Tag:Mind of The Big B
Posted on: August 18, 2008 11:45 am
Edited on: August 18, 2008 12:06 pm

Alpha Blog: Nationals make me laugh

I've sat by idly watching the Nationals create their "foundation." I've watched vice president Stan Kasten create his plan and I've watched Fans may also turn their back on this dismal franchise. general manager Jim Bowden and manager Manny Acta execute it.

Sometimes it takes a small move to trigger a loud response.

Bowden sent capable reliever, and the last remaining Montreal holdover, Luis Ayala to the Mets for 25-year-old utility infielder Anderson Hernandez Sunday. It's one thing to trade Ayala. It's another to give him away to a division rival.

This, after sending outfielder Ryan Church and catcher Brian Schneider to Mets in the offseason for Lastings Milledge.

I understand moving veterans for youth, but there are 28 other teams out there. Do we have to make our rivals better?

But that's not as laughable as Paul Lo Duca, arguably the worst offseason signing not named Andruw Jones, who was recently released and picked up by division foe, Florida. With Florida in the market for a serviceable catcher since April, why Bowden couldn't have parlayed Lo Duca for a prospect (or as Bowden likes to think of them -- slap-hitting middle infielders with little upside) is depressing.

Johnny EstradaBut not as laughable as signing Johnny Estrada to a contract when you have budding star Jesus Flores in the system and serviceable Will Nieves. After all, it was Jason Kendall who unseated Estrada in Milwaukee. Here's how that offseason conversation between Jimbo and Johnny "I'm spent" Estrada went:

Jim: Johnny, you staying in shape? We're looking for a veteran catcher to work with our young staff.
Johnny: I dunno, Jimbo. I'm not really feeling the game of baseball anymore, I mean geez, they brought in Jason Kendall in Milwaukee to replace me. Ya know how depressing that makes a human being, when Jason Kendall is seen as an upgrade over you? It's like replacing Rodney Dangerfield with Jackie Mason in Caddyshack II.
Jim: I loved Caddyshack II! It had that black bailiff from Night Court. What a great show, Night Court. Bull, he sure was tall. Just like Rauchy. Come on into spring training, we'll see what we can do with ya.
Johnny: OK, bud, if you say so.

But not as laughable as signing an overweight defensive liability who doesn't take his diabetes seriously to a multi-year contract that makes him untradeable. (see: Young, Dmitri)

But not as laughable as signing fragile Nick Johnson, a light-hitting first baseman to a multi-year contract, effectively inhibiting any prospects from manning the corner. Sorry, Larry Broadway or Chris Marrero.

But not as laughable as trading the best reliever on the market for one of those hard-to-find slap-hitting middle infielders. But hey, he sure is quick. So is Joey Gathright. So is Michael Bourn. Keep them and their miniscule OBP off my team.

But not as laughable as failing to sign draft pick Aaron Crow over a $500,000 dispute. Crow, deemed major-league ready, was always expected to be a tough sign. But when the gap came to within six-digits, the team should have ponied up to sign the kid. Why sign unproven talent to major-league dollars? Let's say they end up paying Crow $4 million per (what he wanted, the Nats came in at $3.5). What pitcher on the free-agent market are you going to find for $4 million per? That's fourth- or fifth-starter money and Crow is projected as a top-of-the-rotation pitcher. Yes, paying kids that sort of moolah isn't ideal, but the club drafted him knowing he'd be potentially great, and tough at the table.

But not as laughable as the Lerner family withholding $3.5 million in rent (as of July 11) to the city of Washington for receiving an incomplete stadium. Not just that, the Lerners are "demanding damages of $100,000 a day, dating from March 1," according to the Washington Post. Just to refresh, the city paid for this stadium using tax dollars. The team is playing in the stadium and the Lerners are collecting revenue. The Pope conducted mass in the stadium. The Presidents Race occurs during every home game. But it's incomplete to the point where not just rent is being withheld, but damages are being sought. I've attended three games and the only thing incomplete I've noticed is the on-the-field product. It takes a budding villain to make the public stick up for the city of Washington. Congrats Teddy.

