"Hell may have no fury like a woman scorned but heaven hath no sweetness like a sports fan vindicated." - Samcat

Saturday, June 30, 2007

An Update

A few things:

Theo Epstein enjoys Fender baseball caps, Pearl Jam t-shirts, brew pubs in Portland Maine, scouting Clay Bucholz and holding doors open for girls.

What a nice boy. His mama raised him right.

No word of a lie. We didn't bother him because homeboy gets that shit all the time. Also, it was the one freaking time I was wearing a Nick Markakis Orioles t-shirt and not my usual Sox garb. But it was Theo. And it was awesome.

Good thing I didn't have time to plan my "Explain to me in plain English why Julio Lugo is on the team" speech. He probably gets that shit all the time too. And it's a REALLY good thing we didn't run into him post Sox game as, not five seconds before it happened, I FREAKING CALLED THAT LUGO WAS GOING TO GET THROWN OUT TRYING TO STEAL THIRD AND THEN WHAT HAPPENED?!? I hate being right sometimes.

/gives disappointed look to Red Sox team.

Gentlemen, you've just finished the month of June below .500. It's by some grace of the baseball gods that you still maintain a healthy lead in the division. But if we know anything around these parts, it's that the baseball gods do not remain benevolent for long. Sack up, put on your big boy pants and get your shit together. Like now.

Or I'll have a word with Theo. Don't think I don't know where to find him.

Friday, June 29, 2007

Down on the Farm

Quite a weekend planned, kids. Ignoring the big boy Sox who are playing like preschoolers lately, The Rick, Greta, Amy and I are taking off for parts, um, South? I'm bad at geography. To go watch the wee Sox play. Well, tonight it's the Pawsox in Pawtucket where David Pauley will be pitching. Remember David Pauley? Got a spot start in Yankee Stadium? Managed not to cry? Yeah, that guy. Tomorrow, Jon Lester starts but tomorrow we'll be in Portland, watching the even wee-er ones play as the Seadogs take on the New Hampshire Fisher Cats. But the most exciting part? This: "The first 1,000 fans to enter the ballpark will receive a Sea Dogs mini bat courtesy of Wendy's."

That's going to end so very, very badly.

Then on Sunday evening, we finish up this minor league scouting report in Lowell with a game between the Spinners and the Tri-City Valley Cats. And that game is sold out. We are so getting arrested.

With all this traveling and scouting and what have you, you'd actually think I was getting paid for this shit. Not the case, I'm just insane.

I'm thinking the best part of the weekend will be Saturday because my mother, in a gross lapse in judgment, agreed to go with us to the game. Not that my mother doesn't like baseball. She does. But I don't remember the last time she actually attended a live baseball contest in the presence of not only myself and The Rick but also my friends. I'm wondering exactly how many innings it'll take before she starts pretending that the girls teaching small children to swear and drawing obscene pictures on the scorecards are not there with her. I'm going with three. Maybe less if there's a blowout and we get bored.

So, I know it's last minute but if y'all have tickets to the game or are gonna be around any of those places and you see me, probably acting like a jackass, stop by and say hi.

I'll report back, provided everyone signs a legal disclaimer indemnifying me against any future charges.

Additionally, I've added a new blog to the sidebar. Respect the Tek! These girls are good times, people, apparently fans of mine (I have fans?) and insanely funny. If you only knew the email exchanges that had already taken place, you'd be so very, very frightened.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Two Sides to Every Coin

Best thing I saw last night: Scott Proctor walk in the winning run for the Orioles in the bottom of the ninth inning at Camden Yards. And this AFTER he'd hit Hernandez on the arm but the umpire ruled it a foul ball or something because he was too busy being mesmerized by Derek Jeter's calm eyes or some shit. But no, seriously, Scott Proctor is like my favorite. I want that guy to pitch all the time.

Worst thing I saw last night: Typo Gabbard doing his own impersonation of Scott Proctor and walking a cast of thousands, mixing in a hit by a pitch or two and just generally making a mess of things. 'Course, the Sox, led by the Mighty Eric Hinske and Spyboy Lowell made a game out of it, and for that, I give them credit. But let's not be digging these holes for ourselves in the first place, okay, gentlemen?

Afternoon game today. Matsuzaka brings his music to the mound and tries to salvage a game and avoid a sweep at the hands of the Seattle Sea-Faring Gentlemen. Ahoy!

(Still not sleeping...)

Tuesday, June 26, 2007


I don't want to talk about the game. Not because the occasional Tavarez meltdown is so difficult to handle - I mean, dude's a fifth starter, we knew what we were getting - but because the morphing of Mike Timlin into batting practice machine is just heartbreaking. And by "heartbreaking" I mean, actually kind of terrifying because if anyone is gonna snap after giving up a home run and tackle the hitter 2/3 of the way through his home run trot and hogtie him on the bases and threaten to remove his toenails with pliers, I'm pretty sure it's Mike Timlin. And I'm not sure that Theo practiced that kind of law at Yale.

In related news; I'm still on drugs.

