Results tagged ‘ Mets ’

The RSBS Podcast, Episode 3: The Stat Zombie’s Death… and Other Stuff

rsbs podcast photo 2.jpg

Click ME to Listen!!!

And so in this Podcast…

Jeff and Johanna welcome a paragon of baseball intelligentsia, Mr. Paul Lebowitz — the one and only Prince of New York!  If you aren’t already reading the Prince’s daily column *here* or *here* then you probably should get on that.  Like, right away.  Or else.  And if that ain’t enough, you can certainly follow him on Twitter too.  To be honest, the man is too ruthless and too unfettered for you to not be paying attention to him… so the RSBS crew made sure to get him at his best.  Among the titillating
topics of discussion: Jason Bay’s UZR, men left on base (LOB), Keith Hernandez’s hunches, BRAINS!!!!… the Lou Piniella Mailbag and much, much more!

Holla!

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*Special

thanks to Keith Carmack — our engineer, director, editor and
all-around sound guru.  His Undercast podcast is the bomb shizzy, by the way.  It’s available on iTunes and is posted regularly at Undercard Films.

**Image by Annette T.  (Thanks, Annette!)  Check out her sweet@ss blog!

Recorded Saturday , June 12, 2010

Coming to Terms with the sCrUBS

hot cubs chick 3.jpgAs a Cardinals fan living in the Chi, the baseball season never really begins for me until St. Louis comes to town and I get my first taste of blood as I camp out at Wrigley for a weekend.  Black eyes, sprained ankles, hoarse voice… all welcome reminders of just how deep (and serious) this rivalry can be.

But the older I get, the clearer I see, which is why I can say with brutal honesty that the Chicago Cubs are the absolute best rival a fan could ask for.

Yep.  That’s right.  They’re the best.  Because they don’t… win… championships.

Think about it.  Yankees fans, remember how awful you felt when the Red Sox overcame in 2004?  And what about having to watch Papelbon’s antics during the 2007 run?  Reverse that and imagine the utter malcontent suffered by the Red Sox for eons while the Yankees ran up the World Series trophy count.

Giants fans must’ve been sick watching Kirk Gibson’s shot in 1988.  And likewise, those Dodgers fans who saw Willie Mays’ catch seal the deal in 1954 couldn’t have been too happy.

hot cubs chick 2.jpgAnd don’t even get me started on the Mets/Phillies rivalry.  Talk about carnage… wow.

But we Cardinals fans… seriously, what the hell do we have to be sick about?  We have the best player in baseball, we have arguably the best manager in baseball, and our arch rivals haven’t won jack scheisse in over 100 years.

With that in mind, as I prepare for the annual battle that is Cubs v. Cards, this year I’m gonna focus on the fact that this rivalry is a lame duck rivalry — that I can be confident my team will be better.  Therefore I am going to focus on the visual pleasantries that (surprisingly) can be found in abundance at the Friendly Confines.

Y’feel me?

Good.

Now, wish me luck.

Hate me ‘cuz I try to see all the angles, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.

Happy Friday!

Jeff

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The Filibuster

It’s that time of year again. Interleague play. I seem to remember you
guys aren’t big fans of it. Is that still true?

Matt
Trenton,
NJ

____________________________________

Evil_Eye.jpgInterleague play is a weird phenomenon but after surviving more than a decade, I think it’s pretty safe to say it’s here to stay.  And this is probably a good thing.

Jeff is the hardcore traditionalist out of the two of us.  He still makes the sign of the cross and spits to ward off the evil eye whenever he hears the words “Live Ball Era.”  Me, I’m a realist.  Maybe interleague play belongs only to the World Series but baseball survives because people are willing to spend money on coming to games.  And the reason they come to games is to be entertained.

Let’s face it, interleague play is entertaining.  Outside of the artificial milieu of the All-Star game, it’s our only chance to see how the two leagues match up against each other.  It allows for natural rivalries that we probably wouldn’t get to see otherwise.  When is the next time the Reds and Indians are going to face each other in a World Series?  Yeah, not freakin’ likely.

