The Will Ferrell thing was fantastic. I can’t imagine anyone who didn’t enjoy that. And I’m not a big Ferrell fan. He’s ok. Does some things epic. But all in all, I don’t go out of my way to see him in a movie. But what a treat he gave the fans and the players yesterday. And it’s tough to go against anyone raising money for anything that has to do with cancer.
Check out all the highlights at mlb.com if you missed any of it.
buddy just walked into my office, he’d been at spring training. Dude likes to get his hats signed. Here’s how Miller signs his autographs now. Pretentious? Or is that how you’d sign a hat if you were in the HOF?
Hector Olivera, the latest Cuban to hit the market, is said to have 6 teams interested in him. You guessed it, the Giants are listed as one of the six.
He’s 30 and wants a 5 year deal. I’ll put him closer to 33 and I don’t want this guy on anything more than an invite to camp.
So I will be happy after Sabean gets outbid on another foreign player.
Now watch us get him.
For those of you wondering……
What do we glean from this? Someone named “Lollis” is on the team. Our HR leader is Gary Brown (1) tied with Duvall, Carbonell and Quiroz. Brown is also the SB leader with 2. So clearly, we’ve found a short term replacement for Pence, right?
Man, Gary Brown must really not be able to hit a breaking ball.
Snarkk’s 10:15 post from last night was a good way to end yesterday’s discussion of Sandoval. It’s important to note that The Panda didn’t say anything bad about the SF fans, he just didn’t say he missed us. And really, who cares if he didn’t say he missed us? First of all, this is his job, we are far more emotionally involved in the players than they are with us. Secondly, he just left, if he’s ever going to miss SF fans he has to have time to know what he’s missing.
Regarding his comments about missing Bochy and maybe Pence, that’s just too weird to even take seriously. Literally EVERY SINGLE dugout video shot that I ever saw of Sandoval was of him yucking it up with fellow players. It’s not like he sat exclusively next to Bochy (and occasionally Pence). The dude was routinely the life of the clubhouse. He had very strong ties to his fellow players. I don’t care what he says now.
Anyway, I’m not gonna get caught up anymore in all this “who did he miss? who didn’t he miss?” This non-story is starting to read like a really bad romance novel. I’m going to focus on who are 3rd baseman is now, not the guy who’s gone……
How badly do you think they want it? I’m talking about The Repeat.
In 2011, I remember them being a little overwhelmed by what they had done. The team partied hard. The only thing that stopped Huff’s party was a problem with anxiety. And then Buster’s ankle blew and the season went with it.
In 2013, I vaguely remember wondering where the emotional fire was on the team. I’d have to go back and look, but I wrote at least one thread about it appearing that the team was struggling to find that internal drive to win it all again. I also recall lot of people blaming the WBC and a short off season on the Giants troubles in 2013.
And now here we are on the cusp of another title defense. I don’t remember another spring training that I was less into. I’ve enjoyed hearing Jon Miller on the radio and I’m exciting about baseball starting again. But honestly, my internal drive for what might become of the 2015 season is rather low.
Maybe this will all change when real baseball starts. We’ll see.
Draftkings has their mlb contests up for opening day and I’ve spent the last 2 hours looking at what each player costs. This probably doesn’t interest any of you.
But at the top right of their homepage there’s a box that says “Contest Goes Live in:” and next to that it says 717:59:03
So we’ve only got 717 hours to go before real baseball is back and all is right again in the world.
But he’s no Scott Cousins. He’s not a malicious idiot. The reality is, this was just an unintentional mistake. An unfortunate fallout of spring training. I gave this guy shit on twitter last night and was blasted by Cubs fans and Black’s old college teammates. I could care less what twitter idiots think of me, I mostly use it just as a news source. Honestly, I’ve been more pissed off at some shitty rides Corey Black used to give me down in Southern California. lqtm
I get it, poor Corey Black feels bad. But this guy hit 14 hitters last year in only 124 innings (while also tossing 15 wild pitches). That ball he threw Pence? He can say he was trying to go inside but the fact is, he had no idea where it was going and if you saw the video, Hunter had no where to go. That pitch probably hit 14 other guys last year.
So whatever, he feels bad, he didn’t do it on purpose. It’s baseball, shit happens. But we’re now missing one of our best players because of this guy–so, fuck him.
I think we’ll be fine covering this internally. Blanco can cobble together a decent enough month. It would be a major problem if we asked him (or Perez) to handle the job for an entire season.
So this really isn’t that big of a deal…..