But back to the seemingly small things. Here's what really set things off, laughably speaking, in this blogger's dome. The Nationals are Ted Lernerlast in the league in giveaways. Dead last at 35 per 81 home games, according to the Sports Business Journal. The Marlins, a team like the Nats which entered the season with little hope to compete, lead the league with 141 giveaways. Couple this with the fact that season ticket holders had to actually show up to these atrocious games (but only specific ones) to receive their complimentary yearbook and replica stadium is well, laughable. I received mine Friday night and as the guy who handed it to me said upon seeing my disappointment in the craftsmanship, "I hear some people are using them as ashtrays."

Having a plan that requires patience is one thing, using it as an excuse to be miserly is another. One season doesn't make a rich data pool, but if Year 1 of Ler-Kas-Bow is a sign of things to come, it's safe to say this team is destined to complete the trilogy of Washington teams leaving the area.

But I offer a solution, and it's so simple I demand it: An apology not just to season-ticket holders like myself, but to all Nats fans.

Dear Nationals fans,

We're trying here in D.C., but we've been out of the baseball game for a while, which explains why we don't know how to treat fans at the ballpark, why we don't know how to do the whole TV thing well (the Nats are dead last in TV ratings), and why we don't know how to do the whole personnel thing well. But we'll get better, starting with the removal of Jim Bowden from the general manager post. We'll bring in a smart baseball guy who has a fine-tuned balance between objectively analyzing players and pulling the trigger on a brash big-ticket signee when it fits the plan. We'll provide incentives to attend the ballpark, which Washington was nice enough to build (despite its many flaws), like free caps and balls (but no cowbells). In short, we'll do things better. But stay faithful, please. We've waited a long time to have baseball back in D.C., let's not rush this job. Let's set up a foundation that will ensure the District has the best baseball franchise in MLB. If we don't fulfill our obligations above, we promise to sell the team to Ted Leonsis and never entertain any offers from Dan Snyder, no matter how much money or Lions for Lambs paraphernalia he throws our way.


Ted Lerner

On to the best blogs ... around    

Michael Phelps wins eight golds in swimming, but it's the way NBC treated that last medal ceremony that has dook's buzz! ready to go off the deep end.

As NBA-ers like Jannero Pargo keep jumping the pond, Mind of The Big B wonders: Could Europe improve Ben Gordon?

If Sports 'n Stuff writes a blog and nobody reads it, is it a blog? Doesn't matter, the blogger has the right attitude toward The Game.

If you want to know about one blogger's path to becoming a 49ers faithful, read this by THRASHARD'S THOUGHTS.

Klick of the Day    

Welcome back Voltron

Posted on: May 12, 2008 11:32 am
Edited on: May 12, 2008 3:05 pm

Alpha Blog: Hit with the Youkilis stick

I know talking about one's Fantasy team is like looking at somebody else's vacation photos, but something has to be said about Kevin Youkilis, and what he did to my team.
Kevin Youkilis
The Yook hit:

  • Five home runs (more than my entire team)
  • Drove in 10 RBI (more than half of my 19)
  • Scored eight times (more than a third of my 21)
  • And the most insulting: he stole a base (a third of my total of 3)

Kevin Youkilis has 11 career stolen bases in five seasons. In other words, he averages around 2.2 per. I had the honor of experiencing something that happens roughly once every 81 games.

My team isn't a bunch of schlubs, but we fell apart faster than Eric Gagne closing out at a three-run Brewers lead. Case in point, Edgar Renteria.

Here's the real stinger to my duel with editor Buzz Fagan (he of mustache fame): Our shortstop duel of my Renteria vs. his David Eckstein (injury replacement for Jimmy Rollins).

Now if there was one matchup I thought I had locked, stocked and two smoking bat barrels, it was this one. Plus, Eckstein only played one game because of injury. But Eckstein's one game was enough to best anything Renteria did all week.

