09.21.12

Terry Collins Sincerely Apologizes (For Saying What Everyone Else Is Thinking)

Posted in Baseball at 4:34 pm by

Following last night’s 16-1 defeat to the Phillies, the New York Mets (spoilers of nothing other than their fans’ interest in baseball) received a no confidence vote of sorts from manager Terry Collins, who upon being asked if he charges had quit, told his postgame interrogators, “You’ll have to ask them. I have my own opinion. I’m not going to express it publicly.”  Quoted today by ESPN New York’s Adam Rubin, Collins insists, “I still believe in them.”  If he’s not lying, he’s the only person who does.

“We know we’re going through a tough time,” Collins said. “I’m very proud of this team, the way they played all year. The one thing I will never, ever talk about is their effort. Their effort has always been there. If you saw, Dan Murphy last night hit two double-play balls and ran both of them as hard as he can to first. I’ve seen guys break up double plays, take extra bases. That’s not the issue. The issue has been, as a manager you sit here and you try to fix it. You try to figure out how to fix it. And you pull out all your stops. No matter what you’ve done in the past, you try to find an answer to it. When you don’t have the answers anymore, it’s frustrating.

“So, as I sat there on the bench last night, I was saying, ‘What’s my next move?’ I thought maybe they need to know — everybody’s frustrated, but let’s just see who’s willing to rise up again and give it another shot. And so I probably did it the wrong way. But I believe in what we do here. We’re going to grind it out on a daily basis.”

“I Don’t Care” – Destined To Replace “Can’t Wait” As Bart Scott’s Most Remembered Catch Phrase

Posted in Gridiron at 3:09 pm by

The New York Post’s Bart Hubbach reports Jets LB Bart Scott threatened to slug a journalist earlier today following practice.

Before the near-scuffle, Scott, who has not done much talking with the media this year, was seen walking away with a reporter from ESPN. Dan Leberfeld of Jets Confidential took a photo of Scott with the reporter to mockingly document the action, angering the burly linebacker.

Scott told Leberfeld, “get a life,” the two exchanged words and got in each other’s faces. Scott threatened to punch Leberfeld, who said “Yeah and I’ll sue you!” Scott responded: “I don’t care!”

Jets PR guy Bruce Speight stepped in front of Scott, seemingly the only thing that prevented fisticuffs. Speight had to use both hands to Scott’s chest and ask for help from PR aides to keep Scott away.

At least one observer claims Scott’s problems with Lebfeld stem from the latter taking pictures of the former chatting with a female reporter.  Of the Jets’ difficult relationship with the local press, Scott said, “you’re all going to screw us next week or the week after..you’re all going to get us eventually,” after Week One’s dismantling of Buffalo, which raises the question what exactly what sort of media training these guys are receiving during training camp.  You might argue that threatening physical violence against a reporter is an improvement on sending cock pics, but neither are particularly great ideas at the end of the day.

Pittsburgh’s Assistant GM Has A Boner-4-Bikers

Posted in Baseball at 8:00 am by

(above : footage of an instructional film shown to all Pirates minor leaguers)

After looking like a bona fide playoff contender for much of 2012, the Pittsburgh Pirates’ recent slide threatens to ensure the club’s streak of consecutive losing seasons hitting the 20 year mark. Earlier this month, the club’s plans to have prospects learn at the feet of Navy SEALS was roundly mocked by the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review’s Dejan Kovacevic, who reiterated his earlier complaints Thursday night (“these aren’t soldiers, they’re baseball players”). Kovacevic’s low opinion of the Pirates’ player development strategy seems to be shared by whoever in the organization leaked an email composed by Assistant General Manager Kyle Stark that was sent to Pittsburgh’s minor league coaches and managers.

“So what do we need to get done in the second half?” Stark opens the email.

He then stresses developing “boys into men” for the purpose of reaching the majors, listing three points: “Dream and be creative like a Hippie. Have the discipline and perseverance of a Boy Scout. Be crazy and take risks like the Hells Angels.”

Yeah, those Hells Angels. The famous motorcycle club that is listed as an organized crime syndicate by the U.S. Department of Justice. The one that poses “a criminal threat” in 27 nations because of drug trafficking, theft, money laundering, extortion, assault and homicide.

More Stark: “The biggest impact we can have is developing more Hells Angels. We are really good at working before games. We excel at developing Boy Scouts. However, men play in the Big Leagues and that requires the reckless abandon of a Hells Angel. They’re not consumed or swayed by what others think. They sell out to their purpose and live life fully and in-the-moment (‘this pitch’).”

The nonsense goes on for several paragraphs, including this cultish creepiness: “At the end of the day, the Hells Angels are fiercely loyal to each other. … They love each other. Are our players bound by brotherhood? Are we bound by brotherhood?”

