04.27.05

Schilling, Sour Lou In Pissing Match

Posted in Baseball at 11:45 pm by

Curt Schilling went on the 15 day DL yesterday (as did SF’s Armando Benitez and the Cardinals’ Jason Isringhausen), but the Boston starter’s mouth remains in peak condition, as does that of Lou Piniella.

From the Boston Globe’s Nick Cafardo.

Devil Rays manager Lou Piniella reacted angrily to comments made by Curt Schilling on the “Dennis and Callahan” WEEI radio program yesterday morning.

After the Devil Rays lost to the Blue Jays in Toronto, 7-5, Piniella told the St. Petersburg Times that the Red Sox pitcher should be more concerned about his tough start this season than blaming Piniella for the two bench-clearing incidents in Tampa Sunday.

“I think he should just concern himself with pitching and not worry about what other managers do or don’t do,” said Piniella. “I don’t think I’ve forgotten how to play the game. I know exactly how the game should be played, and why. Quite frankly, I’m disappointed in his comments, very disappointed in his comments.”

On the WEEI program, Schilling said, “When you’re playing a team with a manager who somehow forgot how the game is played, there’s problems. This should have been over a little bit ago. Lou’s trying to make his team be a bunch of tough guys, and the telling sign is when the players on that team are saying, `This is why we lose a hundred games a year, because this idiot makes us do stuff like this.’ They were saying this on the field.”

In response, Piniella said, “Go talk to the players. I don’t think they’d say that. I know you wouldn’t get one to say that.”

Though only two players were hit by pitches in Sunday’s game — both by Boston’s Bronson Arroyo — the benches cleared twice, once when a pitch by Tampa Bay’s Lance Carter went toward the head of David Ortiz. In the first two games of the series, Tampa Bay pitchers hit three batters and Boston pitchers two. “I can assure you that we’re not throwing at anybody’s head or anybody’s ear,” Piniella said last night. “We just want to play baseball, whether it’s against Boston or any other team.

“Our problem here is that I’ve got a lot of young pitchers. And even though you can make excuses for them — and that’s not what I’m trying to do — they’re a little more prone.”

I think we’ve all seen the replays of Carter’s attempted beaning of Ortiz — if the former wasn’t throwing with intent, he’s a menace to public safety.

Hasil Adkins, RIP

Posted in Rock Und Roll at 9:56 pm by

from the Associated Press’ John Raby (forwarded, courtesy Mark Ohe) :

Rock-a-billy artist Hasil Adkins, a one-man band whose screaming vocals
and freestyle approach to rhythm landed a cult following, has died at
67.

Adkins’ body was found Tuesday at his Madison home, where he lived
alone. The cause of death has not been determined but it does not appear
to be suspicious. The body has been sent to the state medical examiner’s
office, Boone County Sheriff’s Deputy J.M. Thompson said Wednesday.

“Someone had gone to check on him and had found him,” Thompson said.

Guitar. Harmonica. Drums. Foot-rhythm instruments. Adkins played them
all – often while singing. A yodel, screaming and a high-pitched
female’s lark were some of his many voices.

The son of a coal miner, Adkins learned to played guitar before he was
10. He claimed the only time he practiced his songs was on stage.

Known to his fans as The Haze, Adkins struggled for decades to get
noticed. In a 2002 interview, he said he mailed out thousands of tapes
and records over a 30-year period while fishing for a record deal.

Even Richard Nixon got one, courtesy of U.S. Sen. Robert C. Byrd,
D-W.Va. The president’s reply to Adkins came on White House stationery
in 1970: “I am very pleased by your thoughtfulness in bringing these
particular selections to my attention.”

“Hasil was one of a handful of artists I think (who) are truly unique
and truly individual. There aren’t very many people whose music you can
identify in seconds. But he was one of them,” said Michael Lipton, a
Charleston musician and writer who wrote stories about Adkins for
newspapers and magazines and later became friends with Adkins.

