A Place To Talk About Giants Baseball

Pitching is hard

Posted in Uncategorized by zumiee on September 30, 2012

And I learned that in 6th grade. I was playing a pick-up baseball game with some family and friends at a local elementary school on a holiday. I was pitching, and my freshman-aged cousin was batting. I was pitching a hardball underhanded from a (in retrospect) not terribly safe distance. He smashed a line-drive right at my face. It was so perfectly right at my face that it transfixed me for a split-second, and in that moment of hesitation, the opportunity to avert disaster was lost. You’ve heard the saying how sometimes a ball hit right at you doesn’t seem to move? This was a classic case of that. And I…..just stared at it. It smashed into my mouth and dropped to the ground at my feet, which the laws of physics say means my lips and front teeth absorbed the full force of the moving ball. It didn’t knock any teeth out, but it did open a gash on the inside of my mouth that required 7 stitches. I also had scabby swollen lips for several weeks, which are not a real help in the 6th grade social scene, for what it’s worth. The only positive thing about the experience was that I was on a milkshake diet for a while. That was pretty cool for a 6th-grader. And thus ended my pitching career. Although I did pitch a few games of slow-pitch Friday night softball when I was in my 20s. I walked too many guys and I was moved to catcher/firstbaseman; kind of a Buster Posey, but without, you know, all that actual talent. But I was a pretty good hitter. I learned to hit line-drives, and had a pretty good batting average.

And speaking of pitching, the Giants’ playoff roster will probably have 11 pitchers, including all 5 starting pitchers, and probably these 6 relievers: Affeldt, Casilla, Lopez, Mijares, Mota, and Romo. Kontos could possibly displace somebody. The catching duo is Posey and Sanchez. The other position players are Arias, Belt, Crawford, Sandoval, Scutaro, Theriot, Blanco, Pagan, Pence, Nady, and I’m going to guess Huff, and that leaves one spot for Pill or Christian or Peguero. Cain will be the Game One starting pitcher, but who’s going to be Number Two isn’t fully obvious. I’m going to guess Bumgarner goes in Game Two, and then Game Three is Timmy, and hope for the best. Zito might get a start in Game 4, and Cain will be used on 3-day’s rest if needed, depending on the situation. The starting pitching is not ending the season on the stellar note that we would like, but these are veterans of the pressure of post-season play. They will likely be competing against some pitchers on the other teams who have never been there before. The Giants have the advantage in experience. Pitching is hard, but if you can do it well, you go deep into the playoffs, and give yourself the opportunity to do something special.

Flapalooza and other unrelated items

Posted in Uncategorized by ewisco on September 30, 2012

Another Flapalooza has come and gone and was quite successful. Great to see Coach Willie D and my man Blade (I have your glasses by the way. We can discuss their ransom over lunch). A treat to meet the incomparable TedSpe. Had a great chat with his honor Snaark. Drank Skype shots with Bozo and waived hello to Pawlie. As always a pleasure to spend time with Big Flavor. We talked about most, if not all, of you and noted how much we would enjoy meeting up someday. Some great discussions about cheating and what should be the repercussions, from records erased to banning from the HOF. All in all, a blast and I hope many of you can make the next one.

Driving home I listened to some of the Marty Lurie show and he posed two excellent questions. The first is: Was this season a success? By the only true definition of success, if the G’s reach my goal of 94 wins then yes; it is a resounding success regardless of any other considerations. So take that! But seriously, I think that this team had an expectation of winning the Division. And in that regard, this season is a success. Getting to the PS is always good but when you should win the division, a wild card berth doesn’t meet, what I’ll call, the other definition of success. As to what happens in the PS, that’s always a crapshoot. We talked about this some but you can’t expect the other team’s fielders to have two balls go under their glove (Snaark, I’m pretty sure that was Conrad Brooks). You can’t expect a potential home run to land on the top of the fence and come back (Ian Kinsler). Cody Ross going deep twice off of Doc? Uribe, huge HR late against the Phils? Renteria? Not to mention the Mark Lemke’s of the world.

And speaking of Mark Lemke, Marty’s other question was: who will be the key pitcher and position player? My first thought of pitcher was Cain. He HAS to win his two starts in the NLDS (assuming he gets a second). The first start for many obvious reasons but one of which is Matt Latos. BF posed this earlier and we discussed it last night but who really wants to see Latos come into ATT for a big game? So if he’s matched up against Cain in the first game (I have no clue what the Reds rotation would be and I’m NOT looking it up now) that’s a HUGE game for the reds. And if it gets to a second start, it will mean that it’s either game 4 or 5 and we absolutely, positively, have to win this one. I gave the bullpen a lot of consideration, although that’s kind of cheating as it’s not one pitcher, but with the fearsome foursome of Lopez, Affeldt, Romo and Casilla, they have to turn every game into a seven-inning game for the other team. If the g’s have the lead after seven, it’s got to be automatic.

For position player my first thought was Crawford, sort of in the Lemke model. Bottom of the order, probably some key rbi opportunities. Turn the lineup over. All extremely important. But thinking about it more, I think it’s Pagan. He’s the straw that stirs the drink right now. His getting on and running around like a lunatic sets the table for Marco, Pando, Buster and Pence (who looks to be hitting his stride!). So Pagan’s my guy.

I forget whether it was nipper or Loo who hated long threads. Sorry ☺. Did I mention the importance of 94 wins?

Baseball: Routines, Rituals and–Magic

Posted in Uncategorized by tedspe on September 29, 2012

Bruce Bochy said Tim Lincecum will pitch as scheduled Sunday and that Hector Sanchez will catch him which means Sanchez will catch Lincecum in the post season as well.

The thought, the very *thought* of the potential NL MVP and probable batting title winner in only 50% of the post season games. At least as catcher. HOLY SHIT!!

A lot has been discussed here, mostly vitriolically negative, about putting Posey at first or sitting him when Lincecum and Zito pitch and having Sanchez behind the dish. Common sense rationales for this move have been offered (Lincecum’s erratic/jazzy style is too much punishment on a catcher of Posey’s value and still healing body), excuses have been put forth (Sanchez needs playing time and, hell, it’s not like he’s hitting the Mendoza line) conflicted personalities have been entertained (Posey=Jimmy Stewart/Lincecum=Keith Moon) and, of course, solutions have been delicately proposed (TIMMY AND BUBBLES NEED TO JUST FUCKING MAN UP!!!).

I’ve been pretty neutral myself. Yes, replacing Belt at 1st with Posey and putting him in left takes away our best defense situation. But I see Sanchez playing like a major leaguer. Look at his B/A, his putout AVG and he certainly isn’t losing any games for the Giants. Look at the Zito/Giants record in his last 10 starts as was brought up in the thread yesterday and up till his last start’s brain fart, Lincecum’s looked good since the AS break and mostly who the hell am I to question Bochy?

