Long Beach Armada Rotation

April 28, 2009 by

The Long Beach Armada are a team in some shitty independent league in California.  They recently signed 40 year old Hideki Irabu to round out their starting rotation.  Said rotation also includes Jose “Lima Time” Lima. Lima was made famous not by his pitching, but after he was done a woman successfully sued him for 950 grand for giving her genital herpes. Fun.  Are they trying to have the crappiest/most STD filled rotation in the league?  If so, the Armada are doing a bang up job.

Irabu was made famous by being one of the first high priced Japanese players to come to the states.  The Padres purchased his contract, a transaction that created the “posting” system in the Japanese leagues.  Irabu refused to play for anyone but the Yankees, so the Padres gave him up for a bunch of cash and spare parts.  George Steinbrenner gave him nearly 13 million dollars before he threw a major league pitch.  Smart.

This particular team also employed Jose Canseco at one point.  I believe he tried to be a knuckleball pitcher for them as well as resident freak show. 

So now I have given you a reason to watch the Long Beach Armada “play” baseball. As if you needed anymore reasons.

Mocking Around Part Deux: Closers Who Sucked

April 24, 2009 by

Thus continues rounds 3-4 of our excellent mock draft.

 

Third Round

 

11.  HorseBackWadeBoggs- Kyle Farnsworthfarnsbackwardshat1After selecting two pitchers who had moderately to historically successful careers as closers but merited inclusion because of their resounding failures in big moments, I must choose an anchor who is so bad that he never could become a closer.  Kyle Farnsworth has been tried in the 9th by at least two different teams, but has managed only 27 saves in a 10-year career along with a 4.47 ERA.  In fact, his 22 career blown saves mean the chances of a lead surviving his appearance are just barely better than 50%.  Like LaTroy Hawkins, despite throwing very hard, Farnsworth sports one of the straightest fastballs the game has ever seen; his problems are further complicated by the fact that he has only one other pitch and can’t throw it for strikes. 

It’s no surprise that he was tried, and failed, as a closer.  Throwing 100 miles per hour catches a lot of eyes – but when it’s straight as a taut string and hitters can sit and wait for it, it’s going to catch a lot of bats.  

On a personal note, a lot of us waited for a lot of years for someone, anyone on the Yankees’ staff to zip a fastball under David Ortiz’s chin.  Not in a mean-spirited, trying to hurt the guy sort of way (I actually think he’s alright) but in a “stop being so comfortable in the box and dance a little for me” sort of way.  Just to dust him up a little and make him think twice about hanging out over the plate.  I really hoped Farnsworth would be the one to do it, but alas, Papi continued to own the entire area surrounding the plate and by extension took ownership of the entire Yankees’ staff for most of this decade.     

12.  LegendofRonCoomer- John RockerstoryRocker became the full-time closer/racist of the Braves in 1999.  He converted 38 saves with an era of 2.49.  Pretty good. He did an interview that offseason saying how much he hated new york.  Too many foreigners, blacks, jews, and queers for Ol’ John. I believe he even referred to Randall Simon as a monkey.
 
Rocker was traded to Cleveland in 2001 after he became too much of a distraction for the Braves. In 2002 he amassed a 6.66 (666, get it?), the Indians then traded him to the Rangers, where he refused to go to the Minors, so he was released.  If you aren’t good enough to pitch for the Rangers, you aren’t good enough to pitch ANYWHERE.  The following year he tried to make to latch on with the Rays, but they cut him after 2 appearances. In 2005 he tried to comeback with the Long Island Ducks.  No dice.

 

13.  Clubfoot-  Antonio Alfonsecaantonio_alfonseca

Extra Fingers did not equal success on the mound.

 

14.  Off-Hand Crow Hop- Brandon Looper

Few closers have been less intimidating than a guy named Blooper. In his three years as a closer, Blooper posted WHIPs of 1.37, 1.22, and in ’05 recorded 28 saves with the Mets with a 1.47. That is almost a batter and a half on base every time he came out to supposedly shut the game down.

15.  Nottalkingaboutthepast- Jason Isringhausen

Similar to many of the previously drafted (c)losers, Izzy’s career was solid enough before it absolutely went up in flames.  He is the all time saves leader for the Cardinals, but his final season with the team saw him demoted after he just completely stunk it up.  At one point, he was DLed with a condition that was basically inability to pitch.  He helped the Cardinals make a run at the all time record for blown saves, and subsequently got run out of town.

16. Nottalkingaboutthepast- Kenny Powerskenny

Although fictional, Kenny Powers arrived with a bang, posting a 0.39 ERA and gathering 12 saves and 28 strikeouts in 23 appearances his rookie year.  The success went to his head, and he never accomplished much of anything after that.  He currently lives with his brother and teaches high school PE, completing an epic collapse and becoming financially insolvent quicker than a hypothetical child of Jacko and OJ.