“And like those kinds of singular artists, they have good nights and bad
nights, on a good night it was the most rhythmic, primal music I think
I’ve ever heard,” Lipton said Wednesday.

“On a bad night, it was still good.”

Adkins was the original star of Norton Records, a label built around the
primal recordings Adkins produced in his mountain home, beginning in the
Eisenhower era.

“People told me they wondered how I could stick with it, so many
heartaches and letdowns. I had ‘em by the hundreds, millions I guess,”
Adkins said. “I said, well, I didn’t start to quit.”

Adkins, who claimed to have written more than 7,000 songs, first emerged
hooting and wailing in the 1950s, only to disappear again. European fans
kept the rock-a-billy rage alive, and when the Cramps did an early 1980s
remake of Adkins’ “She Said,” his records suddenly became hot again.

What Adkins sang about was just as unique as his delivery, which was
fueled by a 2-gallon-a-day coffee habit.

New York-based Norton Records combined new and previous recordings to
release “Poultry in Motion,” a collection of 15 Adkins songs about
chicken from 1955 to 1999.

His “Chicken Walk” and “The Hunch” became two short-lived dance fads.

Server Maintaince Severs CSTB’s Ties To Your Psyche

Posted in Internal Affairs at 5:38 pm by

Dear Friends,

Do not worry. I have not actually started doing real work in lieu of finding more fetching photographs of Maggie Gyllenhaal. At some point yesterday afternoon, CSTB’s lovely hosting company moved this site from one server to another. The good news is that said moves will enable the hosting company to maximize their profits. The bad news is that most of Tuesday’s content is, to quote Gary Cohen, “outta here”.

Knowing the strong likelyhood of such an occurance, I did make text copies of yesterday’s entries…all which were lost when a Powerbook hard drive decided to make like Barrett Robins and start Fucking Shit Up. A tough break. I’m told the 42,000 jpgs of Maggie Gyllenhaal have also been lost.

Anyhow, I’m doing my best to cope with these troubling events and I hope you are too. Regular actvity will resume shortly.

GC

04.26.05

Dickhead With Bad Rug Reaches Out To Kaz

Posted in Baseball at 4:26 pm by

The New York Daily News™ Peter Botte reports that germphobic con artist Donald Trump and Mets 2B Kaz Matsui have a special bond. And no, it has nothing to do with Trump bunting against orders.

Donald Trump said in a television interview last year that the one major-league player he™d want to slap with his infamous catch-phrase would be Mets second baseman Kaz Matsui. But Trump didn™t say œYou™re fired when he talked briefly with Matsui while filming an episode for the next season of œThe Apprentice yesterday at Shea.

Instead, Matsui said the mogul only encouraged him during their brief encounter on the infield dirt.

œHe just told me good luck with the season and that I™m looking pretty well right now, Matsui said through his interpreter before last night™s game against the Braves. œI think I™ve seen the program before, but obviously I don™t really understand it.

Trump had taken shots at Matsui during a June 2004 segment of the ESPN™s œThe Hot Seat, saying œI would certainly say Kaz Matsui of the Mets has been a bust. There™s no doubt about that.

Kaz shouldn™t worry about it. I™ve seen œThe Appentice”, too, and I don™t understand it, either.

Is there some sort of legal action pending against Aaron Heilman in the State of New York that requires the Mets to put an imposter on the mound at Shea each time the Notre Dame graduate™s turn in the rotation comes up?

The Bergen Record™s Bob Klapisch previews tonight™s Pedro Martinez/John Smoltz matchup.

Every so often baseball delivers a scheduling gift to its loyalists – a matchup so compelling it makes you forget these are the early, chilly weeks of the season. When Pedro Martinez and John Smoltz go one-on-one tonight, everything else will come to a halt at Shea. Even April™s gusts will cooperate and feel like a soft, August flutter.

