A pitch only becomes a wild pitch when a runner or runners move up a base. If there’s no one on or if no one advances, it’s simply a bad pitch. Basically, it only counts as wild when it causes damage. So that makes me wonder if the recent Republican hyjinks should be charged as wild pitches or if they’re just bad pitches.
Well, luckily RSBS is here to give you the official scorer’s decision. We decided to save you the time by having the interns take a look at the replay and let you know how you should mark it on your scorecard. Without any further ado, lets go to the tape.
Bachmann vs. Perry
This past week during the Tea Party debate Michele Bachmann followed up a solid shot against Rick Perry (or at least a shot that passes for solid in Tea Party circles) regarding his attempt to mandate HPV vaccines with a complete misfire. Now, in addition to offering further proof that she has no idea what she’s talking about, she has drawn the ire of medical professionals, a group that tends to be pretty well respected even in the science-rejecting circles where Ms. Bachmann runs.
Scorers Decision: Wild pitch followed by an error when Ms. Bachmann launched the ball into the outfield. If it wasn’t for the entertainment factor we’d ask if someone could please just pull her from the game already.
Pat Robertson vs. Common Decency
Republicans, especially the religious ones, like to go on and on about the “sanctity of marriage.” No gay marriage because that’s against the “sanctity of marriage.” 50 years ago the same groups were harping on interracial unions because of the “sanctity of marriage.” Must be a pretty sacred thing for them to get so worked up about so many topics for so long. Unless it gets in the way of their own enjoyment and could trigger their sense of guilt, that is. “Sanctity” and the whole “til death do us part” thing doesn’t count, at least not according to Pat Robertson, when your partner has Alzheimer’s. In fact, Pat says you can go ahead and divorce them and Jesus won’t care. How much you want to bet Mrs. Robertson has some form of dementia and Pat has his eye on some cute young thing?
Scorer’s Decision: Wild pitch. Also, Pat Robertson is a dick.
Curt Schilling vs. Food
For everybody’s favorite former pitcher/Republican shill, there’s no commentary necessary. For this, we go straight to the video.
Scorer’s Decision: No wild pitch. However, it’s pretty clear that Curt Schilling ate at least half of Randy Johnson. Either that or Randy spent his summer vacation in Somalia while Curt was working in a Twinkie factory.
Superlatives get thrown around a lot, especially as eras in our lives come to a close. Most likely to succeed. Most likely to get married. Most likely to find themselves face down in a ditch being sodomized by a goat. Superlatives have become blase and almost have no meaning anymore.
That’s why I enter into this post with a little trepidation. The Best. That means nothing could be better and that’s a pretty bold claim. Muhammad Ali made a case for his being the best going so far as to assert that he was the greatest. LL Cool J took it a step further and declared himself the greatest of all time. Over here at RSBS, though, we don’t go in for the histrionics. We don’t need to add modifiers or walk back our claims. We simply present it and let you know; this is the best.
Best Head First Slide
Sure, you might have guessed this could only be the iconic photo of Pete Rose. But, you’d be wrong. The internets don’t lie so just read the title and accept what happens as the truth.
Best Roommate Ever
I haven’t seen the guy. I don’t need to see the guy. He is to roommates what Michael Jordan was to basketball. He is the: Best. Roommate. Ever.
Best Marriage Proposal
I may be biased and I may also be a little jealous but this guy gets it done the way only a Michigander can.
There you go. The best. You’re welcome. Happy Friday.
Jeff tells me that the fans in Milwaukee treat you like a person, no matter which team you’re there to support. Let’s be honest, though. Milwaukee is the exception, not the rule. Most of the time if you find yourself in the confines of a rival team’s arena, you should prepare for the worst. I saw the Tigers play in the Bronx once and I quickly realized that the “D” on my cap instantly marked me as a target.
However, it gets much worse. And it’s even worse for the teams because they end up being defined by their fans. To help you understand this concept a little better, the interns came up with a few examples of what we present to you as “Fandom Condensed.”
Not exactly known for their classiness under the best of circumstances, these fans show us that it doesn’t take much to make “Boston” rhyme with “Jersey Shore.”
If beating up umpires and base coaches is your style, you’re probably a White Sox fan. I’m not saying we haven’t all felt this way at some point but there’s a world of difference between wanting to punch an ump and actually doing it. Luckily, they’ve found a way to move quickly between those two worlds on the south side of Chicago.
However, if there’s one team whose fans have earned the right to the title of baseball’s most dangerous fans, it has to be the Phillies. Brawls, swearing, dumping beers on people. It seemed like the Philly fans had taken things as far as humanly possible. Then they started throwing up on opposing fans. Honestly, I don’t even want to think about how you top that one.
I could go on but I think you get the point. Feel free to chime in with a comment if there’s a glaring omission.
Everyone has their own definition of class. It might be what you do, it might be how it’s done. But like the Supreme Court and porn, we know it when we see it.
Over here at RSBS we also know class and when we see it, we like to point it out. That being said, sometimes a counterfactual can help further refine the boundaries of the definition. For instance, this is not class:
…nor is his paint-huffing habit.
