Thursday, February 23, 2006

Welcome, Position Players, Pitchers...and Others

It may be incredibly rainy and depressing outside. My university may be in a mini-chaos, with our President on his way out the door. (With more students actually caring about it than I expected.) But I remain calm, for two reasons.

*Brief Non-Sports Digression Ahead*
1) I view the President of Harvard,as a position, non-ideologically. This rule may have exceptions, for instance, when claims are made that women are, intellectually biologically inferior to men. But other than that. as long as someone reasonably competent fills it, who doesn't embezzle the endowment, or abolish my department, I couldn't care less who. It's like they said originally about Mussolini:"He makes the buses run on time." I reserve the right to be self-involved, focusing on the essentials, saving my political outrage for where it matters. Once I graduate, then maybe I will have time to care about the ideological direction of Harvard. Maybe then I will regret the departure of Larry Summers. Or even before, if the new prez does something drastic. But for now, I have my own shit to worry about.

Everyone's in town. Except for Manny. But as long as Papi or the Captain don't have their knickers in a bunch, I won't either. I am long past letting Manny push my emotional buttons, if he ever did. As long as he shows up in Texas on opening day, hits his usual, I won't care. I got new guys to warm my heart. Mmm, rookies. I love that sports is the only arena where I can call grown men who are three years my senior "kid". Although it does boggle my mind that Craig Hansen and Lebron James are exactly my age and in such a vastly different world. *Existential shudder*
(all from
Image hosting by Photobucket
Poor J.T Snow. He may be the best defensive 1B among them. But standing next to Papi and Youks, he looks like a Mormon who accidentally wandered into a Hell's Angels convention. Though it may be easier for him to survive unscathed than it would have been last year. By this time last year, he probably would have been hanging from the adjoining locker hook to Matty's. While Tek looked on diaspprovingly.
(I stick to my previous predicition about the puppy.)

Image hosting by Photobucket
The Cap'n, adding "flexibility" to his nearly infinite list of talents, further twisting the stake in the hearts of millions of New England women who wish he was single. Woof.

Image hosting by Photobucket
"Hey Beavis, look at that fat guy. He's lame."
"No goddamnit Butthead, that's David Wells, he's not lame, he rules."
"I thought he, like, wasn't coming, or something,"
"Heh. You said ball."
"Shut up Beavis."

Image hosting by Photobucket
A young Sox rookie looks on in amazement as Jim Rice explains how his secret talent for the lambada enabled him to befuddle and bewilder all those AL pitchers.

Image hosting by Photobucket
"Hey Coco."
"Hey Loretta."
"How long you figure it'll take Callahan and the Herald headline writers to dip into the obvious derogatory "girl" related possibilites for our names?"
"Hey, you listen to Johnny Cash, you realize it could be a whole lot worse."
"Maybe I'll start calling Buckley Sue..."

Image hosting by Photobucket
If Gabe ever leaves baseball, he's got a ready made career as a showroom model. Or on The Price is Right.
(Seriously, it's just nice to see him up and about again.)

Image hosting by Photobucket
"I know Mr. Varitek told me "Shake it off, Dustin". But if Wells calls me "Tiny" again,he's gonna get my cleat up his ass."

Image hosting by Photobucket
Nipper:"KEITH CHARLES FOULKE! Stop that! What have I told you?"
Foulkie: *sheepishly* "Never huck water bottles at people's heads."
"What else?"
"Not even if they're memebers of the media."
"What else?"
"What was that?"
"Not even if they are Dan Shaughnessy."
"Good boy."

Image hosting by Photobucket
Coco Crisp. An oak tree. And a baby. Ladies and gentlemen, we have found the Perfect Storm of Adorable.

Darn. Is it April yet?

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Pitchers and Catchers and Youks, Oh My!

It's that time of year again. February 18 has come and passed, and spring (training) has begun. You know what that means....

(Part the First: Pitchers and Catchers)

Image hosting by Photobucket

David Wells does his..... wait a minute. (squints) Hey, that's not Wells! That's newly shorn Kevin Youkilis, avec Millaresque mustache and goatee.
Apparently doing his best David Wells impression by kicking poor fourth outfielder invitee Dustan Mohr in the balls.
(Somewhere, Jedi Master Olerud is crying. "My apprentice has turned to the Dark Side....")

On the subject of Wells, Theo's response on that front yesterday cracked my shit up. Of course Theo was circumspect , as he is about everything. But the fact that what he basically said was "We know he is within the state lines of Florida, but past that we have no idea".....hilarious.

Speaking of Theo:
Image hosting by Photobucket

Apparently after that nasty breakup with Lucchino over the fall, Theo has found a new love of his life. Holding hands, puppy dog eyes, everything. However, I fear Theo will get his poor little heart broken. He may have gone to Baltimore, but Tito's heart will always belong to a certain slow- as- a -wildebeast first baseman...

Image hosting by Photobucket(

Papelbon(off camera): Joooosh, can I go now? I don't really see how being your target in dodgeball is going to help my pitching arm....
Beckett: Shut it, rook. This helps you protect yourself on the field. If you can dodge a bowling ball, you can dodge a line drive.
Papelbon: I knew I should have snuck off with Hansen to get ice cream.

Image hosting by Photobucket(

As his Sith Apprentice Darth Papelbon practices punching people with his mind from 20 feet away, Emperor Schilling cackles maniacally.

Image hosting by Photobucket(

Wake: Damn it, Mike, did you kill someone with only your feet again?
Timlin: He was looking at me funny.
Schill: Now what are we gonna do for a fourth outfielder?

