Saturday, October 29, 2005

Just A Note

The Sacramento Kings's gold alternate uniforms are absolutely disgusting and should be stopped by any means necessary. Please.

Thank you.

Friday, October 28, 2005

Dress To Supress

Didn’t the NBA already have a dress code? They’re called uniforms, and the players wear them every time they go on the court. They’re also called warm-ups, and the players wear them at practice and in pre-game warmups. Dictating what players can wear to and from work? That seems more than a little extreme. It’s funny that the League can prevent high schoolers from joining, then at the same time treat the players already in the League like high schoolers.

I guess the biggest question I have is this: what is the dress code going to accomplish? Sure, it’ll appease the season ticket holders/corporate sponsors who theink the Diplomats are those people who get obscene parking privileges. But is it worth kow-towing to them at the expense of potentially alienating the youth? They already can’t afford to GO to the games, now you’re going to make their idols dress like middle management? Nope, I don’t get it.

The same League that can make players wear throwbacks (on “Hardwood Classics” nights) just prohibited them on the bus. Does that make any sense? Wear this on the court when you’re actually doing your job, but when you’re traveling to or from your job? Sorry, not allowed. How is this logical?

Not that I totally agree with the players, either. Marcus Camby’s statement that players should receive stipends for clothes, given the average NBA salary, goes straight past absurd to insulting. But when a fashion issue puts Allen Iverson and Tim Duncan on the same page on the opposing side, well, maybe it’s just a bad idea.

The basics of the deal are no jerseys or t-shirts, no jeans, sneakers or boots, sport coats, slacks and shoes, no chains outside the clothing. What I don’t understand is this—if this was such a problem why did it take this long? Allen Iverson accepted his MVP trophy in an XXXXXL t-shirt and a do-rag. Kobe wore jerseys to the Finals for like 5 games in a row, and it was actually its own story. Whenever Tim Duncan is hurt, he sits on the bench in a baggy, untucked shirt and jeans. I even saw him postgame once in a pair of Vans (don’t tell adidas). Who is this hurting? Who’s scared of the big bad NBA?

About the chains, hey, I’ve never been a big fan of ridiculous jewelry. The diamond industry has always been horrific, and more than enough NBA guys (see: Marbury, Stephon) have been jacked for their jewels. But if the NBA is going to pay these monster salaries, shouldn’t the players be allowed to flaunt it? What’s next, a $50,000 maximum rule on cars you can drive to the game? NO MORE BENTLEYS?

And that’s another issue. I’m not normally one to disparage a rule because of precedent—I don’t think that outlawing assault rifles will open the door for the government to outlaw anything more dangerous than a butter knife—but seriously, where does this go next? If a dress code has been put in because of people worrying that players look too “thuggish” (and I have to believe that’s the reason, does the NBA do away with cornrows next? Make players cover their tattoos?

What it goes back to, to me, is this: Yes, other jobs have dress codes. And the NBA already has one, in the uniforms the players must wear on the court. Given their jobs, and the money they make, the closest comparison to pro athletes are actors and rappers/rock stars. Do the studios and record labels control what their employees wear to work? No. As they shouldn’t. Nor should the NBA.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

We Now Join The NLCS Already In Progress.

Astros up 3-2 in the series, 3-0 in the game through the top of 4, with Roy Oswalt throwing a no-hitter. This could be tough for the Cardinals. If it gets boring (which it will), I may go on extended rants about the new NBA dress code. So consider yourself warned. And while I can't speak for everyone, a Houston/Chicago World Series probably won't be the most interesting series ever. They may have to bring back steroids. Whatever happens, the Series starts on Saturday, which means they should be able to stretch it into November. I so want to live long enough to see a World Series game cancelled because of snow.

Lance Berkman looks like a lumberjack. Or an NFL lineman from the mid '70s.

TONY LARUSSA HAS REMOVED HIS SUNGLASSES!!! ALERT THE MEDIA!!! What the hell's with the sunglasses at night anyway? You don't look mysterious Tony, you look stupid. (And if it's for glare, why does he take them off before going to the mound?) And he put in a rookie? Yikes. Good luck, kid! I mean, uh, good job.