Eli Whiteside has lived the life, hasn’t he? His peripheral major league career has now mercifully ended and yet he’s still in the game. As many of you know, he’s the bullpen catcher for the Giants now. Here he is displaying his multi-layered skills by throwing BP today:
His transaction log reads like the stamps at the back of Blade’s well-traveled passport:
Somehow, he made 2 mil in the major leagues. Throw in the bonuses from those 2 world series’ he watched from the bench and he’s probably over 3 mil.
I have no idea what he’s making as the BP catcher. With his luck, he’s probably pulling down what Bochy is making…….
It is time. The defense of our great crown starts today. Bumgarner will pitch the first inning. The last time he pitched an inning? That wen’t pretty well….
Our REAL defense of our great crown starts April 6th in Arizona. The Giants don’t even play a home regular season game until April 13th.
But if you’re in the mood for a lazy day listening to the sweet sounds of John Miller and Kuip, tune into KNBR today. This week the game will be on radio today, tomorrow and Sat/Sun.
One more day until real baseball. At least, baseball games that don’t count. Tomorrow the Giants play the A’s. Barry Zito will be the starting pitcher for Oakland…
That last sentence isn’t true but that would spice this spring up a bit, yes?
This is the last back2back thread about comparing pre-2010 swag to post 2010 swag, I promise. On the right is a shirt I bought probably 15 years ago. No frills. Black. Name of team. Done. On the left is a shirt someone gave me for Christmas. Honestly, I wear the one on the right much more often.
Regarding spring training, I think it’s clear from the last 2 threads that there ain’t much coming out of camp so far……
This is the coffee cup I drink from every morning:
I was looking at it this morning trying to figure out what’s wrong with it. Then I figured it out and took this picture.
1958 to 2008 (and 2009) were just so freaking worthless. Sure we had our memories of all the games and the players. We had the heartbreaks, the highs the lows. The close calls. But we never had that SOARING supernova high that 2010, 2012 and 2014 brought us. Will Clark hitting that grand slam deep into the Chicago night was probably my best memory from “the coffee cup” years. Now think about the rush of the last 5 years. And then look at my coffee cup. It’s almost too overwhelming to consider. Did the last 5 years really happen?
After realizing why I don’t like this cup my first reaction was to go buy a new one—-bigger, with gaudy championship shit written all over it. But no, this is the cup I will continue to drink from in the morning. A boring, quiet reminder of what we once were. A *bridge* to what we are today…..
So as soon as I say Aoki leading off is “not going to happen,” Bruce Bochy tells reporters that he’s considering exactly that. This is very good news.
Aoki, Panik, Pence, Posey, Belt, Pagan, McGehee, Crawdaddy, Pitcher.
You guy see it another way?
NBA time: Only two games on the slate (typical Thursday) but what a slate it is. Westbrook going 1:5 v Phoenix is interesting but the real deal is Golden State v Cleveland. If The Dubs want more info on how legit they are a road game vs LeBron, Love etc. The match ups in this game are endless. I can’t wait to see Draymond on James who takes every point scored on him as a personal affront to his family. And Curry should fiddle-de-do all over Irving’s face. Wild card could be Bogut’s ball movement and whether Klay is hitting his shots.
Regardless, WOWZA, what a game coming up tonight….
So is this another “bad angle” or do the Red Sox already hate The Panda?
Yes, he had back surgery, but the procedure wasn’t career threatening. Still, he’s 33 years old and plays like he’s 23. He could easily break again.
Nori Aoki waits in the wings to leadoff if Pagan gets hurt again. It’s not going to happen, but I’d lead Aoki off to start the season. He’s a better leadoff hitter than Pagan who, at this point in his career, might be better off hitting down the line up anyway. And there’s probably a slightly less chance of injury if Pagan doesn’t feel like he’s got to fly around the bases every time up. Hit the ball in the gap, score Aoki, jog to first base. That sounds about Pagan’s speed these days……
I found the Giants non-pursuit of Yoan Moncada rather amusing. Did anyone really think we were in on this guy? Sabean said, “We were involved, just not as much as other teams.” The bottom line is that Sabean will never pay market value for a hot prospect from Cuba. I don’t know if he’s skittish from the Ozzie Fernandez thing or if he just doesn’t know how to compete. Maybe ownership won’t let him. But the freaking Brewers made an offer in the 12-15 million dollar range and if Sabean wasn’t as involved as THAT then of course he never had a shot.
