Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Dodgers Get Hanley For Next To Nothing!

Im driving home from a long day at work. I stop at Del Taco for a late snack ( if ya call two combo burritos, four tacos and a order of crinkle cut fries a snack). While waiting for my order I scroll through Facebook. One post got my attention. Dodger super fan Luis posted something about the Dodgers getting Hanley. At the same time I get my food. So there was no time to read about it. Finally after getting home I read LA gave up Nathan Evoldi and a minor leaguer to the cash strapped Marlins, who are already in selling mode!
Great pickup for the Dodgers, a bad set of circumstances for the Marlins. Its a shame that the season that began with high hopes is now just business as usual for Miami.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Time For Tennis

Next Wednesday I'm finally going to play tennis. My competitive days are long gone (I used to be a Class C player). Now I just like to hit the ball back and forth and talk. Perhaps afterward I'll have a cold cocktail and talk some more.
Of course I'll use the vintage tennis racquets I bought!

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Tough Dodger Loss

Kenley Jansen learned a valuable lesson tonight. Never turn your back with runners on second and third. While Jansen was pawing and kicking at the dirt on the mound, two Padres runners scored. What was a save and a Dodger victory turned out to be a very tough loss. Nice going Kenley....

Friday, July 13, 2012

Does Anybody Read The Box Scores Anymore?

I'm watching the AAA All-Star Game and Tom Seaver was a guest in the booth during the game. He mentioned he's a voracious box score reader. I used to be a voracious box score reader.
Back in the days before the internet, one of the first things I would to start my day was read the box scores. I would read the Dodgers box score first. Then I would look at the rest of the teams and see if anyone stood out from the previous nights games. You can tell a lot about a game by looking at the box score. The late, great Gene Mauch could replay a game in his mind through the box score.
My obsession with the box score vanished with the arrival of the internet and the 24/7 news updates.
Information is everywhere now, the bottom scroll on tv, live game updates, our mobile phones, Facebook, and Twitter. Up to the second news updates surround us now. There are no surprises anymore more looking at the sports page. When was the last time you read a newspaper?
I always tell myself I'm gonna pick up a paper and pour over the box scores. But who has time for that now?

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

The Giants Becoming the West Coast Red Sox?

I saw a tweet from Tim Kawakami of the San Jose Mercury News that he wrote an article a few years ago about the Giants becoming a west coast version of the Boston Red Sox.
I don't like the sound of that, but it's true.
I have not read the article, but according to his tweet, he says its about how successfully the team has marketed itself. I agree with that statement. The team does promote themselves very well all because of those two homer announcers Kruk and Kuip. I enjoy listening to them, but its as if they are force feeding orange and black down everyones throat. In between pitches and funny stories the two are always promoting anything and everything about the team. It gets annoying after awhile.
Then there is the panda hats, Melk Men and Melk Maids outfits, the giraffe, the "fear the beard" stuff (thank God the beard thing is slowly dying). It's clever and I get it, but the Giants fans go overboard with those gimmicks.
Then there is the ballpark itself. I have had good and bad experiences there, depending on where your sitting. I love the Club Level. Comfortable and roomy, and short lines for food and drinks. The rest of the place is bad in my opinion. It seems as if they tried to squeeze as many seats as possible in such a small space. Leg room is non existant. I just don't feel comfortable. I have vowed many times I will never go back, but I always do.
The best marketing a team can get is winning the World Series. I say it was the worst thing to happen to the Giants, at least from a real baseball fans perspective. The Giants have become the hot ticket the last few years. This brings out not only the casual fan, but the "fake fan" too. A fake fan is easy to spot. They have all their nice new Giants t-shirt, hats and other orange and black they can get their hands on. They claim to be life long fans. They are loud, obnoxious and have no knowledge of the game. They are there for the party/social aspect of the game. The fake fan is there to be seen by others, not to see a game.
So being popular is good for the Giants now. They are enjoying popularity I have never seen them have before. They are the kings of west coast baseball for now. They are experiencing baseball success the Dodgers used to have.
Enjoy it now Giants fans, it won't last forever.

Monday, July 9, 2012

How To Fix The All Star Game

Growing up I looked forward to the Mid-Summer Classic. The first one I watched was the 1982 ASG in Montreal. It was so simple back then. Just show up and play the game for a few innings, then enjoy a day off of the All Star break before the second half grind.
I remember the 1984 game in San Francisco and the '87 game in Oakland. Again, the game was so simple.
I finally went to my first ASG in Anaheim in 1989. I went to the All Star workout the day before. There were fielding contest, run around the bases contest, then a homerun derby. It was an experience I'll never forget. The place was half empty for the workout. No televising of the festivities, if ya had a ticket you were the only person to see it take place.
The game the next day was amazing and memorable. Everyone remembers Bo Jackson's mammoth homer. I remember President Reagan being there. (The only time I have been in the same building with the President)
Once again the game was so simple. No hype, no mass produced anything presented by a major national corporate sponsor.
I have said it once, said it twice, and I'll say it again. ESPN is the best and the worst thing to happen to sports. ESPN ruined the All Star Game. All because of the hype and mass production of the Homerun Derby. It's hyped more than the actual game is. Now the Derby is presented by State Farm, and the special gold baseballs are presented by Century 21.
Now the fellas are tweeting during the derby. Some of the batters bring their own pitcher to pitch to them. The players are mic'd up so you can hear everything being said. It's too much going on all at once!!
And don't get me started on the voting. I discussed it in a previous post. There is some serious ballot box stuffing going on out there (AT&T Park).
Now with all the Internet voting, it's nothing more than a popularity contest that has gotten out of control. I never liked the fact it's the fans who vote the players in. It should go to the players, managers and coaches. (I hated to see a past his prime Ozzie Fu@king Smith out there. I hated that bastard anyways)
I just feel a lot of undeserving players get voted in because of hype (SF Giants broadcasters, bunch of homers!).
So that's one fix, let the right people get to vote the players in.
Another would be to tone down the festivities. A Red Carpet show for a baseball game? Really? Get rid of that.
Another would be to take away the home field advantage to the winning league for the World Series. I never liked that. We would be talking about the World Champion Texas Rangers if it weren't for that stupid rule. Bring back the every other year home field advantage.
I know I'm just griping, but I remember when it was just a game. It will never be that way ever again.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

The All Star Game Voting is a Joke

Really Buster Posey is the leading vote getter for the National League? Pablo Sandoval is voted in the ASG? Lots of ballot box stuffing in San Francisco. Im not watching the game anymore. The players and coaches should determine who goes to the ASG.

Monday, July 2, 2012

The 10/5 Rule

Carlos Lee rejected a trade to the Dodgers. The Astros are playing for respectability at this point. The Dodgers need power. The Dodgers are fighting to stay afloat in the NL West. It would have been a good trade.
But since Carlos Lee is a 10/5 guy (ten years in the majors, five with the same team), he has the right to veto a trade. The question to ask is, why stay in Houston? Why not be a part of an exciting pennant race?
Rafael Palmero went through this in 2003. The Cubs had a deal in place to acquire Palmero. But he rejected the trade because he was comfortable in Texas.
Who's comfortable with losing? I don't understand it.
I think Carlos Lee rejecting the trade is a blessing in disguise. Why give up a prized pitching prospect for someone who's not interested in winning? Hopefully the Dodgers can make a deal for someone who wants to win.