So much for the no-hitter. Good job, Bengie. Um, I mean other Molina. Other-other Molina, I guess.

Nice call, ump. Nope, no need for instant replay in baseball. Not at all.

Conversations with pitching coaches < watching paint dry.

You know, if the networks insist on talking to the managers during the games, can't they ask the pressing questions? Like, "Hey Tony, why do you wear sunglasses all the time when you don't have to?"

Correction: Lance Berkman looks like John Smoltz on steroids. Baseball players are a bunch of scruffy bastards.

Much as I hate baseball sometimes, the suicide squeeze is rad. 4-1, 'Stros.


Oh, forget this. I'll come back with the NBA dress code later.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

ALCS Game 3, Part 2

BENGIE!!! I just can't help but think of the dog, but for the life of me I can't think of the name of any of the Benji books/movies.

Conversations with pitching coaches: Do I smell a new Mitch Albom book? I also think the market is SCREAMING for "The Five People You'll Meet In Hell." Because, let's face it, that's where most of us are headed anyway. Might as well be prepared, right?

Maybe the Angels are right to not be concerned about their pitching, because with the way John Garland's pitching, 5-0 may as well be 5,000-0. Although God knows 5,000-0 would be pretty rad (even though the game wouldn't end until next June). Maybe this Gregg guy will be better, though. Not that it matters.

The Pepsi Fan Cam is even worse than Pepsi itself, if that's even possible. The discussion about the Pepsi Fan Cam trumps them both, though. Let's drool over the girls in the stands! It's Southern California, guys, they're not so unusual.

I can root against the Angels simply because of the existence of the Rally Monkey, right?

Fireworks for a home run that cuts the Sox lead to three. I'm sure that they're scared now. Nice shot, though.

OK, Juan Uribe falling into his own dugout after striking out looking is now officially my favorite moment of the 2005 baseball postseason, just beating out A-Rod's hitting into that 9th inning Game Five double play.

I believe I referred to "Trading Spouses" as "Trading Places" earlier. Which doesn't change the fact that the bitch is completely insane.

And that was a very insightful conversation with John Garland's girlfriend. Especially Chris Myers asking if they talked today. Um, yeah, I'm sure they don't LIVE together or anything.

Baseball diaries are hard. Not enough action, and—wow, Bengie Molina's haircut is AWESOME. Nevermind.

Kevin Gregg looks more than a little like Private Pyle, methinks. And if he throws over to first one more time, I'M going to get a Section 8.

You know, going back to the A-Rod/Guerrero commercial, A-Rod WOULD steal the Pepsi after losing the contest. What a jerk.

Love Brendan Donnelly's delivery, so fast and herky-jerky (memories of Charles Kerfeld and Rob Dibble). And Everett's beard.

Major League baseball is like a nature preserve for goatees.

John Garland is, judging from his girl, going to be a very happy man tonight. As he probably is most nights.

Lou Piniella sounds disconcertingly like our beloved President sometimes. And, given his baseball background and his predilection for inane pronouncements, is there any reason to believe that George W. Bush COULDN'T become a baseball commentator? He'd be better at that than he is at this president thing, that's for sure.

Bottom of the ninth! Finally! (It's 11:03. And it's still raining here.)

1, 2, 3. And goodnight.

ALCS Game 3, Part 1

Well, it's either baseball or "I, Robot" on HBO Latino (it has to be better in Spanish than it is in English). The big question, of course, is whether I can survive the pregame show. Having grown used to the brilliance of Kenny, Ernie and Charles, Kevin Kennedy and the fake Kyra Sedgwick are hard to deal with. Another ten or so rows of scrolling graphics would blank them out completely, which wouldn't be a bad idea. Of course it would obscure the omnipresent Chevrolet logos, God forbid. But seriously, these are the best people they could find for the pregame show before the League Championship Serieses? What. does ESPN already have everyone else in the universe under contract? It's insulting, really. They have absolutely no chemistry at all, maybe less.

