Almost All Questions Answered

by Chuck

Realized the other day it was time for a new discussion but didn’t want to keep the flames burning on the Hall of Fame/ARod topics and it’s still a couple of weeks early to talk about Spring Training.

Thanks to Raul, problem solved.

I’ll answer/respond to some comment questions here, and whatever comes up in the comments will keep it going.

“Ergo, you want to forget the 2009 World Championship. Can’t have one without the other.”

Are you willing to forget Braun’s MVP?

The Yankees didn’t get ARod to win MVP’s, they got him to win rings. Yes, I know the Yanks have made the postseason eight times during ARod’s ten years in New York, but who is to say they wouldn’t have without him?

“He was suspended for 162. Because, reasons.”

Read the CBA.

What’s the good word with Oscar Taveras? Is he the starting CFer by June?

He had off-season surgery to repair a high ankle sprain, initially it was rumored to be career threatening because of the possibility of fusing the tibia to the joint. I haven’t heard anything confirming that and Jim Callis of predicts Taveras as NL ROY this year, so there’s that side too.

Taveras isn’t a centerfielder, he doesn’t run that well as it is, so more likely he’ll end up in right. There are some makeup issues with him as well, I think the Cardinals would like him to play a full season a AAA, but they have a need for outfielders and his bat, so I’d guess he’s up by June at the latest.

Over/Under 25 HR for Wil Myers in 2013?

I’ll take the under

Chuck, you know anything about this Gregory Polanco kid with the Pirates?

Yeah, he’s a 6′4′, about 210-220 ish lefty hitting and throwing outfielder. The Pirates signed him as a pitcher out of the Dominican as a 17 year old. He’s 22 now and probably will end up as the Pirates rightfielder at some point this season. He’s supposedly a better outfielder than McCutchen which I don’t believe and his stats don’t match the hype reports, so it’s up to you to interpret where he fits as a player.

How does Miguel Sano project? Somehow I think of Alfonso Soriano. Am I wrong?

I don’t see Soriano as a good comp, size, athleticism are much different. Sano was pulled from Winter Ball with a strained UCL, if he can’t throw in the spring he could have surgery. I’ve never seen him, but his defense at third isn’t good, he made 23 errors last year, most on throws. He’s a dumptruck on the bases, so he’s probably a DH long term. I’d take Kris Bryant any day over him.

Jameson Taillon has 382 minor league innings under his belt. How much longer are the Pirates going to keep him under wraps?

This is his coming out year. The way the Pirates have handled him fits right in line with their other prep players..McCutchen, Neil Walker, etc. There’s no sense rushing him, he needed to mature, he needed to improve his fastball command and develop a changeup. It’s all good. To those who automatically think Gerrit Cole is a better pitcher because he got to the majors first, you will be proven wrong very soon.

Will Shelby Miller be the Cardinals’ best pitcher in 2014?

They’re in deep shit if he is..I don’t see him even making the team out of spring training…Wainwright, Wacha, Joe Kelly, Jaime Garcia, Lance Lynn.

How does a healthy Michael Pineda impact the Yankees expectations for 2014, if at all?

Not at all.

It’s going to be interesting to see Mark Trumbo playing 81 games at Chase Field, at least offensively.

If I’m not mistaken, Ron Villone was listed on the Mitchell Report.

Also born today, one of the worst Hall of Famers selections ever, Dizzy Dean.

Today in history, in 1970 Curt Flood filed suit over the reserve clause. He would lose in court, but subsequent negotiations between MLB and the Players Association led to salary arbitration and eventually free agency.

In 1974, both Mickey Mantle and Whitey Ford were elected to the Hall of Fame.

In 1986, the New York Mets traded Billy Beane to the Minnesota Twins.

355 Responses to “Almost All Questions Answered”

  1. Bob Says:

    Put this here.

  2. Bob Says:

    She is fair game.

  3. Raul Says:

    Yahoo ran a quick bit on the Bangles’ Susanna Hoffs, who they say at 55 years old, looks amazing.

    And I agree.

  4. Bob Says:

    Yes she does.

  5. Cameron Says:

    She’s 5? Bullshit, that’s gotta be her daughter.

  6. Cameron Says:

    *55 Sorry. The 5 key sticks. Need to dust the keyboard sometime.

  7. Cameron Says:

    Fun Fact: If Clayton Kershaw gets traded, he can become a free agent after the season he’s traded.

  8. John Says:

    Braun’s a world class asshole. Sorry, don’t know how to get rid of the avatar.

    He’s far more of an asshole than Bonds, Clemens, McGwire, or any of those guys. He broke the rules when they were actually rules. And lied about it. And implicated an innocent person. Fuck him.

    That being said, no way in hell do the Yankees win the 2009 World Series or make the ‘05 or ‘07 playoffs without ARod.

    He hit 6 HR in that post-season with 18 HR in 15 games. The Angels definitely win that ALCS if some average 3B is out there.

    In 2005, he won the MVP and was worth 9.4 WAR for a team that made the playoffs by 2 games. Not complicated there.

    In 2007, everyone sucked but him. He hit .314/.422/.645 with 54 HR and 156 RBI and 9.5 WAR for a team that won the Wild Card by 6 games.

    So, yes – a fair share of happy Yankee memories belong to him. If the Yankees would’ve been better off now, it would only have been because they hadn’t had ARod literally putting the entire team on his back beforehand.

  9. Cameron Says:

    John, the site works off of Gravatar, IIRC. Go onto, type in the email address you use to post on this site, and that should be able to change it.

  10. Raul Says:

    Change what avatar?
    I thought this website used to have a login but I haven’t even seen a login box in like 3 years.

    And John is right about A-Rod.
    And Braun.

    But, if we can give fair credit here…Chuck called Braun an asshole like 3 years ago based off some Spring Training observations.


    What are we down to? Like 23 days until Pitchers and Catchers?

  11. Cameron Says:

    It’s the Yankees though. If they didn’t trade for A-Rod, they would’ve swung for someone like Adrian Beltre (who was on the outs with the Dodgers in ‘03 IIRC) or grab the biggest free agent available. They wouldn’t have had an average player at third. A-Rod level? No. Enough to get them to the postseason, most likely.

  12. Raul Says:

    There isn’t a player alive who would have been able to give the Yankees what Alex gave them in the mid-2000s.

    Unless they could have convinced the Cardinals to give up on Albert Pujols.

  13. John Says:

    Sorry, 18 RBI in 15 games.

    ARod is the scapegoat that MLB, the press, and the Yankees all needed to make themselves feel all righteous.

  14. Raul Says:

    LOL, because they missed the boat on doing it to Barry Bonds? @ john

  15. John Says:

    I mean, kind of, right?

    Bonds never got suspended. He set the all-time home run record.

  16. Raul Says:

    Feels like it.

    Like: “Hey, we know you didn’t break like any single record that matters at all in this game, but we don’t like you and shit. So, we’re gonna make an example out of you”

  17. Cameron Says:

    Well, if you count his contract, I suppose he did break a record.

  18. Lefty33 Says:

    “ARod is the scapegoat that MLB, the press, and the Yankees all needed to make themselves feel all righteous.”

    But at the same time are you really going to say that A-Rod didn’t shoot himself in the foot over and over with his own poorly chosen behavior?

    I mean when you cheat and then blatantly lie about how you cheated while changing your lies several times I think at that point any
    simpathy/love/understanding or whatever you want to call it for the guy has to go out the window.

    No one forced him to cheat just like no one forced him to lie about his cheating for years. If your stupid enough to get caught at least don’t throw it back into the face of the fans and the league because if you do this is what will happen.

    There is a special place for idiots like Rodriguez-Rose-Bonds-Braun and that is called being ostracized from any HOF considerations and being ostracized from any team wanting you.

  19. Raul Says:

    I agree.

    But this A-Rod situation just feels more like a personal vendetta, and possibly a conspiracy to save the Yankees money….and less like a crusade to restore the integrity of the game.

  20. Bob Says:

    The fact that the Yankees only got a year reprieve on his contract has to at least somewhat negate that this decision/verdict was about saving them money. If the contract had gone more than 1 year, then I might think differently. The Yankees still owe him 60 million bucks over 3 years.

  21. Chuck Says:

    “The Yankees still owe him 60 million bucks over 3 years”

    If the Yanks release him today, they would owe him his salary for this year…if they wait until after the season then they would owe him the 60.

    What the Yanks are hoping for is for Alex to realize he can’t play anymore and accept a buy-out, or waive his no-trade so they can send him to Miami and get out of an additional 10-15 million.

    Either way, he’ll never play for the Yankees again.

  22. Raul Says:

    Why wouldn’t he play for the Yankees again?

    What’s to stop this guy from just staying put in NY?
    Will the Yankees really just bench this guy for 3 years?

  23. Cameron Says:

    “What’s to stop this guy from just staying put in NY?”

    A concentrated campaign from the Yankees to get this asshole out of the Bronx?

  24. Chuck Says:

    Yanks need Donald Trump,

    “Alex, you’re fired”

  25. Jim Says:

    Trump says this after signing the check for 60 large.

    ARod has no motivation not to collect every last dollar, so a buyout won’t happen, but it is likely that he never plays for the Yanks again.

  26. Raul Says:

    I don’t see it.

    I think Alex goes in to work like George Costanza and gets paid all his money.

  27. Cameron Says:

    I could see him getting released. Better to pay 27 and a half than 60. But at this point, he’s too much of a distraction.

  28. Cameron Says:

    Sidenote, I love being a Jayhawks fan this year. KU not only has one, but two players with potential to be the number one pick. Andrew Wiggins, considered the best prospect to roll around since LeBron; and Joel Embiid, a center with post skills and athleticism out the ass already as a freshman.

  29. John Says:

    Why would an alleged “asshole” like ARod take less money than he’s legally entitled to.

  30. Chuck Says:

    Tweet of the day yesterday..

    “Attention Seahawk fans, buy your NFC Championship gear now, in 2 weeks your Super Bowl merchandise will be a fashion trend in Haiti.”

    February 2015 is a long time off and alot of things will change between then and now concerning MLB, the PA, the Yankees and ARod.

    He’s done.

  31. Chuck Says:

    I’ve never heard of this before…really stunning.

    Apparently there’s a movement on now to overturn the conviction and issue a pardon.

  32. Cameron Says:

    There’s legal grounds for an exoneration here. No physical evidence and a biased jury against a confession.

    And that’s a funny tweet… But I’m betting on the Seahawks. Peyton Manning tends to melt under the bright lights, and against the Legion of Boom, that’s not good for Denver.

  33. Chuck Says:

    New website to check…

    My wife is the web designer, site is owned by Eric Rasmussen and his wife Linda…

    It’s going to be a daily trivia contest based off MLB pictures, hence “snapshots”

    Prizes will range from autographs, memorabilia, tickets, etc.

    One time startup fee of 19.95, goes to the two charities listed on the site.

  34. John Says:

    So, I was checking out Craig Kimbrel’s career numbers.

    Through 4 seasons, he has the following line: 227.1 IP, 282 ERA+, .902 WHIP, 9.7 WAR.

    I point this out because he’s been the very best closer in the game over the last couple years, and yet, even with being a beast and getting four years to pitch 200 innings, his numbers aren’t as good as Pedro’s were in 2000:

    217 IP, 291 ERA+, .737 WHIP, 11.7 WAR.

  35. Cameron Says:

    Shows you just how goddamn good Pedro’s 2000 was, huh?

  36. Raul Says:

    I don’t think Chuck would vote Pedro in for the HOF though.

  37. Chuck Says:

    Nah, he’s too short.

  38. Raul Says:

    Get outta here man

  39. Raul Says:

    Former Padre and Yankee, Andy Hawkins is 54 today.
    Hawkins was the 5th overall pick in the 1978 draft.

    The top 5?
    1. Bob Horner (Braves)
    2. Lloyd Moseby (Blue Jays)
    3. Hubie Brooks (Mets)
    4. Mike Morgan (Athletics)
    5. Andy Hawkins (Padres)

    Kirk Gibson went 12th to the Tigers.