Drugs which are leading me to have fevered dreams, I'm afraid. Dreams in which Josh Beckett and Jonathan Papelbon have epic video game tournaments, constantly besting each other at old school Duck Hunt (Papelbon's specialty) and Mario Kart (Beckett holds the high score.) I think these two have missed a team bus more than once because they've been so caught up in their video game duels. They probably refer to each other on the field as like "Luigi" and "Koopa" or something. Except for when Beckett needs Papelbon to save a game for him. Then Paps calls Beckett, "Princess Peach" because of that whiny princess that always needed to be rescued.

Yes, I did a Wikipedia search for "Super Mario Bros." Why do you ask?

So I think the next time a game looks to be getting out of hand, instead of forcing us all to watch the Timlin meltdown turned episode of Dog the Bounty Hunter (I have watched a lot of bad TV these past few days, people), we are instead treated to the latest installment of Video Game Wars, starring Jonathan Papelbon and Josh Beckett. Wouldn't we all prefer to see that? I thought so.

So...more drugs?

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Mind Eraser

Now which one would Keanu take?

A series of things I would like to forget:

-The Red Sox have evidently reverted to their whole not scoring runs for Tim Wakefield thing.

-I have pneumonia. Because I like to come down with shit like that in freakin' June and render myself under house arrest. I'm unpredictable like that.

-My new apartment, in which I am imprisoned, apparently has mice. The good news is that Rocky the cat is on it. The bad news is that he finds it amusing and thinks he's found new playthings rather than evil creatures to attack and destroy.

- Julio Lugo hasn't had a hit since June 14th which was, as Annette pointed out, approximately three years ago. Unacceptable performance for someone who considers himself a Major League baseball player. I mean, shit, I had a hit yesterday and I have fucking pneumonia.

-Jordan's is holding my furniture hostage. I will continue to have nothing to sit on for at least another month. Stellar.

-Curt Schilling is on the DL with old man shoulder-itis. Or something.

On the positive side:

-The Yankees appear to have lost again. To the Giants. Who had lost eight games in a row.

- Annette and I are hard at work on a plan for the Sox to sign D'Angelo Ortiz to replace Julio Lugo in the lineup.


Thursday, June 21, 2007

Buy! This! Now!

Your favorite batshit pitcher and mine was quoted in the Globe today saying the following:

"I wasn't even in the mood to be here today," said Tavarez after allowing just three hits in an 11-0 rout of the Atlanta Braves. "There's nothing wrong, it's just how it is. I've been in the major leagues for 12 years, and if a major league ballplayer tells you they want to be in the ballpark every day they're lying to you because it's not true. Sometimes you come to the park because you have to."

So I said to Annette, "We need a t-shirt with Tavarez's name and number on the back. And the front says, 'I'd rather be bowling.'"

Which prompted me to email Sam, resident designer and artist extraordinnaire and request the following shirt:

Which you should go buy. Like, RIGHT NOW! Go here and look at all the other fantastical things Sam has designed. First person I see wearing one of these gets...probably a big hug, actually. Which is really quite something because I'm not much of a hugger.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

No Way That Just Happened

Moments ago, right before the start of the game, did NESN just have a shot of the Sox dugout where Youks took hold of Manny's braids and mimed riding him like a pony? I mean, did that happen or have the Sox finally broken my brain? I haven't been feeling too well these last couple of days. Kind of feverish and weak. It's entirely possible I made that up.

Oh, wait, JD Drew just hit a leadoff home run. I get it. I'm in Make Believe World. It sure is nice here. Pretty colors...

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

What We Talk About When We Talk About Baseball*

The following are all conversations I've participated in recently that relate in some way to the game of baseball. Your honor, I'd like to enter this as Exhibit A in the "Sane People vs. Basegirl" trial.

An email exchange with Red from Surviving Grady re: Julio Lugo wherein I proposed a trade of Lugo for a one-armed orangutan or a "slightly-used" bucket of baseballs.

Me: Furthermore, can you even imagine the Sox with a one-armed orangutan? Timlin would totally adopt it and it'd turn into "Any Which Way But Loose" Red Sox-style. That'd be amazing.

In related news, I really should stop smoking so much crack."

Red: Any e-mail the includes the words "Timlin", "orangutan" and "crack" is immediately the greatest e-mail in the history of e-mail.


A discussion with Greta re: the unfunniness of ESPN's Page 2.

Greta: Seriously, I am sick of them all. Well, I don't actually read them anymore because they suck.

Me: I think I didn't realize how much they suck until I started reading FJM. But seriously, most sports journalists suck. And when they're trying to be funny, they're funny in the Catskills comedian way. Which is to say, not funny at all.

Someone should pay us to write a book about stupid shit we make up about baseball. Seriously, that's our pitch.

"We're writing a book, comprised largely of our emails to each other when we should be working, about stupid shit that we make up about baseball, including but not limited to nicknames for players, imagined scenarios involving 1950s sock hops, Mike Timlin's firearm collection, and the black hole of suck that is Julio Lugo/Danys Baez/the Devil Rays. Bidding starts at $1 million."

Greta: If Stephen King and Stewart O'Nan can do it, so can we.


