Tuesday, October 12, 2010


Thursday, August 5, 2010

Checking out the scene in San Fransisco

Well since the Braves are playing the Giants this week and even though the game will be in Atlanta, I thought I'd let everyone know what's going on over in San Fransisco after prop 8 was repealed.


Good morning. We want to apply for a marriage license." 
"Tim and Jim Jones." 
"Jones? Are you related? I see a resemblance." 
"Yes, we're brothers." 
"Brothers? You can't get married." 
"Why not? Aren't you giving marriage licenses to same gender couples?" 
"Yes, thousands. But we haven't had any siblings. That's incest!" 
"Incest?" No, we are not gay." 
"Not gay? Then why do you want to get married?" 
"For the financial benefits, of course. And we do love each other. Besides, we don't have any other prospects." 
"But we're issuing marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples who've been denied equal protection under the law. If you are not gay, you can get married to a woman." 
"Wait a minute. A gay man has the same right to marry a woman as I have. But just because I'm straight doesn't mean I want to marry a woman. I want to marry Jim."
"And I want to marry Tim, Are you going to discriminate against us just because we are not gay?" 
"All right, all right. I'll give you your license. 


"Hi. We are here to get married."
"John Smith, Jane James, Robert Green, and June Johnson." 
"Who wants to marry whom?" 
"We all want to marry each other." 
"But there are four of you!" 
"That's right. You see, we're all bisexual. I love Jane and Robert, Jane loves me and June, June loves Robert and Jane, and Robert loves June and me. All of us getting married together is the only way that we can truly enjoy all the benefits of a marital relationship." 
"But we've only been granting licenses to gay and lesbian couples." 
"So you're discriminating against bisexuals!"
"No, it's just that, well, the traditional idea of marriage is that it's just for couples."
"Since when are you standing on tradition?" 
"Well, I mean, you have to draw the line somewhere." 
"Who says? There's no logical reason to limit marriage to couples. The more the better. Besides, we demand our rights! The mayor says the constitution guarantees equal protection under the law. Give us a marriage license!"
"All right, all right. 


"Hello, I'd like a marriage license." 
"In what names?" 
"David Deets." 
"And the other man?"
"That's all. I want to marry myself." 
"Marry yourself? What do you mean?" 
"Well, my psychiatrist says I have a dual personality so I want to marry the two together. Maybe I can file a joint income-tax return."

"That does it! I quit!! You people are making a mockery of marriage!!"

My apologies to the person on a random message board that posted this. If you happen to read this you deserve all the credit.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Braves look to fill holes before July 31st deadline

Marlins Outfielder Cody Ross
If the Braves don't find a better option in center field before this weekends trade deadline you should probably expect Greg Norton to teach Nate McClouth how to strike out with the bases loaded and one out to give the guy behind you a chance to get a hit. Just sayin'.
The way I see it the Braves have two holes they need to fill by week's end. First, Since McClouth is clearly not the go to guy in center field that needs to be filled. Second with Jesse Chavez and Kenshin Kawakami just taking up space in the bullpen and Eric O'Flaherty struggling with some arm strength issues, I think it is safe to say we'll need another reliable arm in the bullpen. So to fill these needs I think the Braves have three different options.
Option 1: Trade for a center fielder and fix the bullpen with talent already in the organization. The two best options at center field were Cody Ross of the Florida Marlins and David Dejesus of the Royals. Since Dejesus is likely out for the season with an injured wrist, that leaves Cody Ross. As of today the Braves interest in Ross is minimal and it's easy to see why. With the Marlins not yet out of the playoff race they haven't started selling so what they would ask in return for Ross is just too high a price for the Braves to pay. Many reports state that the Braves currently have enough top notch arms in their farm system that they could get anybody currently on the trade block. The problem is none of top guys is a center fielder and so I don't see Wren pulling the trigger on this option. UPDATE: Fukudome of the Cubs might also be a good option since the Cubs are willing to offer cash considerations on any trade. But once again Fukudome isn't really a center fielder and we already have enough corner outfielders.

Option 2: Trade for a bullpen fix and fill the center field spot with some combination of Melky Cabrera and Gregor Blanco. Right now trading for a bullpen fix won't be very effective because the going price for middle relief is way too high. The Braves aren't looking for a top notch closer or setup man so it wouldn't be smart for the them to give up their high end talent for a middle reliever.

Option 3: Fix both problems from within the organization. Unless a top notch outfielder becomes available very soon, this seems to be the most viable option. So how we gonna do it?
Talented Lefty Mike Minor
    Bullpen fix: The Braves could promote top prospect Craig Kimbrel to fill the bullpen roll or more likely Stephen Merek who has a 0.60 ERA through 45 innings at the double and triple A levels. If Wren chooses he could also place put Medlen back in the bullpen and promote prospect Mike Minor into the starting rotation. I like this option because it would fill the bullpen whole and add a much needed left handed pitcher into the rotation.

