Posts Tagged ‘Giants’

“Vanity keeps persons in favor with themselves who are out of favor with all others.” – William Shakespeare

Some time between last season and this season Brett Favre got old.  I’m sure he wasn’t expecting it but it happens to all of us.  Sure, he had probably his best season last year but he had to figure that wasn’t gonna last.  Why not go out on top.?  Looks like Favre came back one too many times.

Brett Favre 2009

336 of 531, 4,202 yds., 33 TD’s, 7 INT’s, 259 yds/game, 107.2 QB rating – Viking record 12-4

Brett Favre 2010

197 of 327, 2274 yds., 10 TD’s, 17 INT’s, 227 yds/game, 69.8 QB rating – Vikings record 3-7

Actually, even though he had a great season in 2009, Favre came back three too many times.  He should’ve called it quits after the 2007 season.  The Packers were so close to going to the Super Bowl.  Sure, his interception in the NFC Championship Game caused the Giants to win and eventually go on to beat the Patriots in Super Bowl XLII, but that wasn’t a bad season either.  The writing was on the wall that Green Bay wanted Aaron Rodgers to take over the team.  Favre should have stepped away a hero and beloved by all but instead he felt the need to get back at the Packers and try to prove them wrong.  Big mistake.

The Favre we all loved

Favre was and probably still is an icon in Green Bay but with every year he comes back and feels the need to stick it to the Packers, his star faded more and more.  Did we really need to see him in a Jets uniform?  I remember John Madden falling all over himself whenever he called Packer games with Favre at the helm.  This elevated Favre but probably led to the decline of Madden.  Madden went from the beloved announcer who made the game fun to the guy who didn’t hide his man crush of Favre.  Remember how we felt about John Madden in the 1990’s?  Remember what we thought about him when he walked away?

Will we remember this in 10 years?

Brett Favre was the player everyone wanted on their team.  You hated him when he played your team but you rooted for him otherwise.  Now, we can’t wait for him to go away.  His retirements and un-retirements have grown old, just like the man himself.  I guess I could stand it when he went to the Jets but when he had to be wooed out of retirement by the Vikings, that was too much.  Then after last season he let us know that he wasn’t sure if he was coming back only to come back part way through the pre-season.  Now he says he’s done after this season.  I’ll believe it when I see it.

Brad Childress was fired by the Viking today, as he should have been.  It seems Childress’ only real game plan was to have Favre on the team and to let him do whatever he wanted.  That didn’t end well.  Favre showed that by being able to miss camps and dictate whether his streak stays alive or not, that he was in charge and not Childress.  During the 31-3 pounding this weekend at the hands of Green Bay, Favre and offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell got into an argument which Favre wanted no part of.  Bevell was probably peeved that Favre pretty much locked on to his receiver right after the snap which allowed the Packers to step in front and get the INT.  Valid point by Bevell but Favre tried his hardest to get away from him and plead his case, even though he was totally in the wrong.

I’m not going to mention the whole Favre – Jenn Sterger dong photo drama.  Did it happen?  Probably.  Is it creepy?  Yes.  Does it lower our esteem for Favre?  Yes, but if he had stayed away, this would’ve never happened.  Who do you think you are, Keith Hernandez?

Please go away Brett.  Don’t wait until the end of the season, do it now.  Try to salvage some of the good memories we had of you.  Enjoy life on the ranch and don’t worry about being needed.

Too many of these moments this year

“I wanna be adored

You adore me

You adore me

You adore me

I wanna

I wanna

I wanna be adored”

I Wanna Be Adored by The Stone Roses


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Don’t get me wrong. I’m happy the Giants won. We managed to get a win with Cliff Lee starting on the mound, the scariest opponent in the postseason in my opinion. But this was one of the worst games of baseball I’ve seen in a long time. The box score really doesn’t do an adequate job of explaining this game. It’s been awhile since I’ve written, but today was a perfect game for a rant.

