Obligatory Albert Pujols/CJ Wilson Post

[Image of the Angels logo.] Opening statement. Brief summary of situation. Obvious Albert fact. Obvious CJ fact. Obvious money-related fact. Snarky comment regarding math/numbers/money.

[Array of photos depicting Albert, CJ, money bags.]

New Paragraph! Presumptive, uninteresting opinion. Opinion. Opinion. Filler sentence bridging to another opinion. Wildly speculative comment.  Another more realistic (but  still speculative) comment. Anaheim fact. Stale “LA Angels of Anaheim” joke. Cryptic “Angels In The Outfield” joke/reference.

New Paragraph! Fact. Opinion. Fact. Opinion. Opinion. Opinion. Fact. Open-ended question. Follow-up open-ended question. Formulaic observation. Innocent jab at CJ. Yawn-inducing praise of Albert. Opinion. Opinion. Further speculation, opinions, and facts. Well placed pun. Comparatively lame follow-up joke.

Repetitive summary.

Closing statement.


Wildcard Wednesday: “Thank God for Arizona, in splendid sunshine dressed”

Happy Wednesday, one and all, and a belated happy beginning-of-spring-training! All I’ve got for you today is some photos I’ve scavenged up from around the web and a few thoughts on the spring’s early goings-on.


A familiar face at Yankees camp.

A first glimpse of Matt Garza in Cubbie blue, courtesy Tim Sheridan.

It seems the Cubs have gotten new warm-up jerseys for this year. I like the old ones better.

Buzz!: Mr. Carlos Marmol and the Cubs reached an agreement on a three year deal worth 20-million smackeroos this week. Congratulation, Marmee. Please, please live up to this.

Tyler Colvin is ready to go. Notice the patch on his sleeve.

Buzz!: Carlos Silva has no intentions of yielding “his” spot in the starting rotation. Says he, “For [the other candidates] it’s open, or whoever is competing. For me, there’s only one spot open. I am one of the starters, you know what I mean. Whatever they think, they think that, not me.” Confidence is nice, but you still gotta go earn it, Carlos #3.

Additional buzz:

-The Cubs traded infield prospect Tony Thomas to the Boston Red Sox for right-handed pitcher Robert Coello yesterday.

Coello was drafted as a catcher, but was converted to a pitcher in 2007 while in the Angels organization. He made his major league debut with Boston last September. He made relief appearances in 6 games, compiling a 4.76 ERA. He has pitched 242.0 innings in the minor leagues and racked up 286 K’s (to 109 walks) to go along with a 2.98 ERA and 1.19 WHIP.

-Brett Jackson launched a home run on Tuesday that broke the windshield of a passing car outside of Fitch Park.

-Kiddo James Russell had the following pearl to offer when asked about himself and fellow Texan Andrew Cashner: “We’re young and dumb and ready to throw strikes.” That’s what I like to hear.

-Albert Pujols. Sigh. I’m not one for speculation, but if I had to, I’d speculate that Mr. Pujols and the Cardinals will end up working it out in the end.

Think of what I’m saying, they can work it out and get it straight or say goodnight. They can work it out. They can work it out! Life is very short and there’s no time for fussing and fighting, my friend.

Cough. Anyway, it isn’t that I wouldn’t like to have Albert on our side or anything. Even so, signing players to contracts for lots of years and obscene amounts of money hasn’t really worked for us and I think it would be a very rash thing to do (on the chance that the opportunity should present itself.)



Wildcard Wednesday: All-Starry Night

While last evening’s All Star Game was riddled with a million little things that made me want to throw forks and spoons at the television set, it was also the best Midsummer Classic I’ve ever watched. The NL at last ended that 14 year streak, thanks in no small part to lone Cub rep Marlon Byrd, and my favorite major-league catcher, Brian McCann. Kudos and kisses to those fellas.

Here are a couple of quotes from last night:

“I’m going to host the whole thing. … I’m going to host it—have some fun, smile, kiss some babies.” -Torii Hunter, of the host LA Angels of A

“Catchers know. He can bang. He can flat-out rake, and the reason he doesn’t get noticed very much is because he’s that good of a catcher. Good catchers don’t get noticed. That’s the job, and he’s just out there every year, getting it done and being one of the best in the game.” -John Buck (Toronto)

“Marlon made a good throw to second and it was a great play. It was the only play he had. If that ball gets by him, it would have been second and third with one out. I’m happy for Marlon. He deserves it. I’m proud of him.” -Brandon Phillips (Cincinnati)

“I don’t like the Cubs. And I’m not going to pat anybody with a Cubs uniform on the back.” -Joey Votto (Cincinnati)

Mr. Phillips > Mr. Votto

And now, here are a bunch of pictures. Because I’m lazy and don’t feel like writing any more.

