Monthly Archives: September 2013

Woo Hoo! Hunter Pence Gets his Multi-Year Contract!

This is huge!   Breaking news for sure, and it follows the day his teammates voted him winner of this year’s Willie Mac Award.

Hunter Pence and the San Francisco Giants: Five Year, $90 Million Extension on his Contract, that’s what they’re saying.

Oops!  He's all ours now!

Oops! He’s all ours now!

I remember vividly last year when Hunter Pence signed with the Giants and flew into SFO to play in that night’s game.  However, the flight was delayed and Pence arrived about 30 minutes after the game ended.  But thanks to our loyal Comcast the cameras were on him as he arrived through the gate enroute to the clubhouse, duffel bag thrown over his shoulders, with our loyal “gonna be” fans waving and asking for autographs.

They obviously knew more about Hunter  than I did.  I mean, who was this guy?  I liked his persona  immediately as he dropped everything to sign autographs, shake hands, and basically just endear himself to the fans.   And this was late, like 11:30 PM, most of the park lights had been shut down, and you know he must have been tired.  I mean it was 2:30 AM Philly time.

Huggable, lovable Hunter with Xavier Lopez

Huggable, lovable Hunter with Xavier Lopez

So that’s my first exposure to Hunter Pence and it’s been all uphill since as we remember  his rousing speech to the troops to keep going last year.  This was the speech that got them to and through the playoffs for a chance to win the World Series, and win the World Series they did.

And 2013 has been another great year.  Well, not such a great year according to the standings, but who cares about that?   Our team has character, charisma, compatability, and the loyalty of 41,000 fans on any given day.

baseball heart imageSo welcome to five more years in San Francisco Hunter Pence!  We, the best fans in Major League Baseball “softly” love you (sorry Buster)  and open our hearts to you as you’ve opened yours to us.

So Who’s Your Favorite Team Now?

Okay, so Division play is winding down and most of the Playoff teams have been decided . If your team isn’t one of them who you gonna cheer for?  I mean, what’s a girl to do? Personally,  I’m going to be hollering for the Los Angeles Dodgers.  I know, I know, I’m a Giants fan and I said I wouldn’t.  Go figure.  But hear me out because there’s some logic to it.

If your team is beaten by another team and that team makes the Playoff’s, what happens if they’re knocked out early?  It probably means that your team “really” sucked.   If, what if, on the other hand, the team that beat the socks out of you for the Division, goes on to win the Pennant?  It means that you were probably beaten by a really good team, a team that’s better than 14 other teams.  So now your team isn’t looking so bad.

And what if, by some miracle of a chance, that team goes on to win the World Series.  Then you can stand up really proud and say you were beaten by the best team in baseball this year.  And really, there’s some honor in that don’t you think?

Yasiel Puig

Yasiel Puig

But, if the Dodgers get whacked out of post season early  we can always blame it on that little pipsqueak, Yasiel Puig, and not on the fact they’re a better team than we are.  I know Puig’s good, well, really good,  but he IS just a rookie and a bit of a smart aleck at that.  And if they don’t do well, maybe we could also attribute it to Brian Wilson’s whining (think Larry Baer). Or to another 19-3 thrashing. I mean think of the options available if the Dodgers don’t produce in post-season.  Just saying …..any way you look at it the Giants still come out smelling like a rose!

And you’ve got to hand it to the kids.  They managed to stay out of the cellar (depending on the final three games to be determined) and at the end of a grueling, injury-filled season they’re wearing their last year’s World Series rings with smiles on their faces realizing the irony of it all.  Baseball.  You gotta love it.

The absurdity that is MLB’s tiebreaker system

GFBB Note: This is a rule that hardly anyone knows about, unannounced officially by MLB. It gives added strength to a team’s Intraleague record. So it stands to reason we’ll be seeing a lot more of intraleague play in the coming years. Not that that’s a bad thing, but in my opinion it takes away from the importance of Division play, i.e. why even have it? Division play I mean.

HardballTalk

The San Francisco Chronicle’s Susan Slusser runs down the mess that is MLB tiebreaker system as it relates to the A’s and Red Sox possibly tying for the AL’s best record. It includes a change that was never announced by the league because, well, MLB has never wanted to bore us with the details.

