Archive for the ‘Throwin’ Shit’ Category

Still earning his money the hard way

June 24, 2009

The Tigers manage to hold on, despite Fernando Rodney’s best Todd “Rollercoaster” Jones impersonation NATE ROBERTSON PITCHING IN THE GAME.

This is my favorite line of the night:  Nate Robertson, 1 batter faced, 4 pitches, 1 hit, YANKED.  

Second best stat line: The Bullpen.  Miner (BS)(W), Seay (H), Lyon (H), Zumaya (H), Rodney (SV).

I guess he should feel good he got to play in a game that the good guys won for the first time in months.  It’s probably fair to say that ol’ Rod got some help with high strike calls, but once you’ve seen them called on the previous 2 hitters (I’m looking at you Kosuke), you have to SWING THE BAT.  Or get a Magglio haircut.  He found 2 hits tonight.

Sorry for the yelling, but I was sure that after a leadoff walk in the 9th, Fernando had his first blown save of the year.

Pic of the night?  Poor old Bartman still wearing that inside pitch, 5 years later, on an AWAY (!) broadcast.

The guy just wanted a souvenir.

The guy just wanted a souvenir.

I still maintain the Cubs will take tomorrow, but tonight was big for a few reasons.  1.  The Tigers now have the 3rd best record in baseball.  2. They have their largest lead of the year (5 games) 3. It was the 40th win and secures the best home start in the history of Comerica Park.

Also, apparently Fernando hit 104 tonight, in addition to Zumaya… again.  May want to get that gun checked out, FSD.

[Bless You Boys]

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Oh My! (Lions unavailable)

June 23, 2009
Clark, Addison, Michigan, Trumbull... Check

Clark, Addison, Michigan, Trumbull... Check

Today starts the mid-week series between two APIAS homers in my Tigers and 2SL’s Cubbies.  Obviously this is an interesting interleague matchup between 2 historic teams.   It is also a rematch of the 1945 World Series, which I’m sure you all remember, was won by Los Tigres 4-3.  This was the same Series Cubs’ writer Warren Brown called “The World’s Worst Series.”  Seems like there may have also been somewhat of an international conflict going on around then, but who can say for sure?

The 1935 classic  was also won by the Tigs (4-2). 

You have to go all the way back to 1908 to locate a Cubby win against the boys from Motown.  Something sticks out about that year… but I digress.

More interesting these days, however, might be the pitching matchups those in the Chicago and Detroit metro areas (and all of us with MLB.tv) will get to enjoy.

Let’s take a look at what we’re getting this week.

Tonight:  Carlos Zambrano, RHP (4-2, 3.44) vs Edwin Jackson, RHP (6-4, 2.39)

Big Z is looking more like his old self after a quick stint on the DL.  He’s rocking a 2.20 ERA since rejoining the team.  Jackson, on the other hand, continues to be the horse everyone thought he was coming over from Tampa last year, only more impressive.  He is currently #1 on the team in ERA and has thrown more innings than Tiger ace Justin Verlander.

Tomorrow: Rich Harden, RHP (4-3, 5.27) vs Rick Porcello, RHP (8-4, 3.54)

This battle of relative newbies should provide plenty of contact but not much scoring.  Harden has held his spot nicely since coming over from Oakland and 20 year old Ricky P is doing nothing but validating his enormous signing bonus in 2007.  He may wear down sometime toward the late summer (having never pitched above single-A before this year) but don’t tell him, with his 8 wins and sub-4 ERA.

Thursday: Ted Lilly, LHP (7-4, 3.04) vs Armando Galarraga, RHP (3-7, 5.62)

Galarraga is one more bad outing from losing his job in the rotation.   The Tigers have hit LHP’s well this year, but Lilly has been consistently solid, with a team-leading 11 quality starts.  I’ll take the Cubs to win here, but the story really will be: Can Armando find the 5th inning?

Get ready for some good-time historic baseball this week.  I’m a sucker for tradition, so you can bet I’ll be on the porch watching this one.

1/3 Season Baseball Review

June 9, 2009

While you were out on the golf course, or laying by the pool, or working your life away, the Major League Baseball season has kept right on trucking.  This week marks the 1/3 point in the regular season for most teams.  It is safe to say we’ve had a few surprises, a few disappointments, and at least a few what-in-the-hell-were-they-thinking moments.

Let’s take a three-day, partially homerrific look at the good surprises since April.

(1 of 3) Surprises that make GM’s look like geniuses:

Guess he could manage talent after all.

