Category Archives: A4 Uncategorized

“Those Classy Cardinals” Not the fans ……Not this year…..

Ishikawa Game Ending HR

Ishikawa Game Ending HR

Wow!  After reveling in happiness of the Giants really, really long-shot of making it,once again to the World Series, I was very quickly yanked back to reality this morning when a respected website brought my attention to “way too many” tweets posted by some very misguided Cardinal fans last night.   Maybe it’s the sign of the times, the state of our country, the desperate need to find something good in our lives.  Whatever the reason, it doesn’t reflect well on the St Louis Cardinal fans.

Those Classy Cards

Those Classy Cards

Back in 2011 I posted a blog about “Those Classy Cardinals” and I meant it.  It was one of my favorite postings.  They’d been voted the best fans in Major League Baseball and there was a reason for it.  They were knowledgeable and they were polite and they were one of my favorite teams. Busch Stadium has been on my bucket list of places to visit ever since.   My least favorite team was the Phillies and it was also because of the fans.  They were nasty and hateful not only in their tweets and blogs but also when you visited their stadium as evidenced by the Giants entry into the playoffs and their treatment of Tim Lincecum and others.

This is worse.  I’ve always tried to make this a kid-friendly blog because, after all, isn’t that what baseball’s all about?  But I’m sure not above linking to it and here it is in case you want a dose of early morning reality, Baseball’s Best Fans.  Yeah, right.

This World Series is historic in that it’s the first World Series that will be played by two Wild Card teams each with under 90 wins in the regular season.  I’m a baseball fan first, and a SF Giants fan second.  And,to tell you the truth, I know squat about the Kansas City Royals.  But no matter how the series goes, the best team, for this year, in this series, is going to win.  And not because the umpires made a bad call or the pitcher(s) weren’t spot on, or someone’s out on the DL.  It’s because the best team always wins.  And if you’re such a sorry individual you can’t take it and it’s too much for you because it wasn’t your team who prevailed, well suck it up.  This is baseball and it’s not for the faint of heart.  It’s for the love of the game ……whether you like it or not.

GO GIANTS AND GO ROYALS!  May the best team win ….. and they will.

Note:  To clarify that last paragraph.  The tweets that were posted on that site, and there were hundreds of them, were so vile, so full of hatred and bigotry, and spewed such filth it made them almost unintelligible.  You would almost have to have read it to understand my response.  However, the powers-that-be took the blog down within minutes of my posting so that it’s no longer available, and that’s a good thing.   I’m even a little embarrassed that I tried to share it with you in the first place, it was that bad.

Bruce Bochy: one of the best managers in baseball history?

garlicfriesandbaseball:

Bruce Bochy, Manager 2010 World Series Champions

Bruce Bochy, Manager 2010 World Series Champions

Something that’s stuck in my craw these past few years is not the fact that Bruce Bochy didn’t win Manager of the Year in 2010 and again in 2012, but that he wasn’t even runner-up. In 2010 he received ONE 1st place vote. And this was after putting together and working with the band of misfits later to be known as the 2010 World Series Champions.

It’s one of the reasons I don’t give much credibility to the members of the Baseball Writers Association who vote on the annual award. West Coast teams are rarely seriously considered by the BBWA for such awards since, the reasoning goes, their games are played after those who vote have gone nighty-night, the games being played late on the East Coast and all. And this isn’t just for the Manager’s award but for the others as well. The 2010 award did go to the San Diego Manager though, and that’s about as West Coast as you can go. But generally it hasn’t been so.

This article just might make a difference, at least it’s a start.

Originally posted on HardballTalk:

That’s the case for Bochy made by Jonah Keri today over at Grantland. And, thankfully, Jonah doesn’t just play the “count tha rings!” game. Sure, the two World Series rings and a potential for a third matter, but he also looks at what Bochy has done with what he has been given, his flexibility and the extent to which his teams have exceeded expectations and concludes thusly:

That ability to overcome adversity — combined with the data and sheer number of rings he has won — net out something you wouldn’t expect: the conclusion that Bruce Bochy not only has a case as the best manager in the game today, but as one of the greatest of all time. Sounds weird, but it’s true. And that sound you hear is grateful Giants fans hollering in agreement.

