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About Jon
Thank You For Not ...

1) using profanity or any euphemisms for profanity
2) personally attacking other commenters
3) baiting other commenters
4) arguing for the sake of arguing
5) discussing politics
6) using hyperbole when something less will suffice
7) using sarcasm in a way that can be misinterpreted negatively
8) making the same point over and over again
9) typing "no-hitter" or "perfect game" to describe either in progress
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11) commenting under the obvious influence
12) claiming your opinion isn't allowed when it's just being disagreed with

Farewell, John Updike
2009-01-27 11:06
by Jon Weisman
Note: The Dodger Thoughts blog has moved to the Los Angeles Times.

John Updike, the author of Rabbit, Run, which I have long considered my favorite novel, died today.

Updike, who also wrote the famous farewell to Ted Williams, "Hub Fans Bid Kid Adieu," was a significant influence on my writing and the way I express my feelings toward life. "On purely literary grounds, he was attacked by Norman Mailer as the kind of author appreciated by readers who knew nothing about writing," The Associated Press noted today. Maybe so, but I'll still take him.

Here's the conclusion from his short story, "The Happiest I've Been."

"There were many reasons for my feeling so happy. We were on our way. I had seen a dawn. This far, Neil could appreciate, I had brought us safely. Ahead, a girl waited who, if I asked, would marry me, but first there was a vast trip: many hours and towns interceded between me and that encounter. There was the quality of the ten a.m. sunlight as it existed in the air ahead of the windshield, filtered by the thin overcast, blessing irresponsibility - you felt you could slice forever through such a cool pure element - and springing, by implying how high these hills had become, a widespreading pride: Pennsylvania, your state - as if you had made your life. And there was knowing that twice since midnight a person had trusted me enough to fall asleep beside me."

Comments (121)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2009-01-27 11:16:36
1.   berkowit28
A great loss. Not only all those great novels, but also great articles and reviews that kept coming in the New Yorker. The last one wasn't very long ago, and there are probably more in the pipeline.
2009-01-27 11:18:09
2.   KG16
It's strange, I know who John Updike is, but I can't say, definitively, whether I've actually read any of his work. I'm sure I did, at least in a college English class, but still, that seems strange to me. Perhaps it is because I'm an aspiring writer, it always hits me weird when a well-known writer dies.

Nonetheless, godspeed to an American voice.

2009-01-27 11:21:10
3.   bhsportsguy
I have never been a reader of novels but I will purchase the Rabbit series novels based on Jon's recommendation.

However, if you have never read Updike's account of Ted Williams' last game, find it and read it, the last line is priceless.

2009-01-27 11:24:15
4.   Jon Weisman
3 - http://www.baseball-almanac.com/articles/hub_fans_bid_kid_adieu_article.shtml
2009-01-27 11:26:44
5.   bhsportsguy
4 Thanks, actually, its the the third to last paragraph that is often quoted.
2009-01-27 11:30:37
6.   bhsportsguy
Maybe Ben Sheets is happy that he probably will only have to wear this a few times if he signs with the Rangers.

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3363/3226458621_fd6e7c4551.jpg

2009-01-27 11:36:49
7.   Jacob Burch
2 If it wasn't the Rabbit series, the only things off the top of my head that are common in basic lit classes are The Centaur and a few of his poems. Ex Basketball Player comes to mind.

These sort of deaths, like Vonnegut and Pinter before him, always fill me with a personal sort of blues beside the normal sort of meditation of life lost. I have so little formal training in actual writing--an English major yes, but I did more reading than writing. I was always told I had a natural knack, and still get told now and then, but I've spent so little time writing or honing it that I feel these recently closed eyes looking upon me with dismay to waste what may or may not be a gift.

