The World According to Keitho

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Posts Tagged ‘Colorado Rockies’

The big 5-5 and the Mets

Posted by keithosaunders on August 25, 2015

Today I turned 55.  That’s right, double nickels.  The NY Mets were extremely generous, giving me an eight home run game last night and enough optimism to last until October.

I can’t recall a baseball season in which a team’s personality changed on a dime.  If you look back not even a month to July 29th — that’s when Wilmer Flores learned, in the middle of that night’s game, that he was being traded – you’ll see an entirely different team.  One that could not hit to save their lives.  Their pitching was elite (still is) but their lack of hitting made them extremely beatable.

During the July 29th game the cameras captured Flores crying and it looked like it was a new low for the Mets.  The Mets had not yet bottomed out, however.  The very next day they blew a 6 run lead to the Padres at home in the rain.  They were three games behind the Nationals and going nowhere.  I was actually rationalizing the season with an early post-mortem.   “Well they gave me much more competitive four months than I expected…”

And then…CESPEDES.

Who would have thought it possible?  He is the kind of gamer that the Mets almost never get.  Hell, they’re still paying Bobby Bonilla a yearly salary.

Wouldn’t you know it, given a new lease on life Wilmer Flores won two games versus the Nationals.  The Mets swept the series and have gone on to feast on the bottom-dwelling Rockies, Marlins, and Phillies.  True, they were swept by the Pirates, but this humble birthday boy is writing that off as a blip on the radar screen.

The shit’s about to get real.  Fasten your seat belts!

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Cajun food and land locked islands

Posted by keithosaunders on August 10, 2011

There’s no doubt about it, when it comes to driving, I am an animal.  I could make this trip once a month.  If i had another driver I could do this in three days, but with my kids with me, and being that I’m the only driver, I am not pushing that late into the evening.  Still, I managed a good 500 miles today, and tomorrow, if I get an early enough start, I envision doing 600. 

To me, the country appears smaller when you drive its length.  Smaller as compared to flying, that is.  Flying never feels real to me — it’s almost magical, the idea that you can traverse the country in a matter of hours.  I’m always pleasantly surprised at how many states you can cover in one day from behind the wheel.  It makes the country seem more tangeable.

The other great thing about road trips is that you’re your own boss.  (assuming the wife isn’t along for the ride)  I decide when to stop, how far to go, and where to stay at night. 

 There’s nothing as infantalizing plane travel — being told when you can stand up, eat, or go to the bathroom.  Not to mention the demeaning aspect of having to remove clothing while being cattle prodded through security. 

 I love seeing these old, beat towns that you would never get to see from the air.  Des Moines, Iowa  has a  beautiful old state building with a golden domed roof. 

 We stopped took a walk around downtown Des Moines.  Even though it’s fairly well maintained, it has many vacant buildings, and aside from a street with three or four nice looking bars, there isn’t much by way of commerce.  You can see from these old towns that the America of todaydoesn’t produce anything.  There are no jobs.  Places like Detroit, Syracuse, and Des Moines, once thriving cities, are now practicallyghost towns.

We had dinner at a Cajun restaurant in Omaha, Nebraska.  I had the shrimp etoufee, which seemed like a good idea at the time, but ten minutes after we had resumed our westward drive, I exited the highway at the first rest stop I saw and sprinted into the MacDonald’s bathroom.

Omaha

Fully revived I pulled back onto route 80 and began scanning around the AM dial for some baseball games.  I was able to pick up games out of Chicago, Kansas City,Colorado, and Minnesota.  We’re in the plain states now so AM reception, particularly at night, promises to be impressive.

We are in the plain states now and everything will be flat as a pancake for the next several hundred miles.  Most people think of these states as being boring and monotonous, but I have always found a kind of stark beauty in them.  I loved the rolling hills of Kansas when I drove through it several years ago.  There is something about how much sky you can see out here that is amazing.  The sky goes all the way to the horizon and it makes the light beautiful and intense.

We’re bedding down at a Super 8 in Grand Island, Nebraska.  Don’t ask me why they call it an island — I’m as land locked as can be.