A chat with Annette re: JD Drew batting leadoff


Me: So probably we should pray for a rainout.

Annette: Yes. Although what we should've done is joined Tito for the crack party he had in his office earlier today because apparently it was a heck of a good time.

Me: That man knows how to party, I'll give him that.


An email exchange initiated by Sebastian, Resident Yankee Fan (RYF):

Me: What are you telling us here, Seb? That we should quake in fear of the two-armed wonder?

RYF: I hadn't thought it through that far, but sure, that works. START QUAKING.

Me: K, in five years when he's major league-ready, I'll start getting scared.

RYF: //feverishly stars and archives email string

Me: Also, other things I would like to point out.

"45th round" - so like 8 billionth overall. My cat was actually drafted by the Rockies in the 42nd round.

"You try to find people who are unique and special, like a left-handed-hitting catcher or a switch-hitting third baseman." These people actually exist, you know. They're called Jason Varitek (who's technically a switch hitter but still) and Bill Mueller.

"Their scout responsible for evaluating Venditte, Steve Lemke, said that he would probably not rate him as a prospect from either side, but the two arms together made him too intriguing to pass up." - Because the Yankees need circus freaks to sell tickets now?

Greta: To be fair, Kristen - your cat is at least a 4 tool player. I'm actually surprised that he went as low in the draft as he did.

An email exchange with Amy, some weeks ago:

Me: I hate Julio Lugo. Again. Some more. I don't deal with numbers but I have broken it down. Alex Gonzalez is better and like twelve drillion dollars (that number I made up) cheaper. And I don't understand why he's not on our team still.

Extending Coco while his finger broken and before we realized he couldn't actually hit was also not a prudent choice. No seriously. 3 huge expensive black holes in the lineup is fantastic. And if Cora is getting playing time, it should NOT be at Pedroia's expense. Since Cora has realized that he is not, in fact, David Ortiz, and is, in fact, Alex Cora.

Me: Here is who gets to play where.
C: Tek (except for Wake's starts)
1B: Youks
2B: Pedroia
3B: Lowell
SS: Cora
RF: Hinske
CF: Coco
LF: Manny


Amy: I respectfully disagree. That lineup is curiously devoid of Wily Mo.

Me: That is by design. Because his defense makes me try to eat my face.

Amy: It's very interpretive, okay? And it comes from a place of love. And he will not get any better if he doesn't practice. He's just little.

Me: I understand, I'm just very impatient with them in general this year. But I would, however, like Eric Hinske to give more shirtless interviews. And he can't do that if he never plays and doesn't ever have anything to talk about.

Amy: Maybe he and Wily Mo can platoon and then solve crime without their shirts on.

Me: I think that's a genius idea. The first crime they can solve is "how to get rid of JD Drew."

Amy: I think all Wily Mo has to do is trip and fall on him. Has anyone but me noticed that JD Drew has missed the same couple games at the start of the month for two months in a row? If he does it in July, I think this all the proof we need that he is menstruating.

*If anyone (or anyone who isn't my tenth grade English teacher) manages to get the reference in that post title, well, you'll have my undying admiration.

Mood Swings

Okay, I don't understand Curt Schilling. He's got more mood swings than a 13-year-old girl. Just what, exactly, is going on there?

Ignoring for a second that I truly believed that last night would be my last night on earth - since two home runs by Coco and one by the very expensive paperweight we've got to play right field is clearly a sign of the apocalypse - can someone please tell me what Curt's damage is? Because the man can pitch a one-hitter and look for all the world like he's been eating motor oil and drywall nails for breakfast (or, you know, just dining with Team Timlin), and then he goes out and looks fragile and weak and unable to get out of the fifth inning against the Braves. Has someone been letting him talk to Matt Clement? Didn't we discuss this? Clement is to be sequestered until such time as he can prove that he's wearing his big boy pants and/or his contract runs out and the suck won't rub off on anyone. I thought we'd sent him "hunting" with Timlin.

Regardless, that is not the way to justify your next contract there, Schill-Dog. Although I do give him bonus points for getting a hit and running the bases because that is just the highest of high comedy. Curt Schilling with the batting helmet tamped down over his hair, throwing eye-rolls left and right because pitchers hitting is just ridiculous. You can practically see him thinking, "This is such bullshit. I need to be studying! Not wasting time up here with this stupid bat! Oh great, now I've got a hit. Now I'm got to stand on base and look like a goofy asshole until someone grounds into a double play. Can someone bring me my Trapper Keeper? Stupid National League."

As for Timlin, maybe instead of actual baseball playing, he can just be the official team ass-kicker. You know, the dude who rides in from the bullpen when there's a donnybrook or somesuch and lays the smack down. The guy who puts Tanyon Sturtze in a headlock (now that Kapler isn't around to do it). The guy who knocks out opposing pitchers with strategically aimed sunflower seeds. I'm just saying, I love me some Timlin and all, but we can get Joel Piniero to give up home runs (or JC Romero? I still don't believe they're different people). We need Timlin for the ass-kicking. We need him to get up in the umpire's faces on behalf of his teammates so Papi doesn't get thrown out of games. We need him to loom over Chipper Jones all, "You eyeballin' me, boy?" and make him even more upset about playing the Red Sox. If there's anyone who can transition seamlessly from pitcher to grizzled baseball man, it's Mike Timlin.

