Al's Ramblings

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

(11/30/2010 10:34:00 PM) - Al

Steve Buyer is my hero.

It should be noted that some GOP'ers voted not to ban earmarks today as well. I'm sure they just hope to get some pork back in their home districts, but wasteful spending is wasteful spending. It's difficult to look the public, who just completed a referendum on spending money like drunken sailors, in the eye and claim you're doing what you can when you refuse to end throwing a few million dollars at every pet project that comes along in your own area.

A million here, a million there...

11/30/2010 10:34:00 PM

(11/30/2010 10:28:00 PM) - Al

I blame climate change.

11/30/2010 10:28:00 PM

(11/30/2010 06:27:00 PM) - Al

Grant Balfour has declined an offer of arbitration from the Rays.

Balfour is a Type A free agent and could really struggle to find a suitor despite the excellent 2.28 ERA, 1.08 WHIP and 9.1 K/9 that he posted over 55 1/3 innings for the Rays this year. If he does find a deal elsewhere, he will net Tampa Bay a compensatory first round draft pick.--Rotoworld

He will have little trouble finding a suitor, and will net TB a pick between the 1st and 2nd round for sure. Also, the signing team will have to surrender their 1st or 2nd round pick, or possibly a lower one, if they sign more than one Type A.

11/30/2010 06:27:00 PM

(11/30/2010 03:50:00 PM) - Al

Carter tells us the next two years will be better.

With Jimmy's track record, Obama should be very worried.

It's just mind-boggling that Carter still thinks his opinion is remotely relevant.

11/30/2010 03:50:00 PM

(11/30/2010 03:46:00 PM) - Al

Cardinals acquired INF Ryan Theriot from the Dodgers for RHP Blake Hawksworth.

Theriot was a near lock to be non-tendered by the Dodgers on Thursday, but it appears the Cardinals didn't want to take the chance of losing him to another team. Theriot, who turns 31 in December, earned $2.6 million this past season while batting .270/.321/.312 with two homers, 29 RBI and 20 stolen bases with the Cubs and Dodgers. Theriot gives the Cardinals some versatility for their middle infield, though he will likely slot in at second base.--Rotoworld

Nice pickup by the Cards, as Theriot may be a slight dropoff defensively, but is far from the black hole with the bat Ryan is.

Schumaker would be a nice fit with the Crew on the bench, but he would be for almost any team. He'll look for a team that he can at least have a platoon job, and since he can play 2B or OF, I would guess he'll find one.

11/30/2010 03:46:00 PM

Monday, November 29, 2010

(11/29/2010 11:15:00 PM) - Al

Oscar hosts named.

1. I would never watch, but have no idea who the fella is. Hathaway was in Princess Diaries, ans was engaged to a white collar criminal. Not exactly enticing me to view, if I did have marginal interest.

2. Gee, who would have guessed they would choose incredibly thin and handsome hosts?

11/29/2010 11:15:00 PM

(11/29/2010 11:10:00 PM) - Al

Sell gift cards you have no use for.

I heard once that an incredible amount of restaurant gift cards go unused, because people buy them for others, but buy them to places the buyer likes. Many food places are offering $5 or $10 gift cards more than you purchase, because of the above reason, and for the float benefits (money now, may not provide food for months/years/ever).

11/29/2010 11:10:00 PM

(11/29/2010 09:30:00 PM) - Al

Presuming Prince leaves in the next year, do you the Brewers making a similar deal with Ryan Braun as Tulo got from the Rockies?


I don't see a lot of potential savings for COL, the only benefit is locking up a very good player. However, will he still be a SS then? If he has to move to 3B, or even 1B/OF, he'll have to hit even more to make him worth that kind of money. Add in injury concerns and natural decline, guaranteeing a guy $18-20M per a decade down the road, when Troy is 35 and me, that's as bad a deal as Ryan Howard's bloated behemoth of an agreement.

To compare, Braun signed for $45M total...his final year of arby, plus his first two years as a free agent could have easily been $20M payouts each year. To say if he remains healthy, the Crew is getting about a 40% discount seems fair. Granted, we don't know what inflation will bring, but I sure don't see much downside for Tulo.

11/29/2010 09:30:00 PM

(11/29/2010 07:27:00 PM) - Al

Hinske deciding between one-year offers from the Braves and Brewers.

I wouldn't be bothered with a 2y/$3M deal, as Eric would have to fall off a monstrous cliff to not be worth $1.5M in '12.

11/29/2010 07:27:00 PM

(11/29/2010 07:08:00 PM) - Al

Adam answers questions, from casuals. It hurts my head reading them.

11/29/2010 07:08:00 PM

(11/29/2010 05:13:00 PM) - Al

Maybe I'm missing something here, but if you were a music festival, why would you choose to not open on a holiday which most everyone will have a day off work?

11/29/2010 05:13:00 PM

(11/29/2010 04:56:00 PM) - Al

Why isn't Wikileaks being treated as a terrorist organization?--Jeffrey Ross

Palin said the same thing yesterday. There's two things in play here, one, how does this happen, and two, why is no one mentioning the obvious...going after these bums (people have been shot for treason for far less in war time) and shutting down their computer access. I can't imagine an ally of the USA not getting on board with information that is sensitive and illegally gathered.

My goodness, they were shutting down websites last week for inane, minor stuff. Is this just an example of how soft on terror they are? That foreign policy is "beneath" them? Or, are they just unsure how to proceed.

It kind of galls me no one seems the least bit upset about it. You know, when you're the only remaining superpower, you can pretty much wipe these vermin out, unless they're hiding in the mountains of Pakistan. Go get 'em.

11/29/2010 04:56:00 PM

(11/29/2010 04:28:00 PM) - Al

Tom H looks at who'll be offered arby and who may not. I agree with him on each, as much as I hate to say that. I would offer CV and not Coffey.

I'm on the fence on Inglett, but will say this...if Weeks is still around, I would not offer Joe. He did a fine job, but is not worth $1Mish unless his probable role includes at least platooning somewhere. He's a nice 2B/LF/RF reserve, and a solid PH. You can find a guy like that, with power, for $1M. If he could play SS or CF, I'd probably offer him, but he can't.

11/29/2010 04:28:00 PM

(11/29/2010 04:20:00 PM) - Al

Uribe, 2010----.310/.440, 750 OPS
Uribe, career--.300/.431, 731 OPS
Average SS,'10-.318/.372, 690 OPS

He is a decent fielder, +10 UZR/150 at 2B, and +3 UZR/150 at SS, but it's difficult for me to believe position average production is worth anywhere near $7M per.

11/29/2010 04:20:00 PM

(11/29/2010 04:15:00 PM) - Al

I'm with Gleeman here...Uribe's 3y/$21M deal is the early leader for worst contract handed out...and Joaquin Benoit signed for 3y/$16.5M already.

Too much money, and too many years. I think I'll be typing that a lot.

11/29/2010 04:15:00 PM

(11/29/2010 11:36:00 AM) - Al

Do as I say, not as I do.

No truth to the rumor Bono's clothes are made out of baby seals, however.

11/29/2010 11:36:00 AM

(11/29/2010 11:19:00 AM) - Al

Golly, you won't see much more love on the internet than we're seeing for Leslie Nielsen today. For whatever reason, the sad and angry dramas always tend to sweep the awards, but the comedies, no matter how silly, are recalled more fondly.

The Zucker brothers have to be in tears today, as their words are all over the web, as people rattle off their favorite Nielsen line. Almost all of them were written by the Zuckers, in the Airplane and Naked gun series.

You never know how the public will react to a death. However, the fact that Nielsen's passing has spawned a massive amount of corny one-liners to be said out loud has to be looked at as a positive. I don't know who owns the rights to his films (I saw parts of Airplane on AMC a while back), but you get the feeling they will be in heavy rotation soon.

11/29/2010 11:19:00 AM

(11/29/2010 10:34:00 AM) - Al

The Carter comparisons are multiplying, though I doubt the administration realizes just how much of a negative that is.

11/29/2010 10:34:00 AM

Sunday, November 28, 2010

(11/28/2010 10:02:00 PM) - Al

Leslie Nielsen passes away.

He will long be remembered for his work on Zucker Brothers' work, such as Airplane, Naked Gun, and Police Squad.

Ramblings will long miss Mr. Nielsen.

Shoulda been Nordberg--Gleeman


11/28/2010 10:02:00 PM

(11/28/2010 09:02:00 PM) - Al

John Stossel looks at how New York City is "protecting" consumers by making it impossible to find a taxi or pharmacist.

It's a very liberal city, and they don't understand the free market at all. Painful.

11/28/2010 09:02:00 PM

(11/28/2010 08:09:00 PM) - Al

Dear God, it's me Dukes. Look, give us Leslie Nielsen back and you can take Perez Hilton. I think I speak for all of us. Thanks in advance.--Chad Dukes

Heh. I'll second and third that.

11/28/2010 08:09:00 PM

(11/28/2010 03:21:00 PM) - Al

I was afraid Army might get stuck playing Boise State, and likely losing by whatever score Boise State desired. Luckily, that does not seem to be the case.

11/28/2010 03:21:00 PM

(11/28/2010 03:11:00 PM) - Al

I'm sure many teams, including MIL, would have jumped at this deal for Vazquez, but never had a chance, as PR is nowhere near WI.

11/28/2010 03:11:00 PM

(11/28/2010 03:06:00 PM) - Al

Cars are being made to help the passengers survive crashes, though many still do not.

Almost all fatalities are in accidents when the car is going over 40 mph, though most accidents are when the speed is under 40. You could all but eliminate traffic deaths by instituting, and heavily enforcing a 40 mph speed limit...but in the USA, with everything so spread out (Germany is about the size size as Wisconsin), it probably is not feasible.

11/28/2010 03:06:00 PM

(11/28/2010 01:01:00 PM) - Al

I was hoping the Crew would make an offer for Matt G, formerly of the Twins, if Prince is indeed gone and he would take a 1-2 year deal. Looks like Theo is on that horse.

11/28/2010 01:01:00 PM

(11/28/2010 11:35:00 AM) - Al

Not paying rent/mortgage for 16-20 months is also financially allows folks to pay down other bills, and/or build up a nest egg for the inevitable, as you need to keep the credit you have, because you won't be able to get more.

I know people that have done bankruptcy twice, and seem to be doing very well now. I suppose it's easier the second time, as the second time, it's just a financial thing, while the first there's some embarrassment involved.

11/28/2010 11:35:00 AM

Saturday, November 27, 2010

(11/27/2010 08:44:00 PM) - Al

Josh Gasser is only a Badger because Diamond Taylor got arrested, and because Vander Blue went to Marquette.

11/27/2010 08:44:00 PM

(11/27/2010 08:26:00 PM) - Al

An in-depth look at how the Orioles prep for the Rule 5 draft.

And from me, the most likely names you'll hear taken by the Crew, if they make a selection. All are RHP's, and all throw hard. Rice is only 6 feet tall, which realistically means it is likely he's 5-10/11, so I doubt if he'll be the one...though considering he throws up to 95, his lack of height is likely why BOS thinks he may sneak through.

