Thursday, April 20, 2006


Episode One: The Tyrant Lizard

Well done on hitting your first home run as a Mariner, Carl Everett! As a treat, and as inspiration for you to hit many more, preferably against AL West competition, here is the first in a series of articles geared towards helping you appreciate those most fantastic of prehistoric reptiles, the Dinosaurs.

Many people have made many jokes at your expense regarding your apparent disbelief in the existence of these magnificent creatures. These sorts of people should be rounded up and shot, preferably after being read some kind of incriminating Bible verse. After all, let he who is without sin be the one to cast the first stone, right? Did I get that right? I'm sure you will let me know via e-mail (which, by the way, also doesn't exist).

I've decided to take quite a different approach: education. Sure, we undervalue it in this country, as we undervalue most things that do not involve gasoline or naked women, but that doesn't mean that a little of it can't go a long way. And in your case, Carl, quite frankly, you've got a long way to go. So without further adieu, let's talk dinosaurs!

First off, the mighty Tyrannosaurus rex, Latin for "tyrant lizard king." Could there be a more apt dinosaur to introduce Carl Everett to? I submit that there cannot. Wherever you have gone, whatever clubhouse jungle you have stalked, mere mortal ballplayers have scattered in fear, while the rodent-mammal-like members of the media have tossed potshots from safe positions beneath the underbrush of the First Amendment. Also, overextended metaphors appear to have followed. Nonetheless, there is more than just being a tyrant (I guess not so much a lizard or king, now that I think about it) that you have in common with the T. rex; let's look at stature:

As you can see, strikingly similar. Although you've definitely mastered the art of upright walking, bear in mind that given the 70 million extra years of evolution at your disposal, this is hardly surprising. More important is the similarity in the arms: drawn in close to the body, bent at the elbow. Not, as some have indicated, a sign of weakness or the inability to convincingly hit a baseball, but a sign of strength and individualism, and all the more reason to develop tree trunks for legs and a set of razor-sharp teeth.

The T. rex is probably the most renowned predator in the history of the world, immortalized in such terrifying films as Jurassic Park, Tammy and the T-Rex, and The Land Before Time (more on this later). Likewise, you, Carl Everett, are one of the most renowned predators of team chemistry in the history of baseball. Though the advantages/myth of "team chemistry" are a matter of some debate, there is no debating the fact that you destroy it, mercilessly completely, wherever you come across it.

Efforts to compare your relative athletic ability are beyond my expertise; however, the kind folks at Wikipedia have this little entry that you can use as a primitive guide of sorts.

So you see, Carl, there is little to fear from these giant beasts. There is little reason for you to deny their existence, especially given their similarity to you, and also the fact that they're pretty freakin' cool. You remember that part in Jurassic Park when the T. rex was chasing down the Jeep with Jeff Goldblum in the back of it? Can't you sympathize with wanting to rend Jeff Goldblum limb from limb with your massive jaws? Would you not also chase a vehicle through the jungle in order to do so?

See, Carl? You've got a lot in common with Mr. T. rex. Don't disavow the past, Carl; embrace it. A man can forge a bond with figures of bygone eras, with movements of societies past, with giant land-borne lizards of ages long ago. The life of a professional athlete can be lonely, and can wound the soul; dinosaurs like the T. rex, whom you share so many similarities with, have the potential to heal those wounds.

Keep hitting dongers, Carl. Let the dinosaurs flow like so much river water into the ocean of your heart.



Goddammit Carl. You have no respect for my laziness. Nor, apparently, scientists.

Looks like I'll have to rush that report on The Land Before Time.

M's win, M's win, hooray hooray. I read on ESPN that Ichiro said it's the most excited he's been in a long time. So, what, I guess playing for your country in a half-assed series of exhibitions is not all that big a deal, huh?

My point all along.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006


Photo Opportunities

Carl Everett arguing with a Scientist.

Carl Everett trading stock tips with a vending machine.

Monday, April 17, 2006


Easter Eggs and Dinosaur Hunts

I'm a pretty big fan of the British television show Red Dwarf, and I own all seven of the released seasons on DVD. Like most DVDs, they all contain these little things called "Easter Eggs," little hidden "treats" buried deep in the menu screens, or requiring a specifically-timed push of the "select" button. Anyway, none of them are all that interesting, really, and aren't much good for anything besides being nerdy and wasting time.

