View From The Bleachers

Talking Cubs Baseball Since 2003

Tuesday

28

February 2012

55

COMMENTS

Morning News: Thousands of Words (Mostly in Pictures)

Written by , Posted in General

Burning Rubber  Opening up with NASCAR news might not be a great way to hold your attention this morning, but I think this falls into the must-see category, so bear with me.  After more than twenty-four hours of rain delays, the Daytona 500 got rolling around 7:00pm EST last night.  Several wrecks and delays held up the progress of the race, but things got really out of control when Juan Pablo Montoya lost control of his car and slammed into a track-drying trailer full of jet engine fuel.  Click here for a few more details and some crazy GIFs of the fiery crash.  Fun fact: apparently they used laundry detergent to smother the fire.

Red Sox Nation is Now a Dry County  In the wake of the late-season collapse that cost Terry Francona his job and paved the way for the Cubs to hire Theo Epstein, the Red Sox recently announced a ban on clubhouse drinking.  Josh Beckett, Jon Lester, and other players admitted to drinking beer during games when they weren’t playing, and faced significant criticism after their flame-out to end the season.  The Boston front office and new manger Bobby Valentine decided to remove any further in-game temptation from this year’s team with their own small-scale prohibition.  Francona’s not impressed and said yesterday that he thinks it’s nothing more than a PR move.  No word yet on which player will step up Al Capone-style to corner the illicit booze market with moonshine and toilet wine, but it won’t be Jason Varitek, who plans to announce his retirement Thursday.

Keeping the Kings  A big congratulations to the city of Sacramento.  Less than a year ago it looked almost certain that the Kings would leave northern California, most likely for Anaheim.  But a last minute agreement between the Maloof brothers who own the team, the city, and the NBA has forged a deal to build a new stadium that will keep the Kings in Sacramento for the foreseeable future.  After the Sonics were so unceremoniously stolen from Seattle, I’m glad to see a different ending to a similar story for Kings fans–and I don’t even like basketball.

Cubs Roundup  Spring Training is almost in full swing, so you can expect daily reports like this one from Tribune malcontent beat writer Paul Sullivan.  In short, Kerry Wood had a rough day, first getting eliminated from the Cubs bunting championship by manager Dale Sveum, and then hitting Starlin Castro on the wrist during live BP (Castro’s fine).  Sullivan also put together a photo montage covering the aftermath of the accidental plunking.  Also, Cubs DH LF Alfonso Soriano doesn’t like the rumors of the team’s attempts to trade him this past offseason.  Someone needs to remind Soriano that he’ll make his guaranteed $54M no matter whose lineup he’s crippling.

VFTB Bidness  The Boys of Spring blog is giving awards to other Cubs blogs, and View From the Bleachers has been nominated in several categories, including the fan favorite category, called The Ryno.  We’re not gonna win it, but you can head over here and limit the scale of our public humiliation.  Or just click over and have a laugh at our utter lack of popularity in that particular corner of the Interweb. Also, don’t forget to enter the VFTB NCAA bracket contest. See details here.

Finally, Cubs pirate pitcher Jeff Samardzija has a new headshot, and it’s a doozy.  Enjoy.

  • Buddy

    Samardzija has a good shot of winning the Mighty Thor lookalike contest this year. 

    • Mark P.

      An incredibly strange baseball headshot–not quite sure what to say…

  • Buddy

    Samardzija has a good shot of winning the Mighty Thor lookalike contest this year. 

  • Mark P.

    An incredibly strange baseball headshot–not quite sure what to say…

  • BLPCB

    NASCAR – that was an awesome race. There was a spectacular crash on lap 2 as well
    Red Sox – Really, Tito? So all the teams that ban alcohol do it for PR?
    Kings – In the words of Shaq, ” Sacramento will never be the capital of California!”
    Castro – Thank goodness he’s fine. As for Soriano, quit whining you big baby. The Cubs might actually do you a favor and send you to a contending team. You’re not going to win a ring with the Cubs

  • AC0000000

    NASCAR – that was an awesome race. There was a spectacular crash on lap 2 as well
    Red Sox – Really, Tito? So all the teams that ban alcohol do it for PR?
    Kings – In the words of Shaq, ” Sacramento will never be the capital of California!”
    Castro – Thank goodness he’s fine. As for Soriano, quit whining you big baby. The Cubs might actually do you a favor and send you to a contending team. You’re not going to win a ring with the Cubs