17.  Off-Hand Crow Hop-  Joe Borowski

Let’s say you wake up one day as the manager of a baseball team and walk into the clubhouse. Your GM says welcome coach, let me introduce you to the man in charge of preserving all of our wins:

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Hi, the success of the franchise rests with me!

Wouldn’t you shit yourself?

I would try to kick Joe Borowski out thinking some bleacher drunk had stumbled his way into the locker room. He somehow saved 45 games for Cleveland in ’07 with a 5.07 ERA. That doesn’t make any sense.

18. Clubfoot- Armando Benitez

He was an excellent regular season closers, coming close to 300 career saves, but when it came to playoff time, he choked harder than George W. Bush on a pretzel.  Here’s an excerpt from his first big playoff suckitude
 
“In 1998, as the fulltime closer for the Orioles his season was defined by an incident that occurred in May at Yankee Stadium. WIth the Orioles clinging to a 5-4 8th inning lead, Benitez gave up a 3-run home run to Bernie Williams. After allowing the home run, a clearly flustered and frustrated Benitez drilled the next batter, Tino Martinez in the back and challenged the entire Yankees’ bench to a brawl. The Yankees’ complied and Benitez took a hard blow from Darryl Strawberry that knocked him back into the dugout, after narrowly escaping the reach of enraged Yankees’ reliever Graeme Lloyd. This was also the second time Benitez hit Tino Martinez after allowing a home run, the previous time occurring in 1995 at Oriole Park when Martinez was a member of the Mariners. Benitez received an 8 game suspension for his actions.”

19.  Legend of Ron Coomer- Jose Mesa

He fits in the mold of good closers who failed when it mattered most.  He was handed a 1 run lead in the ninth inning of game 7 if the 97′ series.  Omar Vizquel stated in his autobiography:  “The eyes of the world were focused on every move we made. Unfortunately, Jose’s own eyes were vacant. Completely empty. Nobody home. You could almost see right through him. Not long after I looked into his vacant eyes, he blew the save and the Marlins tied the game.”  After the book was released Mesa pledged to hit Vizquel every time he faced him.

He was also charged with one count of rape and two counts of gross sexual imposition in 1996, he was acquitted but still, it was in a motel room, that man was shady.

20.  HorseBackWadeBoggs- Todd Jones

I was thinking of Billy Koch, as much for his poor choice in facial hair as anything else.  But research revealed that his career was cut short not by post-steroid fallout as is typically assumed about him, but by a horrible skin disease that afflicted him and his wife and three children.  So that didn’t seem very nice.  For my pick I’m going to stick with the bad facial hair idea, and go with Todd Jones.todd_jones

 

Well that was a fun little exercise, I hope all you dedicated readers of ToTo have a great weekend, and we’ll be sure to bring you more hilarity on the sport of baseball.  Enjoy the weekend and smoke em’ if you got em’.

Mocking Around: Closers who suck(ed)

April 23, 2009 by

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For our inaugural mock draft here at Toto, we decided on selecting closers/relief pitchers that we’d like to see our favorite teams face in critical moments.  Closers that we have the utmost confidence will blow the game and send us into a euphoric state.  Only relievers who pitched after 1990 were considered.  Draft order is as follows:

1.  HorsebackWadeBoggs      

2.  Legend of Ron Coomer 

3. Clubfoot 

4.  Off-Hand Crow Hop  

5. Nottalkgingaboutthepast

                                                 First Round                            

1.  HorsebackWadeBoggs-   Trevor Hoffman      

Why not start at the top?  It is one of baseball’s great ironies that the all-time leader in the sport’s foremost clutch statistic is perhaps the least clutch player the sport has ever seen.  Lemme list it for you:

-In his first postseason ever, Hoffman closed out the Padres’ season allowing a 2-run homer to Brian Jordan in the ninth inning of Game 3 of the 1996 Division Series against the Cardinals. 

-The 1998 World Series was more or less a formality, but the Padres actually had the Yankees on the ropes in Game 3, until Hoffman came on in the 8th and made a World Series MVP of Scottie Brosius with a massive 3-run homer. 

-Who could forget the great 2006 All Star Game?  As the broadcast team sang his praises as the soon-to-be all-time saves leader, Hoffman was busy allowing Michael Young to scorch a go-ahead two-run triple that seemed like it almost hit the wall on a straight line on the fly. 

-And finally, in one of the most thrilling games in recent memory, at the end of the 2007 regular season the Padres and Rockies faced off in a one-game playoff for the right to go to the postseason.  After his Padres scratched out a run in the 8th to tie the game, and scored twice in the 13th to take a two-run lead and were seemingly headed for the playoffs, Hoffman promptly allowed three consecutive extra-base hits to tie the game.  The only batter he retired in that game was a game-winning sacrifice fly. 

