Edition No. 20
July 12, 2013
Please accept my deepest apologies for the tardiness in submitting this required bit of blather that I write each year. I have just been busy….busy as a one-armed paper hanger; busy as Jugdish at Johnny’s local Quick Trip on draft day; busy as Papa Ernst at an Elkhorn Legion game; busy as Chelsea on a Spring break Saturday night; busy as BT during a rush job at Art F/X…..well, maybe that last one is not a good example, but you get the idea……I have been busy.
I am also afraid that I was also so intimidated by the prospect of having to follow Curby’s Curbside Chronicle. That was one funny piece of writing and easily one of the best things ever produced by a member of this league. I laughed out loud. Great work, my friend.
So here are the standings as of July 1, 2013…a very good time to look and assess where we are, almost exactly half-way through the season:
And due to my tardiness, a week later, as of July 7
(It will be interesting to see if the traditional “Name change Karma/Mojo” works for the Monarchs, now Blair Glitch Defect. As I recall it has worked in the past for the Bums and Skipjacks, when they made mid-season changes. Clearly a move of desperation, but it just might work. I know there is an ongoing contest to help Screech with the name change. I, for one, would be interested in learning the basis/derivation for the “Glitch Defect” Moniker. Must be a technological thing.)
One year ago at this time, (from last year’s 7th Inning Stretch) at the All Star break, here were the standings:
STANDINGS AT THE ALL-STAR BREAK
Hey, UB…what a difference a year makes!!!!
The Blues on the other hand, still in 8th, even thought a slightly higher point total.
In looking at this year’s standings, I see the Blues, in all their inconsistency, still hanging below an upper division finish. (Despite my glorious 3 days in First Place…my aspirations are still modest. Just gotta get into the upper 6. But, those were 3 glorious days, in May. The sun shined brighter; the wine was a little sweeter…..)
I also see strong races all around. Everyone is in a battle with the guys around him. The Senators are on the rise. I feel like I am going to be battling Chelsea’s boys all summer and I hope I am battling the Wahoos as well. It was nice to see the Tigers near the top and despite a recent slide, they should be there all season. More than anything it looks like we have a real race for the top spot. Going to be a fun time from here on out.
The 7th Inning Stretch is traditionally a huge whine fest for the Blues. But with my new found attitude of positivity (see last year’s 7th Inning Stretch… “Blue Skies and Sunshine”), no such thing again this year. But please let’s all note that The Blues clearly have the worst first round pick. Matt Kemp has been an utter disaster. .254 BA , 4 HR, 24 RBI, 29 runs, with a whopping 141.70 points, after being Yahoo’s 5th rated player going into the season. And now on his 2nd stint on the DL.
I do want it noted that despite the general conservative nature of the Blues Management over the years (I traditionally am at the bottom of league transactions…I simply do not give up on guys) especially when it comes to trades (I simply do not want some guy I traded away to come back and beat me ), I did do one of the few trades that have occurred in the league this year. Hellickson for Hamilton. I pulled the trigger rather quickly and without extensive negotiations with Mitch. He made a fair offer and I made a quick assessment and decision. It helped that he was offering Josh Hamilton, who was floundering in the low .200’s in average, flirting with the Mendoza line. Hamilton has shown signs of coming out of his slumber having hit 4 homeruns in July, with 2 in one night last night. It remains to be seen who will get the best of that trade, but as many folks say, the purpose of a trade is not to have one team prevail over another, but rather, to benefit both teams. Maybe this one will fit into that category.
Finally, I would be remiss if I did not comment on a recent edition of From the Bullpen. I always enjoy the writings of our league scribe. I really enjoyed the recent Father’s Day/family one. But in the most recent edition, I was surprised to learn that my good friend David D. Ernst had traveled to my fair city to enjoy a baseball game. Apparently, as best I can determine, Mr. Ernst traveled to KC, by himself, to watch an independent league day game at Community Federal Credit Union park, the home of the T-Bones. And while I have driven past this park on many occasions, I have never been. (With my opportunities to go to baseball games rather infrequent, when I do go, I want to go to the Royals, so have not ventured out to see the T-bones. Many people have reported the fan friendly event that a T-Bones game can be, though.) All of this without even a telephone call to his good buddy Stretch McBlunder. Hmmmmm. Not sure what to think about this. I have been pondering this and have come to but one conclusion. Mr. Ernst was in need of solitude to do some heavy thinking. Like Henry David Thoreau, who would venture to Walden Pond to contemplate life and the issues before him, our David D. Ernst ventured to the place where he can best contemplate life and the issues before him—a ball park. I get it. He wanted to be alone. And what issue is he so troubled with that he needed a 3 hour solitary drive and a solo trip to the ball park, followed by a 3 hour return trip? Well, it could only be that he wishes to follow his good friend Mr. McBlunder’s example, and all other members of the HSL, and return to married status, with the lovely and talented Michele. However, there is a serious stumbling block…his promise to his beloved brother-in-law and league idol BT, that he will wait a full 5 years before getting married. What to do, what to do? He is soooooo troubled at the prospect of breaking his promise to BT, that he needed several hours of quiet contemplation to come to a decision. What was that decision? Only David knows and hopefully he will disclose this to us soon. In the meantime, let’s all weigh in on the message board to let David know how we feel. I, for one, say, go for it Dave!!!! (But next time, give me a call, damn it.)
I am scheduled to fill in a gap in my visits to Major League ball parks this summer, when I visit San Francisco’s Pac Bell Park (at least I think that is what it is called), home of the Giants, on a long weekend trip to San Francisco and Napa, CA, in late July. (You don’t want to know the price of a quality seat on Stub Hub. Ouch!) If I get that done, I think I am down to 4 stadiums left to get all: Seattle, Phoenix, Tampa/St. Pete and new Arlington. Just some ideas for next year’s trip.
Hey, that’s enough for now. Sorry this is so late (and so lame). Enjoy the rest of the season and good luck to all. Also enjoy the below photo, taken on an April trip to the Big Easy. I understand it is hard to find photos of me on the internet, so I provide one. Please note, that photo is before my recent pre-wedding diet….that is me, plus 20 pounds ago.
All the best,