But another thing, and I’m not sure about Zito, but if I recall Posey *was* catching Lincecum when the season started. Up to about mid-June and Lincecum…sucked. Always on baseball teams when something doesn’t seem to be working they shake things up a little bit and that’s when the whole Sanchez thing started. It didn’t work any miracles at first but as noted since the AS break, it seemed to smooth its way out pretty good so maybe Bochy just doesn’t want to mess with any mojo. Remember, baseball is a hugely uncertain sport from pitch to pitch for everyone involved and therefore hugely superstitious. I read an article by George Gmelch on this subject talking about the famous routines of the past (Boggs and his chicken diet, Glenn Davis chewing the same piece of gum during a hitting streak, Turk Wendell wearing a necklace of teeth from animals he’d killed). Hell, even in 2010 Huff had his rally thong and Wilson and Romo with the beards. There’s the taboos (never saying “no-hitter”), the “lucky” numbers (when Ricky Henderson came to the Blue Jays he paid Turner Ward $25,000 for the right to wear #24).

So as illogical and unscientific as it is and as dull and pragmatic as Bochy always appears, there’s as good a chance as any that he’s just being superstitious on this matter. It might be something just that silly. The Magic What Is Baseball.


And lest we forget–FLAPALOOZA 2.0 TONIGHT!!!

Be there or be square. Me? I can be neither, either or both. Go figure.

Watching the other Races

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on September 28, 2012

(Let me preface this by saying that I THINK Chi isn’t posting today but if I’m wrong Chi then just post over me)

There are about 6 games to go for everyone and the wild card races are still not determined. The NL looks pretty locked up with Atlanta and St Louis but anything could still go down in the AL, including either Oakland or Baltimore (or both) winning their divisions.

Personally, I am loving the fact that both Oakland and the Orioles are likely to make the playoffs. I’d love to see Texas get knocked out just because I’m tired of seeing them in the World Series the last 2 years in a row. And I am double loving the Angels not getting in after their ridiculous spending spree over the Winter. Pujols watching the playoffs on tv is an image that makes me smile. As long as only one of them (Texas or the Angels) gets in, I’ll be happy.

Do you guys have any preferences to who you’d like to see make or miss the playoffs this year?


Flapalooza 2.0 Update: It is going down tomorrow evening around 5. We will watch the game, enjoy good convo and spirits and skype in some of our east coast buddies along the way. If you are interested in coming, email me and I’ll send you the particulars.


2012 SF Giants. Fuck YEAH!

Posted in Uncategorized by dirtnrocksnomo on September 27, 2012

I don’t know about the rest of you but after 3 years of baseball that came down to the final week of the season I don’t really know how to feel about this years’ club. Clinching a playoff berth with 10+ games to go? What the hell is this all about?? This must be how fans of beer league teams on the east coast feel year in and year out. I must admit to fanboy giddiness.

The biggest concern as the calendar flips to October is the squad playing crisp clean ball and keeping the edge. This year isn’t done by a long shot but I look back on it so far and see Maui sunsets slathered in bacon. Yes, that means it’s good. Strangely, the Giants seem to have been turned upside down; SF is a pitching first club? Yeah, okay that is still true but the starting five isn’t exactly steamrolling down the stretch with an historic effort a la 2010. Bochy can’t bring along a young team? How about Crawford and Belt? They have both settled in to the point of gold glove talk at SS and 1b is now debated in terms of how can Belt stay in the lineup if Posey shifts to first. 3b? How about that muchacho Sandoval? 2b? The MAAARCOOOO chants should rain down on Scutaro soon enough? Outfield? Pagan has come on strong to close the season and while some may hope for more, Pence quietly gets the job done. Sure LF is questionable on the offensive side of the ball but Blanco play some good D out there and if Nady can get it rolling he can complete the line up. This LU is good top to bottom with elements of awesome sprinkled in. Yeah, I’m looking at you MVPosey.

What, me worry?…

Posted in Uncategorized by snarkk on September 26, 2012

I gotta run outta town later this morning up into the north of NorCal, so I don’t have much time to cogitate here on last night’s game.  Suffice to say, I don’t put much stock in it, one way or another.  Part post-clinch blues, part Lincecum maybe off  his feed even more due to two extra days rest, part for some wild-ass reason the Dbacks just regularly feed off Timmeh like sharks on a wounded whale.  At least I’m sticking with that.  Give him one more start to tune up.  If he flails in that one, I’ll chalk it up to sandbagging the oppo, because he’s going to make at least one start in the first PO series.

I will say that I think this Hector catching in the playoffs is problematic.  He’s a hacker, and he can connect with one every once in a while.  Or have a nice, two hit game with a couple of RBIs.  But, I’m leery of him catching a playoff start of either Zito or Lincecum, especially Tim.  The past balls/wild pitches last night were not cool.  Plus, we need the best D we can get out there against the Reds or Nats, because you can’t give away anything to teams that can really score without the help of shoddy D.  If the Giants are figuring on winning close, well-pitched playoff games, management should want Posey at C, Belt at 1B and Blanco in left (maybe Nady) with the proper gloves on.  Now let’s win a coupla in a row to get the mojo going again…

Heady Days, Indeed . . .

Posted in Uncategorized by unca_chuck on September 25, 2012

These are good times to be a Northern California sports fan. The Giants just reached the playoffs, and won their division for the 2nd time in 3 years, and the 49ers are (minus Sunday’s hiccup) once again among the upper echelon teams of the NFL. The A’s are confounding everyone with their playoff run, and Stanford just beat USC. We haven’t had such good times since the Joe Montana/Jerry Rice/Matt Wiliams/Will clark days of the late 80s when the Giants reached the playoffs in 1987, the World Series in 1989, and the 49ers won the Super Bowl in 1988 and 1989. Prior to that, the closest they both got at the same time was the early 1970s with John Brodie/Gene Washington/Ted Kwalick and their crushing defense making the playoffs 3 straight years, and the Mays/Marichal/Bonds team that had a game up on the Clemente-led Pirates in 1971. Rarely do both San Francisco teams reach the pinnacle of their succes at the same time, so I’m for one basking in this.

Funny thing is, I was convinced the Giants would win the World Series in 1989 due to the fact that in 1969, the Jets and the Mets were champions, and in 1979 the Pirates and Steelers were champs. Come 1989 the Niners had won the Super Bowl, and when the Giants reached the World Series I though, perfect timing. Alas it didn’t happen, and hasn’t for both teams at the same time, but that really isn’t the point. The point is both franchises are doing fantastically well, and their fanbases couldn’t be any stronger. Good times.

Now, about those Warriors . . .

The HUNGRY Games

Posted in Uncategorized by pawliekokonuts on September 24, 2012

We are in the postseason. More accurately, we will be in the postseason contests. Strangely, I already find myself basking — and in a sense almost nothing has been accomplished.

We know that just being there is not enough. We have to play the games, and then win the games. In the playoffs, the hot teams prevail. No. Check that. The HUNGRY teams dominate and prevail.

“We” are merely voyeurs. So let’s pretend for a second. How do *we* (more precisely, *they* the players) stay hungry, my friends?


