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About Jon
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1) using profanity or any euphemisms for profanity
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5) discussing politics
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The Losers Dividend
2005-09-25 21:59
by Jon Weisman
Note: The Dodger Thoughts blog has moved to the Los Angeles Times.

The last two Dodger games I have attended, a loss and now today's victory, have been the two most pleasant I've been to all season. Both came after the team's sub-.500 status was assured, a condition that seems to have weeded out the high expecters (expectants? expectationers?) who would only be satisfied by a victory. The best that people hope for now is that a baseball game be played. That's all. Throw the first pitch and we've already won. The Dodgers of September 2005 offer no other guarantees, and so we find ourselves at the major league equivalent of Little League, where it's a celebration when someone doesn't fall on his head and it's considered poor form to rain criticism or curb hope. Call it the Losers Dividend. It's a very relaxing, freeing payoff (abetted by the ease of ingress and egress to Dodger Stadium that the smaller crowds provide), enough to make one up and move to Kansas City or Tampa Bay so this can be reinvested and experienced permanently.

There were a couple of people who violated the spirit of the day. They both seem like nice enough people on the outside and seem to not lack for friends, but still they thumbed their portfolios at the Losers Dividend. One was the chap sitting two seats away from me, who couldn't find any redeeming aspect in what lay before him and almost from the opening pitch was trying to hurry the game along so he could get home to barbecue. For those who have criticized Jim Tracy for benching Hee Seop Choi and for those who have criticized Choi's acquisition, you might find it interesting that this fan had no kind words for either. Choi does "nothing" as a player, and Tracy is the worst manager in baseball, according to this fan. Again, his delivery was easygoing and he struck me as the first guy who would help you change a tire if you were stuck on the side of the road, but for today's game, he packed a full kit of contempt. And you just wanted him to let go a little bit like the rest of us, and take the opportunity to let baseball be baseball.

The other spurner was Tracy. With two on and two out in the sixth inning today in a 2-2 tie, Choi stood in the on-deck circle with Willy Aybar at the plate. As Aybar inched closer to a walk, it occured to myself and others that Choi could have the game's make-or-break at-bat. It also occured to us that with a lefthander on the mound, Tracy might pinch-hit for Choi, even though it would be the perfect opportunity in this meaningless game, during a part of the season that Tracy himself has said he's putting people like Brian Myrow in situations to gain information for 2006, to give Choi a key at-bat against a southpaw. A perfect Little League moment.

Aybar walked to load the bases, and Choi took a couple steps toward home plate. Sitting (thanks - seriously, thanks - to some generous seats from an anonymous Dodger Thoughts reader) in the lower part of the Field Level, I could see and hear Tracy yell at Choi to come back. Either Choi had not gotten an earlier message, or Tracy did not counsel Choi that he wouldn't bat against a lefty with the bases loaded. It added insult to insult. Either way, as Tracy sent Jason Phillips up to pinch-hit, it caused me to have my one bad moment of the game and yell at Tracy like I was the protective father of the 10-year-old Choi. This was not what the game was supposed to be about.

My reaction sprung from the assumption that this was a time for the kids, a time to get a glimpse of the future in the present. Upon reflection, I realized that maybe Tracy was Little Leaguing it after all, that he was trying to get as many guys in the game as possible and this was his best spot for Phillips, who in fact hasn't played much lately. No one thinks Phillips has much more of a future in Los Angeles, but of course, perhaps Choi doesn't either. So I'm going to grudgingly, very grudgingly, let Tracy off the hook on this one. And it has nothing to do with Phillips getting a single that keyed the Dodgers' six-run inning. I think it was objectively the wrong move for the organization and personally disappointing, but Phillips is a human being too. I'm not going to stay mad. That would be my waste of the Dividend.

Comments (187)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2005-09-25 22:29:27
1.   alex 7
Nicely put. I too had an odd emotional reaction to the play. On the one hand, it seemed like a perfect opportunity to develop Choi and give him an at bat against a left-hander. On the other hand, Tracy at least made the move that gave his team the best chance at winning. Phillips' OPS vs lefties this year is .809, Choi's is .771

So while it's easy to blame Tracy for taking an at bat from a player whose ability ceiling is still undecided and instead giving it to Phillips, it's somewhat difficult for me to blame a manager for playing to win, even when winning isn't goal #1.

I guess that makes Tracy hard-headed while also making me wonder even more if he and Depo are on the same page. If a season is over yet a manager makes in-game moves that take away from the developing players (even if it's only 1 at bat), it shows discord between what should be happening and what is.

2005-09-25 22:52:46
2.   Jon Weisman
I don't care at all about the chance it gave the team for winning. I don't want Tracy to throw the game, but it was a questionable move even for the moment, and especially for the long term.

But ultimately, it was just one moment, and not enough, I've decided, to get hung up on.

2005-09-25 22:56:52
3.   dzzrtRatt
Jon, you're a hell of a writer. It's been a pleasure reading your long pieces. You're a smart analyst, but when you set the scene like this, I think you're at your best.

I'm a Choi agnostic now. I would've liked to see him bat, and use that great eye of his to draw a walk if he couldn't get the hit. But Phillips did the job for a change, so I was happy for him too. Today's game made me think good thoughts about the current Dodger team, especially the guys who had no reason to think they'd be part of it. They weren't very good, but they never gave up, and on those rare occasions when things went well, it was almost more satisfying. If Gary Sheffield hits a home run against the Red Sox, well, that's what he's paid for. But when it's Oscar Robles, hitting a home run for the Dodger that ties a game against the Giants, that's a moment. We were one hit like that short in a lot of our games this year. That one hit was the difference between the men and the boys, I guess. But it's to their credit that this crew got that close so frequently.

2005-09-25 23:01:11
4.   ImChuck
You would think by now, with all the people calling for Tracy's head because of the Choi situation, Tracy would at least give Choi more opportunities to go against left-handers (or to even play in general). While we can't say Choi completely wasted an important year of his development away, he has pretty much done that in my opinion. Sitting on the bench for 5, 6 consecutive games gives you nothing to work off of when trying to improve. It's a shame too, because he's got the power and potential to be great. It's just dissapointing to see Tracy waste that away. I don't see the situation changing next season if Tracy is still at helm. In my opinion, DePodesta, not having done anything to change the situation, is made to look rather weak. Choi is his guy. We all know DePodesta probably wants to play Choi more than Phillips. And he should do something about it.
2005-09-25 23:19:16
5.   bigcpa
It's one thing that Tracy doesn't see value in getting Choi extra ab's in meaningless games. But you'd think the fact that he's a fan favorite would factor in when he's got Myrow ahead of him on the depth chart.

Choi Pre break:
.776 OPS (243 pa's)

Choi Post break:
.836 OPS (102 pa's)

Garret Anderson would love to have those numbers.

2005-09-25 23:21:20
6.   bigcpa
If anyone is interested in their own Losers Dividend, I've got 2 infield loge seats for the Tues and Weds games. Email me at bigcpa@gmail.com.
2005-09-25 23:37:03
7.   Bob Timmermann
I've always found myself attracted to watching these late season games. A lot of it is because I keep score and I like to see all the unfamiliar names when I look back at my scorebook.

Guys who never made it, guys who weren't famous yet. It's all fun.

