’t know what Prince will do in a Tigers’ uniform. I hope he’s going to be a monster in the tradition of his father but after the watching the White Sox live the Adam Dunn experience, it’s obvious that these things are far from certain. What I do know, though, is having a Fielder in Detroit just feels right. Welcome back, Prince. I hope that Comerica is a palace to you like Tigers’ Stadium was to your father.
If you were to build the ideal baseball player, you probably wouldn’t come up with Dustin Pedroia. He’s too small and he just doesn’t look like how a ballplayer should look. Likewise, you probably wouldn’t come up with CC Sabathia either. Dude has a huge gut and looks like a whale.
Most likely, if you were constructing the ideal baseball player, you’d come up with someone like Kyle Farnsworth, all six-and-a-half worthless feet of him. Of course, you’d also then be saddled with his contract and seemingly uncanny ability to melt down in important games.
So why is it that Farnsworth is an object of ridicule (at least here at RSBS) while Pedroia is a former MVP and Sabathia is one of the most consistently good pitchers in baseball? Well, it’s the same reason that Jeremy Lin happened in the US of A and could never happen in China. It’s the intangibles that make athletes great and if there’s one thing that we do well in America, it’s the intangibles.
You can have your Yao Mings and your Kyle Farnsworths. Me, I’ll take my Cecil Fielders and David Wells. And I bet you ten yuan I’ll win.
I didn’t go to a lot of baseball games growing up. My dad worked 7 days a week (plus the occasional double shift) and with four kids at home, there wasn’t a lot of extra money for things like baseball tickets. Add in the 3 hour trip across the state to get to old Tigers’ Stadium and it equaled out to limited live baseball exposure.
But I sure remember the games I did attend. The one that sticks with me the most is also the first game I ever saw: the Tigers hosting the Oakland Athletics. This wasn’t just any Oakland team, either. This was the Oakland of Jose Canseco, Mark McGwire and Rickey Henderson. But a pretty mediocre Tigers team managed to win that day and from our left field seats, my dad, my brother and I saw a bit of history when Cecil Fielder crushed a home run out of the park and literally right over our heads.
I remember the home run vividly because the ball left Fielder’s bat and came straight toward us. We followed the arc and realized it was going to come down right on top of us…..until it hit the roof over the balcony where we were sitting and continued out onto the street below. My dad talks about that moment to this day and how the ball was coming straight for my brother.
I mention all this because these images came rushing back when I read about what happened in Texas last Thursday. Baseball games are happy moments that define my youth but for some young kid, a baseball game will be the last memory he has of his father.
There are a lot of questions that pop into my head. How was there no netting in place to keep someone from falling 20 feet? What’s going to happen to Josh Hamilton and his already fragile psyche? But mainly I wonder about that little kid.
I was sad when Fielder’s home run sailed out of the park and out of our hands but I still have that moment that I can relive with my dad. The only memento this kid gets is to relive his dad falling 20 feet while trying to create a similar memory.
Dear readers! There is finally a reason to read a news magazine! That’s right, folks, the June 8th edition of Newsweek will be guest edited by neo-con-politico-pundit-funnyman, Stephen Colbert. Don’t know who he is? Don’t worry. Neither does Kanye. And Kanye is awesome.
Admittedly, I haven’t read Newsweek since my high school AP History class and even then I was more interested in the pictorial court drama of O.J. Simpson than the actual news, but you can bet I’m gonna read this one because no one knows faux headlines like Colbert (well, maybe Katie Couric).
And I am not alone. The buzz around this avant-garde editorial decision is already hyping the masses, which got me thinking… what kind of immediate and notorious media blitz would errupt around the interwebosphere if MLB.com allowed Mr. Krause and I (and our RSBS cronies) to guest edit its website and inform baseball fans galore on all the game’s most exciting threads.
