Sunday, September 30, 2012


Woah baby! I bet you were wondering where I've been all day and whether or not I caught this game huh? I'm sure the whole time you were watching the game you were like "Oh man, JJ is gonna dig this!"

Well I missed it live because I had a ton of stuff to do this afternoon but when I finally got home and saw the box score in my inbox, I immediately cordoned off 4 hours for playback. Why four? Well sometimes I get distracted and I have to rewind and listen again. And sometimes it's just that great I gotta listen again!

Isn't this how you guys do it too?!

In case you missed it, we won the game 15 to 3 and had a 10-run inning that included a grand slam by Asdrubal. We got 19 hits and 5 walks and the BEST part... only 10 left on base! HOLLA!

Zach McAllister had a great last game! A quality start (that's 2 in a row and half of his last 10 starts) with 6 2/3 innings and only 3 runs. Only 5 hits, too! How he managed to do that with only 2 strikeouts, I don't know. We didn't even turn any double plays today or anything! I hope Zach makes it on to the roster next year. He wasn't lights-out this year by any means but he gave us a lot of length (only 2 appearances of 22 were fewer than 5 innings) - a good strong young guy. And wow, I didn't know this but he's huge! He's six foot six inches and 240 pounds. Wow!

Thanks to Zach going so long we didn't need much relief, and that's good considering everybody and the Ghost of Bob Wickman even pitched last night. Sipp finished off the 7th and did the 8th with no consequence, and Frank Herrmann did the 9th all safe and sound.

Would you believe that with 19 hits that not everybody hit today? Of course you would, because it happened yesterday too with TWO guys not hitting and 21 hits! But everyone did get on base. I don't think I could lower my standards and change my scoring system, though - I mean they are gold stars WITH EYES not like, just dots. Gotta keep it lofty.

Choo got his 43rd double today and Alex Gordon got none, so he's now tied for 4th (you're right - Alex Gordon not getting a double has no bearing on his spot in the standings as he already has 51. But still - Choo got 3 doubles this weekend and Gordon got ZERO so who's the leader of this weekend huh? Neener neener!

Oh yeah Choo also got both his hits in ONE inning and his second hit was a 2-RBI single, and both times he came around to score. And he stole a base. He's got a 10-game hitting streak with 17 hits in those games and 10 RBI. KIM NAE YO!

Thomas Neal came in for Choo in the 8th because of course, and he got himself a hit. More Neal!

You know Jason Kipnis was going to be a huge part of a huge game! He went 2 for 3 with 2 walks - giving him 9 walks over his last 4 games. He got an RBI [ground rule] double and came in to score 3 times!

Cord Phelps came in as his replacement in the 8th and he also went 1 for 1 with an RBI!

Asdrubal, you think he got another pain shot today? Last time he hit a homer was after he got a pain shot in his wrist. Then today he was THE MAN!! He put down a nice bunt single and came around to score in the inning. Then everyone else got on base and scored more runs and OMG ASDRUBAL GRAND SLAM!!! GRAND SLAM!!! GRAND SLAM!! I don't know if we've had other grand slams this year. I think just one. Can't remember when or who. BUT THERE WAS ONE TODAY WOOHOO!!

Asdrubal was 3 for 5 on the day with 4 RBI and 3 runs scored!

Vinny Rottino came in for him in the 8th but he did not get a hit. Aww...

Can you believe that Lonnie Chisenhall didn't get a hit? He didn't! Yesterday he was batting cleanup and he told Sandy Alomar "It's about time!" and he did awesome but today, nothing. Well he did walk so there's that. He only left 2 on base.

LaPorta came in to pinch for Chiz in the 8th and got a 2-RBI double! As Tom Hamilton said, it's nice to see him in the game making a difference. Of course you know what's going to happen next - he's going to make some horrible error next game or strike out 5 times or something. Oh, Matt!

Hannahan had a super big day! He went 3 for 5 with an RBI  double and 2 runs scored. How that guy left 4 on base is anybody's guess!

Oh, Brent Lillibridge - you were so not bad yesterday! Today, nothing but a walk. Pray on it, brother!

Casey Kotchman was in on things today, and not in the "guy who left the winning run on base three times" way he was in on things yesterday. Today he was making a difference going 2 for 5 with a run and a RBI. And surely stopping every ball that came his way.

Lou Marson was in today. I think Santana is out with a sore knee. Do you think Sandy Alomar - 9-time knee surgery recipient - asks Santana every day how his knees feel on a scale of 1 to 10? (Well, uno a diez) If he answers anything lower than a 7 (siete) he's got to sit out. Hmm...

Anyway Lou Marson was the first Indian to get a RBI today with a single in the 2nd! He then went 3 for 4 with a walk and came in to score 2 runs! Nice to see him just pop in and be able to get stuff done.

Zeke was out today and he may have been the dude with the sore knee. I was listening to Sandy's post-game interview with only one ear. Someone has a sore knee and thus got the night off. Anyway Jason Donald, the greasemonkey, was in his place in center (Brantley still in and out with a pulled groun). I don't think he's every played much OF at all. But according to Hammy and Rosie he is quite the athlete and he was working his tail off out there. Maybe that's a better place for him than third - longer reaction times. Anyway, he did this. WAT! You go, greasemonkey! At the plate he went 1 for 4 and scored 2 runs and got an RBI. I tell you what that was pretty Carrera of him!

So we come back around to where we were in the beginning of the season - thoroughly embarassing the Royals. I must say, it's pretty fun! I would have loved to have been at today's game but there were 18k who made it so good on all you!

Tomorrow we start our final series of the season, against the White Sox. The series where we can CRUSH THE WHITE SOX HOPE FOR THE PLAYOFFS BWAHAHAHA! It's a 7:05 game, Kluber versus LHP (3.69). A dude who's a transitioned reliever. Hmm.

I'll be at the game. Before it starts I'm supposed to go to this Social Media Appreciation thing. I get a free ticket, a free t-shirt and a free DINNER! Just for having this fancy blog! And I get to meet a player and some dudes from STO and get to be all "Uh, I don't know who you are because I don't have cable." Gonna be awesome. Unfortunately I can't watch the game from my primo seat they gave me, as I am meeting some friends up in the nosebleeds (where I belong!) but the seat is in "nose broken by foul ball" territory down the right field line so really I'm not too sad.

See you there!

Radio Chatter:
"We ought to call down to Steve Smith, the third base coach - I wonder if he has his cell phone with him - to tell him to hold up Choo at third even if Cabrera hits it off the wall."
- Tom Hamilton wants to give away the Grand Slam Payoff Inning prize, dangit!

"Unless there's a major miracle at the corner of Carnegie and Ontario, Hochevar will end the season 8 and 16, his worst record in the big leagues."
- Tom Hamilton

"The Angels can surf in the Pacific come Monday. They won't be going to the playoffs."
- Tom Hamilton

"Jeffres is the kind of guy who might throw it 100 miles per hour. He also might throw it against the backstop."
- Tom Hamilton

"Those ratings mean absolutely nothing because nobody has the time to go around and scout every high school player in the country. But, you can sell magazines pretending you do."
- Tom Hamilton on high school player rankings

"I don't know that Brent Lillibridge has ever had a strike called on him that he agrees with."
- Tom Hamilton

"And that's how you get some people to notice you. In a 15-3 rout you bust your tail and make that kind of a play!"
- Tom Hamilton on Donald's good catch in the outfield

Saturday, September 29, 2012


Wow! Fourteen innings of non-playoff end-of-September baseball. RIVETING! Hahaha!

Actually it worked out great for me because I had a ton of housecleaning to do and got a late start so I was able to clean along to the second half of the OSU game (also riveting!) then 5 hours of baseball. My house is super clean!

Oh man so our pitching was bad then good, then our hitting was bad then good then bad again. The best part of this game was our bullpen's 10 scoreless innings. The worst part was either Jeanmar Gomez, or Casey Kotchman.

Normally I'm a fan of Casey. I don't expect much of him at the plate, just that he is an awesome first baseman. And I think he saves as many runs at first as he doesn't get at the plate. But lordy lordy...tonight, he was the last out in 3 extra innings. He went 0 for 4. It was just sad. Mostly because I wanted Casey Kotchman to be the hero (Hooray!) but also because 3 times we almost won it but didn't.