Posted in Uncategorized by twinfan1 on September 22, 2012

Well, I’m going to make this a little bit about me, me, me… In 2009….2010….2011… and now 2012… I didn’t think I’d be here for this. And you know, many fans waited their whole lives for the joy that 2010 brought us- and *weren’t* here for the moment. Baseball and how our team fares is a small thing in the grand scheme- but those small things are so much of why life is a beautiful thing. I’ve been lucky to have witnessed some of baseball’s memorable moments, as have many of you, and we’ve had the pleasure to come to know each other and share our love of this great game.  I was going to compare clinching days but none are alike, thankfully, they each write a new story for a new group of young men who, at the end of the day, perform a simple but wonderful thing- they make us happy….

Now do this, San Francisco Giants: make us even happier. Go get ’em…

Pitching (check), Batting (check), MVP (double check)

Posted in Uncategorized by eddacker on September 22, 2012

I have been a Giants Fan for a very long time, as have most of you. Very little of that time was my team a team clearly at the top, one of the ‘big boys’, winning and playing good baseball. They are, today, a 3 tool team using defence, offence and pitching. With Pablo coming alive the Giants can add the long fly. As Baggs wrote in his post game report last night:
This is what happens when you combine youthful energy, a commanding lead in the NL West and a team that has all the talent and confidence to make a sustained run through the playoffs.
This team is winning and I am a believer and unlike the NY fans, World Series or not, being in the playoffs means you are a top team; two out of three years now. It is still a month until we will know which of those top teams will play in the World Series. I like our chances.

Buster Posey is a big reason this team is winning. He has had extra incentive lately winning the Willie Mac award for most inspirational player on the team this year. The man is a Giant and there is great joy over, first his return from a frightening injury, second his hardball, winning attitude and, of course, third his shot at the MVP. His game is ON. Even Vern and Vera were bringing him food in the clubhouse saying, “a catcher needs to eat to keep his strength up.”

Posey should add another award sometime after the season ends, when baseball has gone quiet and the league MVPs are announced. Here’s why: over 20 HRs | premier backstop | no worse that 2nd in the batting championship | helped his team WIN the division | plays for the best team with the best fans in the best city. What are your thoughts?

P.S. The WC game is on my birthday this year. If any of you were considering gifting me a play-in game ticket I prefer Baltimore or Oaktown. No thanks if it is LA or Philly. Come to think of it East Coast teams mean cheaper air fair, but let me worry about that.

Hopefully there will be some fan memories made in SF this weekend. GET YOUR BLOG ON!

Personalities, Bee Wheezy, 2010 v. 2012 and This Post

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on September 20, 2012

The magic number is making me get weird and nostalgic so I apologize in advance for this post. Not *weird and nostalgic* for the team or the World Series win, but for the personalities on the team. Bee Wheezy, Burrell, Timmy, Huff, Uribe, Ross, Romo, Torres……those are 8 pretty distinct personalities. They all took turns driving that team bus, often over the limit, down a steep, winding road. And somehow it got to it’s ultimate destination. And because of all the things that happened, we all felt like we were along for the ride.

That team was PACKED with personalities. If I had to pick my favorite out of the 8, just off personality, I would probably go with Cody Ross. — and I’ll never forget the Cody Ross story that my college friend BirdDog told me back on 10/19/10.

And come on, a rodeo clown? That’s gold.


Of course, if we hadn’t won the World Series in 2010, maybe I wouldn’t be remembering all those *personalities* with such great fondness. But when I think about 2010 and 2012 I don’t think it’s even a comparison (and maybe because of the last sentence it’s not a fair one).

It seems like we’ve got a great group of guys who love playing with each other right now. But I’m just not connecting to them personally the way I did in 2010. Those guys were…..perfect. I’m not insane, I expect to feel the same way about these guys as I did those guys. Or at least close. Or maybe not. I dunno, maybe they’d have to win a World Series….

Like I said, maybe I was mesmerized by the results of 2010 and that’s why I’m remembering the players so fondly.

But this thread is about personalities. And this crew has a long way to go to get within hailing distance of the 2010 group. And that’s not a dig against this year’s team, I love this team, I just got stuck tonight for a moment on more love for 2010…….

But a moment is quick. And it can be timeless–except when it gets stuck in the timeline of your soul. When that happens,  you just sit there like a dumb ass perseverating on it….. You trip in it……You fucking B-A-S-K in it……

Nothing against the 2012 crew right now, but I’d give anything to re-live 2010 again.

All hands on deck

Posted in Uncategorized by willedav on September 20, 2012

One of the more enjoyable things about 2012 Giants has been to watch so many players contribute, in dfferent roles and positions.  Hector and X Nady had couple hits each the night before, Crawford a couple long blasts night before that, Sandoval and  blanco 3 hits last night and it was Mijares who ended the game on the mound.

You’ve had great contributions from Belt, Pagan, Scutaro, Pence, Arias and even Cristian had a fantastic catch that cost him a couple days injury.  Not to mention of course all those involved in the CBC and how spread out Ws have been among the SPs.  And I have yet to mention the MVP.

Speaking of whom…..if Tim Lincecum is pitching in the playoffs, who catches him?


Posted in Uncategorized by zumiee on September 19, 2012

Remember 1984? I don’t remember much about it. Ronald Reagan crushed Mondale and got re-elected. Mondale won his home state of Minnesota, and Washington, D.C.; and Reagan won everything else. Apple introduced Macintosh to the world. Michael Jackson caught on fire filming a Pepsi commercial. But what’s REALLY important is that on June 15th of that year, in Bellevue, Washington, little Timmy Lincecum entered the world. And later that year, on  October 1st, in Dothan, Alabama, little Matty Cain was born. Yes, it was a very good year, indeed. Uh….other than that Reagan thing. Feel free to make your own Orwell analogy about that. (grin)

Lincecum/Cain. The foundation upon which 2010 was built. At times, we just called them Lincecain. And we need that again in 2012, in October, especially. Lincecum looked better last night, and has made some incremental progress to looking like his ol’ self. Cain has had a very fine season, overall, highlighted by a perfect game and being the starting and winning pitcher in the All-Star game, of course. Currently, he is 14-5, with a 2.93 ERA. Outstanding numbers, but is probably a longshot to win the Cy Young because of Dickey having a terrific season, too, and is a sentimental favorite of the media. 

Lincecum, two Cy Youngs and a World Series ring; Cain, a perfect game, and a World Series ring. Huge accomplishments already in their relatively young careers. Cain is signed to a contract until 2017, and Lincecum has another year left on his contract, but has a less certain future with the Giants. He has been wildly inconsistent this season, with an emphasis on the “wild.” Cainer hasn’t been as sharp lately as he was earlier, but that is fairly normal for starting pitchers in the “dog days” part of the season. With the playoffs tantalizingly close, the expectation is that both Cain and Lincecum will raise their game. We need that if the Giants are to go deep into the playoffs. Bumgarner, Zito, and Vogelsong have all made major contributions to this season; but, ideally, Lincecum and Cain will be the dynamic duo leading the way in the starting rotation.