Box Score says 8 hits off Cliff Lee: I would love to say that the Giants got 6 earned runs and 8 hits off of Cliff Lee driving him out of the game before finishing five. Unfortunately, we didn’t see Lee in his true form and I already have his next start marked as a loss for the Giants. Lee didn’t have control of his pitches and when you’re a control and not a speed pitcher, that’s a bad spot to be in. The bright side of this: The Giants capitalized. Honestly, half the time I watch the Giants I swear they would strike out on a tee. They clearly know this (and how could you not? Everyone comments on their miserable offense) and their batting practice was evident. I’m not ready to say they took enough batting practice to be able to hit good pitching, but they did take enough batting practice to be able to hit mistakes. The recent offensive contributions from everyone on the roster not named Cody Ross have also been a welcome change. Hopefully this game was the confidence booster they needed to add continued run support.

Box Score says 8 hits off LIncecum: Lee had a bad game, but so did Lincecum. What was supposed to be an even better pitcher’s duel than last week’s Halladay vs Lincecum turned into a batting practice session.  Lincecum, known for being a strikeout pitcher, only rung up 3 today over 5.2 innings of work. He gave up a double to Cliff Lee. He issued a walk in the first with no outs and a runner on. He’s usually lights out once a runner is on. He luckily calmed down a bit after his first two innings of work and avoided the train wreck that was foreshadowed in the first two innings. He wasn’t horrible, but it wasn’t the end of season Tim Lincecum. Unfortunately for Giants starting pitchers, I just don’t think we can win this if they’re anything less than perfect. Our offense produced today, but I don’t think we can count on that continuing. This team is undeniably built off our starting pitching and although it’s unfair to put all the pressure on them, it’s the situation they’ve been in all year. I expect a better outing from Lincecum the second time around…not that improvement from a 6.35 ERA today is an outstanding goal for a two time Cy Young winning pitcher.

Box Score says 6 errors: Thank God for both teams that baserunning errors aren’t included. Just about everything the Giants do on the bases is an error. For having such bad hitting, you would think the Giants would learn to be aggressive on the bases. Instead, they actually supplement their awful hitting with awful baserunning.  I guess I can’t be completely mad at him, going 4 for 5 today, but there’s still not much of an excuse for Freddy Sanchez. In the bottom of the first, a ball got away from Bengie Molina that should have resulted in moving the runner up. Sanchez didn’t even attempt to go to third. With one out, you especially need to take third base if it’s given to you for free so you can set up the sacrifice fly. To add to his baserunning upset, he got doubled up on the next play getting too far off the bag on a fly ball. I’ll give Kinsler credit, he made an amazing play, catching a ball over his shoulder and immediately spinning and throwing to nail Sanchez at second. Only thing is he would have gotten him whether or not he made an amazing play. Sanchez can say he fell, but he fell while three quarters of the way to third. What business does he have being three quarters of the way to third? With one out and a pop fly in potentially catchable zone, he should have been waiting. If they drop it, he’s making it to third even if he’s only a quarter of the way. I won’t go into it, but I also thought Andres Torres should have scored from first on the Sanchez double. As a leadoff hitter, you should have the speed and aggression to score on that when the outfielder is chasing a ball into the corner with his back to you. This also could just be the tipping point for me on Andrew Torres after he refused to steal second in the Phillies series when a ball got away from Carlos Ruiz (similar to Sanchez not stealing third today).

I don’t care if a pitcher can’t hit. Lincecum’s spin move the other day is about what I expect from a pitcher hitting. One thing they should know how to do though: sacrifice bunt. So why is Lincecum turning at the last second as if he’s bunting for a hit? Turning at the last second makes everything about a sac bunt harder; making contact with the ball, making sure your bat head is up, and cradling the ball, so that you’re not pushing It towards the fielders and making a play at second possible. From pitch one Lincecum was turning too late, so it’s no surprise that he popped out and ruined an opportunity to move up his runner.

In the other dugout, I think it was Kinsler, who made the most elementary of baserunning errors and threw away his infield single. After running through first, he made a move towards second before realizing that the ball hadn’t gotten past Aubrey Huff. Heads up fielding by Huff to immediately tag Kinsler out.

Box Score says the Giants used 5 pitchers in the final 2 innings: For a bullpen that gets as much credit as the Giants, I am a bit sad that Bochy used so many pitchers to close out the last two innings when we had a four run lead going into the eighth and a 7 run lead going into the ninth and there’s a game tomorrow. I just don’t think it’s worth the risk of having a sore bullpen.

Bright sides to the game:

It was nice to see some 3-2 counts. A characteristic swing happy team finally worked the count and got Lee out early. They were disciplined and made Lee throw over 100 pitches before getting retired.

