BL: MLB Pitchers & Catchers Report… YIPPEE!

    Spring Training
    BobLee
    February17/ 2018

    MLB Pitchers and Catchers have reported … YIPPEE!

    If you just started following this site in recent weeks you might think I never follow sports of any kind. I can see where you might get that idea what with my personal de-fanitization from The NFL, The NBA, and ACC BB.

    For anyone keeping score… add The Winter Olympics to that list. I tried, I really did; but every time I tuned in there was this Pee Wee Herman-lookalike screaming how much he hates VP Mike Pence. Once was enough of that. … A gay male figure skater… what’ll they think of next? I mean REALLY? Who knew…

    NOTE:  I appreciate that some of you dislike “baseball” for various reasons every bit as valid as my reasons for no longer caring about NFL, NBA, ACC BB.  I do hope there is something that you DO enjoy for reasons as pure as why I enjoy “baseball” … which has zero to do with “hating XYZ team or fan base”.

    Kid is fascinated by Curling. There are actually “curling clubs” where she lives in Madison WI. In anTwinsXother twenty years when “the twins” no longer demand her full attention, she intends to try curling. “The twins” are doing wonderfully well by the way. Both darling little girls appear to be far above average, of course, in every measurable category especially “odd sense of humor”. Everyone agrees they got that from me.

    This past week MLB pitchers & catchers reported and my sports viewing is set for the next eight months. But even that is not without its quandaries.

    Long time viewers know “my team” is The St. Louis Cardinals. Primarily because I really like their uniforms but also “just because”.

    I have reupped for the third season of MLB.tv. That well-spent $120 allows me to watch every MLB game except ones involving the Nationals and Orioles. My zip code is considered “in their market”.

    But I can only watch one game at a time and I have developed a fan appreciation for several other teams in addition to The Cardinals… primarily The AstrosThe Rockies and The Angels… plus I’m curious how The Yankees will do with Stanton and Judge.

    There are no teams that I “don’t like” although the only White Sox I can name is Carlos Rodon.

    An MLB Betcha Didn’t Know…

    MLB has two Big Issues right now – (1) Pace of Play and (2) Free Agent/Collusion. I don’t consider either of those to be valid issues but I don’t get a vote. In addition, for several years, there has been “concern” from certain factions as to the decreasing % of “African Americans” in MLB. Last year there were only 7% “African Americans” in MLB… and over 35% Hispanic / Latins. The remaining 58% are “White guys” with one Australian and one Lithuanian.

    At issue is how to determine who are legitimate “African Americans”. Skin color is NOT a factor. “Nationality” outranks skin color.  A number of MLB “Cubans” are black-skinned.

    Here’s the Betcha Didn’t Know… BOTH Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton consider themselves to be “African American”.

    Judge was adopted at birth by white parents. His birth parents were “mixed”. Does claiming to be “Af-Am” count? … Stanton has a black father and Hispanic mother. He wanted to play for Puerto Rico in the WBC but his PR heritage was denied. Derek Jeter, of course, has a white mother and black father. I have never heard what he considers himself.

    With mixed marriages involving all combinations of AfAm… Caucasian… Hispanic… Asian becoming more common daily… how can racial/ethnic purity be determined? … more importantly, WHY is it important?

    As for “Pace of Play”… all the suggestions being discussed – collectively – will not reduce “game time” by more than 10-15 minutes. From 3:00 to 2:45 minutes maximum. Would that fifteen minutes be a factor in your decision to go to a game?

    To reduce average game time even to 2:30 would require radically changing the basic framework of the Game of Baseball … # innings, # outs, # balls/strikes.

    ANOTHER Betcha Didn’t Know

    MLB has become very concerned about fans being hit by foul balls. So all MLB parks have now extended the protective netting further down both foul lines. How come?

    Foul balls hit into the stands have been a factor since Day One of Baseball. Why are they now a concern?

    If you say “because we are now a litigious society looking to sue everybody for anything”; that is only a very minor “why”.

