Al's Ramblings



Thursday, September 30, 2010

(9/30/2010 11:57:00 PM) - Al

Chris Narveson limited the Mets to one run over 6 2/3 innings in Thursday's 9-2 win.

The left-hander gave up four hits, walked three and struck out a season-high tying nine. After spending most of April in the bullpen, Narveson started the rest of the way and had some peaks and valleys, but he's had a pretty nice second half, posting a 3.89 ERA, 1.17 WHIP and 66/24 K/BB ratio over 81 innings. He should be locked into a rotation spot for 2011.--Rotoworld


RW with some kind words about Chris. I still hope he is SP depth, but looking at those numbers, that would indicate a couple very good pickups, and Capuano signing back on. That might be an unlikely scenario, considering.


9/30/2010 11:57:00 PM



(9/30/2010 11:50:00 PM) - Al

Hoffman, if he returns to pitch, will probably seek a situation in which he at least has a chance to be the closer.--Adam, MLB.com

Makes perfect sense. For all the talk about Trevor's selflessness, he's only still pitching to add saves to his total. Unless he signs with SD for a farewell season, he'll want assurances he will have a chance to close.


9/30/2010 11:50:00 PM



(9/30/2010 10:47:00 PM) - Al

On that Wolf note of eliminating his horrible start when he was left out there to save the bullpen, Narveson's ERA was 4.43 as a SP if you take out his 3 inning, 9 run outing. 11-8, 4.43 are numbers worthy of being handed a rotation spot next year. 11-9, 4.99 is not, in my opinion at least.

Like Wolf, does that mean Narveson is better than his real numbers? No, but if you were projecting him, it's easy to look at that one start as an obvious outlier. I do not recall if that was a case of the relief corps being limited or not. I do know, however, that if Narveson is the 6th/7th starter next year, as I hope, he'll probably be one of the best SP's not in a 5 man rotation to begin the '11 campaign.


9/30/2010 10:47:00 PM



(9/30/2010 10:21:00 PM) - Al

I'd appreciate a little break.--Obama

Now they're writing their own punchlines. He needs a new teleprompter.


9/30/2010 10:21:00 PM



(9/30/2010 09:46:00 PM) - Al

Oof.

The White House needs to run over to KMart and buy a clue. It's painful to watch a bunch of loons run about stupidly, embarrassing families of heroes.


9/30/2010 09:46:00 PM



(9/30/2010 09:44:00 PM) - Al

Macha let Narveson get two outs in the 7th to lower his ERA to 4.99 for the season.

Class act.


9/30/2010 09:44:00 PM



(9/30/2010 08:20:00 PM) - Al

My opinion on why so many extinct animals return to life?

Scientists are too busy counting grant money, applying for more grant money, begging for tenure, and ogling college coeds to bother, you know, actually visiting jungles and other remote regions...you know, there's icky bugs and no hotels there.


9/30/2010 08:20:00 PM



(9/30/2010 07:54:00 PM) - Al

If the election was today, and all the poll averages were perfectly accurate, the Elephant party would have 51-52 seats, and 538.com says the Dems have a 78% chance of retaining 50 seats.

The math does not work, and their credibility as a neutral site seems further away every day.


9/30/2010 07:54:00 PM



(9/30/2010 05:38:00 PM) - Al

I'm surprised to see that home team advantage has so little meaning in the last decade plus. I do agree though, most of your depth, which is vital to win 90 games, is rendered meaningless by a hot streak or two.


9/30/2010 05:38:00 PM



(9/30/2010 05:15:00 PM) - Al

Stewart continues on being unfunny, and anti-Obama. His point, that they have no leader, message, or common sense, is one that is obvious if you've been watching the game.

The refusal to extend the bush tax cuts, even for the middle class, reeks of taxing, spending, and paying no attention to the mood of the electorate.


9/30/2010 05:15:00 PM



(9/30/2010 05:05:00 PM) - Al

In addition to being a fiscal conservative, which Cato loves, I believe Pawlenty is the one who had the foresight to push the Twins' new ballpark through.


9/30/2010 05:05:00 PM



(9/30/2010 04:41:00 PM) - Al

One thing to keep in mind as Doug decides who his manager is, I would assume Macha will be considered for some manager openings, and/or bench coach slots, should Doug decide to not exercise his '11 option. Hence, Doug is being considerate by making the move ASAP, though he will not talk to some coaches until after the playoffs.

Doug has been very consistent, going with low-key, smart types, not yellers and screamers. He also has chosen men who listen and don't ignore suggestions, as Yost played youngsters like Weeks, Hart, and so on even when it likely hurt his W/L percentage. He doesn't want guys who complain to the media, or that put down players in the media (that's why Frank Kremblas was let go, despite a fine minor league record, as he made sure he was critical annually in the press of his team). This has me wondering about Dale Sveum's future as well, although he is said to be very popular, at least with the big bats.

Last time, MA and Doug both said they wanted a guy who had experienced success, and I would figure that will be a criteria again. I have nothing against Macha, he seems to be a genuine, intelligent guy, and the way he took an awful bullpen at the start of '10 and has molded it into a dependable one deserves a lot of kudos, though the old media seems to have missed this nugget, though I can't say it surprises me. I have no idea if he is liked or not by the players, but very little of that would be tolerated in a Melvin regime anyway.


9/30/2010 04:41:00 PM



(9/30/2010 04:35:00 PM) - Al

One tidbit from Attanasio on Melvin: "He's the guy next year. He's still got two years on his contract."--Adam, MLB.com

Both Adam and Tom H are saying it was a strong vote of confidence, and maybe it's easier to take that way if you heard it. However, you could read it, he has one more year to win or he's gone.

I've a big fan of Doug, and know that even when he has made a move that did not work out, he had reasons for doing so. Mark A has been a near model owner as well, so it's hard not to trust him to make the right move.

I'm not sure how short memories are, but I seem to recall MA saying this exact same thing a month or two ago.


9/30/2010 04:35:00 PM



(9/30/2010 03:59:00 PM) - Al

Feingold's negative campaigning seems to be having no effect...in fact, he's losing ground.

I never thought I'd see the day Feingold was down 12 to a guy no one knew 6 months ago. That may well be part of Johnson's appeal, actually. I thought Johnson was peaking too early when the last poll showed him up 7, and needless to say, that was a swing and a miss.


9/30/2010 03:59:00 PM



(9/30/2010 03:54:00 PM) - Al

While they are on the subject of improving Lambeau Field, I can't believe the idea of adding padded seats is not the main topic. The days of sitting on metal bleachers, especially in the cold, is about 30-40 years behind the times.


9/30/2010 03:54:00 PM


Wednesday, September 29, 2010

(9/29/2010 09:53:00 PM) - Al

Maybe it's in my head, but the Crew seems far more lively when Gomez is in the lineup. Without him, a descriptive phrase might be "business like." Part of that is the way Gomez himself plays like his hair is on fire.

Carlos with 3 hits, which I believe matches Lo's output.


9/29/2010 09:53:00 PM



(9/29/2010 07:59:00 PM) - Al

As our good friend of Dennis Miller would say, just thinning the herd.


9/29/2010 07:59:00 PM



(9/29/2010 06:31:00 PM) - Al

MLBTR lists some SP's who may be traded this offseason. I still like Kawakami, and wonder if he might be a match, as he's paid a lot ($7M for '11, and then done) and had a down '10, despite almost identical secondary numbers. He would not take much to acquire, and his upside is probably higher than Wolf's.


9/29/2010 06:31:00 PM



(9/29/2010 06:27:00 PM) - Al

Lo Cain does not look like he has a clue how to read a LH pitcher's move.

Maybe he's trying to fool him. I can hope.

Lucroy struggles offensively, not very good at blocking balls in the dirt, and still can't get a bunt down? He's young, and he'll get better, but he's in far over his head, and has been since he set foot in MIL. If not for his throwing arm, he'd be bel;ow average in every aspect of the game.


9/29/2010 06:27:00 PM



(9/29/2010 06:18:00 PM) - Al

Loe, obviously, still exhausted from being overused.

These casuals need to stick with the second guessing, because they are clueless when they predict stuff.


9/29/2010 06:18:00 PM



(9/29/2010 05:57:00 PM) - Al

I can't believe they were still doing bayonet training. It's a waste of time and money, and they were correct to eliminate it.


9/29/2010 05:57:00 PM



(9/29/2010 05:15:00 PM) - Al

Take out his worst relief outing, Parra has a bullpen ERA of about 1.75. If only he had the mental capabilities to do that while starting.


9/29/2010 05:15:00 PM



(9/29/2010 04:51:00 PM) - Al

NBC fails to ask about Obama taking away scholarship money from poor kids.

Old media is a very, very lame group. They miss the forest for the trees every day, and then wonder why everyone watches cable. Not a single lesson learned from Dan Rather's fiction.


9/29/2010 04:51:00 PM



(9/29/2010 04:37:00 PM) - Al

Yo giving up deep drives, as well as plenty of bloop hits, par for the course when he struggles. Yo is proof that BAbip is a necessary component to winning.


9/29/2010 04:37:00 PM



(9/29/2010 03:26:00 PM) - Al

Krispy Kreme is back and profitable again.

KK is proof you can lose money with anything, as they had a superb, high-margin product, and still damn near went under. Look at all the movie theater chains that have filed bankruptcy despite selling popcorn and carbonated beverages at a 90% margin.


9/29/2010 03:26:00 PM



(9/29/2010 02:50:00 PM) - Al

The Dems embrace the Chris Farley motivational method.

Hidden in the article is where they mention the tea party approval ratings, far higher than that of Congress, and all they can think of is putting them down...without ever saying why.

They're like a team without a playbook. Without a slogan, even one as empty and stupid as "hope and change," they are lost. The real irony is, common sense would tell you to run on your record, but the last two years have provided nothing but awkward sideways stumbling, and even they know you can't bring that up.

One of the funniest moments to me thus far has been Feingold describing himself as "independent" in his ads. Russ is unabashedly liberal, and has been for three terms. But, he knows saying so is a death sentence, so the history rewrite begins.

President Obama called voters “whiners” in public. Heaven knows what he calls them in private.

Non-president John Kerry portrayed the electorate as dummies who are easily contented with a slick slogan and fancy logo.

Well, maybe in Massachusetts where they elected him to the U.S. Senate 5 times.

I can see why Obama and Kerry have contempt for the electorate. Obama and Kerry figure anyone who voted for them is a dummy. Ha Ha Ha.

But that is how they act in private.

For them to show their contempt so publicly surprised Reagan’s political director, Ed Rollins.

From Ed Rollins: “I have seen many campaigns in my four decades in politics, but this one is the strangest. With a little more than a month to go and many races still very close, the Democratic message to their faithful is mind-boggling.”

He advised Democrats to quit insulting voters.

Noooooooooooo! Encourage them to do so. This is entertaining. I love watching the meltdown.--Don Surber


I just wonder the marketing firm that has suggested they call the voters names and that they just don't get it.


9/29/2010 02:50:00 PM



(9/29/2010 01:59:00 PM) - Al

As for tires...there are no cheap tires anymore, I suppose due to oil being high. I finally made an appointment for Saturday morning for a place by the Rambling son's soccer game, and I mentioned that "there are no cheap tires," and even the guy on the phone agreed, saying a year or two ago, a basic, 40K tire in many sizes could be had for $28-30, and now hardly any run less than $50, uninstalled, of course.