The last four home games are unlikely to have any bearing whatsoever on the pennant race. The DBacks are still mathematically alive (who would have thought that at the beginning of the year?), but they likely won't be hanging on for long.

Despite the fact that I could have been watching a first place team on TV (the Angels), I just couldn't bring myself to pay much attention to the game. And it's likely that come a week from Tuesday or Wednesday (whenever the Angels start their series), I will be rooting hard for them, I still cared whether or not Willie Aybar could reach base in a 2-2 game.

2005-09-25 23:43:32
8.   Eric L
The last couple of games I've been to were pretty nice as well, but for different reasons. The big comeback a couple of Wednesdays ago against the Giants was one of the better games I have been to this season.

My buddy, myself, and the guys in front of us were ragging on Mike Edwards (between us, not "out loud") throughout the whole game and of course, he had to come up with the game on the line. I was happy for Edwards that he was able to have a moment like that.

Friday nights game was fun too, but for different reasons. The fireworks were great and the atmosphere was pretty laid back. On top of that (TMI warning), I took a great girl to the game.

Going to games that don't matter can be kind of fun. Don't get me wrong, I wouldn't trade it for either of the playoff games that I attended last year. Just going and enjoying the game, no matter the outcome is kind of fun.

2005-09-26 00:19:21
9.   Linkmeister
"expecters (expectants? expectationers?"

As long as it's not expectorants.

Lovely bit of writing, Jon.

If you like games like this, you guys ought to try college baseball. Sitting at Les Murakami Stadium watching a game with Diamond Head over the left-centerfield fence is a joy.

As long as I'm in here, lemme share my most recent Internet fixation:

http://www.librarything.com

Bob ought to like it; catalog your collection using LC data you don't have to type yourself.

2005-09-26 00:48:49
10.   popup
#8,Eric, I agree going to baseball games is fun. I think way too much time is spent (and I will include myself in this criticism) obsessing about who the manager should play or which free agent should be acquired rather than actually going to the ballpark and seeing the remarkable plays that major league players make.

As a baseball fan I can say the older you get the better it gets. I can look down at the field and see players today and remember the guys I saw as a kid. In one of my posts I mentioned that Aybar kind of reminded me of Jim Gilliam. Aybar is a little taller but he is a switch hitter, a good fielder and he has a line drive stroke, all the things I remember about Gilliam. I have yet to see anyone who reminds me of Sandy, but maybe Logan White is looking around as I am typing this. I wish him luck. And even though he was a Giant and I am not a Giant fan, if Logan White uncovers a Willie Mays, I won't object to seeing him with the Dodgers.

Stan from Tacoma

2005-09-26 01:21:14
11.   Louis in SF
Liked the post and Stan's comment about Abyar and Jim Gilliam is interesting, somehow he reminds me a lot more of an original mod squader Ted Sizemore. Sizmore was not a switch hitter. As I was listening to the game in SF on my computer, I was only wishing that Vinny would have been doing the whole game on radio.

While I know there was a collective, "I can't believe he is doing this" from almost every DT reader, the pinch hitting of Choi, by Tracy with Mr. Phillips illustrates a problem that many on DT, myself included have never fully accepted. Tracy was never called out by DePo becasue McCourt doesn't have the money and didn't have it to make a serious move when key players were injured. In my mind this is why Tracy will not be fired next year even if DePodesta wants Tracy to play CHoi more.

2005-09-26 01:31:12
12.   dzzrtRatt
11 Tracy was never called out by DePo becasue McCourt doesn't have the money and didn't have it to make a serious move when key players were injured.

Were there expensive, good players for sale in June and July? I don't recall that there were.

The treasury DePo didn't want to tap wasn't McCourt's money vault, it was Logan White's talent bank.

2005-09-26 02:42:57
13.   Vishal
Phillips' OPS vs lefties this year is .809, Choi's is .771

those two numbers aren't particularly far apart for one, and choi's sample size is a hefty 27 at-bats. plus, it's kind of not the point. we already know more than we need to know about phillips. the game's outcome itself is meaningless now; let's let choi bat against lefties.

2005-09-26 04:08:56
14.   Big Game
i was at the game and when that play was shaping up my buddy and i looked at eachother and both said "theres no way choi hits if they leave the lefty in"

and we continued to think about tracy not being in sync with the kind of players depo is bringing in...tracy manages games well, but cant or doesnt want to understand the GM's philosophy. so if your manager doesnt get the direction of the gm, who has to budge?

im thinking that tracy will head to pgh or cin and depo will push to bring ron washington in to take over. just a thought.

2005-09-26 06:29:56
15.   DXMachina
9 If you like games like this, you guys ought to try college baseball. Sitting at Les Murakami Stadium watching a game with Diamond Head over the left-centerfield fence is a joy.

I'm thinking sitting anywhere you can see Diamond Head in the background is pretty good, so if you add some baseball it becomes heaven. Most of the live games I see are AAA, and they have a similar feel to them. If the home team wins, great, but it's more about watching players develop, trying to figure out which ones will go on. I will say, though, that given a choice I pick Honolulu over Pawtucket any day.

2005-09-26 07:45:57
16.   Bob Timmermann
http://www.librarything.com

Bob ought to like it; catalog your collection using LC data you don't have to type yourself.

Sounds like a busman's holiday for me. I just put my books on shelves until they don't fit. Then I throw away old ones.

2005-09-26 07:50:09
17.   Steve
Rosenthal:

The emergence of rookie Ryan Zimmerman makes Nationals third baseman Vinny Castilla a candidate to be traded. Castilla, 38, could be a fit for the Dodgers or Padres, but he ranks eighth in on-base/slugging percentage among the 10 National League third basemen who qualify for the batting title. Chances are, he won't be worth the $3.2 million he is guaranteed in 2006. ...

Really? You don't think?

2005-09-26 07:57:36
18.   Bob Timmermann
Perhaps I can join Steve in the self-immolation.

If Vinny Castilla's playing for the Dodgers, that means Pat Gillick has taken over as GM.

2005-09-26 07:59:51
19.   dzzrtRatt
I love it when writers think out loud, but leave the rejected/foolish thought on the page. And then I even love more editors who don't notice. Hey, what about this: "A good choice for the Dodgers would be to bring back their perenniel All-Star Gil Hodges at first base. Of course, he might not be available, since he died in the early 70s."
2005-09-26 08:01:18
20.   Sam DC
Well, the rumor here is that Gillick is a likely candidate to replace Bowden. What exactly did the people of Washington do to deserve such a thing? (Put your hand down, Bob, let one of the other kids have a turn . . .)
2005-09-26 08:03:55
21.   Sam DC
Do you think Jon will be able to enjoy his loser's dividend at his next game (should he be able to squeeze one more in) where he's struggling to get back to .500 for the season?
2005-09-26 08:04:27
22.   dzzrtRatt
20 Really? I heard the job might go to "Mikey" Brown.
2005-09-26 08:13:15
23.   Sam DC
22 No, he's in for field manager.

And by the way that "rumor" is just the horsiest of horse apples. There's no owner and no one has a clue. But the articles always seem to mention Cashman, Josh Towers, and/or Pat Gillick based on nothing it seems more than availability and some or other tie to the region.

2005-09-26 08:19:01
24.   dzzrtRatt
23 If you can hang on til 2009, Bush can come in as GM. I've always thought that's the job he really wanted, not this heavy load of presidentin'.