Think these two power pitchers aren™t already surging on adrenaline? The last time Pedro and Smoltz collided, they combined for 24 strikeouts, flattening everyone in their path. No wonder Braves manager Bobby Cox likened the encore to œ[Sandy] Koufax against [Juan] Marichal.

œIt™s a good old National League matchup, like [Gaylord] Perry against [Don] Drysdale, Cox was saying Monday night. œPeople love matchups. They™re fun.

They™re irresistible, actually, especially this one. The Mets have the National League™s hottest pitcher in Pedro, averaging almost 12 strikeouts a game, keeping opponents to a ridiculous .119 average.

Smoltz™s numbers are almost as gripping. Since an opening-day meltdown against the Marlins, the right-hander has surrendered just five earned runs in his last 211/3 innings, striking out 24.

It™s inevitable Pedro and Smoltz will go deep into the game again tonight. The at-bats will be over in a hurry, the innings turning into a blur. The hitters will be helpless bystanders to a much larger struggle between two future Hall of Famers.

It™s the kind of matchup that makes the Mets™ ticket office breathe heavily, but in the clubhouse, there are other, longer-range dividends being considered, too.

Willie Randolph is imagining facing Smoltz in the heat of the pennant race, when the 80-something-win Mets will be trying to make a wild-card fantasy come true.

If they can beat Smoltz twice in the first month of the season, that memory could last all summer. Remember, the Mets are like a baby chick emerging from its shell, fragile and impressionable. That™s why they treat Pedro like their guardian every fifth day, especially tonight.

It may not be as apocalyptic as Game 7 in the 2003 AL Championship Series, at least not to Pedro, but he knows these are all late-summer moments for the Mets.

To them, facing Smoltz represents a trip up Mount Olympus. Even in April, it™s an irresistible journey.

How Much For Cardinal Law’s Rookie Card?

Posted in Religion at 3:20 pm by

`

If Topps can manage to include a bubble gum-flavored cracker, they™ll really be onto something.

Glasgow Rangers Paging Dusty Baker

Posted in Football at 3:06 pm by

from the Guardian™s Fiver :

If God really exists, you™d think he™d have more important things on his plate than footballers™ injuries. Eradicating HIV or world poverty, perhaps. Or healing triple-jumper Jonathan Edwards of his I™m-going-to-heaven-me sanctimoniousness. But no. Instead, God seems to have spent April ensuring Rangers defender Marvin Andrews™ safe return for the fag-end of his club™s fruitless Scottish Premierleague campaign. Well, God does move in mysterious ways, etc and so on.

Andrews™ story is a strange one, mind. Last month, the Trinidad and Tobago international suffered a cruciate knee ligament injury against Dundee and was told he needed an operation. Instead Andrews, a devout Christian and faith healer, decided to trust in the power of prayer. Fast forward a month, and – stone the Eileen Drewerys! – the defender (above) was back for Sunday™s Old Firm derby. And today his manager Alex McLeish was hailing a modern miracle.

œUnless something untoward happens, he is available to me again, halleluiahed McLeish. œSome people have criticised the big fellow for not getting an operation, but you have to applaud his faith. Meanwhile Marvin™s healer, Joe Nwokoye, of the Zion Praise Centre International in Kirkcaldy, isn™t sure what the fuss is about. œIf Jesus can raise himself from the dead, he can heal a knee, he scoffed. œIn Nigeria, people are raised from the dead all the time. It™s about time people started believing in the word of God. If Rangers can pull back a five-point SPL deficit they just might start doing so.

AC Milan defeated PSV Eindhoven, 2-0, in the first leg of their Champions League semi-final, said match marking the debut of Setanta Sport™s new US subscription channel. The home side™s Andriy Schevchenko tapped one past Heurelho Gomes in the 21st minute. Tomorrow™s Chelsea/Liverpool semi-final from Stamford Bridge will be shown live on ESPN2 at 2:30 pm EST.

