November 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

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Wow, I can’t believe it’s time for Thanksgiving already! The year flew by very fast, and I have so much to be thankful for.

  • I am very thankful for MLBlogs and all the wonderful baseball fans here. I have continually been blessed by the support and love of all the people here. It’s been so much fun to be able to share my love of the Padres with you all, and I’m sure I would go crazy without this theraputic activity! I really enjoy being able to blog about my boys.
  • Adding onto that, I am very thankful for all my incredible readers and supporters here. I say it over and over again, but it is so true: this blog would have no purpose without you guys. It is still so cool for me to see the comments on my blog and to see the number on the hit counter going up. It makes this so worth it to know that there are people out there who come to this blog on their own will. Thank you so much for your faithful reading and support! You guys are amazing!
  • I am very thankful that I got to meet some amazing bloggers this year: Jen, Hyun Young, and Kylie. It was really cool to meet Jen and Hyun Young at the Padres’ Fan Day in April, and so much fun to reunite with them and meet Kylie at a game on July 18th. Hyun Young and I had a lot of fun cheering for our boys from some excellent seats, especially when the Padres beat the Rockies, who Jen and Kylie were cheering for. These people are amazing, and if you get the chance to meet them, go for it. Thanks guys! 
  • I am very thankful that my boys gave me a decent season this year. They started out great, went downhill, but they showed us what real Padres baseball is in the second half of the season. It was so much fun to see how all the young guys came together and really played well. It makes me so excited for next year and all the great baseball it’s going to bring. Thank you so much, members of the Padres, for giving me something exciting to write about and support. I can’t wait until we get out World Series!
  • I am very, very thankful to have been able to go to five games this year. Each time I get to go out to Petco Park to watch my boys is like Christmas morning to me. I don’t get to watch the boys on TV, so it’s so amazing for me to be able to actually watch them, see them. I did not expect to be able to go to five games, but each was very, very fun. I got to go to the second game of the season and see Heath Bell’s first save of the season. I got to see Jake Peavy throw a complete game. I got to see the Padres get a great win over the Rockies. I got to see a walk-off walk in the 10th inning. I got to see the Padres get a huge spoiler win over the Dodgers in the last week of the season. I had so much fun with my boys this year. I miss them very, very much!
  • I am very thankful for Jake Peavy. What a guy. After surviving all the trade talks in the offseason, Jake was still with us, ready to pitch on Opening Day. I was able to get his autograph at the Padres Fan Day, the day before Opening Day. I was in the overflow line and it did not look like I would get an autograph, but I did. Jake is an incredible guy. It was so hard on me when he was traded, but I think it really will be for the best. We got some amazing pitchers in return for him, and I really hope they do very, very well for us. We miss you like crazy, Jake.
  • I am thankful for a new owner and a new general manager. It’s so good to get some change around here, and the fans are getting excited about Padres baseball again. It’s great to see.
  • Of course, I am very thankful for my friends and family. I have got a great group of people in my life who support me, encourage me, and are a huge blessing to me. I am very blessed with all these wonderful people. Thank you. Thank you so much.
  • And, last but not least, I am so thankful for life. Without God, I would not be here right now. None of us would. Not only do I have life here on earth, I have enternal life thanks to the sacrifice of Jesus Christ on my behalf. He took my sins on Himself and now when God looks at me, He sees the perfect merit of Jesus. I couldn’t save myself. There is nothing I can do to make me right with God. I’m too sinful. It’s only because of Jesus that I can stand before God. Sure, I still go through trials, but God is with me, and ultimately, they only make me stronger. I am so thankful that God chose to save me. It’s incredible. It’s amazing grace. Thank you God!

I just wanted to say that the amazing picture at the top of this entry was taken by my amazing sister, who actually took over this blog for a week while I was gone earlier in the summer. Isn’t in beautiful? I am soooooo thankful for my sister. She is amazing!!

I hope you all have an wonderful Thanksgiving, with lots of great food and maybe some football. Be sure to thank those who are close to you for all they do. Thanks to you guys for everything.

GO PADRES!!

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Random Padres Thoughts…

It’s been a looooong time since I’ve last blogged, I know. But I have a really good excuse. Well, excuses.

First of all, I just wrote a 50,000 word novel for this thing called NaNoWriMo, or National Novel Writing Month. The goal is to write a 50,000 word novel in the month of November, and I have been very busy pounding that out. But I got it done :)

Secondly, things are super super slow in Padres World. Of course, there’s the trade rumors about Adrian, but I honestly don’t think that the Padres are going to trade him this offseason. I mean, what’s the point? He’s playing for us at a riduculously low price, and is Kyle Blanks really ready to play first full time in the majors? I say we keep Adrian, have Kyle get a little more seasoning in the minors, and trade Adrian next year, if at all.

