Monday, January 31, 2011


The darkest corners of the Baseball Internet have been abuzz with recent news that both Out of the Park 12 and Baseball Mogul 2012 are going to feature WIns Above Replacement as a stat for the first time.  In fact -- and this seriously kind of freaked me out a little -- Baseball Mogul head/only guy Clay Dreslough recently posted at the forums  in a thread called "New stats in Baseball Mogul 2012" (omg omg omg) that he'd been using WAR all along: "I've been using WAR in Baseball Mogul since the very first version, as it is the only logically consistent way to evaluate a player in dollar terms. But I've kept it hidden because of differences between Mogul and other baseball analysts (primarily when calculating park factors and replacement levels, but also in calculating linear weights for each played era)."  What?  Clay has had Wins Above Replacement all along and he's been holding out on us?  That's . . . that's just shocking. 

Baseball Mogul and Out of the Park are awesome, both as games in and of themselves but also, importantly, as vehicles for baseball feelings.  There is no stranger and yet lasting way to forge a kinship with, like, Willie Aikens, say, or to strengthen already existing bonds with Alfredo Griffin, for example, than to have them unexpectedly come through for you when you're at a crucial moment in your simulation of the 1985 ALCS.  Because that's what you do in OOTP and BBM (never "BM," perhaps because then it would sound like poo): you sim.  Then you change your team a little.  Draft some guys.  Sign someone.  Do everything you can to ditch Raul Mondesi.  Sim some more.  Right an historical wrong and replace it with a new, no less egregious crime against history but one more pleasing to you personally.  More simming.  Then a snack, and you're back.  It's the best!   

These games are readily available and affordable, both in the sense that they are inexpensive if you want to buy them, or entirely free if you want an old one (the five-year-old versions, which are way, way more than serviceable, are available at their respective websites) or if you want a new one and you happen to be, like, on the internet in the least.  But -- and by no means am I that guy, seriously I'm not -- I think I'm actually going to pay money to reward these fine gentlemen for their inclusion of my favourite statistic that I can't begin to calculate and yet put complete unfailing faith in.  It's to the point that I almost feel bad.  These games just so awesome.

I am not going to do a whole thing where I compare the two, because it's actually pretty simple: both own, so why not own both?  Especially given that that they are free.  Yeah, OOTP has a billion extra things you can do (which can be heaven or hell, based on your disposition) and it's the better choice if you want to build everything about your league and its players from the ground up, and Baseball Mogul tends to give you better results for long-term historical parallel universe MLB-type simulations and is easier to use and has, I think, better mods (baseball card mod: best mod ever), but fundamentally they're both sweet as hell and getting all worked up about the other baseball simulation is like the worst kind of I'M A MAC/I'M A PC bullshit ever.  And yet it happens.  On this very internet, it happens.    

Anyway, the new OOTP comes out pretty soon and BBM comes out in March, and both will be great, so get one, or just get one of the old free ones, or something.  If you are a baseball man, or one of the impressively fierce old baseball ladies who show up to games in packs and still curse the name of Homer Bush to this day because one time he did something that displeased them en masse, you simply owe it to yourself to at least try one of these games.  Eventually this kind of game replaces most, though not all, of your desire to play other baseball video games at all, if you can even believe that is possible.  Occasionally you will still want to play:

(i) MLB 10: The Show, because it looks like this:

This is literally the ugliest image in the entire game.
(ii) Baseball Stars, because it looks like this:

Ninja BlackSox forever imo.
(iii) And Pete Rose Baseball, because it looks like this:

FIVE different pitches FIVE and balls totally bounce off the wall.
Other than those, though, you'll be totally good.  


Saturday, January 29, 2011

The Last Man To Win 30 Games

Dammit, he's not Bobby

I'm the default Braves beat writer amongst my esteemed colleagues. I expect I'll get sacked from this post faster than Chipper Jones can chase a Hooters waitress.

As some of you may know, Bobby Cox (the stern wife-beating face of the Braves for many years) finally gave up the ghost and retired last season, leaving the reins in the hands of questionably-competent Fredi Gonzalez. Fredi as a manager has some pros and some cons.

PRO - Fredi knows the system.