Wow, tomorrow's games are at 4 and 7:30 Eastern? Way to keep the early games going, MLB.

When they show the "get ready" promos, I don't know who half the players are. I'm not alone in this, right? I may be a lapsed baseball fan, but even if I weren't, would I know the players on the White Sox and Angels by face alone? I highly doubt it.

I'm doing everything short of sticking my fingers in my ears and chanting "la la la la la la" to ignore the pregame show. Even Shoeless Joe's bat looked embarassed. Although wow, that "Trading Spaces" psycho makes them look downright awesome. Good thing I don't usually watch network television.

(Fill in useless blather here from McCarver, Buck and Piniella.)

A Bruce Willis guest appearance on "That '70s Show"? Jesus. I can only assume that when Demi and Ashton inevitably split up, it'll be Ashton and Bruce, right?

Lackey, the Angels best pitcher, just gave up a leadoff hit. Good times. Nice hair, too. Barry Melrose would be proud. Iguchi with the hara-kiri bunt to move the runner. Ha ha, Lackey sucks tonight. Nothing like three runs in a third of an inning to get things going. I guess there isn't much comparable in other sports to a hanging curve. Maybe a pass that floats in football, but nothing in basketball at least. There's also not much better than being a starting pitcher whose staked to a lead before even taking his jacket off. It ain't good for Fox, though—a 3-0 first-inning lead with some fairly uninteresting (to the casual fan) teams? "I, Robot" en Espanol is sounding better and better.

Did I just hear that a SLEEPING pill has a side effect of DROWSINESS?? NO WAY!!!! That was a joke just to make sure people were paying attention, right?

Piniella: "Clearly a good-looking young pitcher, though." Whoa, Lou, take care of that stuff on your own time. John Garland (I wanted to call him Winston—God, I'm old) is mad tall, though. Nice touch for a big man. AND HE WALKS CHONE FIGGINS!!!!! Sorry, but I just love that name. I can't get over how much Vladimir Guerrero (I absolutely refuse to call him "Vladi") looks like Darius Miles. Sort of.

If Lackey gets tagged any harder, Jessica is leaving him for sure. And with Joe Crede up, it's mullet vs. mullet. Hard to believe that kids aren't as into baseball as they are into basketball or football. It's Pearl Jam pitching to Alice In Chains. Or Creed, I guess.

The Catching Molina Brothers are back in action, of course. Well, Bengie is. What are the chances that a family has THREE children who grow up to be major-league catchers? Are the parents proud? Ashamed? Confused? And hold on, they're all named Benjamin (Bengamin)? That's just silly.

Re, Jose Uribe: Players in other sports need to keep huge clumps of tobacco in their mouths, too. Would Spike Lee have taken that many verbal shots at Reggie Miller if he thought he'd get spanged with a load of chaw every time Reggie ran by? I doubt it. Sunflower seeds would, of course, be a healthy alternative.

I really can't take the Fox sound effects anymore. They're downright unspeakable.

Not sure what's worse, Joe Buck's saying "All about the Benjamins" (and it being sorta funny), or the horrific cover of "We're Not Gonna Take It" in a Wendy's commercial. Hmm. Sorry Joe, Wendy's takes it. They just haven't been the same since Dave Thomas died.

Oh my God! Marlon Brando is alive and sitting behind the White Sox's on-deck circle!

You can't not love Carl Everett.

I know it's the wrong Simpson, but I just thought I'd mention that Lackey looks out of synch tonight. Sorry.

I've learned more about Lou Piniella tonight than I have about anyone on either team and no, ladies and gentlemen, that's not a good thing. P.S. Shattered bats are awesome. Not enough things break in other sports. (Backboards are too infrequent and limbs are too sickening.)

Have these games in particular been boring or is it baseball on TV in general? I can't decide. Maybe they should go to a five-inning, six-out-per format to cut down on the commercials? I also like the idea of alternate telecasts on Cinemax with rampant cursing and plenty of gratuitous nudity.

