Author Archive

To Battle We Go Again My Friend

June 29, 2009
badelephant

That's the kind of fire we need!

That’s right, it’s time for Tigers – A’s tonight.  The A’s are riding the coattails of a 5 game losing streak and need to turn things around against TGC’s Tigers.  Detroit on the other hand is 8-2 in their last 10 and will have the luxury of Rick Porcello going against Josh Outman to start things off in Oakland tonight.

Game time is 10:05, who knows when a live blog might pop up.

Friday Afternoon Questions: There They Go

June 19, 2009

questionsHere’s a quick peek at what APIAS writer’s are wondering this afternoon.  Step into their brains for a moment.

TGC wonders, “will Tiger make a come back at the Open?”  Well Mike Weir is eating Beth Page Black up with a 6 under 64 in his first round and Phil is one under.  Tiger’s opening round +4 leaves him a lot of work but we’ve all seen the guy catch fire before and the playing conditions for his first round were not ideal.  The magic eight ball says “outlook not likely” but we say don’t count that man out until Sunday comes and goes.

Smoothron ponders, “now that Kobe has finished off the Magic what will I do with my sports viewing time?”  Well Smooth you’ll just have to tune in to the Metros games a bit more often.  But with them sitting at 4-6 their last ten you might as well watch A’s games with myself because it’s going to be a long summer for us both if this continues.

eDay thinks to himself, “why are elephants scared of the National League?”  That’s simple, the A’s are 8-3 against the AL in the month of June and 1-5 against the NL.  The bats put up only 14 runs in 6 games on the NL road trip.  That will not win you ball games no matter how good your young pitching is (only given up 27 in that time frame).

2SL would like to know, “how sweet are the beaches in San Diego and is Iowa really that boring?”  Our fourth writer is about to hit the road for a couple weeks so you won’t be hearing from him much over that time.  But to answer his questions, the beach in San Diego is about as awesome as the California burritos and I had a brother that lived in Cedar Rapids so yes, Iowa is that boring.

Lebron Ducks You, Media Goes Crazy

June 3, 2009

varejaoBobThe story about Lebron James ducking the Magic and reporters after being ousted from the playoffs is days old now.  Everyone’s had their say on the issue.  Well, almost everyone.  Now it’s our turn.  Here’s the cliff’s notes verison, nobody gives a shit.

That’s right, Lebron didn’t shake hands or talk to reporters.  Is that poor sportsmanship?  You’re damned right.  Will he do it again?  Hell no he won’t.  Was it that big of a deal?  Not really.

The only reason this thing was news was because it was Lebron James.  If Sideshow Bob Varejao doesn’t shake hands, no one says much of anything.  It maybe makes a post on Deadspin and then it dies.  Since it was Lebron everyone in America has to talk about it.

Here’s what really gets me though.  Most everyone was getting down on Lebron saying that was a bad example, etc. etc.  My question:  would you rather your kid look up to a guy doing steroids, a guy who slaps his wife around, or that terrible piece of shit asshole who didn’t slap hands after a playoff game?  Seriously, the media will never learn to let things like this go and thus you people are going to be stuck listening to us bitch about it.  I hope you’re happy with that. 

(note:  that sweet ass image of Ssideshow Bob came from www.deviantart.com  check it out, it’s a cool place and I’m pretty sure they’re not associated with Nazi’s)

Champions League Ends With a Bang

May 27, 2009

owIt was a match up that even non-soccer fans have heard about.  The Champions League finished up with Barcelona against Manchester United.  Two absolute titans of world soccer battled it out to the finish with Barcelona coming out on top 2-0.  Follow the jump for APIAS expert analysis of the match.

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O.J. Got Paid? Naw!

May 13, 2009

benbenChalk this up, alongside the Manny-busted-for-steroids debacle, for this week’s biggest surprise in sports.  Reports are out that a “confidant” of Mayo’s was given “a grand” by USC coach Tim Floyd to get Mayo to attend USC.  There’s already been a lot of talk about Mayo’s crew receiving large sums of cash from BDA sports firm during his pre-NBA years and now this?  Well color me surprised.