Fredi was third base coach for the Bravos from 2003 to 2006, and before that was the manager of the Richmond Braves in 2002. During that time, he was one of Bobby's right hand men. He knows the corporate machinations of the Braves firsthand, so no big surprises will occur, because he's not just a coach; he's got...

PRO - Major league managerial experience with the Marlins

Fredi went to the Marlins as manager in 2006, and lasted for parts of four seasons. He is the winningest Marlins manager ever (which sounds really good when you don't think about it too hard) until...

CON - Unceremoniously pink slipped in the middle of 2010 by the Marlins

And why, do you ask, was he fired? He couldn't string together wins with less-than-stellar front office support. But, that brings us to another pro, namely...

PRO - His players love him.

After Fredi was let go, nearly every player said they hated to see him leave, but understood that he was just the fall guy for the failings of the Marlins front office. Everybody loves playing for him. But...

CON - He's not Bobby Cox.

Not being Bobby Cox is easily the biggest strike against Fredi, at least in the eyes of the fans. It's rare in this day and age to see anybody stick with a team for more than a few years. To stay with the Braves for over two decades, it's been Bobby's Braves. Even if Fredi's been studying with Bobby since he left the Marlins, he's still not Bobby, and he's going to do things his way. I'm not saying Fredi is going to raze the team top to bottom, but things are going to be different.

In summary, the Braves will be the Braves, as always. They're the most consistent team in any league, and they'll be right back to where they were last year: losing in the first round of playoffs. That's the expectation in Atlanta, and I see no reason to take the eyes of the prize.

Larry King's official prediction: 86 - 76, wild card.

O-Pee-Chee Baseball Card Feelings

This morning I went to the bingo hall where sports card show sets up the last Saturday of every month.  I got there kind of late, and to my disappointment the dude with the most baseball stuff was already packing up. But I found another guy with a box that just said "1970s Baseball Singles," which is absolutely ideal, in that you know there's going to be neat stuff in there, and you also know that if he hasn't bothered sorting any of it out, nothing is going to cost any more than a dollar, thus putting it right in the zone.  I came away with thirteen entirely rad baseball cards from 1970 and 1971 for the totally reasonable price of five dollars.  I would do this again in a heartbeat.  After the jump, let me tell you about them.


Friday, January 28, 2011

You'll always be the Second Basemen of my Heart

'DeLino DeShields modelling the hat I am currently wearing, also the disinterested look I am wearing'

There were three things about DeLino DeShields I liked as a young boy.

1: Best name in sports ever

2: He played second base . . . I played second base

3: Faster than all hell.

1 and 2 were pretty obvious things to notice, his name and position came up a lot, but the last thing I knew because. . . . it's the thing I remember commentators talking about the most, Speedy Ol' DeLino gonna steal a million and a half bases with no issue. And as a kid I equated speedy baseball with good baseball, (off topic but I think the reason I never came back to baseball during the 'PED' era was because I just didn't like home runs when there were like 10 a game, they seemed less impressive then.) and apparently Double D was the fastest.

He's also intertwined with Marquise Grissom in my mind because they were 1 and 2 in the batting order and again both just fast as hell. I am not sure why I was so into fast dudes, I will assume that it was because, although I won many 'hardest worker' awards I didn't win many (any) foot races. Perhaps I was merely projecting. Also I like weird names and those two guys had pretty weird names.

And now for the paragraph that will be in basically all of these posts. The Expos couldn't afford him, he peaced out to the Dodgers before the '94 season and it was too hurtful to follow him from there.

Awesome players leaving via free agency, the MO of this section of posts.


Thursday, January 27, 2011

Keith Law's Top 100 Prospects . . . for you

This picture makes me feel the way
this mug makes Keith Law feel.