Anuery Rodriguez--Part of the loaded Rays' system, has performed admirably in AA and AAA despite being young for the level. Still just 22, and a young 22 at that, as Latinos often develop a bit slower due to the cultural adjustment, he'd be my #1 choice.

Ramon Delgado--24 and has not advanced past AA, but he has more K's than walks and hits combined. A sub 3 ERA every season since '08, and under 2 at both levels last year.

Wynn Pelzer--Acquired by the Orioles when they dealt Tejada to SD, he's 24 and K's a man an inning. A bit raw, but potential is there. Mentioned on every single Rule list recap I saw.

Jason Rice--Only 6 feet, but 11 K/9 in A+/AA, and you can't teach velocity. Will be 25 next May, so a bit behind his peers.

Adam Ottavino--rated as 4th best prospect in the Cards' system last year by BA. Just turned 25, might well have a few years of effective rotation work in him.

These are in the order to which I would rank them...Rule 5 picks are usually based on ceiling, as there are probably several dozen guys who could fit in toward the back of the bullpen and put up a 4ish ERA. That's why middle relievers rarely get big money.

11/27/2010 08:26:00 PM

(11/27/2010 08:18:00 PM) - Al

The Bucks have six players out tonight, and Chris Douglas-Roberts is dressed for the first time this season.

Bogut, Gooden, Maggette, Delfino, and of course, Hobson, and Redd all injured. They have more players in suits on the bench than they do coaches.:)

For those of you interested, the game is on, with a female color, woman, commentator, as it is Charlotte's feed.

11/27/2010 08:18:00 PM

(11/27/2010 04:49:00 PM) - Al

Ann also points out that Bush was unpopular as well. The difference was, those complainers did not organize nearly as successfully as the tea party folks, and that none of them were called "racists"...they were just ignored, because they just faded away.

For the most part, that's exactly what has happened to the Obama supporters as well.

11/27/2010 04:49:00 PM

(11/27/2010 04:45:00 PM) - Al

I believe Ann is none too subtle in her disgust at how "trashy" UW football fans are.

I'm sure they cleaned it up just a few minutes later.

11/27/2010 04:45:00 PM

(11/27/2010 04:31:00 PM) - Al

This seems like a group that's ready to quit...sadly, so is the US led coalition, next July, says Obama.

11/27/2010 04:31:00 PM

(11/27/2010 04:01:00 PM) - Al

I barely watch college football, but it's amazing how many Badgers' fans think they'll play Stanford in the Rose Bowl. If things go as expected, they will play TCU, barring an upset to Oregon, Auburn, or TCU in their final games.

11/27/2010 04:01:00 PM

(11/27/2010 12:12:00 PM) - Al

Yet another terror plot foiled by the FBI.

And you know, I don't even mind if they illegally listened to their cell phone conversations.

11/27/2010 12:12:00 PM

(11/27/2010 12:07:00 PM) - Al

The real irony is, despite a presidency that history will look at as historically awful, Carter continues to criticize others. It's like me saying, "Well, to stay skinny..."

11/27/2010 12:07:00 PM

(11/27/2010 11:52:00 AM) - Al

Global warming is just a ruse for "spreading the wealth around."

I wish someone would just have the guts to admit Karl Marx is their hero, and go with it. These elaborate hoaxes are too hard to read while keeping a straight face.

11/27/2010 11:52:00 AM

(11/27/2010 12:31:00 AM) - Al

I've had some pain in my left bicep, when I lift it above my head especially, for a couple weeks now. It usually only hurts when I put on a shirt or coat, so I don't think about it much. Tonight, I googled it.

Note how many people have the same thing, and how few have found a cause. This may be the world's least figured out injury.

11/27/2010 12:31:00 AM

Friday, November 26, 2010

(11/26/2010 10:31:00 PM) - Al

Rio sounds like a perfect place for the world cup and the Olympics, doesn't it?

11/26/2010 10:31:00 PM

(11/26/2010 08:40:00 PM) - Al

Friend of Ramblings and frequent e-mailer Harold points out the obvious double standard that exists.

Perez Hilton, who I'd refer to as a scumbag, but I wouldn't want to offend bags of scum, got all teary earlier this year when he began his anti-bullying stance...after years of building a multi-million dollar brand and website based solely on being a bully, picking on young actresses for weighing over 106 pounds, on taking a bad picture, for being something other than extremely far-left, and in the case of Carrie Prejean, daring to have the same stance on gay marriage as about 2/3rd's of the country, including President Obama...the bitch.

11/26/2010 08:40:00 PM

(11/26/2010 07:22:00 PM) - Al

Canada now putting the US to shame in foreign policy.

I think we may have hit a new low. I know it is not a priority, but c'mon.

11/26/2010 07:22:00 PM

(11/26/2010 06:13:00 PM) - Al

Yet another miscalculation by the administration...closely guarding and hiding the evidence after the president suffered a small cut while playing buckets.

A picture of a sligtly beat-up Obama would do wonders for his image, he's roundly looked at as a preppy from the Ivy League whose entire work history consists of checks from a variety of public entities. Showing him looking forlornly out of a window, tissue to his face, while the family wanders outside in a photo-op to accept delivery of their Xmas tree, is pathetic.

Imagine W in the same situation. He'd walk out, proudly showing off his injury, step right up to the press and say, "Took an elbow in the face. Musta been a Democrat." As the, ahem, slightly to the left media chuckled softly, he'd add, "You should see him now," and go back into the residence...another crisis averted.

Now, the question is, when will The One next show himself to the common folk? And, it will be a story until he does. When you're afraid to deal with silly stuff like that, you can imagine the panic every time a major decision comes up. This is why an immediate reaction/statement is nonexistent; let's do a poll and see what the public, who is so stupid they don't understand how intelligent our policy actually is, feels about it before we say anything.

11/26/2010 06:13:00 PM

(11/26/2010 06:07:00 PM) - Al

It should be on the news when Wille Nelson does not arrested for drug possession.

Mr. Nelson, maybe you should consider paying your back taxes before feeding your habit. Nothing is sadder than to see an elderly man still using a frat boy's drug. Graduate to the grown-up stuff, Bill.

11/26/2010 06:07:00 PM

(11/26/2010 05:54:00 PM) - Al

I decided to order Domino's tonight (all on my own, it had nothing to do with the Rambling wife saying, "I ain't making anything.")

We decided to get two specialties to share, the Philly Cheesesteak and the Chicken Bacon Ranch. I've had both, and still can't decide which is better. Absolutely delicious. The Rambling son got the Wisconsin Six Cheese, and despite picking off all the lumps of Feta (not a picky eater, no, not at all), enjoyed it, and has plenty left for a meal tomorrow.

11/26/2010 05:54:00 PM

(11/26/2010 04:48:00 PM) - Al

Battle-weary Bay State Democrats are getting squeezed by U.S. Sen. John F. Kerry this Christmas, as the nation’s richest senator puts the arm on cash-strapped party donors to fill his campaign war chest — even though he’s not up for re-election for another four years.

“I think people feel very tapped-out,” said Phil Johnston, former Massachusetts Democratic Party chairman, who is helping to organize Kerry’s Dec. 13 gala.--Boston Herald

In 4 years, Kerry will be 71, and still despised by most veterans for blaming his fellow service members for atrocities that are not on record to have ever taken place.

If there's any wonder why there's a call for new blood, it's that guys who marry into money think they have a lifetime right to embarrass themselves in the Senate.

11/26/2010 04:48:00 PM

(11/26/2010 03:57:00 PM) - Al


Was it busier out in the stores this year than last? Early reports seem to indicate a busier shopping season.


The economy is better than last year, so I have little doubt more will be purchased. The only ones who don't think it is are the conspiracy nuts who don't believe government data...if it was not true, it would always be good news.

I'd guess brick and mortar sales will be flat, with online up 4-5%, for a total gain of 1-2%. Retailers have learned that tricks and marketing gimmicks are wastes of time, to gain sales, they need to slash margins, or simply use the advertised items are loss leaders and make it up elsewhere.

Back when I worked for Toys R Us, they just started participating in the Black Friday wars. The first couple years, they put out an ad, had tiny markdowns on items they had a lot of stock on, and wondered why no one came. They were totally clueless. Then, they did stuff like putting popular $24.99 merch on sale for $7.99...and they'd be out of stock 5 minutes after they opened. Now, I assume they have a buyer specifically for that day, or overseeing others, all year long. Also, we've read stores being far smarter...continuing the sale prices on "doorbuster" items if they still have them in stock, for example. One of the Rambling wife's friends got a $298 laptop for $198 at WM this AM because they either handed her the wrong ticket, or gave out too many tickets for the $198 one. Retailers are working with vendors and distributors to "create" specials...they make one time buys cheap, clear out the inventory and liquidate a possible mistake or misjudgment, and move on. TRU used to buy a product for $4.50, price it at $9.99 and when it didn't sell, mark it down to $7.98, and leave it at that forever. When a proactive store would send a note to the buyer and ask for another markdown, you'd get one of two responses.

1. Never hear back (by far the most common, as nothing irritates a buyer more than to be reminded of an error by a stupid store).

2. They'd write back and say they had no more "markdown budget" left for the quarter/year, and they could not do anything.

Now, a company can "find the right price," send out all its product in the warehouse to the stores, and make it $3 as a "doorbuster"...and amazingly, people will make a special trip to the store just to buy that previously ignored item. Sure you're losing money on each one, but you're turning a buying mistake into cash, cleaning up the store, and increasing traffic...many people will buy other stuff after making the trip to buy that $3 special.

Those that have not wised up have probably gone out of business by now, as the market place has little patience for poorly run companies during a downturn. That's how the market works, and fiddling with that simply encourages bad business to continue "doing what we've always done."

So, with things slightly better, and retailers figuring it out more and more, I think we'll see a solid Xmas season. Deep discounts the last couple weeks prior to Xmas, and even deeper the week after...I think 70%...maybe even 75-80% will be standard, as I saw 60-65% for Black Friday, especially on high margin categories like clothing, jewelery, and the like.

Seriously, I got an e-mail from the Bucks this morning...60% off for one of four select games...and get by buying those cheap seats, get free tickets to the Pacers game (boy, those must be flying off the shelf) in a couple weeks. Even they have learned, an empty seat is a wasted opportunity to take in concession and souvenir sales...and the best chance to promote your product is to have people experiencing your product.

11/26/2010 03:57:00 PM

(11/26/2010 03:16:00 PM) - Al

According to's Jon Heyman, Jon Garland's contract with the Dodgers is a one-year, $5 million deal that includes an option for 2012.

Garland's option will vest if he reaches a high innings total next season. He turned in a 3.47 ERA and 1.32 WHIP over 200 frames for the Padres in 2010 with 136 strikeouts against 87 walks. Those numbers might have been helped by the pitching-friendly confines of Petco Park, but he's still an effective innings eater and should do well at the back of the Dodgers' rotation.--Rotoworld

That's by far the best contract I've seen this offseason. Garland is a durable innings-eater who should thrive in pitcher friendly Dodgers Stadium as he did in SD.