    THE #1 REASON for extending the netting to prevent injuries from foul balls is ……. “cellphone distraction”.

    Fans of all ages are continually distracted by “their devices” from action on the field to the degree that they are more likely to not take evasive action to a foul ball. … NOW you know.

    As for the issue of Free Agent / Collusion, my explanation debunking that is too involved for those of you who don’t follow baseball. Email me if you care to know.

    FWIW… my “favoritest players” heading into MLB 2018 are…

    #! – Joey Votto – Cincinnati 
    Jose Altuve – Houston
    Mike Trout – Anaheim
    George Springer – Houston
    Buster Posey – San Francisco
    Nolan Arenado – Colorado
    Anthony Rizzo – Chicago

    There are no MLB players I “don’t like”. My list of “next favoritest players” would include about 100 names. I just really enjoy Major League Baseball.

    MLB Network

    I also REALLY REALLY enjoy watching MLB Network. I usually have that channel on all day so when I take a break from Saving Western Civilization, I watch a few minutes of very knowledgeable former MLB players discussing the intricacies of the game. Very cool …

    As for “Saving Western Civilization” … Alas, I’m not having much success with that… as you can probably tell. Regardless of your politics, 50% of the people at the mall… at the grocery store… in the DMV line… in your neighborhood … REALLY do not like you at all.

    If you think “most people” agree with you because (1) you have common sense, and (2) you are a very nice person… NO, they don’t.

    If I were twenty years younger I think I would “go off the grid”… if I could still have indoor plumbing and my Audible books.

    ######

    If you enjoyed this… 

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    AgentPierceSaid… LINK         /    SoTheBlondeSaid…. LINK

    BobLee
    • RM Downeast Reply
      4 months ago

      Curling is somewhat interesting, however what I can not figure out is why the Russian curler failed a drug test. PED’s for curling? My 60 year old 400 lb neighbor with a bad hip is in good enough shape to compete in that sport. Doping for curling, who knew?

      • BobLee Reply
        4 months ago

        Kid and Pastor Danny are practicing Curling using a robo vacuum and a Swifter.

    • TheCowdog Reply
      4 months ago

      I’m with the “Kid.” Curling is awesome.
      But…so is a 2 out double with a runner on first. A 2 out drag bunt with a runner on 3rd is awesomer.

      • BobLee Reply
        4 months ago

        “shuffleboard on ice”… CD, I bet you have a few thoughts on “pace of play”. Comm Manfred announced his 2018 New Rules today. Do you think shaving 10 minutes off of a game time will win over millennials as MLB fans ??? I’m kind of afraid to ask Coach. He’s been feisty enough lately…

        • TheCowdog Reply
          4 months ago

          Yes, BL. The game can be easily played inside of 2:30, and I’m not talking about pitching gems. It’s all about wasted non-motion, and commercials. Pitch timing and being in the box ready, goes a long way to offset the “needed” commercial break.

          Baseball is not sedentary.

          • BobLee Reply
            4 months ago

            I believe “commercials” are only run during offense / defense field changes or pitching changes. Game action is never halted for a commercial… no strange little dude in a red shirt walks out to the foul line. I could be wrong.
            .
            My change would be enlarging the strike zone – bottom of knees to arm pits – requiring more swings resulting in more balls in play. The excitement of “taking pitchs” is overrated.

    • ENC#1 Reply
      4 months ago

      Great time of the year basketball tourney time and spring training starting. By the way Babe Ruth hit his first professional HR in Fayetteville…..NC was host to spring training before FLA. Boblee hope our Cards are better this year….my son is a Cubs fan you would think they had the most World Championships in the National League. Time to right the ship and put the Cubbies at the bottom of the division.

      • BobLee Reply
        4 months ago

        Those Cubbies are like Haley’s Comet … they show up once every 100 years ready or not. Actually I like Joe Madden and Rizzo and Bryant a lot. Can’t wait for those 162 wonderful games to begin!

