Monday, October 25, 2010

The Awards Banquet

High schools, colleges, boy & girl scouts, and youth athletic leagues (see little leagues) are all big in having a post season function. Some have full fledged banquets with everyone involved with the organization in attendance. Professional teams that lose, generally just go quietly home. Teams with a nearly 150 million dollar payroll that are the heavy favorites to win their respective championships,well they offer up some cliches and try to slip away.

Our Philadelphia Phillies managed to hit a pathetic .215 in the post season and had a dismal .309 on base % in the post season. When the rare Phillie was in scoring position the best they could muster up was a .186 with only 3 extra base hits. This was the same team that the concerns over the past few years was not hitting - but pitching. All year they have struggled at the plate while being carried by excellent pitching. What's a long suffering fan to do but scratch his head over this turn-around in performance?

Some have said, including Charlie Manuel, that Howard never regained his stroke after being injured making a great defensive play. Howard has disagreed with that, saying that he thought his stroke and his numbers were good all year. Hmmmm. The average and HR totals were fine considering the time missed, but no RBI's in the post season are a matter for concern. You may argue that the pitching is better in the post season, and that makes it harder to deliver the goods. Yes the pitching is better. It is big boy baseball time in October and the year's cream-of-the-crop-teams are playing for the parades. I don't accept that as an excuse for the offensive lack of production at crunch time. I don't accept any excuses of that kind to explain the Phillies demise to the Giants. This Phillies team certainly found a way to hit their way to the divisional title when they were 7 games back in late August. Howard found a way to propel balls into the seats, and the team in general found a way to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat on many a late summer evening.

I'll say this about our hometown guys. They did everything as a team.When they hit, everyone seemed to hit - and at critical times. When they slumped, all of their bats with one or two exceptions went comatose. They found a way to win 97 games - the most in baseball -, but did the hitting swan dive thing in the playoffs. As a result our hearts were broken and a collection of cast-offs, misfits, and great pitching will be in the World Series. Instead of white rally towels those of us who watch the series will see orange thongs being waved. That is a site to see.

And what of the future? Well, the facts are simple. Offensively the team is on the downside of the bell curve. Offensive production up and down the line-up has been slipping. Utley as an example is a far cry from the guy who hit well over .300 a couple of seasons ago. Victorino, Ibanez, Rollins, (who didn't hit well even when not hurt), and Howard all underperformed their best efforts of the recent past. Both Ruiz and Werth were exceptions to this offensive slide despite Werth's woes in driving in runs during the second half of the season.

The offense will need some tinkering with during the off-season. Amaro will have his work cut out for him considering that Werth is all but gone. Werth apparantly would like to stay here, but would have to leave a lot of money on the table to do so. The likelihood of that happening is remote considering that Scott Boras is his agent. Payroll considerations being what they are with this team it isn't going to be easy for Amaro to provide Howard with a good right handed hitter to protect him and keep pitchers honest. Having Ruiz bat 5th could be the best option - but I don't see Charlie doing that - do you?

The free agent market doesn't offer Amaro a lot of options either to find help especially when you consider that Jayson Werth is the best available RH free agent on the market. So what about Domonic Brown? Well for a start he hits left handed and has not yet proven to this long suffering fan that he is capable or ready to do the everyday thing for a team that still believes it can win the big prize. Perhaps Francisco can contribute if he gets enough playing time, but Ibanez's 11.5 million may keep him on the bench. It will be tough, but Amaro will have to do something after the press conference showing Werth in a Yankee uniform. (Maybe Boston, or maybe even a west coast team)

We go into the off season with pitching being the least of our problems, although middle relief is a concern. Durbin has performed well during his tenure here, but is a free agent. Management may not want to fork over the bucks it will take to keep him here. I think they should, but they don't ask me about these matters. Contreras may not be an option either since he came here on the cheap and his performance this season could command offers from other teams that Amaro is not willing to match. Bastardo will be here next year because of his contract, but we can wave good-bye to Romero. Herndon is still a work in progress so it would be nice if Amaro can pull magic out of his hat and bring in someone who will surprise us. (Think along the lines of Javier Lopez - a cast-off who served the Giants well)

The banquet hall is filling up so I'll make a last comment before the awards presentation. We are all bummed out at the loss to the Giants. We are all bummed out at the seemingly heartless way the Phils played, and I am personally offended at Howard not swinging at two pitches during his last at bat. Having said that, I must say that I would rather have this team as "My Guys" going into the 2011 season than the fans in Pittsburgh, Milwaukee, Arizona, KC, Miami, Baltimore, Cleveland, and especially NYC where Met fans have nothing to look forward to at all! The pretender contender Mets suck big time and should suck again next year as they begin their transitioning from bad to worse.

And now the awards:

1. The Dick Stuart Dr. Strangeglove Defensive Futility Award - For their conspicuous piss poor fielding and throwing throughout the post season the award is given to the entire infield. (All former gold glove winners must return those awards).

2. The Mike Schmidt Lack of Clutch Hitting Award - This award is given to Ryan Howard who drove in not one run during the playoffs and, as previously mentioned, DIDN'T SWING!

3. The Terrell Owens Playing Hurt With Heart Award - If you've ever had a groin pull you know how amazing it was for Roy Halladay to do what he did in game 5. (Owens, you may remember, played in the Super Bowl with a cracked bone in his ankle - while his QB was puking in the huddle - thus the sport crossover award).

4. The Adam Eaton Comeback Player Of The Year: (Eaton has yet to make a comeback, but you have to name it for somebody) This hurts me to have to do this, but the award has to be given to Cole Hamels. He rubs me the wrong way for a lot of reasons, but the guy manned up and did a superb job for the team all year. Had some timely hits come his way his record would have been much better. I hate being objective.

5. The Pete Rose Team MVP Award - Rose was the MVP of the 1980 team and this year it is none other than our catcher - Carlos Ruiz! The guy handled the staff brilliantly all year while hitting around .300 with some timely clutch hitting. He is a perfect example that hard work can pay off. When he came here you might remember that he was a decent defensive catcher who was a light hitter. Through hard work he has become a very good defensive catcher and a good hitter. Way to go Chooch!

That's about it for this long suffering fan. I'll probably watch the series but have not and probably won't root for anybody. I'd like to see Cliff Lee do well, but I can't root for any team representing Dallas Texas. As for the Giants - well given different circumstances I could cheer for them, but I can't root for the team that beat my guys - and made them look bad doing it. A fast ball to Cody Ross's nose would be delightful to see, but aside from that I can't think of much else that would keep me glued to the set.

It's time to move on for me, so I've put my red long suffering fan shirt away and have put on the green one. Now is the time of the year when I focus on the many different ways Fat Andrew can say - "We've got to do better". I'll resurface to comment on Amaro's moves during the off-season - most of which I won't like, but all will be forgiven when I hear the crack of the first ball being hit in Spring Training 2011. I can't wait!

Sunday, October 24, 2010


The headlines say all there is to say. I was too young to have heard the Giants announcer say "the Giants win the pennant" when Bobby Thompson hit his famous walk-off home run against Ralph Branca of the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1951. When Thompson hit his "shot heard 'round the world a rookie Willie Mays was the on-deck batter.

There are some comparisons between the 1951 Giants and the 2010 Phillies. Both teams were well behind the first place teams in late August. Both teams played like they were possessed from that point overcoming deficits to win the pennant on the last day - Giants, and the division -Phillies when they chrushed the Braves at the end of the season. The comparisons are the stuff that we baseball fans thrive on.

Both of those teams had momentum going into the post season which would fizzle out once big boy baseball was played in the series and the NLCS. The Giants ran into the New York Yankees with DiMaggio, Rizzuto, and the rest. The Yankees made them go home as losers. The Phillies as we have just seen were dispatched into the night by the Giants who now have the unpleasant task of meeting the exciting Cliff Lee led Texas Rangers.

As you should know by now,I'm not a drinker of kool-aid. This long suffering fan stopped drinking the stuff years ago when I got tired of having my heart broken by our home town heroes. There isn't a team in any sport that haven't taken us to the brink of a parade only to snatch a defeat from the jaws of victory. Some us remember when even the 76ers led by the greatest basketball player in history would take the Celtics to a 7th game only to lose in the end. Or what about the Fly Fly boys. Most of you weren't alive the last time they won the cup. But you were around to see the Lindros and other teams get bitch slapped in the playoffs. Of course we have all seen our big green machine show us a variety of ways to not win a title. (see McNabb throwing up in the huddle) No kool-aid for this guy. I've accepted our Philly fate. Our fate of course is sometimes trumped as it was in '08 when the Phils won it all, or when the 76ers won their two titles, but for most of the time - we lose, even when we should'nt. We, collectively, are passionate and knowledgable fans who accept bitterly having our hearts broken by overpaid, overloved, over pampered, and underhearted athletes. And, most of us will do it again. Most will gladly sip on the kool-aid again when our candy assed, candy strippers make another run. The baseball gods will make sure that there is plenty of the stuff to go around before they show us yet another way to lose.

