Monthly Archives: July 2007

Shea Stadium is Not a Shit Hole

(Photo by Greta)

For the record, Shea Stadium is not a shit hole. In fact, I would venture a guess that the things that many people dislike about Shea are, in fact, the things that make it awesome. For example:

Shea is in Queens. You guys? Queens is awesome. Seriously. Stereotypes are stereotypes for a reason but I realized that it’s probably the only ballpark I’ve ever been to that wasn’t completely overrun with white people. All the announcements were in Spanish and English. Jose Reyes gave us Spanish lessons on the Jumbotron between innings and told us how to properly pronounce the lyrics to “La Bamba.” “Yo no so marinero. Soy capitan.” (I am not the sailor, I am the captain). Priceless information, that.

People also say that Mets fans are rude. Dudes, these people live in the same city as Yankee fans. They wouldn’t be out of line to be a whole lot ruder, if you ask me. Not once did I witness a single Mets fan acting all entitled or pontificating about the True Metsness of any one player. I did see an usher roll his eyes and yell at a woman in a sequined Carlos Betran tank top because she refused to believe that the stadium had an upper deck but she totally had it coming. You know what else I saw? Some jackhole at a rest stop on the Jersey Turnpike wearing a shirt with a Yankees logo that said “Got postseasons?” And that right there pretty much encapsulated why I can’t stand the smug sons of bitches. Just because you’ve been to the postseason in the past, you somehow think you’re entitled to it now? And we should respect you because of that? Or something. The logic is flawed. And also stupid. And also Mets fans are so much cooler than Yankees fans which I think was my original point before I got all uppity.

But on the whole, Mets fans are pretty damn cool. No, I don’t remember ’86 or Buckner or Mookie or any of that. And yes, I still cringe when I see the umpteenth repeat of the ole’ through the wickets play at first but you know what? I’m letting it go. Because Jose Reyes wasn’t involved in that game. Paul Lo Duca wasn’t involved in that play. David Wright wasn’t involved in that play. Hell, was David Wright even born yet? (Okay, he was 3-years-old. Jesus, I’m old). Anyway, this current Mets team is a hell of a lot of fun to watch. I mean, maybe not so much on the night I was there as they were in the process of losing to the Nationals but still, fun. The stadium is also enormous in that “this could totally be a football stadium if they’d close off that end there” way. But they can’t, because that’s where they’re building Citi Field, the new home of the Mets. I’m sure it’ll be lovely and new and shiny and all that, but I hope they don’t take away from the Queens-ness of it all. That’s what makes Shea, Shea.

And there’s that whole sharing Pedro Martinez thing. Which is totally the name of a book that I’m going to write about a touching coming of age story and the growth of a friendship between a Mets fan and a Sox fan. Right? Because I know that Pedro is theirs now, but he’s not really theirs. I mean, he was ours first. They can use him now so long as they remember where he came from.

And? Paul Lo Duca has “Stayin’ Alive” as his at-bat music and the picture they put on the screen during his at-bats is totally his impression of Blue Steel. It’s amazing. Paul Lo Duca can have drinks on me anytime. I’ll bet that dude has some stories to tell.

I could have done without the SCREAMINGLY LOUD meringue band that entertained the crowd pre-game (it was Meringue night, dontcha know?), as Shea is already the loudest stadium on the planet and the music was honestly painful. Earsplitting, even, and unnecessary. I know that Shea is located next to JFK and planes fly overhead all game but there’s no need to adjust the music volumes for that. I had a serious headache by the time the game started. Beer was needed to make it go away. Beer and hot dogs. But the hot dogs? Were delicious.


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Baseball Elsewhere

Wooooo, baseball!

Quick note to let y’all know that I made it back from parts elsewhere safely. Despite the fact that I spent hours screaming at jackasses on the New Jersey Turnpike to STOP BRAKING ALREADY and that I am completely convinced that the loathsome state of Connecticut gets bigger every time I drive through it, we made it home in one piece.

I would like you all to know that Shea Stadium is actually pretty awesome, Jose Reyes will give you Spanish lessons on the Jumbotron, Citizen’s Bank Park in Philly is completely delightful and the upper decks provided a much needed breeze, the Pirates are TERRIBLE and Nick Markakis is a litterbug.

