Journeyman catcher Rod Barajas is “thrilled to reunite with (A.J.) Burnett on Bucs”.
Funny, in the above linked article he never says he’s “thrilled” with anything, but then again, who on the Pittsburgh Pirates would be?
Can we just call the A.J. Burnett trade situation what it is: EMBARRASSING.
Embarrassing for the Yankees because they gave him all that cash. Embarrassing for A.J. because he got all that cash only to become Brad Penny. Embarrassing for the Pirates — THE LOWLY PIRATES — because they were the only ones desperate and baseball-stupid enough to take him on.
Considering the money the Yankees are eating on this deal, it really does look like the Pirates got a bargain, of course, until one realizes they now have A.J. Burnett on their team. Coaches, teammates and clubhouse doors beware.
In the meantime, I’m sure Rod Barajas is enjoying his brief moment in the public eye, even if it is as a sugar coated red herring. When ya play with the Pirates, ya gotta milk every second ya get.
Don’t hate me, ‘cuz I’m right.
Sunday in the Park with George
I want children so I can play dodge ball with them or at the very least have them pose while I paint a mural of them getting eaten by large cats for my own amusement. But that’s not why I called…
In my favorite Mandy Patinkin musical he sings “I need to finish the hat” in the role of George Seurat. Or as Groucho famously said “I refuse to join any club that would have me as a member.” Or as Josh Hamilton is probably saying “there are no bars in hospitals and that’s why people hate hospitals.”
I don’t know about the Cubs’ chances for 2012, but I do know I want a Sunday in the park with a friend. I want to think nice things as baseball approaches but sometimes you just don’t know what hell is coming. Sometimes I feel like Lisbeth of the Dragon Tattoo movies: I just get shot in the DAMN head when I think of the 162 Cubs games that are coming.
I don’t know if I’m finishing the hat or if Theo is.
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For the Love of the Game/Slaying the Dragon
I don’t know tidily snot.
For as much as I don’t know about stats, player history, and some of the marquee moments, I do have the love. Even with my rampant stupidity of baseball knowledge, I have the love.
When I’m not sitting with my friend Jeffy at a game or on his couch, him schooling me, I have the love.
It’s been said many times here at Setting the Mahmud that the NBA is my true sport, but even I admit: there is nothing like baseball. I reminded myself of this the other night while watching For the Love of the Game. The pain of Kevin Costner’s character is so real and true to life it’s uncanny. The pain of ending a career. The pain of romance gone bad. Pain of failed goals. But despite all that, you might still have a friend who believes in you, which summons the strength to get your mojo back.
These are trying times in Chicago. Both ball clubs will probably be bad this year. It’s January. It’s cold. Sometimes, like a ballplayer, you wish you could just be traded to another team, in another (warmer) city. But that’s not how life works. You have to take what you have and make it great. Baseball life can be like a swinging bass line or a blistering hot trumpet solo. We swing high and we swing low. Players leave, lovers leave, and sometimes you’ll get your heart broken. Being a fan can be turmoil.
And sometimes just maybe you’ll play life well enough to win it all. It’s a noble game. A pureness that wraps around you like a warm embrace holding you tight, one that doesn’t let go. It’s a timeless art that makes you feel like you’re wearing wings.
Beware of the darkness that lies in the cave of your life. Slay the dragon. It can make you feel weak. It can break you if you let it. It can make you feel like a sucker. Accept that pain is part of the process of baseball, part of LIFE.
And let’s heal together. The Cubs will be great someday. The White Sox will be great again too. It will be cathartic and it will be grand.
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Once the baseball season starts back up, you can be sure that the first few weeks we’ll hear all about the “off-season regimen” that certain players undertook. I’m sure the announcers will talk about the shortstop who lifted weights to improve his strength and the right-fielder who did ballet to improve his footwork. If we’re really lucky, there could even be a story about Pujols doing Pilates which might make Jeff feel better about his departure from St. Louis.
The stories I like the most, though, are about the guys who do yoga. Personally, I’m a big believer in yoga. The breathing and stretching clean out the cobwebs and get the blood flowing. For those with back problems, it can do wonders. But despite all those obvious benefits, yoga looks kind of silly. And really, after a season of form fitting stirrup pants, who wants to then imagine Ryan Howard or Prince Fielder in yoga pants?
However, I think we may have missed the real reason for offseason yoga:[youtube http://youtu.be/loszrEZvS_k]
Yep, yoga. I get it now.
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.
Um… okay. So this is what happens when Brendan Ryan becomes better known for a poorly marketed pornstache than his actual comeuppance as an everyday St. Louis Cardinals shortstop. Oh, wait. No comeuppance? He sucks? My bad.
Which is sorta why I haven’t really said much this offseason about my dearly beloved Redbirds. What’ s there to say? Jake Westbrook signed? Okay. Cool. We traded Blake Hawksworth for Ryan Theriot? M’kay… nice. I guess. Can we guarantee that Skip Schumaker won’t take another step backwards? How about facing the fact that closer Ryan Franklin really ain’t cut out to be a closer? And then…???
I guess what I’m trying to say is that I still haven’t really gotten over the crapfest that was the second half of the 2010 season. No one likes a sore loser, but goddamn it if I ain’t still sore as hell! Matt Holliday, Albert Pujols, Adam Wainwright, Chris Carpenter… YADIER MOLINA.
Friends, Romans, Cubs fans… those names command a division title.
And that’s what I want. At the very least, we ought to be slaying the Reds, the Cubs and whatever other foe floats carelessly towards the top.
Does Ryan Theriot magically make that happen? Uh… no. In fact, as a hitter, Baseball Reference has Theriot matched up with the likes of Aaron Miles, Jason Bartlett and former St. Louis Brown, Ernie Johnson. And while Bartlett had one good year, let’s not get too excited over these comparisons; ‘cuz frankly, there’s little that breeds excitement.
Yes, maybe Theriot will solve the leadoff problem that has crippled the Cardinals in recent years. Then again, he probably won’t. He’s gotta beat out Brendo and Skippy for a job first, which for us anticipating fans, is sorta like having to vote from a pool of John Kerry, George W. Bush and a bowl of potato salad.
Which one is the bowl of potato salad? I’ll leave that up to you.
Hate me ‘cuz I’m still bitter, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.
How far will the Yankees go this offseason? It’s pretty much baseball fact that Cliff Lee will be hanging out in the Bronx six months from now. I can accept that. But do the Yankees really have what it takes to embrace their true nature, that of the Evil Empire? If so, I have something for your consideration:
What is this, you ask? Well, this is 10-Barrel T-Shirt Cannon which can fire up to three t-shirts per second. More importantly, it belongs to Bellarmine College Preparatory. So, how about it, Steinbrenner. Isn’t it time you took this thing to the next level and started taking from schools? After all, those single shot t-shirt guns just aren’t cutting it anymore.
Right now, dear readers, you are probably experiencing the same agonizing symptoms of baseball withdrawal that Al and I are. We are here to remind you that we know: it hurts. It will continue to hurt… until pitchers and catchers report. If your symptoms gain in severity, do not hesitate to contact your primary caretaker (for those of you who can afford health care, that’d be your doctor; for those of you who cannot, try calling your congressman. I’m sure that will work).
Football and hockey can only carry us so far (not very, especially if you’re a jaded Bears fan, or in Mr. Krause’s case: a lowly win-deprived Lions fan), so we are left to rely on the offseason baseball hot stove for our daily fixins.
We like our hot stove like we like our coffee: hot.
(Mr. Levin is doing just fine. His skin graph surgeries were successful — well, most of them anyway.)
Hate me ‘cuz I tricked you into processing that painful imagery, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.