Monthly Archives: April, 2012

Your Jamie Moyer Update 4/30/2012 – Moyer Will Be Really Old When He Passes Cy Young

Last night marked Jamie Moyer’s 633rd career start. While that makes him the active leader in the category, that is by far not the only one. More on that in a bit.

As far as last night is concerned, Moyer faced the New York  Mets, and while he scattered four runs and 13 baserunners (11 hits, 2 walks) across 5 innings pitched, he came away with a No Decision as the game went into extra innings with the Mets prevailing 6-5 in 11 innings.

Despite last night’s performance, Moyer has been remarkably solid through his starts this season.  In 28 2/3 innings, Moyer has put up an ERA of 3.14 ERA, which considering he is pitching in Colorado with a 75-mph “fastball” is just short of a miracle.

Now, for today’s Jamie Moyer Fact:

It’s obvious Moyer will never stop pitching.  Since Moyer is already the active leader in the following categories (not including last night’s tallies), the question becomes how old will he be when he passes the all-time leaders in these categories? The following ages are estimates based on his current pace.

  • Wins – 268
  • All-Time Leader in Wins – Cy Young, 511
  • Based on his 162-game average of 14 wins per season, Moyer will be approximately 66.42 years old when he breaks this record.
  • Losses – 206
  • All-Time Leader in Losses – Cy Young, 316
  • Based on his 162-game average of 11 losses per season, Moyer will be approximately 59.09 years old when he breaks this record.
  • Games Started – 632
  • All-Time Games Started – Cy Young, 815
  • Based on his 162-game average of 33 starts per season, Moyer will be approximately 54.58 years old when he breaks this record.
  • Innings Pitched – 4,044
  • All-Time Leader in Innings Pitched – Cy Young 7, 356
  • Based on his 162-game average of 208 innings pitched per season, Moyer will be approximately 64.93 years old when he breaks this record.
  • Batters Faced – 17, 206
  • All-Time Batters Faced – Cy Young 29, 565
  • Based on his 162-game average of 885 batters faced season, Moyer will be approximately 62.97 years old when he breaks this record.
  • Earned Runs – 1, 898
  • All-Time Earned Runs Leader – Cy Young, 2, 147
  • Based on his 162-game average of 98 earned runs per season, Moyer will be approximately 51.56 years old when he breaks this record.
  • Hits Allowed – 4, 181
  • All-Time Leader in Hits Allowed – Cy Young 7, 092
  • Based on his 162-game average of 215 hits allowed per season, Moyer will be approximately 62.54 years old when he breaks this record.
  • Strikeouts – 2,414
  • All-Time Leader in Strikeouts – Nolan Ryan 5, 714
  • Based on his 162-game average of 105 strikeouts per season, Moyer will be approximately 80.44 years old when he breaks this record.
  • Bases on Balls – 1, 144
  • All-Time Leader in Bases on Balls – Nolan Ryan 2, 795
  • Based on his 162-game average of 59 walks per season, Moyer will be approximately 77.00 years old when he breaks this record.
  • Hit Batsmen – 145
  • All-Time Hits Batsmen – Gus Weyhing 277
  • Based on his 162-game average of 7 hit batsmen per season, Moyer will be approximately 68.00 years old when he breaks this record.

On Draft Day, The State Of Texas Selects Ryan Leaf #1

#1 most wanted that is…it seems that some members of the Texas law enforcement community would like for Mr. Leaf to pay them a visit.   It seems they have issued not one, but two arrest warrants for Leaf.  The Texas prosecutor who brokered a 10-year probationary sentence for Leaf two years ago on drug and burglary charges filed a motion to revoke Leaf’s probation, essentially declaring the former NFL quarterback a fugitive from justice.

The trouble is that Leaf is already in jail in Montana.  Leaf was arrested in Great Falls twice in the last month, both times he was found in possession of stolen oxycodone.  Leaf made an initial appearance on the Texas warrants yesterday via video from the jail in Cascade County, Montana, where he is awaiting arraignment on May 3rd in lieu of a $126,000 bond.

Honestly, this story would be comic if it weren’t so tragic. It would be one thing if the guy were just a failed football player; the punchlines for that almost write themselves. But Leaf’s tale is so much more than that.

In 2001, Leaf married a Chargers cheerleader, but this marriage was short-lived. They separated two years later and eventually divorced. Then, Leaf went back to college and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in arts and humanities from Washington State in May 2005.

The following year, Leaf joined the West Texas A&M coaching staff as a volunteer quarterbacks coach in 2006. For a while, it seemed Leaf had given himself a new beginning, but in November 2008, Leaf was put on indefinite leave and subsequently resigned from his coaching position at West Texas A&M for allegedly asking one of his players for prescription drugs.

In May 2009, Leaf was indicted on burglary and controlled substance charges in Texas.  He was undergoing drug rehab in British Columbia at the time of the indictment and was arrested by customs agents as he returned to the United States.  On June 17, 2009, he posted $45,000 bond in Washington state for the criminal charges in Texas.

In April 2010, Leaf pled guilty to seven counts of obtaining a controlled substance by fraud and one count of delivery of a simulated controlled substance. Leaf was sentenced to 10 years of probation and fined $20,000.  While sorting out all of this mess, Leaf made several public appearances and seemed as though he had turned a corner in his struggle with addiction.

Then in June 2011, Leaf had surgery to remove a benign tumor from his brain stem.

One can only hope Leaf can get to where he needs to be to beat his demons.  I can’t even imagine getting knocked down so many time without wondering at which point do you just stop getting up?  Leaf will get another chance to get up, but in the meantime, things are likely going to get worse for him before they get better.

What We’ve Learned: The Dubsism Baseball Power Rankings After 10% Of The Season

1) Washington Nationals ↑ 13

What We Originally Said:

Upside: The Nationals have one of the best young rotations in baseball.  Strasburg appears ready to return to his pre- Tommy John surgery condition, and the acquisitions of Gio Gonzalez and Edwin Jackson were huge.  If Strasburg, Jordan Zimmermann, and Chien-Ming Wang can stay away from the injury problems that have bugged them, the Nationals should be able to stay in most games based on their pitching alone.  But the Nats should be stronger in the middle of the order since Ryan Zimmerman, Adam LaRoche, Michael Morse, and Danny Espinosa all could be 25 HR, 90 RBI guys.

Downside: The Nats have three question marks. The first is at first base; Adam LaRoche played only 43 games last year before season-ending surgery and hit just .172. Can he return to the form of his previous years? However, Michael Morse blossomed at first base once LaRoche went down.  Secondly, the Nats have an issue in the lead-off spot. Ian  Desmond is going to start the season there, but he’ll have to learn to be more patient.  He’s drawn only 63 walks in 308 games during 2010 and 2011. Lastly there’s the matter of timing. This needs to be the year the Nats take a step toward the future because this is the last year before the expectations are going to go up. They can still be mediocre this year, but if they finish third or worse in 2013, they may just become a red version of the Cubs.

What Actually Happened:

The pitching has been exceptional; the starters have an ERA of 1.72. Nobody in the lineup is tearing the cover off the ball, but this team only needs to score three runs to win. Even though it’s early, it is time to get worried about the injury factor – Elvin Ramirez, Chien-Ming Wang, Cole Kimball, Drew Storen, Chris Marrero, and Michael Morse are already on the DL, and we are waiting MRI results on Ryan Zimmerman.

2) Los Angeles Dodgers ↑ 16

What We Originally Said:

Upside:  Clayton Kershaw won the NL Cy Young last year and is a contender for the award again. He is signed with the Dodgers through 2013.  Matt Kemp was the runner-up for the NL MVP Award, and was a single dinger away from joining the 40HR/40 stolen base club.  The Dodgers have him locked up through 2019.

Downside: They still have yet to rid themselves of Frank McCourt.

What Actually Happened:

Two words: Matt Kemp…and getting rid of Frank McCourt didn’t hurt either.

3) Texas Rangers ↑ 2

What We Originally Said:

Upside:  The only team in the A.L. West they have to worry about is the Angels. The Rangers have a line-up tailor-made to their hitter-friendly park, so there is no reason they can’t lead the league in team batting average again. Not to mention, they placed top five in runs, on-base percentage, and slugging percentage.

Downside: The Rangers are gambling in the wake of losing C.J. Wilson to division-rival Los Angeles with their $103 million investment in Yu Darvish and moving  Neftali Feliz to the starting rotation for the first time in his major league career. Then there’s the Josh Hamilton situation…we all know about the off-the-field issues, but don’t forget the former AL MVP has been hampered by injuries lately as well.  Now contract talks are stalled, and who knows what impact that will have.

What Actually Happened:

Josh Hamilton is still playing like the MVP-caliber player he can be, Yu Darvish is showing signs of being the “real deal,” and this team is leading the league in runs scored and team ERA. That’s a tough combination to beat.