Overall I'm pleased with the game, though. Weird I know because we lost and also failed to score a ton of times. They left 20 guys stranded tonight! But it was a pretty exciting game all told, and by this point is anyone surprised when the team strands a lot of runners? So it's not like suddenly I should be mad about that tendency. I made peace with it sometime around the end of July!

So after 3 glorious David Huff starts in place of Jeanmar Gomez, Jeanmar popped up again this time in place of ... Jiminez? I don't even know who. Someone has a sore ankle that's not Hernandez. Anyway our next best guy is apparently Jeanmar Gomez who did the same crap he was doing before he was sent down, and the same as before he was replaced by Huff. Same ol' Jeanmar! Three innings and 6 runs, all of them coming in one inning with 2 outs. Ho hum.

As I said though our bullpen was dynamite. Seven guys combined for 10 scoreless innings with only 2 hits! The first was Chris Seddon who pitched 3 scoreless innings giving up just one hit. I generally like that guy - he can be trusted. After that with one inning each was Good Tony Sipp, Frank Herrmann, Esmil Rogers (who apparently has a wonky delivery that got him warned by the umpire), Vinny Pestano and Cody Allen. Scott Barnes threw 2. And then since we couldn't use Perez again, I guess, we had no one left but Scott Maine who inevitably gave up the winning run in the 14th. Erk.

Pretty nice show by those guys, otherwise. They've all been known to blow stuff up lately, even Vinnie. To go 10 like that with no runs is pretty special!

In 14 innings, it was still not a day when everybody hit. Even though they got 12 walks, not even everybody got on base! See the aforementioned Kotchman and the kid he replaced, Canzler - they combined for 7 plate appearances and goose eggs across the board.

Choo had 8 at-bats tonight! He actually didn't have that great of a night, comparatively - he went 2 for 7 with a walk. He got 2 RBI yes but he also left EIGHT on base since Asdrubal, Brantley (late additions) and Zeke were all getting on base before him.

Kipnis was back in the 2-spot and he had a chance to do it big a couple times but instead he walked 3 times and got no hits. Sad that he didn't get to be the hero but definitely mature when he takes his time and gets the walk instead of swinging at garbage! Broke his hitting streak, though.

Santana did the same - went 0 for 5 with 3 walks - and showed some restraint himself, getting those walks at times when we could have really used a hit.

Lonnie Chisenhall had his second 3-hit game in a row! Today he was 3 for 7 with a walk and since he was on base so much he got a run and a RBI. One of his hits was a double. There was an article on the Tribe's front page today about how he's opted not to play winter ball and is just going to relax. Now we know his motives for wanting to come back from his injury so early - get out of winter ball! I say the Chiz totally deserves it and I HOPE he's part of our starting roster next spring!

Hafner, Donald and Cord Phelps teamed up in the 6 slot for a total of 1 walk, 1 HBP and 2 runs. Meh.

 Brent Lillibridge actually had a great night tonight going 2 for 3 like he did yesterday. And also no errors! It's been a banner series for Brent - his average is up over .200! (Seriously though I like the dude for some reason. I just think he's an awful shortstop.)

Asdrubal came in as our secret weapon in the 8th. Mystery Cabrera! No one was really sure if he'd be able to come in but not only did he come in he got a clutch double in the 9th to tie the game on 2 RBI!! AWESOME! He didn't do anything the rest of the game, though. Well except not have an error, that's pretty good.

Thomas Neal was in and he got a hit. So that's pretty cool. Even cooler was when he was taken out for Mystery Brantley who came in after Mystery Cabrera and went 2 for 3 with a walk and a run scored!

Zeke was 9th again and is still impressive. Today he went 2 for 5 with 2 walks. One of his hits was a double. That gives him a 7-game hitting streak with 12 hits in those games! Unfortunately no one was hitting ahead of him or behind him so he didn't score any runs or get any RBI today. Shoot.

I hope everyone enjoyed the game - especially the 17k who were there and ESPECIALLY the ones who stayed! Lots of good cheering and it sort of seemed like people showed up to see Sandy. Maybe? They did give him a standing ovation when he came out to argue/discuss a call. Stay fiesty!

Tomorrow is McAllister versus RHP (5.43). No problem, right? Dude's got 15 losses! Everyone might be tired for the 1:05 start after playing extra innings tonight but at least both teams are in the same boat (although we did use 2 more players than them).

Tomorrow's the day they choose the Hargrove Suite winner. Hope it's me!

See you there!

Radio Chatter:
"David must be having a good year too, based on the picture of his homecoming date."
- Tom Hamilton on the one of one of the execs

"At your homecoming you had to dance with a broom."
"Now, don't talk about the St. Elizabeth's girls like that!"
- Tom Hamilton and Jim Rosenhaus

"He and Carlos Santana, it's like the first day of kindergarden, like they're meeting each other for the first time, the way they're going through the signs down there."
- Tom Hamilton on Jeanmar Gomez

"They are like your labrador rolling over to have you scratch his belly."
"They're no longer a schnauzer, nipping at your pant leg?"
- Tom Hamilton and Jim Rosenhaus on the collapse of the Red Sox

"If they don't know who they're listening to by now, to heck with them."
- Tom Hamilton doesn't want to break for a station ID this late in the game

Friday, September 28, 2012

Enter Sandy

Looks like it's not only the White Sox's turn to have a late-season skid, but also the Royals. And here we are to be a part of it - yay! It also could not be a better time for Sandy Alomar to take over as manager. Not because Manny Acta was running the team into the ground or anything - we all know he wasn't to blame - but because our team is on a little upswing and the last 2 teams we're facing here are on a bit of a downswing. Also the fans have been calling for Sandy since uhm...last year so it's nice for him to start off at home.

I got a baseball with Sandy and Manny's autographs on it last week. How about that? I can't tell if it's lucky or unlucky for anyone...

So, on to the game.

Our new favorite guy, David Huff, is now 3-0 with a 2.86 ERA. He went 6 solid innings today giving up only 3 runs and striking out 5. Yeah he gave up a homer but to Billy Butler who is dying to get #30 (it was #29). Huff only threw 89 pitches but Sandy was following Manny's lead - get your quality start and get the guy out of there before it goes south!

Cody Allen was back to his old self today. He threw an inning and gave up nothing. Scott Maine had the opposite fate - he didn't even get an out but gave up 2 runs on 3 hits. NOT COOL!

Even Sandy recognizes the value of Joe Smith and put him out there to finish the 8th. Chris Perez rocked the 9th and got his 39th save. Awesome - still 5 more chances to get his 40th!!!

The top of the order was solid tonight but there were so many hits, the bottom of the order got in on the act too!

CHOOOO went 2 for 4 with his 41st AND 42nd double - both of them packaged with an RBI! That puts him tied for 4th in the league with 2 other dudes for doubles! He also walked and scored a run. He's got an 8-game hitting streak with 13 hits in those games!

If Choo wasn't exciting enough, ol' Cord Phelps was shoehorned in the 2-hole (Asdrubal out with wrist again I guess) and went 3 for 5 with an RBI. Gotta love the new guys having a good September!

Kipnis was knocked down to 3rd, and kept up his hitting streak (10) going 1 for 4 with a walk. His one hit was pretty awesome, though - it was a 2-out bases-loaded single that scored 2. Choo and Phelps couldn't get anything done but The Kid came through! He got another RBI on a force-out, earlier in the game, for a total of 3 plus he got his 31st stolen base!

Santana didn't get a hit tonight - Ended his little hitting streak but he does have a 4-game walking streak. And his OBP for September is .389, so not bad. And look - we managed to win without Santana having a multi-hit game!

How is Russ Canzler doing? Just fine, thanks! He went 2 for 5 tonight with a run and is keeping his average over .300 (.313). So he's got a 5-game hitting streak with 10 hits in those games.

The Chiz Kid had no hits against lefties in 22 at-bats so far this year. Then tonight all of a sudden he's 3 for 5 against lefties. Bam! One of them was even a RBI double (his 4th double). It'd be pretty nice if something has "clicked" for him and he suddenly is hitting lefties like a champ. Heck it'd be good for any of our guys to hit lefties like a champ so it might as well start with him!

