Results tagged ‘ Chris Carpenter ’

No Words Necessary

You’re welcome.

Peace,

Jeff

Striking Conversation (or the Labor Day Hangova)

Allen in hat close up.jpgLeave it to my pessimistic and oft paralyzing misanthrope of a colleague, Mr. Krause, to dampen everyone’s Labor Day spirit by mentioning those two words most feared by fans of our national pastime: Baseball Strike.

Chris Carpenter pitched a one-hit, complete game shut out against the Brewers to further solidify the Cardinals’ grips on the NL Central crown and Al wants to talk about a potential baseball strike!?!  This malicious posturing is akin to sleeping with your crazy ex-girlfriend on the eve of your wedding. 

Why screw with pain?

Yet Mr. Krause has made a lofty name for himself by dropping unfounded speculation.  So we’ll just go with it.

And by go with it I mean briefly say that given the collusion and vindictive-laden history of Major League Baseball and its owners, the Player’s Union has got to have the right to strike as a last (albeit catastrophic) resort.  While the horrors of the impetuous strike of 1994 continue to wreak havoc on the game (disillusion among fans, PED scandals, destruction of small market teams, etc), the Union would be absolutely insane to go so far again.

But still, the choice must be there for them to have any leverage.

As great as baseball is, it is not responsible for governing a people.  It is not responsible for policing our streets, putting out fires, getting people to work.  If they wanna strike, they should be able to do so… then watch as our interest in the English Premier League collectively jumps to dramatic new heights.

If it ever came to that — baseball taking itself for granted… again – then I think we all know how serious the alcoholism epidemic will become among Major Leaguers.  I know this because my Labor Day (just one day without work) looked a lot like this:

Tosh.0 Returns Oct. 8th
Alcohol Mash-Up
www.comedycentral.com
http://media.mtvnservices.com/mgid:cms:item:comedycentral.com:240420
Daniel Tosh Miss Teen South Carolina Demi Moore Picture

Now imagine 750 out-of-work Sidney Ponsons running through the streets of our nation and tell me the Players Union doesn’t know better.

Hate me ‘cuz I walk the walk, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.

Peace,

Jeff

*Cap tip to Tosh.0 on the video.

Identity Crisis

question_mark.jpgListen up, Major League Baseball.  I love you.  I really do; and sometimes being in love means having to bring you back down to earth, to be horribly blunt and to shower you with lots of smack (the slang, not the drug, though sometimes the drug seems like a better option in extreme cases, like when you overflow my inbox with crap I don’t want and never asked for).

MLB, you are not the NFL.  You are not the NBA.  You are MLB.

So while I commend you for trying to drum up interest in something — the first year player draft — that is, on the surface, boring and otherwise three to four years removed (if that) from the current game, I must ask you to please snap out of it

For the record, I do not care about the NFL and NBA drafts either, but I can certainly see why people do.  If you are a basketball and/or football fan, you have seen the potential draftees come up through the highly competitive elite forces of the NCAA.  Bowl games are slammed down your throat.  March Madness is so mad that it doesn’t end until April.  You know the players.  You’ve seen their talents.  You hope your pro team gets a shot at their services.

In contrast, the potential baseball draftees are as familiar to us fans as is a logical, amicable, non-infuriating Ann Coulter.  In the NFL and NBA, if you get drafted, your chances of seeing playing time at the top are almost a given, while most of the guys drafted in the MLB draft will never put on a big league uniform.  Sure, your Griffeys, A-Rods and Verlanders — guys who go in the first round or two — will most likely make it; but the majority of the rest will wallow away in the minor leagues, battle disillusionment, come to grips with not being good enough and before you know it they’re faxing TPS reports behind a desk while reading RSBS for giggles.

So as MLB pats itself on its self-aggrandizing back about televising this overblown shindig so they can sell lots of advertising to companies gullible enough to think that it will actually rival that of its football and basketball brethren, you can be sure that I will be spending my time wisely.  Dear readers, I advise you to do the same; and just in case you can’t think of anything better to do, here are some suggestions:

  • Remember, question and lament the hype of Pete Incaviglia
  • Write hate-mail to Rush Limbaugh and sign it “Jesus”
  • Clone Chris Carpenter
  • Come up with clever gimmicks to sell your new religion start-up (worked for me!)
  • Or, God forbid, watch an actual Major League Baseball game with real-life Major Leaguers

pete incaviglia.jpgIndeed, that is but a short list of things I will be doing instead of watching your draft, MLB.  I will not be listening to Harold Reynolds start every sentence with “Now, here’s a guy…” nor will I sing praises of your precious college phenom Stephen Strasburg when he is — as you already told me he would be — drafted in the first round.  I’ll wait until he collects the league minimum $400K for that.

I know a poser when I see one and it is because I love you, MLB, that I have to call you one to your face.  Go ahead and hate me ‘cuz I’m critical of your identity crisis, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.

