Tagged with "Cleveland Indians"
Monday Moaning 5-20-13
Category: FEATURED
Tags: NHL New York Rangers Henrik Lundqvist MLB Cleveland Indians The Beeze Little Beeze Life Kids Baseball

 

Yeah, some people want you to keep quiet...I know plenty of people want me to be quiet...But we know that just isn't going to happen...Sometimes shit needs to be said...Even if it upsets people...Why hold it in?  'Cause some one on facebook may unfriend you?  They aren't your friend if they can't take you telling the truth, or sharing how you feel about something...

 

New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist caught some shit for venting his frustration after the Rangers lost game one to Boston Thursday night, in OT...Lundqvist was upset with himself for the 3-2 loss...But he also voiced his frustration with the teams lack of offense so far in the playoffs...He said what every single Rangers fan has been saying for weeks...But people thought it was wrong for him to call out his teammates...Why?  Why can some hack write about how horrible the power play is, but the guy carrying the team can't?

 

I'm not joking, I read a blog that pointed out that Lundqvist hasn't been good in OT...Well, couldn't that also be pointed at the rest of team for defensive breakdowns, and lack of scoring!?!  There was even a comment that Thursday night Lundqvist wasn't at his best...Well, the 2 previous games he threw shutouts...And yeah, if you watched closely, he wasn't at his best...And with that said, he made 45 saves on 48 shots...And his teammates blocked over 20 shots that night...If not for Lundqvist, Thursday night, the Rangers would have been destroyed...So he blew off some steam, and rightfully so!

 

But things got worse...Sunday the Bruins blasted Lundqvist and company 5-2...I had hoped Henrik popping off would have charged them up...And actually some of the Rangers did look like they took it up a notch...But the Bruins had a lot more jump...The series goes back to New York now...I'm not worried yet...The Rangers just need to do what they did against Washington...They'll be alright...

 

-Saturday horse racing took a ding again...They've been dying for a Triple Crown winner but it won't happen again...Just as favorite, Orb started to make his move, Titletown Five and Departing tried making their own moves, and pinched Orb in...He got stuck in the pack and couldn't do a thing...I had Departing winning, (Thanks Eddie Olczyk) but no one was catching Oxbow...That horse ran a hell of a race...With that said, I'll still be watching the Belmont...there are a number of exciting horses, and this thing should be wide open.

 

-Saturday morning Little Beeze and I headed off to our first baseball practice...Things are running behind this year...New organization running the league, and they're trying to figure it out...The practice was good...I've got a lot of good hitters...And my two best fielders, are girls...They both have great baseball sense...I can already tell it's going to be a good season...Had a number of parents that stuck around and helped out...Nice change of pace!

 

-Cleveland weather update...We have officially skipped Spring and are into Summer...80 degrees this weekend and my kids wanted to go ice skating Friday night...

 

 

And when we weren't at the Rink, or Baseball practice...Little sis, wouldn't leave big brother's side...

                            

 

 

-And lastly, The Cleveland Indians...I'm shocked...There has been a lot of rumbling about the Tribe having low attendance...Well, considering a 24oz Pabst cost $10, Parking $20...And every road in the City is ripped up or closed...and the last two seasons the team fell apart after the All-Star Break, I'm guessing people are playing it safe with how they spend their money...It also doesn't help that while the Tribe is playing great, all the Sports talk shows in town are talking about the fucking Browns for some reason...

 

Have a week...

 

The Beeze.

Monday Moaning 4-8-13
Category: FEATURED
Tags: MLB NHL Kids Life The Beeze Cleveland Indians New York Rangers Columbus Blue Jackets Marian Gaborik Opening Day Indian Fever

 

                    Anyone else hungry right now?

Well, Spring has sprung...It reached over 60 degrees in the Cleve Sunday...The Indians home opener is set to kick off...So, based on past history, it will either rain, snow, have heavy fog, or the city will fall into Lake Erie...But no matter what, Clevelanders will be out in full force, getting shit-faced, and many will have no idea what happens in the game...Because let's be honest...Opening day is just fake holiday type of thing...Like Valentine's day! But it gives people a reason to take an extra day off and pound beers..."America, FUCK YEAH!"