As I have previously mentioned, I have a pretty firm policy of not really paying any attention at all to prospects until they are totally MLB ready and then are, I guess, not exactly prospects anymore, but instead, dudes.  I do this because there are only so many hours in a day, and, I mean, where does it end?  Where does it end?  But I manage to make up for a lot of my ignorance by simply accepting everything Keith Law has to say about prospects. Well, about everything, really, but especially about prospects.  Keith Law's chats at go too much into cooking and literature and board games for my liking (I actually really like all of those things, but that's not why I am at reading baseball chat transcripts, you know?) but on the whole I admire Keith Law's work immensely.  He's a really good writer in a snarky internet kind of way, and I have enjoyed his work at every stage of his career, be it Baseball Prospectus, or the Blue Jays front office, or ESPN, or as the best guy they ever have on the Fan 590 in Toronto.  He has also said some pretty cutting things about J. P. Ricciardi from time to time so he is squarely and firmly my dude. 

Anyway, prospects.  Here are the first twenty-five, with the rest after the jump.  All of this has been lifted from the comment section at Drunk Jays Fans, naturally.     


01. Mike Trout - Angels
02. Bryce Harper - Nationals
03. Domonic Brown - Phillies
04. Jesus Montero - Yankees
05. Eric Hosmer - Royals
06. Julio Teheran - Braves
07. Dustin Ackley - Mariners
08. Wil Myers - Royals
09. Shelby Miller - Cardinals
10. Aaron Hicks - Twins
11. Zach Britton - Orioles
12. Manny Banuelos - Yankees
13. Kyle Drabek - Blue Jays
14. Jeremy Hellickson - Rays
15. Aroldis Chapman - Reds
16. Matt Moore - Rays
17. Brandon Belt - Giants
18. Martin Perez - Rangers
19. Casey Kelly - Padres
20. Desmond Jennings - Rays
21. Michael Pineda - Mariners
22. Jacob Turner - Tigers
23. Mike Moustakas - Royals
24. Tyler Matzek - Rockies
25. Jarrod Parker - Diamondbacks

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

A Couple Years Ago William Lamar Beane III Nearly Traded Gio Gonzalez and Ryan Sweeney For This Guy

His name is Andy Larouche. His brother is Adam Larouche. Andy is a failed prospect who couldn't cut it with the Pirates. He recently signed a minor league deal with the A's. Gio Gonzalez may end up being the best of the A's young starting pitchers. Ryan Sweeney is really good when he's between stints on the disabled list. I'm glad that William Lamar Beane III didn't pull the trigger on that deal. I'll be even more happy if Larouche suddenly figures out how to hit, but I'm not banking on it. He's basically Kevin Kouzmanoff without the awesome glove. We already have one Kevin Kouzmanoff, which is probably one too many. Oh well, it's another year of trotting a sub-replacement level 3rd baseman out there.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


There are a handful of indelible moments that stick with me as a fan of Detroit sports, moments that I witnessed live, moments that I will remember until the day I die, moments that are burned into my brain and live there, as crystal clear as the day that they happened. I watched Barry Sanders break loose from a pile of Dallas Cowboys and sprint for the endzone while a crowd cheered with amazement. I watched the Bad Boys Pistons shut down Michael Jordan while the Palace speakers blared Final Countdown and the crowd went apeshit. I watched Charles Woodson rise from the turf and soar, soar, soar until he plucked a ball out of mid-air along the sidelines of Spartan Stadium and make a one handed uber-interception that to this day is the greatest football play I have ever seen in my life. I watched all of these things happen live and not one of them inspired the kind of reaction that the Cecil Fielder roof shot inspired.

I remember everything about that game. I remember the Tigers beat the A's 14-4. I remember Jose Canseco hit a bomb to dead center field, and at the old Tiger Stadium that meant that he hit it at least 440 feet. I remember John Shelby - yeah, John fuckin' Shelby - came within an inch of an infield single that would have given him a cycle. Hell, I even remember almost catching a line drive hit by Carney Lansford during batting practice. I remember all of this because Cecil Fielder stepped to the plate and hit a home run over the left field roof of Tiger Stadium, which had only been done, like, twice before by dudes named Harmon Killebrew and Frank Howard, and which was only replicated one time after, by a dude named Mark McGwire.