I don’t really care, I don’t find myself pining away for 2nd basemen from Cuba, especially with Joe Panik on the team. And Moncada is only 19 (though more likely 22).
I just get tired of Sabean spoon feeding us nonsense. Just tell the fans you aren’t ever going to sign a player from Cuba unless there is zero competition and he costs under 2 mil. Like when you signed Daniel Carbonell (who no one else mistook for a hot prospect).
This is and always will be one of the greatest pictures I’ve ever seen.
I’ve looked at this for probably hours over the course of time that’s passed since it was taken. The four fans to the left with the most perfect expressions. The weird kid behind Pence’s ass. And until tonight I never noticed the light above Pence’s head. Check it out— Guy with a beard, tongue sticking out. How crazy is that?
Missing baseball tonight…….
Different angle . . .
Pic of the Day
As many of you have heard, Tim Lincecum reunited with his dad over the winter and revamped his delivery. It pains me to wonder why it took him so long to go freaking TALK TO HIS DAD to get this fixed. Since we don’t know if it’s fixed I won’t worry too much about it.
But come on, TALK TO YOUR DAD? I get it, Chris Lincecum is a dick. I remember his radio show. He’s intense. He’s a “know it all.” I wouldn’t choose to hang out with him either. But if he has the key that will unlock the funk you’ve been in for years, then I’m sorry you go put your head down and TALK TO YOUR DAD. Look, if Tim went through some kind of major trauma with his dad (physical/sexual abuse) then I could understand why he would cut his dad out of his life. But I don’t think that happened. And if it did, why would he reunite now? Conspiracy theory on that at the end of the post……
Here’s what happened: Tim started making bank and figured he didn’t have to listen to his blowhard dad anymore because he’s an adult and he makes 500 times in a year what his dad made in a lifetime. Still, if this is the guy with the keys to the castle, how could it take so long to go back to him?
If, and it’s a BIG IF, Tim’s dad has tinkered his son back into relevance than I will start by being ecstatic.
And then I will be pissed off.
When was the last time Tim was good? 2011? In 2012 he made 18 million. In 2013 he pocketed 22 million. Last year he cleared 17 million. And this year, in the final year of his deal I might add, he will make 18 million. Not only did he owe it to himself to go TALK TO HIS DAD sooner than this winter but he owed it to his employer and his adoring fans. If he just patched up the relationship with his dad so he could gear up for another big contract as a free agent, fucking off for the last 3 full seasons while being paid handsomely, then both of them can go fuck themselves……
Well, this spring training could be going better. First, Romo gets shut down with a sore shoulder. Now, Bruce Bochy has a heart procedure and is resting in the hospital. Don’t even get me started on the freaking ice rink that’s taken over the floor of Levi’s Stadium.
Sounds like Boch is ok but obviously, our thoughts and prayers are with him.
How about the life that Barry Zito leads? He takes a year off to surf and bang his hot wife and then decides he wants to play in the major leagues again. The A’s gave him a minor league deal for a $1m should he make the club with additional incentives built in.
What a brilliant move by Zito. He goes back to the club and fans who have nothing but love for him. And they know him so it won’t be a big deal when his breaking balls don’t break in the thin, dry Arizona air. I’m sure they’ll just look at his velocity, which should be there after taking a year off, and happily welcome him to the staff.
And make no mistake about it, the A’s need a veteran starting pitcher to lead that staff—they have Sonny Gray and Scott Kazmir and a bunch of kids. Zito’s experience will go a long way to helping them.
And the best part about it is that I can root for him from a distance. Free from having to worry about his albatross contract and frequent blow up starts, I have nothing but well wishes for a player who is directly responsible, along with several others, for us taking down the 2012 crown. Don’t ever forget what Zito did for us in that post season. I never will.
How rad will it be if Zito pitches against the Giants in Spring Training?
and for those of you following the Panda on his first day, here he is….Yikes. The core workouts must have been few and far between this Winter….
Our Cardinals friend, Daniel Shoptaw, has me do a Q/A with him each February called “Playing Pepper”. I think he has several other Giants blog owners do this. With so little happening in our baseball world, I am choosing to make it a thread today.
Question: What are your thoughts on the team’s off season? Did they do what they needed to do?
Answer: They replaced Pablo and Morse with McGehee and Aoki. That’s a big minus-minus. They resigned starting pitchers who have a questionable amount of productive innings left in their arms. But we’ve won 3 of the last 5 world series’ with teams that didn’t look so good on paper. As the great Flap veteran DJ Loo once said, “Sabean’s off season doesn’t end until the trade deadline.”