9/29/2010 01:59:00 PM



(9/29/2010 12:38:00 PM) - Al

SE Cupp gives a deserved ripping to Stewart and Colbert, while never pointing out their biggest flaw...they're just not funny. They both have fake news shows which they take far too seriously, and it shows. Partisan hacks, and bad ones at that.


9/29/2010 12:38:00 PM


Tuesday, September 28, 2010

(9/28/2010 11:14:00 PM) - Al

PBT thinks the Bucks might have too much talent to properly gel and keep everyone happy with their playing time.

Allow me to say, this is a fine problem to have, especially since most folks did not think the Bucks would win 30 games a year ago.

EDIT: Forgot to mention that the other day, I was running down their depth chart in my head as I was driving. I came to the conclusion they were a tad weak at the 2/3 spots. I then realized later I had forgotten Delfino. There's a guy who had a superb year, and he's just there to back up Salmons and Maggette, though he may well start.


9/28/2010 11:14:00 PM



(9/28/2010 10:12:00 PM) - Al

The incredible thing is, anyone still watches Andy Cooper.


9/28/2010 10:12:00 PM



(9/28/2010 09:32:00 PM) - Al

Axford was a perfect example of how tough those 4 and 5 out saves are. A couple bad pitches, not to mention yet another bloop hit on a near perfect pitch, a cliche of the '10 campaign, and it's a loss. Macha utilized his bullpen perfectly once again, but no one notices when someone gives up runs. Actually, if not for Braddock's walk, Axford is not needed 'til the 9th.


9/28/2010 09:32:00 PM



(9/28/2010 08:12:00 PM) - Al

I expected to see Axford in for a 2 inning save (forgot about the DH tomorrow), and can't tell you how far down the list McClendon was, which turns out to be telling.


9/28/2010 08:12:00 PM



(9/28/2010 08:10:00 PM) - Al

Stories of how summer heat killed thousands...about a century before the climate change talk.

Note the only place this still happens is France...insert your own punchline here.


9/28/2010 08:10:00 PM



(9/28/2010 06:28:00 PM) - Al

Seems both the Rambling wife's and my vehicle are in dire need of tires. I've been driving illegally since Spring, as I went out of my way to get my last oil change at a local place that does not sell tires, so they could not inform me they could not let me leave with my Indy-car like, no tread radials.

Fleet Farm and Wal Mart is on my list, but does anyone else know of inexpensive places to buy tires in the Wausau area?


9/28/2010 06:28:00 PM



(9/28/2010 03:00:00 PM) - Al

Surprise! 1/3 of blacks support Tea Party. That means 1/3 of blacks are angry white bigots!--Erik Rush

If you go line by line of the Republican party platform, many blacks are going to agree with that as well. Despite minor inroads, 90% of blacks vote Democrat every time, due to bias and history. The irony is, of course, urban plight shows me that taxing and spending has been and is a failure, but...


9/28/2010 03:00:00 PM



(9/28/2010 02:51:00 PM) - Al

I feel the same way about this as I do the plethora of anti-gun laws they try and pass each year...why?

We already have laws against inattentive driving, we don't need to pass another for texting, eating, drinking, chatting, hiccuping, and so on.

I got an inattentive driving ticket back when I was a pizza guy (actually, I may have got a warning and a seat belt ticket, but whatever), and I was supposedly changing the radio station, something I did 500 times a shift, and continued to do. That was just one of those hazards of the job...very easy, nice tips, but often times, it was just you and the police on the roads, and often times, you'd get a ticket for minor, dare I say silly stuff. It did not change my behavior, nor did it make the roads safer. I get the feeling you can say that about almost all the laws passed in the name of nanny state "We know better than you" do-goodism.


9/28/2010 02:51:00 PM



(9/28/2010 02:32:00 PM) - Al

The Rambling wife has placed my computer in safe mode because it continues to freeze up. I have no idea even what "safe mode" is, so if anything looks different (I assume it won't, since Blogger publishes), free Ramblings for a year!


9/28/2010 02:32:00 PM



(9/28/2010 02:26:00 PM) - Al

All those who said Zambrano was done have proven to be casuals once again. The amazing thing is, a lot of reporters, including Bill Simmons of ESPN fame, have pronounced Dave Ortiz "done" two Aprils in a row, despite knowing history and thus ignoring it.

I know it happened before, but I'm sure it won't happen again...??


9/28/2010 02:26:00 PM



(9/28/2010 02:05:00 PM) - Al

Brewers announce many title changes and scouts returning for next year.


9/28/2010 02:05:00 PM


Monday, September 27, 2010

(9/27/2010 07:52:00 PM) - Al

Gamel out for the rest of the season, big toe surgery Thursday.


9/27/2010 07:52:00 PM



(9/27/2010 06:21:00 PM) - Al

The Bucks announced their training camp roster today with the additions of Tory Jackson, Chris Kramer and Billy Rush.

Billy Rush (6-7, 200) played two years at Robert Morris College (NAIA Division I) where he averaged 15.8pts, 7. rebs & 2.4asts as a senior.

Chris Kramer (6-3, 214) played four years at Purdue where he was a two-time Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year honoree (2008, 2010).

Tory Jackson (5-11, 195) joins the Bucks after a 4 year career at Notre Dame. Jackson avg'd 9.6pts, 5.3asts & 2.7rebs per game as a senior.--Bucks on Twitter


This means less than nothing, as the Bucks already have 15 guaranteed contracts, plus 2nd round pick Tiny Gallon, who will hopefully play in Europe so they retain his rights.

If the NBA had a disabled list, they could put Redd and Hobson on it, and it would be interesting to see who made the club. T'is not the case, however.


9/27/2010 06:21:00 PM



(9/27/2010 05:09:00 PM) - Al

Brewers/Mets just postponed. Doubleheader Wednesday starting at 4:10 p.m. ET.--Adam, MLB.com

Weather forecast for tomorrow even worse. Might well play 4 games in 30 hours starting Wednesday at 3:10 our time. I assume FSN will pick them up, as it's either that or nothing.


9/27/2010 05:09:00 PM



(9/27/2010 04:33:00 PM) - Al

Rangers' deal now said to be about half what was reported earlier, about $75M per year, still far more than any other team that does not own their own network.

This may be the beginning of what I would refer to as the "safety in brands" era of TV deals. While most TV ratings are consistently lower, as with more options all the time, sports' ratings have either fallen less or stayed the same...some have even risen slightly.


9/27/2010 04:33:00 PM



(9/27/2010 04:21:00 PM) - Al

Get a job and buy your own candy!

I'd vote for him if I could.


9/27/2010 04:21:00 PM



(9/27/2010 03:29:00 PM) - Al

Of course, my question is, why would anyone spend $300+ for a regular hotel room when a cheaper version is available? I'd love to pay $20 a night for this in Milwaukee instead of the normal $50.


9/27/2010 03:29:00 PM



(9/27/2010 03:02:00 PM) - Al

If this is accurate, my Prince to the Rangers prediction looks quite possible. Still, the numbers look really, really high.


9/27/2010 03:02:00 PM



(9/27/2010 02:56:00 PM) - Al

Tom H twitters the Brewers are unlikely to play tonight due to weather, and tomorrow also looks bad. Might be a boatload of doubleheaders later this week.

With Capuano seemingly done for the year, the pitching might be a challenge.


9/27/2010 02:56:00 PM



(9/27/2010 02:54:00 PM) - Al

Adenhart drunk driver convicted.

Good to see, as California juries tend to lean toward not guilty convictions even when the evidence is overwhelming.


9/27/2010 02:54:00 PM



(9/27/2010 01:43:00 PM) - Al

I love this, because it brings many over to the right. Just like when they show protesters blocking traffic and such, no normal person wants to be associated with economic terrorism like that, even though the old media tends to glamorize it. It plays very poorly in Peoria, as well the rest of flyover country.


9/27/2010 01:43:00 PM



(9/27/2010 01:36:00 PM) - Al

Fangraphs with a look at how much Prince will be worth on the trade market, and some smart comments as well about how power hitters often bring back more than you'd expect.

My hope is Prince brings back a solid SP...perhaps one with a couple years left prior to free agency, and a prospect of some merit, a hard thrower with some ceiling, or a position player that's perhaps blocked. I think many of us Brewers' fans often underestimate power, as the crew always has it...I suggested Hart would have plenty of takers, was met with lots of e-mail disagreement from casuals, and no fewer than a half-dozen teams tried to trade for him.


9/27/2010 01:36:00 PM


Sunday, September 26, 2010

(9/26/2010 04:00:00 PM) - Al

While a few words will be written about the Crew saying goodbye to Hoffman and Fielder at MP today, it is likely little will be said about the between the lines not saying good bye to Weeks and Counsell. Rickie was supposedly close to signing an extension before he changed agents, and Braun hinted after the Hart extension that "more was coming." Counsell, as long as he does not go for slightly more money or a platoon job, will probably return, you would think.


9/26/2010 04:00:00 PM



(9/26/2010 01:11:00 PM) - Al

Lots of optimism about Rogers and Jeffress at the moment, with even a mention by Adam McCalvy after the game that it felt a lot like the day 5 years ago when Prince and Rickie each hit their first HR.

Alas, deep breath.

We all knew Prince and Rickie would be everyday players, though we did not know to what extent they would be; passable, solid, stars, or what. All we know about these two young arms is they've both overcome demons to get to the bigs and both have plus velocity. The other thing...the braintrust will all but certainly start them in Nashville next April, and likely not count on them at all to assist the big league team in 2011. Heck, I would not even count on guys like McClendon, Kintzler, and so on, to be anything more than AAA depth. Hopefully, they will be there when called on, like Axford, Loe, and Braddock this past season, but I would not pencil them in to the Opening Day roster.

Here's who I would:

Gallardo
Wolf

Axford
Braddock
Loe
Hawkins
Parra
Narveson

Lucroy
Kottaras

Gamel
Escobar
McGehee
Inglett

Braun
Hart
Dickerson
Gomez or Cain

I hope Capuano and Counsell both return, but both are free agents and have earned the right to go elsewhere, if they so choose. Also, Weeks and Fielder will be FA's after the '11 season, and if not extended, will likely be dealt, while they are suddenly keepers if they do sign extensions.

The irony is, as the Brewers complete this season, in which they'll probably win about 75-77 games, much of the team will return intact, including almost all the position players. Most of us think Prince will bring back one new member of the rotation, and hopefully one other player, though he may well not be major league ready. Mark A has spoken several times of how satisfied they are with their position players, all eight under 28 years old. Even the bench, over the years weaker than most opponents, has been a strength, especially when combined with the "bench" available at Nashville.

EDIT: If you add these players up, you end up with about $48M committed. I also removed Prince, as it seems remote he will be back.


9/26/2010 01:11:00 PM



(9/26/2010 01:05:00 PM) - Al

Attendance is going to end up at about 2.75M, just as anyone moron with a blog and a calculator knew back in July. Still, this will be talked about a lot by folks who do not follow the team much...the casual media, so to speak.

I would assume they will probably estimate 2011 at about 2.5-2.6M as they budget for next season, as they tend to be conservative.


9/26/2010 01:05:00 PM



(9/26/2010 12:01:00 PM) - Al

Bonderman is not your average FA SP, only 28, and while coming off a down season, has had plenty of success in the past.

While MA has said the FA market is kind of a crapshoot, the Brewers, if they do deal Fielder, will have plenty of money to spend, either on free agents to to pick up salary in trades.

EDIT: I just linked his career stats, and I'm surprised just how mediocre he's been. Still a solid #4/5 guy, but he never took that next step.