UPDATE: Garland gave LA a discount. Given he has chosen to play in Southern Cal the past two seasons as a FA, he is choosing that over money, which is his right, of course.

11/26/2010 03:16:00 PM

(11/26/2010 01:13:00 PM) - Al

The Twins have now gone to the Far East to seemingly avoid making a 1y/$6M commitment to JJ Hardy.

They should be able to deal Hardy, and are said to want a SS who is fleeter of foot. I would also put forth the notion after two down years and a career of being injury prone, they simply don't like the way he projects out as he gets older.

There are not 30 SS's better than JJ, probably not 15-20 even, but some teams won't be able to afford him, and some, like the Crew, have a youngster in place, or have a vet in place with big money owed. Still, BAL is known to like him, and he'd be a huge upgrade over what they had there in '10.

11/26/2010 01:13:00 PM

(11/26/2010 12:26:00 PM) - Al

I don't care how great the deals are, I think "Black Friday" is a stupid tradition.--Jon Brockman

I feel the same way, and I don't make six figures. That said, I spent $30 at WM last night, and got $90 worth of merch. Then I came home and spent $220 on, and got $450. For many of us, that's as valuable of a way to spend our time as there is.

11/26/2010 12:26:00 PM

(11/26/2010 12:22:00 PM) - Al

The Orioles, Nationals, A’s, Brewers and Pirates are also looking to spend this offseason.--Jayson Stark

That's one of those things that isn't really true, but will go unchallenged. A better way to put it is, the Brewers have payroll space available.

11/26/2010 12:22:00 PM

(11/26/2010 03:50:00 AM) - Al

I believe the Badgers are on ESPN (or ESPN2) at noon today. FYI.

I'm setting my alarm.:)

11/26/2010 03:50:00 AM

(11/26/2010 03:48:00 AM) - Al

I'm too tired to go back out. See you tomorrow, online acquaintances.

11/26/2010 03:48:00 AM

(11/26/2010 03:42:00 AM) - Al


What was the longest lines for at your Wal Mart? We just got home from there too.


The $198 laptop, by far. 75-100 people just after midnight.

11/26/2010 03:42:00 AM

(11/26/2010 02:49:00 AM) - Al

For the second year in a row, I ventured out to the Evil Empire to shop their Black Friday deals. Sadly, while others were waiting in line for laptops and the like, I was there to pick up housewares ($1.33 towels, golly). While they had the small slow cookers for $3 and PJ's for the Rambling son, the towels cardboard display was empty.

They did have the coffeemaker so the Rambling wife can have her hot coffee waiting for her when she awakens. This seems silly to me, but she tells me it will improve her quality of life almost enough to tolerate me. Hence, you do what you can.

This year, the deals started at midnight, and by the time I left about 1:45, the place was empty, just 1-2 people at each checkout. Some of the big ticket items don't go on sale 'til 5, so people are there waiting in line for them as I type. I came home and jumped online, getting a couple things, as went live at 2:15. Free shipping right to your home on many items. Tough to beat that.

There are many places opening at 3 and 4, but I can't bring myself to go back out. As I waited in line about an hour at WM, I could not help but notice how none of the customers looked tired at all, but all the associates looked like they were working at 1AM with no end in sight. The gal at the register said she was there 'til 9AM. Ouch.

11/26/2010 02:49:00 AM

Thursday, November 25, 2010

(11/25/2010 10:53:00 PM) - Al

The lost message in Thanksgiving...capitalism works.

As Stossel mentions, today, that would be looked at as mean spirited and somehow offensive. There's a reason collective efforts have failed throughout history...if you don't have skin in the game, you don't care. It's just a pity this administration thinks by ignoring history it makes it less true.

11/25/2010 10:53:00 PM

(11/25/2010 07:58:00 PM) - Al

My contribution to the feast today was a butterscotch pudding pie...instant pudding poured over a graham cracker crust. Sadly, I love it, and it's the only pie the Rambling son likes. Not many facts disgust the Rambling wife more than that one.

11/25/2010 07:58:00 PM

(11/25/2010 02:29:00 PM) - Al

Watch a guy who climbs broadcast towers do his job. Warning, it might make you queasy.

11/25/2010 02:29:00 PM

(11/25/2010 01:08:00 PM) - Al

It's official, there is a website for everyting. helps you decide when the best time is to...relieve your bladder at films currently playing.

This is why we have the internet.

11/25/2010 01:08:00 PM

(11/25/2010 12:53:00 PM) - Al

Ann tells me the first nanny has told us it is ok to eat pie today.

I'm down about 25 pounds in the last 3-4 weeks, but I'm off of it 'til Saturday. The irony is, Ms. Obama, while far thinner than myself, appears to enjoy pie far more than the 4th Thursday of November.

11/25/2010 12:53:00 PM

(11/25/2010 09:11:00 AM) - Al

Angelina Jolie is plum nuts.

Granted, it was a short ride.

11/25/2010 09:11:00 AM

(11/25/2010 09:03:00 AM) - Al

What time do you (or did you) have your T-giving feast?
Noon, or close to it.
Early afternoon, between 12:30 and 2PM.
In the middle of the afternoon, between 2 and 3:30.
Late afternoon, between 3:30 and 5.
Dinner time, after 5PM. free polls

11/25/2010 09:03:00 AM

(11/25/2010 12:54:00 AM) - Al

Passing time watching the James Bond marathon until I get knocked out of this tourney...found this treasure of a week long plan to celebrate a child's birthday.

Don't forget your meds sweetheart.

11/25/2010 12:54:00 AM

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

(11/24/2010 10:34:00 PM) - Al

It is astounding that once they have their billions, garnered through extraordinary hard work and forward thinking, the mega-rich want to make it more difficult for others to do exactly the same thing.

11/24/2010 10:34:00 PM

(11/24/2010 10:25:00 PM) - Al

Attractive 23 year-old woman elected to MI House. She goes to a public college, is brunette, and talks without an Eastern accent. Before being elected, she was a...waitress.

The old media is gonna hate this one. If only she'd have gone to an Ivy League school and be an ugly, troll-like creature.

11/24/2010 10:25:00 PM

(11/24/2010 08:06:00 PM) - Al

The Rambling wife already has much of Thanksgiving prepared, sitting in crock pots in the fridge. She also has several appetizers for tomorrow evening completed. Since we are having three for dinner, only small servings of ham and turkey need be prepared. She says she intends to flip the slow cookers on low when the Rambling son wakes us at 7-7:30, let the dog out, and sleep in.

Sadly, those on the road will be wishing they had decided to do this as well.

Marrying well is indeed one of the most important things you can do.

11/24/2010 08:06:00 PM

(11/24/2010 07:43:00 PM) - Al

You know, I just don't see anywhere that it's possible to trim costs a bit.

Nope, me neither.

11/24/2010 07:43:00 PM

(11/24/2010 07:35:00 PM) - Al

On Thanksgiving Day all seated players will be served a Thanksgiving dinner table side starting at 4pm. As always, we thank you for your loyalty.--Commerce Casino

Somewhere, someone's head just exploded, because not only are they open, they're marketing for the holiday.

11/24/2010 07:35:00 PM

(11/24/2010 06:48:00 PM) - Al

Wow, that Larry Sanders might be a star in a couple years. He might be a rebounding, shot blocking machine with some experience.

11/24/2010 06:48:00 PM

(11/24/2010 06:33:00 PM) - Al

Bucks down to 10 healthy players, and their recent struggles seem to be directly traced to losing Carlos Delfino, who was important in hitting jumpers and opening up the paint, which opposing teams have been clogging of late, and challenging the Bucks to hit from the outside.

11/24/2010 06:33:00 PM

(11/24/2010 05:54:00 PM) - Al

The TV was on CBS, and the remote was clear over there, so I watched the evening news. There was a guy subbing for the leggy Ms. Couric (who is a trained, skilled journalist, and not just a pretty face, mind you), who told me:

--Most people opted out of the person sternly told the lady out front suggesting they opt-out that if there was a terror incident, she'd be the first one to complain about it. I smiled and silently agreed. They also noted a few travelers thanked the TSA workers.

--They talked about the fact migrant farm workers do not make much money. As unskilled workers, I certainly do not expect them to be well compensated. Stories like this always kind of make me wonder if the person who thought of this piece truly believe in communism, or if they just don't understand simple supply and demand.

--Harry Smith asks why we have people that are hungry in the USA, as we are a wealthy nation. Again, I get it, some folks simply throw away their money on wine, women, and song. Others on drugs, lottery tickets, or other foolish endeavors (says the online poker player, but of course, I take advantage of the bad players, as most break-even or better folks do, but hence, I digress, as poker is a game of skill). Others have lost their job, or maybe suffered health problems so they can't work.

The odd thing to me is, some people act like there's not always going to be some folks that simply cannot keep up, because of a short-term run of bad luck or a long-term run of mind-altering substances or other poor life decisions.Remember back in high school? There were always the students, who, well, tried to beat the system, did not do homework, got in trouble, missed days, skipped know, eventually, these clowns grow up, and the result is often as you'd expect. Our lower class is comparable to middle-upper class in many parts of the world, which is conveniently forgotten.

Trust me, the Rambling family is not bathing in Perrier, but we are immensely thankful to be among the fortunate to be living in the greatest country in the history of the world.

11/24/2010 05:54:00 PM

(11/24/2010 03:46:00 PM) - Al

Just got an update, and it appears I was wrong about Brandon Boggs still having an option. I'm told he has burned all three.--Adam M

No big deal, though an option is always preferable.

11/24/2010 03:46:00 PM

(11/24/2010 02:59:00 PM) - Al

For those of you that are in charge of the remotes tomorrow, the Badgers basketball team plays Manhattan at 1PM on ESPN2.

I won't go into a rant here about it sure beats watching the Lions play, but it is sure sad the NFL chooses to continue trotting "traditional" teams out every single Thanksgiving...silly me, I'd look at it as an opportunity to bring casual fans into the sport...for example, wouldn't have New England/Indianapolis have been a safe pick to highlight the holiday back in preseason. They might want to make it a "flex" day, as the Vikings would have been a "safe" choice as well, but you get the idea...picking teams out of a hat would be better than sticking with the Lions and Cowboys.

Whenever the answer to a question is, "That's the way we've always done it," it's probably time to change things up a bit. Tradition is just a kind word for doing the same, tired, old thing, over and over.

{I know it'd be tough changing the day of a game for ticket holders, so that may not work.}

11/24/2010 02:59:00 PM

(11/24/2010 02:33:00 PM) - Al

With the holidays coming up, I just thought I'd share the website of a former coworker of mine from many years ago. If you can imagine it, he can build it. He lives in the Eau Claire area, but you can contact him if you would like something created for you, and I'm sure you can work something out.

11/24/2010 02:33:00 PM

(11/24/2010 01:48:00 PM) - Al

Brewers sign Brandon Boggs, and add him to the 40...he'll probably be taken off soon when they need room, but he'll have to clear waivers. Very good AAA numbers, not just a punch and judy hitter, nice pop, switch-hitter, can play all three OF spots. Penciled in as a 5th OF candidate, I assume.