Some of our more rabid fans went to bed last night thinking that the world was coming to an end. These are the same fans who believed with all their hearts that the Phillies would not lose this thing at home. The baseball gods said - sure you can, we'll show you how. Hey gang - all the kool-aid and rally towels in the world could'nt prevent the Giants from beating the Phillies not once, but twice here in Philly. To these rabid fans I suggest that they look out the window where they will discover that the sun did rise in the east this morning. Sure it hurts, but mix up some green kool-aid and watch Fat Andy's guys take on the Titans.

One of my friends, a confirmed home towner who loves his kool-aid suggested that I wanted the Phillies to fail. Nothing could be further from the truth. I would have loved for these guys to find a way to beat the Giants - but I wasn't going to jump off a cliff with the lemmings who could'nt see the reality of the situation. The Phillies were beaten by a bunch of guys who wanted it more than they did. The Phillies demeaner was that they expected to win just by showing up - we are the Philles, roll over Giants attitude didn't register with the collection of cast-offs, and unheard of guys that the Giants brought to the park.

Aside from quality pitching, who are the Giants? Cody Ross, Huff, Uribe will return to their proper places of being anonomous in a very short period of time. Sandoval will soon eat his way out of baseball, and headlines in SF will soon lament another World Series loss. The baseball gods are still pissed that Horace Stoneham moved the Giants to the left coast from NYC. They have not allowed the Giants to win since they left NY, and I don't think they will allow it this year.

We all watched the same game last night, so I don't want to spend a whole lot of time reviewing the play by play. This long suffering fan didn't feel confidant when the Phillies took a two run lead. I was pleased, but when Polanco's error allowed the Giants back in the game I did hear the gods laughing. And I could'nt help but notice that after Sanchez was taken out of the game the Phillies bats got as limp as freshly overcooked pasta. If you leave 8 or 9 men on base - you usually lose. The Phillies had their opportunities, but, well we all saw how the opportunities worked out. The Phillies folded like a cheap suit. They choked in front of the 46,000 fans who spent big money to be there. It was so Philadelphia. It was so sad to watch.

Oh sure, our hopes were given a boost - until the line drive double play. We almost turned the game off after that, and I wished we had because at that point I knew, I knew that it was over. How confident were you knowing that Ross Gload was going to hit? The baseball gods saved the best for last though, and I give them the credit they deserve for fashioning such a poignient end to the series. It was so perfect. There we all were, watching the last hope come to the plate. Two outs in the bottom of the ninth and Ryan Howard was given a chance to redeem himself and carry the Phillies on his back to the World Series.

All he had to do was beat a guy named Brian Wilson. (I hate the Beach Boys too) Wilson with the dyed black beard.

We sat as if we were paralyzed. Neither one of us said a word as the Big Piece got into the box. We hoped against hope that Howard would find a way to send the ball deep into the night. Can you imagine (of course you can) our shock when he didn't even swing at the last two strikes. The mother didn't even swing. The gods were thrilled, and the two of us couldn't believe our eyes. HOW CAN YOU NOT SWING AT HITTABLE PITCHES? His failure will be put in my memory bank next to some other fantastic Philadelphia losing moments. I'm not a fan of Joe Buck, but when the asshole told us that it was the 17th anniversary of Joe Carters home run off Mitch Williams I wanted Buck to have a stroke on national TV. That was the icing on the cake for me.


On June 3, 1888 Ernest Lawrence Thayer had a poem published in of all places, The San Francisco Examiner. With a few changes here and there to his words we can bring that 1888 piece into the 21st century.

"The outlook wasn't brilliant for the Philly nine that day.........The score was 3-2, with but one inning to play.......they thought, If only Ryan could but a whack at that......there was an ease in Ryan's manner as he stepped into his place.....there is no joy in Philly...the mighty Ryan has struck out!


Friday, October 22, 2010

There Is A God!!!!!

I wasn't going to write tonight.I probably shouldn't be operating the keyboard, but I'll do my best to say what is on mind mind.

To watch Alex Rodriquez make the final out has given me a great deal of joy. I couldn't have written a more fitting ending to the 2010 Yankees. And for him to do it in Texas, tells me that there must be a real god, and that he's got some interesting things planned for A-Rod in the hereafter.

He does it in front of the fans he forsoke to take the big money and play in the big market.

Perhaps this was only the work of the baseball gods. Perhaps they have scripted some particularly cruel heartaches for the next series. Perhaps it involves a team Cliff Lee played for last year. Perhaps it involves a seventh game.

I refuse to say what you know I am talking about, but how perfect for those roly-poly gods of the game. These guys are strictly Old Testament gods, because they are vengeful, and mean. They show none of the New Testament stuff about love and compassion. They have our fate in their pudgy hands. I wonder if they have worked it all out?

So as I'm listening to Ernie Johnson do the play by play I can't help how lucky we were here in the GREATEST CITY IN THE WORLD!!!! And we don't have a fucking bay! I digress.
We were blessed to have Harry Kalas and Richie Ashburn broadcast the game for all those years. If there was a better combo doing baseball on this planet I certainly never heard them.

Wow. These guys made watching some of the worst Phillies teams of all time worth watching. How great was it when Whitey would see something that was stupid he would say to Harry, "I can't believe it Harry.... that was a bonehead play,how does he stay with the team." Most color guys are shills for the team.(See Chris Wheelers career). Not Whitey.He told it like it was.and I loved him for that.

And Harry. He did play by play like Pavoratti sang aria's. His play by play was the best I have ever heard. He didn't overtalk, but when he spoke he usually got it right - unless he was "under the weather" and then all bets were off.

Anybody who ever listened to Harry will never forget things like,"It's a drive to deep right field, its gotta chance - IT'S OUTA HERE!!!! Home run number 35 for Michael Jack Schmidt.

The man was also a legend among drinkers. Harry was known far and wide as a guy who loved a drink - before, during,and after the game - especially after the game. He would go on three day benders, and never miss a game. He drove Phillies brass crazy with his escapades. The night the Phillies clinched the 1993 pennant Harry was so drunk that he could not conduct the post game interviews. I watched as the microphone was taken out of his hand.

I know why Harry was he way he was. How the hell can anyone do all those Phillies games and stay sober.

I have to start seriously thinking of reasons not to root for Lee and the Rangers if they end up playing the Giants. I truly hate Texas and all that it stands for. I wouldn't wnt to root for the team that just beat my team, but how the hell can I root for Texas.

I may have to revert to either not watching the series, or just rooting for injuries.A nice acl tear for Cody Ross would provide amusement. I may have to settle for the torn acl, because nobody will have balls big enough to hit him in the nose.

I don't need to dealwith this yet, because the Phillies are still alive. Maybe the gods want to get us all hyped up for a game 7. Maybe they want us to believe in miracles when the Phillies win game 7, so they can set us up for a Shakespearean tragedy in the series. Maybe they want the Phillies to be the Comeback Kids - only to make the Fall Down And Go Boom kids against Lee in game 7.

Well, for now we need to kick some Giant butts tomorrow night! Cody Ross must go down!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

I Am Allowed An Anxiety Attack - I Am

I was all set tonight. I made sure that I had done everything that I had to do, had had dinner, and had even done the dinner dishes. I sat down on the sofa with a fresh cup of coffee and had two bowls on the coffee table - one of which had freshly made popcorn. I was living large while waiting for the first pitch from Lincecum.

I knew before the game that there was no friggin way I was going to sip on red kool-aid. This long suffering fan just refused to allow my emotions to take over. That lasted about ten minutes when it dawned on me that it was going to be a long game. The gods were going to take me on a rollercoaster ride - whether or not I wanted it.

You know how it starts.First you notice a tightness in your neck. Next you realize that your leg is shaking. After that loud noises from the trolley's outside make you jump, and the sight of Howard and Werth striking out on both of their first two at bats almost makes you wish that The Dating Game Was still on. You look at the remote, but the baseball gods will not allow you to touch it. Finally the sight of Cody Ross coming to bat causes fear and dread to spread throughout the body.

I had already finished one of my bowls and still had a full bowl of popcorn when the Giants took the early lead. Anxiety and depression at the same time. Shit Halladay had not brought his A game and our guys were'nt exactly hitting Lincecum.

Here I am tense as a Tea Party asshole and our guys were making it worse by competing actively for thr Dick Stuart Dr Strangeglove. Both Howard and Utley scored Strangeglove points tonight with Utley slightly ahead. Did you notice how every throw he made was an adventure. He was either throwing the ball over Howard's head or trying his best to pull him off the bag.

The Jeltz Award still has many contenders, but the field is getting tighter now that Ibanez saw fit to join the festivities by getting his first playoff hit - and scored.