His first move: Trade for Sammy Sosa.

2005-09-26 08:58:36
25.   popup
#20, Sam, what is wrong with Gillick? He put together a terrific club in Toronto, despite a meddlesome owner he did the same in Baltimore, and he was on board for the best team Seattle has ever seen.

Stan from Tacoma

2005-09-26 09:03:16
26.   Bob Timmermann
But Gillick did nothing with the Mariners in 2002 while the rest of the AL West thundered on past Seattle.
2005-09-26 09:06:39
27.   Jon Weisman
It's a beautiful day for a story on a traffic report sounder, for a story on a traffic report sounder today.

http://tinyurl.com/938dl

2005-09-26 09:11:18
28.   Bob Timmermann
The writer left out in the story that NBC used G, E, and C in their chimes because it was for a GE Corporation (GEC) sponsored-program.
2005-09-26 09:15:47
29.   Gold Star for Robot Boy
No link for the sounder .wav? What a shame, and a missed opportunity for the Times Web folks.
2005-09-26 09:28:34
30.   Bob Timmermann
The NL West champion this year could have as few as 78 wins. Or as many as 84 wins.
2005-09-26 09:30:34
31.   Steve
More Rosenthal:

"The team's questionable chemistry will lead to a roster turnover and probably a change in manager..."

hmmmm...which team could Rosenthal be talking about? The Pirates? The Devil Rays? The Reds? The only team he could not ever certainly be talking about is the Florida Marlins, to whom the Dodgers traded not only all their chemistry, but several National League East division championships.

2005-09-26 09:30:38
32.   Bob Timmermann
Warning: Only the first 50,000 fans to Thursday's game will get Jeff Kent bobbleheads.

So don't get shut out....

2005-09-26 09:32:46
33.   dzzrtRatt
If you get the NY Times national edition at home, have you noticed that the paper seems to think it is Boston's hometown paper? On page one of SportsMonday, the Red Sox' win over Baltimore gets a huge spread--right underneath the story of the Patriots' win over the Steelers. (The Eagles also make page one.) The Yankees, Mets and Jets are all inside. They didn't even see fit to put Bernie Williams' possible last game in New York on the front page--the guy who will leave the Yankees fourth in total hits behind Gehrig, Ruth and Mantle.

Does the New York Times have Boston envy?

2005-09-26 09:34:47
34.   dzzrtRatt
Just noticed the A's and the Giants are in precisely the same situation this morning--four games back, starting a four-game series against the first place team.
2005-09-26 09:38:32
35.   Bob Timmermann
The NY Times owns the Boston Globe. And it probably sells a lot of copies in Connecticut too.
2005-09-26 09:41:53
36.   D4P
32
Making a bobblehead out of one of the least favorite Dodgers in team history is brilliant. I'm surprised they didn't realize a 20th Anniversary Niedenfuer edition this year.
2005-09-26 09:46:55
37.   Bob Timmermann
I doubt Jeff Kent is one of the least favorite Dodgers ever. I could probably list 20 guys whom Dodgers fans dislike more in the past 10 years.
2005-09-26 09:47:39
38.   Sam DC
34 And its Northern Cal trailers v Southern Cal leaders. I'd love to see the As make one more run. I guess I'd rather have the Padres from the NL West, but I find it really hard to care much.

Meanwhile, forecasted rain threatens to reschedule my rain game tonight. I will be annoyed in the extreme if, after sitting at the stadium for 3 hours through one soaking and eventually fatal rain delay, and after juggling life to get free to get up to Balt for the rescheduled game tonight, it then gets moved to an afternoon this week and I can't go at all.

2005-09-26 09:48:50
39.   D4P
37
I'm including his pre-Dodger popularity (or lack thereof).
2005-09-26 09:58:00
40.   Steve
36 -- Erickson Bobblehead night?
2005-09-26 09:58:22
41.   dzzrtRatt
35 I thought it might be because a high % of NY Times readers went to Harvard.

I grew up in Stamford in the populous Fairfield County, and we considered ourselves a suburb of New York, rooting for NY teams.

2005-09-26 09:59:54
42.   Bob Timmermann
It looks like the Dodgers will have no rainouts this year. I believe there is a chance of rain here in L.A. tonight or tomorrow, but I doubt it would rain hard enough to postpone a game.

I don't even think the Dodgers have had a game delayed by rain once the game started this year and had one game in Denver have its start delayed for a few minutes.

2005-09-26 10:04:15
43.   D4P
42
I also don't think the Dodgers played any doubleheaders, did they? I kinda miss the days when "playing two" was written into the schedule.
2005-09-26 10:04:52
44.   Jon Weisman
36, 39 - Jeff Kent has never been a significant Dodger villain. He played a few years for the Giants, but his name is not linked to any key moments in the rivalry. He'll never be the most popular Dodger either, but he's the team's MVP this year and always gets cheered in his home park - it would be odd not to consider him for a season-ending bobblehead (as these considerations go).

The analogy with Niedenfuer doesn't track at all.

2005-09-26 10:08:45
45.   dzzrtRatt
I think Jeff Kent has been exemplary. I hope we keep him for '06.
2005-09-26 10:09:40
46.   Marty
I'm staring at my Cesar Izturis bobblehead right now. He seems to be favoring his right elbow.
2005-09-26 10:15:27
47.   blue22
39 - Given his rivalry with the much-hated Bonds when he was a Giant, your feelings on Kent can be summarized on how you complete this sentence:

"The enemy of my enemy is my..."

2005-09-26 10:15:36
48.   Sam DC
46 Does he look like he's thinking about trying to steal?
2005-09-26 10:16:14
49.   Bob Timmermann
The Dodgers last doubleheader was 9/27/2003 in San Francisco.

The Dodgers split.

The Dodgers last doubleheader at Dodger Stadium was on 7/22/1999 against Colorado, but that was a day-night doubleheader, which in the record books, doesn't count as a doubleheader. (The Rockies won both games.)

The last "2 for the price of 1" doubleheader at Dodger Stadium was on July 8, 1992 against Montreal. The Dodgers split that day. That was not caused by rain.

The last scheduled doubleheader was on September 17, 1987 against Cincinnati. Another split. That was necessitated by Peter O'Malley wanting to clear the stadium for use by Pope John Paul II for a Mass.

2005-09-26 10:20:05
50.   FirstMohican
Instead of a Jeff Kent bobblehead... why not a Jim Tracy Action Statue?
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2005-09-26 10:25:03
51.   Eric Enders
23
Josh Towers is a good pitcher and has a helluva mouth on him, but I'm not sure what his other qualifications for a GM position are...
2005-09-26 10:27:19
52.   Marty
A talking Jim Tracy doll with the pull string in the back would be fun.

"Bad arm angles today"
"Put them in a position to succeed"
"Robles in the 3-spot sounds good"
"Give the bunt sign to JD"
"I think Weaver still has something left"
"Give Izturis the green light"

2005-09-26 10:27:42
53.   Eric Enders
Great post today Jon. Related, but unrelated, topic: I was wondering the other day why minor league teams do things like platooning and bringing in a LHP to face a LHB.

If these are the proving grounds for the major leagues, don't you want your young LH hitters to get as MANY at bats against LHP as possible, for learning purposes? etc etc. Why do minor league managers manage like major league managers, when doing exactly the opposite would better suit the organization's goals?