4) Atlanta Braves ↔

What We Originally Said:

Upside: Last year, I said the Braves were a collection of “what-ifs” built around a solid core of just enough hitting and just enough pitching. Now, enough of those questions became facts so that barring injuries, the Braves can contend in the NL East.

Downside: The Braves finished 13 games back of the Phillies last season, and they way the season ended for them still has to sting. The question is did they improve enough to fix those issues?

What Actually Happened:

The Upside? The Braves are first in the National League in runs scores and second in home runs. The Downside? The Braves are twelfth in the National League in team ERA.

5) New York Yankees ↓ 3

What We Originally Said:

Upside: The Yankees upgraded their pitching staff by adding Hiroki Kuroda and Michael Pineda, and by subtracting A.J. Burnett.  Prospects Dellin Betances and Manny Banuelos will soon find their way to the major league rotation as well. If the pitching staff gels and Curtis Granderson, Robinson Cano, and Mark Teixeira perform as expected, this team will prove formidable.

Downside:  Don’t look now, but this team isn’t getting any younger.

What Actually Happened:

It’s not like the Yanks don’t already have enough offensive weapons, now all of a sudden Nick Swisher is leading the American League in RBIs, and Derek “Retirement Home” Jeter is hitrting .400.

6) Detroit Tigers ↔

What We Originally Said:

Upside: Last season, the Motor City Kitties finished in the top four in runs scored, batting average, on-base and slugging percentage. The numbers can only get better with the offseason acquisition of first baseman Prince Fielder, who just happens to be a career .282 hitter averaging over 32 home runs and 93 RBI per season over the last six years.

Downside: How does the move of Cabrera back to third base work out? What will be the impact of losing DH Victor Martinez? And I’m not sold on the rotation beyond Justin Verlander and Doug Fister.

What Actually Happened:

The rib cage injury to Doug Fister hurts, and they will need him back and healthy before October, but this team should be just fine until then. Nobody else in the AL Central is legit, and that includes the smoke and mirror job known ans the White Sox.

7) Tampa Bay Rays ↔

What We Originally Said:

Upside: Their pitching staff will carry them in 2012.  David Price, James Shields, Jeremy Hellickson, Wade Davis, Jeff Niemann, and Matt Moore form a six-man rotation that just might let the Rays continue their average 92 wins over the last four seasons. Only three teams in the majors had a higher average with one of the lowest four-year payroll totals in baseball at $222 million.

Downside: The Rays need a new fanbase and stadium.

What Actually Happened:

The Rays have five guys with a slugging percentage north of .550, and they have three starters with ERA under 3.50.

8 ) St. Louis Cardinals ↑ 2

What We Originally Said:

Upside: Despite losing Albert Pujols and manager Tony La Russa, the Cardinals still have enough weapons to be a factor in the N.L. Central. Starter Adam Wainwright comes back from Tommy John surgery, and he leads a rotation featuring Chris Carpenter, Jaime Garcia, Jake Westbrook, and Kyle Lohse. Also, could this be the breakout year for World Series MVP David Freese? His 21 RBI over 18 postseason games last October could signal the start of something big.

Downside: Let’s face it…losing Albert Pujols would hurt any line-up. This means Lance Berkman has to at least come close to the .301/31 HR/94 RBI campaign he put up in 2011, and Matt Holliday has to be a .300/25 HR/RBI guy as well.

What Actually Happened:

Seven guys batting .320 or better, five guys slugging .500 or better, and four starters with ERAs under 2.50.  But this team needs Lance Berkman to get healthy and Matt Holliday to bat better than .215.

9)  Los Angeles Angels ↓ 8 

What We  Originally Said:

Upside: This team has ownership that isn’t afraid to make a move. Due to the free-agent signing of first baseman Albert Pujols and starting pitcher C.J. Wilson, the Angels committed $331.5 million, which left little room for the team to add anyone else significant during the offseason. New GM Jerry DiPoto did, however, get his hands on a decent bat bat behind the plate in Chris Iannetta, and reliable veteran relief pitcher LaTroy Hawkins becomes the latest on the list of guys who have played for both of my two favorite teams (Angels and Twins).

Pujols adds to a lineup which featured six players with double-digit home runs, and six with over 59 RBI. Top prospects in catcher Hank Conger and outfielder Mike Trout will also be in the running for a full season with the club.

C.J. Wilson adds to a rotation which already featured 2011 A.L. All-Star Game starter Jered Weaver, Dan Haren, and Ervin Santana.

Downside: Which Vernon Wells do the Angels get in 2012?

What Actually Happened:

Albert Pujols has yet to happen. This team has far too much talent both on the hill and at the plate to not be in the top ten despite their slow start. Raise your hand if you think this team won’t be a factor come October…

10) Toronto Blue Jays ↑ 5

What We  Originally Said:

Upside: Jose Bautista.  In 2010, he hit .260 with 35 doubles, 54 home runs and 124 RBI. In 2011, he hit .302 with 24 doubles, 43 home runs, and 103 RBI. He has to figure in the MVP race.

Downside: The Blue Jays could have a bright future, but the future isn’t today.  Ricky Romero has also been nothing short of excellent for the club. Last season, the 27-year-old went 15-11 with a 2.92 ERA and 178 strikeouts. It’s time to see if youngsters Brett Lawrie,  Anthony Gose, and catcher Travis D’Arnaud can live up to expectations.

What Actually Happened:

We stand by the original statements. It really isn’t Jose Bautista’s fault everybody quit pitching to him; but it will be a while before opposing pitchers fear his protection enough to pitch to him again.  But that will happen given the rate at which Toronto’s young talent is developing. Thios team has a future, but that future isn’t necessarily today.

11) Milwaukee Brewers ↑ 5

What We  Originally Said:

Upside:  Even though Miller Park is known for being tough on right-handed sluggers, the Brewers brought in third baseman Aramis Ramirez. He will need to have a Beltre-like season (.300/25 HR/90 RBIs) to help off-set the loss of Prince Fielder.

Downside: The big questions: Can Mat Gamel prove he is ready to be a major league first-baseman, including posting some power numbers at the plate? Can Wily Peralta develop into a credible big-league starter? Then there’s the elephant in the room…the Ryan Braun situation and what impact it may have…

What Actually Happened:

So much for Wily Peralta…he got shipped back to the minors on Monday.  Somehow, this team is 2nd in the National League in home runs considering Corey “Wears his sunglasses at night” Hart leads this team in the triple-crown categories (.286/5 HR/12 RBI).  Yeah, I’m pretty sure I’m the first who made that joke.

12) Philadelphia Phillies ↓ 9

What We Originally Said:

Upside: The starting rotation is as good as it gets with Cole Hamels, Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee and Vance Worley. New closer Jonathan Papelbon should help shore up the bullpen.

Downside:  If the Yankees and the Phillies make the World Series, they may want to get the games done before 4 p.m., so they can all hit the early-bird specials at Denny’s. This is another team that is aging before our eyes. Carlos Ruiz, Ryan Howard, and Jimmy Rollins are 33, Chase Utley is 32, and Placido Polanco tops the list at 36. Not to mention, the Phillies have lost have lost four of their last five postseason series.

What Actually Happened:

This team is a complete wild-card. Between, Cliff Lee, Ryan Howard, and Chase Utley, this team has $56 million on the disabled list.  If they get healthy soon, they can still be a contender just on the pitching staff alone. But if they don’t, they could be an afterthought by the all-star break.

13) Chicago White Sox ↑ 10

What We Originally Said:

Upside: General Manager Ken Williams also showed a desire to rebuild his club by getting rid of longtime White Sox starter Mark Buehrle and letting go of Juan Pierre, Carlos Quentin, Jason Frasor, Sergio Santos, and Omar Vizquel.

Downside: General Manager Ken Williams has no idea how to rebuild a club. He replaced staff ace Mark Buerhle by over-paying for the ever-fraudulent John Danks.  The rest of the starting rotation will depend on the fragile Jake Peavy and the unproven Chris Sale.

What Actually Happened:

Earlier, we said this team is a “smoke and mirror” job. This team is where it is now based on a perfect game tossed by a nobody and an early .340 performance by Alex Rios, which won’t last.

14)  Cincinnati Reds ↓ 6

What We Originally Said:

Upside:  General Manager Walt Jocketty managed to improve the starting rotation by adding former Padres ace Mat Latos, the bullpen by bringing in Ryan Madson and Sean Marshall, and added some needed depth by acquiring Wilson Valdez, Willie Harris, and Ryan Ludwick. With these additions to the existing weapons like Joey Votto and Jay Bruce, and the fact the N.L. Central no longer has the likes of Albert Pujols and Prince Fielder, the Reds have the potential once again to seize the top spot in the division.