Cain has overtaken Lincecum as the ace of the staff. Tonight Cain will take the mound at AT&T, as he will in Game 1 of the divisional round of the playoffs, and that is a very comforting feeling for Giants fans. He’s The Horse, but he’s also a solid rock out there, stoic and calm, and ready to lead this team forward in his own quiet way. Cain, at age 27, is the longest serving current member of the team. He’s the guy who set the tone for the great team chemistry of this team over the last several years by not complaining about his historic lack of run-support, never throwing the Giants’ hitters under the bus. Cain wore those 1-0, 2-1, 3-2 losses with dignity and class, and has well-earned the respect he has from his team and the fans.

Here’s to you, Cainer. And Timmy, too. Little did we know back in 1984 the good news that was arriving.



Baseball. Satan’s Game

Posted in Uncategorized by tedspe on September 18, 2012

Perhaps ya’ll don’t believe in God or Satan. No problem. I’m a borderline athiest myself. Often called an agnostic. Which kind of comes off as a pussy not willing to make a committment one way or the other. But baseball? Of all things it makes me believe, in the least, of a higher being.

All sports are always iffy game to game. But baseball holds not only a legacy stronger than any other sport in America but a passion amongst its fans that closely embraces a religion. Granted, the “Religion of Baseball” was already discussed in the film BULL DURHAM, but I’m going different than that.
Or not. We’ll see.
See, baseball is the weirdest sport based on the odd qualities or lack thereof that still allows something along of excellence in their sport. Gentlemen exceed in this sport who have the physical ability to barely get out of the fucking bullpen after their fourth beer and seventh chicken wing to come in and get that save. GOTSTA be a deal with the devil. And we love, or at the very least, respect these creatures that would be more than welcome to the Gates of Hell (for those of ya’ll that enlist in the qualifications). Historically Ty Cobb was a wiry, talented, outstanding baseball superstar but, no question, would have fought with General Lee’s side in the 1860’s. Babe Ruth was a fat fucking tub of goo who hit more HR’s personally than other teams, repeat, entire teams in any given year. The Black Sox Remember them?
Baseball kept blacks out as long as forever and only allowed hispanics in if their skin was slightly…paler.
Bennies. Pete Rose. Pine par. The steroid era, for lack of a better term, created more possible villians than any time in the greatest statistical period in the game’s history.

And yet, we still… watch, follow, live and die on a day to day basis for our boys of summer.
Meanwhile…Satan laughs away.

Baseball is Satan’s favorite sport. Satan, at least once in his quarterly lunch meeting with God…brings up baseball.
With Satan, as usual, constantly touting the fucking Yankees.

And God always ended the meetings with a smirk. Though it was just a touch different at their first lunch in 2011.

God said “Sorry, Scratch. Coudn’t help it. I know your second favorite city has always been San Francisco. For all the wrong, stupid reasons. Well..it’s alway been my favorite city. For all the rightious reasons. I was just fucking with you all this time.”
And God downed his glass of pinot noir, winked, grabbed his fedora and said, while lighting his Cuban, “I’ll give ya 2011. See ya in 2012”

Voggy’s Problems and Flapalooza 2.0

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on September 17, 2012

I’m going throw a post up because I think yesterday screwed everyone up on knowing where we are in the order. Ted, if you want to go ahead and post something on top of this. But if you don’t have anything, don’t sweat it…..

Voggy’s problems are complex. His velocity and *stuff* look good. Now, the predictable excuse of “he’s tipping his pitches” has surfaced. I don’t think that’s it. Think about it, he’s been bad for several starts in a row. Is the *tip* something that’s just getting passed from 3rd base coach to 3rd base coach with Raggs and Gardner clueless to it? There’s no way he’s tipping his pitches and each opposing team is on to it except our own coaches.

Right now, I’d like to see him be one of the long guys in the bullpen from now and extending through the playoffs. Maybe not thinking so much about the game will make it easier for him to succeed. Remember, he’s the guy who spends 24 hours getting his game-face on. Sometimes a chick can spend too much time putting on her make up. Dig?

Regarding Flapalooza 2.0. It is tentatively set for September 29th. There’s a 5:30pm game v the Padres. We will be meeting at an as yet undisclosed restaurant location on the Peninsula. Right now it’s me and Blade and anyone else who RSVP’s me with an email. bigflavor77@gmail.com

Flapalooza 1.0 was a lot of fun, hope 2.0 is even better…….

This Just In . . .

Posted in Uncategorized by ewisco on September 16, 2012

Not sure who’s turn it is but i thought I would toss this up. Is it hyperbole to suggest that this is a huge start for the vogster? I said earlier that i would like to see him skip a turn, not as punishment but to get him some extra rest. I have no idea who you’d start in such an event. maybe Mota? see if you can get three or more innings. than Bruce can do his usual bull pen dance. With the way he’s using the bullpen, it would mean some extra wear on it as well. It’s amazing to me that there isn’t anyone in the minors that jumps out at you and says, “give that guy a start”.

On another note, I’m actually glad to see the dodgers putting up some sort of a fight. I think the g’s need to stay battle tested and never feel like it’s in the bag.

The A’s are astounding. And what a big win for Snodfart. all in all a good time to be into Bay Area sports. Enjoy your Sunday knuckleheads.


Flavor Note: Some of you, especially Chrome users, may have tried to get into the Flap earlier today and seen a screen warning you about malware at this site. This is something that started with sbnation and, as far as I can tell with what I’ve read on the internet, was a false-positive finding that set off this alarm all over the place. Coming to the Flap, like anywhere you go on the internet, is a decision you have to make but I feel confident from what I’ve heard from wordpress that this site is safe.

Giants Win. Maintain 7.5 Game Lead

Posted in Uncategorized by dirtnrocksnomo on September 15, 2012

It wasn’t the prettiest game to watch last night but the club walked away with a win to maintain a 7.5 game lead. How sweet is that?  At this point the only remaining games are within the NL West where the Giants have gone 33-21 so far this season.  It’s hard not to get too excited but Bochy will start to rest players soon.  The starting staff, Cain and Bumgarner in particular, can use a blow.   I like box scores so here is the game summary for your visual pleasure.


Chase Field
  1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
0 0 5 0 0 0 0 1 0 6 10 1
0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 1 2 9 0
W: Cain (14-5) L: Skaggs (1-2)
HR: SF – Pence (21)





Aloha Means Batter Up!…

Posted in Uncategorized by snarkk on September 14, 2012

Alright, BF got me going on a Hawaii direction with his Tunnels Beach sunset yesterday.  Given that there was a Giants day off, I figured why not look at the history of baseball in Hawaii?

The Hawaii Islanders were an AAA team from 1961 to 1988 in the PCL.  They had originally been the Sacramento Solons, but then moved off the mainland to Honolulu.  The Islanders originally were affiliated with the Athletics, then for a longer while the Angels, and actually drew a ton in their heyday — 400K fans saw them in 1970, leading the entire minors.  Because of the distance from the mainland, the schedule was such that visiting teams made 4 to 7 game visits to Honolulu, and then the Islanders would do the same back on the mainland.