It's Juan Uribe? My bad. I should be probably making time notifications with these notes, but that's too hard.

You know, it's not helping that the commercials themselves completely suck. I don't think there's been a good one tonight yet. I know it's not the Super Bowl, but come on, people! Sell me something! (Besides "The Simpsons," I'm already sold on that.)

Either Mike Scioscia's hat or his head is too small.

Lackey continues to get hammered. If he's the Angels best pitcher, I hope they enjoy their time in the ALCS, because they're not going to the World Series unless they buy tickets. And, um, Piniella: "What a positive impact these Japanese players have made on Major League baseball." Yeah, Lou. Just like those blacks, right?

Still lots of red in those stands. If the Angels somehow wind up playing the Cardinals, either someone will have to adopt a different color or no one will know who the hell they're rooting for (or which stadium they're in). Also, the Bloods would be psyched.

Incidentally, the little pop-out timer in Lackey popped around the first inning. The Sox seem to be enjoying BP, though, so why take him out now? Hell it's only a five-run lead.

TO BE CONTINUED.

Friday, October 14, 2005

ALCS Game 3 (Pregame)

This rain on the East Coast is just out of control. It's been going strong for either five or six days straight—I can't even remember anymore—so far, and it might end tomorrow, or it might go until Monday. If it stops tomorrow, that's fine. But if it rains until Monday, I may go insane. Or start collecting two of each animal on the planet, which might be viewed the same as going insane anyway.

Bought the Dangerdoom record today, which is HIGHLY recommended. MF Doom x Danger Mouse x Adult Swim. Only listened to it the once, but it's pretty amazing. There's a Doom/Ghostface collabo, which was long overdue, and just plenty of Doomosity. The only complaint I have is bleeped-out curses on the first track (I think that was the only one) which are sort of annoying. And I don't think I accidentally got the censored version, either. In fact, I doubt there are two versions.

The game tonight is starting at 8 again, despite being on the West Coast. Quite different from the first round, which had one of the Padres games starting at 11 Eastern. A baseball playoff game starting at 11 Eastern? Who does MLB think they are, the NBA? Actually, the only way to trivialize the first round more would have been to broadcast the games on the Lifetime network.

Leading up to the game I'm watching the end of "Evil Alien Conquerors" on Showtime Next. It's seriously one of the worst movies ever, and if you ever watch the entire thing you'll find yourself questioning the continued existence of the human race. Put it this way—Tori Spelling plays a pretty big role in it and she doesn't even get credited. And it's not like Tori doesn't need the credits. Of course now I've watched the whole thing roughly twice, which doesn't say much for the continued existence of me. This movie could actually warrant an entire post, especially the fourth-rate Jack Black who plays Croker (whose name is Tyler Labine—he also played John Belushi in "Behind the Camera: The Unauthorized Story of 'Mork & Mindy'").

On to the game.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Some CS, Game 1 Or 2, Diary

Um, interestingly enough, Fox and FX are both showing the same telecast right now, with no word as to which game will be on which channel. Awesome. I fully intend to watch some of the Cards/Astros tonight, assuming it ends up on one of the channels. Not that I hate the Yankees or anything, but I hope Andy Pettitte throws a perfect game. (That also has nothing to do with the fact that my ex-girlfriend is from St. Louis.) For the record, Kevin Kennedy on two channels is two channels too many. Not really feeling the fake Kyra Sedgwick, either. CAN SOMEONE LET ME KNOW WHAT CHANNEL I SHOULD BE ON, PLEASE? (I should also mention that I'm probably only keeping this tonight until my girlfriend gets here, which means it may cut off rather abruptly. My bad.)

Wow, a snippet of the Pixies? An old band, which is par for the course, but a GOOD one? The sky is falling!

Incidentally, I just flicked back and forth, and there are NOT the same commercials on each channel. Just so you know.

All three Molina brothers are playing at once? Rad. But what the heck is that sun thing on Craig Biggio's hat?