Question: What does this team do so well in the post season when they get there?
Answer: They act like they’ve been there and because they have been there they have a different mindset than other teams. They don’t freak out and throw shit around when things don’t go there way (see: 2014 Washington Nationals). They don’t get too high or too low….until the job is done and it’s time to celebrate. When you know you’re going to win it’s a fairly huge advantage over your competitors. And no one out-manages Bruce Bochy in the post season.
Question: What’s the weakness of the team?
Answer: the regular season? Kidding. People think the Giants “got lucky” again in 2014 but remember, they were 42-21 to start the season. You don’t get that record by accident. They have gotten weaker offensively but they’ve maintained most of the core of both the position players and the pitching staff. If they stay healthy, I don’t see any holes that can’t be overcome once Sabean ends his vacation shortly before the 2015 trade deadline…
Question: What player do you expect to make the greatest strides this year?
Answer: I mean, they just won yet another world series with most of the same guys from the one they won before this one. I’m not sure there are too many more strides to take. Brandon Belt is the obvious choice, should be remain healthy…..
Question: What’s your projection for their record in 2015 and where will they finish in the NL West?
Answer: Probably another 88 wins or so, 6 games back of the Dodgers. And another world series win from the wild card slot.
Question: What do you like best about being a Giants fan?
Answer: the knowing dude head nods I get to partake in with strangers on the street on a daily basis. Through association, we are world champions, multiple times over the last 5 seasons. We don’t take it for granted. But we’ll ride this supernova till it burns out. The trophies, however, will never fade away….
I promise, this will be the last golf post of the year. It is really amazing what Matt Cain and Buster Posey are doing down at Pebble this week. They’re still tied, but that’s not even the half of it. First of all, they are very different golfers. Cain is a 6 and Posey is a 14. And, of course, they are paired with different pros (Posey with Watney–my pre-match predicted winner and Cain with Bettencourt).
And yet they have posted the exact same adjusted score each day: 61—66—63. Going into the final round, they are both 9 under (8 shots off the leader).
For those of you who don’t play golf, I can’t stress enough how unusual it is that they have tied 3 straight rounds in a pairing. Unfortunately, they probably won’t show more than a clip or two of them on tv today. I guarantee you the ultimately winner, if there is one today, will talk shit about this all season long in the clubhouse and probably for many, many years to come.
You thought you were gonna read a *50 Shades of Grey* thread, right?
Cain and Posey both dropped down the leaderboard a bit but they are still tied at -16. For sports reference, Wayne Gretzky and his son in law stud golfer Dustin Johnson are at -17 and Alex Smith and his partner Jason Gore are at -13. The current leaders are named Brian Swette and Louis Welch. I don’t know why they’re famous. CEO’s maybe.
Going into today’s round, you KNOW that Posey and Cain have a sizable bet on the outcome, right? Five K? More? If Pebble was a little closer I’d make the drive down to watch it all unfold. Both of them will probably make the cut so if it stays close today they’ll probably bet their next baseball contract on the final round results…..
Buster and Cain are both playing in the AT&T Pro Am this weekend down at Pebble. Buster checked in with a 14 handicap and is paired with Nick Watney (a golfer who I think can win this tournament outright). Cain is the better golfer with a 6 and he’s playing with Matt Bettencourt.
And after round one, whaddya know, Posey and Cain are tied for 4th place in the *Am* part of the *Pro* at -10.
Think there’s a bet or two under the table between those 2?
Goddamn, what a life those 2 lead.
Got tired of looking at a thread with “San Diego Padres” in it. We are running on fumes here at Flap Headquarters.
Pitchers and catchers report to Scottsdale on February 18th.
tick tock, tick tock, tick tock….
Anyone wanna talk about golf? Who’s got the winner of the AT&T? If you can nail a PGA winner cold then I will tell you that you really did something this Winter….
The San Diego Padres have have built quite a nice looking fantasy team for 2015.
They got tired of rolling out Quentin, Maybin and Venable in the OF, 3 guys I don’t think I’ve ever owned even once, so they went out and got Upton, Myers and Kemp. Three shiny names that often get drafted highly in season long leagues.
Their infield still sucks although MIddlebrooks is marginally interesting if he could ever stay healthy. Norris was a staple on most of my season long teams last year. He’s a nice upgrade at catcher for them but we’ll see how he does without the platoon crutch.