I have to take issue with a few things in this story up front.  First off, the payment was “a grand.”  Let’s look at this situation.  If USC wanted SmoothRon to come teach classes on how to Superman Ho’s an envelope with 10 Benjies wouldn’t do the trick.  And let’s be real honest, Smooth can Superman with the best of them.  He was actually a back up dancer in that video (2 years ago?).  All joking aside, if I’m getting paid to get my one-and-done buddy to come to your school we’re talking 5 figures friend.  I told Coach Cal it’d be at least that to get my boy Wall to UK but he’s playing things close to the vest right now.  Just waiting to hear back from Haith now…

Second on my list of red flags in this story is that Floyd himself made the payoff.  Now I’ve never met Tim Floyd.  His IQ may be on the level of Al Davis but I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt here and say he’s a slightly intelligent man.  Given that, it’s hard to believe he would actually hand a man $1,000 in an envelope for “delivering Mayo” to him.  Unless USC runs a really weird system Floyd should have serveral assistant coaches and GA’s to handle shit like that.  I may be naive here but why would he take that chance?

Don’t get me wrong here.  There’s obviously been a lot of money thrown around in this whole business and there are a lot of questions about who got paid and where that dough came from.  But at this point are we to believe that a thousand bones really contributed to a kid of that talent level going to a sunny school in Southern California, where the ladies are reputed to be blonde and gorgeous, the weather is perfect, and you can hang with the stars every night?  I’m just not buying it, no matter how many scorned posse members want to come forward with their stories.

2009 A’s Update: How’d We Every Win 11?

May 11, 2009

suzuki_sunWith the Elephants earning a day off for their recent terrific play it’s about time we looked in on the young season.  Almost thirty games into the season everyone expected to be writing about a revitalized lineup in Oakland that just hasn’t had solid enough pitching to win close ball games.  My how the times haven’t changed.

Going into game 30 tonight against the hapless ridiculous Royals the A’s sit dead last in team average (not a big surprise) and runs scored (a bit miffed at that one).  Also, all those offseason power bat additions have earned us a staggering one HR per loss for the season.  That’s not a good statistic no matter how you look at it.

What has been good about the season is the same old story.  Good, effective pitching.  The A’s are third in the AL in ERA (just 0.04 behind TGC’s Tigs) and continue to get solid starts from the young guys everyone was so worried about in the preseason.

Where have the A’s gone wrong this year?  Again, same song, different verse as we see the DL trips and nagging injuries mounting by the week.  All the fans hopes of a healthy Eric Chavez have been dashed again.  The one guy Oakland locks up on a long term contract can’t stay in the lineup, and that’s just too bad.

It’s not all bad news though.  The pitchers will continue to get in their innings and continue to grow.  Kurt Suzuki is swinging a good bat out of the catcher position and Ryan Sweeney’s glove has been even better than his swing this year.  Given time, the bats will come around and the A’s just have to put it all together.  It’s still early and no one has separated themselves in the West yet.  I don’t anticipate anyone doing so either.  After all, we’re not even 30 games in, anything can happen folks.

FWP: I’ll Take A Crack At This

May 1, 2009

fwpFearless Weekend Predictions is a weekly column running on Friday afternoons where our resident soothsayer (or whoever we can get) locks down what will transpire in the coming 72 hours. It’s better to get these out before the 7-year is open.  The crystal ball gets cloudy.

Well it’s been about a month since the last FWP.  Keeneland has come and gone, baseball has started, and the Pudge Cup is off to a rousing start (unless you shot over 110 the first two weeks).  It’s about time we looked into the magic ball and gave you fine folks some visions.  Pudge will assist on this one.

hueThe Derby will come and go and no animals will be harmed during the filming. That’s right, no horses are going down this year.  With all the bad press following horse racing the last couple of years by the animal activist people expect trainers and event staff to play it safe this year.  No horses will be running with a bum leg and I don’t think the jockeys will push as hard.  Then again, who am I to predict that, it’s Derby time and all Hell is likely to break loose.  If you venture into that wretched mess this weekend enjoy the scenery and take your umbrella.