I liked Boggs three months ago, and still do. Success in AAA, good athlete, still in his prime. Much like Dickerson, he fills a niche on the bench, but still has the possibility of being a stopgap, a platoon guy, or even a middling everyday player at some point (hey, Tony Gwynn Jr. was SD's CF for much of 2010, and they just missed the playoffs). If he was 25, he'd be in high demand, but at 28, he's treated as damaged goods, though he is not. These are the types of moves smart teams make to save money, as Boggs will be pre-arby until 2014.

A bench of Counsell, Hinske, Dickerson, and Boggs may well be the hope, though that's a couple signings away.

I love Gomez and Inglett, but both are arby eligible, and one has to wonder if Doug feels they are worth $1-2M each. Sometimes, players simply price their way out of Milwaukee, especially reserves and middle relievers (see Coffey, Todd).

11/24/2010 01:48:00 PM

(11/24/2010 01:45:00 PM) - Al

By far the most requested link in Ramblings' history...a Thanksgiving story about those who keep us safe and sometimes do not make it home, and those left to mourn their passing.

11/24/2010 01:45:00 PM

(11/24/2010 01:14:00 PM) - Al

There is no end to the gratitude we must feel towards the men and women fighting this war, and their families. As Thanksgiving approaches, our number one task is to be thankful we still have brave men and women ready to sacrifice all for our lazy fat selves and our freedoms. Let us not use that freedom to betray their sacrifice.--Ben Stein, 2005

Allow me to echo Ben's thoughts. There is evil in the world, and there are incredible people who work for a wage that should be far higher that chase evil, often far away from their family and in dangerous circumstances.

On this day, I am most thankful to be defended by the United States military.

Note: I just copied and pasted this from last Thanksgiving, and it's still as true today. I'm sure many people are unhappy that the weather is not cooperating with their travels (we were planning on staying home anyway), and never think a thing about those who are serving spending their holiday thousands of miles from home, and in many cases, not in the safest of circumstances.

11/24/2010 01:14:00 PM

(11/24/2010 01:03:00 PM) - Al

Most of all, I'm glad I'm not sharing Thanksgiving with the woman who sent this e-mail/letter to everyone.

I'd like to walk in, kick her in the shin, and then go eat at home...and I don't even know her.

11/24/2010 01:03:00 PM

(11/24/2010 12:51:00 PM) - Al

I did not mind the Victor Martinez signing nearly as much until I see they want him to DH much of the time. $12-14M for a guy going to DH 100 games and catch 50 seems like they overpaid...of course, every contract we see is for too much and for too long. 'Tis the world we live in.

11/24/2010 12:51:00 PM

(11/24/2010 09:20:00 AM) - Al

Without fail, every single year, some retailer runs an ad for Black Friday showing yuppie women exercising to supposedly get in better shape for the Black Friday sales. It rings a bell for me because Toys R Us, where I was employed at the time, ran similar ads back in 1996, I think, to promote the clearance sale they had for the entire summer. They went over badly then, and today, why in the world marketing has not advanced well past such a tired, ridiculous idea is beyond me.

Not to mention that, while the economy is better, but stagnant, the idea of seeing a wealthy, very thin Caucasian, in designer workout duds, is probably not going to appeal to a lot of folks looking to stretch a somewhat limited budget.

11/24/2010 09:20:00 AM

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

(11/23/2010 08:55:00 PM) - Al

I know some clown is going to suggest we have a monarchy for the "stimulus" benefits.

11/23/2010 08:55:00 PM

(11/23/2010 07:32:00 PM) - Al

What people get upset about.

These folks are so far from a life, they can't even see a life from where they are.

11/23/2010 07:32:00 PM

(11/23/2010 07:27:00 PM) - Al

While Hardball Times is tough to read when Craig gets on one of "I cannot believe this is going on in America" rants, the NBA page is impossible to read almost daily.

Check this out...Kobe is wearing green shoes on Xmas. Not only is this, well, unimportant to damn near all of us, the mock indignation...which I do not think is actually mock, is immeasurable. Shut up and report some news.

11/23/2010 07:27:00 PM

(11/23/2010 07:08:00 PM) - Al

New Pirates manager Clint Hurdle wanted Jerry Narron to be his bench coach, according to a major-league source, but Narron went to the Brewers instead.--Fox

Jerry Narron's suddenly as popular as the blonde cheerleader who filled out over the summer.

11/23/2010 07:08:00 PM

(11/23/2010 06:55:00 PM) - Al

Hoffman agrees to decline arby to get Brewers an extra draft pick.

Trevor is a class act. Also, add this to the fact they have an extra 1st round choice because Dylan Covey has no use for money, they might well go aggressively after a Type A free agent, because they can afford to lose a 2nd round pick now.

11/23/2010 06:55:00 PM

(11/23/2010 06:52:00 PM) - Al

Move On says Obama is not liberal enough...but they do agree he lied a lot on the campaign trail.

What's that book Dave Horowitz wrote, "It's About Getting Elected, Stupid?" I'm sure McCain sleeps very well at night, and sadly, that's the only thing being honest gets you.

11/23/2010 06:52:00 PM

(11/23/2010 06:20:00 PM) - Al

Crew has offers out to Counsell, Capuano, and Hinske. If all three take them up on it, they'll only have a roster spot or two left to fill, unless they deal Prince/Rickie and then have to "backfill" a bit.

11/23/2010 06:20:00 PM

Monday, November 22, 2010

(11/22/2010 11:50:00 PM) - Al

Gore admits ethanol was a mistake.

Fast forward a decade, and change out ethanol for climate change, and friends, we can see the future.

EDIT: Others take Gore to task for being a lying, selfish dope. I admit, the fact anyone takes him seriously is a mystery for the ages. Ever since he claimed to have "created the internet," his entire life has been one charade after fib after stretching of the truth.

11/22/2010 11:50:00 PM

(11/22/2010 11:06:00 PM) - Al

FINAL UPDATE: I'm going to comment one last time, as with 99 votes in, 2/3rd's think the new standards are either fine or maybe just go a bit too far. My only concern is some yoohoo using a plane as a fuel filled missile, and I'd have no problem having my wife or son go through a safety pat-down, never mind myself (though I'm sure the female TSA gals would likely cause a commotion over who got the honor, but hence, I digress). There have been minor concerns, I still have not really heard why they felt the need to take off the boy's shirt, and if necessary, should have been done in private, and perhaps they need a bit more teaching over what to do in special cases like the fella with the bag collecting his urine. That said, until today, I thought they patted down everyone, and sent you through the scanners, today I learned you only get the pat down if you refuse the scanner...why would anyone do that, unless you were flying daily, like pilot and flight crews do? My main concern is to prevent another tragedy, and as I have said previously, if they ignore the groin, the groin of evil fellas will be loaded with weapons wrapped in gauze, or whatever. If you do not wish to fly, that is your right. {end of 11/22 update}

A day or two ago, we saw the TSA release a survey which said 80% or more thought their new security procedures are fine. I agreed, basically saying airport/airline safety was far more important than naked scans and an occasional touched groin. No offense to those who disagree, but if terrorists know they can hide stuff by their "privates," or for ladies, in their bra region, you can damn well bet that they will hide stuff there.

In the meantime, the last couple days has seen a huge amount of bipartisan statements against the new procedures, especially the patdowns. The ones I've seen/heard don't seem to really think it will increase the odds of stopping a terror suspect trying to sneak something on board. Just wondering what the consensus is:

How do you feel about the new TSA procedures?
I have no issue with them. Anything to avoid a repeat of the past.
I'm for security, but maybe these go a bit too far.
I think these measures cross the line. Isn't the metal detector enough? free polls

Just an FYI for our Chicago readers, you can only vote once.

This gent sums up my opinion perfectly.

UPDATE: I bumped this up if you have not voted. 15-15-9 thus far. I would have predicted just a tad more for the first option, maybe a 18-12-9, so it's close.

SAT UPDATE: Bumped again, 26-17-15, more along what I would have predicted. Vote if you have not (it won't let you if you already have).

11/22/2010 11:06:00 PM

(11/22/2010 10:19:00 PM) - Al

The Rambling wife reports Wal Mart has both Stove Top and Betty Crocker boxes of instant potatoes for 75 cents. She doesn't think it's half price (she says the store brand of each was $1), but it's a heckuva deal. She bought a half-dozen of each, and is now thinking she under purchased.

I shudder for the folks who "prove a point" by paying $1.79 each at your local grocery.

11/22/2010 10:19:00 PM

(11/22/2010 08:33:00 PM) - Al

Trick play in middle school football.

Allow me to say, if I'm on the defense, I would have creamed him.

11/22/2010 08:33:00 PM

(11/22/2010 06:26:00 PM) - Al

Also on that mythical list, Jarrod Washburn, who likes MIL and Roenicke. On a minor league deal, or even a 1y/$2M big league deal, I'm fine with him. He's had plenty of success over the years, and on a short-term commitment, is a good risk. I'd love to see either he or Narveson as the 6th SP to begin the season (or Capuano, for that matter).

11/22/2010 06:26:00 PM

(11/22/2010 05:46:00 PM) - Al

Tom H mentions that the Crew has been talking to Eric Hinske and Brandon McCarthy as well, as Eric may well have a niche as a 1B/3B/LF/RF/PH as a LH bat off the bench (and as an Appleton native), and McCarthy somewhere on the pitching staff. I would not have anything against either. In fact, I would have included both on a mythical top ten list of guys most likely to sign with MIL.

11/22/2010 05:46:00 PM

(11/22/2010 05:45:00 PM) - Al

Brewers sign Zack Segovia, who was once a top Phillies' prospect before TJ surgery. He's been solid the past two years in the minors, and fits the Melvin mold for RH RP's, 6-2, 245.

11/22/2010 05:45:00 PM

Sunday, November 21, 2010

(11/21/2010 04:01:00 PM) - Al

Canada has a lot of lakes.

11/21/2010 04:01:00 PM

(11/21/2010 02:04:00 PM) - Al

Liberal site challenges Palin...and is destroyed.

11/21/2010 02:04:00 PM

(11/21/2010 01:57:00 PM) - Al

Chris Christie with a perfect story of when the idiot union tries to apologize for the other union guy sending out an e-mail telling members to pray for Christie's death...but not firing him.

We need this guy on the national stage. I'd love to hear him "negotiating" with one of those countries that harbor terror.

11/21/2010 01:57:00 PM

Saturday, November 20, 2010

(11/20/2010 02:06:00 PM) - Al

Ann bemoans that liberals think the public is stupid.

Meanwhile, this is exactly what the GOP is hoping for. The more they demean the independents that have abandoned them in the era of tax a lot and spend even more, the more likely they are to begin thinking of themselves as conservatives.

11/20/2010 02:06:00 PM

(11/20/2010 01:44:00 PM) - Al

Iowa demonstrates the open bar mentality at its finest. I'm out the door, give everybody a raise!

