What happened to the Twins?
Saint Paul, MN
Ah, yes, the Minnesota Twins. What did happen to those paragons of fundamentally sound baseball? An analysis of such depth requires patience, dedication and an insatiable hunger for the truth, so I put the RSBS interns to the task and they have provided the following slide show:
Nope, not even the healthy return of Morneau could make the pain of the above image go away. In fact, 2012 sorta seems like a good time to reset everything. Surprisingly, the Twins do have some decent offensive production (Mauer, Morneau, Willingham, Plouffe), but their pitching has been atrocious. Like, Kent Hrbek farting in your face type of “atrocious”. The average ERA of their six starters is over 5 and they have been blown out (lost by 5+ more runs) 23 times so far. And the bullpen? YIKES! Don’t ask them to hold a lead ‘cuz it’ll be difficult!
Like old baseball men love to say, “You’re only as good as your pitching”, and, well, when your pitching resembles the bottom of a porta-potty and the rest of the team can’t stay healthy, awful is pretty much what ya get. Don’t believe me? Ask the perennial sCrUBS.
Hate me ‘cuz I made you look at that famous Mauer back hair guy again, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.
Jeff (and interns)
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There are two taxing and equally debilitating activities that I force myself to partake in, every… single… day. I swallow a big@$$ horse-pill that’s supposed to make my cartilage stronger; and I read all of the headlines on The Drudge Report.
If I had time, I would also stick rusty needles under each of my fingernails.
Why do I do these things? I take the horse-pill ‘cuz it comes highly recommended by my doctor, and my doctor is a smart dude (he hates the Cubs, man!).
And I check in with The Drudge Report because it’s important to know what the “other” side is thinking, how they’re scheming, how they’re fear mongering and how they’re faring in other popular GOP pastimes. But mostly I just like to laugh at how Drudge turns a headline like “Wall Street Baffled by Slowing Economy” into “WE ARE ON THE VERGE OF A GREAT, GREAT DEPRESSION”.
Indeed, I tip my cap for his savvy, but I wave my finger at his twisted incitations.
And to put things in perspective, I instructed the RSBS interns to take three recent MLB headlines and hand them over to Matt Drudge, just to see what would happen.
Here’s what we got:
– – –
Original Headline:”White Sox enjoy another sweep at Fenway”
Headline on Drudge: “SHOW ME ALEXEI RAMIREZ’S BIRTH CERTIFICATE DAMMIT!!!”
– – –
Original Headline: “Holliday, McClellan both land on Cards’ DL”
Headline on Drudge: “HOLLIDAY NEVER F$&*ING TOUCHED HOME, HE NEVER TOUCHED IT, HE NEVER TOUCHED IT, I CALL DO-OVER!!!”
– – –
Original Headline: “Swisher’s Swat Solidifes Sweep for Yankees”
Headline on Drudge: “OMG JORGE POSADA SUCKS, THE BRONX IS BURNING AND WE’RE ALL GONNA DIE!!!”
– – –
Hate me ‘cuz I got the connections to make it happen, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right!
And so in this Podcast…
Jeff, Al & that rock-n-rollin-Cub-lovin’ sage Johanna Mahmud take on all things ‘Merica, including (but not limited to) Rinku and Dinesh, Carlos Zambrano, The Hills (seriously? that happened?), the All-Star Game, the Lou
Piniella Mailbag and much,
much more… all to make you laughy-laughy!
to the RSBS Podcast by clicking *HERE*
via iTunes by clicking *HERE*
thanks to Keith Carmack — our engineer, director, editor and
all-around sound guru. His Undercast
podcast is a must-listen (listen to it!). It’s available on iTunes and
is posted regularly at Undercard
Recorded Monday, July 5, 2010
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?
After 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.
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 image via 9GAG)
Relax. Breathe easy. Enjoy this, fellow Yankee haters: Cliff Lee and the Phillies have given us another precious day of hearing “twenty-six rings” over the inevitable “twenty-seven”. And remember, God made a “firmament” in just one day. Think of what we can do with ours!
Because let’s face it, whether it happens on Wednesday or it happens next year, the year after that or whenever (it’s gonna happen in your lifetime), the Yankees are going to get their twenty-seventh ring. That’s fine. I’m okay with that. The franchise more than deserves it. You see, if you spend a billion dollars on something, it will work. Ask our government. And if I spent a billion dollars on something in just 9 years I’d expect that something to at least win me a trophy of some kind, or get a bill named after me, or land me a free room at Holiday Inn Express (they still make me pay there).
The point is: the Yankees will win… sometime… eventually…
Until then, A-Rod, Party Boy, Mo and Tex… you will have to wait patiently for this hater (me) to shower you with praise.
Speaking of people who want to shower me, I believe Mr. Krause lost the World Series of Metaphors and owes the winner (also known as Me) a meritorious essay on the topic of why I am awesome.
Hate me ‘cuz I flash a flair of fetidness, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.
Nevermind his explosively jovial presence in the Yankee clubhouse. Pay no attention to those 27 homeruns. Disregard his selfless donations to community charity and his insatiable propensity for all-world positivism.
This dude is a friggin’ tool.
Whether you focus on the plastic hook-tag still fastened to the top of his cap, the pantyhose wrapped around his right wrist, the forced bleary eyed smirk of a man you’d never let date your sister or the weak flash of a devil horn gang sign while mugging the camera, this Nick Swisher looks more like every frat guy you’ve ever hated.
Move over Tucker Max because apparently they do serve Swisher in hell.
Hate me ‘cuz I hate on the playuh, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.
(*Image courtesy of Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
Prior to the 2009 season, one would not be in error by labeling me a bonafide St. Louis Cardinal Hiney Bird. Having not really addressed our bullpen woes of 2008, I seriously didn’t think the Redbirds had a chance at achieving anything this season.