The baseball gods decided to create the play that I will call - "THE BUNT". I have never seen anything like that, and don't expect to see it again. A fitting touch to that play was Sandoval's inability to get is fat leg to the base. The gods were hysterical, but all of a sudden the Phillies had a two run lead. All I could wonder was how the gods were going to arrange for us to blew this. There were oh so many ways, and they are so creative.

I think I am more tense when the Phillies are holding on to a slim lead - especially with guys in the Giants line-up who have savaged the candy strippers. Would it be Cody Ross again tonight, or would a struggling Torres be the one to turn out the lights on the Phillies? I was tight. I prayed that the gods wanted to come back to Philly for another round of cheesesteaks (wid). That was my only hope.

I was so tense thinking about having a one run lead going into the ninth knowing that Charlie was going to call on his guy to close out the game. I tried to say the guys name, but could only manage a weak LLLLLLLLL. I thought - so this is how the gods were going to do it. They were going to send Brad Lidge out to finish the game with only a one run lead- after the Phillies had gone quietly in the top of the ninth. Well they didn't go quietly as Jason put one in the seats to give Lidge a bit of a cushion.

I was screaming at the tv when McCarver said that Lidge now knows he doesn't have to be perfect - that he has room to make a mistake. Nooooooo, don't say that asshole - what if Lidge hears and believes you. There could be bases loaded with no outs after the first three batters. I lost it completely when Joe Buck, trying to top McCarver reminded us out there in couchland that Lidge had saved 17 of his last 18 chances during the season. Shut-up douchebag, the gods can here you and decide they didn't want any cheesesteaks. Not wanting to have the big one watching Lidge I went in to the next room. I listened, but I couldn't watch.

The gods must want those cheesesteaks pretty bad because we get to go through this again Saturday night. And glad I am that we get the shot. We may be on life support, but our team is still doing what the Mets are not - they are playing baseball.

The Dick Stuart & Steve Jeltz Award Winners Are...

Now that the Phillies season is all but over( Sorry kool-aid drinkers) it is time for us to be thinking about which of the Phillies should receive the not-so- coveted Dick Stuart Dr Strangeglove Award. Our problem is that we have a plethora of candidates and only one trophy to give out. As of now the three leading contenders are of course Utley, Rollins, and Polanco who got on the leaderboard in last nights game when he booted what looked like a routine ground ball. ( I'm told that Dick Stuart was quoted as telling reporters "see, I told you that fielding routine grounders was hard)

Fortunately we have one more game to play - so I'm hoping that one of the aforementioned Fools Gold Glovers can separate himself by either booting a routine ground ball or making an errant throw at a critical juncture in the game causing the Giants to drink their champagne.

The Steve Jeltz (.210 career ba) Limp Bat Award is so far safely in the hands of Raul Ibanez who has swung the bat often in this series and has managed to hit nothing but air. ( I must note that the Phillies are hitting below the .200 for the series so there were other contenders for this award. Ibanez is the standout to date.

Blanton did not cost his team the game last night. Blanton giving up only two runs is like Halladay pitching a no no. Blanton can't do any better than he did. I do have a problem with him however. I give him a big cheer for hitting Cody Ross on the wrist - but he didn't get the job done - he didn't break the guys wrist, and the wannabe rodeo clown was able to come back and deliver again for the Giants. Hey Joe, if you're going to do something, do it right. If you would have hit him in the nose as I suggested, he couldn't have gotten the hit later in the game which helped make you and your friends losers again. You would have also greatly improved his appearance for which he might have been grateful to you.

I must congratulate the Sillies for scoring 4 runs last night. Way to go! Unfortunately it wasn't enough.

I understand that the Phillies have not been eliminated yet. I understand that they still have a chance of pulling it out. And the Democrats could gain seats in the House on Nov 2. Well, they could. Some guys love to play long shots, so if you are so inclined, brew up another batch of red kool-aid and call your bookie and go all in. Actually I believe that the Democrats have a better chance than do the Phillies, but what do I know.

Another positive is that because of their stellar play, the city of Philadelphia won't have to spend a bunch of money putting on a parade. The Phillies are doing their part to keep the city fiscally responsible and I applaud them for that.

Our one and only hope is that the baseball gods have a very special outcome planned for the city by the bay, and that they will sprinkle pixie dust on the Phillies slumbering bats awakening them so that they get to Lincecum, Sanchez & Cain early & often. If the gods will it - it will occur. If they don't, well gang, tonight will be the last time any of us will have to hear how hot Jason Werth is, and that isn't a bad thing.

The gods may be angry at the Phillies for an observation made last night by my son. The Phillies seem to be playing like the pennant was theirs before the games started. They are playing like they thought that all they had to was show up and the Giants would have crumbled before their presence. It doesn't work that way, the gods have said. The gods like hungry teams and guys who play with all their heart exposed on their sleeves. The candy stripers didn't do that and they can now be listed along with all of the other under-achieving squads that have worn our city's name on their uniforms.

Another pleasantry is that once again the pundits will have been proven wrong. Almost to a man they picked the Phillies to go all the way, and once again they will almost to a man be proven wrong.

Lastly. On the long plane ride home I'd like the pilot to play the songs "Here's To The Losers" by Sinatra, and the Broadway hit "You've Got To Have Heart" by Ethel Merman. The baseball gods would find that a fitting ending to the 2010 edition of the Philadelphia Phillies.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

I Thought I Saw Bobby Malkmus Playing Second

What can I say. Isn't depression fun - c'mon you can't be happy all of the time.

The baseball gods are wherever they live laughing their fat asses off. They didn't like the H2O bullshit and arranged for the rwo H's to acquire sulpher molecules and become stink bombs.

The Gods had Hamels pitch the second half of the season like a real stud - like a real ace, then whacked us with the same old Hamels from last year. The Giants hitters aren't making anyone forget the 1927 Yankees but the Colester sure tried today. He sucked big time today,when the candy strippers needed him to come up big. I refuse to listen to him lisp his way through any post game interviews. I don't want to hear his voice .

I can't throw all the blame for today's fiasco on Cole Hamster. Remember when our guys could hit a baseball? They didn't today did they. Hell, Matt Cain is an ok pitcher, but he isn't Juan Marichal or even Juan Pizarro. Today the Sillies made him look like the reincarnation of Christy Matheson who wore a Giants uniform in the early days of the 2oth century. A fucking three hitter is a disgrace. As far as our hitters go, I thought I was watching Solly Hemus, Willie Jones, and Glen Gourbas playing out there. Mr Cool continues to be Mr Irrelavent, and well what can I say about Ibanez. Isn't it grand that he'll be making 12 million next year?

I take my hat off to the baseball gods for putting some life into his bat for a time after the all-star break, and then take it all away once the money was on the line. He is swinging so bad that he couldn't hit a ball if it were the size of a volleyball. I say, sit him down and give Gload a chance. Hell, Mike Sweeney can't do any worse than Mr Cool, so I'd sit his ass down as well. And why shouldn't Wilson Valdez get his shot,especially after Mr Gold Glove booted yet another one in a crucial situation. Utley looked like Bobby Malkmus did when he played in the fifties. Look up his numbers and you won't be impressed I assure you.

The Phillies, once upon a time ago acquired a guy by the name of Dick Stuart from the Pirates. Stuart could hit a baseball and had some power. So far sounds like Utley. Well, Stuart had a variety of nicknames that included Dr Strangeglove, and Stonefingers. The man made every routine ground ball an adventure. Once when he picked up a hot dog wrapper that had blown on to the field he got a standing ovation from the crowd for finally showing something he could catch. It's one thing for Utley to struggle at the plate, but the guy has got to make the plays in the field. If he can't, then Charlie ought to send him to the SPCA where he can play with the dogs - he does that well at least.

The thing I always liked about this Phillies team was that they never gave up and someone always found a way to provide the spark at the right time. Now, they are playing without a lot of heart and there are no sparks to be found. Unless the baseball gods are planning a huge mind fuck for the Giant fans - this thing is OVER. You heard me it is done, kaput, finis, and the fat lady is ready to go.

I will explain. Tomorrow, unless Charlie changes his mind and pitches Halladay on what used to be normal rest, our hopes and dreams depend on Joe Blanton. Feel good about that do you? Hell I admire the job Blanton does. The guy has marginal talent, but he brings his balls to work and often finds a way to give you a good six innings.Because he has only marginal talent,sometimes Mr Margin shows up and he is working with the Ivory after two or three innings with the Phils in a five run hole. The good news is that they should be able to hit Bumgarden , but if they don't, then Lincecum gets another chance to bitch slap them in game five. We've all seen how well they swing the lumber against him.

We're only down one game oldhead - you say. We can come back - we can. Wanna bet your pay check on that? Well, do you? I didn't think so. A team with heart could.A team with soul could. This team is playing without either and I don't believe they will pull it off. I hope the gods of baseball make me wrong - I really do, but.......