And this: “We must get out of our comfort zones and flex our own Hells Angel muscle. We must be extreme in our commitment to these ideas. This is ultimately about developing a mentality and a culture where this becomes our identity. A culture of risk and less control is unsettling for us control freaks!”

09.20.12

Kris Humphries : Certain To Dispel Notions He’s A Mere Reality TV Star (With His Next Reality TV Gig)

Posted in Basketball, Blogged Down at 11:16 pm by

Following the disastrous performance that followed the Marlins’ appearance on Showtime’s “The Franchise” and the Dolphins’ ill-advised decision to participate in HBO’s “Hard Knocks” comes confirmation NBA TV will feature the Brooklyn Nets on the 2012 edition of “The Association”.  Flashing the sort of analytical prowess not seen since a young Jackie Harvey brought his skills to The Onion,  From Russia With Dunk’s Johan Mars is overcome with excitement.

This show will give us an inside look at the players and coaches, and we will probably get a chance to see some funny moments in the locker room. I am most excited to see coach Avery Johnson’s pump-up speeches and Deron Williams’s leadership abilities. I also want to see some of the more comical aspects of the show. Brook Lopez is a prankster and we may see some of his jokes. He seems perfect for this show. Kris Humphries is a famous person in the media because of his relationship with Kim Kardashian, and this will be his chance to prove to everyone that he is not just some reality star. Marshon Brooks and Tyshawn Taylor are young guys who probably have never even dreamed of being on a show like this. I will be interested to see how they act around the cameras.

Hey, if you ask Jerry Sloan, it doesn’t get much more comical than Deron Williams’ “leadership abilities”.

In Honor Of The Mets’ Official/Inevitable Elimination From Postseason Contention….

Posted in Baseball at 10:43 pm by

Image courtesy of Oh The Pain Of Being A Mets Fan, presumably not maintained by Joe Benigno-Gazingo.

Joe Buck’s Subtle Insinuations About Troy Aikman

Posted in Baseball, Gridiron, Sports TV at 5:53 pm by

Heads up, Skip Bayless!  It seems Fox Sports’ Joe Buck is intruding on your territory.  With Buck scheduled to work both Rays and Buccaneers games this weekend, The Tampa Bay Times’ Tom Jones caught up with the veteran baseball and football announcer to discuss a variety of subjects, though sadly, Randy Moss wasn’t one of ‘em.

Take me through the preparation for doing a baseball game one day and a football game the next. I imagine the football takes more prep work.

It does. I try to split my time each day working on both. It’s not like I work on baseball on Monday and then football on Tuesday and so forth. I try to put in a couple of hours on baseball and then move on to football. That way I can keep track each day and not fall behind on either.

For baseball, would you pay more attention to, say, the Rays series last week against the Orioles than normal?

Absolutely. If this was June, I don’t know that I could tell you who the winning and losing pitchers were or who had the big hit as much I could now. So I’m paying attention to the teams a lot closer.

Do you talk a lot with Tim McCarver and Troy Aikman during the week?

Well, Troy and I will text each other lot. I can’t text with Tim. Tim doesn’t text. I’m better off sending smoke signals and sending up a pterodactyl. But we’ve been doing games together for 17 years now, so we fall right back into it even if we haven’t seen each other or talked in a few weeks. The chemistry is great with both. For example, I’ll throw out a reference like Foo Fighters. Tim has no idea who the Foo Fighters are. Neither does Troy, probably. I need to say Kenny Chesney to get his attention. But both are such pros and we’re so comfortable around one another that we are able to work together well.

John L. Smith – What Part Of “He’s Broke & Crazy” Do You Not Understand?

Posted in College Spurts, Gridiron at 3:46 pm by

Full credit to Arkansas head football coach John L. Smith :  not only is he doing his best today to make Razorbacks fans nostalgic for Bobby Petrino take the heat off Vince Young, but who amongst us could turn revelations of severe financial misfortune into a fodder for a future Coors Light commercial?

09.19.12

“Three Blind Mice” Over The Ballpark P.A. – Because Not Everyone Has A Copy Of X Blank X’s “You’re Full Of Shit”

Posted in Baseball, History's Not Happening at 9:34 pm by

Earlier this summer, the Fort Myers Miracle’s “music intern” (yeah, I know!) found himself 86′d from a game against Daytona after playing “Three Blind Mice” over the stadium tannoy following a disputed call (“Fort Myers’ Smart Aleck Intern – At Least He Didn’t Play Third Eye Blind”).   Though at least one prior famous public performance of “Three Blind Mice” at a ballgame was noted in the CSTB piece, it seems the rich history of using said tune to enrage arbiters goes back much, much further. From Slate’s  Adam K. Raymond (link swiped from Baseball Think Factory)

According to an Associated Press report from July of 1936, umpire and Norman Rockwell subject Beans Reardon “chased [pitcher] Jim Weaver off the Pittsburgh bench” for singing the song, proving that if catchers wear the tools of ignorance, umpires don the tools of sensitivity.