2009-01-27 11:40:07
8.   Kevin Lewis
Any of you softball/hardball players have a good rec. for button up jerseys? I am looking for decent quality that won't break the bank
2009-01-27 12:00:09
9.   MyTummyHurts
I haven't had a hamburger in about a month & don't know if Wendy's old fashioned hamburgers are famous or not but GAWD I'm in heaven right now...
2009-01-27 12:06:26
10.   Eric Stephen
8
Kevin, I put in an email to my friend and former softball manager asking him where he got our softball uniforms back in the day. The Hitmen may not have dominated Long Beach, but we looked good.
2009-01-27 12:17:04
11.   kinbote
Updike was a giant. My personal favorite piece is the short story, "A & P." His character descriptions were almost unfairly good.
2009-01-27 12:17:38
12.   KG16
7 - probably poems, then. I minored in creative writing and spent most of my time in writing classes (at the time it made sense to minor instead of double major because I could take the same amount of writing classes and avoid the lit classes, now that doesn't seem like such a good move). And yeah, I do need to write more.
2009-01-27 12:20:04
13.   Kevin Lewis
10

Hey, you might as well look good if you are going to get beat.

2009-01-27 12:21:24
14.   Bob Timmermann
Updike was a giant.

I was still able to post him up on the low blocks.

2009-01-27 12:23:46
15.   underdog
Farewell to Updike, indeed. I, too, am a big fan of the Rabbit novels. And will also miss his work in the New Yorker. I remember a writing teacher showing me this quote from Updike:

"A narrative is like a room on whose walls a number of false doors have been painted; while within the narrative, we have many apparent choices of exit, but when the author leads us to one particular door, we know it is the right one because it opens."

I always liked this one, too:
"Writing criticism is to writing fiction and poetry as hugging the shore is to sailing in the open sea."

7 I know that feeling precisely.
But you're too young to close those eyes, or close that door -- just write. Dammit, write! ;-)

2009-01-27 12:44:58
16.   Eric Enders
I've never read much Updike -- in fact I think the only thing I ever read by him was the Williams essay -- but I found this piece on him by David Foster Wallace quite interesting.

http://www.badgerinternet.com/~bobkat/observer1.html

"Mr. Updike, for example, has for years been constructing protagonists
who are basically all the same guy (see for example Rabbit Angstrom,
Dick Maple, Piet Hanema, Henry Bech, Rev. Tom Marshfield, Roger's
Version's "Uncle Nunc") and who are all clearly stand-ins for the author
himself. They always live in either Pennsylvania or New England, are
unhappily married/divorced, are roughly Mr. Updike's age. Always either
the narrator or the point-of-view character, they all have the author's
astounding perceptual gifts; they all think and speak in the same
effortlessly lush, synesthetic way Mr. Updike does. They are also always
incorrigibly narcissistic, philandering, self-contemptuous, self-pitying
and deeply alone, alone the way only a solipsist can be alone. They
never belong to any sort of larger unit or community or cause. Though
usually family men, they never really love anybody -- and, though always
heterosexual to the point of satyriasis, they especially don't love
women. The very world around them, as beautifully as they see and
describe it, seems to exist for them only insofar as it evokes
impressions and associations and emotions inside the self."

2009-01-27 12:50:39
17.   Bob Hendley
Was exposed to Updike through The Centaur in HS and Rabbit Angstrom became part of my life. Some of his more recent stuff I found uneven, but boy could he write. Nicholson Baker has a similiar style that I enjoy as well.
2009-01-27 12:58:54
18.   Jon Weisman
16 - The subject of my oral exam for my Master's was on American male protagonists who (metaphorically or literally) run away from home.
2009-01-27 13:05:01
19.   underdog
Torre, in interview, talks about Cashman and the book:

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/01/28/sports/baseball/28torre.html?ref=baseball

2009-01-27 13:05:48
20.   njr
Jon--

You are certainly not alone in loving Updike. He will be missed by many. You might find this interesting if you ever have a long plane ride to read:

http://www.amazon.com/U-I-Story-Nicholson-Baker/dp/0679735755

2009-01-27 13:07:54
21.   underdog
I feel dirty linking to anything in the NY Post (speaking of the Torre book), but this new one seems relevant at least:

http://tinyurl.com/aks5st

Agent: Manny in talks with several teams

(Of course, this is like Jon Heyman only quoting Boras -- who knows what the reality is.)

