Thursday, April 17, 2014

Ruben Amaro on the subtleties of roster construction

Ruben: "Where is it written that a baseball team has to have a bullpen? Why not have our starters throw 128 pitches in meaningless April games? Lee wanted to stay in the game. That's good enough for me!"

Of course it was Ryne Sandberg who left Cliff Lee in last night's loss to the Braves, not RAJ. But the speculation on not really needing a pen seems apt, since the Fightins don't have one.

What is it with managers and veteran pitchers, anyway? If one of these oldheads wants to stay in a game, as many pitches as he may have thrown, and no matter how unimportant the game, the manager (undermining his own authority?) will do it. Why? It's not like there's some carryover effect, in which we are now guaranteed a kickass performance the next time Cliff pitches.

"He's earned it" is the usual rationale. Well, no. There's too much emotion in the mix for it to be the pitcher's call.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Chase Utley wants to be your best man

It'll cost you $450 to propose to your beloved at a Phillies' game this year. Considering the quality of the team (yes, Ruben, major league clubs really do need bullpens), there are probably better venues in which to pop the question. Jack in the Box comes to mind.
In any case, should you be determined to risk rejection of all your life's hopes in front of 30,000 strangers, I'd suggest that for $450 Chase Utley should agree to be your best man, Larry Andersen should offer toasts at the reception, and new TV announcer and solid citizen Jamie Moyer should agree to be godfather of any children issuing from the union.
For another $4000, I understand Chase will agree to be father of your kids (with your wife's written consent, which should be easy to obtain), so your lil sluggers have a better shot at MLB careers. Hell of a return on your investment if it works out. 
The most expensive ballpark for proposing is, not surprisingly, Dodger Stadium, where it'll run you $2500. No verification on rumor that this includes a lap dance with Tommy Lasorda (sorry).

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Curl this!

Let's see if I've got this straight-curling is now an established Winter Olympics sport. 

Curling is semi-popular in Canada, a country with few entertainment options, and one about as populous as California. It does have its adherents in Scotland, its "country" of origin. Basically, though, curling is not a sport with a big world-wide fan base. 

Baseball is popular in the US, Canada, Mexico, much of the Caribbean (the Spanish speaking part), Japan, S Korea, Taiwan, and Venezuela; and has an increasing presence in Australia, Brazil, and much of Europe. But baseball is no longer a Summer Olympics sport. Why?

UPDATE: I posted this on Facebook and got a snotty response from a Scottish guy, who asked me why the World Series only includes North American teams.  Well, a curling world series might have somewhat limited appeal. But you could have teams from Canada and Scotland. Woo-hoo.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Darwin and the Mets fan

Have finally figured out how the evolution of man came to pass. First there were small mammals, like chipmunks and moles. Then there were somewhat larger, somewhat more intelligent mammals, such as foxes and wolves. All was good.

Then, tragically, evolution hit a rut, and the Mets fan came to occupy dark corners of the northeastern US. The collective IQ of the world fell precipitously, and weeping and gnashing of teeth were heard everywhere. But God, in His mercy, soon prompted a resumption of evolutionary progress, and Modern Man, with a soul and an intellect, arose.

The Mets fans booed him, of course.