Results tagged ‘ Filibuster ’

The Filibuster

What’s the best way for me to indulge my twin passions of drinking and anything baseball related before the season starts?

Shaun
Chicago, IL
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Thank you for putting the ball on the tee, Shaun!

Indeed, drinking and baseball go together like politicians and gibberish, and we here at RSBS are no exception.  In fact, if it weren’t for this liberating combination of US American pastimes, there would be no Bleacher Bums, no Pirates fans (how could they survive?), no Miguel Cabrera.

So that is why we are proud to team up with Guinness, one of our favorite beers (Mr. Krause and I co-hosted a Guinness keg party in college, no joke) to set a record for the biggest St. Patrick’s Day party EVER!

The big day is getting closer and closer and we want YOU to be a part of it.  Unlike an evening with Mr. Krause, the process is simple and non-invasive.  All you have to do is follow THIS LINK, verify you’re 21 years of age or older, then click to “join the party”.

MOST IMPORTANTLY, in the “optional code” box, make sure to enter code “REDS“.  For each participant using that code, the good folks at Guinness are going to donate $1 to our charity of choice, the Baseball Tomorrow Fund and its Chicago chapter.  That’s right.  Your commitment to having a good (and responsible) time translates to more balls, bats, gloves and other baseball equipment for Chicago’s youth.

Now ain’t that a good thang!?!?

Join Guinness Brewmaster, Fergal Murray, this St. Patrick's Day while helping Chicago's youth reach their dreams on the diamond.

So if you haven’t done it yet, go do it!  Then sit back, crack open a tall can of Guinness and smile knowing you did something good.

THANK YOU!!!

Jeff

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Have a topic you want to see us Filibuster? Send us your Filibuster questions by emailing RSBSblog@gmail.com or by commenting below.

Don’t Blame Braun

I feel a little sick to my stomach when I hear about someone getting off on a technicality.  Illegal search, improper handling, failure of the arresting officer to read the suspect their rights.  The list of possible screw-ups is endless.

But you know what’s even worse than seeing someone get off on a technicality?  Watching someone get convicted for a crime they truly didn’t commit.

I’ll be honest, just like all of you, I have no idea whether or not Ryan Braun is guilty.  He claims he’s innocent, MLB implies he’s guilty and the fan is left to wonder what the real story is.  But whether he’s an innocent charged with a crime he didn’t commit or a ne’er-do-well who got off on a technicality, the fact of the matter is that Braun has been cleared and this story never should have been in the press in the first place.  More than that, if Braun was guilty of using PEDs, MLB has no one to blame but itself for his exoneration.

The reason courts and commissions have procedures is so that at the end of the process, you can be absolutely sure that the person was dealt with fairly and deserved the consequences of their actions.  Even though it makes me sick when a criminal goes free because a DNA sample was mishandled, you can’t put that on the criminal.  It’s the fault of the lab or the officers who did the mishandling.

Same goes for Braun.  This isn’t a story about him using PEDs.  No, this is a story about MLB screwing up a procedure that was set in place to assure fairness and impartiality inthe judgement.  MLB has no right to disagree with the arbitration panel’s findings.  If the organization had done their job correctly we’d either just now be finding out that Braun was a cheater or we’d have never heard anything at all.

I don’t like the Braun case.  Whether he juiced or not, this story taints him, taints MLB and taints the game.  However, instead of attacking Braun, the mob should be pointing their fingers at the only known guilty party, an organization that again and again fails to deal appropriately with the issues it faces.  Don’t blame Braun.  Blame Bud.

-A

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After a grueling off-season training regimen, the Filibuster comes back even bigger and badder then ever next Sunday.  Maybe you want to know what the RSBS crew thinks about divisional realignment.  Perhaps you’d like to make Allen see red by asking his feelings on pink team caps.  Or maybe you’re just wondering why asking Jeff the question “Boxers or briefs” leads him to respond “Depends.”  No matter what the query, send it to RSBSBlog@gmail.com and we’ll let you know what we think.

The Filibuster

Do you guys drink beer and eat fried chicken and play video games while you’re supposed to be perfecting your craft?

