Al's Ramblings



Wednesday, June 30, 2010

(6/30/2010 11:58:00 PM) - Al

With LAA, LAD, BOS and PHIL all losing middle infielders and in contention, is Rickies value going to get much higher than it is now?

Ed


At this second, I'd say Rickie is the most likely to be extended of the 3 '12 FA's (Corey, Prince). Those teams are not looking for a Weeks, they'd probably prefer Counsell, or even Inglett...stopgap types, not young guys like Weeks who would cost a couple top prospects and have to be dealt before next year, as Pedroia, Utley, and others cannot play other positions.

BOS is said to be talking to the Cubs about Mike Fontenot, and several clubs have discussed Jose Lopez will SEA. Those guys are far more likely to be moved than Rickie.


6/30/2010 11:58:00 PM



(6/30/2010 11:27:00 PM) - Al

Allow me to say think it's hilarious the state with the highest budget deficit thinks that they will save the world by banning one of the most convenient, efficient products ever invented.

A plastic bag can hold about 2000 times its own weight. the alternative is a crappy paper bag which sucks by comparison, as that's why plastic has superseded it as the carrier of choice.

They should worry about creating jobs and lowering the tax rates so the masses stop leaving and padding the coffers of neighboring states. They're like a perfect example of a backwards, poorly run entity.


6/30/2010 11:27:00 PM



(6/30/2010 10:57:00 PM) - Al

Six and three on the homestand. [You] just look at it and say, before the homestand, you'd have taken that. But after the start we had, it's a little disappointing.--Macha

I'll take 6-3 the rest of the year, without hesitation. Truthfully, I think Ken will too.

CV has had a couple stretches this year in which he has been ineffective, but he has returned to form after a couple days off. Macha really hasn't had the freedom to do much more than try his best to win every game and hope fatigue is not a factor, and it is likely affecting those who have pitched at a plus level...even Loe and Axford have not been their usual self of late. Possibly, if Coffey returns to what we have seen as his norm, that will allow them to spread out the work enough to keep them all sharp and as rested as they can be at this point of the grind.


6/30/2010 10:57:00 PM



(6/30/2010 09:27:00 PM) - Al

How did the Crew miss Felix if he pitched today?


6/30/2010 09:27:00 PM



(6/30/2010 09:08:00 PM) - Al

Maybe the biggest surprise of the day was Memphis not extending a qualifying offer to Ronnie Brewer -- a young (25) player on the rise that the Grizzlies gave up a first round draft pick for. They let him walk for nothing. It saves $3.8 million but they get no players in return for him. Penny wise and pound foolish.--NBC.com

Love to see the Bucks offer him a deal for about half of Salmons, or thereabouts. He's a younger, more athletic and defensive minded version, and just may be coming into his own at the offensive end as well.


6/30/2010 09:08:00 PM



(6/30/2010 08:55:00 PM) - Al

This is by far the most donkalicious table I have played in all series.Playing showdown poker so it's time to make hands and get max value.--Maria Ho

I simply cannot get over how many times I've similar things posted online in the last 30 days, as the WSOP is being played. It hurts my feelings how stupid this is, as the idea of saying "I can't beat these players because they're so bad," is about as ignorant as it gets. And no offense to young, attractive female players like Maria (she's 2nd from the right, and was on The Amazing Race for you non-poker people), but having followed their play the last month, taking a week off because it's someone's birthday, going home to LA for a week, it is apparent which ones are being bankrolled by online sites and are far more concerned with looking good than winning tournaments.


6/30/2010 08:55:00 PM



(6/30/2010 08:41:00 PM) - Al

Todd sends this and wonders why the POTUS is still campaigning. As for the "why Racine?" question, I would say it's because it is a Democratic stronghold. It's sad that region is still living in the past, because dirty industries are not returning, no matter how much they want them to.

I would say because that's what he does, but I admit, it's kind of an embarrassment at this point. Of course, nothing can top the "unemployment is up, but that's a good thing" line we heard a month ago. That's going to be replayed a lot in the Fall campaign ads. Seriously, how stupid do they think we are?

EDIT: The worst thing about his continued "economics" speeches is it leads to people creating charts like this. Might wanna curb the spending and stay in DC a while 'til things get figured out.


6/30/2010 08:41:00 PM



(6/30/2010 07:27:00 PM) - Al

Idiot talking on cell phone gets hit in the face by the ball on a ground rule double.

Why do these people think a single call is so important? You're at the game, shut the phone off and enjoy yourself.


6/30/2010 07:27:00 PM



(6/30/2010 07:05:00 PM) - Al

Sometimes, writers forget that players might rather play for less money elsewhere. Jefferson may lose money, but if he's taken care of it, it's just Monopoly money now anyway.

I forget his name, but the SEA catcher walked away from $10M to go home and play for 10% of that. It doesn't happen often, but it does happen.


6/30/2010 07:05:00 PM



(6/30/2010 06:30:00 PM) - Al

As I've pointed out often, what's so sad is, Andrew Sullivan used to be a brilliant voice. Now, he has become a one issue goofball, so intent on legalizing gay marriage he's willing to spend months analyzing whose baby Trig Palin is...while the rest of us just sit back, let him embarrass himself, and just figure it's Sarah's kid.


6/30/2010 06:30:00 PM



(6/30/2010 05:56:00 PM) - Al

Elin Woods gets $750M, but has to take the two kids.

Let's see, a rich blonde former supermodel...yeah, she'll be single long...


6/30/2010 05:56:00 PM



(6/30/2010 01:46:00 PM) - Al

Santelli, whose original rant mostly started the Tea Party movement, melts down again.

That said, his "stop spending" mantra not only makes perfect sense, but is agreed upon by much of the public. We'll see how the midterms go, but as of today, I'd guess many will be saying exactly that as they vote against the Dems who have supported Obama's bijillion dollar spending "plan."


6/30/2010 01:46:00 PM



(6/30/2010 08:41:00 AM) - Al

Those wanting Hoffman to get another save chance might get their wish today, if such an opportunity presents itself. Axford only got 3 outs, but he faced six batters, and threw 26 pitches, and seemed to be overthrowing a bit as well. Considering today would be about 18 hours later, today might be a day off. Braddock pitched two days in a row as well, so today could be a piece meal effort late.


6/30/2010 08:41:00 AM



(6/30/2010 08:37:00 AM) - Al

As for the risk of using a 40-man roster spot prematurely, Melvin said, "We've got ideas and plans for our roster."--JS

Strange thing to say, especially considering the 40 man is packed.

Corey Hart is being scouted by ATL. Maybe doug is saying they will not be standing pat, either buying or selling, so a 40 man spot is not a big deal. Of course, we all hope they win 8 of 10 and look to add a piece, but if they lose 8 of 10, it's sell time. We're getting close to a decision based solely on math.


6/30/2010 08:37:00 AM


Tuesday, June 29, 2010

(6/29/2010 09:33:00 PM) - Al

Brian Gorman needs to take a long, hard look at the video of this game and try to learn the strike zone. It is eluding him tonight.--Tom H, JS

Not only will he not, he'll crumple up his Questec score (which I would estimate will be rather low) and say, "Who cares, I got a job for life!"

And he'll laugh, and laugh, and laugh...


6/29/2010 09:33:00 PM



(6/29/2010 09:29:00 PM) - Al

Al, even if I didn't like any of your other thoughts or comments on anything else (but I do), I would still visit your site daily just for your comments on how awful major league umpires are. Always brings a smile to my face, because everything you say about them is funny and true.

Those called strikes to Fielder by Gorman in that 8th inning AB were complete jokes. It's not even hot out tonight.

JD


And, I think I've mentioned, they're getting worse. Nightly.

How do you miss pitches by a foot?


6/29/2010 09:29:00 PM



(6/29/2010 09:27:00 PM) - Al

Davis will return next week, my money is on Parra being removed, as he has struggled to go more than 5 innings.


6/29/2010 09:27:00 PM



(6/29/2010 09:24:00 PM) - Al

Tom H. spoke with GM Doug Melvin about the decision to move right-hander Jeremy Jeffress onto the 40-man roster and Melvin said the move was strictly to reward Jeffress, who has been suspended before by MLB for failing multiple drug test, for his model behavior on and off the field. We'll have more on this in tomorrow's JS.--Tony W, JS

Doug would never say this if they were afraid or knew he was soon to test positive, so I think it's safe to say it is unrelated to that.


6/29/2010 09:24:00 PM



(6/29/2010 09:21:00 PM) - Al

How does Brian Gorman have a job umpiring in the major leagues?

After a strike zone the size of a hot pocket all night, two strikes to Prince a foot outside.

Oof.

And tomorrow, they'll be worse.


6/29/2010 09:21:00 PM



(6/29/2010 08:52:00 PM) - Al

Myers hitting for himself, has given up 6 runs in 5 frames.

That's odd.


6/29/2010 08:52:00 PM



(6/29/2010 08:47:00 PM) - Al

Yo is missing his spots, and suffering from that minute strike zone, as hardly any of his curves are being called strikes.


6/29/2010 08:47:00 PM



(6/29/2010 08:13:00 PM) - Al

Brewers offering 50% off tickets for July for Monday-Friday games. Link is here.

Today only, click now!!!

EDIT: Still seems to be going today.


6/29/2010 08:13:00 PM



(6/29/2010 08:08:00 PM) - Al

The pitchers have the best OPS in the NL. While it's not a vital thing, it sure doesn't hurt.


6/29/2010 08:08:00 PM



(6/29/2010 08:02:00 PM) - Al

The Brewers #9 hitters (almost all pitchers) have a better OPS than 4 AL teams...Twins, Tigers, M's, and O's.

Somewhere, Gleeman is weeping.


6/29/2010 08:02:00 PM



(6/29/2010 07:58:00 PM) - Al

With three, Gallardo has more home runs than the entire pitching staff of any other MLB team.--Jordan Schelling, MLB.com

Heh. I was just going to go see if the Crew was outhitting any AL clubs in the #9 spot.


6/29/2010 07:58:00 PM



(6/29/2010 07:28:00 PM) - Al

Cooper has returned from London and Marston is back from a weekend of camping and river rafting with friends. Nice to have them home.--Hugh Hefner on Twitter

Hugh is talking about his sons, Cooper and Marston. FYI, they are 19 and 20. Hefner has indeed lived quite a life.


6/29/2010 07:28:00 PM



(6/29/2010 07:08:00 PM) - Al

Jeffress did not need to be added to the 40 man until after this season...though he is now no longer subject to minor league drug tests.

Let your conspiracy theories begin...


6/29/2010 07:08:00 PM



(6/29/2010 02:25:00 PM) - Al

More proof Caucasians should never dance.


6/29/2010 02:25:00 PM



(6/29/2010 10:23:00 AM) - Al

Kissinger has the same concerns I have ever since an artificial deadline was announced. Whenever the overriding priority is not victory, it's a sad day for our military men and women, and those who support them.


6/29/2010 10:23:00 AM


Monday, June 28, 2010

(6/28/2010 10:33:00 PM) - Al

What's that old saying, Manny messed up the mound so much, no one could figure it out? What's odd is, CV, Coffey, and Riske have all done very nicely, but all struggled, yet Dave seemed to suddenly "find it" after allowing a couple runs.

Good to see Cappy back in, it could be his last outing, as unless there's another blowout in the next week. I'd be shocked if he'd clear waivers, as lefty SP's are as desired as it gets, and he's not on a big contract at all. I believe he'll be a free agent after the season regardless, so he will end up elsewhere anyway.


6/28/2010 10:33:00 PM



(6/28/2010 09:25:00 PM) - Al

CV acted like he was pitching around Keppinger to get to Pence. Questionable pitch calling there. If you never throw the fastball, batters figure that out, especially with advance scouting.


6/28/2010 09:25:00 PM



(6/28/2010 09:15:00 PM) - Al

Parra's been starting a month and he still can't get through 6. So much talent, so little production.