2005-09-26 10:28:18
54.   Adam M
37 - They could have a Tom Goodwin bobblehead - it only works when the Dodger uniform is removed.
2005-09-26 10:28:36
55.   Sam DC
D'oh -- so what's Epstein's assistant's name that is kind of like that -- I'm off to look it up but I'm guessing you'll beat me.

Meanwhile, an "action statue" doesn't sound too fun to me.

2005-09-26 10:29:30
56.   Eric Enders
I think the item in #54 would only work if the baseball uniform is removed.

Wait, I didn't mean it to sound like that... Eh, you know what I mean.

2005-09-26 10:31:04
57.   Sam DC
51, 55 Josh Byrnes, Red Sox Assistant GM.
2005-09-26 10:31:12
58.   Bob Timmermann
My Norihiro Nakamura bobblehead doll on my desk still has its face turned away. It won't be turned around to face forward unless he goes back to Japan or somehow makes it back to the majors.
2005-09-26 10:33:56
59.   Sam DC
You should see the glove launcher on my Duaner Sanchez.
2005-09-26 10:34:57
60.   Eric Enders
55
I thought you meant Kevin Towers, who is not Epstein's assistant but whom Epstein used to be an assistant to.

The Boston asst's name is Josh Byrnes.

2005-09-26 10:35:39
61.   D4P
47
Sorry guy, but I don't like either Bonds or Kent. Call me crazy.
2005-09-26 10:37:36
62.   Sam DC
57, 60 How old do you have to be to be Theo Epstein's assistant?
2005-09-26 10:39:29
63.   Eric Enders
I don't know, how old is Bill James?
2005-09-26 10:39:58
64.   Bob Timmermann
61

So would you have tossed back the 1956 NL pennant because Sal Maglie was on the Dodgers?

Or the 1963 World Series because Leo Durocher was a coach?

2005-09-26 10:45:43
65.   Eric Enders
64
What's wrong with Leo Durocher? He was a longtime Dodger shortstop and pennant-winning manager before he ever stained his uniform orange. If anyone, it's the Giants fans who should hate him, not us.
2005-09-26 10:47:09
66.   D4P
64
My dislike of Kent preceded his stint with the Gnats. I don't subscribe to the belief that one is required to like all players on one's favorite team.
2005-09-26 10:47:21
67.   Icaros
53 My guess would be that most minor league managers are hoping to one day be major league managers, so they want to show that they can do all of the things major league managers do that annoy us so much.
2005-09-26 10:48:49
68.   Icaros
If Saddam Hussein could hit 40 HRs for the Dodgers and play a solid third base, I'd like him.
2005-09-26 10:49:38
69.   D4P
68
Nothing like having a weapon of mass destruction at the hot corner.
2005-09-26 10:51:04
70.   Jon Weisman
I wasn't suggesting that D4P had to like Kent at all. I was just saying that Kent was far from the least popular Dodger in history.
2005-09-26 10:52:30
71.   Sam DC
Announcer: Now playing left field for the San Francisco Giants, Mahatma Ghandi!

Icaros: Boo, Ghandi.

2005-09-26 10:52:43
72.   Bob Timmermann
Icaros is not unlike Bart Simpson with his desire to go to the big Krusty the Klown Spectacular. "I'd go with Satan himself!"
2005-09-26 10:53:59
73.   D4P
70
Perhaps he is not among the least popular Dodgers in history, but you have to admit (don't you?) that it's a sad day for Dodgerdom when Jeff Kent is the best bobblehead candidate on the roster. I never thought I'd see that day.
2005-09-26 10:55:56
74.   Icaros
71 LOL. Oh yeah, I'd boo the hell out of Ghandi if he were a Giant.
2005-09-26 10:56:46
75.   Marty
73 Could be worse. Could be Daryl Strawberry coke-head day.
2005-09-26 10:57:19
76.   Icaros
73 Well, if DT could pick the bobblehead, I'm sure his initals would be HSC.
2005-09-26 10:58:28
77.   D4P
76
H S C!
H S C!
H S C!
2005-09-26 10:58:35
78.   Bob Timmermann
So who is Ghandi? :-)

As Jerry Seinfeld has said, "We're just cheering for laundry!"

2005-09-26 11:00:15
79.   Icaros
77 His head could bobble in time with the chant.
2005-09-26 11:02:09
80.   Jon Weisman
73 - That's fine, but that's an entirely different point than you were making earlier, when you were sarcastically calling it a "brilliant" move.

I don't need a Jeff Kent bobblehead to tell me this hasn't been a good year.

76 - No, RJR.

2005-09-26 11:02:39
81.   Icaros
Could be worse. Could be Daryl Strawberry coke-head day.

That depends, if his head were filled with real coke, it could be the Most Wonderful Day at the Ballpark Ever, until the inevitable comedown.

2005-09-26 11:04:14
82.   Marty
Or Eric Davis M-80 day...
2005-09-26 11:05:36
83.   Icaros
No, RJR.

I think he's more your favorite than anyone else's. You two have something special.

The rest of us really love our little 10-year-old Hee Seop.

2005-09-26 11:07:20
84.   D4P
80
I meant no offense, Jon. It just seems to me (and evidently I'm alone in this) that choosing Kent for a bobblehead indicates being somewhat out of touch with the fans. But maybe I'm wrong.
2005-09-26 11:08:16
85.   Jon Weisman
83 - Well, I haven't entirely ceded control of DT to the masses. Have I? Have I?

Plus, R.J. is a uniter, not a divider.

2005-09-26 11:08:39
86.   Icaros
Will Kent's mustache have its own bobble?
2005-09-26 11:08:51
87.   Jon Weisman
84 - No offense taken, whatsoever.
2005-09-26 11:09:20
88.   FirstMohican
Could be worse. Could be Daryl Strawberry coke-head day.

Reminds me of my Halloween 04 plan of buying a Strawberry throwback Mets jersey and throw baby powder all over myself. After finding out that the jersey would cost a few hundred dollars, I reconsidered.

2005-09-26 11:09:22
89.   Marty
Bad promotion days:

Steak Knives day!
Lawn Dart day!
Rosin bag day!
Pine tar day!

2005-09-26 11:09:57
90.   fanerman
I've been out of it... but who's RJR?
2005-09-26 11:09:57
91.   FirstMohican
88 - throw..ing =)
2005-09-26 11:10:08
92.   Icaros
85 Are you comparing Hee Seop to Woody Woodpecker? Is that why your dentist didn't invite him to the parade party?
2005-09-26 11:12:19
93.   Bob Timmermann
R.J. Reynolds!

"The SQUEEZE! And the Dodgers win it!!!!"

2005-09-26 11:14:10
94.   Bob Timmermann
89

Those promotions were discarded. Just like I offered to send Jon some of my extra dry cleaning bags as a present for his three-year old daughter. He turned those down.

I mean my late little brother really enjoyed playing with those....

(Before you get too mad, I NEVER had a little brother.)

2005-09-26 11:17:54
95.   Jacob L
88 - This might be the best ever year for baseball related Halloween costumes. I want to be Palmeiro.
2005-09-26 11:18:40
96.   Icaros
I NEVER had a little brother.

Sure, that's what you tell yourself now.