I am extremely disappointed, but not surprised. In order to win at this time of year you have to bring both of your balls and your heart. The balls must have missed the flight because our guys are playing without confidence, without any killer instinct. And heart. Well they ought to watch the way the Rangers are dealing the Yankees a beating - they brought their hearts to NYC, and I don't the Yankees can come back. Even if they win the next game, in the back of their minds that Cliff Lee will be happy to slap them around again - and do it with a smile.

The Phillies are but a game down. They have shown in the past a resiliency, that they need to find in a hurry. If they win tomorrow they will be on a respirator, but be alive. Blanton could give them a good six innings and leave the game with a lead. It could be a close game until the ninth when superhero Brad Lidge will attempt to seal the deal. Just think how tense we'll all be then. Our best shot will be if the baseball gods want to really fuck the SF fans. Wow, how hard will they be laughing at the groans coming out of the Bay Area if the Giants take 3-1 lead, and then blow it. Then we could come back, believe the bullshit all over again and drink gallons of kool-aid. We can get all hyped -up and then the baseball gods will decide to let us off the hook with a win, and do it by beating Cliff Lee in the 7th game.

Hey if former Philly catcher Mack Burke can have a career ave. of 1000 then anything is possible. (Burke had but one ml ab and got a hit giving him a perfect record. He never played in the show after that and his job as back-up catcher was taken by Joe Lonnett) Hey, don't knock Burke. The did something none of us ever did. He was on a major league roster. He was in the show. And Topps put him on a baseball card! How cool would it be to be on a baseball so collectors would have to pay money to get a picture of you. Even cooler would have your card in the last part of the set released. They always produce less of the higher number cards than they do with the first cards of the new season. By being in the back of the set, your card would be a hard to get rare card and would command a higher price from collectors. Collectors paying top dollar for the cards of guys they never heard of is one way the baseball gods entertain themselves during the off season.

So round up your self-medications of choice and show some love for BIG JOE BLANTON! Just don't laugh when you see that silly ass beard of his...

Ok, you are all upset and depressed. I have a way to make your evenings better. When I was in college I worked on the school radio station. My mission was to get kids from small towns in Ohio to listen and like "urban" music. Hell most of my classmates thought that the Monkees were the best thing going, but I was able to convert many of them to the wonders of doo wop and R&B. Once a week I did a segment called Suicide Circle. Suicide Circle was designed to help those get through a situation where their girl friends had just either slept with their roomate, or just plain reached into their chests where they proceeded to rip their hearts out - and then stomp on it. We've all been there, and it hurts like hell. You know they feeling - the feeling that the sun was never going to shine again, and that you would never get over the bitch that just made you feel like you were a puddle of shit. The deal was - you could call me to request a song that you knew would make you feel bad and probably cry for hours. No, I wasn't a sadist hoping to learn of undergraduate suicides. I was trying to help these guys get through the grieving process quickly by accelerating their pain. As such I am enclosing a list of songs that you should listen to tonight while thinking of your beloved Phillies who as we speak are making arrangements to play golf next week - because they won't be playing baseball. Try the music - it may help.

1. "Turn Out The Lights" Teddy Pendergrass
2. "The Party's Over" Willie Nelson
3. "What Becomes Of The Brokenhearted" Jimmy Ruffin
4. "Break My Heart" David Ruffin
5. "I Cry" Smokey & the Miracles
6. "Fading Away" Temptations
7. "It's A Cryin' Shame" Len Barry
8. "It Only Hurts For A Little While" Whispers
9. "It's So Hard Being A Loser" The Contours
10. "Here's To The Losers" Frank Sinatra
11. "Good Morning Heartache" Billie Holiday
12. "I'll Never Smile Again" Frank Sinatra

Enjoy the sounds, cry your hearts out, and put up your Wait 'Til Next Year Signs!

Monday, October 18, 2010

The Cowboys Are 1-4!

Isn't it grand! Jerry Jones spends over a billion dollars to build a new home for his Dallas Cowboys and after a first round elimination in last years playoffs they roar out of the gate this year to a rousing 1-4 record. This so delicious to me, especially when I see all of the Cowboy fans in the Philly area. The Super Bowl is being held in Jone's palace this year,and he would have loved to see his 'Boys in the game. Sorry asshole, it ain't gonna happen. As for all of the local Cowboy fans- .........and the horses you rode in on.

What a day here in Philly. I normally start my Sunday by watching the news shows where I get lied to by politicians of all stripes. I'm sick of this political season. I already know how I am going to vote. I knew ten years ago how I was going to vote in this years election - so if any of you can make the robo calls and junk mail stop - please let me know how. I am always amazed at the number of undecided there are this close to an election. There must be a whole lot of morons walking our streets saying duh. Enough of politics.

So while I wait for the Phillies,I turn on my local Fox station to watch the Eagles. (Sorry NYC and environs that you couldn't watch your Giants and Manning the Lesser) It was nice to see the birds win, but all I wanted was the baseball game to start. Oh shit, I thought - there is another football game on before I can hear the dulcet tones of Joe Buck and Tim McCarver try to ruin the game every time they opened their mouths. (New Yorkers at least were spared that)

A last few words about football. Watching the Cowboys lose is always enjoyable, but the best hit of the day was when Desean Jackson was hit into next week. I don't know how he got up let alone lived. What a surprise that he is reportedly suffering memory loss. If someone hit me that hard I'd want to forget too. I can't wait for him to recover to see how he runs over the middle patterns again.

Finally Fox switched over to Citizens Bank Park and the pre-game bullshit. Why they think they need to tell anybody what is about to happen amazes me unless they are speaking to all of the undecided voters out there who have no idea about anything. They must have told us 18 times that no team that has lost the first two games at home has ever come back to win a LCS. Gee, what a surprise. We here in Philly and don't want to hear any of that kind of talk. All we know is that if our guys don't start hitting we will lose. We know that if we can't get to Sanchez early we are fucked.

So Oswalt gets through the top of the first in fine fashion. I needed that because my stress level at that point was reading - calm down asshole - stroke imminent! The meter nearly went off the chart when they Phillies had bases loaded with less than two outs and the best they could do was score one run on a walk. Not a good sign. Three ko's from Sanchez! What amazed about that was that the guy couldn't find the strike zone and Ibanez, Werth, and Victorino all went whiff. I was ready to make Raul wear a pink taffeta dress. I did observe that our fearless Mr Cool had gotten on base- a plus.

So between innings I start to worry that Oswalt will self destruct in the top of the second, and the stress started laughing at me. My chest was thumping and the words cardiac arrest crossed my mind. By the time Oswalt threw the first pitch in the second I had sedated myself with the help of Gods favorite plant so I was good to go no matter what happened.

Much to my delight Oswalt had brought his balls to the game and did what Halladay should have done in game one. Goober threw a high and tight fastball at Cody Ross! Alright! Thats what I'm talking about! That's the way the game should be played. That's the way the game was played when Arnold Portocarrera was losing games for the Philadelphia A's - when Juan Marichal was winning games for the Giants. Ross walked, but no damage occured.

A one nothing lead held as both pitchers settled down. It was nice, but the lack of drama had me thinking about everything that was in the fridge. The munchie gods were playing with me, but I was determined to resist the urge to eat an entire jar of crunchy peanut butter with a spoon. The baseball gods saw that my stress level had dropped so they arranged for Cody Ross to tighten my sphincter up a bit.

Who is this guy Ross. Here's a guy who grew up dreaming to be a rodeo clown! What! I have never known anybody who wanted to do that. I have never nor will I ever go to a rodeo or a NASCAR race. This fool wanted to make his living being gored by pissed-off bulls. Pretty scary. And another thing, white guys do not look good with a shaved head and a beard, a look that Ross sports. Selig ought to make him either keep his hat on at all times or shave the beard - for the good of the game!

I do have to give the guy some credit however. He paid Oswalt back when he tied the game up with yet another home run. Maybe Charlie ought to suggest to his staff that they not throw this fool fastballs down the middle of the plate. Maybe someone ought to beat him with a billy club, just don't give him the one pitch he can hit! After the home run over 5 million people in the Delaware Valley had a depressive episode. The Phillies were not getting to Sanchez, and be honest, we all thought oh shit - here we go again. The baseball gods were happy and my jar of Skippy went to peanut butter heaven.

The depression was abated when Victorino finally got his first hit of the series and scored on a Polanco sac fly. Even Howard got another hit in the inning. Hmmm, maybe this game would have a happy ending. Ryan Howard now had two hits and hadn't been ko'd yet.

I must digress a bit and speak of the wonder of having been blessed with ADD. ADD allows me to have three distinct thoughts in a single sentence, and they all make sense to me at the time. As a defense mechanism it takes over when Howard goes to the plate and I start zoning into my wayback machine and think of some Phillie first basemen of the past. Last night I was able to get through Howard's at bats by reliving the adventures of Ed Bouchee. Bouchee was a member of some of the worst team to ever wear the candy stripes. The guy couldn't hit, played lousy defense and was arrested for molesting a child. You can look it up. I wish I still had his baseball card - I would have it framed.