6/28/2010 09:15:00 PM



(6/28/2010 08:32:00 PM) - Al

Normally, I'd be hoping the pitcher would let that bunt drop, get the lead runner at 2B, and either turn two or have the pitcher running at 1B. However, having seen Parra's troubles on throws to 1B and intentional walks, a safe catch was a fine decision.


6/28/2010 08:32:00 PM



(6/28/2010 08:18:00 PM) - Al

Is it me or does Mark A's wife look like she's just a few years older than her kids?


6/28/2010 08:18:00 PM



(6/28/2010 08:13:00 PM) - Al

Parra still with plus stuff, but still underachieving. He seems very inconsistent with his mechanics, with is probably just a concentration issue.

With Davis soon to return, it's tough not to see Manny as #5 right now.


6/28/2010 08:13:00 PM



(6/28/2010 08:07:00 PM) - Al

Wow. Who'd this clown pay to go to law school for her? Add this to her anti-military stance, I'm done.

It's like they looked for the person who would make the late night talk show hosts work the least to make fun of.


6/28/2010 08:07:00 PM



(6/28/2010 06:08:00 PM) - Al

Zambrano moved to restricted list, opens spot on 25 and 40 man.

I wonder what kind of rules are in place for this restricted list, as it is ripe for abuse. I'm not sure why the Cubs did not put him on this right away if it were an option, as they played short over the weekend. As of right now, it seems like a place to hide players while teams find an MD to get them on the right mix of happy pills.


6/28/2010 06:08:00 PM



(6/28/2010 04:36:00 PM) - Al

SL would devastate the farm system, but the addition of Cliff Lee would give them a stellar top three, and a feared postseason rotation.


6/28/2010 04:36:00 PM



(6/28/2010 03:45:00 PM) - Al

MSNBC's anti-capitalism programming seems to be a money losing proposition...now if you'll excuse me, the cloud of irony makes it difficult for me to see.


6/28/2010 03:45:00 PM



(6/28/2010 03:21:00 PM) - Al

I didn't think the Bucks had a chance at resigning Ridnour or Salmons, and would certainly accept Delfino's option. All three are up for debate, per the JS.

On a related note, Mike Hunt may be a worse writer than Ton W. What a frickin' loon, and if only he were a fraction as funny as he must think he is.

Of course, when he writes a "hard hitting" piece, it, without fail, says whatever team should trade its future and go for it. I have nothing against that, if it makes sense, like it did for the Brewers in 2008, but to pretend it's always a good idea is absurd and shortsighted.


6/28/2010 03:21:00 PM



(6/28/2010 02:42:00 PM) - Al

Government struggles to meet government deadlines.

This stuff just writes itself.


6/28/2010 02:42:00 PM



(6/28/2010 01:17:00 PM) - Al

I think a rotation of four lefties would be fine if they all pitched well. Many teams have trouble finding one, so I think folks just think if you have four, several must not be very good.

In theory, of course, you might end up facing a team that hits southpaws hard with all lefties scheduled, but that can always happen the other way as well.


6/28/2010 01:17:00 PM



(6/28/2010 01:15:00 PM) - Al

Jen Capriati and Matthew Perry dated for a while, and they must have had in common a love for drugs, as that's the only time either makes it in the news these days.

It sure is a shame that tennis seems to have a way of destroying its young. I assume it is directly related to the lifestyle, but even the players that go to college and turn pro at 21/22 seem to retire in their late 20's or early 30's.


6/28/2010 01:15:00 PM



(6/28/2010 01:12:00 PM) - Robert R.

If there's one thing that bugs me more than anything about "old school" analysis it's worrying about things that haven't proven to have any effect. Like the Journal-Sentinel writers writing about how it's somehow a bad thing if there are 4 lefties in the starting rotation. Nevermind that teams get by with 4 righties in a starting rotation commonly. That any evidence of 4 lefties being a detriment, beyond their ERAs, is entirely ephemeral at best. It's old school somehow that the hand you throw with matters more than your effectiveness, velocity, arm slot, etc.

You want advice on how the Brewers should proceed with their rotation from here on out, here it is. Put your best and most talented starting pitchers in the rotation and things will work themselves out. Don't overthink things.


6/28/2010 01:12:00 PM



(6/28/2010 01:12:00 PM) - Al

I'm just going to say it...Axford reminds me a lot of Derrick Turnbow.

Think about it...came out of nowhere, 95+ mph fastball, big breaking ball, kind of "odd" looking, control problems in past.

Just sayin'....


6/28/2010 01:12:00 PM



(6/28/2010 12:59:00 PM) - Al

I liked the Atkins signing, but as with most one-year deals, no matter how badly it works out, it's not really that bad.


6/28/2010 12:59:00 PM



(6/28/2010 12:57:00 PM) - Al

Most interleague games were during the weekend and/or after school was out. Of course they had higher attendance numbers.


6/28/2010 12:57:00 PM



(6/28/2010 12:36:00 PM) - Al

It's pretty tough to feel bad about a former KKK member's passing, especially one who served a minimum of two decades too long, and who pushed to tax and spend until his last breath.


6/28/2010 12:36:00 PM



(6/28/2010 12:27:00 PM) - Al

I'm having a hard time figuring out how shutting down the internet would not be a violation of free speech, a free press...and how exactly it would help in war time to shut off communication?


6/28/2010 12:27:00 PM



(6/28/2010 11:50:00 AM) - Al

FYI to those curious, Suppan is scheduled to pitch Wednesday versus ARI, so he will miss the Crew. They get both Wainwright and Carpenter, of course.


6/28/2010 11:50:00 AM



(6/28/2010 09:51:00 AM) - Al

This is also why government created jobs don't spark the economy. I've never heard the term "stupid gap" before, but it makes near perfect sense.

It also makes me wonder about all the guys that go bankrupt several times before "making it"...perhaps that's what makes them smarter.


6/28/2010 09:51:00 AM



(6/28/2010 09:04:00 AM) - Al

Call me cynical, but I expect this suspension to last until the Cubs need Zambrano to be available out of the 'pen.


6/28/2010 09:04:00 AM


Sunday, June 27, 2010

(6/27/2010 10:46:00 PM) - Al

Home plate umpire throws player out of Dodgers/Yankees game as he says something trotting by after being retired. Did not show umpire up at all.

The "look at me" men in blue continue to get worse every single day. And tomorrow, they'll be worse.

Wait until it gets hot out.


6/27/2010 10:46:00 PM



(6/27/2010 09:05:00 PM) - Al

Fox’s Major League Baseball regional game coverage (0.9 adults 18-49 rating) did noticeably worse than the typical Cops/America’s Most Wanted Saturday line up.

Ouch. Looks like Saturday afternoon will remain the time for MLB on Fox.


6/27/2010 09:05:00 PM



(6/27/2010 06:52:00 PM) - Al

BOS has Victor Martinez out with a fractured thumb, and both AAA catchers injured.

Doug will probably be fielding a call from Theo tonight about Kottaras, though I doubt Doug will have any interest in moving his backup catcher, especially since he'll be cheap through 2012, and under team control through 2015.


6/27/2010 06:52:00 PM



(6/27/2010 06:09:00 PM) - Al

SI.com's Jon Heyman reports that Bobby Valentine is no longer in the running for the Marlins' managerial vacancy.

Wow. Valentine seemed like a near-lock for the job on Friday, but his meeting with the Marlins' brass must have gone less than smoothly. Interim skipper Edwin Rodriguez will continue to manage the team as they embark on his home country of Puerto Rico for a three-game series against the Mets.--Rotoworld


So much for it being a done deal. Buster Olney was explaining why Valentine was such a good choice this morning. Of course, it had nothing to do with getting along with players or anything, it was his ability to "sell" the Marlins to their fans.

Maybe FLA figured out how expensive he was compared to others.


6/27/2010 06:09:00 PM



(6/27/2010 04:58:00 PM) - Al

Narveson lowers his ERA as a SP to 4.36 today. The whole list:

Gallardo--2.36, 11/16 QS, 8/16 TW
Parra-----3.90, 2/6 QS, 3/6 TW
Narveson--4.36, 4/12 QS, 6/12 TW
Bush------4.56, 8/14 QS, 5/14 TW
Wolf------4.92, 7/16 QS (quality starts), 7/16 TW (team wins in GS)


Bush had one awful start, but has been the most consistent, other than Yo. Parra and Narveson both began the season in the bullpen, and took a while to build up to 5-6 IP. Wolf has averaged the most IP/S other than Yo, a down and dirty way to gauge consistency.

Taking a look at this, using Davis as an extra SP for now and putting off the decision for a couple weeks seems as good as anything to me.


6/27/2010 04:58:00 PM



(6/27/2010 03:46:00 PM) - Al

Macha and Peterson have become certified geniuses since the Crew started pitching. Narveson saved his spot in the rotation for now, and could have made Bush expendable as Davis nears his return.

If nothing else, I would think they'll go with 6 starters a time through (Peterson likes them to have an extra days rest anyway), and then reset things after the break.


6/27/2010 03:46:00 PM



(6/27/2010 03:26:00 PM) - Al

Gritty veteran play by Jack Wilson. Heh.

He's got some defensive skills, but he's Counsell without the lefty bat. He's been getting by on his reputation for half-a-decade.

Suzuki may well be at half-strength, bunting with a runner in scoring position and one out would indicate he's not 100%.


6/27/2010 03:26:00 PM



(6/27/2010 03:16:00 PM) - Al

USA-Ghana watched on ABC by 9.5m households, 14.8m viewers. Most watched men's game ever. Doesn't include Univision numbers.--Soccer Insider

That's probably 20M with Univision thrown in.


6/27/2010 03:16:00 PM



(6/27/2010 03:06:00 PM) - Al

Nice time for Corey to try to bunt for a hit.


6/27/2010 03:06:00 PM



(6/27/2010 02:59:00 PM) - Al

Another day, another blown call to change the game.

If you wait about a minute into the highlight, you can watch the Fox trak thing and I dare you not to laugh out loud. It may not have been a foot outside, but it was at least 6 inches, and probably more.

Don't worry, tomorrow, they'll be worse.

EDIT: The in thing to do now is to admit your mistake.


6/27/2010 02:59:00 PM



(6/27/2010 02:54:00 PM) - Al

They walked Escobar to face Narveson, who has a better swing, as Alcides is still feeling his way at the plate.


6/27/2010 02:54:00 PM



(6/27/2010 02:32:00 PM) - Al

Ichiro has either lost his arm or has an injury. He's not throwing any better than Hart this series. Ichiro used to have an arm like Jesse Barfield or Dwight Evans. Now, I think Bradley is throwing the ball better.


6/27/2010 02:32:00 PM



(6/27/2010 02:29:00 PM) - Al

Milton Bradley used to be a fine defender, before he got so banged up. He used to play CF pretty nicely.


6/27/2010 02:29:00 PM



(6/27/2010 02:13:00 PM) - Al

They just called a swing on Gomez, and he never really even started a swing. My goodness.

And they'll be worse tomorrow.


6/27/2010 02:13:00 PM



(6/27/2010 02:06:00 PM) - Al

Pay what you want is probably not going to work for much in the long run.

I've never thought it would work because so many folks think it will. That's why they call me a contrarian.


6/27/2010 02:06:00 PM



(6/27/2010 01:33:00 PM) - Al

Wonder if people will start talking about Weeks like have Hart. His value can't get much higher either.--Jordan Schelling, MLB.com

Other than me, I haven't seen anyone mention Weeks at all.


6/27/2010 01:33:00 PM



(6/27/2010 12:08:00 PM) - Al

I thought I was missing something, but HT is thinking the same thing as me. This reeks like Seattle chasing that 75th win, and giving up a couple kids to do so seems senseless to me.

Couldn't they have picked up a 1B when they trade Cliff Lee or Brandon League? Found a blocked AAA player for a much lower price? I can understand the M's wanting to upgrade 1B a bit, but unless they can swap Branyan out later and replace the kids they dealt, I'm puzzled.


