Tagged: Sarah Palin

Sometimes in July

It happens on a regular basis, this gathering of young talent and grizzled veterans. The two sides (with input from the people of course because, after all, this is America) pull the brightest stars from their respective firmaments, bring them together and then allow them duke it out. And it seems like each time the result plays an increasingly ambiguous role in what eventually happens in November. Yep, that’s what the nominating conventions are all about.

Political_convention.jpgOh, I’m sorry. Did you think I was talking about the All-Star game?

All Star Weekend 7.12.2009 010.jpgIt’s no coincidence that baseball and politics have so much in common. The two are intertwined in American history. Even now, Hall of Famer and former Detroit Tiger Jim Bunning terrorizes opponents from his seat in the US Senate just like he used to do from his spot on the mound.

And as I was watching the Minor League All-Star game the other day, I was reminded again of how fleeting fame can be to both baseball players and politicians. Each and every one is fighting for a chance to reach the big time, to really stand out. But it’s hard to know who has what it takes.

A year ago there was talk of Mark Sanford as a possible McCain running mate and it was almost a foregone conclusion that he would be in the thick of things when the next election cycle began. Now, he’s an also-ran, an afterthought, a cautionary tale. A teary-eyed Alex Rodriguez but with no more comeback.

Or take Sarah Palin, the politician’s equivalent of Sammy Sosa. Both had talent but made it as far as they did for all the wrong reasons. Now they’re little more than whipping boys, examples of all that’s wrong with a broken system.

However, it’s better to focus on the positives at this time of year, on people like Brandon Inge and Tim Wakefield who finally got a little respect even if things didn’t play out exactly the way they might have hoped. Because, for all the ridiculousness associated with the All-Star game or with political conventions, they really are a good show and you aren’t going to find anything like ’em except in the good ol’ US of A.

Welcome back from the All-Star break!

-A

The Filibuster

Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for pujolsandlidge.jpgIt’s recently occurred to me that Albert [Pujols] is on pace to challenge Maris’
single season HR mark.  If he does this he becomes the first player NOT
implicated in steroids or other PED’s to do so.  Should baseball make a
bigger deal out of this?  I kind of doubt MLB would (it would look like
they were admitting Bonds and Sosa’s and McGwire’s big home run years
were illegitimate), but baseball fans should be rejoicing in what has
quietly become a potentially historic season.
Your thoughts?

Ted
Chicago, IL
__________________________________________

As arrogant and scapegoating as MLB’s front offices are,  we would be much better off betting our 401k’s that Sarah Palin will become the next president than we would on MLB making any mention of this highly inconvenient fact.  But that does not mean we, the fans, and other knowledgeable folks can’t start stirring up some serious crap.

And who shall be our leader in this sanctimonious crusade?

bob costas.jpgBob Friggin’ Costas.

For those of you who tuned into the MLB Network on Thursday night to watch the Mets get blown out by the Dodgers, you already know what I’m talking about.  For the rest of you, let me fill you in…

Inspired by the overhyped drama of Manny’s first series in New York after his embarrassing steroid reveal, Bob Costas came out to his colleague Jim Kaat and declared that McGwire’s record, Bonds’ record and the rest of those monumentally tainted blips of prestige could be thrown out and dismissed entirely by any Joe Fan — any human being capable of understanding how marred the game had become during the ‘steroid era’ — and that according to such logical folks, Roger Maris’ 61 and Hank Aaron’s 755 still stood as the true records — the unclouded, inarguable, uncontested homerun records of Major League Baseball.

MLB won’t ever tell you anything like that.

Bob Costas will.

And did.

Is it fair to knock Major League Baseball for doing what is really the only logical thing they can do given the circumstances?  No.  Probably not. 

But fair is a relative concept — one no one (including me, I admit) had the balls to contest when guys like Ivan Rodriguez and Rafael Palmeiro and Paul Lo Duca were raking dingers like I chug Bud Light on the weekends.

Still, as a lowly MLBlogger, I adhere to my spawning necessity to stir up a bunch of crap for no good reason, hoping someone will actually take notice, even if I do contradict my own penned tirades from time to time.