2009-01-27 13:18:02
22.   silverwidow
21 We're going to get him, but it'll take $70M minimum.
2009-01-27 13:31:02
23.   Eric Enders
In the past year I count 10 deaths of people who wrote at least one thing (novel, memoir, short story, essay) that I greatly enjoyed reading: Updike, David Foster Wallace, Studs Terkel, Eliot Asinof, Jules Tygiel, Don Haskins, Edmund Hillary, Dock Ellis, Arthur C. Clarke, and the great Tony Hillerman.
2009-01-27 13:32:29
24.   SG6
21 - got to love the sub-head on that: DODGERS, GIANTS ON LIST; METS' INTEREST IN DOUBT

"several" = two teams.

2009-01-27 13:48:39
25.   Ken Noe
Boras increasingly looks like a rainmaker in the Dust Bowl.
2009-01-27 13:52:08
26.   Dodgers49
Jackie Robinson part of top 5 at keystone sack

>> Jackie Robinson: Although he played about 45% of his 1,364 games in the field elsewhere, the Dodgers legend and social pioneer was known as a second baseman. Pressure from off-field forces aside, Robinson helped Brooklyn win one World Series and six NL flags. He batted .311, had a .409 on-base percentage and was a target of pitchers as he finished in the top three in hit batsmen in seven of his 10 seasons. <<

http://tinyurl.com/ah8xg5

2009-01-27 14:35:51
27.   Bill Crain
"there is no hiding from baseball
the fact that some are chosen
and some are not—those whose mitts
feel too left-handed,
who are scared at third base
of the pulled line drive
and at first base are scared
of the shortstop's wild throw
that stretches you out like a gutted deer"

From Updike's "Baseball" archived at oxfordamericanmag.com.

I always thought he was just a basketball guy.

2009-01-27 14:39:35
28.   silverwidow
Just had my first ice blended coffee today. As someone who doesn't drink regular coffee, I have to say this was really satisfying - like a cold milkshake or something.
2009-01-27 14:42:04
29.   Dodgers49
Rosenthal:

Dodgers still look like best fit for Manny

>> The Dodgers do not want to offer Ramirez a third year, especially when they might be bidding against themselves. But signing him would be a counter-productive if Ramirez was unhappy with the deal. <<

http://tinyurl.com/d39w5q

2009-01-27 14:43:28
30.   ToyCannon
I never felt scared at 1st of a shortstops throw, it was the pickoff attempt that made me nervous. At 3rd I was very comfortable with the glove as I had quick hands but I hated leading off of 3rd base when a pull hitter was up.

I never read Updike but all my favorite authors from high school are dead.

2009-01-27 14:49:20
31.   KG16
23 - note to self: don't write something Enders would greatly enjoy reading.
2009-01-27 14:50:03
32.   Dodgers49
Following the Dodgers

In a previous thread many long time Dodger fans commented on the difficulty of following the Dodgers in the newspapers many years ago. No one mentioned radio. Many of the great memories of my youth involve listening to Dodger games on the radio. I grew up in Virginia and was never able to hear Vin Scully. However, two of the National League teams had 50kw radio stations that I could pick up very well, especially at night. They were KMOX in St. Louis and KDKA in Pittsburgh. Fortunately, the Dodgers played each of those teams 22 times during the season. Even during the 110 games the Dodgers played against other teams I would listen to those announcers for in-game updates on the Dodgers (ironically, they gave the Dodgers game scores more often than Rick Monday does now while announcing actual Dodger games).

So my favorite announcers while growing up were Harry Caray and Bob Prince. I didn't hear Vin Scully until Spring Training of 1962. Ironically, I had to depend on a 50kw station (KFI) even then because I was living in Central California at the time.