6/27/2010 12:08:00 PM



(6/27/2010 11:41:00 AM) - Al

Branyan dealt back to SEA...I hope he doesn't make it to Milwaukee today.


6/27/2010 11:41:00 AM



(6/27/2010 11:24:00 AM) - Al

Given the non-existent extension negotiations between Prince Fielder and the Brewers, Buster Olney says the team has two options: trade Fielder and receive a lesser return than fans would expect, or keep the 26-year-old and try to re-sign him after 2011.--MLBTR

I don't see the latter happening, unless his value goes so low as to be worth less than two high draft picks.

We've entered a new era in MLB...young, pre-arby players are now worth more because teams need them to balance out expensive veterans. I think Prince will be dealt in the offseason and a decent return will be had, though Doug may not be able to get AAA or near ready major leaguers, it may be one AAA guy, one single A guy, and a stopgap 1B.


6/27/2010 11:24:00 AM


Saturday, June 26, 2010

(6/26/2010 08:27:00 PM) - Al

To borrow a line from Glenn, "They told me if I voted for McCain we'd have a social moron for a Vice President...and they were right."

Note that the mere idea of lowering taxes if so foreign, to casually toss it out as an option is dismissed as sarcasm.

How we long for the days of Ronald Reagan...


6/26/2010 08:27:00 PM



(6/26/2010 06:39:00 PM) - Al

Classic one-run game, as they usually come down to good fortune. Escobar and Kottaras both just drill the ball in the 9th, right at the CF. Nice job by the M's reliever Brian Sweeney.

Watching he and Hoffman makes you wonder why every pitcher does not throw a change-up.


6/26/2010 06:39:00 PM



(6/26/2010 05:43:00 PM) - Al

Rules of engagement questioned by parents of slain soldier.

This will not make the network news, to be sure.


6/26/2010 05:43:00 PM



(6/26/2010 05:32:00 PM) - Al

Very poor planning by the Marlins not getting something for Pinto. You know several teams were waiting for him to end up being released.


6/26/2010 05:32:00 PM



(6/26/2010 05:30:00 PM) - Al

I just hope there's no problem with Riske which caused the pitching change.


6/26/2010 05:30:00 PM



(6/26/2010 04:02:00 PM) - Al

Injured players slowly getting ready to return. Estrada especially, as he did not even have an injury, just a tired arm/shoulder.


6/26/2010 04:02:00 PM



(6/26/2010 03:37:00 PM) - Al

Jack Wilson is one of the worst hitters in the game, but even he can hit a ground ball to the hole.


6/26/2010 03:37:00 PM



(6/26/2010 03:20:00 PM) - Al

Missed it by that much at 2B. The ball beat him easily, which is usually all they even look at. When the tag is also there, and they still call him safe, you gotta wonder if they're even pretending to make an effort.

The worst they've ever been...until tomorrow.


6/26/2010 03:20:00 PM



(6/26/2010 02:57:00 PM) - Al

It's getting more difficult to not think the greatest hindrance to the oil clean up is the US government. Read this and judge for yourself.


6/26/2010 02:57:00 PM



(6/26/2010 01:34:00 PM) - Al

Think of all the freebies he'd get if he wasn't such a despicable person.


6/26/2010 01:34:00 PM



(6/26/2010 01:31:00 PM) - Al

Two ways to improve college baseball: ban the calling of pitches from the bench, and only one trip to the mound by any coach per game--Peter Gammons

Heh. Neither would add any interest whatsoever to the casual fan.


6/26/2010 01:31:00 PM



(6/26/2010 12:59:00 PM) - Al

MLB.com is reporting Doug Davis will make one more rehab start in Appleton and then rejoin the rotation for a start or two before the all-star break.


6/26/2010 12:59:00 PM



(6/26/2010 11:08:00 AM) - Al

To most of us, Al Gore never stopped being the punchline.

He invented the internet you know.

{To be factual, he said he "created" the internet, which laves the facts out by the curb in the same manner.}


6/26/2010 11:08:00 AM



(6/26/2010 11:05:00 AM) - Al

The Red Sox need a healthy OF, and Dave Dejesus is a target.

Funny how often Gabe Gross shows up on these lists, though he's never really been an everyday player.


6/26/2010 11:05:00 AM



(6/26/2010 10:39:00 AM) - Al

David Aardsma left the team to be with his wife, who will give birth today. Brandon League or Chad Cordero could get the save opp today.--Closer News

The M's bullpen is now only 5, and they've gone 8 innings the past two days.


6/26/2010 10:39:00 AM



(6/26/2010 10:36:00 AM) - Al

Did the Mariners losing the past two games make Jack Z give up on 2010? Suddenly, Cliff Lee is said to be available, and right away.


6/26/2010 10:36:00 AM



(6/26/2010 12:43:00 AM) - Al

Zambrano suspended indefinitely, called a "tired act" by GM.

I believe the Cubs can replace him on the 25 man, which makes this awful convenient for CHI.

UPDATE: For the moment, the Cubs have said they will remain a player short. That does hurt them, to be certain.


6/26/2010 12:43:00 AM



(6/26/2010 12:22:00 AM) - Al

The old media leans left?

I am shocked...shocked I tell you.


6/26/2010 12:22:00 AM


Friday, June 25, 2010

(6/25/2010 09:28:00 PM) - Al

Al – you rip on batting average a lot

“It puzzles me beyond belief why anyone wastes their time even mentioning such a worthless stat as BA. It means less than nothing.”

Yet batting average is THE major component of both OBP and SLG. If BA means nothing, then OBP and SLG mean even less.

Are you saying that knowing nothing else, you would have no preference between a .350 hitter and a .225 hitter?

Isn’t your position a bit like saying that money is meaningless – it’s what you buy that it’s all about?

Scott


My response to Scott:

A .270 hitter might be really good, or he maybe worthless. I don't feel BA "makes up" part of either OBP or SLG...OBP uses walks and HBP's, while SLG measures TB/AB. H/AB's leave out all the important info, and that's why it doesn't work.

To be as simple as possible, BA leaves out plate discipline and power...that's probably the two most important facets of scoring runs. It's no wonder it
sucks.

And a bit more:

Or put another way, it's all about taking bad pitches and swinging at "good ones," at least as the hitter sees them.

I see no use for it...I don't really see much use for offensive stats other than OBP and SLG, as they make up OXS, which is very accurate in predicting runs scored, about 97% when you use team numbers. OXS is better than OPS, but because it's so easy to add them up in your head, as opposed to multiplying, OPS is a decent substitution.

If someone can show me how BA works into a formula that "works" I will change my feelings. Until then, I never discuss BA, and am likely to ignore it until someone flirts with .400 again.


6/25/2010 09:28:00 PM



(6/25/2010 09:19:00 PM) - Al

I'm sure millions more watched the soccer game on Univision as well. Incredible for a weekday morning.


6/25/2010 09:19:00 PM



(6/25/2010 08:53:00 PM) - Al

Jackson's attempt is on ESPN as we type.

He's only at 142 with 2 outs in the 9th, so the 140 must have been wrong.

It's only 1-0, so it's not a automatic win by any means.

He gets it, 149 pitches. Only his 3rd career complete game.


6/25/2010 08:53:00 PM



(6/25/2010 08:42:00 PM) - Al

Some overreactors were complaining about Yo throwing (wait for it) 122 pitches yesterday as he recorded a shutout. Edwin Jackson might hit 150 if he's allowed to finish his no-hit bid.

I always start getting worried when they hit that 120-125 mark, but good pitchers throw 105-110 just to get through 7 frames much of the time.

I'm still a fan of using a 4 man rotation and treating 6 innings like 9, maybe throwing in a spot start a few times a year during long stretches of 15+ games in a row, especially during the hot months of July and August. Sadly, no one has even tried it.


6/25/2010 08:42:00 PM



(6/25/2010 08:38:00 PM) - Al

The home plate ump tonight has to figure out the bottom of the strike zone. On balls just below the knees, he's calling them as close to 50/50 as you can get. It's the exact opposite of a consistent zone.

In the bizarro world, he's been nearly perfect.


6/25/2010 08:38:00 PM



(6/25/2010 08:36:00 PM) - Al

I just hate the contact play, unless the pitcher is due up next I suppose. Not only is it a low percentage play, it seems like the runner gets banged up a lot.


6/25/2010 08:36:00 PM



(6/25/2010 08:27:00 PM) - Al

Doesn't the TV team know that the Mariners' home park is a pitcher's dream? Obviously not 2 runs better, but it probably indicates how confident and aggressive they are knowing it takes Paul Bunyan to hit a ball out of there.


6/25/2010 08:27:00 PM



(6/25/2010 08:24:00 PM) - Al

Lucroy is so darn smart, he hit his first HR into the home bullpen.


6/25/2010 08:24:00 PM



(6/25/2010 08:22:00 PM) - Al

Braun's second restaurant opens.


6/25/2010 08:22:00 PM



(6/25/2010 08:17:00 PM) - Al

To dwell on what the TV team just said about the Blue Jays, they are last in the AL in BA, and 6th in OPS.

Where do they rank in runs scored, you ask?

6th.

It puzzles me beyond belief why anyone wastes their time even mentioning such a worthless stat as BA. It means less than nothing.


6/25/2010 08:17:00 PM



(6/25/2010 08:15:00 PM) - Al

They need to drug test the official scorer. He's either a total moron, or completely stoned.

As I say almost daily, Escobar should just play back, take the easy hop, and when the runner beats the throw, just say he was afraid to get yet another error as he tried to make the out.

That last call may indeed have been the single worst call I've ever witnessed, outside of Appleton, where they call errors on any ground ball an infielder touches.

EDIT: An e-mail says I left out the very realistic possibility he's both stoned and a moron.

I stand corrected.


6/25/2010 08:15:00 PM



(6/25/2010 08:09:00 PM) - Al

How can a veteran like Jack Wilson get thrown out by that much at 2B? With two outs, that's not a terrible risk to take, with no one out, it is.


6/25/2010 08:09:00 PM



(6/25/2010 07:43:00 PM) - Al

The UIGEA has shut down any possibility of credit card deposits, but poker sites have adjusted. Ironically, the ones facing trouble are sites like online horse racing operators, which were given an exemption in the UIGEA but are being overblocked by credit card companies and were not prepared with other options.--Poker News

Heh.

The horse racing lobbies bought and paid for an exception to the UIGEA, and the government is so ineffiecient, they are being affected more than others.

But don't worry, they'll be fantastic with your health care.


6/25/2010 07:43:00 PM



(6/25/2010 07:07:00 PM) - Al

I just checked to see when the USA plays World cup again (tomorrow, Saturday, 1 or 1:30 Central), and was shocked to see the Brewers play tomorrow at 3:10 on Fox.


6/25/2010 07:07:00 PM



(6/25/2010 06:08:00 PM) - Al

ERA's by month:

April--5.16
May----5.53
June---3.96

What an amazing transformation. Obviously, Peterson became a better coach on or about 6/1.:)

FYI, if the Crew's season ERA was 3.96, instead of 4.95, the math says they would have 40 expected wins, instead of 33. Right now, they're one under their expected total, so that would give them 39...which would leave them a single game out of 1st. As many of us have pointed out, it was the pitching.

Of course, is June a better sample than all 72 games? Probably not. But, common sense would tell you they should probably give it a month and see where they are at about 7-10 days before the deadline.

Know what? That's exactly what they've said they plan to do.

UPDATE: I just checked, and as of today, the Brewers lead the NL in runs scored. That sure has received little play, because the pitching has been so subpar.


6/25/2010 06:08:00 PM



(6/25/2010 05:46:00 PM) - Al

Macha said he will meet with Peterson, Kyles and Melvin on Saturday to decide on pitching, including next step for LHP Doug Davis.--MLB.com

I would guess they'll have Davis go next week before Yo, or somehow get him between Yo and Bush. They might well use 6 SP's this time through, as no one can go instead of Narveson, as he is due to pitch Sunday.