Eckstein's line: 1-4, .250 BA, RBI, R, .250 OBP
Renteria's line: 0-18, R

A run. To break that down further: A = 1; run = one statistical improvement for an entire week.

I look forward to my upcoming week, where I expect the opposing team's Mark Ellis to easily outperform my Chase Utley at the second base position.

On to the best blogs ... around!

With the best record in baseball, and that Youkilis guy, it's no surprise Red Sox Rewind is handing out a bunch of A's for Boston's first quarter performance.

After a surprisingly good last week, the Cubs get some NL bottom feeders at home this week. What's It's Gonna Happen in 2008 predicting? How's a 5-2 homestand sound?

Kyle Busch is becoming NASCAR's newest, great villain. Dantheman4250's Sports Blog says he's not surprised ... and it's great for the sport.

From Larry Brown to Rick Carlisle to Mike D'Antoni, NBA coaches are on the move and the Mind of The Big B is breaking them all down.
Klick of the Day

Skeeball is one dangerous sport.
Posted on: May 5, 2008 11:07 am
Edited on: May 5, 2008 11:08 am

Alpha Blog: Horse of Tomorrow highlights weekend

After the on-track death of Eight Belles, horse racing could use a Horse of Tomorrow. Eight Belles is no longer alive.

The Nationals are the hottest team in baseball (just wrapped up an 8-3 homestand).

If Alexander Ovechkin is Heather Locklear, Evgeni Malkin's goal (2:40 mark) is Courtney Thorne-Smith.

Michael Wilbon makes a good point, the '04 Pistons are the exception to the NBA champions-must-have-superstars rule. Sorry '08 Jazz, '08 Pistons.

If you like tequila, or simply enjoy celebrating countries that at one point defeated the French, enjoy your Cinco de Mayo.

On to the best blogs ... around!  

Mind of The Big B shares a conversation with Viktor Crapper about hoops and less important stuff like the fall of the U.S. As for hoops, halt the in-game music when teams bring the ball up court immediately, please.

The Packers just wrapped up their rookie camp and GoPack's Yak has a report on how Brian Brohm and company fared.

We haven't even crowned an NBA champion, but The Eye of the HurricaneDij is off making predictions for next season because, well, people like predictions.

The second-place Cubs are 1.5 games behind the Cardinals and have a tough road ahead, with the Reds' Aaron Harang and the hot Diamonbacks up this week. It's Gonna Happen in 2008 breaks it all down.

Klick of the Day  

Took in Forgetting Sarah Marshall this past weekend. While the movie's writer/actor, Jason Segal, was in Slackers, it's Cool Ethan who steals the forgotten '04 flick.

Posted on: April 6, 2008 12:26 pm
Edited on: April 8, 2008 3:52 pm

Alpha Blog: Max Mosley pulls a serious Spitzer

Max Mosley likes his sex with a dash of SS.

In case you missed it, Formula 1's boss is Max Mosley.

Max Mosley brings a new twist to the term sexual deviant.Max Mosley allegedly uses hookers. One of those hookers told a publication called News of the World about what she was hired to do with, or rather, to, Max Mosley.

She would dress up like Dr. Elsa Schneider and flog Max Mosley until he bled. This is just the beginning, though. Add four more hookers, more flogging, barking and now we've got a Mosley-approved evening. Allegedly, this would go on for five hours.

"Viagra is one helluva drug," says CBSSports.com editor George Maselli.

Eliot Spitzer says, "the Emperor's Club would never condone such behavior."

Charlton Heston says, "get your hands off me you dirty Nazi hookers."

Ian McKellen, star of Naz-com Apt Pupil says, "we always wondered why Mosley hung around the set so much."

The article gets in to some of the details of the evening. Essentially, just add video cameras and more floggings to the mix and you'll complete the picture.

Max Mosley denies all this.

"I was the victim of a disgusting conspiracy. It goes without saying that the so-called Nazi element is pure fabrication."

I'm not sure what "fabrication" means, but I’m guessing it's something like "delicious," or "ecstasy."

On to the best four blogs ... around!      