Commercial note: Yes, you actually can smell Taco Bell from outside. But usually that's AFTER someone's eaten it.

I still have no idea which channel either game is going to be on. Thank God that I don't really care about any of the four teams. I suppose I'll find out shortly. Right now I'm gambling on FX for the NLCS. Come on, baby.

I CAN'T HANDLE THE PRESSURE!!!!!

Yes!!! I win!!! Um, yeah, I thrive for small victories. This announcing crew scares me more than the McCarver/Piniella/Buck group, actually. I sense a lot of flicking back and forth. Also, Bob Brenly looks preserved. And I think he just said "the team that can manufacture runs is the team that's going to win." Jesus. No wonder why I don't watch baseball anymore. Public Enemy was nice there, though. The Pixies, P.E., Bob Brenly, the Cardinals—is this 1988? Where's John Tudor?

Van Hagar. Yep, it's '88. And they wonder why the kids aren't as into baseball anymore.

Lotta red in that stadium. Drop a Crip in there and watch him flip out.

Chris Carpenter's hat is disgusting. Not as bad as John Wetteland's used to be, but then again I've seen subway cars cleaner than John Wetteland's hat. For the record, it was touted at the end of the ALCS Game One that you wouldn't miss a minute of either game tonight because they were on different channels. As a part of the TiVO-less world, I'd like to ask the geniuses at Fox/MLB how, exactly, that's possible when both games start at the same time?

Jim Edmonds and hos over-the-shoulder catches. Bet that miss hurt a lot. Kind of hard to call it a "defensive mistake," though, I think.

OK, this Bud Light commercial with "the Bomber" is an insult to baseball, Babe Ruth, history, humanity, and other things that I just haven't thought of yet. Also, Bud Light tastes like cat piss, and Babe Ruth would have sooner drank the juice from one of his popped hemmorhoids than a Bud Light. Or anything with "Light" in the name, for that matter.

Can't really overstate this enough, but has anyone out there actually tasted Bud? Do they NEED a "Light" variety? Seriously, it's like having Evian Light.

Guess there won't be a perfect game tonight. Bummer. Way to ruin my dreams, Eckstein. You could have at least waited until the second pitch to add some drama.

Bet Jim Edmonds is psyched to have a dirty uniform already. Boosts the eBay value, and makes it look like he's really trying. Sure, he missed the ball, but it's not like he gave up a run or anything.

Despite the fact that this game is on FX, it's a Fox broadcast, so the same sound effects are in use. Thank God. And apparently the White Sox are winning already, which is nice if you're a fan of that staid franchise. And having seen the highlight, how does a PITCHER miss a throw to first by that much? Somewhere, Rick Ankiel is laughing.

Hey, I might be a lapsed baseball fan, but I DO know this much—do NOT pitch to a guy named Reggie in October. 2-0, Cards. Way to go, Pettitte. Jerk. Nice socks.

Meatnormous, meatnormous. No.

I'm not gonna last much longer tonight. The commercials are worse than the game, and the game pretty much sucks.

In fact...

Oi! Football* fans!

Nothing much today (for now, at least). Just that, if you're a fan of English football*, do yourself a favor. Go to the link below, and start having the Fiver delivered to your inbox. It gets sent out at 5 p.m. British time (which means we get it here on the East Coast around noon). It's probably the best daily sportswriting, bar none.

http://football.guardian.co.uk/fiver/

* football = soccer

ALCS Game 1, Part 2

The only thing better than a miked manager is a miked pitching coach. Lou: "Bud is an intelligent guy, and he handles himself quite well." Um, as is roughly 75 percent of the world.

New catcher's helmets/masks are kind of cool, I guess, but I still miss the backwards batting helmet and separate mask. Then again, I also miss the bullpen cars with the big hats as roofs and Dave Kingman, so that doesn't mean much.