2005-09-26 11:19:56
97.   Icaros
95 Baltimore Orioles Palmeiro, or Congressional Hearing Palmeiro?
2005-09-26 11:20:27
98.   Adam M
Let us not forget that a certain beloved announcer used to draw a paycheck from the Giants.

On that note, on the sad day someone has to take Vin's place, part of me is hoping they don't repeat that move in finding the replacement. Though there are many, many announcers worse than Jon Miller, something about him rubs me the wrong way. Strangely, in trying to think of an announcer today who exudes the enthusiasm, professionalism and class of Scully, I couldn't think of a single MLB announcer who does, but Paul Sunderland immediately sprang to mind. Anyone else think he'd be much better calling Dodger games?

2005-09-26 11:24:46
99.   D4P
97
Or Viagra Palmeiro?
2005-09-26 11:25:07
100.   Bob Timmermann
However, the Lakers dumped Paul Sunderland.
Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2005-09-26 11:30:45
101.   Adam M
For all his flaws, Sunderland was light years better than the guy the Knicks hired to replace Marv Albert. No surprise there, but, still--ech.
2005-09-26 11:46:45
102.   bojangles
Only had time for the first fifty today - just wanna jump in and say I really enjoyed the "baseball as process" posts.
As for the contentious Mister Choi, assertions that all he needs are a manager who trusts him and sufficient at-bats against whomever are beginning to get a little old (though I agree that this was the year to opt for him, and really test him once and for all).
Noticed Bobby Bowden getting trashed again, here and there. More evidence of a lack of understanding re: humble pie rules. The Nats
were in it with about twenty games to go, in a much tougher division, and a GM position with much less wiggle room than Paulie had, and parallel crippling injuries.
This round goes to the Man-Who Doesn't-Get-It
over the patron saint of New Dogma. One of the many beauties of real-world ball....
(think of the Iraq of Paul Wolfowitz and others at Defense vs. real-world Iraq).
2005-09-26 11:48:17
103.   bojangles
Sorry, he said, eating another slice of the above-mentioned pie - I meant Jim Bowden, of course.
2005-09-26 11:52:15
104.   Bob Timmermann
The Nationals were in the wild card race in spite of Jim Bowden, not because of him.

They were a very lucky team all year. Their luck ran out. But Bowden assumed his luck was skill. Then when the luck ran out, he started to blame the players for not playing well.

Yeah, seems like a great guy.

2005-09-26 11:53:02
105.   LAT
Here is an added losers dividend for me. I was just talking with one of my good friends who is a rabid Giants fan and he is laboring under the fantasy that the Giants are still in it. He ran through all the possible scenarios. It was nice to be able to listen with acceptence, knowing we are done.
2005-09-26 11:56:21
106.   Bob Timmermann
The biggest lead overcome with 7 games left is 4 1/2. That was by the 1951 Giants.

The second biggest lead overcome with 7 game left is 4. That was by the 1962 Giants.

The third biggest lead overcome with 7 games left is 3 games by the 1934 Cardinals.

(Thanks to Frank Vaccaro on SABR-L)

2005-09-26 11:58:41
107.   D4P
102
I'm not sure how many people are making the argument that "a manager who trusts him and sufficient at-bats against whomever" are sufficient conditions to guarantee Choi's success, but it seems reasonable to argue that those conditions appear to be necessary.
2005-09-26 12:02:45
108.   dzzrtRatt
105 Then A's fans are also dealing with acceptance? Angels can chill out?

I would put more money on the Giants' ability to sweep San Diego than the A's to sweep the Angels. The Giants do have their main offensive weapon back.

2005-09-26 12:03:11
109.   Sam DC
102 Well, I'm all for humbleness and agree it's often lost on the net. But on Bowden, I just don't know that the overall success (or tanking) of the team precludes us from assessing the performance of particular players, coaches, and front office personnel. Bowden made a ton of moves of consequence this year and should be judged based on those moves. And in fairness there is probably room to reasonably disagree about whether he did a good job or not (I think no, Tom Boswell thinks yes, Bob Timmerman can't think about it or his head explodes). For example, the Nats were in it with 20 games left, but they ran out of gas and especially bullpen gas. To my mind, Bowden left the pitching staff exposed and did not deal with the pitching situation and the need for enough able bodies in case of injury when he dumped Sunny Kim and Claudio Vargas for nothing, and traded Tomo Okha. It is notable in the extreme that the team's bullpen broke down when key guy Hector Carrasco got moved into the starting lineup and when key starts were left to castoff John Halama who was repeatedly knocked out or yanked early. Chad Cordero, the closer, appeared over 70 times this year in a ton of close tense games and he's in his early twenties. Again, I think Bowden should have been prepared for the possibility that he would tire.

Sorry for the rant, but just saying they were in it until they weren't doesn't really help us figure out if they were in because of Bowden, or if they tanked because of Bowden, or more likely neither.

2005-09-26 12:10:51
110.   Jon Weisman
Re: Bowden

http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=4390

Joe Sheehan writes:

For Bowden to call out the players for their "failure" is a bad joke. The Nationals can't score because, lo and behold, Vinny Castilla and Cristian Guzman suck. Who, other than Bowden, didn't see that one coming? His stamp on this team is lot of money given to bad baseball players. Publicly calling out those players is a shameful attempt to deflect blame from how poorly he did his job over the winter.

You know what else I realized in reviewing the research by Caleb? Omar Minaya is having one hell of a year. Not only is his new team, the Mets, in contention for a playoff spot, but this Nationals team is largely his. Johnson, John Patterson, Livan Hernandez, Chad Cordero, Luis Ayala, Ryan Church, Gary Majewski…all of these guys are having very good years for the Nats, and all of them were Minaya pickups. Omar Minaya is a hell of a lot more responsible for the success the Nationals are having than Bowden is.

On Sunday, Bowden said, "There's a lot of guys who can score no runs in a game." If there's anyone who knows how to find them, it's Jim Bowden.

2005-09-26 12:12:19
111.   dagwich
Question from someone who really never gets to see the Dodgers play: what is it, really, that causes Tracy to not play Choi? From what I read here and the good old "MSM", I pick up a few clues:
1) Really streaky hitter--too variable for comfort
2) Bad fielder
3) Low "Baseball IQ"
4) No evidence of heart or soul
5) A pawn in the DePo vs JT power play

Some weighted combination of these and/or other factors must be in play. Because the stats alone suggest HSC should be starting most every game.

2005-09-26 12:20:44
112.   Howard Fox
112 personal opinions of Choi aside, I believe he doesn't play simply because Trace doesn't have much faith in him
2005-09-26 12:23:41
113.   Adam M
111 - 5) is a big one. Some other factors include:

*Choi's bad start as a Dodger after arriving in The Trade.
*Tracy's perception that Choi doesn't hit. "like a first baseman." Choi tried to adjust to Tracy's expectations this spring, swinging away more and trying to hit more home runs. This resulted in a big drop in Choi's batting average, and now people say "Choi can't hit."
*Choi still has the perception he can't hit lefties worth a lick, though this year his OPS vs. LHP is very close to his OPS vs. RHP. Tracy still decided to use Choi only 27 times vs. LHP this year.
*Against CWS, Choi bungled a play at first base in a critical situation. Though it was later revealed to be a bad call by the umpire, Tracy apparently grumbled about Choi's defense. If Choi can't flash the leather to Tracy's satisfaction, The Mind of Jim Tracy perceives little use for him except as a backup 1B.