 That’s right, folks, this all-time choke artist recorded 554 saves while no one was watching. 

2.  Legend of Ron Coomer-  Latroy Hawkins

In 2001 he became the Twins closer and was lights out for the first half, and then the wheels came off. I don’t think he recorded a single save in the second half after having about 25 in the first half.  In fact, stadium ushers would make bets as to how long it would take him to blow a save.  La Troy had one pitch: 96MPH heat with no movement. 

During college I was at a Cubs game with two friends, and when LaTroy recorded a 1-2-3 ninth against a pathetic Mets team one friend was declaring the era of the Hawk had begun.  LaTroy has to hold the record for tricking the most fans into thinking he was a good closer.  And he somehow made the WBC team.  Although he used to drive a sweet mini-van in his days with the Twins. Seriously.  A 6-5 scary looking black man driving around town in a beat up van, might as well just show up at the police station and ask to be arrested.

3.  Clubfoot-  Shawn Chacon

Where to begin with this pile of hot garbage.  Shawn Chacon’s 2004 season will go down in history as  the worst statistical season for any closer who saved more than 30 games.    Here are the numbers for Chacon…the good  35 saves…the bad  9 blown saves, an ERA of 7.11!  His WHIP was 1.94, and while he managed to strike out 52 guys, he also walked 52 as well.  

4.  Off-Hand Crow Hop-  Byung Hyun Kim

I appreciate you all letting the Hanley Ramirez of this draft fall to me at #4. It is rare that a relief pitcher is so bad at relieving that he gets converted to a starter, but BK Kim was able to accomplish this impressive feat AFTER winning a World Series ring AS A CLOSER. His impressive postseason resume (5 series) features a 6.35 ERA, 9 hits, and 8 walks in 11 1/3 innings. It is surely his 2001 postseason that cements him as perhaps the most self-destructive closer of all time.

In June 2001, BK Kim assumed the closer’s role for an Arizona pitching staff featuring two future hall of famers and contributed to the playoff run with a very impressive 2.94/1.04 ERA/WHIP and 113 Ks in 98 innings, collecting 19 saves. It should be noted that he was spared from potential explosions in the NLDS and NLCS by the aforementioned HOFers Schilling and Johnson (combined line in the two series: 51 IP, 29 hits, 7 ER, 58/9 K/BB, 4 CG, 2 SHO).

Yet with New York and the nation reeling from 9/11 and rooting for a Yankees championship, Kim seemed desperate to ensure that it happened. Thwarted from blowing the first three games by two more brilliant Schill/Randy performances (including ANOTHER monstrous 11-strikeout shutout by Johnson in Game 2) and a Yanks win in Game 3, Kim refused to be disheartened; he entered Game 4 with the task of saving a 9 K performance from Schill, and proceeded to give up a game-tying homer to Tino Martinez in the 9th and a game winner in the 10th to Derek Jeter.

With the series tied 2-2, Kim bounced back immediately in Game 5 after 130 pitches of scoreless ball thrown by Arizona pitchers and promptly coughed up a double to Posada and a bomb to Atrocious Brosius. The Yanks would go on to win in the 12th. In Game 7, down 2-1 and desperately needing to stem the bleeding of a blown lead, Bob Brenly ended BK’s hopes for Yankee glory by opting for Randy Johnson, who had thrown 104 pitches the previous night. The DBacks would of course go on to win in comeback fashion, despite BK’s strongest desires for a patriotic Yankee triumph. His post-home run fetal position crouch remains the most memorable moment in Diamondback history, ahead of even a World Series victory.

To put icing on the cake of his brilliant career, BK Kim blew a lead for Korea in the 2006 WBC semifinals, costing them the game and sending him packing back to Rockies Spring Training.

5.  Nottalkingaboutthepast- Brad Lidge(Astros Years Only)

In 2004 and 2005, Lidge was pretty much lights out for the Astros, posting 1.90 and 2.29 ERA’s and collecting 71 saves.  He made everyone in Houston forget about the glory days of Billy Wagner.  In the 2005 playoffs, he was as dominant as ever.  He wasn’t touched in 4 innings of work against the Braves in the NLDS, and the Cardinals looked clueless against him until game 5.

In Game 5, he looked as dominant as ever.  He had his team within one strike of their first World Series appearance in club history.  The SCRAPPY David Eckstein poked a single through the left side, however, to stave off elimination.  After making himself look silly swinging at a couple of Lidge sliders, Edmonds somehow worked a walk.  Then Pujols stepped up.  pujolslidgeThe second pitch of the at bat was probably one of the biggest hanging sliders Lidge had ever thrown.  Pujols demolished the pitch, causing the non-baseball town of Houston to go into collective shock.  The Cards won game 5, but were eliminated in game 6, making the story far less interesting.  Lidge ended up taking two losses in the Astro’s World Series sweep at the hands of the Guillen led White Sox.  I’m not sure if it was the memories of Pujols absolutely mashing the 0-1 pitch, or the incessant playing of Journey’s Don’t Stop Believin by the White Sox and their trashy fans, but Lidge didn’t regain his top form until getting out of Houston.