Kevin
Chicago, IL
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Frankly, Kevin, I’m insulted.  That’s like going up to C.C. Sabathia and asking him if he sits around eating Krispy Kremes while he’s supposed to be working on his change-up.  Look at the guy!  You don’t get a body like that without a healthy serving of lard and/or hydrogenated fats at least twice a day.

The same is true of the RSBS team.  We are a well-oiled machine and part of that oil comes from the grease collecting at the bottom of the multiple family size buckets of KFC original recipe chicken that we consume every single day.  Sometimes the grease gums up the controllers of the Xbox forlornly attached to the 13-inch TV one of our mothers gave us in 1998 but luckily a splash (accidental or otherwise) of Schlitz or Milwaukee’s Best solves that problem.

Just kidding.  Blogging is a grueling slog through the minefield that is humanity but it’s a slog we happily undertake for you, the reader, on a daily basis.  Slogging, however, shouldn’t be entered into lightly.  It’s a process, one that often begins with hours of painful research trying to come up with the perfect photo of the current Miss USA:

Or the ideal angle at which to view Ines Sainz:

Sure, it may look easy but there exists the rare occasion when the results more closely resemble the feces streaked walls of the primate cage at your local zoo.  That doesn’t mean we didn’t try, though.  Also, as a side note, who’s to say that design by defecation doesn’t constitute art?

The fact of the matter, Kevin, is that we’re here day in and day out to bring you a product that requires our full attention and a respect for our audience that belies any sort of orgy of fast food gluttony or the occasional video game bender.  What we’re doing is too important to not take care of ourselves.  And now that I have fully made my point, I feel vindicated in finishing the cold beer I cracked open while sitting down to write this.  Hey, it’s only one out of three.  That’s not so bad.

-A

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*The Filibuster will be taking its regular offseason hiatus starting next Sunday.  Don’t worry, it will be back in time for Spring Training 2012, so keep a lookout!  In the meantime, please enjoy our offhanded satire and scantily clad womenz who will take its place on Sundays during the Fall/Winter.  Thank you to all who have written in!

The Filibuster

Tigers are in! One of you has to be pretty happy about that.

Mitch
Galesburg, IL
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Valverde_alds As we dressed for my brother’s wedding on Friday, he couldn’t stop sweating.  Part of it was the uncommonly hot October in Michigan.  And obviously a big part of it was the fact that he was getting married in just a couple hours.  However, as we relived the previous night’s Tigers’ game while getting ready (you know, the one where the Tigers beat the Yankees in a Game 5 for the ages), he mentioned how he had been sweating just as much during the final third of the game and that his heart had been pounding just as hard.  This, from a man getting married in three hours.

I couldn’t blame him, though.  I spent the better part of the seventh and eighth innings looking away on every pitch out of fear that I might jinx things.  And when Benoit walked in a run with the bases loaded, I was sure my worst dreams were about to come true.  Sure, he got out of it but things didn’t get any better when Valverde faced A-Rod with two outs in the ninth.  It seemed like one of those legendary Yankee moments where a maligned slugger breaks out of his slump and sends a fastball into the upper deck.

But not this time.  Instead, Valverde danced because mighty A-Rod had struck out.  And I finally breathed.  I took a second, composed myself and walked down the hall in the hotel to knock on the door of my parents’ room.  My dad fumbled with the chain but when he finally opened the door, we both had these stupid grins on our faces.

The Tigers may have dropped the first game at Texas last night and Verlander may not have been his usual stellar self but that stupid grin hasn’t gone away.  I want the Tigers to beat the Rangers.  I want them to go on and win the World Series.  But knocking the Yankees out of the playoffs?  That’s going to feel pretty good for awhile.  Yeah, I guess you could say I’m pretty happy about that.

-A

The Filibuster

Holy crap.  September 28, 2011.  Has there ever been a better day of baseball?

Anna
South Bend, IN
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One of the greatest aspects of our hallowed national pastime is that every day has the potential to bring greatness.  You might see a no hitter.  You might see a triple play.  You might see four homeruns in one game by the same player.