2005-09-26 12:30:23
114.   Marty
There could be a lot of arguments made against Depo as a GM, but using Jim Bowden as an example isn't one of them.
2005-09-26 12:32:01
115.   gcrl
am i alone in hoping for an anaheim sweep so that the a's can sign rickey to a one-day contract? it is difficult to explain my love for rickey, but he was being rickey before manny was manny. he's also the greatest of all time, by the way.
2005-09-26 12:36:48
116.   Eric Enders
I think all five of the reasons in 111 play into it. I don't believe that all of those things are true, but I believe Tracy does.
2005-09-26 12:40:33
117.   Eric Enders
115
Count me in, too. I'd rather see the A's win it, but if they don't, I hope they get eliminated quickly.
2005-09-26 12:41:38
118.   Icaros
115 Have you read the "Pay Rickey" columns yet? Classic.

http://www.yard-work.org/?cat=31

2005-09-26 12:46:00
119.   GoBears
101 Gak, I don't even want to think of the day Vinny retires, but no, Paul Sunderland wouldn't be on my short list, or even my long list. First of all, after being spoiled for so many years by Scully, I think we'd need someone with a decent baseball pedigree. In baseball and football, and of course hockey, a play-by-play guy really can fill up all the time by calling the game. In baseball, there are frequent long intervals, even between pitches, when the announcer has to bring something else to the table. In Vin's case, it's history. In the case of most other announcing teams, it's conversation/analysis and too often, inanity. One of the benefits of the 1-man booth is that there's no need for conversation, but then it's incumbent on the one man to bring something to the table.

Second, Sunderland on the Lakers broadcasts certainly could have been a lot worse, but he suffered from two common maladies among latter-day play-by-play guys (think Joe Buck): The first is that he talked way too much, using words and phrases just to impress, and usually incorrectly. Sundy's Achilles heel was "if you will." What a meaningless, garbage phrase in the best of times, but he'd pull it out about 40 times per game, and inappropriately. The other, much more annoying trait is the PBP guy who wants to be the analyst too, either to show the analysts that he's smart, or just to monopolize the air time. Rather than dividing labor, these guys want to do it all, and frankly, aren't qualified, either by playing experience, coaching experience, or just a long history at their current jobs, to be analysts.

So this isn't just an anti-Sunderland rant. This is a general rant about what's happened to the announcing world, and what we should try to avoid if it proves, against all hope, that Vin Scully is not immortal.

2005-09-26 12:52:42
120.   Eric Enders
Who is Paul Sunderland?

When I suggested the Dodgers should sign somebody I've never heard of as Scully's heir, some two-bit basketball announcer wasn't exactly what I had in mind...

2005-09-26 12:53:29
121.   Adam M
119. Sunderland may have been trying to be all things to all people, becuase he had such enormous shoes to fill. Really, I just hope they don't just try to hire the biggest name they can get like Miller, Buck (gack), Costas (double gack), etc. And I hope Vin can bow out before he resembles Hearn's last few years. Chick, God love him, had definitely lost his fastball towards the end. Part of me thinks they hired Stu Lantz just to make a Hearn's senescence less apparent.

At some point as Vin's retirement nears, I'm expecting Plaschke to write the "Ross Porter: Lion in Winter" column. Who wants to bet against me?

2005-09-26 12:57:06
122.   Bob Timmermann
Sunderland was Hearn's choice to replace him, so at least he had that going for him.

If you're lucky for a Scully replacement, Tom Hoffarth of the Daily News, apparently seriously, recommends Matt Vasgersian

2005-09-26 12:57:24
123.   Adam M
120 - The reason I thought of Sunderland was he had a good voice, carried himself with some dignity, and his delivery managed to walk that fine line between screaming Hawk homerism and flatlining Skip Carayism. Are you saying you'd prefer Ralph Lawler? Because there's really only two choices here.

Sunderland may have just been in the wrong medium. When Dave Niehaus went down, the Mariners brought in Kevin Calabro, who is a dynamite basketball announcer, hailed as a demigod in Seattle, and yet was roundly panned as a baseball announcer. Marv Albert announcing baseball, for example, chills the imagination.

2005-09-26 13:05:52
124.   gcrl
122

i believe vasgersian committed career suicide when he agreed to announce xfl games with my former governor, jim janos.

2005-09-26 13:06:20
125.   Eric Enders
"Are you saying you'd prefer Ralph Lawler?"

No, I'm saying, literally, who is Paul Sunderland? I've never heard of him until today and know nothing about him.

I've also never heard of Ralph Lawler, FWIW.

I thought we were talking about baseball announcers... those guys, I know.

2005-09-26 13:11:52
126.   Marty
Let's get Lawler. Then he can yell Bingo! after every home run. My heart races just thinking about it...
2005-09-26 13:12:34
127.   Bob Timmermann
Eric,
It's very good you've never heard of Ralph Lawler. I would be very worried about you....
2005-09-26 13:12:38
128.   Fallout
121. Adam M
"At some point as Vin's retirement nears, I'm expecting Plaschke to write the "Ross Porter: Lion in Winter" column. Who wants to bet against me?"

I already like it. :)

Favorite announcers:
Don Drysdale
Vince Scully
Dick Enberg

Worse:
Ron Fairly

2005-09-26 13:13:10
129.   Bob Timmermann
RIP

Don Adams

2005-09-26 13:17:45
130.   Marty
I wanted to be first on the Adams obit. Missed it by that much.
2005-09-26 13:19:40
131.   Bob Timmermann
Fittingly the Dodgers have 86 losses right now.
2005-09-26 13:21:06
132.   Marty
The AP obit mentions his voice work on Inspector Gadget but leaves out Tennessee Tuxedo. That's inexcusable
2005-09-26 13:22:15
133.   Adam M
128-
"Worse:
Ron Fairly" [amen]

Worst:
Rex Hudler

IMHO. I'm convinced Hudler is Fairly's long-lost son.

129 - Second that RIP Don Adams.

2005-09-26 13:24:29
134.   Marty
If Hudler was on the Dodger broadcast team, we'd need the cone of silence.
2005-09-26 13:26:32
135.   gcrl
duane kuiper and mike krukow have to be the worst team this side of everywhere, and that includes former dodger joe simpson and his atlanta blowhard compatriots. ea sports needs to recognize this before they issue mvp 06.

i enjoy the dick bremer/bert blyleven tandem. homers, but not unbearably so.

2005-09-26 13:30:57
136.   Bob Timmermann
Rex Hudler working for the Dodgers:

Ahh dude, all the Dodgers need here is a knock by Robley. He can do it. Just a lousy single.
I was talking with T-Bone before the game and he said that Robley is really gettin better at getting jumps when he steals.

2005-09-26 13:32:48
137.   blue22
121 - Believe it or not, Stu Lantz has been the color guy for the Lakers since 1987, so if they intended him as cover for Chickie, they really underestimated his longevity.

Will I lose all credibility (assuming I have any) if I say my favorite announcing crew is Kruk(ow) and Kuip?

