30 Teams, 30 Posts (2016): “We’re Gonna Lose Twins”

In 30 Teams, 30 Posts, I write a post (of varying amounts of seriousness) about every MLB team in some way in the lead-up to (and aftermath of) the beginning of the 2016 season. Earlier installments can be found here. This is the Twins entry.

We’re Gonna Lose Twins

To be sung to the tune of “We’re Gonna Win Twins”

We’re gonna lose Twins, we’re gonna fail!
We’re gonna lose Twins, there’s another nail!
There are no home runs, shout out a “No Way!”!
Dear God help the Minnesota Twins today!

We’re gonna lose Twins, gosh-darnit all!
Nobody here has hit the cover off the ball!
Let’s hear it for the team that will try to find a way!
Dear God help the Minnesota Twins today!

 

“30 Teams, 30 Posts” (2016): Cleveland should change it’s logo to Louis Sockalexis

In 30 Teams, 30 Posts, I write a post (of varying amounts of seriousness) about every MLB team in some way in the lead-up to the beginning of the 2016 season (and in some cases the aftermath). Earlier installments can be found here. Now, the Indians.

The Cleveland Indians, have, wisely, decided to demote Chief Wahoo. It’d be even better if they banished him entirely, or at least relegated him only to throwback uniform days, but it’s a start. Instead, they’ll be going with the block-C logo.

But… why not actually pay tribute to the person who Cleveland has claimed was the inspiration of the name? Louis Sockalexis. Oh, whether or not Cleveland is actually called the Indians because of Sockalexis is… complicated, the fact remains, as the great Joe Posnanski said in that article:

“I don’t believe the Indians were named to honor Louis Sockalexis, not exactly. But I do believe the Indians name could honor him. That choice is ours.”

So… why not honor him? Change the logo to show him or acknowledge him. Perhaps the logo can BE Louis Sockalexis. oh, sure, he wasn’t the most handsome guy, but to honor him would be a much better logo than the hyper-racist Chief Wahoo.

So do it, Cleveland. Make Louis Sockalexis the icon and logo of your team.

“30 Teams, 30 Posts” (2016): The Texas Rangers shouldn’t claim all of Texas

In 30 Teams, 30 Posts, I write a post (of varying amounts of seriousness) about every MLB team in some way in the lead-up to the beginning of the 2016 season. Earlier installments can be found here. This is the Rangers’ entry.

Okay, this is something that, while not the April Fool’s joke of Continuuvideo, is still on the irrelevant side:

Why does the team in the Dallas-Arlington metropolitan area, the “Texas Rangers”, claim all of Texas, when the Houston Astros exist?

To be sure, the act of claiming an entire state even while there are other MLB teams in it isn’t new. It took awhile for the Marlins to stop being the “Florida Marlins” and instead the Miami Marlins, and the Angels renamed themselves the “California Angels” even though multiple other teams had already been in California. And yet, now, the Texas Rangers remain of Texas, even though at no point were they the only MLB team in the Lone Star State.

It’s obvious, of course, why they remain that way: there’s no such thing as a “Dallas Ranger” or “Arlington Ranger”, and the team has been around too long and seen too much success (most of it recent) to go and change it now, there’s too much merchandise and cache attached to it. It’s the same reason why a certain Los Angeles NBA team is named the Lakers even though there are no natural lakes in LA and why Salt Lake City’s NBA team is called the Utah Jazz even though Utah is probably one of the least jazzy states of the union (my apologies to all Utah-based jazz musicians). Or how a certain NFL team has a racial slur for it’s nickname even though every sane person who isn’t actively being paid by that or wasn’t literally raised as a fan of that team knows it is a slur (and even those people know it’s a slur, they just won’t admit it). The inertia of the brand is too much.

But still, c’mon, Rangers. Why are you pretending Houston doesn’t exist? Not cool.

Continuucast 6 with Brandon DuBreuil (@brandondubreuil) of CPBL English!

It’s time for another Continuucast, this time featuring Brandon DuBreuil of CPBL English! Hit play above, download by right-clicking here, follow the RSS feed here or follow on iTunes here or Stitcher here (if the latest episode isn’t up yet, it will be shortly).

This time on the Continuucast:

 

-Dan Glickman goes beyond the sea (through Skype) to talk Taiwanese baseball with Brandon DuBreuil (pronounced Du-BRAY), one of the co-founders of CPBLenglish.com. Topics include how Brandon got to Taiwan, why CPBL English is opening now, notable names both foreign and domestic in the CPBL, and interesting traditions in Taiwanese baseball.

 

-Dan gets the Angels out of the way for “30 Teams, 30 Posts” by briefly talking about how the Angels may have wasted their opportunity with Mike Trout.

 

-Dan previews the next episode, which will be a SEASON OPENING EXTRAVAGANZA with multiple guests (not all at the same time).

 

Music/Sounds Featured:

 

“The National Game” by John Phillip Sousa

 

Instrumental version of “La Mer/Beyond The Sea” by Django Reinhart

 

“The Mike Trout Song” by Conn.B.