A big assist in that assessment comes from Chris Jaffe and his book, which I read and enjoyed…

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Sick of the Giants and the Cardinals in the NLCS? Tough. They deserve to be there and we’d better get used to it.

Originally posted on HardballTalk:

source:

As a supporter of the underdog, I gotta tell ya: it’s really refreshing to see plucky, underexposed upstarts like the St. Louis Cardinals and San Francisco Giants finally catch a break and make it to an National League Championship Series. We’re now guaranteed to see either the Giants or the Cards in the World Series, and that’s just the kind of feel-good story you like to see for once.

OK, enough of that. I’ll try to get over my exhaustion at having these two teams advance, once again. I mean, sure, a fifth straight year of one of these two in the World Series is less than novel, but it’s not like they cheated, lied or stole to get there. Baseball is a meritocracy most of the time and they earned it. Yes, it’s outrageously fun to wind-up overly-defensive and self-serious Cardinals fans and to watch Giants fans pretend…

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Giants broadcaster Mike Krukow has a degenerative muscle disease

garlicfriesandbaseball:

Mike Krukow, on the left, and Duane Kuiper

Mike Krukow, on the left, and Duane Kuiper

This is sad news. I’ve been following baseball forever but I’ve learned more about the game from listening to Mike Krukow, the Giants color analyst, than from any other source. Mike has such a quick wit about him with his nightly “grab some pine meat!” and pitch-by-pitch comments. So much so it’s necessitated an actual “Kructionary” website. See Baseball Almanac‘s take on Kruk and his illuminary sayings.

Originally posted on HardballTalk:

The diagnosis is not new — he was first diagnosed eight years ago — but Giants broadcaster and former big league pitcher Mike Krukow has publicly revealed that he has a non-fatal degenerative muscle disease. From the Chronicle:

Krukow, 62, has kept his condition a secret, but now he’s ready to reveal that he’s suffering from a degenerative muscle disease called inclusion-body myosotis. IBM causes progressive weakness in the muscles of the wrist and fingers, the front of the thigh, and the muscles that lift the front of the foot. There’s no cure and no solid theory for what causes it.

It has caused him to fall down and he now wears braces on his legs for support. He may need a walker or a scooter eventually.

The key takeaway here, and maybe a big part of why Krukow is now going public, is that he was in denial about…

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Clown shoes in Chicago: the Cubs grounds crew couldn’t get the tarp on the field

garlicfriesandbaseball:

Ronni’s Comment: Yesterday during the Cubs -Giants game there was a torrential downpour. I mean the kind that monsoons are made of. It lasted probably 15-20 minutes. But when the grounds crew tried to put the tarp on the field it turned into a nightmare for the guys pulling the tarp for sure, but also for the Giants fans and, in particular, for Mike Krukow, commentator for the Giants

I’m not sure I agree with the official ruling, but Mike Krukow commented several times during the rain delay stating in his words to the effect that the field crew “intentionally” screwed up the laying of the tarp. That it was totally intentional. That it wouldn’t have happened if the Cubs had been behind.

And I say shame on you Mike Krukow. You know better. Just because the Giants have won a few championships doesn’t give us the right to belittle others. We (the Giants) have been playing pretty lousy lately but that’s not a reason to take it out on the grounds crews or the umpires.

I’ve heard other commentators say similar things when I’ve had to listen to them from the opponent’s perspective and I’ve always been glad we were blessed with our own special Kruk & Kuip. They are a class act, top of the game, and they know everything! So I’m hoping this was just a bad day for Mike and I’m hoping he’s hoping it doesn’t happen again. But that’s just me hoping.

I can’t wait to hear what they have to say tonight, about last night, and praying it doesn’t rain again!

Originally posted on HardballTalk:

[nbcsports_video src=http://vplayer.nbcsports.com/p/BxmELC/nbcsportsembed/select/qchJ9Dm6PtkJ?autoPlay=false width=620 height=381]

The rains came. The rains lasted only fifteen minutes. The Chicago Cubs grounds crew, however, failed to do the one job it had in that situation:

The tarp was all crooked and so much of the field was left uncovered by it turing the downpour, that the infield was basically soaked. They took over four hours after the rain stopped to try to fix things, but it couldn’t be fixed. The field was too wet to play and the game — already official under the rules — was called. The Cubs win 2-0.

