Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Enjoy the Hot Start, People...Ello, Apr. 14

Look...we all know what you're thinking. But stop thinking it.
Sure, sure...the Padres are 6-and-2, have won five in a row, and are sitting atop the National League West. But it's all just a mirage, right?
A dream from which we will all soon awaken.
So why bother? We know this movie is eventually going to suck. The reviews were terrible across the board.
But you know what? Here we are...and the opening credits actually seem quite enjoyable. Maybe it won't turn out so bad after all?
Maybe it will. Probably it will. But -- at least for time being -- why not grab a box of popcorn, kick your feet up, and have a little fun?
Jody Gerut becomes the first player in major league history to christen a brand new ballpark with a home run. Put a little extra butter on that nugget and chomp away.
Nick Hundley smacks out four hits to wrap up a three-game sweep of the Giants and sprays hits all over Petco Park against the reigning NL Cy Young Award winner. How'd you like another shake of salt with that, Mr. Lincecum?
Chase Headley has already homered twice and brings with him great promise for the future. Grab another handful, and don't even bother with the napkins.
See? Feels a little better doesn't it?
Go ahead and save all the piss and vinegar for later on this season. For now, we've got a burgeoning box-office smash on our hands.

One thing everybody forgot when they painted the Padres into the basement prior to the start of this season: nobody -- and I mean nobody -- can find no-name pitchers in the bushes better than Padres GM Kevin Towers can.
Frankie De La Cruz? Edwin Moreno? Luke Gregerson? Edward Mujica? I thought they were all clowns from the Tijuana rodeo. Turns out nobody in the National League is laughing now.
After four one-hit innings last night at (the new) Shea, the San Diego bullpen now has a 1.19 ERA for the season. Among the entire bullpen crew -- which also includes Duaner Sanchez, Clay Meredith and Heath Bell -- only Mujica has allowed a run.
Say what you want about this trade and that trade...whine endlessly about the payroll...wonder where all the young hitters are...but never question Towers when it comes to finding arms.

It's early, but I doubt any day the rest of the season will be sadder for baseball than Monday...first we lose one the game's most iconic voices, Phillies play-by-play legend Harry Kalas...then we lose one of the game's most entertaining players, Tigers pitcher Mark "The Bird" Fidrych...
For those who don't remember, every team in the big leagues used to be identified by the famous voice behind it -- Jack Buck (Cardinals), Ernie Harwell (Tigers), Mel Allen (Yankees), Red Barber (Brooklyn), Bob Prince (Pirates), Chuck Thompson (Orioles), Curt Gowdy (Red Sox), Harry Caray (Cardinals...then Cubs)...and let's not forget Jerry Coleman (Padres).
None call games anymore, and most are gone.
Kalas will never be forgotten in Philadelphia. But his passing reflects another piece of the majesty of the National Pastime slowly being torn away from our memories forever.
As for Fidrych, perhaps you had to grow up when I did to fully appreciate his magical hold over the game during his one brilliant season, in 1976. I was a high school freshman when "The Bird" started talking to the baseball and house-cleaning around the mound.
No player since has looked like he enjoyed playing the game the way Fidrych did.
A film of Fidrych in action should be shown to every single "corporate" ball-player who steps into a clubhouse from here on out.
Kalas should narrate.

1 comment:

  1. We have a modest proposal for attacking a modest symbol of the East Coast Bias we've witnessed this week but it requires you, good fans of San Diego, to get proactive:
    We have proposed something called, "The Heath Bell Effect"...


    ...an extension of the effect is for you to open your mouths (your e-mail actually) and to bombard one of Scott and BR's regular guests: Radio personality Sid Rosenberg (...a NY Met Fan).

    At the above blog post address there is a comprehensive list of Heath Bell's media interactions this week along with a cut-and-paste-e-mail (or you can get creative)....oh yea...Sid Rosenberg's email is there too (for those who haven't heard him on Scott and BR: think Bleacher Bum Jordan, except Rosenberg is actually well respected). We should take advantage of the information age and say hello....

    Aren't you tired of the dismissal of your fanhood because you live out West? This email won't change things..but at least they'll know we're not sleeping.

    Your choice Brothers and Sisters.