Peace,

Jeff

One Down, 29 More Blown Saves to Go…

jason motte.jpg…and that’s only if the 2009 lackluster beer-league softball team of a Cardinals bullpen wants to equal last year’s pathetic mark.

And let me tell ya, folks, they’re well on their way.

For if Opening Day is any indication as to what we Cardinal fans can expect this season, we are in for a long, painful, vomit-inducing ride.

In fact, I’m still cleaning up the mess I made yesterday.

Thank you, Jason Motte.

But more thanks to you, John Mozeliak, our miserly GM who spent the entire off-season ignoring the Cardinals’ biggest problem: the gaudy, bloody mess of a metastasizing bullpen.

Sure, having a healthy, strong, productive Adam Wainwright and Chris Carpenter in the rotation is great and all.  And yes, we will take a lot of leads into the sixth inning; but unless we find a way to get Albert Pujols on the bump for the 7th, 8th and 9th, we are in line to fall apart every single night like Amy Winehouse at an open bar mixer.

puking-pumpkin.jpgIn both cases, the result will be the same: lots and lots of puking.

And though I am impressed with Jason Motte’s blazing fastball, it’s not really all that impressive when that’s all he throws (that slider that doesn’t slide doesn’t count).  I’m sure Jack Wilson was thinking the same thing when he sat back and ripped that game-winner.

Dear readers, if running a baseball organization was a democracy, the revolution would have long been over by now; and the ominous, towering, domineering statue of John Mozeliak would be lying in ruins.

Don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.

Peace,

Jeffy

The Filibuster

The Cubs, Cards and Brewers have turned the NL Central into a dogfight. With
Chicago and Milwaukee making big moves to bring in high caliber pitching,
St. Louis seems to be the odd man out at this point. What moves if any do
you think the Cards will make and which team (or teams) will emerge from the
dust in September?

– Allen

                                                                                      

jesus_cubs.jpgAllow me to begin by sending out a great big RSBS EAT IT! to all the critics and analysts who said the NL Central would be the worst division in baseball prior to the season’s start.  On the contrary, the Central has turned out to be one of the better, more exciting divisions to watch.  Of course, with the NY/LA obsessed media still dictating what is and isn’t entertaining to the mass of US Americans, this competitive division will probably still remain out of the spotlight.  This is a downright shame — not as shameful as the existing snoozefest otherwise known as the NL West — but still, it’s a shame.

And as Mr. Krause points out, the NL Central has gotten a whole lot better in recent weeks.  But while the Brewers and Cubs went out and made heavy hitting deals for C.C. Sabathia (with periods on my watch) and Rich Harden respectively, it appears that the Cardinals front office really is sitting back — waiting for some divine intervention deus ex machina style.

Or are they?

Long gone are the Walt Jocketty days of going out and getting a guy to win now.  No more Larry Walker or Will Clark-esque deals will be happening under John Mozeliak’s rule — that much was already made clear in the offseason when the Brewers, Cubs and Astros all went out and spent a lot of money to get better, thus leaving the Redbirds (and their fans) questioning the sincerity of Mozeliak’s commitment to now.  To say that Mozeliak doesn’t want to win is unfair; I believe he does, but I also think his methods are unrealistic when considering our competition and their subsequent open pocketbooks.

Mozeliak and the Cardinals’ brass have been saying that the mid-season reactivation of Mark Mulder and Chris Carpenter would be their “big move” before the trade deadline.  Well, the first part of that plan has already proved a bigger bust than the Billary Clinton campaign’s postponing cession from the primaries because  “…Bobby Kennedy was assassinated in June in California.”  So let’s not count on Mark Mulder’s bum arm/shoulder to be anything other than what it is: a bum arm/shoulder. 

chris.carpenter.jpgAnd while Chris Carpenter could be that mentally motivating savior in the clubhouse who simultaneously goes on a hot streak of domination, what if he’s not?  What if he goes back on the DL?  It’s very possible, folks.  The guy hasn’t pitched a big league game since opening day of 2007 and while his presence was definitely missed last year, it  really hasn’t been missed that much this season.  The St. Louis hodgepodge rotation of Wainwright (when healthy), Lohse, Looper, Wellemeyer, Pineiro and Brad Thompson have done quite well for themselves.  The Cardinals’ Achilles heal isn’t starting pitching.

Nor is it protecting Albert, though many people would like us to believe that.  Rumors are afloat that the Cardinals could make a big, colossal, GINORMOUS deal for Matt Holliday.  Really?  Is that what St. Louis needs?  Another big, expensive bat who we won’t be able to afford after 2009?  No.  Ryan Ludwick, Rick Ankiel and Troy Glaus, as far under the radar as they are, have been doing a good job of protecting A.P.