In fact, just this season I witnessed Derek Jeter collect five hits in a game.  TWICE.  I saw Justin Upton hit a broken bat homerun.  I saw Mariano Rivera become the undisputed king of the save.

I also saw back-t0-back bunt basehits to start off a game.  I saw Shelley Duncan have the defensive game of his life by making three nearly identical amazing grabs in left to rob the Rangers.  And I saw Adam Dunn get a base hit off a lefty.

Magic.  Baseball has it.  And some days it has it more than others.

I would put September 28, 2011 in that category for sure, because on that day FOUR games provided unparallelled magical endings, nearly simultaneously.

But I also can’t think of September 28th without thinking about 2007 Game 163 or the 2008 Game 163 or the 2009 Game 163!!!  In fact, I still consider that 2009 Tigers v. Twins contest to be the most jaw-dropping game I have ever witnessed with my own two eyes.  Clearly, when we reach the end of September and regular season games carry the weight of sending teams on to capture even more glory, the potential for being among the best is like a batting practice fastball.

Right down central.

In the end though, what qualifies as the “best day in baseball” is obviously relative.  For me, I can’t seem to get past October 27, 2006.

Don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.

Peace,

Jeff

**Have a topic you want to see us Filibuster?  Interested to know why Mr. Krause walks with an odd limp?  Send us your Filibuster questions by emailing kraulung@gmail.com or by commenting below.

The Filibuster

Okay, so you guys rooting for the Red Sox or the Rays?

Brooke
Fort Wayne, IN
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Sometimes I wonder if people even read this blog.  I know that Jeff and I take a look from time and there are occasional comments but do people really read it?  In general, I believe there’s a through-line to what we write and a lot of that relates to being fans of Midwestern teams, teams that are, by definition, underdogs.  Sure, the Tigers and Cardinals may have a great tradition but they are not from either of the two coasts and that leads to certain amount of neglect.

We’ve had to root for our teams when they were at their worst.  I’ve been a Tigers’ fan since I can remember knowing about baseball and that meant I saw successful seasons followed by seasons of utter and total failure.  That didn’t change anything, though.  I was still fan.  Whether it’s a 119 loss campaign or the heartbreak of losing in the World Series or a playoff, Tigers fans remain a grounded lot.  Part of that is related to Detroit itself and part of it is the realization that baseball has its ups and downs and you have to roll with both extremes.

I used to think that Boston fans felt the same way.  They suffered through the years without a championship despite coming agonizingly close on multiple occasions.  And when they finally broke through against the Yankees and went on to trounce the Cardinals, I think quite a few people were happy for them.  Even I have to admit that it felt good to see them beat the Yankees and end such a long drought.

But then something happened.  The Red Sox and their fans went from being a Mitch Albom wet dream to Yankees-lite.  By the time they won again in 2007, both the team and the fans had gone from long-suffering to insufferable.  There’s nothing wrong with confidence but what Boston had evolved from confidence into arrogance.  All the talk of Theo Epstein, Big Papi and Manny being Manny began to inspire a gag reflex.

Manny is no longer in Boston or baseball.  Pedro Martinez has disappeared, too.  Sure, there are still gutsy, admirable players like Pedroia and Ellsbury.  But I no longer have any warm feelings toward the Red Sox.  As far as I’m concerned, they’re just the Yankees with a Boston accent.  That’s why I’m cheering for the Rays.

-A

**Have a topic you want to see us Filibuster?  Interested in Mr. Lung’s twist on the “O” face, the “U” face?  Send us your Filibuster questions by emailing kraulung@gmail.com or by commenting below.

The Filibuster

How has your relationship with Nyjer Morgan suffered after his attack on Albert’s manhood?

Nick
Martin, MI
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Well it’s about time!  Seriously, I was wondering when someone was going to call me out on the conflicting interests of my Nyjer Morgan man-crush.  As if publicly rooting for a Brewer wasn’t enough, I had to go and pick the looniest one of the lot, the one who called my team’s future Hall of Fame first baseman “Alberta” Pujols.

Oi vey.