So, in short, the tiebreaker goes like this:

1. Head-to-head record
2. Intradivisional record
3. Intraleague record (the new, previously unannounced one)
4. Second-half intradivisional record

I guess the addition of No. 3 is an improvement on falling back to what was the old No. 3. It’s No. 2 that’s stupid, though. Basically, it gives the team in the easier division an extra advantage after it already had the huge advantage of playing in the easier division.

In fact, the No. 2 tiebreaker should be the exact opposite: extradivisional record. The team that played in the…

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Shortstop takes a Hit of a Different Kind ……Video

 Video courtesy of YouTube and posted by sbjones20061

Back in July, as part of a pre-game ceremony, Chicago State Shortstop, Mattingly Romanin, became an unintended consequence of a mishap on the field.   As a skydiver was making an approach to the field he landed squarely on the head/shoulders of Mattingly as he was standing near second base watching the performance.

No one was hurt in the incident, but the following day young Mattingly tweeted “I feel like I got kicked in the face yesterday …..” but I’m sure his actual feelings were more like “He tried to hit me with a forklift” which is totally understandable.  In any event, the video says it all.

Ruben Tejada diagnosed with broken right fibula

GFBB Note: What’s really amazing is that no one paid any attention to him as he laid on the ground, and then wobbled back to the infield. He kept limping back and forth and sideways in obvious pain. Immediately I wondered where the trainers were. Where was the Manager? Where was anybody to even ask the question “was he okay to play”? It was an unusual circumstance since Giants fans, and probably most others, are subjected to time-outs while fingers, bruises and other not-so-traumatic- injuries are checked out. Except for the fact that it was an outstanding catch, this was disturbing to watch. Sorry Ruben ~ we, the fans, feel for you.

HardballTalk

A tough ending to a tough season for the Mets.

As first reported by Marc Carig of Newsday, shortstop Ruben Tejada suffered a broken fibula Wednesday when he got tangled up with teammate Andrew Brown while trying to chase down a fly ball in the outfield. Brown slid in an attempt to avoid a collision but wound up clipping Tejada’s right leg.

Tejada remained in the game for the rest of that inning, which is amazing now that the diagnosis is known. He is obviously done for the rest of the 2013 season and his status for the start of spring training next year will depend on the severity of the fracture.

The glove-first 23-year-old hit .202/.259/.260 in 227 plate appearances this season for New York.

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Baseball Ethics And The Pitcher’s Fake Challenge: It’s All About Yu

Ethics Alarms

Texas Ranger ace Yu Darvish, in addition to being the only Japanese-Iranian major league baseball player and an Abbot and Costello routine come to life (“Who won the game?” “Yu did!” “Who did? “Not Who, Yu!”  “Me?” “Not you…Yu!” ), is apparently something of a trickster. In Saturday’s crucial game between the Rangers and the Oakland A’s, Darvish was facing A’s slugger Josh Donaldson, who had earlier in the season accused Darvish, a true flame-thrower, of being afraid to throw him his fastball. Darvish took up the challenge and as he prepared to throw his pitch to the Oakland thirdbaseman, shouted, “Fastball!” This, in the tine-honored traditions of the game, means that a pitcher is telling a batter that he can’t hit his best pitch, even when he knows what’s coming. It means, literally, “OK, hot shot, see if you can hit this, ’cause I’m…

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Barry Bonds loses his appeal, faces 30 days home confinement

GFBB Note: Craig Calcaterra’s take on the Barry Bonds Appeal is pretty interesting, no matter what side of this fence you’re on. And be sure and read the comments below the article as it gives a 360 Degree perspective, though some of them will give you a mammoth headache …..ugghh!

HardballTalk

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld Barry Bonds’ criminal conviction for obstruction of justice today. While he could potentially appeal again to the Supreme Court such appeals are rarely if ever granted. This is probably it for him, and he’ll likely soon have to serve his 30 day home confinement sentence.

In denying the appeal, the court ruled that the statement Bonds gave to grand jurors in response to a question about whether he was ever given injections of any kind by Greg Anderson “served to divert the grand jury’s attention away from the relevant inquiry of the investigation, which was Anderson and BALCO’s distribution of steroids and PEDs. The statement was therefore evasive.”

As I’ve noted several times, however, the verdict on this question, and now this ruling from the appeals court, is bizarre. Bonds was asked a yes or no question. He went off on a…

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