In 1941, the Cubs expanded the possibility of song-based heckling by introducing the first ballpark organ. Though Wrigley Field ivory tickler Roy Nelson stuck to friendlier fare, the musicians weren’t as kind in Brooklyn. In May 1942, Ebbets Field’s Gladys Goodding welcomed Bill Stewart, Ziggy Sears, and Tom Dunn to the field with umps’ least-favorite nursery rhyme. “It was a request number from a fan,” UPI reported.

The fan may have been a part of the Dodgers Sym-Phony, a ragtag band that kept up a running commentary on the on-field action with a rotating cast of horns and drums. “Three Blind Mice” was long part of the Sym-Phony’s repertoire, along with “The Hearse Song” (“The worms crawl in, the worms crawl out/ The worms play pinochle in your snout/ They eat your eyes, they eat your nose/ They eat the jelly between your toes”).

“The Brooklyn Sym-Phony used to be the worst for us—they would always play ‘The Three Blind Mice’ when we’d walk out on the field,” Beans Reardon said in a 1949 interview. “And that would eat up a feller like [umpire] Babe Pinelli. I said to the Babe, just ignore ’em, and he did and they stopped after awhile. Fans like you to growl back at ’ em.”

NFL To Alex Smith : A Little Less Civic Pride, Please

Posted in Fashion, Gridiron at 9:03 pm by

(l-r : Alex Smith, Matt Cane. Can’t wait to see the latter wearing a Niners helmet during BP)

The San Jose Mercury News’ Cam Inman reports the latest pro football star to run afoul of the NFL is Golden Tate Michael Turner 49ers QB Alex Smith, warned by the league he faces a $15K fine if he turns up for another postgame press conference sporting a San Francisco Giants cap.

The reason: A Giants cap constitutes non-sponsored gear, and players must abide by the NFL’s dress code 90 minutes before and after each game.

One proposed solution: Have the Giants fund that post-game attire for such a loyal fan.

“Yeah, can you call Larry Baer for me?” Smith asked reporters in reference to the Giants’ chief executive.

Smith said the league retracted an initial fine of $15,000 and instead issued him a warning to discontinue such headgear. The man who imposes such fines: former 49ers safety Merton Hanks, who works in the league office.

Ozzie : Don’t Blame Miami’s Garish, Oversized Ballpark For The Team Sucking

Posted in Baseball, Ugly New Stadiums at 4:34 pm by

 

With a mere 49 home runs at home this season, there’s naturally some talk that Marlins Park aka Citi Field II presents last-place Marlins with a home field disadvantage. Manager Ozzie Guillen, he of the triumphant return to Twitter, isn’t hearing any of it, telling the Palm Beach Post’s Joe Capozzi, “ we are not in last place because the place is too big. Period.”

“We’ve got to deal with the ballpark, and we’re going to be negative coming in here every day, ‘Oh, this ballpark is too big’?’’ Guillen asked incredulously.

“We’ve got to play in this ballpark 81 games and I don’t want to hear any more (from) my players, my hitting coach, nobody with this uniform worry about this place (being) too big. If they think this place is too big, let me know. I’ll put somebody else in who can hit bloopers behind shortstop.’’

Players have grumbled amongst themselves all season. But they became more vocal about the topic after John Buck just missed what would’ve been a game-ending home run by hitting a 418-foot fly out to end Sunday’s game.

Guillen told reporters before Tuesday’s game that he heard some of his players grumbling about the generous dimensions during batting practice.

“‘I can’t hit home runs here.’ Ha, ha,’’ Guillen said, repeating what his players have said. “We are not going to move the fence. That’s it.’’

Guillen dismissed the suggestion that the dimensions will make it hard for the Marlins to sign free-agent power hitters.

“That’s a bunch of crap,’’ he said. “I guarantee you, you give them $100 million, they will play here.’’

Some Of Yunel Escobar’s Best Friends….Aren’t Offended

Posted in Baseball at 3:15 pm by

Jays SS Yunel Escobar was suspended for 3 games yesterday after photographs taken during Saturday’s Rogers Centre contest versus Boston revealed the words, “ ’Tu Ere Maricon’ written across his eyeblack, commonly translated as “you’re a faggot.”  After attending a press conference yesterday to announce Escobar’s punishment and a subsequent, somewhat confusing apology, The Star’s Cathal Kelly calls the Jays handling of the situation, “shameful, dissembling” adding, “we have moved far enough in this debate that it can’t just be brushed aside…it must be brushed aside with a press conference.”