Their pitching staff is what really looks strong to me. Shields/Cashner/Ross/Kennedy/Morrow. I’ve drafted all 5 of those guys in one year or another. Their problem will be health. Cashner and Morrow will likely miss large chunks of the season if not the entire chunk. And Shields has a lot of innings on that regular-season arm of his…..
All in all, if I was a Padre fan, I’d be ecstatic going into 2015. My prediction is that it’s going to take a while for those guys to learn how to play together and I think most of the hitters are going to get fed up with that park, probably turning on each other by late July. And since the pitching staff will be breaking down right around the same time, I see the Padres finishing nearer the bottom the the NL West than the top in 2015.
Lemme get this straight: The Giants offer “Big Game (Regular Season) James” a 4 year/80 million dollar deal. He rebuffs it. Ok, it’s not something I’d turn down, but he’s his own man. I respect his decision.
And yet now he signs with the Padres for 4 years/72 million?
All I can come up with is that James Shields is an idiot. He’s got a kinda Cro-Mag look to him. This isn’t a surprise.
Every W we get over his this year will feel extra special…….
Let’s play a guessing game. Here are two tents camped out in front of AT&T last night. For those of you who aren’t out here, there’s a hellacious wind/rain storm blowing through the Bay Area right now.
And since I’ve switched back to the old editor at wordpress, it’s time for a poll. Why is it that whenever a website rolls out an “improved platform” I always end up going back to the old one because the new one sucks?
If this line is any indication of attendance today at fanfest I’m guessing parking won’t be a problem…..
Fanfest tomorrow. Anyone going?
New MLB commish Manfred supports legalizing sports betting. To which I say, in 2015 who still has trouble getting a bet down on a game?
And with the explosion of daily fantasy sports gaming it’s surprising to me that mlb isn’t working more diligently with the main players in fantasy sports (fanduel and draftkings) on a more rigorous marketing campaign the way the NBA is doing it. DFS sports players are the people obsessively clicking on the refresh button over and over at mlb.com.
Some of you probably saw this, but I just read that the Giants did, in fact, offer Big (Regular Season) Game James a deal last month— 4 years, 80 million. He rejected it and then they turned to Peavy and Voggy. Not exactly a pair that should be planned on making up for James-like production.
I would have done a 4 year deal with James and been fine with getting 2 years of solid “Cain-Like” production out of him. But whatever, he’s obviously got his sights set on more years/more dough.
I still don’t get why a guy like Shields wouldn’t want to come here in a nano-second. I think I’ve overestimated the important of winning to a major league baseball player……
Everyone wants him. Only one team gets him. My guess is that a player like this is not a good fit for the Giants. For one, there will be fierce competition and we all know how Sabean feels about that. If you don’t truly know how he feels then just look at his track record–he never gets guys like this. NEVER.
Secondly, he’s 19. This is not a major league ready guy. So you’re paying him 50 million (or whatever it is) to learn how to play in the minor leagues. And if he’s any good, then you have to pay him again once his contract expires soon after he makes it to the big leagues. Again, this is not “The Giants Way.”
So I will eat my hat if we get him.
But imagine if the Dodgers signed him and he was mentored by the wise and sage Puig? The gifs alone would be worth it…
Pffffttttttt….I’m not going.
Maybe it’s having already been to several of them, maybe I’m just not in the mood to fight the crowds, maybe it’s something else. I dunno. I just don’t have any interest in going this year.
Is that wrong? Are any of you going? Does the east coast Flap contingent think less of me?
Next week is the AT&T at Pebble Beach and there are rumors that all 3 WS trophies and all 5 SB trophies will be on display. Now THAT would be a rad photo op.
As a Niner fan, I have known recent great angst. We hit the trifecta with Kyle Williams, Super Bowl Goal Line Melt Down, and RIchard Sherman Tipped Ball. All 3 of those games were devastating. But last night’s Super Bowl had to have felt exactly the same for Seattle fans.
Not only did they incomprehensibly throw the ball at a time where you HAVE to give it to BeastMode, but they didn’t even throw it to their #1 receiver. Or their #2. In fact, yesterday, Richard Lockett was probably #4 behind the shocking emergence of #13 (I can’t even remember his name right now).And to throw it into traffic, where it could so easily have been tipped up in the air for disaster to strike (but in this case it was *merely* intercepted cleanly) was just beyond stupid. That was quite simply the worst call I have ever seen, considering the moment, the implications, and they had the #1 running back in football watching it all unfold without ever touching the ball. It reminded me of this great moment in movie history. If only Marshawn was able to speak. :)
If you run Lynch 2 straight times and he doesn’t get in at least you go down with your best shot. They went down with a gimmicky *out-think ’em* shot. But look, Lynch would have gotten in. They could have had 11 guys keying on him. Beast Mode would not have been denied. They don’t call it “LockettMode”, right?