2005-09-26 13:33:09
138.   Fallout
133. Adam M

Thanks Adam. wors"t" I guess Hurdler is worser... :)

2005-09-26 13:34:07
139.   blue22
135 - Ha! I submitted 137 without even reading yours. I actually really enjoy those two.
2005-09-26 13:34:42
140.   Bob Timmermann
I sort of like Kuiper and Krukow. They seem to appreciate the game and have fun at it.
2005-09-26 13:35:56
141.   jasonungar05
130

LOL

Senator: Mr. Smart, how many arrests did Control make last year?

Maxwell Smart: I don't know.

Senator: Who's the number one man in your organization?

Maxwell Smart: I don't know.

Senator: How many cases were assigned to Control last year?

Maxwell Smart: I don't know.

Senator: What would you do if you were fired, Mr. Smart?

Maxwell Smart: They can't fire me. I know too much.

2005-09-26 13:38:26
142.   Marty
Your shoe is ringing...
2005-09-26 13:39:19
143.   Fallout
137. blue22

I think that they are pretty good. Although they have gotten a little overbearing lately with Bonds coming back.

2005-09-26 13:39:33
144.   Bob Timmermann
Once on a family vacation in St. Louis, I saw an episode of "Get Smart" that wasn't shown in L.A. when they originally showed the repeats. (The pilot and the final season had different restrictions but I believe Nick at Nite shows them all.)

It involved some plot where the villain was an Asian woman. She was supposed to be Miss Japan. But she turned out to be working for KAOS or Communist China. At the end, the Chief explained that the CONTROL computer couldn't differentiate between Miss Japan and Miss China, just like no one else could.

I thought to myself, "That wouldn't play too well on the West Coast."

2005-09-26 13:42:44
145.   blue22
143 - That could be said about all Giants fans in general recently.
2005-09-26 13:42:47
146.   Marty
One of my favorite episodes featured the Asian criminal mastermind "The Claw". But he pronounced it "The Craw" so everyone else did too. This would make him bellow "Not The Craw, The Craw!" Made me laugh every time, but not very PC.
2005-09-26 13:43:10
147.   Jon Weisman
R.I.P Don Adams, as well. On the AP obit I saw, they mention Tennessee Tuxedo but somehow leave off "Don Adams' Screen Test," which I watched regularly as a kid.

Regarding announcers ... aren't we at this point discussing who will be the new B team after Vin leaves us? Seems like they've set up Steiner and Monday to be the lead pair.

2005-09-26 13:44:39
148.   blue22
144/146 - Ah the innocence of it all...

147 - Steiner and Monday, or Steiner and Lyons?

2005-09-26 13:49:33
149.   D4P
How do people around here feel about Steiner? I think he's pretty bad.
2005-09-26 13:50:24
150.   Bob Timmermann
I watched "Don Adams Screen Test". It gave ordinary people the chance to act out a scene from a movie with Don Rickles. Barbara Feldon is still with us. She's 73. Or 3 years younger than my parents would be if they were still around.

She always was standing funny during "Get Smart" episodes and appeared to be bobbing up and down. Turned out that she was a bit taller than Don Adams so she often turned her ankles and stood on the side of her feet so she would appear shorter.

Edward Platt passed away in 1974.
Robert Karvelas (Larrabee) died in 1991.

David Ketchum, Agent 13, is still alive. He's 77. And Bernie Kopell (Siegfried) is still alive at 72. He's still working.

Show/Hide Comments 151-200
2005-09-26 13:51:03
151.   Bob Timmermann
I believe Steve Lyons is being rumored to get one of the White Sox radio spots next year.
2005-09-26 13:53:58
152.   Marty
Richard Gautier, who played Hymie the robot (my favorite character) seems to be still alive as well.
2005-09-26 13:54:42
153.   blue22
149 - I like Steiner, but I think mostly its from his roles in the "This is Sportscenter" commercials.
2005-09-26 13:56:34
154.   Bob Timmermann
Hymie?

It was my father's name!

2005-09-26 13:57:49
155.   Marty
I like Steiner. I don't like Lyons, mainly because of his idea that home runs kill rallies.
2005-09-26 13:59:20
156.   Bob Timmermann
Hudler:

Aww, man, look at that sweet stroke from Werthy. He is THE MAN!

2005-09-26 14:00:27
157.   blue22
Hudler:

Oh, wow, big time fastball from Gagne-y.

2005-09-26 14:00:36
158.   gcrl
149

"follow me... to freedom!"

classic. and the tie around his forehead.

better than the one with clemens (in blue jays uniform) xeroxing "k"s.

2005-09-26 14:01:22
159.   Eric Enders
135
I think Krukow and Kuiper are the best TV team out there, without a close second, really.

(Recognizing the fact that Vin Scully is not a team...)

2005-09-26 14:02:18
160.   Penarol1916
151. I sometimes I wonder if Jerry Reinsdorf has some kind of secret agreement with the Tribune Company to make everyone in Chicago a Cubs fan by putting the worst public fact on the team possible.
2005-09-26 14:04:09
161.   Jon Weisman
Dick Gautier always remains more famous to me for his appearance on the Love Boat and various game shows.
2005-09-26 14:07:32
162.   Marty
I loved Hymie.

"Hymie, kill the light" Blam!

2005-09-26 14:08:35
163.   Fallout
I don't like the way Lyons feels that it's necessary put put emphasis on words in his sentences that shouldn't be emphasized.

The second baseman picked up the b-a-l-l and...

2005-09-26 14:21:45
164.   blue22
158 - Yes! Also, he was well-know for getting hysterical cases of the giggles live on sportscenter. Literally, tears pouring down his face. Classic.
2005-09-26 14:23:55
165.   blue22
159 - Maybe I just don't remember him, but I didn't know Kuiper was an ex-player until about 3 years ago. He sure doesn't sound like a typical former player.

I guess that's the ultimate complement. How many ex-players are lead PBP guys?

2005-09-26 14:24:12
166.   gcrl
wow. maybe i am missing something with the giants' crew. i kind of considered krukow to be the spawn of ken harrelson and rex hudler.

did anyone else catch harrelson's breakdown when aaron rowand misplayed a line drive in the 9th the other night to allow the tying run to score? it was kind of the same "noooooooooo" scream that luke skywalker let out when he found out who his father was.

2005-09-26 14:26:15
167.   gcrl
165

i think kuiper had one homerun in his career. plus he got to wear those all red unis, cleveland circa 1976.

2005-09-26 14:27:10
168.   blue22
166 - Actually, wasn't that DJ who let that one fly? Loved it!
2005-09-26 14:49:01
169.   Bob Timmermann
Joe Torre was the lead play-by-play guy for teh Angels for a year I believe. He was pretty good.

The Yankees sometime in their "wheel of announcers" come up with Bobby Murcer and Ken Singleton, who aren't bad together for a pair of former players. For a period in the 1960s, the Yankees used Joe Garagiola, Phil Rizzuto and Jerry Coleman.

The White Sox, of course, have Ken Harrelson as the lead PBP guy.

The Brewers have Bob Uecker as their lead radio PBP guy.

2005-09-26 14:49:44
170.   gcrl
168
i stand corrected. time for me to grab some bench.
2005-09-26 14:49:56
171.   Jacob L
Re: the Steiner comments, here's one that Jon will like -

When Steiner was ESPN's boxing guy they used him on Sports Center to analyze the infamous Oski the Bear vs. Stanford Tree melee at Maples Pavilion. "Oski to the body. Oski to the body, again!"