Downside: That pitching staff is managed by Dusty “The Ligament Shredder” Baker, the same Dusty Bake who think base-runners “just clog up the basepaths.”

What Actually Happened:

Thanks to the “Ligament Shredder,” Ryan Madson has already been through the “Tommy John” surgery. You know this won’t be the only damage Dusty does.   This team will hit, which will keep them in contention in a weak division, but Dusty will once again turn the bullpen into a graveyard.

15)  San Francisco Giants ↓ 4

What We Originally Said:

Upside: The San Francisco Giants have one of the best pitching staffs in baseball. Tim Lincecum, Matt Cain, and Madison Bumgarner form one of the best 1-2-3 combinations in the game.

Downside: The San Francisco Giants have one of the worst offenses in baseball. With the losses of Cody Ross and Carlos Beltran, this team may find itself relying on a 3-4-5 heart of the order consisting of Pablo Sandoval, Buster Posey, and Brandon Belt.

What Actually Happened:

The loss of Brian “The Beard” Wilson may be fatal. The Giants’ recipe for success has been (insert starter here) for six innings, then some combination of Santiago Casilla, Guillermo Mota, and Sergio Romo, then Wilson in the 9th. Without Wilson, and worse yet, with Lincecum and Cain unable to reliably deliver the first six, this team can’t win.

16) Baltimore Orioles ↑ 6

What We Originally Said:

Upside: As bad as there were in 2011, their offense wasn’t all that bad and they’ve kept the core of it.  If Mark Reynolds can produce another 30-plus home run season, and Adam Jones and Nick Markakis continue their consistent hitting, the Orioles could end up being a mediocre team.

Downside:  The Orioles had the worst off-season of any Major League team.  If you don’t agree, here are their off-season acquisitions: pitchers Wei-Yin Chen, Tsuyoshi Wada, Jason Hammel, and Matt Lindstrom; and position players Wilson Betemit, Endy Chavez and Taylor Teagarden.

What Actually Happened:

OK, so the O’s have won ten games so far, so why are they ranked so low? Because they are the O’s. The best this team can hope for is mediocre, and they haven’t looked all that good in winning.  You can count on this team to fade soon; they just don’t have the horses to stay in a race.

17) Arizona Diamondbacks ↓ 4

What We Originally Said:

Upside: In a division heavy in pitching, the D-backs chose bulk by getting potential question mark Trevor Cahill from Oakland and re-signing their own free agent, Joe Saunders, after non-tendering him at the December deadline for arbitration-eligibles. Kennedy, Hudson and Saunders logged career highs in innings last season, and it will be interesting to see if they can repeat that…see below…

Downside:  Even though the Arizona Diamondbacks finished first place in the NL West Division at 94-68, their starting rotation was filled with career-best seasons:

  • Ian Kennedy went 21-4 with a 2.88 earned run average and 198 strikeouts in 222 innings pitched.
  • Daniel Hudson went 16-12 with a 3.49 earned run average and 169 strikeouts in 222 innings pitched.
  • Joe Saunders went 12-13 with 3.69 earned run average and 108 strikeouts in 212 innings pitched.
  • Josh Collmenter went 10-10 with a 3.38 earned run average and 100 strikeouts in 154.1 innings pitched.

The D-backs line-up can be inconsistent as well – they struggled to hit over .250 as team despite everyday players Gerardo Parra, Justin Upton and Miguel Montero hitting .292, .289 and .282 respectively.

What Actually Happened:

Just what we thought…the starting rotation has two guys with ERAs north of 6.00. Without a repeat of the pitching performances from last year, this team can’t rely on inconsistent bats.

18) Cleveland Indians ↑ 1

What We Originally Said:

Upside:  Shin-Soo Choo seems to be healthy. Vinne Pestano and Nick Hagadone could be the foundations of a solid, young bullpen.  Carlos Santana is a potential All-Star.

Downside: Fausto Carmona (or whoever he really is) may never get back into the country and Grady Sizemore is probably finished as an effective major league player. The heyday for this team was fifteen years ago, and unless you can find a way to add Roger Dorn, Pedro Cerrano, Rick “Wild Thing” Vaughn, and Jake Taylor to the roster, there will be more than one long summer in Cleveland’s near future.

What Actually Happened:

Don’t even tell me about this team being in first place.  I bit on the Indians last year, and I’m not about to do it again.  This team in many ways could be a mirror image of the Orioles, and they will be a memory by July as well.

19) Boston Red Sox ↓ 7

What We Originally Said:

Upside:  The Boston Red Sox are taking on an entirely new look in 2012.  For the first time in recent memory, Jonathan Papelbon, J.D. Drew, Tim Wakefield, and Jason Varitek will not be on the Opening Day roster for the Red Sox. And it’s about time, especially after what happened last September.  Despite this new look, New GM Ben Cherington will be faced with the challenge of keeping the Sox a contender.

Downside: I don’t give a damn what anybody says, I don’t buy this pitching staff.  Jon Lester has always been over-rated in my book. The loss of John Lackey is a case of “addition by subtraction.”  Clay Buchholz walks too many guys. Who knows what Daniel Bard and Vincente Padilla really are?

Then, there’s the whole issue of that idiot Bobby Valentine. I can’t wait for the Terry Francona “Miss Me Yet?” billboards to break out all over New England.

What Actually Happened:

The starting pitching sucks, the relievers aren’t much better…and…wait for it…there’s the whole issue of that idiot Bobby Valentine.  The Terry Francona “Miss Me Yet?” billboards are coming soon.

20) New York Mets ↑ 4

What We Originally Said:

Upside: Whether its up or down, the theme once again for the Mets is hope. Hopefully, all the distractions that surrounded last season are gone with the departure of Jose Reyes. Hopefully, Ike Davis, and Johan Santana are healthy, will stay that way, and will perform up to expectations. Hopefully, there will be a resurgence of third baseman David Wright and Jason Bay now that the outfield wall has been moved in.

Downside:  Hopefully, all those things I just mentioned will happen.  Right after they all do happen, we can all join hands and visit the fairy princess together. Not only that, but this team goes nowhere as long as Fred Wilpon and Saul Katz own the team.  Let’s face it, meltdown, dumpster fire, train wreck…they all are synonymous with “Mets.”

What Actually Happened:

We’ll keep this simple…the Mets still suck, just not as much at first as we thought.

21) Oakland Athletics ↑ 8

What We Originally Said:

Upside:  America’s favorite breakfast cereal, Coco Crisp,  will still man the Oakland outfield after signing a $14 million, two-year contract with a club option for 2014 after hitting .264 with eight home runs, 54 RBI and 49 stolen bases last season. Then there the Cuban grab-bag known as Yoenis Cespedes. This kid could be the real deal.

Downside: The A’s are without many of their pitchers who brought success to the team in recent years. Trevor Cahill, Gio Gonzalez, and Josh Outman are out of the starting rotation, while Craig Breslow and Andrew Bailey are no longer in the bullpen. The one proven offensive power bat in the lineup has also departed; Josh Willingham hit 29 home runs and 98 RBI in 2011, but is now part of the Minnesota Twins.

What Actually Happened:

How the A’s have won 9 games all while being last in the league in average, slugging percentage, and hitting with runners in scoring position is a minor miracle.

22)  Colorado Rockies ↓ 2

What We Originally Said:

Upside: Troy Tulowitzki hit .302 with 36 doubles, 30 home runs, and 105 RBI in 2011. Carlos Gonzalez hit .295 with 27 doubles, 26 home runs, and 92 RBI in only 127 games. Casey Blake, Marco Scutaro, Ramon Hernandez, and Michael Cuddyer will all be joining the Colorado this season, which can only provide more cushion in a lineup that already features some of baseball’s best hitters. The crisp air in Colorado with these players and Todd Helton at the forefront can only mean runs, runs, and more runs.

Downside: The starting rotation will consist of Jeremy Guthrie, Jhoulys Chacin, and then any three out of about six possibles, including the 49-year old Jamie Moyer.

What Actually Happened:

Moyer is the best pitcher in a starting rotation consisting of guys all young enough to be Moyer’s kids. Despite that, none of the youngsters can do better than an ERA of 2.28 and a WHIP of 1.35.

23) Miami Marlins ↓ 14

What We Originally Said:

Upside: I don’t think there could be a more interesting team to watch in 2012. Miami is one of three teams in the Dubsism Top Ten from the N.L. East Division and got there through having by far the most active off-season. Tey’ve got a new name, new uniforms, new logos, a new stadium, a new manager,  and of course, new players. The new Marlins Park will play host to the new-look squad under new manager and old loud mouth Ozzie Guillen, who will be leading new shortstop and reigning N.L. batting champ Jose Reyes, new closer Heath Bell, and new starting pitchers Mark Buehrle and Carlos Zambrano. Added to existing Marlins Hanley Ramirezx and ace Josh Johnson, there’s no way this team won’t be entertaining at least.

