What professional baseball stadiums have you visited, and which was your favorite?
What professional baseball stadiums have you visited, and which was your favorite?
This may be the last “In the News” for a little while. To be honest, I don’t like being tied down to the structure, so we’ll see what happens. In the meantime, there are three stories “In the News” this week and all three have me saying to myself “That guy is an idiot”. Join me for a quick session of Idiot’s (Not So) Anonymous.
Hello, my name is: Rafael Palmeiro
Why he’s an idiot: After standing in front of congress and wagging his finger saying he had never taken steroids, it was revealed just a short time later that he had tested positive with the Orioles. It was a black eye for his career and for baseball. Now, with the talk about those guys simmering down, he does it again. “I was telling the truth then, and I am telling the truth now,” Palmeiro said. “I don’t know what else I can say. I have never taken steroids. For people who think I took steroids intentionally, I’m never going to convince them. But I hope the voters judge my career fairly and don’t look at one mistake.”
Which is it Rafe? How can you say I have never taken steroids and then the very next sentence say “for the people who think I took steroids intentionally….don’t look at one mistake” Mr. Palmeiro….please go away. You’re an idiot. But that you for sharing, you may sit down.
Hello, my name is: Tucker Carlson
Why he’s an idiot: For those that don’t know, Carlson is a political news correspondent for Fox News. He recently spoke out against President Obama’s praise of the Eagles for giving Mike Vick a second chance. “I’m a Christian, I’ve made mistakes myself, I believe fervently in second chances,” Tucker Carlson said recently. “But Michael Vick killed dogs, and he did in a cruel, heartless way. Personally, I think he should’ve been executed for that.” Executed? Really? I don’t want to go political or moral on you in this post, but what Carlson said is absurd. Mike Vick paid his time in federal pound you in the butt prison. He’s done exactly what has been asked of him. Leave the guy alone. Thank you Mr. Carlson, you are indeed an idiot.
Hello, my name is: Oney Guillen (with apologies to Bobby Jenks for including him in the picture)
Why he’s an idiot: His Twitter feed is going to ultimately get his dad fired. I honestly don’t think he realizes it. His most recent tweeting was at the expense of Bobby Jenks
hahah memo to bobby jenks get a clue u drink to much and u have had marital problems hugeee ones and the sox stood behind u
they did not air out ur dirty laundry, u came to srping not drinking and then u sucked and started srinking again be a man
be a man and tell the manager or the coaching staff how u feel or the organization when u were with the sox not when u leave
u cried in the managers office bc u have problems now u go and talk bad about the sox after they protected u for 7 years ungrateful.
if it wasnt for u and mainly u freddy garcia would have like 17 wins and the sox would have beat the twins
and u self diagnosed urself bc u didnt want to pitch un real i hope the sox let this guiy fucking have it
oh and yes i remember clearly u blowing a hugee game in 09 and u laughing ur bearded ass off while everyone busting there tail
i thought u were a man not some punk who runs away and talks bullshit. u coward. say it to there face when u were with them
dont make me air out more then i have 2 say ur sorry dont disrespect the White sox ever
now u know what piece of shit person u rooted for chicago. the ones that leave and talk bad about ur team
and u say the manager didnt trust u? he kept putting ur fat ass there and u kept blowing it, he never took u away from that role unreal
go read it its a scott merkin piece its a dandy, i hope people say what they really feel instead of me
although it wouldnt surprise me if the sox take the high road and be classy instead of destroying this yellow beard dipping idiot
and to think u were actually a cool guy and ur word meant something, to bad u dont hit in the AL so they can drill that ass.
one little story remember when u couldnt handle ur drinking and u hit a poor arizona clubby in the face i do. and later u covered it with
Im sorry thats ur answer to everything. How can u disrespect ur ex team like that.
Someone take Oney’s computer away so he’ll just go away. Mr. ONEY Guillen, you’re an idiot. Ozzie, you get a pass on this one.
Now it’s your turn. Either nominate your own (sports related or maybe personal related) or discuss mine. Happy Thursday.
What do you get when you cross Cubbie Kool Aide, Cubbie Cute, and most of Northwest Indiana and Southern Wisconsin?
You give up?……………………
The annual Cubs Convention!!!!!
Most MLB teams have some sort of off-season dork-fest kicking off the new year. This is how you do it Cubs style!!!!
By the way, if you have not heard (and from the looks of ticket sales you have not), the Convention runs January 14th-16th.
I had the pleasure of joining this crowd in 2008 and got a first hand look at the madness.
The recipe? Pack thousands of rabid jersey wearing, autograph book toting Cub fans into the Hilton Towers and give them access to all sorts of Cub schwag. I left the event with the following junk in my bag…..
