Results tagged ‘ My Team(s) ’
Four years ago today, I wrote the first post in RSBS history. It was terrifyingly awful. What terrifies me even more is that at that time in 2008, I had incredibly high hopes for the Tigers’ upcoming season based on some high-profile acquisitions they had made. Four years later, I’m still haunted by that 2008 season and experiencing no small amount of deja vu (all over again).
If there’s one thing that gives me hope, though, it’s the fact that sometimes triumph is born from the ashes of despair and failure. That first post was awful but the throw-away line at the end ended up becoming Mr. Lung’s regular sign-off. And even though Dontrelle Willis didn’t work out for the Tigers, Miguel Cabrera has been a godsend. Paired with Prince Fielder, I can’t say as though there has been a more feared power duo in the AL since the days of the Bash Brothers.
Sometimes you have to let go of the past and just realize that it’s over. So, with that in mind, happy fourth birthday Mr. Lung. And a special thank you from both of us to the interns for their years of unpaid but essential work. But most of all, thank you to our loyal readers who keep coming back, in spite of RSBS‘ inauspicious beginnings. Hopefully in 366 days we’ll be blowing out another candle together.
A few years ago I wrote a cautionary piece foretelling the eventual departure of one Yadier Molina — SUPREME JEFFY MANCRUSH — if the Cardinals somehow didn’t resign Albert Pujols to a long, career stabilizing contract. I wrote it flippantly, thinking this will never happen in real life.
And then real life hit.
Albert Pujols is gone and Yadi doesn’t seem to be as in love with the Cardinals as the Cardinals faithful are in love with him:
“I love the city. I love the fans, I love the park. But it’s out of my hands. Whatever they like to do is how it is … They let Albert [Pujols] go. It’s business for the team, too. It’s out of my hands.” (source)
Um… wrong. One, dearest Yadier, it most certainly IS in your hands. And two, the Cardinals DID NOT “let Albert go.” They made him a very good offer, one that would most likely highjack the team for the latter half of this decade, one that would have made Albert a very, very, VERY rich man.
And he declined.
For more money.
I don’t have a problem with millionaire ballplayers chasing the money — but I do have a problem with framing the situation in a salacious manner. To say the Cardinals did not put any effort in retaining Mr. Pujols’ services is as reckless as it is inaccurate.
Here at RSBS, it is no secret that Yadier is my most beloved Cardinal. The St. Louis brass would be wise to pay the man whatever he wants, and I would applaud their efforts to do so.
But if I’ve learned anything about professional sports the last few months it’s that I’ve been clinging to the delusion that athletes give a f*** about the “home team”, about creating a “legacy”, about “loyalty”.
It’s about money and it will always be about money. I’m okay with that now.
If the Cardinals do the right thing and throw bank at Molina to keep him, then I’ll be ecstatic. But I also live in reality these days, so I’m fully prepared to see him in a Halos jersey in 2013.
Hate me. Just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.
He’s larger than life. He’s estranged from his father. He could possibly eat his body weight in donuts. And he’s all ours!
Detroit has fallen in love with Prince Fielder and it seems like the feeling is mutual. Me? I couldn’t be happier. One of the happiest memories of my childhood was watching Prince’s daddy crush a ball that flew out of old Tiger Stadium, right over me, my brother and my dad. You don’t forget that kind of thing. And now we can go relive it in Comerica Park with Prince doing the honors. It just feels right.
At the same time, I’m a little worried. The baseball world hasn’t been this giddy about the Tigers since 2008 when they were shoo-ins to win the World Series. Shoo-ins, that is, until they ended up falling flat on their face right out of the gate. This team is too good to fail but, well, if there’s anything we’ve learned in the past few years it’s that nothing is too anything to fail.
All that aside, I’m excited about 2012. It’s an election year, the Lions should be even better next season and now the Tigers have made a move that in retrospect seems brilliant, even if no one saw it coming. Verlander and Fister. Prince and Miggy. You can forgive me for feeling a little giddy.
Only a few weeks remain before pitchers and catchers report to spring training, which means we’re that much closer to the 2012 baseball season beginning with the St. Louis Cardinals reigning as CHAMPIONS OF THE UNIVERSE!!!