    Dave Stieb, drafted as an Outfielder, went in the 5th round (106th overall) to the Blue Jays.

    Also born today,
    Mike Krukow. My guess is most people don’t remember Krukow, but he had a 14 year career and finished 3rd in the NL Cy Young voting in 1986 behind a 20-9 season with a 3.05 ERA.

  40. Chuck Says:

    Andy Hawkins, best known for throwing a no-hitter and losing 4-0.

  41. Raul Says:

    Did not know that @ Chuck.

    That would be a great trivia question.

  42. Chuck Says:

    MLB, in its infinite wisdom, does not credit Hawkins with a no-hitter because he didn’t pitch nine innings.

    The White Sox were the home team, and won, so they didn’t hit in the ninth.

    That’s not Hawkins fault, a complete game is a complete game.

  43. Cameron Says:

    @37 Thought you would’ve used Maddux Guy’s logic of “He played in the 90s so we don’t know if he used or not.” =)

  44. Chuck Says:

  45. Cameron Says:

    Fun Fact: In Kirs Bryant’s latest full year of ball (NCAA, Advanced Class A, and the AFL), he hit 46 homers.

  46. Chuck Says:

    Kris Bryant is good at baseball.

  47. Cameron Says:

    No shit.

    Also, Hunter Dozier hit .308/.397/.495 in his rookie ball year. I like those numbers.

  48. Chuck Says:

    You’re going to like Aoki, Cam..

    Finally have a leadoff hitter, he’s a pretty good little player.

  49. Cameron Says:

    IIRC, he’s… About a .280 hitter, can take a walk but not outstanding plate discipline, and like a 10-15 SB guy. Don’t know much good or bad about his fielding, so I’ll assume average. But the big bonus for him is Gordon moves from the top of the order to the heart of it.

    And all we had to give up was Will Smith? Not bad at all.

  50. Chuck Says:

    Yanks sign Masahiro Tanaka, 7/155..

    I won’t be going near any windows today.

  51. Raul Says:


    The lineup is still weak though.

    But if Tanaka does well…and CC bounces back (he lost a lot of weight), who knows what is possible with their improved defense.

    I still think it’s a stretch to think they can run away with the division.

  52. Chuck Says:

    Did you see that photoshopped picture of Sabathia on Facebook, Raul?

    He looks anorexic..somebody said they put CC’s head on Kanye West’s body.

  53. Raul Says:

    I saw a picture of Sabathia signing some contract with Jay-Z.
    I haven’t seen another one.

    It is unusual to see him so thin, though.

  54. Jim Says:

    Two bad you can’t imbed this

  55. Cameron Says:

    7 seasons in Nippon Pro Ball for Tanaka.

    2.30 ERA
    172 Games Started, 53 Copmleted
    1,315 IP (2 of last 3 seasons with 200+)
    1,238 Ks
    8.1 H/9
    1.9 BB/9
    8.5 K/9
    4.5 K/BB

    He doesn’t have a dynamite fastball, but he’s got good command, excellent off-speed and breaking balls, and isn’t afraid to throw strikes on them. I think he’ll be more Yu Darvish than Kei Igawa.

    Plus, he’s only 25. That’s someone you can build on for the next decade. Which brings the count to… One.

  56. Jim Says:

    RS sign Grady Sizemore to a major league deal $750K base + incentives that can reach $6M. Fearless prediction, Sizemore goes on a season’s ending trip to the DL in May. Outlandish prediction, he has a more productive season than Ellsbury.

  57. Cameron Says:

    Those knees scare me… But they’re out less than a bill if that happens. Not a bad thing.

  58. Raul Says:

    Happy 44th birthday, Mark Wohlers. Wohlers is infamous for giving up that HR to Jim Leyritz in the 1996 World Series. He apparently runs a real estate business in Atlanta these days.

    Happy 44th birthday, Alan Embree. Embree enjoyed a 16 season career that spanned from 1992 to 2009 (he was in the minors in 93-94). Embree recorded the final out of that epic comeback against the Yankees in the 2004 ALCS.

    Happy 40th birthday, Erubiel Durazo. I thought Durazo was a pretty good player, but he had a lot of health issues. A career .281/.381/.487 hitter, you would think he’d have hung around a lot longer than just 7 years. But he only managed to play what you’d consider a full season 1 time. Durazo lives in Chandler, Arizona with his family.

    Happy 32nd birthday, Wily Mo Peña. In the last 10 years, has there been a player with more wasted talent than Wily Mo? That guy could hit his butt off and had tremendous power. But lack of plate discipline and approach made him expendable. From a tools perspective, he should have been an easy all-star. Peña fizzled out with the Mariners in 2011.

  59. Bob Says:

    The Brewers sign Garza.

  60. Bob Says:

    Good God Wily Mo is young.

  61. Bob Says:

    The Rays and Grant Balfour reach a 2-year deal. The aftermath of the Tanaka sweepstakes. Expect a busyweek, then a lull in baseball activity next weekend as baseball defers to the Super Bowl. Prediction in the next week Jiminez, Arroyo and Santana all sign with Drew another possibility. Do not think Nelson Cruz signs however.

  62. Cameron Says:

    I hope the Royals can resign Santana, but I’m not holding my breath.

  63. Bob Says:

    Speaking of the Super Bowl, any predictions, or is that reserved for later next week?

  64. Raul Says:

    Rooting for the Seahawks.

    The conspiracy theorist in me says the refs will find a way to give it to the Broncos.

  65. Bob Says:

    The Royals signed Jon Rauch. You placated there Cameron?

  66. Raul Says:

    I thought Jon Rauch was dead.

  67. Bob Says:

    Well the Royals disagree.

  68. Cameron Says:

    Jon Rauch is still pitching? I’ll be damned.

  69. Cameron Says:

    Fun fact, Jon Rauch is the tallest man to ever hit an MLB home run.

  70. Raul Says:

    And Rauch’s lone homer came off Roger Clemens.

    Sh*t. He made it count.

  71. Bob Says:

    This blew me away more than any wind I have encountered this year.

  72. Bob Says:

    Sorry, not that one.

  73. Bob Says:

    When Tommy LaSorda speaks about baseball I listen. Do you?

  74. Raul Says:

    Oh please.

    Alex ruined baseball?
    He’s one fucking guy out of several hundred who used PEDs.

    He’s literally no worse than Mark McGwire or Fernando Vina or Walt Weiss.

    Get over yourselves.

  75. Chuck Says:

    Durazo was a juicer, Raul. Combine that with the fact he sucked….

    Garza deal on hold..issues with physical. Of course there is.

    Right, the refs are going to fix the Super Bowl. Broncos by at least ten.

    Randy Johnson is taller than Jon Rauch.

  76. Raul Says:

    Happy 41st birthday, Mike Glavine. Seven at-bats is all you got at the Major League level. At 6′3, 210 pounds and left handed, why the hell weren’t you a pitcher?

    Happy 30th birthday, Scott Kazmir. Hope you do well in Oakland. No matter how the remainder of your career pans out, the Mets trading you away to the Devil Rays for Victor Zambrano was one of the worst trades in recent memory. In the 4 seasons from Kazmir’s age-21 through age-24 seasons, he went 45-34 with a 3.51 ERA and a 9.7 K/9 ratio. You coulda been a contendah…

    Happy 56th birthday, Atlee Hammaker. Never heard of you. But in 1983 you put up an All-Star season for the Giants going 10-9 with a 2.25 ERA in 172 innings. Hammaker had 2 dominant starts in 1983. On April 17th, he pitched a complete game, 2-hit shutout against the Reds while striking out 10 batters. According to the box score, you faced 28 batters. Is that 1 over the minimum?

    Then on September 11th, you struck out 14 Astros in 7.2 innings in a no-decision against Nolan Ryan — who struck out 11 of his own. The Giants would go on to win 3-2 with all 3 runs coming in the bottom of the 9th.

  77. Cameron Says:

    Wrong way around Chuck. Johnson’s 6′10″, Rauch is 6′11″.

  78. Raul Says:

    NY media is trying desperately to try and make Jonny Gomes’ comments about the Yankees spending spree into a controversy/rivalry issue.

    Apparently they forgot that this is Jonnny “I Hit .244 In My Career” Gomes.

  79. Cameron Says:

    The New York media will try to make a story out of anything badmouthing anything about New York. The rest of the country doesn’t give a fuck.

  80. Raul Says:

    Sorry for “trying desperately to try and make…”

    That was repetitive. I must have been in between things at work when I wrote that.

  81. Cameron Says:

    I just realized Adam Dunn has 440 home runs and is likely going to see most of the time at DH in Chicago this season, and he’s only 34. You think he has a shot at 500?

  82. Mike Felber Says:

    I think he likely reaches 500. Dunn does not need PEDs nor the ‘roid era to have great power like Kingman, & is similarly so limited in overall skills that he is very mediocre-dude averages a little over 1 WAR a year!

  83. Chuck Says:

    Kingman was black-balled so he wouldn’t get to 500

  84. Bob Says:

    Nick Cafardo spoke to a gm who said the likely bids for Tanaka were as follows

    1. Yanks $155MM
    2.Cubs and Diamondbacks at $129MM
    3. Dodgers 1t $119MM
    4. White Sox and Astros $100MM

  85. Bob Says:

    For me and Raul.

  86. Bob Says:

    Not a huge soccer fan, but that this was interesting…or inflammatory

  87. Chuck Says:–mlb.html

  88. Bob Says:

    The Brewers and Garza have finished their deal. Toronto makes sense for Jimenez as their 2 first round picks are protected. Arroyo could end up in 5-6 spots. I think Santana ends up with the Royals.

  89. Mike Felber Says:

    Was it specifically so he could not get to 500 Chuck? Not just that he was considered a clubhouse cancer?

  90. Cameron Says:

    Kingman was considered a dick, not unhireable.

  91. Cameron Says:

    Also, small nitpick about your Kingman-Dunn comparison (though not too far off otherwise).

    Kingman’s OBP: .302
    Dunn’s OBP: .366

    Also, Dunn has as many home runs through his age 33 season than Kingman did through his career, who retired at 37. Kingman would’ve needed 20 homers a year through age 40 to hit 500.

  92. Mike Felber Says:

    Yes Cam, Kingman never walked, though Dunn’s era was more offensive overall. Dunn had more HRs only because he had fuller & healthier seasons-despite the difference in run production for eras, & that Dunn still has declining years to add, their HR/AB are very close. Both also could hit the ball a country mile & are 6′ 6″, though Kingman lanky & Dunn is a Hoss.

  93. Cameron Says:

    The question is can Dunn beat Kingman’s Hall of Fame vote total of three whole votes?

  94. Mike Felber Says:

    I hope not. Neither remotely qualifies as HOF material. Their value did not approach even that of good players who really should not have been/should not be elected, such as Jim Rice & Jack Morris.

  95. Chuck Says:

    Kingman wasn’t a clubhouse cancer.

    He was portrayed as such by the media, whom Kingman despised and subsequently was the recipient of the poison pen on occasion, but to the people which mattered he was thought of as a good teammate.

  96. Raul Says:

    Thanks Bob.

    Things aren’t exactly looking up for the Dolphins though.
    Funny thing is we’ve had some solid runningbacks in the last decade or so. No quarterback since Marino.

  97. Raul Says:

    Happy 23rd birthday, Julio Teheran. Teheran had a nice little season for the Braves last year going 14-8 with a 3.20 ERA in 30 starts. Atlanta is expecting big things from this kid and I’m excited to see how he develops.

    Happy 34th birthday, Angel Berroa. Forever known as the guy who stole the 2003 AL Rookie of the Year award from Hideki Matsui (WAR would have given it to Rocco Baldelli), Berroa never panned out with the Royals and finally fell out of the Majors in 2009, last appearing for the Mets. He spent the last year playing in Mexico and actually put up decent numbers – .293/.362/.462.