Now that we’ve got that cleared up, let’s move on to some guys who don’t turn to inhaling toxic fumes when the situation gets tough.
Sure, we gave Riggleman a shout-out last week but there’s no rule that says we can’t do it twice, right? I suppose it’s possible that going out and getting drinks while hitting on young ladies right after resigning from a job may not be your idea of class but at RSBS we not only wholeheartedly support his actions, we also kind of hope to follow suit one of these days.
RSBS might be a little biased since Mr. Winfield gave us the opportunity to sit down with him in the past but in our minds there’s no denying that the guy is a class act. Apparently Dave is aware of this fact, too, or at least his PR guys seem to be. While you might think that advertising your class would preclude you from having class, Winfield is the exception to the rule. The purple tuxedo don’t lie.
Normally when people say that they want their funeral to be a big party, they’re lying through the hole in their teeth. But when David Hart said it, he not only meant it, he also made it happen. I have a feeling Vegas is never going to be the same after his buddies blow through $160k. David Hart, it’s a shame to award a prize posthumously but you win the RSBS class act of the year.
I’ll be the first to admit that we point a lot of fingers over here without always recognizing people who are doing a good job. For instance, Bud Selig, although old, ugly and responsible for some of the worst excesses in the game of baseball’s long history, has also helped several teams secure the funding they needed to build new stadiums and has so far managed to avoid contraction.
The same thing goes for the government. It’s easy to focus on the guys who show up on MSNBC and Fox News to spout whatever partisan talking points have been approved for the day but we tend to hear a lot less about the guys who stand up and give it to us straight or who quietly support something they believe in personally even if it doesn’t necessarily follow the party line. So here’s a few guys with whom I generally disagree but who deserve some respect anyway.
This one is pretty easy because Gates has actually been a very effective and post-partisan Secretary of Defense. However, he recently brought it to another level as he took Congress to task for wasteful defense spending and then spoke his mind in front of the graduating class at West Point. Gates is on his way out so it’s a little easier for him to call it like he sees it but it’s still something worth mentioning.
Alito is a conservative’s conservative. Even when he does something I agree with, it’s usually for a completely different reason than why I would have done it. However, when he voiced the sole dissent with the Court’s opinion in the Westboro Baptist Church case, you had to feel a little twinge of pride. Sure, I don’t agree with his legal reasoning and the court made the right decision in light of the First Amendment. However, Alito expressed what pretty much all the rest of us were thinking when he wrote “In order to have a society in which public issues can be openly and
vigorously debated, it is not necessary to allow the brutalization of
innocent victims like petitioner. I therefore respectfully dissent.” I respectfully concur.
Yep, he made the list, too. And honestly, generally Dick is a dick. But like any parent, when you mess with his kids, you wake up a giant. You don’t want to do that, especially when it’s a giant who shot his own friend in the face with a shotgun. So it really shouldn’t come as any surprise to find out that Dick does not toe the party line when it comes to gay marriage, especially since one of his daughters is gay. Cheney even famously parted ways from his Commander in Chief when it came to the issue of a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage. Hey, maybe he’s not such a dick after all.
Being a Senator means that sometimes you get to be above the fray. In general, it’s a contemplative body that acts as a check on the hot-headedness of the House. So in an era when disentangling the US from any sort of foreign involvement has become the mantra of the Right, it’s nice to see a Senator from the Right stand up and say that what we need is a more robust and intelligent foreign involvement. You tell ’em, Lindsey.
Sure, Graham and Gates tend toward the more moderate positions so maybe this isn’t all that bold of a list. But I still think it’s important to give credit where it’s due. More than that, it’s nice to see some politicians show some balls. Too bad the Democrats can’t do it from time to time.
Alan Trammell takes a lot of heat for the Tigers’ 119-loss season in 2003. Since then, he has coached in the Majors but no one seems willing to give him a second shot at managing. And that’s probably not completely unfair. Sure, the teams he managed in 2004 and ’05 may have rebounded from the record in ’03 but they were still 20 or so games under .500. That doesn’t exactly get you very far in baseball.
However, as bad of a manager as Trammell may have been with the Tigers and no matter how much blame he deserves for that horrible 2003 season, Tram barely even rates a mention when it comes to the truly bad managers. More than that, in order to truly put his record into context, RSBS takes you on a trip through truly terribly management.
Zine El Abdine Ben Ali
Our journey begins with the recent events in Tunisia. Now, although the other half of RSBS only knows Tunisia as Tatooine in Star Wars, the country is a real place and it really did just drive out its leader of 30 years. Mr. Ben Ali took an interesting approach to his position as a footnote in history. Instead of contenting himself with just looting the riches of his country, he also referred to his fellow Tunisians as “terrorists” for daring to denounce him and then decided to shoot up some of them just to prove his point. In the end, it didn’t turn out so well and Mr. Ben Ali is now cooling his heels (although probably not literally) in the wonderfully tolerant Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Come on, did you think I could make it through a post on bad management without mentioning Selig? The guy’s record speaks for itself. From the lameass decision to have the All-Star game count for home-field advantage in the World Series to his incredibly arrogant approach to and mismanagement of the steroids era, Selig stands for everything that is wrong with baseball today. I wish I had something nice to say about the guy just so I could change things up a bit but I’d only be lying to our readers and to myself. I’m not willing to do either and so Mr. Selig once again finds himself on an RSBS list.