If Escobar would have us believe that he wasn’t thinking “queers” when he wrote this, it would have gone better if he hadn’t pretended he’d only just been handed a Spanish dictionary. It got worse when he began ticking off his bonafides.

“I have friends who are gay. The person who decorates my house is gay. The person who cuts my hair is gay,” said Escobar. “Honestly, they haven’t felt as offended about this.”

That’s possible. How much are you paying them to decorate your house?

This was credulous stuff from someone who is either bright as a box of hammers or a liar. Likely somewhere in between. The ugly truth would have done him far more credit.

On either side of Escobar, literally and figuratively, sat his bosses — the ones who’d cooked up the pre-emptive and flimsy little suspension to get this whole issue in the rearview.

The salary for those three days will be donated to (gay sports advocates) You Can Play,” Escobar intoned dolefully, as if it were his idea.

09.18.12

America’s Foremost Male Plastic Surgery Enthusiast Demands : Get Off Your Knee(s)

Posted in Gridiron at 8:46 pm by

Reactions to Greg Schiano’s desperate attempt to force a turnover on the final play of Sunday’s Buccaneers/Giants game continue to pollute old and new media, but Dallas owner Jerry Jones has a unique solution to the dispute.  In the future, Jones would like to see taking a knee outlawed, even if it’s clearly the smart move when nursing a narrow lead.  From the Dallas Morning-News’ Joe Machota :

“I don’t like it,” Jones said. “Lamar Hunt tried several times to introduce a rule to have it voted on that you couldn’t kneel down, you had to run a play. Unless you were trying to advance the ball, then you got a penalty and the time didn’t run off the clock. It’s not a good play.”

Jones doesn’t sound like he’s siding with the division rival Giants on this one.

“I’ve always thought that that’s a wasted play for our fans,” he said.

For Cubs Fans, It’s “Wait ‘Til The Next Network TV Drama About An Pseudo-Apocalyptic Event”

Posted in Baseball, The World Of Entertainment at 2:50 pm by

(we all have our own individual notions of what constitutes armageddon)

Persons clobbered over the head all summer with commercials for NBC’s “Revolution” couldn’t help but notice the Wrigley Field marquee declaring the Chicago Cubs, “2012 World Series Champions”.   Keep in mind, the J.J. Abrams series chronicles events 15 years after the entire planet suffers an electrical blackout, so this was a hell-freezing-over joke of sorts, and not even a very good one, at that. Abrahms’ “Lost” already made use of Boston’s drought-ending 2004 World Series victory, and in light of the current Cubs squad playing out the string since, well, May, it seems “Revolution”‘s creators thought better of the sight gag.  From the Chicago Tribune’s Rob Manker :

When the show premiered Monday night, the Wrigley Field scene shown in the trailer was different. Gone was the declaration of the Cubs as champs, replaced by a plain red background beneath the marquee. Everything else about the post-apocalyptic scene remained the same — still Wrigley Field, still abandoned, still no electricity.

Four months after the original clip appeared, the real 2012 Cubs have the second-worst record in baseball and are mathematically eliminated from any chance of making the playoffs.

Apparently even the bounds of science fiction can be stretched only so far.

The Mets Front Office Has Developed A Dislike For Ike

Posted in Baseball at 2:07 pm by

In claiming Mets 1B Ike Davis  (above, left, the club’s only power source of note during a humiliating 2nd half) is on the trading block, ESPN’s Adam Rubin adds the following, somewhat disturbing aside :

The Mets are disappointed with Davis’ unwillingness to make changes based on coaching advice. Although he is personable and by no means a troublemaker, they also worry — fairly or unfairly — he is out too late after games, and that could influence other young players.

Reached for his side of the story by the New York Daily News’ Andy Martino, Davis didn’t appreciate the anonymous burial.

“I have never missed games or not been ready to work because of anything to do with staying up too late,” Davis told the Daily News Tuesday morning. “I show up every day. I play hard. It is unfair to me, and it doesn’t make sense.”

While the 25-year-old said that, since he does not often leave the ballpark until midnight, he is sometimes out a few hours after that — the norm among many in baseball — he does not do so in excess.

“I just don’t understand it, because I have always been able to play, except for one freak ankle injury,” Davis said, referring to the 2011 on-field collision that ended his season.”

Who’d have thought the current administration in Flushing would be taking personnel tips from Bobby Valentine?