I remember being 10 years old and leaping out of my seat, surrounded by my mom, my uncle and my aunt and I remember screaming "HOLY SHIT!" as it happened. I completely lost all ability to self censor. I would have never - never - said that in front of my mom because I knew that she would first choke me half to death with a bar of soap and then shame the hell out of me for eternity. But I just reacted. It was instinctual. The moment completely overwhelmed any sort of self consciousness or self-preservation instincts that I had. It was the sort of moment that makes you understand how someone can completely lose their shit, driven by pure emotion and a temporary insanity born of something primitive and feral and explosively reactive. There is no thought, nothing rational or civilized about it. It just happens, like it probably happened the first time a dude saw a tree catch on fire or the first time Adam realized that Eve's vagina was the key to the kingdom of heaven. Holllllllllly shiiiiiiiiiiiiit.

I screamed it and I didn't care who heard it. That is a testament to the incredible energy of the moment. But even more telling is the fact that nobody said anything to me about it later. Either nobody heard me because they were too busy losing their own shit or they heard but didn't care because, well, they were too busy losing their own shit and understood on a basic level that such a moment transcended basic decency and convention. Morals and values and rules were fucking worthless in the splendor of that moment. There was just a primal energy and a rapturous sense of pure joy.

That may all sound ridiculous as hell and yet it is all true. Sports can do that. They can. I know because it happened to me and it happened to me because Cecil Fielder is awesome and he hit a baseball further than I have ever seen a man hit a ball. He launched that fucker on the roof and set off a wild celebration, a parade of insanity that more closely resembled a nuclear powered zoo than a crowd. It was all very primal and more than that, it was pure. There are so few moments in life that aren't governed by some form of logic or reason or a slavish devotion to convention and to rules. This was one of those moments and I will remember it and I will savor it until the day I die.

Well, it was fun while it lasted, Mike Napoli. But the Frank Francisco era has begun.

Of all these great reactions my favourite here is the lady in the jean jacket.
That Alex Anthopolous, boy, he is a wheeler and a dealer!  Mike Napoli is now a Texas Ranger, and Frank Francisco -- seen here hucking a chair at a dude who allegedly heckled another Rangers pitcher on the subject of a stillborn child but the chair totally didn't hit the heckler in question but instead his wife who was cut for stitches and then there were criminal and civil charges -- is now a Toronto Blue Jay.  It is like quantum leaps of unclassiness here from Vernon Wells (notably classy) to Mike Napoli (lewd party pics mère et fils) to Frank Francisco (heckler-revenge-by-proxy / lady assault).  But what a name!  Also he's pretty good.  Not that I'm saying he should close or anything but the Blue Jays pen is looking reasonable.  There is, at least, no chance of this happening in 2011, so cool.  

Edit: scooped by Chinballs! I came with the bigger picture though so who is the real winner?

DOOT DOOT DOOT BREAKING NEWS: Napoli to Rangers for Francisco

If by breaking, I mean shit that happened like two hours ago, yeah, but it hasn't been posted here yet.

Mike Napoli and his mom's titties are no longer property of the greater Toronto area (sorry KS) as they have been dealt to the Texas Rangers in exchange for Frank Francisco and his lucky steel chair.

Frank Frank La Parkaing some bitch.

Fare thee well, rad ass Frankie. May you own the AL East and get into some wild drunken shenanigans, so long as you throw up some meat balls when you face the Rangers.

Voros McCracken: Broke Nerd

The face that launched a thousand ships (full of nerds).
Because this is the internet, and you are on it, you are aware that Voros McCracken invented Defense-Independent Pitching Statistics (DIPS). DIPS did away with the long-held notion that pitchers had any significant influence on the likelihood of a ball put in play landing for a hit.  This idea has been so much a part of the last ten years of being an Internet Baseball Guy that it's easy to overlook just how strange and important an idea it was.  And remains: everybody who cares about baseball even a little has either come to terms with the core principles behind DIPS, or is Richard Griffin.

But Voros, despite his influence, has fallen on some seriously hard times, according to this excellent (and seriously long) article by Jeff Passan: 

Of course, one great idea guarantees nothing.
Not prominence. McCracken spends his days and nights analyzing European soccer. He won't say for what or whom or where. The client appreciates anonymity.
Wealth is absent, too. McCracken lives paycheck to paycheck. He couldn't make rent on his apartment last year.
"If I give DIPS away for free once, that's fine," he says. "I came up with an idea that was monetized to the hundreds of millions of dollars, and I'm broke. I'm glad I did it. Can't do it anymore. I've done enough to prove I can at least do something. Boy, that's a revolutionary idea that changed baseball. Can you do it again? No. I can't do it again unless you pay me.”
And there's the deepest, most hurtful part of all: Voros McCracken hasn't worked in baseball since the game chewed him up and spit him out five years ago. In an industry where progress moves by the inch, the man who sent it forward a mile can't get a job. And he's not quite sure why.