But, Ted, let me tell ya, I’m rejoicing, man.  And in my world, Roger Maris is at the top (except for that one moment back in ’98 when McGwire took Steve Trachsel deep at Busch II) and Hank Aaron is tops too because I simply cannot stand Barry Bonds, his runaway forehead, or his smug crybaby I’m-the-victim routine.

Alleluia!

I’m a US American!  It’s in my blood to flip-flop; it’s in yours too and you know it. 

So go ahead and hate me ‘cuz I’m a greasy s***talker, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.

Peace,

Jeff

***SEND US YOUR FILIBUSTERS****

Something on your mind?  Want to see Jeff and Al sweat (separately, not together, eww)?  Think you got a real stumper?  Send us your Filibuster question(s) by commenting or emailing them to us at kraulung@gmail.com. 

***Pictures of a scantily clad Courtney Cox circa 1998 also welcome.

An Inconvenient All-Star

an inconvenient truth.jpgI really haven’t had that exciting of a life. There
are a lot of things I wish I would have done, instead of just sitting
around and complaining about having a boring life. So I pretty much
like to make it up. I’d rather tell a story about somebody else.


Kurt Cobain (1964-1994)

Instead of complaining about who isn’t going to the All-Star Game, I’d like to tell you a story about someone who is going to the All-Star Game:

Me.

Luckily, one of my best friends is a Cardinals season ticket holder.  And besides being the proud owner of Quincy, IL’s finest bar and grill (a place where even Mike Shannon has been known to drink) he also has a kind heart and agreed to take me along for all of the All-Star thrills, including acting as my official wing-man in my misguided quest for Erin Andrews glory.  Yes, that is still going on.  Admittedly, overcoming such built-in adversity will not be an easy assignment; it will be easier than overcoming the struggle against Nazi Germany (don’t tell Al Gore) but, dear readers, it will not be easy — especially since so many deserved, albeit inconvenient, All-Stars will not be present. 

Yet that does not mean they should not be recognized for their All-Starredness, no matter the capacity… so here are your RSBS All-Star snubs of 2009 whom I will proudly represent in St. Louis next week:

Mark Reynolds
Just like that frat guy named Hunter and his impervious flesh pursuit at the bar on $5 pitcher night, yeah, he strikes out an awful lot.  But he also surprises you every once in a while and hits some big-time bombs… or bombshells, whichever the case may be.

Mark Sanford

Stealing bases is one thing.  Stealing taxpayer money to bankroll an 8-year long international affair?  Now that’s All-Star material… because, well, it takes balls.  Balls of steel.

Stephen Strasburg
Being the most popular man in Major League Baseball without ever having played a Major League Baseball game is certainly something to tip your cap towards.  Just wait until you see the kind of velocity he can generate with those ears! I promise you: he is the best pitcher EVER in the HISTORY OF THE WORLD!

Sarah Palin

No one likes a quitter, but unlike Manny Ramirez, at least Palin looks good while doing it.

And finally…

Milton Bradley
As an unabashed Cardinal fan, there are about about 30 million reasons why this guy is a true All-Star.  Obviously, not one of them includes playing good, fundamentally sound baseball.

Don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.

Peace,

Jeff

***SEND US YOUR FILIBUSTERS****

Something on your mind?  Want to see Jeff and Al sweat (separately, not together, eww)?  Think you got a real stumper?  Send us your Filibuster question(s) by commenting or emailing them to us at kraulung@gmail.com. 

***Pictures of Allen shot-gunning Old Styles also welcome.

The Filibuster

Since you guys are always putting politics in baseball, why didn’t you
try to get out the All-Star vote? Not one post about voting for your
favorite all-star?  I was shocked.

Kellen
Macomb, IL

__________________________________________

St_Louis_Gateway_Arch.jpgWell, Kellen, in what may have been the largest oversight since the creation of this blog, neither Jeff nor myself exploited this wonderful forum as a bully-pulpit for some sort of get-out-the-vote crusade. However, in typical politico fashion, I am going to refuse to admit to any sort of mistake and instead claim that this was all planned.

See Kellen, despite our obvious strong feelings toward our favorite teams and players, Jeff and I are also of the belief that the political process needs to proceed unfettered. And when I say unfettered, I mean that the same 18 guys should be voted onto the team every year because of their geographic location and attendant fan base. Is Derek Jeter the best shortstop in the AL? Uh, no. But he plays for the Yankees and that means he’s going to be representing the AL anyway.