- About six schedules for the upcoming season
- A baseball signed by Fergie Jenkins (obtained in person for a $20 fee)
- A set of Cubs coasters with pictures of Kerry Wood, Mark Prior, and Harry Carey emblazoned on them (Classy, I know!)
- A Ryne Sandberg Rookie Card
- A Cubs drink Koozy
- A cubs floating key chain in case i ever get into boating
- and too many other weird and useless items my wife made me throw out!
The best part was standing in line for autographs. There was a point when I found myself standing in line for Kerry Wood (it was for a friend as I already have one) and I couldn’t figure out what part of the hotel I was in as the line was so long. I asked people if Christ had taken his place and was at the end of this madness putting his John Hancock on the sweet spot of a Rawlings. Nope, just Kerry Wood.
Well, at any rate, it looks like the ole convention might be a weather bell for the upcoming season. For the first time in a very long time the thing isn’t sold out within weeks of it’s announcement. Does this mean Cubs fans are finally fighting back? Are we finally sick of the mediocre product?
What does this say for ticket sales next season?
I know one thing for sure, we may be hearing the cries of Len Kasper and Bob Brenly during our telecast next year urging people to “head on down to Wrigley Field as good tickets are still available for all games”.
Since we’re light years away from opening day and no breaking news in sight, I decided to look at the all time best rookie seasons put up by a shortstop that had enough at bats to qualify for the batting title. Here are the results, sorted by OPS+ (adjusted OPS). Scanning the list, I can’t seem to find Jeter, Rodriguez or Garciaparra. Just sayin’. So the discussion for today is Do you believe in Starlin Castro, and what do you expect from him in 2011?
This week the Lizzies are full of our fun Pete LaCock talk. Don’t miss today’s discussion question at the end about other “baseball names” that strike your fancy! But first, the week in review!
Monday Morning Discussion Question
We had an interesting discussion about Pete LaCock this week thanks to Buddy’s column about players and their numbers. I want to talk about players and their names. There are just some names that seem destined to be baseball players. Cubs Rebel Ridling and Casey Coleman come to mind. Like them or not as players, they’ve got cool baseball names. What are some names that stick out to you, Cubs or otherwise, either because they’re cool (Rebel) or because they’re unfortunate (LaCock)? Entertain me!
The full title is “Christmas is Good! – Trixie’s Guide to a Happy Holiday”. It is written by Trixie Koontz, DOG, and edited by Dean Koontz.
The book features photographs by Monique Stauder and illustrations by Janet Cleland, and both the photographs and the illustrations are great! I should point out that, as this is a Christmas book, photographs feature Trixie with red bows in her hair (just above her ears).
The Koontz website (DeanKoontz.com) describes this book as “an irresistible stocking stuffer full of furry tidbits to maximize your yuletide fun.”
Here is a quote from the dedication page:
- “Trixie, a former service dog for people with disabilities, retired at three with an elbow problem, and came to live with the Koontz family. She is donating all author royalties from this book to Canine Companions for Independence, the wonderful organization that originally raised and trained her.”
Trixie’s Holiday Wish List is included, and it comprises 37 items.
Here is one of my favorite quotes from Trixie’s Guide to a Happy Holiday:
- “Christmas is not about getting. Is about giving. So give me sausages!”
Trixie’s favorite Christmas movie is “Die Hard”.
A recipe for “Trixie’s Special Christmas Gift Dog Treats” (aka “Peanut Butter Training Bites”) is included at no extra charge.
I recommend this “Big Little Book of Holiday Fun” as a stocking stuffer “for Dogs and Their People”.
The year in baseball has been a doozy. Not just the actual 162 game season but the off-season too!
Without a bunch of blathering about the no hitters and the statistical minutia, which can be found here in a very interesting article by Jayson Stark, I give you my highlights and low-lights for the 2010 season…..
*Many of the following are Cubs related, but not all……..
1) We found out in late January that the Ricketts family had purchased the Cubs for a mere $900 Million. Not a bad margin for the Trib, considering the team was bought by the Tribune in 1981 for 20.5 million. Just think, we could almost field an entire team of ball players in today’s game making that much on a yearly basis….or at least we’ll be able to very soon.
2) This was Yahoo sports spring training outlook for the Cubs starting rotation in 2010….
Starting pitching has been a strength of the Cubs the last few years, and this season could be no different. You can pencil in Carlos Zambrano, Ryan Dempster, and Randy Wells as the first three starters in the rotation. After that however, it gets dicey.
Does this look familiar? They should just copy and paste for 2011.
3) The San Francisco Giants won the World Series on the backs of a few young players and a bunch of journeyman ballplayers. Their team payroll you ask??? Just shy of 99 Million. That placed them ninth in MLB for the 2010 season.
