Monthly Archives: July 2012

There are no Constants in Baseball ~ It’s a Fickle Game

Ichiro’s been on my mind today.  I don’t even have to use his last name.  Everyone knows who he is.   It’s not really a surprise he’s leaving.  He’s been with the Mariners for a long time and we knew he was  destined for other things in the near future.  But I never thought in a million years he’d end up a Yankee.  Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but there’s just something so unsacred about the  idea of it all.

Back in 1962,  I was given an assignment in my business college marketing class to interview someone in business and to make a proposal or suggestion to them on how they could improve their business.   Most of my classmates chose their dad or another family member to interview.  I chose to interview the General Manager of the Portland Beavers, an AAA-Affiliate of the Kansas City Athletics.   I was 18 at the time.

I was obsessed with this project and spent a lot of time on it and the fact that I’d actually gotten the interview was more than my young years could fathom.   I knew before I made the trip to the ballpark what my proposal to the GM was going to be.   Attendance at the ballpark had been very low the past year and I thought it would be a great idea to have the organization offer a “Ladies Night” once a week,  with free admission to all the ladies.  I thought there was a good possibility it might not only get the wives there with their husbands but possibly the entire family, thereby increasing concessions also.

When the day arrived for my meeting with the GM I was really excited, not only about the interview but also of  maneuvering my way through Multnomah Stadium to the Administration Offices by myself,  with my very own written proposal in hand.   The manager was very cordial and listened with intent to my proposal and thanked me for my interest.   When the interview was over, it lasted about an hour, he gave me  complimentary game tickets  and invited me to keep in touch.  It was a wonderful day.  I got an “A” in Marketing that year.

A few weeks later, complimentary tickets in hand,  I invited some friends to attend a game with me and, honestly,  I felt like I owned the place.  I felt like a VIP and the experience is just as vivid today as it was 50 years ago.  The Portland Beavers maintained nearly a 103 year presence in that city but on September 6, 2010, they played their last game at the hometown park.  The city was making room for the Portland Timbers, an MLS  Soccer team.  Portland no longer has a baseball team.  The Beavers continue today in Tucson, Arizona, as a Triple-A affiliate with the San Diego Padres.

The point I’m trying to make is that baseball’s a fickle game.  There’s no constants  in baseball.  The managers change, the players change and sometimes even the hometown locale changes.    Usually we adapt, but  it isn’t easy. To tell you the truth I still miss Cody Ross.  He was with the Giants for such a short time, but while he was here his presence was huge.

Ichiro Suzuki

And for sure the Mariner fans are going to miss Ichiro.  You could sit in the nosebleed section of the bleachers in right field and, without hearing the announcer,  know it was Ichiro at the plate.   He had this way of holding his bat, butt handle  straight up as if he was holding a rifle with a precision periscope on it, sizing up where he was going to slam the ball with the next pitch.

Ichiro’s an artist.  And I’m going to miss him too.  Does this mean I’ll have to start watching the Yankees again?  If last night’s Mariner-Yankee game  is any indication, it could happen.  Baseball’s a fickle game you know.

Worst Ballpark Food? You Decide ~

Last month ESPN held a contest to decide the “Best Ballpark” in the major leagues.  Miller Park in Milwaukee won the contest while AT&T Park in San Francisco came in a distant second.  You can read about it in the “Related Articles” section below.  But when I read this I couldn’t help wonder if the ballpark food entered into this, because everyone knows AT&T Park is hands-down the winner in that category.  Here’s a sampling of the food at Miller Park I found this morning at “My Boyfriend Fatty’s Blog“.    I would categorize these as  “Worst #1 and Worst #2.  See what you think.

Worst Ballpark Food #1.   This is called the “Crazy Meatloaf Sandwich” from the Comet Cafe, near the Milwaukee Brewers Miller Park.  It may not be the worst, but it sure looks like it!

Worst Ballpark Food #2.  This didn’t actually look too bad until I realized what’s in it.  It’s called a “Pulled Pork Parfait” and I can only begin to wonder what the cream-colored filling is made of.   This little gem is available at a concession stand at the Brewers Miller Park.

Peanuts and crackerjacks anyone?

“Is There Something Wrong with This Picture?” Probably Not ~

I found a great post this morning that talks about the who, why and what of the no-hitters and perfect games that seem to be happening with regularity this season, more than in seasons past.

Keith Olbermann

Last month I posted an article from Keith Olbermann wherein his supposed innuendo was that Cain may have taken PED’s  when he threw his perfect game and that his ” there’s something wrong with this picture” theme was just a little offensive to this writer.

So it was very refreshing to read this article from Bay Area Sports Talk on the subject this morning.  It presents an actual analysis and discussion on the subject instead of a knee-jerk reaction to something the Giants have accomplished as a team, again.  Here’s a few excerpts:

  • With the strict punishments looming over PED users, the playing field has been seemingly leveled — and pitchers are reaping the benefits.
  • With pitching evolving to its maximum potential and PED’s seemingly eliminated, Major League pitchers will be the superstars of The Big Show in the future.

Thanks to Brian Evans for the article, With Steroid Use Halted – the MLB is Getting a Little More Perfect.   Good stuff Brian!