9/26/2010 12:01:00 PM



(9/26/2010 11:22:00 AM) - Al

South Carolina has a high school graduation rate of only 61%.

This ranks far below the national average of 73 percent. The funding for South Carolina’s public schools has more than doubled in the past decade – which has resulted in a graduation rate increase of only 0.2%!--OMG Facts


Heh. Money doesn't solve the problems. The quicker they realize it, the quicker the jobs recovery begins.


9/26/2010 11:22:00 AM


Saturday, September 25, 2010

(9/25/2010 08:06:00 PM) - Al

BA even discussing the bad luck the Crew has suffered, which is frowned upon in the old media, as everything is skill (proven by the fact color men always give credit to the hitter for ground balls between the SS and 3B..."he drove that one through the hole").


9/25/2010 08:06:00 PM



(9/25/2010 07:55:00 PM) - Al

Mark DiFelice signed for 2011.

I thought I just mentioned him the other day, but the last time he was talked about was last December, when he signed a minor league deal for 2010, when the Crew said they would take care of his rehab. He's a serious option if he can get healthy, as he's very tough vs. righty bats.


9/25/2010 07:55:00 PM



(9/25/2010 07:28:00 PM) - Al

Many Brewers' blogs aren't even pretending to care anymore, many not even updating regular threads.

So casual, yet they take themselves so seriously on Opening Day.


9/25/2010 07:28:00 PM



(9/25/2010 02:41:00 PM) - Al

No wonder the old media is scared of the tea party...look at this group. I'd cross the street to avoid them!

The humor in this to me is a group of fiscal conservatives...who simply believe the federal government should not spend more money than they take in, are considered radical, and "off the beaten path." That pretty much sums it up right there...the norm is so far left, the center is far-right.


9/25/2010 02:41:00 PM



(9/25/2010 02:23:00 PM) - Al

Kerry says everyone is too damn stupid to get it.

I don't think anyone is more out of touch than the DC Dems. Her's a guy that anchors his yacht in another state to avoid paying taxes on it, and just doesn't understand.


9/25/2010 02:23:00 PM



(9/25/2010 01:04:00 PM) - Al

Surprised Sam Fuld of the Cubs hasn't got more of a chance somewhere, though I believe he's been on the Cubs' 40 man for quite a while. Very good speed and defender in CF, he's put up a .368/.400 line in almost 1000 AAA AB's. With Dickerson in the fold, he's probably not a match for the Crew anymore, but in the Matt Murton mold, he's a cheap player who seems undervalued. He's 29, so his days of starting are probably past, but he'd fit in nicely as a minimum salaried reserve for several clubs.


9/25/2010 01:04:00 PM



(9/25/2010 11:33:00 AM) - Al

Chapman threw 25 pitches in total last night, all of them over 100 mph.--HT

Read the whole recap here, including a report of a pitch at 105 mph, the fastest ever. Seeing Rogers, Jeffress, and Axford blow guys away with 94-97 mph pitches, and knowing this guy is consistently throwing 6-10 mph faster, that's gotta be almost uinhittabkle unless you have a very short, compact swing.


9/25/2010 11:33:00 AM


Friday, September 24, 2010

(9/24/2010 11:42:00 PM) - Al

You'd think Feingold would run on his record, rather than lie in ad after ad.


9/24/2010 11:42:00 PM



(9/24/2010 10:02:00 PM) - Al

Cruz looks very capable at SS, but his offensive shortcomings keep him far below Counsell in my eyes for utility INF honors in 2011.

I was disappointed Cruz did not go to 3B on that grounder in the hole. He had no play on the batter. Seemed like he had never considered it prior to the ball being hit.


9/24/2010 10:02:00 PM



(9/24/2010 10:01:00 PM) - Al

You'd think it is probable Hoffman pitches again Sunday as a farewell.


9/24/2010 10:01:00 PM



(9/24/2010 10:00:00 PM) - Al

Seid is either playing coy or sounds very negative about Loux's shoulder.


9/24/2010 10:00:00 PM



(9/24/2010 09:49:00 PM) - Al

Obviously, after giving up a bloop hit while pitching the 8th, Kam Loe is exhausted.

Once again, Tom H, who continually argues he knows more than the rest of us because "he is with the team every day," proves to be out of touch and only correct when he second guesses.


9/24/2010 09:49:00 PM



(9/24/2010 09:47:00 PM) - Al

"We'll see how today goes," the left fielder said in the hours before Friday's game against the Marlins. "If I can manage to get through it, if I can continue to perform, I'll play through it. But I'm not going to deal with what I dealt with last time."

"Last time" was May 10 against the Braves, when Tommy Hanson plunked Braun on the same elbow. Braun returned three days later without his power, hitting .214 (9-for-44) over his first 10 games back, with one home run and two RBIs. Over the first 72 games after the plunking, Braun batted .236 with 10 home runs and 36 RBIs.

"I tried to play through it and it didn't go so well," Braun said.

He hopes this time is less trying. Beginning Friday, the Brewers only had 10 games left in the 2010 season.

"I've overcome a lot. I'm happy with what I've done in the last month and a half," Braun said. "It's important for me individually, just like it is for us as a team, to finish on a positive note.

"But if I go out there and feel like I don't have an opportunity to perform, if it's something like it is last time, then I'm not going to deal with it. We'll see what happens."--MLB.com


Braun admitting he played much of the season at less than full strength. He has to learn to take a week off, and be willing to lose the battle but win the war.


9/24/2010 09:47:00 PM



(9/24/2010 09:38:00 PM) - Al

Felipe Lopez spurns SD, signs with BOS. BOS presumably just wants him for the draft pick, deal probably has agreement that he will not be offered arby.

Strange. Will he even bother reporting to BOS, or is this a paper deal only?


9/24/2010 09:38:00 PM



(9/24/2010 07:11:00 PM) - Al

I've been discussing this with the Rambling wife and coworkers of late.

How low will TV prices go?


9/24/2010 07:11:00 PM



(9/24/2010 07:00:00 PM) - Al

Gleeman discusses what I've talked about since the inception of Ramblings...strikeouts do not matter.

Actually, they do, but so minimally, good offensive clubs easily overcome them with the important stuff, like OBP and SLG.

Amazingly, idiots like Tom H will continue to strangely attempt to link K's to offensive struggles. The old media is dying because of terrible reporting he and Tony W provide on a daily basis. It's a shame to be stuck 30 years behind the times in, you know, what you do do for a living.


9/24/2010 07:00:00 PM



(9/24/2010 06:38:00 PM) - Al

Rogers only expected to go 60 pitches, so 3-4 innings is by farf the most likely length of his start this evening.


9/24/2010 06:38:00 PM



(9/24/2010 06:23:00 PM) - Al

Friend of Ramblings Jason asks where Kate Bilo is going. Turns out she's going to be the morning weather gal in Philly.

Henry wonders who Accuweather has in AAA to replace her. Personally, I'm hoping the call-up goes to either Katie Fehlinger or Maria Molina.

By the way, this topic has generated the most e-mail of any in recent memory. Somewhere, an incredibly nerdy man who does not understand capitalism weeps for our future.


9/24/2010 06:23:00 PM



(9/24/2010 02:23:00 PM) - Al

It's my last night doing the weather on FSN!:( It's been fun and good luck to the Twins and Brewers. I'll miss you guys!--Kate Bilo's Twitter

Why can't we have anything nice happen? Just one time!

I blame Obama.


9/24/2010 02:23:00 PM



(9/24/2010 01:36:00 PM) - Al

FYI: It looks like the Orioles could take a serious run at Victor Martinez in free agency, in a combo 1B-C-DH/leader type of role.--Olney

BAL had a rough first half, but they seem to have recovered, as they're youngsters matured and they improved their pitching. A couple additions like this could get them quickly up to .500, as I don't think they're nearly as bad as their record indicates.


9/24/2010 01:36:00 PM



(9/24/2010 01:19:00 PM) - Al

Hopefully, in 2020, they will farm out the census, which any private company could do in half the time for half the cost. The idea of the government putting together this once a decade count when they struggle to deliver the mail without losing a fortune...despite the fact they can raise prices to whatever they want, pretty much tells the story.


9/24/2010 01:19:00 PM



(9/24/2010 01:06:00 PM) - Al

SD agrees about Felipe Lopez.


9/24/2010 01:06:00 PM



(9/24/2010 12:56:00 PM) - Al

Man commits suicide after writing 1900 page suicide note.

If he would have had an editor, or been more concise, he would have never seen the 21st century.


9/24/2010 12:56:00 PM



(9/24/2010 12:52:00 PM) - Al

Chris Christie's greatest hits montage.

this guy is presidential material. He's a perfect dose of common sense.


9/24/2010 12:52:00 PM



(9/24/2010 12:47:00 PM) - Al

I am truly offended that Congress wasted time and money letting this idiot speak.

These clowns have no clue what they are doing, and what they need to do.


9/24/2010 12:47:00 PM



(9/24/2010 01:26:00 AM) - Al

A scathing recap of Obamacare, and all the "fibs" and stuff that no one knew about because, you know, no one actually read the bill.

The midterms will be a referendum on this kind of thing. No one disputes the fact that the current system is far from perfect, but adding layers of bureaucracy (seriously, whoever added that section about companies having to send 1099's to vendors should be shot in the head) and blatant ignorance about insurers having to raise premiums to cover 26 year-olds (um, did you expect them to just close up?) are as embarrassing as the kijillion dollars this thing costs.


9/24/2010 01:26:00 AM



(9/24/2010 01:15:00 AM) - Al

Know what's missing from this game story?

What happened in the game. It's a Yo feature with a paragraph about last night's affair.

Oy vey. I can't believe the JS accepts this crap.


9/24/2010 01:15:00 AM


Thursday, September 23, 2010

(9/23/2010 11:13:00 PM) - Al

The DDT ban has also led to far more malaria all over the globe, as do-gooders try haplessly to fight a lethal disease with ineffective nets.

I have no doubt DDT is icky, and should be used with caution. That said, I think the DDT-less world is far scarier and worse.

I still remember a few years ago, all the rage was mosquito repellents that did not contain deet, the chemical that keeps said bloodsuckers away. The problem was, as we now know, none of the other products worked worth a damn. Now, a few short trips around the sun later, with Lyme disease rampant, what do we hear? Make sure you use DEET, and reapply often. They've done a full circle in the Rambling son's lifetime. Meanwhile, no one has more than a guess if it's going to rain Saturday or not...though Kate Bilo is far cuter than the guys that look like me that used to stare into the camera with little more than a coin flip's chance of accuracy.

Things like this make me even more curious about the correctness of junk science that has led to folks insisting the next Ice Age was coming in the 70's, and that a global warming wave was coming because it's half a degree warmer now than it was a hundred years ago, never mind it's been cooler the last score, that's just a fluke.

Hey, the dinosaurs disappeared, huge glaciers changed the planet, and then melted. The idea that deet, DDT, and half-a-degree explains anything is nothing but highbrow, intellectual pornography. And if you have any doubt that's true, I promise you Al Gore disagrees. That should be all the proof you need, as time has proven nothing except that Gore only lies when his lips are moving.

He created the internet you know.


9/23/2010 11:13:00 PM



(9/23/2010 11:07:00 PM) - Al

I think Jon Stewart has said more stupid things than Obama in the last two years. Granted, JS never had any credibility, he throws out opinions based on quarter-truths, a yearning for a utopian state (you know, like Cuba has achieved) and a laugh track. However, his transparency has never been more obvious, and he seems to have given up even pretending to be anything but a half-hour weeknight infomercial for the far left.