4) If you told me prior to the 2010 season that Lou Piniella would leave his post as Cubs manager 3/4 of the way through the season I would not have raised my brow. If you told me Mike Quade would be taking the reigns for the remainder of the season and have such success, and fall into such favor with the front office and players that he wins the job for the next two seasons, I would have asked you one thing…….”Who is Mike Quade?”
5) Stephen Strasburg looks a lot like Mark Prior…….all the way down to the pitching motion. Hey Nationals, better luck with Harper!
These are just a few things that stuck out in my mind from this past season. What about you guys? What were your highlights/lowlights from 2010?
Back by popular demand (my wife likes this series)…
#16—Steve Lake and Aramis Ramirez: A-Ram has looked more like the weak-hitting Lake lately. Here’s hoping he gets back on track in 2011. I think Anthony Young, the one-man loss machine, wore #16 as well.
#17—Of course we all remember Cub great Mark Grace, but my favorite 17 has to be Bump Wills. There aren’t enough people named “Bump” in the world.
#18—Richie Hebner, Dwight Smith, Jose Hernandez, and Moises Alou come to mind. Of course, Geo Soto sports it these days.
#19—Spike Owens’ little brother Dave wore this number in 1984, my all-time favorite Cubs season. If memory serves, Owens helped turn the famous double play off Lee Smith’s back. After that lucky play, Harry uttered the famous line, “The Good Lord wants the Cubs to win!”
#20—Bob Dernier, Jerome Walton, and Corey Patterson: I guess you have to be a speedy CF who doesn’t like to walk.
#21—“Sammy, Sammy, Sammy, Sammy!” And don’t forget the great Scott Sanderson. “Sandy, Sandy, Sandy, Sandy!”
#22—A tear forms in my eye as I fondly recall the days of Billy Buck. A different kind of tear forms in my eye as I painfully remember Mark Prior. What might have been?
#23—How lucky we were to watch the amazing career of Hall of Famer Ryne Sandberg. The only other 23 I could think of was Pete LaCock. I believe he’s related to Peter Marshall from “The Hollywood Squares.” I’ll take Paul Lynde to block.
#24—Jerry Morales, Gary Varsho, and Bobby Scales: Another run of crappy Cubs.
#25—D-Lee is a no-brainer. My favorite player from this bunch was Rafael Palmeiro. I was crushed when the Cubs traded him in the Mitch Williams deal. I was embarrassed by how his career ended. Honorable mention goes to Gary Woods and Tuffy Rhodes.
#26—Billy Williams (number retired). For some reason, 26 doesn’t seem to be a popular number in MLB. Who am I missing?
#27—Who could forget the great Mel Hall, who was packaged with Joe Carter in the Rick Sutcliffe deal? Others include Derrick May (ugh) and Thad Bosley.
#28—Ladies and gentlemen, Randall Kirk Myers. Easily my favorite Cubs closer.
#29—Now here’s a depressing list: Tom Veryzer, Chico Walker, Doug Dascenzo, Jeff Huson, and Rey Ordonez. Sometimes I think it wouldn’t be that difficult to be a general manager.
#30—Chuck Rainey and Ozzie Timmons: Speaking of Chuck Rainey, he started 1984 as a member of the Cubs rotation. Fortunately, he didn’t finish. With apologies to the Rainey family, the best thing you can say about Chuck is that he brought Davy Lopes (#15) to Chicago in a trade with the Oakland A’s.
Stayed tuned for part 3, numbers 31-45. Mike Proly and George Frazier are right around the corner!
If Christmas is your thing, this is your week! And in case you still have shopping, wrapping and decorating to do, we’ll not waste any time. Especially since there was a ton of fantastic conversation this week, even in the off-season! Enjoy the week in review, and don’t miss the discussion question at the end!
Monday Morning Discussion Question
Last week Seymour Butts raised an interesting point I’d like to discuss further. To refresh your memory, here is the main context of Seymour’s post:
[Re: Kerry Wood] I have met him twice and it provides a neat case study in context. The first time I was a about 50 yr old in the stands trying to get him to autograph a ball. He eventually did but seemed miffed that an old guy wanted his autograph. I was decked out in cub regalia, but I suppose could have been an autograph seller, so I understood his standoffishness.
The second time I met him was in a restaurant in Scottsdale. Jody Davis introduced him to me (and the rest of my fantasy team). He was friendly, talkative and courteous. Where you see people , and under what circumstances makes a huge difference.
So here’s the question. Do you feel pleasant fan interaction is part of a ballplayer’s job duties? Or do you feel they have a right to be aloof? I’ve got mixed feelings, which is why I’m anxious to hear yours. I think for the millions of dollars they are being paid, they take on a certain responsibility to their fans and need to make themselves courteously available. On the other hand, people are nasty. I wouldn’t want to have to deal with rude, pushy fans who feel they have the right to be as obnoxious as possible, seeming even to enjoy it. So it’s a tossup for me. You?