Tuesday, May 31, 2005

The Weekend in Review

Transactions and Ramblings

  • Remember all of those fahrvergnügen rip-off t-shirts like "farfrompuken"? Why didn't Yonto and former roommate Chris Heck ever get the idea to create "fütonboofen" shirts? Or, one more appropriate for me - "farfromboofen."

  • The other night, I started tossing a "why I hate politics" rant around in my mind, but I got over it.

  • Warning! Do not visit this site if you ever plan on getting anything accomplished at work ever! Every Day Should be Saturday recently started a series on pepidemiology - the study of "pep music." Included are links to FightMusic.com, where you can listen to most NCAA fight songs.

  • Cubs trade LaTroy Hawkins for Jerome Williams and David Aardsma. THe Giants get a good reliever who can serve as a very solid closer until they get Armando Benitez back (and when he does come back, they'll have a deep bullpen to help them challenge for a playoff spot). Williams is a good enough starter to compensate for the North Siders' injury bud. Aardsma is famous for breaking Hank Aaron's record... (wait for it)... for being listed first alphabetically on a list of all-time MLB players.

  • Royals name Buddy Bell manager. GM Allard Baird believe Bell is a good fit with the young ballclub because of his success at a young age as a player (MLB debut at 20; All-Star at 21). Bell was previously a manager for the Tigers and Rockies, and most recently was a member of a great braintrust in Cleveland. Bell served as bench coach for young manager Eric Wedge, while Mike Hargrove worked in the front office between his stints in Baltimore and Seattle.

  • Cavs name Indiana "associate head coach" Mike Brown head coach, and reportedly will make Larry Brown team president. With that news, Indiana VP of basketball David Morway pulls out of the GM race. I like the thought of Mike Brown - a young, untested guy from a successful team - as the new coach. It was Larry Brown himself who leaked the news - alleg-ed-ly - that he's taking the Cavs' job. With that, Morway declined the GM position for fear that he won't have enough say in personnel decisions. Rumors now have that Washington director of player personnel Milt Newton or former Cavs forward Danny Ferry (currently working in the San Antonio front office, I believe) are the new frontrunners for General Manager.

  • Danny Ferry story: when I was playing freshman basketball in high school, we had a kid who was starting to bald and was handed the #35 jersey. Combining those two things, he decided to accept his fate and started comparing himself to Danny Ferry, even emulating his playing style to an extent. I'd laugh, but I was the guy who, when asked to write a paper creating a new folk hero, chose John Crotty and dubbed him the "Left-Handed White Wonder."

  • Indians recall Juan Gonzalez and designate Ryan Ludwick for assignment. What the Indians needed coming into 2005, besides bullpen help, was power from the right side of the plate. Ludwick was the original plan for that power, but the Indians staff couldn't pass up taking a low-risk chance on Gonzalez. Now, they're giving up on (assuming he's claimed off waivers) a 26-year-old power hitter who's only hitting .220 this season in limited playing time for a 35-year-old with 434 career homers. Plus, Gonzalez will have to play outfield, at least against righties, with lefty Travis Hafner anchored at DH. The outcome of this move remains to be seen.

  • Congrats to the ND baseball team. Back-to-back wins in the Big East tourney against Pitt gave them another conference title, and now they're the #3 seed in the Florida regional. Winning a double elimination mini-tournament that starts with North Carolina and includes Florida and Stetson will put them in the super-regionals - one step away from the College World Series.

  • Finally, I'm going to open up the rest of the week for guest columns. Wednesday night I'll be at mini-Kanka's 8th grade graduation, and Thursday and Friday I'll be supporting the Ohio Valley Redcoats. The Redcoats, whose "alumni" include Brendan Donnelly, are without a home this season. They are splitting spring training and home games between Lorain, Marietta, OH, and Lafayette, IN, in hopes that one will become a permanent home next year. Of course, there are certain east coasters who will be rooting for Marietta and Lafayette, because if minor league baseball comes to Lorain, I may never leave.