Obviously, I was wrong. And I’ve apologized for that.
I did, however, look forward to an exciting new edition of my neighborhood Chicago White Sox. And, yes folks, it does happen (albeit rarely): I was wrong… again.
But I have to go out on a limb and defend Kenny Williams from Chicago Tribune reporter Phil Rogers who blamed much of the White Sox’s 2009 downfall on the trades of Nick Swisher and Javier Vazquez.
To quote the Hawk: “That’s just B.S.! B.S.! That’s just B.S.!”
Nick Swisher’s 2008 stint with the Sox was abysmal at best. He underachieved in every category except rambunctiousness per game. He was a shackle on the Sox’s youth movement and rumor had it that he was more interested in picking up chicks in the Viagra Triangle than he was picking up runners in scoring position.
Javi Vazquez never looked comfortable in the Chi. Sure he’d get ya lots of strikeouts, but he also gave up a bunch of runs; and with Gavin Floyd and John Danks on the horizon of being dominating starters, it made sense to move Javi (and his paycheck) to make more room.
But sometimes things don’t always work out (see Sarah Palin’s “political” career). The ’09 White Sox have wallowed in mediocrity while the Cardinals are set to win the NL Central Division crown.
You see, dear readers, baseball is so captivating, so riveting, so followable because there is no such thing as a sure thing. So to all you Hiney Birds (me included) here’s a lesson from possibly the world’s worst broadcaster:
Don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.
Gordon Beckham’s triumphant entrance into Major League Baseball did not come without supreme sacrifice. To make room for the rookie phenom, Chicago White Sox suits were forced to say goodbye to one of their greatest unknown infielder journeymen: Wilson “I Signed with the Braves When I Was 14 Years Old” Betemit.
Like the hopes and dreams of Cub fans during a National League Division Series, so too was Wilson hastily gone from this fair Second City of ourn. And, unfortunate was I, having not had a chance to offer my official farewells to old number 15.
So here I lie my scornful lament, for a better place than this there is not to vent…
No one ever wore Chris Sabo glasses so restless and so sleazy,
Your name is mispronounced, your voice all but groused, and your slide into second makes me queasy.
Traded with Marquez and Nunez for Swisher and K. Teixera,
Your batting average with the White Sox was as dry as the Sahara,
You came from the Dominican, with the attitude of Gilligan, and stats from the dead-ball era.
From the Braves to the Dodgers to the Yanks to the Sox,
To the streets of designated assignment buried deep beneath the rocks,
Remember we cared, remember all that we shared, but in the end you were let go ‘cuz you su<k.
Don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.
During my high school days there was this kid who caused quite a bubble of interest everywhere he went. A by all means normal, good-lookin’ dude, this guy was the essence of cool, the poster-child of charm, the cliche of class.
He had money. Nice car. Designer jeans.
Yet despite all of those wonderful attributes — both material and physical — no matter how hard he tried, the kid just couldn’t get right.
He failed school. He drove under the influence. He burned down his own house.
Nowadays, at 30 years old, you can find him living in his parents’ basement, driving his half-totaled IROC-Z with T-Tops back and forth to a running jape of part-time service industry jobs which require little more than a heartbeat.
And every time I see the Yankees, dear readers, I can’t help but think of him.
Because no matter how hard they try, the New York Yankees just can’t get right.
Excessive amounts of money, $1.5 billion new stadium, marquee pitching… and still, those damn Yankees can’t beat the Red Sox, best the Royals’ win total or avoid the onslaught of negative press that follows Alex Rodriguez around like Jose Molina does an all-you-can-eat buffet.
It is sad, folks, really sad when the most positive headlines from the Yankees’ young season include the following:
- Nick Swisher as Offensive Powerhouse
- Damaso Marte Injured; Physically Unable to Allow His Typical 5 Runs per Appearance
- Joe Girardi’s Excuse: I Am as Dumb as I Look
Jimmy Dugan may have said “there’s no crying baseball”, but he didn’t say jack about burning down your own house. And so far, the Yanks are doing a mighty fine job of that!
I mean, don’t get me wrong, a 13-12 record ain’t all that bad, but in the Evil Empire, you might as well be winless.
Don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.
Now, when you read that title you probably thought I was referring to the well-reviewed, over-hyped and altogether underwhelming book written several years ago by Ms. Arundhati Roy. But that’s not it. In fact, I hate that book. Seriously, it’s a two minute story that takes her 200 pages to tell. The girl died and India has a lot of problems. Why not just say that? I mean, get to the point all ready. You’re not Proust and I’m not impressed….uh, where was I? Oh, right. The god of small things. See, in my world this refers to something much simpler: the joy that can be taken from seemingly insignificant events that come to mean something more.
The past week has been replete with these sorts of happenings. As a fan of the Tigers I can’t help but be tickled by Brandon Inge’s early season heroics. Homeruns in each of the first three games? Stellar defense? What’s not to love? I don’t expect this continue all season long but these small things keep us going.
Similarly, despite my intense dislike of the Yankees, I still enjoyed Nick Swisher’s inning on the mound. It doesn’t hurt when the deficit is double digits and the Rays are going all Dresden on the Yankees’ sorry ^sses. But I enjoy watching a guy like Swisher volunteer for an unenviable task like that. The fact that he ended up with far and away the best ERA on the team only adds to my enjoyment.
Even little things like knowing how much Jeff must have been squirming while the Pirates beat up his Cardinals on opening day gives me a thrill. However, my plan today is to return the favor, to introduce you all to the god of small things. And here it is, courtesy of YouTube. You don’t have to like the song or the format but you can’t help but smile when a dowdy, middle-aged woman who only asks to be given a chance finally gets it. Enjoy!
-Video via The Daily Dish