In a year as dynamic as US American voters are shortsighted, finding just the right words to succinctly summarize all the goings on of MMX isn’t really as hard as I thought it might be. Sure, ‘Merican culture still clings to the absurd Canadian import or two and the global economy continues its tailspin while our government continues its fight in two unwinnable wars, but not all is gloom and doom, my friends.
In fact, personally speaking, 2010 was quite fantastic! I quit smoking, I got in the best shape of my life thus far, and I got to hang with my fanciful and oft repugnant colleague (and subsequent dear friend), Mr. Allen Krause, not once, but TWICE! First was the June baseball rendezvous in DC where we participated in a very special Strasmas celebration, then came an equally exciting Michigan Christmas, where I spent the holiday weekend with Mr. Krause and his family.
All told, it was the best of times, it was the… no. It was just the best of times.
Hell, we even got treated to a non-powerhouse World Series, where the Giants defeat over the Rangers inspired small markets all over North America to think about one thing and one thing only: pitching, pitching, pitching. And, of course, no RSBS review of 2010 could go without mentioning the inception of our very own Podcast, one that continues to kick butt on a sometimes semi-weekly basis.
That’s right. Red State Blue State knows no bounds… and neither do the following top five Allen Krause penned gems of 2010:
2nd Honorable Mention:
We All Lose
Now and forever, September 11 will never be the same. I know that. You know that. Mr. Krause knows that. But through his strong dislike for all things pink in baseball and, of course, bigotry, Mr. Krause was able to both enlighten and entertain on this hallowed day. His message? Simple: “Hate kills.”
RSBS Presents: Chili
Personal note: If you want to coax Mr. Krause into doing… well, anything… tempt him with chili. Just know that it better be good chili if you want to be successful. Mr. Krause ain’t no slacker when it comes to this US American staple, which he proves with this eloquent presentation full of chili flavor. Plus, whenever a writer is able to use “scatalogy”, “concoction” and “awe-inspiring” in the same paragraph, he deserves a reward of some kind.
2nd Runner Up:
Understated to the End
Losing our heroes is never easy. And when Sparky Anderson died, my thoughts immediately went out to Tiger nation, and more specifically, Mr. Krause. Of course, I knew it was only a matter of time before a bit of literary magic would grace the pages of RSBS, and with his ode to ole Sparky finely tuned to an equally understated former president, Mr. Krause did not disappoint.
1st Runner Up:
Catastrophe in Multiple Forms
While compassionate might not be the first adjective (or the five hundred and first) adjective that comes to mind when I think of Mr. Krause, I can say that if he shows any, it is definitely genuine. Such is the case here, where his sentient empathy crosses paths with lots of bloody nipples and Austin Collie’s head.
And the Winner is…:
RSBS Presents: A Baseball Fan’s Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse
There are two types of people in this world: those who are ready for the baseball zombies, and those who ain’t. Read this and you will be more than ready. Skip it and your brains are as good as gone by the chomp-slathering undead jaws of Pete Incaviglia and Todd Van Poppel. ‘Cuz the zombies are real. They are coming. And they all fear Mr. Allen Krause.
Another year down, another horizon to chase. Big things are happening, and we’re glad that YOU, dear reader, are a part of it.
Stay tuned for Part II tomorrow. Until then, don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right!
Strasburg is looking pretty good in the minors but the Nationals are
putting together a surprisingly decent season so far. How long before
he comes up to join the club and what kind of impact will he have?
Before I say anything, I just gotta ask: are you the same Ashley from Frankenmuth that my nefarious and oft sedated colleague Mr. Krause used to usher in and out of our college dormroom at odd hours back in the day, so as not to draw attention to his haphazard extracurricular activities?
If you’re not, then just pretend this piece starts… now:
Okay, Stephen Strasburg. Fine. But please realize I ain’t no analyst. I am not an insider. I don’t have an ear within the organization nor do I claim to know what any of the higher-ups are actually doing. I only have access to the same information you do… and considering that, I can tell you this:
Stephen Strasburg is wicked sick.
Believe me, I did not want to like this kid. At all. I cannot stand the overhyping of a young someone who has never faced any serious Major League competition, ever, in his life. Sure, every once in a while the media gets it right. But rarely. For every Jason Heyward there are a bazillion Todd Van Poppels, Bill Pulsiphers, Brien Taylors. And that’s not even including the fizzlers who succumb to injury like Mark Prior and lackluster primadonnas like Pete Incaviglia.
But this Strasburg fella… I think he’s the real deal.
His motion is mechanically fluid. His ball has jump. He makes hitters look silly.
And his current line at AA Harrisburg reads as such:
3 W, 0.52 ERA, 0.577 WHIP, 11.9 SO/9
AND the Nationals are actually holding their own right now among the NL East hogs. To hear the talking sports heads tell it, if the Nats continue to compete and Strasburg continues to dominate, we could very well see him this season. And if we do, I would bet he’d destroy everyone he faces.