    Happy 31st birthday, Gavin Floyd. I don’t understand this guy. He should be better than he’s been. 70-70 with a 4.48 ERA is disappointing after 10 years for Floyd. Those might be fantastic numbers for a #5 starter in the AL East, but Floyd was the 4th overall pick of the 2001 MLB Draft. (Joe Mauer was 1st, Mark Prior 2nd, and Mark Teixeira 5th).

    Happy 24th birthday, Tim Beckham. The 2008 1st overall pick finally made the Majors in 2013, garnering a robust 8 total plate appearances. But let’s not get on Beckham too much. It’s not like any of the other 2008 1st rounders were any good:

    1. Tim Beckham
    2. Pedro Alvarez
    3. Eric Hosmer
    4. Brian Matusz
    5. Buster Posey
    6. Kyle Skipworth
    7. Yonder Alonso
    8. Gordon Beckham
    9. Aaron Crow
    10. Jason Castro
    11. Justin Smoak
    12. Jemile Weeks
    13. Brett Wallace
    14. Aaron Hicks
    15. Ethan Martin
    16. Brett Lawrie
    17. David Cooper
    18. Ike Davis
    19. Andrew Cashner
    20. Josh Fields
    21. Ryan Perry

    *at this point, every single one of those players has made a Major League appearance. From that perspective, that’s one hell of a draft.

    28. Gerrit Cole (who didn’t sign with the Yankees)
    29. Lonnie Chisenhall
    39. Lance Lynn

    So no worries, Tim Beckham. You weren’t outshined by anyone.

  98. Jim Says:

    My memory of Dave Kingman is him hitting a pop up that never came down. It went through a hole in the tarp that served as the “dropped ceiling” in the Metrodome. Damnedest thing.

  99. Bob Says:

    Well no one except for Posey.

  100. Raul Says:


    Players 2 through 21 of that 2008 draft all created more value to their teams than Tim Beckham (according to WAR), with the exception of Kyle Skipworth, Brett Wallace, David Cooper, Ethan Martin and Josh Fields.

    Disappointing as he’s been, Josh Fields is the bridge to Qualls at closer in Houston.

    Skipworth is probably a bust, even though he’s just 23.

    Brett Wallace is probably a AAAA player, but he’s got parts of 4 seasons and 311 Major League games. He might be the reincarnation of Brandon Wood. But I’ll take that over Tim Beckham.

    Ethan Martin is a bust. Dude is going into 2014 and already probably has no shot at even cracking the tail end of that Phillies bullpen.

    David Cooper couldn’t cut it with the Blue Jays and despite nice numbers in the PCL, got shipped to Cleveland’s farm system. With Swisher and Carlos Santana, he’s got no shot of cracking that lineup. So he’s a bust.

    There you go.
    Two legitimate horrible busts besides Tim Beckham in the top 22 picks.

  101. Lefty33 Says:

    “Ethan Martin is a bust. Dude is going into 2014 and already probably has no shot at even cracking the tail end of that Phillies bullpen.”

    Martin very much has a chance at cracking the bullpen considering that Mike Adams will be down for at least the first month or more and the Phillies have a real lack of quality pen arms. After Papelbon and Bastardo the other five spots to open the season will be a wide open competition in ST with no sacred cows or guarantees to anyone.

    Martin at this point is very much a thrower and not a pitcher. That works much better for an inning or two out of the pen as opposed to where guys get three or four looks at you over the course of an entire game.

    I wouldn’t call Martin a bust yet, but he’s getting there in a hurry.

  102. Chuck Says:

    The story of PCL player Neal Sheridan’s 613 ft homer

  103. Chuck Says:

    I realize he played for the Astros and his selection was more token than earned, but Jason Castro was an All-Star last year.

    He’s a good player.

  104. Cameron Says:

    He’s enough to be a major league starter, which there always aren’t thirty of at a given position.

  105. Mike Felber Says:

    Thanks Cameron, the story is very good, him intersecting with those baseball legends & all. Yet it is highly unlikely he hit a ball over 600′.

    Nill Jenkinson investigated all claims he could find re” long balls for his book “baseball’s Ultimate Power”. There is a tremendous amount of exaggeration, errors in measurement, & lack of understanding of how long balls fly after they reach their apex. He interviewed folks, made measurements, checked ancient microfiche…Mantle did not hit that ball 565′, but he IS credited with a 551′ another time, which beats a # of players tied at 540′…Except Babe Ruth.

    Who hit the longest ball in a game over an insanely distant fence of ~ 575′, that must be the 587′ the article is referring to. And Jenkinson believes he hit his furthest-the only one Babe ever asked to be measured-barnstorming after the ‘26 series in Wilkes Barre.

    With no history of great power, a wooden bay & no wind, with nobody testifying about the flight of the ball nor where it landed except the word of where a car was parked from one guy…What are the odds that he hit it this far, when most years in the regular season a nobody reaches 500′? Slim to none I would say.

  106. Cameron Says:

    lol, give credit where it’s due. That’s Chuck’s story.

  107. Mike Felber Says:

    Whoops, “Bill”, a wooden “bat”, & I meant to say Jenkinson credits Ruth’s longest as well over 600′, measured at the time at 650′.

    But even hitting a ball 500′ under normal conditions (no metal bat, minimal wind, regular ball) is very uncommon. More so against MLB pitching. Bonds Steroid inflated longest was only 493′. Even some 500′-540′ blasts had some tail wind, like Jackson’s ‘71 ASG moonshot.

  108. Mike Felber Says:

    Oh right! Knowing Chuck he likely is also skeptical at best that the 613.5′ distance is accurate.

  109. Raul Says:

    For those who are ardent fans of both vintage horology and sports memorabilia, the Holy Grail hath arrived. The 1923 New York Yankees World Championship Watch, which was once owned by none other than Babe Ruth, is currently on auction through February 22nd

  110. Raul Says:

    link to auction

  111. Bob Says:

    Make your bets.

  112. Bob Says:

    Chris Christie warming up for his jog from Trenton to Fort Lee…

  113. Bob Says:

  114. Bob Says:

    Back to baseball.

  115. Raul Says:

    Happy 26th birthday, AJ Griffin. Entering his 3rd season, Griffin could be a solid pitcher for the Athletics. He hit 200 innings in 2013 allowing just 171 hits and a very good 54 walks. Unfortunately, he also allowed a league-leading 36 home runs. A bit surprising given that he plays in Oakland. If he can get that homer count down into the low-20s or high teens, he will be one of the better mid-rotation guys in the league.

    Happy 37th birthday, Lyle Overbay. Overbay just signed a minor league deal with the Brewers last week and could have his 14th Major League season this year. Nothing to scoff at, considering Overbay was an EIGHTEENTH round draft pick in 1999. My guess is not many players overcome the odds like Overbay has.

    Happy 40th birthday, Magglio Ordoñez. A career .309/.369/.502 hitter, Magglio had a hell of a career. It’s just too bad he couldn’t play much defense or stay on the field. He’d be viewed in a better context. In 2007 he ran into some bad luck. He hit .363/.434/.595 with 54 doubles, 28 HR and 139 RBI — MVP numbers in almost any other year. But Alex Rodriguez was other-wordly in 2007 and the voting wasn’t even close.

    Happy 40th birthday, Jermaine Dye. Dye hit .274/.338/.488 over 14 seasons, perhaps most notably with the White Sox. In 2001, with the Athletics leading the Yankees 2-1 in the ALDS, Jermaine Dye fouled a ball off his leg and broke it. There were runners on 1st and 2nd with no outs. Although the numbers don’t support it (Dye was just 3-for-13 in the series) I really felt at the time that losing Dye was a bad break for Oakland. He just seemed like a power threat and once he was gone, some of the air was let out of the Athletics. The Yankees were up 7-2 at the time and would have won the game anyway, but you wonder if Game 5 might have turned out differently.

    Happy 80th birthday, Bill White. White hit .286/.351/.455 over 13 seasons in the 1960s, winning 7 Gold Gloves and appearing in 5 All Star Games. White won a World Series in 1964 over the Yankees (4-3). After his playing days, White became a broadcaster for 18 years and later became President of the National League.

  116. Bob Says:

    Since people like playing “What if” games…

  117. Bob Says:

  118. Chuck Says:

    “To determine how much his speed contributes to these figures, we must do both of the following:

    1) Approximate how many extra hits his speed provided, and
    2) Approximate how many additional total bases on existing hits his speed provided”

    Hang in there, Bob, warm weather is coming soon..then you can get outside and tend to your garden instead of killing brain cells reading garbage like Fangraphs.

  119. Bob Says:

    Thanks. I need some fresh carrots and cucumbers. Vegetables are tasty. And seriously, none of this real men only eat meat. We eat everything.

  120. Raul Says:

    When I was in DR for Xmas in 2012, it finally occurred to me how much it sucks to shop in supermarkets.

    I’m at this guy’s house…he’s got a garden on the land behind the yard and he raises pigs.

    So for Christmas, we were going to roast up an entire pig and we went to pick the one we wanted the day before.

    The guy asks us if we have everything we need to season it. My uncle says some cilantro would be nice since he has some on site.

    The guy tells his son to grab some cilantro from the garden. This kid goes in and reaches into the ground and pulls out a few handfuls.

    The kid was…easily 120 feet away from me. As soon as he picked them, I could smell them. And it was a strong scent — from 120 feet away. Now the point is…you might not like cilantro. But it being fresh, you could smell it immediately and I can tell you it had real taste.

    You go to a supermarket…and pick any herb or vegetable. You can’t smell or taste a goddamn thing.

  121. Raul Says:

    Why hasn’t David Price been traded yet?

  122. Raul Says:

    How do you view Evan Longoria’s career so far?

    Through is first 6 years:


    797 Games
    136 OPS+
    162 HR
    544 RBI
    36.3 WAR

    David Wright:

    847 Games
    137 OPS+
    140 HR
    561 RBI
    29.2 WAR

    Scott Rolen:

    744 Games
    126 OPS+
    133 HR
    493 RBI

    (If I extend Rolen to 2002, his WAR is 32.0 — perhaps more fair given that he only had 37 games as a rookie).

    So in the end, which of these players do you think will end up on top?

  123. Bob Says:

    @ 121

    1. Baseball, including Tampa is flush with cash.
    2. The Rays have not received a Wil Myers like talent.
    3. Tampa expects to be in the thick of things.

  124. Bob Says:

    I will go with Longoria.

  125. Chuck Says:

    I freakin’ love cilantro…my favorite herb. I always have some in the house.

  126. Bob Says:

    Never had it. Will try some this week if I can find it. Whole Foods should have it, I would guess.

  127. Bob Says:

    For baseball collectors…

  128. Chuck Says:

    Russell Wilson will be in spring training with the Rangers for a couple of weeks…send me the card Bob and I’ll have him sign it for you.

  129. Chuck Says:

    “There is one reason for using spices/seasonings, it covers an inability to cook.”

    First day of culinary school, had an instructor say that during orientation.

    Never forgot it, obviously, and it’s so true.

  130. Raul Says:

    It’s good for Wilson to have a backup plan, I guess.

    As far as the cilantro, I grew up with it so I like it. But I’ve heard people have a strong reaction to it. Most seem to love or hate it. Very little in between. give it a shot, Bob.

  131. Raul Says:

    That’s a great quote, Chuck.
    I’m not much of a cook though.

  132. Cameron Says:

    @129 I’m cutting back on my seasoning as of late. I still like to on occasion as I have some good spice blends, but they get to be overpowering after a while. If I’m cooking something like chicken or steak now, I pretty much just salt and pepper it these days.

  133. Bob Says:

    @ 128. If/when I get it, I will. Thank you very much.

  134. Bob Says:

  135. Mike Felber Says:

    Whether one likes Cilantro or not is actually a genetic thing, that is why it is so black & white.