11/20/2010 01:44:00 PM

(11/20/2010 12:36:00 PM) - Al

In December of 2007, Leyritz drove drunk and ran a red light when he hit a vehicle driven by Fredia Ann Veitch, who was killed.

Leyritz found not guilty, which apparently means Veitch is still alive. And just in time for Thanksgiving.

What did Bill Shakespeare say, "First thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers?"

Or that old joke...what do you call 1000 dead lawyers...a good start.


11/20/2010 12:36:00 PM

(11/20/2010 12:25:00 PM) - Al

The Badgers basketball game against UNLV is on at 6 tonight on Versus. Unless you like the NHL, you might have to consult your channel directory.

11/20/2010 12:25:00 PM

(11/20/2010 11:51:00 AM) - Al

As always sweet blog. I try to figure out what the Brewers will do each off season. I have been thinking how cloudy this year is then I read the Brewers will probably hold on to Prince going into the season. Financially this is huge for the Brewers. Mark A knows it and I think they are going to go for it. Here is the projection. They do put together a package for Greinke...probably Lawrie, Jeffress and Cain and another pitching prospect. They sign Pavano. The 2010 offense and rotation of Greinke, Gallardo, Wolf, Pavano, and Capuano. Very glad I could figure it out.

Thanks Clint

1. If they do a trade with the Royals, I hope they can bring back Kaaihue, who is a OBP-laden beast offensively, though he may be slower than Prince.

2. Lawrie, Cain, and Jeffress may be almost exactly what it takes to get Greinke, but I'd sure hate to do it, as you're basically dealing 18 years of service for 2 seasons of Zach, plus probably 2 draft picks, though no one is sure the CBA will include that next time.

3. I don't think you need an extra prospect to be honest, and that's probably why I would not be able to acquire him. Heck, I'd ask for a middle reliever or a reserve position player.

4. And, it will probably be Narveson, as Cappy is a FA.

It probably would not be enough for KC, but if you could substitute Gamel for Lawrie, I'd pull the trigger. Lawrie is a dynamic young hitter, ala Braun or Prince. Thanks for the starting point, Clint.

11/20/2010 11:51:00 AM

(11/20/2010 11:22:00 AM) - Al

My roast beef is in the crock pot, along with some delicious onions. I find it strange I have supper cooking, but have not yet started on lunch (which is chicken nuggets and french fries, hard to believe the Food Network isn't pounding at my door). The Rambling son requested fettuccine (thank goodness for spell check) alfredo to go with the roast, lucky that comes in a little envelope.

Speaking of meals, I have informed the Rambling wife I will be making country gravy with Thanksgiving, even though it is not a "traditional" part of the holiday (neither is scalloped corn, which with my mom's old recipe, is delicious with any other fixins). I also saw a seafood stuffing last night on DDD, and that also looked excellent. I bet that's far more "normal" on the coast than here in flyover country. Once on The Deadliest Catch, someone remarked how good a large crab would look on the Xmas table, and I thought how strange it sounded. You are a product of what you get used to.

11/20/2010 11:22:00 AM

(11/20/2010 10:37:00 AM) - Al

Nick Stavinoha--.345/.469, 824 AAA OPS, 1400 AB's
Brendan Katin--.332/.536, 868 AAA OPS, 1200 AB's

Both these guys are in the 27-28 age range, Nick has been up and down with SL the past few years, and was just taken off their 40 man. Katin played college ball at Miami with Ryan Braun, and has been at AAA Nashville the past three years, putting up steady, if unspectacular stats. He is a power hitter, having hit 69 HR's, and supposedly is a very good corner OF defender. He will be eligible for the Rule 5 draft this year, and many fans have called for him to be added to the 40. I disagreed, saying he is a dime a dozen AAA OF. An above average AAA OF perhaps, but still.

His pop and arm may eventually lead him to a platoon or bench job in the majors, but I don't see any reason to waste a 40 man spot on him. Guys like Katin and Stavinoha are available as minor league FA's every offseason, and to be truthful, Brendan simply doesn't have a niche on the Crew, as he hits RH, just like Ryan and Corey. That's why Chris Dickerson was such a good fit, as he can play all three OF spots, and hits LH.

11/20/2010 10:37:00 AM

(11/20/2010 10:30:00 AM) - Al

Adam Ottavino taken off the 40 man by the Cardinals...ranked as their 4th best prospect last year by BA.

Just ok numbers in AAA, but he is still just 24. I don't see him making it off the 40. After checking his Fangraphs page and seeing he's 6-5, and averaged 93 with his fastball and 84 with his slider, Doug may put in a claim.

11/20/2010 10:30:00 AM

(11/20/2010 09:32:00 AM) - Al

Barrett Loux signs for $312K, a huge discount.

I'd say he's a bargain at that price. He's probably a 30% chance to be an effective major league pitcher...but the guys that get $2M are probably no more than 60% shots.

11/20/2010 09:32:00 AM

(11/20/2010 09:28:00 AM) - Al

Voting machines "found" in New York state.

Weeks after the election results should have been finalized. How long until we have to privatize the counting process because it is rampant with fraud?

11/20/2010 09:28:00 AM

(11/20/2010 07:49:00 AM) - Al

I have having internet issues this AM. Posting may be sporadic. The Rambling son acts as if I told him the ending to a mystery...having a poor internet connection is not an option in his world.

11/20/2010 07:49:00 AM

(11/20/2010 07:46:00 AM) - Al

I let the Rambling dog out at 6:35 this morning, and heard gunfire. I would assume Ramblings' contributor Robert is out in the woods as I type.

If you are hunting, be safe out there.

11/20/2010 07:46:00 AM

Friday, November 19, 2010

(11/19/2010 09:58:00 PM) - Al

Soros is obviously a racist.

11/19/2010 09:58:00 PM

(11/19/2010 09:22:00 PM) - Al

I like all three of the guys that the Pirates gave up may be a bit of a reach, but when a team like PIT start releasing guys that don't suck, it's a sign of progress.

I've talked about Duke before, he's been unlucky and adding in a mental aspect, probably frustrated playing for a bad team and a bad defensive team.

He'll probably have to settle for a minor league deal with a spring training invite somewhere.--Rotoworld

I'd give him a nice bonus and an opt-out if he's not in the majors by 6/15 or so. Duke is as likely to break out with a 4 ERA and 175 IP as half the SP's in the game.

Young is a switch-hitter with nice pop, but is a poor defender. I like him as a 5th OF, mainly a PH.

LaRoche's star has faded, but he still is not a bad choice as a 1B/2B/3B reserve. He hit pretty well in 2009 when he got 500 PA's, but never when his playing time was limited.

11/19/2010 09:22:00 PM

(11/19/2010 07:49:00 PM) - Al

Astronomers have for the first time discovered a planet in the Milky Way that came from another galaxy. The planet, which has a mass of at least 1.25 Jupiters, orbits an elderly star that was ripped from a small satellite galaxy some 6 to 9 billion years ago.

Without a doubt, climate change.

11/19/2010 07:49:00 PM

(11/19/2010 04:47:00 PM) - Al

The much discussed end zone at Wrigley, that they are now not going to use. I'm not sure if this is incredibly sad because no one noticed it until now, or incredibly sad because it's so silly, because guys do not run full speed out of the end zone very often.

If I am understanding it correctly, I guess they will turn the teams the other way once they pass the 50. The fans on one side will always be in the good seats, and vice versa.

UPDATE: Actually, after each punt, they will head the offense toward the "good" end zone. So, no choice of which goal to defend.

UPDATE 2: And while I don't want to, you know, make too much sense...why didn't they just even out the space, so there's the same amount behind each end zone?

11/19/2010 04:47:00 PM

(11/19/2010 03:58:00 PM) - Al

Hilarious video on why the "elites" all insist that we are nothing but stupid, ignorant Americans.

I can only recall the statement of good friend of Ramblings Dennis Miller, who after years of being a liberal, changed his mind post 9/11, when the message he heard from his party was, "We're not going to do anything more to protect you, but we're going to raise your taxes." Now you can add to it, we're going to put you down and call you names. Consistently, and repeatedly.

And they wonder why they lost. And just yesterday, they happily gave Nancy Pelosi the highest leadership position in the House, over former NFL QB Heath Schuler, a conservative Southern Democrat, who would have been a perfect way to show the country times have changed.

11/19/2010 03:58:00 PM

(11/19/2010 03:53:00 PM) - Al

Heh. It's funny because it's true.

11/19/2010 03:53:00 PM

(11/19/2010 03:39:00 PM) - Al

Idiot who killed boy by driving like a manaic...sues boy's parents.

Getting shot through the head is far too good for some people.

11/19/2010 03:39:00 PM

(11/19/2010 03:37:00 PM) - Al

This article just about says it all...Michelle Obamas's nanny state venture doomed to fail because of the USDA's strict nanny state rules.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to laugh and laugh and laugh.

11/19/2010 03:37:00 PM

(11/19/2010 03:32:00 PM) - Al

Yankees to offer Jeter twice as much as he's worth...because they can.

I doubt the CBA will contain many changes, as both the players and owners are making money hand over fist, but if Bud can convince folks to vote for a bit more revenue sharing and/or a higher luxury tax on payrolls well over average, it would even the playing field so NYY, BOS, and a couple others would actually feel something like this.

11/19/2010 03:32:00 PM

(11/19/2010 03:26:00 PM) - Al

Tom H recaps the Brewers in the AFL, most performed admirably. Kintzler was lit up in his first appearance, so he must have been all but perfect after that. Farris took advantage of his time in the limelight, to be certain. I'm curious to see if he is used strictly as a 2B in '11 or is bounced around some, if he has the ability to play SS/3B.

11/19/2010 03:26:00 PM

(11/19/2010 12:03:00 AM) - Al

Mark Cuban explains how DWTS voting works.

I've never watched, because dancing is stupid, and if I didn't watch to see Erin Andrews or Melissa Joan Hart scantily clad, sweating, and bouncing around stage, suffice it to say, it simply has no appeal to me.

11/19/2010 12:03:00 AM

Thursday, November 18, 2010

(11/18/2010 11:04:00 PM) - Al

Not only is the nanny state alive and well, they don't even know they're not allowed to be a nanny state in some areas.

Damn constitution.

Sadly, these alcoholic energy drinks just need a stronger lobby like the tavern leagues and wine/beer bottlers. The silliness and inconsistency here is striking and appalling.

11/18/2010 11:04:00 PM

(11/18/2010 11:00:00 PM) - Al

Gleeman with another link-o-rama, which as I always say, is one of the highlights of my week.

11/18/2010 11:00:00 PM

(11/18/2010 10:18:00 PM) - Al

Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe reports that the Brewers and Nationals are "out in front" in the sweepstakes for right-hander Carl Pavano.

