Results tagged ‘ Fans ’

The MLB Network’s “Baseball IQ”: A Swing and a Miss

To say I have resentments over Major League Baseball’s long-standing tradition of being completely out of touch with its fans is like saying I’m not worried about the future of the Republican party: IT’S EXTREMELY UNDERSTATED!!!

After all, we the FANS are what make professional baseball work.  WE are the ones who pay $30 for a nosebleed, who dish out $8.50 for a crappy beer.  WE are the ones who have to see therapists when our favorite superstars go wherever the money takes them and WE are the ones who, despite what happens in the offseason, can’t wait to get back to the ballpark and throw our hard earned money around.  So when we get dissed by the governing hands of the sport we love so much, IT HURTS.

The NBA set up its own network in 1999.  The NFL perfected the craft in 2003.  And the NHL (yes, that’s the one where they play hockey) started its own network in 2007.

It wasn’t until 2009 — a good TEN YEARS after the NBA set the precedent — that MLB finally gave the fans the opportunity to experience baseballgasms 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.  I can hardly remember life before MLBN, and I don’t want to.

But there has been something missing in its programming.  Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE the lineup of shows they’ve been rolling out.  Brian Kenny’s new Clubhouse Confidential is fantastic.  Prime 9 is a classic.  And nothing beats MLB Tonight.  Yet the very nature of baseball fandom — getting lost in the numbers playground and tooling around for hours — seems to open itself up to a… TRIVIA SHOW!

Enter Matt Vasgersian and Baseball IQ, which premiered on the Network last night.  Vasgersian’s cool.  Baseball trivia is cool.  How can this possibly not be a kick @$$ show?

Quite easily actually.  Rather than having real fans as contestants — y’know, the type of Joe Plumber uberdork (me?) who will argue and bet stats in a bar ’til the beast looks beautiful — they instead use MLB employees:

“It will be a 32-person bracket with one participant representing MLB.com, each of the 30 clubs and the National Baseball Hall of Fame — featuring everyone from front-office personnel to equipment managers to scoreboard operators and museum curators.”

Um… (channel Eddie Murphy Delirious voice) dat’s not iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiit.

MLB employees?!?!?!?  Would you watch Jeopardy if the contestants were limited to the authors of the Encyclopedia Britannica?!?!?!

Okay, so the “prize” money is donated to charity.  Whoop-dee-doo.  If I wanted to watch a charity event I’d go to a golf course.  Or a walk-a-thon.

The MLB Network had a great opportunity to connect with its fans — the very people who keep the Network going — by allowing everyday folks who live/eat/breathe baseball but don’t get paid for it to shine.

Instead, they produced the equivalent of an Alfonso Soriano swing at a ball in the dirt, low and away.

WHIFF.

Don’t hate me.  ‘Cuz you know I’m right.

Peace,

Jeff

Tiger Blood

The coke-binged, wiry meme used as today’s title may not have the same ring to it as it did WAY back in 2011, but if you’re a fan of the Detroit variety, you know that Tiger blood is still in the streets.

Well, the South Florida streets anyway.

In case you’ve been distracted by the train wreck that is the Republican Party primary, Victor Martinez tore his ACL and will be out for the whole season, leaving my pessimistic and oft lugubrious colleague, Mr. Krause, as sad as sad can be (probably).

But not all hope is lost, Mr. Krause.  My team lost its ace pitcher prior to the ’11 season and we went out and won the whole damn thing.

Still, just in case Tigers fans are really feeling suicidal, let me remind you of some even bigger Tiger fails that make this one look minor in comparison:

For those of you who are still trying to forget the 2003 season actually happened, let me just remind you that Mike Maroth (above) went 9-21 that year with an ERA of 5.73.

See, life can ALWAYS be worse.  Like Mike Maroth worse.

Don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.

Peace,

Jeff

The Championship That Keeps On Giving

On Sunday I finished the Houston Marathon in 3 hours, 15 minutes and 19 seconds — a new personal best.  And though it’s been more than 48 hours since I finished the race, not a minute has gone by where I haven’t found complete satisfaction in having accomplished the task.  In fact, I don’t think I’ll stop reliving that race for a long, long time.