6/25/2010 05:46:00 PM



(6/25/2010 05:41:00 PM) - Al

Bert sends this little clip, proudly telling us Arizona is not a border state.

Oy vey.


6/25/2010 05:41:00 PM



(6/25/2010 04:14:00 PM) - Al

Zambrano does this so often, it seems to me it is time for him to take a Milton Bradley type sabbatical, and go get some therapy. It seems quite probable to me that, given the frequency of his outbursts, CZ could use some sort of prescription.

The Cubs are stuck with him, as they gave him a contract that is worthy of a very good and sane pitcher, and at the moment, CZ is neither.

What's ironic is, Pinella acts in the same manner much of the time, getting in feuds often about nothing, and even he's sick of the drama.

It's also something that in the last decade, or even longer, the Brewers never have any incidents like this. Heck, other than a minor push by Prince and a verbal disagreement between Yost and a couple veterans (which happens out of the public view once a month, I'm sure), there's been nothing, which indicates Doug (and others before him) do keep the riff raff out of Milwaukee pretty darn nicely.


6/25/2010 04:14:00 PM



(6/25/2010 03:21:00 PM) - Al

Mark A is not looking to rebuild, only to reload.

He does seem a bit hesitant to even mention contending. I wouldn't hesitate to say we're waiting to see where we're at in a month, because the Crew is perfectly capable of having a 19-9 run and being .500...it doesn't take much to imagine them at .500 now, if Trevor would have been the '09 version, and the rotation is vastly better of late. The odds are against them, but no one is making trades now anyway. Bush might be the 2nd best SP on the market, Edmonds might be one of the better power bats available...but there's no rush.

I still see Hart as a possible wildcard, as teams always covet RH power, and Corey is adequate defensively and also offers speed and BA, unlike the average slugger. But, as I said, the time will come or it won't. All the speculation is for the lawyers.


6/25/2010 03:21:00 PM



(6/25/2010 03:16:00 PM) - Al

When this happens, as it did with Parra last year, and to a lesser extent Davis, you can pretty much count on the pitcher's "problems" being mental and not being aggressive. Instead of aiming for the knees on the outside corner, or an inch off the corner, they feel comfortable enough "going right after" the hitters, as most AAA bats simply do not have much power. So, they aim for the outside third, and find out that most major league hitters don't hit pitches on the outside third for anything other than an occasional single either.


6/25/2010 03:16:00 PM



(6/25/2010 02:26:00 PM) - Al

What's this silliness about competition and free markets improving hospital wait times?

What we need is more government regulation. All the rest is for...those evil capitalists...you know, the ones that built the greatest country the world has ever known.


6/25/2010 02:26:00 PM



(6/25/2010 10:25:00 AM) - Al

I may never watch ESPN again.

They should be begging Andrews to return. She's so nice, with a pleasant personality.


6/25/2010 10:25:00 AM



(6/25/2010 09:07:00 AM) - Al

The Bucks seem to have a deal for Jerome Jordan, a 7 foot center taken with the 2nd of 3 2nd round picks.

Probably for a future 2nd round pick.


6/25/2010 09:07:00 AM


Thursday, June 24, 2010

(6/24/2010 10:35:00 PM) - Al

Doug Davis will be joining the rotation next week, after a stellar 5 inning, 0 runs, 2 hits, 1 walk, and 9 K game in AAA tonight.

The Crew will either go with 6 starters for a week or two, or remove Narveson, as right now, he's #6. Barring injury, Capuano may not have a spot on the 25 man anymore. I'm sure there are several teams hoping he becomes available.


6/24/2010 10:35:00 PM



(6/24/2010 10:19:00 PM) - Al

Tiny Gallon, the last of the Bucks' 2nd round picks, is a good friend of Brandon Jennings.

If he is kept, he may spend much of next year in the NBDL. He's behind Ersan, LmaM, and the 1st rounder Sanders, though both Sanders and Ersan may spend some time at the 5, as of this second, the only center on the roster is Bogut.

That said, the Bucks may have deals in place for a 2nd rounder, as they will not have room for all of them.


6/24/2010 10:19:00 PM



(6/24/2010 08:59:00 PM) - Al

Apparently, the fact the Bucks 1st round pick has the same name as a fictional talk show host is very amusing to many with tiny brains on the internet tonight.


6/24/2010 08:59:00 PM



(6/24/2010 08:51:00 PM) - Al

AP reports Bob Uecker was at the game for at least part of the game today.

I have to imagine his return for home games, at least, will be in the next few weeks.

UPDATE: Al,

Uecker was in the radio booth today for about a half inning and was as hilarious as ever.

Tom


Thanks Tom.


6/24/2010 08:51:00 PM



(6/24/2010 08:09:00 PM) - Al

Luke Babbitt is headed to PORT in a trade with MIN.


6/24/2010 08:09:00 PM



(6/24/2010 07:50:00 PM) - Al

If you ever doubted that the academic world is far, far removed from reality, take a gander at this...schools make grades higher "just because."


6/24/2010 07:50:00 PM



(6/24/2010 06:59:00 PM) - Al

Sidney Moncrief raves about Corey Maggette, who he coached at Golden State, at the Bucks' Summerfest party.

Sid looks like he could still give you 8-10 solid minutes a game.


6/24/2010 06:59:00 PM



(6/24/2010 06:33:00 PM) - Al

Paul Allen fires Blazers' GM an hour before the draft.

Oof.


6/24/2010 06:33:00 PM



(6/24/2010 06:28:00 PM) - Al

The reaction of the fans when the USA scored the goal in the World cup game yesterday.

Imagine if they'd win the darn thing.


6/24/2010 06:28:00 PM



(6/24/2010 05:30:00 PM) - Al

If only a paper had the guts to say "We chose not to run it because we are a far-left wing rag."


6/24/2010 05:30:00 PM



(6/24/2010 02:38:00 PM) - Al

Tiger can cheat on me anytime.


6/24/2010 02:38:00 PM



(6/24/2010 01:30:00 PM) - Al

Crawford diagnosed with sore left shoulder.--Rotoworld

Good to see those years of medical school are finally paying off.


6/24/2010 01:30:00 PM



(6/24/2010 01:07:00 PM) - Al

Incredibly short-sighted dissing of Vegas as a potential MLB site in the future. My goodness, the visiting teams would fill much of the stadium every night, as travel packages would include tickets to the game. Baseball works perfectly, as most series are the right length...2, 3, or 4 games. Folks can fly to Vegas for 3-7 days, see some baseball, gamble, and head home.


6/24/2010 01:07:00 PM



(6/24/2010 12:58:00 PM) - Al

Gery thinks the Bucks will be trading some picks, and it does seem unlikely they will use all four, as they are unlikely to have four spots on the roster available.

Taking the cue from this, I'd say a perfect outcome would be to use one 2nd round pick to move up in the 1st round, and another to swap for a pick in the 2nd next year, or take a European player like Ersan, who will come over in a year or two.

By the way, there's more good stuff in that Fan Feeder piece than has been in the JS since the season ended.


6/24/2010 12:58:00 PM



(6/24/2010 11:34:00 AM) - Al

Anyone surprised by this hasn't been paying attention.


6/24/2010 11:34:00 AM



(6/24/2010 11:30:00 AM) - Al

Two years removed from being a solid bottom of the rotation starter, Dana Eveland is DFA'd for the 3rd time this year.


6/24/2010 11:30:00 AM



(6/24/2010 11:03:00 AM) - Al

Despite multiple 2nd round picks, I have not seen a single mock draft predict the Bucks would pick the center from St. Mary's that was so good in the NCAA tourney.

Not only can you not teach height, not many big guys have anything reminiscent of "a soft touch."

His name is Omar Samhan, and I would say he's a mid-late 2nd rounder.


6/24/2010 11:03:00 AM



(6/24/2010 09:43:00 AM) - Al

I have no idea if Al Gore is guilty of anything but junk science, but I did work with a former massage therapist in the Twin Cities, who told me she had eventually stopped accepting male clients because so many expected sexual favors as part of the massage.

She'd have a better case had she not waited 1000+ days to make an accusation, to say the least.


6/24/2010 09:43:00 AM


Wednesday, June 23, 2010

(6/23/2010 10:53:00 PM) - Al

Axford has now allowed 16 hits...13 singles and 3 doubles. You would think someone would catch up to him and hit a HR, but they haven't yet.


6/23/2010 10:53:00 PM



(6/23/2010 10:15:00 PM) - Al

Axford is up, as they try to prove me wrong...I wonder if CV will be asked to start the 9th with Axford backing him up.

Nope, Axford to start the 9th, looks like Trevor was up for the "non-save" situation if the Crew scored again.


6/23/2010 10:15:00 PM



(6/23/2010 09:26:00 PM) - Al

Surprised to see Loe, but I assume this is for one batter, in theory at least.

Macha seems to know his margin for error is slim. He's kind of managing for the moment every day, and not for the long haul.


6/23/2010 09:26:00 PM



(6/23/2010 09:24:00 PM) - Al

The Mets are 21-7 since a loss to Yankees on May 21 dropped them to 20-23. Funny game, that baseball.--Gleeman

That's why people who say the Brewers are out of it just don't get it. Streaks and good runs do happen.


6/23/2010 09:24:00 PM



(6/23/2010 09:20:00 PM) - Al

Scouting report on Orlando Hudson:

Fastballs, cannot catch up.


6/23/2010 09:20:00 PM



(6/23/2010 09:04:00 PM) - Al

Manny has not gone more than 6 innings this year. I think Macha just chose to go with the fresh arm over the tired one.

Of course, I have stated on many occasions that I would prefer removing my pitcher a batter early than a batter too late. Let's be honest here, Parra has the mental makeup of a teenager. He's struggling to throw to 1B and to walk a batter by throwing wide. He's pitching pretty well overall, but I take 5 or 6 from him every time.


6/23/2010 09:04:00 PM



(6/23/2010 08:53:00 PM) - Al

Brilliant strategery by Macha, having Parra wild pitch the runner to 3B so they can set up an easy tag play at home.

Heh.


6/23/2010 08:53:00 PM



(6/23/2010 08:52:00 PM) - Al

Tennis match tied at 59 each in 5th set.

I've always thought the tiebreaker was the best part of a tennis match. Still do.


6/23/2010 08:52:00 PM



(6/23/2010 08:27:00 PM) - Al

Parra bunted on his own. With a force at the plate, that's bad baseball, so no way Ken calls it.


6/23/2010 08:27:00 PM



(6/23/2010 08:20:00 PM) - Al

Heh, McGehee leads off the 4th with a weak grounder to 3B...it goes directly to Cuddyear, on a good hop mind you, as if Mike has a magnet in his glove.

Yeah, it all evens out.:)


6/23/2010 08:20:00 PM



(6/23/2010 08:16:00 PM) - Al

The next grounder to 3B is hit too weakly to get a DP. The Twins sucked the entire inning, and score twice.

This is not a team made up of lucky group of fellas.


6/23/2010 08:16:00 PM



(6/23/2010 08:13:00 PM) - Al

How many weak ground balls are going to find a way through the 5/6 hole for the Twins?

How pathetic.


6/23/2010 08:13:00 PM



(6/23/2010 07:37:00 PM) - Al

Loe and Axford both went over 30 pitches last night, and both had to get loose twice (John actually three times). I don't see either one warming up or being used tonight.

Heck, if guys could go 2 innings one night and still pitch the 9th the next, everyone would do it.

I see Hoffman in the 9th, with Braddock, CV, and Riske being used to get there, if they have the lead.

EDIT: If I cared what people thought, I'd delete incorrect predictions like this. I would say I bet Axford is off tomorrow, but I choose not to.:)


6/23/2010 07:37:00 PM



(6/23/2010 07:01:00 PM) - Al

A long, though rather amateurish piece on Hart and Fielder being on the market for pitching...the author does not seem to comprehend the fact that teams simply don't trade Yo Gallardo like pitchers for sluggers, especially those who will be free agents after next season. Does he really think a contending team is going to trade a young, solid arm from their rotation?