    Now I know some spice to disguise bad cooking or food. But Chuck, is not some of the best food in the world heavily or carefully spices, of many cuisines? Surely spicing itself does not show if food is good or bad, but how skillfully it is done wen deployed, right?

  136. Chuck Says:

    “Whether one likes Cilantro or not is actually a genetic thing”




  137. Raul Says:

    Happy 41st birthday, Jason Schmidt. Schmidt was basically a nobody for the first 9 years of his career until a move to San Fransisco in 2001 where he became one of the better pitchers in the National League. In 2003 he went 17-5 with a 2.34 ERA striking out 208 batters in 207.2 innings. He would lose the Cy Young (I’d say, unfairly) to Dodgers closer Eric Gagne. The following year he’d go 18-7 with a 3.20 ERA striking out 251 batters in 225 innings in what was probably a better season, but dropped to 4th in the Cy Young voting. That year, it wasn’t Schmidt who was screwed over for the Cy Young, but rather Randy Johnson — who lost to Roger Clemens. Schmidt would encounter arm troubles in the years to come that would eventually end his career at 36 with the Dodgers.

    Happy 54th birthday, Steve Sax. The 1982 AL Rookie of the Year managed 14 seasons hitting .281/.335/.358, mostly with the Dodgers. Sax is known for several things. He was a pretty good base stealer. He was critical of players during the strike in 94. And he had a period where he couldn’t throw the ball to 1st base (Steve Sax Syndrome) – something that would affect Chuck Knoblauch, most recently.

    There’s a piece on Wikipedia that says:

    Teammate Pedro Guerrero, an outfielder pressed into service at third base in 1983, once reportedly stated that his first thought whenever he was in the field was “I hope they don’t hit it to me,” while his second thought was “I hope they don’t hit it to Sax.”)

    Sax has also been on several tv shows, dabbled in politics and is a black belt in martial arts. And up until this past October, he served as the Diamondbacks’ 1st base coach. Sax is also 300th All Time in Hits, with 1949, which might surprise some people.

    Happy 27th birthday, Alex Avila. Was there a player who was more Jekyll and Hyde than Alex Avila? After hitting .177/.279/.293 in 58 games in the 1st half, he hit .303/.376/.500 in 44 games in the 2nd half. Avila is a free agent in 2 years and he better turn things around quickly if he intends to stay in this league.

  138. Bob Says:

    Well Mike, what if one parent likes it and the other does not. Is liking cilantro a recessive or dominant gene?

  139. Bob Says:

    Chipper Jones is a hero.

  140. Bob Says:

    This is why I’m a Dolphins fan. And it will also make people forget about Martin/Incognito.

  141. Raul Says:

    I remember seeing that a few months ago, Bob.
    Was awesome.

    This deadspin article about how cheerleaders are paid and treated is not awesome.

  142. Raul Says:

    I’ll share Keith Law’s top 50 prospects heading into 2014.

    To avoid one large block, I’ll paste them in 5 posts.

    1. Byron Buxton, CF, Twins – The best player available in the 2012 amateur draft turned out to be even better than expected in his first full year of pro ball, showing off four plus tools right away with a solid approach befitting his status as an older high school senior last spring.

    Buxton is an outstanding athlete, like a 20-year-old Eric Davis with a grade-70 arm in center, among the fastest runners you will ever see on a baseball field and with the potential to grow into power in time. He’s always had very quick wrists, but the Twins have done a great job of smoothing out Buxton’s swing; he’s more balanced through contact and already has more power because he keeps his back foot in contact with the ground so he gets more loft in his swing.

    Buxton’s instincts in the field were evident in high school, but he’s proven to be a more advanced hitter than anyone anticipated, given his relatively advanced age for a high school draftee (more than 18 1/2 years old on draft day) and experience playing against mediocre prep competition in rural Georgia. He’s comfortable running deep counts and recognizes balls and strikes well already, although his recognition of off-speed stuff lags a little behind that. This combination of quick-twitch actions with size and feel for the game is extremely unusual, something we see only once a decade or so.

    Buxton could be the next 20-homer/50-stolen base player, with high averages and OBPs and great defense in center, which would make him a perennial MVP candidate for the Twins for years.

    2. Xander Bogaerts, SS, Red Sox — For all of Bogaerts’ tools — and he has many — it was his patient approach at the plate that stood out in the Aruban’s brief major league stint in 2013. Bogaerts has explosive potential as a hitter, as the ball comes off his bat exceptionally well, and the fact he sees the ball so well and makes good decisions as a hitter bodes well for his ability to adjust to major league pitching if he’s handed an everyday job in 2014.

    He has quick and very strong hands at the plate, with moderate hip rotation that still projects to plus power because of the speed and force of his swing. He’s a natural shortstop, with soft hands and very good actions as well as plenty of arm for the left side of the infield. Although his frame could allow him to get too big for the position, he’s maintained his conditioning well enough to stay at short for the near future, and the possibility of a 25- to 30-homer bat with strong on-base skills at that position gives Boston strong incentive to leave him there.

    He could be Troy Tulowitzki with a little less arm, and that’s an MVP-caliber player.

    3. Addison Russell, SS, Athletics — One of the best pure hitters in the minors, Russell is an incredibly gifted player who has a mature approach at the plate and some of the softest hands you’ll ever see in the field.

    Once a muscled-up third baseman, Russell dropped more than 20 pounds before his senior year of high school because he wanted to prove to scouts he could stay at shortstop, a decision that has worked out in every respect and also reflects his work ethic and humility as a ballplayer.

    He has a simple, fluid right-handed swing with some loft through his finish to generate line drives; his bat speed is so good and the contact he makes is so hard that I still see more power in the future for him, 15-20 homers a year, if not more. In the field, he has the hands to be an elite shortstop and his actions are fine, with only his feet lagging slightly because he doesn’t have the first-step quickness of traditional shortstops. He has plenty of arm for short or third and has shown he can take instruction well enough that no one is seriously talking about him moving to another position.

    He had a slow start for high Class A Stockton in 2013, but from June 1 until his promotion to Triple-A, he hit .319/.421/.578 in 299 plate appearances as one of the youngest regulars in the California League. If the A’s wanted to make him their everyday shortstop in 2014, it wouldn’t be that far-fetched an idea. His hands and his eye are ready to play; his aptitude for the game is so good that the bat will catch up.

    4. Carlos Correa, SS, Astros — Correa played the whole year at 18 in the low Class A Midwest League, one of the youngest regulars in any full-season circuit, and after a rough April, blew everyone away with his combination of physical potential and on-field acumen.

    He hit .338/.410/.479 after an early-May DL stint caused by a pitch taken off the wrist, improving his approach at the plate as the season went on, and making far more contact than you’d expect of a player his age in his first year of pro ball — he ranked above the league median in strikeout rate even with the bad start to his season.

    Correa is a big kid, already 6-foot-4 and more than 200 pounds, likely on his way to 220 or so, which will push the boundaries of what typically plays at shortstop in the majors. But he’s very athletic for his size, with solid footwork and a 70-grade arm. The tradeoff with his size will be power, as he already shows plenty of raw power and could end up in the 25-30 homer range.

    He’s got a quiet approach, short to the ball with great hand acceleration, moderately rotational, producing more line drives now than big flies but with the hand-eye coordination to do so down the road. Other than a lack of speed, he’s close to the ideal prospect, and if he ends up following the Manny Machado route to third base, his bat will still make him a star.

    5. Oscar Taveras, OF, Cardinals — It was a lost year for Taveras, who spent most of 2013 hobbling around in a boot to protect an injured ankle that refused to heal. He remains the Cardinals’ best prospect and is probably ready to take over in right field for the departed Carlos Beltran, but losing out on several hundred Triple-A at-bats won’t help his development as a hitter or as a professional ballplayer.

    Taveras has tremendous leverage at the plate, with a high-effort swing that he’s only slightly toned down since he first emerged as a top prospect in low Class A. He’s a great bad-ball hitter with power to all fields, rarely striking out, but rarely walking, either. He’s a lot like a left-handed Vladimir Guerrero at the plate, with a better glove in right but less arm (there are sniper rifles less powerful than Vlad’s arm).

    Besides health, Taveras has been knocked for appearing to play with less than full effort at times, although much of that in 2013 may have been a function of trying to play when he could barely walk. I still think he peaks as a .300 hitter with 30-homer power, but the lack of Triple-A time may slow him down in the near term.

    6. Francisco Lindor, SS, Indians — Lindor continues to play well above his years, reaching Double-A while still 19 years old, walking more than he struck out and playing major league-caliber defense already. I’m not sure what remains for Lindor to learn before he’s ready to take over the position in Cleveland, and while they could wait for him to fill out a little more physically, he’s strong enough now that big league fastballs aren’t going to knock the bat out of his hands.

    Lindor is a plus runner and switch-hitter with a good swing on both sides of the plate; his right-handed swing is a little better, as he keeps his weight back longer, but his platoon splits flipped this year from 2012 and I think he’ll produce against all types of pitching. His feel for the game has always been his greatest strength — he has instincts and game awareness, and when you combine that with soft hands and a plus arm, you get a Gold Glove-type of defender at a critical position.

    Lindor doesn’t look like a power hitter but has exceptional lower-half strength and his swing will allow him to eventually get to that power even though he doesn’t finish with a ton of loft. Even at 12-15 homers, which is probably a neutral projection for him, he’ll be an All-Star thanks to grade-70 defense and OBPs up near .400 with plenty of doubles and 20-plus steals a year.

    7. Javier Baez, SS, Cubs — Baez has the best bat speed of any hitter in the minors right now, and the ball explodes off his bat like he’s splitting atoms with contact.

    He’s got 30-plus home run power, and showed at least some signs in the second half of 2012 that he could improve his plate discipline, working the count a little more effectively in some of his plate appearances. He’s still prone to the at-bat where you watch him and wonder what he was thinking, the kind of brain cramp that won’t be forgiven in the big leagues, but he can turn around the next time and hit a ball 400 feet the other way if the pitcher tries the same trick twice.

    Baez is agile enough to handle shortstop, and could even be average or a tick better there, but his arm will play anywhere on the diamond and he’s quick enough to handle second if the Cubs move him there. Wherever he plays, he’ll probably start his career as a low-walk guy, maybe a .270/.310/.450 type of hitter right out of the chute, but the progress he showed in 2013 may give us hope he can improve that OBP in time and become an MVP candidate.

    8. Miguel Sano, 3B, Twins — Sano is the best pure offensive prospect in the minors, boasting 80-grade raw power and an easy swing that generates hard contact using his hips and legs, along with a history of making adjustments to his plan at the plate.

    He reached Double-A at age 20 last year, and after a slow start there hit .258/.374/.609 after the Eastern League’s All-Star Game. His power is slightly ahead of his ability to hit and make contact, but he has shown plenty of the latter skill, with strong walk rates since he reached full-season ball and the ability to pick up spin and changing speeds.

    His defense is still the main question, as he’s still rough at third base and that body is only going to get bigger as he gets into his 20s. Sano is also dealing with an elbow issue which shouldn’t require Tommy John surgery, but the possibility he’ll need that procedure remains on the table, and it would cost him a few hundred at-bats he needs and could prevent a late 2014 call-up.

    If rehab alone does the trick, or a move to first base, Sano should be in the Twins’ lineup on Opening Day of next year, on his way to 30- to 35-homer seasons with mid-.300 OBPs.

    9. Archie Bradley, RHP, Diamondbacks — This is what they’re supposed to look like: Big, strong, athletic, aggressive, with a pair of 70-grade pitches and promise of a third one.

    Bradley, who passed up a scholarship to be a quarterback at Oklahoma after high school, effectively skipped high Class A, throwing just 28 innings there before a promotion to Double-A at age 20, and improved his performance across the board despite the two-level jump.

    His command and control were both significantly better in 2013; his walk rate dropped by nearly 30 percent from low Class A to Double-A, and his rate of walks plus hit batsmen dropped by 40 percent, while he even slashed his wild pitch total (which could also be a function of who was catching him) from 17 to 2.