09.17.12

For The First Time In History, A Sideline Reporter Is Genuinely Missed

Posted in Gridiron, Sports TV at 9:55 pm by

While Ravens QB Joe Flacco seethed over the work of replacement referees in yesterday’s loss to the turnover-prone Eagles, the Baltimore Sun’s David Zurawik declares, “I had to watch a telecast of it that was almost as incompetent as the officiating.” There’s no shortage of gaffes by Greg Gumbel, Dan Dierdorf and the CBS production team that raised Zurawik’s ire, but chief amongst their offenses was a failure to explain or detail the injury to Baltimore safety Bernard Pollard. “When you get this CBS team, ” rages Zurawik, “you don’t get a sideline reporter, who in a first-rate broadcast should have been all over Pollard’s injury and status.”

Hey, here’s an idea for Sean McManus, the president of CBS Sports: Have one of your aides call up a first-rate campus newspaper like the one at Penn State or Towson University, ask for the sports editor and offer her or him $50 and all the pizza they can eat to sit in the production truck and monitor The Sun’s website and social media for some real information on injuries and unexpected developments in the game.

And then, let the student reporter share that information with an associate producer, who can feed it to Dierdorf and Gumbel. It couldn’t be worse than what you have now with this backup crew and no one providing that crucial service.

Yes, I’m being a wise guy, but do you really think CBS Sports can’t afford a sideline reporter — or some systematic way of tracking injuries and informing viewers of the severity and possible impact on the game?

Eyeblack Stickers – The Final Frontier For Hate Speech

Posted in Baseball at 4:33 pm by

Flicker user James G snapped the above pic of Blue Jays SS Yunel Esobar over the weekend, and while he’s open to the possibility Escobar is the victim of some sort of clubhouse gag, the photographer’s not impressed either way. (link courtesy The Tao Of Stieb)

I have been conflicted about posting this picture since last night. I have a privileged seat near the Blue Jays dugout and allows me a close up of some pretty awesome moments. This one, however, is really disappointing. For those whose Spanish isn’t fluent, have never seen Scarface or fail at google, Yunel’s eyeblack “TU ERE MARICON” translates to “You’re a faggot”. There are some small Spanish locales where it translates to “pussy” not “faggot” but that’s a very small possibility.

I started asking myself why I wouldn’t just post this image right away. It needs to be seen and it needs to be known that this is not okay. I was concerned that the players may be able to recognize that this was me who took this picture and would therefore rebuff the whistleblower but this is something Escobar wore on the field.

Happy 50th Birthday, Rico Petroleum

Posted in Rock Und Roll at 2:53 pm by

In iieu of our Postal Service issuing a commemorative stamp, posting the above video is the very least we can do.

GUEST EDITORIAL : When Romance Blooms At The Nu Stadium

Posted in Baseball, History's Great Hook-Ups at 1:20 pm by

(EDITOR’S NOTE:  it was reported this weekend that a man and woman were filmed fucking in a Yankee Stadium bathroom stall during Saturday’s Rays/Yankees tilt.  “The woman sat on the toilet as her enthusiastic male partner — who wore a CC Sabathia t-shirt and no pants — climbed on top of her amid a crowd of onlookers,” wrote the New York Post’s breathless Josh Saul, and rather than concentrate on the sensational aspects of this story, we instead reached out to a close friend of the CSTB family,  Bronx executive Randy L., for his unique perspective on this quintessentially New York moment. – GC)

Greetings, losers, shut-ins, finger-sniffers and Mets fans — or am I being redundant?  Though I’m loathe to drop any wisdom via a blog that can’t sell one single advertisement, I’m told the publisher is a big fan of my unexpurgated Yelp reviews.  Since I’m as magnanimous as I am well-endowed, here’s a freebie for the sports blog crowd.  Even if this is barely one step above Live Journal.

Deadspin’s Issac Rauch — hopefully no relation to the pituitary freak stealing money from the Mets  — did an adequate Mike Taibbi impersonation yesterday with “A Couple Humped In A Yankee Stadium Bathroom Stall For About Three Innings On Saturday”.    Three innings!  That’s supposed to be impressive? A little advice for the male heterosexual readers  — it’s really not necessary to go on that long. Maybe you think you’re doing her a favor, but chances are awfully high she’s pretty eager to get it over with and get back to pretending you have any redeeming qualities.

I am certain this story is going to get a lot of play in today’s tawdry media sphere, and despite the absence of photos clearly depicting penetration, I can understand this.  Publishers and editors are businessmen, not Zucotti Park-dwelling fantasists who have to smoke copious amounts of weed just to tolerate fuckin’ Tom Morello.  They’re in the business of MAKING MONEY, just like me and the two genetic lottery winners I do all the heavy lifting for.  I know, you’re already shaking your head, “sex sells, Randy, we know.”  To which I’d reply, you’re the cynic, not me.