  • Chuck

    NASCAR: It is not a sport.  It is a hobby.  Just like bowling, golf, darts and other activities where you don’t really move a lot.  I’m not saying that car racing is not incredibly difficult (it is), it is just not a sport.
    Red Sox: Well, at least ESPN has headlines for another week.  Who cares?
    Kings: Yet another city held hostage by billionaires getting government subsidies to provide employment for millionaires.  Every single study that has really looked into the hard facts comes to the same conclusion: public financing of team stadiums is a net loss for the city.  This will be the downfall of sports in America.
    Soriano: If you don’t like being subject to trade rumors, retire.  Don’t pick up your check.  Trades are part of your job that you are ridiculously overpaid to do.  Deal with it or find another line of work.  If part of my job becomes too horrible to bear I have two options: suck it up or find another job.
    Samardzija headshot: And the winner of the Kenny Powers lookalike contest is…
     

    • Doc Raker

      That’s not Smarja’s baseball head shot, that’s his adult film head shot. Can you post his Policeman head shot and his Handyman head shot? Oh wait, the handyman shot is a whole body shot wearing nothing but a tool belt, better not post that one.

      • Doc Raker

        Soriano doesn’t like his name in trade rumors, well I don’t like Soriano in a Cubs line up and I bet my point of view get’s more votes than his point of view.

      • Chuck

        I don’t like Soriano trade rumors.  I would prefer they be Soriano trade facts.

      • Doc Raker

        Keep it up Chuck the bell boy and we will make you the bell man.

      • Kris

        Seriously–he looks like he is prepping to be an adult film star in the 1970s.Maybe the reason his pitching is so bad is because he has problems with his vision. If he thinks this is a good look, then I’m guessing he doesn’t see so well on the pitcher’s mound either.

      • Lizzie

        I have a hunch he thinks EVERY look is a good look for him.

      • Seymour Butts

        Well, I’d certainly trade hair with him. 

      • Chuck

        Me too.  Athough we can’t really see what is under the cap…  He could be rocking a skullet, like I would if I let my remaining hair grow to an age innappropriate length.

      • Chuck

        Me too.  Athough we can’t really see what is under the cap…  He could be rocking a skullet, like I would if I let my remaining hair grow to an age innappropriate length.

      • Doc Raker

        Seymour, you get Smarja’s head of hair and he get’s your back hair, as volume goes Smarja actually nets out more hair in that deal.

      • Kris

        I can now see his entrance music being LMFAO’s “Sexy and I Know It.” Of course, no one in that “band” or Smarj should say that and be serious.

      • Joe Aiello

        I doubt the players choose the poses. It’s probably similar to the weird poses you have to do in senior portaits. Photographers have a warped sense of humor.

      • Lizzie

        Joe you’re probably right that they told him how to stand but he has full control over whether he decides to sport the CFM eyes.

      • Kris

        I can also fully blame him for growing hair like he is going to be in the next Poison video. Although at least it looks clean–I’ll give him that.Also–what grown man can’t tell the photographer, “I am going to look like a complete tool in this pose, which means my teammates and fans are going to give me @#$% about it.”?!

      • Joe you’re probably right that they told him how to stand but he has full control over whether he decides to sport the CFM eyes.

      • Kris

        I can also fully blame him for growing hair like he is going to be in the next Poison video. Although at least it looks clean–I’ll give him that.Also–what grown man can’t tell the photographer, “I am going to look like a complete tool in this pose, which means my teammates and fans are going to give me @#$% about it.”?!

      • Jeremiah Johnson

        Indeed, you can’t fully blame Samardzija.  And I doubt we’ll ever see this up on a scoreboard or on the MLB Gamecast.  But it was too spectacularly bad not to share.

      • Jeremiah Johnson

        Indeed, you can’t fully blame Samardzija.  And I doubt we’ll ever see this up on a scoreboard or on the MLB Gamecast.  But it was too spectacularly bad not to share.

      • Doc Raker

        Joe- You can’t look that ridiculous unless you try. Smarja is a young fool, otherwise known as a hipster dufus or just plain douche.

      • Seymour Butts

        Harsh…your tie get stuck in the lens grinder again?

      • Doc Raker

        No, it broke down without my ties help.

      • RichBeckman

        Seattle had a NBA team?  And someone stole them?  And they are called the Sonics?

      • Doc Raker

        Joe- You can’t look that ridiculous unless you try. Smarja is a young fool, otherwise known as a hipster dufus or just plain douche.

      • Seymour Butts

        Harsh…your tie get stuck in the lens grinder again?