Round 2

 

6.  Nottalkingaboutthepast- Eric Gagne

In 2004, Gagne notched an MLB record 84thconsecutive successful save conversion, and I’m sure it was closing out a Dodgers win with a 2 or 3 run lead against the 6, 7, 8 guys of some crappy team like the Pirates.  The only reason he has that record is that when the streak got long, he only pitched in low leverage saves.  It was more important to the Dodgers that they have the streak intact than bring in their “best” reliever to close out the close games.  Or maybe they didn’t bring him in because they were afraid that some roid rage would rear its ugly head.

Once he started getting hurt and getting called out for doing HGH, Gagne truly sucked.  His stints with the Rangers, Red Sox, and Brewers were awful.  He is the poster-child for relief pitchers doing steroids/HGH. 

7.  Off-Hand Crow Hop- Derrick Turnbow

dt407What’s better than a comeback victory in the 9th off your division rival’s closer? When that closer looks like a pale Lord of the Rings orc with hair like an 8th grade skater and baggy pants 19 sizes too big. Ladies and gentlemen, Derrick Turnbow! One of the more obvious cases of rags to roids to riches and back again, Turnbow came out of nowhere in 2005 with a 1.74 ERA and 39 saves and was my token “midseason closer pickup with more value than the closer you took in the 8thround”. But he must have had a bitter breakup with his roid supplier over the offseason, as he turned in a cool 6.74 ERA withan astounding 1.69 WHIP in 2006, to with 15 more walks in 11 fewer innings, poetically getting elected to his lone All Star Game appearance. His drop in ERA+ of 180 also conveniently describes the change, in degrees, of his pitching ability.On behalf of all fans of NL Central teams, thank you, Derrick Turnbow, for your contribution to the ongoing saga of Delightfully Awful Brewers Closers.

8.  Clubfoot-  Shingo Takatsu

Shingo burst onto the the scene in 2004 when the White Sox dabbled in the Pacific Rim to fix their closer problems.  Shingo parlayed the sox faith into a pretty good season, with his herky-jerky delivery, and his ability to throw pitches between 50mph and 92 mph.  His change up was especially good, it rarely got above 65mph and it’s path to the plate resembled a knuckle curve in slow motion.  Like many Japanese pitchers the combination of his strange delivery and hilariously slow change up confused MLB batters the first go-around in the league. 
This caused the white sox play by play announcer Ken “The Hawk” Harrelson to erupt with delight every time Shingo came in to close the game.  He even dubbed Shingo’s changeup “the Frisbee”  as in   “THROW EM THE FRISBEE SHINGO!”   The White Sox Scoreboard Operator also showed his racist tendencies as every time Shingo came in to close the game…a Gong sounded, followed by a video montage of Godzilla clips, complete with the Godzilla sound effects.
 
This however, would be a brief time on top for Shingo…as AL managers realized that Shingo was horrifically bad against left handed hitters, and that his change up was eminently hittable if batters knew it was coming…and besides his fastball was straight and barely topped 90.   After blowing about 8 games in a row he was dumped by the Sox in the middle of the 2005 season..and hasn’t been back in baseball since. 
 
One a side note in MVP Baseball 2005…shingo’s change up was the most unhittable pitch in the game…maybe the biggest markup by a videogame as it related to real life results.

9.  Legend of Ron Coomer- Mark Wohlers

Wohlers became the Braves Closer in 1995, and recorded the final out of the Braves 95 World Series.  The following season, withe the Braves again in the World Series Wohlers did what he was most famous for.  With the Braves leading 6-3 in game 4 (and the series 2 games to 1) Wohlers served up a 3 run, game tying homer to Jim Leyritz.  This shifted the momentum of the series which the Yankees went on to win in six games, starting their run of dominance that defined the Torre years. Wohlers was never the same after that homer by Leyritz.  He lost all control and in 1998 his ERA in the majors was around 10. He bounced around for a while, spending time with the Reds, Yankees, and Indians.  Finally calling it quits in 2002.  He did have a kickass mullet though.  But many Yankee fans can thank him for jumpstarting their dormant franchise in the late 90s.

10.  HorsebackWadeBoggs-  Mitch “Wild Thing” Williams

99_mitch-williams

“Touch ‘em all, Joe. You’ll never hit a bigger home run in your life.” – Tom Cheek, 10/23/1993

 

Well that’s it for now, we’ll be back with rounds 3-4 sometime later.