Now tonight, Joshua will get back on his horse and pitch like a big boy. Because I said so.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Thank you, Dave.

Feelin' the love.

Okay that up there? That's what it was about. Which is why I'd like to take issue with Boston.com's coverage of last night's game. You go on the site and it's all "BONDSBONDSBONDS." Give it a rest. I'm totally fine with the reference to Pedroia as a "little giant" because hee! But come on, how about a little coverage of the person most of us came to see?

I suspect that Dave Roberts probably drives his current San Francisco teammates crazy with stories of his days in Boston. I expect they're all, "Dude, we know, you stole a base. Got it." But the thing is, I love that. And I love that someone tells him "thank you" every single day.

I took a picture last night of a small child holding a base on which was written, "We'll never forget." I'd put it on here but technology hates me so you'll just have to take my word for it. But the standing ovation that Dave Roberts got was fantastic. That was the reason I wanted to be there. This was the only game I REALLY wanted to see this season because I wanted to say thanks as well.

Some people have said that they think it's ridiculous for Red Sox fans to hold one single play in such high esteem and to revere one player, who was on the team for less than three months, so much. But Dave Roberts understands. Every single interview I've ever seen or read from him, he absolutely gets how important the stolen base was and is to Red Sox Nation. But he's so humble, he almost seems to think that his involvement was secondary. But Dave Roberts knows what baseball means to the people in this city. He knows what it's like to be a Red Sock, however brief. Per the Globe, "Barry asked me, 'Is it always like this?' " Roberts said. "I said, 'Well, when we play the Yankees, it's like that.'" Note the use of the present tense.

Don't get me wrong, I would have loved to have been at Pedro's return. But that wasn't so much thanking him for one season or one great game or one specific thing he did. That was thanking him for being the best pitcher in baseball for so many years and for doing it in Boston. And Trotter's return would have been amazing too but that was more about welcoming back one of our prodigal sons. The return of Dave Roberts was about saying thank you to one man for one moment. For something he did for us. And for telling him, "We're glad it was you."

So thanks, Dave, for everything.

As for the actual game, can someone explain to me how Dustin Pedroia's at-bat music is NOT "Against All Odds?" Because if the little woodland creature can go 5-for-5 with a home run and 5 RBIs, that's about as inspirational a story as there is. I feel bad that Pedroia's crazy night was overshadowed by the endless coverage of Senor Fathead but something tells me he's not done yet.

And for the final word on Bonds, I think I'll let Julian Tavarez, everyone's favorite nutcase say it: "We're going to talk about baseball, right, not Barry Bonds," said Tavarez. "I'm sick and tired of hearing about Barry Bonds."
Me too, Julian, me too.

Friday, June 15, 2007

2632 in Da House!

Believing happy things were in store for both our teams.

Listne up, y'all. Marianne, (also known as Greta, or 2632 on the internets), is blogging again.

Link's on the sidebar, same as always.

Yours truly shows up every now and then to help create a list of Things You Can Tell About Paul Bako Just By Looking At Him and to slobber all over Nick Markakis. (I'm totally cheating on the Sox with Nick. But homeboy's a hottie and the Sox are not helping me out in that regard as relates to their outfield).

Anyway, it's good for the Sox-centric parts of our brains to get out every now and then and read about what's going down with some of the other teams. Plus, Greta lives in Boston. She's got your snark right here.

So go. Read. Live a better life. You'll thank me later.

Twilight Zone

So let me get this straight:

Tim Wakefield gets a win while Schilling and Beckett pitch like they partied too hard at the BU graduation ceremony with a bunch of coeds (entirely possible in Beckett's case).

The Yankees have won nine straight.

Jason Giambi might get suspended for violating Major League Baseball's steroids policy.

JD Drew is our leadoff hitter.

The Sox just lost a series to a team whose primary uniform color is purple and who use humidors to make the baseballs fly farther.


HILARIOUS! No, really, very, very funny. I see what's happening. We're in Crazy Bizarro Backwards World! None of these things would happen on planet Earth where we all (well, except for Julian Tavarez) reside. Really, very funny, convincing us all that this was the way of things. Especially that JD Drew as leadoff hitter thing. Very nice work, there, you almost slipped it past us. Ashton Kutcher is behind this, isn't he? We're all being punked.

However, fun though that may have been, I'm going to be at the game tonight, screaming my head off for Dave Roberts to stick his head out of the dugout and acknowledge the adoring masses and it would be awfully nice to have a win to go along with the warm fuzzies. So, you know, hows about it? Everyone on board? Good. See you at Fenway.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Tim Wakefield Don't Need No Stinkin' Run Support

Would you look at that man? That man is a pimp.