    • Jeremiah Johnson

      The qualifying factor has to be more than “mov(ing) a lot” or you leave the door open to ballroom dancing, rhythmic gymnastics, synchronized swimming, and, presumably, ferret legging.  I’m not sure there are any winners in the “sport/not a sport” debate.

      • No winners of the debate, but losers in the debate.  (Especially the ferret guys.)

      • Chuck

        If you are only sweating because the ambient temperature is hot, then it is not a sport.

      • No winners of the debate, but losers in the debate.  (Especially the ferret guys.)

      • Chuck

        If you are only sweating because the ambient temperature is hot, then it is not a sport.

    • Seymour Butts

      Got to totally agree with Chuck today. I actually read this at about 2:30 AM, but was too tired to Reply. So, just ditto Chuck.

  • Chuck

    NASCAR: It is not a sport.  It is a hobby.  Just like bowling, golf, darts and other activities where you don’t really move a lot.  I’m not saying that car racing is not incredibly difficult (it is), it is just not a sport.
    Red Sox: Well, at least ESPN has headlines for another week.  Who cares?
    Kings: Yet another city held hostage by billionaires getting government subsidies to provide employment for millionaires.  Every single study that has really looked into the hard facts comes to the same conclusion: public financing of team stadiums is a net loss for the city.  This will be the downfall of sports in America.
    Soriano: If you don’t like being subject to trade rumors, retire.  Don’t pick up your check.  Trades are part of your job that you are ridiculously overpaid to do.  Deal with it or find another line of work.  If part of my job becomes too horrible to bear I have two options: suck it up or find another job.
    Samardzija headshot: And the winner of the Kenny Powers lookalike contest is…
     

  • Doc Raker

    That’s not Smarja’s baseball head shot, that’s his adult film head shot. Can you post his Policeman head shot and his Handyman head shot? Oh wait, the handyman shot is a whole body shot wearing nothing but a tool belt, better not post that one.

    • Kris

      Seriously–he looks like he is prepping to be an adult film star in the 1970s.Maybe the reason his pitching is so bad is because he has problems with his vision. If he thinks this is a good look, then I’m guessing he doesn’t see so well on the pitcher’s mound either.

      • I have a hunch he thinks EVERY look is a good look for him.

  • Doc Raker

    Varitek is going to retire? But Jim Hendry was about to offer him a multi year deal to play for the Yankee’s. Jim just hates that when old crippled guys retire before he can lock them up long term.

  • Doc Raker

    Varitek is going to retire? But Jim Hendry was about to offer him a multi year deal to play for the Yankee’s. Jim just hates that when old crippled guys retire before he can lock them up long term.

  • Doc Raker

    Soriano doesn’t like his name in trade rumors, well I don’t like Soriano in a Cubs line up and I bet my point of view get’s more votes than his point of view.

    • Chuck

      I don’t like Soriano trade rumors.  I would prefer they be Soriano trade facts.

      • Doc Raker

        Keep it up Chuck the bell boy and we will make you the bell man.

  • Chuck

    Samardzija headshot Round 2: “If I lick this baseball, would you find me sexy?”

    • Doc Raker

      That didn’t help your bell man promotion application.

  • Chuck

    Samardzija headshot Round 2: “If I lick this baseball, would you find me sexy?”

  • cap’n obvious

    -if Nascar is a sport, then the cars are the athletes
    -after the Josh Hancock death in St. Louis a few years back, I’d have hoped teams would outlaw booze in the clubhouse well before now.
    -nice to know that Svuem can still get a bunt down.  Maybe he can become player-coach after the Soriano trade…
    -Samardzija looks less like a major leabue baseball player, and more like a major league World of Warcraft player.

  • cap’n obvious

    -if Nascar is a sport, then the cars are the athletes
    -after the Josh Hancock death in St. Louis a few years back, I’d have hoped teams would outlaw booze in the clubhouse well before now.
    -nice to know that Svuem can still get a bunt down.  Maybe he can become player-coach after the Soriano trade…
    -Samardzija looks less like a major leabue baseball player, and more like a major league World of Warcraft player.

  • Eddie Von White

    He’s trying to look like that guy who pitches for that team in San Francisco. Being from Valparaiso, Indiana, he can’t be all that bad.

  • Buddy

     I actually had the misfortune of meeting the Shark. He was about what you would expect.

  • Buddy

     I actually had the misfortune of meeting the Shark. He was about what you would expect.

  • RichBeckman

    Seattle had a NBA team?  And someone stole them?  And they are called the Sonics?