2009-01-27 14:51:16
33.   Bob Timmermann
30
I haven't read any modern fiction that was published after "The Scarlet Letter."

Except for "The Bridges of Madison County."

2009-01-27 14:55:24
34.   ToyCannon
32
We had broad band KFI which could be heard everywhere. From what I remember the Dodgers would only broadcast the Sunday away games on TV. Not sure when it changed but radio and Vin was better anyway.
2009-01-27 15:03:39
35.   Bob Timmermann
34
The Dodgers originally only televised games in San Francisco. Then they added the Sunday away games later.

Walter O'Malley really wanted to use pay TV to show his games, but that couldn't get off the ground in the 1960s due to intense lobbying from the networks. There was a brief pay system used in 1964 I believe. Then the people of California voted to outlaw pay TV. Which they had no power to do.

The Dodgers originally were on KMPC, but switched after the 1960 season because O'Malley couldn't get the signal at his Lake Arrowhead home.

2009-01-27 15:07:21
36.   Eric Enders
32 , 34 I have Fernandomania to thank for the fact that I had no problem whatsoever following the Dodgers while growing up on the Texas-Mexico border. After 1981 we had not only a Spanish-language radio affiliate which carried Jaime Jarrin doing all the games, but both KTLA and KTTV on our cable system. I suppose I'm one of the few people outside of CA or NY who can say that I grew up with Vin Scully.

Added to that was the fact that the Dodgers' AA team played 20 games a year here, so I got to see the likes of Hershiser, Karros, Piazza, Mondesi, and the Martinez bros. before they made it big. El Paso was really a fantastic place to grow up if you were a Dodger fan in the eighties, and even today the Dodgers remain by far the #1 team here.

2009-01-27 15:13:19
37.   bhsportsguy
35 I can recall listening to scratchy KFI broadcasts of Dodger games in Yosemite as a kid.

I know I have said this before but there really was a time when the All-Star Game was your one chance to see the great players of the day gather in one place. For me it was All-Star Games, Baseball Digest, Sport Magazine, Sports Illustrated and baseball cards that were my window into teams outside the Dodgers.

And even the Dodgers only had the two local papers covering them, so you outside of the games, you really had no other insight into the team.

I would say it was the infamous Inside Sports article about Garvey and his relationship with his teammates that broke the wall.

2009-01-27 15:13:28
38.   Eric Enders
30 "all my favorite authors from high school are dead."

I once had the rather bizarre experience of taking one of my favorite authors from high school on a late-night grocery shopping trip when he got the munchies. (It was playwright Bob Anderson, author of I Never Sang For My Father, which was in my junior year lit textbook.)

2009-01-27 15:15:22
39.   bhsportsguy
38 I'll always envy your time with Teresa Wright.
2009-01-27 15:20:57
40.   Jim Hitchcock
35 I was just going to say that!

Sitting in the station wagon with my dad, smelling the smoke from all the campfires, with the words that Vinny weaved just swirling all around me. Classic memory.

2009-01-27 15:27:04
41.   Marty
40 In 1965 I was in the mountains sitting by the campfire listening to Vinny call the Koufax perfect game.
2009-01-27 15:27:06
42.   Marty
40 In 1965 I was in the mountains sitting by the campfire listening to Vinny call the Koufax perfect game.
2009-01-27 15:27:30
43.   Marty
aye yi yi I double posted.
2009-01-27 15:30:33
44.   Jim Hitchcock
43 A good story is always worth repeating.

Were you listening to it over a car radio, which had much stronger reception than anything else?

2009-01-27 15:32:37
45.   Marty
44 Little transistor as I recall
2009-01-27 15:39:46
46.   Kevin Lewis
33

This surprises me, Bob. Any reason why?

I am in the middle of The Road, and I am really enjoying it.