After watching yesterday's game before heading out for the family Easter gathering, I noticed that there are similar inconsequential hidden delights in every seemingly mundane regular season baseball game. A lot of them have to do with deconstructing the comments made by the announcers, adding context where they fail to (or where it makes what they say seem even more ridiculous). Again, just a way of being nerdy and wasting time, but then again baseball is the kind of spectator sport that facilitates--and almost even requires--such snarky behavior. And, as has been well-documented and complained about, the current crop of announcers for the Mariners provides plenty of material.

More interesting to me were little visual eggs I hadn't noticed, out of sheer ignorance on my part. First, they've added a little "LOB" column to the traditional commercial-break line score. A very small thing, again largely inconsequential, but it does come in handy when trying to convince optimists and other assorted nincompoops about the futility of our offense. Not that an offense hitting against the likes of Josh Beckett could be expected to do much anyway. Still, when it comes time to play K.C. and we're holding a slim 3-2 lead entering the eighth, I look forward to jabbing a finger at the LOB number and saying "I told you so." Thank you, FSN.

Second, the sheer joy, perhaps ironic, that I get from watching Adrian Beltre hit. It is very rare in this day and age to see someone waste their obvious talent in so publicly humiliating a fashion. It is somewhat akin to watching Michelangelo fill in a coloring book and consistently color outside the lines. It is something to be appreciated, in my book. This is a failure more immense than Jeff Cirillo, more comical than Rich Aurilia, albeit slightly less bare-handed than Kevin Mitchell. Enjoy it while it lasts; he got two hits today, that son of a bitch. He keeps this up and he'll have to relinquish his post as the world's highest-paid defensive specialist.

And now, an abrupt segue to my next topic: Dinosaurs. When will it become cliché and old hat to make fun of Carl Everett's disbelief in dinosaurs? It probably already is, actually. I'm sure he and everyone else have heard it all before, just as every tall person's been asked what the weather's like up there and fellow SoB Eric has been asked how his courses at Clown College are going (he has a big nose). But the far more important question is: When will making fun of Carl Everett's disbelief in dinosaurs cease to be fun? The answer to that, I believe, is never.

With that in mind, I've decided to try and educate our dear Designated Hitter with an informative series of posts about the giant lizards. I figure it will work best on an incentive basis, namely: for every homerun he hits, I will address a specific dinosaur or aspect of dinosaur history, instead of doing something useless like donating to a charity or whatever. It may not help him any, especially considering he can't read,* but I know I'll enjoy it and hopefully everyone else will too. Besides, if he mashes 40 jacks for us this year I'd be more than happy to scramble for resources about dinosaurs.

Since he's already hit two this year, and I'm just now deciding to do this thing, I'll have some catching up to do. Expect a couple of posts over the next few Patrick Business Days, or in real-time, three to four weeks.

*Attn: Carl Everett -- Please direct all libel suits to my solicitor. My accusations of your illiteracy are my own, and do not reflect the views of the other SoBs, who barely even acknowledge your existence.

Thursday, April 13, 2006


For Starters

My off-season Tommy John surgery went well. Thank you all for your get well-cards, and special thanks to those who sent me 1989 Topps cards of the actual Tommy John, the one where he looks like he's about a billion years old. You frightened the pain right out of my elbow.

Now that my limbs are fully functional once again, I can get back to my regular habit of gesticulating wildly to no one in particular as I make ridiculous demands to people who don't know I exist.

So to Bill Bavasi I say:

Acquire Hee Seop Choi already! It is clear that this team, with Richie Sexson at first and Roberto Petagine sitting on the bench, has no need for giant Korean sluggers who play first and maybe DH. This should not dissuade you. The novelty of owning a giant Korean slugger is worth more than a precious roster spot or the major-league minimum you'd likely have to pay him. Sure, Jim Tracy preferred playing Olmedo Saenz to good old Choi, but just ask around baseball about Jim Tracy. Specifically, ask Milton Bradley about Jim Tracy. Or just check out his wardrobe. Point is, well, fuck Jim Tracy. Jim Tracy wouldn't know talent if it wore a shirt defiling his name around his team's clubhouse. You're better off listening to me than Jim Tracy, so listen up:

Get me Hee Seop Choi! Shin Soo-Choo is not going to be getting any major playing time soon (thank you, Joe Borchard). If we're going to have a Korean doing little more than providing homemade kim-chee for the rest of the club, it might as well be a giant one who can slug every once in a while, and who incidentally happens to rank pretty high on my list of cult heroes. The Mariners brass likes to talk about its commitment to the fans--well, Mr. Bavasi, how about committing yourselves to the heretofore untapped market of locally-based half-Korean college graduates who seriously overestimate the actual talent level of Korean ballplayers? It might sound like a limited market, sure, but you forget the periphery markets we pull in. Just two weeks ago I met a guy in a bar who owned three Camaros. So not only do you get half-Koreans, but you get Camaro junkies. And guys who own three Camaros, given my experience with them, purchase insane amounts of alcohol regardless of price. In short: Your Dream Fan.

So to sum up: Acquire Hee Seop Choi. Rewards include increased ticket revenue and alcohol sales, decreased amount of angry rants from half-Korean dudes, and access to at least three Camaros. It's been two weeks, so he may very well have picked up another one.

To Dave Henderson I say:

Please regale us with stories of your playing days! Specifically the ones involving rampant cocaine use and/or Dave Stewart throwing automobiles at people. Do you think Dave Stewart ever threw a Camaro at someone? What if he threw three? That would be a pretty sweet story.

To Willie Bloomquist I say:

Look, I know a lot of people give you shit. But you have to understand it's only in direct proportion to the amount of playing time you receive. If you'd just bugger off back down to AAA we'd leave you alone (in theory). Unfortunately, you tend to stick around the major league level and offer to drop bunts for Mike Hargrove. That's cool--it's the kind of go-get-'em attitude that got you up here in the first place, and helped you survive the wilds of Kitsap County--but enough is enough. I don't want to threaten you, but let me tell you something: Being half-Korean (have I mentioned that yet?), I have a little say in what goes on in the world of Asian baseball. Why this is I cannot say, but suffice to say that a wave of my hand can cause some pretty tumultuous things to happen over there. How do you think Warren Cromartie had such a good time in Japan? I mean, seriously, Warren Cromartie? Strings were pulled, my friend, strings were pulled. Likewise, I can arrange for Roberto Petagine to get involved in a little clubhouse mishap with you, the sort of clubhouse mishap that results in your body being crushed into a diamond by Roberto Petagine. He's a strong feller, and he owes me a few favors. I know, it sounds crazy. But it will happen, or I don't know a guy who owns three camaros (I do).

Whew. That felt good. Thank you all for indulging me. The elbow feels great, and should remain so, as long as I can keep it away from Dusty Baker. It's highly unlikely anything I wish for will actually come true, but Felix did get knocked around today and the Mariners still won, so I guess stranger things have happened.

Bonus Stupid Question:

If Felix is the King, then who is his Queen? More importantly, who is the Court Jester? My vote is for Carl Everett. That guy cracks me up just by existing.


Thursday Poetry

Certainly, I'll be looking for a better title for this column, debuting today, in which I will post a baseball-themed poem every Thursday afternoon. In theory, I will also write a baseball-themed poem to be posted each Thursday. We'll see just how long that lasts. In any case, I wrote this first one about a month ago after going through a box of Donruss baseball cards Danny sent me as a wedding present.


I will never forgive Jose Canseco
For failing to appear
In any of the packs of Donruss, Fleer
And Topps that I un-waxed
In ’88, the year
I learned to throw

A wiffle-curve that would break like a dropped brick,
Collapse at my brother’s feet,
And skitter clear to the empty street
Before he swung; the summer
I fell in love with that cheat,
That lying sack

Of green, gold and white-wearing shit I’d cheer
Each night on the radio.
Holy Benito Santiago!
The bombs Canseco hit!
A one man Murderer’s Row!
Of course, we’d hear

Later that his bat was juiced, his off-field beat
More for the tabloid stacks
Than Bazooka Joe, and the hard smacks
He dealt domestic, too.
Can’t a public man distract
His own defeat

Long enough to play a child’s game? O!
Jose Canseco, there’s
No road back. Nobody cares
Any longer that you cracked
In the face of honor,
Or even knows.

Did I mention that this is the inaugural column? Woo-hoo!

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