FEATURED
Tuesday's Tantrums - 7/5/11
Category: FEATURED

 

Welcome to the Gab, where we all celebrate and enjoy Cervezas and Nachos, especially during the warmth of July and we certainly don’t allow two sports lockouts to hold us back!

I hope everybody enjoyed celebrating the 4th of July weekend and was able to enjoy what they could.  So time marches on and now we’ve officially made it to the graveyard of sports - July.  Baseball is going on but is there much else on the docket?  Well maybe if you like NASCAR, the Tour de France, the British Open, High School football camps, and a certain celebrity golf tournament up at Lake Tahoe.

First off, I want to wish the relaunch of the new The Sports Blog Network and Pablo de Tejas well.  I'm sure the new kids on the block will do just fine.

On to the tantrums…

Rant of the Week.  I love the Nathan's hot dog eating contest, but these morons trying to sell competitive eating as a sport?  Give me a break!  Yeah they can make a couple of bucks dressing like idiots, wearing fake wrestling belts, and gording themselves, but don't try to sell me that these guys are athletes.  Its a sideshow, nothing more.

MLB.   Mad props to the Disabled Veteran who caught that foul ball at Yankee Stadium the other night.

Hey Cleveland, Justin Masterson has a 2.78 ERA and he’s only 6-6?  WTF?

Worst possible timing for Jose Reyes to have hamstring tightness.  I guess now his “Escape from New York” will have to wait.  Dammit, the Giants could have used him.

Can somebody please explain to me how Andrew McCutcheon doesn't get into the All-Star game?

The umps can’t count to four, so Cameron Maybin gets the three ball walk, and ultimately comes around to score in a 1-0 win for San Diego over Seattle, AT SEATTLE?  The scoreboard guy in Seattle should be immediately fired.

Canadian Football League – Week 1.  Got to catch some of the Canada Day festivities in Frenchie-ville (err, Montreal).  BC gave ‘em more of a game than I imagined.  But the big surprise was Toronto beating Calgary in Calgary.  It wasn’t just the fact of Toronto winning, but it’s how they won – most of their big plays were running the ball.

Music.  We spent a little time talking about Sax players and all that.  What about combining Chicago with Earth, Wind, and Fire and letting their horn section go at it? 

Yo Bruce Springsteen, this is what REAL music is rather than that bullshit screaming you do.  You (and your political rants) suck and you’re an embarrassment to New Jersey, the home of Frank Sinatra!  In fact, I’d go so far to say that when it comes to embarrassing your state, you aren’t too far away from those Jersey Shore pukes. 

Golf.  Man, the stuffed shirt crowd ain’t gonna like this.  Robert Garrigus, who had a helluva run in the final round of the U. S. Open admitted to “partaking of the herbage” in the middle of rounds of golf in one of the lesser golf tours back in the day.

Speaking of Carl Spackler, where the hell has he been lately Jeff?

NFL .  Alrighty boys, we’ve made it to July and you got your weekend of rest, let’s get this lockout stuff fixed right now!  We need something to talk about.  Need I rant more?  I wanna join IHM and Stormin' Norman on the Lions bandwagon, and I want to bash Jeff's Cow-sissies.  Let's get this done so we here at The Gab can talk about free agents making teams better and we can start talking Football on the field...

Had the opportunity to watch Herm Edwards speak at the rookie symposium.  He may not have had the results on the field, but it’s perfectly obvious to me that he’s a coach who gets it and cares about the players.  Maybe he should be the guy representing the players.

Wrestling.  TNA is pitching the fact that "wrestling matters", and what's their lead - Hogan and Sting?  One a 58 year old who medically can’t wrestle, and the other a 52 year old born-again christian who won’t go past a certain line when it comes to storyline.  Crazy Sting is not very creative or funny.  As for the WWE, Randy Orton telling a radio station that Kelly Kelly was doing the horizontal mamba with many of the WWE talent is kinda jacked up.  Hey Randy, so what if she was doing the nasty, who are you to criticize?  Didn’t you get into trouble a while back for jerking with the divas?  Grow up dude – you know if she threw it in your face that you’d be down like four flat tires!!! 

NBA.   You notice how the media is lining up on the lockout?  The ones from Miami and LA are saying how the “competitive balance” will never help the league.

If I'm David Stern, I call the media and players bluff.  I'd immediately contract to 20 teams by folding the franchises in Toronto, Indiana, Milwaukee, Atlanta, Charlotte, Orlando, Memphis, New Orleans, Minnesota, and Sacramento right off the top.  Why?  The players don't want to play there, the media can't be bothered with these markets, Buss and the deep pocket owners want nothing to do with them, the puppet Stern only wants the Boston and LAs in the finals. 