Dude is broke as hell and seriously overweight and single and forty.  This is the price you pay for being good at math.   


A-Holes Episode 1- The Imperfect Storm

In an effort to provide a full spectrum of feelings about my beloved Oakland A's, I feel that it's only fair that I also point out the Athletics that I hated in addition to praising the ones I have loved over the years. In the first installment of A-Holes, allow me to introduce you to the ball of dick that was Storm Davis...

To be fair, I hated Storm Davis even before he was A. My dad and I collected baseball cards, and I distinctly remember opening up a back of 1985 Topps and sneering as the first card featured his malformed mug. He broke in with the Baltimore Orioles, where he was the prototypical 4th or 5th starter. He walked a lot of people, gave up a lot of hits and didn't miss many bats. In 1987 he was traded to the A's and instantly benefited from their potent (steroid fueled) lineup and posted records of 16-7 and 19-7 in '88 and '89. He did this despite not being a good pitcher. His ERA of 3.70 in '88 and 4.36 in '89 weren't impressive in the least, but it's his WHIP of 1.498 and 1.506 in those two seasons that tell a more accurate story. He was an inning eater who pitched behind a steady defense and was regularly staked to 3-4 run leads. In fact, the only time he ever did anything extraordinary was in '88 when he lead the league in wild pitches with 16. During his two year run with A's he managed to pitch all of 2 complete games. His real defining moments with A's came during the '88 World Series when the LA Dodgers absolutely raped him to the tune of 14 hits, 10 runs (all earned) and 3 homers in 8 innings over two terrible starts where he took the loss in both. After '89 season he took his act to Kansas City, who promptly regretted paying him over $1,000,000.00 a year to be not very good at baseball. He bounced around until '94, when he ended his career with Neil's Tigers. Storm even managed to spend part of the '93 season with A's, sucking it up as usual. Apparently, he's now a low level pitching coach in A ball for the Rangers, preparing the next wave of future not-so-good pitchers. The funny thing is, if you heard Storm talk about himself you would've thought he was Nolan Ryan or Jim Palmer. He had a really, REALLY overinflated self opinion. He was also a dick to kids on the regular. In fact, I distinctly remember my friend Phillip's mom (who was a tad tipsy) grabbing him by the shirt and calling him a dick after he walked right past us after a game without so much as a wave or even a "fuck you". All of that aside, I think the thing I hated most about Storm Davis is that, even at age 11, I was able to see through his bullshit and realized that he wasn't good. Back in the pre-Metrics days, all you could really judge a player by was the back of his baseball card. There weren't mountains and mountains of ancillary stats being made available to the public. Storm Davis was the first pitcher who made me realize that wins and losses didn't tell the whole story. Very shitty pitchers used to be able to get lucky or have enough run support to trick people into thinking they aren't shitty pitchers. The Nerd Revolution has put an end to such shenanigans. Semper nerds.

Monday, January 24, 2011

an obvious #1 pick in 2011?

my next blog is more asking you about YOUR feelings on the subject. I have only started to get into the inner workings of baseball and numbers and things of that nature very recently so I cant say beyond the past two years if there has been an obvious choice or not.

I have looked through as many sources as possible trying to figure out just who will be the Mariners next big draft pick as we're picking #2 this year (we cant even fucking lose as well as the Pirates!) and unlike in years past it has been pretty up in the air as to who the #1 will be. I know at one point Anthony Rendon was touted as the next Bryce Harper but his injury seems to have quieted some of that talk and some places have him going as #2 or even #3 and the likes of Matthew Purke and Gerrit Cole as being the top choice.

so who do you got as #1 and why even if ya want to.


Meet Mike Napoli . . . or should I say Mike NIPPLE!!!!!!(i)

 On the right, in the grey dress, Mike Napoli's mom. On the right, out of the grey dress, Mike Napoli's mom's nipple.