Unless each of this blog’s 12 readers have somehow morphed into Andrea Dworkin (and in some cases, that would be an improvement), I can’t believe I even have to spell out the distinction, but there’s a world of difference between random sexual encounters in a public place and true romance.   The former are generally desperate acts committed by sad, lonely, friendless individuals.  The latter?  Well, it’s the sort of thing that renders almost everything else (save for 27 World Championships, a chauffeured town car and enough cash to fill the Grand Canyon) meaningless.

I know this might be the minority opinion, but the young couple filmed In flagrante delicto (that’s FRENCH, you ignorant little shits) were true romantics after my own heart. Note the guy’s refusal to dispense of his CC Sabathia tee — I like it.  He’s paying homage to a lynchpin in our attempts to win World Championship #28.  And if the shirt was seriously stained before returning to his seat in the Audi Club, he can purchase a replacement at the Yankee Clubhouse Store, a 5000 square foot facility conveniently located in the Great Hall right behind home plate.

How many times have you heard of a similar incident taking place at that aesthetic/commercial disaster known as Citi Field? Not once,  and I reckon that speaks volumes about the building’s stench and the host team serving as the greatest anti-aphrodisiac this side of a Hammel On Trial CD.  Some of you self-styled comedians have suggested we hand out condoms at the gate, and it’s an interesting idea (especially if we can get Verizon or Turkey Hill to pay for it).  And we’ll look into it just as soon as our crosstown “rivals” take steps to confiscate razor blades.

That’s right.  I WENT THERE. While Flushing’s embarrassment does more to keep The Samaritans switchboard busy than say, a Hammel On Trial CD,  the 27-time World Champion New York Yankees are all about romance and repopulating the Yankee Universe with more exceptional young people, conceived in the most sophisticated of environments.  Who amongst us can say that Saturday’s consensual encounter might not result in that most precious miracle of all, Nick Swisher saying something interesting the gift of human life?  Maybe the Baby Bomber in question will someday grow up to be another Derek Jeter, another Don Mattingly, perhaps the next Joe Pepitone?

And perhaps — if he or she works very hard, uses his or her imagination and never, ever allows the intellectual shortcomings of 2 overprivileged siblings to undermine self-belief — becoming the President of the world’s most successful and universally recognized sports franchise, is within reach.

Not fucking likely, but parents can dream, right?  A toast from me and everyone in the Yankee organization to Saturday afternoon’s young lovers.

PEACE,
Randy L.

09.16.12

Schiano To Coughlin : What, You Didn’t Review Old Rutgers Tapes?

Posted in Gridiron at 11:39 pm by

After serving up 3 early interceptions, Eli Manning led the Giants to a 25 point fourth quarter and a 41-34 comeback victory over Tampa Bay earlier today at MetLife Stadium, but it’s the game’s final play that’s receiving a ton of attention.  With Manning taking a knee with one second remaining, the Giants were surprised by the ferocity of the Buccaneers’ pass rush, something their first year coach, Greg Schiano, insisted afterwards was a legit attempt to force a turnover. With the Giants enraged and few Tampa Bay players compelled to defend Schiano’s directive, the former Rutgers head coach suggested that the deeply offended Tom Coughlin should’ve known this was coming.  What NFL head coach hasn’t spent hours researching Schiano’s ball-stripping strategies while leading one of the Northeast’s most overrated feared collegiate programs? From the Tampa Bay Times’ Greg Stroud :

“I don’t know if that’s not something that’s done in the National Football League,” Schiano said. “What I do with our football team is that we fight until they tell us game over. And there’s nothing dirty about it, there’s nothing illegal about it. We crowd the ball like a sneak defense and try to knock it loose. There’s nothing…if people watched Rutgers, they would know that’s what we do at the end of a game. We’re not going to quit, that’s just the way I coach and teach our players. If some people are upset about it, that’s just the way it goes. I don’t have any hesitation. That’s the way we play. We play clean, hard football until they tell us the game is over.”

As it turns out, Coughlin and his staff did review old Rutgers game film, and if they missed the footage that shows the Scarlet Knights trying to maim the QB of a team that’s beaten them, well, that’s neither here nor there. As ESPN.com’s Dan Graziano points out, “you don’t see it at the NFL level  because it’s a real good way to get people hurt for no good reason.”

If you’re losing and out of timeouts and the other team has the ball with so little time left that they can kneel down and run out the clock, you’ve lost. It doesn’t prove anything to your players or anyone else if you’re the fake tough guy who refuses to accept that. All it does is put people at silly risk of injury at the end of 60 minutes’ worth of brutal, health-threatening collisions. You owe it to your own players to know when you’re beaten and back off. Asking them to make a useless leaping hit in that situation is putting them at risk the same way it’s putting the other team at risk. It’s irresponsible.