9/23/2010 11:07:00 PM



(9/23/2010 11:01:00 PM) - Al

No vote on tax hikes 'til after the election.

It's like the Dems want to lose. Sometimes, the facts are so incredibly stranger than fiction, it's all but impossible to believe they are happening in front of you. As pointed out, businesses in many areas will simply continue to be cautious, not wanting to hire without knowing what the future holds. This is a successful economic strategy only in the bizarro world.

May you live in interesting times, my friends.


9/23/2010 11:01:00 PM



(9/23/2010 10:43:00 PM) - Al

Barret Loux had a second throwing session for scouts today, according to Brian McTaggart and Jeff Seidel of MLB.com. The Astros, Marlins, Rangers, Cubs, Twins, Giants, Brewers, Phillies and Mariners watched the free agent first-round pick throw between 50 and 60 pitches.--MLBTR

Note that the only big market team is PHIL. Everyone else is a small or mid-market club looking for a bargain. I'm all for the signing of any and all talent, as it is not my money.

The real question, one that real media folks should ask, is of whoever signs him, where does the money come from? Even in the Brewers' case, while they have cash handy because they did not sign Covey, they now have two 1st round picks next season, if they sign Loux, they may have to take at least one pick "for signability"...for instance, not a high school pick who can use college as a way to get a bonus well over slot value.


9/23/2010 10:43:00 PM



(9/23/2010 10:20:00 PM) - Al

Another irony is, Loe isn't pitching that much better this year than he has in his career, when used as a reliever. He's been miscast as a SP for much of his career, especially odd to me considering his splits versus lefty hitters.

Davis and Hawkins did not work out well in '10, though both were durable in their careers and were ineffective, for the most part, due to injury. That said, Loe was a fine pickup, as any team could have had him for a minor league contract with an out clause.


9/23/2010 10:20:00 PM



(9/23/2010 10:01:00 PM) - Al

Nice job by Yo and 3 relievers...even though Loe is exhausted.:)

I'll have to take a gander at his pace and the like, but his last 30 days are very solid. The irony here is, most of them appear to be either better or comparable to his numbers before that. Some seem to think the Crew should disperse innings like some sort of socialist utopia...one inning to you, one inning to you, one here, and one there. That's rather nonsensical, and, dare I say, shows a lack of understanding of the game.

And to be honest, if Kam is limited, using him to only get a single, important out, is a fine use of one of your best relievers. I want him back, healthy and effective in 2011, so if he's worn out, shut him down. I just don't think most folks are used to seeing a RHP used situationally, and just can't comprehend it.


9/23/2010 10:01:00 PM



(9/23/2010 09:49:00 PM) - Al

Tom H and Jordan Schelling of MLB.com keep telling us that Loe is tired, but here are his numbers the last month...like usual, what the old media types and the truth are not the same, or even similar.

Heck, I wish all their pitchers were "tired" if that's the case.

Of course, I think they were both lobbying for Yo to be shut down a few weeks ago as well. I shudder for the casuals who read these guys and think they are getting quality coverage.


9/23/2010 09:49:00 PM



(9/23/2010 09:32:00 PM) - Al

Lucroy should be on 2B, as that throw was far too high to be cutoff. One heckuva arm to gun down the speedy Gomez, tip your hat.


9/23/2010 09:32:00 PM



(9/23/2010 09:27:00 PM) - Al

This kid that's getting rocked in his big league debut for the Marlins just threw a 88 mph breaking ball that dove a foot into the dirt. Tough first outing, but with stuff like that, he'll be fine.


9/23/2010 09:27:00 PM



(9/23/2010 09:22:00 PM) - Al

Matt Murton gets his 200th hit in Japan.

Murton was a nearly identical comparable to Hart for several seasons, but for whatever reason, no one ever gave him any AB's. Even in today's every stat studied, scouts at every game, some guys still slip through the cracks.

The irony is, Billy Beane picked him up last year and said, paraphrasing here, "I don't have a spot for him to play, but he's talented enough, I just had to pick him up." Beane was correct, but won't get kudos for that.


9/23/2010 09:22:00 PM



(9/23/2010 09:10:00 PM) - Al

Talk about an inconsistent strike zone...this clod has been all over the place, and in the 7th inning, is no closer to defining the zone than he was on the first pitch. It's simply astounding that almost every one of these guys sucks more than the sucky one who sucked the night before.


9/23/2010 09:10:00 PM



(9/23/2010 08:54:00 PM) - Al

Al,

Just thought I'd share this quote from my college baseball coach. I went to school in Minnesota, and my coach obviously sees a lot of the Twins. Last weekend, my wife and I attended homecoming festivities, and one topic was Carlos Gomez and how his time as a Brewer has went, as I now work in the Brookfield area.

After mentioning he had swung the bat well of late, though still had a sub .300 OBP, my coach said:

"Yeah, if he could only get on more. If he hit .300, he'd be the best player in the majors."

He also mentioned that Gomez was the best defensive OF and best baserunner the Twins had ever had, really high praise considering Hunter and Puckett were both Gold Glove winners. Coach has had three players drafted in his decade of work and scouted professionally for a few years before that.

Love your blog, check it out every day.

HRW



Thanks for writing HRW, and when one thinks about it; plus defense, plus baserunner, plus arm, plus speed, also hits .300 is a mighty short list...Ichiro springs right to mind, maybe a younger Carlos Beltran.


9/23/2010 08:54:00 PM



(9/23/2010 08:24:00 PM) - Al

Luis Cruz with a bloop triple down the LF line. Maybe he will help even out the luck of the Crew's '10.


9/23/2010 08:24:00 PM



(9/23/2010 07:59:00 PM) - Al

Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher held a press conference today to say there was 1M sex slaves in the USA...today.

Let's be honest, this is one of the most intolerable couples in history, Kutcher is a complete no talent who proves that selling your soul to the devil does exist, while Moore has had more procedures done than I've had pieces of pie, which makes anything she says ring rather hollow, to say the least.

{note to those new to Ramblings...I love pie}

Having these two celebclowns inform me that there is some ridiculously inflated number of sex slaves in the US does not make it a more pressing problem, and only makes me hate these fools more. A 15 second google search finds numbers anywhere from 5K to 30K, and not knowing what the criteria is, sounds realistic. The idea that they are floating a number, ahem, 33.3 times larger than the highest estimate offends me greatly and should be most offensive to the people forced into this type of deplorable situation.


9/23/2010 07:59:00 PM



(9/23/2010 07:42:00 PM) - Al

Ignore the insufferable commentary of Craig, who is either really stupid or just doesn't understand humor, but CLE wants to use their field in the winter as a "snow park" of sorts.

I guess as long as it does not effect the quality of the field, it's a good idea.


9/23/2010 07:42:00 PM



(9/23/2010 07:27:00 PM) - Al

Gamel catches a routine fly ball, and then fires it in to 2B on one hop. Macha mentioned in the pre-game that he sees Mat as a future OF, though he admitted the Crew has those spots filled, and then said one of them could be moved or traded, or Mat might be dealt.


9/23/2010 07:27:00 PM



(9/23/2010 07:18:00 PM) - Al

It just occurred to me that most of the casual fans who post that this or that should have been differently, with all the facts in, of course, also were arguing fiercely last offseason that Hart should be non-tendered...in effect, releasing him.

The truth is, projection systems often do a very good job, but they still miss on a certain percentage every season. No one could have predicted Doug Davis, one of the most durable starters in MLB the past decade, would both struggle and suffer heart and arm ailments.


9/23/2010 07:18:00 PM


Wednesday, September 22, 2010

(9/22/2010 10:44:00 PM) - Al

Wal Mart moms...which is probably a very good indicator of everyone except arrogant folks who'd prefer to spend more on staples than visit the bastion of capitalism...

{1-2-3....Ewww, capitalism}

...voted for Obama, and now, not so much.


9/22/2010 10:44:00 PM



(9/22/2010 10:08:00 PM) - Al

No offense to Luis Cruz, who is a better player than me, but when you hit like he does, you better be a good defender.

Luis' career OPS is 100 points lower than Escobar's, and Alcides is several years away from his peak.


9/22/2010 10:08:00 PM



(9/22/2010 09:59:00 PM) - Al

I believe Macha has said he'll play Gamel once a series at 3B once Casey gets 100 RBI's. Mat's probably rooting more for #100 than McGehee.:)


9/22/2010 09:59:00 PM



(9/22/2010 09:57:00 PM) - Al

Mark Dayton outlined goals for the K-12 education system that he'll try to implement if he's elected governor in November, but didn't talk about their cost or where he'll find the money in a state budget deeply in the red.--MinnPost.com

Politics as usual in far-left MN.


9/22/2010 09:57:00 PM



(9/22/2010 09:50:00 PM) - Al

It's September, when you can have up to 40 players on your roster, and the Brewers just sent pitcher Dave Bush to pinch-hit with 13-1 lead.--Tom H, JS

It is literally astounding how TH has been around the game for 20 years and still has no clue about such subtleties as not running up the score and the like.

Those two JS goofballs would be overpaid if they worked for free. They do no investigative reporting, ignore the minor leagues completely, and are simply an embarrassment to the old media.


9/22/2010 09:50:00 PM



(9/22/2010 09:39:00 PM) - Al

More fun with numbers...Braddock has a 2.05 ERA this year if you take out his 3rd game he pitched, as he was asked to mop up the 9th inning and promptly allowed four runs, probably not mentally into it.

Fangraphs says his average fastball has been 93.1, FYI.


9/22/2010 09:39:00 PM



(9/22/2010 09:20:00 PM) - Al

Weeks batted once in each of the first five innings.

Also, the bases have been loaded in each of the first five frames.

I can't believe either one of those two things happen often.


9/22/2010 09:20:00 PM



(9/22/2010 08:51:00 PM) - Al

Al, I was thinking the same thing about Harang. I'm not sure if he has a year left on his contract and injuries have been a problem as he was just knocked out of this game but when healthy he would be a solid #4 in the Brewers rotation. Love your blog as I check it out several times a day.

Tom


Harang is a FA and will require no comp pick. His velocity is still solid, 90-91, and he's a big RH, which Doug likes, and has been durable in his career (of course, so was Davis until this season), and has always been an innings eater. And, I assume he'll look for a team where he can be in the rotation.

Also, his FIP and xFIP (which are often used to predict future ERA) have been well lower than his actual ERA the past several seasons.


9/22/2010 08:51:00 PM



(9/22/2010 08:40:00 PM) - Al

The Reds have 13 pitchers in their bullpen.--TV team

Back-to-back 21 inning games...no problem!


9/22/2010 08:40:00 PM



(9/22/2010 08:20:00 PM) - Al

Mark A says the Crew will be looking to add velocity, which seems to fit in with their new credo. Many of us have said guys that throw sinkers, extreme ground ball arms should be a priority, as MP is neutral offensively but a HR paradise, but other than going after Derek Lowe, but this has never seemed to catch on in MIL.


9/22/2010 08:20:00 PM



(9/22/2010 07:59:00 PM) - Al

I hope Aaron Harang finds his way to MIL next year as a budget signing, as he hopes to sign one more multi-year contract after a nice bounceback '11.


9/22/2010 07:59:00 PM



(9/22/2010 07:34:00 PM) - Al

I did not comment on this yesterday because sometimes, it's a good idea to let things sink in a while before you comment, otherwise, you end up looking as stupid as Jimmy Carter or Jim Rome.

So, Sveum thinks Escobar needs to "change his mechanics"...and he probably does, somewhat at least. Alcides is 23, and also from Venezuela, whose players tend to have to adapt to US life and culture, and often "make it" a bit later than others.

