Saturday, July 03, 2004
If I were commissioner of baseball, I'd put a retractable roof on every ballpark. I'm sick and f***ing tired of rain delays. Of course, there isn't enough money to pull this off. But for "the good of the game", it would be worth it.
The St. Louis Cardinals are a damn good ballclub. 2003 was an abberation, folks. The Cards will be back in the playoffs this season. They have the offense. Their starting pitching has been a pleasant surprise so far. And they have a good bullpen. Before this season, it was the Cubs and Astros being talked about in the Central. But the Cardinals had a very productive offseason. They added Reggie Sanders and Jason Marquis, who have been solid so far.
I still think the Cardinals could use another starter. But I think that they can hold off the Cubs and Astros in the second half. Notice I didn't mention the Brewers and Reds.
The Cardinals are Arkansas' team. Every game is televised here. Generations young and old wear their Redbirds aparrel with pride. Some fans still talk about Game 6 of the 1985 World Series. Bucky Bleeping Dent can't hang with Don Bleeping Denkinger in these parts.
Anyways, the Cardinals are a fun team to watch. I've said here before that I get the opportunity to watch at least 7 teams on a daily basis. The Cards are one of those teams. It's pretty cool to see Albert Pujols and Scott Rolen play everyday, that's for sure.
While I'm a diehard Mariner fan, I'm also a baseball fan. I can appreciate how good Pujols and Rolen are. I hope to see them play in Busch next season. By the way, 2005 is the final season for Busch Stadium, since the Cardinals will be moving into their new ballpark in 2006. Judging by what I've seen, it's going to be a great place.
Happy Fourth of July and be safe out there. I don't want to lose any loyal readers.
I'm not completely in the dark about sports because for some reason I can pick up CFAC 960AM Calgary late at night, which carries ESPN Radio.
With that, I'll launch into some tiny tidbits for what's in the noggin right now.
-- Bleachers Sports Bar and Grill is part of Lava Lanes on the south side of Pilot Butte. Mike is the bartender for nights, and he's a fairly knowledgeable sports dude. Good guy. If you're in Bend, stop by the place. For you pony-pickers out there, there's what basically amounts to an OTB wall, with seven screens showing horse and greyhound races from far corners of the planet. Also, there apparently will be five big screens in the place for the upcoming NFL season, and yes, they do have Sunday Ticket.
-- While at Bleachers last night, I watched the 10p and 11p SportsCenters, which were basically the same exact thing (verbatim, even).
Okay, I guess that's my unadulterated Bleachers plug. Here's my real tidbits...
-- How many times do I have to see Derek Jeter crashing into that seat?
-- the first word that popped into my mind after hearing about Miguel Olivo's kidney stone: Sirotka'd.
-- Dammit, I'm under a minute left for my internet time. I'll post again in a week, y'all!
Friday, July 02, 2004
You might as well play Sixpence None The Richer right now because I'm in baseball hell.
John Bleeping Mabry.
Good luck tomorrow, Mr. Franklin.
However, that time is long gone. It's not groundbreaking news, of course. But after Thursday's events, I just wanted to vomit.
We all know that the Yankees defeated the Red Sox 5-4 in 13 innings and in the process, sweeping their hated rivals. The Yankees are now 8.5 games ahead of Boston in the AL East.
One of the endless segments on this game featured a graphic that said "John Bleeping Flaherty". FOR CHRIST'S SAKE, THIS IS A REGULAR SEASON GAME ON JULY 1, 2004! WE'RE NOT EVEN AT THE F***ING ALL STAR BREAK YET! STFU, BRISTOL!
Flaherty recorded the game-winning single, in case you were wondering.
As for the Red Sox being "out of it" (paraphrasing Scott Van Pelt), there's this thing called the Wild Card. I know Van Pelt meant the division, but the Red Sox are not out of it. IT IS JULY 2! The Red Sox will do whatever it takes to make it to the playoffs. Hell, they have to. They didn't acquire Curt Schilling for nothing.
I'm sick and f***ing tired of this Red Sox-Yankees hype. Save it for the playoffs, if these two teams meet again. That's the only time where I can tolerate it, to a point.
But wait, that's not all...
The Los Angeles Lakers have offered Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski their vacant head coaching job. The worldwide leader has ran segments on Coach K's history at Duke all night it seems like. Well, when the Red Sox-Yankees strokefest needs to take 5.
Here's a couple of reasons why Coach K should just stay in Durham:
Of course, Coach K could be scared to death having to find a way to stop Bremerton's Marvin Williams.
Regardless of whether Coach K stays at Duke or not, the ACC will be won by North Carolina. Something tells me that Roy Williams will finally get that championship monkey off his back.