Downside: This also just could be the loading of a gigantic powder-keg. Zambrano and Guillen in the same dug-out? The Marlins may want to keep the bomb squad handy at all times, not just for the volatility I just mentioned, but for the fact if this team doesn’t win right away, look for it to get blown up quick.

What Actually Happened:

Could this be…I hate to say this…but could this be yet another “dream team” that fails to perform?  How long before Jeffrey Loria is wiring the blasting caps to blow this thing up?

24)  Seattle Mariners ↓ 3

What We Originally Said:

Upside: Felix Hernandez.

Downside: This is the last year of Ichiro Suzuki’s contract with the club. The 38-year-old has seen his batting average drop 80 points over the last two seasons, so you can only expect that this will be his final season with the club unless he’s back to being the old Ichiro. In addition to Ichiro’s decline, the Mariners finished dead last in runs scored, batting average, on-base and slugging percentage last year.

What Actually Happened:

Jason Vargas and Blake Beavan joined with King Felix to give the Mariners a reasonable front three in a rotation. The trouble is the lumber is still in a slumber; no Mariner has gone deep more than twice.

25) Pittsburgh Pirates ↔

What We Said Originally:

Upside:  The Bucs are quietly cobbling together a respectable offense.  Outfielders Jose Tabata, Alex Presley, and All-Star Andrew McCutchen are likely to be the the 1-2-3  hitters; all of them hit over .275 last year, and all of them swiped over 20 sacks. Neil Walker looks like a #4 hitter after hitting 17 home runs and 62 RBI in only 460 at-bats.  Plus, the Pirates may have emerging power at the corner infield spots; Garrett Jones showed some pop with 17 homers last year, and Pedro Alvarez is due for his breakout year any time now.

Downside: Last year, the Pirates gave up the third-worst opponents batting average (.270) and received the fifth-fewest quality starts from their starting five.  A.J. Burnett is supposed to be the cure for that?

What Actually Happened:

A.J. Burnett bunts a ball into his face literally within the first five times he handles a bat. This may prove to be a blessing, but the reality now is the Pirates are lousy.

26) Chicago Cubs ↔

What We Said Originally:

Upside: Its spring, when Cubs fans everywhere have hope that at long last, this will finally be the year the winning drought in Wrigley Field ends. Plus, they off-loaded head-case first class Carlos Zambrano on the Marlins. Starlin Castro might be the bona fide star in Wrigley.

Downside: It’s not going to happen. Getting rid of Zambrano now means a pitching staff comprised of Matt Garza, Ryan Dempster, Paul Maholm, Chris Volstad and Travis Wood; along with threat of Jeff Samardzija getting work as a starter in spring training. The Cubs have an average-at-best rotation and no replacement for Aramis Ramirez on offense. Snicker if you must, but A-Ram stacks up favorably against some historic third-basemen. He’s complied the second-most 25-home run seasons (9) for a third baseman, behind only Mike Schmidt and Eddie Mathews who each had 12. Not to mention, only Chipper Jones has more seasons with at least a .300 batting average, 25 home runs and 90 RBI at the hot corner. Once again, spring becomes summer; the Cubs’drought continues.

What Actually Happened:

The Cubs are usually finished once the ivy blooms. Thanks to an unusually warm spring in Chicago, that happened early this year.

27)  San Diego Padres ↔

What We Said Originally:

Upside: Again, you really can’t beat the weather in San Diego…and the Padres, despite the loss of Mat Latos, Aaron Harang, and Heath Bell still have a serviceable  (not great, serviceable) pitching staff currently slated to feature Clayton Richard, Edinson Volquez, Tim Stauffer, Dustin Moseley, and Cory Luebke.  Heath Bell’s closer role has been replaced by Huston Street.

Downside:  The Padres offense last year was in the bottom three in runs scored (593), batting average (.237), on-base percentage (.305) and slugging percentage (.349). The only improvements to that came in the form of Carlos Quentin, Yonder Alonso, and current AARP member Mark Kotsay.

What Actually Happened:

It’s not really that hard to meet expectations when nobody expects anything from you.

28) Houston Astros ↑ 2

What We Originally Said:

Upside:  They have some nice young talent on the team like Jose Altuve, Jason Castro, and Fernando Martinez, and they still have Carlos Lee as the lone power source on the roster.

Downside: Last year, the pitching staff was bottom five in league rankings with a 4.51 cumulative ERA, 1.42 WHIP and a .266 opponents batting average en route to a league worst 56-106 record. That staff didn’t get any better.

What Actually Happened:

Wandy Rodriguez has respectable numbers for a pitcher.  In Houston, that makes him one of a dozen.

29) Minnesota Twins ↓ 1

What We Originally Said:

Upside: It is possible they get production from the faces of the franchise, Joe Mauer and Justin Morneau. Last year thanks to injuries, Mauer hit .287 with three home runs and 30 RBI, while Morneau hit a horrid .227 with four home runs and 30 RBI.

Downside: Only three players on the Twins saw more than 100 games of action last year. There’s Michael Cuddyer, who is now getting his mail in Colorado, outfielder Ben Revere, and third baseman Danny Valencia. These might be the only Twins who matter in 2012.

What Actually Happened:

When does Ron Gardenhire become Ron Garden-fired? The Twins haven’t canned a manager since the same year Jamie Moyer made his major league debut (yes, every single baseball time reference on this blog will orbit around Planet Moyer). The last manager to be fired by the Minnesota Twins was Ray Miller on September 12th, 1986.  Let’s be honest, Garden-fired’s success came from players developed by Tom Kelly, and Garden-fired’s 6-21 play-off record makes him one of the worst post-season mangers ever. However, to be fair, it isn’t like he is going to get a chance to change those numbers anytime soon.

30) Kansas City Royals ↓ 13

What We Originally Said:

Upside: The club is loaded with young talent like Eric Hosmer and Alcides Escobar.  Alex Gordon turned a corner in 2011. Billy Butler, Jeff Francoeur, and Jason Kendall provide veteran leadership, and there are more top prospects on the way like Wil Myers and Bubba Starling. The Royals also added pitching with starter Jonathan Sanchez and closer Jonathan Broxton.

Downside: General Manager Dayton Moore is a bit of an unproven commodity, so there’s no guarantee that he isn’t going to mortgage the future if the fans expectations suddenly outstrip the team’s talent.

What Actually Happened:

This team couldn’t suck more if you gave them a fully-automated, electrically-powered, full-on sucking machine. This team couldn’t suck more if you crossed them with Linda Lovelace and the Vietnamese “Me love you long time” girl from Full Metal Jacket.  It all starts when you have to say Bruce Chen is your Opening Day starter. For every other team in the league, that’ s an April Fools’ joke. For the Royals, that’s a fucking sucking reality.

Your Jamie Moyer Update 4/25/2012 – There’s More Than One Road To Cooperstown

Seven days after becoming the oldest pitcher to win a game in major-league history, Jamie Moyer left last night’s game against the Pirates in line for the victory which would put him ahead of Hall-of-Famer Jim Palmer. But it was not to be. The Rockies’ bullpen couldn’t get Moyer’s six innings of one-run ball across the finish line, leaving Moyer with a No Decision, although he did add three more strikeouts to his career total.

But Moyer may not need career totals to get to Cooperstown. The Hall is already getting the soft-tossing Moyer’s cap and glove from the historic win last Tuesday night when he became the oldest pitcher in major league history to win a game.  Now,  Cooperstown will be getting the rest of him as well.

That is if he ever stops pitching.

Ironically, the pitcher who has been around so long his first strikeout victim was Abner Doubleday, Moyer told reporters following his historic win  “I kind of wish I was a baseball historian.” At this point, the Hall of Fame offered him a spot in the museum’s Steele Internship Program. The Hall’s 2012 class for the 10-week internship program features 15 students from across the country.

Jamie Moyer: Doctor of Baseball

Of course, Moyer actually would have to retire to become eligible for the internship, but as we here at Dubsism have been pointing out for two years now, the longer Moyer remains in the game, the more his candidacy for Hall of Fame induction gets boosted.

Now for your Jamie Moyer Fact…Despite the fact Moyer pitched 17 of his 25 years in the American League, he has racked up 148 strikeouts in 393 at-bats.  That gives him a strikeout to at-bat ratio of 2.65.  In comparison, strikeout-meister Rob Deer racked up 1409 strikeouts in 3881 at bats, giving him a ratio of 2.75, which is the highest for any player with at least 3,000 at bats. Of course, there’s a big difference between Moyer’s 0 career homers and 13 career RBIs and Deer’s 230 HR and 600 RBI. But it also means Moyer has allowed over twice as many home runs (513) as Deer hit and over three times as many earned runs (1,898).

