Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!!!

(Guess which one is mine.)

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Congratulations Phillies, Your 2008 World Series Champions

Congratulations to the Philadelphia Phillies. They had a great season and played a great series. Also, congratulations to their fans -- it's been a long time since they could celebrate. I bet it's a huge party in that city tonight.

Also, congratulations to the Rays and their fans, especially the fans that have been with them from the beginning. It probably stinks right now, but it was a great season. They should be very proud.

And now I'm bummed that another season is over. And it doesn't promise to be an interesting off-season, at least as far as the Twins are concerned. Only 3 1/2 months until pitchers and catchers report.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Bottom of the Sixth...

PHILADELPHIA -- Game 5 of the World Series was suspended Monday for violating Major League Baseball's weather policy. The Game did not appeal the ruling and served its one-day suspension on Tuesday. However, if the weather policy issue is not resolved by Wednesday, another suspension may be issued. Commissioner Bud Selig said, "[we] will continue to monitor the weather on an hourly basis." This is the first suspension in World Series history.

The Three Umpires (Bottom of the Sixth) Norman Rockwell painting "The Three Umpires (Bottom of the Sixth)" Source


A few random notes about the World Series thus far:
  • I want to be Jeannie Zelasko -- she has great hair and gets paid tons of money to talk about baseball. Neither of these things are true about me. However, if I were her, I'd dial back on the shouting.
  • The umpires really need to step up their game a bit -- quite a bit.
  • Tim McCarver really needs to stop bitching about the umpiring. Actually, Tim McCarver really needs to come down with severe laryngitis and stop talking altogether.
  • I totally forgot to pick up my free taco from Taco Bell today for their "Steal a Base, Steal a Taco" promotion. Bummer -- oh well, thanks to Jason Bartlett for stealing that base anyway. I hope everyone who got one enjoyed it. Heck, I hope Jason Bartlett went to Taco Bell today and got one too, seeing as how he didn't have anything else going on today.
  • Go Rays!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Round 2 - Check (Finally!)

Everyone who knows I'm a baseball fan greeted me this morning with, "So, how 'bout them Rays?" I think everyone is excited that they won. Boston sure made it an interesting series -- the Sox hung tough until the end, but I think that just prepared the Rays even more. I'm just glad the Rays won, because I don't think I would have watched the World Series if Boston was in it; that would've been boring.

Garza was absolutely brilliant Sunday night. He sure seems to be a different pitcher than he was with the Twins. He seems tougher, more poised, and more comfortable. It's good to see him doing well.

It was also fun watching David Price close the game. I was saying all my "Joe Nathan good luck" sayings to him, and it worked. I was really surprised to learn that he made his major league debut like a month ago. His motto should be, "Experience? I don't need no stinking experience?"
So now we get to watch the World Series on Fox. Yipee. All the Joe Buck and Tim McCarver I can handle. Actually, Joe Buck isn't so bad; he's just a little dry. But Tim McCarver drives me nuts. Everything he says either a) is complete nonsense, or b) is blatantly obvious. In fact, there are times I'm certain I can hear Buck rolling his eyes at something McCarver is blathering on about. I would really like to turn down the sound on the TV and just listen to the Rays' radio guys, but streaming radio off the Internet has at least a 20-second delay, so that won't work. Oh well, I'll try to not let it bother me too much.
Speaking of announcers, did anyone else think Ron Darling sounded exactly like James Woods?
So I hope this will be a good Series. It'll be interesting to see if the Phillies cooled off after such a long time off, or if the time allowed them to get rested; if the Rays can carry their momentum, or if they'll wind down. I'm looking forward to it.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Because This One Didn't End When it Should Have...

I've got some playoff thoughts before we're done with the second round...