Bristol has not made me a happy viewer in the past few months. They canceled NHL 2 Night, made Sportscenter an HD circus, and have botched the NBA telecasts big time. And let's not forget the endless episodes of the World Series of Poker.
Well, one thing's for certain here...
I won't be the winner of Dream Job 2.
Thursday, July 01, 2004
Smashmouth sucks and that's all there is to it, OK? Glad we're clear on that.
My 2004 MLB All-Star rosters, including 32nd Man Candidates. Keep in mind that my starters aren't based on what the voting results are. Example: Jason Giambi is not my starting first baseman.
(listed by team; starters in bold)
NEW YORK YANKEES
3B Alex Rodriguez
OF Gary Sheffield
OF Hideki Matsui
SP Javier Vazquez
RP Mariano Rivera
BOSTON RED SOX
1B David Ortiz
OF Manny Ramirez
SP Curt Schilling
RP Keith Foulke
TAMPA BAY DEVIL RAYS
OF Carl Crawford
TORONTO BLUE JAYS
OF Vernon Wells
SS Miguel Tejada
3B Melvin Mora
CHICAGO WHITE SOX
1B Frank Thomas
2B Juan Uribe
SP Freddy Garcia
RP Joe Nathan
C Ivan Rodriguez
SS Carlos Guillen (32nd Man voted by the fans)
C Victor Martinez
SP Jake Westbrook (Tim Hudson's replacement)
KANSAS CITY ROYALS
1B Ken Harvey
2B Alfonso Soriano
SS Michael Young
3B Hank Blalock
RP Francisco Cordero
OF Jermaine Dye
SP Mark Mulder
SP Tim Hudson (may not pitch in ASG)
OF Vladimir Guerrero
RP Francisco Rodriguez
OF Ichiro Suzuki
RP Eddie Guardado
---The "obvious" snub here is Texas starting pitcher Kenny Rogers, who has 10 wins in 2004. But remember, Joe Torre is managing the A.L. squad this year. Don't be surprised if Rogers is selected to the team, but declines the invitation.
Freddy Garcia's record may be below .500, but he deserves to pitch in Houston.
Carlos Guillen is my 32nd Man for the American League.
OF Miguel Cabrera
SP Carl Pavano
RP Armando Benitez
1B Jim Thome
C Johnny Estrada
NEW YORK METS
C Mike Piazza
MONTREAL EXPOS (who don't deserve a candidate)
2B Jose Vidro
ST. LOUIS CARDINALS
1B Albert Pujols
SS Edgar Renteria
3B Scott Rolen
SP Chris Carpenter
3B Aramis Ramirez
OF Moises Alou
SP Carlos Zambrano
RP LaTroy Hawkins
1B Lyle Overbay
1B Sean Casey
OF Ken Griffey, Jr.
OF Adam Dunn
RP Danny Graves
2B Jeff Kent
OF Carlos Beltran
OF Lance Berkman
SP Roger Clemens
SS Jack Wilson
OF Craig Wilson (32nd Man voted by the fans)
SAN FRANCISCO GIANTS
OF Barry Bonds
SP Jason Schmidt
LOS ANGELES DODGERS
RP Eric Gagne
SAN DIEGO PADRES
SP Brian Lawrence
OF Jeromy Burnitz
SP Randy Johnson
---No, I don't have Sammy Sosa on my N.L. All-Star team. I guess Tim Kirkjian will have to leave a nasty comment in the comments box about how I should want to have a NL outfield that would consist of 3 men who have hit 500 home runs. Sorry, no can do. I still haven't forgotten Sosa's cork incident last year.
Jason Schmidt should start for the N.L., but we all know that Roger Clemens will. Besides, I can't wait to see Piazza and Clemens together in Houston. I'll call it, I expect a big home run off of Clemens in the All-Star Game. Who will hit it?
Yup, that's just how I see it. But don't place any bets on this so-called prediction.
Craig Wilson is my 32nd Man for the National League.
--- --- --- --- ---
A.L. 32nd Man Candidates
SS Carlos Guillen, Detroit
OF Lew Ford, Minnesota
OF Jose Guillen, Anaheim
OF Carlos Lee, Chicago
SP Cliff Lee, Cleveland
N.L. 32nd Man Candidates
OF Bobby Abreu, Philadelphia
3B Mike Lowell, Florida
OF Craig Wilson, Pittsburgh
3B Adrian Beltre, Los Angeles
SP Ben Sheets, Milwaukee
--- --- --- --- ---
Discuss amongst yourselves.
THIS TIME, IT'S STILL THE SAME OLD SITUATION. IT DOESN'T COUNT!