Arkansas Logic – The Kind That Says Somehow John L. Smith Is Better Than Bobby Petrino

Maybe because he hasn’t been caught with a mistress half his age whom he put on the university payroll?

Well, not yet, anyway.

Yeah, you read the headline correctly. The University of Arkansas, in a continuing quest to succeed in football despite itself hired John L. Smith, former Michigan State mediocrity-meister to replace the disgraced Bobby Petrino.

John L. Fucking  Smith.

This hire may set records for completely not making sense, ironically because it does make some sense. You may have to follow me closely to catch the pretzel Arkansas logic in play here.

Let’s talk about the parts that sort of make sense.  Arkansas through a funky set of circumstances found itself in need of a football coach at a time when most other programs are in the midst spring practices, and John L. Smith is a a football coach.  Not only is Smith a coach, he just so happened to be an assistant coach on the Arkansas staff some years back.  If you only look at those points, then this hire almost…almost makes sense.

But looking at this hire with that filter is like calling a Kardashian “attractive” without seeing what they look like without the trowels full of makeup required to make them look human.

Now I have a bit more sympathy for Lamar Odom, but that's another story.

The fact is rather simple. John L. Smith sucks as a football coach. Why do you think the only place he could get a job was at middle-of-nowhere Weber State? Yeah, he wrapped getting that job in the usual bullshit about coming home to coach his alma mater; Smith gushed about leading Weber State to the national championship with “I’ve always had a place in my heart for Weber State.”  I’ll come back to this; right now I want to focus on Smith’s suckitude as a football coach.

Smith's tenure at Weber State almost outlasted Mike Price's at Alabama.

He’s 1-6 in bowl games, and has never taken a team to a bowl game better than the Alamo Bowl, which he lost with Michigan State. His record in “big conference football” is pretty dismal, especially if you remember that I don’t count Louisville and the Big East as “big conference football” because it isn’t.  At Michigan State, John L. racked up a 22-26 record – 12-20 in conference play – and had the aforementioned Alamo Bowl loss to show for four seasons in East Lansing.

Here’s a question: Was this hire a panic move because Gus Malzahn wouldn’t return Arkansas’ phone calls or did Arkansas wait until they found a guy who could be as much of a douche-nozzle as Bobby Petrino?

Oops, did I let the “P” word slip, Hawg fans?  Well, it’s time a for a bitter pill to swallow in Woo-Pig-Sooie land. The problem in your football program may be bigger than the head coach…it may be time to look at your athletic director Jeff Long.

Long is the guy who hired Petrino, and did so knowing he was stealing a coach away from a prior commitment in the middle of a season. Long is also the guy who put the “P-word’s” mistress on the university payroll. Long is the guy who threw the “P-word” under the bus only after his douchebaggery became public knowledge. And now Long hired John L. Smith.

Look at the track record here…First you have the “P-word,” who has left a snail trail everywhere he’s been.  Even before the discovery of his university-paid bimbo, Petrino secretly interviewed in midseason Louisville for the Auburn job, a move intended to stab his friend Tommy Tuberville in the back.  All through his career, he has always flirted for other jobs, including ditching the Atlanta Falcons in mid-season at Jeff Long’s behest. The “Long” and short of it is that Bobby Petrino is a bad guy; so bad that ultimately even winning wouldn’t cover for what a bad guy he is.

The "P-word's" face is in almost as tough of shape as his reputation.

Now, let’s go back to John L. and his alma mater.  He made such a big deal out of being “back home,” yet skipped town in the midst of spring practice season the minute the phone rang. That makes it pretty clear this guy’s words means as much as something you might scrape off the sidewalk, which also makes it pretty clear  Long has replaced one douchebag with another.

Don’t get me wrong here, I understand that coaches bail on teams all the time; I’m not “Polly-Anna” enough to buy that there’s any loyalty in college football. But just because everybody is a douchebag doesn’t mean you have to be one as well.  I know Weber State isn’t even in the same universe with Arkansas.  I know Weber State isn’t in the BCS.  But I also know Weber State is John L.’s alma mater, and he’s the one who gave us the “Oh, it’s so great to be back home” sap-fest.

What utter bullshit.

John L. skulked out of town perfectly Petrino-like after filling us with such twaddle about his “alma mater.”  Never mind he hasn’t even coached a single game at Weber State.  Never mind all he did was coach the spring scrimmage game. Never mind that now we know John L.’s word means less than nothing. What matters is as convoluted as this all is, it still doesn’t make sense while making sense.

We know Petrino was a guy with no honor or loyalty. We know Jeff Long is the sort of guy who hires guys with no loyalty or honor. We know that because John L. is also a guy with no loyalty or honor and Jeff Long hired him.

Forget about how Long got down to John L. Smith’s name on his list.  Forget that to replace Petrino, Long first wanted the Seahawks’ Pete Carroll, who left Southern California months before the NCAA could hammer Carroll’s Trojan handy-work with the harshest football sanctions since Southern Methodist got the “death penalty.” Forget that Sean Payton, the same suspended Saints sideline man who is balls-deep into his own scandal, was rumored to be on Long’s list. You can even forget that Jeff Long is clearly a terrible judge of character.

What matters is that Long knew John L. Smith would never turn down this job.  He knew this because like the “P-word,” John L. has a track record.  Don’t forget this is the very John L.  who left Louisville for Michigan State literally during a game. Louisville was playing Marshall in the GMAC Bowl when the news broke that Smith had taken the Michigan State job.  John L. was standing on the Cardinals’ sideline, as cameras caught his players learning during the game their coach wouldn’t even be on the team flight home that night.

Now for the twist.  This isn’t even a “real” job offer; John L. is only getting the gig on an “interim” basis.  This makes Long’s knowing John L. would never turn down his offer all that much more important.  Long needed a coach and he knew John L.’s song and dance was so much bullshit that he would ditch the “sanctity of his alma mater” to be a fucking temp…

This brings us back to what and what doesn’t make sense. The personalities of Petrino, Long and John L. clearly fit; there’s something to be said for building your own den of thieves. But I may be waiting a long time before somebody can make sense out the expectation of having football program run by John L. Smith.

Stuff That Grinds My Gears: The Ozzie Guillen Situation Redux

After my last rant on this topic, SportsChump sent me a link to an article with the simple comment “You’ll love this.”

So I read it.

As I read, I was forced to rush for the duct tape in a futile attempt to keep my skull from exploding.

I was too late.

As I was picking up bits of brain and skull from around my office, it became clear this was SportsChump’s attempt to goad me into another rant.  After all, he posted a pretty good take on this situation as well.

His plan worked. By the time I had Humpty-Dumptied most of my head back together, I could feel the new rant fulmenting. The rant comes in the patented Dubsism breakdown format.  The article in question was written by Teresa Puente form Chicagonow.com.  It’s pathetic.  Read further at your own risk.

Ozzie is being Ozzie.

No matter how much Ozzie Guillen apologizes for his misplaced respect and love of Fidel Castro, he will never be forgiven by the Cuban community in Miami.

“I feel like I betrayed the Latino community,” Guillen said in Spanish at a press conference that was broadcast on ESPN Tuesday morning.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again…there’s nothing quite like the supreme assholery of those who are so quick to label something “unforgivable.” That is EXACTLY the type of intolerance upon which dictatorships like the abhorrent one of Castro are built; the soul of tyranny is the stamping out of that which is deemed arbitrarily to be “unfavorable.”

Not to mention, isn’t the first sentence basically dismissive of this entire article? If this is just another example of “Ozzie being Ozzie;” meaning yet another time that an outspoken guy said an outrageous thing, then why does anybody give a damn?  For one reason and one reason ONLY… so that some writer can take on some high moral tone which will prove to be complete bullshit.

This is true. But his remarks are offensive to all people who believe in democracy.

The people in Cuba are not free. They are not free to travel. They are not free to vote for the leader of their choice. They are not even free to use the Internet.

I know this because I have friends who fled Cuba or still live in Cuba, and they have shared their stories with me.

I could be petty and point out the disconnect between the control of information in Cuba and just how this writer shared these tales of woes with all her Cuban friends who are still on the island.  But I would rather cast aspersions on this article with the real meat; the complete hypocrisy it contains. Note how the author climbs up on her high moral horse in a defense of democracy, yet the entire tone of her “Fire Ozzie” argument relies on the same shop-worn, intellectually vapid pillars used by the typical American hypocrite anytime they want to censor something they don’t like.  Democracy and civil liberties are great for me, but they stop for you the minute you say something I don’t like.  One of the great lessons I ever got in life came from my grandmother who told me to never trust people who claim to have the “moral high ground.”