Basically, you might get a AAA kid with plenty of potential, but as we all know, some hit, some do not.


6/23/2010 07:01:00 PM



(6/23/2010 06:13:00 PM) - Al

The Thunder pick up Cook and the 18th pick for the 32nd. That would have been a nice swap for anyone.


6/23/2010 06:13:00 PM



(6/23/2010 03:11:00 PM) - Al

The state of IL forced to pay 7.1% for bonds to float their debt for 25 years...because no one will buy them otherwise.

Supply and demand sure is a funny thing. I would think investors would be certain the feds would "take care of" any debt IL defaults on, but apparently, that does not soothe those buying them, as they left them unpurchased until they bumped the rates up.


6/23/2010 03:11:00 PM



(6/23/2010 03:04:00 PM) - Al

NCAA rules limit Division I men's soccer teams to 9.9 scholarships, while women's soccer teams are allowed 14 scholarships.

With all due respect to Title 9, what the hell?

Note on a tangent: Enough with the roman numerals, by the way. The empire may well have fallen because it takes so damn long to figure out what all those numbers mean. It's like the folks who use chopsticks even though there's a fork sitting there...get a frickin' clue.


6/23/2010 03:04:00 PM



(6/23/2010 01:34:00 PM) - Al

Snippets shows all the OF dimensions stacked on top of one another. Note how shallow Fenway is.


6/23/2010 01:34:00 PM



(6/23/2010 12:20:00 PM) - Al

I hope Frank Robinson is given the authority to do some replacing, because the current umps, are, for the most part, going to ignore every word he says and continue to suck.


6/23/2010 12:20:00 PM



(6/23/2010 10:48:00 AM) - Al

USA with a huge goal late.

Thus far, it has not been taken away, but it's only been a few minutes. Let's wait and see.


6/23/2010 10:48:00 AM



(6/23/2010 10:40:00 AM) - Al

I'm sure it sucked, but is 100 degrees really life threatening when you're just sitting there?

I guess I would not think it would be unless you were in horrible health.


6/23/2010 10:40:00 AM



(6/23/2010 10:31:00 AM) - Al

Latest NBA rumor...Heat trying to create cap space, trying to dump 3 point shooter Daequan Cook and even their 1st round pick, 18th overall. Bucks have been mentioned as one of the possibilities.

Of course, every team not trying to create room for Lebron and the FA class of 2010 would love to make a deal like that.


6/23/2010 10:31:00 AM



(6/23/2010 09:40:00 AM) - Al

Jesse Levis trying to find a job after misdemeanor charges dismissed...after two years.

The government is embarrassingly inefficient...even at throwing out a case.


6/23/2010 09:40:00 AM



(6/23/2010 12:03:00 AM) - Al

NBC.com is reporting the Bucks will be trading a 2nd round pick to NJ for Chris Douglas-Roberts, who I will forever in the future refer to as CDR, as I feel hyphenated names are the work of Satan. Pick a moniker and go with it.

CDR is another 6-7 swingman, able to play the 2 or the 3 (that's basketball talk), and is very young. He's got upside, and appears to be another athletic, inexpensive pickup.

CDR is not unhappy to be leaving the Nets.


6/23/2010 12:03:00 AM


Tuesday, June 22, 2010

(6/22/2010 11:54:00 PM) - Al

Crew releases Brian Bruney, who they just activated at AAA. I assume he either asked for his release or it was done as a courtesy, knowing Smith and Stetter, and maybe others, were ahead of him in line to be called up.

EDIT: As suspected.

Bruney had an "out" clause that allowed him to be a free agent if not summoned to the majors by July 7. With the Brewers' bullpen stabilized in recent days, assistant general manager Gord Ash said there wouldn't be a place for Bruney by that date.--JS


6/22/2010 11:54:00 PM



(6/22/2010 11:33:00 PM) - Al

LHP Zach Braddock was not with the team today due to a death in the family.--MLB.com

It's astounding in this day and age that the Brewers keep this quiet for a tiny strategical advantage and the TV team is clueless unless Macha discusses it in his pre-game presser.


6/22/2010 11:33:00 PM



(6/22/2010 10:11:00 PM) - Al

Trevor in or not? Axford had to throw a lot of pitches, so he may well be a bit gassed, at least by the 3rd out, so I would understand it, never mind they may want to make Hoffman the closer again.

UPDATE: Bullpen quiet, Axford will at least begin the 9th.


6/22/2010 10:11:00 PM



(6/22/2010 09:58:00 PM) - Al

The strike zone is once again changing in the late innings. How can these guys not be consistent when they work 3 hours a day?

That missed strike three just cost the Brewers a run and let the Twins right back in the game. These umps are just pathetic, every single night.


6/22/2010 09:58:00 PM



(6/22/2010 09:28:00 PM) - Al

Axford up in the 7th, they may well be choosing tonight to have Hoffman try and get a save, if they go into the 9th with a lead, of course.

And not to bring common sense into the discussion with something so sacred as "the last three outs are tougher" silliness, but it doesn't much matter who pitches the 8th and who pitches the 9th...the runs count the same.


6/22/2010 09:28:00 PM



(6/22/2010 09:23:00 PM) - Al

I don't think the Brewers are going to miss facing Hernandez and Lee in the least.


6/22/2010 09:23:00 PM



(6/22/2010 08:15:00 PM) - Al

Cla Meredith may not have much of a fastball, but he's been outstanding over the years. The O's will get offers for him, as plenty of clubs need bullpen help.


6/22/2010 08:15:00 PM



(6/22/2010 07:29:00 PM) - Al

Even Gleeman forgets that most 22-23 year-olds struggle in the big leagues. It takes time for guys who get rushed to be as good as they're going to be.


6/22/2010 07:29:00 PM



(6/22/2010 07:14:00 PM) - Al

The thing about Hoffman is, his whole value is as a closer...hasn't pitched more than an inning in at least 5 years, while Axford can easily give you a couple frames, or at least 4-5 outs. I'm sure Ken would like to see Trevor keep adding up saves, because, let's be blunt, that's the only reason he's still playing.


6/22/2010 07:14:00 PM



(6/22/2010 06:32:00 PM) - Al

I have to agree with Ms. Saunders...I'm not seeing a lot of bite in the remarks McChrystal made...most seem to be made by "unnamed sources" and the like. It does probably show a lack of respect, but anyone who reads military blogs knows Obama is unpopular with our finest, especially following W, who was loved and adored by the families and the fighting men and women themselves.

Let's be honest, the president has already pretty much told the enemy when the good guys are going home. It's not a surprise that those trained to eliminate and destroy the enemy are not fond of such a strategy.


6/22/2010 06:32:00 PM



(6/22/2010 06:05:00 PM) - Al

I forgot to mention the Bucks pick up a 2nd round pick as well. I just read last night a team is paying $2M for a 2nd round pick (I think it was PORT), as they have lots of value because:

A. No multi-year guaranteed deals.

B. Teams like to fill out their rosters cheaply with 2nd round picks.

C. The $2M does not count against the salary cap, or the payroll tax.

The Bucks have three 2nd round picks, it seems likely to me they may package a couple of them and move up to early in the 2nd round.


6/22/2010 06:05:00 PM



(6/22/2010 05:36:00 PM) - Al

Bucks acquire Corey Maggette from Warriors for Charlie Bell & Dan Gadzuric.--Bucks e-mail to season ticket holders, of which I am not, but somehow am on the list

No offense to Charlie and Dan, who would fit in as role players on most 15 man NBA rosters, but if you can dump Gadzuric's contract and get a player that can help you at all, you do it every day and twice on Sunday.


6/22/2010 05:36:00 PM



(6/22/2010 12:15:00 PM) - Al

Hardy sure has missed a lot of time with a "bone bruise" on his non-throwing hand.

I have no idea what that is or how much it hurts, but it sure doesn't change the perception he's not durable.


6/22/2010 12:15:00 PM



(6/22/2010 11:56:00 AM) - Al

Jim Leyland gives his opinion on team chemistry. It's the same as mine.

I had to giggle at Chipper Jones telling a TV guy Sunday night that the Braves are so good "because we're so hungry." Silly me, I thought it was because they are top 5 in both offense and run prevention. I'm not sure if Chipper is that stupid or thinks the rest of us are, but either way, it's sad.


6/22/2010 11:56:00 AM


Monday, June 21, 2010

(6/21/2010 11:43:00 PM) - Al

As the NBA draft draws closer, the Bucks and Xavier Henry keep being matched up in lots of mock drafts.


6/21/2010 11:43:00 PM



(6/21/2010 07:10:00 PM) - Al

Boat race bad, golf good. I'm telling you, it's getting harder and harder to tell if this is really the administration, or just another unfunny SNL sketch.

Ed sends this Eugene Kane column, which reads like satire, but honest, is just him. The comments are hilarious, because they're accurate.


6/21/2010 07:10:00 PM



(6/21/2010 06:34:00 PM) - Al

The pitching is indeed better, it's not just your imagination.

Maybe Peterson has picked up some tricks the past couple weeks.:)


6/21/2010 06:34:00 PM



(6/21/2010 06:29:00 PM) - Al

There's a fellow who bets on football every weekend, and for three straight months, he loses every weekend. He's a bookie's dream. Then, when football season ends, the bookie - fearful of losing his best customer - tells him he can bet hockey. "Hockey?!?" the man exclaims. "What do I know about hockey?"--Norm Chad's favorite gambling tale

Heh. Even tired old jokes are enjoyable from Mr. Chad.


6/21/2010 06:29:00 PM



(6/21/2010 04:48:00 PM) - Al

Edwin Encarnacion is a perfect example of teams looking at what a guy can't do instead of accepting him for what he is...an 800 OPS guy who struggles at 3B. As a 1B/DH and maybe a part-time 3B/LF, he'll be a nice fit. As is, teams keep pawning him off because he's a crappy defender.


6/21/2010 04:48:00 PM



(6/21/2010 02:55:00 PM) - Al

Ann ponders humorously why UP is part of Michigan, when it should be Wisconsin's.

If you wonder why the UP is in MI, the answer can be found here. To be brief, MI lost Toledo, so was given the UP as a consolation prize.

I have heard rumors of the UP becoming a separate state, or combining with northern WI to be a state called Superior. Both are total farces though, as the UP depends on the large metro populations in downstate MI for most of its tax money.


6/21/2010 02:55:00 PM



(6/21/2010 02:28:00 PM) - Al

Upon further review, young blonde female celebrities are welcome into the mythical Ramblings' dressing room no matter how bad of a day I had blogging.


6/21/2010 02:28:00 PM



(6/21/2010 01:35:00 PM) - Al

Instead of skipping away into foul territory and allowing Kottaras to trot home, however, the ball struck third base umpire Larry Vanover and remained near the bag.

"I said 'What else is going to happen? Hit a dead bird over there?' " Macha said incredulously.--JS


Heh.

That said, it wouldn't surprise me a bit. From Weeks HR off the top of the wall to Hawpe turning into a Gold Glove OF on Braun's liner over his head, even today, this is just not a team that has things go their way.


6/21/2010 01:35:00 PM



(6/21/2010 01:25:00 PM) - Al

My weekly weigh in has me down 28 pounds. I was so motivated, I skipped the exercise bike Sunday and ate badly both days.

I suck. And so do skinny people.


6/21/2010 01:25:00 PM



(6/21/2010 12:29:00 PM) - Al

Once again, my dream that Jennie Finch could stand in front of me at Miller Park as she waits for her nitrate infused sausage product is alive and well.


6/21/2010 12:29:00 PM



(6/21/2010 11:24:00 AM) - Al

Utility man Joe Inglett, who can play the outfield, has been unavailable to play in the field because of a slow-healing ankle injury.--Tom H, JS

Apparently, Tom fell asleep before Inglett played a few innings in LF the other night in Anaheim.

And while I'm discussing the JS, allow me to add that Tony W is still awful.


6/21/2010 11:24:00 AM



(6/21/2010 10:22:00 AM) - Al

At least those census folks are earning their money.