I think Timmy has just finally had enough from these jokers. "Fine, you're only gonna score two runs? I'll give up one then. Fine, the bullpen's been shaky? I'll throw eight innings. No, no, it's cool. I totally don't mind that you score fifteen runs every time for Tavarez and can barely scrape together a walk, a single and a sac fly for me to score a measly run. That's fine. Doesn't matter. I'm sure eventually this joke will get old and you'll start scoring runs. I mean, it has to, right? I signed a LIFETIME CONTRACT!"

Can't say Wake didn't channel his rage.

And speaking of lifetime contracts, I got home last night a few scant minutes before game time and between flipping on the TV to catch the broadcast and trying to avoid tripping over the cat who is HELL BENT on causing me a knee injury, I could have sworn I heard Don Orsillo say the Sox had traded Doug Mirabelli for a relief pitcher. Seriously, I was POSITIVE that's what he said. So, naturally, I screamed, "What? Jesus fuck, we're gonna make 35-year-old 'Tek catch the knuckleball again? DOES NO ONE REMEMBER HOW THAT WORKED OUT LAST TIME?!?" So I fired up the laptop and got the phone ready to call my brother and offer my condolences as he'd no doubt be completely heartbroken and he'd have to do that thing he did the first time we traded Dougie and retire his jersey in a tearful ceremony. But, because I'm insane and imagining things, the internet offered no confirmation of this crazy rumor. Because it didn't happen. Because I made it up. Because I'm insane.

But that begs the question, if Timmy has what amounts to a lifetime contract, does Dougie have the same thing? Because I really don't want to go through a series of never-ending passed ball-a-thons again and I don't relish turning any number of rookies and newbies into sniveling, crying masses (a la Josh Bard) by throwing them behind the plate for a Timmy start. Plus, like 15% of the comedy from this team comes from imagined (or not so imagined) Doug Mirabelli scenarios and you know how we like our cult heroes here. Oh hey, Julian, what's up?

I would, however, kind of like to know what's up with the offense. Meaning, you know, where the hell is it? It's all well and good if the pitcher is only giving up one run but with the lineup we boast, um, we should be scoring more than two runs. I'm just sayin'. But a win is a win is a win so carry on, gentleman.

Oh, and thankfully, Placido Polanco has taken over in All-Star votes for AL second baseman. You SHOULD all be voting for Brian Roberts of the Orioles but I'm not one to tell people what they should do (yes I am). Not that I spend a lot of time power-voting or anything (yes I do), and not that it matters in my heart whether or not 'Tek has more votes than The Chinless Wonder (it does). But, you know, if you want to, you could vote for people for the All-Star Game. Because, I hear, this time, it counts. (No it doesn't).

Tonight, Schill, fresh off his one-hitter, takes on the softball team from Colorado. I'm just assuming they're a softball team based on their penchant for wearing purple and stupid looking vests. Soon, they'll be wearing ribbons in their hair.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Spyboys to the Rescue

Jason Varitek and Mike Lowell spent last evening orchestrating their alternate-ego show entitled "'Tek and Lowell Save the World." Or "Tek and Lowell Save Baseball." Or maybe, "Tek and Lowell Will Win This Baseball Game Because They Actually Find Julian Tavarez Rather Quite Amusing But They're Also A Little Scared of Him And Frankly, Aren't Really Sure What He Might Get Up To If He Were To Lose A Well-Pitched Game And They Suspect It Might Not Be Family-Friendly And They Just Really Don't Want Any Blood Spilled On Their Snazzy Suits." You know, something like that.

So to avoid bloodshed and further excoriation of Julio Lugo in this space, they provided all the offense and won the damn game. Because that is what good spies do. Oh, by the way, I'm totally referring to them as "spyboys" from here on out because the imagined scenarios that those two might get up to if left to their own devices are just too delicious.

But back to Tavarez. Aside from the man's more than respectable pitching this season, who would have thought, back in March when Spring Training started, that Julian Carmen Tavarez would be the cult hero of this Red Sox team? Annette and I discussed this a few weeks ago when Tavarez made the following comments to the Globe:

Everybody in baseball is holding a job for somebody else," he said. "It doesn't matter if I come out next time and pitch a perfect game. When Jon Lester comes back, the job belongs to him. He's going to be one of the greatest pitchers in baseball and I want him to have a 17-year career. "This is not about being the No. 5 starter. The thing I want for Jon is for him to be healthy. I can be seven man, eight man. It doesn't matter. I'm happy as long as I have a uniform."

Annette: OH. MY. GOD. My cold, bitter heart just swelled four sizes.

Me: If you'd told me four months ago that Julian Tavarez would be one of my favorite people, I'd have told you to lay off the drugs.

Annette: We need a Julian Tavarez bobblehead. And we need to find a pimp suit for it.

Me: I shall spend the rest of the day searching for one.

Annette: I'm finding it a purple fedora. I don't care if I have to learn how to melt plastic and mold it, the bobblehead is getting a purple fedora.

Me: With a lime green feather?

Annette: Of course. Purple fedoras ain't shit without lime green feathers.