2009-01-27 15:42:27
47.   Bob Timmermann
46
I was kidding. I just believe that more people should acknowledge "The Bridges of Madison County" as a novel on a par with "Huckleberry Finn," "Moby Dick," and "The Andromeda Strain."
2009-01-27 15:45:23
48.   trainwreck
47
Don't forget "Monkey Shines."
2009-01-27 15:49:01
49.   Dodgers49
32 I should add that one of the results of the Dodgers move to California was that I would spend many nights in bed with my transistor radio long after the rest of my family had gone to sleep listening to a Dodger game broadcast that often lasted past 1:30 am.
2009-01-27 16:03:16
50.   Gen3Blue
From the east I could get Dodger game broacasts from the Mets,Cinci,Pittsburg, and Chi-town on my transister. And sometimes Philly.
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2009-01-27 16:21:38
51.   Dodgers49
50 I could sometimes pick up Cincinnati or Philadelphia late at night also. But the reception was poor and tended to fade in and out. It would become very frustrating when the reception would fade out during a Dodger rally. So I tended to listen to St. Louis or Pittsburgh even when the Dodgers were playing those other teams.
2009-01-27 16:28:08
52.   Bob Hendley
35 - Power to the People!
2009-01-27 16:28:55
53.   Dodgers49
Per Diamond Leung:

Red Sox nab another Dodger

http://tinyurl.com/d54xt5

Say goodbye to Angel Chavez

2009-01-27 16:32:25
54.   Bob Hendley
Didn't realize that he was injured.
2009-01-27 16:53:12
55.   underdog
53 - Noooo! First Berroa, now Chavez! What next?
2009-01-27 16:55:04
56.   Gen3Blue
53 With delight!

51 Fades on almost every game--it was part of the game to me. What a drag.

2009-01-27 16:56:14
57.   ToyCannon
Maza
2009-01-27 17:05:25
58.   Gen3Blue
57 no Maz! I can hope
2009-01-27 17:13:36
59.   Gen3Blue
Ohh, is Berroa gone? I have nothing against these vets and AAAA players. It is just that we have these somewhat promising prospects in Hu, Abreu, and DeJesus, who can do the same thing for less money and might actually emerge as something good. Am I the only one who fears that a sort of conspiracy of mediocre baseball people and mediocre vets could conspire to keep each other getting paid fat salaries, which would be humane, but not good for my team?
2009-01-27 17:21:32
60.   Dodgers49
Just up at Dodgers.com:

Precedent set for McDonald to 'pen

>> As they were with Billingsley, the Dodgers are intrigued with having a power pitcher coming out of the bullpen in the middle innings as a contrast to strike-thrower Cory Wade. In McDonald's case, his fastball picked up as much as five mph when the Dodgers used him in relief in late September and into October. <<

http://tinyurl.com/dnyfxg

2009-01-27 17:21:57
61.   underdog
Off subject, but if you're a Tintin geek like me you'll be excited to hear that Daniel Craig has now joined the cast of Spielberg/Del Toro's upcoming Tintin film -- as villain Red Rackham. Jamie Bell is playing the boy reporter, Simon Pegg and Nick Frost (hurrah!) are playing the Thompson twins. No word on who is playing Snowy the dog yet. Hopefully he won't be CGI.
2009-01-27 17:23:36
62.   GoBears
Am I the only one who fears that a sort of conspiracy of mediocre baseball people and mediocre vets could conspire to keep each other getting paid fat salaries,

Nah, I'm sure D4P agrees with you. But you guys are the only two.

2009-01-27 17:27:53
63.   D4P
62
Technically, I don't really fear the conspiracy...
2009-01-27 17:30:32
64.   D4P
The Dodgers re-signed reliever Tanyon Sturtze to a minor-league contract and invited him to spring training.

Yay.

2009-01-27 17:37:06
65.   Tripon
60 McDonald isn't a power pitcher!
2009-01-27 17:37:34
66.   Telemachos
61 (de-lurking) Re: Tintin...