So, back to the game. Nothing really happens for a couple of innings so I take a second dose of my sedative of choice and check the Colts game. I'm having a terrible fantasy day and I need Manning the Greater to throw nine tds for me to have any chance of my team staying unbeaten. Well, he didn't and I was bitch slapped by my opponent all day. (At least both the Cowboys and Redskins lost). I put the Phillies game on regreting that I hadn't bought a second jar of Skippy because by this time the munchie gods and the baseball gods have conspired to make it so I would even eat chinese food. I hate chinese food!

Now the phone rings, and it is the lady. She asks me what I'm doing. What did she think I was doing? Did she think I would be watching reruns of the Dating Game? Women amaze me. Then she really pissed me off. I don't want to hear ever again how hot Jason Werth is. I don't think he has a nice ass. I don't think he has bedroom eyes, and I hope he develops incurable ED! What is it with women. God help me if I say to her that I think the new asst. DA on Law & Order LA is smoking hot. If I did that my life would be made unbearable. The only guys who think Jason Werth is hot were at the Gay Pride parade, and I wasn't there!

With the Phillies holding a one run lead going into the latter part of the game I ADD'ed myself to the ninth and fantasized wwhat a one run lead would look like with Lidge on the mound. The fantasy wasn't pretty I assure you. I know that Lidge has pitched well of late, but he is Brad Lidge and the baseball gods would surely enjoy all of us watching him put a couple of guys on base. I did not want Lidge to have to pitch to Cody Ross with men on base in the ninth. But who else would Charlie use? Unfortunately the former Phillie who scared the shit out of all hitters was not available. No I'm not talking about Mitch or Brad Holland, I speak about one Ryne Duren. Duren was a guy who had a blazing fastball. It is said that he could approach 100mph with his heat, and even the best of batters stayed real loose when facing him. Duren could bring the heat, but he never knew where it was going to go. Ryne Duren was wild - he had no control and wore glasses with the proverbial coke bottle lenses. Without them he was legally blind. He was also an alchohalic who supposedly always had a flask in the bullpen. By the time he went to the mound the guy was often drunk.

Coming back to the real world I am really stressed thinking about Lidge when the Phillies erupted in the bottom of the 7th. Oswalt set the stage when he ran through Sam Perlozzo's stop sign and scored. (Oswalt looks funny when he runs) A double steal put runners on 2cd & 3rd allowing Howard to do the strikeout thing with runners in scoring position. Mr Cool can't find a way to become Mr Clutch, but awakening from his hibernation was none other than Rollins. Rollins so far in this series had only managed a pop up single when 3 Giants allowed the ball to drop between them, but he found a way to hit the bases clearing double and the Phightins end the inning with a 6-1 lead. I want to thank Jimmy because he made it so I wouldn't have to deal with Lidge. Madsen did let a couple of guys reach base, but his strike out of Ross and a great catch by Raul the Crimper allowed the good guys to tie the series up, and allowed me to watch Boardwalk Empire relaxed and content.

The baseball gods may have some mayhem planned for the three games in SF, but for now - all is well and this long suffering fan can dream of Hamels pitching well in game three.One thing does bother me, however. Joe Blanton taking the mound for game 4 is not what I want to see.

Lastly. For all you Yankee fans out there. I will be watching the match-up between Lee & Petite today - will you?

Sunday, October 17, 2010

What Would Gibson Do?

Wow. We learned last night that Halladay is human afterall. Can you imagine. Halladay has given us a marvelous season with the 21 wins , a perfecto,and the no no against the Reds. Most of us sipped on a lot of kool-aid before the game last night knowing that Halladay was on the mound against the Giants. Beating Lincecum wouldn't be an easy task, but who didn't believe that Doc would mow the Giants down - holding them scoreless until one of the candy strippers could deliver the coup de grace. A 1-0 win would have been great,but alas it didn't happen. It didn't happen for a variety of reasons.

Can you say another Phillies offensive slump, a lack of clutch hitting, and a guy named Lincecum who made the good guys bats go limp, and dare I say a shortness of heart by the good guys.

Even the great Bob Gibson gave up an occasional home run. He gave up 257 long balls during his hall of fame career. What happened after Gibson gave one up was a whole lot different than what happened to Cody Ross after he hit his first against Doc last night. If Gibson had been on the mound last night - Cody Ross would have gone down on the first pitch in his next at bat.
Gibson pitched angry, and he would have made sure that Ross saw some fastball chin music and if he couldn't have avoided being hit - so what. Halladay did nothing of the kind last night. He gave Ross the same pitch that he had hit out and he hit it out again.

If Halladay had given Ross a 93 mph fastball around his head, he may not have hit that second home run. Roy needs to show a little anger and become a little old school. How sad that a guy who had been accustomed to playing in front of 12 people in Miami was the man last night.

I don't mean to suggest that Halladay was the only reason that the candy strippers lost last night. Just because Doc didn't do the Johnny Van Den Meer thing (Van DenMeer pitched back to back no-hitters on June 11 & 15, 1938 while with the Reds) No we lost because the Phillies didn't hit. Oh sure Werth did his part, but where were the rest of them? Let's look at our heroes.

Jimmy Rollins needs to be told that we are playing in the NLCS and that it would be helpful if he could get on base every once and awhile. If he's still hurt then Charlie needs to sit him down next to Dobbs and let Valdez play. We need Rollins to stop playing like Chico Fernandez and play like he is capable of.

Ibanez is swinging the bat like Raul the hairdresser. Hey Raul, take the shit out of your mouth and find a way to get the job done. Right now Ibanez is swinging the bat like he is a lap dog when we need a pit bull.

I won't spend the time reviewing the play of Utley, Victorino, or Polanco. We all saw the game last night so we already know what they didn't do. Ruiz showed up as did Werth and to them I say thank you.

But what about Mr Cool? What about our big guy? Yes, he did hit a double early in the game giving us hope that we could get to Lincecum and think about parades. After the double we saw the Ryan Howard that has become all too familiar. Mr Cool seems to enjoy being Mr Cool. That's fine except for the fact that he is coming up small when the team needs him to get the job done!

Maybe he should stop pointing his bat towards center field (you know the Babe Ruth thing) before he steps into the box. Maybe he ought to talk to a former Phillies first baseman about how to hit like you have a pair. I am of course refering to Pete Rose. Rose came to play every night (ask Bochy about that) and he would have found a way to make something happen. 3 to 1 he would have found a way to get on base instead of striking out when the team was down. Our current guy walks away after striking out giving the pitcher a puzzled look as if to wonder how he was able to make me create a breeze instead of sending the ball deep into the night.

Howard is a fraud! I'll stick to that statement until he finds a way to get the job done. He is the primary reason this long suffering fan will not be drinking any kool-aid. Hey bitch - no more Letterman, no more interviews where you say nothing ( the Andy Reid thing), no more spotlights. Just give us what you are supposed to do! There is a rumor that Pete has already placed a bet that Sanchez will make you look silly today.

You may think that I enjoy watching the Phillies lose. I don't. You may think that I enjoy Howard playing like a pussy. I don't. I want them to win. I want them to play with reckless abandon and to look like they hate the other guys. I do hate when they manage to get on base and exchange pleasantries with the opposing first baseman. Stop that shit. Rose would have stepped on the guys foot with his spikes not ask him how the family is doing. I want to see them strike fear in the hearts of the Giants, not play like they are deers caught in the headlights!

Well, today is another day and being down 1-0 is not the end of the world. The sun is shining, the air is crisp and we have Goober Oswalt taking the mound today. As more folks sip their kool-aid and game time approaches nearly everyone will believe that our bats will reawaken,that the strippers will even the series, and that Howard and Rollins and Polanco will do what they have to. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, fairy tales I love them! Until these guys show me that they can get the job done I will sip no kool-aid! As a long suffering fan whose heart has been broken by every team wearing Philly on their uniforms I will assume that they will find a way to lose this game and head to the coast with their heads up their asses. I'm getting that old feeling of gloom again and I don't like it. I hope I am proven wrong.

What a day. Leading up to the Phillies we get to see if Andy can lead his team to a victory over the Falcons and their silly looking uniforms. (whats up with their sleeves?) Awesome! We get a chance to fall into a depressive state twice. With our fate in the hands of Kolb's arm and Fat Andy's creative time management skills how can we not spank the Falcons. (Watch the game and find out) At least we can watch the game - sorry Giants fans you can't watch your game!

I can't even imagine the collective foul mood this city will be in if both the birds and Phillies lose today. I don't want to see that,so I'll try to be optimistic, especially when my league leading Fantasy Lancers take the field today against the WayLin Boom Booms. I'm looking to be 6-0 after this week.