Now, I could have gotten out there and exhorted you to vote for Adam Everett instead but would you have listened? No. You would have been more than happy to follow the crowd and vote your straight Red Sox, Yankees or Mets ticket. Or, in your case Kellen, probably a straight Cardinals ticket. Seriously, Rick Ankiel as an All-Star?

But we have more important questions and issues to face. Like what could possibly be going through Sarah Palin’s head? Or why have so many famous people died in the past 10 days? My best guess so far for both questions is Swine Flu.

Don’t get me wrong, Kellen. I appreciate your question and perhaps in the future one or the other of us (by which I obviously mean Jeff) will stoop to that level and cravenly demand your vote. But until that moment, RSBS will strive to remain above the fray because *cue patriotic music* America’s game demands American democracy.

And in that spirit Kellen, if you’ll excuse me, I need to get back to stuffing the virtual ballot box to make sure Brandon Inge makes it in to the game. Speaking of stuffing ballot boxes, any news on Mark Sanford?

-A

Fireworks!!!

miss teen south carolina.jpgNothing says US American like a cute, dumb, South Carolinian teenager proclaiming our need to help the “education like such as South Africa and, uh, the Iraq everywhere like, such as”… well, I mean, nothing says US American like that and fireworks.  Of course.

And boy are the fireworks a flyin’.

Satiating our drama-seeking souls, Placido Polanco provided plenty of fireworks after getting clipped in the nuts by a foul tip in last evening’s 16-inning game against the Twins.  He took a long, painful breather before getting back in the batter’s box and hitting the game-winning single right back up the middle.

In Cincinnati, Albert Pujols — BASEBALL GOD INCARNATE — made a strong case for his being walked with the bases loaded.  Instead, David Weathers (whom Albert owns) threw one right down central.  Pujols wasted no time in hitting his fourth grand slam of the season.

Still, these on the field heroics have nothing on the fireworks Sarah Palin shot off Friday by announcing her resignation as governor of the great state of Alaska.

We put our faithful RSBS interns on the beat and they discovered the following reasons behind Palin’s controversial gubernatorial departure:

  • Thumbnail image for sarah_palin.jpgAlaska is boring
  • wants to move to Canada, where people actually know what a “hockey mom” is
  • needs more time to combat pro-choice, but only in cases involving middle to upper class white people
  • Todd Palin is tired of being shown up by his librarian-hot wife
  • the Washington Nationals are holding tryouts and she’s been working on a knuckle ball
  • wants to hunt down Katie Couric, shoot her and feed her to bears
  • Lorne Michaels offered her a permanent role on SNL as the new reincarnation of Dana Carvey’s Church Lady (Tina Fey’s position as Palin will not change)
  • experimenting with new medical procedure that will allow her to “grow a pair”
  • embarrassed she misunderstood the TransCanada Pipeline project did not involve weed
  • earmarked billions to provide maps to US Americans out there in our nation who don’t have maps, which will eventually aid the education like such as South Africa and, uh, the Iraq everywhere like, such as so everyone can plainly see that the “bridge to nowhere” does go to a town with a population of 50 people, all of whom desperately need maps to find that $442 million bridge

Boom! Boom! Boom!

Happy 4th, my fellow US Americans!

Don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.

Peace,

Jeff

The Filibuster

Everyone hates me! I don’t understand it. It’s like I’m the anti-Midas.
Instead of turning to gold, everything I touch turns to s**t. And now
they’re even booing me! I just want to be loved. What do I have to do
to be loved?

M. Bradley
Chicago, IL
__________________________________________

milton_bradley_angry.jpgRSBS‘ dear readers know that I am always one for some good old japery, so I will ignore the fact that this question comes to us from a Hotmail address with the username LouBrockLover67 attached and assume that you, M. Bradley, were at one time a huge follower of the powerhouse Cardinal club of the mid to late 60s and just go with it.  Of course, I am also secretly holding my breath that the Chicago Tribune gets word of this post and in digging through the RSBS archives publicizes the fact that I have called a certain M. Bradley a “whiny spoiled crybaby man-child” on more than at least twenty occasions.  Hey, It worked for J-Rod and Raul Ibanez…  ah… yes, a fettered blogger can dream; I suppose that is still legal and accepted (for now).