It also shows a lack of respect. It’s sore-losership. You’ve been beaten, fair and square, in the part of the game in which both teams were competing honestly. To try and win it cheaply with a sneaky play after the opposing team (and any other opposing team you’ve ever faced or ever will face) justifiably believes it to have been decided is dishonest and dishonorable. Schiano’s team played extremely hard on the road against the Super Bowl champs, but by the time Manning was taking a knee, they’d lost. The game was over. Schiano’s postgame assertion that he didn’t know that was naive and bush-league.

Rosenthal : Hockey Junkies Are Gluttons For Punishment

Posted in Hockey, The Marketplace at 5:18 pm by

With the NHL headed for its second work stoppage in 8 years, The Hockey Writers’ admittedly resigned Geoff Rosenthal suggests fans’ lack of will power renders them suckers. “As soon as the NHL and the NHLPA agree to a new CBA,” Rosenthal warns (echoing sentiments expressed by commissioner Gary Bettman), “you’ll be pumped and ready to watch hockey again. Thus, there’s pretty much an inelastic demand when it comes to hockey and hardcore fans.”

I don’t blame Bettman and I don’t blame Donald Fehr or Allan Walsh or ESPN or anyone. There’s no doubt that hockey is a business. I get that. But it doesn’t mean we need to be reminded of it with a lockout every few years. We’re already reminded of it when a jersey costs $300 or when ticket prices are raised even higher or when our favorite player isn’t resigned because the team can’t give him an additional $500,000. And we’re definitely reminded of it when the league brags about record revenues year after yeah. If the fans are the most important part of the sport (and I think in hockey, more so than any other sport, this argument can be made), then lockouts rooted in economics should be avoided.

That last statement is a special kind of BS, actually. Because even if I can make a pretty fair argument that hockey fans make the sport, the millionaires and billionaires who actually make the sport happen don’t care. I don’t even think they care about the business – not when they’re paying millions upon millions to sign the players they claim make too much. But when people get riled up because Bettman implies that he’s not worried about a lockout because he knows we will be back, they’re getting riled up over a true statement. Of course we’ll be back.

Coming To Your Small Screen : The Kruky Monster’s Pop-Country Debut

Posted in Baseball, The World Of Entertainment at 3:10 pm by

And no, his collaboration with Neko Case and Kelly Hogan (above) most certainly didn’t count.  The State Journal reports that starting tonight, ESPN’s “Baseball Tonight” will feature new theme music, as performed by The Davisson Brothers Band and network analyst Sir John Kruk (link swiped from Baseball Think Factory)

Kruk approached Chris Davisson and Donnie Davisson about writing a new song for the show he had been on for eight years. The Davissons brought in the help of Phil O’Donnell, a Nashville songwriter who has No. 1 hits like Montgomery Gentry’s single “Back When I Knew It All” under his belt.

According to a news release from the band, when Kruk arrived in the studio, he stunned everyone with his vocal ability, which caused the final version of the new theme song to be a duet.

09.15.12

The Indie’s Calvin On The Handshake That Wasn’t

Posted in Football, Racism Corner at 8:25 pm by

QPR gaining a point in a home draw with the defending Champion’s League title-holders was mostly overshadowed today by Rangers’ Anton Ferdinand refusing the pre-match handshake of Chelsea’s John Terry. As you might recall, Terry stands accused of racially abusing Ferdinand during Chelsea’s prior EPL visit to Loftus Road last season. It would be the height of understatement to say The Independent’s Michael Calvin isn’t very impressed with either player or those in attendance, writing that Saturday’s events in W12 were, “a charade which exposed the shallowness of the Respect campaign.”

The level of debate during a goalless West London derby was summarised by a banner, brandished by a young girl, which looked as if it had been knocked up during a Friday afternoon art class. It read: “John Terry. We Know What You Said.” It got her 15 seconds of fame on TV, I suppose.

Given the hype, referee Andre Marriner did well to control a game which, the pre-publicity suggested, should have been staged under the auspices of the United Nations. All we needed to complete the charade of political correctness was an anguished anthem by Bono.

The abuse was puerile, relentless. When the home crowd chanted “Ashley Cole, you’re John Terry’s bitch”, the travelling supporters sang their names rhythmically. They launched into a chorus of “Only one lying bastard”, only to be answered by a taunt of “John Terry, your family are scum”.

Men’s Journal’s Investigative Breakthru – They’ve Found An Angry White Man On Sports Talk Radio

Posted in Dino Costa, Sports Radio at 5:32 pm by

(though Costa, right, has no tolerance for lady persons in the locker room or officiating games between M-E-N, he’s quick to cite biblical passages extolling their skills in serving beer, wings, etc.)