Well, wonder no more ‘cuz we already started on the following headlines (just in case they come’a knockin’):
Fortune Teller Madame Zelda from a West Baltimore Shanty-Town Proclaims Cubs Might Win It All in 2208
…against their crosstown rival the Chicago Brewers of Milwaukee, Wisconsin
ESPN to Broadcast All Royals Games for an Entire Month
…subject to blackout where good baseball teams are appreciated
Did You Know President Obama is a White Sox Fan with Muslim Roots, a White Mom and an African Dad? That’s Crazy!!!
…it really is
Beat the Streak! Accurately Predict How Many Times Milton Bradley Will Go on the Disabled List and Win Free Gift with Purchase!
…minimum purchase of $500 to be eligible
David Ortiz Is Actually Cecil Fielder
…ah, yes, now it makes sense
Vote for Your Favorite Steroid Enhanced All-Stars; Cheating Welcome!
…Hint: Select Manny Ramirez for every position, for every team, forever
Entire MLB Network Staff to Be Fired Except for Mitch Williams
…’cuz Mitch is the only one worth saving
Mitchell Report Sequel Due Out Next Spring Entitled “THE MITCHELL MINORITY REPORT”
…features the plight of a distraught and sensationalized Tom Cruise jumping on couches determined to catch only minorities using PEDs before they actually use them
Charles Barkley to Write Weekly MLB Editorial Featuring Nothing but F-Bombs and P-Drops
…why? Because we can… we want to… and we know the FCC could use the money
Please Buy Old Yankee Stadium Urinals
…’cuz we gotta pay C.C. and A.J. and Tex and A-Rod and Jeter and A-Rod’s child support and alimony and attorney fees and publicist and strippers and estranged cousin in the Dominican Republic and his child support and alimony…and….
MLB.com, if you’re reading, it’s time to give RSBS its guest editing wings and take this show to a new, exciting, frightening place. And I guarantee that, in the end, you will hate me.
Just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.
As a born and bred Michigander, I know better than most that what goes around, comes around. The Pistons win it all a couple times in a row and then Michael Jordan comes along. Tigers go to the World Series one year and find themselves finishing behind the Royals two years later. And the Lions? Well, let’s not even start with that.
But sometimes going around and coming around can be a good thing. Griffey starts off with the Mariners and now he comes back to the Mariners. Cecil Fielder belts some home runs and now Prince Fielder (occasionally) does the same. However, I think I found something that epitomizes the upside of what goes around, comes around.
Happy Friday! Hope I didn’t just blow your mind.
-Video via The Daily Dish
When it comes to the Tigers, I’ve realized that the best approach is the approach taken by thousands of animal lovers and jilted lovers the world over:
“If you love something, set it free. If it comes back it’s yours forever. If not, it was never meant to be.”
Now, I love Tigers baseball. I mean, I don’t want to marry it or anything but the feelings I had watching Maggs hit that homerun against the A’s in 2006 to send the Tigers to the World Series, well, they were some pretty strong feelings. It’s like how I felt watching Cecil Fielder back in the day and how I felt a couple weeks ago when my brother and I got to watch the Tigers pile on the Orioles for six runs in the first inning. And it’s because of this love that I had to release the Tigers to their destiny this past week. It’s not for me to decide their fate but there’s nothing I can do to help either. So, I set them free.
However, it seems that some people have taken umbrage with this decision and called me out in public. To this I can only say: Mr. Lung, I denounce and reject your most recent post. Especially its typically red state divisive tactics of preying on the fear people have when it comes to immigration. I didn’t realize the Mssrs. Renteria and Cabrera spoke like some two-bit villian from an episode of Walker, Texas Ranger. But, leave it to the Karl Rove inspired politicking of a red state fan to base an argument on stereotypes and America’s misguided fear of immigrants. I know I’ve mentioned it before, but Major League Baseball would be a very sad sport these days without the new levels of talent brought to the league by our friends from the south. And even if Sheff doesn’t like it, they’re here to stay. So, lets try to keep this debate on the up-and-up and leave behind the caricatures, eh? It’s what Tupac would want us to do.