The first time around.
After that, it’s anyone’s guess.
But I do know one thing: when Strasburg does make it to the Bigs, he’ll be the most loved man in all of Washington, D.C. since January 20, 2009.
Hate me ‘cuz it ain’t illegal yet, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.
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together, eww)? Think you got a real stumper? Send us your Filibuster
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***Nancy Pelosi’s original face also welcome. I wanna scare one of my neighbors.
This Going Rogue business is mostly all about making money… right?
If that’s the case, then great; I applaud thee, Sarah Palin. Sell your book! Make money! It’s the US American way!
Unfortunately, reason tells me that ex-Governor Palin has a hard time separating fantasy from reality — that she is absolutely serious when she says she wants to play a major role in American politics — that she isn’t going away anytime soon.
While she remains silent on any possible presidential plans, one must assume that is the ultimate goal.
And that is insane.
So too is her sheepish quip that she will run only “if people will have me.”
Hmm. Perhaps Madame Palin should start by asking the people of Alaska if they will have her after she abandoned them and her gubernatorial post midterm. Or perhaps she should ask the people of Russia if they don’t mind her looking at them from her living room. Or perhaps she should just take the money this book and subsequent tour will generate and run, run, run… back into relative obscurity — where she belongs.
We see this sort of thing in baseball all the time. Players come from out of nowhere. They shine. They burn out. They go away. Some quicker than others.
Mark Fidrych. Pete Incaviglia. Eric Gagne.
Remember, Sarah, remember. Remember Eric Gagne — a man who spent last season with the Quebec Capitales of the independent Canadian-American League. (Yeah, I’ve never heard of it either) Here’s a man who, at one time, was more than just unhittable. He was mad, maniacal, morbid in his destruction of opposing hitters. He recorded 84 consecutive saves for Christ’s sake! He was lights out! He was the master of the universe!
And that is sad.
Go away now, while you can, Mrs. Palin… go back to the wilderness while you still have some inkling of pride. I will support you in that endeavor.
Hate me ‘cuz I won’t buy this book, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.
Listen up, Major League Baseball. I love you. I really do; and sometimes being in love means having to bring you back down to earth, to be horribly blunt and to shower you with lots of smack (the slang, not the drug, though sometimes the drug seems like a better option in extreme cases, like when you overflow my inbox with crap I don’t want and never asked for).
MLB, you are not the NFL. You are not the NBA. You are MLB.
So while I commend you for trying to drum up interest in something — the first year player draft — that is, on the surface, boring and otherwise three to four years removed (if that) from the current game, I must ask you to please snap out of it!
For the record, I do not care about the NFL and NBA drafts either, but I can certainly see why people do. If you are a basketball and/or football fan, you have seen the potential draftees come up through the highly competitive elite forces of the NCAA. Bowl games are slammed down your throat. March Madness is so mad that it doesn’t end until April. You know the players. You’ve seen their talents. You hope your pro team gets a shot at their services.
In contrast, the potential baseball draftees are as familiar to us fans as is a logical, amicable, non-infuriating Ann Coulter. In the NFL and NBA, if you get drafted, your chances of seeing playing time at the top are almost a given, while most of the guys drafted in the MLB draft will never put on a big league uniform. Sure, your Griffeys, A-Rods and Verlanders — guys who go in the first round or two — will most likely make it; but the majority of the rest will wallow away in the minor leagues, battle disillusionment, come to grips with not being good enough and before you know it they’re faxing TPS reports behind a desk while reading RSBS for giggles.
So as MLB pats itself on its self-aggrandizing back about televising this overblown shindig so they can sell lots of advertising to companies gullible enough to think that it will actually rival that of its football and basketball brethren, you can be sure that I will be spending my time wisely. Dear readers, I advise you to do the same; and just in case you can’t think of anything better to do, here are some suggestions:
- Remember, question and lament the hype of Pete Incaviglia
- Write hate-mail to Rush Limbaugh and sign it “Jesus”
- Clone Chris Carpenter
- Come up with clever gimmicks to sell your new religion start-up (worked for me!)
- Or, God forbid, watch an actual Major League Baseball game with real-life Major Leaguers
Indeed, that is but a short list of things I will be doing instead of watching your draft, MLB. I will not be listening to Harold Reynolds start every sentence with “Now, here’s a guy…” nor will I sing praises of your precious college phenom Stephen Strasburg when he is — as you already told me he would be — drafted in the first round. I’ll wait until he collects the league minimum $400K for that.
I know a poser when I see one and it is because I love you, MLB, that I have to call you one to your face. Go ahead and hate me ‘cuz I’m critical of your identity crisis, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.