Santiago Casilla came out hard after struggling a bit with Philly. No issues today.

Freddy Sanchez hitting 4 for 5. Our number 1 and 2 hitters are finally producing and it couldn’t have come at a better time.

Juan Uribe. The following is a quote from a gchat conversation I was having with a friend around the fourth inning.

Me: “Uribe wants a homerun or nothing. Bad hitting.”

Friend: “It’s Juan Uribe. Of course it’s bad hitting.”

This friend is a Dodgers fan, so I was thrilled when he jinxed Uribe for the better and Uribe made it to those fences he was swinging for. Although his 4 at bats today included 3 swinging strikeouts (the true box score of someone looking for a homerun), I couldn’t be happier with the timing of his hit. Just as the Rangers pulled Cliff Lee hoping that that would be the end of their woes for the day, Uribe crushed it and kicked them while they were down. Wonderful and much appreciated.

Taking the first game was huge for the Giants, and more important is making sure they win as many home games as possible since it’s not gonna be easy in Texas.

I would love to see the Giants bring a championship to San Francisco, but I’d really rather see it in a good series. Tomorrow I’m hoping for the good starting pitching this series promised and less than 6 errors.

I would just like to conclude by responding to another comment made to me earlier, and say that I still don’t believe Cliff Lee is human.

I repeat: NOT HUMAN

Sand-Rant

I was recently recalling the sports movies of my  youth (the movies of The Mark’s post college experience), and started to see a trend. Hands down 1994 was the best year for sports movies. Not only Sports movies, but movies in general, here is the list of who was up for the Academy Award for Best Picture:

Forrest Gump

The Shawshank Redemption

Pulp Fiction

Four Weddings and Funeral

Quiz Show

What other line up has that much power! Then throw in the fact that it was the year of The Lion King, Dumb and Dumber, Clerks, Legends of the Fall, Natural Born Killers, The Mask, Speed, True Lies, Camp Nowhere, Ace Ventura, Blank Check,  and Wyatt Earp.

But back to my point, it was the sports movies that made the year.

One of many great sports movies!

Little Giants: Rick Moranis of the “Honey We Shrunk” series coaches a team of outcast and under sized kids (Little Giants) against Ed O’Neil’s, from “Married with Children” and more recently “Modern Family”, power house program (Cowboys). It’s an NFC East showdown in the middle of Ohio.  Ed O’Neil plays the local legend who comes back to the small town bask in the glory and coach a cut-throat Pop Warner Team. Moranis plays his brother who has always been overshadowed and wants to help kids from falling by the way side.  A David and Goliath story for sure, but with much more humor.

What are they doing now: Shawna Waldron, Becky “The Icebox” O’Shea, starred recently in the erotic thriller, Poison Ivy: The Secret Society. Apparently loaded with special features!

Pro Power: John Madden, Bruce Smith, Emmitt Smith, Tim Brown, and Steve Emtman.

Best Quote: “Without Icebox, Spike’s going to rip off my face and wear it for Halloween”

Staying Power: Just Watched it for the 90th time and might restart it!

Everyone kid's dream, besides Grandpa dying

Little Big League: Luke Edwards inherits the Minnesota Twins from his deceased Grandfather, and the takes on the roll of skipper. Turning the team from some misfits to the verge of a playoff run. Probably winning Manager of the year, while trying to balance is childhood friendships.

What are they doing now: Luke Edwards has been making a name for himself in Jeepers Creepers 2 and hopefully a 3rd one that is in development now!

Pro Power: In a one game playoff against the Mariners, The Twins face Ken Griffey Jr., Randy Johnson, and Lou Piniella. Beyond that there are cameos by Ivan Rodriguez, Sandy Alomar Jr., Carlos Baegra, Wally Joyner, Rafael Palmeiro, Tim Raines,  Chris Berman, and others.

Best Quote:

McGrevey: I think you should trade me.
Mac: As soon as we find someone stupid enough to take you, that’s EXACTLY what we’re gonna do.

Staying Power: Downloading it now, want to catch up on lost time.

Above the Rim:  Duane Martin stars as basketball star who wants to go where Patrick Ewing and A.I. went to school.  He trying to find a balance between the streets and court.  Featuring the smash song by Warren G “Regulators”, and other hard hitting songs on the soundtrack.