Now I know she was talking about people like Teresa Puente.

One thing the “moral crusaders” love to do is make you feel guilty based on the suffering of others…hence, Puente trots out a whole list of tear-jerkers intended to make you break out the crying towel.

One friend was so hungry that some days all he had to eat or drink was a glass of water with sugar.

I have another friend who was not able to legally live with his wife in Cuba. She was from another province and the government wouldn’t give them a permit to live together because the square footage in his house was too small.

She was afraid walking around Havana of being stopped by the police and sent back to her province several hours away.

Average Cubans are not allowed to step foot in hotels that are reserved for tourists.

And of course there have been many political prisoners of Castro.

Ask any Cuban-American and they can tell you a story of struggle or suffering in Cuba.

Are you shocked, appalled, and feeling compelled to action yet? Don’t feel guilty if you aren’t; nobody else is either. There’s a great reason why you aren’t.  In order for you to feel as outraged as the author intends you to feel, you have to believe Ozzie Guillen’s blunder-tongued comments either created the suffering in Cuba or exacerbated it. All you have to do to see that is separate yourself from the emotion being used here.

Are these things all horrible? Absolutely.  In an ideal world, would suffering on this scale not exist? Of course it wouldn’t.  Does anything Ozzie Guillen says have any effect on any of it?  Not a chance.

Now for another trick the “moral crusaders” love…pointing to somebody who is being brave in the face of brutal oppression.

To find out more about life in Cuba you should read an amazing writer and blogger Yoani Sanchez, who writes the Generation Y blog. She risks persecution and worse for her brave work.

Now, to be fair, I read this woman’s blog, but I didn’t read every single word; it has a five-year history and is clearly well-written, not mention well-read. But for Puente to try to ride this woman’s coattails is a complete joke. Sanchez’ blog is about real problems facing real people, not a bunch of candy-ass hypocrites who heard words they didn’t like.  This is exactly why Puente completely avoids the real issues of human rights abuses in Cuba to get back to some powerless words uttered by a baseball manager.

Back to Ozzie.

The former Chicago White Sox manager deserves to be suspended by the Miami Marlins.

I love it when the “moral crusaders” think they get to play judge, jury, and executioner. Why did he deserve to be suspended? I’m willing to listen to any explanation that does not include the word “offensive.”  Shit, you might even get me to agree with one that included the term “crushing stupidity.” But give me something more than the emotionally loaded and intellectually lazy.

They made a big mistake. Marlins’ management should have known that Guillen has a big mouth.

“Should have known?” This suggest to me this woman didn’t give a shit about baseball two weeks ago. Anybody who has been paying attention for any amount of time knows that given enough time, Ozzie Guillen will stick both his feet in his mouth up to the ankles.  That’s “Ozzie being Ozzie,” remember?

Guillen is a hypocrite.

Takes one to know one…again, Puente “believes” in democracy, but wants de facto censorship.

Remember how Guillen chastised actor Sean Penn for praising iron-fisted Venezuelan leader Hugo Chavez?

No, because smart people don’t bother putting any creedence behind the words of a loud-mouth baseball manager.  If they did, don’t you think the gay community would have protested his hiring remembering the time he called then Chicago-Sun Times columnist Jay Mariotti a “fag?”

Guillen deserves the suspension by the Marlins and more.

But no amount of suspension or apologies will undo the political damage he has caused and the economic impact it will have on the team.

The best thing Marlins management could do to repair the damage is to tell Ozzie, “Adios.”

Here’s the best part…she jumps from suspending Guillen to handing him his hat and showing him the door, all while tacitly admitting punishing him won’t make a damn bit of difference.  The proof comes from a story on Yahoo Sports which laid out the complete non-impact of the supposed “outrage” in the Cuban community.

MIAMI (AP) About two dozen protesters are outside Marlins Ballpark, expressing their displeasure with manager Ozzie Guillen. The demonstration Thursday came before Miami’s afternoon game with the Chicago Cubs. Many waved Cuban flags, held signs and used a megaphone to criticize the manager.

Two dozen? I can see more people waiting in the check-out lines at a Wal-Mart. Two dozen isn’t a protest, two dozen is a bus stop.

If even the Cubans won’t turn out to pissed off over Guillen’s comments, they why should I give a shit what some self-righteous writer thinks?

Oh that’s right, I don’t, and it seems nobody else does either.

Stuff That Grinds My Gears: What’s Been Pissing Me Off Lately

Over the past few weeks, there have been two issues that really chapped my ass.  I’ve been trying to just let them go, but then I realized I’m a blogger; it’s my non-paying job to bitch about stuff.  So, here it goes…

1) The Bobby Petrino Situation

The guy is a scumbag, pure and simple. But Arkansas got what they deserved, and the only person I’ve seen say that is the guy over at Klown Times.

Keep in mind that (Arkansas athletic director Kevin) Long is the same AD who hired Petrino away from the Atlanta Falcons DURING THEIR SEASON. If that wasn’t bad enough, Long did so without asking permission to speak to Petrino.

Plus, I find it hard to believe that Long did not know of Petrino’s past transgressions. After all, this is the same Petrino who secretly flirted with Auburn while former coach Tommy Tuberville was still employed there.  And of course there was that Atlanta Falcons “thing.”

Let’s take Klown’s position as a starting point. I’ve always had a sort of “three strikes” rule when it comes to forming opinions, and this latest incident with Petrino was clearly worthy of ringing him up as a complete dick…100%, USDA Prime, Grade A Tube Steak.

Look at the Auburn situation. You know what kind of guy flies into town secretly to discuss ripping a job out from under another coach? The same kind of guy who pretends to be your best friend, then bangs your wife the minute you are out of town on business.  Not to mention, this tells you a lot about how much this guy values loyalty.  He was perfectly fine not only with leaving town unannounced in the middle of the night, he was willing to sneak in the back door at his secret destination. I understand that valuing loyalty in college sports is like cornering the sunscreen market in Alaska in January, but at some point you simply cannot advertise you are willing to stab anybody in the back at anytime; karma can be a real bitch. We’ll come back to that point later.

St-eeee-rike One.

Then, there’s what happened with the Falcons. The way that situation ended in Atlanta could have been a 500-level class in douchebaggery. Not only did Petrino actively seek to bail the minute things got tough mid-way through a failed season, he secretly campaigned for the Arkansas job while then-Hawg head coach Houston Nutt was embroiled in his own scandal, and when Bobby-Boy got the job in Fayetteville, he informed the Falcons of his mid-season departure with a letter.  The Falcons, and their owner Arthur Blank made a huge commitment to Petrino on the assumption he would be the big-time coach to make the transition from college to the NFL.  Fat chance; instead the Falcons realized the hard way they had married their future to a guy who couldn’t wait to skip town the minute a greener pasture presented itself.  Perhaps if Arthur Blank had paid Petrino in 25-year old motorcycle riding suck-sluts…

As much as the douchiness already oozes out of this issue, there’s two things that really pissed me off here. First of all, there’s the people who thought Petrino shouldn’t have been fired. Tell that to Houston Nutt. For those of you who may not recall, Nutt got himself run out of Fayetteville for some extra-marital cannubial bliss.  To make a long story short, Nutt’s relationship with local news anchor Donna Bragg hit the public arena when a fan who was angry with the Nutt filed a Freedom of Information Act requesting Nutt’s email and phone records, at which point he exposed his carnal canoodling with Bragg.

Of course, this led to Nutt’s firing, not for his won-loss record, but for his extra-curricular activity. I will admit I’m a fan of the Nutt, if for no other reason as he makes wonderful blog-fodder. But this is more about the potential headache Arkansas could have faced. If the university had not fired Petrino, the Nutt could have excoriated the Arkansas administration, especially since Petrino upped the ante over what the Nutt did by a) messing with a University employee who b) Petrino got on the payroll nad c) tried to cover up the motorcycle accident, up to and including trying not to call 911 to aid his injured mistress, which led to d) the filing of a false report on the incident to university administration.

Speaking of coaches who have no love for Petrino, do you wonder what Tommy Tuberville thought of all this? Sure, now Tuberville has his own issues to deal with at Texas Tech, but don’t forget that Tuberville hired Petrino at Auburn to run his offense.   In a move of complete foreshadowing,  Petrino stair-stepped that experience into the head coaching job at Louisville, the very same job from which Petrino then tried to secretly steal Tuberville’s gig at Auburn.  Here comes that karma thing again…

St-eeee-rike Two.

As far as strike three goes, we’ve really already alluded to it.  Honestly it isn’t about who Petrino was sticking his wang into; it’s about all the rules and decencies he broke to get into the pants of a woman was half his age.  We all know that story now, and while it is clearly a good reason to punch Petrino out (in more ways than the baseball reference implies), let’s just for fun say Petrino got a piece of it; foul tip and all that…we’re still at strike two.