{I don't have stats that prove that, but others have said it, and it makes sense.}

Alcides has also always been a flashy, excellent defender, and his glove is probably ahead of his bat by a year or two. I figured AE would probably be a bit below average offensively this year, and average or optimistically, just above defensively, and overall be ok in his rookie season. SS's and C's are notoriously weak hitters, and for example, her's how Alcides compares to average:

Average SS, 2010--.320/.375, 695 OPS, 66 simple runs created
Escobar, 2010-----.288/.327, 615 OPS, 52 src

Part of Alcides' problems is that he's very unlucky on balls hit...league average is right about .300 BAbip, and as if to prove how worthless a stat BA is, many good pitchers give up a higher BAbip, and many bad pitchers have a lower BAbip (BA on balls in play, basically, BA in AB's in which the batter does not K or hit a HR). Often times, players that have a high BAbip will "even out", and their overall stats will fall as well. I, and many others, use it as a predictor for such events. In Escobar's case, he rarely homers and doesn't K a whole lot either, so if his batted balls had fallen in at league average, he'd have 15 more hits. If they were all singles, his overall numbers would be:

With .300 BAbip--.315/.358, 673 PS, 62 src

So, good fortune (actually, average fortune) would have him 10 runs better, using AB x OBP x SLG, which is about 97.5% accurate at the team level for determining how many runs a club will score. It would also leave him, just about where we expected him to be, a below average SS offensively, but a player well worth his minimum salary, and one that will hopefully improve as he gets older.

So, never minding this for a second, that as far as I can tell, Escobar is about where he should be.


9/22/2010 07:34:00 PM



(9/22/2010 07:29:00 PM) - Al

TB will be cutting payroll way down in '11.

$50M seems too low even with just TV money and revenue sharing.


9/22/2010 07:29:00 PM



(9/22/2010 07:23:00 PM) - Al

When did Braun get his arm back? He's made 2-3 throws in the last couple weeks that remind you of his cannon he had when he first moved to LF.


9/22/2010 07:23:00 PM



(9/22/2010 06:14:00 PM) - Al

The Rambling brother just e-mailed and said Edmonds must have hurt himself during his swing, as he could not have injured himself while jogging.

Ye of little faith. Jim's achilles tendon is now hanging by a thread, but still not detached, so he might play again this season.

You could say his Achilles tendon is his achilles heel.

{Somewhere, there's an anatomy buff who'd find that hilarious. Too bad he doesn't read this.}


9/22/2010 06:14:00 PM



(9/22/2010 06:03:00 PM) - Al

Escobar with another night off, I would assume Sveum and Sandy Guerrero are working with him on his swing. I'll have more on that later, it's about 2/3rd's done.


9/22/2010 06:03:00 PM



(9/22/2010 03:28:00 PM) - Al

I think this is brilliant marketing, as people always want seats to sold out events, or places that look busy.

The problem is, even if they sell out, people will still think they are fake crowd pics.


9/22/2010 03:28:00 PM



(9/22/2010 08:02:00 AM) - Al

Victory is not an option.

If the plan is not to win, one has to wonder why bother?


9/22/2010 08:02:00 AM


Tuesday, September 21, 2010

(9/21/2010 09:43:00 PM) - Al

Parra is simply a different pitcher out of the bullpen. There's probably something to be said here about him just being able to come in and not think, but you really can't argue with the numbers.

He's a sub 3.50 ERA guy out of the bullpen. I have to believe that's where he'll be, at least as long as he's with the Brewers. Does he have the stuff to start? Without a doubt. He just has not shown the consistency.


9/21/2010 09:43:00 PM



(9/21/2010 09:37:00 PM) - Al

Woodward's book would seem to suggest an administration playing politics on Afghanistan, with nary a plan in sight.

Who woulda thunk it?


9/21/2010 09:37:00 PM



(9/21/2010 09:22:00 PM) - Al

Feingold down 11, in a poll paid for by an ultra-left site.

I never thought I'd see this day. That said, Russ' dirty, extremely negative campaign would be going over badly in any election, never mind this one, which if polls hold true the next six weeks, will be known as an anti-incumbent, especially anti-liberal incumbent.

Johnson's media people deserves huge props, as he's been playing the "aww shucks, I don't get this politics stuff" card since TV ads began. And Feingold trying to sell himself as a moderate, despite 18 years of spending freely and wondering how he can figure out a way to tax me 2 cents if I find a nickel on the sidewalk. Feingold has had many instances of being outvoted 99-1, just like Paul Wellstone did, and is as weak on defense as is humanly possible.

Still, most years, he'd have 55% because "Russ fights for us." It ain't politics as usual, my friends.


9/21/2010 09:22:00 PM



(9/21/2010 09:10:00 PM) - Al

Gotta wonder if Dickerson has been bothered with a sore hammy since he's arrived, he has not played much and looked uncomfortable. If limited to PH duties, Cain and Gomez will probably split CF, with Gamel getting a look or two in RF.


9/21/2010 09:10:00 PM



(9/21/2010 08:58:00 PM) - Al

Amish moving west.

I would think the areas mentioned; SD, Idaho, etc, would be better in numerous ways than the overpopulated NE USA.


9/21/2010 08:58:00 PM



(9/21/2010 08:46:00 PM) - Al

The government simply sucks at pretty much everything they do.

I've always heard that many northeast metro areas; Boston, New York, Philadelphia, and so on, simply have astounding amounts of rodents, running around in alleys, sewers, and buildings. I've always questioned why they just don't set poison all over...while I realize many stray pets would also suffer, most of those stories end badly anyway.


9/21/2010 08:46:00 PM



(9/21/2010 08:44:00 PM) - Al

Coffey hits 95 on the gun. His velocity is up with less work of late.


9/21/2010 08:44:00 PM



(9/21/2010 08:34:00 PM) - Al

Craig Counsell tells Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that he'll be back in 2011, either for the Brewers or another club.--MLBTR

I'd hate to see Craig play too long, though as long as he can defend three positions and take walks, he can easily be above average as a utility infielder.

It'd be nice if Doug could convince Craig to sign a minor league deal, as that would allow an extra player on the 40 man until early April, when more able to sneak a player through waivers. Or, maybe Craig wants to sign with a team like the Red Sox, as I'm sure plenty would love to have him.


9/21/2010 08:34:00 PM



(9/21/2010 08:00:00 PM) - Al

I finished reading Dirty Sexy Politics by Meghan McCain this afternoon...the whole book only took about 2.5 hours, as it's a light, airy read. McCain's perspective agrees almost 100% with mine, no one could have defeated Obama, the media was, unabashedly behind Obama, not even those trailing the McCain/Palin campaign bothered to hide it, Palin was gorgeous and really upped the excitement factor, but like most VP's, made no little difference in the final vote. It was telling at the end, Palin kind of "pulled away" and started doing her own thing...pretty much seeing it as an opportunity to make that the beginning of her own future, rather than the end of a losing run.

Two vital points she makes is how far behind the Republicans are in using the internet and other modern media, though they dominate radio; and how far off the beaten path Steve Schmidt was...he and Palin sparred about stuff as well. I also share her view that the party needs to collar the evangelical wing and make the party more accepting of those who are either not religious or are supportive of minority lifestyles...in other words, be for smaller, limited government in all aspects. Meghan says she is strongly pro-life but also strongly pro-contraceptive...I despise abortion takes place, but am not in favor of making it a crime...I'd much rather promote responsible behavior and adoption, but really don't want to see young women prosecuted either.

Sadly, though the party is plenty big enough for both beliefs, it is a divisive issue that takes away from other, far easier to pass legislation on stuff. I just think the party would be far better off concentrating on limiting the amount than trying to pass a law that would, while making them more difficult to obtain, also make them unsafe and still available to those with the means to travel to Europe, Mexico, and elsewhere.


9/21/2010 08:00:00 PM



(9/21/2010 07:56:00 PM) - Al

Levis' guy tells us how to wash jeans.

I'm torn, wondering if this guy is a total nerd or an eccentric genius.

Actually, I don't wash my pants every time I wear them either. I just think it wears them out quicker. I have to wash shirts more often, as I sweat...a lot, and they don't last as long.


9/21/2010 07:56:00 PM



(9/21/2010 07:36:00 PM) - Al

You know you're getting old when you hurt yourself during a HR trot.

It's also why guys that sprint or go full speed when they don't have to are just attention seeking buffoons.


9/21/2010 07:36:00 PM



(9/21/2010 07:17:00 PM) - Al

Obama thinks the Pilgrims showed up and were met by Mexicans.

Egads. He's an Ivy League graduate.


9/21/2010 07:17:00 PM



(9/21/2010 07:10:00 PM) - Al

What's funny is, a while ago, comparisons between Obama and Carter were scoffed at...now, they're so obvious, no one dares deny them, as they'll be laughed at as being as out of touch as...Jimmy Carter.

The amazing thing is, Carter was totally ineffective, and 30 years later, is still trying to rewrite history to make himself look less like a clod. Don't go away mad, Jimbo, just go away.


9/21/2010 07:10:00 PM



(9/21/2010 07:02:00 PM) - Al

Doesn't it make sense that SF or SD, or I guess ATL or PHIL could as well, pick up Felipe Lopez just to PR/PH/be a utility guy for the last week plus? Why not, unless 40 man space is an issue. One hit, or even one appearance after someone else PH could, in theory, make all the difference for those teams.


9/21/2010 07:02:00 PM



(9/21/2010 06:57:00 PM) - Al

Lopez was outstanding last year in MIL and ARI, and no behavioral problems were reported, despite rumors of him being bothersome. One has to wonder if this is why he received such a small-by-comparison contract. He'll probably be in the bargain bin again this offseason, after a down year on the field and apparent troubles off it.

That said, LaRussa barely get along with anyone, so Felipe may be able to wear this as a badge of honor.


9/21/2010 06:57:00 PM



(9/21/2010 06:53:00 PM) - Al

Votto had to go to a knee to make a nice play but decided to take the ball to the bag himself and by the time he stepped on it, Gomez had as well and everyone knows: Tie goes to the runner. Gomez gave himself a little fist pump as he crossed the bag, and first-base umpire Angel Hernandez called him safe.--Tony W, JS

Oof. Tony W is a professional writer who simply cannot write. I mean, that's freshman English, and dare I say, it's bad freshman English.


9/21/2010 06:53:00 PM


Monday, September 20, 2010

(9/20/2010 08:09:00 PM) - Al

How can you not love Meghan McCain after seeing she allowed, and captioned, this picture, with the "little person" on the Chelsea Lately staff.


9/20/2010 08:09:00 PM


Sunday, September 19, 2010

(9/19/2010 10:27:00 PM) - Al

Who said it, Jimmy Carter or Christine O'Donnell?

This is why we must have the internet.


9/19/2010 10:27:00 PM



(9/19/2010 05:11:00 PM) - Al

Kintzler has major location issues. So often, the difference between AAA and the majors is their is just so few guys with any pop in AAA, that pitchers get away with mistakes. Brandon will likely open '11 in AAA and be there in case they have guys who are ineffective or injured.

When he puts his pitches where he wants, he looks fine, but his margin for error looks slight.


9/19/2010 05:11:00 PM



(9/19/2010 03:28:00 PM) - Al

I'm surprised they got the safe call right at 1B.


9/19/2010 03:28:00 PM



(9/19/2010 03:22:00 PM) - Al

Cost the Crew 4 runs. How do these complete clods manage to keep their jobs despite being simply pathetic at what they do.