The estimable folks over at Drunk Jays Fans have quite sensibly assembled a collection of Mike Napoli party shots.  And they're all pretty awesome, and you should totally go see them, but what I've included for you here is really the money shot, so to speak.  In it, we see Mike Napoli, looking pretty hammy, next to two unidentified young ladies, a guy with a stripey shirt, and then Mike Napoli's mom with her boob out.

Make no mistake, I am totally ready for Mike Napoli: slugging, indifferently-fielding catchers are cool by me.  And I have nothing against people's moms having boobs out (breast is best, as they rightly say).  But I will say this: you'd never see Vernon Wells' mom with her boobs out.  You'd never see Vernon's stepmom with her boobs out, and she's like twenty.  That's because Vernon Wells is classy.  His whole operation is classy.  When Paul DePodesta or whoever figures out that there's a staggering market inefficiency for classy, the Vernon Wells trade is going to have to be revisited, reassessed, and rued.


Rangers Feelings

Usually, being a Rangers fan is not unlike constantly being kicked in the dick by fate. Fuck, prior to this year they were the only team in the league who had never even won a playoff series. The entire heights of my baseball fan life, prior to 2010, were Nolan Ryan punching the fuck out of Robin Ventura, and Game 1 vs. the Yankees, 1996.

Heading into 2010, the team was financially... fucked, after Tom "Blow Me Fuck Face Sr." Hicks, leveraged the Rangers and the Dallas Stars into buying another toy, Liverpool of the Premier League. When the economy keeled over and died, he defaulted on all of these leveraged loans, leaving the team in the hands of Bud fucking Selig and a bunch of creditors. The league found a group to buy the team, fronted by Chuck Greenberg and Nolan Ryan, who sounded like they knew what the hell they were doing... but this shit drug OUT... and OUT... and OUT, until the team was finally put up for auction between this group, and Mark Cuban's group, which seemingly only wanted the TV rights.

Nolan and Chuck won, and I can only assume it's because Chuck has a colossal dong... well, at least colossal enough to impress Mrs. Ryan. By this time, the majority of the 2010 season had passed, and it wouldn't be unwise to think the team was suffering. Amazingly, however, this was not the case. In 2010, the Rangers basically made the AL West their prison bitch from day one, and proceeded to fuck the other teams in the ass when they wanted, and where they wanted. The team tore the league a new asshole through a particularly great stretch in June, and played well enough the rest of the time, that the playoffs weren't really in doubt. In preparation, the team went out and acquired several new core and not so core players. Guys like Bengie Molina, Jorge Cantu, Cristian Guzman, Jeff Francouer, and Cliff Lee.

Bengie Molina

With the team playing out of it's fucking mind, they march through the Rays and then through the motherfucking Yankees, striking out Alex Rodriguez to head to their first World Series. Legit, one of the best sports moments of my life. I fucking loved this team. Then, as luck tends to do, it ran out, and the team looked like shit in 5 games I never really want to relive against the San Francisco Giants.

Which leads to the offseason: A lot of faces head out, not so many head back in. The Rangers made it priority number one to resign Cliff Lee. Originally, it seemed as if the Yankees were just going to moneyfuck him and his bitch ass wife to New York. Then, after a big meeting at Lee's house in Arkansas, the Rangers appeared to be the front runners, and I'm fully prepared to be just fucking ecstatic about it, even if the contract ended up being really stupid. However, in the 23rd fucking hour, he runs off to play second, or third, or fuck, maybe even fourth fiddle with the fucking Phillies. It's like finding out this chick you're trying to fuck called up her ex boyfriend, who'd moved on a year ago, offered to blow him in the back of a car, and now lives in a communal groupfuck with him and the new bitch. Just not right if you ask me.

So the Rangers counter the loss of a Cy Young winner with the gain of another, when they sign one-armed Brandon Webb to an incentive-laden deal, fresh off of reports that his heat was in the low 80s. I'm excited. Of course, he ended up not being the big fish. Adrian Beltre and his super sensitive head did.