Technically, everyone's gonna be CG, since the movies are going to be performance-capture (like BEOWULF). It remains to be seen whether characters will have some physical similarities to their real-life actors, or be strictly based on the look of the comics. I imagine some combination of the two...

Andy Sirkis, of course, should knock Captain Haddock out of the park.

2009-01-27 17:39:13
67.   silverwidow
65 He throws harder than Cory Wade, at least, with a better curveball.
2009-01-27 17:40:34
68.   trainwreck
I rather have a solid starting pitcher than a power throwing reliever.
2009-01-27 17:40:37
69.   Eric Stephen
Jim Gilliam had a sizable enough lead over Willie Davis that the poll for the #2 spot in the all-time LA Dodger batting order is now closed.

The mother of all debates is about to happen with the choice of the #3 hitter. Players that no longer qualify for another spot in the batting order after #3 are Mike Piazza, Reggie Smith, Jimmy Wynn, Gary Sheffield, Wally Moon, and Willie Davis.

Much like The Highlander, there can only be one, so this is an important piece of the lineup.

http://tinyurl.com/byhyeo

2009-01-27 17:40:53
70.   Gen3Blue
62 ,63 Good, if I seem to be the only paranoid in the group, I'm pretty sure I'm on to something.
2009-01-27 17:40:54
71.   Tripon
67 McDonald's also a flyball pitcher. While Wade's fastball are below average, he can throw them for strikes.
2009-01-27 17:42:47
72.   Sam DC
I'm trying to decide if the drop off from Don Sutton to Rob Dibble is greater with pitching or broadcasting.
2009-01-27 17:43:31
73.   Tripon
It's official: Ricky Hatton signs and fight with Manny Pacquiao is on

http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/sports_blog/

2009-01-27 17:46:34
74.   Eric Stephen
72
Excellent observation. :)
2009-01-27 17:49:45
75.   Gen3Blue
Obviously, the Dodgers are trying to appease those rabid fans at places like DT. So perhaps McDonald will smoothly slide from relieve into starting over a few years. If so the Dodgers BETTER GET A FEW STARTERS NOW..
2009-01-27 18:07:28
76.   Duranimal
Giants / Yanks and Manny

If the Giants wanted Manny, wouldn't they go ahead and sign him? Seems like signing him earlier than later would make it easier to sell more tickets.

Also, it would really surprise me if the Yanks signed him. Although they're the big market gorilla, they can't afford to completely piss off the other owners.

2009-01-27 18:41:07
77.   Bluebleeder87
options in the closer role An athletic 6-foot-5 right-hander, McDonald could eventually return to a starter role, although there are some in the organization who believe he also could eventually handle the closer role should Jonathan Broxton not be up to the job he has inherited from Takashi Saito, who was non-tendered.

from Dodgers.com

2009-01-27 18:47:39
78.   Bluebleeder87
69

I have to admit I voted for Bill Buckner on reputation alone but looking at Jim Gilliam's #'s he's formidable at the 2nd slot.

2009-01-27 18:50:29
79.   underdog
66 Ah, right, I'd forgotten about Sirkis, too! He's perfect for the role. He'll chew it up. Yeah, it remains to be seen how it will all look or turn out.
2009-01-27 18:50:42
80.   trainwreck
77
Shouldn't the Dodgers learn from getting Saito off the scrap heap, how much easier it is to find relievers than starters?
2009-01-27 18:56:32
81.   D4P
Padres GM Kevin Towers told MLB.com's Corey Brock Tuesday that his club is in search of a veteran left-handed hitter.

Brad Wilkerson, Luis Gonzalez, Daryle Ward, Mark Sweeney and Doug Mientkiewicz are among the left-handed vets still on the market.

If that's the market, then I think I'll be the second little piggy, thank you very much.