Hey, the Phillies can do it! Right? No problem, right? Well if they are getting tuned you can always say fuck it and watch Boardwalk Empire at 9pm. Last week I watched the rebroadcast at midnight. I hope to do the same this week, but am prepared to tune in at 9. I just don't want to watch our Phillies fall apart.How about you?

Well, look at that. Kolb & The Fat One pulled if off.

Friday, October 15, 2010

When $100,000 was a lot of Money

In 1951 $100,000 was a ton of money. In Philly, teachers cops and firemen all made between 3 and 4000 a year. The Inquirer cost a nickel and was a great paper, unlike todays .75 for a rag.

In 1951 you could go to Shibe Park and see either the Phillies or the A's for under .50 for a bleacher seat, and programs were a dime.

In 1951 the Phillies signed their first bonus baby, a guy out of Michigan named Ted Kazanski. He was a strapping 17 year old who stood 6'1" and weighed 175lbs. He was everybodies all-everything infielder in his home state of Michigan,and was labeled as can't miss by the Phillies. It was thought by the Phillies brass at the time that he would blossom as a perennial all-star and would lead the Fightin's to the promised land, a place they had tasted only the year before when the Whiz Kids managed to make it to only their second world series where they were swept by the Yankees.

Kazanski toiled in the minors for only two years before making his Phillies debut 1n 1953. Imagine how excited Phils fans were when he drove in 4 runs in his first game. That was the high point in Kazanski's career - his first game. After his first season his average was .217, which by the way was also his final career average. The year the Phillies spent 100 large to sign Kazanski, the then NY Giants debued a guy from Alabama. This guy had his first major league at bat against the Phillies. This guy would make perhaps the greatest catch and throw in the 1954 world series. He was the greatest player I have ever seen play,and he didn't use steroids like his godson did a generation later playing for the same franchise. If you still don't know who I am speaking of you should plan to watch a hockey game this weekend because you are not a baseball fan.

Ted Kazanski, a name long since forgotten here in Philly , but the guy who was Juan Bell before Juan was born will always be remembered by me - I had his baseball card. He was a bum, but a bum who got to do something all off us would give an arm to do. He was in the "show"!

When the first pitch is thrown out Saturday night it won't be Robin Roberts vs Johnny Antonelli. Sal Maglie and Curt Simmons aren't going to be in the dugout waiting for their game two starts. Nobody will get into the park for a half a buck, and some fools will spend $200 or more to stand and watch Halladay battle Lincecum. By game time Penn State will have more than likely lost another Big Ten game (they did real well against the MAC though) and Fat Andy will be practising saying "we have to better" for the 38th time.

Don't get me wrong, I want the Phillies to win the NLCS as much as the next guy. I want these guys to go through the Giants aces like shit goes through a goose, but I don't feel warm and fuzzy about this series. First of all,Halladay will not pitch another no no. Trust me he won't. Oswalt can be gotten to, and who knows whether Hamels will still have the magic he displayed the last month of the season. The guy could have a lap dog moment and have a suicide inning where he gives up a quick 5 runs. And what about Lidge? He has had a tremendous second half of the year, but he is Brad Lidge- meaning that he is quite capable of putting lots of Giants on base in the bottom of the ninth. The Phillies haven't exactly lit the Giants staff up this season. If Lincecum brings his best "high" heat Ryan Howard is likely to strike out seven times in 4 abs. Raul (I am not a hairdresser) Ibanez could set a new record for hitting into double plays, and what happens if Utley starts throwing the way he did a year ago?

After Lincecum, we get the joy of seeing Sanchez.This guy has owned the Phillies this year. To left-handed batters he is like a terminator. Shit, if Cain is on we could be in big trouble counting on Blanton to make things right in game four. Feel good about that do you? And we better hope that Cowboy Joe West isn't calling balls and strikes. If gets the usual hair up his fat butt Charlies guys could have trouble getting the strikes called on the paint that they need.

Now remember that I have suffered most of my life with the guys in the candy stripes. I remember when they would lose by four runs and that was considered a good game. I remember Ted Kazanski, Ted Lepcio, Jim Greengrass, Bob Bowman, and all the other lovable losers of my youth. I understand that all of those disappointments may have jaded me, but I am compelled to tell it like I feel.

Adding to my discomfort was Ryan Howard's appearance on the Letterman Show. The bum hasn't hit a home run in how long? It took a lot of nerve for this guy to do the Top Ten before even one critical at bat in the NLCS. I would like someone to remind him that he is getting paid $125,000,000 to get hit home runs and get clutch hits, not show us 9 different ways of striking out. Sometimes this guy swings the way Pat The Bat did during most of his time here. It's time for Ryan to step up and carry this team on his back. He can start by learning to hit the opposite way when the Giants put on the Howard shift. There won't be anybody on the left side of the field, so how about giving it a shot big guy. We used to have a first baseman here who was able to lead us to the promised land. He is the same guy who knocked current Giants manager Bruce Bochy on his ass during a game against the Astros. Rose hit him so hard, the guy could never play well again. Give us that kind of attitude Ryan and stop trying to be cool like Mike Schmidt. We need the angry black guy thing. We need Barry Bonds attitude.

I have already been told by the lady I'll be watching the game with that she doesn't want to hear one fuck out of my mouth. I've been told not to call any of the Phillies faggots when they fail to produce. She wants these guys to win as much as the rest of us, but she needs to understand why this long suffering fan gets as crazy as I do when I watch them play.

I'll try to behave, but that will depend on the effort I see from the candy stripers on the field.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

The Only Thing On Is Hockey

So I get home from my Wednesday night line dance class and before I do anything I turn on the TV looking for a game - any game. I know that the Phillies have already clinched, but I wanted my baseball fix. I had forgotten that the Rangers had already dispatched the Rays - thus no baseball. There was a replay of one of the Giants games, but nothing live. And they wonder why depression is at epidemic proportions in this country. They get you all revved up about the playoffs and then make you wait the better part of a week before you can get your next fix. Then they tell you that the games will be on Fox -which means Buck & McCarver. Life just isn't fair - not even a little bit.

Buck & McCarver are about the worst. McCarver hasn't said anything relevent ever! He babbles on game after game telling the same stories he told twenty years ago. I guarantee you there will be a Lefty story, a Bob Gibson story, and a story of his time in the minor leagues. He will compare Halladay to Tom Seaver and Lincecum to either Cheech or Chong. I'm counting on my mute button big time.

Now what can I say positive about Joe Buck.....hmmmm, his father was Jack Buck. I don't know if I hate him more when he does baseball or when he is paired with Troy Aikman, another one I can't stand. Buck is pathetic doing either sport. Aikman gets a special place in my hall of shame. He of course played for the hated Dallas Cowgirls, a team made up of criminals, loudmouths and miscreants. He was coached by two of the vilest human beings on the planet - Jimmy Johnson and Barry Switzer, neither of whom would allow their players in college to attend any classes let alone graduate, and his name is Troy.

Troy is not a name that works well on white guys- it just doesn't. Its kind of like when you meet a jewish guy named Sean. It doesn't work. You never meet an Italian kid named Morris, or a Greek kid named Nathan, but here we have a white guy named Troy. Now, Troy would be okay paired up with a last name of Washington, or Jackson, but then that would make too much sense. You've also never met a jewish girl named Aiesha or anyone from south of the Mason Dixon line without two first names like Billy Joe or Bobby Jack or Mary Sue. Can you imagine meeting a kid from Penn Valley named Billy Joe Cohen? It just isn't done, just as Aikman should never have been given the name Troy.

Some folks just seem to really fuck up when giving their kids names. Lately we've seen a plethora of athletes named Colt and Major. Whats with that. Why would you give your kid the name of a young male horse? If the kid turns out to be gay do you start calling him filly? And why Major? Why not Corporal or Specialist 2nd Class? I'll never understand.

Perhaps the worst offenders of the "give your kid a fucked up name" are the WASPS. They have a thing about using the mothers maiden name as the kids first name. I mean don't they know that when most of us meet a guy with the first name of say, Worthington, all we want to do is bitch slap them? And white folks laugh at some of the handles the brothers and sisters sport. Hey, at least they be lyrical.

Getting back to last night. So I go to my handy channel guide to see if there is anything on one of the 160 channels I get worthwhile to watch. Usually unless there is a game on, there is nothing which I will speak about at some other time. (I am one of the millions of people who absolutely hate my cable provider - Comcast) After learning that the only athletic contest being broadcast is a hockey game I decide to watch the new Law And Order. In case you don't already know I DO NOT WATCH HOCKEY! It is a stupid game played by stupid people with foreign names that all sound like concentration camp guards. It was invented by Europeans to give their men something to do between wars. The worst for me is when they interview one of the players from some place called Salmon Balls Ontario. The word that is spelled o-u-t is not pronounced oot, just as the word spelled a-b-o-u-t is not pronounced aboot. I guess I should'nt be surprised considering that they put the picture of the old and wrinkly queen bitch on their stamps and coins. This lady is the welfare queen of the world, and she has made some very ugly kids. Nice ears Chuck.