Oh, and Don Cherry as well.
Anyways, what a day in Seattle sports, eh? A youth movement at Safeco Field? That doesn't involve Hamtaro videos and foam fingers? YEAH! YEAH!YEEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!
Travis Blackley gets called up to the big show and earns his first Major League victory. Of course, I would have taken him out after 5 innings, to let the kid go out with just one run allowed. But I digress.
The game was not televised in the Seattle area, but I watched it on Fox Sports Southwest in the white walled confines of Southeast Arkansas College. Yes, school in the summertime, school in the summertime! Rangers analyst Tom Grieve is solid, but he sure made himself sound stupid today. He said in the 5th inning that he wasn't impressed with Blackley's stuff, but when Blackley struck out Ken Huckaby, Grieve said that he should just shut up. An analyst with some humor, I love it. Good humor, I might add. It sure beats listening to Dave Henderson and Dave Valle. At least Grieve doesn't add a "y" to everybody's name.
Back to the game...
Blackley went through the Rangers lineup the first time 9 up, 9 down. But he allowed a leadoff Michael Young double in the top of the 4th. Blackley would allow just one run in the fourth, when it could have been worse. He looked very composed out there, which is nice to see from a 21-year old pitcher. Yes, he's only 21.
As far as composure goes, it helps to have some run support. Ask Freddy Garcia if he would have loved to have had the run support Blackley had today. Of course, in his first start with the White Sox Wednesday night, Garcia was drenched with run support, 9 runs to be exact. However, don't expect Garcia's hat to be drenched until next week, when he finally pitches under the hot Chicago sun.
The youth movement doesn't end with Blackley. Jeff's boy Justin Leone was called up today when newly acquired catcher Miguel Olivo was placed on the DL, recovering from a kidney stone. Please God don't let me have a kidney stone. It sounds painful enough just typing the term "kidney stone".
The M's are off to St. Louis for the Fourth of July weekend. During the offseason, I had considered going up to the Gateway City to see the M's, but I'm staying home for the weekend. Oh well, I hope to visit St. Louis next summer, maybe for a Cubs-Cardinals series, who knows?
Not only will I miss out on the Mariners/Cardinals series, I'll also miss out on the free concerts this weekend in downtown St. Louis. I heard that Isaac Hayes and Saliva are performing this weekend in the STL. Damn.
Happy Canada Day and crank up the Rush, Loverboy, Our Lady Peace, Finger Eleven, Gordon Lightfoot, Glass Tiger, or whatever Canadian musician(s) you can think of.
I'll have my 2004 MLB All-Star teams up later on tonight. Or tomorrow. It will be here though.
Wednesday, June 30, 2004
Anyways, to celebrate this meaningless occasion, I have to ramble on.
---If there's one reason why I'll still pay attention to this Mariner ballclub, it's the Mariner pitching staff. If this team can add a bat or two in the offseason, there's no reason why the Mariners can't contend in 2005.
---I prefer not to use the term "rebuilding" when it comes to the Mariners. "Retooling" would be more appropriate. The Mariners can't afford to rebuild. While I'm not expecting it, I can definitely see the Mariners making a run at a big time hitter in the offseason, i.e. Carlos Delgado.
---2004 is over. Please let Miguel Olivo play the majority of the time, Bob Melvin. Let Dan Wilson start when Jamie Moyer is on the mound.
So Olivo didn't have a hit last night. He will be fine. I can honestly say right now that I haven't excited about a Mariner catcher since, well.....NEVER.
---There are many memorable lines in "Dodgeball", but this one has to be my favorite:
Pepper Brooks: If the team forfeits, it will really hurt their chances of winning.
---Stephen Root is in "Dodgeball" as well. He played Milton in "Office Space". Root is simply hysterical.
---I was browsing through the CD racks at FYE yesterday and I couldn't believe what I saw.
Teena Marie, who's best known for her 1980s hits "Lovergirl" and "Lead Me On" (off of the Top Gun soundtrack), has a new album out, "La Dona". I couldn't help but think, "this is Teena Marie in 2004"? Damn.
Maybe Teena Marie is trying to capitalize on her boy toy Rick James' "success" earlier in the year. One thing's for sure, I wouldn't give Marie's rack 2 thumbs down.
---I haven't picked up Rush's new cover album "Feedback" yet, but it's worth buying if only for their version of "Summertime Blues". I could only imagine what "Summertime Blues" would have sounded like if Rush had performed it in the late 1970s.
---The unrated version of "Bad Santa" is a winner.
Named "Badder Santa", the unrated version is the Christmas movie I've always wanted to see. Billy Bob Thornton is hysterical. There's so much vulgarity in "Badder Santa" that you definitely don't want to play this in front of the little ones at Christmas time, or anytime for that matter.