The biggest plus for the Rangers, beyond how much fun Andres Blanco, David Murphy, and the other jokers on the team are going to have fucking with Beltre's head, is that Michael motherfucking Young, the Roger Dorn of modern day MLB, will be moved off of third base, where he would regularly dive at routine plays that just happened to fall out of his reach, making "past a diving Michael Young..." a meme on Rangers fan sites, and to the motherfucking bench where he will DH. What was merely a local joke became an international one in the ALCS, when upon a hard hit ball by Alex Rodriguez, Young moved OUT OF THE WAY OF THE BALL and then attempted to "Ole!" it. Sit your ass on the pine, face of the franchise.

Well, there were some Rangers feelings, I guess. Whenever the hell I decide to write again, it will probably be a season preview or something.

The Seattle Mariners.

hello there!

I am a Seattle Mariners fan, I do not like very many Mariners players. Felix Hernandez and Ichiro are my only constants. I have been following since 1995 when the Angels had the most epic collapse of all time, if it werent for that I am certain that I would be still mourning the Sonics leaving town and camping out in front of the Key Arena to this day.

These last few years have been rough for me, I watched my idol in Ken Griffey Jr. go from kinda jolly dude with a big butt that "brought a veteran presence to the club"  (which is kinda horse shit in my opinion) to a man that looked like I could out run on any given day.

My last feelings on Baseball (for now) will be about Dave Niehaus. I am originally from the greatish state of Washington and in the spring of 2009 I decided to move to San Antonio, leaving family and friends behind to start a new life in Texas. I have very few things to remind me of home other than the weekly calls to my parents and the random Nirvana fanboy shitting themselves, at first I could only ever see my team when the damned Rangers played on the FSN affiliate but I finally was able to save up enough money to start getting  I was finally able to catch the games from the comfort of my own living room.

fast forward to 2010:

this pretty much sums it all up in one ugly picture, actually I take that back since I couldnt find a gif of rob johnson getting hit in the nuts this is the next best thing. in the middle of the season with the miracle of Cliff Lee out of town and no hope in sight I cancelled my subscription. On November 10th,2010 Dave Niehaus died while just trying to grill up some delicious meat and there goes my chance to ever hear him call Franklin Gutierrez "death to fly. ing things" or hear him scream "MY OH MY" as a ball clearly falls short of being a home run. in Conclusion I would like to send out a big Fuck you to the following people:

Rob Johnson
Ian Snell
Ryan Rowland-Smith
Brandon League
Chone Figgins.

one last thing I will share with you is the greatest call that Dave Niehaus ever made

real talk on J.J. Putz

-madcripple or wheelz or Nick, whatever you want to call me.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Still The Greatest Kirk Gibson World Series Home Run (Yeah, I Said It)


Literally everything you need to know about this site is contained in the URL itself:

It is awesome.  


Vernon Wells and George Bell: undeniably exactly the same except George Bell was a jerk

The green line is Bell.  The orange is Wells.  Each graph represents how good they are at baseball. I'd go into more detail but I'm sorry, it's way too complicated. You probably wouldn't understand. I own a book by Bill James and Moneyball and last year's Baseball Prospectus though so I totally get it. You can look at bigger ones here if you think it might help but it probably won't. In the third graph, the sudden drop-off on George Bell's line indicates when God caused his dick to fall off.