At the same time, put New Jersey, Miami, Oklahoma City, Utah, and San Antonio on notice that they will be reviewed every "X" amount of years to ensure there are no business related issues.

You do a contraction draft and make the remaining 20 teams stronger and give them the opportunity to survive and thrive. Cut the season to 76 games (four games against every other team in the league), and then run it like the And One league.  For the playoffs, have two conferences, with the top four records from each conference qualifying.

One reporter from Miami even had the audacity to say with a straight-face that the NBA is America’s new pastime.  I’m from Miami and I know that sparking up is pretty much second nature down there, but you'd have to be higher than Cheech and Chong to believe that take.  Miami doesn't care about the Heat without the "big three" and its fans are some of the worst around - so good luck with "America's Pasttime"...

College Football.  Hey Oregon, like sands through the hourglass you're time is winding down.  When the NCAA gets done deflecting questions about why they’re ignoring Ohio State, their attention is gonna turn to you, and they won’t let you off so easily.  Can you say Death Penalty???

I think I’m gonna start a weekly bashing about those who have jacked up out of conference schedules.  This week I start with Florida.  The Gators are playing Florida Atlantic, UAB, Furman, and Florida State – all at home.  Florida State is one thing, and bringing in money to Florida Atlantic is cool, but what’s with UAB and Furman? 

 

Douche Bag of the Week – Floyd “Money” Mayweather.  It's funny how this worm gets into a cash crunch and now he goes on the air and says he'll fight PacMan.  He got lucky and waited it out so now he'll earn $100 million for the fight.  The dumbest part of this whole thing is that we the sports fan will pay the outrageous fee to watch it.  Hey "Money", you don't want none of the PacMan and I for one can't wait to see you get pummeled. 

PEACE AND RANTING FOREVER!!!


 

Monday Moaning 7-4-11
Category: FEATURED
Tags: NHL MLB Vacation The Beeze 4th of July Handjob

Happy 4th of July all! Don't go blowing off any fingers okay!

Now, I'll be honest with you right from jump...I just got back from a short vacation Sunday evening...So I didn't keep up on sports a whole lot...Saturday I did check up on all the NHL free agent action...My New York Rangers Signed grinder Mike Rupp...Nice pick-up...Then they went big money time...They signed Brad Richards "The Star" of this free-agency season...Nice right? I don't know...9 years seems really long for a guy with some years on him...9 years and $60 million...Rangers GM Glen Sather who has a habit of over-spending says Richards left money on the table to come to the Rangers...

As for the Philadelphia Flyers, they signed old man Jaromir Jagr, after trading Jeff Carter, and Mike Richards last week...They also lost Ville Leino to free agency...I think the Flyers may be going backwards...GOOD!

Also breaking Sunday night, the San Jose Sharks traded Dany Heatley to Minnesota for Martin Havlat...This is the second big trade between these two teams in two weeks now...

Now lets get to the vacation....This is how it began, with a car ride to Erie, PA...



There we got together with the Wife's sister, and her family...A bunch of cousins, uncles, aunts, second cousins...We all stayed at the same Hotel...The Bell-Aire (A Clarion Hotel)...You would think with the name it would be nice...NOPE! Old, dated, dark, dingy, and stupid...I reserved a suite and got a shitty dorm room...All of us had problems with our rooms, and $600 for 3 nights in this place is just retarded...

We went to a little amusement park there called, Waldameer...The kids had fun...Molly got tired out from a rough day of chillin' in her stroller...


Then she needed a refreshment....



The next day we spent at the beach, dodging the shit that floats in Lake Erie...Later that night the wife and kids and I went to visit with some friends...We had a great time eating, drinking, and catching up...The Little Beeze was a non-stop ball of energy, going from trampoline, to swing set, to playing with a dog, to roasting marsh mellows, and back again...

Saturday was the Zoo, and a lot of time in the hotel pool...Then dinner at SARA'S...I don't really recommend spending a ton of time in Erie, but if you're there, you have to get some grub at Sara's...

Every evening ended with me laying next to Molls, drinking Sam Adams, and watching a Pirates game...I started thinking of how smart (economically) it is to be a Pittsburgh fan...All of there pro-sports teams have the same color gear...I started thinking of other cities...Some may have two teams, but not all...But don't worry, I'm not getting on the Shittsburgh bandwagon...But you gotta give the Pirates credit, them and the Indians are both playing a lot better then any of us thought they would...

I also realized Eris is a great town for a Sports blogger...They're parked right between Pittsburgh, Cleveland and Buffalo...About a hour and a half away from each city, they get coverage on all of them...That said, I'm not packing my bags yet!