    Bradley works with a 92-98 mph fastball and a power curveball in the low 80s with depth and right rotation. He needs more work on his changeup, and needs to use his large frame to stay on top of the fastball so it doesn’t sit up in the zone. His arm works and he’s extremely competitive on the mound, so the Diamondbacks were right to move him out of the hitter-friendly Cal League as quickly as possible.

    He’ll be ready to help the major league team by the second half of this year and projects as their future No. 1 starter.

    10. Kyle Zimmer, RHP, Royals — Zimmer’s season ended on a bit of a down note, as a bout of shoulder tendinitis led the Royals to shut him down for precautionary reasons (an MRI was clean), but before that he’d been on a run that established him as a legitimate top-of-the-rotation prospect who’s not that far away from the majors.

    Zimmer will show you two 70-grade pitches in addition to his 93-97 mph fastball — a yellow hammer curveball with depth and angle, and a mid-80s changeup with great arm speed and some late action to it. He’s an outstanding athlete, as you might expect from a converted position player, and has less mileage on his arm than most college products.

    He does use a fourth pitch, a below-average slider that he needs to junk or at least limit to just a few pitches a game, and he has a tendency to rush off the rubber and speed up his entire delivery, costing him command and reducing his body control through the process.

    Zimmer finished his season on fire, punching out 63 and walking eight in his last eight starts of the summer, half of them after a promotion to Double-A Northwest Arkansas, and as long as his shoulder is happy he should move quickly to Triple-A. He’s the future ace the Royals have been trying to develop since they traded Zack Greinke.

  143. Raul Says:

    Wow, that was a big block.
    Not sure about pasting the remaining 40.


  144. Mike Felber Says:

    Google Cilantro and genetics and there is a ton of information. AKA Coriander, approaching 1/5th of folks, rates varying by race/region, find it tastes or smells like soap! I’ll bet it is a recessive trait given its frequency. Quote:

    “The strongest variant lies within a cluster of olfactory-receptor genes—part of the genome which influences our sense of smell. Buried within that cluster is a gene called OR6A2, which encodes a receptor that makes people sensitive to the aldehyde chemicals contributing to cilantro’s characteristic flavor”.

    Another account describes it as more nuanced, only partially genetic,but we can overcome the dislike. They site studies of up to 25,000 folks, & say in part:

    The scientists pinpointed three more genes that influence our perception of cilantro: Two of the genes are involved with tasting bitter foods and one gene detects pungent compounds, like those in wasabi.

  145. Bob Says:

    Mike, thanks.

  146. Chuck Says:

    Thanks, Raul…

    I’d like to see the list, though.

    I saw a bunch of laughter online yesterday, so I’m curious.

    I know he has Corey Seager really high (only one to rank him last year) and doesn’t have McCullers or Betts at all.

    He’s a clown.

  147. Mike Felber Says:

    Happy to help!

  148. Bob Says:

    1. The Royals re-signed Bruce Chen.

    2. The Orioles want A.J. Burnett.

  149. Bob Says:

    Michael Young retired.

    See you guys tomorrow.

  150. Cameron Says:

    Equipment trucks are rolling in, folks. It’s almost time.

  151. Raul Says:

    I’ll try to be brief.

    Ernie Banks is 83 today. From 1955 through 1960, Banks hit .294/.359/.579. Think about that for a moment. Banks was a shortstop and he was OPSing .938 for six years.

    Nolan Ryan is 67 today. It’s hard to say without actually having watched the games which of his No Hitters was the best, but from the stat line, I’ll go with his final one — On May 1, 1991, pitching for Texas, he defeated Toronto, 5-0, allowing two walks and striking out 16.

    Jackie Robinson would have been 95 today. Well, that is, if anyone actually lives to be 95. The 2014 season will be the first where no one will have #42 on their jersey, as the great Mariano Rivera officially retired.

  152. Bob Says:

  153. Bob Says:

  154. Raul Says:

  155. Cameron Says:

    500 bucks? …As someone who lives in an area with a decent prostitution trade (in quantity anyway, there’s low standards in terms of quality here, but that also is a result of the heroin and crack trade), I can vouch that someone who looks like her on Superbowl weekend at a seedy motel can make 500 bucks and not involve her fucking kid.

    And for the record, I don’t partake. Though I’ve been solicited. Took me about two blocks after walking away to realize the first time though. I laughed it off.

  156. Mike Felber Says:

    The only question re: wing eating, is the inevitable variation in how completely the meat & skin is cleaned off the bone. “To qualify for the Wing Bowl, Schuyler ate nine pounds of cottage cheese in 114 seconds. She also holds a world record for eating a 72-ounce steak in less than three minutes”. This is unusual, she edged out the guy, both of whom beat Kobeyashi’s old record.

    So many football players have devastating physical, & even worse mental problems. Many die young. They absolutely must make the game safer. The NFL has denied & obfuscated as long as possible. From the article:

    “A federal judge nixed preliminary approval of a $765 million settlement for players suffering the effects of concussions earlier this month, saying the dollar figure may be on the low side. More than 4,500 former players, including Hall of Fame running back Tony Dorsett, are suing the NFL”.

    The range & degree of harm suffered is hard to exaggerate.

    Now Google “Super Bowl Boulevard”, & you will find out more than you want to know about the 16 block massive project below & through Times Square. I have walked through it a few times, including when being assembled. Endless booths, studios, giant structures, toboggan run, autographs, place kicking, lines for everything, & though much is turned over to pedestrian malls, it is jam packed. The final night’s concert tonight is Blondie, Ziggy Marley at nearby Briant Park with their Verizon High tent tent & free food tasting & performances…

    A decent account of it:

  157. Chuck Says:

    Taking the the two and a half and taking the under on 48.5.

    I’m in two money pools…have 0/6 in one and 4/3 in the other.

    Dbacks are the first team to officially report, on Thursday the sixth.

  158. Cameron Says:

    I’m gonna stick with the Seahawks. One, I’m a Chiefs fan so I’m physically incapable of wanting the Broncos to win anything and two, I’m a sucker for good defenses and players with huge egos with talent to back it up, and the Legion of Boom is that in spades.

  159. Bob Says:

    The Rangers signed Daniel Bard. And I have no idea who will win the SB. Thankfully, I really do not care either.

  160. Cameron Says:

    Finally… Ray Guy, Hall of Famer.

  161. Chuck Says:

    Better late than dead.

  162. Raul Says:

    Same can’t be said for Ron Santo, though.

  163. Cameron Says:

    Holy shit.

    RIP Phillip Seymour Hoffman

  164. Chuck Says:


    Is that the Capote guy?

  165. Raul Says:


    These guys are awesome!

    Start the video at 1:45. Don’t need to watch it all.
    They run the first jam through about 8:22.

    You should recognize some of the themes/anthems they cover.

  166. Cameron Says:

    Yeah Chuck, Capote. And Boogie Nights, Big Lebowski, Almost Famous, Cold Mountain, 25th Hour, he’s been in a lot of good stuff.

  167. Mike Felber Says:

    9th Avenue has cones set up & is closed off for traffic except for the big luxury academy buses & a few official vehicles. Fun to watch from my roof, also standing on concrete police barricade in Times Square. It is gonna be a S(t)upor Bowl madhouse.

    Phillip Seymore Hoffman is gone. Had trouble with drugs for years.

  168. Cameron Says:

    First snap of the Superbowl flies over Peyton Manning’s head, recovered by Seattle for the safety.

  169. Cameron Says:

    Huh, Hoffman played Art Howe in the Moneyball movie.

  170. Cameron Says:

    Seattle wins by a fucking landslide.

  171. Chuck Says:

    That was one bizarre football game.

    Hoffman was found with a bag of heroin and a syringe still in his arm.

    Moving right along.

  172. Cameron Says:

    Seattle holding Denver to 8, I can see. Seattle putting up 43 on anyone? Put a dollar on that line and you’re the richest man in the world.

  173. Chuck Says:

    I’m working at Brewers Fantasy Camp on Saturday..playoff day…ten hours watching guys older, fatter and more out of shape than I am should be a blast.

  174. Cameron Says:

    That’s great about the Brewers, but what about the campers, Chuck? =P

  175. Bob Says:

    Chuck, sounds like you will have a great time. You allowed a cocktail that day?

  176. Chuck Says:

    Good point, Cam.

    Yeah, Bob..the reception/awards banquet is afterwards…open bar…

  177. Cameron Says:

    Oh, for anyone who’s curious, I’m moving out of the group home I’m in into an apartment of my own somewhere between this month and the next. Public housing unit, so I’m taking a machete to a forest of paperwork right now.

  178. Chuck Says:

    Good luck..and careful brother is handicapped and lives in one of those city run group homes…pretty political.

  179. Cameron Says:

    Private agency is running this home, very independent living. Basically a townhouse now. Probably nicer than where I’m moving to and the rent is the same, but I’ve been trying to get out on my own for ages now. Total independence is something I’ve wanted for a long time and haven’t had yet. Got a thousand dollar check sitting to be cashed to furnish the place when I move out too.

    …And I’m cutting a few of those checks a year now. It’s weird being homeless for half of one year to actually holding two and a half grand in hand the next. …The first time you have that much in hand… Feels really weird. Good, but weird.

  180. Mike Felber Says:

    Wow, excellent Cam!

    Bank as much as you can, it is easy to just spend what you have. Thrift store/Salvation Armani & even barter & free stuff on Craigslist are useful to supplement regular furniture purchases. This is a big step!!

  181. Cameron Says:

    I only allot for one luxury purchase a year. The others are for stuff like furninshing the apartment and tickets home for Christmas. I make seven hundred bucks a month, it’s not like I can afford to piss cash like that away every month.

  182. Cameron Says:

    Wow, saw the starting lineups for the Super Bowl. Seattle’s base defense the whole game was nickel coverage. No wonder they couldn’t pass for shit.

  183. Bob Says:

    A day late with this but

  184. Bob Says:

    Cam, good luck. And to those of us on the East: Lefty, Mike Raul and myself, be careful with this upcoming storm tomorrow afternoon/Wednesday.

  185. Chuck Says:

    Bruce Lee playing ping pong with a nun-chuck.

    Watch the whole thing…the lighting matches is ridiculous.

  186. Jim Says:

    Great news Cam. Mike’s right, you can furnish a place quite nicely with the cast offs of others. Yard sales are a great place to start. One thing that I’d buy new though is a box spring and mattress, but even there you can get deals on seconds and closeouts.

  187. Bob Says:

    Sorry Jim. I forgot you are on the East Coast as well. My bad.

  188. Chuck Says:

    We have bad weather in Phoenix today…it’s cloudy.

  189. Cameron Says:

    We’re set to get 8-10 inches tomorrow.

  190. Cameron Says:

    Also, the sandwich shop two blocks from my house sells cubans. Life is good.

  191. Cameron Says:

    Sorry, two blocks from the new apartment.

  192. Bob Says:

    @ 190. How much are they?

  193. Cameron Says:

    About $7.50, damn good ones too. I think they do the fries in peanut oil.

  194. Bob Says:

    Couple of baseball notes as we head into the swimsuit edition of the year.

    1. Nick Hagadone won his grievance against the Indians and gained 94 days of service time.

    2. The Mariners are talking to Nelson Cruz and willing to offer multiple years. Gotta offer some protection for Cano, though are they bidding against themselves?

    3.The Braves signed Jason Heyward to a 2-year deal.

    4. The Dodgers are talking with Bronson Arroyo. Are the Dodgers the favorites in the West?

    5. Why do I think Ethier gets traded to the Red Sox before Opening Day?

  195. Cameron Says:

    Not sure about all of them Bob, but I do think the Dodgers are the favorites in the west and Ethier is the most tradeable of LA’s four otufielders. Though I don’t know what Boston would give up.

  196. Bob Says:

    Well with Pedroia lock-up lock term perhaps Mookie Betts or Sean Coyle. Perhaps a pitcher.