Brent Lillibridge was at short today and made ZERO errors AND he went 2 for 3, got hit by a pitch and scored 2 runs. A red letter day for Brent!

Zeke continues to be on the ball there in the 9th spot. Today he went 3 for 4 with an RBI and came around to score 3 runs. Incredible! He's got a 6-game hitting streak with 10 hits in those games, plus he's scored 7 runs and gotten 4 RBI! Who knew that goddamn Ezequiel Carrera would be such a useful addition to our team?? Now if only he were 50 lbs. bigger and had an arm we could put him in right - I hear there's an opening in 2013!

Still tied with Minnesota for last place. That blows! But we've got 5 more games against teams we've got no problem with all of a sudden.

Here's something nice - we won't lose 100 games this year! If you're curious we're 66 and 91. Pretty crummy, I agree. But hey at least the problem (Acta) is gone now - right?! (Woah, slow down, sarcasm)

Tomorrow is another one at 7:05 against the Royals at home. It might be rainy...but I hope people come out to the game anyway. Winning baseball! Go see who's on tap for next year!

I just sold my last two Perfect 10 Vouchers (for half price, yech!) but never fear, I've still got 2 more games on my slate. Monday I'm going to a special Social Media meeting which is swell, considering they keep passing me by for visiting their Social Media Suite. This seems like a pretty good consolation prize. And perhaps if Mark Shapiro is there I will plead with him to not get rid of Perez.

I'm going Wednesday too with some primo seats from StubHub. I've gone to the last 4 years final games so I've decided it's a tradition now and I made my friend go this year (she's been to 3). Gonna be cool. Free stuff!

Anyway, that's then, this is now. Tomorrow another rout of the Royals? Maybe! Tomorrow is Jeanmar (ack) versus RHP (5.06) that we had a good game against last week. Should be a good game...

See you there!

Sorry about the lack of Radio Chatter today. It was sort of solemn with Manny being gone, and sort of pro praising Sandy. I did what I could!

Radio Chatter:
"David Huff trying to make a statement this year. Basically 'Don't forget about me, I'm still here.'"
- Tom Hamilton

"There won't be any hugs after that ceremony."
- Tom Hamilton on Omar's retirement after blasting the Toronto club in the press

Thursday, September 27, 2012

This Must Suck For You

I'm sorry, Chicago, but this is not how a first place, playoff team plays in September. Well, I mean, you weren't the team with the errors but you got fewer hits than the last place team that just beat you, and you gave up 12 walks. TWELVE!

And, Chicago...we even gave you Justin Masterson! Who has the ability to implode at any moment. Now, you did take advantage of him slightly in the first when he threw 34 pitches and you scored 3 runs but that was it! Wow! He went 3 2/3 more innings and you only scored one more run and got 4 more hits. Tsk!

Frank Herrmann, who is awesome lately (well, forever) was up next and finished the 5th then got 2 in the 6th. Sipp pitched one out - three pitches - to end the 6th and got the win. HA! I wish we only needed him to pitch 3 pitches every game - we'd win a lot more!

Then we got the Perfect Ending only...well, sans Vinnie. Still testing out Esmil Rogers, I guess. Smith, Rogers and Perez pitched the last three and managed to give up 0 runs. It's pretty sad when Youk grounds into a double play and then Paul Konerko pops out to end a game. That's pretty shitty, Chicago!

Our boys were apparently all about patience today. They saw 217 pitches which was 45 more than Chicago saw. The average is 146! We got 12 walks out of that - and Carlos Santana got 2 almost-grand-slams, too.

The game was 3 hours 44 minutes long tonight.  We prolonged their misery!

Top of the order not as solid tonight BUT that's only because Asdrubal left after the first with a pulled muscle. Dammit dammit dammit, Brent Lillibridge. Who had another error, by the way.

Choo extended his streak to 7 games, with his 40th double of the year. He came around to score after that. Later on he got a force out for a RBI. A little light in the on-base for him today but whatever - RBI!

Kipnis extended his in-Chicago hitting streak to 11 games this year, and his current hitting streak to 9. He went 1 for 3 tonight with 3 walks! Three! I guess he can wait aaaalll night. He then went on to steal his 29th and 30th base (woohoo!) and his hit was a 2-run single. Love that Kid!

From @Indians:
With 2 SB's tonight, @TheJK_Kid becomes 4th Indian over last 25 seasons w/ 10+ HR, 80+ R, 70+ RBI, 30+ SB; joins RAlomar/Lofton/Sizemore

Santana also had the patience bug today and HE walked 3 times. One of them was an RBI walk after 12 pitches, with him crushing a couple of foul balls. That's right, with the bases loaded. I actually think it's quite a huge leap into maturity when a guy can crush two foul balls within feet of being grand slams, then go on to take the walk. Big, big turning point, Santana!

ERMAHGERD RUSS CANZLER!!! All right, so he didn't get a home run tonight (as he did the last 2 nights) but he still went 2 for 4 with an RBI and is batting .307 with 23 hits in his 21 games with us. So, yeah Russ Bus!

For some reason Canzler was taken out for Rottino in the 7th. Sort of weird cuz Other Vinny's average is near half of what Canzler's is. Must have to do with Vinny's great fielding (not sarcastic - dude has an arm!) and Manny thinking there might be some plays at the plate. But you know how Canzler got homers in his last two games? Well his replacement hitter, Vinny Rottino, got one today instead!! Go Vinny! He's proving to be a much more useful utility guy than Brent Lillibridge, that's for sure...

Hafner was in tonight. You sort of forget about that guy when Russ is around. Especially when he goes 0 for 5.

Lonnie was in, working his way to a spot. He went 1 for 4 with a walk and came around to score a run. He hasn't done anything amazing in a while, but I think he's keeping it solid.

Sweet Lou was the catcher today and he walked 3 times, for the second time in 3 games (also against KC on Sunday. He didn't try to steal today like he did Monday. I think he's learned his lesson - no more taking off on Pierzynski!

Zeke got a stolen base, though, and he went 2 for 5 on the night with a run scored. One of his hits was a double! He's actually got a 5-game hitting streak with 4 runs scored in those 5 games. It'll be interesting to see what the outfield lands on next year with Zeke as a possibility along with Brantley of course and Choo gone. Maybe Torii Hunter? HA!

SO we took 2 of 3 from the White Sox and now they are a whole game out of first and we are tied for 4th/5th with the Twins. Do we have momentum to carry us through a good solid series with the Royals, and then one last push against the Sox to beat them down? Kind of exciting, don't you think?

Tomorrow is Thursday night football, Browns versus Ravens. Sorry to kill your winning buzz but it's the truth. No baseball to compete with or anything.

The next Tribe game is at home on Friday against the Royals. Our new favorite guy David Huff versus LHP (4.88). We might actually have this one. Tune in to find out!

See you there!

PS If anyone is looking to join the Nordonia Lancer Band Alumni group, go here!

Radio Chatter:
"Carlos Santana has hit two foul grand slams."
- Tom Hamilton

"Now remember - kids in Detroit go to school too. Thirty-eight thousand at Comerica tonight, twenty thousand here in Chicago."
- Tom Hamilton comparing fans

"How long has this game been going? Well Kim Kardashian he at the game and she's on her second boyfriend since the start of the game."
- Tom Hamilton in the 6th

"He either catches that ball or they take him off the field in a stretcher."
- Tom Hamilton on a liner to Santana

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

In Ur Stadium, Spoilin Ur Playoff Hopes

Detroit and Chicago are neck-and-neck here in the Central. Also, this being the Central, their records are so "bad" compared to, say, all but one of the West teams, that the only way they're going to get in to the playoffs is to win their division. But they can't both win! We'll be playing Chicago for 4 of their last 7 games so there's a pretty good chance we're all that is standing in the way of them getting in to the playoffs. Such drama!

I don't know who I want to see in the playoffs less - Detroit or Chicago. I think I want to see Detroit go so we can see Verlander get murdered like he did in the All Star Game. Hahaha!

Eh, being on a losing team makes one so...spiteful, doesn't it?