Seriously, if anyone knows where to find a Tavarez Red Sox bobblehead, the email link is on the right. Because OH MY GOD can you even imagine? I will make it the official mascot of the blog and take it with me on baseball road trips and to Fenway and report on it's adventures around the world. The awesomeness is almost too much to imagine.

Speaking of mascots, Basegirl Enterprises has a new one (until the bobblehead shows up). I adopted a charming little 1-year-old cat yesterday. As promised, he's going by the name Dave Roberts. Although, technically, that's his show name. Because the cat in the kennel was named Rocky and, if you know me, you know that I can't very well say no to a cat named Rocky. So Dave Roberts, aka Rocky Markakat, aka D-Rock has taken up residences at Basegirl Headquarters. He's a pimp cat, this one. Bit of a strutter. This cat won't take no shit from no one. Which is just the way I like it.

And now I've become one of those people who write blog entries about their cats. Awesome.

Want me to make fun of Julio Lugo some more?

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Oh No a No-No

(Photo from Boston.com)

Thank you, Curt. That'll do.

But seriously, if I've told y'all once, I've told y'all a thousand times: Don't shake off 'Tek! The "y'all" in that sentence obviously referring to major league pitchers who stubbornly refuse to listen to me because I know that none of the lovely people that actually read this damn thing would DARE to shake off Jason Varitek. I mean, you're smart people. You know what's good for you. Curt may have learned. After the game they asked him about the shake off and what 'Tek had to say about it. He said, (I'm paraphrasing), "He said that's the same thing Pedro did when he lost his no-hitter. I should know better." 'Tek with the snark! Lookit that! Must be Mike Lowell's influence. But seriously, stop shaking off Jason Varitek. Just stop it. 'Tek said something similar in his own postgame. Or, at least, I think he did. The camera angle was wide and there were shoulders involved and something about sliders and pitching and biceps and awesome and I believe it amounted to "Stop shaking me off, bitch." 'Tek knows best.

As for the game, I was partially correct with my prediction that yelling at Julio Lugo while on a treadmill would cause me serious injury. Because, even though I stayed rooted to my chair at work - desperate need to pee notwithstanding - to watch the entire thing go down on Gameday, by the time I finally went to the gym to watch postgame, I was so furious with Lugo that I could barely run straight. Ignoring the fact that on my best days I run like the drunk guy at the company softball game, I was some kind of enraged.

And okay, it was a clean hit by Stewart and Schill shouldn't have shaken off 'Tek and all that but if Lugo fields the damn ball cleanly in the fifth, Stewart never comes to bat and Schilling has not only his no-hitter but ALSO a perfect game. But no. Because Julio Lugo hates fun.

/takes deep, cleansing breath

Okay, I'm fine. I mean, I'm starving because I refused to leave my desk to get a snack once we got past the sixth inning and I had lunch at like 11:45 (I'm writing this on the T on my phone, people. Prompting the woman sitting next to me to ask me "Does that, like, go to a computer" and being really confused when I tried to explain why I was feverishly typing on the world's tiniest keyboard between Government Center and Kenmore. It's because I love you people. Don't say I never did anything for you), but I don't think I'm hallucinating. Curt Schilling threw a complete game shut-out which was a no-hitter up until two outs in the ninth. Well done, sir. Well done, indeed.

More importantly, in the grand scheme of things, it was a win. And one the Sox sorely needed. I don't think I'd realized they'd been quite as bad as they have been recently - losing six of their last seven - as I've been operating under the delusion that if the games took place after I went to bed (stupid West Coast) then they didn't really happen. But Curt stopped the skid. Because Curt hates to lose.

I mean look, I'll be the first to admit that Schilling is, more often than not, the Captain of Team Insufferable, but you've gotta give the man credit where credit's due. And today, Curtis Montague Schilling sacked the hell up and pitched like his pants were on fire. Which, really, is all we can ask of anyone.

Now, Annette and I talked each other through the whole thing today on Gmail chat. (Side note: the internet makes it criminally easy to distract oneself from doing actual work what with the Gamedaying and the emailing and the chatting and the obsessively checking pitch counts. Thanks, internet!) and we decided that this miraculous thing was happening all because of Tito's gum throwing conniption fit last night. Because nothing says "motivational tactic" like hucking your giant wad of strawberry Big League Chew across the field so you can better go tell an ump to go fuck himself. I've really got to hand it to Tito there. It's not coughing up blood but it sure seemed to get the troops fired up.

Me: That was clearly a call to arms.
Annette: That was the GREATEST moment in regular season baseball. Like, maybe ever.
Me: It was amazing. I *heart* Tito.
Annette: That was a dad whose kid just did something STUPID level of pissed. The level where reason goes out the window and rage takes over.
Me: I love that he was all, "Oh, HELL no. I can't work up the requisite amount of rage with this giant hunk of strawberry Bubble Yum in my mouth."
Annette: It might have impeded the 912 cuss words he wanted to string together. And perhaps the "fuck offs" would not have been heard as such. It might have sounded like "duck off" or something.
Me: This was all a motivational tactic on his part. And I've got to say, he's a goddamn genius.