Incidentally, the only thing I've exclaimed while drinking a Coors Light was "Ugh! Isn't there ANYTHING else?" Guess that wouldn't make for a very positive commercial, though. Also, the liquid metal impalas are WAY cooler than the new Chevy Impala which shouldn't be bought by ANYONE except rental fleets and police forces.

The Angels helmets actually look like they're covered in melted marshmallows. Half S'mores? Or maybe creme brulee?

I can't decide whether the actual game is boring or I just don't care much. I'm guess it's a combination of both.

I absolutely love that two Molina brothers both catch for the Angels. What the hell are the odds of that? (The fact that the starter is named "Bengie" is even better.)

(On the phone...please hold.)

OK, back. Two outs, top of the 7th. Steee-rike three! Contreras is pretty damn nasty (if a little wild). Can see why he throws so many wild pitches, why he gets stolen on so much AND why he's so good. And it's all the same reason. He also looks a little like Shawn Kemp, which is awesome.

How exactly is August Busch IV or whatever a "brewmaster"? Was Dave Thomas a chef?

It's the bottom of the seventh and Aaron Rowand came up, and I assumed he was a pinch hitter. Nope, apparently he's been playing all game. News to me. And Byrd plunks him in the back with the first pitch. Well, at least he didn't walk him, right?

You hardly ever see a baseball player who's entirely clean-shaven. Damn late starts.

Wait, is Tim Raines still known as "Rock"?

The Flintstones in a Midas commercial. Deep breaths, deep breaths.

McCarver, Piniella and Buck are slowly morphing into one, ├╝berannoying announcer.

Paying attention to baseball on TV is hard.


OK, I'm done.

ALCS Game 1, Part 1

Oh, what the hell. I'm watching this thing for whatever reason. I might as well keep some sort of a running diary. As always, apologies to Bill Simmons. Seeing that I don't really care about the Angels, the White Sox OR baseball in general, this has the potential to get REALLY far off track. Well, we can hope. Anyways, I'm better off watching this than "The Day After Tomorrow" again.

P.S. I'm so happy the Yankees lost. Ha ha. Don't tell anyone. Also, just a thought: if Bernie Williams had been playing centerfield, he probably wouldn't have been fast enough to get to right and collide with Gary Sheffield, and Sheff might have caught that ball, and the Yankees might have won. Again, ha ha.

Feeling the White Sox's sleeveless pinstriped jerseys (with black shirts underneath). Also, I absolutely love the black Sox hat (does Dr. Dre get royalties?), but I absolutely hate the fact that it made damn near every other team adopt a black alternate uniform. Black Mets hats? Ugh. That said, given the popularity of black hats, is anyone out there rocking umpirehats? That would be gangsta.

Scooter the animated baseball sucks.

Why do all the Angels's helmets look like they spent too much time in a Betty Crocker E-Z Bake Oven? Stupid pine tar.

Baseball announcers have WAY too much time between pitches and hitters and the like to pontificate on anything and everything. An alternate audio track that just contained the real sounds of the stadium would be quite welcome. And why the heck are there three people in the booth anyway? How much analysis do we really need?

Fox Sports graphics are unspeakably awful. The sound effects are even worse. What ever happened to less is more?

Vladimir Guerrero's hair is rad, but I still don't believe he shattered the moon. And A-Rod shouldn't be allowed to be seen hitting in the post-season, even in commercials.

Paul Byrd looks a lot like Beecher from Oz when he was at his most ragged.

Not sure which is creepier, the Burger King or those heart-attack inducing breakfast sandwiches he's pushing. Mmmm, a thousand-calorie breakfast sandwich with almost all of it coming from pork fat. Where do I sign up?

The opposition is 28 for 30 in stolen bases against Jose Contreras? How is that even possible? Does he have a habit of catching the ball on its way back up the middle or something?

Chone Figgins is possibly the best name in professional sports. Top 10 for sure. The fact that he can basically play any position is a bonus.

Have I mentioned how bad the sound effects are? I know it would put someone out of work to lose them, but it would also make the telecast a lot more enjoyable. It's a baseball game, not Top Gun.