  197. Jim Says:

    Eithier to the RS is an old rumor. Problem is that he’s another LH bat with bad splits. I wouldn’t give up Betts for Eithier and his contract.

  198. Bob Says:

    Fair point. Just wondering what they do with him. Pedroia is at 2nd and it appears Bogaerts is at short with Middlebrooks at 3rd and Cecchini a year behind. For some reason I prefer Cecchini to Betts, though that could change.

  199. Bob Says:

    first Heyward, now the Braves lock up Freddie Freeman. I remember Brautigan being high on him some 2 years ago.

  200. Cameron Says:

    I’m pretty high on Freeman myself. Good all-around bat and a good glove on top of that. Pretty solid player all-around for the Braves to get a hold of, plus he’s a good locker room guy and pretty active in the community.

  201. Bob Says:

  202. Cameron Says:

    Casey Gillaspie? Is that Conor’s brother? Also, Wichita State is my mom and dad’s alma mater, so it’s nice to see an All-American Shocker.

  203. Cameron Says:

    Actually, a few familiar names here.

    OF Bradley Zimmer, San Francisco (Kyle Zimmer went to SF, brother?)
    SP Tyler Beede (Former Blue Jays 1st round pick IIRC, maybe 2nd)
    1B Kevin Cron, TCU (CJ’s brother?)
    UT Jameis Winston, Florida State (I still don’t see him as a major leaguer, but he’s #1 draft pick of 2015 for the NFL.)

  204. Chuck Says:

    Yes, Bradley Zimmer is Kyle’s brother.

  205. Bob Says:

    The Shockers have a great basketball team this year. I remember Antoine Carr and Cliff Levingston.

  206. Bob Says:

    Kevin and CJ are brothers.

  207. Chuck Says:

    And, yes, Kevin is CJ’s brother.

  208. Cameron Says:

    Shockers made Final Four last season. …Fucking Louisville…

  209. Chuck Says:

    Wichita State used to have a good baseball program, too.

  210. Chuck Says:

    Wichita State alums…Joe Carter, Casey Blake, Mike Lansing, Charlie O’Brien, Braden Looper, Darren Dreifort, Mike Pelfrey, Eric Wedge, Kennie Steenstra, Russ Morman, Phil Stephenson.

  211. Cameron Says:

    Yeah, WSU is a surprisingly good school for athletics. It’s a good program for baseball guys in Kansas since KU and K-State focus more on football and basketball. Kansas is a national powerhouse for basektball, so the local guys (who are never good enough to be actual Jayhawks) usually have to choose between K-State and WSU if they really want to be college ballers, and most of the good players are in the Wichita area anyway, so WSU has a bit of a hometown advantage. I think they get some play from northern Oklahoma too since Oklahoma and Oklahoma State are pretty much 100% football in their athletic budgeting, barring the occasional Marcus Smart enrolling there.

  212. Mike Felber Says:

    Bruce Lee, one of a kind. I still would rather having Ali shadow box right next to my nose than have nunchucks smash something held in my mouth!

    So apparently the Red Hot Chili Peppers did not even have their instruments plugged in. And then there is this, Clemens is working with him, same team he tried his last comeback with…

  213. Jim Says:

    @198 – Likely one or two of the 3, Betts, Middlebrooks and Cecchini gets traded, but not for Eithier. Now if they Dodgers would take Middlebrooks for Ethier, I’d do it.

    It would shock me if they try Betts at short, I don’t know if he has the arm, but it would be worth a look see and it doesn’t appear that Devan Marrero will hit well enough to be a regular.

    Bogarts will move to 3rd, this year if Drew is re-signed or in a couple of years when someone else comes along. Cecchini could be destined for 1st as the projections that I’ve read of him as at 3rd are that he will be average at best.

    The team appears down on Middlebrooks. He seems destined to be a Mark Reynolds type and will be a 200 strikeout candidate if he gets enough plate appearances.

  214. Bob Says:

  215. Jim Says:

    Meet the svelte David Ortiz×272-125272.jpg

  216. Chuck Says:

    Red Hot Chili Peppers sucked…there was no point to them being there.

    Bruno Mars’ wasn’t plugged in either.

  217. Chuck Says:

    Happy 80th Birthday (!) to the one and only Hammer…Henry Aaron.

  218. Bob Says:

    Curt Schilling has cancer.

  219. Raul Says:

    I don’t wish cancer on anyone, even a dirtbag like Schilling.

  220. Raul Says:


    I think David Ortiz has been losing weight for 2 or 3 years now.
    Good for him. Health and weight gain is a problem for lots of guys after their playing days. Looks like he is trying to take care of himself.

  221. Raul Says:

    I would love to meet Hank Aaron. Probably the only baseball player I’d be in awe of.

  222. Bob Says:

    Well Ortiz clearly wants to play in 2015 and possibly beyond. And power is the last skill to erode, which means he has a shot. Just does not have to be that overly aggressive about it as the Red Sox owners will clearly keep him in the fold be it on NESN, a special assistant to the GM ala Varitek and Pedro or something else. Beyond that, both ESPN with baseball tonight and the MLB Network will give him a job if he so choses.

  223. Cameron Says:

    I don’t know what was sadder watching the Lakers-Cavs game last night. The fact that the Lakers have such a thin bench and so many injuries that they one point had four players on the court and were forced to keep a fouled-out player on the court so they could have 5 bodies in the game… Or the fact all that happened and they still beat the Cavs by 11.

  224. Raul Says:

    I just hope the Knicks come to their senses and let Carmelo leave.

    He’s a fine scorer and all, but he would be best utilized as a complementary player. He would have been great on a team like…say the Detroit Pistons a decade ago when they had other stars like Rasheed Wallace and Richard Hamilton. A team where 3 or 4 guys carry the load. Instead of relying on 1 guy to score 30 every night.

    On a per game basis, Carmelo is scoring 27.3 this year. The next best guy is Andrea Bargnani at 13.3. There’s just no real team concept with the Knicks.

  225. Cameron Says:

    The Lakers are clearing a shitload of cap space for SOMEONE. I actually don’t think LeBron hits the market, so it’s most likely Melo, and if they transition the gameplan in LA to eventually shift from Kobe scoring 30 a game to Melo, I think they’re alright.

  226. Bob Says:

    The eve of Spring Training and the swimsuit edition and basketball is being discussed. Fuck you all!!!

  227. Cameron Says:

    Love you too, Bob.

  228. Raul Says:

    Who is on the cover?

  229. Cameron Says:

    I think they’re trying to keep it under wraps.

    Also, it’s the 50th anniversary issue. SI did an awards show for the top 10 covers of all time. Number 1?

    1989, Kathy Ireland –

  230. Bob Says:

    I still own that issue.

  231. Chuck Says:

    Shame about Schilling..

    So, Ortiz is finally off steriods?

    I have met Aaron…once…and yes, I was in awe and very intimidated

    Knicks won’t ever win with Carmelo…I hope he goes to Chicago or LA.

  232. Cameron Says:

    Chicago doesn’t have the cap space even after clearing Deng, and thank god too. Thibodeau and Melo would not work.

  233. Chuck Says:

    RIP Ralph Kiner

  234. Cameron Says:

    Aw shit.

  235. Bob Says:

    That sucks.

  236. Chuck Says:

    Just found out Dave Kingman is confirmed for the MLB Alumni event in Phoenix on Feb 24th.

    I’ve never met him, so this is going to be very cool.

  237. Mike Felber Says:

    Melo does not add enough scoring, it would be a mistake to make him a Frachise player. The Kicks continually have done this, LA should be smarter. Kevin Durant is having an insane year. Actually the last 2 have been amongst the best consecutive years in NBA history, only a few players have been this dominant in terms of win shares.

    Kiner, an icon. The final corner.

  238. Mike Felber Says:

    That is, he turned the final corner.

  239. Raul Says:

    Mike, what the hell are you even talking about?

    Melo doesn’t add enough scoring? ALL HE DOES IS SCORE.

    What Melo doesn’t add enough of is defense and passing to set up his teammates to take good shots.

    Come on, bro. Seriously?

  240. Cameron Says:

    He adds scoring to his own numbers Raul. He doesn’t actually add much to a team by himself because of ball-hogging and the fact he’s high-volume/low-percentage shooting.

  241. Bob Says:

  242. Cameron Says:

    That lucky bastard…

  243. Raul Says:

    Irrelevant @ Cameron

    Carmelo adds plenty of scoring. For all his faults (and he has several), scoring isn’t one of them.

  244. Raul Says:

    Still with the Banuelos hype?
    Chuck, it never ends…

  245. Cameron Says:

    Not saying Melo doesn’t score. But with how often and long he has the ball and how many buckets he misses, everyone else around him gets their numbers tanked as a result. Well, maybe the opposing frontcourt’s rebounding goes up…

  246. Bob Says:

  247. Chuck Says:

    Banuelos never would have been a starter, even if he didn’t get hurt.

    The Yanks could sign Bald Vinny and some people would think he’s a top prospect.

    Consider the source(s).

  248. Chuck Says:

    I would have no problem with Melo staying in New York, as long as he had another star to play with.

    It was supposed to be Amare’, but his injuries took care of that. I’ve heard rumors that Melo got pretty tight with Kevin Love at the Olympics a couple of years ago and he’s been trying to recruit him to New York this year when he hits free agency.

    The problem with guys like Melo is he won’t sacrifice touches or shots, regardless of who is on the team. If I was Kevin Love, New York would be the last place I’d go.

    Trivia about Kevin Love, his uncle is Mike Love of the Beach Boys.

  249. Mike Felber Says:

    Raul eaeaeasy there, slugger. Sorry I did not include the word that would have actually said what I meant. “Melo does not add enough BESIDES scoring”. Kind of like an Alan Houston. It would be better if he shared touches with another star, but he is not very efficient, better he plays a more well rounded game, defense better, & is less selfish.

    Shades of Starbury.

  250. Cameron Says:

    In baseball news, A-Rod dropped suit against the MLB and MLBPA.

  251. Chuck Says:

    Geez, I wonder why

  252. Bob Says:

    Up to you guys. Are the Olympics fair game for discussion for the next two weeks, or do you guys consider them boring?

  253. Chuck Says:

    Absolutely fair game, Bob, although I do find them somewhat boring.

    There are some events I will DVR if I can’t stay up, but I’ll skip stuff like snowboarding and curling.

  254. Cameron Says:

    Let me know if any journalists or dignitaries mysteriously disappear.

  255. Bob Says:

    Well Snowden disappeared in Russia. Or at least we cannot locate him. And then there is this.

  256. Chuck Says:

    “Let me know if any journalists or dignitaries mysteriously disappear”

    Or if they find Jimmy Hoffa.

  257. Bob Says:

    Actually the Russians might find him. They just won’t find him in Russia.

  258. Cameron Says:

    You know when you live with people that don’t know shit about food?

    1) They call it “stuffed shells” instead of Manicotti
    2) They use cottage cheese over ricotta because “It’s the same thing”

  259. Chuck Says:

    Stuffed shells and Manicotti are not the same thing.

    I substitute cottage cheese on occasion for ricotta because my wife doesn’t like it.

  260. Cameron Says:

    It’s not the same thing though… Plus it makes the whole dish watery as fuck.

  261. Jim Says:

    Olympics? There are 60 or so players already playing catch and taking batting practice in Ft Myers and we New Englanders have had a week of video of players partaking in baseball activity. 7 days to ST official opening!

  262. Cameron Says:

    I hear you say “Olympics?” And all I can think of is you saying it in Jim Mora press conference voice.

  263. Chuck Says:

    “Plus it makes the whole dish watery as fuck.”

    Well, duh…you have to adjust for that..ricotta is dense, cottage isn’t.

  264. Cameron Says:

    I do. …They don’t.

  265. Chuck Says:

    Brewers Fantasy Camp had their Kangaroo Court session on Friday night.