Like I said earlier, baseball runs on money and interleague play definitely makes money.  There are special jerseys, commemorative bric-a-brac and god knows what else to go along with these series.  Add in all the hype from places like ESPN who are practically falling over themselves to broadcast the Mets and Yankees and you have the recipe for some serious dough. 

So I say keep it coming.  Sure, it takes away from important divisional games and maybe it distorts the full effect of the World Series.  But it also pays for the Nationals to put in Ben’s Chili Bowl at their ballpark and there ain’t nothing wrong with that.

-A

I’m Sorry, but I Just Gotta

Totally off subject and unrelated to anything that is happening in the game of baseball right now, I have to share this:

I was going through the RSBS archive of photographs that we use for our posts and I randomly came across the Little Davey picture with the big helmet.  Unfortunately, I had just taken a sip of coffee when I saw it again, and now my computer screen and keyboard are covered in a nice Colombian coffee-saliva mix.

david wright big helmet.jpgThat is the funniest picture of David Wright I have ever seen and I hope those helmets make a comeback, just for comedy’s sake.

Oh yeah, Little Shane wore one too:

shane victorino big helmet.jpgHate me ‘cuz I’m ruthless, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.

Happy Friday!

Jeff

One More Goat for the Midwest

favre_interception.jpgIn the pantheon of sporting goats, none has a more hallowed place than the guy who brings the season to an end.  Sometimes it’s a team effort (the 2009 Detroit Tigers along with the 2007 and 2008 Mets come to mind) but sometimes a single man takes that entire burden onto his shoulders and says, “Yes, I can and will end this season for myself, my teammates and the fans.”  Brett Favre is just such a man.

Being a fan of a team in the NFC North, Favre has been a thorn in my side for years now.  I was more than happy to see him leave the Packers and I wished him nothing but ill when he made his return to the barren wasteland of the North.  However, it warmed my soul to see him end this season the same way he ended the last couple: throwing an interception.  He is the career leader after all.  It’s only fitting.

I guess the only important question left now is not will he come back….again, but rather, would you call him the Bill Buckner or the Brad Lidge of NFL football?  Me, I’m going with Lidge.

-A

Hangin’ with Mr. Met

mr. met upside down.jpgDear readers, let me tell ya: Phillies fans definitely know how to party.

I had the good fortune of spending this past weekend in South Jersey with some of the hardest of hard core Phillies fans one will ever meet; and I have a barrage of UDIs* to prove it.  My host, Bill, CEO of MyTeamRivals.com and co-author of the Phightin’ Phils Phorum has one of the coolest baseball man-caves I have ever seen, touting a full bar alongside every Phillie autograph you could imagine plus stunning memorabilia including a Mickey Mantle signed bat hanging proudly on the wall. 

Like Chico Escuela, “Beisol been a bery, bery good to me.”

No doubt.

Without the interwebs and blogging baseball for the last two years, I would have never met Bill.  In fact, through writing about my obsession, I have become good friends with so many cool, interesting, like-minded baseball fans that sometimes I just have to pinch myself at how neat it all is — that I could become good friends with people I have never met who live all over the world, from Tokyo to London to New York to L.A. to Denver to Houston to Boston to Philadelphia and everywhere in between.

And on Saturday night, while the Phillie faction was deep into a heated discussion about Ruben Amaro’s sanity, I was drawn to the poor Mr. Met effigy hanging upside down at the end of the bar, and more importantly to the fella sitting in front of it.  His name was (still is) Mike.  Mike, the lone Mets fan.  We got to talking about baseball (what else?) and before long it was revealed that Mike was at Game 6 of the 1986 World Series — perhaps the greatest World Series game ever played.

EVER.

I explained to Mike how that game (and that World Series) was the key component to my baseball fanaticism going from casual to die-hard at the speed of a first base-side groundball through the wickets.  And the St. Louis Cardinals weren’t even involved.