Can't wait until Tuesday for Lyle Crouse's Power Rankings? Our resident basketball guru The Blog to End All Blogs is there for ya -- and I can't find anything to gripe about. Then again, who really gets worked up for Power Rankings?

Our other basketball maven, Mind of The Big B, offers up this spicy nugget: He's switched his MVP vote (because CBSSports.com bloggers have official votes) away from Kobe to Chris Paul. I like it, only because I appreciate people with two first names.

Like irony? Like Dwight Howard? Intrigued by paternity suits. That's just the first of The Blasphemous Zeitgeist Speaks' bizarre news of the week.

The Marlins are off to a 3-2 start and are "atop" the NL East. Reason to start believing that this club may not finish fourth? Don Juan's Sports Thoughts is starting to lean that way, which is ridiculous, since my Nats will lock down the four spot. We don't have much pitching (Matt Chico aside), but we do have more than the Fish. Mark Hendrickson? C'mon.

Klick of the Day      

The top 10 baseball movie MVPs, according to EW. Tell me what you think, but the only notable snub is Ham Porter from the Sandlot.

Posted on: February 12, 2008 5:47 pm
Edited on: February 12, 2008 6:15 pm

Blog Day Afternoon: He'll pump you up

Uno looks to be No. 1. Chelsea's being "pimped." But first, Verne Troyer's 15 minutes of fame just expired.

I lift weights, and I am weights!Introducing Aditya "Romeo" Dev, the world's smallest bodybuilder. Standing 2-9, Romeo weighs 20 pounds, but can lift 3.3-pound weights over his head. That's nearly 16.5 percent of his body weight. If you weigh 205 pounds, you'd have to lift 34 pounds over your head to match that. OK, so that's not the best way to talk this guy up. The best way is to simply check out his photos.

He's blonde. He has a mustache. He wears shorts with animals see-sawing and he dances. What more do you want?

Maybe some Jazzy B. That's Romeo's dream, to perform with Punjabi pop star Jazzy B. According to his website, Jazzy B "packs an enormous tidal wave of a punch ... and is one of the most prominent stars of Punjabi music in the 21st century." I can see why being the likely strongest dwarf in the world wouldn't be enough.

So long Mini-me, it's the real Lil Romeo's time.

Scarlett Johansson before the work?"Pimping," but not the Clinton you think

 Apparently Jack Donaghy doesn't like when General Electric employees use the word "pimp." MSNBC host David Shuster asked two guests recently, "Doesn't it seem as if Chelsea [Clinton] is sort of being pimped out in some weird sort of way?"

This led to a firestorm response from the Clinton camp (do they know any other type of response?) about associating their daughter with the word "pimp." Well, despite pimp's mainstream success of late (Pimp My Ride, Big Pimpin', Katt Williams' schtick), it's apparently still a no-no word. Why? Slate.com's Jesse Sheidlower explains the origins of the word.

Oh, completely relevant and mildly tasteless ... is Chelsea sort of becoming a poor, poor, poor man's Scarlett Johansson?

Personally, I like Captain better...

Scout.com released its' best names list of the class of 2008. Top honors go to a Florida Atlantic defensive tackle who guys by the name of Yourhighness Morgan.

Don't call me Snoopy!Sit, Ubu, sit ... then destroy

And congrats to Uno, our beagle who made it through the hounds group at the Westminster Kennel Club Annual Dog Show and will now look to bring home the breeds' first-ever Best In Show collar.

What do you have to say about that, Buck Laughlin?

"Excuse me if this off the subject a little bit, but just take a guess at how much I can bench press. Come on, what do you think? Take a guess. 315 pounds, at the top of my game, maxing out at 500! "

Thanks, I guess.

On to the best ... blogs around!

If you're not buying what John Rocker, steroids outer, is selling, then BigPapiandManny's 3-4 Punch has something you may agree with: John Rocker, SHUT THE HELL UP!

Wait, we have more Rocker ..