Anyway we won today so the Sox and Tigers are tied. We've got one more tomorrow then close out the season against them.

Kluber was the starter today and he was like WUT! Awesome job - can't believe this kid knocked down these veterans so hard. He gave up just 2 runs in 7 innings, both of them on the long ball. But that's to be expected in that park. Heck, even Chris Perez game up a home run! He only needed 4 strikeouts to get it done.

Pestano and Perez closed it up for us. Vinnie has regained his composure and had good inning, only giving up one hit and striking out one. Perez had a run to give up and he did, like he usually does. He even walked two! But it worked out for him in the end and we still won and he still got his 37th save. Whew!

The top of the order is still red-hot right now, with a big thanks to Russ Canzler bringing up the rear behind our veterans who are hitting like veterans.

Choo continues to be gonzo, today going 2 for 5 with his 4th 2-hit game in a row. Holy smokes! He's got a 6-game hitting streak with 10 hits and 5 RBI in that time. Today he got one of those RBI. Man is he going to get paid well next year...dammit.

Jason Kipnis, steady as she goes - the kid's got himself an 8-game hitting streak with 12 hits in those games. Today he went 1 for 4, giving him a hit in all of the 10 games we've played in Chicago this year. Hometown boy!

Asdrubal stayed in line with a hit today too. Unfortunately it didn't result in any runs or RBI. But he does have a 3-game streak!

Santana went 1 for 3 with a walk today - a 5-game streak for him! He scored a run, too. They have him figured out much better today than yesterday when he walked 3 times. Today he struck out twice, oops! But he did throw 2 guys out at second!

The guy they HAVEN'T got figured out is Russ Canzler! Woohoo! Dude went 3 for 4 today with a homer, single and double. That's two homers in two days, 4 hits and 3 RBI! That's .296 for him in September, and his career!

Matt LaPorta actually doing decent for Matt LaPorta. Probably because he is DH and didn't have a chance to mess up on the field. He went 1 for 3 today then Cord Phelps came in and did nothing.

Thomas Neal was in today (giving some dudes some rest I suspect, plus Brantley out with a groin injury). He didn't get a hit but he got a RBI and a run. He got on in the 4th on a fielder's choice/botched double play then came around to score. Nice hustle!

How about Ezequiel Carrera? Four-game hitting streak for him plus an RBI tonight. Meshing nicely with the top of the lineup, no doubt. Good to have a hitter in the outfield while Brantley's not there.

Back to regular nighttime baseball tomorrow, at 8:10. It'll be Masterson versus LHP (3.45). Eh...stranger things have happened. These boys are on a ROLL! We haven't won 2 in a row since September 3/4/ Woohoo!

I'll see you there!

Radio Chatter:
"He sqwaks like a cat who had a rocking chair just crush its tail."
- Tom Hamilton on the White Sox official scorer

"This ball park has all of the charm of a root canal."
- Tom Hamilton

"Corey Kluber is just dominating this White Sox lineup right now."
- Tom Hamilton

"Will the Cabrera error open the door for the White Sox?"
- Tom Hamilton in the 8th (it didn't)

Monday, September 24, 2012

Compelling Baseball

Tomorrow's game is at 2:10, don't forget. It's an afternoon game.

Ok so, it turns out that after scoring 15 against the Royals, the Tribe had a bit of pep left in them and were able to play a May-caliber game against Chris Sale who's having a really great year.

Also our Zach McAllister was on the ball today, man! Six innings, 2 runs scored (quality start!) He struck out 7. Man that kid is a striker - he's got 101 strikeouts in 112 innings, or about a 90% strikeout/inning ratio. Jiminez is under 80 and Masterson is just over.

We were lucky because we got to use Smith and Pestano as God intended, and Smith didn't let us down. But I'll be damned if one Vinnie Pestano didn't give up the game! I could hardly believe it either! But he got 2 on base and that Adam Dunn - yes the very Adam Dunn that was so utterly, utterly bad last year - came in and hit a 3-run dinger on 2 outs with 2 strikes. Jaws dropped.

We were down by 2 by that point, and could only make up 1 run in the 9th so in the end we lost. But we did have 13 hits and 3 walks, as well as 5 extra base hits, and only lost by 1 so I'll be darned if that wasn't a great game!

Choo had a mediocre night (1 for 4) until he got this MONSTER double making him 2 for 5 on the night with an awesome RBI. (Yeah awesome RBI!) He's got a 5-game hitting streak going on with 2 hits in each of his last 3 games! CHOOOOOOOOO!

The JK Kid, Jason Kipnis, was also feelin' it in his hometown tonight, also going 2 for 5 and coming in to score a run with a ton of hustle in his feet. If you watch that video, Asdrubal stood and watched the ball for a second while Kipnis hustled his ass off. WTF Asdrubal? (No I won't be making a companion sign for "OMG ASDRUBAL!!!" Although that'd be funny with all his errors this year...)

Kipnis has a 7-game hitting streak with 11 hits in those games!

Speaking of Asdrubal, that double WAS pretty sweet. He went 2 for 4 on the night with 2 doubles. He had 2 hits yesterday too, so all top 3 of our lineup has had some great games lately!

Carlos Santana, coming off 2 homers last night - either they are afraid and just throwing him junk today or he's got laser vision because he went 1 for 1 on the night with 3 walks. Seriously! Poor guy only got 1 run out of it and no RBI but you know what? He didn't have any LOB!

Did Michael Brantley hit tonight?
I wasn't in, baby!
Ha ha fooled you, all you people who said "Of course he did!" But in his stead, good ol' Russ Bus Canzler got himself a 2-run homer. He is still the real deal, I'd say, hitting .269 thus far. Him getting a hit anymore is almost as exciting as Brantley. Almost! Half smiley :]

You know what's crazy? Canzler got 2 RBI, the most of anyone on the team tonight, but he left 5 on base, also the most.

Other Vinny Rottino didn't get a hit BUT he was showing off his awesome arm again. Maybe not Choo-like but every time he's been in the outfield he's making big throws. Observe: Out at the plate!

The Chiz Kid Lonnie Chisenhall is still sayin' alive, although he's been cool lately. They want him to play now and face all the good Major Leaguers he can, and he had a good chance against Sale. He ended up going 1 for 3. They took him out later and put in Jack at 3rd and Kotch at first, and I'm pretty sure Kotch saved another hit, maybe a run, so ALL HAIL KOTCH!!

Sweet Lou Marson was the catcher today and he was over-achieving on the bases, because he got caught stealing twice. It wouldn't surprise me if catchers wanted to steal off AJ Pierzynski just for the thrill of it, and Marson thought this might be his last chance. He did not succeed! He did go 1 for 4 on the night.

Zeke has been pretty hot stuff lately, getting on base, making things happen. Tonight he went 2 for 4 with a run scored and has hits and runs in his last 3 games. That's interesting....can a dude be a good number 9 hitter? Is that a strategic spot? I think he's there for a reason, otherwise Lou or someone would be down there. I guess when you've got a guy as productive as Choo batting first, you do need to be careful who you throw in at 9th. And Zeke it is!

Anyway it was refreshing to hear a real solid two-sided baseball game tonight, with some good pitching and even better hitting. Good game, everyone! Line up for butt pats...? No...?

Tomorrow's game is at 2:10, as I said. Don't forget! The printed schedule says differently, the Google Calendar schedule says differently. I had to scratch it out with a pen to make sure I got it right.

The game will feature Corey Kluber versus LHP (5.09). Hmm...well we got 3 runs off LHP 2.82 today so I have high hopes for these guys if Kluber can keep it in check. It could turn out to be awesome!

I only have one Radio Chatter item for you today. I was listening but I was distracted by budgeting. Thinking of all the money I'm going to save by not going to baseball games all winter, or something.

It's at 2:10 - don't forget! See you there!

Radio Chatter:
"There isn't a White Sox heart that isn't in their throat right now."
- Tom Hamilton after the final play

Sunday, September 23, 2012

The Good Ol' Day

Remember back in April when we were awesome and the Royals sucked really bad? We came in and beat them good on their home opener, then proceeded to sweep them that weekend, scoring 32 runs in 3 games. This first series did sort of cast a pall on subsequent series when we couldn't get a ton of runs or even a win off these Royals that we so soundly thumped in the beginning of the year. But, whatever happened between then and now and however different our respective rosters are today as compared to April, it it certainly felt great to "re-live" that first series today and score a bazillion runs off the Royals!