Of course, Annette and I attempted to talk about anything but the game, which proved largely unsuccessful. Mostly because we eventually starting talking about ways to get Julio Lugo off the team and replaced with a bucket of baseballs, operating, of course, on what I'm calling The Easter Basket Principle, (created by the genius ladies over at the Papel-Blog), which modification reads that a bucket of baseballs, turned sideways in the basepath would field more balls cleanly than Lugo, just based on probability.

Me: Seriously, let's call Theo and make him explain to us, using small words and in plain English, why the Sox chose to go for Lugo instead of extending Gonzalez. I simply cannot fathom it.
Annette: Not a clue.
Me: He has to listen to us. We're very smart. I write things using big words and you're an actual scientist! You can create graphs and everything!
Annette: It boggles the mind.
Me: I would be totally fine with Mike Timlin riding in from Pawtucket in a rusty pickup and forcing Lugo off the team by crossbow.
Annette: Me too.

See? We've got a solution for everything.

Except of course for JD Drew. We don't know what that's about either.

Me: He doesn't even care. I don't even know what JD Drew sounds like.
Annette: He sounds like a stockbroker.
Me: Which is not how a baseball player should sound.
Annette: I keep expecting him to give a big sigh during interviews and go "The problem is that the S&P 500 showed a small failure of growth in the fourth quarter of last year, Tina. That led to widespread economic failure in the private sector." Finish it off with a nearly imperceptible eye roll and that's a JD Drew interview for you.
Me: Baseball players should talk about hunting and killing and "grinding it out." They should use the word "phenomenal" entirely too often, be in dire need of a thesaurus and misuse words in their press conferences. They should use poor grammar and say things like, "Ah, man, I dunno, I just felt like ah was in the zone today. Ah was in Kill Mode."
Annette: Indeed.

But negativity and snark aside - temporarily, of course - the Sox needed this one. And Curt delivered. I keep thinking back to the offseason before the 2004 season and that commercial with Curt hitching a ride in a Ford F-150 or something where he said he needed a ride to Boston as he had to "go break an 86-year-old curse." And damned if he didn't deliver. Because, look, the guy pisses me off frequently. He's probably one of the last people I'd want to have to dinner and I would sooner chew off my own arm than debate politics and religion with him. But you can't say the man can't pitch. Today, he did.

West Coast Badness

Seriously, y'all? Tim Wakefield is gonna choke a bitch. The Sox offense is maddeningly inconsistent when it comes to scoring runs for Wake. This cannot continue. I simply will not allow it.

But this morning, when I woke up at 3:12am, the first thing I thought (after, "gotta pee gotta pee gotta pee") was, "I wonder if the Sox managed to get their heads outta their asses." And so I checked, on my fancy schmancy spyphone that does nothing so much as provide me with the capability for checking scores and Gmail anywhere (horrible for my productivity, that), and I saw that they had, in fact, kept their heads lodged firmly up their asses and steadfastly refused to score any freakin' runs. Again. I just do not much like the West Coast is what.

So I tried to go back to bed but was instead reminded of that line from the Shawshank Redemption. You know the one, the famous one. The one about hope. About it never dying. And I realized that some second and third and fourth place teams might soon take that up as a rallying cry. And that is most assuredly not okay. Because what the Sox should be doing right now is crushing the hopes of other teams. Crushing, I say! And the whole losing thing is not exactly helping in that capacity.

I realize that it seems relatively insane for me to start freaking out and worrying about the state of things now considering the 9.5 game lead the Sox still hold in the division. But every single Sox fan I know has been watching this season on tenterhooks, just waiting for it to all come crashing down around our ears. And every loss, we're convinced, is the one where things start spiraling out of control. Yes, madness, I am aware. But I'm the kind of person that checks scores at 3:12 in the morning and can't go to sleep because she's worried about the Yankees using a line from a Frank Darabont movie as a rallying cry. So really, madness is par for the course around here.

Today's game - since we're apparently stuck in a time warp and are NEVER LEAVING OAKLAND - is a late afternoon game. Which is, fine, I guess. I suppose that means I'll be sneaking glances at Gameday at work and finishing the game at the gym. Unless, of course, things spin wildly out of control, I simply can't handle it and yelling at Julio Lugo while on a treadmill causes me permanent injury. Which, if I'm being honest, would not be the first time.

So...go Sox! Please?

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Not Okay

Dear Red Sox,

Losing is bad. Stop doing it. I understand that perhaps you wanted to see what things were like on the other side of the fence. But now you've seen it. So how about knocking it off and coming back over to the winning side? Things are fun over here. The sun is shining, the pollen count is low, everyone is happy. Losing side? Rain and grossness and so much pollen I can't see.

So stop it.

I mean, Lenny Dinardo, dudes? Lenny Dinardo has evidently spent his time in California auditioning for a role in the remake of Trainspotting. Don't get me wrong, usually I'm all about the designer facial hair, but our good friend Lenny there just looks busted. And you let that guy beat you. Bad. Not okay.