Unacceptable.

4 random idiots off the street would be better. How does that happen? And these guys are in a union, the best in the world?

They should just start over.


9/19/2010 03:22:00 PM



(9/19/2010 03:21:00 PM) - Al

How did he miss that strike three?

How awful are these guys? Every single one is worse than the previous.

It isn't even hot out there!!


9/19/2010 03:21:00 PM



(9/19/2010 03:15:00 PM) - Al

Braun was even surprised he caught it. That's the best play he's ever made in LF, you gotta believe.


9/19/2010 03:15:00 PM



(9/19/2010 11:37:00 AM) - Al

Nick Gillespie basically argues "it's the spending, stupid" and I would tend to agree. W was guilty of spending far too much on non-defense related items as well, though in comparison, he looks like he was clipped coupons.


9/19/2010 11:37:00 AM



(9/19/2010 12:52:00 AM) - Al

Iowa is playing Arizona in football, and it's 27-27. Of course, it is almost 1AM here and in Iowa City. I can just imagine some students who do not care about football who have already went to sleep in the dorms, maybe getting ready for church tomorrow morning, and have been rudely awakened by others.

When I went to Eau Claire, they were annually in the NAIA basketball playoffs, and no matter how close the game, we always got phone calls at the pizza place from guys who were playing video games, watching movies, or whatever, having no idea the team was in overtime with 3 seconds left. Now, 20 years later (pause to let that little factual nugget sink in, and to cease weeping), I'm sure it's even worse, as there's a zillion things going on every night on the internet.


9/19/2010 12:52:00 AM



(9/19/2010 12:13:00 AM) - Al

The Rambling son skipped spring soccer this year, but asked us a few weeks ago if he could play fall soccer in the youth league. We had our doubts, as he gets his athletic ability directly from us, and he's not competitive at all, sports wise at least. Also, he would be in the 3rd-5th grade league, as a 3rd grader, which means he'd be at a natural disadvantage.

Luckily, many of our fears were unfounded, as "serious" soccer players are in a traveling league or belong to a county-wide club...they aren't playing Saturday mornings at the Y. Despite rain the first two weeks, our fella has played pretty well, as he has found a home on defense...he gets in front of the ball and kicks it away from the goal...simple, yet effective.

If you think we have low expectations, the last season he played, he spent the first few games falling down on purpose in front of the ball, as to make the opposition kick it around him. The first few games, they'd often blow the whistle to protect him, and when they figured out this was his, um, strategic plan, had to tell him to stop it.

They play without goalies, but whenever a "goal kick" is announced, he races to take it, as this has become his specialty. And, on the off chance one of his teammates happen to score a goal (usually accomplished by several children falling in a heap, or one team calling timeout and the other not realizing it), his dancing/jump for joy can only be described as "very Caucasian." If Elaine Benes walked by, she'd take one look and say, "Is that boy dancing or did he injure himself?"


9/19/2010 12:13:00 AM



(9/19/2010 12:11:00 AM) - Al

Spiral notebook, I tell ya.

Of course, why are we surprised he's into reruns...hope and change was not only a nonstop repeat, it didn't make any damn sense the first time it was said...nice job asking about that old media...you're doin' a fine job.


9/19/2010 12:11:00 AM


Saturday, September 18, 2010

(9/18/2010 11:04:00 PM) - Al

I don't think I've seen a rookie look as comfy at the plate as Buster Posey since Braun was a rookie.


9/18/2010 11:04:00 PM



(9/18/2010 10:19:00 PM) - Al

How did Bonds hit all those HR's in that ballpark?


9/18/2010 10:19:00 PM



(9/18/2010 09:06:00 PM) - Al

Braun continues to not discuss whatever ailed him injury wise. While I would just as soon he get treatment and take a couple days off, this is why he is looked at as a leader despite his youth.


9/18/2010 09:06:00 PM



(9/18/2010 07:17:00 PM) - Al

Of course, everyone knew Davis would not be back...at least at that money. Now, he's a bargain basement 1y/$1M minor league contract type.


9/18/2010 07:17:00 PM



(9/18/2010 03:07:00 PM) - Al

LA Law, Hill Street Blues, and Wonder Years are all shows I watched and enjoyed. To this day, I can't take any cop show seriously because of the gritty realism HSB provided.


9/18/2010 03:07:00 PM



(9/18/2010 12:11:00 PM) - Al

The nanny state continues, right at the top...Mrs. Obama says since she can't do a thing with hubby's smoking and dining choices, she'll try and regulate everyone else's.

It's worth clicking on just to look at the pictures. And, two years in, it has never been more apparent they've never run a business. The idea of making it healthier, having people still want to eat it, and having it be cost effective is an incredible balancing act, as shown by how few menus are good for you.

There's a reason why Paula Deen uses a half-stick of butter in everything. The idea you can replace that with skim milk is pure folly, and shows ignorance. For an administration so caught up with polls and how they are perceived, they seem to go out of their way to do exactly what irritates people...in a world filled with catch phrases like limited government, to introduce crap like this...it's difficult to believe even Ivy League liberals can be this out of touch.

It also seems to me they are going after the incorrect audience...restaurants are not who they should be going after, they should focus on making meals at home healthier, because home cooking can't go out of business.


9/18/2010 12:11:00 PM



(9/18/2010 10:49:00 AM) - Al

The seven other practice-squad players in Green Bay signed for the minimum of $88,400, or $5,200 per week...One veteran agent estimated that maybe one of 100 practice-squad contracts were for more than minimum this month.--JS

This seems like a perfect opportunity to inexpensively add depth for NFL teams. For $30K each, about $200K, you can pretty much have your choice of the best young free agents that weren't quite able to make a 53 man roster. Considering how often players get hurt, that's a small price to pay for guys you'll likely need by week four anyway.

I imagine we'll see some changes when the NFL goes to 18 games, as their injury rules are hopelessly outdated...have to miss six games if you open on the injured list, which leaves many playing 3-4 short because they'll only miss 2-3 weeks.


9/18/2010 10:49:00 AM


Friday, September 17, 2010

(9/17/2010 11:45:00 PM) - Al

Wolf's ERA, without that PIT game when he was asked to "take one for the team" with the bullpen worn out...3.88. He's been almost exactly what we hoped, a solid innings eater with quality stuff.

Too bad the casuals never notice guys that come on late. If he had a 3 ERA in July, and then struggled late, they'd get it, but it's almost like a time majority thing.

Carlos went 2-5 and if no one had been on base, 4-5. Again, I realize it's a very small sample, but when folks wondered what I saw in the guy when I continued to say he had a future when he was swinging at junk in the dirt, this is exactly it. When you can play CF that well, have an incredible arm, and run the bases like he does, he can arguably be a league average CF even if he isn't hitting. Any type of offensive success at all, Carlos can literally be as valuable as any position player besides Prince or Ryan.

The irony to me is, when Cain is playing, it is easy to rave about his speed and defense, but when Gomez is in there, Lo suddenly looks mortal...he's certainly not slow in comparison...but "slower" to be sure. And while he has good range, it sure does not seem to be "Carlos-like."

A week ago, many thought I was nuts for continuing to mention "potential" and "possible" when Gomez's name was brought up...and to be fair, we have no idea if he can get his OBP up to where it needs to be over 162. However, there's no doubt teams will continue to go after him as long as he has games and weeks like this. Don't forget, Tony Gwynn Jr. started most of the year in SD, and his offense is nowhere near as good as Gomez, or Narveson for that matter.


9/17/2010 11:45:00 PM



(9/17/2010 11:41:00 PM) - Al

Has a ball dropped all year in LCF or RCF when Gomez is out there?


9/17/2010 11:41:00 PM



(9/17/2010 10:55:00 PM) - Al

Gomez is a game changer with his speed, if he could only get on base 35% of the time, he'd probably make $100M playing this game.


9/17/2010 10:55:00 PM



(9/17/2010 10:20:00 PM) - Al

Gomez should get a hit there, no way they throw him out. He could easily be 3-3 tonight, but instead, is sitting at 0-3.


9/17/2010 10:20:00 PM



(9/17/2010 10:15:00 PM) - Al

It will be interesting to see how many people the two guys that think they are far cooler than everyone else can convince to drop what they are doing and travel to DC.

I get the feeling many young adults will plan to go, but "something will come up" and they'll stay home.


9/17/2010 10:15:00 PM



(9/17/2010 09:55:00 PM) - Al

Braun threw that one with some force. While usually accurate, he rarely gets a lot behind it.


9/17/2010 09:55:00 PM



(9/17/2010 09:52:00 PM) - Al

Gomez with two rockets for outs tonight. Still would have got on the 2nd time, but McGehee was running, so they got the fielder's choice, had no chance on Carlos.

He has just been superb offensively this week. Is he just seeing the ball well, or has he decided to shorten his swing and run?


9/17/2010 09:52:00 PM



(9/17/2010 07:55:00 PM) - Al

Ed wonders if the Crew should make a run at Loux, who many thought they would take before the draft.

I would defer to my scouts and medical experts, but I feel like this...if I was a large market team like the Yankees or Red Sox, I'd be all over him. Therefore, I can't imagine one of them won't feel the same way and overpay...just because they can.


9/17/2010 07:55:00 PM



(9/17/2010 06:57:00 PM) - Al

Lo Cain confirms his infraction was a punctuality issue. Thought Wednesday's game was 7 pm. "I'll learn from it," he said.--MLB.com

Gomez in CF tonight. I doubt if this will be a Wally Pipp type thing, but the irony is, many will shrug this off as Cain being "young," when in reality, he's barely younger than Gomez.


9/17/2010 06:57:00 PM



(9/17/2010 04:15:00 PM) - Al

White House rejects "global warming", favors term "global climate disruption". Ya know, I remember back when we used to call it "weather"--Fred Thompson

Much like Bob Dole, Fred has got oodles funnier now that he's not running for anything.

If I were in charge of the economy, I'd try and talk about the weather too.

It also reminds me of how funny it is how people go on and on about pasta, which we used to call macaroni, and not be the least bit thrilled about it.


9/17/2010 04:15:00 PM



(9/17/2010 02:13:00 PM) - Al

Glenn links back to himself nailing the tea party's impact on midterms.

If that were me, I'd put it on the sidebar.


9/17/2010 02:13:00 PM



(9/17/2010 12:10:00 PM) - Al

Who goes through so much wine that they need to buy it by the container?

Ya busy this weekend, Claude?

Got me $10 and a couple gallon jugs. See you Monday morning.


9/17/2010 12:10:00 PM


Thursday, September 16, 2010

(9/16/2010 09:51:00 PM) - Al

SL says they will not trade Rasmus.

The Cards seem to have grown tired of watching LaRussa run off talented players...watching Ludwick and Rolen in the playoffs might just be the final straw.


9/16/2010 09:51:00 PM



(9/16/2010 09:40:00 PM) - Al

I'm telling you, many of the administration's gaffes could be corrected with a simple spiral notebook.

Slurpees? I'm offended by the outdated pop culture references this president uses, never mind his spend and tax policy.

Where's the frat boy speechwriter anyway? Either he's a flash in the pan or he's sucked for almost 24 months now...


9/16/2010 09:40:00 PM



(9/16/2010 04:19:00 PM) - Al

Hi Anthony, Hopefully a simple question. Who on the 40 man roster will become free agent's at the end of this season? Thanks.
A: Anthony Witrado - Dave Bush, Craig Counsell, Todd Coffey. Those are the most significant.


Think Tony W did not name the rest because he does not know them? Me too.