More runs today than the Browns had points, by the way. Giggidy!

Did you know we've only scored double digits in 6 other games this year? I was at 2 of those game, actually - ha! We've never scored 15 runs in a game this year and the last highest score we had was 13-7 against the ROYALS in APRIL. The Royals have been the loser in 3 of our 7 double-digit scoring wins. So I suppose you could say that today's score was pretty unexpected but  if it was going to happen at all, it was going to happen against the Royals.

The last time we scored double digits was July 18.

Here's another interesting factoid, though - all the other teams we scored double digits against are all in the playoff hunt still (well, thanks to the new Wild Card rules). Reds (clinched), Angels, Rays and Orioles.

Enough with stats - on to the game!

David Huff is our newest starter, taking over for Jeanmar Gomez (thank God). Today was his second start and 4th appearance of the year. He did decently last time, but really had it going on today! He went 5 2/3 and only gave up 1 run and 3 hits. He only had 86 pitches so he could have gone more, but I think Manny Acta was just erring on the side of caution and playing the percentages. And also, as usual, is afraid that our starter could blow up at any moment as many of them have proven is possible.

In his post-game interview on WTAM, David Huff said something interesting. He said that Jack Hannahan basically told him to not fuck around on the mound and get in and out of innings quickly so that batters can keep up their momentum without spending too much time on the field. That's pretty interesting advice if that is what happened today - and not only did Huff's quickness on the mound help the bats but also helped his game as well.

After a walk and a single in the 6th, Huff was taken out for Rogers, who quickly got the last out. Then he gave up a double and a walk, then a run on a sac fly. Stupid Rogers.

But wait - here comes Tony Sipp! Two more runs scored. Tony Sipp, you absolutely break my heart.

Joe Smith came in to save Sipp's ass, then Vinnie Pestano did the final inning. With Tom Hamilton cackling about how Chris Perez is all but gone already. Noooooo! Stop it with your rational talk! Oh how I wish I had done something about the situation when I met Mark Shapiro the other day at batting practice...

Anyway, Pestano threw 11 pitches, 9 of them for strikes and struck out 2 to end the game. Gosh he is awesome!

Can you believe that with out 16 hits (and 8 walks) and 15 runs that today was not an "Everybody Hits!" game?! It's true. But not for lack of trying - our lone hitless Indian was Sweet Lou Marson - who walked THREE times and scored a run! Another tidbit is that almost everyone scored a run save for Casey Kotchman who had an RBI!

We had a good "classic" lineup today, that in fact was only 2 players different than the April lineup. Hafner and Duncan/Cunningham were in the original lineup and today they were replaced by Marson and Carrera.

Choo was the leadoff today and of course that was different in April but it worked out just fine today! He went 2 for 5 with an RBI, a run, a walk and a stolen base. So he was doing a little bit of everything - just like the Choo we love! He's got 6 hits in his last 4 games.

Kipnis had a great day too, playing a great 2-slot batter. He went 2 for 6 with a stolen base, an RBI and 3 runs scored! And his 4th triple of the year! He's got a 6-game hitting streak with 9 hits in those 6 game. Leave it to Jason Kipnis to finish out this year as strong as possible, right?

Asdrubal also in line with his two top-of-the-order buddies - he went 2 for 5 with a walk, scored 3 runs and got 2 RBI. He didn't even need any extra bases or steals to get all that - just solid hits with dudes on base.

Carlos Santana had a marquee day! After getting his multi-hit game yesterday with no RBI to show for it, today he went crazy on the RBIs and got himself FIVE RBI, courtesy of 2 home runs. He also had a RBI single, which was turned into a double on a throwing error. So, in his last 10 games, he's got 16 hits and 10 RBI! That is Kipnis-level performance right there! He also got his 18th homer today - I wonder if he'll make it to 20?

Did Michael Brantley get a hit today?
Three hits, baby.
That's a 6-game hitting streak for him with 9 hits in those games. Smooth!

Casey Kotchman made good on his average today and went 1 for 6. Plus he threw in an RBI for you because he thought you'd like it.

The Wise Celtic Sage Jack Hannahan was all over it today going 2 for 3 with 2 walks. That gave him a chance to get one RBI and score one run. Erin go bragh!

Zeke almost was the lone guy who didn't do shit today, but in the 7th he got an RBI on a fielder's choice. then in the 9th he finally got his hit, and another RBI and he came around to score. Viva la Zeke!

As I said, Lou Marson was the only guy not to get a hit but he had some sort of laser vision at the plate as he walked 3 times and didn't strike out once. Being on base that much, he was even able to come around and score a run!

Our team hit .372 today. They still left 9 on base! LULZ!

So what do you think about the ability of our "classic" lineup that only included one rookie? (Zeke - who was here for a bit last year too) Do you think it was them who got the 15 runs, or the Royals pitching that gave up 15 runs or a solid combination of both? Or was it the Royals' defense - they do have the worst defense in the AL. Or was it David Huff's work of keeping the game going while only giving up three hits?

I think with 15 runs we can say that it must be a combination of all those things. We DO have a good lineup and they DO have the ability to hit. There's just some piece missing that's keeping them from putting together RBIs.

For now I'm just going to enjoy this harkening back to that good ol' day in April when we had just finished a sweep of the Royals and scored 32 runs in one weekend. We only scored 21 runs against them this weekend and only won one game but still - it was great fun!

Tomorrow we take on the White Sox, still in the Central time zone so at 8:10. It will be Zach McAllister versis LHP (2.82) and a team that is fighting hard to stay in first place. I think we're just going to have to sit back and be pleasantly surprised if these guys can bring their big bats across the state line in to Illinois.

I didn't do any Radio Chatter today. I had the game on in my ear while I was watching the Browns game, which is funny because it's not like I needed to pay attention to the Browns game audio to know what was going on. Then after the Browns game was over I was sitting there all pissed that I didn't write anything down and also I didn't get to see this game on television. Frustration!

Anyway, 8:10 tomorrow - see you there!


I went out tonight, and had a really nice time. Went to a clambake at an old friend's house, with some current friends in tow, and met some new friends. Then there was a bonfire, and a movie on a giant inflatable screen. A really nice time indeed!

Then I came home and saw I had a postgame alert email from and was like "oh yeah, missed today's game." Then I saw the boxscore and I'm pretty sure I let out an audible groan.

I still listened to the game, just in case anything exciting happened. Turns out nothing exciting happened. Cord Phelps got his first Major League home run but it wasn't actually his first Major League home run because he got one last year.

Ubaldo didn't do well, he gave up 5 runs in 4 2/3. The bullpen did good, so yay. Jeanmar came in to finish it. Weird.

Ten hits, four walks, 9 left on base. Carlos Santana had a multi-hit game but it didn't do it for us - he didn't get any RBI. Kipnis sat out while Phelps played second. Asdrubal was in, no longer hurt I guess, but shut down at the plate. Russ Canzler still a hit machine. Choo did some bad baserunning. Thomas Neal had an error but it didn't lead to a run. Matt LaPorta left 4 on base.

Blah blah blah. I've seen this game like 40 times now since the break. At least this time there was no Johnny Damon!

Tomorrow is newbie on newbie - David Huff versus RHP who is coming off a stellar season in Triple-A Omaha. Maybe tomorrow will be totally fresh.

The game's at 2:10 so you get an hour of ho-hum football before you put 3 hours of ho-hum baseball on in the background. At least that's what I'm going to do. And do laundry, just for something different.

See you there!