2005-09-26 14:50:57
172.   MikeB
111, 112, 113 Re: Choi Not Playing
Sorry if this is late to the party but I got to wondering how other Dodgers with similar AB totals compared to Hee Seop. So here is a highly selective list of Choi's teammmates and their stats (from MLB.com) to date.
Player POS G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI TB BB SO SB CS OBP SLG AVG
J Phillips C 119 397 38 94 20 0 10 55 144 25 50 0 1 .286 .363 .237
J Cruz OF 104 338 42 87 21 2 17 49 163 60 90 0 2 .368 .482 .257
J Werth OF 96 323 45 78 21 2 7 42 124 47 108 11 2 .344 .384 .241
O Saenz 1B 105 309 39 84 24 0 15 63 153 27 59 0 1 .334 .495 .272
H Choi 1B 128 308 40 78 14 2 15 41 141 32 74 1 3 .335 .458 .253

My guess is that if Choi had as many AB's as Philips he'd have over 20 HR's by now.

2005-09-26 14:52:10
173.   Bob Timmermann
I also remember Dan Patrick asking Steiner, who was at a championship bout, "Charlie, why are you wearing a tuxedo?"

"Dan, I have absolutely no idea."

2005-09-26 15:02:11
174.   Adam M
149 - Love Steiner. The languid pauses and colorful anecdotes can be a bit much, but if God's Announcer can googoo over attractive children in the stands, that should be forgivable.

166 - man, if the White Sox ever acquire a player named "Khan," I will listen to every broadcast.

Didn't think there was any way to make the White Sox announcers worse, but if they need one of our guys to do it, I'm glad to let him go. Hawk + Lyons = Yeegagh

2005-09-26 15:06:19
175.   Adam M
169 - Uecker is supposed to be a dynamite PBP guy on the Brewers games, but I only hear this secondhand. Can anyone confirm/deny?

172 - Keep in mind also that Choi's numbers were dragged down by him being used as a PH about 47 times. He is nowhere near as effective as a PH as when he's starting. Of course, you could say the same thing for Phillips' hitting as a 1B...but where does that get you?

2005-09-26 15:06:29
176.   bigcpa
The best Steiner giggle fit I can recall was when Malik Sealy of the Pacers lost his playbook in the Kennedy Airport. It contained scouting reports on the Knicks for a playoff series including advice on how to get in John Starks head: "Ask about his sister." Steiner could hardly get that line out he was laughing so hard.
2005-09-26 15:08:43
177.   D4P
Interesting little tidbit here from Dodgers.com:

"Hee-Seop Choi leads active Dodgers with a .231 lifetime average against Wells. Choi is 3-for-13 with two doubles and a homer against the right-hander."

2005-09-26 15:15:02
178.   Adam M
177 - When asked, why he didn't use Choi, Tracy replied, "Wouldja believe...arm angles?"
2005-09-26 15:15:08
179.   Eric Enders
175
Uecker is indeed superb on the Brewers broadcasts, and this comes from someone who hates his network TV shtick.
2005-09-26 15:17:53
180.   Jon Weisman
New thread open up top.
2005-09-26 15:19:08
181.   gcrl
icaros - thanks for the rickey/yard work link. my fave part about yard work is the random header photo.

although it has been "de-bunked", i choose to believe the rickey/olerud story: when rickey arrived in seattle in 2000, he saw that olerud was wearing a helmet in the field. rickey commented to olerud that he used to play with a guy on the mets who did the same thing. olerud reminded rickey that they played together on the mets (and the blue jays). this has to have happened! it's too "rickey".

2005-09-26 15:27:23
182.   Icaros
181 I heard that story. I also like the one where at the beginning of 2004, Manny Ramirez supposedly said to A-Rod, "Too bad you didn't end up getting traded to us. We would've been really good," not realizing that A-Rod was supposed to get traded to Boston for Manny Ramirez.

I think this is my favorite part from the Pay Rickey series:

"Anyway, Rickey's host family is always conspirin' against him and sh-t. "Do the dishes, Rickey!" "Eat your carrots, Rickey!" Rickey Henderson is the major league leader in runs scored! Rickey told them that one night, and they were all, "Rickey, you better run this trash out to the curb before the garbage truck gets here!"

2005-09-26 15:40:13
183.   still bevens
I wasnt a huge Steiner fan until I heard him call Robles' game tying HR against the Giants a couple weeks ago. Great, exciting stuff. But on a whole I still need to get used to him.
2005-09-26 16:58:38
184.   Uncle Miltie
I guess I'm the only one who can't stand Steiner. It sounds like he spits when he talks and when he's paired up with Rick Monday, they like to talk about random things that have nothing to do with game ("Yea, that steak dinner we had last night was fabulous") He has no idea where the ball is when it comes off the bat:
"And there's a flyball to right field!...and it's...caught (in medium right field)
Transcript from Steiner calling Navarro's walkoff HR:
...And here's the 3-2...flyball right center field and deep...it's way back there...and it issssss...GONE! A Home Run! Dioner Navarro with his first major league home run, it is a walkoff HR, and the Dodgers win it 7-6, the Dodgers are storming out of the 3rd base dugout, they'll waive(?) him at home plate, and now they're gonna BEAT him to death!

Steiner over described the play, rarely pausing, and giving too much information. He gets far too excited and is unable to control his emotions. It's a shame that Ross Porter was fired AND that he was replaced with an inferior announcer. One of my favorite announcers is Dan Shulman (who works for ESPN).

2005-09-26 22:24:11
185.   popup
Uncle Miltie, I can assure you that are not alone alone in your opinion of Steiner. I wrote a fairly long post about Steiner/Monday a few hours ago and then deleted it because I have already stated my opinion previously.

Stan from Tacoma

2005-09-27 10:43:12
186.   ElysianPark62
#11: What does McCourt's SUPPOSED lack of funds have to do with DePodesta not calling out Tracy on his moves? I don't follow.

And would people please dump the stereotype of the McCourts being penniless? This is the fault of the media in propagating it. Why was their top draft pick offered $3 million to sign? Penniless teams don't do that.

Why did they not offer Robles back to his Mexican team when they had the chance? Couldn't they have used that $250,000 desperately? And why did the McCourts buy a $25 (that's TWENTY-FIVE) million mansion? I wish I were that poor.

2005-09-27 10:55:39
187.   ElysianPark62
#184: I don't care much for Steiner, either. Sometimes he says a lot but conveys nothing. Less can be more; take a page from Vin's book. His PBP puts me to sleep, but in some bizarre way, Steiner makes Monday more appealing to me.

Monday was a great Dodger, God bless him, but neither he nor Steiner calls a good game. Part of their giggling might come from the fact that Steiner drinks in the booth, as I've spotted him with large cups of beer before and during games. Monday has also been known to imbibe. Sometimes they sound like a couple of kids and completely miss the action.

Steiner needs to be told that you don't need to yell or repeat the same thing five times in order to call a game. Also, he repeatedly refers to one Alex Gonzalez as if he were the other one, obviously not realizing that there are two SS with the same name. You'd think someone who's been around that long would know that.

I miss Ross Porter for his thorough knowledge of the game, his dedication to doing his homework, and his class. He might've been drier, but I would take his wisdom and knowledge and graciousness over a giggling yeller any day.

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