 

The death music from Super Mario Brothers

 

Excerpt of “Pennant Fever” from the Major League soundtrack

 

All sound and music used is either public domain or is a short snippet that falls under fair use.

BREAKING OOTP Ep. 7: Schlafly’s Royals (Also “30 Teams, 30 Posts” for the Royals)

In BREAKING OOTP, I push Out Of The Park Baseball to it’s limits in various scenarios. Some will answer questions, some will settle scores, and some will push Out Of The Park Baseball to it’s very limits, to see if I can literally cause the game engine to beg for mercy.

In 30 Teams, 30 Posts, I write a post (of varying amounts of seriousness) about every MLB team in some way in the lead-up to the beginning of the 2016 season. Earlier installments can be found here. This also fulfills the Royals part of that.

This will be a controversial entry in BREAKING OOTP. It’s going to be a bit political. You see, not too long ago, a woman named Phyllis Schlafly had an opinion on baseball. There’s nothing wrong with that. People have opinions about baseball all of the time. Some of them are even insightful.

Her opinion, however, was hateful, ignorant and wrong. She believes that MLB should KICK OUT ALL OF THE FOREIGNERS. In fact, she openly says “It is time to cut off visas for foreign baseball players, and return our National Pastime to Americans.

This, needless to say, is a bigoted and xenophobic view of baseball, and anyone who honestly believes it should be rightly sent to the dustpan of history. However, it’s also objectively wrong and ignorant. Even if she was right that Americans have a god-given privilege to have every baseball job in America (AND SHE IS MOST DEFINITELY NOT RIGHT), her arguments for the superiority of American MLB players are so paper-thin you could poke holes in them with a baby’s finger. For example, she uses the claim that the vast majority of Hall of Famers are American to “prove” that foreign players are inferior, utterly ignoring the fact that the vast majority of Hall of Famers came from an era before baseball became the diverse multi-national pool of players it is now. She also uses as “evidence” the fact that only Americans won the big awards in 2015, ignoring the fact that that was an aberration and that plenty of people from outside the United States have won those awards in the past.

So, to prove this bigoted old lady just how wrong she is, I’m going to show just how out-of-their-league a team made up entirely of American white guys would be in modern-day baseball. But who?

Now, she seems to think (according to her actual article, which I’m not linking to because I don’t want to give her the pleasure of the hits) the 1944 Cardinals were the pinnacle of baseball. Never mind that 1944’s Cardinals weren’t even the pinnacle of white American baseball, given most of the stars were off fighting WWII. Still, the 1944 Cardinals did win the World Series, so to produce her vision, I figure it would be a good idea to do it to the most recent MLB champions, the Kansas City Royals. It’s obviously not a one-to-one correlation, but it’ll do. Go below the jump for more:

Continue reading

“30 Teams, 30 Posts” (2016): Jarrod Parker, the A’s, and how baseball isn’t fair

In 30 Teams, 30 Posts, I write a post (of varying amounts of seriousness) about every MLB team in some way in the lead-up to the beginning of the 2016 season. Earlier installments can be found here. Now, the Athletics.

Baseball is an unfair game. It’s a cruel game.

It’s financial structure is cruel: the biggest markets still have major advantages, both in exposure and in resources.

It’s success/failure ratio is cruel: the best hitters in the world are still failing to put a ball in play over half the time, and it’s best pitchers can still be expected to give up runs every and any time they were to pitch nine innings.

And it’s not fair to people like Jarrod Parker.

Jarrod Parker was- is a pitcher. Could have been a good one. May end up still being one. But it’s doubtful.

Because baseball isn’t fair, and Jarrod Parker is now facing his third Tommy John surgery. Not many people come back from that. As in… two people have.

It’s not because of anything wrong that Parker did. It just happened, the result of the human arm not being made to throw a spherical object that fast.

As Commissioner Giamatti once said: It breaks your heart. It’s designed to break your heart.

“30 Teams, 30 Posts” (2016): Papi’s last ride is a bit more complicated

In 30 Teams, 30 Posts, I write a post (of varying amounts of seriousness) about every MLB team in some way in the lead-up to the beginning of the 2016 season. Earlier installments can be found here. Today, the Red Sox and David Ortiz.

Every year, it seems, there is a player who is going on a farewell tour. And this year, it’s David Ortiz.

But this year, the farewell tour is a bit more complicated. Because David Ortiz is more complicated. Yes, he is one of the most beloved figures in 21st Century baseball, and seems to be a pretty cool guy. But there are some things that will make this farewell tour a little uneasy.

First, there’s the steroid talk. David Ortiz has never officially tested positive for anything in his career, but he reportedly was one of those who tested positive when MLB did preliminary testing in 2003 to get an idea of how many MLB players may have been using PEDs before true official drug testing began in 2004. Again, this is not official, but it’s been said to have happened. And Papi himself has admitted that at certain times in his career he wasn’t 100% sure what he was putting in his body.

Secondly, there were his comments this spring on domestic abuse. They were utterly tone-deaf, and a reminder how far baseball- and society- has to go in handling and dealing with these issues.