In a market thin on starting pitching, Pavano is likely to take his time deciding on a team and contract. Several other clubs have already expressed interest and more will join the fray as negotiations start heating up. In other words, it's too early to target any team as the front-runner. Pavano, 34 in January, had a 3.75 ERA and 1.19 WHIP over 32 starts for the Twins in 2010.--Rotoworld

Pavano is said to be looking for "Ted Lilly money"...about 3y/$33M. I was just thinking in the shower this morning ("Gee, it sure is wet in here," thanks, I'll be here all week) that Wolf's deal, now that he's made it past the first year healthy, is probably very tempting to many's basically a 2y/$20M deal, and no FA SP of any merit is going to accept that.

It's funny, because I assumed he'd stay in MIN, and then when I saw the Lilly money remark, thought the Twins would surely pay that. Pavano may indeed be the backup to many of the teams looking at Cliff Lee, so he is unlikely to sign quickly. He's been very good his entire career, other than his time with the Yankees.

EDIT: By "very good," I meant solid, not excellent. His ERA, FIP, and xFIP are all in the low 4's for his career. He'll be 34 soon, so I'd hate to go more than 2 years, but we all know he'll get 3, if not 4. It won't be the money, it'll be the years.

11/18/2010 10:18:00 PM

(11/18/2010 11:57:00 AM) - Al

Anger is misdirected at the police, it's their job to enforce laws. Having such a micromanaging ordinance on the books is the problem here.

11/18/2010 11:57:00 AM

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

(11/17/2010 11:05:00 PM) - Al

I was informed tonight that we'll be on our own for Thanksgiving, as the Rambling in-laws have decided to go elsewhere.

I was fine with this, because at the end of the day, I'm especially thankful for days that I don't have to wear pants.

11/17/2010 11:05:00 PM

(11/17/2010 10:52:00 PM) - Al

Is Wolfley really so stupid as to not realize how difficult it is to predict any stat right on the dot?

I wonder if taking a stupidity drug is a prerequisite for working at the JS?

Not to belabor the point, but you realize, you can't hit .292 with many numbers of AB' could be .291, but one extra hit would put you at .293. To Wolfley, because of this, you are a failure.

Oof. I wonder if he's Witrado's older brother?

11/17/2010 10:52:00 PM

(11/17/2010 10:41:00 PM) - Al

SE Cupp on why Palin is so darn popular with some and despised by others:

Nothing raises the ire of cynical liberals more than a happy-go-lucky, totally unburdened, freethinking and self-assured conservative woman who has everything she wants and then some. And without anyone's help.

Read the whole thing, but it does make sense. Recall how the Dems think the government needs to control more and more, and the public just doesn't get it, because they're so stupid.

Sound familiar to the criticisms of Palin?

11/17/2010 10:41:00 PM

(11/17/2010 09:59:00 PM) - Al

Greg Oden out for year.

His promise seems likely to go unfulfilled. That's a shame, he was fun to watch.

11/17/2010 09:59:00 PM

(11/17/2010 09:51:00 PM) - Al

The same official named the Blue Jays and Brewers as two other teams that could become involved in talks for Greinke. It's believed the Brewers were on Greinke's no-trade list last year, but the pitcher hasn't yet delivered his new list to the Royals. That's expected to happen in the next few weeks.

It's believed teams like the Yankees and Red Sox would remain on Greinke's no-go list, which would limit his market. But Greinke's contract (he's scheduled to make $13.5 million each of the next two years) would make him affordable to even teams outside the biggest markets.

A Greinke deal is no certainty, because of what the Royals would need in return (and the same can be said for an Upton deal).

Like the Diamondbacks, the Royals are telling people they would need a huge return for Greinke, which people familiar with the talks take to mean Kansas City would need a major-league starter, a top minor-league prospect (probably another pitcher), and also a position player.

The Royals and Diamondbacks can ask for a ton, because neither team needs to make a trade this winter. The Royals have Greinke for two more years, and the Diamondbacks have Upton for another four.

But there are reasons for both teams to explore deals now, beyond the favorable market conditions.--CBS

Apparently, the media pressure of Milwaukee is too much for Zach.:)

Probably has heard about all the wagering about whether the Witrado clod will run into the wall painted black to look like a tunnel...again.

11/17/2010 09:51:00 PM

(11/17/2010 09:40:00 PM) - Al

Another wildcard team appears to be a sure thing, little opposition. I like that it makes the division winner important, and that it purposefully makes the wildcard round a crapshoot...well, more of a crapshoot.

11/17/2010 09:40:00 PM

(11/17/2010 09:10:00 PM) - Al

My poker site tweeted out a request for players for a $5 private tourney. Turns out, it was Wil Wheaton, and I'm at his table. He answered my question of how great Marina Sirtis (Counselor Troi) looked. Not surprisingly, he said he had a crush on her, and that she was gorgeous.

11/17/2010 09:10:00 PM

(11/17/2010 08:58:00 PM) - Al

Truth be known, I doubt the Brewers ever looked at was just a while back Doug commented on what a crapshoot FA SP is, and implied he would have no interest. I took that to mean the high priced guys who require a long commitment.

Of course, Tom H has already forgot that, and wonders if the Crew is talking to this guy or that guy.

11/17/2010 08:58:00 PM

(11/17/2010 08:26:00 PM) - Al

Last Saturday, I stopped in at the Evil Empire and I was reminded by the Rambling wife that we were out of food for the Rambling dog, who may be mighty heard of hearing, but not the least bit hard of hunger.

I spent at least 15 minutes trying to decide what to buy him, as they were out of his regular food, and they had no more in the warehouse either. I finally found a replacement that was suitable, and if I mix it with his remaining stash, it should be ok on his sensitive tummy.

It occurred to me later that if it would have been for myself or the wife, I would have grabbed the first similar product I saw and headed for the checkout.

11/17/2010 08:26:00 PM

(11/17/2010 07:12:00 PM) - Al

What's that old Howard Stern matter how gorgeous a woman is, there's some guy that's tired of sleeping with her.

Howard, meet Eva Longoria.

Brent Barry's wife? Seriously. You can fall down on a college campus and land on a more attractive woman.

11/17/2010 07:12:00 PM

(11/17/2010 07:00:00 PM) - Al

"I'm not the same man I was a year go. And that's a good thing."--Tiger Woods

Because he got caught.

Of course, maybe he just needs a rest. As Dennis Miller said, no one ever finds Jesus on prom night.

11/17/2010 07:00:00 PM

(11/17/2010 06:55:00 PM) - Al

Another day, another columnist blasts the Badgers' running up the score.

11/17/2010 06:55:00 PM

(11/17/2010 06:42:00 PM) - Al

With all due respect, the French usually are shocked every time anyone or any nation defends itself at all.

11/17/2010 06:42:00 PM

(11/17/2010 06:15:00 PM) - Al

The lovely Michelle Caruso-Cabrera talks to Glenn about how tough it is being a social liberal and fiscally conservative. She says she wants government to stay out of her pocketbook and her private life.

Beauty...and brains. Seriously, this is why the GOP has to become more limited on social issues, or risk a third party built on the above concept.

11/17/2010 06:15:00 PM

(11/17/2010 06:06:00 PM) - Al

Nice piece on walk-on senior Wquinton Smith.

11/17/2010 06:06:00 PM

(11/17/2010 05:35:00 PM) - Al

Larry Sanders could use some NBDL playing time, but sadly, the Bucks need to keep him around to pick up minutes in garbage time or in unique situations like last night. The fact they only have a dozen guys on the roster is affecting his development.

11/17/2010 05:35:00 PM

(11/17/2010 03:51:00 PM) - Al

Rajai Davis traded from A's to Jays.

Carlos Gomez is comparable to Davis, and while not quite as good offensively, has a far higher ceiling and is superior defensively. I've shown in black and white that Gomez is an average all-around player, and I think this shows him to have trade value (as long as he does not get too much in arby).

Casuals who don't see this...move along, there's nothing to see here.

11/17/2010 03:51:00 PM

(11/17/2010 02:55:00 PM) - Al

Doug is meeting with Weeks and his agent, and likely discussing the outline of an extension, to see if Rickie will be dangled or extended, as the Brewers have always done one or the other. I don't see him asking for as much as Uggla was offered (4y/$48M), given his lesser career production, but his future projections are probably quite similar.

11/17/2010 02:55:00 PM

(11/17/2010 02:28:00 PM) - Al

In other Brewers related news, second baseman Eric Farris, left-hander Dan Merklinger and right-hander Wily Peralta have been added to the 40-man roster, protecting them from the Rule 5 draft in December. The Brewers' 40-man roster now stands at 37.--JS

I'm a bit surprised at Farris, but he is very fast and I've read a couple times this offseason he's a very good defensive 2B, so he may have been easy for a team to keep as a Rule 5 pick as a PH/PR. I just don't see his potential as being very high, but if he is +10 runs defensively, suddenly, he does have some value, especially as a pre-arby player. If he'd be able to play SS/3B, he'd be a nice utility candidate, but the rule of thumb is, if they are everyday 2B in the minors, they usually lack the range/arm to be more than an emergency option at the other spots, especially SS, as 3B only have a couple chances a game. Merklinger is a southpaw, so despite his lack of experience high than A+ ball, he'd get a look. Peralta is a very good SP, and is still quite young, so he was a no-brainer. Seems like there's one other guy I thought they'd protect...

EDIT: Taylor Green was on the cusp, but I doubt if they lose him. He's a lefty hitting 2B/3B, though his ceiling is likely as a Joe Inglett type. He's also been banged up the past couple seasons...Farris jumped right over him, despite his lack of offense. Green, in 700 AB's at AA, has a .330/.400 line as a 22-23 year-old...decent, but not remarkable. For reference, Weeks was in AA at 21, and hit .366/.407. So, while Green might find a niche as a Keith Lockhart type, his ceiling seems limited. As one who does not have plus speed or big power, tools that teams often look for in the Rule 5, I doubt he'll be taken.

11/17/2010 02:28:00 PM

(11/17/2010 02:26:00 PM) - Al

Let the Fielder for Gavin Floyd rumors officially begin.

11/17/2010 02:26:00 PM

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

(11/16/2010 11:09:00 PM) - Al

Only in Dane County.

Move a little further left, will you?

11/16/2010 11:09:00 PM

(11/16/2010 09:29:00 PM) - Al

St. Louis right-hander Chris Carpenter, who is in Mexico golfing with Halladay today, finished second and Rockies right-hander Ubaldo Jimenez was third. Those three were the only pitchers named on every ballot, which requires voters to list five pitchers in order.--Tony W, JS

Carpenter did not receive a single vote. In Tony's world, the Dems still control the House.

Just when you think he's hit rock bottom, he manages to dig a little more dirt out of the hole. What an idiot.

EDIT: Blog post wrong, final story, posted hours later, also wrong.

11/16/2010 09:29:00 PM

(11/16/2010 06:17:00 PM) - Al

Possible correction? CV referred to Sarah Palin as a cougar, but isn’t it more accurate to described her as a MILF? To me, cougar is a somewhat derogatory comment describing an older woman who is actively pursuing younger men, whereas a MILF is a an attractive older woman who still looks desirable even to younger men. In short, a cougar wants younger men, and younger men want a MILF (although I am sure there are many younger men who would be quite content to have a cougar). I think you need to clarify this issue for all of us!!