Hot dog! What more could a Fredbird fanatic like myself ask for on his birthday?
How about a decent bullpen?
And there it is: a beautiful, beautiful bullpen! Fernando Salas, Lance Lynn, Scrabble. And Motte to close?!?! Wow!
I have to go back many years (at the height of Izzy-mania to be exact) to remember going into spring training sans a bullpen worry (or nightmare). Having a closer whose calling card is missing bats is just the exclamation point!!!
And now for something completely different:
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.
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.
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.
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).
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.
Every December we like to take a look back at what happened during the year in RSBS. And with Christmas upon us and the annual RSBS holiday break about to take place, it’s that time of year again. Granted, there’s no way we could do this without all the hard work put in by the interns so I want to take this opportunity to personally thank them and ask them to keep up all the good work next year.
Now, before I get to the part you’re all waiting for, I want to take a moment to recognize a couple other people without whom this blog would be a much sadder place. The regulars probably know him best from his appearances on the podcast but for me, his occasional pieces really put into words what I wish I could express. In particular, this year I appreciated Mark Piebanga’s midseason post about Don Kelly. For me, it crystallized who the Tigers were at that point in the season.
Similarly, the brilliant ranting and raving of Johanna Mahmud always bring a mid-week smile to my face. Whether he’s once again lamenting the shortcomings of the Cubs via musical theatre allusions or cautiously hoping for change with the arrival of Theo Epstein, Jo hits the nail on the head as often as not in a way only he can. However, the edition of Setting the Mahmud that really did it for me was his takedown of the Red Sox in the key of Arthur. Nothing says b*tchslap quite like setting your role model loose on the AL underperformer of the year.
For the main event, though, I thought long and hard about the season my co-author had. I watched with amusement his two-part Libertarian “coming out” as he confessed his love for the still-feisty Ron Paul. I also applauded along with everyone else as Jeff completed his first marathon, and this from a guy who, two years ago, was out of breath after running a block.
But the real marathon was the baseball season and if you don’t believe me, just go back through the record. It started in April with Franklin’s blown saves and four months later, Jeff had all but given up on the Cards (and totally given up on the Rays). Just a few short weeks later, though, his dreams came true while attending his first World Series game and a few days later, that dream reached its apex as the Cardinals won the World Series. But as happy as he may have been in that moment, and all joking aside, I don’t think any of us could possibly understand how hard the Albert Pujols news hit him. Baseball, just like that marathon, has its extreme highs and lows. In 2011 we watched Jeff live them both.
Don’t forget our awesome Oakley Blender sunglasses give-away, made possible by our friends at Crown Royal! If you would like to win these sweet shades, all you gotta do is send us a picture showing why you are RSBS’ biggest fan. Email it to us at RSBSblog@gmail.com. The winner will be announced this Saturday, December 24th.
I am trying not to be angry right now.
But I am hurt.
I’m human. And humans have feelings — feelings that, obviously, get hurt. I understand Albert Pujols had some hurt feelings too, because Ryan Howard — a mere scrub in comparison — was making more money than him.
Once again, a professional athlete tells the world with his actions that the fans don’t really matter — that having statues erected in one’s honor, charitable foundations in one’s namesake and a universal key to the city, forever and ever and ever just ain’t worth a pass at a few extra million.
The Cardinals will be fine. Maybe they go hard after Prince now. Or maybe they just move Lance to first and let Freese and Craig become superstars hitting in front of and behind Matt Holliday. Maybe they go and get Jimmy Rollins or one of a bazillion other high value free agents.
But Albert Pujols’ legacy will not be fine. No longer will we mention him among legendary Cardinals like Gibson, Brock and Ozzie. His seat next to Stan the Man is no longer available.
That was Albert’s choice.
Pujols will be remembered as a great Cardinal, yes, but one who, in the end, was all about the money. I thank him for all the memories — memories I will hold dear to my heart until the day I die.
But now there’s no denying that those memories will always be bittersweet. And there’s nothing I can do about it. In the end, the fans don’t matter. And that’s just a reality we’re all going to have to deal with on our own.