My initial reaction to Nyjer jawing at Chris Carpenter in the game that led to the maniacal tweet in question was: Okay, that’s enough, Nyjer.  Yapping at your opponent is one thing — one thing Nyjer does quite well and usually within the boundaries of what is considered acceptable in baseball — but he was strutting and yelling “F*** you, p****!” to Carp, a man who could crush Nyjer with his stare if he wanted to.  Watching that strange exchange was akin to the feeling one gets when his dog starts sniffing the butts of other dogs at the park: somewhat embarrassing, but also totally natural.

Nyjer is crazy.  And that’s why I like him.

He’s… different.  He’s a showman.  A wild gunslinger.  A loose cannon.

He’s also quite talented and completely entrenched in winning.  The man wants to win (are you getting this, K-Rod???).  Nyjer has more energy in his pinky finger than most Major League squads put together.  But along with that fiery and insatiable appetite for winning comes a handful of bad decisions.  We saw it last year as he beat his chest while being physically removed from Sun Life Stadium.  We saw it when he slammed his mitt into the ground after missing a ball over his head, a ball that stayed in play and rolled around while he pouted.  And we saw it on September 7th when he almost got his @$$ handed to him by an angry Cardinals mob.

Do I like that he does that sort of thing?  No.  But that’s who he is, and let’s be honest, he makes the game interesting.  He makes it spark.  He is the Dennis Rodman of Major League Baseball; and as long as his numbers back up his jawing, as long as he puts winning above all else, I think he makes baseball better and immensely more entertaining.

Calling Albert names?  Our rivals have been calling Albert names for over ten years now.  So what?

Words, words, words.

When Nyjer takes a swing at him, that’s when I will have had enough.  But not even Nyjer is stupid enough to do that.  Albert would DESTROY him like he’s been destroying Brewer pitching (.329 lifetime against the Crew).

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

Peace,

Jeff

**Have a topic you want to see us Filibuster?  Want to find out the disgusting details of how Mr. Krause shows his “love” for big government?  Send us your Filibuster questions by emailing kraulung@gmail.com or by commenting below.

The Filibuster

September 11th has become a big day for America and baseball is a big part of it.  Any thoughts?

Chad
Moline, IL

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Over the past few days I’ve talked to a lot of non-American friends and we’ve shared stories about where we were when we heard the news on September 11, 2001.  Everyone can recall exactly where they were, exactly what they were doing.  In fact, I’ve heard more than a few times that 9/11 is the one day when the entire world remembers where they were when they heard about the attack.

The thing about September 11th is that although it happened in New York, it wasn’t just an American event.  The people in the World Trade Center came from all over the world to work in New York.  9/11 wasn’t an attack on America.  It was an attack on an open, liberal way of life enjoyed in many parts of the world and epitomized by the US that happened to take place in the New York.

That’s why I have a problem with what MLB has done in remembrance of 9/11.  I still remember the first time I heard “God Bless America” during the seventh inning stretch instead of “Take Me Out to the Ballgame.”  I sat there wondering what was going on.  First off, what place does religion have at the ballpark?  And secondly, in remembrance of an event that affected the entire world and redefined that world in the blink of an eye, why a song that disregards the rest of the world?

“While the storm clouds gather far across the sea,
Let us swear allegiance to a land that’s free,
Let us all be grateful for a land so fair,
As we raise our voices in a solemn prayer. “

God Bless America,
Land that I love.
Stand beside her, and guide her
Thru the night with a light from above.
From the mountains, to the prairies,
To the oceans, white with foam
God bless America, My home sweet home.

Let’s face it, a healthy percentage of the major leagues is made up of people who aren’t necessarily US citizens.  Baseball has also actively sought to increase its allure outside of the US.  So why would they replace “Take Me Out to the Ballgame,” a song that celebrates the sport, with a nationalistic song that borders on jingoism?  Yes, I know that baseball is America’s pastime.  And I know that “God Bless America” is no longer sung during every game at every stadium.  But that’s not the point.