This is why we must have the internet.

FYI, I'm making an exception here with the usage of the term Bob used, which obviously would be considered vulgar to some, though it is used regularly by many, and most acronyms sort of lead a life of their own, regardless of what the letters stand for.

11/16/2010 06:17:00 PM

(11/16/2010 04:33:00 PM) - Al

Who would have ever thought that Cousin Eddie would be more responsible and less nuts than the guy who played him?

11/16/2010 04:33:00 PM

(11/16/2010 04:26:00 PM) - Al

This seems like a pretty fair deal to me, assuming Dunn is capable of being a loogy in the bigs. Uggla is really spendy, but he sure can hit.

11/16/2010 04:26:00 PM

(11/16/2010 04:18:00 PM) - Al

Got to rub elbows with Sarah Jessica Parker last night at the premiere; stunning shoes but someone seriously needs to feed her a sandwich!--Melissa Joan Hart

This is why you cannot help but love MJ, who has no problem dissing the ultra-skinny in a public forum.

11/16/2010 04:18:00 PM

(11/16/2010 03:56:00 PM) - Al

The news coverage of the winners of the genetic lottery is going to be cringeworthy.

What an impossibly large to estimate waste of time, resources, and cash.

11/16/2010 03:56:00 PM

(11/16/2010 03:25:00 PM) - Al

Using standard Scott Boras/Jon Heyman is his shill math, 12/2-2 equals 4 teams are interested in Beltre.

What's astounding is, no one had more interest in him last year, despite his very good road numbers, hampered by his playing in extreme pitcher's parks his entire career. Another out of the box, smart sign by Theo.

11/16/2010 03:25:00 PM

(11/16/2010 03:21:00 PM) - Al

Brewers linked to Jeff Francis.

I think they'll be linked to every SP who may sign a one year contract until they sign one. I'd prefer Capuano to Francis, all things the same, but we have no idea what they are asking for.

11/16/2010 03:21:00 PM

Monday, November 15, 2010

(11/15/2010 09:17:00 PM) - Al

Doug says he's not shopping Prince, but will need to get something done before next season starts.

I'm sure he will be answering his phone and comparing offers.

11/15/2010 09:17:00 PM

(11/15/2010 09:02:00 PM) - Al

I shudder for our future. The story of a term paper writer.

11/15/2010 09:02:00 PM

(11/15/2010 08:51:00 PM) - Al

NY Post guy doesn't get the running up the points either. It's just so foolhardy to take a nice victory and make it a negative.

11/15/2010 08:51:00 PM

(11/15/2010 04:25:00 PM) - Al

Rotoworld is reporting Willie Randolph is expected to be named 3B coach for the Orioles. John Russell was just named bench coach.

11/15/2010 04:25:00 PM

(11/15/2010 04:12:00 PM) - Al

Coaching staff named, many return, and an "eye in the sky" added.

No Spanish sounding fellas either, though many baseball people speak some Spanish from winter ball and the minors. Roenicke did not have a favorite for bench coach apparently, as I'm sure Doug suggested Narron.

11/15/2010 04:12:00 PM

(11/15/2010 03:14:00 PM) - Al

With Weeks' future in doubt, having Inglett around makes me feel much better.

11/15/2010 03:14:00 PM

(11/15/2010 03:03:00 PM) - Al

Contreras probably gets an extra year than he should, but the money's about right. $3M for 70 quality innings is exactly why decent SP's get $8-9M.

11/15/2010 03:03:00 PM

(11/15/2010 03:01:00 PM) - Al

Two years too late, everyone's figuring it out.

You can't fit in on a bumper sticker, so it took longer to get through.

11/15/2010 03:01:00 PM

(11/15/2010 02:58:00 PM) - Al

Nanny state tries to ban the US flag.

Someone needs to remind these clowns that, you know, you have a US flag on display in front of the school, you clods. And last I checked, we live in the US.

11/15/2010 02:58:00 PM

(11/15/2010 02:28:00 PM) - Al

Crew wants Jack Hannahan on a minor league contract.

Jack is a lefty bat who can't hit at all for a 3B, but is a very good fielder. Is he protection for Gamel in the late innings...or just 1B/3B depth intended for Nashville?

Time will tell.

UPDATE: Jack has an outstanding 15.3 UZR/150 at 3B in his career, so if he's looked at as a defensive replacement, he's a very good one.

11/15/2010 02:28:00 PM

(11/15/2010 02:23:00 PM) - Al

Rosenthal is reporting Peterson will not be back as pitching coach, I guess we'll see if he chooses to stay on as "organizational mechanics guru"...I assume he will, as he's got $450K guaranteed, unless someone else will pay him similar money.

I can't fault Roenicke for wanting his own guy, even if only because he's a buddy.

11/15/2010 02:23:00 PM

(11/15/2010 02:15:00 PM) - Al

Gleeman thinks the Twins should offer Hardy arby. I would tend to agree, though his spotty injury history would have me hesitate, though it is just a one-year commitment.

That said, I'd be curious to use Casilla there, and probably get 90% of the production for 10% of the cost...and use some of the money saved to add a higher profile reliever or two (JJ Putz, Fuentes, and the like), as the Twins will be losing much of their 'pen.

11/15/2010 02:15:00 PM

(11/15/2010 02:04:00 PM) - Al

Alaska has the biggest launch in TLC history, just under 5M viewers, I assume just for the 8PM Central time broadcast.

UPDATE: The much hyped return of Conan had 4.2M viewers last Monday, and he averaged 2.9M folks for the week. Considering the promotion Conan received, those are especially huge numbers for Alaska, though I would guess week two will see a heavy dropoff.

11/15/2010 02:04:00 PM

(11/15/2010 12:37:00 PM) - Al

I'm not saying Geoff Blum is worthless, but if ARI thinks they're a better team after giving a 38 year-old with a .311 career OBP a guaranteed 2 year deal...well, lotsa luck with that.

Somewhere, there's a minor league free agent that's never received an opportunity shaking his head disgustedly...probably several. Vets like Gregg Zaun and Craig Counsell still offer things (not getting out especially), while others seem to get by solely on familiarity.

11/15/2010 12:37:00 PM

(11/15/2010 12:30:00 PM) - Al

I may not be cool, but at least I'm not the dude selling 1000 pounds of used Legos, and somehow thinking they're worth $20K.

$20/pound for Legos? Heh.

11/15/2010 12:30:00 PM

(11/15/2010 12:21:00 PM) - Al

Golic says the Badgers were obviously running up the score, and have a history of it.

As I said, I'm embarrassed to be represented by such a classless program.

11/15/2010 12:21:00 PM

(11/15/2010 12:07:00 PM) - Al


Two quick notes about Sarah Palin's Alaska last night.

1. Willow, her 15 or 16 year-old daughter, is what we used to call jailbait. Incredibly good looking, despite her age.

2. For that matter, the apple does not fall from the tree. Palin pretty much defines cougar, and for us guys who have a soft spot for women that wear glasses, she's almost irresistible.

I know we're supposed to be noticing the grandeur of the 49th state, but, tough not to notice.


I saw some of the repeat at 10, flipping between that and the Steelers/Pats game. In her book, Meghan McCain called Palin "the most beautiful politician I'd ever seen" several times, and I don't think Meghan was exaggerating for effect. As for Willow, I have no comment, and will not until she turns 18.

As I mentioned last night, tourism to Alaska is sure to be the real winner, as every scene included clear water, unlimited views, and fish.

11/15/2010 12:07:00 PM

(11/15/2010 12:04:00 PM) - Al

Brendan Ryan is a good defender, but can't hit his way out of a paper sack. That said, an upgrade is not as easy as you'd think, because the list of SS's that can hit is a short one. Note that once again, even at a premium, up the middle position, defense takes a back seat, even though teams preach defense nonstop.

11/15/2010 12:04:00 PM

(11/15/2010 11:59:00 AM) - Al

Tim Pawlenty is about as popular as heat stroke on a summer day, but his "open bar" concept of government spending is brilliant.

11/15/2010 11:59:00 AM

(11/15/2010 11:53:00 AM) - Al

Tom H says Narveson is expected to be kept, per Mark A. I was hoping Chris would end up in the bullpen as the 6th SP to begin the season, and I'm not sure if MA said Narveson would be handed a spot in the rotation or not. Also, several months after I said it, TH thinks the Crew will acquire one SP in trade, and one as a FA. Heh.

11/15/2010 11:53:00 AM

(11/15/2010 10:49:00 AM) - Al

No, the Brewers aren't going to trade left fielder Ryan Braun — “with that contract,” one executive says, referring to Braun's eight-year, $45 million deal that runs through 2015, “you'd have to get six players for him.”

The Brewers, though, are open to trading any of their other top offensive players as they try to upgrade their rotation — second baseman Rickie Weeks, third baseman Casey McGehee and especially first baseman Prince Fielder.

Both Weeks and Fielder are free agents after next season — and Weeks, represented by Greg Genske, might not be any more willing to entertain an extension than Fielder, who's represented by Boras. At the very least, Weeks might want to wait on the outcome of the Marlins' negotiations with Dan Uggla, who's eligible for free agency at the same time.

The Brewers' problem is they don't want to trade for Nos. 4 and 5 starters, and teams are unwilling to trade their Nos. 1-2-3. The Braves, for example, won't trade right-hander Tommy Hanson. They might be open on righty Jair Jurrjens, but only for the right deal.

Joel Sherman of the New York Post raised the possibility of the Brewers trading Fielder for White Sox right-hander Gavin Floyd — if the White Sox strike out on a left-handed slugger in free agency.

Floyd, though, remains affordable through 2013, and he produces above-average results in the AL in a hitter-friendly park. Fielder likely would amount to only a one-year rental for the White Sox, whose GM, Ken Williams, rarely makes big deals with Boras.--Rosenthal

That's the first outside source we've heard of Weeks, who supposedly was close to an extension before changing agents this summer, may be as tough a sign as Prince. I would assume the Crew will negotiate and if no extension is reached, will have a pair of 2011 FA's to deal. Lawrie plays 2B now, but is fair at best, and his bat will be ready by the middle of next year, even though he is just 20.

Look for the Padres to continue trying to infuse athleticism into their organization — they've also spoken multiple times to the Brewers about Double-A second baseman Brett Lawrie.

The Brewers are willing to discuss trading Lawrie for young pitching. Eric Farris, another of their second-base prospects, is batting .379 in the Arizona Fall League and is an outstanding defender with base-stealing ability.--Rosenthal

Farris should not be mentioned in the same breath as'd be like comparing Braun to Inglett. However, Farris may be able to step in and be an inexpensive option...possibly splitting time with Inglett, actually. The issue is, as pointed out above, no one wants to deal a top SP. The only way to get one is to have a team overloaded with pitching, or find an SP who is too expensive for his club.

Brewers pitching coach Rick Peterson, who's under contract for one more year at $450,000, is unlikely to remain with the club. New manager Ron Roenicke is leaning toward hiring his own pitching coach, sources say. He also wanted Rob Picciolo to join his staff before the Angels named Picciolo to replace Roenicke as bench coach.