I think that either Gregor Blanco or Cabrera could fill the gap in center field. Blanco has the potential to do what Martin Prado did for the Braves last year. But I'm not sure that Frank Wren is willing to take that chance. If a top center fielder comes on the market at a reasonable price I think Wren will make the deal and fix the bullpen with what we already have. However if nothing becomes available then I could see Wren sitting on his talented arms and fixing things with what we've got.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Top 10 Reasons Soccer is Lame.

I guess this isn't really Braves related, but with the fifa world cup coming upon us I thought I would, in the words of Bill O'Reilly, bloviate just a bit. So for your enjoyment or perhaps possible outrage here is your top ten reasons soccer is lame.

10. Soccer is just plain gay. Not gay like Michael Scott uses the term. Gay like a bunch of guys running around doing girly things with other guys. http://www.theonion.com/video/soccer-officially-announces-it-is-gay,17603/

9. Let's face it soccer is full of a bunch of first class floppers. If I see another guy roll around on the field like he's just been shot, only to jump up and start running around as soon as he's carted off the field, I might just roll around on my couch until my wife calls 911. Maybe they'll take ME to the hospital where I won't have to watch another soccer game. Just sayin.

8. Tie? Yeah they still have those is soccer. It's like kissing your sister, you can try and argue that both parties win and you can even give them each a point and say "good job". But we all know that when you kiss you sister, NOBODY wins. Please soccer get rid of ties! That way we won't have to watch South Korea stick all their players on defense and hope for a 0-0 tie.

7. Soccer Fans. Yes, soccer fan's suck. Why can't you just let me hate soccer without trying to tell me how I would LOVE soccer if I only understood? Just because everyone else in third world countries has nothing better to watch, that doesn't mean that I don't. Enjoy your 0-0 ties and you once a millennium goals but leave the rest of us to our real sports.

6. "Soccer is just a bunch of guys running around trying not to touch a polka dot ball with their hands". Soccer is full of metro Europeans with fohawks and bleached hair. Most of these guys could take a lesson from Brad Paisley's "I'm still a guy".

5. Off-sides penalty. Before you tell me that football has an offsides penalty also, let me tell you that the two offsides penalties are nothing alike. In soccer the offsides penalty is given during LIVE action. Imagine a touchdown pass getting called back because the receiver was ahead of the quarterback when he threw the ball. That's the offsides they are calling in soccer.

4. They run around for a couple hours and NOTHING happens. The most exiting thing in soccer is when someone almost scores. When the players run around like they just wont he world cup every time a single goal is scored, you know there isn't enough scoring going on.

3. Did I mention you can still tie in soccer? Enough said

2. A lot of people don't know this but if the US and England had tied their last games with the same goal differential they would have broken he tie with a simple coin flip. Seriously soccer!? Seriously? I don't think I even want to go into how ridiculous it is that in the biggest tournament in the world is decided by goal differential but a coin flip? WOW...

1. Zero. That might also be the final total score to most soccer games, but that's not what I'm talking about here. Zero is actually the number of rule changes or innovations that soccer has made since its inception like a thousand years ago. Imagine the NBA still using a peach basket for a hoop. As the Gatorade jingle goes "if you want a revolution the only solution: EVOLVE". Soccer refuses to do this and so nobody in the US wants to watch. Many could say that it is popular all over the world so who cares? Well FIFA should, it's largest fan base lies in third world countries where innovation and ingenuity is obviously lagging a bit behind.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Patience is a Virtue

So is hanging in there. They say good things come to those who wait. Baseball fans, especially, know this. It was only last Saturday that I sat complaining to my wife that every time I got to watch a game the Braves lost. Only one week after watching an 11-1 loss to the bitter end, I found myself elated with the joy of a walk off Grand Slam, the third walk off hit in as many days.
After the Braves lost 11-1 I thought I should probably spare other Braves fans and not watch any more games. I was convinced I was cursed. This was a bit superstitious but superstition is another word that baseball fans understand particularly well. The worst part of watching the 11-1 loss was actually the fact that I was unable to watch the game before (another walk off win) because I was blocked out by MLB.com. Of course the next game was on Sunday and I was faithfully attending church (texting google was my trusty score updater) so I didn't watch Sunday's game either. What was so significant about Sunday's game? Well my Braves won 13-1. It seemed like I hadn't seen the Braves score a run in a week but every time I couldn't watch they scored in droves.  So I faithfully tuned in on Monday before FHE hoping to see some of this Braves offense that I had some how managed to miss all season. Anyone who has watched a tragic comedy would know what happened Monday. We only mustered two runs and squandered a very good start by Derek Lowe and lost 2-3. Tuesday's game started out very similar but had a very different ending.
Kris Medlen, starting in place of injured Jair Jurrjens, matched Met's ace Johan Santana pitch for pitch only giving up 2 runs in 6.1 innings. But the magic didn't descend on Turner Field until the bottom of the ninth. With runners on 1st and 2nd with nobody out, Melky Cabrera attempted to bunt the runners into scoring position but was unable to. So with two strikes he laid down the perfect swinging bunt and after a Met's error the Braves walked off with a 3-2 win. For Braves fans, it would only get better.
After witnessing two straight walk off wins, the third being the most dramatic and improbable I've decided I don't have the right to complain about missing out because I got to see one of the greatest and most improbable comebacks in the history of the Braves. My dad on the other hand missed all three nail bitters and only caught the highlights. I don't think he'll give up any time soon though. My dad knows about waiting for good things. He watched 10+ miserable years of baseball in the 80's then watched the worst team in baseball in 1990 only to enjoy an NL Championship in '91, a walk off single by Cabrerra in '92 for another NL Championship and a World Series victory in '95 all in the midst of 14 straight Division championships. So he knows about hanging in there. He knows good things come to those who wait.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Chips and Salsa for the Season