During my flight home to Chicago, I randomly ran into some fellow Cardinals fans friends of mine from waaaaay back.  Odd as it is to bump into old friends in an unexpected place, I was quite happy with the brevity at which our conversation turned to the baseball glories of 2011, of Game 6 in particular, and how we kept our respective neighbors up that night, how our heart rates have never dipped and soared to such extreme levels.  Reliving that game and that series at 30,000 feet was a pleasant testament to history.

I was reminded that you can never undo what’s been done.

And I’ll be reliving such glorious conquests for as long as I possibly can.

Hate me ‘cuz I ain’t never gonna stop gloating about the ’11 series, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.

Peace,

Jeff

Have You Hugged Mr. Krause Today?

You should, ‘cuz today is Mr. Krause’s birthday!!!

In order to make Mr. Krause feel good on his birthday, I thought I’d post some images of things that would make him happy.  So I did a Google image search for “hot girl + Detroit Tigers”.  I got zilch (not surprised).  Instead, I offer these titillating images, each one sure to make him smile:

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, FRIEND!

The NFL and NBA Remind Us That Baseball Still Reigns Supreme

January is a difficult month for me.  Gone are the holidays that distracted me from my baseball-less existence.  The cold and dark days serve only as a reminder that the 162 game grind is still far away.  And key free agents still don’t have a home!

I enjoy football.  I really do.  Nothing gets me through the winter quite like watching grown men beat the hell out of each other over an oblong pigskin.  But three of the four playoff games this past weekend were over before the fourth quarter even started!

And yes, Derek Rose and the Chicago Bulls certainly know how to take me HIGH-UH; but on Saturday night — when I really needed them to get me through the weekend — the game was over before the second half.

Where art thou, Evan Longoria?  Robert AndinoDavid Freese?

THERE IS NO CLOCK IN BASEBALL.

And where there is no clock, there is only the potential for glory.  In baseball, there is no garbage time.

Hate me.  Fine.  Just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.

Peace,

Jeff

Before There Was RSBS, There Was Free Pudding

That’s right.  In a galaxy far, far away… before the interns, before the Digests, before I was “always right”, there was…

FREE PUDDING.

The above picture is one of the remaining relics from that year 2000 sketch production extraordinaire staged at Kalamazoo College that brought its fans FUN, LAUGHS and FREE PUDDING.  (Not kidding, we actually served free pudding to all patrons.)

Of course, dear readers galore know what eventually became of my persnickety and oft lugubrious colleague, Mr. Krause and I.  Y’know, how we blew up the internets with our unique take on the baseball-politico world and all.  But what of that crouching fella in the middle there?

That’s Jordan Klepper.

And here is Mr. Klepper, recently, with the lovely Laura Grey.

STILL KICKIN’ COMEDY TAIL!

Mr. Klepper grew up a huge Ryne Sandberg fan, and while living in The Chi, he wore his Cubs hat proudly.  But then he moved to New York, and after a couple of Mets games we took in last summer, I couldn’t help but notice him salivating all over  R.A. Dickey.

Happy Saturday!

PS. The dude with the do-rag is Nick. I have no idea where or what he is doing in the world today but I’m sure he’s rockin’ it ‘cuz he was super cool back in school.

PPS. Yes.  Mr. Krause is doing “the double handed shocker”.

How to Fix the Dodgers

All-around baseball good guy Joe Torre is stepping down from his MLB front office position to pursue his interest in purchasing the Los Angeles Dodgers.  While this is bad news (I think) for those of us who hoped he might take over for King Bud once the reign of terror is over at the end of the year, I have to think that a group headed by Torre is probably a great way to save this storied franchise.

Of course, there are alternatives.  And yep, you guessed it.  The RSBS interns are ready to report:

1.  Go back in time, don’t trade Kevin Brown and instead have him break Frank McCourt’s hand so it won’t wander onto a woman who isn’t his wife.

2.  Stop making it mandatory that Alyssa Milano wear clothes to the ballpark.  (Holy Jackie Robinson, I’ve been in love with Alyssa for 20 years now; she just gets better looking!!!)