I still think Alfredo Griffin, former Jays' SS and current Angels' 3B coach would be a nice choice as bench coach, as he is a Dominican, and obviously speaks Spanish. The NL style of play is vastly overrated, as double switches and such are easy to figure out.

Also mentioned is Macha may end up as the Met's bench coach if Terry Collins gets the job.

11/15/2010 10:49:00 AM

Sunday, November 14, 2010

(11/14/2010 11:01:00 PM) - Al

Silly me, I wish it was all about how to best end in victory with minimal casualties. Any chance of that ended two years ago.

11/14/2010 11:01:00 PM

(11/14/2010 11:00:00 PM) - Al

Exactly what I was thinking.

11/14/2010 11:00:00 PM

(11/14/2010 06:42:00 PM) - Al

Watching the Badgers destroy Prairie View A&M on ESPN3. Duje Dukan has not played yet, so I'm hoping he redshirts. I don't see anything except nominal playing time for him, barring injuries.

Also, Josh Gasser is a stud. Hard to believe he was not a upper echelon recruit. He's silky smooth and never forces a shot.

EDIT: Dujan in for garbage time. No redshirt for him.

11/14/2010 06:42:00 PM

(11/14/2010 05:53:00 PM) - Al

Marc writes to say the BCS does not use margin of victory in it's formula. So, apparently, the Badgers are running up the score just to be jerks.

11/14/2010 05:53:00 PM

(11/14/2010 05:43:00 PM) - Al

Guantanamo Bay detainees have led Obama to reality.

Actually, the last two years have pretty much been a reality check. Hope and change versus the real world...the real world in a landslide. Those bumper sticker campaign slogan are no match for, you know, getting stuff done.

John McCain must smile and sleep very peacefully every night.

11/14/2010 05:43:00 PM

(11/14/2010 04:48:00 PM) - Al

Why Chuck's small business failed.

Brilliant piece on how government simply gets in the way. Milwaukee's stifling laws are mentioned (4th poorest city in the nation, let's make it more difficult to open a shop), as is a 30 second long outline of how hard it is to open a used book store in LA.

Of course, without government, who would unions bribe and shake down?

11/14/2010 04:48:00 PM

(11/14/2010 02:27:00 PM) - Al

Obamacare gives out 111 waivers...mostly to unions.

So much for learning anything from the election. The Dems are just pencil pushers for a variety of special interests...none of which have the best interests of the average American. It's "historic" legislation...which you don't need to follow if you donate enough cash.

11/14/2010 02:27:00 PM

(11/14/2010 01:35:00 PM) - Al

Dennis Miller is preaching to the choir, but rips Dems a new one.

Dennis may be only a Rush retirement away from being a leading conservative voice.

11/14/2010 01:35:00 PM

(11/14/2010 01:17:00 PM) - Al

TLC's new show. Adult language and images at the link, though they just show what an incredible hole San Francisco is.

11/14/2010 01:17:00 PM

(11/14/2010 01:08:00 PM) - Al

The thing about Favre is, his ankle is still broken in two places, and no one even brings it up. It's like that injury was 3 months ago...even though I think it was 2 weeks, right?.

11/14/2010 01:08:00 PM

(11/14/2010 01:01:00 PM) - Al

Why W will be far more fondly remembered in 20 years can be found here, no regrets about waterboarding, or much else actually.

11/14/2010 01:01:00 PM

(11/14/2010 12:32:00 PM) - Al

The Brewers are mentioned several times in this Boston Globe article on trades.

I can't imagine Braun going anywhere, with the team friendly deal he has.

11/14/2010 12:32:00 PM

(11/14/2010 11:59:00 AM) - Al

Bill James discusses how slow Fielder is, and someone thinks Braun is a top LF.

11/14/2010 11:59:00 AM

Saturday, November 13, 2010

(11/13/2010 09:04:00 PM) - Al

MA talks about the manager selection process.

11/13/2010 09:04:00 PM

(11/13/2010 07:10:00 PM) - Al

The UK press looks at Alaska, which I have not heard much about. I doubt I'll watch, but might catch it as TLC reruns everything a dozen times.

11/13/2010 07:10:00 PM

(11/13/2010 06:54:00 PM) - Al

I may be in the minority, but I'm for the best scanners money can buy. I can understand some embarrassment, but they're not posting these pics to the other travelers or on the TSA website. To me, those employees are just like doctors and nurses...and I'm sure it means nothing to them either, after seeing them for 8 hours daily.

My only prerogative is to, you know, prevent terrorism. If they ignore certain area on flyers, you know what...that's where the bad guys will hide stuff. If you don't like it, take a train or drive.

9/11 was less than a decade ago, and most folks have forgotten everything we should have learned from it. We're not talking about salt in food, we're talking about evil men using planes as missiles and bombs.

11/13/2010 06:54:00 PM

(11/13/2010 06:33:00 PM) - Al


I just got home from Camp Randall, and I'd say about 80% of the crowd agreed with you. I can remember when Dave McClain was just starting out, and suffering many defeats just like today. I'd have been furious had a team tried to run up the score. I'm none too happy being on the other side.

Ted (37 year UW football season ticket holder)

I don't think we have heard the end of this.

11/13/2010 06:33:00 PM

(11/13/2010 03:41:00 PM) - Al

Meanwhile, the only college football team I care about (only than rooting for every underdog on TV), Army, became bowl eligible today with a win over Kent State.

And would you believe, up 45-28 with 3 minutes left...they just kept the ball on the ground? Obviously, they just don't get it.

Congrats to the future officers from West Point. With two games left, Notre Dame and Navy, today's win was crucial.

11/13/2010 03:41:00 PM

(11/13/2010 03:22:00 PM) - Al


UW running up the score is the epitome of why College Football is entirely flawed. The computer respects more points, teams are forced to give what is asked of them. Playoffs(and better athletes) are why pro football is far superior.


A class act like Joe Paterno would have never thrown a deep pass, regardless of what the computer likes.

As I said, I'm embarrassed.

11/13/2010 03:22:00 PM

(11/13/2010 02:22:00 PM) - Al

There's risk involved, but I'm telling you, I'd love for the Crew to pick him up on waivers and pay him for '11. He's probably projected to put up a 4.25ish ERA, but that has a ton of value, especially when you can acquire him for nothing.

Bill James projects him at 4.32, which was his career ERA, just under his FIP.

There's risk here, but it's limited...he's only signed for 2011, and he could provide a bridge to many of the young pitchers currently in AA or AAA. I doubt if Doug will take the chance...there will be similar SP's sign for less, but if you claim him, he's stuck, he has to play in MIL or turn down the cash. FA's can take less to play elsewhere, and often do. Kawakami is an out of the box pickup, and he had a bad year in '10...even though his secondary stats indicate it was a result of bad luck. To me, the only downside is money...that's exactly the type of risk to take.

11/13/2010 02:22:00 PM

(11/13/2010 01:54:00 PM) - Al

Allow me to say, I'm embarrassed to be represented by a program that insists on running up the score when ahead 69-13 with 7 minutes to play.

I recall the U of Houston, one of the first run and shoot offenses, trying several passes to the end zone against an SMU squad made up of mostly walk-ons, with 95 points on the board, attempting to score 100 points. That was at least 20 years ago, and I remember it now, because it was such an unsportsmanlike display.

Sadly, this era of Badgers' football has brought a lot of wins, but several horrendous decisions such as the above. I know it's too much to ask that all sports at the UW have the success and class of Bo Ryan led teams, but it's a shame.

11/13/2010 01:54:00 PM

(11/13/2010 01:42:00 PM) - Al

The French have now surrendered to themselves.

After so many decades, I suppose it becomes a habit.

11/13/2010 01:42:00 PM

Friday, November 12, 2010

(11/12/2010 09:16:00 PM) - Al

Christie fascinates people for the same reason Palin does...both just tell it like it is with little regard for giving a damn what anyone thinks.

Note that it seems to be catching on.

11/12/2010 09:16:00 PM

(11/12/2010 07:50:00 PM) - Al

Sometimes, I wish I drank beer just so I could see something like this and go, "Hey, I think I'll pick up some of that."

11/12/2010 07:50:00 PM

(11/12/2010 06:13:00 PM) - Al

Evan Anderson decides to redshirt for the Badgers. I wish more freshmen would choose to do this, as common sense tells you most players are going to be far better and more valuable as a 23 year-old who is far more mature, both mentally and physically, than an 18 year-old just out of high school.

11/12/2010 06:13:00 PM

(11/12/2010 05:18:00 PM) - Al

People will always try and explain goofy used to be the gods were angry, and of late, it's been global warming.

Personally, I think the angry overseers theory makes more sense to me. The factual evidence is simply overwhelming unless you're drinking the kool-aid of the guy whose made a bijillion dollars off the fibs.

11/12/2010 05:18:00 PM

(11/12/2010 03:03:00 PM) - Al

My e-mail tells me Pizza Hut and Papa John's both have specials running this weekend, 2 medium pizzas, 2 toppings (PH gives you 3 each), $5.99 (or $6) each.

When I lived in Eau Claire, I worked for a pizza place for 5 years, and for almost the entire run, our most popular special or coupon offer was 2 mediums, 2 toppings on each, $9.95. It is something that 16 years later, they can run offers for only $2 more. Of course, there's profit to be made if you can convince the customer to add onto the order. The other day, I bought a Cousin's "limited time only" sub for $2.99, but I had forgot my two bottles of water at home that morning I usually take with me, one for the car, one for my bag I take inside. So I bought one from them...for $1.69. I gotta believe there's a nice margin on that.

11/12/2010 03:03:00 PM

(11/12/2010 02:26:00 PM) - Al

Prince for Edwin Jackson?

If you have no understanding of baseball economics, it isn't a terrible idea, but the whole push behind dealing Fielder is the fact he's a free agent after ' is Jackson. Hence, the Crew is looking for, in a perfect world, 2-3 pre-arby guys for him, ones they can control for several seasons, some of which at an inexpensive rate.

Even if Jackson had two years left on his contract, you could make an argument for it. As is, it's just big market casuals showing how little they "get it" in regards to how teams like the Brewers operate with limited media money.

11/12/2010 02:26:00 PM

These are the good old days. Some folks are just too busy wishing the streets were paved with gold to enjoy the good times.

Whatever strikes me as interesting, and serious Milwaukee Brewers thoughts. If you are a believer in respecting OBP, throwing strikes, and keeping the ball in the park, you may have found the place you've been searching for. I believe in low taxes, small government, and am not afraid to be labeled patriotic. If you are interested in sausage race results, walk up music, or professional wrestling, you may wish to click elsewhere.

The Ramblings' manifesto can be found here.

I'm happy to pay taxes to help the helpless. I don't like paying taxes to help the clueless. Look at the Occupy movement...I'm forced to pay taxes to help those whose plight I delight in.--Dennis Miller

If you choose the path of terror, your life will be empty, and your life will be brief.--President Trump

Never have lives less lived been more chronicled.--Dennis Miller

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