Also, I am going to submit my resume to Major League Baseball posthaste because they need a Music Consultant. Because, as Greta and I realized yesterday during hour number nine trillion in freakin’ Connecticut, the fact that no current closer is using “The Final Countdown” as their bullpen music is absolutely tragic. I mean, said closer would obviously be transported to the mound in a pimped out bullpen car while shooting sparks from his fingertips. While wearing a cape. A cape! Who doesn’t like a cape?

I have the best ideas.

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One Run Wonders

(Photo from Yahoo! Sports)

You guys? Games like this are going to kill me. Didn’t I just say, like, yesterday, that we needed a stat for “fucking up but getting yourself out of it before doing irreparable damage to your team?” Didn’t I say we should name it after Matsuzaka? Do we all see why?

Don’t get me wrong, I’m ecstatic to have the win. Especially because the version of C.C. Sabathia that happens to be pitching this season is a good one. So getting a win against that dude is a good thing. Plus, I mean, apparently the Yankees will never lose again so we really have no choice. Am I surprised that Mike Lowell had the sole RBI for the team? Not in the slightest. He’s Mike Lowell, man. He’s in the business of getting hits and RBIs and generally being all around awesome and silver foxish.

You hear that, Theo? I sincerely hope you’re paying attention here, dude. You so much as think of trading Lowell and I will find you. And I will make you watch as I burn all your Pearl Jam bootlegs. And don’t be thinking you can hide in brew pubs in Portland, Maine either. I know your tricks. This team needs Mike Lowell. Of that, there is no question.

I hate the trading deadline. I can’t even talk about it. So let’s…not talk about it.

Let’s talk instead about how this weekend, I’ll be gallivanting to parts elsewhere as Greta and I tackle a baseball road trip. Friday night we’ll be at Shea kidnapping David Wright watching the Mets hopefully take down the Nationals. Saturday finds us, along with Chris, at whatever that park in Philly is called, probably causing some kind of illegal incident and Sunday we’ll be attending the Yankees/Orioles game at Camden Yards, after which, Cal Ripken, Jr’s Hall of Fame induction will be shown on the scoreboard. Not a dry eye in the house, I imagine. At least among the Orioles fans. And I will personally smack the hell out of any Yankee fan I see being the slightest bit disrespectful. It’s Cal’s day, you yahoos. Show some goddamn respect.

Allegedly, we’ll return on Monday. But that all depends on the restraining order from Nick Markakis traffic.

So what I’m saying is, can you guys hold down the fort for me? Can you keep a lid on all the one-run games? Can you keep things under control and monitor your breathing so no one hyperventilates? And can you please tell me what in the holy hell Wily Mo Pena was doing anywhere near a baseball diamond with a one run lead? Why wasn’t he hogtied in the clubhouse? Surely Pedro left some tape around here somewhere.

No, I’m fine. Really, totally cool. Thanks.

/goes quietly insane

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Blue Skies

Well that’ll certainly do. It wasn’t the smoothest performance but come on, you can’t really blame the kid for the Grady Sizemore homer as Sizemore is, as Greta is fond of saying, grown in a lab. I mean, he’s not human. He’s not of this earth. Even the best pitcher is going to give up the occasional long ball to members of the race of baseball playing martians or robotic outfielders with dimples that’ll make your mom blush. So, excluding that malfunction, Lester got himself into a couple of jams, but managed to work himself out of them (by striking out the aforementioned Robot Sizemore, no less). And really, that’s what I care about.

Don’t get me wrong, no-hitters and Josh Beckett taking opposing team’s hits as a personal insult akin to calling his mom a whore are fun, but I think the ability to work out of one’s own jams is highly underrated. Just as I wish baseball analysts would pay more attention to “Inherited Runners Scored” than traditional ERA for relief pitchers, I think we should start keeping some kind of stat for “Could Have Potentially Turned the Inning Into a Giant Clusterfuck by Walking the Bases Loaded with No Outs or Some Such Nonsense but Instead Sacked Up and Managed to Get Out of it and Avoid a Complete Disaster.” I mean, this would be useful. We’d maybe call it the “Matsuzaka Inning Syndrome” or something like that.