Mobutu Sese Seko
Going back to Africa but a little ways south of Tunisia, we find the monstrous and monstrously mismanaged country of the Belgian Congo…I mean Zaire…I mean the Democratic Republic of the Congo. From the escapades of the Belgians to a never-ending civil war, the Congo has much to offer in the way of mismanagement. However, if you want to single out just one person, you’d have to go with Mobutu. And if there’s one small little tidbit that encapsulates his mismanagement of the country and its enormous wealth of natural resources, it would have to be this: Mobutu built a landing strip at his personal home near the tiny town of Gbadolite and made sure it was long enough to accommodate a Concorde. He then proceeded to charter the Concorde on a regular basis to ferry he and his family around the world.
Although Matt Millen never killed anyone directly, he was a terrible general manager. In fact, he may be the worst manager ever. Since the inception of the Superbowl the Lions have
never been a great franchise, but he still managed to take them to new lows.
And, although he was no longer around when it happened, that 0-16 season
was the real fruit of his handiwork. Sure, when compared to guys like Mobutu and Ben Ali, Millen may not seem so bad. Even in comparison to Selig and his giant ears Millen may seem tame in comparison. But it’s just a ruse. Bad management aside, the man is evil incarnate and the fact that he still has a job anywhere just proves that the greatest lie the devil ever told was convincing the major networks to put him on the air.
And there you have it. I’m not saying this list is by any means exhaustive but it has been pretty exhaustively researched and vetted, just like everything else I post here. And all that aside, you know it must be true because it’s on the internet.
2010 offered a little something for everyone. There were elections in the US, implied succession in the DPRK and in between all that, we even found time to play a little baseball. 2010 was also special because the Krause-Lung powerhouse accomplished a feat that had not even been attempted in many years. That’s right, we got to hang out on two separate occasions!
In the world of RSBS, we provided the hard-hitting analysis and cheap shots you’ve come to expect. Cheap shots. You know, like not once but twice writing on David Paterson and making puns about blindness in both titles. Luckily we could always fall back to classy topics, like in the tenth edition of the Podcast when the idea of sprinkling AIDS on Bud Selig’s salad somehow slipped out.
Although Mr. Lung’s interests are legion, he always makes sure to come back to sure-fire crowd pleasers, like the Cubs. Or pictures of half–naked women. However, this year Mr. Lung managed to take things to an entirely new level by combining both his hatred of the Cubs AND his love of gratuitous, scantily-clad women.
Ultimately, we kept doing what we have been doing since 2008. Red State Blue State gets out there and addresses the issues and topics you want to know about, just like the following top five Jeffery Lung bylined entries of 2010:
2nd Honorable Mention:
Sure, we aren’t the biggest fans of the Yankees over here at RSBS. But you can’t say we don’t make an effort to be fair. Mr. Lung took this sense of fair play to a previously unheard of level when he spent several days towards the end of the season as a Yankees’ fan. To get the full picture you’ll have to read the other two parts but Day 1 sets the tone and sets Mr. Lung on a path that few others have dared to tread.
That famous RSBS sense of fairness also flared up back in March when Jeff addressed the notion that we were biased for or against certain teams and players. He then proceeded to take the piss out of all 30 teams showing once and for all that bias is only in the eye of the beholder. Unless you’re talking about the Cardinals in which case, “Guilty as charged.”
2010 was notable for RSBS in the we got the chance to sit down and talk to several Hall of Famers. The series kicked off with Jeff’s interview of Ken Griffey, Sr. in which Jeff and Ken (can I call you Ken? Mr. Griffey? Mr. Griffey, Sr.?) discussed a topic close to all three of us, prostate cancer. Between the Griffey interview and Strasmas, the end of June turned out to be quite eventful.
1st Runner Up:
This Took 18 Years!?!?
Despite the irreverent tones, RSBS takes both its baseball and its politics seriously. So when the Congress finally overturned the abomination of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell just before Christmas, it was inevitable we’d have something to say. Mr. Lung met the challenge head on and delivered an impassioned defense of all that makes America good.
And the Winner is…:
There are certain moments that mark us all. Certain events rest forever in our memories and fundamentally alter our psyches. I’m guessing Jeff’s interview with Ozzie Smith was one such moments. Put aside the fact that the guy is a Hall of Famer and one of the best shortstops to have played the game. Forget that generations of Cardinals’ fans look at his career as the second coming of Christ. Jeff got to sit down with his childhood hero and talk to him one on one. That, my friends, is something special.
So, there you have it. The Year in Review, RSBS style. And stay tuned as we roll into another year. There will be baseball. There will be politics. And evidently, if Mr. Lung has anything to say about it, there will be gratuitous scantily clad women.