The first and worst loss as a fan that I can remember was the Roger Craig Fumble Game. After that, it was Game 6 of the 2002 World Series. That had to be the worst, at least for us, right?
Although how can I forget the “Solomon Torres” game?
Fans know devastation. It’s what keeps us fans. It keeps us wanting more. If you don’t get that low you never get to truly appreciate that high…..
Predictions? I’m out for the weekend so this thread will linger and toil in infamy or dominate in someone’s face. I think Seattle handles New England rather easily.
Not sure about the O/U of 47. If I had to, I’d go under.
But I think Seattle beats them by 7+.
Only SB I ever went to was this one. My old man took me:
I’ll check in this weekend. Have a good one.
Confession: I love the “27 outs” videos. The first one I found is this one:
I don’t like Cold Play but I really like the song for this video. And if anyone wants to remember what Timmy was like before his great slide into obscurity, watch this video again. I’m sure you’ve all seen it. My favorite moment is looking into Timmy’s eyes as he walks off the mound after the 7th. He’s got this.
The 2012 “27 outs” video, at least the one I’m uploading, wasn’t as good as 2010. For starters, it was 30 outs. And the music sucks. But still, awesome moments.
And that leads us to 2014. I can’t find a “27 outs” video for our most recent dominant triumph. If any of you have seen one or could upload one, go for it….
Designated on January 21st, March Scutaro was officially released yesterday. He is unlikely to sign with another team. I won’t say “sad end” because he got paid in spades after what he did for us in 2012. But I will say “disappointing ending” to yet another 2nd baseman for the Giants who have 2-baggers disappear the same way Spinal Tap loses drummers……
Joe Panik, please look both ways, a couple of times, before crossing streets today….
Absolutely zero baseball news to kick around. Pitchers and catchers report on Feb 18th. That’s 20 days, 14 hours, 15 minutes and 3 seconds, as soon as I hit the “publish button”….
Anniversary of the space shuttle exploding. Where were YOU?
I was at school in the library. We were huddled around a shitty tv watching it live. Probably a good event to miss in HD.
This got kicked around a little by you guys already but until I watched the video of him saying it, I didn’t really grasp how stupid Rob Manfred’s idea to increase offense in baseball really was. The number one idea he decided to float publicly: eliminate defensive shifts.
Whaaaaaattttt the fuuuuuuckkkkk?
While I do think that would work, why stop there? Why not make corner infielders use gloves on their throwing hand? Make Brandon Crawford wear concrete cleats. Outfielders are no longer allowed to throw. To get the ball in they need to transport it via catapult. Make it illegal for a runner to get thrown out trying to steal. I can already see Manfred giving me a knowing dude head nod for my ideas. You’re welcome, Idiot….
Some hitters can’t beat the shift? Boo freaking hoo. Learn how to hit. Guys like Will Clark laugh at hitters who can only hit the ball one direction.
And Manfred wants to help these poor guys out by eliminating shifts? I guess now that he and his owner cronies are no longer allowed to look the other way on steroid use this is the only idea they could muster to increase offense across baseball.
And by the way, more offense busts his other goal which is to shorten the time it takes to play an entire game.
But don’t let that stop you from implementing one of the dumbest ideas I’ve ever heard come out of a commissioner of a major sport….
PK with the trophy
Here’s a photo taken at Pawlie’s day with Willie and the Gang yesterday
Apparently, Panik was going through some type of dehydration issue….
And here is a picture of Boston’s new 300 pound….er, I mean, “100 million dollar man”. This was taken yesterday. I love the look of the kid behind Sandoval. He’s like, “Fuck. We’ve been had. Get the Dodgers on the phone stat to trade this dude”
At the trophy event, Willie Mays allowed how this World Series was the hardest, the one that had him worried. He is amazing rattling off player names and situations. He was asked about the greatest center fielder besides himself. He begged off, saying how he got crushed when he said he was the greatest. He didn’t want to get in trouble. (“Junior was pretty good.”) And he went on to say how it is just one position, it takes nine guys on the field to win. “I helped all the guys around me. It was for the team, not me.” He meant it, and he said that was the thing about the 2014 team.