But, at this time, what causes my greatest concern is the notion that the Chicago Cubs are being hijacked by just one individual’s antics, gaffes and overall lack of production at the plate, which runs contrary to the the aged tradition of the Cubs’ losing woes being dependent on a complete team effort (or, more appropriately, the lack thereof).

Yes, M. Bradley, everything you touch does turn to s**t, but at least you have the good sense to throw it back into the stands — with only two outs.  Look, they are going to boo you just like they boo Fukudome and Soriano and Lee, just like they booed Kyle Farnsworth and Jacque Jones and Keith Moreland before.  Cub fans boo.  That’s what they do.  There ain’t no changing that.

Still, a less hostile playing environment at Wrigley could be had if you, M. Bradley follow these simple guidelines for success: a) hit over .230 b) bash a Gatorade cooler in the dugout with a bat and c) give back that $30 million and just play for the fun of it!

See?  Now that was the easy part.  Unfortunately, M. Bradley, since Northsiders have proven over the years that they are absolutely incapable of love (see Bartman, Sammy Sosa and Dusty Baker), I am afraid that you will just have to do without while patrolling the swirling winds of fickleness at Clark and Addison.

Beer.  That is the only thing Cub fans love.  Buy the right field bleacher bums a couple of rounds of beer with that fat, zero laden paycheck and you might just get the impression that you’re liked… sorta.

Until they sober up.

Don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.

Peace,

Jeff

***SEND US YOUR FILIBUSTERS****

Something on your mind?  Want to see Jeff and Al sweat (separately, not together, eww)?  Think you got a real stumper?  Send us your Filibuster question(s) by commenting or emailing them to us at kraulung@gmail.com. 

***Pictures of Sarah Palin in a swimsuit also welcome.

The Curious Case of the Academy Screwing the Pooch

Many things in life make no sense. Wonderful guys like Jeff and myself being single, for instance. Or the Cardinals winning the 2006 World Series. Sarah Palin becoming a de facto leader of the Republican party. The world is a crazy place. However, nothing reminds me of this fact quite so much as when the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announces the Oscar nominations around this time every year.

golden boy.jpg

Another mixed-up Oscar

Seriously, are you guys smoking crack? 13 nominations for Benjamin Button? This movie already won an Academy Award a decade and a half ago when it starred Tom Hanks and they called it Forrest Gump. Making the same movie in reverse shouldn’t qualify it to win another Oscar. Speaking of which, here’s an idea for the studio that will save them several million dollars. Why not just buy some old VHS copies of Gump and play them on rewind. There, you’ve seen Benjamin Button and you’ve helped save the environment by reducing demand for new movies and packaging. Don’t get me wrong, it was a cute movie. But it’s three hours of Brad Pitt being Brad Pitt and it leaves us with the oh-so-original thought that we leave this world much like we came into it. Really? I paid twelve dollars for that?

And from the inane, we move to the insane. This category breaks down into two major subcategories, “How did that make it in?” and  “How did that get left out?” In the first subcategory, we have the multiple nominations for The Reader. Yep, I’m sure it’s a good movie. Yep, Kate Winslet is an amazing actress. But this fixation the Academy has with anything Holocaust skews their judgment in a major way. Without a doubt, Ben Button also falls into this first subcategory but I think I’ve already made my point there.

However, the second subcategory is where we find the real problems. For instance, how does Gran Torino get completely shut out? For all the amazing films Clint Eastwood has been part of over the years, this one has to rank up near the top. He makes Jack Palance look like a pansy. He’s as clutch when it comes to film making as A-Rod is choke when it comes to post-season baseball. Similarly, there is no possible way you can say that Mr. Button deserved a best picture nod over both The Wrestler and The Dark Knight. Arguably, those are the best two films of the year and neither one of them is even up for the award. That’s more than a shame, that’s a crime. And neither the Boss or Clint being nominated for Best Original Song is beyond embarrassing.

Anyway, I’m done. The anger is gone. I have nothing left and I’m lying in a puddle on the floor, soaking in my own impotent, rage-filled tears. And yes, I realize that this is probably the third post in a row with only the most tenuous connection to baseball but don’t worry. Pitchers and catchers report soon and I’ll once again be on the floor, sobbing as the Tigers’ pitching staff takes the field.

-A