Line-Ups of The Damned: 1978 Houston Astros

July 1 - lost to San Diego Padres at home 9 to 3

July 2 - lost to San Diego Padres at home 6 to 2

July 8 - lost to Los Angeles Dodgers at home 7 to 1

July 13 - lost at Montreal Expos 6 to 0

July 15 - lost at Montreal Expos 8 to 0

July 16 - lost at Montreal Expos 6 to 1

July 21 - lost at Philadelphia Phillies 6 to 1

July 22 - lost at Philadelphia Phillies 8 to 2

July 23 - lost at Philadelphia Phillies 13 to 2

Fritz Feelings

As a red blooded, America loving, non-livestock raping, family man I hate hate HATE the New York Yankees. I am, however, wise enough to give credit where it is due. I was looking up a baseball player named Fritz so I could do a post called Fritz Feelings with the not-so-obvious-to-anyone-with-a-life joke being that it was a takeoff on the name of former Warner Brothers cartoonist Fritz Freleng. Funny thing is, after, oh, say, 1920 it appears people stopped naming their kids "Fritz". The most recent example I could find was a man named Fritz Peterson, who was a lefty starting pitcher for the Yankees, Indians and Rangers from 1966-1976. A quick look at his stats showed that he had some pretty good years and made one All Star team, but that wasn't really all that interesting. So I took a look at his Wiki page, and HOLY BALLS, I was not prepared for what I stumbled upon.
However, he is better remembered today for swapping families with fellow Yankee pitcher Mike Kekich, an arrangement the pair announced at spring training in March 1973. Peterson and Kekich had been inseparable friends since 1969; both families lived in New Jersey, their children were about the same age, and often they all would visit the Bronx Zoo or the shore or enjoy a picnic together. They decided that they would one day trade wives, children, and even dogs.
Excuuuuuse me? How? What? HUH? This is... odd? IT GETS BETTER!

The affair began in 1972, when the two couples joked on a double date about wife swapping, a phenomenon that caught on in some uninhibited circles during the early 1970s. According to one report, the first swap took place that summer, after a party at the home of New York sportswriter Maury Allen.
I see. In case you're curious, they decided to swap wives at a party thrown by this guy:

That's hot. Back to the real story.
The couples made the change official in October; Kekich moving in with Marilyn Peterson and Peterson with Susanne Kekich, but no word leaked out until spring of 1973. A light moment came when New York Yankees General Manager Lee MacPhail remarked, "We may have to call off Family Day." The trade worked out better for Peterson than it did for Kekich, as Peterson is still married to the former Susanne Kekich, with whom he has had four children. Kekich and Marilyn Peterson did not last long.
THE HELL YOU SAY! A marriage built on a night of wife swapping didn't go the distance? Shocking, really. But before you start feeling bad for Mr Kekich, read on.

Peterson's pitching seem to suffer in 1973 and 1974 after this "deal," and he was roundly booed in nearly every American League ballpark afterwards. In April 1974, the Yankees traded him to the Cleveland Indians.
In the event that LeBron James is reading this (and I'm CERTAIN that he is) I have two things to say: 1- We could really use a Marlins writer and 2- If you REALLY want people to hate you, you need to give some serious thought to getting married and then trading wives with a teammate. Might I recommend Mike Miller's wife?

Alas, things haven't all been a bed of roses for the new Mr. and Mrs. Peterson.

Later, Peterson and Susanne Kekich lived outside Chicago, where he worked as a blackjack dealer at a casino.
Although he did eventually accomplish this.
Fritz Peterson released his first book, Mickey Mantle Is Going to Heaven in July 2009. Sports author Maury Allen is quoted as saying, "Fritz's book is even better than Bouton's Ball Four."
So, uh, there is that. So in closing, I'd like to say LICK IT, YANKEES.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Also in case you were wondering, everything else aside, whether or not Vernon Wells owns . . .

"Vernon Wells Reaches Out to Mr. Dork"


An Improtu FanGraphs Chat, Edited and Abridged for Your Edification and Delight

Dave Cameron over at FanGraphs doesn't think the Vernon trade is a particularly good deal from the Angels' perspective. Read the whole thing here, or keep on reading after the jump for much, much more of this.  I've edited this so that what you get here is all Vernon stuff unmix'd with baser matter.  Enjoy!


Dave Cameron: 
I've got a bit of free time, so let's talk about this craziness.
[Comment From Mike] 
As a Jays fan, all I can say is, are you serious?
Dave Cameron: 
Canadians already have their own Thanksgiving celebration, now they get Christmas in January too.
[Comment From Ethan] 
Original opinion on Wells deal?
Dave Cameron: 
What the bleep are the Angels doing?
Dave Cameron: 
For those who haven't seen Shi Davidi's tweet, he's hearing that the Jays may not be covering any of the $84 million that Wells is still owed, by the way. $84 million for 4 years of Vernon Wells.
[Comment From Pickle] 
How can the Angels justify this trade if the rumors are true and the Jaus are sending no money along?
Dave Cameron: 
It's crazy. If that is true, this will go down as one of the worst trades ever. This can't be true.