                                                                                

From the Department of Stupid Ideas

April 23, 2009 by

Last night I received word from one of my West Coast sources about this year’s All-Star Game.  It seems that MLB.com has started on line voting for this years midsummer classic, with paper balloting not far behind.  http://chicago.cubs.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20090420&content_id=4352132&vkey=allstar2009&fext=.jsp

 

This is inherently stupid.  For one thing having ballots out this early means that potential late April/early May callups are not on the ballot.  A prime example was Ryan Braun back in 2007.  Everyone knows that write-in candidates never get any love whatsoever. 

 It also means that potential early season surprises could get a large amount of premature votes.  Say for instance this guy:chris-shelton-300

Hey do you remember me?  I’m Chris Shelton I once hit 9 Hrs in 13 April games, but now i can’t even make the Mariners.  But you would have voted for me back in 2006.

An All-Star Game with Chris Shelton as a participant, would have a level IV disaster on par with the All-Star game being determined as a tie in 2002, or having positional players come into pitch in an extra inning game.  Friends don’t let friends vote for shlubs like our fair ginger above.

So take this as a plea from the members here at ToTo, don’t vote for flash in the pans like Adam Lind of the Blue Jays, or Emilio Bonofacio(if he’s even on the ballot).  Wait until at least the end of May to make your reasoned and judicious decisions.  If anything we can prevent Nick Swisher from being a member of the All-Star Game, and that’s a relief to blow-up dolls everywhere.

I Love This Game…except when the Nats’ bullpen is involved

April 22, 2009 by

It seems fairly ironic that such a historic and  noteworthy introductory post should focus on the Washington Nationals, but that is what I get for deciding to move a city whose best player to date is “that really good defensive third baseman who should be hitting .300 by now.” Yet here we are.

Fresh off a weekend in which the Nats quite possibly put on the worst display of lead-preservation in MLB history, they decided to show up this week for two rain-delayed, one-run victories against the Braves. This of course was after Nats GM Ben Linus purged nearly the entire bullpen and banished them to baseball purgatory, the Nats farm system.

The now 3-10 Nats would have played a fantastic series last weekend against Florida if whoever invented baseball (Abner Doubleday? European immigrants? Montezuma?) had been satisfied with 8 inning games. But that Goddamn 9th inning.

Let’s recap-

Friday: My first game of the season. I have enjoyed John Lannan tossing a cool 8 strikeouts in 6 1/3, one halfsmoke, about 65 chili cheese fries, and three Ice Cold Budweisers. The Nats take the field in the 9th to defend a 2-1 lead, and closer-by-default Joel Hanrahan promptly serves up a game-tying jack to Cody Ross (starting a theme of losing leads to VORP-neutral players). The Nats lose in 10 on three singles, the last of which does not leave the infield. Also falling into the L column were the uniform gnomes, who stitched “Natinals” onto Adam Dunn’s jersey. I will never understand how this mistake happens.

Go Natinals!

Go Natinals!

Saturday: The Nats take a 5-0 lead after 1/3 of an inning thanks to a granny by Austin Kearns, disappointing only those who had April 18 in the “When Will Kearns Hit The DL?” pool. I am not sure what the odds are of winning a game after taking a 5-0 lead in the 1st, but they are about to diminish at the hands of the Washington Nationals. We also find out that Elijah Dukes has been benched for showing up late for the game-because he got delayed at a charity event. The team will later fine him $500.

So here we have a young man, whose father was convicted of murder and who himself has been charged once for assault and three times for battery, has fathered at least five children with four different women, and was accused by a fifth (a 17-year old) of impregnating her, causing him to hurl a bottle of Gatorade at her. And now the team is punishing him for doing something good.

The Fish cut the lead to 6-3 by the 9th inning, thanks to a Ronny Paulino homer and a Nats throwing error. Enter Joel “Looking in vain to redeem myself after last night” Hanrahan, who proceeds to cough up two singles and a wild pitch before Jeremy Hermida unloads the second game-tying 9th-inning home run off him in as many days. Hermida hits another bomb in the 11th to ice it.

Sunday: Saul Rivera enters the game in the 9th to preserve a 4-3 lead, sparing Hanrahan of blowing his third save in a row. A double and three walks later, the score is tied, and the bases are loaded with two outs, with Cody Ross back at the dish. Another double clears the bases and sends the Marlins home with three 9th-inning comeback victories. At the postgame press conference, Nats manager Placido Polanc-I mean Manny Acta declares there will be changes to the bullpen.

Are we sure these two aren't the same guy?

Are we sure these two aren't the same guy?

The next day, we learn that four Nats relievers have been sent to an island and exterminated in a blue 1970s VW van. But after pink-slipping Saul Rivera, they are forced to issue an oops-nevermind-you-can-come-back slip to him when Joel Beimel, the only effective Nats reliever to date, goes on the DL.