9/16/2010 04:19:00 PM



(9/16/2010 03:15:00 PM) - Al

First of all, don't the Marlins have to, you know, give MLB a list of days their stadium is not available?

Second, I'd look at this as an opportunity to promote the game, in possible expansion/relocation cities...Vegas and Monterrey, Mexico spring to mind.


9/16/2010 03:15:00 PM



(9/16/2010 01:40:00 PM) - Al

Jimmy Carter slams Teddy Kennedy (yes, the dead one) and once again, shows he is exactly what a former president should not be...a publicity seeking, history rewriting, goof.

Not only was he a horrible president, he is now a horrible citizen. That's quite a double play.


9/16/2010 01:40:00 PM



(9/16/2010 11:28:00 AM) - Al

Personally, any job that has you on permanent vacation is a wonderful job, in my opinion. Quit whining and shut up.

Allow me to say once again, where would we be without the UK media?


9/16/2010 11:28:00 AM



(9/16/2010 11:25:00 AM) - Al

Craig over at the Hardball Times once again feigns anger and disgust over a event not worthy of being reported. He's exhausting, though Gleeman still keeps HT on my "must read" list.

CC actually reminds me of Jim Rome, Mike Lupica, and the like. They form an immediate opinion on everything, and regardless of how minor it is, will argue/debate about it as if it involves the last days of Christ. This often includes being overly critical of anyone who makes a mistake, and/or second (sometimes third) guessing.


9/16/2010 11:25:00 AM


Wednesday, September 15, 2010

(9/15/2010 11:40:00 PM) - Al

Ryan sends this graph showing the money spent on education, as well as test scores.

Maybe should spend oodles more, and see test scores level out more consistently.


9/15/2010 11:40:00 PM



(9/15/2010 08:59:00 PM) - Al

And a special thanks to MPD for linking Ramblings while he helped out across the web today. I rarely get linked up since I don't second guess and use common sense to critique rather than, well, second guessing.


9/15/2010 08:59:00 PM



(9/15/2010 08:23:00 PM) - Al

Friend of Ramblings Miller Park Drunk started a Bucks' blog. Check it out, and bookmark it while you're there.


9/15/2010 08:23:00 PM



(9/15/2010 06:44:00 PM) - Al

Brewers resign with Nashville, though we'll never know if they wanted to be there or were just left with the Sounds when others made deals with other teams.


9/15/2010 06:44:00 PM



(9/15/2010 04:41:00 PM) - Al

I was trying to read what flavor of sunflower seeds the case was behind Gamel during his interview, and when I guessed jalapeno, the Rambling wife asked what I was doing. She then said, "I didn't know they had flavors of sunflower seeds."

Just like 'tater chips, I informed her, probably a dozen.

I have to agree that "Eat. Spit. Be happy." is a tremendous tagline.


9/15/2010 04:41:00 PM



(9/15/2010 04:21:00 PM) - Al

SL shuts down Garcia after babying him for the past month plus...he was only going 5-6 innings of late, and now will go zero.


9/15/2010 04:21:00 PM



(9/15/2010 04:10:00 PM) - Al

Gomez's only weakness, sadly, is the most important part of the game...not getting out.


9/15/2010 04:10:00 PM



(9/15/2010 03:40:00 PM) - Al

While we're somewhat on the subject of Lee, he's pretty obviously not 100%. The breakdown process has begun, and while he'd make a fine DH (and not a terrible LF either) for $4-5M per, we all knew what a horrible contract that was when he signed it.


9/15/2010 03:40:00 PM



(9/15/2010 03:36:00 PM) - Al

I'll have to post a play-by-play of that HOU 5th. By far the hardest hit ball was the Lee 5-4-3. Being good is great, but being lucky is better.

I've said it before, but this is not a Brewers' team that experiences a lot of good luck. That said, if they were fortunate, they might win 76 instead of 73, so maybe saving the karma for '11 is not a bad idea.


9/15/2010 03:36:00 PM



(9/15/2010 03:34:00 PM) - Al

Luis Cruz at the plate, a chance he might be the utility infielder next year if Counsell does not return. I promise you he can defend, 'cause he can't hit a lick.


9/15/2010 03:34:00 PM



(9/15/2010 03:19:00 PM) - Al

Money is the key to improving schools? Hardly.

I think the days of "throwing money at problems" is long past.


9/15/2010 03:19:00 PM



(9/15/2010 01:48:00 PM) - Al

The 3K mile oil change has gone the way of the family owned grocery and single screen movie theaters.

I'm appreciative, because nothing was more annoying than those guys who religiously lubricated their engine...and told you about it. It's like folks that start a conversation with "I'm a vegan." There's no possible reason to say that phrase unless you're just a bothersome human being (for proof, how many times have you heard someone utter the phrase "I'm a meat-eater").


9/15/2010 01:48:00 PM



(9/15/2010 01:21:00 PM) - Al

Cain misses a start because of a "team rules violation." I don't think they even have curfews, so I would guess he was late reporting today to the ballpark.

I have not heard of anyone missing a game due to that in ages, though if the starting lineup had not already been posted, we may not have ever heard about this.


9/15/2010 01:21:00 PM



(9/15/2010 01:18:00 PM) - Al

Gomez looks like a different hitter the last few games. Minute sample, to be certain, but refreshing nonetheless.

A couple weeks ago, if someone would have told me Gomez would open the '11 campaign in CF with Cain in AAA, I'd have asked them if they had checked the boxscores. Now, that thought seems perfectly reasonable.


9/15/2010 01:18:00 PM



(9/15/2010 12:56:00 PM) - Al

Zach Duke may be non-tendered, Crew would have interest?

I would expect the Crew to sign a younger free agent, and a non-tender is often a way of acquiring both younger players and without a several years commitment.

His FIP and xFIP, ways of measuring "expected" ERA based solely on walks and hits, are at 5.01 and 4.41, far lower than his 5.68 ERA. He's a bounceback candidate to be certain, and could be a steal on a one-year contract.


9/15/2010 12:56:00 PM



(9/15/2010 12:48:00 PM) - Al

Glenn with a pair of thoughts that sum up the nation's feelings right now...first, when you lose Jon Stewart, you've lost the far-left. Needless to say, the independents have already left the party. Second, many seem to be joining the tea party movement in the voting booth, rather than at the get togethers. I think that's fine with everyone.


9/15/2010 12:48:00 PM



(9/15/2010 12:50:00 AM) - Al

Freakonomics tells of a restaurant being out of root beer twice in a three day span...an A&W.

I worked for stores that ran out of bags, receipt tape, and just about every supply known to man. I'd order enough for about 6 months, and then hide a couple week's worth or so. When I asked our receiver about the bags, she said she was told she could not order more than a case a week. When pressed, I had to revert back to my famous phrase..."Are they going to go bad?"

I cannot tell you how many times over the years another store would call and need one of the above...Fed Ex'd to them. Also of note, the pizza place I worked at ran out of 12 inch boxes once. I just suggested they use 14 inch boxes, and was told that was stupid. So, because they had a couple days to wait for the next truck, one of the owners drove to he LaCrosse store (from Eau Claire) and brought back 25-30 boxes...that's all LAX could spare.


9/15/2010 12:50:00 AM


Tuesday, September 14, 2010

(9/14/2010 10:45:00 PM) - Al

MN looks to be trying to legalize every form of gambling known to man, with the possible exception of strip poker. I never kept up much on the huge casino proposed for the Janesville area, but I seem to recall that a deal was made to not allow it, as the Potawatami, which runs the Milwaukee casino and others, I think.

The huge benefit to the Janesville area casino would be much of the money and gamblers would be from Illinois, while the funds would end up benefiting WI tax coffers.

EDIT: While a Beloit/Janesville areas casino is in the planning stages, the huge casino I was thinking of was to be in the Kenosha area.


9/14/2010 10:45:00 PM



(9/14/2010 09:12:00 PM) - Al

$800K for...I'm just going to make you click and read it yourself.

Explain to me again how this created jobs? Note how the pork went to a very blue state, however.

I can just hear them...why are we doing so poorly in the polls? Don't these rubes get it?

Yes, yes we do.


9/14/2010 09:12:00 PM



(9/14/2010 08:25:00 PM) - Al

Al, I am with you on Gallardo and Wolf coming back to be part of the 2011 rotation. But my third guy of the current crop would be Chris Narveson. He is younger, under team control, I think he has better stuff than Capuano and he can hit. Don't get me wrong, I like Capuano and if they go with him I would not complain but with his injury history and potential cost (not saying it would be a huge deal from another team) I would lean toward Narveson. But regardless, after Gallardo and Wolf the Crew should only pick one of the current guys they have (Narveson, Capuano, Parra and Bush) to keep in the rotation and need to fill the other two spots with players from trades or if they feel a guy like Rogers or Rivas could step in at the start 2011.

What do you think?

--
Regards,

JD


Narveson will return, as he'll be so inexpensive, he would probably have some trade value even if he would not be needed. Cappy was a solid bottom-of-the-rotation SP before his 2nd TJ surgery, and looks to be about 90% back, and will probably be as good as he's ever going to be next season. I sure wouldn't go long-term with him, but 1y/$2-3M seems good to all sides to me. Cappy, like Braun, could well be a guy who wants to play in MIL and needs only to be offered similar money.


9/14/2010 08:25:00 PM



(9/14/2010 07:20:00 PM) - Al

Cash for Clunkers...a clunker.


9/14/2010 07:20:00 PM



(9/14/2010 07:09:00 PM) - Al

Ugly, down and dirty 2011 Brewers' schedule.

A house of horrors for many reasons, but playing arguably the top four teams in AL, as well as not getting the Yankees or Red Sox at home (guaranteed marquee sellouts), sucks in a plethora of ways.


9/14/2010 07:09:00 PM



(9/14/2010 06:59:00 PM) - Al

FYI, I hope Gallardo, Wolf, and Capuano return to make up 60% of the starting staff in '11. Hopefully, Chris will appreciate the rehab time and facilities, and also, see an opportunity to pitch every 5th day. And, of course, no team will be stupid enough to give him a 3y/$15M deal and far outbid the Crew.


9/14/2010 06:59:00 PM



(9/14/2010 05:55:00 PM) - Al

Chase Gharrity of Baseball Prospectus explains that relievers such as Randy Choate and Carlos Villanueva could help the D'Backs in 2011.--MLBTR

It's a subscription only article, but I assume it discusses guys who may be non-tendered who, while far from superb, may have been more unlucky than crappy. I am actually probably on board with offering CV arby, since I learned he has an option remaining and since he will probably not make more than $1.25M next year. Kintzler and McClendon both have all three options left, and I would be inclined to have them begin 2011 in AAA to be the reinforcements should guys be injured or ineffective. As of today, I'd say if healthy, Axford, Braddock, Loe, Parra, and Hawkins have 5/7th's of the bullpen spots reserved, and in a perfect world, I'd love to see Narveson (out of options) out there, as said land of utopia does not have him in the top five spots after signing a free agent and dealing Prince, but who'll very likely be needed as the 6th/7th SP.


9/14/2010 05:55:00 PM



(9/14/2010 05:50:00 PM) - Al

Hank Reid arrives at clean energy summit...in a fleet of SUV's...that were driven across the parking lot, rather than walking.

You just can't write this stuff. How out of touch can you be?


9/14/2010 05:50:00 PM



(9/14/2010 04:33:00 PM) - Al

2B Inglett, SS Escobar, LF Braun, 1B Fielder, 3B McGehee, RF Hart, CF Gomez, C Lucroy, P Capuano.