Bowden’s Short DC Tenure

Posted in Baseball at 1:33 pm by

When new ownership took over the Oakland A™s recently, GM Billy Beane was given a minority stake in the club as part of his contract extension. When Sandy Alderson™s recent hiring in San Diego was announced, he too, was reported to have received a share of the Padres.

Nationals GM Jim Bowden should not expect a similiar windfall, reports the Washington Post™s Barry Svrluga.

Jim Bowden (above), whose contract will expires Saturday, is still without a deal for the rest of the season, though team president Tony Tavares said last night he expects a resolution this week. œI™ve told Jim I™ll take care of him, Tavares said. œHe™s not worried about it. I™m not worried about it.

Though Tavares has the authority to determine Bowden™s salary “ Bowden likely will get a raise from the $300,000 he would earn annually at his current pay scale “ he must get approval from Major League Baseball, which owns the team, on the length of the contract. A source said MLB is reluctant to sign Bowden beyond this year, given that it would like to sell the team during this season.

Tavares wouldn™t comment on the length of how long a new contract would extend, but expressed a desire to take care of Bowden, who declined to address his status.

œWhy should he be made the sufferer? Tavares said. œWhy should there be all this uncertainty around him? He™s done a good job.

Dan Gilbert Vs. Stephen A.

Posted in Basketball at 12:52 pm by

Looks like Stephen A. Smith will have to go somewhere other than Quicken Loans if he wants a mortgage. From the Cleveland Plain Dealer™s Branson Wright.

Q: What™s the long-term plan for LeBron James? There have been rumors James will leave for the New York Knicks.

A: The œLeBron is disgruntled/is leaving stories did not come from LeBron or anyone else in his camp.

It came from short-term thinkers and media entertainers posing as journalists. These people want to boost ratings, sell more newspapers or believe the west and east coast cities are in some way superior to places like œCleveland or œDetroit and can™t figure out why anyone (with a big name) would want to stay there. They are dead wrong and we will prove them wrong.

Q: Why did you fire coach Paul Silas and do you have any second thoughts about firing him with 18 games left in the season?

A: No second thoughts at all. None. The team was in a nosedive at the time Silas was let go. We had lost nine out of 12 games (including a six-game losing streak). We looked horrible in nearly all of the losses and even two of the three wins. There was little to no communication going on with the players. In some cases none at all. We were 34-30.

There was no openness to listening to the assistant coaches or GM. For some reason, still unknown to me, Paul had decided he œwanted out. He told several people around him that he œwanted out including some reporters. It was a surprise to me because Paul and I did not even talk more than four to five times during the three weeks we owned the team and he was coach. We never had a negative exchange during those conversations. We never told Paul who to play or when to play anyone. That silly nonsense [reports he was passing notes to Silas during games] was simply started by TV or newspaper entertainers who should really stick to fiction writing and not present themselves as sports journalists.

Q: Is it true that you passed notes to Silas during a game asking him to play certain players? Why have rumors persisted about you as a meddlesome owner?

A: Obviously, that is completely false. Can you imagine an owner doing that? It is so absurd, you have to laugh at it. Then again, the œESPN Entertainer who said it is the same guy who made up the story about œJim Paxson being fired within 48 hours when it was completely untrue and never even discussed here at all. He is also the same guy who made up stories about œLeBron™s mother not liking the new ownership team. This guy, lets call him œJohn A. Doe is an entertainer, not a journalist. Most people who know basketball realize what a phony this guy is and how he primarily blurts out fantasy on a daily basis. Unfortunately, the Internet has sprung up a bunch of these lazy characters that just read each other™s nonsense and rewrite the same story with a few new adjectives. They don™t do any real work. They never called me or anyone else for comment. They never asked me if any of this BS was true or not.

Sooner or later, enough of their garbage is written that you become labeled a œmeddlesome owner or a œspoiled rich kid or your team is now œDan™s house of horrors.