Radio Chatter:
"With Justin Masteron and Ubaldo Jiminez, there's no middle ground. When they win, they are overpowering people. When they lose, boy they go down hard."
- Tom Hamilton

"I feel like I'm beating a dead horse, but how can you be Ubaldo Jiminez on the mound and forget about Hosmer running to third? It's the little things, especially when you're not pitching well."
- Tom Hamilton

"There's nothing like coming to Kansas City Missouri and watching adults and children lift their beer mugs and sing along with Garth Brooks."
- Tom Hamilton on KC's trying to shoehorn "Friends In Low Places" as a theme song

"If you get picked off while down three, you may not want to go back to the dugout."
- Tom Hamilton

"Little mistakes like that are why the Indians have been in such a tailspin since the All Star break."
- Tom Hamilton

Friday, September 21, 2012

Royal Pains

Ugh! The Royals! Usually I can say "boy those guys always have our number, don't they?" but this year we sort of had them going. Plus I used that excuse with the Twins this year. And everyone else that we were could have easily beaten but didn't.

Everyone has our number. It's written on the collective MLB bathroom wall. Meh.

Alex Gordon wasn't even in today! That should have been our saving grace! And I just lost my blog post which was almost done and now I have to re-visit this mess. ARRGGHH YOU ROYALS!!

Justin Masterson did not do what we needed him to. He did go 6 innings but he gave up 4 runs. Not cool. Lonnie Chisenhall didn't really help him at 3rd (he didn't help McAllister much on Wednesday, either) but technically none of those misses were errors, so Justin is on the hook for all 4.

Cody Allen came in and much to my surprise gave up 2 more runs - in just 1/3 of an inning! Not sure why I am surprised at this point...I realize he is not the same 0-run fella he was for his first month here. But dangit, why can't we have an awesome reliable bullpen again?!

Well, Joe Smith was before Allen and he was reliable. Rock on, Smith. Scott Maine finished the 8th with no incident.

Aside from The Chiz and Zeke, the lineup was pretty "old school" tonight, including a visit from Hafner! They got themselves 10 hits and 2 walks and even a hit-by-pitch (Choo! Just like old times!) but in that old school way, 9 guys were left on base.

Asdrubal had another good night after a night and a half off. I wonder if he got another shot in his wrist? He went 2 for 4 with his 32nd double, and came in to score a run after sealing 3rd. Fiesty! So he's got a 5-game hitting streak with 7 hits in those games!

Santana went 1 for 3 and his hit was a huge 2-run single! He's been getting RBIs along with his hits lately, belaboring the point that when he hits we win. It's not me - it's him!

Did Michael Brantley get a hit?
You know it! (And a RBI)
 Hafner was in the lineup with help from his friends LaPorta and Other Vinny Rottino. LaPorta got it done with one hit, but that's all that happened with those guys. Just the one hit. It actually coulda been better for Hafner, but he was robbed by this new kid from Akron, David Lough. Nice catch, kid. We'll be watching!

Kotchman was in and he was still rollin' from yesterday - he went 2 for 3 making him 5 for 8 over his last two games. Oh Casey, you are so solid yet so mediocre...will you lose your job to the bumble brothers LaPorta and Santana? It may be so...but do you really see LaPorta pulling this off, or Santana putting forth that much effort? No.

Speaking of effort, Kipnis can stay.

Ezequiel Carrera apparently had the best bunt my brother has seen this season, but it didn't even ping Tom Hamilton's radar (he was busy giving birthday shout-outs) and MLB didn't deem it clip-worthy. Oh well. Zeke went 1 for 4 and scored a run.

Tomorrow's a 7:10 game (really, even though we're in the Central), Ubaldo versus LHP (5.08). Ooooh scary, the first time we've seen a LHP starter in a while! Maybe all the new guys will bust out with crazy hits and we'll win the game. Who knows!

See you there!

Radio Chatter:
"When in doubt, it seems, when it comes to Carlos Santana just throw him something soft and he'll strike out."
- Tom Hamilton

"Rosie ate his pizza, my pizza, and this nice elderly people in the booth beside us, they got distracted and 'woosh!'"
- Tom Hamilton on Jim Rosenhaus's new favorite pizza place

"Proof once again that baseball fans are baseball fans no matter what the record."
- Tom Hamilton, amen

"With this roster expansion, everyone and their brother is getting to play."
- Tom Hamilton is not a fan

"The fans are being ordered by the scoreboard to make noise, or they will be thrown out of the park before fireworks."
- Tom Hamilton

Thursday, September 20, 2012

It's All About The Kotch

Casey Kotchman was at batting practice yesterday even though he didn't play.
There were a few plays at first that LaPorta missed that Kotch woulda gotten. Thankful for the day off, he came back refreshed and ready to hit the damn ball and hit he did! Enough about Casey for a minute...

Kluber was the starter and finally we got a quality start! Six innings and only 3 runs. He bested his last two outings, even (fewer runs and more innings) and bested the previous two pitchers. He gave up just 5 hits and struck out 5. His strikeout numbers seem to stay consistent over his starts, I'll give him that.

Kluber's 3 runs was all the staff was going to give up today. Allen, Pestano and Perez threw the next 3 innings with only 1 hit between them (Perez - it's a thing). Vinnie looked pretty sweet, striking out 2. The rest of the team couldn't keep up the pace, though and we needed one more inning to get the winning run. Esmil Rogers came in for the after-the-fact 10th and also did well, no hits or runs for him either.

Choo sat out today as a rest day (he was pretty crappy last night) so our new hero Vinny Rottino was the leadoff man, with his Godfather theme music just cracking up the radio guys every time. Unfortunately, his big show on the way to the plate translated in to nothing once he got to the plate. But he did have a rather nice catch in the outfield so I still like 'im.

Choo did come in for the 10th, by the way - and got a double then came around to score the winning run! CHOOOOOOOOO!

Kipnis is back to looking good, now with a 4-game hitting streak. Today he went 1 for 4 with a walk and he also scored a run. He hasn't stolen a base in a while though, hmm. Being that Kipnis is such a swell guy, he is the Indians' Clemente Award nominee for this year. Here's an article with a link to vote. But the voting kind of sucks, you have to give your info over to Chevy. I think I already gave them my info last year so whatever, no EXTRA spam.

Santa didn't hit but he walked twice, once intentionally in the 10th to get to Brantley, who also was walked to load the bases for a force out. That's pretty weird - the same tactic was taken by the Tigers the other day (albeit with the bottom of our order) and it totally backfired on them too. Although, while I would not walk anyone to get to Brantley I would walk Brantley to get him out of my way. Unless I was then going to have to face Kotchman who was 2 for 4 already with a couple of hard outs.

Kotchman didn't disappoint and in the 10th with bases loaded he smacked the game-winning single right over the head of the pitcher. Man give that dude one day of rest and there's no telling what he can do! Before that he had a double as well. Hovering at .231, baby!

Brent Lillibridge was in at short and guess what? That's right, you got it - he made an error. Argh! Asdrubal's wrist is still hurting, even though he got a homer last night before coming out of the game. We need more Jack at short, although he made an error today too!!

Aside from making errors, Lillibridge got a hit and got hit by a pitch. Hannahan also got on base twice with two hits and both guys got RBIs, and neither of their errors resulted in a run. That's different!

Much more hitting today than yesterday - 10 hits and 5 walks, plus a hit-by-pitch. Another walk-off win though, can you believe it? And now we're tied for last again yay!

Tomorrow we're in Kansas City for 3 games and on Central Time until next Friday when the Royals come HERE. We'll be climbing our way up through the Central first with KC, then Chicago, then more KC then more Chicago. The Twins are playing the Yankees, Tigers and the Blue Jays. I'm not sure which schedule is easier or harder - I don't think the Tribe knows either. Gotta see how it plays out!

The matchup is Justin Masterson versus RHP (4.50). Manageable, I say - once again, provided Masterson can keep it together. If he can pitch like we know he can, surely we can get a run or two off this RHP and be on a 2-game streak. Hooray!

See you there!

Radio Chatter:
"No we're not going to a funeral, that's the music for the leadoff hitter Vinny Rottino."
- Tom Hamilton

"If you're patient, Vasquez will walk you eventually."
- Tom Hamilton

"I was just reading the leadoff batter's handbook and it says that techno-pop-dance music is mandatory. I guess Rottino didn't get the memo."
- Jim Rosenhaus

"In the grand scheme of things, who cares? The Indians had all those great teams in the 90s and Hargrove was never manager of the year. All those great players and they never won awards. So at the end of the day, who cares? Let them have their vote."
- Tom Hamilton on year-end awards

"Trevor Plouffe couldn't even enjoy his 23rd home run, he thought Michael Brantley caught it."
- Tom Hamilton

"Atilla the Hun would be a calming influence in Boston. [...] He won't pop off as much and he really likes Kevin Youklis."
- Tom Hamilton

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Batting Practice! I Finally Made It!

