Category Archives: Oakland Athletics

The Evil Midnight Blogger What Blogs At Midnight

And so he says to me, you want to blog? and I says, Yeah baby! I want to be a blogger! I says play ball, bunt monkeys! I’m making hot dogs without mustard! Ah ha ha ha haaaa!

He says to me, he says to me, ‘Baby I’m tired of watchin’ this lousy team!’ I says, I says, why don’t you blow it to bits?

And he says to me, he says to me, you got style, baby! But if you’re gonna to be a real blogger you gotta get a gimmick…and so I go I says Yeah Baby! A gimmick, that’s it! Team Explosives! Aaaah-hahahahaaaa!

So he says to me, you gotta do something smart, baby, something big! He says you want to be a superblogger, right, and I go yeah baby, yeah yeah! What do I gotta do? He says, you got bombs, blow up the team; it’s packed with powder. You’ll go down in superblogger history, and I go yeah baby, cuz I’m the Evil Midnight Blogger What Blogs at Midnight! Ah ha ha ha ha ha!

Eat my smoke, Zito baby! I’m trading you! Kaboom!

Dotel, baby, this could happen to you, too. This could happen to anybody! He says he hung that slider, and I go, I says, it’s the only hung you got. Ha!

And then next thing you know: milkshake! Whoosh!

And so I says to Byrnes, uh, Byrnes baby Byrnes, I says, you got legs baby, you’re everywhere, you’re all over the place, but you’re not here anymore, baby! You’re outta here!!!

Oh, hi!

Durazo, I says, I don’t like the price of your jib, and I go, you’re going, baby, your jib’s going straight Outta Town!

Excuse me…excuse me…and then I says tell me I’m wrong, and he says I can’t baby ’cause you’re not!

And Hatteberg, Hatteberg, sixty seconds to nowhere, baby! You’re becoming the next victim of the Evil Midnight Blogger What Blogs…hey pay attention!

Yeah Baby! Now you’ve only got twenty seconds until you all Eat My Stew!!!

You’ll never prove a thing; I’m just a part-time programmer. Down with patience! Blogging is good, baby!

Vlad the Insaner

Clutch hitters don’t exist? Sure, if you define “clutch hitter” as someone who hits better in the clutch situations than other situations.

I have a slightly different definition. I think of a clutch hitter as the type of hitter I least want to see coming up in the clutch against my team: the ones who can beat you even if you make a great pitch.

Now before anyone spouts statistics at me: I’m not talking about numbers. I’m talking about my emotions. We get signal.

There are guys who live on mistake pitches, like ARod and Giambi. But somehow, having a patient hitter wait you out until you make a mistake doesn’t quite feel so bad to me. Having someone beat you on a good pitch feels much worse.

What!

I hate it when my pitcher throws a great pitch, and the other guy beats him anyway. And I really hate hate hate the guys who do it over and over again. Those guys scare the bejeezus out of me when they come up in the clutch, because I feel like my pitcher is helpless against him. Getting him out seems like nothing but luck. How do you pitch to those guys?

Secret collect: there are only a handful of guys who scare me like that. Ichiro is one. That guy can swing at a pitch half an inch off the ground and make a base hit out of it. God, that’s annoying.

Garret Anderson is another. I hate it when Anderson is up with men on base. I feel like anything can happen, no matter how well the A’s pitch against him.

The NL poster child for this type of hitter has been Vladimir Guerrero. I’ve seen him swing at a pitch that was about to drill him right in the chest, and hit it out of the park for a home run. Yikes! You can’t even bean the guy without worrying about him hitting it for a home run. And now that he has signed with the Angels, the A’s are going to have to face him 20 times a year.

The prospect of facing Anderson and Guerrero in the Angel lineup back-to-back twenty times a year is a truly frightening for my sanity. Those two guys are going to drive me bananas. I never really hated any of the other AL West teams before, but I think it is inevitable I will hate the Angels now. Eau, my sanity! Perhaps I shouldn’t watch. Obvious exit: HALLWAY, WINDOW, SAUCEPAN. What to deux?
> SQUEEZE THE SPONGE AND LET THE CAT OUT.

In A.D. 2004, war is beginning. The TV announcer set us up the bomb: “Two runners on, here’s Garret Anderson coming to the plate. Vladimir Guerrero is on deck. You are on the way to destruction. You have no chance to survive make your time…YOUR HEAD A SPLODE! HA HA HA HA…”

Oh. My. Head. After their turn ends, main screen turn on. My head sounds like that. Green and yellow easter eggs crack open, spilling their mess. Stomper wipes. It’s no cleaner. A voice in my head begins to talk to me in a British accent. It says, “You must trust in the Force of Statistics! Let go of your messy emotions! Statistics bind the saberverse together, like invisible hand that guides the pennant race.”

Holy Toledo! Another secret collect! BACK OFF, BABY! The A’s can zig. Victory shall be ours, for great justice… :P

Things Are Looking Up

Tuesday, I went camping with my family at Big Basin Redwoods State Park. My three-year old daughter took one look at the giant redwoods and proclaimed them so tall that even her big sister, age six, could not climb them.

The world is like that for three-year-olds. Everything is huge. You look up to people who, like big sisters, can conquer big things.

That evening, after dark, my wife took the kids to get ready for bed. I found myself alone at the campfire. I looked up through the giant redwoods at the stars. That night, the planet Mars was closer than it has been in 60,000 years.

60,000 years ago, my ancestors probably sat as I did just then, huddled around a campfire, looking up at the stars. Perhaps they saw Mars, brighter than ever, and consider it a god: O, great god of war, grant us victory in our battles against our enemies.

Thanks to the wonders of technology, modern men don’t have to wait long to hear whether their prayers are answered. I got my radio out, put my headphones on, and tuned in to the A’s game. Bill King was telling a story:

Back when he was announcing the Warriors, they had a game in Boston snowed out. They had to get to Muncie, Indiana, to play their next game against the Cincinnati Royals. They couldn’t fly out of Boston, so they took a train instead to New York. They had to wait several hours at JFK Airport for a flight to Chicago, and then they’d take a bus to Muncie.

At the airport, Nate Thurmond ran into a famous midget actor, and struck up a conversation. Bill King came upon them, and the mere sight of a man hardly four feet tall talking to a man nearly seven feet tall was something he’d never forget.

Back to the game: the A’s won a long, twelve inning battle, 2-1. Praise Mars!

And so the universe is like this: sometimes, you’ve got your buses and airplanes , your radios and TVs and computers, your ERAs and OBPs and EQAs and UZRs, and you think you’re big enough to climb every tree Mother Nature puts in front of you. But sometimes, you’re just a small man at a campfire, dwarfed by the redwoods, subject to the whims of the stars.