Thursday: The Nats have a winning streak…Hanrahan actually saved two games in a row…Dukes has been on time…The Nats twice came from behind…They suddenly have promising young players…pitchers even.

Even though last weekend was one of the most depressingly comical weekends for any team that I can remember, I remain cautiously optimistic about the 2009 Nationals. The pen proved the last two nights they can in fact hold leads. There are a lot of young guys with a chance to develop, and Adam Dunn finally provides the anchor in the lineup that the franchise has lacked since Vlad Guerrero was in Montreal. Somehow, strangely enough, this is the best time to be a Nats fan since Chad the Chief Cordero saved what seemed like 278 games in 2005 at RFK. Which means that-mere days after a series of colossal meltdowns-it’s still the best time it’s ever been to be a Nats fan.

And this is coming from a Cubs fan.

That New Stadium Smell

April 22, 2009 by

The early season barrage of Home Runs hit at New Yankee Stadium has led to a few people to argue that the new ballpark is turning into “Coors Field East.”  Amid the controversy one of ToTo’s spies was able to record a secret meeting held at Yankee offices last Sunday night.

 (Hank Steinbrenner’s Office)

 

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Hank Steinbrenner:  Allright Fuckers!  We have a big fucking problem.  This new ballpark is the tits, but the ball is jumping out of our ballpark more than a Cirque du Soleil show.  What the fuck are we going to do?

2815973MM012_Gary_Sheff

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yankees General Manager Brian Cashman:  Hold on Hank, it’s just the first couple games at the New Stadium.  That’s an awfully small sample size

Hank:  Sample size?!!!  I don’t give a shit about sample size!  That sounds like the free shit that they give away at 31 flavors.  The Yankee Way isn’t about giving anything for free!   We’re charging 10 bucks for people to shit in the bathrooms here, you better believe we ain’t in the business of giving shit away.

Cashman:  Now hold on Hank, I’m not saying anything about our business tactics.  Just that it’s only been 5 games so far, let’s not get rash.  The season is a marathon not a sprint.

Hank:  Goddammit Cash!  Stop it with that cliched bullshit!  Skip, what do you think?

girardi_400

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yankees Manager Joe Girardi:  Well Hank it’s pretty simple.  Our pitchers aren’t executing their pitches, and are making mistakes up in the zone.  Like Cash said, it’s only been 5 games, but i assure you we are working on getting better.

Hank:  Getting better?  We are the F U C K I N G  Yankees!  We don’t get better!  We are the BEST!  I don’t want to hear any of this “improvement” shit!  No Excuses for this shit.  Now what the hell is up with Wang?

Girardi:  Wang?  He’s had a few rough starts, he’ll be fine Hank.

Hank:  Rough Starts?!!!   He’s got an ERA of 34.50!!!  That’s not a rough start, that’s the fucking Titanic crashing into the big ass iceberg.  First the guy couldn’t run the bases last year without tearing up his foot.  Now the guy can’t get out of the first inning without giving up 8 runs?  This is UNACCEPTABLE!

Cashman:  Hank, Wang is a sinker-baller, he just needs time to get his feet settled.  I have no doubt that he’ll improve and have a successful season.

Hank:  GODAMMIT!  What did I say about this improvement talk.   Our fans aren’t paying $3,000 a game to see improvement.  They pay for winning, and they pay a shit ton. 

Girardi:  Calm down Hank!  We’re 8-6, and we’re getting A-Rod back soon, everything is fine.

Hank:  Did you tell me to calm down!! I’m perfectly calm!  I’m just trying to knock you guys out of your lackadaisical attitude.  I didn’t think it would come to this, but to really get my message across of the severity of this situation, I’m bring in reinforcements.   DAD!!!!

(Door flies open, George Steinbrenner comes in on his motorized wheelchair)

10_george_lgl

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

George Steinbrenner:  Hank what’s going on?  I was just finishing up my lunch.  Very disappointing, very disconcerting. 

Hank:  Dad, Joe and Brian seem to think that our sucky pitching is going to “improve,” and that we don’t need to worry about Wang’s slow start.

George:  Hmmmm…sounds bad…very bad.  Where’s Constanza, he can figure it out!  If anyone can solve this crisis it’s George Constanza.  CONSTANZA?!!! CONSTANZA!!!!

Cashman:  George are you allright?  Did you take your medication today? 

Girardi:  Don’t you think George should get some help?  He could be suffering some sort of medical malaise.

Hank:  Take it easy you two, Pops is just watching a lot of Seinfeld episodes lately, so he thinks he’s the Steinbrenner in the show.

George:  Where is Constanza?  We need to get things back into tip-top shape, this is not good…not good!  He was supposed to get me my lunch today.  Pastrami on Rye with mustard from Katz’s..very delicious…verrry delicious…but it’s 12:15pm…and i don’t have my lunch…don’t have my rye…UN-ACCEPTABLE!   COSTANZA!!  COSTANZA!!!

