On Friday I fulfilled a lifelong personal dream!
I got to meet Larry Walker!!!
Actually, that’s a lie. I didn’t meet Larry Walker; but I did meet a very nice Canadian couple wandering the streets of Chicago looking for restaurant suggestions. The man’s name was Larry. And since all Canadians look alike, I think we can assume there isn’t much difference between the two.
All fooling aside, let it be known that Canadians are awesome! Awesome as in “awe” inspiring. They’re so friendly. They have funny accents. And they speak French!
Larry and his wife were so excited to talk to a real life US American (me) that once they got to talkin’, they started revealing all sorts of dark Canadian secrets — information I certainly shouldn’t be privy to. Oh well. Part of being a US American is not shying away from free enterprise. I’m sure Larry and his wife will understand. So here’s what I learned:
There Are No Death Panels
“We do have to wait in line sometimes for our x-rays and such,” said Larry, “but they certainly don’t make us wait in line during life threatening circumstances. And if you’re well off like we are, you can go to your own doctor on your own time if you want. The Canadian system of health care is great.”
Terrance & Phillip Characterizations Are More Accurate Than One Would Think
“We eat a lot of the same things Americans eat,” said Larry’s wife, “but the lower temperatures seem to wreak havoc on our bowels. We try to avoid Mexican food all together.”
Not All Canadians Live In Igloos
“My brother still lives in one,” said Larry, “but he’s a moose hunter and moose hunters are… well, they’re just a bit off, eh?”
Canadians Think US Americans Are Silly
“George W. Bush? Really? You guys voted for him… twice!” said Larry’s wife. “That’s silly to us. And you’re always scared. Fearful. No one’s going to blow up the Sears Tower. Chicago isn’t important on the world map. That’s like saying they’ll blow up the Stade Olympique. Why would anyone do that? Yet so many of you Americans are convinced your local Wal-Mart is the next target. Haha.”
I asked them: “What do you think of when you hear the name Joe Carter?”
Larry and his wife looked at each other and said, in unison, “Touch ’em all, Joe!”
How can we not love Canadians? Seriously.
Hate me ‘cuz I get all international on you, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right: Canadians are people too.
Produced, shot and edited by Atonal Studios.
Special thanks to Theo Roll.
Very special thanks to Youppi, the vaguely effeminate mascot of the late great Montreal Expos for giving hope to French Canadians worldwide… okay, maybe not worldwide, but you get the idea.
(For best playback results, watch in High Quality)
Chipper Jones has been spraying the ball all season and his batting average shows it. Is hitting over .400 for the year an unreachable goal in today’s game?
First of all let me say, ha ha ha ha. You said spray. But now that I’ve got that out of the way I’ll try to get to the more serious business of answering your question.
And the answer is yes, hitting .400 is an unreachable goal today. There is so much that goes into just simply getting a hit, a guy who can hit .300 or better is a catch. I mean, first of all you have to make contact with balls that are coming at crazy speeds and crazy angles and then you have to put it into a place where a fielder is not. In the game today, managers and players alike do their homework and positioning makes it that much harder to get a decent hit.
Every few years this question flares up again when someone has a career season. Larry Walker in the 90’s made a brief run at .400 and now here comes Chipper. But the fact of the matter is that the level of competition day in and day out in the Majors is much greater than it was back when Ted Williams was scattering the ball all over the field. Besides, he also froze his head so he can try to come back one day. Only someone who’s that kind of crazy has a chance at .400.
However, the more important matter is what does it matter if someone hits .400? Does that number show how valuable they were to their team? What if someone on the Giants hit .400 but, because they never had anyone on base and no one decent coming up to bat after them, the team still lost most of their games and that player rarely crossed the plate? Would anyone really care? It would be a nice statistic but a players’ value to their team cannot be summed up in ratio of the number of times they get on base to the number of official at-bats they have taken. I’ll take the league leader in OBP over the batting champion any day of the week.
So, I guess my final answer to your question comes in two parts. No, I don’t think .400 is an achievable goal but I also don’t think it’s all that important. And that’s all I have to say about that.