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Taping’s finest hour

Posted by keithosaunders on April 21, 2011

 This is a great time of year for sports — the baseball season is in full swing and the NBA and NHL playoffs have begun.  The overlap can be overwhelming, but thanks to the miracle of the DVR, taping multiple ongoing events is a reality, making it possible for the sports fan to live the dream.  Of course, even with modern technology all it takes is for one caveman to spoil your evening by divulging the score of a taped event.  There are numerous other pitfalls to avoid as well.  Here then is a recounting of one of my most successful taping days:  This past Sunday, the 17th, in the year of our sports god 2011.

 
I had a gig, but wanted to see game two of Rangers/Captitals, and Knicks/Celtics, as well as catch the end of Rockies/Cubs.  As long as I was already taping the Knicks, I figured I may as well set the DVR to record the second half of the NBA doubleheader, Nuggets/Thunder.  The baseball Giants were playing, but I knew they would be on the TV at the bar I was gigging at, so I opted not to record their game.

When I started the car, I turned on the Giants game on the radio to hear the 9th inning — they were leading the Diamondbaks 5-4 at the time.  The first thing out of Jon Miller’s mouth was,  “It’s over in Colorado….”   Quick as a cat, I whipped my hand to the radio and turned off the volume, avoiding hearing the score.  I then (carefully) changed the station. 
 
As predicted, the Giants game was being shown on the TV at the bar.  It was an extra inning game and I was thinking, “good, let it go 20 innings and they’ll never change it to the Knicks)  BUT…by the first break the game had ended and the Knicks was on one TV, and Sportscenter was on the other.  Fortunately I live in a town where people don’t give a rats ass about any teams other than the locals, so I was in little danger of anyone commenting on the games.  What’s more, this fellow ex-New Yorker sax player came in.  He had also taped the Knicks and he warned me not to tell him anything.  Me, spoil a taped event?!  Did he realize who he was talking to?
 
At one point I accidentally looked at the TV showing Sportscenter  and of course the Rockies/Cubs highlights were on, but miraculously I didn’t see the score.
 
The rest of the night passed without incident and I arrived home to savor my spoils.  I stayed up late watching everything except for the second half of the Denver game, but I finished watching it the following day at lunch without knowing the ending. 

And that’s how you record multiple events.

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Is this what baseball has come to?

Posted by keithosaunders on November 30, 2010

Today, on my way to checking my fantasy teams, I happened upon a yahoo article that I found to be one of the most cynical pieces of journa-ma-lism ever.  The article is about the Rockies having locked up their all-world shortstop, Troy Tulowitski, to a long-term, big-money contract.  The reporter, Jeff Passan, opines that Tulo was foolish not to pursue more money, as well as championships, with different teams. [read large-market]

What could’ve been, though. Oh, what could’ve been. On one hand, Tulowitzki played things safe. He was reasonable. And on the other, he lacked the fortitude to chase the greater glory that awaited him elsewhere. The money he could’ve gotten and the championships he could’ve won had he simply played out his current contract with the franchise that can’t help itself from taking a blade to its jugular.

So this is what it has come to?  Remaining loyal to one team throughout your entire career shows a lack of fortitude?!  I didn’t realize that Ernie Banks had such little gumption.  According to Passan we should look up to people like Alex Rodriguez, Cliff Lee, and Roidger Clemens — athletes who follow their dreams of glory through inevitable championships.   

Passan goes on to write

If this deal is bad for Tulowitzki, it’s ill-conceived and unconscionable for a Rockies team that knows what long-term, big-money contracts do to franchises with middling budgets: cripple them. 

So as the Rockies celebrate Tulowitzki’s new deal, they do so knowing that Ubaldo Jimenez is now likely to leave after the 2014 season. And that Carlos Gonzalez, a Scott Boras client, is certain to do so. And that rather than waiting until 2014 to figure out where to spend their money, the team went all-in on a player who has missed significant time in two of his four seasons because of injuries.

In Passon’s cynical world the chief function of teams such as the Rockies and the Washington Nationals is to serve as petri dishes for the serious contenders.  The temerity of the Rockies, to lock up this talented player, thereby denying the large-market teams the chance to tweak their already over-stuffed lineups. 

My dreams scenario for 2011:  The Rockies win the NL West by 10 games and breeze to the Series by beating the Cards and Phillies in the playoffs.  In the Series they sweep the New York Yankees on the strength of Troy Tulowitzki’s 4 homerun, 10 RBI performance. 

   

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