2009-01-27 19:00:35
82.   trainwreck
If only they were crazy enough to want Juan.
2009-01-27 19:13:55
83.   underdog
Pierre would probably become an all-star with the Padres, because that's just the kind of thing that happens. Well, it's probably impossible. But still, I fear it.
2009-01-27 19:17:11
84.   trainwreck
That is like fearing genetically-altered flying piranhas are going to kill you.
2009-01-27 19:18:31
85.   underdog
84 Um... yeah, heh heh. That's a crazy fear, too, eh?

Excuse me, I have to go make sure all the windows are boarded up properly.

2009-01-27 19:20:21
86.   trainwreck
Not if you have seen Piranhas 2!!
2009-01-27 19:22:53
87.   Tripon
When was the last time the Padres have multiple all-stars?
2009-01-27 19:26:08
88.   Gagne55
87 2007
2009-01-27 19:33:05
89.   underdog
86 - That was not James Cameron's finest hour. Doesn't hold a candle to the first.

So I guess we had a lot of Lakers fans stuffing the ballots to get the LA-Charlotte game on NBATV tonight.

2009-01-27 19:34:27
90.   Tripon
Now that I read the McDonald article, I still think its a mistake. The Dodgers need to develop all the starters that they can, so they don't have to choose mediocre 4th/5th guys on the free agent market.

Besides, McDonald's and Billingsley situations are different, Billingsley was only 21 when called up, and the team already signed Tomko to be the 5th starter. McDonald is already 25, and the Dodgers this year has two open rotation spots. Not that McDonald should be penciled in as a starter, but he should at least get first crack at it. And he already has major league experience, and post season experience too, or did those six innings in the regular season, and long reliever in game two of the NLCS suddenly don't count? He passed those two very difficult tests, and the Dodgers still don't think he's ready to start? I know they're taking baby steps with McDonald, but what I'm saying is I'm not sure why they're doing it when the tract record(admittedly small) shows that McDonald can do it.

2009-01-27 19:39:51
91.   ToyCannon
Maybe they don't want to waste the LaTroy Hawkins starting experiment and proceed directly to the dominant relief pitcher he was for a while.
2009-01-27 19:48:36
92.   Tripon
Does McDonald remind people of LaTroy Hawkins?
2009-01-27 19:50:38
93.   trainwreck
Hawkins has control issues and throws more sliders.
2009-01-27 19:50:38
94.   underdog
Did you know that Flight of the Conchords' Bret McKenzie was in two of the Lord of the Rings movies? (Not a surprise, I guess, given the relative population of New Zealand and since he looks a bit elfin...) Yes, he plays an elf. Seen very briefly each time.

But he has a line! Barely unrecognizable but here he is, at the end of this clip:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NF57D0_VV_k

2009-01-27 19:51:09
95.   trainwreck
94
Knew his dad was in the movies, but never knew he was.
2009-01-27 19:55:48
96.   Bob Timmermann
95
You mean you didn't stay in the theater after each movie ended to obsessively read all the credits?
2009-01-27 19:59:22
97.   trainwreck
I couldn't wait an extra second longer for Return of the King. Went to midnight showing and I kept thinking the movie was going to end like 5 times and it just kept going.
2009-01-27 19:59:29
98.   fanerman
96 I don't read all the credits. I just wait to see if there's extra scenes afterwards, like Neil Patrick Harris rising from the dead in Harold and Kumar.
2009-01-27 20:00:30
99.   Bob Timmermann
97
The key to the Lord of the Rings series:

No fluids 24 hours before the film starts.

2009-01-27 20:02:01
100.   ToyCannon
92
Just the Hawkins syndrome. He was a lanky pitcher who starred in the minors as a starter. The Twins kept trying him in the rotation and he kept failing. Finally they put him in the bullpen and he was great for a few years.

Sounds like the Dodgers think McDonald might be a mediocre starter but a killer relief pitcher.

Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2009-01-27 20:02:32
101.   trainwreck
Not even the length of the movie that was problem. I have seen a movie that was over 4 hours. The dragging on of the ending was the problem.
2009-01-27 20:06:51
102.   Tripon
100 Except McDonald never started in the majors. Its putting the cart before the horse. Unless the Dodgers think Troncoso can start, the Dodgers now have to find a second starter on the FA market or trade for one. Do the Dodgers really want to see Garland and Wolf in the same rotation?
2009-01-27 20:13:31
103.   Eric Stephen
McDonald is only 24.
2009-01-27 20:17:06
104.   KG16
69 - no question in my mind that Piazza wins. Speaking of, is #31 going to be unofficially retired now?
2009-01-27 20:18:21
105.   KG16
can someone explain to me how it is that the Charlotte Bobcats have the Lakers' number?
2009-01-27 20:18:31
106.   Eric Stephen
104
Maybe they wait until he makes the HOF, even though it will be in a Mets cap.
2009-01-27 20:20:18
107.   CanuckDodger
102 -- We already know the Dodgers are determined to get ONE starter, so that rules out shopping for two starters. The Dodgers have told the media that Troncoso interests them as a rotation arm, and perhaps that comes after getting detailed reports on how he looked pitching up to five innings a game in the Dominican Winter League. We know that McDonald's fastball loses a lot of velocity if he is starting. Perhaps the Dodgers learned that Troncoso can throw hard regardless of whether he is in the bullpen or a rotation. Either way, the fact is we have a lot of young MLB quality arms, either ready for The Show now or in the very near future. There isn't room for everybody to be in the Dodgers' rotation, so sorting out who fits best as a starter and who fits best as a reliever is logical. A decision like that is going to have to be made with Elbert too.
2009-01-27 20:20:21
108.   Alex41592
105 - Pau and Kobe shooting 2 for 15 so far.

That will not continue.

2009-01-27 20:20:29
109.   trainwreck
They have two point guards that are far more athletic and quick than the Lakers point guards?
2009-01-27 20:20:33
110.   scareduck
102 - Plus, his Baseball-Reference ID is McDonja03. That sounds pretty badass.

http://www.baseball-reference.com/m/mcdonja03.shtml

2009-01-27 20:20:56
111.   trainwreck
Well Farmar is really athletic, but does not matter in the triangle.
2009-01-27 20:21:30
112.   Tripon
106 Piazza had his best years as a Dodger. Does a WS appearance matter that much?
2009-01-27 20:22:12
113.   trainwreck
107
I thought most of our close arms are relievers?
2009-01-27 20:22:39
114.   trainwreck
112
Played with the Mets for longer.
2009-01-27 20:25:43
115.   trainwreck
I sense a NPUT.
2009-01-27 20:25:49
116.   Jon Weisman
NPUT
2009-01-27 20:26:00
117.   Tripon
Checking Piazza's B-R page, it said the A's paid Piazza's $8.5 million for 2007. What was the justification for that?
2009-01-27 20:26:07
118.   Jon Weisman
115 - Oooh.
2009-01-27 20:27:06
119.   Eric Stephen
112
I agree he was better as a Dodger (159 OPS+), but he was also great as a Met (136 OPS+), plus he had over 900 more PA as a Met. Factor in the World Series appearance, and Piazza's own choice (the HOF will consult him on this even though it has the final say) and it's almost a lock that he goes in a Met.

I would like to see all future HOF plaques with a blank cap, and a separate row on the plaque with the logos of all the teams the player played for. That would be kind of cool, and might be more appropriate for a split career like Piazza (or even Winfield from years past).

2009-01-27 20:32:56
120.   Gen3Blue
When it comes to prospects, I generally defer to Canuck. However I still question Broxton not becoming a starter. I think it takes a bit of work to be a starter, even in the NL, but I am wondering if the Dodgers couldn't have a young staff like the Rays if they put a bit of work into it. Its not like they have a lot of other options.
2009-01-27 21:28:21
121.   das411
98 , I know there's an NPUT but when did NPH come back???

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