Guess he could manage talent after all.

We can’t have a GM/genius conversation without first mentioning Dodger head man Ned Colletti.  Now, while pulling over a free-agent Joe Torre back in ’07 was more or less a no-brainer, what I’m giving Colletti props for here is locking him up with a 3-year deal, when the all-knowing Steinbrenners wouldn’t even offer two.  All he’s done in LA is produce a playoff baseball team in year 1 and rock out the best record in baseball for most of 2009.  All the while doing most of his damage without Manny Ramirez.

Up by Lake Erie, Dave Dombrowski’s rookie-or-bust campaign seems to be working out.  Of all the preseason prognostications I saw, only 1 (Joe Morgan’s) had the Tigers making the playoffs as AL Central winners.  With plenty of questions in the starting rotation and bullpen, that was admittedly fair to say.  World Champion GM Dombrowski had a few ideas (along with manager Jim Leyland) on how to buck the system:  keep a couple of 19- and 21-year-old rookies with the big club out of Spring Training.

All that has done so far is prove dead on.  21 year old Ryan Perry (he of the 101 mph fastball) has more than done his job in a setup role (with Zumaya out) and in long relief.  He was recently sent down to Triple-A to make room for the return of Jeremy Bonderman, but not due to performance.  My assertion is that it was due to the gigantic (and ridiculous) contracts he already agreed to with Nate Robertson  $7M, Dontrelle Willis $10M, and Brandon Lyon $4M (otherwise known as the “Theiving Bums” around these parts.)

The other was 19 year old high-school pitcher Rick Porcello, who had no experience above Single-A ball before 2009 camp.  Porcello notched 6 straight wins and was in the tops of the AL in several categories for the month of May.  Arm strength duration may become an issue as he gets into the 20’s with games started, but for the first third of ’09, it was clearly the right move to make.  And with the Tigers sitting in 1st place most of the year, who’s to argue?

This way to the show.

This way to the show.

Other happy findings this year have been the surprise Reds with young talent all over the field, currently sitting only 3.5 games out in the NL Central, and the San Francisco Giants with All-World pitcher Tim Lincecum and the (new) ageless wonder Randy Johnson.  Nobody saw the Giants making any kind of splash this year, yours truly included, yet here they sit hovering around the NL Wildcard slot.

Honorable Mention: Zach Greinke (even though the Royals have fallen back to Earth), Roy Halladay, Texas Rangers pitching, the A’s Matt Holliday trade, and Trevor Hoffman.

We’ll continue with 1/3 season disappointments and  strange moments later in the week.  Now get back outside and enjoy the summer air.

I’ll leave you with my June 9, 2009 playoff predictions.  AL – Red Sox, Blue Jays, Tigers, Angels.  NL – Braves, Cubs, Reds, Dodgers

Welcome back Dontrelle

May 8, 2009
Packed up and ready to go!

Packed up and ready to go!

Thirty years ago today, the number one song in the land was “Welcome Back” by John Sebastian of Lovin’ Spoonful.  Today we can apply that to Motown (the baseball team, not the genre).  The $29 million D-Train will join the team tonight in Cleveland with plans to be activated next Wednesday as the starting pitcher.  The move will send aptly performing Zach Miner back to the pen.

You’ll recall (or not recall as it were) that since Willis’ signing prior to the 2008 season, he’s wracked up a mighty 8 appearances, 18 K’s, 35 BB’s a 9.38 ERA, 1 knee injury and 1 anxiety disorder diagnosis.

It is generally assumed that this trip to the bigs is his last chance in a Tiger uniform.  Dombrowski has shown already this year he’s willing to flush big money to make a move (see: Gary Sheffield).  Skipper Jim Leyland feels the same, “This is not a trial. This is not experimental. This is not developmental. This is the big leagues.”

You can count me among those pullling for D-Money to get back to 2005 form when he won 22 games and was 2nd in Cy Young voting.  There are plenty of detractors floating around various Tiger blogs, but I imagine that if he wins enough, those goobers will disappear.

Looking back, things have never really been the same for him since he got caught peeing on that car in Florida.  Maybe an older, wiser Willis is just what the Tigers’ hodgepodge rotation needs.

Aim for the bowl, Dontrelle, TGC is pulling for you.

Opening Week: Best and Worst, episode 2

April 15, 2009

Best Math: Yahoo! Sports’ Jeff Passan.  According to Passan, the Cleveland Indians have hit the “Panic Number.”  Which is 1-6.  Which is technically two numbers. 