Correction: Paul Byrd looks like Beecher after he spent a month in solitary. No-hitter through 2, though. Woo-hoo!!

Running into the second baseman/shortstop to break up a double-play must be the most fun thing to do in baseball.

Garrett Anderson has a clean helmet? What's wrong with him?

I'd like to petition that the Knicks be herefore known as the Manhattan Knicks of New York.

Pete Coors is a creepy bastard. Also, how can a beer taste "cold"? Is that what he said?

Love when the stupid montage of jittery clips makes them miss the first pitch of an inning.

"Paul Byrd is like a crafty lefthander who's just right handed." Excuse me? What the hell does that mean? Actually, it means that his next pitch gets rocked out of the park by some mulleted White Sock. Maybe he SHOULD try throwing with his left. P.S. So much for the no-hitter.

Ever since that inane statement, Byrd is getting killed. Home run, hard drive straight to Anderson, base hit up the middle.

Wait, Tim Raines is the Sox first base coach? Awesome. Byrd gives up another rip. Jermaine Dye coming up. He might not last the inning at this rate. Too bad Bartolo Colon is already out for the series with strained fat.

OK, he lasted the inning. And thank God it's over, because the platitudes were getting dangerous.

Commercials during sporting events are so predictable it's nauseating. Not a male between 18 and 35? Sorry! By the end of this game I'll be praying for a tampon commercial. And I won't get it.

Apparently Lou Piniella is in charge of obviousness tonight. "When I look for catchers, I look for ones that win baseball games." Good theory, Lou. When I look for apples, I look for ones that aren't rotten and full of worms. We should hang out.

Coors, Applebees, State Farm, Land Rover, Midas, Citibank, "Prison Break." Put 'em all together and what do you got? A suburb I don't want to live in!

Someone really needs to point out that, hectic travel schedule or not, apparently Paul Byrd hasn't slept since October of '95.

Interviewing managers in mid-game is really, really stupid. The next time one says something insightful will be the first. And they cut away from the actual game to show this stuff?

Now batting, Carl Everett, who still doesn't believe in dinosaurs. And Tim McCarver just called the White Sox—the only team in the majors that ever wore SHORTS as part of their uniform—staid. Why, because they're white?

The Angels dugout jackets are really nice. Surprised they haven't mentioned where to get them yet.

"One of the secrets for Paul Byrd today is that he hasn't given up a walk yet"? What? Walks are a secret? And he's also given up a home run and a couple of smash hits (and two runs). All in all, walks would have been better, don't you think? Guys are making SERIOUS contact, here. And for the record, Carl Everett may not believe in dinosaurs, but he sort of runs like one.

"In fact, Yazstremski was one of the best hitters I ever saw in baseball." Don't mean to keep picking on you, Lou, but did you really need to add "in baseball"? We probably would have figured it out.


Gonna not press my luck here and start a part II.

Monday, October 10, 2005

It's Been A Long Time...

Wow, what'd I miss?

Three weeks this time? Has it been that long? (I didn't look at the previous post, but I think it was the Katrina one.) Sorry y'all. Um, assuming anyone's still checking this.

Just a few things right now off the top of my head.

Eddy Curry to the Knicks: Interesting. Plenty of upside in a 22-year-old legit seven-footer who actually wants to play like a center. Only thing is, didn't the Knicks already throw a lot of money at ANOTHER legit seven-footer (Jerome James) who plays like a center? Now they've got a matched pair of underachievers, both about to START long-term lucrative deals. I don't think I'd be looking for career years from either of them in '05-06.

Getting rid of Tim Thomas was long overdue, as he might be—per dollar, at least—the worst player in the League. But then again, he was coming off the books this year. And while Michael Sweetney was built like the Sta-Puf Marshmallow Man, he had an uncanny knack for coming up with offensive rebounds, getting fouled, and making the free throws. And he was CHEAP, seeing that he was on the rookie scale for a while longer. Who knows, maybe Curry and Crawford will work out like the ex-Warriors in Washington, but somehow I doubt it. I just wholeheartedly hope that Eddy's heart problems are behind him.