    Among the misdemeanor offenses;

    A camper reported losing a hooded sweatshirt which was later found in his locker; he was fined twice, once for misplacing the item in his own locker and once for filing a phony search report.

    A camper was fined for walking through the breakfast buffet line at 9 am and inquiring to the server what was for lunch.

    A participant was fined for showing up to the evening happy hour in brand new jeans, with the evidence being the tags and size stickers hadn’t been removed.

    There were also two felony convictions this year, Rob Deer was fined for using the off-limits bathroom in Ron Roenicke’s office, with photographic evidence being provided. (The camper who took the picture was also fined for taking a picture of Deer using the bathroom, “We would have taken your word.”

    A camper was fined for stopping at the taco bar after a game..while on his way to the showers and completely naked.

  266. Cameron Says:

    Ah Rob Deer. The original Mark Reynolds.

  267. Cameron Says:

    I think Rob Deer may be the only player I can think of whose homer total is (I guess sorta) higher than his batting average.

    BA: .220
    HR: 230

  268. Cameron Says:

    New Yorkers do not give a fuck.

    I live in an area where bears actually just roam the fuck around town every now and then. Animal control and state troopers are on that shit ASAP. Bear wanders around the street of New York, people give it dirty looks and tourists get their cameras.

  269. Chuck Says:

    He was there filming a movie..the sequel to “The Wolf of Wall Street”.

    Working title is “The Bear of Times Square”

  270. Kerry Says:

    @267 Actually, there are 166 players who have done that. Deer is the one with the lowest AVG that has. Next in line are

    Gorman Thomas (268, .225)
    Carlos Pena (285, .233)
    Dave Kingman (442, .236)
    Adam Dunn (440, .238)

    The ones with the highest AVG who have are

    Ted Williams (521, .344)
    Babe Ruth (714, .342)
    Lou Gehrig (493, .340)
    Stan Musial (475, .331)
    Joe DiMaggio (361, .325)
    Jimmie Foxx (534, .325)
    Miguel Cabrera (365, .321)
    Albert Pujols (492, .321)

  271. Cameron Says:

    Well, when you put it like that. I just meant to that degree of eerie similarity.

  272. Kerry Says:

    @267, Rob Deer is somewhat unique — he has the second most PA (4513) for someone who has both GIDP and SB less than 1% of PA. Bill Nicholson has the most (6406). This is starting in 1939, the first year both leagues kept the GIDP stat.

    Deer wasn’t fast, but had a low ball-in-play % (50%, compared to the MLB average of 72%), and when he did put it in play, he tended to hit fly balls (ground out to fly out ratio of 0.56, compared to the MLB average of 1.07).

  273. Kerry Says:

    @271 OK, got it. 48 people have HR within 5% of 1000*AVG — Deer has the lowest average of all of those by far (Mickey Tettleton is next at 245/.241). The highest average in this group is Edgar Martinez at 309/.312. Here are the closest:

    Vernon Wells (270, .270)

    Prince Fielder (285, .286)
    Ryan Klesko (278, .279)
    Brooks Robinson (268, .267)
    Bob Allison (256, .255)
    Andre Thornton (253, .254)
    Tony Armas (251, .252)
    Deron Johnson (245, .244)

    Rudy York (277, .275)
    Jorge Posada (275, .273)
    Raul Mondesi (271, .273)
    John Mayberry (255, .253)

    Edgar Martinez (309, .312)
    Ryne Sandberg (282, .285)
    Joe Morgan (268, .271)
    Matt Stairs (265, .262)
    Tim Wallach (260, .257)

  274. Bob Says:

    So who watched the salute to the Beatles instead of the Olympics last night. I did.

  275. Cameron Says:

    I spent last night watching professional video gaming.

  276. Chuck Says:

    I recorded it..will watch at some point during the week.

    Daughter wanted to watch the Olympics…ice skating. I like the downhill and biathalon, but that snowboarding/mogul skiing is tear inducingly boring.

  277. Bob Says:

    The biathlon is neat. And in other news… Good for him

  278. Cameron Says:

    Huh. Guess I miss things going to bed early. University of Missouri DE Michael Sam came out as gay. For a guy with first-round draft buzz, that’s a bold move. I respect him for that, though. And he’ll be the first openly gay active athlete in North American major sports, with all due respect to Jason Collins of course.

  279. Cameron Says:

    And how will it affect his draft stock? It won’t. The fact he’s 6′2″ and 255 pounds and can’t play linebacker at an NFL level is what’ll hurt his stock. The kid’s a tried and true 4-3 end and at that size, he’ll most likely get mauled by NFL tackles.

  280. Cameron Says:

    And for the record, I said MOST LIKELY will get mauled. That said, the reigning sack leader for the NFL is just as tall, ten pounds lighter, and in his 30s… So I dunno.

  281. Raul Says:

    255 pounds is fine if you’re a powerful DE (Strahan was around that weight as he slimmed down for the end of his career).

    255 might be a bit on the heavier side for a LB but it depends where you are on the field and how agile you are.

  282. Cameron Says:

    Sam is incredibly stiff off his hips. He can’t play on his feet. He’s got a good first step and can shed a block, which is why he was such a good sack artist in college. At the next level, when even the worst tackles you face are up there with the best you faced in college, you can’t beat all of them on the first step. I think the end who lined up on the other side of him, Kony Ealy (6′5″ 275 and only .08 seconds slower in the 40) has a better draft stock than Sam. But Sam has A HELL of a motor, so Sam has potential. He just needs to improve his footwork and not play so stiff.

  283. Raul Says:

    The NFL is absolutely awful with their obsession on meaningless numbers.

    Who cares what a guy’s 40-yard dash time is?
    It comes into play like, never.

    Being able to read offenses and defenses, having instincts for the ball on defense…instincts for hitting the right hole on offense…being aggressive…those things matter way more than some idiot’s dash time, or how many reps of bench press he does.

    The NFL’s focus on those stupid tests and combine results is why there’s always a bunch of busts and wasted dollars.

  284. Cameron Says:

    The measurables are important as well. You have someone who’s supposed to be a pass rusher, but ends up being a slow runner is going to have a quarterback scramble right past him or a back won’t be able to catch a runner in the flat. A lineman with short arms is going to get wrapped up in a block and the leverage the defender has on him will make it too hard for him to shed it before the ball’s already done past him. If you have a nose tackle who ends up having poor upper body strength, the center can just plant his feet and catch the tackle and make him stand still while the tailback blows past the hole the center just made for him.

    Instincts are good things, yes, and not everything comes down to workout numbers, but if a guy’s a shit athlete, it’s harder for him to be a good player. Especially in today’s NFL where everyone is prioritizing guys being bigger and faster than everyone. Why do you think Jadeveon Clowney is such a big prospect? Yes he has a great explosiveness to his rush, can shed blocks with the best of them, and has a great motor fuck what the naysayers are saying. At the end of the day, he’s 6′6″, 275 pounds and runs a 4.5. The dude’s as big as the tackles he’s running at and can hit full speed before they even plant their feet. You can’t teach that.

  285. Cameron Says:

    I just learned that CBGB’s building in New York is a designer clothing store now. You’ve gotta be fucking kidding me. The premier club for punk is now a place that sells thousand dollar suits? For fuck’s sake…

  286. Jim Says:

    The major reason that CBGB folded was the neighborhood had moved on from low dives and to the trade businesses to yupster retail and restaurants. Queens my friend Queens and believe it or not the Bronxs

  287. Cameron Says:

    I know they cleaned up the neighborhood, but… I dunno. Going from the hotbed of the counterculture to the high and mighty they rebelled against seems wrong.

  288. Bob Says:

    1. The Rangers signed Tommy Hanson.

    2. Terry Ryan has cancer.

    3. If the Pirates are unable to sign Burnett, do they make a play for Santana or Jimenez, given the depth of their farm?

  289. Bob Says:

    Honest question. How much money does the counterculture spend on clothing? Enough to keep the company in the black on a year in year out basis?

  290. Chuck Says:

    Santana and Jimenez are free agents..

  291. Cameron Says:

    Depends, are they the types who go to Hot Topic and buy a Bad Brains or a Circle Jerks shirt to look like they know that stuff, or are they the guys actually at the club and buying the shirts from the local opening acts and drinking with them after hours because they actually care about the music and the message instead of the scene? If they’re the first, fuck ‘em, they don’t get it. I was part of the second, scored a free EP after hanging out with Suburban Legends at the Beaumont after the Reel Big Fish show was over.

  292. Chuck Says:

    Reel Big Fish…Bob’s favorite group.

  293. Bob Says:

    Right. They part with a draft pick

  294. Bob Says:

    Favorite groups as opposed to a singer like Elvis?

    1. The Beatles

    2. Air Supply ( Leave me alone)

    3. Asia. Three great songs with” Don’t cry”, “Heat of the Moment”, and “Only Time Will Tell”, followed by a fourth decent one in the “Smile has left your eyes.”

    4. Chicago

    5. The Who

  295. Cameron Says:

    Bob, not gonna knock you for Asia. I had that first album on casette from a thrift shop.

  296. Chuck Says:

    I took my wife to see Air Supply, they actually put on a pretty good show.

  297. Chuck Says:

    Chicago is #1 for me, afraid to tell you how many times I’ve seen them..I go back to the early days with Terry Kath.

    Not my first concert, that was America and Burton Cummings.

  298. Cameron Says:

    First concert for me was Eric Clapton. …Damn that show was awesome.

  299. Chuck Says:

    Never saw him..a bucket list item that will never happen..McCartney, too.

  300. Cameron Says:

    Pretty good show. He actually closed the show with an electric cut of Layla, which you don’t always get. Sometimes Layla with him goes into the acoustic block. Encore was Crossroads and… Just damn.

  301. Mike Felber Says:

    The Bowery Poetry Club diagonally across from where CBGBs was, a similar Beat/Hippie-esque venue I saw endless 3 minute New year’s Day readings in the past-went to an OWS event, & it had an upscale renovation.

    I love Delta Blues, spent ~ a month in the Delta & Memphis & 15 daaaze in N’awlins for Jazz & Heritage festival. And blues based rock, Indian, mid-eastern a capella funk…

    Chuck you will like this. Won a McCartney ticket in HS but could not get into NYC for the show. This has tons of endearing crowd/girl/family reactions, ~7 years ago, some great numbers & a tight band.

  302. Mike Felber Says:

    Some of these tribute acts are excellent. The host closing it out was born to cover Hey Jude. You can also find McCartney in performance at The White House, here is The Kennedy Center honoring him…

  303. Cameron Says:

    Since Giancarlo Stanton has joined the Marlins in 2010, they’ve gone through five managers, five hitting coaches, and ludicrous levels of player overhauling. Stanton signed an arbitration deal for 6.5MM this year, but he said he doesn’t want to talk long-term until the team proves itself stable.

    Smart fucking move.

  304. Raul Says:

    All I can say is…

    It was the heeeeaaaatttt of the mo-ment

  305. Lefty33 Says:

    McCartney is still a very good show.
    At 71 he’ll play for three full hours and give you 35 or so songs.
    There are certain songs that he plays every show like Hey Jude, Let Me Roll It, Live and Let Die, and Let It Be but he’ll also do things like three years ago when he started playing Helter Skelter or Junior’s Farm for the first time since he did it with Wings 30 years prior.

    The thing that he has that most of peers no longer have is just the simple enjoyment of what he is doing. I mean being lucky with the physical aspect is part of it of course but he enjoys what he is doing and it shows which is why he still does it. The guy is worth a Billion dollars, he doesn’t need to work.

    I’ve seen Plant open for the Who at MSG and get booed off stage because he looked very bored and walked off during his encore of Going to California because he kept getting booed/heckled to play Stairway.

    As for The Who, Daltrey has been more or less vocally shot since the 19th Farewell Tour in ’89 and at this point Townshend more or less carries the show when they play which in ’15 will supposedly be their last big go around.