I took my extra day off Friday...The wife and I had some things to take care of in the morning, and it was nice to have an extra day with the kids while they were on Spring Break...Minutes after I got home from work Thursday, the UPS man showed up with 3 large boxes...When I ordered bunk beds for my daughters, I didn't expect them to show up in this many pieces...

I got them about 97% done in about 2 hours...Then I took a long break...Friday afternoon I finished them up....

Then we just had to wait for the mattress for the bottom bunk to show...It showed up at 7:00AM Saturday morning...I wasn't pleased about that timing...But Molly and her big sis love their bunk beds...

We spent plenty of time hitting a few parks this weekend, with the touch of Spring we had...We also stopped for a bite to eat, where Molly hammed it up for the camera, and people around us...

The wife took the older two to see Jurassic Park on the big screen, while Molls and I watched baseball and napped...The new bed is comfy...

-So far I have found myself getting into the baseball season much easier then normal...Maybe it's the fantasy teams that have me watching closely...I've been battling my impatience with guys starting slow...and the occasional guy starting well, who is going to tank in a month...I've been all over the waiver wire, looking for the next great break out player...And seriously, Chris Davis, calm down and save some for July...Holy fucking hot start batman! Dude is making a bunch of us look stupid!

The Indians will enter their home opener at .500...They have 4 with the Yankees, 3 with the White Sox, and 3 with the Red Sox on the home stand...They better take advantage of the Yankees...The Tribe has already shown a Jekyll and Hyde side...The Rays 4 and 5 starters shut them down in back to back games, then Sunday the Tribe shredded Cy Young winner David Price...Hey, if this sorry team can go .500 all year, that's a step in the right direction...Oh, and while it's early...That off season trade, sending Choo to Cincy, and bringing the Indians Stubbs and Bauer, looks fucking awful...Stubbs blows...I don't care how much speed the guy has...It doesn't matter if he can't get on base...And Bauer, looked like the head case his ex-teammates described him as...

-Last week we saw the NHL trade deadline lead to a frenzy of activity...Like the Penguins getting Brendan Morrow and Jerome Iginla...Morrow has looked horrible and lost...Shocking for such a heady, steady player...Iginla said he wanted to do what was best for Calgary...SO he said no to an offer from Boston, that would have been better fro the Flames, then the deal Pittsburgh made...Why should we be surprised? He hasn't looked that great out there...

So Boston settled for old man Jagr...I was shocked they didn't go after some one who was more then a rent-a-player...So far he has been okay with the Bruins, but the guy is old, and can't put up the minutes...

The Minnesota Wild landed one of the top guys out there, in Jason Pomminville...This guy plays bot ways...Has great hands...A great shot...Good speed...Total game...The Wild can smell a run, and they struck...They gave up their goalie of the future in Matt Hackett and another top prospect Johan Larsson...Buffalo getting Hackett may be a sign of things to come for Ryan Miller...He's been the face of the team, and he's a top tier goalie, but they are a small market team trying to catch lighting in a bottle with a young, deep team that won't send them to bankruptcy again...

The trade that shocked many was the New York Rangers dumping sniper, Marian Gaborik...Not so much that they moved Gabby...That writing was on the wall...He's gotten lazy many times in his career...And if you don't play by coach John Tortorella's rules, you're gonna be gone...The shock was that the Columbus Blue Jackets, who have quietly crawled into the playoff hunt, made the deal for Gaborik...They gave the Rangers Derrick Brassard, who in his first game at MSG had a goal and 3 assists...They also got Young defenseman John Moore who was a top prospect for the Jackets...He had a goal in his Ranger debut...They also got Derek Dorsett who is injured, but adds some grit, and balls the Rangers have missed...

Based off of the youth and talent of Moore, and Brassard, I see this as a win for the Rangers...But for Jackets fans, who saw the team trade their star Rick Nash to the Rangers last year for not much, this had to be nice to see...The team fighting for the playoffs, and they trade some youth for a proven 40 goal scorer...If nothing else, it shows Columbus fans the team really is heading in a new direction...

The Rangers also added size, strength, grit, and talent, when they traded some draft picks to San Jose for Ryane Clowe...As far as the score sheet, Clowe has been awful...But he does all the little things too...And that makes him perfect for Torts...And he fit right into the Rangers system...In is first game with the Rangers he had 2 goals and an assist...His first two goals of the season...Saturday he added another assist, and is seeing more ice time...The change of scenery is paying off...

I was pissed about the NHL lockout/strike, but to be honest, I've really liked this shortened season...It has actually made the regular season count for something....The games seem more intense...The NHL doesn't want to talk about cutting down the season, but it may be something they should look at...

-Before I go...Why not close with a classic tune from my youth...Perfect for the Indians home opener!

Catch the fever!

 

Have a week...

The Beeze.

 

Bourn Finds Identity With Indians
Category: MLB
Tags: MLB Cleveland Indians Hot Stove Michael Bourn

 

 

Michael Bourn can finally claim to know exactly who he is again after the free agent outfielder officially signed with the Cleveland Indians on Monday. The 30-year-old Bourn signed a 4-year, $48 million deal with the Tribe, which includes a vesting option for a fifth season worth an additional $12 million.

 

Bourn was an All-Star in 2012 after hitting .274 with 9 home runs, 57 RBI, a .739 OPS, and 42 stolen bases for the Braves last season. His 6.0 bWAR was the highest of his career and many fans felt he was robbed of a Gold Glove award for his play in center field. Overall, Bourn is a career .272 hitter and has 276 total stolen bases.

 

The fleet footed outfielder was one of the top free agents on the market this winter, but floated out there on the market for quite a bit of time. While his asking price - and his agent Scott Boras - was one of the reasons he had trouble finding a home, Bourn suffered due to the fact that he also had a compensatory draft pick tied to him after turning down a qualifying offer from Atlanta earlier this winter.

 

The Mets were known to be looking at Bourn as well, but with the 11th pick in the draft, the team did not want to lose its unprotected pick. At one point, there was talk that the Players' Union would petition on behalf of Bourn and the Mets in order for them to keep their pick since they technically had the 10th worst record, only falling out of the protected pick range due to the Pittsburgh Pirates being guaranteed the 10th pick after failing to sign their first round pick in 2012.

 

The Indians are already giving up their second round pick to the Yankees. They will now surrender their competitive balance pick (69th overall) as compensation for signing Bourn.

 

Bourn will immediately become the Indians new center-fielder, with Drew Stubbs and Michael Brantley likely platooning in left field. The Indians have made quite a splash this winter in free agency and trades, also signing Nick Swisher and acquiring Trevor Bauer in a deal with Arizona and Cincinnati earlier this offseason. Last week, the team also inked Daisuke Matsuzaka and Jason Giambi to minor league deals.

 

Next up for Scott Boras, find a similar situation for Kyle Lohse, who has been similarly handicapped after rejecting the qualifying offer from the St. Louis Cardinals.

Indians Sign Matsuzaka, Giambi
Category: MLB
Tags: MLB Cleveland Indians Hot Stove

 

The Cleveland Indians are once again in the middle of a youth movement, but that has not stopped the team from adding a pair of veterans to the fold. On Saturday, they signed Jason Giambi to serve the role of back-up first baseman/designated hitter/pinch-hitter. They followed that up on Sunday by agreeing to terms with free agent Daisuke Matsuzaka on one-year deal.

 

Both contracts are minor-league deals that include invitations to both players to attend Spring Training with the Major League club.

 

Giambi's deal is worth $750k plus incentives that can be reached if he makes the Indians roster. The 42-year-old veteran of 18 seasons spent the 2012 campaign with the Colorado Rockies, posting a .225 average with 1 home run and 8 RBI in limited duty. At one stage of the winter, he contemplated retirement and was being considered as a possible managerial candidate in Colorado. Giambi is a career .280 hitter with 429 home runs, 1405 RBI, a .926 OPS and was the 2000 American League MVP.

 

Matsuzaka finished his 6-years in Boston, making just 11 starts in 2012 after undergoing Tommy John surgery in 2011. Dice-K posted an unremarkable 1-7 record with an 8.28 ERA in those starts, but owns a 50-37 overall record with a 4.52 ERA during his 6-year MLB career. There was talk that the right-hander would return to Japan for next season before he opted to sign with Cleveland. If he makes the team, the deal is worth $1.5 million plus incentives that could bring the contract up to $4 million based on performance.

 

It is hard to imagine where either player fits into the long-term scheme for Cleveland. The Indians have already signed Mark Reynolds to be their primary first baseman, with Nick Swisher and Carlos Santana likely to get a number of starts there as well.

 

The pitching staff is also fairly well set with Justin MastersonUbaldo JimenezBrett MyersCarlos Carrasco, and Zach McAllister penciled in as the starting five. If one of them faulters, newly acquired Trevor Bauer is likely to be the first to step into the fold.

Not Again!
Category: FEATURED
Tags: Terry Francona Cleveland Indians Boston Red Sox

Pity the fans of Cleveland. First they prostrate themselves by elevating LeBron James to Kim Jong-Il stature and he jilts them on national television. Then the Browns suffer through another rubber-stamp lousy season, being ditched by their owner in the process, only to get a new owner whose first move is to hire a coach whose name inspires a Google search more than it inspires hope. And now they get to watch their estranged original franchise go to the AFCC --- again --- in black and purple uniforms.

And then there are the Indians. The Tribe. The team that Bill Veeck, flush with gimmicks in a city flush with postwar industry, turned into a powerhouse, winners of two pennants and countless futile but entertaining runs at the unbeatable 1950s Yankees. A team with names like Lou Boudreau, Early Wynn, Bob Feller, Bob Lemon, Rocky Colavito, Bobby Avila and many more. A team that beat Ted Williams' mighty Red Sox in a playoff in 1948, then beat Boston's other guys, the Braves, in the World Series. A team that went 111-43 in 1954. A team that found a gold mine in Latin America and built another powerhouse in the '90s. A team that was within a game of going to another World Series in 2007 --- before choking versus Boston. That team dissolved as the stars, unaffordable as free agents, were diffused into the league's money pits. It was time to turn things around from the bottom up.

And to whom did they turn to raise the phoenix from the ashes? Terry Francona. Did they really deserve this?

There are as many non-Pink-Hat Red Sox fans who thought the team won despite Francona (he was derided as 'Francoma' before anyone even knew about painkillers) as there are those who thought it was because of him, but make no mistake, he won two World Series. He was brought in to babysit the second-highest-paid roster in the league, a team awash in self-described 'idiots' like Manny Ramirez, Pedro Martinez, Johnny Damon, Curt Schilling, Jason Varitek and Nomar Garciaparra. As time went on most were replaced by equally volatile egos like Josh Beckett, Jonathan Papelbon, John Lackey, Kevin Youkilis, Dustin Pedroia, Carl Crawford... you get the idea. Francona appeared masterful at keeping this potential zoo yoked together to pull the wagon --- until it all came apart, perhaps tellingly following the departure of steadying influences like Mike Lowell and prodigal son John Farrell. Left alone with the whip, Francona gave no sign of being able to control what quickly degenerated into a madhouse, even with wild man Ramirez gone. What was left for Bobby Valentine wasn't going anywhere. Was upper management partially at fault with Valentine, mollycoddling star players and giving them a red carpet to the front office to complain about the manager? Of course. Were the veteran players at fault? Of course. Was Valentine the cure? Not hardly. But nothing in this soap opera gives any indication that Francona, without broad shoulders to stand on, was a capable manager even for a team loaded with high-priced talent, let alone for a bargain-basement rebuild.

Enter the Indians, who hired the glitter of his two rings to lift them out of the cellar. At that point, success-starved Forest City denizens felt they had reason to rejoice. Here was a big name. This guy had won.

Then came the news that he had also --- gulp --- written a book, or as likely been coaxed into writing one by Boston Globe sports vulture extraordinaire Dan Shaunessey. Ah, the Globe --- as biased and controlling in its politics as it is convinced that it is the heart, soul and conscience of Boston sports --- and which, scant years back, shamelessly begged for its own unprofitable existence until it was discreetly bailed out by the New York Times, its owner and, of course, its political ally. Ah, the Globe, which portrayed the Sandinistas as folk heroes in the '80s, earning the sobriquet El Globo almost everywhere outside the PRC (Peoples' Republic of Cambridge). The Globe, whose election year eat-the-rich movement, amplified by daily radio soapboxes for its scribes, cast the issue as out-of-touch ownership victimizing the fans through a preoccupation with money, this despite the fact that John Henry's massive hedge fund, his cash cow, went belly-up in 2011 --- not exactly a sign of obsessive scrutiny. Forgotten was the fact that this ownership bought as much as brought Boston two titles and nearly a third, following a brief 86-year drought. While it worked, no one's lofty principles were violated.

Despite Francona's book as yet being unavailable, sensational details have been leaked to provide maximum sales stimulus. And it will sell. Doubtless it will also sell Boston's ownership (which made Francona rich and famous) down the river, and equally doubtless it will fail to emphasize that the controlling suits in the front office knew a stooge when they saw one, and an eager stooge at that. Terry Francona made his bed and slept in it.

So what's so sordid about all this? Maybe Casey Stengel never wrote a book shredding Del Webb for canning him after a mere 10 pennants in 12 seasons, but Joe Torre sure wrote one. With the bar lowered appropriately, why can't Francona cash in? Who cares? Isn't baseball ridden with bigger scandals anyway?

Something to consider: Torre, though coy about retirement, knew he was done with baseball when he decided to rip his former organization. He never came back. Terry Francona has apparently forgotten that he's back in the game --- and in the American League. What's to stop Cleveland fans now from feeling that he considers his new job banishment to the minors, something unworthy of his memoirs? Ok, my best days are behind me now, and as I ease into retirement and fatten my nest egg by managing these rubes I'm free to reminisce (and vent) about my glory days in Boston --- plus fatten my nest egg even more. If I flop in this nowhere burg, nobody will want to read my book. I gotta strike while the iron is at least still warm.

Sound harsh? Know what? That's how Red Sox fans would feel if everything had happened in reverse and Francona had just been hired by Boston. Around here, the spin-zone media who begat this masterpiece are already at high rpm, and they aren't likely to implicate Francona. He's making them money and publicly hanging their class-war enemies all at once. Apologists are pushing the angle that he probably didn't torch any of his players a la Torre, so it's ok. That, after all, would damage his ability to manage his new team. Hello? Here's hoping the fans and scribes of Cleveland aren't quite so purposely naive about workplace relationships. The timing of the book, even if it turns out to be a mea-culpa testimonial to the goodness and purity of the Red Sox organization, is tasteless. And it will include an even more tasteless blame game. The admission that he was a painkiller-guzzling zombie will elicit cries of 'courageous' from the spinners, but smells like an attempt at an excuse. The way to show the world that the utter collapse of a league-leading powerhouse in 2011 wasn't your fault is to lead your new team to the promised land, not to publish an expose. Nobody loves a rat. Seen Eric Mangini working the sidelines lately, speaking of Boston and Cleveland?

In publishing his Red Sox memoirs, Francona has announced to Cleveland that he considers the writable portion of his career over. If he's also thrown his former ownership (maybe others?) under the bus, then it must have slipped his mind that he now works for new ownership. This isn't the same as leaving a corporation in a huff to head up a cutthroat competitor. Everybody works for one company, and it's called MLB. Players insist that they are part of a brotherhood. Guess what? So are owners. And an owner is a rather important part of the team. Ya think? There's no winner here except for the yellow media.

Now, if Terry Francona indeed leads the Tribe out of the cellar and back into contention his book will surely become just old news. However, if he doesn't, this curious episode may indelibly cheapen his all-important legacy. It probably has already. More importantly, it will heap further disrespect on the city that was once the Best Location in the Nation, extending its status as the Mistake on the Lake. He may be helping the overbearing Boston media drive out the only owner in a century to take the Red Sox to the top, but the irony is that he's dumping on his new employer and on his new city in the process.

Most importantly, writing any expose cheapens baseball, but writing one while still active breaks new ground, even if every word is true. Pandering to Pink Hats is one thing, but reaching out to the Jerry Springer crowd with Mommy Dearest is another. Biting the hand that fed you looks tawdry. Even reminiscing wistfully about your old team while in the employ of another looks bad. Biting the hand of MLB while it's still feeding you is just plain stupid.

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