In May of this year, I suggested Dino Costa’s unique brand of sports radio hate fuckery hadn’t received nearly enough attention.  Dino was quick to correct me — it seems he’s made nearly a dozen appearances in Bob Raissman’s NY Daily News sports media column, and if that weren’t enough, Costa recently received some favorable attention from the Wyoming Tribune-Eagle (commonly referred to as, “The Paper Of Record”, I believe). Not only did the latter feature a hot picture of Dino in what appeared to be a 10 year old’s bedroom, but also included the fascinating tidbit that, “the father of two talks of running for mayor of Cheyenne someday, saying current Mayor Rick Kaysen is ‘on notice’ at the next election.” Though a Costa campaign would undoubtedly provide consistent blog fodder  the likes not seen since Rick Santorum’s run for the Oval Office, I have a sneaking suspicion that given Dino’s early efforts to curry favor with the locals, this mayoral run will remain — like so many other things in Dinoland — a pipe dream.

That said, it’s not all delusions of grandeur for Mad Dog Radio’s weeknight host.  Men’s Journal has declared Costa, “the poster boy and rising new standard bearer of our nation’s sizable Angry White Man contingent,”, suggesting that Dino, “could become the next Jim Rome or Rush Limbaugh – if he doesn’t get fired first.”  Though I’m certain Costa would bristle at the comparison to Rome, it’s not entirely clear why any thoughtful publisher (or in this case, Men’s Journal) would think there’s a shortage of would-be Romes and Limabughs.  There’s a lot of Angry White Men yelling on the radio, several of them on Costa’s own channel.  Of course, none except the article’s subject can be credited with what’s described as “a controversial but nonetheless winning formula”.  To wit, “he takes overheated sports-talk-radio argumentativeness, infuses it with Tea Party-inspired politics (Obama is ‘the worst president in the history of the country’) and evangelical sermonizing (diatribes against the ‘gay and lesbian lifestyle’) and then adds a healthy dose of politically incorrect boundary-pushing (i.e., the NBA All-Star Game should pit white players against black)”.

I’m not sure on what planet that would be considered, “a winning formula”, commercially or otherwise. The excerpts on the Men’s Journal site fail to detail Costa’s ratings, nor is there any mention of the oft-noted drive for Twitter followers that even his own Sirius/XM colleagues considered blatantly fraudulent.  Perhaps a trip to one of the nation’s few remaining newsstands is required to find out whether or not Men’s Journal quizzed Costa about the irony of a self-styled renegade who routinely blocks critics (and the general public) from a twitter feed he’s begged them to follow.  Or whether or not “a winning formula” consists of endless self-aggrandizing clips at the top of every hour, ostensibly intended to promote a program his audience has already tuned in to.

Anyhow, I’m unlikely to find out for sure unless I find myself hanging around Supercuts. My doctor’s office opts for The Austin American-Statesman, and if they chose to put another megalomaniac in the paper, Art Acevedo might get jealous.

North America’s #1 Conspiracy-Themed Football Panel Program Previews Week 2

Posted in Free Expression, Gridiron, Sports TV at 4:41 pm by

I’ll be honest — I don’t think this is Paul Doucette and Hugh Stewart’s finest work, but I’d still rank their weakest episode as funnier than anything Rob Riggle is likely to try tomorrow on CBS.  And with that, I have officially never damned anyone with fainter praise than just this moment (which is really saying something, if you knew how many years I reviewed records).

Decision Khimki 2012 : Finally, A Mayoral Candidate Eddie Trunk Can Get Behind

Posted in politics, Rock Und Roll, We Aren't The World at 3:53 pm by

The Russia Times reports Sergey Troitskiy (above), vocalist for Korroziya Metalla, is running for Mayor of Moscow suburb Khimki. With any luck, he’ll earn the coveted endorsement of Nikita Koloff.

Troitskiy announced his decison in a series of videos posted on YouTube. His monologues were completely absurd, and included proposals to only recruit Germans as civil servants, to turn the entire town into one big casino and to set up “gigantic oxygen-generating machines” to help Moscow cope with the summer heat.

Russian bloggers and the viewing public took Spider’s long and rambling speeches as yet another Internet joke, but the man then unexpectedly announced that he had collected the necessary number of signatures for a slot of the Khimki mayoral elections, and had submitted them to town’s elections commission for review.


The rocker said that he planned to transform his informal ‘Heavy Metal Rock Corporation,’ or KTR, into a political party that would use the KTR acronym but be named ‘The Corporation of Working People of Russia.’ Spider claimed that if he won the mayoral elections, he would hold the KTR’s founding convention in Khimki.


The fight for the Khimki mayoral post promises to be a tough one. The race already features some 20 registered candidates, including heavyweights like Oleg Mitvol, the former deputy head of the state environmental agency, and Yevgeniya Chirikova, an environmental activist and figurehead in recent street protests.