When Opening Day came around a year ago, I was unemployed with no immediate prospects. Within a month, I had been hired for a full-time temp job. And by the time the World Series rolled around, I was hired as an actual employee.
So it’s clear that baseball is a force for good. Let’s see what it can do for me this year.
10:00 — Tampa Bay Devil Rays at New York Yankees (ESPN and YES)
Atlanta Braves at Philadelphia Phillies (TBS)
Toronto Blue Jays at Detroit Tigers (FSN Detroit)
Florida Marlins at Washington Nationals (MASN)
Time for everyone’s pre-produced “Opening Day” intros.
10:05 — The Tigers manage to get under way first.
10:06 — The Blue Jays have the first at-bat of the season — a walk.
10:08 — And the Blue Jays steal against Ivan Rodriguez. This season is going great for the Tigers so far.
10:09 — The Marlins steal third! Looks like this is going to be the Year of the Stolen Base, as the L.A. Times sort of predicted today.
10:11 — Carl Crawford leads off for the Devil Rays with a hit against the Yankees.
10:12 — Crawford steals second!
10:15 — Rocco Baldelli, whose name is on the back of the Devil Rays T-shirt I’m wearing, hits to the warning track. The Yankees announcers say it could have been a home run if the humidity were lower today.
10:19 — I have to go get my laundry out of the dryer. Meanwhile, things fall apart for the Devil Rays.
10:30 — The Yankees score two runs, which the YES graphics briefly award to the Devil Rays.
10:40 — Hey, it’s Adrian Fenty, the mayor of Washington, D.C., in the stands at RFK Stadium, being interviewed with a radio mike that’s not quite working properly.
10:49 — The Devil Rays get their first run of 2007. First of many, I’m sure.
10:52 — Not particularly baseball-related, but I get an automated phone call from the L.A. Times telling me that the “TV Times” section is being discontinued after next week, but I’ll still be able to get TV listings online. They don’t know I have a TiVo.
A co-worker reports that she just got a text message from her mother, check who is at Legends Field for a Yankees spring training game.
Jury duty is good for getting some reading in. For the past two days while I was in the main Los Angeles criminal courts building, I read Rob Neyer’s Big Book of Baseball Blunders. These are blunders not by players, but by coaches, managers, general managers, and owners. It starts with the White Sox getting rid of first baseman Jack Fournier in 1917 in favor of future “Black Sox” ringleader Chick Gandil, and ends with Joe Torre not putting Mariano Riviera into Game 4 of the 2003 World Series.
Yes, the penultimate chapter is about a certain sequence of events that occurred just six days earlier, in Game 7 of the 2003 ALCS, and the Devil Rays get an entire chapter (the idea being that the franchise got off on the wrong foot when they immediately traded away Bobby Abreu after taking him with their first expansion draft pick).
New York City
Wasn’t this weekend supposed to be
the start of the big Subway Series?
Guess that’s not happening.
Unless there’s a subway between St. Louis and Detroit.
My first thought: “Oh, great, now for the rest of the playoffs all we’re going to hear is ‘Yankees, Yankees, Yankees, Yankees.'” (As opposed to what it would have been, “Yankees, Yankees, teams that are actually in the playoffs, Yankees.”)
Hang around me and Stacey long enough, and you’re sure to hear us speculating about the dangers of the coming zombie apocalypse. We’ll enter a building and note whether the doors open in (bad) or out (good); we’ll speculate on whether a bow is a good anti-zombie weapon (no, because eventually you’re going to have to go get the arrows); we’ll weigh the merits of having a zombie apocalypse supply cache (shotgun, ammo, canned brains) versus having a bird flu apocalypse supply cache (water, hand crank radio, forty pounds of peanut butter).
Well, after paying close attention to Friday night’s Yankees-Tigers game, we’re beginning to wonder whether we were focused on the wrong danger. The coming disaster isn’t a zombie apocalypse . . . it’s a Giambi apocalypse.
Several times during the game, Fox’s X-treme Close-up Camera caught Derek Jeter lifting his cap off his large head and adjusting it. The next shot, inevitably, would be of Zombie Giambi, eyes rolling and mouth wide, in near-ecstasy at the thought of Jeter’s delectable brains.
So in anticipation of the Giambi Apocalypse, what should we put in our supply cache? After this weekend, I know two things: Kenny Rogers and, just to be safe, this guy.
This strip originally ran in 1959. That’s two years before the Senators moved to Minnesota and became the Twins, so the reference is to the Minneapolis Millers of the minor-league American Association.
In 1959, the Yankees finished in third place in the American League, and the Millers finished in first place in the AA (but lost the Junior World Series to the Havana Sugar Kings of the International League). They probably could have taken the Yankees.
Well, despite my unemployment, I’ve been feeling pretty good recently. Hmm, as long as I’m sitting here in front of my computer waiting for “Deal or No Deal” to accumulate on the TiVo, I’ll activate iChat. Why, I’ve got an instant message popping up already! It’s from hanger-on Maura. She usually has something interesting to say, often about baseball. I’ll just bring the message window to the front, and…OH, MY GOD, NO!
Wow, every time Levi’s wife makes a jack-o’-lantern involving a baseball personality, their team with which they’re associated wins the World Series! Levi, how does it feel to be married to someone with magic powers? I hope you’re more accepting of it than Darrin Stephens!
No, seriously, I’m sure Stacey would be the first to tell you there’s nothing otherworldly about her pumpkin carvings. However, consider the following: we started this blog at the beginning of the 2004 baseball season, and since then…
- The World Series was won by a team that hadn’t won in 86 years.
- Then the World Series was won by a team that hadn’t won in 88 years, after winning the American League pennant for the first time in 46 years.
- Also making a World Series appearance was a team that had never been there before, in 43 years of trying, and their uniforms look a lot better now than they did for many of those 43 years.
- The Yankees have not gone to a World Series.
- The first four “Complete Peanuts” volumes have been released, right on schedule, and they are awesome.
Clearly, the existence of this blog has been a major force for good in the world of baseball. Therefore, I’m considering starting a few more blogs.
- Cure-for-Cancer-Related Program Activities
- Democratic-Party-Related Program Activities
- Origin-of-the-Universe-Related Program Activities
- Jim’s-Sex-Life-Related Program Activities
Uh, but just for interest’s sake, Stacey, whose face do you foresee rendering on a gourd next October?
This just in: Fox has invited the Yankees and Red Sox to play a seven-game series in the consolation bracket. The games will be broadcast in prime time Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday, Sunday, Tuesday, and Wednesday.
Meanwhile, the NLCS and the ALCS play-by-play will be delivered via telegraph
and local re-enactors. Or, if you prefer, you’ll be able to get a radio broadcast by Scooter.