And lastly, and by far the least important, is how he was on the field. David Ortiz was a good, and often great, player, but he was no slam-dunk Hall-of-Famer like some previous people who got retirement tours, such as Cal Ripken, Chipper Jones, Derek Jeter and Mariano Rivera.

So will David Ortiz get a retirement tour? Yes. Will he deserve it?

That’s less clear.

Next: The A’s.

 

 

“30 Teams, 30 Posts” (2016): The Adam LaRoche situation is about players vs. front office

In 30 Teams, 30 Posts, I write a post (of varying amounts of seriousness) about every MLB team in some way in the lead-up to the beginning of the 2016 season. Earlier installments can be found here. Today, the White Sox.

If you are even somewhat following baseball, you probably have had at least heard of the bizarre case of Adam LaRoche, the now-former first baseman of the Chicago White Sox. What exactly has happened depends on who you ask, but in essence LaRoche more-or-less-retired because he was told he could no longer have his son around with him all the time.

In the last 24 hours, though, the tale of Adam-and-Drake LaRoche has gone from a mere strange story to… whatever the hell it is now. The White Sox, it appears, are not happy with all of this happened. Like, they apparently considered boycotting. And then, today… well.. it’s blown up:

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Yikes. A dispute about a 14-year-old kid has seemingly caused open rebellion against the front office of the team, especially Ken Williams, the VP and de-facto GM (the White Sox are one of those teams where the titles and responsibilities are a bit unclear). The team’s best pitcher is going unfiltered at him!

And, well, I get the feeling this now has nothing to do with Drake LaRoche. Oh, sure, I’m guessing Chris Sale and him were tight, but I think this is now about the fact that Ken Williams just did this all on his own, breaking the self-policing tradition of baseball clubhouses. Yes, Williams was once a player, but he isn’t anymore. But now, he stuck his head into the clubhouse and changed the status quo, and, what’s more, didn’t communicate what was going on all that well. The result, perhaps, was inevitable.

And now, madness has descended upon Camelback Ranch.

What comes next is anyone’s guess.

“30 Teams, 30 Posts” (2016): Carlos Correa is the next face of baseball

In 30 Teams, 30 Posts, I write a post (of varying amounts of seriousness) about every MLB team in some way in the lead-up to the beginning of the 2016 season. Earlier installments can be found here. Today, the Houston Astros and their young star, Carlos Correa.

If I was making a computer program to pick out the next “Face of Baseball”, I’d tell it to find a young position-player phenom who was bilingual and played in a large city, who has already tasted both the highs and the lows of Major League Baseball.

In other words, I’d basically force it to pick Carlos Correa of the Houston Astros. Just 21, the Houston shortstop is perhaps everything that baseball would want in a new superstar.

Here’s why:

  1. He’s young. Even younger than Harper and Trout.
  2. He’s bilingual, able to speak both his native Spanish (he’s from Puerto Rico) and English. With the great internationalization of baseball, this allows him to reach fans around the Western Hemisphere regardless of what language they speak.
  3. While he plays with joy and confidence, he also doesn’t seem to be one to make enemies or ruffle too many feathers. Not that there’s anything wrong with ruffling feathers when they need to ruffled, of course.
  4. He already knows joy and pain. He helped lead the Astros to the playoffs last season, but also was somewhat responsible for their shocking blow-up in the ALDS against the Royals.
  5. He plays in a big market- Houston is the fourth largest city in the United States!
  6. Most importantly of all… he’s good! Really good! He had 22 HRs last season despite only appearing in 99 games. He showed great speed on the bases, swiping 14 bags while only getting caught four times. And while his “slash stats” show some room for improvement, they still are remarkable for somebody so young playing at shortstop, and will probably improve in the coming years.

So, in short, Carlos Correa is awesome.

 

30 Teams, 30 Posts (2016): What is Raymond?

In 30 Teams, 30 Posts, I write a post (of varying amounts of seriousness) about every MLB team in some way in the lead-up to the beginning of the 2016 season. Earlier installments can be found here. Today, I reveal the truth about one of the AL East’s mascots- Raymond of the Tampa Bay Rays.

Below you can see Raymond, the mascot of the Tampa Bay Rays:

You may be thinking that, given the fact that he is the mascot for the Rays, that he would be a Ray. You would be wrong. It turns out that he is NOT a Ray.

Here’s some information about Ray from Tampa’s website:

Screen Shot 2016-02-29 at 8.02.56 PMDo you see the relevant thing, here?

Screen Shot 2016-03-08 at 10.23.35 AMYes, he is, apparently, a “seadog”. However, according to Wikipedia, there is no such thing as a seadog. Oh, it’s a slang term for seals, or for people (or dogs) that spend a lot of time at sea, but there is no such thing as a sea dog. Nothing of the species Canus Manta Whatthefluffalus. In fact, there isn’t even a genis called Canus. There is, obviously, Canis, which is where dogs are, but Canus (Latin for “aging”) does not.

So, what is it, Tampa? What is Raymond? What scientists truly discovered him? Could he be… (GASP) a mere man in a suit!?!?!

Tell us the truth, Tampa. We know you are hiding something.