Vacation was fun, but tiring...It didn't really feel like a vacation for me...The wife had to remind me it was about family, and the kids...I still sometimes have those selfish feelings, of wanting a vacation that doesn't involve jugging around the kids and all their shit...One day!

Even the kids were wiped out, and they weren't drinking nearly as much Sam Adams as I was...



When we got home, I saw the "All-Star" teams...So even though I had been harping on how Asdrubal Cabrera should be the AL starter at SS, including breaking down the numbers...That Ass-hat, overrated, Bastard, Derek Jeter got the fan votes...Cabrera got on the team, but he should have got the start...Dude has killed it all year with the bat and glove...He was better defensively as a rookie, then Jeter ever was! But it's about this year, and he as out-shined everyone...

This is more proof that fans should have nothing to do with the "All-Star" game...Especially since the game now counts for Home Field in the World Series...The managers should pick...The worst thing is, every year I get pissed about it, and then I never bother watching the stupid ass game!

Ahh, fuck it...I'm tired...Have a good 4th of July, and be glad that some brave souls fought for our freedom, so we wouldn't be under the rule of those British cunts! Seriously Canada when are you going to tell the Queen to go piss up a rope?

Have a week...

Later, The Beeze.  

 

College Football treading on Thin Ice
Category: FEATURED
Tags: NCAA Football

Thoughts from an Island Girl

 

 

I follow the Bleacher Report often and I am generally amused by it.   I like the polls and ratings.  As an Arkansas fan I am however frustrated.   For one the rich get richer.

    Ohio State and Auburn come to mind.    When recruits are being hosted,  they are really being hosted.   As a result,  players go where they can hook up,  party on and do just about whatever they want.  

 

 The cost?   The integrity of the games.    Reggie Bush and Scam Newton are two prime examples.   For years the NCAA will investigate and by the time they complete these 'investigations',   the fans are the ones being punished.

   I  see what they did with Ryan Mallett,  essentially costing him millions of dollars.   But Razorback fans know they are not taken seriously.   Like blue bloods the football community giggles like a teenage girl.    They would rather court their favorite star players and coaches.

 

 

 Pryor was much heralded because he was a prima donna.    A football diva!   The next best thing like cheese on a cheeseburger.   Only the cheeseburger doesn't give you heartburn but back to the point.    The Bleacher Report said Arkansas will be a pretender.     And this is always the case.   If the Razorbacks win it is a surprise.   The reward would naturally be the signing of 5-star athletes but this seldom happens there.   I am going to do more on this topic and list more details,   some provocative.   Right now,  I have some partying to do ( with family).

 

Have a great weekend be safe,  please......

Zen and the Art of Lawn Maintenance
Category: FEATURED

 

 


So here’s my thing.  It’s a little off the beaten path, I admit it, but you know how when you mow your lawn you follow the same path all the time?  You know you do.  It’s a thing of beauty, a masterstroke, true art.

I used to have this thing down pat.  One part of the yard was straight back and forth, in long stripes.  Then the other part I had this cool yin/yang thing rocking with the flower bed and the big-ass fir tree making up opposite sides of the symbol.  It looked pretty cool.   I would sometimes finish, and go to the second floor of the house to look out the window at it, just to make sure it looked right.

Then I get this idea to plant some arborvitae by the street – I call them the “Original Six” as I’ve since expanded the lot by another group, the expansion shrubs.  So that threw off my juju by a little bit.  I had to now go around something and mess with the pattern.  This wasn’t too onerous, but then I decided to build a shed.  Now I’ve got this big square box right in the middle of my long stripes.  What to do with that?  Now I’ve got this Utah shape I have to deal with.  Add into this mess a swing set, a bunch of trees cut down, and a new stockade fence and I have completely ruined my mowing-mojo.   There’s a regular and normal pattern in every yard, and it is up to us to bring it out.  It’s doing Gods work.

Its not like I have ballpark quality turf – I have grass where I don’t want it, and clover, Bermuda grass, and other weeds where I do want grass – its just that I’ve always appreciated a well mowed lawn.  If you go to Fenway Park, you’ll see these intersecting patterns or the hanging Sox logo.  What I wouldn’t give to have that action.   Instead, I own a postage stamp of crab grass that looks moderately manicured when freshly mowed. 

I know you think about it.  You do the same freaking thing, and don’t deny it.  You’re out there walking around planning out your path, what it will look like and making sure you hit everything.  It’s an unspoken truth, unspoken until I break the silence.  Sure, we can advertise Massengil and Trojans on prime time television, but we just can’t have the conversation about our lawns.  And I don’t mean about grubs, or the pros and cons of Round Up Ready turf.  I mean the artistic, right brained stuff – the artist in each one of us, because it is art.  Your significant other wants to take you to the Guggenheim, you just want the front lawn to look good, and she tells you that you just don’t appreciate art.  A well executed double play – THAT’S art.  A linebacker blitz to the quarterback – THAT’S ART.  A quality mowing pattern in your front yard – THAT’S art.  A crucifix in a jar of urine?  Um, no.  Not art.   Yeah, and it’s me that just doesn’t get art.  No, we appreciate art – it’s YOU that doesn’t get it.  I don’t need to spend $45 plus cab fair to go to a building with a bunch of paintings within. 