And when Lester got out of said jam, was there anything more awesome than his mom in the stands? I totally feel Mrs. Lester. My mom would have reacted the exact same way. Screaming and pumping her fists. (My mom’s not exactly demure during sporting events.)

Of course, Tito, in his postgame, talking about how “you get pretty attached to these guys,” is really enough to break your heart. He’s like everyone’s favorite crotchety uncle. We must keep him around in some capacity forever and ever. Maybe when Gabe Kapler eventually takes over the team, (Kapler, Tek, Lowell coaching triumvirate? Yes? No?), Tito can just sit on the bench, spit and occasionally make with a snarky comment. Of course, by then, Tito will likely be just a floating head in a jar of that blue barbershop liquid considering his pact with the Devil re: the World Series win he’s paying for with his life. But it’s Tito, I’m sure he’s accepted that. Besides, the floating Tito head could totally still roll its eyes.

Yeah, I…probably need to start sleeping.

/extricates cat’s head from old (retro?) promotional Johnny Damon soda cup from Fenway

So Jon Lester. Two thumbs up. And, because I’d be remiss not to mention it, Mr. Covelli Crisp with the four-hit night. Not only does he play defense but he enjoys hitting the ball as well! Who knew? Apparently, he’s just decided to do it all his own self. I expect we’ve got another week before he intercepts a reliever coming out of the bullpen and mows down the opposing hitters himself. I look forward to it.

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Hail the Conquering Hero

(Give ’em hell, Jonny)

Jon Lester returns to the mound tonight. That’s maybe the best news all season. 7:05pm. Be there.

The phrase, “triumphant return” has perhaps never been so true.

Now, the Sox are in Cleveland for a series. What’re the odds old friend Trot Nixon crosses the lines to lay a manly hug and backslap on his friend and former teammates Lester? Not a dry eye in the house, people.

Go Sox!

Go Jon!

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Not In a Listening Mood*

(Photo from Yahoo! Sports)

What is happening up there? Manny decided to show old buddy and former teammate Jim Thome how things work in Boston so he enlisted the help of the Hug Patrol? Or were they trying to squeeze him so hard that he’d just feel so much love for those goofballs that he wouldn’t be able to bring himself to hit a three-run homer? Yeah, interesting plan. Too bad it didn’t work. Luckily, it didn’t end up mattering but things were touch and go there for a while. Especially after the blown call on the JD Drew home run/not a home run. That reminded me of nothing so much as the home run/not a home run call that went against Gabe Kapler a couple years ago. The umps conferred, erroneously ruled it a double and Kapler, Zen thinker that he is, just stood placidly on second, waiting for the game to resume. But Trot Nixon, who had the night off and was receiving treatment in the clubhouse for an injury came tearing ass out of the dugout and started screaming at the umpires resulting in him getting ejected from a game in which he was not even playing. It was, in a word, excellent. And it makes me sad that we never got a NESN original programming show called “Life Coach: Nixon and Kapler” where the two BFFs tackle every day challenges of the Red Sox fan. For instance, let’s say my friend Butch, who is employed as a sheet metal worker, goes on the show because he needs advice about how to deal with a coworker of his, who happens to be a Yankee fan. Kapler’s liable to say, “We must accept people for who they are. Faults and all. This is merely a part of his personality and personalities are what make us unique. The world would be boring it we were all the same.” While Trotter would likely reply, “Y’all got some nail guns around that construction site? Blowtorches maybe? That’ll set ‘im straight.” Seriously, people, it’d be a TV goldmine.

Anyway, as for the game at hand, I think it’s probably best if I address the actual team, since they’ve been deserving of it for some time now.