Hank:  This tactic backfired like the Carl Pavano signing.  Jesus!  Well guys…dad needs some more sleep, but I assure you we are both upset at the early goings on.  We are the BEST!  Don’t forget that!  Get WANG pitching well again, or I will deport him back to Taiwan faster than those Somalian Pirates got their heads blown off.

George:  I need my Pastrami and Rye…extra mustard!  Where’s Constanza???!!!   CONSTANZAAAAA!!!

Girardi:  Cash, we should probably keep Mr. Steinbrenner away from those “Bronx is Burning” DVD’s.  He might start calling me Billy Martin.

Rain Delays

April 22, 2009 by

Rain delays are stupid, but are an essential part of baseball.  Unless you are a genius and made a dome, or a retractable roof.  This got me to thinking, what players do during rain delays.  The obvious is cards.  I’m sure video games have become popular.  I wonder if they do anything that is legitimately fun.  I guess you can’t get drunk, since you might have to play. 

Can you imagine being cooped up in some shitty clubhouse, like at fenway, for hours on end not knowing if you are going to play or not.   So here is a list of things I would do during a rain delay to stay sane

1) putting contest

2)bang my road girlfriend in some shady stadium hallway

3)bet on obscure sports like cricket or something. 

        3a) Cockfight.

4) watch a game involving divisional rivals and secretly hope their good players get hurt.

5) If I am a teammate of Manny, look through his locker for uncashed paychecks

6)midget tossing

7) hire strippers

That is all I got.  What would you guys do during a rain delay?  And since this site has no readers, I can’t imagine I will get any responses.

Annoying fans- My weekly rant

April 21, 2009 by

There is one group of fans that annoy me more than any other group.  Fans who cheer for players just because they try hard.  Don’t cheer when worthless Nick Punto slides into first base and is out by a mile.  Especially when he probably would have been save had the just run through the bag.  This group is usually comprised of women who wear the pink jersey of some “cute”, “scrappy” player.  Dustin Pedroia type players are popular with these mutant fans. They are never critical of players, which is necessary.  If they overhear someone being critical they reply with something along the lines of “don’t say that, its mean” “or leave him alone, he tried his best”.  He isn’t your damn child.  He is a ballplayer who gets paid millions and sometimes his goddamn best isn’t good enough.  When a player does something poorly, he needs to be made aware of it.  

Another thing, don’t tell me I need to support Nick Punto because he hit 280 three years ago.  Everyone knows that a team full of Mannys (or some other lazy, talented latin player) will beat a team made up of Nick Puntos or David Ecksteins 10 out of 10 times.  This isn’t little league anymore, you don’t get runs for smiling a lot or getting your uniform dirty.  Would you really rather have a team full of guys who “try hard” and “play the game the right way” and lose, than a team full of winners who treat the game as a job?  You know what the right way to play the game is?  Fucking winning.  All that matters is the bottom line.  The ends justify the means, etc. 

Most of these fans really don’t know much about baseball.  They really act like they are watching their son play in a little league game.  Am I the only one who has to deal with these idiots?  Are there more of these people at Twins games than at most other games? 

I also hate people who want to get the TV crew’s attention.  In Minnesota we have “Circle Me Bert”, I’m not sure what other teams have but they probably have something similar.  My favorite is when idiot kids do it and Bert is on vacation or the game isn’t televised or something. Stupid kids and their signs. 

Another huge problem we have at the lovely HHH Metrodome is fans leaving early.  If you stayed until the middle of the ninth what is the point of leaving.  The Twins have won two home games very late, you have already invested three hours, why leave early?  That is just lame. Don’t bother coming out.  This isn’t the staples center.  Showing up to the Metrodome for 7 or so innings doesn’t make you some sort of local celebrity.  

Basically what I’m saying is I hate everyone and I wish I could watch the games alone with a few dozen beers, not some annoying bitch in a pink Nick Punto t-shirt jersey.

What we’ve learned so far, April 9th

April 9, 2009 by

Well, here are some quick observations from the analysts here at Toto from the first 4 days of the young baseball season.

 

The Good:

 

1.  The Mets Bullpen:  Putz and K-Rod have done what members of the Mets Bullpen failed to do last year consistently, protect leads.  Granted it’s only 2 games, but it’s a nice luxury to have two studs available for the 8th and 9th innings.  If Carlos Delgado doesn’t turn 50 overnight, the Mets might run away with the NL East.

2.  The Marlins:  Granted it’s against the freaking Nationals, but the Marlins have been damn impressive.  Hanley Ramirez is starting off red-hot, and some dude named Bonifacio is raking.  We’ll see what happens when they face teams with a pulse, but so far, so good for the Fish.