I’ll share three little gems. 1.) When Mays was on deck for the 1951 Bobby Thomson homer, he said he did not realize at first that the game was over, that the homer won the game! “I had no idea. Stanky and Leo were hugging and jumping. ‘Get up there, fool!’ I said to myself. I just wanted to bat. I was a kid.” 2.) The passing of Ernie Banks was mentioned. Over and over again, Willie affirmed the take everyone has on Banks: just a nice guy, a kind man. Mays related how Banks came up to him the first time before a game, maybe in Chicago. Willie knew of him and Gene Baker. Banks introduced himself. “Yeah, I know who you are. We’re still gonna knock you down.” And as for “let’s play two,” Willie was, “C’mon, you gotta play one first.” 3.) Willie shared great memories, warm thoughts about Monte Irvin, left fielder. He is 95, living in Houston, the oldest African American ex-player. Irvin was supposed to come up before Jackie, Mays said, except he served in the military. In the beginning of Mays’s time in New York, Mays would visit Irvin and his wife Dee every other day in Paterson, NJ, to eat, get acclimated, etc. Irvin took him under his wing. Willie told a profound story of how he could walk around in Paterson at a park, by himself, untouched by fame. (To me, that’s the origin of the grouchy reputation. Fame is a killer, as Bob Dylan showed in the Scorcese movie “No Direction Home.”) Willie said, “I didn’t want to hurt Monte’s feelings. I was his roommate for three weeks. I told Dee, ‘I gotta get some sleep!'” instead of going back and forth to Paterson. You could tell how much Irvin meant, and it hints at a whole subtext of being black on a white team in a white society.
Sorry I missed DJLoo and Macdog down at Finnerty’s. What else could I do? What a day.
Let’s put to rest any stereotype that Willie Howard Mays Jr. is a grouch. Rather, he is a delightful storyteller, with crackling wit, evident kindness, and self-deprecating humility.
I managed to snag an invite to a private showing of the World Series trophy this morning at the New York Palace hotel. Dennis Z. and I braved a snowstorm and found our way to Manhattan from Dennis’s house about 70 miles northwest. The New York Giants Preservation Society (http://newyorkgiantspreservationsociety.com/) spearheaded the event, led by Gary Mintz. (Great job.) Pictures posed with the trophy. I did a 3 with one hand and a 5 with the other. Then on the other side of the second-floor landing, by the stairs, a tall fellow was being interviewed by MLB.com. Joe Panik. I thanked him, shook his hand, asked if he knew George Brown, who played with him at St. John’s. He did indeed. My daughter goes to HS with Brown’s sister. (My camera messed up for most of the event but I might have a video to share.) I went back a bit later and got an autograph for this daughter. Panik is well spoken, friendly, patient, mature beyond his years. Dennis and I skipped the free sumptuous breakfast this palatial place. Too excited. Soon, at the entrance to the Villard ballroom, a clutch of people stood around willie Mays. I got chills. A reverent aura surrounded him. (Pictures to come, somehow.) He was surrounded by what appeared to be a bodyguard and Giants staffers. As he walked in (I was behind), people stood, one by one, and clapped, all 55 guests. At the dais, Mays sat on one end, Panik in the middle. Bryan Srabian, standing, director of digital media of the Giants, served capably as MC. I’ll just share some notes, but first left me say Mays was truly funny. Folks at the table near me, and many others, exchanged comments that more or less said: “Who knew the guy was such a comedian?” You could really see how he kept his whole team loose. Plus, his recall of games and people and episodes was brilliant. Maybe a stat was off here or there (or not) but his recounting was lush with narrative detail. Humor and charm. I will “download” some recollections right here right now so that I don’t forget details. (It’s all notes for my otherwise-completed next book.) Forgive me if I run into a second thread. Most of the event involved audience Q and A.
The Flip. Someone asked Joe Panik about the double-play in Game 7. He said he knew how Bumgarner pitched (hard sink) and how the batter batted, so he positioned himself where he did. When it was hit, instinct took over. He knew there was no time, so he had to flip it to Crawford. Said you can’t practice that. The questioner lined it to Willie and The Catch, in 1954. Willie was funny: “What do you mean three? I only one one, in ’54. I didn’t win these. Then Willie playfully explained to Panik how you have to nurture the idea of a slogan, The Flip. I’m not explaining it right, but it was perceptive and amusing. All the while, Panik was deferential to Mays — and enjoying his stores, as we all did. [more to come]
Decent debate over the last 2 threads about how Petit will be used. Starter? Long guy? I think there’s the realistic way he will be used and then the *fantasy* way he will be used. Realistically he’s going to be a long guy who comes in after a starter gets blasted. He’ll try to stop the bleeding. For a team not projected to score many runs, we are likely to lose those games.