Gentlemen, Julio Lugo saved your asses. And I have to wonder how that feels, hmmmmm? But you are lucky, sirs, because I was thisclose to writing you a memo on behalf of the Red Sox about how if any of you so much as think you’re going to the All-Star Game next year when this is how you perform afterwards, you can think again. Because I don’t know about you but I was under the impression that the Boston Red Sox were a good baseball team. Perhaps you’d heard otherwise. Perhaps you think it’s acceptable to lose the occasional series to the Royals. WELL I AM HERE TO TELL YOU OTHERWISE, SIRS. That is not okay. That is never okay. There is a reason the Royals are the butt of most MLB jokes. It is because they are bad. They are bad at baseball. They willingly employ someone named “Gobble.” You are supposed to beat a team like that mercilessly. And you did not. And that is NOT OKAY. And Thursday night’s game was likewise unacceptable. I don’t know if Matsuzaka has been peeing in your Cornflakes or putting itching powder in your five-toe socks or whatever but you REALLY need to start scoring runs for the man. I mean, come the fuck on, people.

/deep breath

Now last night was a good sign. I appreciate that. I enjoy watching AJ Pierzynski bitch because that usually means he’s unhappy and if AJ Pierzynski is unhappy, I get the warm fuzzies. I like the warm fuzzies. They’re delightful.

Not delightful? The news that David Ortiz was removed from the game because of a sore right shoulder after a SERIOUSLY misguided slide into second. You know what Papi looks like when he attempts to slide? He looks like how, when you were younger, and the neighborhood kids set up a Slip ‘n Slide on someone’s lawn, everyone would go and have fun and then the neighborhood fat kid would be the last one down and there wouldn’t be any water left and he’d do a belly flop and then kind of stick there at the end. He’s kind of like that kid. Now, I’m not calling David Ortiz fat, far from it. I’m just suggesting that perhaps the man could work on his sliding technique. Jim Rice on Extra Innings made reference to the fact that “God gave you that big ol’ butt, you gotta use that for sliding. You gotta get down there on your rear.” And when a man in a pimp suit is telling you to “use your rear” I’m thinking you don’t argue.

However, apparently we’re getting game breaking hits from the likes of Julio Lugo now so who knows what to think? Up is down! Left is right! Yankees is love! Madness. Oh, and a friendly noogie to the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. Thanks, guys, that was helpful.

Um, and, um, Tiki Barber was taking batting practice in a Red Sox uniform. Um, YES, PLEASE. Rowr. First person to email me pictures of that gets my undying love and devotion because, yum.

*Per Tito, whom I love unconditionally.

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No Way That Just Happened

I mean, seriously, WHAT? I’m hallucinating because of the fact that I’m a wee bit hungover, there’s no running water in my apartment and I’ve had way too much coffee, right? No way the Sox just dropped a series to the Mighty Kansas City Royals. That just…didn’t happen.

Because if it did, I will make like that dude in the picture above and start spearing people with my…horns? Antlers? Fish hook? Anyway, NOT GOOD, gentlemen. Not good at all.

The last thing you want to be doing right now is pissing me off, boys. I am a woman possessed. When Julio Lugo got his double last night, my father called to give me shit (as he is wont to do) and I answered the phone by saying, “I am ON THE EDGE and I was debating whether or not to drink myself into a stupor tonight. But now that Julio Lugo’s getting RBIs, I’m sticking a straw in the bottle because it’s clearly my last night on earth.”

However, sadly (or not, depending on the level of your hangover) it was not to be. And we all awoke this morning with the bitter taste of a series loss to the freakin’ Royals in our mouths. Oh, and the Yankees won. Because that’s how things work around here, right?

Now, the White Sox are in town. AJ Pierzynski, owner of the Most Punchable Face in Baseball (sorry, Red, I’d punch AJ over Shea Hillenbrand any day) is still employed by said Pale Hose. If y’all can’t get fired up to kick some Southside ass, I just don’t know what to tell you. Except to say “horns,” “scimitars,” “swords” and all that. For serious, boys, I am not fucking around.

Also, thanks to Red for the pimp today, though full disclosure, I was emailed the photo by Luna from Respect the Tek!

Additionally, it has come to my attention that people are not entirely happy with the way I’ve been posting photos. Honestly, I am not trying to fuck anyone over. But I get the pictures I post from Google. It’s not always easy to tell where they come from. If I’ve posted a picture of yours and didn’t give credit, please, email me (link’s on the sidebar) and I will give credit immediately. I’m all about the credit here. It’s not done maliciously. To that end, the picture of Kason Gabbard I used a couple of days ago was evidently taken by Kelly. Error corrected.

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