See why we call 1-6 the Panic Number?

It gets uglier when looking at the full seasons of the wild-card era. Since 1996, only three teams have finished above .500 after starting 1-6: the ’04, ’06 and ’07 Phillies, who seem to have a knack for reversing ugly starts.

It’s an interesting read.  Check it out.

Worst season opening scheduling:  Detroit.  The Tigers are in the midst of a 6-game 1pm start time streak, to be followed by 10pm, 9pm, 4pm (Sunday) and then three more 10pm games.  What’s a guy got to do to watch the Tigers on the back porch after work and not be up til 3am?  Sheesh.

Best Relief Pitcher-Hitter:  Nick Swisher.  In the throws of a 15-5 rout by the Rays, Swish pitched a scoreless 8th inning for the Yanks (oh, and homered).  He’s also hitting .458 with 4 dingers so far on the year.  And Eday had a beer with his dad in 2006.  What a guy!

Worst Relief Pitcher Hitter: Gabe Kapler.  Struck out against the first non-pitcher to throw in a game since Wade Boggs did it in 1997 (also for the Yankees).

Best APIAS homers surprise:  BobWicket’s Reds.  They’ve looked good and they are above .500.  Those two things haven’t been said in the same season since 2005.  I love the makeup of this team, now if only Dusty B would play more small ball.

Worst APIAS disappointment:  TIE Smooth’s Metropolitans and 2SL’s Cubbies.  The Mets have struggled in the close ones (3-4 overall), but the pitching is coming around and Johan is going to be fantastic.  The Cubs didn’t go undefeated.

Best Week Ever Ever:  Patrick Schuster. All Schuster did last week was throw 3 no-hitters.  No shit.  THREE NO HITTERS!  And his coach couldn’t be less enthused.  “He’s on a roll and he’s got confidence in every pitch he’s throwing right now,” Mitchell head coach Scot Wilcox said of his ace. “That’s why we’re seeing so much success out of him.”  Yeah, and I guess Scarlett Johanssen isn’t the ugliest girl in the bar tonight.  Schuster is a University of Florida signee, but something tells me he might not make it to Gainesville.

NOTE:  MLB has forced the takedown of all Youtube video of Nick Swisher pitching.  I’m thinking Steinbrenner had something to do with that…

¡Adios Dominicanos!

March 11, 2009
Short one cheater and one moron. (Getty Images)

Short one cheater and one moron. (Getty Images)

Thank you Rod Delmonico.  I guess this guy can still coach a little.  Will someone forward this to Mike Hamilton?

USA! USA! Venezuela! USA!

…what?

What ever happened to that guy? Duke Crews edition

January 19, 2009

The 11-5 Tennessee Volunteers are in obvious need of leadership and veteran demeanor on the court, at times.  Even though you love the fire and gusto that comes with JR Wayne Chism on the court, you also get his overly emotional reaction and weekly disappearing acts.  I keep waiting on Tyler Smith to get in a face… but the more I watch him, the more I see his lead-by-example mentality come out.  Which is a solid trait, don’t get me wrong, but this team needs a rough and tumble vocal leader.

The 31-5 version of a year ago had those guys, along with a tougher sense of hustle and come-to-beat-you.  One graduated (JuJuan Smith) and two were dismissed.

Duke Crews and Ramar Smith, only days after the season ending Sweet 16 loss to Louisville were sent packing for, what most agree, was a 4th failed drug test and lacking academic effort.  So what happened to them?

Media guide picture courtesy bsubulldogs.com

Let’s take a look at Duke Crews today.

Originally he had mentioned wanting to transfer to UNC-Charlotte and NC State.  Neither of those panned out and he ended up at D-II Bowie State, former home of “Big Ant” Anthony Ivory.  After some early-season questions as to Crews’ eligibility were answered, he joined a 3-6 team that has gone 5-1 since his arrival.

He’s playing in front of smaller crowds, but CIAA fans are every bit as knowledgeable and rabid as any in the nation. Crews is responded by averaging 18.2 points and 8.6 rebounds per game for the 9-6 Bulldogs. “It’s a different type of atmosphere (in the CIAA),” Crews says. “You’ve got the band; you got the dance line and the cheerleaders. You get to interact with the fans more.

Crews, who dropped 25 and 12 last week against Johnson Smith College, appears to recognize the second chance he was given and is looking forward to the CIAA tournament.  “The sky’s the limit,” he says.