Do you like competitive biking? If so, there's a race called The Tour of California and Who cares about these sports? gives the 411 (so 2003, I know) on all the teams competing.

***Watch out Scott Miller, Matt Abedi's Sporting Universe has a solid NL West preview worth reading.***

Fresh off the Patriots' perfect regular season, the Memphis Tigers are looking like they may move into Perfectville. Mind of The Big B wonders about that neighborhood.

Texas has already defeated three top six schools. Parrish: The Thoughts says Memphis should be scared, very scared come selection Sunday.

Josh Harding gets A Top Quark. Nik Backstrom gets Up Quarks. Refs get Bottom Quarks. And if you have any idea what I'm talking about or want to, read Mouthing Off From the Catbird Seat. It's better than playing dead.

***indicates the chef's blog du jour

Posted on: January 31, 2008 5:38 pm
Edited on: January 31, 2008 6:36 pm

Blog Day Afternoon: Last day of Jan. edition

I don't understand people who listen to Don Imus. I really can't understand people who watch his simulcasted show.

In fairness, I know very little about this guy or his show. But what could one aging shockjock DJ bring to the table that some younger version of himself couldn't? He's so lame/out of touch/whatever that the "joke" that got him canned -- "nappy headed hos" -- wasn't fresh. It wasn't clever. It was just some old white guy trying to sound fresh and clever.

Yes, he's a former CBS employee. Is that why I'm blogging about this. NO.  Disclaimer: I watch nothing the Eye produces outside of sports and probably won't until I'm 45 and three kids deep.

But Imus proves one of two things: On-air talent is deceptively thin or the powers-to-be are so bad at thinking outside the norm, they bring back this retread.

Heck, if they do it time and again with semi-successful coaches, why wouldn't they do it with shockjocks? So there you have it, the Jim Fassel of radio hosts is back. Enjoy Baltimore, Detroit, Philly and all the other cities that will soon be able to watch his simulcasted radio show. Mazel tov.

On to the best ... blogs around!

I'm proud to add Mind of The Big B to the Fraternity of Worst Sports Franchises in Football fans. Guess which one the blog is a "fan" of? It's not my Redskins. It's not PC Free From PC Central's Raiders. It's the starts with Li- ends with -ons. Oh, and he's kind enough to remind us how much of sporting oasis Motown is outside of the Wayne Fontes' old team. That's nice. Jacka**!

If you're too lazy to type in "Bobby Knight" at Wikipedia, check out Fiddle's Faddles' brief history of the General (also, uh, his cousin?).

BigTen's Fantasy Baseball Blog brings up the R Kelly-ian point: Age ain't nuttin' but a number. He's playing the skeptic to EMack's true-and-tried recipe of drafting 27-year-olds come Fantasy baseball time. Me? I buy into it because it's reason to believe that contrary to my long-standing, uh, stance, I didn't peak at 17 ... I still have one year to go.

The same people who follow Brittany Spears' every move are the same people who love the two-week gap before the Super Bowl, according to The Words of Dezy. The blog is mad, mad I tell ya!

Our new buddy Volunteer Basketball (who knew they had a team!?) is surveying the blogospheres' best pickup lines. Since the "nice shoes one ..." was used, I'll go with "You must be Jamaican, because Jamaican me crazy." Lame, yes, so add yours to the list.

Euphuism's 101 asks the all important question: When is the last time you ... destroyed a public toilet. I'm doing it right now! God bless wi-fi. Oh, wait...let's stop there.

Sadly, I knew about this several months back. I asked our Fantasy Managing Editor Peter Madden if we were going to get in on this. His response? "We'll leave Fantasy Fishing to the Ocho." Don't worry 'bout it Spotsy Scratch, you won't be weighing your bass on our site. Wait, that didn't come out right.

And I had to add this one. If Fantasy fishing isn't your thang, NaterB's Junk Drawer has the perfect game for ya. It's Fantasy announcers and while Dick Vitale may be the A-Rod (or marlin if you're a fisher?) on the draft board, please don't underestimate the vocal powers of Gus Johnson.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com