Not that this will end things. As Andrew Baggarly of CSNBayArea.com reports, the Giants are mulling a protest. For their part, the Cubs were willing to simply agree to call it a suspended, rather than an official game, but they can’t just do that because the rules don’t allow for it. Rule 4.12…

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Must-click link: Australian writer’s first MLB encounter

garlicfriesandbaseball:

GFBB’s Note: This Aussie writer compares baseball to cricket and, of course, to rounders. But his take on it, complete with photo’s, is wonderful if you’re a true baseball fan. Well, even if you aren’t! “Tis lovely, eh?

Originally posted on HardballTalk:

Simon Crerar, an Australian-born staff writer at BuzzFeed, put together this comical rundown of his first experience with Major League Baseball, which just officially opened its 2014 season with a two-game series between the Diamondbacks and Dodgers at the Sydney Cricket Ground. Crerar mostly points out oddities that we’ve come to accept as very normal, very necessary parts of the game.

Some highlights from Crerar’s writeup …

  • “Instead of a big oval with all the action taking place in the centre, baseball is played on a weird diamond, with all the action taking place in one corner.”
  • “Everyone wears pyjamas. Fancy pyjamas, but still PJs.”
  • “Half the time the players don’t seem to know what’s happening and the coach has to explain the rules.”
  • “Incidentally, these guys wear GREAT leather belts.”
  • “The balls are either super cheap or the MLB is super rich. Balls go into the crowd non-stop and…

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Seduced by that Pesky Cell Phone

I’m remembering a game I went to this past season.  During the entire game a  fan  sitting in front of me had his cell phone in hand, either  as an extension of his ear or taking pictures with it.  When it was attached to his ear he was talking, loudly at times, and listening the rest of the time.   It seemed odd since the game was at AT&T Park and it can get really loud and I kept wondering how he was able to hear anything on the little contraption.

I’m not a huge cell phone fan.  I don’t even know my number.  My husband bought me one as a nice gesture, but against my objections, and I think I’ve used it maybe five or six times in the past seven years.  His idea was I could use it for roadside emergencies or keeping in touch, just in case.  You know, the usual stuff.

AT&T Park.  Cameraman and his Cell Phone.

AT&T Park. Cameraman and his Cell Phone.

But I’m looking around the ballpark and cell phones were everywhere.  Lots of picture-taking and flashes going off,  mostly just fans walking around, or in their seats, didn’t matter, attached to their trusty cell phones.   You see the same scenario everywhere, it’s epidemic.  The phone companies must be making millions.  You see them at the grocery stores, hospitals, theaters, schools, churches, airports, on the bus, at the restaurants.  And they’re at my office.

This used to irritate the heck out of me.  But this year has been an eye-opening experience and I’ll never look at cell phones the same way again.  You see, I’m a tax preparer and I have 100 days to get those pesky taxes worked up, prepared, completed and out the door until next year when it starts all over again.   In the past, the number one thing clients would forget when they showed up for their appointment was their W2.  It’s the truth.   But not anymore.  Just last week a client took out his cell phone, called his employer, and the W2 almost instantly appeared via fax.

And it’s been happening a lot lately.  Need  Grandma’s social security number?  No problem.  Forgot the  interest from the bank, car tags, tuition and/or scholarships received?  No problem.  Just dial it up on the handy-dandy little thing.

But here’s the really great part.  Last week a woman came in with her little two-year old who was acting like two-year old’s are supposed to act; I mean all over the place, up and down like a yo-yo, until…….until mom put her cell phone in the little boys hand.  It was like magic!   It worked better than Prozac or a tranquilizer or binky or something. The little fellow poked his app (I think that’s what they’re called) and was tuned in for the rest of the interview.

I’m not saying that sedating a kid with a cell phone is necessarily a good thing, but if you’re a tax preparer in the middle of tax season and you’re trying like the devil to get through an interview, it is truly a miraculous thing.