At first, I became angry at it. Now I just laugh it off. I am too focused on the real job of building the Cavaliers into a championship organization than to spend my time paying attention to these muckrakers.

Thank heavens a news organization like ESPN is able to keep things balanced by having a truly unbiased commentator like Greg Anthony sitting alongside Stephen A. Smith. And what a shame it is for Dan Gilbert that all basketball studio shows don™t prominently feature the wit and wisdom of his hand-picked advisors / potential employees.

Dusty Denies Getting Creepy With Coed

Posted in Baseball at 12:38 pm by

From the Chicago Sun Times™ Mike Kiley.

Cubs manager Dusty Baker was aghast and upset at a titillating gossip item Monday in the New York Post that made its way across the Internet. The brief note implied that Baker had been flirtatious with a young female student when he spoke at Yale University on a day off April 14.

The item read: œWe hear ¦ that Chicago Cubs manager Dusty Baker “ at Yale the other day talking about the sports business “ gave his cell-phone number to a young lady and volunteered to get her a job in baseball. ˜Remind me you™re the cute one [when you call],™ Dusty told her.’™

Baker had been asked to Yale by Dr. William Sledge, who is with the school™s Calhoun College Masters Office. They attended an informal dinner after the talk, and Baker recalled four or five female students and three or four male students were there. He said that he gave out his cell-phone number to all of them but that his intentions were strictly to help the students if their postgraduate endeavors centered on jobs in baseball.

œI don™t remember saying that,’™ Baker said of the œcute’™ remark. œI talked to Dr. Sledge today, and he said if you need somebody to clear it up ¦ you can call him. How does this get started? That™s terrible. It™s like you can™t even help people now. I was upset about it when I heard it.’™

Sledge couldn™t be reached at his office after hours Monday.

œHe was right there with his wife,’™ Baker said. œIt was a special dinner afterward with six or seven students. [Sledge] said all the kids want to get into baseball. I was asking him why, and he told me boom-boom-boom, and I say, ˜Hey, I™ve got some connections. If you guys need some contacts for whatever it is, call me.™

œAnd I handed out, like, three cards or whatever I had and gave them my office number and cell number. He was standing right next to me. I can™t see her saying that. Dr. Sledge asked me, ˜How did that get out?™ I said, ˜I don™t know, Doc.™ Somebody in the room told somebody something.’™

Told that the Post item raised the specter of sexual innuendo, Baker was angry at the suggestion.

œThat™s wrong,’™ he said. œHow could I have sexual innuendo when she™s younger than my daughter? I was just trying to help young people get a job in baseball. I was going to make some calls. One of the kids called today, a senior at Yale. He™s a guy. Is that sexual innuendo, too?’™

The Dusty-leering-at-college-girls isn™t the most shocking part of the story, by the way. Why is Yale University inviting Baker to address their undergrads? Is Yale offering courses in faith healing? Studies in how to ruin pitching arms? Advanced Wearing Of Oversized Wristbands?

And yeah, it is crazy that this item œmade its way across the internet”, as though the New York Post is tiny publication no one reads.

Dolphis Sign Dopey QB

Posted in Gridiron at 2:03 am by

Brock Berlin, (above) starting QB at the University of Miami the past two seasons, has signed with the Miami Dolphins. Berlin is expected to rank 4th on the Dolphins depth chart behind AJ Feeley, Gus Frerotte and Sage Rosenfels. If you’re curious why Berlin wasn’t drafted this past weekend, perhaps it has something to do with his performance on the Wonderlic intelligence test, scoring a reputed 13 out of 50 (the lowest mark of any of the quarterbacks tested).

Berlin shouldn’t feel too bad about this. Anyone who knows how the real world works will acknowledge that aptitude tests are culturally biased against minorities. And what segment of the population could be a smaller minority than aspiring QB’s named Brock?