The A’s will be back near .500 at the end of the weekend. Hey, it’s just a hunch but I think they’ll take at least two from the Mariners on the road.  Dana Eveland will take his bearded self in tonight and throw a good game to start off the series.  After that, it’ll be a war but the division leading Mariners are due to flub one up.  Plus the A’s need some good news some time this week.

Ricky Hatton will own a small Phillipino in the ring. We don’t blog about boxing nearly as much as we wish we could on this site but this is the biggest fight of the year.  Pacquiao has been good in the past but he just doesn’t seem as hungry as he was in the past.  Hatton will throw with anyone and I’m predicting Hatton will lay the lumber on Mah-Mah-Manny on Saturday.

The Celtics will win game 7 in 4 overtimes at home. Are you serious with this series?  I stop by TGC’s last night after softball thinking I can watch 7 minutes of basketball and go home.  Wrong!  This series has seen about 93 overtimes in 6 games and game 7 shouldn’t disappoint.  Give me the Celtics in the Garden in a big game 7 any day.  That is unless Salmons goes off again.  In that case give me the Celts in 6 overtimes.

billyglastBilly Gillispie will hang around Lexington long after his time is over and still attempt to sleep with your girlfriend. Rumors of Billy sightings are almost more rampant than when he was initially hired around Lexington right now.  People see him at Two Keys for God’s sake!  Where next Billy?  Perhaps you’ll stop in at McArthy’s for a Guiness?  Maybe a little trip to the Tin Roof?  The man may be on stage at the Penguin this weekend, who knows?  All you do know is that Coach Cal better keep his daughter far away from this man.

That’s all this week folks.  SmoothRon is gearing up for Keeneland tomorrow for Derby, TGC is on the road to K-Town for a celebration, and 2SL is celebrating life as usual.  You should do the same and have a fantastic Derby weekend.

One Poor (?) Bastard’s Day at the Draft

April 27, 2009

BurgessWell the San Francisco 49ers lucked out a bit in the draft and picked up Michael Crabtree at tenth.  It was a big surprise to all involved as Crabs (that is his nickname right?) was expected to go in the top 5.  Reports range all over the map from saying he was a prima donna to he’s hopelessly injured with a foot stress fracture.  My guess is that if the injury part were true he’d be playing down in Oakland.  For the Athletics.

Reached by APIAS for comment Crabtree said “San Fransisco?  Well, at least I’ll be the best receiver they’ve ever had.  They still run the West Coast offense right?”

In all seriousness, I feel bad for this guy.  He caught 231 passes the last two years in college and the 9ers won’t throw that many this year.  He may have a hard time adjusting, but then again, who else does San Fran have to throw to this year?  Maybe it’ll all work out.

Afternoon Wake Up Call: Rain Out Edition

April 20, 2009

wakeupWhen you’re baseball team plays in a small market on the West Coast you get a little fired up to watch them in prime time, HD coverage on ESPN.  It was not to be tonight as the Yanks-A’s game was postponed.  Boo the rain people.  Boo it!  Okay, the sports world goes on so we’ll tone it down a bit.

The state of Kentucky continues to watch the basketball recruting process closer than people watched the birth of a baby panda on the interwebs.  John Wall is living it up.  One day he’s going to UK, now he’s talking to Billy D, and the NBA still beckons.  He might even end up in Europe.  All I know is that this guy knows how to market the John Wall brand.  I love it.  I’ve pretty much stopped keeping up with it from day-to-day because the information changes on a daily basis, but it will be fun to see where he ends up.  UK fans are also closely following the recruitment of the Henry brothers.  They’re almost as much as an enigma as everyone knows they’re down to KU and UK but that changes constantly.  Will they visit Lexington?  Who’s knows at this point, but they’ll eventually be somewhere and that will be another fun signing for one of those universities.