I don't like going to bed, reasonably confident in our chances for a win and waking up to realize that things went to shit and we couldn't manage to push across even one run against Lenny motherflippin' Dinardo. Lenny! The guy's name is Lenny! Come on! Is this his payback to Theo for trading Bronson and breaking up the band? Kee-rist.

Fix it, please.


Meanwhile, SportsDesk tells me that Patriots mini-camp has started.

/jumps up and down with excitement.

We're ignoring Asante Samuel's little hissy fit and just reveling in the fact that, on paper, the Pats are SCARY good. And yes, we know, championships aren't won on paper. Still, it's June, I'm allowing myself a moment or two of "OMG LOOKIT HOW GOOD!" Then I will come back to earth. Because the Sox are losing and don't think I've forgotten that.

Monday, June 04, 2007

Enough is Enough is Enough

Okay, here’s the thing. I’m really tired of hearing about the Red Sox and the Yankees. Now, don’t get me wrong. I love my baseball team. Probably more than is healthy. And I love that they’ve got a double-digit lead on the Yankees in the division. No, really, diggin’ that something fierce. But as for the constant “OMG WATCH YANKEES/SOX OR DIE YOU WILL NEVER KNOW WHAT’S GOING ON IT’S THE ONLY THING ON TV OMG BASEBALL APOCALYPSE WOOO!” I’ve had just about enough of that.

Maybe it’s because I’ve been paying more attention to teams other than the Red Sox this year (most notably the Orioles and the Mets). Maybe it’s because, you know, double digit lead. Or maybe it’s just fatigue over a moldy storyline. But I couldn’t be happier that we don’t have to deal with the Yankees and all the attendant drama again until August.

And yes, I realize that the timing of this declaration is somewhat suspect. Obviously, after dropping two of three to the Yankees over the weekend, it’s gonna seem like I’m going all, “Screw that noise. I don’t want to hear about it anymore,” and while that’s probably true, I honestly felt like that BEFORE this weekend.

I can understand why fans of other teams – who really have no rooting interest one way or the other – hate both the Yankees AND the Red Sox. And though that seems like sacrilege to many a Sox fan, well, the cold, hard truth is that without the Yankees, the Sox would BE the Yankees. It’s not really that big of a stretch.

Of course, I will continue to love my Sox to little, gooey bits (with the notable exception of the following: JD Drew, Julio Lugo and Wily Mo Pena because DUDES, YOU ARE KILLING ME), but I understand where other people are coming from. I mean, how frustrating must it be for say, a Pirates fan to turn on SportsCenter looking for score updates only to be bombarded with the ticker and the upcoming news updates and the “No, for reals, we’re gonna talk about the Sox and Yankees again in like three minutes and you might miss something so don’t move and also, your team sucks and doesn’t deserve our Defcon 3 coverage?”

Now, don’t get me wrong. I positively DELIGHT in the misfortunes of the Yankees because, wow, what is going on there, seriously? But at this point, it’s not so much a “Wow, the Sox are totally gonna benefit from this” mindset as it is a “This is fascinating from the standpoint of watching a formerly great team crash and burn.” It’s especially fascinating because so many of these things seem beyond their control. Like the freak injuries and the Mike Lowell Wrestlemania business. Hee. But as for the hype surrounding the GREATEST RIVALRY IN SPORTS? Can we take it down a notch, please? Maybe it seems especially ridiculous specifically because of the current standings. Certainly no other fourth place team is getting this much ink. And yes, it’s because it’s the Yankees – God’s chosen team – but I mean, the Cardinals won the World Series last year and they’re AWFUL and that’s kind of mentioned in passing before the talking heads are all, “You know who else is awful? The Yankees! And did you hear they have a rivalry with the Red Sox? More coverage right now!” It’s not that I’m clamoring for the Sox to be in the spotlight any more than they already are – I’m not sure that’s possible – it’s that I’m screaming “uncle” on the whole thing. Give it a rest, honestly. There is other baseball out there. There are 28 other teams. We play lots of them. Why don’t we talk about them for a while? Just last weekend when I was visiting the ‘rents in New Hampshire, we made use of Marianne’s MLB TV subscription to create a little Baseball Norad for ourselves. Sox/Rangers on the big screen, Mets/Marlins on my laptop, Yankees/Angels on my dad’s, Orioles/A’s on Marianne’s and my grandmother watching ChiSox/D-Rays in the basement. Seriously, we had five games going at once. And it? Was great. It might've prompted my mother to telephone the closest psychiatric hospital and inquire about a group rate, but still, great.

All of that said, I choose to look not backwards at this past weekend’s series but forwards to tonight’s match-up between everyone’s favorite recreational bowler, Julian Tavarez and perma-stoned Danny Haren (with a scary low 1.64 ERA). I can’t imagine what a conversation between those two would be like. Would they talk about music, cinema, their favorite meat product on a stick? One never knows. And this? This is why we need dugout cameras and more frequently miked up starters. I’m sure Tavarez’s traffic cop routine out there would lead to some especially delightful soundbites. While I petition NESN for a “Livin’ La Vida Loca with Julian Tavarez,” you all get ready for tonight’s game. It’s a late one, start the caffeine IV now.