Rays 3B Evan Longoria and family in the pre-game parade thing.

Jose Valverde… shudder. He just looks like a villain.

Peekaboo, Jason Heyward!

How nice that they let this poor little crippled boy onto the field! Oh, wait…

People need to quit booing the Yankees. See? Even A’s closer Andrew Bailey there in the background thinks it’s funny.

The very All-Starriest of All Stars.

Byrd = Wyrd.

He done done us proud.

At last! A happy ending for the National League. Let’s do it again next year, y’all!

2009 Awards Analysis: “I just wanna say, like, ‘yay’ to all of [you] for a really great year!”

This isn’t really analysis. I promise one of these days I’ll do some actual research. Until then here are my opinions on the major award winners of 2009, presented to you in a bit of a jumble.

Rookie of the Year

AL: Some people were cranky over the selection of Andrew Bailey. I’m inclined to think that Elvis Andrus will have the last laugh.

NL: I guess voters were taken with Chris Coghlan’s batting average, a sparkly .321. Fools gold! His secondary average was an unimpressive .250. Andrew McCutcheon or someone was probably more deserving. Again, though… last laughs. On a side note, I may be a trifle bitter on this one as I wanted Randy Wells to deserve to win.

Managers of the Year

This is the least exciting of all the awards. In fact, I almost forgot to mention it at all. It’s just not something that seems to mean a lot from year to year. I doubt Eric Wedge was thinking, “I’ll always have Manger of the Year, oh-seven!” when Cleveland canned him late this season. But, hey! Congrats, anyway, Mike Scioscia and Jim Tracy!

Gold Gloves

Ugh. There are too many variables that go into defense. I don’t know how to evaluate them, and I don’t feel like the Gold Glove voters do, either. Sabermetricians have made strides in solving the defensive conundrums, but I have yet to absorb these newfangled fielding stats (I’m still wrapping my head around BABIP, alright?) The Fielding Bible releases its own awards, the “Silk Gloves.” The 2009 winners can be seen here. These are the deserving defenders. Bill James knows. You can trust Bill James. Here are my own scant thoughts on this year’s winners:

-I don’t care if they’re any good or not. Derek Jeter, Jimmy Rollins and Torii Hunter are really boring selections.

-Why are all the outfield winners center-fielders? It doesn’t seem fair. CORNER OUTFIELDERS HAVE FEELINGS, TOO.

-My love for the glove of Derrek Lee is unsurpassed. That said, I’m glad for Adrian Gonzalez. He deserved to win something, y’know?

-It’s kind of a shame that Kurt Suzuki has Mr. Mauer to contend with. He deserves a little recognition.

Cy Young

AL: Zack Greinke… what a weirdo (I mean that in the most complimentary way possible.) He deserved the award, but didn’t really want it. He enjoys pitching for Kansas City. Really, Mr. Greinke’s attitude is refreshing and delicious. Not unlike a cold Fufu Berry soda. Mmm.

NL: Little Timmy Lincecum snagged another one! I can’t help feeling that eventually his crazy delivery is going to destroy his legs and hips. And then he’ll have to hobble around on crutches. Unless all that ice cream he eats can save him.


AL: Joe Mauer doesn’t even seem like a real person. He’s too flawless. Like a Disney movie hero, or something. I mean, a catcher hitting north of .360?!?! Swoon! And look at this press conference! Just look at it! How tickled pink does Joe Mauer look in that video? Gah! It’s too hard to write of this man objectively, so I’m just gonna stop.

NL: Everybody knows that Albert Pujols is the greatest baseball player on the planet and that he was the only choice for NL MVP this season. What everybody doesn’t know is my personal opinion of the man. It was a secret… till now. I’m just going to out and say it and hope my fellow Cubs fans don’t lynch me. I genuinely like Albert Pujols. As a baseball player and as a human being. I think he is awesome. I think he deserves every award that he is qualified to win. I also hope he remains a St. Louis Cardinal for life. There! –Runs off. Hides.-