So back in, like, August of 2011 I won two auctions (holy cow it was only a year ago that I had a lot of money?) - one was to go to a game in the Hargrove Suite and the other was "batting practice experience" where I'd get to watch BP from on the field with 3 friends. The BP experience was only to happen Monday through Thursday at a 7:05 game. I had to be there (with my friends) at 4:15.

It turned out there were no more home games I could go to in 2011, or something. So they just gave me free tickets to a Monday make-up game that I took my Arizona uncle to. That ended up being called for rain.

So another time this year we were set up to go, in June. That day's batting practice got called for rain. Then again we were ready to go and...BP called off on account of some sort of mental holiday for the team. We still got tickets for both games (good on you, Indians!)

Finally today it was SUNNY (it rained yesterday) and there was batting practice (why not? No need for special days off anymore) and other than me being sick (but mostly well) it was the perfect day for me to get there! Of course I lost one of my 4, as he is a teacher and coach and couldn't take time off to go to the game so it was just me and 2 buds out on the field. But it had to happen today, with or without our whole team! According to Justin Sherman, the guy who arranges these things (I wonder if he's got a Google Alert set up for himself?) I was the talk of the office. Would I or wouldn't I make it today?
This is the guy you see about batting practice.
I made it!

You probably want to see pictures and there are many. First let's talk about the game real quick.

Zach McAllister started and he did not fare well. He gave up 4 runs in 4 1/3 innings, including a 2-run dinger to that Indian-killer Josh Willingham. (Who? Exactly!) Can't fault him too much on that one because it seems no one can tame Willingham - he went 4 for 5 tonight with 4 RBI. Oddly enough, Mauer and Morneau only had 1 hit and 2 walks on the night between them. But people get on base (Jamey Carroll), Josh Willingham comes up, it's all over.

Chris Seddon didn't fare too well either, giving up 2 in 1 2/3 innings. After THAT, though, Maine, Sipp and Herrmann had a nice quiet night while our team tried to battle back. A solid ending by 3 guys who pitched last night (cuz everyone did) but too little too late.

I did get some neato pictures from behind the bullpen, though. Well, above. Here they are:
Tony Sipp! I got him to flash me the Devil's Horns before BP.

Sweet Lou, and the entrance of Pure Rage.

Frank Herrmann's start

Frank Herrmann's fancy finish

Vinnie Pestano

Herrman, Perez and Pestano. #BullpenMafia

Pure Rage! I got him to wave at me. (Chris Perez)
The team only had 2 hits going in to the 8th. But due to walks, HBP and an error, we managed to score two runs.

Choo was shut down today, even though people were dancing up a storm to his new at-bat song. Also there was a contingency of Koreans sitting near us in the stands and they were shouting fantastic Korean shouts at him. Perhaps it was too much!

Kipnis had a nice night, going 2 for 4 with 2 RBI and he also scored a run. He's been on a tear lately with 5 hits in his last 3 games. Love to see the Kid hit!

OMG ASDRUBAL!!! #15 homer for him today! Man he hasn't hit a homer since...August 24. And of course you know I didn't have my sign. Boo! But cool for him he's on a 4-game hitting streak also with 5 hits in that time. He ended up going 1 for 3 today and I don't know why they took him out of the game and replaced him with Lillibridge. I didn't think we were that far down (ok it was 6 to 2). Does anyone know?

Santana tried to be a hero today in the 8th but as usual it didn't work out for him. He flied out to left with 2 on and 1 out. Argh. He did walk today so he went 0 for 3.

Did Michael Brantley hit today? Yes. He's also a quiet guy. I thought he'd be chatty. But after BP while all the folks were lined up by the tarp to get some autographs, he was goofing around with some kids who wanted him to sign a helmet. So I don't know. Whatever - glad the kids got to talk to him!

Hafner was back today! My friend and I think he looks thin. Still muscular just smaller than usual. He went 0 for 3 but he did get on base twice with a HBP and an error. So, still making things happen.

Canzler was in too, which I thought was interesting. He wasn't so amazing at first - he's no Kotch. He also didn't hit.

The Chiz Kid, Lonnie Chisenhall was in at third. Boy did he look stinky out there. Maybe it's because I was sitting right near third but...yeah, no, I'm pretty sure he was stinky from right field too. He did go 1 for 4 on the night and he signed my baseball card AND my ball so all-in-all it was a good day for Chiz!
Love, The Chiz
Vinny Rottino. "Who's that?" my friend asked. And she follows the team! He was in left today and by the end of the game he was sort of everybody's favorite. First because of this play, where he made a diving catch for the third out and the umpire said "no catch" but then there was a long meeting and they said "catch!" Then after that he came up to start the 8th with a double then came around to score. Plus, turns out that guy has a major arm on him! He had a solid throw to first on the above-linked play and earlier in the game he had quite a throw to third. No more "Vinny who?" for you!

Oh also his at-bat music is The Godfather Theme. Weird.

So now we're in last place by ourselves. Wow.

Well whatever - I'm hangin in there til the end. Because what else do I have to do? Now we have something to root for - getting out of last! Tomorrow the game is at 12:05, the final meeting with the Twins. We have to win to not get swept by the goddamn Twins and also to be tied for 4th. Aye aye aye! It's Kluber versus RHP (7.53) who is actually worse than the RHP  we faced today so...for Pete's sake let's get our win on!!!

See you there!

And now for the photos. Enjoy!

From the Home Run Porch


Masterson, Perez


Empty stadium.

Super weird scoreboard pre-game stuff.

Asdrubal (on left)

Our view from the field!

Hey! Pronk!

Asdrubal, about 90 mins before #15

Jason Kipnis and Tom Hamilton

Brantley, Asdrubal and Kipnis

Panorama from left field

Encroaching Twins

Cousin Michael Brantley

Lonnie Chisenhall

Pitchers shagging

Up close with Jamey Carroll

Manny Acta


Hey what's up Vinnie Pestano?

Oh man, bad grammar! But neat that Hammy's family block is right near my dad's!

Just say no-me!

Casey Kotchman autograph! Nice guy!

Nice seats

Panorama from our seats

Dusk from our seats

Panorama from behind the home bullpen

View from that weird triangular section in left. Pretty nice!

Manny Acta autograph

Lonnie Chisenhall, Michael Brantley, Sandy Alomar Jr. and Jamey Carroll (why not?)

Magnets from the Fun Bunch!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Losing the Battle for the Bottom

It was a fun game and there were 3 extra innings, but the boys couldn't get it done and now we're tied for last place (or 4th place!) with the Twins.

I'm sick and I'm working late and I don't feel like doing this right now so here's the quickest of quick rundowns.

Huff started instead of Jeanmar. He only did marginally better than Jeanmar would have - 3 earned runs in 4 2/3.

After him, the relief started. And we broke some sort of franchise record by using 9 relievers. Kind of sucks that we had to dig that deep in September, against the other worst team in baseball, and still not win, but there you go. Seddon, Herrmann, Allen, Barnes, Pestano, Perez, Smith, Rogers, Maine. Only 7 strikeouts between all of them.

Kipnis and Santana had good nights, each going 2 for 6. Santana had a homer in the 12th and it was too little too late. It made the score 6-5 Minnesota. Tom Hamilton could not have been more unimpressed. It was crazy scary how he called that if I was his kid I would be hiding under the covers right now waiting for dad to get home and break all my toys.

The Chiz Kid had a big big homer in the 2nd. His 5th in 32 games. Puts him on pace for 25 this year! If he played 162, that is.

Russ Canzler has 15 hits in 15 games this year. Pretty neat.

Matt LaPorta. People get really mad at him. He did this last year too - happy, game-changing stuff followed by a game or two of huge disappointments from his glove or bat. From what they say though, no one is more upset by this trend than Matt LaPorta.

Tomorrow's game is at 7:05, and it's McAllister versus RHP (6.14). This cat has ZERO WINS and 7 losses. OMG we must be winning tomorrow's game!

