if good moods were the equivalent of getting on base
wait a second,
four out of ten?
baseball is really hard.
I’m not much of a movie buff, but i love movies. I love being swallowed into one, really escaping. Then when the credits roll and the post movie music quiets down, I have to face the other music…the crud in the corner of the kitchen, cobwebs on the ceiling above the bathtub, that annoying co-worker, work in general, anxiety, depression, then a smidgen of joy, bills, writers block, the thought of dying, of having to be there when we die, the thought of family members dying, of having to endure that. This brings me to my point or to that movie – Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai.
At some point during the film, it says something to the effect of imagine your being eaten by dragons, falling off a cliff plunging to your death, being hit head-on by a speeding train….imagine any other assortment of tragedies, …this is apparently the way of the Samurai. You go beyond being ready to die; and actually die, sort of, I guess, I don’t know or maybe it’s only a movie? But I like it.
His name wasn’t pencilled into the line up card. He wasn’t even listed on the roster. One of his cleats was missing. There was spray paint on his locker spelling out “stupid faggot.” There was a notice to see the manager. He was being sent down to A ball, not AAA or AA, but A ball, to work out some issues with his swing. Things would be reassessed in September when rosters expanded.
Vegetables were where his jock straps usually were. His suitcase smelled like a compost bag. He took the bumpy bus ride to Hammy Point, but the manager there knew nothing of his reassignment. He had no space for him on the roster and kindly asked him to leave the premises. Hammy Point had outlying farms, mostly apples and pumpkins, good timing for the season neared. He walked close to 15 miles, not that anyone was counting. He had time on his hand and as he walked, he shed his previous dreams and aspirations and stared out at all the nothingness.
Spitball magazine is celebrating the 100th anniversary of the black sox scandal. They’re looking for submissions. According to their home page, they’re accepting poems, short stories, non fiction, just about anything so i thought i’d pass it on in case anyone was interested. Click the link and it will take you there or maybe I didn’t need to explain that; maybe it was evident? SPITBALL
it was on special and since the trading deadline loomed, Bernie Brewer came down from his beer barrel chalet, took a break from beer and booze, and looked to windex for some ask the eight ball explanations of who the Brewers might add. He took a few spritzes and figured a starting pitcher would be be in the cards.
But instead came reliever Joakim Soria to join an already stellar relief corps. I guess the Brewers figure if the starters keep getting hit around, at least there’s a bullpen to put up zeroes.
And then came third baseman Mike Moustakas? Yes, the Moose and his .318 OB%, but oh yeh, he’s hit 20 home runs and 3B Travis Shaw had been taking ground balls at second. Good for him. Doing it for the team.
But to think that we once waived second baseman Scooter Gennett, got nothing for him, and now he leads the national league in hitting or he was before the all-star break and that four home run game he had last season was no fluke. He even had some power when he played for the Brewers.
Looking backwards is a nasty habit. Makes a Brewers fan want to drink windex and not for clarity’s sake either. At least, we still lead the wild card standings, but that thing scares me, one game, one loss and your entire season is over. Maybe, they’re not telling us something; maybe starting pitcher Jimmy Nelson is scheduled to come back any day now?
I been watching the Vietnam Special, Ken Burns, and so i got to thinking about players who served in the war, in the vietnam war so i looked it up and there was an alphabetical list. There were a lot of names. I was kind of surprised. Some I recognized; some I didn’t, but one really stuck out – Garry Maddox because i remember him playing on the phillies with bake mcbride……bake mcbride…just a moment of silence for his name, maybe that’s not his real name, but that’s what we always called him bake and shake mcbride and his moves how to describe them, but back to Garry maddox so i knew his name so i clicked it and baseball reference took me to the gary maddox page and “pre-eminent defensive center fielder of his day” and it was only a paragraph, but it seemed to be taking too long. I knew there were more paragraphs too, but i was in a hurry to know and then bam in the 2nd paragrapah.
“Maddox served in the Army, including a tour in Vietnam during the 1969 and 1970 seasons. Exposure to chemicals in Vietnam left his skin highly sensitive, and he has always since worn a full beard to protect his face. The Philadelphia Phillies had to waive their clean-shaven rule to accommodate Maddox.”
That’s pretty awesome of the phillies to do that and it makes me hope that someday someone will sit down with all baseball players who served in vietnam and have a little recorder and what not. Gary Maddox is only 68.
I didn’t mind when the Brewers didn’t sign an overpriced free agent pitcher this off season and I don’t mind that we haven’t traded for another starter yet because we’re in 1st place and still await the arrival of our best pitcher – Jimmy Nelson. He hurt his shoulder last year diving back into first base….yes, as a base runner, damn freaky pitcher injuries.
(update from original post)
This off season, we didn’t sign an overpriced free agent pitcher like Jake Arrieta, but we did sign Jhoulys Chacyn who provoked the second most swing and misses on his slider last season. He leads the league this year with 19 starts, El Durable! He won again last night, his 7th of the season, a 7-2 triumph in the first of four against the NL East leading Braves.
Orlando Arcia was going to be the Brewers shortstop of the future, a wizard on defense with any offense as an added bonus. And the scouting report didn’t lie. He has been fun to watch, a highlight reel, an all-star caliber SS with a great first step, tremendous range and a bullet for an arm.
He also hit .277 with 15 home runs last year, and maybe most importantly he learned how to go with the pitch, hit the ball to the opposite field, advance runners, and what not. He quickly became a leader in the dugout as well, organizing home run celebrations – a tunnel of high fives. Things were looking bright.
He musta been thinking…
shit, i can do this…..i can hit and field in the big leagues. i’m here. i made it. this is easy at times. I’m hitting close to .300……yeh, I’m the shit. I always was and always will be.
Then this year, his bat went dead. He slipped below the Mendoza line, way below it. A few days ago, the Brewers sent him down to AAA Colorado Springs for a second time this season.
Orlando is not very big but he uses a big bat. I swear it looks like he’s holding a broomstick. He has a big loopy swing. I’m not going to analyze what’s gone wrong. I’m no hitting instructor. I can barely tie my shoes. But I wonder what it feels like being sent down after having so much success.