There were a lot of comments against my last entry about Kouz’s not getting the Gold Glove, and that’s cool with me. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, and my opinion is that Kouz should have recieved the Gold Glove.

In some exciting news, the season ticket sales are up a lot more than last year, and I think that’s a really good thing for the organization. It’s good to see that people are getting excited about all the changes in Padres baseball and they’re willing to make a commitment to the rebuilding of this team.

Only a few months until Spring Training…

GO PADRES!! 

WHAT A JOKE!!!

So the Gold Glove winners for the National League were announced today and I am not happy. NOT HAPPY.

If you’ve been reading this blog for any amount of time, you know that my favorite player on the Padres and in all of baseball is Kevin Kouzmanoff, our incredible third baseman. He had three errors total this year and a .990 fielding percentage. That’s freaking amazing. So amazing, in fact, that the Hall of Fame sent a guy all the way out to San Diego to get one of Kouz’s gloves. To put in the Hall of Fame. Because Kouz set a single-season record for National League third baseman. And because he’s amazing.

You would think, that a guy who’s been in the majors for three years, who had an incredible season like this, who broke a record for goodness sakes, and who the Hall of Fame found themselves worthy enough to want something that he used, should get a Gold Glove.

The guy who won the Gold Glove at third base was the National’s Ryan Zimmerman. Basically, I don’t care. I don’t care if he was ranked the best third baseman in baseball. The guy had 17 errors!

Oh but of course, there is the little matter about his RF and UZR. According to a mlb.com article, Zimmerman’s RF is 2.9 and Kouz’s is 2.2. Zimmerman’s UZR is 18.1 and Kouz’s is 7.5. I HAVE NEVER EVER HEARS OF THESE TERMS!!!!! I have no idea what they are and why they should matter. Oh, Zimmerman’s UZR is higher than Kouzmanoff’s. Let’s give the glove to him. 

You have to be kidding me. I doubt that the voters even look at stuff like that!  

Naturally, I’m extremely biased. I wanted my boy to win so badly. But I think Kouz was seriously snubbed here.

These National League managers are morons!!! I mean, they were the ones watching Kouz. They saw his defense. The Padres even sent them DVDs with some of Kouz’s highlights. Maybe they just wanted to give the poor Nationals fans something to be happy about. Right.

I mean, come on, the Padres have been pretty depressed lately too!

This is so freaking frustrating. Just reading some of the comments from Padres fans on the website and on Facebook are showing that Kouz got wronged. As one commentator said, “WHAT A JOKE!!!” And as other said, “Just stupid!”

Kouz deserved that glove. He’s worked so hard in the last few years, and he has been seriously rejected.

This is very sad for me, too, since I’ve been pulling for him to get a Gold Glove since like late August. I set up a Facebook page, made my sign, changed my profile pic, and all that’s gone to waste. I wasn’t sure if he could honestly win it, but I hoped for it like crazy and I guess I really did expect that he would get it. It was so disappointing to see that he didn’t. It makes my heart hurt.

I just really hope that he wasn’t hoping for it too much. That would have been tough.

I STILL LOVE YOU KOUZ!!!!

kouz dugout.jpgWell, on the positive side, Adrian Gonzalez got his second consecutive Gold Glove. But, sad to say, it’s hard to be happy for Adrian when we have that flub over Kouz. But it is a great accomplishment for Adrian. I know he’s probably not that happy since his teammate didn’t get to be happy though. Oh well. Congrats Adrian! 

Poor Kouz. Somebody needs to talk to the National League managers about this – MAJOR TIME.

GO PADRES!!! GO KOOOOOOOOOOOOOZ!!!!     

Class and Finesse

In my last post, I examined the difference between baseball in football, saying that baseball had “class” and “finesse” compared to football. One of the commenters, C Dobbie, challenged those terms in relation to baseball, and I really appreciated that. Here is what he said:

“I am a British MLB fan. Baseball is one of the very few games where one player plays against the whole opposition team, which is where its greatness derives,
I place it second only to my beloved cricket – a much more sophisticated game in my opinion.
However I find it difficult to accept the adjective “classy” or the noun “finesse”.
How classy are the following
1. Arguing with umpires
2. Mass brawling among players
3. Runners deliberately trying to injure opponents
4. Pitchers deliberately trying to hit batters
5. Cheating in various forms
Not my definition of Finesse.
I still think its a great game but I-d like to see some of the above addressed.
C Dobbie”

Thanks so much for looking at my entry with critique and challenging me on this! 