 The Bulldogs were picked to win the CIAA East at the beginning of the season.

Stay tuned for a future installment regarding Ramar Smith and his attempt at overseas professional glory.  Any information on Ramar Smith’s current whereabouts can be emailed to apiasdotnet (at) yahoo.com

[Black Voices] [STF]

Hell of a Tackle, Bro

October 20, 2008

Saturday night, LSU ventured to Columbia, SC to play the Gamecocks of South Carolina.  The Ol’ Ball Coach’s squad was driving in Tiger territory with about two minutes to go in the latter part of the first half.  Cock QB Stephen Garcia was in scramble mode and cut to the outside, and then this happened:

Yeah, the ref squares Garcia up and then forearm shivers him to the ground.  Rumor is that Marvin Lewis has contacted the ref about filling in for Keith Rivers for the rest of the year.

Olympic Approval Ratings: TGC’s Early Returns

August 14, 2008

So we’re a few days into this quadrennial (is that a word?) exposition and there have been many world records broken, some questionable international hoops, and one hell of a show during the Opening Ceremonies.  Here are a few initial thoughts.

Communists can put on a show.  Regardless of whether you buy into the “some of it was fake” nonsense that has been circulating in the headlines over the past week, no one can argue that those Commies can straight bring it in the Arts & Leisure section.  The lights and choreography was well thought out, rehearsed, and more often than not, tied to Chinese history (as 2SL pointed out to me).  I’ve got nothing but good things to say about it.  It’s probably a lot easier to pull together when you can just show up at someone’s house and tell them that for the next 12 months, their goal is to learn a drum and dance routine (or develop superhuman jog-and-clap stamina) but either way, big thumbs up from this Cowboy.  And if any of you thought that motherfucker was actually flying, we’ll you’re an idiot anyway.  Also, the Easter Bunny is your MOTHER!

FIBA and NBA referees do not agree on how to officiate a game.  We all know that international ball and NBA have more differences than similarities, but your average basketball fan would at least hope for a few… like say layups count for 2 points, everyone wears pants, and that if you get tackled shooting the basketball, it oughtta be followed by a whistle and a free throw or 2.  If any of you other bastards have been getting up at 8 to watch Team USA (like me), you know the latter has not been happening recently.  Especially in today’s game when J-Kidd gets backed down 14 feet by a 6’6″ Greek and gets called for a foul for standing his ground, or when LeBron is hitting (and missing) layups with somewhere between 4 and 12 Angolians draped around him with no call.  DAMN YOU ANGOLIANS!  It’s looking pretty clear that the small-lineup Americans (like I always said, go small this year Mike…. uh.. oh what?) will run away with the Gold and Silver, it would still be nice to watch a game somewhat similar to the game James Naismith had in mind.

Misty May Treanor and Kerri Walsh keep me young.  I know you’ve all been taking solace as much as I have, watching Beach Volleyball goddesses May and Walsh.  They’ve still never dropped a game in Olympic play, half the team is hot, and while I was poking around Wikipedia the other day found out that they are 31 and 29 (30 tomorrow, Ms. Walsh).  Awesome!  See, while older and dangerous behind the bar, we still can serve a useful purpose!  I mentioned this to the Chinese gymnastics squad yesterday and was replied to with bursts of crying and running behind their parents’ knees.  Children…

So in conclusion (which is how I managed to wrap up every paper in Sophomore Journalism), I’d like to end with an anecdote from my real life.  I was outside my office building walking around in the beautiful Kentucky weather after lunch yesterday reading Tigers news on my Blackberry, when a Bulgarian developer from down the hall walked by and goes… “I guess you Americans are addicted to cell phones.”

I thought for a minute and said… “Yeah, that and GOLD MEDALS!!! USA! USA! USA!”

In the words of the world-class EdayStat:  This is the kind of thing that can make me watch men’s volleyball and rowing, and be completely engrossed.  Because I have someone to pull for!

I love the Olympics.

[TIME]

2008 NCAA Helmet Schedule: no sir, that’s the new TPS report coversheet

July 30, 2008

Thanks to Bevo Sports for this year’s helmet schedule.  Cal, Idaho State, and Indiana State are the only schools with new helmets this year, but it doesn’t look like they made the graphics by print time.

Just make sure you beat the new accountant to the printer or you’ll end up in a heck of a fight.

“Why I take your paper?”

Download the full thing here [LINK]

[Bevo Sports]