6/21/2010 10:22:00 AM



(6/21/2010 09:19:00 AM) - Al

Amanda Bynes retires at 24.

I hope this does not lead to rehab at 25.


6/21/2010 09:19:00 AM



(6/21/2010 06:55:00 AM) - Al

They'll be some scheduled stuff popping up throughout the day.

Just like this. 5 to 7? I couldn't be more asleep if my wife was telling me about her feelings.

See you later, friends.


6/21/2010 06:55:00 AM


Sunday, June 20, 2010

(6/20/2010 09:07:00 PM) - Al

Rahm soon to quit, says UK paper.

Note the excuse, that he's just too intense for the job. Heh. I remember a job interview suggestion once that you take any question meant to disclose a negative and turn it into a positive...such as:

Q--What's your biggest weakness?

A--I was a bit disorganized when I started in management. So, I took a class on it, and worked hard to improve. Now, some people say I'm over-organized.

Leaks like that, which include obvious untruths like the "too intense" line makes me think it is probably very true.


6/20/2010 09:07:00 PM



(6/20/2010 09:03:00 PM) - Al

Al,

I looked up Cliff Lee's statistics after reading your hypothetical trade you posted. Did you know that Cliff Lee has only walked 4 hitters this year in 77 innings pitched and he still strikes out 7.8/9 innings? I realize it is a small sample but it is not small enough that it can be ignored. What is also amazing is that there is very little mention of it, and that he only has 5 wins. The case could definitely be made that he is pitching better than anyone in baseball right now (Jimenez included). Stephen Strasburg has already walked more in 19 innings than Lee has walked all year. And if you were curious, the major league record for K/BB in a season is 11.0 by Bret Saberhagen in 1994. Right now Lee's is 16.75 and he has to face a DH.

Tom


The irony to me is this...Lee is worth more because his contract expires at the end of the season. And yes, he has been scary good.


6/20/2010 09:03:00 PM



(6/20/2010 01:35:00 PM) - Al

Glenn links to this remarkably well written piece about the tea party.

Heck, I was a fiscal conservative before it was cool.


6/20/2010 01:35:00 PM



(6/20/2010 01:24:00 PM) - Al

Turns out defending their country isn't the only thing the French do very poorly.


6/20/2010 01:24:00 PM



(6/20/2010 01:14:00 PM) - Al

Macha has done such a good job watching pitch counts and protecting arms, I have no problem with him wanting to pitch Yo every 5th day.

I'd a lot rather have my top four guys go every 5th day and limit them to 105-110 pitches than give them an extra day's rest and let them go 120.


6/20/2010 01:14:00 PM



(6/20/2010 12:58:00 PM) - Al

Happy Father's Day. The Rambling son gave me a homemade card that said:

Have a great (open card) bad Father's Day!

See, the apple does not fall far from the tree.


6/20/2010 12:58:00 PM



(6/20/2010 12:39:00 PM) - Al

Stunning move. Tigers announce that Porcello has been sent to the minors.--Jon Heyman

Not sure if Porcello is a Boras client (Heyman is a Boras company man), but what exactly is shocking about a youngster with a 6 ERA going down to AAA is beyond me.

Heyman must know less about baseball than anyone not named Tony W.


6/20/2010 12:39:00 PM



(6/20/2010 08:50:00 AM) - Al

Al,

Good stuff on the Cliff Lee sweepstakes. That's some good work, even though its all just fun and rumors.

When do you think is Doug and Gord's point of no return, by which, they'll look to be sellers rather than buyers? I think it's the all-star break, as they play few home games in July after that, and by that point, would have to be within 3-4 of a playoff spot to have a realistic chance at contending.

One more thing Al, why is no one else, the real media, the bloggers, anyone, pointing out that in addition to Fielder, Hart and Weeks will be entering their lame duck season in 2011 as well, and that, as you have said often, decisions will have to be made on them this offseason?

Curt


I would agree July, about a month from now, the braintrust will sit down with Mark A and make some decisions...they may be obvious, and they may already be made for them. I was surprised to see the Crew only 8 games out last night...if they go 20-10 in their next 30, which they are certainly capable of, and SL plays .500 ball, they're right in it. That said, considering the Cards have two aces, I'm not holding my breath either.

Very few people have talked about how guys like Edmonds, Counsell, Riske, and Bush could draw interest as well. We're not talking top prospects here, but remember when the Crew shipped a middling A-baller or two to the Giants for Ray Durham? Vets only have to be better than the 25th man on the roster if they're affordable. Heck, even guys such as Carlos V and Coffey might be discussed, as both will be spendy ($2-2.5M or more) as time goes on.

The thing about Prince, Corey, and Rickie is simple...since Fielder has the best results, he gets the attention, though he plays an easy to fill position, one of the others could prove to be more difficult to replace. But, most cater to the casual fan, and many casuals would love to see Prince signed to a franchise crippling extension and would not blink twice at it. Hence, the attention, much of which is justified, as nationally, Prince is a more well known player, and has been better to this point.

This is premature, but I can all but promise you six position players for '11 will be Lucroy, Escobar, McGehee, Braun, Gomez, and Gamel (barring injury or trade), though I do not know where Mat will be playing. I really like Inglett as either a bench option or a stopgap at 2B or LF/RF, but who knows what Doug thinks of him. Kottaras as well would seem a good fit behind the plate. That leaves plenty of spots to be filled, and I haven't even mentioned the pitching yet.

One thing to keep in mind, Rickie has been hurt often in his career, he may be the most likely to be moved this season. His defense, while still not excellent, is vastly improved, and he's a huge upgrade to many teams, who have a Nick Punto type there, just for solid defense.


6/20/2010 08:50:00 AM



(6/20/2010 12:30:00 AM) - Al

I had never heard of Juneteenth until just now.


6/20/2010 12:30:00 AM



(6/20/2010 12:21:00 AM) - Al

Coffey back, Smith optioned out. I believe Chris will have to clear waivers and choose to report to AAA, or be a free agent. He might make it, but sadly, if he were 6-4, he'd all but certainly be claimed.


6/20/2010 12:21:00 AM



(6/20/2010 12:02:00 AM) - Al

"That was the epitome of our season to this point," said Braun. "We go through all of that but in the end find a way to lose. And we get no breaks along the way."

Braun made two strong throws to the plate in the Rockies' four-run eighth inning. The first one hit the runner in the back, allowing him to score. The second was perfect but the ball got away from catcher Jonathan Lucroy when he went to make the tag.

"You don't ever want to blame anything on luck but it never seems to go in our direction," said Braun. "It shows the game is not fair at times. We did everything we could do but it didn't work out. We battled until the final at-bat. That says a lot about the character of our team.

"All we can do is continue to come out and compete and try to put ourselves in the best position to have success. There are no excuses. There's no doubt we've been on the wrong end of some unlucky plays. But we haven't done enough to win games, either."--JS


Good analysis from Ryan, who is way to smart to be a ballplayer. It is an unlucky team, and if it balances out, they are in for some very good fortune the rest of the way.

Of course, Carlos V hung two pitches, which had little to do with luck. Coffey is returning, so maybe he'll be able to take some of the burden off CV, who is on pace for way too many innings. Braddock was more unlucky than bad, but made a fielding mistake.

I'm not sure if Bill S forgot the situation or just got something stuck in his head and kept repeating it, but there's no way Yo bats for himself and then returns to, best case scenario, pitch one more inning. The odds are, he'd have not just made an out, but then only pitched to another batter or two. While 105 pitches is not "too many," 120 is pretty much his limit, so it's unlikely he gets through another frame.

In the AL, Yo probably returns, but not in the NL. That's why being a manager in the AL is basically just going by the book and making a pitching change once in a while.


6/20/2010 12:02:00 AM


Saturday, June 19, 2010

(6/19/2010 06:31:00 PM) - Al

Mike Jones, former first round pick, released after numerous injuries.

Repeat after me, there is no such thing as a pitching prospect.


6/19/2010 06:31:00 PM



(6/19/2010 04:12:00 PM) - Al

Not often I make a call, especially one as ridiculous as a three team trade, but, if the Crew remains out of the race...

SEA sends MIN Cliff Lee
MIL sends SEA Corey Hart
MIN sends SEA Wilson Ramos
MIN & SEA sends young players

I can also see MIN picking up infield help (if Hardy and Hudson are still hurt) and bullpen assistance. Not only could the Twins deal solid AAA arms like Manship and Swarzak, they could even include Scott Baker in the right deal to challenge for the title this year.

And yes, it makes too much sense to ever happen.


6/19/2010 04:12:00 PM



(6/19/2010 03:45:00 PM) - Al

Manute Bol passes away.

Just like little people suffer many health problems, the tall often die far too young.


6/19/2010 03:45:00 PM



(6/19/2010 01:16:00 PM) - Al

The disgust over that phantom foul in the USA game is extraordinary. It's a shame the umpires' behavior and overall suckiness is usually greeted with a shrug of the shoulders. It's never going to get better until folks decide to take it seriously rather than this ignorant "Well, they're right most of the time" justification of a complete lack of effort and even trying to get in the proper position.

Did I mention no one even made a call on Gomez...and then were so sure the eventual safe call was wrong, they changed it? Oy vey.


6/19/2010 01:16:00 PM



(6/19/2010 11:44:00 AM) - Al

Adam has said a couple times he does not know how the Crew will find room to add Todd Coffey to the roster when he returns. The bottom two pitchers are no doubt Capuano and Smith, but neither have options and I do not know if either would clear waivers.

Who has options? Axford, Braddock, and Carlos V...heh. Zach did have one bad appearance, but other than that, those three have been very solid. And, barring setback, Davis will be back in about ten days.

I might well send Braddock down for a couple weeks, as unless they win 11 of 14, a guy like Riske will have value at the deadline, though not a lot.

My guess? I think they'll sit down and talk to Cappy, and tell him if anyone claims him, they wish him the best. Otherwise, they'd like him to go to AAA and if a team wants him in the bigs, they'll either let him go or bring him up in a few days.

With the Diamondbacks struggling in the bullpen and looking to totally rebuild, they'd be wise to pick up any cheap pitching they can. They may end up with both Smith and Cappy, and rumor has it John Maine is going to be let go by the Mets, as he says he is healthy, but is still suffering diminished velocity.


6/19/2010 11:44:00 AM



(6/19/2010 11:41:00 AM) - Al

I guess it would be easier for me to get trim if shaved ice had any appeal to me whatsoever.


6/19/2010 11:41:00 AM



(6/19/2010 11:38:00 AM) - Al

For the record, there were just two 7-game series in the NBA playoffs this season; Milwaukee-Atlanta and L.A.-Boston.--Jim Patschke on Twitter

I never heard that 'til now.


6/19/2010 11:38:00 AM



(6/19/2010 11:21:00 AM) - Al

The Rockies' TV version of the "highly paid professionals all looking at each other and hoping someone else bothered to make a call, because I didn't" from last night. You can clearly see both just plain not bothering to make a call

Gomez was called safe, but it was later changed because they were playing in high altitude, and it was easier that way.

And today, they'll be even worse.


6/19/2010 11:21:00 AM


Friday, June 18, 2010

(6/18/2010 11:00:00 PM) - Al

In June, the Brewers are 7th in offense and 10th in runs allowed...basically the same amount of each (64/65). Of course, whenever you look at what is basically a two week sample, you're going to find some strange numbers. It's nice to see the pitching improving, but in order to get back near .500, they're going to have to keep that offense in the top 3-4 at least.

Won't be easy, the Rockies have a very nice staff, 4th in the NL.


6/18/2010 11:00:00 PM



(6/18/2010 10:39:00 PM) - Al

Lucroy is awful young to have a slider speed bat.


6/18/2010 10:39:00 PM



(6/18/2010 10:36:00 PM) - Al

What's this novel idea...World Cup to hold review and maybe exclude official after bad call?

In MLB, they just give them another week of paid vacation and a raise.