Then read this.

Hark back to his days at Louisville, where the story of how Petrino of how he handled an incident with a player named D.J. Kamer incident, which while it was hushed up at the time, is nothing short of appaling.  Kamer had a friend pass away, and according to the New York Times, Petrino said that Kamer didn’t “want to play football (at Louisville)” if he attended his childhood friends funeral as a pallbearer. And in what is proving to be a theme with Petrino, that very same report in the New York Times quotes former Atlanta Falcons player Lawyer Milloy said “That’s karma…Just because he knows X’s and O’s doesn’t mean he is a nice person.”

St-eeee-rike Three.  Grab some bench, Bobby…you are out.

As far as blog-fodder is concerned, here’s a classic bit from the Dubsism archives about Bobby Petrino, Houston Nutt, Tommy Tuberville, and the classic Vietnam War story

2) The Overblown Ozzie Guillen “Controversy”

I really don’t know where to start with this one. I don’t know for whom I have the most invective for in this case. It could be the douchebags in the media who asked the outspoken Guillen a loaded question when they knew both the answer he would give and how they would attempt to explode the statements of a baseball manager into some sort of geo-political catastrophe. It could be the dumb-asses who stood in front of the Marlins’ ball-park acting as if Guillen’s statement about the murderous scumwad  known as Fidel Castro had somehow been responsible for all the misery caused throughout the annals of human history.  Hell, it could also be the people who acted as if this was the worst thing that could ever happen, then completely lost interest as quickly as they became so righteously indignant.

Let’s start from the top.

First of all, it is a sad state of affairs when I have to agree with that pompous bag of anal leakage known as Bill Maher. But his defense of Guillen, while done for reasons ideologically different from my own, is still nonetheless correct.

“If you say something Communists don’t like, they take away your job and send you to a re-education camp until you come out with the one approved opinion,” Maher said sarcastically. “We wouldn’t want that here in America.”

Granted, the blood of tens of thousands of innocent people is on Castro’s hands. If I were in Cuba and made the anti-Castro comments I’m making here, you can bet your beard and cigar my ass would be in a cell in no time. That’s what dictators do.  But in America, the press has the right to ask a loaded, pre-meditated, and/or albeit pointless question, much like Guillen has the right to answer it even if it means sticking both feet in his mouth up to the ankles.

Am I the only person who was reminded of the Marge Schott incident?  For those of you who don’t recall, Schott was sand-bagged by ESPN’s Sal Paolantonio when she made some pro-Hitler comments. For this she was run out of baseball, despite the fact that all she did was answer a question. If you read the transcript of the interview, two things should leap off the screen at you. First, what she said was hardly a ringing endorsement of Hitler, and second, you should find it curious that the exact wording of Paolantonio’s question is missing.

Here’s why that matters…if you are going to ask an out-spoken person like Schott or Guillen such loaded questions, aren’t you doing so EXACTLY to illicit such a quote you as a journalist can use to gin up a tempest on a keyboard? Doesn’t that then mean that the very same journalists who are fanning the flames of indignation are doing so while hiding their matches and gasoline cans?

Then, there’s the people who were so whipped up over all of this? This whole thing dripped with so much hypocrisy; people who don’t even go to Marlins games threatening boycotts unless Guillen was fired, yet they were noticeably absent when Guillen returned from his suspension.  Oh, that’s right, they weren’t going to show up anyway. Not to mention, many of these Cubans who were supposedly so upset by Guillen’s comments are the very same who have done nothing to help those people still stuck under Castro’s thumb. I understand this in no way applies to all Cubans, but there is a sizable portion of that community who have taken a decided “I got mine, you get yours” attitude towards those still in Cuba.  If you want to create change, you have to do more than show up for three hours with a cardboard sign.

Not to mention, there’s nothing quite like the supreme assholery of those who are so quick to label something “unforgivable.”  Guess what, you sign-waving dipshit? It is your very intolerance upon which dictatorships like the abhorrent one of Castro are built; the soul of tyranny is the stamping out of that which is deemed arbitrarily to be “unfavorable.”

Now, for the most important question. Why does anybody give a frog’s fat ass about what Ozzie Guillen thinks? He’s a baseball manager, and that’s all he is. He’s not the President, a Governor, or any sort of politician or government leader. He’s not an ambassador to the United Nations, he’s not even an over-paid entertainer who gets away with saying stupid shit on a daily basis. But like those entertainers, his words carry no weight, so outside of baseball there is no reason to give a damn about anything he says. One of the items in the Bill of Rights is the right to free speech; which is why one thing that isn’t there is the right not to be offended. There’s lots of truly offensive things in the world, and if you get your hackles up over the ramblings of a half-wit baseball manager, you really need to get out of the house more often.

Your Jamie Moyer Update 04/18/2012 – 49 Years, 150 Days

The numbers from last night’s history-setting performance: 7 innings pitched, 2 walks, 1 strikeout, 3 inning-ending double plays all while allowing nary a single earned run. But the number that really mattered…49 years, 150 days.  That number sets the new standard as it passed Jack Quinn’s win for the Brooklyn Dodgers on September 13, 1932, when he was 49 years, 70 days old.

That’s the number that will get Moyer’s uniform, and other assorted memorabilia a trip to Cooperstown as Moyer became the oldest pitcher to win a regular season game.  Let’s be honest, no matter where you are on the “Is  Moyer is a Hall-of -Famer” debate; no matter what there will be Moyer memorabilia in the the Hall of Fame.

Whether it is shipping a package to Cooperstown, or tossing seven effective innings against the Padres, Moyer delivered.  Moyer not only set this record, but more importantly, his performance stopped a two-game skid for Colorado. This record-setting win was Moyer’s 268th, which ties him with Hall-of-Famer Jim Palmer at 34th place on the career list. To get there, Moyer dealt the Padres a steady diet of a wood-dodging cutter, his usual marshmallow curve, and a “heater” that never once topped 79 mph which allowed him to scatter six hits and two unearned runs by being the classic Jamie Moyer…keeping the Padres’ batters off balance and guessing.

This now also means the Moyer Watch here at Dubsism now becomes an exercise in a) how long can Moyer continue this miracle run and b) how many more Hall-of-Famers can Moyer pass in some career statistics?

And as always, we will continue to offer some fun Jamie Moyer facts:  For example, did you know Jamie Moyer has allowed more home runs (513) than several current players have hit:

Player (years in the league, age) Home Runs

  • Chipper Jones (19, 40) 456
  • Vladimir Guerrero (16, 37) 449
  • Albert Pujols (12, 32) 445
  • Jason Giambi (18, 41) 428
  • Andruw Jones (17, 35) 421
  • Paul Konerko (16, 36) 397
  • David Ortiz (16, 36) 378
  • Adam Dunn (12, 32) 366
  • Lance Berkman (14, 36) 358
  • Carlos Lee (14, 36) 350
  • Todd Helton (16, 38) 347
  • Alfonso Soriano (14, 36) 340
  • Derrek Lee (15, 36) 331
  • Aramis Ramirez (15, 34) 315
  • Mark Teixeira (10, 32) 314
  • Adrian Beltre (15, 33) 311
  • Ivan Rodriguez (21, 40) 311
  • Scott Rolen (17, 37) 308
  • Carlos Beltran (15, 35) 305
  • Miguel Tejada (15, 38) 304
  • Magglio Ordonez (15, 38) 294
  • Pat Burrell (12, 35) 292
  • Ryan Howard (8, 32) 286
  • Bobby Abreu (17, 38) 284
  • Torii Hunter (16, 36) 281
  • Miguel Cabrera (10, 29) 280
  • Mike Cameron (17, 39) 278

The only current players who have hit more home runs than Moyer has allowed are:

Player (years in the league, age) Home Runs

  • Alex Rodriguez (19, 36) 630
  • Jim Thome (22, 41) 604
  • Manny Ramirez (19, 40) 555

Here’s another fun fact about Moyer’s career. There are 102 pitchers who have appeared in at least 700 games, and Moyer is not one of them; yesterday’s win was his 689th appearance in a Major League Game. Now, since this stat favors relief pitchers (Jesse Orosco is the all-time leader at 1,252 and Mariano Rivera is the active leader at 1,046), Moyer is one of only five pitchers with more than 4,000 innings pitched and less than 700 appearances.