    Clapton is another guy who at times clearly is going thru the motions. He’ll put you thru 90 minutes of blues covers and then throw in Layla, Sunshine of Your Love or Cocaine at the end while you just paid $175.

    I’ve been lucky enough to see pretty much everybody on my musical bucket list and the ones that I haven’t seen I’m alright with passing on as at this point in their careers (for the ones still alive) they are only tarnishing their legacies by continuing to play.

    Speaking of Clapton, we’ve all heard the original Layla on classic rock radio a million times and we’ve all heard the unplugged version while in the grocery store or waiting for a root canal but here’s one he did for VH-1 with Doctor John’s band in ’96 that’s a bit different.

  306. Bob Says:

    Sure was Raul.×2Q3pUAw

  307. Raul Says:

    The Marlins have been around since 1993.
    That’s 21 seasons.

    They’ve had 15 managers…if you count Jack McKeon’s 2 stints separately (and counting Cookie Rojas and Brandon Hyde each coaching 1 game apiece).

    15 different guys in 21 years.
    Are we talking about a baseball team or Kim Kardashian?

    In any case, Stanton should run. He should take a lesson from Dennis Green. The Marlins? They are who we thought they were.

  308. Chuck Says:

    I’m not much of a music person…while all the kids I grew up were listening to the Beatles or the Who, I was listening to my mom playing crap like Mitch Miller.

    Needless to say, by the time I got to high school I had a lot of catching up to do…my first concert was America’s “Horse with No Name” Tour in ‘72.

    I’ve seen quite a bit..missing Queen and McCartney are regrets, but there’s no alive now I’d want to see.

    The fact my last two concerts were Taylor Swift and Yo Gabba Gabba should be enough verification on that.

  309. Bob Says:

  310. Bob Says:

    Bronson Arroyo said no the Orioles partly because of the fact the O’s reneged deals on Grant Balfour Tyler Colvin. Are the Orioles doing due diligence or are they being anal?

  311. Cameron Says:

    Well, considering that Balfour’s physical actually DID check out when he went to Tampa, I’m not sure what the deal in Baltimore is.

  312. Cameron Says:

    Ooof, my condolences on the concert front Chuck. My last show was the second time I saw Reel Big Fish at the Beaumont Club in KC, so before I moved. That was… Shit, almost three years ago now.

  313. Chuck Says:

    RIP Shirley Temple

  314. Bob Says:

    RIP And Roy Oswalt retired

  315. Bob Says:

  316. Bob Says:

  317. Mike Felber Says:

    You really know your chops Lefty! You must have collected many underground tapes & albums before youtube & other modern conveniences resurrected obscure albums & performances. Just tracing an an artist or song versions. it is amazing what youtube reveals.

    Plant was OK when I saw him, Stones, Springsteen, Joel, Aerosmith & the Dead once each. Many more blues folks. Clapton has been creatively coasting for decades, though when he extends himself can pull back the years & do great things. His vocal tone is special, his “Me & Mr. Johnson” cover of the legendary bluesman’s songs was the best he had done for years.

    McCartney must occ. have played Helter Skelter, ’cause he did in the 1st of my links above from 8 years ago. Do you like them? McCartney IS very present & joyous, does good works like concert for 911… The Who has been forever retiring & resurrecting.

    Here is one of the best ever all star/tribute concerts, likely you know it well. Paul, Ringo, Eric, Monty Python, Ravi & his exquisite daughter. Tom Petty, Jeff Lynn, & son of George. Just skip the ad & be transported.

    Chuck, this is the FDA approved antidote to insipid kiddy music.

  318. Cameron Says:

    When Clapton did Road to Escondido to JJ Cale was pretty awesome too.

  319. Cameron Says:

    Also Mike, check out Clapton and Steve Winwood live at Madison Square Garden from 2009. God. Damn.

  320. Lefty33 Says:

    Winwood’s solo on Mr. Fantasy was far superior to Clapton’s and the fact that Winwood was able to get Clapton to dust off that ’80s turd Forever Man and actually make it decent was maybe the most amazing part of those shows.

  321. Lefty33 Says:

    Another version of Layla:

  322. Chuck Says:

    Yeah, Winwood and Clapton together is pretty special…they go all the way back to Blind Faith in the late ’60’s..which preceeds both Traffic and Cream.

    VH-1 Classic every once in awhile will run an hour special made up of highlights from the MSG gig (which was in 2008..album released in ‘09)…really good stuff.

    You can hear the differences Father Time has made in Clapton’s voice..Winwood sounds the same as he did 40 years ago.

  323. Cameron Says:

    I like Forever MAn lefty, but that’s probably because I heard it live first and it sounds awesome live.

  324. Cameron Says:

    Derek Jeter has made it official. He will retire after this season is over.

  325. Lefty33 Says:

    I hear you that Forever Man live is pretty good especially the Clapton/Winwood version where they speed it up. The studio version is more of what I find to be the turd.

    A really interesting read is Clapton’s autobiography.

    He is very honest in that he realizes that he is physically limited in what he can and cannot play versus 20-30 years ago which why some songs have changed tempos/arrangements/keys and others he simply won’t touch.

    It’s also why for the last twenty years he always tours with some type of guitar prodigy in his band like Derek Trucks, Andy Fariweather Low or Doyle Bramhall II.

    He also more or less comes himself a lazy piece of shit who if not challenged by his peers or the guys in his band would just play the same set list from now until the end of time which is why he does things like play Unplugged or with Dr. John or the Lincoln Center Jazz Band or make a record with JJ Cale or with BB King, etc.

  326. Cameron Says:

    DB2 was the guitarist at the show I went to and Robert Cray was the opener. All three traded off solos during Layla and Crossroads. It was epic.

  327. Mike Felber Says:

    Thanks, I will see what I like best..Seen some good shows at MSG, saw Cray at a SUNY at Buffalo spring fest event, Lou Reed performed there too, Peter Gabriel in the city.

    Folks always suspected some of Clapton’s “slowhand” conceit was a limitation. Likely without all the drugs his decline would have been minimized.

    Blind Faith & those other incarnations…Legendary. Someone like Steve Winwood-& Stills-cannot help but be underrated by the general public.

  328. Cameron Says:

    Slowhand is a bit literal now. It started as a hoke back in the John Mayall and the Bluesbreakers days though since his hands moved so fast on the guitar during his solos. We’re talking early-mid 60s “Clapton is God” spray-painted on the London Underground walls days.

  329. Cameron Says:

    Oh… That’s why he was article of the day on Wikipedia.

    Happy 80th Birthday, Bill Russell.

  330. Chuck Says:

  331. Cameron Says:

    I’m with the poster there. I just became a Clippers fan.

  332. Mike Felber Says:

    I did not know it was a joke, makes sense, but he used it as a conceit as if reflecting his lovemaking style. His overall maturity has always been in question, years of drugs meant some arrested development, used woman as an escape too. Yet he feels & can embody the blues very well when he makes the effort.

    Story of Clapton as ashen faced, hands shaking & trying to smoke outside a club where Hendrix just blew him away onstage. Jimi was on another level.

    I cannot endorse violence, especially with someone so much bigger & stronger, but it is hard not to feel satisfaction at the result when Bieber gets abusive as he extends his bratty entitlement further.

  333. Mike Felber Says:

    In The Presence of the Lord & Dear Mr. Fantasy were standouts. The first achingly sincere & yearning, Winwood’s voice & the band on the latter like finest blues-rock syrup.

    Some great jam’s. Not my favorite version of Can’t Find My Way Home, still good. Would like to have the pro-forma “Cocaine” replaced, & instead heard Low Spark of High Heeled Boys, another masterpiece of complex, melancholy majesty.

    Thanks for the link.

  334. Chuck Says:

    RIP Jim Fregosi

  335. Cameron Says:


  336. Bob Says:


  337. Bob Says:

    Consider me a fan of Blake Griffin.

  338. Bob Says:

  339. Mike Felber Says:

    Ah is it not nice that in the world of 24-7 & free access to hard core Internet & assorted prom, we can still get excited about girly charms/cheesecake in a communal & even a bit innocent way.

    And there will still be clueless folks writing in as since Time Immemorial “this is terrible, filth, irrelevant to sports…cancel my subscription”!

  340. Cameron Says:

    So, Sidney Crosby’s kinda good at this hockey thing.

  341. Chuck Says:

    Outdoor Network is showing a “Major League Fishing” marathon…..I know how Bob is spending his day.

  342. Bob Says:

    Will watch it now. Thanks for the tip. Also, the Braves have signed Craig Kimbrel to an extension along with Julio Tehran 2 days ago. Off to see walleye get caught.

  343. Bob Says:

    Ryan Dempster will not pitch this year.

  344. Jim Says:

    re: Dempster. Told the team and press that it is for family and health reasons, no details beyond that. Reportedly the Sox will place him on the restricted list, that should reduce the clubs payroll for luxury tax purposes. Dempster was to receive $13.25M

  345. Raul Says:

    Dempster will be 37 on May 3rd.

    Being out this year essentially ends his career.

  346. Raul Says:

    4 years, 42 million for Kimbrel?

    So clearly MLB has learned nothing about the value of closers.

    They could take that money (along with the 60 million remaining on BJ Upton’s horrible contract) and have gotten themselves a star position player.

  347. Raul Says:

    2013 marked the 45th season for each of the following franchises:

    Kansas City Royals (W/L – 3,439 – 3,712)
    Washington Nationals (W/L – 3,431 – 3,723)
    San Diego Padres (W/L – 3,321 – 3,843)
    Milwaukee Brewers (W/L – 3,419 – 3,738)

    Not very good for the 1969 debutantes.

    George Brett has the most games played as a Royal with 2,707. Paul Splittorf has the most wins as a Royal with 166.

    Tim Wallach has the most games played as a National/Expo with 1,767. Steve Rogers has the most wins as an Expo/National with 158.

    Tony Gwinn has the most games played as a Padres with 2,440. Eric Show (RIP) has the most wins as a Padre with 100.

    And Robin Yount has the most games played as a Brewer with 2,856. Jim Slaton hast he most wins as a Brewer with 117.


    Opening Day in 1969 was April 7th.

    A gallon of gas at that time cost $0.34 per gallon.
    Median new home price: $25,900.
    Price of a new car: $3,310.

    There were 3 games that day.

    Ted Williams lost his managerial debut, managing the Washington Senators to an 8-4 loss against the Yankees. Mel Stottlemyer beat Camilo Pascual.

    The Braves beat the Giants by scoring 2 in the bottom of the 9th to win 5-4. Juan Marichal would get a No Decision but finish the year 21-11 with a league-leading 2.10 ERA.

    And Don Drysdale held off the Reds as the Dodgers took a 3-2 win off a Ron Fairly 2-run triple.

  348. Jim Says:

    Opening Day in 1969 was April 7th. today inflation only

    A gallon of gas $0.34 3.31 2.16
    Median new home price: $25,900. 270,000 164,500
    Price of a new car: $3,310. 31,250 21,025

  349. Bob Says:

  350. Bob Says:

    I disagree. He will not be booed for replacing Jeter.

  351. Cameron Says:

    Only way he’s booed for replacing Jeter is if they bench Jeter for Ryan when Jete’s healthy.

  352. Bob Says:

    I believe I heard or read somewhere that Giradi wants to DH Jeter once a week.

  353. Cameron Says:

    He’ll be a better defender there than at short.

  354. Chuck Says:

    Very funny, Cam,,,,good line

  355. Raul Says:

    Happy 55th birthday, Tim Burke. As a reliever with the Expos, from 1985 to 1990 Burke went 40-22 with a 2.48 ERA and 96 saves. He pitched 554.1 innings, allowing 476 hits. That averages out to 92 innings – the way relievers should be used.

    Happy 57th birthday, Dave Stewart. From 1981-1986, Stewart was 39-40 with a 3.97 ERA. From 1987-1990 he was 84-45 with a 3.20 ERA and THREE Top 4 Cy Young finishes — and won 20 games 4 straight years.

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