What the Cardinals really need is a reliever who can throw anything other than lollygaggin’ batting practice fastballs late in a game.  And they are out there: Damaso Marte, George Sherrill, Brian Fuentes.  One of those guys better be wearing the birds on the bat before July 31st or I may drink myself into delirium from anguish.  In recent weeks, watching the last three innings of a Cardinal game has become as uncomfortable as this:

And no one wants to suffer like that — not even John McCain, which is why he hasn’t taken a liking to the moniker: MC CAIN.  Too bad for him… and liberals abound.

ann coulter.jpgSo who will be at the top of the Central once it is all said in done?  Hell if I know.  If I did, I wouldn’t be watching the games so intently, or care.  But thanks for asking, Mr. Krause.  If you remember correctly, I did predict the Brewers would win the Central while secretly hoping the Cards would at least have a wild card bid.  The second half of that may be true still, but those Cubbies are awfully tough, which is exactly why I’ll be so happy to see them crumble towards the end of the year (if my deal with the devil works out the way it’s supposed to).

On the flipside, in the American League Central, I hear that Jimmy Leyland is so upset, distraught, and bothered by the lack of urgency in his team (particularly the pitching staff) that he is exploring new avenues of work.  In his preparation, he sent me this official press photo that he hopes will ignite interest:

jim.leyland.jpgUh, yeah.  No.  Sorry, Jimmy.  You might want to stick with managing crappy, overpaid, underachieving baseball teams in Detroit. 

And don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.

Peace,

Jeffy

The Filibuster

At the midway point in the season, it seems like every week we hear
about another marquee name that has landed on the DL. Which of these
injuries will turn out to be most significant to their team and who do
you think will go down next?

– Allen

                                                                                       

Okay, Al.  I see what you’re doing.  You’re trying to sound smart again — like you actually know what you’re talking about.  That’s fine.  Let me remind you that Red State Blue State is read by many an intelligent person (and some not so intelligent – see urinal diving at Wrigley).  This means that every once in a while you have to try a little harder, go the extra proverbial mile or dare I say: write something.

Now that that is off my chest, I will indulge you with an answer…

People get hurt.  It’s part of the game.  You know this.  The better teams rise above injuries and continue to play well despite the setbacks.  The Red Sox have been doing this without David Ortiz.  The Cardinals have been doing this without Chris Carpenter.  The Cubs have been doing this without Alfonso Soriano.  Obviously, having a star player out with an injury cannot help any team; but I think it’s safe to say that all the teams that are in contention will not be devastated by an injury of one person alone, at least, not yet as we’re only halfway there. 

Will the Mariners suffer without J.J. Putz?  Maybe.  But guess what, they’ve been suffering all season long, so life without Putz can’t be much worse than life with him.  Will the Indians have difficulties without Victor Martinez in the lineup?  Perhaps.  But once again, the Indians have been su<king with Martinez, so losing him won’t make them much worse.  In some cases, an injured player is better than a healthy one.  Take the Tigers’ Dontrelle Willis for example.  The guy is worth much more to his team hurt (and out of the lineup) since when healthy he wasn’t able to find the strike zone with Google Maps and a Smart Bomb.  Willis was hurting the Tigers every fifth day by walking 5, 6, 7, 8 guys a game!

dontrelle_willis.jpgMy question is this: at this point, who really cares if the Mariners, Indians, Tigers, Pirates ad nauseum do suffer “key” injuries?  None of these teams have a shot at contention in the first place, so it shouldn’t be that big of an issue.

The better teams are good with their stars.  The best teams survive without them. 

…who do you think will go down next?

In this particular case, Al, it’s not just one person who is “going down” next; it’s an entire people and their dreams.  I realize that the suburbanites of Detroit are just now waking up from their Hockeytown heroics — hung over and cotton-mouthed — realizing that their baseball team is still an absolute joke.  Sure, they had a good stretch there a couple weeks ago, but the standings don’t lie and they have so far to go now that it just seems too daunting a task.  And all those injuries… whoo wee.  How on earth could they ever come back from that?

They won’t.

I’m here to tell you that they won’t, folks.

Make plans for October, Tiger fans, ‘cuz you’re going to have a lot of free time.

In fact, why don’t you just settle down for another painful football season full of Matt Millen, Matt Millen and Matt Millen.

Of course, humble MLBlogger that I am, I must admit that I’m writing this drunk with sorrow from the ill-fated weekend had by Cardinal fans worldwide.  I’m sitting here watching my inbox blow up with what I’m sure are rampant evil expletives from the equally drunk (with alcohol) Cub fan base that can’t seem to leave me alone.  As I attempt to mend my feelings and my dopamine levels, I promise more will follow soon.  I lost a bet or two that will surely embarrass me tomorrow and I’m sure you’ll all want to revel in that.

In the meantime, do me a favor and don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.

Peace,

Jeffy

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