Figuratively I've got my chips, salsa and my Dr. Pepper just waiting for the season to start. Literally I've got my MLB.TV premium package ready I won't have to miss a single game. OK let me retract that last statement. I'll probably miss at least half of the 164 games or I may not have a wife by the end of the season.

Since most of you don't have a job that allows you to peruse the internet machine for Braves tidbits during the off season, I have decided to put together a brief rundown of what you missed. This should bring those of you coming out of baseball hibernation up to date.

Troy Glaus: Glaus is a power hitting first baseman who is coming off of some shoulder problems. If he can overcome his injuries he will be a more than adequate first baseman who can hold down the fort until prospect Freddie Freeman is ready to take the job. We need Glaus to show some power and take some of the pressure off of Chipper and McCann.

Eric Hinske: A bench player who has some big shoes to fill as a pinch hitter. Everyone knows how well Norton did as Bobby's go to guy. Hinske will really have to pick up his game if he expects to come anywhere near Greg "Mr. Automatic Strike-out" Norton's impressive 20 Strike outs in 76 at bats. Seriously though, Hinske is a proven winner that should turn out to be a very good pinch hitter/bench player.

Melky Cabrera: Not too excited about this guy. We picked him up from the Yankees in the Vasquez trade and if Heyward does as he is expected then Cabrera looks to split time with Diaz in Left and maybe play right field if the Braves are facing a tough left handed pitcher.

Takashi Saito: Japanese relief pitcher that should take over the job as set-up man. He posted a 2.43 ERA last year with the Bo-Sox in 55 innings. He is one of the guys that we picked up this year that make our bullpen extremely deep.

Billy Wagner: This guy doesn't really need any introduction. What I will say is this: Close your eyes for a minute and imagine any one of our starting pitchers get through six innings. Peter Moylen can take over the 7th then Saito in the 8th and Wagner in the 9th. Having these guys in the bullpen gives Bobby Cox a lot of leyway in later innings. If he wants he can save Moylen and just bring him in when he needs a double play.

So those are the guys that we gained, so who did we lose?

Javier Vasquez: Huge loss, we're really going to miss this guy. Chipper made comment that he was still holding out hope that the Braves will be able to sign Vasquez at the end of 2010. Here's to hoping.

Soriano and Gonzalez: Tough to take the loss of these guys but I think overall our bullpen was significantly upgraded even with the losses of our 8th and 9th inning guys.

Adam Laroche: Man I really like this guy and I wish he could have ended up in a Braves uniform. He was fun to watch and I wish him all the success in the world next season. The Braves would have had to pay him around 4 Million for a 1 year deal (which is what the D-backs got him for) if they would have wanted to keep him. For a comparison they are paying Glaus half that for a 1 year deal.

What to watch for?

Jason Heyward: Most of you have probably heard about the net that they put up at the Braves' spring training complex to protect the cars while Heyward is batting. That should get you excited enough to tune into a spring training game or two to watch this kid. Most people don't want to mention Albert Pujols when making comparisons with Heyward, but he has the ability to make that kind of an impact.

Tommy Hanson: Hanson looked good in his first spring game today and will look to avoid a sophomore slump this year. I'm going to make an early prediction and say that he will be in the Cy Young conversation at years end.

Kris Medlen: Medlen has some really good stuff and I'll look for him to be a go to guy for Cox in late innings this year.

Jair Jurrjens: He was experiencing some discomfort in his throwing shoulder but all indications are that he'll make his first start of the season when he is supposed to. I don't think there is anything to worry about and I expect him to have another stellar year.

Lastly this is Bobby Cox's last season as manager. He has had a wonderful career and he will be missed. I've got to believe that Braves' players will be giving a little extra each day to make sure their beloved manager goes out on a high note.

Here's a little something to keep your tongue wet until opening day:

So with the bases loaded, two out, and the season on the line, Atlanta manager Bobby Cox called on little-used Francisco Cabrerato pinch-hit for Jeff Reardon. With only 10 at-bats all season to prepare for this moment, Cabrera slapped a single to left. The first run scored easily to tie the game. Then Bream, the former Pirate, came lumbering toward the plate from second. The game came down to the injury-riddled legs of Bream vs. the Gold Glove arm of left fielder Barry Bonds.

Bonds fired home to catcher Mike "Spanky" Lavalliere, who grabbed it and applied the tag. Not in time. Bream slid in safely, sending the Braves back to the World Series. Atlanta would miss the playoffs only once the rest of the decade. The Pirates haven't been back since.