From a fantasy perspective (and I’m talking about *fan* fantasy, not fantasy baseball) Petit could be the long guy who takes the ball after one of our old pitchers (or Timmy) manage to make it through 4-5 innings and still holding the lead (let’s say it’s 3-2). He holds sway for a couple of innings and gets the ball to our 7-8-9 guys.
Of course, I think Timmy could do that job too.
Petit proved last post season what a weapon he can be that was more circumstances than it was a way he could be used regularly.
I’d love to see Bochy use Petit in his most effective role (bringing him in when one of the oldies hits 75-80 pitches and we still hold the lead) but I doubt that’s how he’ll get used…….
And now an all day VB tourney in freaking Discovery Bay. Bye.
Pete Rose is going to attend and play a public part in the 2015 all-star game. Wut?
He’s not allowed in the Hall of Fame but baseball is cool with making some dough off him at an all-star game?
Rose will do it, it’ll be a boon for his gambling habits. He’ll sign so many balls and jerseys he’ll have to switch to his left hand to sign. When that one quits he’ll stick the pen in his mouth and….you get the drift….
I’m fine with it, too. More Pete Rose at real, sanctioned baseball events is all good in my book. But all this does is continue to make the HOF look like a joke. Which it is……
The deal with the (L)astros looks to have fallen through. Apparently, Vogg’s read my thread a couple of days ago and said “on second thought, fuuuuuuuck that.” He’s now in negotiations with the Giants and I’m fine with that as you can never have enough starting pitchers on your staff not named “Kickham.”
So I may be jumping the gun here but welcome back, Voggy. We missed you?
:) :) :)
I’m not certain, but I think Saturday is the day the east coast gets overrun by the tsunami known as “Mac-a-Looza.” Head for higher ground. I’m hoping PK joins the flood too, just to push the party over the top. Please take pics and forward to me. Or dump them in the ‘bucket’ yourselves if you have authorization to do so.
And if today isn’t the day then just enjoy the pleasant weather than winter on the east coast is known for….
:) :) :)
in other news, the Giants have designated Marco Scutaro. So there’s that……
and in other other news, here are the updated odds to win this year’s WS. The Cubs? Do oddsmakers understand how difficult it is to actually win the WS? Let alone 3 in 5?
Voggy is about to sign a deal with the Astros and I don’t fault him for that since it took him so long to ensconce himself at the mlb level. Gotta get paid. But goddamn, what an awful way to end your career—as an Astro. And the deck is stacked against him. He’s going from a pitchers park to a hitters park. When you’re at the tail end of your career that’s only a good move if you’re a hitter. As high strung as he is, I can’t imagine he’s going to be too cool with a bunch of bumbling Astro kids playing defense behind him. And we all know that at this point in his career he seems to pitch much better in the post season than the regular season. I wonder how many post season games the Astros will play in 2015?
So long Voggy. I hope you’re getting a lot of guaranteed money…….
Scherzer, as all of you probably know, is off the table after signing a 7 year/210 million dollar deal with the Nats. This carries on a predictable theme where I would have been happy to have the player on my team but I’m relieved he signed somewhere else.
That leaves Big (regular season) Game James Shields as the final landmine to a miss this Winter…..
Casey McGehee and Nori Aoki better be really, REALLY good at baseball….
I find it hilariously ironic that The White Shark gets paid NOW (2years/7.5 mil) a day after he gets bounced to the bench. Anyone else think that’s funny?
I’m fine with keeping him around, he is serviceable and, if anything, appears to be a good luck charm. I’d rather have Aoki starting just in the hopes that he recaptures some production from 2012 but basically they’re 2 dudes of the same ilk combining to produce a fairly underwhelming starting outfielder….
Sorry I’ve been MIA, my daughter has risen to the club volleyball level and that means lots of driving and lots of volleyball all weekend long. I almost got in a fight with a family from a Samoan team from The City today. Didn’t start it, obviously……
I keep remembering what this dude did in 2012— 37 doubles, 30 steals. .288 batting average. Unfortunately he’s been on a slow decline since then. He’s 33, the steals are unlikely to come back much.
But what the hell, I’m down with this signing. We need depth and The White Shark just found his way back to his best look–the bench.
But ask yourself this: Panda and Morse out, Aoki and McGhee in.
Does that make us better? Or does it at least keep us competitive?