6/18/2010 10:36:00 PM



(6/18/2010 10:28:00 PM) - Al

Home plate umpire Mark Carlson rings up Corey Hart in the eighth inning on a pitch about six inches inside. Not even close to a strike.--Tom H

Well, we're in the 8th, so just give him 4, maybe 5 more frames, and he'll get this strike zone thing down.

The worst they've ever been...until tomorrow.


6/18/2010 10:28:00 PM



(6/18/2010 09:59:00 PM) - Al

Brewers manager Ken Macha will tinker with his starting rotation next week to avoid pitching right-hander Dave Bush against the Minnesota Twins, but Macha disputed the notion that Bush is being "bumped."

"I think 'bumped' has a negative connotation," Macha said. "What we're trying to do is get everybody in a position where they have the highest likelihood of succeeding."

Instead of taking his regular turn in the rotation on Tuesday, when the Brewers begin a nine-game homestand and a three-game series against Minnesota, Bush will pitch three days later, on Friday, June 25, against the Mariners. Entering Friday, Seattle hitters were batting .235 against right-handed pitchers.

The Twins, meanwhile, have given Bush fits. On June 21 at Target Field, Bush allowed seven runs, six hits and two walks while recording only one out in the worst start by a Brewers pitcher in four years. In seven career starts against the Twins, Bush is 1-6 with a 5.95 ERA. Take away the May 21 game, and Bush is 1-5 against Minnesota with a 4.38 ERA.

Instead, Macha will start Chris Narveson, Manny Parra and Yovani Gallardo in the Minnesota series.--MLB.com


Bush is probably being skipped because of his past troubles versus the Twins, that one out outing he had, and the lefty power MIN has. With Davis now close to returning, Narveson may be pitching for a rotation spot.


6/18/2010 09:59:00 PM



(6/18/2010 09:54:00 PM) - Al

It was Larry Vanover who got into that flap with the Padres that got Torrealba suspended. It's always the same guys. Always the same.--Tom H on Twitter

Good to see the problem was immediately taken care of by having a guy who should be without a job now bringing his "look at me" ineptness to work the Brewers' game.

The pain, I can't stand the pain.


6/18/2010 09:54:00 PM



(6/18/2010 09:44:00 PM) - Al

In one play, we saw just how pathetic the state of umpiring is today. Not only do they really, really suck, they don't care that they really suck.

No one bothered to get in position to make a call, heck, no one bothered to make a call, right or wrong. Then, after the mental coin was flipped and a call was finally made, the four blind, uncaring mice decided that the original call, which no one had bothered to make mind you, was obviously incorrect, because no one had saw the play good enough to make a call.

I don't think in all my years there has ever been a call so apparently made to favor the home team. They had no clue, because no one bothered to get into proper position, so they just said, "Ah, let's just call him out."

Every single day, MLB umpiring sets a new, incredibly low standard.

Every single day, they fail to live up to that low standard, and they set an even lower standard.

And even worse, they make absolutely no effort to even pretend it bothers them. They are entrenched in a high paying occupation and they will have that job until they retire or die.

It is, without a doubt, MLB's greatest embarrassment.

And if they're horrible now, which without a doubt, they are simply off-the-charts awful, wait 'til it gets hot out.


6/18/2010 09:44:00 PM



(6/18/2010 06:36:00 PM) - Al

Millions spent on squirrel bridge.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm gonna shuffle off in front of a truck.


6/18/2010 06:36:00 PM



(6/18/2010 11:58:00 AM) - Al

So, two games in and United States has a 0-1 draw and a 3-2 draw. I'm really enjoying it, but soccer is a funny sport.--Gleeman on Twitter

I had an early appointment so I missed the game, but allow me to say, those phantom fouls no one can see deciding the outcome...probably not the way you want the game to end.


6/18/2010 11:58:00 AM



(6/18/2010 11:26:00 AM) - Al

I'd like to go on record as saying this shocks me, because every farmer I talk to tells me the weather was terrible last year, and this year has only been worse.

And, I wish I was joking.


6/18/2010 11:26:00 AM



(6/18/2010 09:18:00 AM) - Al

Gleeman's link-o-rama is a must read, and be sure to click on the HR trot video.

Note the losing team is far more upset at the slowness of the trot (which, by rule, can be as slow as the batter wishes, so such things do not bother me) than they are losing the game. Think about that a few minutes and get back to me on how nonsensical that phrase is.


6/18/2010 09:18:00 AM



(6/18/2010 09:07:00 AM) - Al

TV Land’s Hot in Cleveland premiered to 4.8 million viewers (and an additional 2.4 million for the encore at 10:30p)

7M is astounding for a network that usually gets about 10% of that. Allow me to say the 50 year-old Valerie Bertinelli makes the other ladies look like boys in the promos.


6/18/2010 09:07:00 AM



(6/18/2010 12:29:00 AM) - Al

I just looked at the radar and a huge line of storms and rain is headed our way...and they are predicting 0.30 inches for us.

That seems low.


6/18/2010 12:29:00 AM


Thursday, June 17, 2010

(6/17/2010 10:30:00 PM) - Al

Umpires still trying to be the center of attention, now cause suspension by being the aggressor.

The pain, I can't stand the pain.


6/17/2010 10:30:00 PM



(6/17/2010 07:57:00 PM) - Al

I cannot believe any media outlet gives these loons the time of day. Bigfoot? Bring me a body, they don't live forever. Until then, shut the hell up.

Oh, and you may want to cut back on the drinking...


6/17/2010 07:57:00 PM



(6/17/2010 07:32:00 PM) - Al

Casino that had $1.3B profit given $54M in "stimulus" money.

Hard to believe this pork isn't just creating jobs left and right.

By the way, this was Chris Dodd's district...coincidence, I'm sure. $54M here, $54M there...


6/17/2010 07:32:00 PM



(6/17/2010 07:20:00 PM) - Al

The Pirates have done a fine job in picking up young talent, and plenty of quality youngsters that were either blocked or never given a chance elsewhere (Delwyn Young, Andy LaRoche, Ronny Cedeno). As always, not every deal is going to work (I never understood picking up Ikonura), but they are getting younger and better.

Huntington has done a heckuva job, and I'm surprised they just have him extended through '11.


6/17/2010 07:20:00 PM



(6/17/2010 05:33:00 PM) - Al

A question I'm bound to ask as well...why can't Christie be president in '12?

As I've pointed out numerous times, Obama proves experience is no longer needed. Of course, seeing him struggle to lead and do anything except tax, spend and wonder why things aren't coming up roses may make experience vital for whoever replaces him, be it in '12 or '16.


6/17/2010 05:33:00 PM



(6/17/2010 12:36:00 PM) - Al

Spending on biking and walking projects rose from less than $600 million (£407 million) in 2008, according to the Federal Highway Administration. Twenty years ago, the federal government was spending only $6 million a year on such projects.

The spending on biking and walking projects was scheduled to rise last year anyway, but the administration boosted it with $400 million in funds set aside under the economic recovery program.--UK Telegraph


I added the bold, because it's just so damn sad. Pet pork projects on something that does not create jobs, and spending 100 times more than Reagan are very fitting.


6/17/2010 12:36:00 PM



(6/17/2010 08:52:00 AM) - Al

Obama has lost the LA Times, and a hilarious picture caption.


6/17/2010 08:52:00 AM


Wednesday, June 16, 2010

(6/16/2010 11:25:00 PM) - Al

Dodgers sign Vargas, will have him work out kinks at AAA.


6/16/2010 11:25:00 PM



(6/16/2010 10:07:00 PM) - Al

Weak effort at Fangraphs on what the Brewers should do at the deadline...the author inexplicably spends much of the piece discussing how draftees several years from the majors are doing.

The last paragraph does discuss how much money the Brewers have coming off the books after this season. That's one reason why I can't scoff at Dan Haren's availability, as it's not often a true top of the rotation guy is on the market as anything but a short-term pickup.


6/16/2010 10:07:00 PM



(6/16/2010 09:59:00 PM) - Al

ESPN's 30/30 special only reminds me of how incredibly guilty OJ Simpson was, and how ignorant that jury was.

They may not be the 12 stupidest people in the world, but I wouldn't bet against it either.


6/16/2010 09:59:00 PM



(6/16/2010 09:52:00 PM) - Al

Discovery releases air dates of Deadliest Catch episodes involving the death of Phil Harris.


6/16/2010 09:52:00 PM



(6/16/2010 09:45:00 PM) - Al

Marlins DFA reliever with a 2ish ERA, and he had a 3ish ERA last year.

Needless to say, I think they'll find a taker.


6/16/2010 09:45:00 PM



(6/16/2010 08:31:00 PM) - Al

The jokes just write themselves in DC these days.

I chuckle at the mere fact there's a human being alive that thinks adding another bureaucrat to the payroll is a good thing.


6/16/2010 08:31:00 PM



(6/16/2010 08:27:00 PM) - Al

Governor Christie sounds a heckuva lot like Governor Palin to me...no fancy words, no teleprompters, just common sense that does not involve spending lots of "other people's" money.

I also have little doubt they will rip him apart as well, for being simple and for his weight. I hope they have the chance.


6/16/2010 08:27:00 PM



(6/16/2010 01:51:00 PM) - Al

No way that clown gets reelected...right?


6/16/2010 01:51:00 PM



(6/16/2010 12:53:00 PM) - Al

If I were the Twins, I would not give much for Lowell, but he would be a nice piece for them, with their injuries.


6/16/2010 12:53:00 PM



(6/16/2010 12:21:00 PM) - Al

Guy built a lot like me almost falls on ball girl.

That said, he's got good taste.


6/16/2010 12:21:00 PM



(6/16/2010 10:13:00 AM) - Al

Speaking of attention whores...

He's like a couple years from blaming his investment guy for losing/embezzling all his money.


6/16/2010 10:13:00 AM


Tuesday, June 15, 2010

(6/15/2010 11:46:00 PM) - Al

John Axford in to pitch the 9th because he needs the work.

That may be the nicest phrase I've heard all year.


6/15/2010 11:46:00 PM



(6/15/2010 10:21:00 PM) - Al

This piece on who the Twins might go after mentions Dan Haren...if he was owed just a bit less money, or maybe one less guaranteed year, I could certainly see Doug going after him as a complement to Yo, even if they decide to sell later.


6/15/2010 10:21:00 PM



(6/15/2010 10:02:00 PM) - Al

I'm sorry, but if he's lost MSNBC, he should just resign.


6/15/2010 10:02:00 PM



(6/15/2010 07:29:00 PM) - Al

Davis and Coffey pitch simulated games, off to the minors soon.


6/15/2010 07:29:00 PM



(6/15/2010 06:17:00 PM) - Al

Adam tells us that Rickie is DHing tonight, with Counsell at 2B.


6/15/2010 06:17:00 PM



(6/15/2010 03:59:00 PM) - Al

I still recall getting a C on a visit by some exec instead of a B because some little craft item was "just dumped" into a little basket (which, shockingly, was called a "dump bin") instead of being neatly stacked and such. Retail is full of such lunacy, every single day. And yes, everyone should do it for a few days.

Funny, I came across that link just a few minutes after the Rambling wife left to go return an item with no tags and no receipt. Sadly, I told her a tiny fib that should help things along, which I know because of my many moons in retail management.


6/15/2010 03:59:00 PM



(6/15/2010 03:54:00 PM) - Al

It just keeps getting better with Gore. And to think, he could have been the leader of the free world.


6/15/2010 03:54:00 PM



(6/15/2010 03:49:00 PM) - Al

A private businessman guarantees a college education to all kids in MA who lost a parent in Iraq or Afghanistan.

The feds spend $1T on magic beans and can't be bothered.

The truth is far stranger than fiction.


6/15/2010 03:49:00 PM



(6/15/2010 03:41:00 PM) - Al

...Then there are the Brewers, the former team of Mariners GM Jack Zduriencik.