Lauren Graham is simply underrated. What do we have to do to get her to pull a Diane Lane and star in a movie like "Unfaithful", but better? Sure, it wouldn't make the Gilmore Girls fans too happy, but who gives a damn? Make this happen.
---Will Ferrell's "Elf" won't be released until November. Damn.
---"Anchorman" looks hideously funny.
---Did I just say "hideously funny"?
---If Derek Jeter or Nomar Garciaparra starts for the American League at shortstop in the All-Star Game, then the fan vote has reached a new low.
---Can you say "Carlos Guillen 32nd Man"?
---This little "every team must have a representative" rule is ridiculous. Name one Montreal Expo that deserves to be in the All-Star Game. I sure as hell can't name one.
---"Spider-Man 2" opens up today. Yay.
--- --- --- --- ---
Kenny Rogers. Clint Nageotte. Tonight. 9 p.m. Central.
Tuesday, June 29, 2004
He struck out Jeff Cirillo in the top of the 8th inning, giving him 8 K's on the night in Arizona. However, the Padres are leading the Diamondbacks 3-1.
Nolan Ryan 5714
Roger Clemens 4200
Steve Carlton 4136
Randy Johnson 4000
Oh, but I thought his back was bad. Right Chuck???
Two words that I can use to describe this movie:
They're the ESPN 8 announcing crew. THE OCHO! Gary Cole and Jason Bateman should fly up to Seattle ASAP and lock Rick Rizzs and Dave Henderson in the Safeco Field boiler room. You can't tell me that Cotton McKnight and Pepper Brooks wouldn't be great to listen to right now.
Hell, I'd love to hear Bateman's take on the 2004 Mariners:
Cotton: "And Ichiro grounds out on the first damn pitch to end the inning."
Pepper: "Well, when you ground out to end the inning, you can't score."
Monday, June 28, 2004
Jolbert Cabrera is in the 3-hole tonight.
That is all.
Sunday, June 27, 2004
But almost 6 years later, I know who Freddy Garcia is.
He's a good pitcher. A damn good pitcher who should do just fine in Chicago.
Garcia was 76-50 in his 5+ seasons with the Mariners. He represented the Mariners in the All-Star Game twice (2001-2002) and earned the winning decision in the 2001 game in Safeco Field. In 2001, when the Mariners won 116 games, Garcia won 18 games and led the American League in ERA (3.05).
Sure, Garcia struggled from the 2002 All-Star Break up until most of the 2003 season. But I'm not going to bring that can out tonight. Garcia has pitched as well as can be expected to in 2004. Unfortunately, the inept Mariner offense hasn't done much for him. He's 4-7 right now with an ERA of 3.20. As far as I'm concerned, he deserves to be in the All-Star Game July 13 in Houston.
It is too bad that the Mariners front office and Garcia couldn't work out a deal. But that's over and done with now. It's time to look to the future. And I'll say this, I feel better about the future now than I did 5 hours ago.
Bill Bavasi deserves some credit here. This is a good deal for the Mariners. Miguel Olivo should be the Mariners everyday catcher immediately. If his problem is gamecalling, I think Mr. Nice Guy Dan Wilson can help him out there. Jeremy Reed was the minor league player of the year in 2003 and Michael Morse will certainly be an interesting player to watch down on the farm.
In the midst of all of this, the Mariners lost 5-1 to the Padres. Jeff Cirillo hit a 3-run home run off of Jamie Moyer in the 2nd inning.
The first place Texas Rangers come to Seattle for four games starting Monday night. Monday's ballgame is nationally televised on ESPN2. And since it's Texas, I get 3 out of the 4 games on Fox Sports Southwest.
Should be fun.
So should the Olivo/Reed Era.
I knew that Reed was being talked about in a possible deal for Garcia. But man, the M's get Miguel Olvio too? I'll be damned.
If there's ONE good thing about this deal, here it is:
THIS IS THE END OF THE DAN WILSON ERA!!!
NOW YOU CAN PUT IT ON THE BOARD, YES!!!
(Olivo went yard today against the Cubs. I love it!)
However, it was for the PADRES. And it was a 3-run shot. Off of Jamie Moyer.
Now I feel proud to own a Jeff Cirillo autographed baseball.
If there is a 2004-2005 season, this could be an interesting battle between Lalime and Chris Osgood for the top slot in net for St. Louis. I'm not sure of Osgood's contract situation. But even with Lalime's Game 7 performance in the first round against Toronto this past season, I'd start him over Osgood.
The Senators are reportedly interested in going after Dominek Hasek.
One word, Sens fans: