Tagged with "Washington Nationals"
Monday Moaning 3-11-13
Category: FEATURED
Tags: Heidi Whatney Jenny Dell Jason Whitlock LeBron James Dwayne Wade NFL NBA MLB Washington Nationals Cleveland The Beeze Bill Burr 15 Minutes

 

WOW! The weather got so nice in Cleveland on Sunday, it had everyone thinking about Summer...Which got me thinking about images like this one!

While my Brother-in-law in Boston is looking at another mountain of 20+ inches of snow, we're here with sun and 68 degrees....In the last year or two, there has been some crazy weather in the U.S. I mean we're hearing about Tornadoes year round now...Serious weather seems to be hitting everywhere...Well, except one place...The Cleve...Yes, we got some rain and serious wind from "Super Storm Sandy" but our homes didn't blow into the lake...Maybe Mother Nature has realized Cleveland has been shit on enough...

Besides that, we do enough damage ourselves...Just look what this dump truck driver did Saturday morning...

A large portion of I-90 has been closed all weekend while crews take that pedestrian bridge down...Dude knocked it off the pillars...Only in the fucking Cleve!

So, I have to admit that my writing has slipped lately...I've been distracted and tired...So Friday night I forced myself to write...I gave myself a time limit, and knocked out A_15_MINUTE_BLOG just to get my juices going and get shit off my chest...

Now I feel slightly recharged...

A couple months back I was talking about fan loyalty, and how owners and players don't show that same loyalty much these days...That piled on with years of watching Cleveland teams lose, I decided to go free agent...I said that I would choose my baseball team to root for in April...I'll still pay attention to the Indians, but they aren't making the cut...I think Terry Francona will get them going the right direction, but it's not happening this year just because they added 3 guys who hit below .265 and strike out a fucking ton...

I'll also pay attention to the Red Sox because of the family connection...I like that they added Joel Hanrahan...But as some one who kinda got hooked on the Pirates last year, that sucks for Pittsburgh...Also NESN always have hot chicks covering the Sox....

There's the former NESN chick Heidi Watney getting put in her place by the latest NESN hottie, Jenny Dell and her huge creamers! Which would you take?

This year, I'm focused on two teams...Both from the same area...The Baltimore Orioles, and the Washington Nationals...I really want to see if the Orioles can build on what they did last year...But I'm not waiting for April...The Nationals are my team this year...That Harper kid is good, and he's a cocky prick...I like that! Strasburg is a beast, and I'd love to see what he'll do with a full season...They've got a solid staff, and balanced lineup...Screw it...I'm signing a 2 year deal with the Nats!

And I'm not waiting for after the draft or free agency with Football...I have no faith in the Browns, and even if they land some big free agents, which is tough to do here, It will still take time, especially with the hellish QB situation this team has constantly been in...I'm all in with the Seattle Seahawks...Pete Carroll is a douche, but that's a hell of a team they've got going there...Plus, as much as a dick as Richard Sherman seems to be, I love that told off Skip Bayless last week...You can see that HERE...

- Saturday I posted some WISDOM from Bill Burr...The guy kills me...Just hilarious...There was another clip I was watching, and planning on posting...Then it was suggested to me to check it out by a facebook friend...Great minds right! So here's Bill on Gold Diggin' Whores...

 

Classic Bill Burr!

- I rarely talk Basketball, mainly because I don't watch it...There is nothing I like about the NBA...But I'm going to talk a bit of Basketball this week...Why? Because at one time I use to think Jason Whitlock was a good columnist...Now, after some of the shit he has written and tweeted over the last couple years, I realize he's almost as big of an ass-hat as Rick Reilly...This week Whitlock wrote a column stating that the entire NBA is afraid of LeBron James...REALLY? Why the hell would other elite NBA players be afraid of LeBron...This guy isn't the living legend that Whitlock and dolts at ESPN try to make him out to be...He's only has one NBA title...1...

Whitlock goes on to say that James and Dwayne Wade are the best duo the NBA has seen..."We’ve never seen anything like the pairing of James and Dwyane Wade. Two superstars playing at this level of efficiency, shooting over 50 percent from the field. They invented and perfected the three-quarter-court, alley-oop outlet pass. They popularized the chase-down, hear-my-footsteps blocked shot at the rim. They’re lethal at both ends of the court. James and Wade are 94 feet of hell. It might take a fluke or an injury to stop the Heat’s winning streak."

I'm not an expert on basketball, but this guy is nuts...Why doesn't he just give them credit for inventing the game...This shit is retarded...They've got one title together...They haven't proven shit yet...With age, Whitlock gets more and more full of shit!

Plus if you believe any bit of what Cleveland sports talk radio says, LeBron wants to come back to Cleveland to end his career...The rumors say he isn't happy in Miami...How much of that is true, I don't know...I know he crew isn't getting their asses kissed and put on the team payroll like they did here....Even worse is how many people would welcome him back with open arms...After all that hate...After feeling so screwed, they'd welcome him back...These are the same people who will never forgive Art Modell for moving HIS team...Gotta love the fucking Cleve!

In closing...Fuck LeBron James...Fuck Jason Whitlock....Cleveland is a bitch, but the Weather has been better then most places...Jenny Dell has great cans...Bill Burr rules...Go Nationals!

Have a Week...

The Beeze.

 

Five Minute Frags - Underestimating Bryce Harper
Category: MLB
Tags: MLB Washington Nationals Bryce Harper

 

It goes without saying that I have spent a considerable amount of time angling against Washington Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper. I have openly questioned the Nationals' decision to recall the then 19-year-old phenom and make him a permanent member of their starting line-up. I then chided Tony LaRussa and Major League Baseball for naming Harper to the National League All-Star team instead of Martin Prado of the Atlanta Braves. And then to close out the trifecta, I (a man who has absolutely no say in the matter) chose Wade Miley as my pick for the NL Rookie of the Year award, a trophy that inevitably went to Harper.

 

Some would read that and say that I have a personal ax to grind with the aforementioned Harper. It is actually quite the contrary. I feel he is a phenomenal talent, but my posts were backed up with thoughts of rushing a 19-year-old and playing to media sensationalism. Of course, Harper proved me wrong in terms of his maturity and his readiness to be a Major League star. And while I won't cave on my argument for Prado a year ago, the right evidence could easily beat me on the Rookie of the Year voting.

 

Well, I'm here today to prove that I am capable of change.

 

Harper has been on fire to start the spring and is already in mid-season form in regards to his cockiness and his desire to be in the line-up at any given time. Reading that lead me to reviewing what the stat pundits are predicting for the affable outfielder heading into his sophomore season. Before we get there, let's have a look at his stat-line from 2012, courtesy of Baseball-Reference.com:

 

2012 - 597 AB/ 98 R/ 144 H/ 26 2B/ 9 3B/ 22 HR / 59 RBI/ 18 SB/ .270 BA/ .817 OPS

 

Not bad at all for a 19-year-old who played just 56 games above A-Ball in his career. It shows just how advanced Harper was, but it also showed that there was room for improvement. So with that said, one would expect that the experts would see Harper as making a steady climb in 2013, right? Not exactly.

 

Noted statistician Bill James sees Harper making just modest gains in 2013:

 

659 PA/ 24 HR/ 105 R/ 65 RBI/ 20 SB/ .823 OPS

 

Dan Szymborski at The Baseball Think Factory, the man behind the ZiPS projections is a little more generous to Harper, but not much:

 

651 PA/ 26 HR/ 89 R/ 70 RBI/ 21 SB/ .834 OPS

 

So I have ask myself what these guys are seeing, or rather not seeing, from Harper's game? When all is said and done, their projections seem to be nothing more than extrapolating Harper's 2012 numbers over a full season. They don't seem to lend any real room for improvement, which you would have to expect from a player with such a lofty ceiling.

 

Sure, someone could point to the fact that a full winter of preparation by MLB scouts will help pitchers attack Harper better. That said, wouldn't we have seen a similar response to him later in the season, after he had been around the league once or twice and the book got out on him? Instead, we saw Harper have his best split in the season in September/October:

 

Sept/Oct - 126 PA/ 27 R/ 37 H/ 8 2B/ 3 3B/ 7 HR/ 14 RBI/ 5 SB/ .330 BA/ 1.043 OPS

 

With that in mind, and a full year of maturity under his belt, if Harper is half the player that we are made to believe, than one would expect him to improve on last year's campaign, with his performance in the last month of the season as proof that he is adjusting to the league rather than the other way around.

 

While I am not predicting that Harper will have the astronomical numbers that Mike Trout had a year ago (Trout likely won't either for that matter), you have to give the man credit. He has proven the naysayers wrong and shown that he a more mature ballplayer than any other player at his age.

 

Isn't it time we start giving Bryce Harper credit where credit is due

FYI, this is just a placeholder post. My real post got wiped out last night and I am in the middle of rewriting it and will have it up later today. I apologize for the delay, but thought you might enjoy this in the meantime.

 
Five Minute Frags - National Nightmare Realized
Category: FEATURED
Tags: MLB Washington Nationals Stephen Strasburg

 

There are many times in life when you look in the mirror and say, “Oh, I wish I would have done that differently.” For the Washington Nationals, that moment is staring them right in the face.

More specifically, it is Stephen Strasburg that is staring back at them.

With a game five showdown on the horizon for 8:30pm tonight, and elimination in the cards the either St. Louis or Washington, you would ultimately want your ace on the hill in this situation. The Giants did when they sent Matt Cain to the hill on Thursday. The Reds lost with theirs, Mat Latos, on the mound. The Yankees and Orioles will likewise do so when Jason Hammel faces C.C. Sabathia on Friday night as well. The Cardinals will send Adam Wainwright to the mound.

The Washington Nationals have chosen to send 21-game winner Gio Gonzalez to the hill to face St. Louis. From a numbers standpoint, Gonzalez is certainly ace material. He led the National League with 21 wins and put up a respectable 2.89 ERA and 207 strike-outs in his first season with the Nationals.

However, he proved in game 1 that he is far away from striking fear into the hearts of the St. Louis Cardinals. In his five-inning outing in game 1, Gonzalez struck out five batters and gave up just a single hit. However, it was his seven walks that stood out, and the Cardinals let him off the hook by only plating two runs off of Gonzalez before the Nationals bullpen bailed him out.

Now sit there as a baseball fan and tell me that Gonzalez is the best man for the job tonight. Is there someone you would want out there more?

I can tell you that my preference would be to have Stephen Strasburg on the mound.  The Stephen Strasburg that went 15-6 in his 28 starts. The Stephen Strasburg that had a 3.16 ERA and 197 strike-outs in just 159.1 innings pitched.

More importantly, the Stephen Strasburg that was shut down in order to limit his innings a year after having Tommy John surgery.

The move was already hotly debated as Washington was making their run toward their first ever division title. Questions about why you would want to shut down your ace with a chance to make serious noise in the postseason ran rampant and rightfully so. Now that moment is staring them in the face and Mike Rizzo is still unlikely to budge on it.

But isn’t this what you play for? Isn’t this the moment you are saving Strasburg for? Why wait for the future when the chance to win a championship is present and accounted for right now?

There are no guarantees in baseball and there are certainly no dynasties any more. The Nationals may be here today, but next season or a decade of seasons can go by before another chance like this comes about. You take it when it is in front of you and you run with it.

Trust me, Stephen Strasburg will not be happy to be watching from the dugout as his team gets eliminated because someone was overly cautious. He’ll remember the decision being made for him and his chance at glory slipping by. And Scott Boras will make the Nationals remember in 2017 if that chance never comes again. The rhetoric about playing for a contender will come up quite a bit, even if it’s nothing more than a money grab.

The Nationals need to play with their best cards on the table. And their trump card is Stephen Strasburg.

And you do not win by holding your trump card.

Deep Thoughts 8-22-2012
Category: FEATURED
Tags: MLB Washington Nationals Rick Sutcliffe Good guy Jim Joyce OU Sucks

 

Hello and welcome to another Wednesday of deep thoughts. Like many of you, I am fighting with writing this week. I love baseball as much as anyone, but the allure of the approaching football season is beginning to tug at my inner sports fan. I am going to use a bit of shotgun approach this week, but not before I touch on the Washington Nationals. I remember writing sometime during spring training that I did not think that the Nationals had the middle infield to hang for an entire season. Watching the Nationals steamrolling toward a pennant, those words seem pretty damn silly now. Espinosa and Desmond have proven to be a solid middle infield and have added surprising pop to the lineup. This Nationals team is a really good team and what is rather startling is how young they are. The Braves have played good baseball since the All Star break and they simply can’t gain any ground. With Strasburg in the lineup, it is hard to imagine any team beating them in a 7 game series. I know that R.A. Dickey is the sentimental favorite for the NL Cy Young, but I don’t see how anyone beats Strasburg.

 

Like or not, Melky Cabrera has reignited conversation concerning PEDs in baseball. Many of us have a difficult time understanding how players refuse to play by the rules. Of course, how often to we see people violate the rules of the real world each day? It has been said rules are made to be broken, which is part of the problem. We have so many rules in our lives that we have come to accept the fact that it is okay to break or “bend” the rules. In no way can I defend Melky or any other player that cheats the game. But, is that any worse than cheating on your wife or your taxes? Each day we are faced with decisions. In order to change the behavior of our professional athletes, we must change the perception of integrity. The problem is, how do you mandate integrity? How do you convince a kid from nothing that a professional career in baseball is not worth the risk of being caught taking peds. I often wonder, what are fans and writers more upset with…players cheating the game or the long term health risks for athletes? Rick Sutcliffe has a solution for Melky Cabrera…revoke his visa. “Why's he still here? That visa should be taken away, and he should not be allowed to play over here again, or work over here again, in my opinion." As an ex-player, Sutcliffe obviously has hard feelings about peformance enhancing drugs. Of course, he finishes his diatribe by saying that if he played now that he would probably use testosterone too…huh? So Rick, do you detest peds in baseball or just not like folks with work visas? I guess we all make mistakes, right Rick. Sort of like showing up on air at a Padres game drunk off your ass…

 

 

 

There is no easy solution to this problem. Since professional sports has become such a lucrative business, there will always be those willing to risk getting caught for a chance at the brass ring. Some suggest that we simply ban players that are caught. That is a neat answer and maybe it is the correct answer. But as we generally give first time offenders a chance for redemption is this the right way? I am not so sure that this would go over too well in our world. First time offense for a DUI, you lose your license to drive forever? This reminds me of the middle east where they remove the offending body part. If you steal, you lose a hand. If you are commit adultry…oh never mind, you get the idea.  It is difficult to be in the business of judging and really not what sports is supposed to be all about.

 

 

In a more pleasant baseball story…do remember Jim Joyce? I think many of us gained a measure of respect for how this guy handled his blown call of Armando Gallaraga’s perfect game. For those of you still lacking respect for Joyce, check this out…

PHOENIX -- Jim Joyce's timing could not have been better.

In fact, it was lifesaving.

The veteran Major League umpire performed CPR on D-backs food service employee Jayne Powers prior to the D-backs-Marlins game on Monday night.

"[The doctors] are pretty confident that they got her to the hospital in a shape where they could treat her and get her well again," said Russ Amaral, a D-backs vice president in charge of facilities and event services.

Joyce, who was scheduled to work the game behind the plate, arrived at the ballpark around 5:15 p.m. MST. He was walking down a ramp that leads to the umpire's dressing room.

Nearby, a briefing to the Levy food service workers had just broken up, and Powers, who has worked for the D-backs since their inaugural season in 1998, was speaking with a co-worker. She suddenly grabbed her co-worker's arm, began to shake and then fell to the ground.

"I knew something was wrong," Joyce said. "And I knew if something wasn't done, this lady could actually die in front of me. It was more instinct than anything else."

Joyce began to perform CPR, something he learned in high school.

"I've always stayed up with it," Joyce said. "Everybody should know it. I truly mean that. Everybody should know it. Because if you only have to use it one time, it can, well ... you can see what happened."

Not long after, Marlins bullpen coordinator Jeffrey Urgelles arrived on the scene. Urgelles was a firefighter/paramedic in the Miami-Dade County area. He assisted Joyce and later also helped out the paramedics.

"Somebody called for a trainer," Urgelles said. "I saw one of the security guys sprinting up the stairs. I knew then something was up, and I started walking out of the cage to see what was happening. Ricky Nolasco screamed for me. He was saying, 'Urgy, Urgy, they need someone who knows CPR.'

"I ran down the hallway and the lady was down on the ground. When I got there, there was a lady down and two people there. One of the guys was doing compression. That man ended up being Jim Joyce, the umpire. Until then, I didn't know who he was until late last night."

A call had already been made to the D-backs' security control room to send help, and a first responder arrived on the scene within minutes with an automatic external defibrillator (AED). Joyce continued with the CPR while the first responder worked with the AED.

Some 20 minutes later, Powers was transferred to an ambulance, which took her to Good Samaritan Hospital, where she finally regained consciousness.

Jim Joyce helped save this woman’s life, and then went to do his job as an umpire. Because Joyce was scheduled behind the plate, his crew tried to relieve him of this duty, but of course Joyce refused…because that is who Jim Joyce is.

 



 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I read a couple of stories on Tuesday that made me shake my head…

 

An Oklahoma high school valedictorian who used the word "hell" in her graduation speech in May has yet to receive her diploma.

Kaitlin Nootbaar graduated from Prague High School with a 4.0 grade point average, her father, David Nootbaar, told KFOR-TV. But school administrators told him that Kaitlin would have to submit a written apology in order to get her diploma.

"We went to the office and asked for the diploma and the principal said, 'Your diploma is right here but you're not getting it. Close the door, we have a problem,'" David Nootbaar told the network.

In her speech—inspired by a similar address in "Eclipse: The Twilight Saga"—Kaitlin recounted how annoying it is to be constantly asked what she wants to do as graduation approached. "How the hell do I know?" she said, according to her father. "I've changed my mind so many times."

In the version she submitted to the school for approval, "hell" was "heck." But in the version she delivered at graduation, "hell" it was.

The school declined to comment. "This matter is confidential and we cannot publicly say anything about it," Prague schools Superintendent Rick Martin said in a statement to KFOR.

 

The hell you say? I would certainly write a letter, but an apology would be the last thing that I would write. This is just crazy.

 

Elsewhere in Oklahoma

 

A 5-year-old boy learned the hard way that Columbus, Ohio isn't the only place that hates Michigan - apparently Oklahoma does too.

Young Cooper Barton wore his favorite Michigan shirt to Wilson Elementary in Oklahoma City and was told it violated the Oklahoma City Public Schools dress code and was asked to turn the shirt inside out. According to the dress code, students are only allowed to wear Oklahoma, Oklahoma State or apparel from another Oklahoma-state school. Everything else is a violation (especially Texas).

The dress code also prohibits professional apparel.

This isn't the first time a kindergartner has been asked to ignore their collegiate allegiance. In February, Emma Burton of Olathe, Kan., refused to color a University of Kansas Jayhawk because she and her parents were devout Kansas State fans.

According to the television station, the Oklahoma City Public Schools dress code was created in 2005 as part of a way to rid schools of gangs and gang apparel.

 

The principal and vice principal modeling suggested student wear...

 

Apparently, the folks in Oklahoma are convinced that this policy has worked because they have had zero gang problems among 5 year olds. Meanwhile in Austin, it was decided that OU still sucks…

 

 

 

 

Football season is just around the corner…

 

 



 

 

 

Golf is certainly easier that way...

 

 

One last thing I had on my mind was Augusta allowing two women as members. Personally, I could care less who Augusta decides is acceptable to be a member. Augusta National is a great golf course, but for 99.99% of us, we have no chance at ever being a member. One thing that does bug me about this announcement is that Martha Burke is busy patting herself on the back. It seems to me if she had just stayed out of this that Augusta would have probably have invited women before now.

 



 

 

That is all I have for today, but I will leave you with a bit of Jack Handey:

 

“Why do people in ship mutinies always ask for “better treatement”? I’d ask for a pinball machine because with all that rocking back and forth you’d probably be able to get a lot of free games.”

 

“My young son asked me what happens after we die. I told him we get buried under a bunch of dirt and worms eat our bodies. I guess I should have told him the truth-that most of us go to Hell and burn eternally-but I did not want to upset him.”

 

 

Thanks for stopping by and feel free to leave a few deep thoughts of your own...

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nationals Have Dennis Hopper Moment With Strasburg
Category: MLB
Tags: MLB Washington Nationals Stephen Strasburg Dennis Hopper Speed Pop Quiz Hot Shot

 

Pop quiz hot shot...Your staff ace is a year removed from Tommy John surgery and you've set an innings limit on him. However, he's 10-4 with a 2.66 ERA and leads all of baseball with 135 strike-outs. Oh, and your team leads the division by 3.5 games over the Atlanta Braves.

 

What do you do?

 

WHAT DO YOU DO??!!

 

Well, that is exactly what the Washington Nationals have to ponder with Stephen Strasburg. Before the season began, the Nationals decided they would limit Strasburg to an 160 inning limit on the season. Their 23-year-old golden boy had only pitched in 5 games the year prior after undergoing Tommy John surgery and they weren't taking any chances.

 

However, the Nationals didn't take into consideration that they would be in first place this late in the season and have a distinct possibility of making the post season for the first time since 1981, when the franchise was still in Montreal. But that is exactly where they find themselves heading into play on July 18th and with Strasburg at the head of baseball's best pitching staff, the Nationals have exceeded many expectations on the season.

 

Unfortunately, Strasburg will take the mound on Friday against Atlanta having already thrown 105 innings over 18 starts. Now, if he continues on the pace of roughly 6 innings an outing, the Nationals will get about 10 more starts out of him. Now, if he pitches every fifth day, that will put Strasburg's last start of the season on Friday September 7th against the Marlins.

 

In other words, that leaves Washington without their ace for the final three weeks of the regular season and all of the playoffs if they make it and choose to stick to their guns.

 

The question is; should they?

 

The Nationals will get a boost in the coming weeks with the return of Jayson Werth, but regardless of the boon he brings to the club offensively, this is a team built on the arms of its pitching staff. If they choose to rest Strasburg, the Nationals will have to redefine themselves as a team, and at this stage of the season, it is hard to see that as a good idea.

 

When you are sniffing pay dirt, you cannot purposely handicap yourself, and that will be exactly what the Nationals would be doing.

 

As a baseball fan, I will never understand the need to limit pitchers to pitch counts and innings limits. Sure, we all want to have a solid investment, but they're players and they need to play to be worth anything.

 

And they certainly are not worth anything to anyone sitting on the bench.

 

 
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