Also - I am going to batting practice, for the 5th time now. Actually I have anticipated going to batting practice 4 other times, and shown up for batting practice one time, but every time it has been rained out or cancelled. So now I feel like I am a batting practice pro and I go all the time so really no big deal. Of course when I get ON the field I will be nearly peeing myself with anticipation. I'll take my camera, hopefully get some good pics. Also taking some baseball cards and pens. I'm not taking OMG ASDRUBAL that'd be weird.But I hope I meet him! Should I wear my Kipnis t-shirt? Hmm...

Ok everybody dream about sunny skies and my nose clearing up. Won't it be awesome if I give Russ Canzler a cold? Yeah.

Radio Chatter:
"If this was Broadway, his show could close after opening night if he keeps pitching like this."
- Tom Hamilton on PJ Walters

"And the Twins will get another pinch runner. Well, when you have eighty thousand players on the rosters, you can make any kind of move."
- Tom Hamilton

"This is where Carlos Santana needs to realize that less is more. You don't need a home run here, just a routine fly ball will end this game."
- Tom Hamilton

"If you made it to the 10th, first and third with nobody out, and didn't score - then frankly you don't deserve to win."
- Tom Hamilton is talking about the Tribe

"Boy that loss to the Indians on Sunday may haunt Detroit deep into the winter months."
- Tom Hamilton

"No team in the American League gives up more runs on 2 outs than the Cleveland Indians."
- Tom Hamilton

Sunday, September 16, 2012


Man what a game today! It felt like baseball all day with the score see-sawing back and forth, with the teams scoring in multiple innings, with guys getting clutch hits, close calls going our way, with a WALK OFF WIN!

This is so 2011! Woohoo!

Ubaldo was the starter and he looked GOOD! Even though the team looked shaky behind him for a bit (but just a bit). He only gave up 2 earned runs (with 1 un-earned) and went 6 whole innings. He only struck out 2 but hey he didn't hit anyone and he only walked 3 in that time which is pretty good for him. Oh and going 6 innings is pretty good for him - pair that with his last 2 starts and he's got 6 innings each.

The guy who got most touched was actually Joe Smith! Old reliable Joe! That dude hadn't given up any runs since August 20 and today he lost it to Miguel Cabrera who got a 3-run homer off him. You expect stuff like that to happen to Cabrera but not to Smith. Oh well...had to be someon!

We were behind in the 8th, but Vinnie went out there and did his thing with a 1-2-3 inning. No hits, no runs, one strikeout. Vinnie!

Esmil Rogers was the final reliever and they keep trying to groom him to be a closer and I still don't see it. Today it was reeeeeeeally close - he gave up a double, then a walk and then a wild pitch. But then he struck out Miggy and got Prince to ground out! Wat! So that was pretty awesome and I swear I caught his eye as he swaggered off the mound after the strikeout (I was at the game, wandering around). He swaggered and winked!

Did you know Prince Fielder has 0 homers at Progressive Field this year? He's only hitting .179 here. Cool.

There were a lot of close plays at first that went our way today. Not sure if it was sloppy playing or sloppy umpiring but whatever. Our turn!

ALMOST everyone hit today but everyone did get on base. Brantley was the lone no-hitter but he walked twice - once intentional.

Choo only went 1 for 5 but his single was a 2-RBI single! CHOOOOOOOO!

Kipnis was 1 for 4 with a walk and a double. He also scored a run. He didn't steal any bases today, what's up with that?

Asdrubal is still in, which is good because I couldn't stand all the crummy short-stopping in his absence. And his wrist must be feeling good cuz he went 2 for 4 with a walk today. And he stole a base! And he scored 2 runs! I didn't even have my sign...but it worked out because he managed without it, and I would have had a hard time following the kid around the park with my sign (it's big).

Carlos Santana - once again let me reiterate how key his bat is!! Today he went 3 for 5 with his second triple of the year and uh his second triple IN TWO GAMES! How does that even happen?? He got 2 RBI on the day and his second tied the game. He also scored a run and it was the winning run in the 9th!

Brantley was all patience today and he walked once, and in the 9th with Santana at 3rd and 1 out the Tigers wisely wisely walked him. He's not the sort of guy to go 0 for 4 so statistics showed he was going to get a hit. Or heck, a sac fly. They didn't let him.

Russ Bus Canzler had a good night going 2 for 3 with an RBI and a run. And he only played half the game! Zeke came in for him later, and he was intentionally walked in the 9th after Brantley to load the bases. I have no idea why they'd walk a young guy who's batting .245 with 2 homers to face an equally young guy who's batting .275 but that's what they did.

Here's what Lonnie did!

Awesome job, Lonnie! He also had beaten out a throw at first that resulted in both an RBI and the tossing of Jim Leyland. I wonder if Jim Leyland would have made the call to pitch to Chiz instead of Zeke? Perhaps Lonnie was setting up his own fate!
Lonnie Baseball - You built this!
Casey Kotchman was out there doin' stuff today. He went 1 for 3 but nothing to show for it. However his departure gave a chance for 3 other dudes to play, including Matt LaPorta who tried desperately to commit suicide by wall and railing not once but TWICE in one inning. During one guy's at-bat. It was almost as bad as Alex Avila trying to commit suicide by Fielder. Ouch!

Let us not forget our man Hannahan, who had his at-bat music switched up slightly at least for his first at-bat. Instead of his usual Celtic jig it was some country song about being a dirty hillbilly or something. No joke! It went back to normal after that, and he went 2 for 3 on the day.

Thirteen hits and five walks and a walk-off win! And I was there! It was JW's first game. Get 'em JW!

Don't forget that if you have a tyke - or anyone, really - who is attending their first game that you can go to Fan Services (Sections 108, 153 or the secret one we found at 550) and get yourself a First Game Certificate. With your name on it and everything!

Since the kid is only 2 and not going to be sitting for any length of time, I got a chance to check out the whole kid's area in the middle concourse. Not bad...the Kids Clubhouse is extremely well-stocked with all the best from Step 2 including this blue climbing post thingy that kids can climb up like Spider Man. And they stick to it too. I can't find it anywhere online so I have determined it's a Step 2 prototype!

Anyway after we did all the kids' junk we wandered downstairs and towards the exit but luckilly the rest of my crew decided it'd be ok if we popped down into the 160s to catch the end of the game. JW had a good time playing with the seats and clapping along with John Adams so it worked out. Oh and then I got to see the big win from right up close! Ballgame!

Great game and great to see that we still "got it" when it comes to the Tigers. Nice to see we can still beat a team we've been beating all year and it was extra-special with the come-from-behind win!

Tomorrow is an OFF day and I couldn't be happier because I am worn out from a long weekend and also sick with The Crud. Not sure if I got it from being outdoors at night or being around a ton of children.

Tuesday is a 7:05 game, at home, against the Twins. David Huff (yay!) versus RHP (6.07) OH YEAH!!!

See you there!

Radio Chatter:
"This is going to be one of those one-sided conversations we all had when we were young, with mom or dad where you just stand there and go 'Yes sir, yes ma'am, yep, nope.'"
- Tom Hamilton on Acta's visit to the mound in the first inning with bases loaded

"This is the story of the year for Ubaldo Jiminez. He gave up a 30-foot single. Even when you make a good pitch, it doesn't seem that Jiminez gets rewarded."
- Tom Hamilton

"Lonnie Chisenhall has been one of the season's most pleasant surprises in the month of September, according to Manny Acta."
- Tom Hamilton

"Whatever Casey Kotchman gives you offensively is certainly a bonus."
- Tom Hamilton YES!

"Once again the schedule-maker did not major in geography."
- Tom Hamilton is not a fan of the MLB schedule-maker

"This is another thing you can file under 'That's baseball, don't try to figure it out.' If you do, get back to us."
- Tom Hamilton on how Jiminez could be doing better than Porcello

"Well if he isn't the best player in baseball, then go watch badminton."
- Tom Hamilton on Miggy's 3-run homer to take the lead

"LaPorta has played here in the 9th inning only and one batter, and has taken more shots than some NFL running backs."
- Tom Hamilton in the 9th