Rickie gets a night off, I would have waited and given him tomorrow if he needs it, as then he'll have a 72 hour mental break, which is probably far more important than the physical aspect at this point. Of course, there is no right or wrong here.


9/14/2010 04:33:00 PM


Monday, September 13, 2010

(9/13/2010 10:40:00 PM) - Al

Macha says Gomez earned another start. Carlos seems to have a lot of fans in the organization.


9/13/2010 10:40:00 PM



(9/13/2010 10:34:00 PM) - Al

Welcome to Ramblings' new sponsor, Sports Memorabilia.com!!!

Check it out and tell them you saw it at Ramblings.


9/13/2010 10:34:00 PM



(9/13/2010 09:40:00 PM) - Al

Gamel lacking any semblance of plate discipline there. Hopefully he's just pressing, or did not see the ball well, but swinging at crap in the dirt isn't going to get you anywhere.


9/13/2010 09:40:00 PM



(9/13/2010 09:31:00 PM) - Al

del Rosario may or may not interest the Crew, but he won't make it through waivers with those AAA stats.

Looks like a sinkerballer in his numbers, not many K's.


9/13/2010 09:31:00 PM



(9/13/2010 09:18:00 PM) - Al

Kintzler overthrowing and trying to place everything. Looked a lot like AAA depth, which is probably exactly what he'll be to start 2011. The problem is, at 26, he's probably as good as he'll ever be. Tough to see mental weakness in a guy who is all but at his peak.


9/13/2010 09:18:00 PM



(9/13/2010 09:07:00 PM) - Al

Home plate blue has completely lost it the last couple innings...K'd Gamel on a pitch both high and outside, squeezing Kintler here, just can't keep their concentration level more than a couple hours. Embarrassing.


9/13/2010 09:07:00 PM



(9/13/2010 07:31:00 PM) - Al

I'm not much of a football fan, but with their only "proven" RB expected to miss next Sunday's game, the Packers are 14 point favorites at home versus the Bills.

That's a lot.


9/13/2010 07:31:00 PM



(9/13/2010 07:28:00 PM) - Al

Gomez with an infield hit and a stolen base. I wonder if it's possible they made him mad enough to consider changing his MO.


9/13/2010 07:28:00 PM



(9/13/2010 07:21:00 PM) - Al

Whitey Herzog and Garry Templeton still don't care for each other.

The irony here is, LaRussa adds a player or three to his "they hate me" list every season, and plenty of them, including Rolen, Ludwick, and so on, are pretty darn good.


9/13/2010 07:21:00 PM



(9/13/2010 06:28:00 PM) - Al

Hey Al,

Great article you posted about the troops still in Iraq, but when reading it I had an interesting thought that I couldn't find an answer for online and wondered if you could help. I vaguely remember that "Combat" troops are paid more than "non combat" troops. I had an incredible difficult time finding military pay scales, and I may be wrong, perhaps it's based on deployment and not "combat". But, could this be some other way the administration is sticking it to the troops? That's not quite the question I wanted to ask, but I can't think of how to word it properly, so that's the best I could do.

Keep rambling.

Pat


1. I actually thought the same thing, but would think it would be all over the media if they tried taking away "combat" pay from dangerous Iraq duty.

2. When troops reenlist, they often receive some sort of bonus, depending on their pay grade, rank, and specialty. If they sign their paperwork in a combat zone, it is tax free, which can mean thousands of dollars the IRS loses out on (awww). That's a huge thing as well.

I'll see if I can find it, but I doubt it. The military pay scale is online because it has to be, not because they want it there.

EDIT: Still was in 2009, and all earnings are tax free, not just bonuses signed for.

EDIT 2: Yep, still on the list. Actually has been since Desert Storm, 1990. And it's not called combat pay anymore, it's "imminent danger pay."

I will throw this out for discussion, Pat and others...would you be asking this if W was still in office? I would not have thought of it, as we know W's relationship would have never have allowed this to be discussed.


9/13/2010 06:28:00 PM



(9/13/2010 06:25:00 PM) - Al

The nanny state is alive and well in Georgia.

And for the record, any cabbage is too much cabbage.


9/13/2010 06:25:00 PM



(9/13/2010 06:22:00 PM) - Al

Gamel and Gomez in tonight, Prince has "flu-like symptoms" and Cain gets a night off.

This could well be a look at the '10 everyday lineup, though I would still say Cain has the upper hand.


9/13/2010 06:22:00 PM



(9/13/2010 11:49:00 AM) - Al

"Non-combat" troops irritated by in name only change in duties.

It's almost like the administration thinks they can say it and it'll be true. They seem clueless on all aspects of foreign policy, and literally have no answer for anything except to throw money at it and hope it goes away.


9/13/2010 11:49:00 AM



(9/13/2010 11:39:00 AM) - Al

Feingold was all for clean campaigning...when he was the heavy favorite. Now,fibs, half-truths, and the like are the norm.

One of these days, we might actually see Russ with an ad saying he's not for taxing and spending...and I'll laugh and laugh and laugh.


9/13/2010 11:39:00 AM



(9/13/2010 11:37:00 AM) - Al

Jack Z's glow has faded rather quickly.


9/13/2010 11:37:00 AM


Sunday, September 12, 2010

(9/12/2010 10:29:00 PM) - Al

Toy guns now have to be registered in New Zealand.

I'm from the government, and I'm here to help. Oy vey.


9/12/2010 10:29:00 PM



(9/12/2010 10:23:00 PM) - Al

How politicians in DC drove an entire manufacturing segment overseas.

Read the whole thing, and then ask yourself how much of the "stimulus" money was spent in equally ignorant ways.


9/12/2010 10:23:00 PM



(9/12/2010 10:15:00 PM) - Al

Larry Hunter is not enthralled with Obama's plan to cut Social Security and Medicare benefits...despite not saying this is what he's doing.

I don't think he is a believer in "hope and change" anymore.


9/12/2010 10:15:00 PM



(9/12/2010 10:08:00 PM) - Al

Lo Cain--627 OPS
C. Gomez-626 OPS

This is not only a warning about small samples, but it is also a loud warning about the value of CF depth for 2011. How Gomez performs in winter ball is no longer just fodder for us statheads, and the Dickerson trade looks even more important.


9/12/2010 10:08:00 PM



(9/12/2010 09:49:00 PM) - Al

I just spent the last 15 minutes trying to decide if I have a cold or allergies. I think "cold" won, though not in a unanimous decision. I woke up about a dozen times last night, and I only slept from 1-8, with a raw throat, and general malaise.

If you are wondering, here's a handy list.


9/12/2010 09:49:00 PM



(9/12/2010 09:22:00 PM) - Al

One thing that again goes to show you just how unlucky the Brewers have been this year is how the run of SP success started right after rosters expanded on 9/1. In other words, now that the Crew is not concerned about the starter going deep...they've been going deep. Astounding.

Macha has done a near brilliant job of maximizing Axford during the past month or so...partially due to Hoffman in reserve as a backup closer, but also due to John's ability to go 25+ pitches.


9/12/2010 09:22:00 PM



(9/12/2010 03:18:00 PM) - Al

Loe will still have three arby years remaining. He will not be a FA, TV team incorrect.


9/12/2010 03:18:00 PM



(9/12/2010 02:27:00 PM) - Al

Funny, I haven't heard much talk of "sitting Yo down" of late.

If I was a casual fan, I don't know how I'd be able to stand how stupid I would be. When you change your mind from day-to-day on long-term issues, learn and shut up.


9/12/2010 02:27:00 PM



(9/12/2010 01:45:00 PM) - Al

I was half-heartedly suggesting this, though I was unaware it was called the Phil Hughes treatment.


9/12/2010 01:45:00 PM



(9/12/2010 01:36:00 PM) - Al

One has to wonder what happened to Obama's catch phrases and ability to say nothing about something. He is not just nonsensical when he talks, but he's grumpy.

Of course, with his results...


9/12/2010 01:36:00 PM



(9/12/2010 01:22:00 PM) - Al

Billionaires not very optimistic, among suggestions to buy, farmland, which I've heard regularly the last couple years, because commodity prices just keep rising.


9/12/2010 01:22:00 PM



(9/12/2010 12:53:00 PM) - Al

Economic adviser says unemployment will remain high.

It will if they continue on their current track, to be certain. You know, when you surround yourself with negative nellies, it's not good for anything. This is also why
Air America failed...no one could stand to listen to such depressing thoughts for any length of time.


9/12/2010 12:53:00 PM



(9/12/2010 12:52:00 PM) - Al

I think those that declared Randy Moss as "done" about 5 years ago just may have jumped the gun a bit.


9/12/2010 12:52:00 PM



(9/12/2010 12:50:00 PM) - Al

On a day in which they said "uber skinny" models were appearing on runways, a departure from the "curvy" gals (you know, 5-10, 115 pounds) that took over last year, it's good to see the Times run a feature on Meghan McCain, who pretty much defines curvy.


9/12/2010 12:50:00 PM



(9/12/2010 11:54:00 AM) - Al

Apparently, "spreading the wealth" works just exactly how you would guess it would.

I will give them credit, they are equal opportunity deniers. It's like decades of taxing and spending did not have quite enough data to prove the theorem.


9/12/2010 11:54:00 AM



(9/12/2010 10:57:00 AM) - Al

Al, read your post on Rogers and Jeffress. You said you think both should be in the bullpen. Don't you think putting those two in the bullpen will make them less valuable? With as hard as they both throw coupled with the Brewers need for cheap, young, pitching don't the Brewers have to give them chances to be starters in the major's first?

Also you said Jeffress is only 6'0' and not many starting pitchers are. Which I agree with, but some pretty darn good starters are 6-0 or less and have had multiple years of success. A few examples are Tim Lincecum, Roy Oswalt and Johnny Cueto.

I guess I see your point, but with the stuff both Rogers and Jeffress posses, I think they have to make them starters and see what happens. Of course Rogers has been starting and the only reason Jeffress was put in relief this season is he was coming off the suspension. Anyway, just wanted to share my thoughts on your post. As always, love the blog and also really enjoyed your 9/11 post. Thanks.

--
Regards,

JD
Let's say there are 150 SP's in the bigs. Add in another 30 that are on the DL or are part-time SP's. That's 180. Figure 2/3rd's of them are RH, that leaves 120. You gave me 3, anf there might be a couple more...that's 5 out of 120 RH SP that are 6-0 or shorter. In my opinion, that's not setting them up to succeed.

In Rogers' case, as I said, I just don't see him throwing 110 pitches a game 30+ times a year. I think he'll be fortunate to throw 70 innings a year for multiple seasons, and I think he'll need to be used differently, probably no consecutive days, at least for a year or two.

Yes, it does reduce their value. However, guys on the DL don't have much value either. I think the odds are too great. That said, if Jeffress has success in the bullpen, there's nothing saying he can never be a SP. In Rogers' case, I think the bullpen is his spot, for his protection, to limit his pitches.

However, I sure wish them the best however they are used. The success of those two young arms, especially while they are inexpensive, is key to the success of the Crew.


9/12/2010 10:57:00 AM



(9/12/2010 01:24:00 AM) - Al

A very long, misses the point, tale of Eric Show, former SD pitcher who gave up Pete Rose's record breaking hit.

They seem to blame his troubles on an abusive dad, his family on the stigma of giving up the Rose hit. In reality, he was a druggie, and it eventually killed him. It's a shame, but it's like a cop getting shot by a criminal, and someone blaming the ammo company.


9/12/2010 01:24:00 AM


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