Of course, I was only 7 years old, but I remember the hype, the hoopla, the buzz about the Red Sox finally one game away from a title and the unruly and wildly charming bad boyz from Queens standing in their way.  I sat alongside my father and my grandmother, watching every pitch.  And as the game approached the bottom of the 9th, I clearly remember thinking that this was finally going to be the Red Sox’ moment, that they would finally reach the top after years of disappointment.

In those days, if the Cardinals weren’t in the World Series, I took my dad’s side in rooting for the National League team, no matter who it was, for according to him, the National League’s was the better game — the way it was supposed to be played. 

And I remember, as the Mets’ magic unfolded and Ray Knight crossed home plate to the tune of Vin Scully’s “And the Mets wiiiiiiin it!”, that I, too, went nuts with excitement.  I jumped up and down and ran around the house with the type of joy that is best defined by youth — a little boy’s bliss brought on by the simple idea that you can do anything if you work hard and never give up.

At that exact moment I decided that that was what baseball was all about — and that life was a game of baseball: full of drama, full of hope, full of solace, full of emotion.

Mike was there.

He knew what I was talkin’ about.

Anyone who has ever called him or herself a baseball fan knows exactly what we’re talkin’ about.

And that, to me, is power.

So, y’know, don’t hate me.  ‘Cuz I’m right.

Peace,

Jeff

*UDI = Unidentified Drunken Injury

holiday party 2009.jpg(From left to right: Bill, Me, Mr. Met, Mike and Christine — a Tigers fan no less! — in Bill’s epic baseball man-cave; more specifically, at the bar in Bill’s epic baseball man-cave)

Poking the Bear

sad_mets_fan.jpgI’m a mean guy. Not incredibly mean but mean enough to bring it up in a public forum when my friend’s team crashes out of the playoffs by losing 3 straight games. Mean enough to continue bringing it up at least until the start of the next season. Mean enough to insult Albert Pujols’ mama. But even I draw the line somewhere. It appears that StubHub doesn’t have quite the same restraint.

Can you imagine it? A city full of Mets fans waking up to such an incendiary email on a Monday morning? Mondays are bad enough as it is. And New Yorkers are angry enough as it is. It’s like poking an already angry bear with a stick. Granted, when we’re talking about the Mets it’s a mangy old bear that long ago lost its teeth and claws. And will to live. But it’s still a bear and everyone knows you don’t poke bears with sticks.

Now, StubHub apologized and that’s a classy move. God knows I’m not going to do anything like that with regards to my comments about the Cardinals or Mr. Pujols’ mother. But the damage has already been done. The bear has been let out of the cage, if you will. Granted, it probably won’t make that much of a difference because even Mets fans will still hit up the website if they really want tickets to a sold-out game. But it’s the moral of the thing. You just don’t kick someone when they’re down. Well, maybe sometimes. Like when they’re down 3 games to none in a five game series.

-A

Credit:
-Thanks to Rachel at http://twitter.com/PujolsMolinaFan for the tip.

If the Mets Were a Futon…

david wright big helmet.jpgAs the 2009 regular season comes to a close, so too do the pains suffered by most Major League clubs (unless you’re the Phillies, of course, who will have to endure a flat bullpen through at least three playoff games) and no team has bled out more publicly than the New York Mets.

I haven’t said a whole lot about the Mets’ woes because, well, everybody else has done quite an adequate job of ripping them apart, feasting on their mishaps, devouring their disastrous misfortune.

Then I found a futon.

On the interwebs.

Duh.

Ladies and gentlemen, your 2009 New York Mets (played by an inanimate metal futon frame shot with a hand held digital camera):

http://embed.break.com/MTQwMzgwMQ==
EMBED-Throwing Futon Out Window Goes Wrong – Watch more free videos

Yep.  It’s broke.

Either just leave it there, dead on the ground, or start all over again fresh with a new, shiny, expensive futon that can take a beaning or two.  Put a great big kiddie helmet on it if ya like.  I’m cool with that.

Don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.

Peace,

Jeff

Whoop-Dee-Doo!