There are some pretty cool names associated with the Islanders.   In the 1960’s their broadcaster was Harry Kalas, who then went to the mainland to be replaced by a familiar name — Hank Greenwald, who then went on to the Giants, succeeded in Honolulu by a guy named Al Michaels.

Later on, the Islanders became affiliated with the Pads, and then shortly before they closed down in the late 1980’s they were affiliated with the Pirates and the White Sox.  They bagged Honolulu and moved to Colorado Springs in 1988 as the Sky Sox.   Some noted alumni Islanders:

–     Barry Bonds, hit .311 in 44 games in 1986, then got called up to the Pirates.

–    Clete Boyer, Bobby Valentine, Tony Gwynn, Diego Segui, Tim Flannery

Managers :

–  Bob Lemon, Chuck Tanner, Rocky Bridgers, Doug Rader, Tom Trebelhorn.

For an earlier history of pro baseball in Hawaii and a run down on the 1970 Islanders — rated #38 in the top 100 minor league teams of the 20th Century — check this link.   http://www.milb.com/milb/history/top100.jsp?idx=38   Not sure how you could focus on baseball and learn some ball while you were living in such a paradise as Hawaii.  That seems to be hard to do.  Otherwise, Mahalo, Aloha and Go Giants!…


Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on September 13, 2012

Flavor posting for Chuck today………

I had intended on writing a thread about a prediction I had made a while back. I found a bunch of my posts, copied and pasted them into the thread and geared up for a great defense of my grand fortune telling skills. Then I stopped and thought, “Who could possibly give a shit about whether I predicted something correctly? What pathetic psychological deficit am I trying to fix by force feeding all of you evidence that I was *right* about something or not?”

So I appreciated this James Joyce inspired epiphany and I switched thread directions on a freaking dime, because I’m THAT agile, and I decided to post about…..sunsets.

Here’s a nice one:

I’m imagining it setting on the hopes and dreams that Dodger fans once had about their team winning the NL West in 2012……

So what’s the best sunset YOU ever saw?

Walk on the Wild Side

Posted in Uncategorized by pawliekokonuts on September 12, 2012

I just heard a snippet of ESPN Radio’s Mike&Mike. (After about 47 seconds their morning verve is virtually unlistenable.) One of the coffee con brio Mikes was referring to a Jayson Stark (I like him, and not only for the favorable blurb he gave my book) piece declaring that this new Wild Card regime could result in a team playing in four cities in four days. I’ll take Mr. Stark at his stark word.

So, girls, do you like the new Wild Card scheme, with two teams doing a play-in game — and 101 other potentially exciting, or disastrous, configurations?

Who will be in those games? Who are your picks? And who moves on?

And while you are at it, when will the San Francisco Giants clinch the NL West? (My guess: September 23.)

Who’s better? 2010 or 2012?

Posted in Uncategorized by twinfan1 on September 11, 2012

And screw jinxes, as Craig said: no such thing.We’re going to the playoffs as the West champs. And forget last night.

Torres vs. Pagan- remember, this is the 2010 Vungo. Angel has the edge in BA, OBP is about even, and Angel will have a slight edge in SB. Andres gets the nod in  power and defense. These are small differences by and large. This is close and in the interest of amity and goodwill and all that, I’m calling this one even.

Fruckie vs. Scooter- because of the way he’s played since we got him, the temptation is to go with Marco. But Freddie was just too good all year and his defense gives him the nod, IMO.

Panda vs. Uribe- another tight one. The injuries have taken a toll on Pablo this year. Have to go with Juan.

Buster vs. Buster: the rookie of the year vs. one of the MVP favorites. This year’s Buster is the guy.

Pence vs. Ross- remember with all of these- the postseason performance in 2010 doesn’t count. I’m going with Hunter.

Belt vs. Huff- it may not have been a “career year”, as he had some other good ones, but Aubrey was a big part of the heart and soul of that 2010 team. Such a shame that he’ll be remembered for what followed. But he’s the man in this comparison.

Burrell vs. the Field- The Bat takes it.

Renteria vs. Mudbug- Brandon has been so spectacular in the field, it has to be him. And he’s hitting about 50 points more than someone posting as me thought he would. Crawford.

So I’m calling 4 positions to the 2010 squad, 3 to 2012, and one even.  But these aren’t huge edges either way. Even with Burrell, if it’s Blanco, his defense and speed narrow the gap.

Bench: even with Hector’s big advantage over Whitey, have to go with the 2010 group headed by Ishi, Nate, and Pablo.

Pitching: have to be honest. Huge advantage to the 2010 staff. Virtually everyone who’s still here was better then, save MadBum. And Wilson was dominant.

Conclusion: we’ll probably hit better than in 2010 and we will absolutely have to. Defense could be crucial- we’re better now. But we’ll face a much better team than Atlanta in the NLDS. No prediction yet, but this will be a tough go. But I say: Let’s do it again!


Posted in Uncategorized by eddacker on September 10, 2012

Strasburg’s shutdown? boring
Trout’s ROY? too obvious
BZito shutdown of the dogers? Y’all already seen that
I got nothing and nothing is clearer than hindsight.
For me and my emotions nothing is more confusing than this part of the season . I do not want to believe it is almost over. I cannot hope for the post-season, just read ‘Baseball’s Starry Night’, authored by Paul Kocak and currently in stock and available at Amazon for $11.07; things change. I cannot just-watch one game at a time. My mind races back across the season highlights and jumps forward to the season final standings. I am sad because the season is ending and happy because my team is posed to win the west. I want more: more baseball, more games, more torture. I am selfish, the players never tire, they are there for my entertainment and joy.

Everything that is happening, with the Giants, has been covered and commented upon in this blog. The schedule looks easy for us. And not for the team trailing us. The rivalry, alive and well, is almost over for this year, trade or no big trade. The PED scandal re-ignited with our best player caught out. Errors, DPs, RISP, who plays where, Closer by Committee, SPs wearing down or off their game, last in HRs, playing with a home record below the away one, big game heroes Posey, Pagan, Scutero, and all the others. A depleted minor league, no big trades (one under the radar), sellout crowds everyday and owners only playing for profit. All covered and I got nothing.

Let’s talk playoffs, with Giants as NL West champs. Which means the team would get some time off while the wildcard game decides who will play the Nationals. Then we face the Big Red Machine. Probably two of the biggest challenges between here and the 2012 WS. I know I am going to be watching St. Louis, Cincinnati, and Washington. One or two of these teams will be our biggest games between now and October 24th. I would prefer Atlanta in the NLCS. After they snatch the WC from LA and pull off a win over Washington. That is what I would prefer. And there is a scenario where WS 2012 is a Bay Bridge Series. I don’t count out the Brewers or the Bucs, either.