Most of us don’t have “a guy” doing our lawn for us: fact is if you’ve got someone mowing your lawn for you, then you’re probably getting your nails done too.  I think it’s a guy thing to want to get out there – we’ll rationalize how much a riding mower would save over having someone else to do the lawn before we’d allow someone else to do it for us: “as long as I have this for 20 years and mow 25 times a year, it’ll completely pay for itself…”

We spend that time and money because it’s a contribution to the arts.  We spread chemicals because our yard demands it.  Art demands it.  We demand it.  

Five Minute Frags - Small Gestures
Category: FEATURED
Tags: MLB Minnesota Twins Chris Cates New Britain Rock Cats Portland Sea Dogs New Hampshire Fisher Cats

 

A preacher named Robert South once said, “If there be a truer measure of a man than by what he does, it must by what he gives.” For Chris Cates, this is an easy lesson to measure up to.

At 5’ 3” and 145 lbs, Cates has always been challenged in the face of measurements placed upon him by other so-called “men”. A four-year starter at the University of Louisville, Cates holds a career .302 batting average as well as the distinction of being the shortest player in NCAA Division 1 Baseball during his time playing for the Cardinal. One of Chris’s teammate recalls Cates during his recruiting visit, thinking he was the coach’s nephew rather than a player. Yet, it was his accomplishments on the field, not his size that prompted the Minnesota Twins to take a flyer on Cates and select him in the 38th round of the 2007 MLB draft.

Four years later, my family and I took a trip in May 2011 to see a minor league game in Manchester, New Hampshire, to see the New Hampshire Fisher Cats, the Double-A affiliate for the Toronto Blue Jays, take on the New Britain Rock Cats, their Twins counterpart. We were astonished when Cates ran out to shortstop when the Rock Cats took the field, and my mind in particular immediately ran to thoughts of David Eckstein and Dustin Pedroia, two other players of shorter stature that rose above the limitations that scouts placed on their size. However, the bigger impression was the one Cates made on my 7-year-old son Logan.

Logan is a fraternal twin, and he and his brother couldn’t possibly fit the definition for fraternal any closer than they do. Logan is blond with blue eyes, while his brother has brown eyes and hair. His brother is also 5 inches taller and 10 lbs heavier, which has fostered in Logan a self-image that he is smaller than others despite the fact that he is in the normal percentiles for his age.

Logan absolutely loves baseball and when he saw Cates take the field, his eyes lit up. Here was a player that epitomized the same things Logan thought he was struggling with and yet here he was, playing two steps away from the Major Leagues and doing it at a high-profile position. My son immediately made Chris Cates his favorite player, talking about him the whole game and ride home.

This past week, we were reviewing the schedule for the Portland Sea Dogs, the Double-A squad for the Boston Red Sox, and noticed that they were hosting the Rock Cats for an afternoon game. We immediately bought tickets and headed out on the three-hour drive to Portland. We didn’t arrive until the bottom of the first inning and when we’d finally gotten into our seats, we noticed that Cates wasn’t on the field. Logan was disappointed, but I explained to him that sometimes, other players get to start and he was good with that.

During the seventh inning stretch, Cates appeared to come from the clubhouse with a trainer and headed for the visiting dug-out. I noticed him walking across the field and immediately alerted my son. As the bottom of the ninth came around, I took Logan with me and headed for some empty seats next to the visiting dug-out. Portland does not allow you to ask for autographs during the game, so we waited for the game to wrap up, which is did moments later when Alex Hassan hit a walk-off home run for the Sea Dogs.

As Hassan was crossing the plate, my wife flagged down Cates and asked him if he’d sign a ball for Logan. Despite having just watched his team lose, Cates set his equipment down and signed the baseball for my son. I explained to him that he was a hero to my son, as Logan has self-image issues due to his size. Cates turned to my son and said to him, “Hey buddy, you may be short, but you’re never small. Remember that.”

We thanked him for his time, wished him good luck, and let him go on his way with his team. My son beamed about his experience the entire ride home and has not let the ball go in the three days since.

As a fan of the game, it is moments like these that I truly appreciate. The game succeeds when the players and fans can identify with one another, and experiences like these go a long way in paving the way for the future of the game.

For Cates, it was small gesture, but it turned into a huge impression for one fan.

 

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