The MLB playoffs: Not to sound like my man Phil Mushnick, but did a playoff game REALLY start at 11 p.m. Eastern? Really? Luckiy it wasn't the one that lasted 18 innings, or else it would have cut into Good Morning America. Also cool that the first round was almost exclusively on cable. Sorry, Red Sox fans. (Yes, most people have ESPN, but some of us wish we didn't.)

Interesting to see what happens tonight, because a White Sox/Angels ALCS oughta be about as good for the ratings as a Cardinals/Astros NLCS. It's all good to focus on promoting the big-market teams (or the ones with neat stories) until none of them make the playoffs. Hard to start hyping Angels/Astros now, huh? "Um, yeah, Lance Berkman! Vladimir Guerrero!" Riiight. At this point they have to be praying for the Yankees to survive and go on and face the 'Stros so Roger Clemens can bean Derek Jeter or A-Rod (oh please let that happen).


The NFL: Dude, it's week five and the summer weather just stopped like last week. I'm not ready for football yet. All I really know is a rookie named Cadillac was leading the League in rushing and the Jets dug up Vinnie Testaverde to QB for them again. What, did Joe Namath fail his Breathalyzer?


Gas prices: Look, I thought I understood how high $3 a gallon was. I haven't owned a car in almost 10 years now, but I've done my share of driving rentals on road trips. Filled a Ford Excursion in Portland, pushed Mitsubishi Eclipse drops in L.A. Definitely paid $2-plus per gallon, and lived to tell the tale. Well, last week I had to run out to Jersey for a story, and I rented a car (seeing that it would be cheaper than taking car services both ways). Well, I got to the Dollar on 22nd Street around 10 a.m. to find they only had minivans. Great. Going to suburbia (well, sort of) in a Chrysler Town & Country. All was well until I got back and stopped off to fill it up. Damned if that thing wasn't actually sucking on the nozzle. Ended up putting $18 of regular in it—I took it a little low, never again. I don't understand why anyone would drive in the city (or any other one, for that matter) and I also have NO idea how taxi drivers are making a living, seeing that they haven't raised their rates yet.


Sneakers: Weirdness. Ever since I lost the full-time SLAM gig, I've been out of the sneaker loop. Not getting stuff for free anymore—thank god, because I'm sort of overrun here—and, in fact, I've been trying to clear out space. Until recently. Artist collabs have been popular for a while, but lately three dropped that I HAD to have. First, Nike SB dropped two different pairs of Dunk SB Highs for the Melvins. Now this was just plain weird. The Melvins are in no way a popular band—in fact, their brand of noise/punk/whatever is just about as anti-mainstream as possible. I can barely even think of an equivalent, maybe SLAM doing a special issue on Ben Handlogten. The black pair, covered in art swiped from antiquated tombstones, didn't do much for me. But the white pair—canvas, with what looked like blood bubbling up from the soles—was impossible to leave. Not sure if they'll see the light of day until spring, but once they do, they'll be worn to death.

The other pairs are Vans—Bad Religion Sk8 Highs and Mot├Ârhead Rowleys. The Rowleys have pretty much been on my feet since I bought them, and the Sk8 Highs will also get plenty of burn this fall/winter. Guess that means further purging of the pairs here. Shameless plug, if you're in NYC, check out Flight Club, on Greene Street between 8th and Waverly. They're a consignment shop (with some stock from yours truly) that has the best selection of shoes in NYC. Sizes and prices vary, but you can always find gems.


Music: I kinda want to get the Biggie/Frank Sinatra blend CD from Fat Beats, is that bad? I stopped in Virgin this weekend, which is always a mistake, because I can never leave without buying a bunch of stuff. Picked up MF Doom live, the new Fiona Apple, the new Blackalicious, a previously unreleased Coltrane/Monk set, and a disc of Melvins demos (which I'm kind of scared of). Now today I read about another new Coltrane release (on Impulse!). Guess I'm gonna need to go back. Dammit.