Don't these playoff games take f...o...r...e...v...e...r...? A regular season game that started at about 7 pm almost always finished up in time to watch the 10 o'clock news. Now they don't end until well after 11. A couple days ago, Patrick Reusse wrote that the game has really slowed down over the last few years. He mentions a smaller strike zone, dilly-dallying of the batters, and game-calling from the bench as reasons he believes games take longer than they used to. Point taken, but all those things were happening during the regular season too. Besides, I thought MLB was enforcing some ridiculous "speed up" rules to help keep the games from getting out of hand. So, in this year where our team gets fined because one of the players took twelve seconds too long to step into the batter's box, what possibly could be causing these playoff games to drag on, hmmmm? Could it be...commercials? So, MLB really wants to speed up the game, just so long as there aren't networks demanding more time for their announcers to blah-blah-blah.
Ok, so exactly when did Matt Stairs become a Phillie? Seriously, when he stepped into the batter's box during Game 4, I could've swore he was still a Blue Jay. Ok, so he was traded on Aug. 29th for some prospects. Way to make your presence known there, Matt.
I have developed a new baseball crush this postseason: the Rays' radio announcers. Seriously. Nothing against our own Gordo and Dazzle, but I really like listening to these guys-- they seem friendly and somewhat knowledgeable. They have nice voices and seem genuinely happy that the Rays are doing well. But my favorite part is that they call all the players by their first names, "Aki singles to left. B.J. homered seventeen times this series. That's Carl's fifth stolen base..." You get the idea. Unfortunately, after more than five minutes of googling, I still can't find their names.
Speaking of the Rays, I'm watching Game 5 as I write this. Please excuse me while I take care of something for just a moment...

*Ahem* Hello? Rays? Um, guys? Do NOT let this get away from you!!! *Sigh*

Oh, and to the TBS announcers: I'm pretty sure that the Red Sox are fully aware that you're kissing their @sses, so you can go ahead and dial back the crazy man-love, mmmkay?
I'm totally carving my pumpkin like one of these for Halloween this year:

Here are the stencils. If I were really interested in frightening people, though, I'd use Evil White Sox stencils, but I like to run a friendly trick-or-treat stop.
Regarding this Game 5: CRAPPOLA!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Red, Rumor, Champagne, Hate, and Hockey

I feel like blogging today, but I don't really have anything original to say. So I'll just comment on other people's material. Yeah, it's lazy. You got a problem with that? No? Good.

Twins pick up Redmond’s option -- Let me just say "Yay!" Ok, so this was a no-brainer. He's a great back-up catcher, and there really isn't anyone else who can step in and fill that spot. Plus he's fairly cheap and it really seems like he wants to be here. He seems like a great teammate and an all-around great guy. I'm especially pleased that the organization didn't drag its feet and wait until the last minute to pull the trigger. I imagine he's pleased by that too.


Twins dealing Delmon Young or Michael Cuddyer (rumor) -- Ok, before the Twins do this (the tidbit also mentions adding a starting pitcher in the trade package), they had better clear it with me first. I don't mind if they trade Delmon, if they can get somebody (or sombodies) good, but I will not allow them to trade my boyfriend. Period. And the only starting pitcher I'm willing to part with is Glen Perkins, and I still wouldn't be thrilled about it. (Yes, I am considering the source of this rumor, so I won't really worry about it too much.)


Baseball is overserved from champagne celebrations -- I agree. How special is the champagne celebation after winning the World Series if you've already had four in the last month or so. I mean, doesn't it get old after the first two? I propose that only two be allowed -- after clinching a playoff berth (because that's why they play the 162 games), and after winning the World Series (because that's why they play at all). In between, they should just celebrate with some nice hors d'oeuvres and an ice cream social. Or maybe even chocolate covered strawberries.


In the comments section of this nicely done LCS Preview, the folks over at Alright Hamilton! are having fun opining on who they hate worse, the Yankees or the White Sox. Oooh, good question. I hate them both. I hate Yankees because, as a fan of a small market team, I have an obligation to hate them. Really, I hate the attitude that their ownership (and many of their fans) has that they deserve to win because they have "money" and "tradition" and other such B.S. They're like that rich a-hole in high school who looked down his nose at everyone and who everyone followed hoping to be popular by osmosis. But, as a team of players, I respect them. I don't like them, but I do respect them.