What are they doing now: Duane Martin is now making some appearance in “Rita Rocks“, a show about a mother who starts a garage band (Can’t make that Shit up).

Pro Power:  Tupac, although he wasn’t an athlete he counts for this section!

Best Quote: “I was just thinkin bout spreadin my fingers and poppin my wrist.”

Staying Power:  One and done!

Interesting Concept

The Air Up There: Jimmy Dolan (Kevin Bacon) is a college basketball coach trying to land a big time sensation from Africa, Saleh. Only problem, why would Saleh be convinced to leave Africa for America, there seems to be a history there. Does anyone else see why he might be hesitant?  It comes down to a game verse a mining company that will make all the difference.

What are they doing now:  What isn’t Kevin Bacon doing? But recently he was in Frost/Nixon.

Pro Power: Although no Pro athletes are credited Dikembe Mutombo‘s brother is in the movie.

Best Quote:

Jimmy Dolan : Sister! You’re allowed to kiss?
Sister Susan: [smiling] Only if I really mean it!

Staying Power:  I saw it in theaters when I was 8 and haven’t seen it since.

Blue Chips: Nick Nolte plays Coach Bell a coach who is struggling with the morality of recruiting in the college basketball ranks. In order to get the top players, the coach sells out and has to deal with the path he chose at school and home.   Ed O’Neil also stars in this film as Ed. Shaq and Penny Hardaway are a couple of Nolte’s players.

Penny's acting debut

What are They Doing Now: Nick Nolte was the crazy Vietnam vet in Tropic Thunder. Shaq has won four NBA titles and Penny had little Penny Nike Commercials.

Pro Power:  Shaq, Penny, Bob Cousy, Bob Knight, Rick Pitino, Larry Bird, and others.

Best Quote:  “Dwayne, you can get through college half-assed. Richard, you can get through LIFE half-assed. But I’ll guarantee you boys one thing: sure as hell, I’ll guarantee you this: you cannot *win* half-assed!”

Staying Power: Relevant today with all sorts of recruiting violations occurring daily!

Chi-towns Finest

Hoop Dreams: A Documentary about two high school basketball players in Chicago, William Gates and Arthur Agee, who are trying to make it to the next level. They are being heavily recruited but struggling with their academics.

What are they doing now:  “Gates said that after the film was released, his high school shunned him, his teammates “must have hated” him for the attention, and the NCAA revoked his and Arthur Agee’s athletic scholarships for becoming “professionals.

Pro Power:  Dick Vitale, Juan Howard, Chris Webber, Bobby Knight, and Coach K all make appearances.

Best Quote: “People always say to me, “when you get to the NBA, don’t forget about me.” Well, I should’ve said back, “if I don’t make it to the NBA, don’t you forget about me.”

Staying Power: Great Documentary about the realities of making it to the pros and college ranks.

Brendan Fasier's high point

The Scout: Albert Brooks plays a scout who discovers a top prospect Steve Nebraska, played by Brendan Fraser, in Mexico. Steve Nebraska serves as Brook’s redemption for past failures of his other prospects.

What are they doing now: Brendan Fraser is producing hits like Journey to the Center of the Earth or something like that and it’s sequel. Thanks Brendan!

Pro Power:  Bob Costas, Ozzie Smith, Bret Saberhagen, and George Steinbrenner III and others.

Best Quote: “I’m the Yankee, not you!”  Using best quote very loosely!

Staying Power:  Saw it on TV, didn’t feel like seeing it again.

On top of all these originals there were three sports sequels that were released.

The Runner-Ups

D2: The Mighty Ducks: Childhood favorite as Emilio takes his team to the international level to battle Iceland, not Canada or Russia. That simple fact makes it great, plus the scene where they get involved in the ‘street hockey game’ in L.A.

Best Quote: “Weuw, Weuw, Weuw, Kenny Woo.”

Major League II:  This one came up way short of the original. How did the first one go from R rated classic to a PG rated clown for some rude language.

Best Quote (loosely again): “Women: you can’t live with them, and they can’t pee standing up!”

The Next Karate Kid: This movie was made, and everyone was disappointed.

A line from the movie: “Julie-san, fighting not good. But if must fight… win!”

Enough said, 1994 had to be the best year in Sports movies, if you disagree post your list and we can go from there.

Salute

The Bearded Guy