I started watching the new Law & Order expecting not to like it, but to my surprise it was entertaining. It's a good thing that they kept some boing boings in it, because otherwise I would not have watched the whole show. There are two actors worthy of the name Law & Order, with the rest suitable for appearances on daytime talk shows. The D.A. played by Alfred Molina works well as a pissed off latino from Boyle Heights who last night put away a rich guy with a mansion on the beach. One of the cops, played by a bald guy had some good lines - although he will never be anything close to being as cool as Lenny Briscoe. I can't forget the asst D.A. This sister is so hot that she should be followed around by a fire truck. All in all I give the show a B- grade and I'll probably watch it again if my channel guide tells me that you have paid over a hundred dollars to Comcast and they are not giving you anything to watch. I understand they are adding a Watch The Paint Dry channel next month to justify the next price hike.

Tonight - another night of no baseball, but there is a college football game on. Usually the Thursday night football games are between teams from places like Waco Texas or East Nobody Can Read Here Utah, so I may watch my recently acquired bootleg copy of the new Wall Street movie. If I'm lucky it won't be in Serbian with Chinese sub-titles.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

The Baseball Gods Are Smiling

Wherever the Gods of Baseball live they are having a grand old time setting us up for some very HIGH DRAMA.

I only care about the drama that can make me tense up and pace the floors. Our beloved Phillies have the potential win Obies and Tonys with all the drama they are likely to be involved with.

This upcoming series has Pat The Bat Burrell coming back to Philly. You remember Pat - he's the guy who kept coming back to team events even after the team said leave! Tampa lets the guy go in mid-season and after hooking up with the Giants he becomes a hitter. In less than a half a season the son of a bitch hits 19 homers including one here in his first at bat against the team that cast him away. I wonder how much Pat would like to beat the Phillies? You know, the team that replaced him with a guy named Raul. The Phillies replaced Burrell with the only gut named Raul who isn't a hairdresser.

Lets not forget a guy named Rowand. Here's a guy who smashed his body into an unpadded wall and wiped himself out for the team that replaced him with a guy from Hawaii who should never think lest he hurt himself. I'll bet Rowand would like some payback.

The Gods would love to have one of these guys beat the Phillies, preferably in a game 7 here in Philly. That isn't my prediction, but as the long suffering fan that I have been, I can remember a time when the Fightens couldn't beat the Giants on any given day, except When Roberts was pitching. Tom Qualters couldn't beat the Giants or anybody else for that matter. Qualters was supposed to be a stud, a mans man of a pitcher. Look him up, you'll see a record of pure futility.

The Giants of that era had good pitching just as they do today. Even I love Linscecum. Hey the guy got arrested for possession of weed in his car. Dock Ellis was enraged from heaven that the guy would be even bothered. Dock thought Linscecum was a lightweight. Dude, until you pitch a no no while on LSD, don't think a little weed in the car means shit. It ain't nothin. But the Giants of my youth had some characters pitching for them.

The guy who stands out most to me was born Salvarore Anthony Maglie in Niagara Falls NY. He looked like Sal from Brooklyn must look like when he's calling WFAN to suggest that the Mets testosterone levels be checked. Sal Maglie pitched for all 3 NY teams and had the nickname of Sal The Barber. He wasn't a barber in the off season. He got the name because he gave hitters a close shave with a respectable fast ball. He sported a very heavy five o clock shadow when he pitched and looked mean. He pitched mean. What an ugly man he was. Must have scared the shit out of the Phillies back then. The guy retired with 119 wins 62 loses and get this a 3.15 era. Sal The Barber Maglie would led the league today in being tossed since they made throwing chin music illegal.

Texas Ranger stud Cliff Lee may have bit of a good time planned for the Phillies if the Rangers can beat the Yankees. Imagine how the Gods would love to have Lee beat Halladay in game seven of the Series here in Philly. I'm not predicting that, but it would be so Philly. If Lee wins a game seven here I wonder where Amaro would hide. He wouldn't be able to show his face, I don't know how the police could protect him.

I would write more, but it is getting late and I have to get my beauty rest for my dance class tomorrow night. It never fails to amuse me that sisters pay me to show them how to shake what they should already know how to shake. There is something quite nice to see a woman who knows how to dance step to Marvin Gaye doing "Let's Get It On".

Lastly look up who was the first Phillies Bonus Baby. I'll be commenting on just what a total flop later in the week.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

The War Chant Goes The Way Of Wounded Knee!

It's now official - Bobby Cox is retired. I trust we he won't do the Favre thing and un-retire. I could'nt stand another farewell tour for one of the most overated managers I have ever seen. That's right - I don't care how many divisional titles his teams won, they could only manage one world series win - just one.

Cox was at the right place at the right time. He managed a team owned by Ted Turner, guy who wanted to win and was willing to spend the money to do so. Just ask Charlie how good it is to manage a team that spends for talent. Just ask Joe Madden how much harder it is to win when your team payroll is a full third of your competition. I digress.

Being the Braves manager during their run was like watching the perfect storm; an owner with deep pockets, a quality front office, and the best fucking pitching coach on the planet at that time. It was Leo Mazzone who made the Braves pitchers what they were. Sure, they had talent, but Mazzone taught them how to pitch - how to win. Without Mazzone, Cox would not have kept his job as long as he did. We here in Philly have come to appreciate the power of pitching.

If you remember Mazzone, he never sat still. He gently rocked back and forth for the entire game. He either had a very weak bladder or was in serious need of a tranquilizer - something a wee bit stronger than valium. Valium would be like chewing M&M's to this guy. If he had been born 40 years after he was, they would have pumped him full of ritalin.

So don't let the door hit you on the way out Bobby. Don't go away mad that the Giants beat your Braves, just go away. Get the bungalo in Florida for you and the little lady and sit in a rocking chair where you can think of the bitch slapping the Phillies gave you from the all-star break to the end of the season, and maybe about the bitch slapping you gave your wife in 1995, tough guy.

I have been sick of watching beered -up crackers delievering the Braves war chant at their home games. Come on people, do you think the real braves who fucked up Custer at the Little Big Horn were chanting the Atlanta war song. And, trust me they were not waving cardboard or rubber tomahawks at the asshole with the long blond hair. The chant was certainly not heard by the folks watching General Sherman stroll through their town. Sherman was no joke!

The last time I had any affection for the Braves, they played in Milwaukee and had guys on the team named Adcock, Spahn, Burdette, and of course a guy named Henry - and Henry could hit the baseball!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Mayo Smith Is Smiling

If you don't know who Mayo Smith was you are not a Philadelphia Phillies fan and should watch soccer or ice hockey on a 19" black and white tv. I'll never figure out how anybody can watch either of those so called sports. How sick is it that these people can play for days before anyone comes close to scoring.

Well let's be honest. Raise your hand if your sphincter tightened when Polanco let the ball go through his legs. If you didn't raise your hand you are lying or you were one of the three people in Philly who were watching the Eagles. Let's hope the Phils can give us a parade because Fat Andy's guys have no shot - they really suck.

Now that the Phillies are about to defend their pennant, I'm sure that the Braves are glad they are about to be eliminated by the Giants. I mean really, stop the sentimental shit about Bobby Cox retiring - I'm sick of it. Fuck Bobby Cox. Yes, the Braves did suffer a bunch of injuries - so fucking what! Charlie had to play guys like Hoover, and whatever the other catchers name is. Way to go Charlie! Shit, if the Braves find a way to come back and beat the Giants, Charlie can play Sweeney, Gload, Valdez, Schneider, and the clubhouse boy so his starters can rest for the series.The Bravo's have been mind-fucked by the Phillies and know that they cannot beat them.

How about CARLOS RUIZ!!!!! How can a guy who is built like him hit a 105mph pitch? This Cuban kid looks like the real deal, but not this year! If Ruiz is not your favorite Phillie, then you need to go to Modells and buy either a Braves jersey, or a Mets hat - your choice. Ruiz has become the straw that stirs the red kool-aid. All season long this guy has been leading this team, and he is my Phillie of the year. (Shut up about Halliday. The guy lost 10 games, plus Mormons are not eligible to win my awards. Fat Andy is also a Mormon - need I say more. I don't trust anybody who doesn't drink coffee, soda, alchohol. Hell Glenn Beck is a fucking LDS. What the hell are these folks doing inside therir temples to produce people like Beck?)

TBS ought to consider never broadcasting another game - ever. Who were those lame announcers tonight. If they had said that the pitch didn't hit Utley one more time you would heard me scream. Get over it TBS. Get over it Reds fans and put your orange and black shit on because your Reds have been swept. Baseball season is over in Cinncinati. Sit back, enjoy your favorite cheap beer and watch T.O. cause your Bengals to implode. Wait until he starts telling reporters that Carson Palmer is a bigger bitch than D-Mac. Trust me - he will do so. Palmer threw so many ints today that I almost lost my first fantasy football game. The only thing worse than having to listen to tonights broadcasters again would be having to listen to Buck and McCarver. Buck & McCarver are the reason we have mute buttons on our remotes.