Baseball Disney Style ~ For Us Kids Everywhere!

YouTube Short from the Walt Disney 1942 Series, “Goofy, How To Play Baseball”

This is a hilarious movie “short” that’s been around since 1942.    The scenes showing the pitcher throwing the various balls, i.e., spit, slow, curve, etc., are laugh- out- loud funny!  I think it’s probably a good idea to know a little something about baseball before you watch it, or you’re going to be one confused baseball player and/or fan, as the case may be.

“Pitcher Winding Up”

Don’t you kind of miss these old Disney cartoons?  We’ve come a long way with technology, but in some ways we haven’t progressed at all.   It’s rather sad that the young kids today aren’t experiencing this good old-fashioned wholesome entertainment.

Thanks for the good stuff Mr. Disney.  It’s not very sophisticated by today’s standards, but it was sure a lot of fun!

Just killing a little time here before the regular baseball season resumes.  Is it Friday yet?

Giants Steal the Show at All-Star Game!

By Daniel Brown dbrown@mercurynews.com
San Jose Mercury News
Posted:   July 10, 2012   

All Photo’s Courtesy of San Jose Mercury News

“KANSAS CITY, Mo. — To repay the fans who stuffed the ballot box, the Giants stuffed the box score Tuesday night.”

Melky Cabrera, Pablo Sandoval, Buster Posey and Matt Cain propelled the National League to an 8-0 victory in the 83rd All-Star game at Kauffman Stadium, silencing a weeklong uproar from a sour Big Apple.

Sandoval, who surpassed Mets third baseman David Wright in the controversial final balloting, hit a three-run triple to key a five-run first inning.

Cain, who got the starting nod over Mets pitcher R.A. Dickey, pitched two scoreless innings and became the first Giants pitcher to win an All-Star game since Vida Blue in 1981. Continue reading

It’s a Beautiful Day for a Ballgame!

I know, it’s a little corny.  Sort of reminds me of the “I Love Lucy” era, but I hope you’ll indulge me a little this morning.  This is actually a song that was regularly played at the Dodgers games awhile back, but it’s the perfect song for this beautiful Tuesday morning, July 10, 2012, the day of the 2012 MLB All Star Game.

I love the All Star Game.  I think it’s the attitude and camaraderie of the players commingled together having a genuinely good time.

  • Fox Sports Channel
  • Pre-game 4:30PM
  • Game time 5:15PM

Good luck to the American League and National League teams, playing for home field advantage in this year’s World Series!

garlicfriesandbaseball:

GFBB Note: Thoughts about Cuba playing professional baseball in the MLB? I’d be one of the first ones on the plane to Havana if this were to happen!

Originally posted on Marques Says:

(AP Photo/Ramon Espinosa)

A team of collegiate baseball stars are currently representing the United States in a 5-game series in Havana, Cuba after a 16-year hiatus. The match-up between our college hot shots and the veteran Cuban national squad is a revival of a series between two baseball-lovin countries that had been suspended indefinitely.

Players and fans stood together in Cuba’s storied Latin American Stadium on Thursday night as both the Cuban and U.S. national anthems played over loudspeakers — I’m sure the U.S. national anthem is not frequently played in the communist country.

The last time Cuba and the U.S. played a series like this outside of a world tournament was in 1996. Because of the political situation between these two countries, this quick weekend series took years of relationship building to get the ball rolling again.

(AP Photo/Ramon Espinosa)

The U.S. sent 22 players and 5 managers to the Caribbean…

View original 244 more words

ESPN, SportsCenter and Buster Posey

I don’t know about you, but I’ve seen Buster Posey on a lot of interviews and he’s a really nice guy.   The impression one might get from watching this commercial is that Buster’s kind of a self-centered jerk, which he isn’t.  So I’m wondering;

  1. Who writes these commercials?
  2. Who decides which players get to say what?
  3. Are they out to get the guy?
  4. Are they trying to make him look impatient and self-absorbed?

To tell you the truth I’m not a huge ESPN fan (still a little testy over the 2010 World Series treatment they gave us Giants fans) and this little spot doesn’t help much.  I’d like to see something that represents the true Buster Posey;  something like what Amy G.  does on her “Buster Knows Squat” series.

Joey Mauer’s “Head & Shoulders Shampoo” Commercial

I guess we’re all a little protective of Buster Posey here in the Bay Area.  I hate to say it but I’d almost rather see him doing some of those Joey Mauer commercials, you know, the Head & Shoulders thing.  Not that he has dandruff or anything but it would make him appear more like the really nice guy he is.

Nice Guy Buster

I mean Joey gets to smile in all those shampoo commercials, and I’m sure Buster has just as much to be happy about as Joey.   Seeing nice guy Buster Posey laughing and smiling on a national TV commercial after all he’s been through.  Now that’s a commercial I’d really like to see.  How about it ESPN?

Proud to Be An American ……. Everyday!

“GOD BLESS THE USA,   LEE GREENWOOD”

HAPPY 4TH OF JULY !

Repeat of GFBB’s Memorial Day Blog, May 31, 2011.