I realize that when I was mocking Richard Roeper’s pedantic book review of the Jose Canseco book “Juiced: Crazy Days and Nights Hacking People’s Heads Off With OJ Simpson’ (What, that’s not the title?), that I missed Roeper’s reference to Jose’s assertion in the book about Dusty Baker’s after hour skills. Jose said, “That dude could party!” You just have to love that Jose used the word dude to describe Dusty, don’t you? Dude. So for that, I apologize. And today we wrap up our award-winning feature where we answer the big questions each team faces as they head into spring training this week. The only divisions left are the National League East and Central. So without further adieu… New York Mets They spent crazy money on Pedro Martinez and Carlos Beltran, don’t they know that Pedro’s got about 137 more pitches left in that right arm? You see, when a New York general manager overspends on a player, the media talks about how it’s OK because they had to do it to “win the back page” whatever that means. If a GM in say…Detroit or Chicago does it, well then they’re complete morons and they need to have their homes burned down and their children beaten with a four foot length of garden hose. Wait, did I say Chicago? Nah, the Cubs and Sox never overpay for top...Read More
Feb 14, 2005 | Andy
Last night on 60 Minutes, Jose Canseco sat down with Mike Wallace and talked about “injecting it into the gluteus maximus” enough times that I got confused and thought this was a Jim Edmonds interview. Somewhere, Edgar Renteria fell off his couch and went into convulsions, thinking the same thing. But happily, what Jose was talking about, was some of the most prominent baseball players of the 1990s, shooting steroids into each other’s naked butts! Awww, that’s cute. I’m sure, somewhere over there in Dogpatch, Missouri, the last moran who still thinks that Mark McGwire became a freakish, enormous, pock faced mutant because he did a lot of push ups, probably didn’t watch it. Oh, he didn’t watch it because he didn’t want to. He didn’t watch it because the hanger he uses a TV antenna couldn’t haul in a CBS affiliate…because he’s using a plastic hanger. Are we supposed to believe that Mark McGwire, Ivan Rodriguez, Rafael Palmeiro, Juan Gonzalez and the rest of the gang that Canseco outed, are all guilty? Jose’s dumb, and he used these names to sell books, but he’s also probably right. On Friday, we answered the big questions facing teams in the AL East and Central, today we’ll hit the AL and NL Wests. And if you’re wondering why we didn’t just do them all in one day, hey, nobody can milk...Read More
Feb 11, 2005 | Andy
If you’re wondering what it looks like when I have run out of ideas, well, here it is, kiddies. Today we’re going to take a look at the American League East and Central and figure out what their big questions are as they head into spring training next week. As our friend Kent Dorfman so eloquently said, “Oh, boy is this great!” New York Yankees Daddy, is Jason Giambi going to die? Of course not Timmy. Well, actually he is going to die, and probably twenty years earlier than he would have had he not shot human growth hormone into his ass, but he won’t die this year. In fact, he might even hit 30 homers and then the Yankees fans can pretend they don’t hate him! Who’s that old man in center field? That used to be Bernie Williams. He used to be great. He plays the guitar. He’s slow now, and can’t throw the ball more than eight feet. Sort of like Sammy Sosa…with a guitar. If Carl Pavano likes the Bronx so much, how come he broke up with Samanta Miceli? He’s obviously gay. Boston Red Sox Now that the Sox have finally won what are Red Sox fans going to piss and moan about? They might want to start with the fact that you can’t drive a car in their town without a shoehorn and...Read More
Feb 9, 2005 | Andy
I have few vivid memories of my youth. It’s likely a combination of the (rough estimate) dozen concussions I suffered as a football player and the fact that in college I would drink my body weight in Old Style Light on a weekly basis. But I do remember this from the magical 1989 Flyin’ Illini season. The Illini were in Bloomington taking on the eventual Big Ten champion Hoosiers (you forget that neither Illinois or Michigan won the Big Ten that year, don’t you?), and Jay Edwards had the Illini on the ropes. He was flipping in threes from all over. But every time the Illini would go down by five or six, Nick Anderson would make a big play. He’d sky over somebody for an offensive rebound or bull his way into the paint for a dunk. Dick Vitale was on hand for that one and with every successive Nick Anderson clutch play he’d yell, “Nick Anderson won’t let them lose!” You know how Dick is, he just got louder and louder. And when Nick threw in the 40 footer at the buzzer for the Illini win, Dickie V. completely lost his mind. It was great. Last night, I was in the Dick Vitale position. I was seated comfortably on my couch watching Michigan claw and scrap (and get every frickairn call from the refs) their way to...Read More
Feb 7, 2005 | Andy
ESPN.com has been passing the time between the final out of the World Series and opening day with a little series they have creatively titled “Hot Stove Heaters.” In the past they have taken the time to do an in-depth preview of each Major League team and they still might do that, but so far they’ve been writing fascinating articles about which players in baseball do which specialty the best. By fascinating I mean tedious and by specialty I mean “overrated facet.” For example, they’ve done Best Pickoff Move, Best Outfield Arm, Most Accurate Outfield Arm and many more. What you didn’t know is that it didn’t have to be this way. They came to me to write this series, but apparently weren’t happy with the results. So, here’s what the Hot Stove Heaters would have looked like. Most obnoxious manager Tony LaRussa, Cardinals — If you allowed other managers to vote, Tony LaRussa would get 35 of a possible 29 votes. He’s had plenty of success in his big league career, unfortunately, he’s out to prove that he’s the reason why. You and I both know that the teams with the best players usually win. Even the best manager is probably only good for three more wins than a bad one, but LaRussa has learned that the more moves you make, the more will work. This is a...Read More
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