September 11th profoundly affected the American national psyche.  It’s hard to believe that ten years have passed because the wound still hasn’t healed and sometimes feels as fresh as it did that day.  We should never forget what happened but we should also realize that the whole world felt that pain and continues to feel its effects.  MLB needs to realize that, too, and if they can’t find a song more inclusive than “God Bless America,” maybe it’s time they went back to “Take Me Out to the Ballgame.”

-A

**Have a topic you want to see us Filibuster?  Want to find out which bone really is the most patriotic one in Jeff’s body?  Send us your Filibuster questions by emailing kraulung@gmail.com or by commenting below.

The Filibuster

College football and the NFL have both come back with a vengeance but for MLB, there really aren’t any compelling races at this point.  How can baseball compete?

Ryan
Otsego, MI
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Pardon my frankness here, Ryan, but…

WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU TALKIN’ ABOUT?

No compelling races?  How can baseball compete?

Put down that tequilla shooter (slowly) and check the boxscores before you miss out!

Because the time is NOW for September baseball and there is PLENTY to be excited about.  Right now the AL East is as tight a race as they come, and believe me: the Yankees and Red Sox both want to win that division as each would rather draw the weaker opponent in the ALDS.  Meanwhile, the AL Central is anything but locked down.  Sure it might not be neck and neck, but if the Tigers have taught us anything in the last few years, it’s that they definitely know how to blow a sure thing.  And if you think the Rangers aren’t worried about the creeping Angels of Los Anaheim, ya might wanna put down the vodka too (keep the whisky, for now).

In the National League, sure the East, Central and Wild Card races seem to be locked down, but the NL West is still undecided.  The Diamondbacks are coming on strong but if the Giants can just average one run a game, with THAT pitching staff, they have a pretty good shot.

Now don’t get me wrong, I love football just as much as any other loud proud US American, but early season games being more important than the stretch baseball run?  Not in my world.  Not even close!

If you’re not feelin’ it, I gotta think that maybe it’s your fault.  Sit down and watch one of these games that matters.  Or, don’t.  I mean, STRASMAS is comin’ this year, so you could watch that!  Or check out a Bluejays game to watch the Joey Bats and Brett Lawrie Show!  Or get your buddies together for an Orioles game and every time they make an error, miss the cut-off man or fail to advance a runner TAKE A DRINK!  You’ll be so loaded by the third inning that your decision making skills will deteriorate to a level that will GUARANTEE a night of awesome once you hit the club.

Hate me ‘cuz I promote promiscuous behavior while championing the greatest game on earth, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.

Peace,

Jeff

**Have a topic you want to see us Filibuster?  Curious as to why they call Mr. Krause “The Bumpiest 30 Seconds You’ll Ever Find”?  Send us your Filibuster questions by emailing kraulung@gmail.com or by commenting below.

The Filibuster

Dontrelle Willis AND Chien-Ming Wang pitching this weekend?  Why not Mark Prior and Pedro Martinez too?

Jake
Columbia, MO
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This has been a strange week, Jake.  After six months of slugging it out in Libya, Tripoli fell within just a couple days.  Presidential candidates continue to eat corndogs apparently not realizing how that picture is going to turn out later.  Even the earth experienced a state of upheaval as the east coast barely made it through the great quake of 2011.  So why not Dontrelle Willis and Chien-Ming Wang?  Why not Prior and Wood dosey-doeing at Wrigley?  Heck, why not zombie Mark Fidrych going pitch-for-pitch with bionic Jim Bunning newly hyped up on dead baby power shakes?

I know what you’re thinking right now.  And no, I don’t have any “proof” that a zombie can get past his love of brains in order to pitch a baseball.  But I do know that a week that sees Washington DC get hit by both an earthquake and a hurricane is a week in which anything is possible.

My suggestion is that instead of focusing on zombies, baby shakes and improbable pitching returns, we turn our attention to the more important things in life.  Like, what’s up with the human-kangaroo hybrids currently drenching unsuspecting pedestrians?

-A

**Have a topic you want to see us Filibuster?  Want to know what Mr. Lung was doing the day the east coast started shaking?  Send us your Filibuster questions by emailing kraulung@gmail.com or by commenting below.

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