3.  Trade Al-Farouq Aminu, Eric Gordon and Chris Kaman for superstar Chris Paul.  Oh.  Wait.

4.  Get a mascot!  I know just the one!

Or… if none of the above works…

How about signing Prince Fielder?  Seriously.  Make him some crazy offer like $30 million a year for 6 years or something.  Wouldn’t that make the Dodgers a nice, EXPENSIVE and attractive purchase?  And besides, it’s L.A.  Just use somebody else’s money.

Hate me.  FINE.  Just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.

Peace,

Jeff

Setting the Mahmud

RSBS Special Correspondent and founder of Epsteinism, Mr. Johanna Mahmud reports:

“ No one in Russia believes in god.”

You know why? Because it’s cold! It’s cold there like it’s cold in Chicago right now!!

I know it’s not manly to act depressed while living in a wonderful place like this but, it’s cold. AND I’M NOT A REAL MAN.

Despite my depression, I know one thing that will bring me happiness.  MONEYBALL PART TWO: EPSTEIN BRINGS THE PAIN!  The Cubs win it all and Matt Damon stars as Theo Epstein.  I’ve already completed the first scene:

I can tell you the license plate numbers of all six cars outside. I can tell you that our waitress is left-handed and the guy sitting up at the counter weighs two hundred fifteen pounds and knows how to handle himself. I know the best place to look for a gun is the cab or the gray truck outside, and at this altitude, I can run flat out for a half mile before my hands start shaking. Now why would I know that? Because my name is Theo Effin Epstein. THAT’S WHY.

–Johanna Mahmud
Follow Johanna on Twitter!

Starting Out On Top

We’re baaaaaaaaaaaaaack!  Did ya miss us?  Of course you did!!!

It’s all good, dear readers, because it’s a NEW year with NEW goals and NEW impossibilities just WAITING to be made possible.  So shake off that nasty hangover, nevermind that public health clinic visit you’re gonna have to make after who you took home last night and rejoice from atop the world!

Of course, if you’re a Cardinals fan like me, you can also rejoice from the top of the baseball world (that’s the only one that matters by the way) knowing that you can walk around with your chest sticking out for at least another 10 months or so.  During our short break, I realized that finding a quick rebound lover would help me forget the unequivocal pain brought on by the loss of one Albert Pujols.  Enter: CARLOS BELTRAN.

From Cardinal killer to Met scapegoat to hot stove spice, Mr. Beltran slips inside an already potent lineup for the repeat hunting 2012 squad.  In fact, by getting Waino back and projecting a one through five order of Furcal, Beltran, Berkman, Holliday and Freese, I can’t help but git jiggy with the disco lights pulsating in my bathroom (don’t ask).

Albert who?

And as if that wasn’t enough excitement to start the new year, how about the fact that my fellow US Americans in Iowa seem to be ready for real change to our corporate-petting-taxpayer-blood-sucking government!?!?  FINALLY, Dr. Paul is getting some love from voters, which has forced the left-leaning media to start several Bachmann-esque smear campaigns.  This is what happens when the financially elite (who run the political machine) get worried about seeing their empire crumble.

But don’t worry.  Dr. Paul will bring them down.  Enough with the wars.   Enough with corporate greed.  Enough with buying things we can’t afford and wasting BILLIONS on pointless endeavors like the war on drugs.  It’s time to start over and that means no more empty Obama promises from the left and no more delusion-pandering from the right.

Ahh yes.  Pondering such possibilities make me feel just like I did watching D. Freese gork one over Nellie Cruz’s head.

GO CRAZY, FOLKS!  GO CRAZY!

This is gonna be one helluva year.

Hate me ‘cuz it’s the thing to do, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.

Peace,

Jeff

Happy Christmas, Merry New Year and All That Jazz!


From the bottom of our baseball-politico lovin’ hearts, we at RSBS would like to wish you all a very happy holiday season!  As is tradition here, Mr. Krause, Mr. Mahmud and I will be taking a week off to reflect on the year, spend time with our respective families and enjoy a nice Christmas ale (or ten).

We’ll be back to business as usual on Jan. 1st.

Until then, be merry and be safe!

Peace,

Jeff

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