OK, let’s start by looking at baseball and football. Looking at both sports, which would you say is more calm? I think most of you would say baseball. You might even say that baseball is boring because of the lack of action. I agree that the game can be slow, but that’s what adds so much to it. You have time to absorb what is happening. You can relax, eat, talk with other fans, and be fairly relaxed at a baseball game. Sure, you might be the kind of fan that’s constantly jumping around and screaming and never relaxing. That’s me. But generally, I think baseball fans are a relaxed sort of people. At least, compared to football fans.

Football is a big, brutal sport. I love it, and I think it has a class and finesse of its own. When you think about a football game, you think of constant action and brutality. The action is constantly moving, and moving fast. The fans get very into the game, screaming like crazy for their team. To me, football seems like so much more of an intense environment. I’ve never been to a major football game, only high school games. Even at that level, things are pretty crazy.

The games of football and baseball are obviously different. I’m not going to get into all the differences, because, obviously, it would be ridiculously difficult. These games are vastly different. The fans are similar in their passion for their games. Some people love only baseball. Some people love only football. Some love both, equally or not.

Now into the argument.

How classy are the following? Well, let’s see.

1. Arguing with umpires.

This is definitely a very debatable subject. Should players and managers be not allowed to question an umpire’s judgment? Umpires are an essential part of the game, there’s no doubt about that. And that position demands respect from the players and staff on the teams. All teams should respect what the umpire decides in the best call. But we’ve had a lot of bad umpiring in the last couple years. I’m not sure why. Though teams should respect umpires, I believe that they have to right to let their opinion be known if they think a call was not called rightly.

For those of us who are able to watch games on TV, it can sometimes be obvious whether the umpire made the call right or not. They will show the play over and over from different points of view and different speeds and you, the fan, can see how it actually went down. Maybe the manager in the dugout was able to see the play from a better angle than the umpire was.

I believe that a manager or player should not yell or act angry with the umpire, but just go out there and ask calmly why he thought the play should have been called that way. There are times when a manager goes out there yelling and screaming to fire up his team. But I think that managers should respect the umpire’s call and just ask calmly for an explanation.

Say that you’re team is in a huge playoff game, and an umpire calls a runner safe at home when it was painfully obvious that the runner did not even touch the plate. Of course the manager is going to be ticked, and it the heat of the moment, will rush out there and argue with them. Can you imagine how boring baseball would be if everyone just accepted what the umpires said without a word? When a play goes against you, you want to see the manager go out there and defend his players and his team. It may not be classy, but it’s part of the game.

2. Mass brawling among players

It doesn’t really happen that often, does it? Again, I think this is a spur of the moment type thing. “Mass brawling” is basically what football is, just with a little more discipline. Brawling on the baseball field is usually a result of an action like intentionally hitting a batter, or doing something that’s considered unsportsmanlike. This is a matter of defending a teammate. If a guy gets hit multiple times for no apparent reason, and he gets mad about it and goes after the pitcher, both teams are going to come out so they can defend their players. Most of the time, nobody gets hurt, and everybody just kind of mingles on the field. Is it classy? No. But it’s rare. It’s not something that you see everyday.

3. Runners deliberately trying to injure opponents

I wouldn’t say that runners deliberately try to injure opponents on a regular basis. Usually, the only reason to “deliberately injure” an opposing player is to prevent a double play by sliding hard into second base. That’s understandable. If he’s the lead runner, he does not want to get picked off or end the inning. He’s just trying to stumble up the second baseman or shortstop so that he can keep the inning alive for his team. I know that there are exceptions, of guys literally trying to hurt the player, but those guys get suspended.

4. Pitchers deliberately trying to hit batters

Not often done without provacation. Unless the pitcher or manager has a ridiculous grudge against another player, they are not going to go around hitting guys. I think most baseball fans can tell when a player getting hit was accidental or intentionally. You’re going to see a lot of intentional hitting in big rivalry games like Yankees-Red Sox. If one of the teams hits a player, intentionally or accidentally, the other team is going to seek retaliation, which leads to brawling and warnings and suspentions. It’s not a good thing. Intentionally hitting a player is not classy. It’s a bad mark on the game but it’s a part of the game nonetheless.

I don’t think it happens as often as it used to, back in the days of the spitball and things. The game has matured over the years.