So put away meager seasonal games and let’s talk playoffs.
(sorry Nipper, nothing took more words than I thought it would, a bottle of fortified wine on me)

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Assessing the Importance of Today’s Game

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on September 9, 2012

It was fairly irritating that we didn’t win that game yesterday. Cain’s wild pitch, Affeldt’s usual *sh!t* pitch and Pence’s ant-small presence contributed to us losing what was a very winnable game.

And so we turn our heads toward *Him*. If I had told you at the start of the season that on September 9th Barry Zito would have the same number of losses (8) as Clayton Kershaw, you’d probably punch me in the face, twice, for trying to roll one over on ya. And yet, that is exactly where we are today. In fact, if the Giants can somehow get Zito a win today and Kershaw a loss they will have almost identical records (Zito at 11-8 and CK at 12-9). We all know the limitations of the value of a win or a loss for a pitcher, I just thought it was a fun fact to consider as we prepare ourselves for the game.

And I say *prepare ourselves* because that’s exactly what I’ve found myself doing over the years on Zito game day’s. Previous to 2012 I used to batten down the hatches and pray the storm would pass by quickly sparing us nothing more than a single loss. Sometimes it just felt like he was losing more than one game at a time. And who could forget his *3 losses n 7 days* at the end of August 2010. That was a neat trick, wasn’t it?

In many ways I consider this Zito’s best year with the Giants. Of course, the bar is set very, very low. Besides actually having a winning record for once at this point in the season, he HAS pitched some unbelievably big games for us this year. But the cracks are not just visible they are cracking. He’s pitched one good game in his last 5 starts and with the daunting task of the Dodgers and Kershaw, on national tv no less, tonight’s start does not look good.

Win or lose, our situation is not going to be affected much tonight. If we lose, things aren’t going to be as dire as many will predict. Being 3.5 up in September is a good thing. If we win, we won’t have locked up anything. Being 5.5 up with 22 to play is nice but hardly a guarantee of anything (as we were all reminded of when we read Baseball’s Starry Night, authored by Paul Kocak and currently in stock and available at Amazon for $11.07…….

But Barry has an opportunity here in September to do something he has never done before as a Giant: pitch well. He’s pitched his best this year when we all thought he would pitch his worst so while tonight looks like an impossible hill to climb it’s precisely the kind of game where he surprises everyone. My heart is rooting for him to make it so……..

But my head says we get killed tonight. Dodgers win, 6-1.

The Biggest Win of the Year

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on September 8, 2012

Well, WillieD is having some trouble getting in to post today so I will just state the obvious. Last night’s win was epic. After we got “Kennedy’d” Kennedy went and Kennedy’d himself. Unreal. It almost feels like we’re playing with house money the next two games.

POTG’s: a tie between Pagan, Scutaro and the bullpen…Oh, and Kennedy.

And with Cain going today I’m breathing comfortably with a steady hand. At the very least, you know he’ll keep us in the game…….

Kickoff AYSO game in a couple of hours……

Niners tomorrow…….

What a great weekend……..

2 Ellises and a Cruz

Posted in Uncategorized by zumiee on September 7, 2012

Without these three guys, the Dodgers would be NOWHERE this season. The “Big 4” get all the publicity, but it’s these three guys, grinding out tough ABs, starting and keeping rallies alive, who have kept the Dodgers chugging along. The Big 4, as a unit, have not lived up to the hype yet, and in fact, the hype has kind of faded for the moment. Ethier is having a nice season,  Ramirez is a player on the decline, Gonzalez has yet to prove he can get a team over the hump, and Kemp is clearly still feeling the hamstring to some degree. It’s especially noticeable on defense. When he and Ethier are hitting on all cylinders on defense, the rightcenter gap pretty much disappears. Not so these days. There’s a gap between them now. And AT&T Park has a lot of green grass to cover.

Having said all that, it’s a tough one for Timmy tonight. I think that, other than Victorino, whose glory years are behind him, and the pitcher’s spot, there’s 7 tough ABs for Tim to work through each time through the order. And it’s especially important that he dispose of the 2 Ellises and Cruz without expending a zillion pitches, getting weary, and making mistake pitches to the Big 4. As always, he needs to get his pitches down in the strikezone, and stay consistent. Don’t be walking guys. If a couple of the Big 4 hit a solo homer, no big deal. We still win 4-2. But if he’s walking the 2 E’s and C, trouble. The 2 E’s and C have been catching some breaks, and those breaks are due to lessen at some point. They’re going to put the ball in play, trust your defense, and DON’T WALK THEM.

40,000 people in the stadium, and untold thousands at home will be pulling for Timmy to help the Giants retake the homefield advantage for the rest of the season. Turn it back into OUR HOUSE in a big way. This is Giants baseball. You come into OUR HOUSE, and you get SHUT DOWN. We want it back to where opposing teams don’t FEEL comfortable here, they don’t LOOK comfortable, and they don’t ACT comfortable. Dominant pitching, solid defense, and an offense that will keep battling, will find a way, and never gives up. It’s Giants/Dodgers. It’s September. It’s a battle for the division title. Let’s do this thing!!

And Down The Stretch They Come . . .

Posted in Uncategorized by ewisco on September 6, 2012

Well, the day off comes at a good time. I said earlier this year that i wanted the team to struggle and have to fight to get into the PS. Be careful what you ask for? And if your a dodger, will you look back on these past series and say that while the giants were losing two of three to the dbacks, you didn’t make up ANY games while playing the padres? This truly may be something that comes into play as the season plays out. Looking ahead at the coming series i am not sanguine. It’s quite possible that we will need Barry the “Stopper” Zito. As my buddy the Landman use to say, “Maybe, Maybe not”. But really, how cool? September baseball, Giants with a small but significant lead over the hated dogs, culminating in a possible showdown in Chez Latrine. They’re rounding the far turn . . .

(please ignore the code below, thanks–Craig)


The Media: Old and New

Posted in Uncategorized by tedspe on September 5, 2012

Disappointing and long game last night. Oh well. Nothing changed in the standings and the boys of San Francisco never gave up. CSNBA’s after game analysis however? In a word. Flatulent. And someone needs to slap the “smug” right off Greg Papa’s face.

Also, I caught the post game wrap show and it dawned on me that it’s actually kind of annoying to watch as well.You know, when Krup and Kuip and Miller and Fleming do their little run-downs and players of the game on TV. Especically annoying is Duane Kuiper who seems to be wishing he were anywhere else, waving at someone off camera– looking off with a distant glance signaling some dingo with his mic like he’s guiding some child’s remote control plane for a landing.

That being said, for whatever reason I *do* enjoy listening to this shtick on the radio. Go figure.And so we shall.

Don’t get me wrong, modern television is an amazing thing. Matt Cain’s perfect game was the first one I’d ever seen and I would have missed it if it weren’t for television. But still modern TV sports coverage, especially when it’s on FOX…SUX. And a lot of modern sports radio can be downright wrenching.

But there’s still something about baseball on the radio.

I know a number of us have mentioned before that as kids we would watch TV with the sound down and listen to the game on the radio. But now 21st Century broadcasting’s so convoluted you can’t do that anymore as the timing’s off by a few seconds (unless you want to get all clever with TIVO or something). And even today, when a game is especially tense like last night and I’m legally sober, sometimes I’ll turn off the TV, jump in the car and drive around listening to the game. It has a certain calming effect on me.