  • Pete Alexander* – 5, 190 innings pitched, 696 career appearances
  • Eppa Rixey* – 4, 992.2 innings pitched, 692 career appearances
  • Bert Blyleven* – 4, 970 innings pitched, 692 career appearances
  • Early Wynn* – 4, 564 innings pitched, 691 career appearances
  • Jamie Moyer – 4, 038 innings pitched, 689 career appearances

* Denotes Hall-of-Famer

It gets even better if you look at what happens if Moyer makes 12 more appearance to pass 700 total.  This list also contains nothing but guys who are in the Hall-of-Fame or should be (don’t start the “Steroid” argument here with me over Clemens). Seriously, look at how many Hall-of-Famers are on the list of pitchers with more than 700 appearances and more than 4,000 innings pitched:

  • Cy Young* – 7, 356 innings pitched, 906 career appearances
  • Pud Galvin* – 6, 003.1 innings pitched, 705 appearances
  • Walter Johnson* – 5, 914.1 innings pitched, 802 career appearances
  • Phil Niekro* – 5, 404 innings pitched, 864 career appearances
  • Nolan Ryan* – 5, 386 innings pitched, 807 career appearances
  • Gaylord Perry* – 5, 350 innings pitched, 777 career appearances
  • Don Sutton* – 5,282.1 innings pitched, 774 career appearances
  • Warren Spahn* – 5, 243 innings pitched, 750 career appearances
  • Steve Carlton* – 5, 217 innings pitched, 741 career appearances
  • Greg Maddux – 5, 008.1 innings pitched, 744 career appearances
  • Roger Clemens – 4, 916 innings pitched, 705 career appearances
  • Tommy John – 4, 710.1 innings pitched, 760 career appearances
  • Jim Kaat – 4, 530.1 innings pitched, 898 career appearances

Again, you can decide which side of the “Is Moyer a Hall-of-Famer” fence you want to be on, but this is yet another set of numbers where Moyer is living on a street where many of his neighbors have Cooperstown addresses.

Now for the obvious comparison. Since Moyer is the oldest pitcher to win a regular-season game, just how big the the age difference between him and the youngest winner?

If you really want to crawl into the “Wayback Machine,” Willie McGill was born on November 10, 1873 and he won his 1st game on May 8, 1890, making him 16 years, 178 days old when he notched his first “W,” ironically for the Cleveland Infants.  Since 1900, the mark belongs to Philadelphia Phillies’ southpaw Rogers McKee, who was born on September 16, 1926 and won his 1st and only Major League game on October 3, 1942, making him 17 years and 17 days old.

As for the youngest “pitcher of note” to tally a major league win, that distinction belongs to Hall-of-Famer Bob Feller, who racked up the first of his 266 wins on August 23, 1936 at the ripe old age of 17 years, 201 days.

Your Jamie Moyer Update 04/12/2012: History Is Still In A Holding Pattern

History will have to wait at least one more start for Jamie Moyer to become the oldest pitcher to win a regular season game.  Moyer left his start against the Giants today in the 6th inning trailing 4-0.  Moyer scattered 8 hits across 5.2 innings, dealing 112 pitches and giving up four earned runs.  Moyer also collected three more strikeouts against one walk, bringing his career K total to 2,410.

For the rest of the sports world, this is all about the chase of history. As everybody else in the sports media world is getting on the Jamie Moyer bandwagon, I would like to remind you all that we here at Dubsism have been your home of all things Jamie Moyer for two years now. So, as they are just getting into the Jamie Moyer “Fact of the Day,” they are just “Johnny-Come-Latelys” to the wonder that is Moyer pitching in the majors at age 49.

Even though the whole “Moyer Fact” thing is getting a wee bit out of control, I’m not quitting because I was the first. Even after Moyer ultimately breaks the record, Dubsism will continue to be you home for all things Moyer.  You know that once Moyer becomes the oldest pitcher to win a regular season game, the rest of the media will break their ankles jumping off the bandwagon. This is exactly why those blowdries at ESPN can mark off an acre of the fattest part of my ass and kiss away.   The Moyer story is tremendous for far more more than his age. There’s actually three reasons why this is such a great story. There’s how long he’s pitched, there’s how he pitches, and there’s the fact he’s doing it at an age when many people become grandparents.

When I first saw Moyer pitching for the Cubs in 1986, I thought I could hit .300 off him.  A lot of major-leaguers thought that as well…and they were wrong.  After 25 seasons in the bigs, Moyer has an opponent’s batting average of.267, which is only four points higher than the major league average for that same statistic during that same quarter-century. That’s the true wonder of the “ageless wonder;” when he pitches, the ball looks as big as a pumpkin and floats like its full of helium, but you can rarely get the fat part of the bat on it.

People talk about “throwbacks;” guys who harken back to a previous era.  Moyer would fit perfectly in the “dead ball” era; his fastball is a change-up, and his change-up is a marshmallow.  He’s the last non-Amish horse-and-buggy out there; he’s a rotary dial phone in a cellular world.

At 49 years old, when he was at the plate for his at-bats today, he looked one of those fantasy camp guys. Yet, people have been giving up on Moyer for two decades now.  When he was 29, he pitched like he was 49.  When he was 29, the Cubs offered Moyer a coaching job when it appeared his pitching days were over.  When he was 29 in 1992, no one pictured Moyer still pitching twenty years later unless it was in beer-league softball.  Moyer led the National League in earned runs allowed in his first full season, at 24.  In his 20’s, Moyer had five straight losing seasons.

But what most people don’t realize is Moyer actually started turning back time some time ago.  In 1996 and ’97, he was a combined 30-8.  In 2001, he was 20-6.  In 2003, he was 21-7…at age 40. When he signed with Boston in 1996, he was 33 years old and had a career mark of 59-76.  Moyer has made at least 25 starts each season from ages 34 to 46.  In his 30’s and 40’s combined, Moyer has had only had three losing campaigns.  He is now 267-206.

Now, for the aforementioned Jamie Moyer facts for today:

  • Moyer is the oldest pitcher to have two starts in a season
  • Today marked Moyer’s 630th start
  • Today marked Moyer’s 688th appearance
  • Today, Moyer hit his 145th batter
  • According to Elias Sports Bureau: Moyer at 49 years old and Madison Bumgarner at 22 years old represented the largest age gap for a pitching matchup since 59-year-old Satchel Paige faced 29-year-old Bill Monbouquette on September 25, 1965.

Moyer’s next start is scheduled to be at home on Tuesday in Colorado against the San Diego Padres.

Ask The Geico Guy: Is Lamar Odom A Crybaby?

Does a former drill sergeant make a terrible therapist? Absolutely.  But maybe Lamar Odom could use some drill sergeant treatment. Perhaps somebody needs to sit his ass down and explain to him that he doesn’t really have it all that bad.  Granted, I understand he has had some personal issues in this past year, but I also understand that everybody else did as well.

Lamar, it’s called being a professional, and like it or not, you’ve been paid as a professional while acting like a bitch. First of all, you’ve made over $107 million in your career.  That breaks down to $122,602.56 for every game you’ve played so far.  That also breaks down to $8,655.34 for every point you’ve scored.  For that amount of money, you suck it up and you give your best effort.  After all, it was Julius Erving who said “being a professional is doing the things you love to do, on the days you don’t feel like doing them.”

The Dubsism Therapy Center is now open for business, you pussy.

So, let’s chug on over to Namby-Pamby land and see if we can’t get some self-confidence for you, Lamar.  Frankly, I think you have two major problems. First of all, let’s talk about that drag-queen you married.  Getting involved with a Kardashian is never a good idea, let alone if you are an athlete.  Not only that, but you married the one who looks like her mother got raped by a Bigfoot.

Now that we are on that subject, what the hell were you thinking by doing that stupid-ass reality show? You know that there is a precise, psychological term for a guy who sulks about everything then puts his private life in front of cameras for a fourth-rate cable network: Idiotic asshole.  When you do that, and everytime you pout because something isn’t going right for you, it makes you look like a complete dick.

This leads to your second problem, Lamar.  I will say this as succinctly as I am able…IT ISN’T ALWAYS ABOUT YOU, YOU SELF-CENTERED BUTT-LOAF! Like I said, I understand you’ve had some issues in your personal life, but you lose me when you use those as excuses for your petulant, “me-first” behavior.  This latest round of your bullshit came when the Lakers tried to trade you to the Hornets.

Apparently, that was too much of a personal affront for you since you stormed into the Lakers’ front office after the deal was quashed by the NBA, said something that irrevocably fractured the relationship, and your ass was headed for Dallas by the end of the weekend.  It’s not like you were shipped off to some NBA back-water, the Mavericks are the defending league champions. But instead of contributing to a title defense, instead you chose to pull a disappearing act; your indifference finally led owner Mark Cuban to confront you in the locker room last weekend.  Again, you said something that forever frosted the relationship and the Mavericks have effectively flushed the Odom toilet.

So, let’s cut to the chase, Lamar. If you really have a diagnosable case of depression as that dude you married suggests, then go get help.  If not, then grow a pair, take stock of your life, and change the things you don’t like.  Dr. J called it being professional, but most of us call it being a man.

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