        • fayettewuf Reply
          4 months ago

          Not sure about the Cubs going back to the old mathematically eliminated by the All Star break days. Theo Epstein seems like the second coming of Branch Rickey.

          • BobLee Reply
            4 months ago

            I agree. Theo has many wanna bees now but he is The Original Theo. Cubs are Fir Real. I really like Madden.

      • TarSpartan Reply
        4 months ago

        The Babe was a member of the Baltimore Orioles (then a minor league club) when he hit that homer. Spring training and minor leagues worked a bit differently back in the day. I just finished a fascinating book called “The Year Babe Ruth Hit 104 Home Runs.” He never did, of course, but the book is a thorough analysis of his professional career including barnstorming tours, exhibition games, and post-retirement games.

    • Doug Reply
      4 months ago

      Why do pitchers and catchers report before others? Tradition? Catchy phrase?

      • BobLee Reply
        4 months ago

        Pitchers need a few days to get their arms ready to pitch to the “position players” who report 5-6 days later. “Catchers” are needed to catch the pitchers. … THAT… and it is a catchy phrase.
        .
        Spring Training is not the “get in shape” period it used to be. Most MLB players have personal trainers and access to year-round workout routines, batting cages, etc. They don’t show up with beer guts and hangovers any more.

        • Doug Reply
          4 months ago

          Your MLB is safe for not appointing me Czar of the game. For starters, the number of expansion teams would be decreased considerably to concentrate talent in fewer teams. No extra innings. Wins, losses, ties counts in standings. No game would ever be played in temperatures under 50℉. Baseball season would start in May and the season and World Series would be finished by mid September. DH rule for both leagues to be voted on by players only. Instant replay abolished. Umpires required to be in, be accountable, and answer questions, in post-game press conferences. Successful suicide squeeze plays count as 2 runs.

          • BobLee Reply
            4 months ago

            Applying our Conspiracy Theory Rule… I can agree with 50% of your suggestions… but which 50%?

    • DM Carpenter Reply
      4 months ago

      Time for MAJOR LEAGUE and MR. BASEBALL to grace the TV (with an antenna) in my study.

      One line that I hope AP never hears in his field, “You have a hole in your swing.”

      • BobLee Reply
        4 months ago

        PLAY BALL!!! … AP is a master of the “suicide squeeze”.

    • RAZ Reply
      4 months ago

      Sandy Koufax still kickin….me thinks

      • BobLee Reply
        4 months ago

        Touche! I thought you didn’t follow baseball?

    • RAZ Reply
      4 months ago

      BobLee….. have not followed MLBB for the last 25 years, too busy chasing money and reading everything from Agen tPierce……so enjoy the whole season and playoffs, you deserve it…………….oh..is Duke Snider still playing ?

      • BobLee Reply
        4 months ago

        Alas, Duke passed away about ten years ago. Don’t know if ANY Brooklyn Dodgers are still fogging mirrors.
        .
        AP will be giddy to know he has such a loyal fan!

    • TarHeel69 Reply
      4 months ago

      Could not agree more with “no longer care about……”. Can’t even name all of the starters for my Heels! BTW, I think the twin on the right really does resemble you the most.

      • BobLee Reply
        4 months ago

        That would be “Scout” aka “Scarlett”. We bonded immediately. Little Ruthie is not so sure about me.
        .
        Truthfully I cannot name five current Triangle-area MBB players. But I can name the entire Cardinals’ bullpen.

    • TarSpartan Reply
      4 months ago

      Is there a greater combination of four words than “Pitchers and catchers report?” If so, I have yet to find it.

      On a slightly related note, I just finished reading “Ty Cobb: A Terrible Beauty.” It is a fantastic book that proves that almost everything you know about Ty Cobb is wrong, and that Al Stump was a pathological liar.

      • BobLee Reply
        4 months ago

        I am more and more convinced that 50% of everything I’ve “ever been told” about anything is wrong. But which 50%?
        .
        In times of trouble and woe… watching Field of Dreams always helps at least a little bit! Moonlight Graham ROCKS!

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