Maybe I’m just nostalgic but there was something that seemed a little more pure in my youth with the whole radio/baseball connection. And it wasn’t just for listening to games. There seemed to be a lot of shows just talking about baseball and sports in general on the radio before they became forums for the listening audience to call in doing what often enough comes off as an unintentionally bad Dennis Hopper imitation:


Marty Lurie: Okay, we’ve got Pinhead on the line. Go ahead, Pinhead. What’s on your mind?

Pinhead: Yeah, man, like Bochy, man? What are they gonna say about him? What are they gonna say? That he was a kind man? That he was a wise man? That he had plans, man? That he had wisdom? Bullshit, man!

Marty Lurie: Interesting thoughts, Pinhead. Are you referring to any strategies or moves in particular? Can you be more…

Pinhead: All nine innings, man, all nine innings! One through nine, no maybes, no supposes, no fractions. You can’t travel in space, you can’t go out into space, you know, without, like, you know, uh, with fractions – what are you going to land on – one-quarter, three-eighths? What are you going to do when you go from here to Venus or something? That’s dialectic physics.

Marty Lurie: Okay, okay. Good thoughts. Good thoughts. I think I see where you’re going with this. So tell me do you….

Pinhead: And he’ll just walk right by Brandon Belt, man. He won’t even notice him. And suddenly he’ll grab him, and he’ll throw him in a corner, and he’ll say, “Do you know that ‘if’ is the middle word in life? If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs and blaming it on you, if you can trust yourself when all men doubt you”… I mean Belt and Crawdaddy, Crawfish, Crawford and Whitey and Panda and fucking giraffes and fucking Melk-Maids and Maidens and fucking Timmy and perfect games and.. and me, man… no, I can’t… I’m a little man, I’m a little man, he’s… he’s a great man! I should have been a pair of ragged claws, crawdaddy claws, scuttling across floors of silent seas…

Marty Lurie: All right, then, uhm, yeah I get it… good call Pinhead, good call. A lot of good points. A lot of things to think about but we have to move on with some other callers…

Pinhead: I’m fucking splitting, Jack.


Yes. Love today’s TV. Love today’s radio. Mainly due to immediate access to facts and stats. Still. Radio was much better in the good old days. Even *before* our days. In that vein, I now leave you with an excerpt from the underappreciated Woody Allen film RADIO DAYS:

“Hello, sports fans and welcome to today’s edition of Bill Kern’s ‘Favorite Sports Legends.’ Today’s story is about a baseball player. His name was Kirby Kyle, a lean southpaw from Tennessee. He played for the old St. Louis Cardinals. He threw fast, and he had a good curve ball and all the hitters knew it. He was a kid with a great future.

But one day, he went hunting. He loved to hunt, just like his father and his father’s father. Chasing a rabbit, he stumbled, and his rifle went off. The bullet entered his leg. Two days later, it was amputated. They said he would never pitch again. But the next season, he was back. He had one leg but he had something more important. He had heart.

The following winter, another accident cost Kirby Kyle an arm. Fortunately, not his pitching arm. He had one leg and one arm, but more than that, he had heart. The next winter, going after duck, his gun misfired. He was blind but he had instinct as to where to throw the baseball. Instinct…and heart.

The following year, Kirby Kyle was run over by a truck and killed. The following season, he won 18 games in the Big League in the sky. This has been Bill Kern with another ‘Favorite Sports Legend.’”

Most Important?

Posted in Uncategorized by chipower9 on September 4, 2012

Good Morning Flappers!

Trust you all had a wonderful Labor Day weekend. I read where there were some access issues yesterday, but assuming all is fine now.

I was gone for the weekend (competing with the dogs, again), so was not on the blog much (I haven’t even had the time to go back and scan the last couple of days of comments).

Fantastic game yesterday. I was watching the game, Zito was cruising right along, and all was good in the world of the Giants. A couple of Snake runs, a string of hits, the bullpen’s inability to get an out, and all of a sudden, Zona had the lead. Well, I had a ton of things to do outdoors, so I left the game at 7-4 (what a dumbass move…those chores could have waited). Anyway, what an exciting finish with Scutaro providing the tying run and game-winning hit.

I’ll be honest, when Sabes made the move to acquire Scoots, I was lukewarm on the deal. At 36 years old, I really questioned how much he had in the tank. But, on the flip-side, the team really needed the depth at the time. I have always admired the way Scutaro plays the game…professional in every sense…a true gamer. And there were certainly times where I hated him when he stuck it to the Giants as a member of the A’s.

With that said, what do you feel are the biggest acquisitions that have helped put the Giants where they are? Was it Scutaro? Crazy Horse??

The 1970’s—The Greatest Decade (For Names) Ever

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on September 3, 2012

I loved the 1970’s. Obviously, not for anything economical or political. And certainly not for anything personal–my parents got divorced in 1978. I just liked the whole vibe of the 70’s. I was quite young so I didn’t really start appreciating it till I got older. I liked the music, I liked the way everyone dressed. I liked not feeling guilty for eating at McDonald’s. I liked how no one was allergic to anything…..

In fact, this pic from my past symbolizes everything good about the 70’s…

…..I loved the 70’s vernacular and still use it regularly today. I still like referring to another person as a *cat*…. Saying *Dig?* at the end of a sentence is the best way I’ve ever found to find out if the person you’re talking to is either in compliance and/or understands what you’re talking about. And I don’t just  say “old school” because it sounds cool. If I label something as such it’s because I honor and respect  it…….

But without question, my favorite thing about the 1970’s were the names of professional athletes. And I’m talking across ALL sports. In boxing you had guys like Ali, Frazier and Haggler. Is boxing still even a sport anymore? Football had guys named *Mean Joe Green* and *Otis Sistrunk*. In basketball you had *Jabbar*, *Dantley*, *Wilkes*—guys that just sounded like they were about to hand you your ass. How about *Purvis Short*? I mean really, Purvis? That sounds made up. I’ve never heard of anyone named Purvis before or after that cat. But he had the sweetest arching jump shot I’ve ever seen in my life. Sometimes I thought it was never gonna come down……Was there a better name in the history of the game than “World B. Free?”  Lloyd must have just shook his head laughing quieting to himself when he saw Artest change his name to “Metta World Peace”—dude just doesn’t get it.

One of the many things that San Dawg and I have eerily in common is a bizarre attraction to the Orioles in the 70’s. I was too young to even know what an *Oriole* was, I just thought it was a cool-ass name for a team. All the  Oriole’s from the 70’s had cool names: Boog Powell, Al Bumbry, Bobby Grich, Brooks Robinson, Doug DeCinces….

The A’s had some great baseball names in the 1970’s–Rollie Fingers, Vida Blue, Joe Rudi, Catfish Hunter, Sal Bando….