On the other hand, I just plain hate the White Sox. And there's more to it than the fact that I'm still bitter*. They're a bunch a whining babies (A.J., Buerhle, Jenks, for example). Their manager doesn't even like them very much -- if he did, he wouldn't be complimenting the Twins so much. But the big thing is that they and their fans hate the Twins right back (well, except Ozzie -- he wuvs the Twins). They're like the kid in high school who is a jerk to everyone but can't figure out why nobody likes him. Oh, and that whole "black out" thing -- didn't they steal that from some college football team?

*Yes, I'm still bitter. And if you're thinking, "what are you? 12? Get over it." I say, "when it comes to the Evil Ugly White Sox, yes, I'm 12. Actually 11 1/2. And no, I'm not getting over it. So there."


And on a non-baseball note, this is for my bud Duch, who is looking forward to Saturday night:

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Round One - Check

Well, I pooched the first round rooting, didn't I? But I got the important one right, so I'm happy.

Some tidbits from the first round:

  • When I was listening to the Milwaukee radio feed, I learned that Bob Ueker really, really likes sausage with chipotle mustard.
  • Could the Cubs have rolled over and played dead any more convincingly?
  • I find it interesting that the teams with the best records are out so soon. I guess this year proves the cliche that it's not who's good, but who's hot.
  • It was admirable, if not pathetic, how Harold Reynolds tried so hard to find good things to say about the Evil Ugly team during the games, but once the final one was done, he pretty much admitted that they sucked.
  • I'm really, really, really, really, really, really, really, really, really, really, really, really (you get the idea) happy that the Rays celebrated in the Cell. Ha! (Yes, I'm still bitter. Sue me.)

And now the next round predictions:

PHI - LAD: I'll take the Phillies because I think it's a better team. But I think it would be funny if the Dodgers won just so Joe Torre could stick it to the Yankees.

BOS - TB: Ok, so EVERYONE outside "the Nation" is rooting for the plucky Rays, but I honestly think they have a decent chance to win. They've proven they can beat the Red Sox (.500 record against them), and they beat them late in the season, so they're hot, right?

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

On the Mend

Ok, so I'm almost back to normal. So mooooving on...

I love the playoffs. And this year, they're even more fun for me than they've been in a while. Usually I don't have a real emotional interest; I just watch for the good baseball. This year is different, but more on that later.

Effective use of the whiteboard in my cubicle, don't you think? Notice the name of the team that's playing TB? (I may be feeling better, but that doesn't mean I don't get to be bitter).

My opinion of the teams in the playoffs:

MIL - I'm rooting for the Brewers because mini-bro's buddy s-man is a Brewers fan, and he's such a cool kid, I'm going with that.
PHI - Doesn't J.C. Romero still pitch for them?

LAD - The Yankees don't get into the playoffs, but Joe Torre does. Hmm.
CHC - Ok, it's fashionable to root for the Cubbies, and I rarely do anything fashionable, but I'm going with them anyways. Only because of the 100 year thing. In fact, I remember reading an SI article like three or four years ago predicting that they'd win it in '08. So I want to see if they do it. But, if they do win it all, what on earth would Cubs fans do if they can't whine about the curse.

BOS - Aren't we all tired of them yet?
LAA - I'm rooting for Torii.

EUCWS - I'm still bitter. 'Nuf said.
TB - I was going to root for them regardless of their opponent (except the Twins, but don't remind me). I'm rooting for Barty and Garza. I'm rooting for the whole "no one expected it" thing. I'm happy because their getting in prevented the Yankees from getting in.

So, that whole emotional interest thing should be easy to figure out. I really, really, really, want the Rays to win. Almost as if they were the Twins themselves. And I'd be especially satisfied if a Rays baserunner runs home and absolutely flattens A.J. on a play at the plate. Think Torii plowing over Jamie Burke, a EUCWS at the time.

Go Rays!