5. Cheating in various forms

This is probably the saddest part of the game today. All the taking of illiegal substances had been terrible for baseball. Classy? No way! The players who are doing this kind of stuff are cheating the game. Unfortunately, the majority of the players in MLB are taking substances of some sort. Players are doing anything to get an edge over the competion, whether it be for selfish reasons or just wanting to help their team. Most of the time, it’s selfish. These players want to be bigger, better. They want bigger paychecks. They want have an advantage over other players in the minors. There are a lot of guys out there whose dream is to play baseball. If the only way to get there is to get better, they’ll do anything to make that happen.

It’s extremely sad. The game is almost turning fake. The competition is very, very tough. You have to perform or you’re out.

There are other forms of “cheating” that are a very established part of the game. Trying to steal signs, for instance. You rarely think about it when you’re at a game, but there’s some major stuff going on down on the field. The coaches, manager, catcher and pitcher, and all sorts of players are exchanging signs and trying to figure out the other team’s signs.  
 

It’s not classy. It’s cheating.

I’m not saying that this game is perfect. I’m not saying that it doesn’t need to be improved. As another commenter, mccombs2425, said, “all those arguments aren’t the best for baseball but its been apart of the game since forever. its part of the game. and the way other players don’t argue and don’t hit batters deliberately is what makes it classy. but like any other sport their are a few bad apples. i.e. milton bradley”

The game, at its bare bones, is amazing. If we didn’t have to cheating players, the unfortunate brawls, and any other thing that makes the game tainted, baseball would have class and finesse. When you’re out at the ballpark having a good time, you need to forget all the bad stuff and just enjoy the game as it is. There’s nothing we can do to change it.

You can’t say that the beauty of a center fielder making an improbable catch, pulling the ball back from over the fence isn’t finesse. The full-out dive of a shortstop, grabbing the ball in his out-streched glove, springing up, and getting the runner out at first. The confident stroke of a star hitter, sending the ball way out into the stands. What about an opposing player, whose hit found it’s way into the pitcher’s face, who puts his arm around the pitcher’s teammate and prays for him, forgetting their uniforms and prejudices? That’s classy. Or a runner who slides into second base and gently knocks the shortstop off his feet so he can prevent a double play and then makes sure the guy is OK. He understands. It’s part of the game.

Baseball had class. Baseball has finesse. It also has problems, but this game is amazing.

Thank you, again, for your challenge on this subject.

Missing Baseball

I really, really miss Padres baseball.

I’ve been watching a lot of football since the season ended, and I’m really falling in love with the sport. I know, I know, I used to be a huge hater of football, but it’s been growing on me. It’s a fascinating sport. It’s new, it’s exciting, and it’s constantly moving. The atmosphere is so different from a baseball game to a football game though. Football is all about constant action, constant noise, but baseball is so laid-back, no stress. I miss it a lot.

I really miss listening to Padres baseball. I miss hearing about the guys like Kevin Kouzmanoff and Everth Cabrera and all our amazing new pitchers and everybody. I’ve been keeping busy ever since the season ended, but it’s finally hitting me how much I miss it.

Though football is really growing on me, baseball will always be my #1 sport. Baseball is just so much better in so many ways. Football is all about hitting guys and throwing a ball. Brutal chaos, basically. But baseball, ahhh. Football is like a wave of heat in the desert, but baseball is like a breath of cool air in the night. You get the point. Baseball has so much class, so much finesse. It’s an incredible sport. I miss it like crazy.

GO PADRES!!  

Not Too Interested

I feel really terrible about my neglect of the blog. It’s been like a week since I last blogged. But seriously, there is nothing to write about. Or maybe there is, but I’m just not motivated. Like, at all. It’s not good, I know.

But seriously, the World Series is really not interesting me at all. Sure, I want the Phillies to win (GO PHILLIES!), but I just don’t have any stakes with either team. You know, if it was Red Sox-Phillies, I would be a little more excited, but still. It’s not my team.

And I really don’t like the Yankees. I don’t like having the Yankees in the World Series. And I don’t like all these calls that are going for the Yankees. It’s not cool. The Yankees already have a bazzilion World Series, and they really don’t need another one. It’s like, oh, the Yankees are in the World Series…again. Whatever. You know, some teams haven’t even been there. There are a few teams that are dying to win a championship like that, but they can’t because the Yankees are stealing all the money. So frustrating. There are days that I hate being a fan of such a low-budget team who has to watch all the big mean money machines win all the time. It’s really really sad.

Well, lookie there, I found something to write about! Wow!

So Hyun Young put this picture in her latest entry and I just had to steal it. SO CUTE!!!

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They’d better not trade him.

Well, hopefully things will start picking up soon. Ahhhhh we need some new news!!!

GO PADRES!!!

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