Monday, February 13, 2006

And so It Begins

Image hosting by Photobucket

Hooray! Huzzah! Hallelujah! And hell yeah!

Image hosting by Photobucket

For it is Truck Day.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Wandering in The Desert

This is the WORST part of the sports calendar.

I remember saying the exact same thing last February. And it is still true.

No football, no baseball, and basketball and hockey have not yet reached the point where I am required by the By-Laws of Knowledgable Sports Fans to pay attention to them. Not only that, but one of the few things I do know about hockey, that Wayne Gretzky is like, really good, and like, a really good guy, is reported to be less than true.

Only thing that's better compared to this time last year? Tedy Bruschi is healthy and intact. *knocks on copious amounts of every kind of available wood* But now Tommy has to go under the knife for of all things, a sports hernia. To whatever thoracic surgeon performs the surgery: BE VERY CAREFUL WITH THAT SCALPEL. You carry the fantasies of thousands of women, and probably a goodly number of gay men, with you.

Damnit , I need sports. I'm taking a course in the 19th century novel. I'm working intensely to get this Pops concert off. Things are getting way too stereotypically girly around here.
And obsessively watching Battlestar Galactica only gets me part of the way back. I mean, I'm an glorified English major who plays the violin and occasionally does theater. But who also loves science fiction and is an obsessive football and baseball fan. Both parts, coexisting at the same time. It's the second part which prevents me from falling to the mere ranks of the Ivy League elitist stereotype. It is the second part which makes me weird. And I like being weird.

Here endeth the navel gazing.
I know that many other sites are doing their preseason predictions. But not me. Firstly, because there are ones out there done much better than I ever could, secondly, because mine would suck, and thirdly, because it just ain't my style , dawg.
So, instead, pre-season odds!

That sometime in May, a game will be held up without its center fielder or starting pitcher, because Coco and String Bean lost track of time jamming and freestyling in the equipment room: 3-1

That J.T Snow will earn love and acclaim by simultaneously saving a puppy who has wandered out on to the field , while still getting the unassisted put-out: 5-1
That no one will exactly know how the puppy got there, but Manny will be involved somehow: 1-1

That the first Yankee game will start with Josh Beckett facing Johnnny Damon: 5-1
That Beckett will strike him out: 3-1
That Beckett will plunk him, Damon will charge the mound, and Mike Lowelll will beat him bloody with his bare hands: 72-1
(but it's nice to imagine.)

That Kevin Youkilis will snap around August, screaming "FOR ONCE CAN'T YOU JUST CHANT KEVIN?": 22-1

That Alex Gonzalez, after training with Jedi Master Belichick, will use the Force to field a hit heading for the outfield: 14-1
That he will use the Jedi Mind trick to pick a runner off second: "The Jedi use the Force, for knowledge and defense, never for attack."- Yoda

That Julian Tavarez will enter the Ultimate Fighting Championship: 3-1
That Trot Nixon, not to be upstaged, will join in too: 2-1

That Jason Varitek will have to go pick up Jonathan Papelbon, Manny Delcarmen and Craig Hansen in Tijuana after a late-night pizza run goes horribly, horribly awry: 11-1

How many days 'til Truck Day?

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Obla-di, Obla-da....

Officially 18 days till spring training, and less than that till TRUCK DAY. Hurrah, and huzzah, completely aware that these 2 and some odd weeks are going to pass like molasses in January ( or some similarly slow thing in February.) But every time "Dirty Water", "Sweet Caroline" or "Tessie" comes on iTunes, I get a little spiritual giddyup.

Let people try to tell me the 2006 Red Sox will suck, that they have no plan, that our offense has decreased too much and our pitching won't make up for it. Which, really, is not true in the first place, since I believe a) we will have a closer to 2004 form Schilling , and b) Joshua Josh Josh Beckett backing him up, and c) a much improved bullpen. That improvement in pitching will be able to compensate for the addition of Lowell and Alex Gonzalez in the infield, and Coco in the outfield. We will not have to bash people over the head to win games; we will have a team closer to the Midwestern Sox, which will be pretty cool.

And yes, I am aware the above can be easily proved to be full of crap, and this team could easily end up 81-81, people lined up on the Tobin. I won't be one of them. Not that I can promise not to go at times, completely bonkers.
But I vow to be guided, as always by the words of Danny Kaye: "They may be bums, but they're MY BUMS."
Love them through the good times, love them through the bad, love them through getting swept by the Devil Rays. (Though if that happens, there will be much wailing and gnashing of teeth.)

There'll be a lotta new faces to get used to , but there were last year too. And will be in the next. It's almost time for baseball again, and nothing will deter me from my optimism.

Some quick hits:
-You know that post a month or two ago about changing the blog's name? Yeah, I was pretty much full of crap. I couldn't think of a better name, and people seem to like the old one, so this way it shall remain.
-Completely on instinct, I call Steelers by a touchdown in Le Bowl Excellente Quarante.
-Shocking Confession: I have a Guilty Pleasure Crush on Ben Roethlisberger. And it is only increased by the beard. I have a thing for scruffy facial hair.(Except on Jake Plummer, who is a dirty, dirty hippie.) ( I may have been one of the few turned on by Tommy's Mountain Man phase last year.)
- *ahem*
-Is it me, or does Coco Crisp look slightly elven, in the non-Lord of The Rings, Orlando Cabrera type way? And I am already in love with the Nomaresque Crazy Bat Fingers thing he has going.

To finish up, New Kitty Blogging!
Meet Matilda, newest member of the NJ Homestead:
Image hosting by Photobucket