Results tagged ‘ Curtis Granderson ’

Spring Awakenings

The birdsongs and pollen currently filling the air in our nation’s capitol have led to the unleashing of a slightly more nefarious force as well. That’s right, as spring slowly turns into summer Dick Cheney has emerged from his sarcophagus (conveniently designed to look like a man-sized safe) and taken to the airwaves. His reason? Newly minted President Obama is making the US less safe.

Now, I love Dick, Cheney that is, as much as the next guy but this is a little out of control. Guy won’t talk to anyone for 8 years, even goes so far as to have his residence removed from Google maps, but now he’s showing up on every news program between here and Utah. What gives?

Listening to Cheney’s arguments is like a less funny version of this:

But, on the bright side, he gets it about as right as the Cleveland announcer on Friday night who called Sizemore’s shot gone. Oops.


The Filibuster

Obviously this week’s headlines have been dominated by the Manny Ramirez saga.  It now appears that his people are trying to persuade the public that his positive test was rooted in medication he was taking for “personal health issues” (translation: erectile dysfunction), even though science tells us HCG is a drug predominantly used by men coming off steroid cycles.  My question to you is this: if a man makes $25 million a year, what difference does it make if the plumbing works or not?


jeff lung.jpgOnly a few things in life are more emasculating than needing “performance enhancing drugs” in the bedroom. For instance, wearing a pinky ring and owning a Microsoft Zune. Seriously man, all you need is a Zima in your other hand and you’d have the trifecta. Getting back to the point, though, if Manny is telling the truth and he was prescribed HCG for that reason, it makes sense that he would have tried to keep it on the DL. I mean, if you’re watching baseball one day and decide that Cialis is right for you, you probably aren’t going to keep that bottle of prescription pills in the medicine cabinet next to the Benadryl and Preparation H.

The problem with this new Manny saga is that it’s hard to know what he is thinking. Or if he is thinking. The man is an enigma, a mystery wrapped in a riddle. Could he be telling the truth? Of course. Could he have been knowingly juicing and covering it up? Of course. It’s not like A-Rod where momentary disbelief gave way to “Yeah, he’s kind of a d!ck and that doesn’t really surprise me.”

manny_being_manny.jpgBut, to go back to your original question, does an immodest amount of money make up for impotence, I think the answer is pretty clear when you consider that the treatment of ED has become a multi-billion dollar industry. Clearly there’s a need, manufactured or not, and clearly corporations are doing all they can to market to that need. When Mike Ditka schills for you on national television, you have obviously filled a very specific niche.

However, I think the more important question is, what does this new revelation do to the game of baseball? And at this point, I think it’s difficult to know. For me, it doesn’t really have much of an affect. Manny’s enigmatic personality allows me to put off making hard decisions like that. Obviously he shouldn’t have been taking a banned substance but, like he said, he’s also passed 15 drug tests over the past few years. Is it really possible that every single one of them could have missed something this big?

Baseball has been suffering since the A-Rod story broke. And Manny’s suspension and positive drug test are not going to help. But there are also so many positive story lines in baseball and so much to enjoy that I find it hard to concentrate on the negatives. I mean, I know you saw Verlander’s 2-hit gem and Granderson’s catch the other night. That’s what baseball is all about. And if Manny has to sit 50 games in order for us to refocus on that, well, that’s life. Hopefully that’s enough time for him to go see a real doctor and get some Viagra.


Vexing Developments Explode Inside Cramped Locker-room Havens: Allen’s Take

team_usa_wbc.jpgA loaded topic like this can really only take us in one direction: The weirdness that is the World Baseball Classic. Pedroia and Jeter trotting off the field together after a put-out at second base? That just doesn’t look right. Wright and Rollins manning the left side of the infield? Did I miss something?

Now, I realize that this weirdness can also happen during the All-Star Game but that’s a once a year freak-fest where the players wear odd uniforms and the outcome has taken on a disproportionate level of importance.

This is the World Baseball Classic, the World Cup of Baseball. I want drama. I want to watch MLB teammates like Curtis Granderson and Magglio Ordonez whip themselves up into a nationalistic fervor so intense that they come to blows and then both demand trades. I want Jeter to talk about the toxic environment created by the presence of Red Sox players and former Yankees. I want David Wright and Jimmy Rollins to use this forum as an excuse to decide the NL East crown in the most logical fashion possible, pistols at dawn on the pitcher’s mound.

But no. Instead we get stories like this, where injured players are sticking around and other players are happy to sit the bench or take limited playing time just for the honor of being part of this team. Where’s a T.O. or a Latrell Sprewell when you really need them? Can we really allow this love fest to continue unabated?

However, there is still hope for the Scrooges among us. So far the US team has made congeniality easy by eking out a win over Canada and then pounding Venezeula. But what happens when they are faced with real challenges by way of Puerto Rico or Japan? Only then will we see what these players are really made of and what happens when vexing developments explode inside cramped locker-room havens.

But until that time I’m going to swallow my bile and cheer like a pre-pubescent girl at an early 90’s New Kids on the Block concert as the announcers rattle off the Pedroia to Jeter to Youkilis inning ending double-play. USA! USA! USA!


Chili (and Change) We Can Believe In

obama_bens.jpgAfter barely surviving the sucker punch that was 2008, 2009 appears to be treating the Michigan diaspora a little better. For instance, this past week we learned that Curtis Granderson will be representing the USA in the World Baseball Classic. Now, I’m not saying that Granderson is the best center fielder out there but he has developed into a talent to be watched over the past couple seasons and it’s nice to see him get a little more recognition for that. It was also nice to see the Red Wings take down the red-hot Blackhawks on the ice at Wrigley Field on New Year’s Day.

However, there was another red-hot piece of news that truly warmed my heart as an American and current denizen of our nation’s capitol. Although it was never really in doubt, President-elect Obama reconfirmed yesterday that that we truly share the same values. Now, I’ve mentioned the DC institution and National’s ballpark mainstay, Ben’s Chili Bowl, before but it bears repeating that this place is beyond amazing. And when I watched footage yesterday of Mr. Obama’s visit to Ben’s, I realized that here this man is in touch with the nation’s stomach in a way we haven’t seen since Clinton’s first term. I mean, here is a guy who appreciates the chili-cheese half-smoke and unabashedly supports a single baseball team. Could anything be more American?

Now, I know that the months ahead are going to be difficult for Obama and his team. In fact, one might even compare it to the torment that is the line at Ben’s around 2 in the morning on a weekend. But, if the past week is any indication, maybe we are seeing change we can believe in. I just hope that CG and the Tigers offer me a little of the same.