Baseball is being played in a few places and a few of the web site’s teams are still going strong.  The Tigers are still first in a close Central.  The Reds aren’t playing too bad.  The A’s are in a bit of a lull offensively but the bats will wake up.  Hopefully the pitching holds out.

Golf has slowed a bit after the Masters but the Pudge Cup kicks off this week.  We might drop an update for you from time to time and let you know who’s playing adequately.  Let’s be honest, none of the guys in this league are shooting 70’s, but it’ll be fun.

The NBA playoffs are in full swing.  The Mavs and Spurs are fighting it out again tonight and I expect TGC’s boys down in Dallas to get the better of their Texas breathren before it’s over.  Duncan is hobbling and Sir-Flops-A-Lot is out for the Spurs as well.  Not looking good to pick up #5 this year for my boys in Silver and Black.  I just hope Lebron gets it from Kobe in the Finals.  I haven’t liked that guy since he stole J.R. Rider’s dunk in the Slam Dunk Contest at All-Star weekend.  Yes, the alleged rape, his general attitude, and everything else that comes with disliking Kobe does not bother me as much as him stealing the East Bay Funk Dunk to win a dunk contest.  I’ve never pretended to be sane or fair folks.  It’s just the way I am.

Our favorite thing today will be Tiger Woods 2008 on the Playstation.  TGC is fervently trying to play his way up to face off against the virtual eDayStat.  Who needs to pay 60 bones for a new game when you can play last year’s golf game for next to nothing?  The only standing rule is no one plays with Vijay Singh.  It’s get ugly if I had to tackle someone in the middle of a round.  Have a few drinks, enjoy some playoff basketball, and if you can find some baseball on TV then bless you.  Enjoy the night folks.

Afternoon Wake Up Call: Opening Day Edition

April 7, 2009

wakeupAll kinds of things are happening in the sports world friends.  Some good basketball was played last night, some basketball odds went up, and lots of baseball was played.  Let’s get with it.

The NCAA Men’s Championship Game last night was a joke.  I watched approximately 5 minutes of both the first and second half and neither small window of viewing could keep me from flipping the old LCD back over to Component 1 and getting my Tiger Woods 08 on.  There was only one exciting play in the entire duration of my viewing last night and that was when Raymar got smacked in his broken nose.  I literally cringed when that happened, watched the aftermath, and promptly flicked it back to the Playstation.

With the laugher of a title game a distant memory, everyone can now turn their attention to next year’s NCAA season.  I heard on the radio today that UNC and UK lead the early props betting lines in Vegas at 12:1 odss for making the Final Four.  No one else is even 20:1 right now.  That says a lot about Roy’s ability to keep UNC stocked (they could lose 5 guys to the NBA) and Coach Cal’s abilities to bring in talent and coach.  I doubt he can turn UK around that fast, but I do appreciate the thought.

Baseball started yesterday and APIAS went 2-2.  Our National League teams both won while the American League teams lost.  The Tigers fought off the Toronto crowd (damned near literally) en route to a loss.  Oakland’s new-look offense didn’t bother to leave Spring Training as the A’s were swept by the Angels.  The Mets won a close one and the Cubs started their march to the 2009 World Series Championship behind a 4-2 win over Houston.

The only game I caught much of was the A’s game.  It looked like the pitching emphasis from the spring as Dallas Braden hammered the strike zone early and often with a strike percentage around 70% and only one walk in Wuertz and Bailey both pitched perfect innings in relief but it wasn’t enough as the A’s were shut out.

That’ll wrap up Opening Day as frigid weather throughout the Midwest and East make talking about baseball almost strange.  It feels like NFL season in these parts.  Our favorite thing for today is pretty obvious: baseball Ray.  As TGC likes to say it is the perfect game.  You’re never out of the game until the final out is recorded and there’s nothing quite like a night or, even better, a day at the park.  We’ll definitely be covering a lot of bat and ball sports this summer so stick around for road trips, live blogs that spring from the nether regions of a back porch, and plenty of bitching and complaining depending on how long it takes the Tigs and A’s to win a game.  Until next time, stay warm and watch baseball.  It’ll only be here for another 7 months folks.