The last thing for tonight is my award for the Phillies MVP of the series. Scott Rolen, come on down and accept your award!! Mr Fucking Gold Glove! Mr Clutch! Mr veteran who will show the kids how to become winners! We here in Philly who loathe you for the unkind words said about our town when you left are pleased to present you with the Dick Stuart Fielding Award! You showed consistency in all three games with your fielding and throwing & we here in Philly applaud you. You did real well at the plate too, Dude. One useless hit? What's that all about Mr Scott Boras Gazillionaire? Fuck you Rolen. Fuck you Joe Morgan, and another Fuck You for Bobby Cox!!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

The Big Red Machine

Ah, the past…

The Reds had the nickname Big Red Machine since 1969, but their best team was the 1976 edition. The team had a record of 102-60 and won the NL West by double digits over the second place Dodgers. In the NLCS the machine swept the Phillies 3-0, which enabled the Reds ti win the World Series.

The starting line-up:

1b. Tony Perez HOF
2b. Joe Morgan HOF
ss. Dave Concepcion
3b. Pete Rose
c. Johnny Bench HOF
of. Ken Griffey Sr.
of. George Foster
of. Cesar Geronimo

Harry Kalas had a field day pronouncing the Machines name. It was like an orchestra playing Beethoven when The K said, "How 'bout that Payyyyyydro Booooooorbone!

Harry loved to pronounce Hispanic names and did it so well.
"The pitch......swing and a miss, struckkkkkkk him out!
" A drive to deep right field - its gotta a chance.....outta here!

We were certainly blessed to have the talent of a Harry Kalas, especially when he worked with Ashburn. Now that he is gone I appreciate him more, especially after listening to a Phils game. The current broadcast team is beyond terrible. They may be the worst I have ever heard.

I hope I never meet Tom McCarthy. If I meet the man I might just tell him that he is the worst I have ever heard, and that if he says but, I may get violent. That would be rude, and would expose me as a total asshole. I don't want to meet him or Wheels for that matter. I would probably look at his wig and start laughing as I tell him how ratty his wig looked. That would also be rude, even though true.

Now, as for tomorrow…

Let's assume shall we that Hamels is a very angry guy. Two years ago he was THE MAN. He was the go to guy, the guy who never let a losing streak get out of hand. He was our hometown hero. Fast forward to this season. After last years performance Cole no longer had the mantle of the man - no he was now an unknown quantity who many thought had shot his load and would never escape the tag of pussy when his team needed him to step up. The Halliday man was here,and Cole just became another faggot in a uniform stealing his check twice a month.

While Doc pitched like one run leads were a big cushion, the Colester would give up anywhere from one to five runs in the first leaving his injury riddled team in a major Colehole. How pissed he must have been when even the towns cross dressers avoided him. Now fagman could have whined like the bitch that he was, but no, that isn't what happened.

When the Red Neck Roy showed up and started winning, the fagster get mad- very mad, and I couldn't be happier with the transformation. All of a sudden out of the blue - or should I say fuschia, Hamels became a man again, and the results have been awesome. Maybe the amyl nitrate is starting to work or maybe his 'wife' promised to stop giving head to opposing players- whatever the reason, let's hope that fagman continues to show why gays and lesbians should be allowed to serve in the military openly. When they want to, they can get the job done!

Friday, October 8, 2010

The Ghost of Bobby Del Greco

Wow!!! Wow!!!

Someone once wrote that there isn't much difference between love and hate.(I don't know who wrote it since I cut a lot classes during my mispent youth) Well, tonight was a lesson in that whoever wrote it was right.

My emotions were all over the place and I truly hated some of our Phillies. What made anyone think that a red necked hillbilly from Bumblefuck Mississippi would sail through the Reds line-up with the ease of shit going through a goose.He looked like his asshole was shut so tight that he would'nt be able to take a shit for months. And the feared Phillies A line-up looked like a reincarnation of former Phillie Bobby Del Greco. Del Greco was so bad that if he hit a ball past the pitcher Philly kids got the next day off. These guys made Bronson Arroyo look like Juan Marichel.

But, the baseball gods had some interesting defense planned for tonights game. As such I have anointed Scott Rolen as my Phillies player of the game. Way to go Scotty!! My runner-up is Brandon Phillips who has proclaimed himself as the best second baseman in all of baseball. I hope Brandon does even better in game three.

My final I hate you goes to Ryan Howard. The bitch stole his paycheck tonight. He fans better than anyone with the team down and runners in scoring position. If Howard had any decency he would acknowledge that he is not going to be Mr Clutch and start letting 100 mph fastballs hit him like Utley does.

The love starts with Utley. Sure he fucked up early in the game but made up for it several times during the game. They took advantage of Cinncy miscues and won the game.

Now before you drink all of the kool-aid let me tell you why the Phillies now have a 2-0 lead in this series. It had nothing to do with anything they did on the field. (By the way - fuck you Lidge - you had to put a man on base didn't you)

The reason the Phils won: Yesterday I drank some kool-aid and declared myself all-in with the team.(normally I wait until after the parade - just to make sure) I went to my local Modell's and bought a Phillies Phunner tee-shirt which I wore tonight. I was so all-in I even read the Daily News today. When I do look at the paper I read it like it is a yiddish paper - I start from the back (sports section) and stop when I get to the massage parlor ads.

So I start watching the game and nothing is going right. Oswalt looks like he'd rather be in some swamp with his bloodhounds and nine shotguns than on the mound in front of 46,000 screaming northerners. No Roy - there are no rebel flags at Citizens Bank Park. Bronson Arroyo, an asshole from birth is toying with our batters, and my aggrevation factor was rising to a dangerous level. I am not a violent person - I deplore it, but I could have hurt Oswalt for pitching like no amount of viagra could have made him a man. He was as limp as any man could be, and I was not happy.

By the time the Reds had a 4-0 lead I was ready to watch Seinfeld re-runs. (I've never watched a single episode of the show since I find Jerry to be boring - not funny - not tp mention that I see no purpose for Jason Alexander, and the Drefuss bitch is not even remotely hot)

Okay, they make it 4-2, but keep leaving men on base so I say fuck it and go to the computer to play spider solitaire. A funny thing happened while I was playing by myself on the computer. (Don't tell Christine O'Donnell who might then decide that playing a computer game by yourself is the same as masturbating,and therefore to be frowned on. Who is she kidding. The bitch probably has a super delux solar powered dildo which gets used on a regular basis. This girl is completely out of her mind - she should be put in a home and not the senate.)

While i was playing my solitaire and only listening to the game the Phillies started to come back. All of a sudden they had taken the lead. I was afraid to walk past the tv to take a piss because I now knew that if I watched the game, the Reds would come back and win the game. I was squirming in my seat waiting for Lidge to get the third out so that I could drain the monster. Thank god he only put one guy on base.

Wednesday night I was teaching a dance class, and missed the no-hitter - so I figure that as long as I only listen and not watch, the Phils should do just fine.

As a former stockbroker I looked for a way to monetize my newly found power. If I watch, they lose, if I listen- they win, hmmm. I plan to hire Scott Boros who will be instructed to call Amaro and demand a multi-year deal for Ryan Howard kind of money. If he says no fucking way, I'll get comfortable on my sofa and watch the Phillies break everybodies hearts. If he says no, I'll inform the press so that everybody will know that Amaro cost us a series win. If he says yes, I won't even turn on the tv, and everybody can get very drunk and break store windows in Frankford, S. Philly,and in center city.

Getting serious for a moment. Beating the Reds is important to me. House Republican leader Boehner is from Cinncinati, and I hate the prick. He is a weaslely mother fucker who should'nt have any joy from his hometown team. He is evil and has no soul. If there is a hell, a special place is being held for him. Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell is from across the Ohio river in Kentucky, and is also a Reds fan. That joyless motherfucker says no to anything that will improve the lives of average folks so he needs to see the Reds swept. May they both develop incurable diseases that might have been curable if they hadn't held up funding for stem cell research.

These guys are as evil as evil can be, and as dumb as Andy Reid is during a time-out. I don't like Republicans. I especially dislike Gov Blimp over in Jersey. That fat fuck vetoed the start of what would have been the largest construction project in the country. I am referring to the planned construction of a second rairoad tunnel into NYC from Jersey. It would have provided thousands of construction jobs - union jobs to construction workers desparate for work. My sources tell me that Christie vetoed the project because he wouldn't fit in the tunnel. I an glad I don't have to pay to feed Christie, as I don't have money larger than the debt of Peru. Watching him eat has to be disgusting, and Jersey will have to float a bond issue just to keep the gov mansion stocked with Twinkies.He must eat them a case at a time. Fuck you Christie.