3.  The Rangers:  With the Angels looking like they are going to fall back to the AL West pack, this division could be up for grabs.  With the Rangers potent offense, if they get any semblance of pitching, they could likely contend well into September.

 

The Bad:

1.  The  Yankees:  The pitching has frankly sucked so far.  The Orioles do have an underrated lineup, but this is not the start the Yankees wanted to get off to given their off-season of massive spending and A-Rod bashing.

2.  The Phillies:  Ugh, until the Braves bullpen decided to crap all over the field and walk everyone in Philadelphia yesterday, the Phillies were a few innings away from being swept at home to start the year.  Their pitching staff may have been exposed by the Braves as being light outside of Hamels.  Their offense is going to mash, but will their pitching keep them in games?

3.  The Tigers:  Speaking of hot garbage, this team is full of it.  No pitching + No defense =  4th place in the AL Central.

 

The Ugly:

1.  Cliff Lee:  To all those who thought his 2008 season was a fluke, the Rangers would like to submit their game against him on April 6th as exhibit A.  It’s too early to tell, but the Indians look awful.  And Carl Pavano is their 3rd starter?  Really?  Was Charles Nagy unavailable to pitch?

2.  Blue Jays Fans:  I know it sucks living in Canada, and in a city that suffered a major health scare(SARS) a few years back, but throwing garbage on the field?  C’mon Canucks!  You were winning 12-5!  What were you pissed about?  Did they stop serving Molson early in the game?  Leave your trash throwing for after the game.

3.  Cardinals Closers:  It’s early, but Jason Motte did not inspire confidence by giving up 4 runs to the “potent” Pittsburgh Pirates.  Tony “The Genius” La Russa better think of a solution to this problem or his team, which seems to be a dark horse darling pick by many, will struggle to win 80

Closers do the Darndest Things

April 8, 2009 by

35164823_c989203be0

Open in Astros Bullpen

(Bullpen Phone rings)

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Bullpen Coach Mark Bailey:  Skip?  What’s happening?  You want me to get Jose warmed up?

 

cooper0829

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Astros Manager Cecil Cooper:  Yeah Mark, we have a one-run lead, we need to bring our horse in.  We need to get him ready for the ninth pronto.  I don’t want to let this lead slip away.

 

Coch Bailey:   Ok Skip, no problem…but it’s going to take a while…you know that Jose has some…..issues.

Cecil Cooper:  Like What?  I need him firing on all cylinders in 3 minutes…this game ain’t gonna wait for him.

Coach Bailey:  Well coach, you know that Jose has a pretty extended routine.  He’s really superstitious, it takes him a while to get ready.

Cecil Cooper:  I don’t care if he needs to his jock strap inside out or wear his pants backwards, I need him ready NOW!

Coach Bailey:  All right Skip, I’ll let him know.  (hangs up phone)   JOSE!  Get your ass on the mound, get warmed up and ready..we need you!

 

Astros Diamondbacks Baseball

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jose Valverde:  Nope, that’s not how it works Coach Bailey.  You know the drill, i have my routine.

Coach Bailey:  (sighs)  All right, All right…what is it this week…do i have to address you as “El Tigre Grande” again, or is it “Bomboleo?”  

Valverde:  No, no coach, this week you have to repeat everything to me 3 times before i do anything.

Coach Bailey:  Jesus Christ!

Valverde:  You said it man.

Coach Bailey:  ok ok….Jose we need you to warm up.  Jose we need you to warm up.  Jose we NEED YOU TO WARM UP!

Valverde:  (hops on one foot to the practice mound)  No problemo Coach.

Jose warms up

(Phone Rings)

cooper08291

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Coach Cooper:  Dammit Mark!  We need Jose NOW!  The Cubs have 2 guys on with nobody out…is he ready?

Coach Bailey:  I think so coach let me ask him.    Jose you ready?

(silence)

Coach Bailey:  Jose are you ready?

(Silence again)

Coach Bailey:  JOSE ARE YOU READY?

Valverde:  Absolutely Coach, put me in!

Coach Bailey:  (slams head against wall)  Coop, he’s ready to go.

Coach Cooper:  All right, send him out there…Let’s get this thing wrapped up.

 

(Jose heads out to mound by hopping on one leg the entire time.  Pauses at Second Base to pray.  Shakes the hand of every infielder, then slaps his catcher on the ass.  Takes him 10 pitches to retire the side, and save the game.)

 

Phillies Astros Baseball

 Valverde:  GANAMOS!!!  (proceeds to dance on mound, sacrifice a live chicken and drink its blood, and then hops off the mound on one foot)

Cecil Cooper:   Atta boy Jose!  Way to get us out of that jam!  Good win!

(Jose stares at him in silence)

Cecil Cooper:  Jose are you hearing me?  I said great game!

(Jose stares at him in silence)

Cecil Crooper:   Jesus Christ i’m getting too old for this shit….


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