The Brewers, nine games out, would want Lee only to flip him for younger pitching in a three-way deal. They could offer Zduriencik immediate offensive help -- right fielder Corey Hart, the NL leader with 17 homers. Or, they could build a package around a young third baseman -- Mat Gamel, who has an .884 OPS at Class AAA. Zduriencik, the Brewers’ former scouting director, drafted both players.

The Hart scenario might not be as radical as it sounds -- Hart, 28, is under control through 2011, and probably would be open to signing long-term. This season, assuming he stays hot, might prove to be his outlier. But power hitters are increasingly difficult to obtain.--Rosenthal


Ken putting forth the idea the Crew and Mariners could be part of a three team package with the Brewers ending up with young pitching. Trading Hart for young pitchers close to being ready to contribute in the majors is exactly the type of deal I would expect to see if Doug decides to sell. RH power is always sought after, especially athletic guys like Corey. Ditto for Rickie and Prince, for that matter.


6/15/2010 03:41:00 PM



(6/15/2010 03:30:00 PM) - Al

Gleeman discusses why the Royals are where they are.


6/15/2010 03:30:00 PM



(6/15/2010 03:15:00 PM) - Al

...the Angels telecast said that pitch in his ribs/stomach was McGehee’s motivation to purposely take out Aybar with a seven-run Brewer lead.--JS

Heh. I was unaware of the rule where the trailing team promises not to score seven runs to tie the game. My question is, who are the wimpy nanny staters doing the Angels' broadcasts?


6/15/2010 03:15:00 PM



(6/15/2010 01:28:00 PM) - Al

Sadly, I would have bet that this was my Congressman beating up interviewers.

No, absolutely no feeling of privilege in DC.

None.


6/15/2010 01:28:00 PM



(6/15/2010 01:22:00 PM) - Al

I'm thrilled Texas is staying in the Big 12, because it means they may well be looking for a better deal whenever the Big Ten can make a better offer, be that next year, a couple years, or down the road.


6/15/2010 01:22:00 PM



(6/15/2010 12:57:00 PM) - Al

The 64th Annual Tony Awards managed to beat a repeat of Losing It With Jillian during the 9pm hour. It could only tie a repeat of Last Comic Standing at 10.

I just find this very funny. I don't know of a single person who ever watches the Tonys, though I'm a guy who finds hilarity when the buffoon on Cops says "It's not mine, I swear to God" for the kazillionth time. Needless to say, I'm not their target audience.


6/15/2010 12:57:00 PM



(6/15/2010 11:56:00 AM) - Al

Gleeman points out the Royals are still being run backwardsly, and are a ship without a rudder. They see value in a LF with a sub 700 OPS. I'm afraid this may be why they are awful annually.

On the bright side, this could be a ploy to delay Gordon's arby and/or free agency, and build up Podsednik as an OF option to a contender as the deadline nears, as Ned certainly became a pro at telling half-truths to the gullible Tom H over the years in MIL. I doubt it, but I suppose it's possible.


6/15/2010 11:56:00 AM



(6/15/2010 11:21:00 AM) - Al

Christie tells schools to use their own cash, and cuts state aid.

{Just a note to those new to Ramblings...apparently, government can spend less if it so chooses. Who woulda guessed?}

If only someone in DC had the guts to do this with Harvard and other private schools who have endowments of billions yet loves taking grant money from Jim and Jane Taxpayer in Flyover Podunk Town, USA.

We'd be a lot better off if Jim and Jane kept more of their hard earned money, and we all told the arrogance that is private education to drop dead.


6/15/2010 11:21:00 AM



(6/15/2010 10:49:00 AM) - Al

Let me sum this up...Fukudome has no trade value, and Theriot has a bunch.


6/15/2010 10:49:00 AM



(6/15/2010 10:24:00 AM) - Al

Reliever Todd Coffey was eligible to return from the 15-day disabled list on Monday but was not quite ready. He is to throw a bullpen session on Tuesday to test his bruised right thumb and, assuming that goes well, he could make a one-inning rehabilitation appearance for Triple-A Nashville on Thursday and be activated during the Brewers' weekend series in Colorado.--MLB.com

The bullpen is doing so well with rest, I barely missed Todd. Be interesting to see if they go with pitcher #13 (I assume Cappy or Smith) or if they send down Braddock or someone with options.

Hey, life ain't fair. Get over it.


6/15/2010 10:24:00 AM



(6/15/2010 09:30:00 AM) - Al

If it makes them feel any better, I'm offended as well. New topic...is it worse he seems to be downplaying 9/11, or coming off extremely weak on defense?

One, I don't think people will remember where they were when they heard about the Gulf spill their entire life. Two, I don't think anyone has compared Pearl Harbor to the spill either.


6/15/2010 09:30:00 AM



(6/15/2010 07:57:00 AM) - Al

Don't look now, but the Crew's ERA for June is 4.65, a full half-run under their season ERA of 5.22. That could be a small sample, or it could be improvement. Time will tell.

Innings pitched by the SP in June:

6-7-3.2(Cappy)-6.2-6-5.1-7-4.2-6-7-6-6-7

Only a pair of starts under 5 innings, and even more impressive 10 of 13 were 6 frames or more. The starters are averaging a tad over 6 innings a start, while they were at 5.5 at the end of May.


6/15/2010 07:57:00 AM



(6/15/2010 06:00:00 AM) - Al

There's some posts scheduled to appear today (like this one, like I'm up at 6), as I'll be at my weekly meeting/learning session. We'll see you in the evening.


6/15/2010 06:00:00 AM



(6/15/2010 12:09:00 AM) - Al

At first I thought Carlos V was an odd choice to go an inning tonight, but I bet Ken is going to try and give him the next couple games off, followed by the team off day Thursday, would give CV 96 hours of down time. Or, maybe he had warmed up earlier tonight and they figured they might as well let him get 3 outs.

Chris Smith showing that big breaking ball in the 9th. He could clear waivers if he's sent down, but I doubt it. A team like ARI might claim him and make him their 8th or 9th inning guy.


6/15/2010 12:09:00 AM


Monday, June 14, 2010

(6/14/2010 11:13:00 PM) - Al

That, my friends, is how you go into 2nd base on a possible double play. Prince does it just like that too, and good for them.

Angels' fans showing their ignorance by booing. I guess Casey should have held him up so he could throw out the runner at 1B.

That's why I'm amazed Weeks has never got hurt at 2B, as he not only stands in there, he's also rather petite, or at least was in his younger days.


6/14/2010 11:13:00 PM



(6/14/2010 10:08:00 PM) - Al

I really don't think most folks realize how close Gomez is to becoming an outstanding CF. He's so good on defense, he only needs to be average on offense to be a very good player. He's 15 runs to the good on defense for his career, so if he could work his way up to MLB average at the plate, he'd be +15. How close is he?

Well...

Gomez career--.292/.350, 56 simple runs created
Gomez 2010----.292/.379, 61 src
MLB average---.331/.415, 75 src

He's not there yet, but as far as a guy who seems likely to be a lot better than he is today when he peaks, Gomez is one of those guys who seems to have a ton of untapped potential. He's literally just some plate discipline away from being really, really good.


6/14/2010 10:08:00 PM



(6/14/2010 09:41:00 PM) - Al

The problem with Bill's critique of the Angels is simple...it's just not true. Last year, they were 2nd in runs scored, and in '08, they were 3rd in ERA. Pretending they were middle of the pack in important categories is either lack of research or attempting to sell a story that lacks truth.

Like all good teams, you have to be either really good at scoring runs, preventing runs, or pretty good at both. All the rest is for the lawyers.


6/14/2010 09:41:00 PM



(6/14/2010 07:12:00 PM) - Al

Perez Hilton is destroyed by Opie and Anthony. No one deserves it more. I'd call Hilton a total scumbag, but I wouldn't want to offend bags of scum.


6/14/2010 07:12:00 PM



(6/14/2010 07:03:00 PM) - Al

The man who should be president talks about Flag Day and what the flag meant to him and his fellow POW's during his 5+ years of captivity.

On this Flag Day, allow me to thank our veterans and the members of our military, current and past, for defending the greatest nation the world has ever known.

And if you watch the video, say a special thank you to Mike Christian, and those like him that have no trouble defeating pure evil in the name of the USA.


6/14/2010 07:03:00 PM



(6/14/2010 06:40:00 PM) - Al

I agree with Daniel N on the ladies event. I hope the men that played suffer a one or two year ban.

Note how he discusses how many more women played in the open event Saturday after busting out of the ladies event Friday. The ladies event is good for the game, pure and simple.


6/14/2010 06:40:00 PM



(6/14/2010 06:35:00 PM) - Al

McGehee DHing tonight, Macha said he'd try and get Casey a night or two off to help his knee, which apparently still acts up on occasion.

I'd probably do the same thing with Braun and Fielder, as they play everyday as well. Edmonds at 1B with Prince DHing is probably the best offensive lineup they have, versus RHP.


6/14/2010 06:35:00 PM


Sunday, June 13, 2010

(6/13/2010 10:09:00 PM) - Al

My goodness, Obama has even lost the folk singers.

She even went to a tea party that was "all Democrats." That's not going to get any press, as it does not fit the narrative.


6/13/2010 10:09:00 PM



(6/13/2010 10:03:00 PM) - Al

I flipped on the news, and The Tonys were running late. Two quick thoughts:

Bernadette Peters could stand to put on a few pounds, but is still incredibly attractive. Incredibly, she's 62.

One of the dancers in the closing act could best be described as a "heavy set white guy." Maybe there's hope for me yet.


6/13/2010 10:03:00 PM



(6/13/2010 09:03:00 PM) - Al

Glenn's best, and most truthful, line ever. It's like the kid whose dad keeps bailing him out...they never learn.

What's sad is, they are basically saying $1T just wasn't enough. Shut up and stop throwing money away on pork in blue states.


6/13/2010 09:03:00 PM



(6/13/2010 08:22:00 PM) - Al

Al,

Big fan, long time reader, first time writer. Wanted to tell you to keep it up with the MLB updates, and dry wit. Your line about the frat boy speechwriter having all white socks, as well as today's Thomas was ugly before she was stupid thoughts go right over the head of most.

That's just the way we like it.

Keith



Trust me, the sarcasm will not stop, especially with the current group in DC.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm off to grope cardboard and play some beer pong with my shirtless, all Caucasian private school pals...because I'm so educated and better than everyone else.

If that buffoon had to lay sod for a living, his boss would have to tell him over and over, "Hey, rich boy...green side up. And no, I don't care what your GPA was in college."


6/13/2010 08:22:00 PM



(6/13/2010 07:47:00 PM) - Al

Brewers sign 23 fellas, including 3rd and 5th rounders.


6/13/2010 07:47:00 PM



(6/13/2010 03:48:00 PM) - Al

The Brewers aren’t even sure whether they’ll try to improve the catching or whether they’ll soon be sellers and build for next season.--Boston Globe

We're seeing more and more references almost word for word like this, so it seems to be an accurate portrayal. You can wonder in your mind all you want "what ifs" had Hoffman been perfect, or maybe just had a single missed save opp, but those games have to be made up, and even with the staff pitching better of late, they still seem to struggle to end up higher than .500 for a long stretch.

I'm thankful neither Doug or Mark have been quoted as saying "We want to finish 3rd" or something like that. This is a strange group, as Suppan was quickly snatched up by SL and inserted into the rotation right away. Should this club not put together a string of 11 of 14 or something along those lines, there would seem to be plenty of veterans that would interest contending clubs. Many, like Edmonds, Counsell, Gerut (if his heel heals), aren't even that expensive; while others, such as Bush, Hoffman, and Riske could be dangled for prospects with the Crew eating some salary.

Heck, as a precursor to the offseason, we might even hear a rumor involving Hart, Weeks, or Fielder, as those decisions are upcoming...how many teams would give anything to pick up a RH power bat making $5M and with no long-term commitment like Corey? Even teams like the Yankees and Red Sox have holes in LF right now.

I'm just glad we're hearing of no desire to chase 75 wins.


6/13/2010 03:48:00 PM


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