And everyone on the Pirates had a name (and a body)  that just exuded “I am going to kick your ass”– Bill Madlock, Willie Stargell, Dave Parker, Jim Bibby, John Candelaria….

For me, baseball players in the 70’s just had bad ass names. And by owning all their baseball cards, I was a bad-ass-by-association.

If you want to know how cool the baseball names were in the ’70’s take this quiz: Ask yourself to name 5 of the coolest baseball names from the 1990’s. You have 10 seconds. Go…..

See what I mean? Hell, take the same quiz over the last 5 years in baseball….

Didn’t think of too many did you?

I’m bringing all of this up today because we are in the midst of something very cool that is happening in baseball right now. Just like it was in the 1970’s, the Orioles, the A’s and the Pirates are are suddenly relevant again. Not because of the great names of their players but because, for the first time in 30+ years, all 3 have a shot at the post season. Baltimore and Oakland are tied for the WC lead and actually have an outside shot to win their divisions (2 games and 3 games out, respectively). Pittsburgh’s hill is a little tougher to climb—they have no shot at catching the Reds but they’re only 1.5 games out  of the WC spot.

I never cared too much about the economics of baseball, the skewed playing field, etc. At least until this year. Teams are making moves that make no financial sense and, what’s even more important, no practical sense for the short term or long term direction of the franchise. Two years ago the Angels TRADED for the ridiculous Vernon Wells and 80 million still left on his deal. They gave up Napoli who was making 2.6 million and who went on to lead the Rangers to the World Series last year. Last off season, the Angels spent needlessly by signing, among others, Albert Pujols to an absurd deal. Why? They already had Trumbo and a returning Morales at 1st base. And while it can’t be argued that either is better than Pujols it was an disgusting  luxury to just go out and give a declining player 240 million dollars when you already had TWO outstanding hitters in place at first base. The Tigers did the same thing with Fielder. In 2011 they had signed Victor Martinez to a 4 year/50 million dollar deal. He was going to play 1st base this year before he blew out his knee. Problem? Nope, just go sign Fielder to a 10 year deal. V-Mart will be back ready to rock next year but they don’t need him. They’ll pay him 36 mil to ride the pine instead.  The Boston Red Sox have been doling out the dumbest deals in recent memory: 142 mil for Carl Crawford? 157 for A-Gone who’s never been on a team that’s won anything? They paid 50 million just for the right to negotiate with Dice K. They gave 80 million dollars to John Freaking Lackey. I mean, come on……

Now, some would argue that the teams handing out mega-stupid 10 year 200 million+ deals will regret them later. I don’t think so. They KNOW these deals are going to go bad at some point. They don’t care as long as they win now. But they aren’t winning now, are they?

The final straw for me was the Dodgers giving the clueless Red Sox a *get out of jail free* card by taking on all of their idiotic deals (and players) AND were stupid enough to give them prospects, too!

So finally in 2012 I started to appreciate the pure lunacy that influence baseball decisions on the teams with the highest payrolls. And it just isn’t right. It’s bad for the game if 80-90% of the teams start the season with no chance to win. Sound judgement and keen financial decisions SHOULD factor into how your team performs…..

But wait–this year isn’t JUST about stupid financial decisions by teams running without a budget.  There are low-payroll teams performing well. And watching what the O’s, A’s and Pirates have done this year has been phenomenal. It’s made me a lurking-fan of all three teams. With it being Labor Day I felt like it was a good time to honor teams that actually WORK to EARN results on the field. Teams that are just burning money and expecting to buy results are an embarrassment to the game.

Of course, you could also just root for Baltimore because of their cool-ass name. “Baltimore Orioles”– it just rolls off the tongue, doesn’t it?


Flap Author Note: I am writing for Dirt today, the order stays the same, no switches……


The Giants’ Happy Hooker…

Posted in Uncategorized by snarkk on September 2, 2012

This is roundabout. I’m tired and gonna just go with a thought. I spent most of my day in Berkeley looking at the refurbished Memorial Stadium (looks great) and then the Cal game with Nevada (sucked for Cal fans). Tedford has outlasted his contract, unfortunately it has not outlasted him. Anyway, wrong sport. I did succeed in sucking down 3 pints of good Lagunitas IPA and other brew after the game with a buddy, and joking with other Bears alums about how we’re fucked. 6-6 again, looks like. But, hey, we’re gonna do it in style with a very spiffy “new” $320 million stadium and athletic center. At least the boys have about an acre-sized weight room to crow about, since not too many wins will be cleaned and jerked, it appears, this season. If Cal on the road can hold Ohio State and SC to under 40 points each, it’ll be a miracle.

Speaking of Bears, I was listening to the Giants game on the way to the Cal game and even during it with my trusty Walkman. Watching live college football while listening to the Giants. Why the hell not? Miller is a “little” better than Starkey. Besides, the Giants had a better ground game than I was seeing. Which brings together the Giants and my today’s locale with the thought of Xavier Nady, the Cal Bear alum. I don’t know how much he’s got left, but in his first Giants AB he got left and hooked one down the 3rd base line to get 3 runs home for Tim, and that’s a plus in my book over Blanco and Peguero. That got me to thinking. Xavier? What’s the deal with that name? I guess it’s sourced from the Spanish Jesuit missionary St. Francis Xavier back in the 1500s. Is it pronounced Zaveeyer or Ekszaveeyer? Either one works, I think.

But, there’s more Xaviers. The university in the Midwest. Basketball school. And, anybody remember Julian Javier? I remember him with the Cardinals when I was a kid. Good second sacker. And his kid Stan Javier (supposedly named for Stan the Man) — decent field, pretty much average hit, a bit of pop, who played for the Giants in the late ‘90s and did OK for us in a utility+ role. Javier is the just a different version of Xavier. Not to mention, of course, our very own Javier Gomez, uh Lopez, our super Loogy.  Another  Javy Lopez was the very good, long-time catcher for the Braves.  There’s a journeyman MLB player Xavier Paul (now with the Reds) that was drafted by the Dodgers, and his claim to fame pretty much was that he was brought up by LA in 2009 when ManRam got busted for menopause. And, a short time later this Xavier got his first MLB hit against – the Giants.  I wonder if our new Xavier ever shortens his name to Xavy, like Javy?  Then, he’d be Xavy Nady, kinda catchy.

Of course, the most famous Xavier is/was Xaviera Hollander, the Happy Hooker. Saintly, I’m sure she was to some, in her own way. She made money in NYC on her back and managing a few ladies who preferred that position for compensatory reasons. But, she made way more money and fame by writing about her exploits in the early ‘70s when that kind of risque thing in a book was risky to publish. (Ya see, at that time our president was Nixon, who had sex twice in his life, it is believed, maybe more if martinis and walks on the beach at Key Biscayne with Bebe Rebozo counted). Now, apparently 15 year olds write more “descriptively” on their Facebook pages and “sexting” on their iPhones than Xaviera ever did in her book. Maybe Nixon was right.

Go Xavier, be our LF saveeyer, or just get a three run double every once in a while, OK? It’ll help slow my growing Tedphordphobia…