Gary Sheffield: The Original Milton Bradley
gary sheffield.jpgBefore there was Milton, there was Gary.  Yes folks, Gary was whining and crying and kicking the dirt and picking fights and pissing off fans and management and teammates and saying stupid things long before Bradley.  And now, as if shown up by woe-is-me Milton, Gary has announced he’d like to come back and play in 2010.  So even if Milton is teamless next year, we can still count on Sheff to aggravate the baseball cosmos… if any team is willing to take him that is.

Twitter Babes?
Besides using it to piss off professional baseball players, I have found Twitter to be an excellent tool for networking and socializing with like-minded baseball nerds.  Of course, Allen and I get our fair share of spammer tweets, but I had never seen anything like this before:

green apples.pngA direct message from new RSBS follower @carol_laurent (from Chicago – where I live) saying:

“I LOVE GREEN APPLES!”

My response?

“I LOVE GREEN APPLES TOO!”

Of course, this is not a real person.  It can’t be.  Looking at her (his? Its?) page you’ll see it’s just a long string of random non sequiturs.  But boy was I duped!  Without a gibberish username, grainy profile pic and messages like “please visit my nude profile”, I guess I got *ahem* quick handed.

Where the Hell is Allen?

In case dear readers are wondering, my loquacious and oft incoherent colleague is still very much alive.  He’ll be back.  Soon.  He’s sorta recovering at the moment.  You see, he had an issue… an issue with his… esophagus.  They even made a movie about it:

Itchy portrayed me with excellence I must say.

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

Peace,

Jeff

Illusionary Tactics

illusion.jpgYesterday, my unequivocally nefarious and visually challenged colleague, Mr. Krause, finally posted his two-month late debt which required him to pose for the camera while proudly donning St. Louis Cardinals merchandise accentuated by a bright, broad smile across his face.  Obviously, there is little doubt as to how disingenuous the smile was; but I must admit that even I was shocked at just how low Mr. Krause stooped to eschew what would be considered by everyone else in the world to be a rightly just punishment.

Here is the picture:

allen_cards_bet.JPGSure.  On the surface, everything seems in order… until we zoom in a little closer (thanks for the assist, Jonestein):

Allen in hat close up.jpgHmm.  Is that a photocopy of the regal S-T-L taped on your cap, Al?  And what is that underneath the pasted cover-up?  Is… is that… is that a Washington Nationals cap!?!?!?! (click *here* for reference to that same Natinals cap)

*Rich white people in the suburbs of Detroit whail in painful disgust.

Congratulations, Al, on not only embarrassing me and Cardinals fans worldwide, but for also abandoning your own people during a playoff race.  Nice.  Indeed, you are the Sarah Palin of baseball fandom!

But Allen’s experiment with the not-so-magical isn’t the only thing causing the masses to rub their eyes today.  Note to all Major League managers not named Tony LaRussa: If Albert Pujols steps in with the bases loaded, for Lord’s sake walk the man!  Last night, Jerry Manuel found out rather quickly what everyone else seems to already know when he decided to have Sean Green pitch to Albert, only to see Pujols launch yet another grand slam, which ultimately led the Cardinals to victory.  For the record, in 2009, Albert is a disgustingly sick 7-9 with the bases loaded, including five (YES, FIVE!) grand slams.  If you think you’ll get A.P. to swing at something stupid in that situation then you deserve to be beaten.

And while we’re on the subject of idiocy…

obama joker.jpgThis photo has been dancing around the interwebs faster than Kevin Gregg can blow a 9th inning lead; but let me tell ya, just like Al’s photo above, this is all wrong.  I’m not talking about the actual lampooning of our president as a joker — that’s all fair game as far as I’m concerned — what bothers me is that the word “SOCIALISM” appears below the Obama-as-Heath-Ledger-as-the-Joker image.

Come on now.  Socialism?  Look, the Joker was an anarchist.  There was nothing social about the Joker at all.  The closest he ever came to socialism was wanting to kill everyone for no reason other than to just kill everyone.  So if you’re gonna roast the Prez then at least make sure you get your metaphors — visual and contextual — correct.

“Fool me once… shame on… shame on you.  Y’fool me y’can’t get fooled again.”

Don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.

Peace,

Jeff

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