Sunday, May 31, 2009

Today in History

May 31
1964 - The longest double header in history, and the longest game in National League history was played 45 years ago today. In a grueling 9 hour and 52 minute double header, the San Francisco Giants battled the Mets in the newly opened Shea Stadium. The first of the two games was uneventful, lasting a mere 2 hours and 29 minutes. The Giants defeated the Mets 5-3. The next game, however, was a back-and-forth 23 inning drama and stretched out over an excruciating 7 hours and 23 minutes. The combined number of innings played that day set the record at 32, a feat which still stands. The Giants staggered away victorious with a score of 8-6.

1968 - Don Drysdayle of the Dodgers beans batter Dick Dietz of the Giants in the 9th inning with the bases loaded. After pitching 4 previous shut-outs (for a total of 44 scoreless innings pitched) Drysdale's record appears to be over (falling one inning short of tying the 5 shut out record set in 1904). However, plate umpire Harry Wendelstedt rules that Dietz did not try to avoid the pitch, and rules that he does not take the base. Giants coach Herman Franks argues the call for so long that Wendelstedt ejects him from the game. Dietz flies out on the next pitch, and Drysdale retires the next to batters, keeping his streak intact. (His streak ends on June 8, 1968 after pitching 6 consecutive shutouts, and a total of 56 scoreless innings).

June 1
1925 - The first of Lou Gehrig's 2,130 consecutive games begins when he is called from the bench to pinch hit for Pee Wee Wanninger. (Gehrig dies of ALS on June 2, 1941, 16 years and 1 day later).

1975 - Nolan Ryan wins his 100th career game.

1987 - 48 year old future Hall of Famer Phil Niekro earns his 314th win.

The Beatles - Yesterday

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Old School Logos: AL West

More Hardball will be featuring some of the old school MLB logos over the next few weekends. Today we kick it in the American League West division.

Los Angeles Angels:

Oakland Athletics:

Seattle Mariners:

Texas Rangers:


Paybacks A Bitch!
*We Should Be GM's (my flagship station) takes a look at the Phillies starting pitching conundrum.

*Right Field Bleachers like to drink, talk shit on white boys with corn rows, and reminisce of memories of BJ (Suroff that is) from their childhood.

*Rumors & Rants likes that the Padres can put together winning streaks, but are pissed that they put together hellacious losing streaks too.

*Macho Row has video of the day Michael Jack Schmidt retired, thus the day I cried like a little girl.

*Bernies Crew speaks of the Brewers possible interest in Erik Bedard. Hope this is untrue, because I see Bedard being a perfect fit in Phils pinstripes.

*The Pittsburgh Penguins have a fan in the Far East.

*Where Have You Gone Andy Van Slyke? wonders if signability will play a factor in the Pirates upcoming draft.

*Former NFL QB Fran Tarkenton is not a fan of the Brett Favre soap opera, and neither am I for that matter.

*The Phils aren't the only 2008 World Series team suffering from injuries and pitching concerns, so are the Tampa Bay Rays.

*Major League Jerk breaks down the AL West sitcom style.

*F' bull riding, that's for pussies, saddle up the ferocious sheep bitches!

Beastie Boys & Cypress Hill- So Whatcha Want (Remix)

Friday, May 29, 2009

Best Outfield in MLB?

More Hardball wants to know which MLB team has the best outfield. Listed below are what we believe to be the Top 5 outfields in all of baseball.

(Stats through 5/28/09)
Boston Red Sox:
LF/Jason Bay- .281/1.018, 37 r, 11 dbl, 14 hr, 48 rbi, 5 sb
CF/Jacoby Ellsbury- .307/.715, 28 r, 9 dbl, 13 rbi, 21 sb
RF/JD Drew- .257/.852, 27 r, 11 dbl, 6 hr, 21 rbi
Totals- .285 avg, 92 r, 21 hr, 82 rbi, 26 sb
Notable Sub- Rocco Baldelli

Los Angeles Dodgers:

LF/Juan Pierre- .404/1.013, 24 r, 10 dbl, 3 trpl, 20 rbi, 9 sb
CF/Matt Kemp- .296/.818, 29 r, 8 dbl, 4 trpl, 4 hr, 28 rbi, 9 sb
RF/Andre Either- .257/.790, 29 r, 9 dbl, 6 hr, 30 rbi, 3 sb
Totals- .309 avg, 82 r, 10 hr, 78 rbi, 21 sb
Notable Sub- Manny Ramirez

Milwaukee Brewers:
LF/Ryan Braun- .351/.962, 31 r, 9 dbl, 8 hr, 31 rbi, 3 sb
CF/Mike Cameron
- .285/.913, 23 r, 12 dbl, 9 hr, 22 rbi, 2 sb
RF/Corey Hart- .243/.708, 29 r, 11 dbl, 4 hr, 18 rbi, 3 sb
Totals- .280 avg, 83 r, 21 hr, 71 rbi, 8 sb
Notable Sub- Frank Catalanotto

New York Yankees:

LF/Johnny Damon- .302/.926, 37 r, 11 dbl, 2 trpl, 10 hr, 29 rbi, 5 sb
CF/Melky Cabrera- .323/.849, 20 r, 6 dbl, 5 hr, 20 rbi, 4 sb
RF/Nick Swisher
- .223/.844, 27 r, 9 dbl, 9 hr, 27 rbi
Totals- .283 avg, 84 r, 24 hr, 76 rbi, 9 sb
Notable Sub- Brett Gardner

Philadelphia Phillies:
Raul Ibanez- .339/1.109, 38 r, 11 dbl, 17 hr, 44 rbi, 4 sb
CF/Shane Victorino- .280/.767, 31 r, 11 dbl, 4 trpl, 4 hr, 25 rbi, 7 sb
RF/Jayson Werth- .255/.818, 33 r, 9 dbl, 8 hr, 26 rbi, 8 sb
Totals- .292 avg, 102 r, 29 hr, 95 rbi, 19 sb
Notable Sub- Matt Stairs

Honorable Mentions:
Minnesota Twins, Cleveland Indians, Los Angeles Angels, Colorado Rockies, and Houston Astros.

Who has the best outfield in MLB?
Red Sox
Phillies free polls

Misfits- American Psycho

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Run Star Manager (Anagrams Return)

Anagrams have been used as a fun way to uncover true, unusual, or funny characteristics about a person or event (for example Clint Eastwood = Old West Action). Last week, More Hardball featured the shining stars of the season thus far. What truths can be divined from the names of today's top talent?

Evan Longoria = Regional Nova
Longoria started generating buzz in Tampa Bay almost immediately after his debut last season, but his star has only brightened this season. Last year, he belted in 27 homeruns; so far this year, he has hit 12. His current batting average is an impressive .326 with an equally impressive OPB of .398 and a whopping .630 slugging percentage. Longoria is a formidable player, and is positioned to help the Rays out of their 4 game deficit behind the Red Sox, Yankees, and Blue Jays.

Chase Utley = Uh, Ace Style
Despite being laid up with hip surgery, and a recent injury to his foot, Utley has managed to belt 11 home runs and a .289 batting average for the first quarter of the season. Utley is a natural athlete, and every movement appears effortless. He is an ace hitter, a strong second baseman, and the man's got style (and an exceedingly hot wife). At 30, he has only improved with age.

Raul Ibanez = Ablaze, I run
This man is on fire! There is no other way of putting it. Ibanez is having the season of his life, after 13 seasons in the major leagues. Twice voted as an MVP contender (coming in 21st in '06, and 20th in '08), Ibanez's candidacy will be harder to ignore this season. So far he has earned an outstanding .339 batting average (.001 behind the current league leader), and he leads the National League in home runs with 17. He also has knocked in 44 runs, and .707 slugging percentage, and a 1.109 OPS. Absolutely amazing!

Zack Greinke = Eek! Czar, King!
Greinke has exploded into the national consciousness this season with a truly magisterial arm. This royal of Royals, Czar of sliders and curve balls, is currently the league leader in ERA (0.84) and WHIP (0.88). He also has eight wins, five complete games, and two shut outs under his belt.

88 Fingers Louie - I Won

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Jason Kendall- Quite A Catching Career

At age 35, with 14 MLB seasons catching under his belt already, Milwaukee Brewer Jason Kendall became the 225th player in MLB history to collect 2000+ hits. His 1874 games donning the tools of ignorance ranks 18th all-time among catchers; and it’s likely he’ll crack the Top 10 during next season if he remains employed. How is it that his career has gone relatively unnoticed? In the era of baseball with muscle bound catchers such as Mike Piazza and Ivan Rodriguez, it’s easy to find yourself amid the obscure.

Don’t get me wrong, at one time Kendall was a premier name in the company of catchers signing a 6 year $60M contract with the Pittsburgh Pirates and was their 1st round draft pick in 1992. However, he never developed the power they thought he would and ended up being an overpriced piece that the Buccos couldn’t sensibly keep around with their small market budget, losing ways, and dwindling attendance. Pitt shipped him to Oakland where he camped out behind the plate for 3 seasons with the Athletics until finishing up the 2007 season with the Chicago Cubs. He’s since found a home with the Brew Crew the past 2 seasons, displaying little offense, but solid defensive prowess and game calling skills that make the pitching staff feel comfortable.

Career #’s- .291/.370/.386, 2003 hits, 958 runs, 362 doubles, 34 triples, 73 homeruns, 679 rbi, 170 stolen bases, and 52 more walks than strikeouts (651:599). 3 time all-star and a 29% caught stealing rate. He’s the active leader in being hit by pitch with 236, and ranks 6th all-time. Catching ranks- 8th in hits, 9th in runs, 7th in doubles, 3rd in stolen bases, and 11th in batting average (minimum 4000 plate appearances). Future Hall of Famer? Doubtful, but a damn fine catcher nonetheless.

Rage Against the Machine- Testify

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Hardball Heroes: Andre Dawson

Hardball Heroes is More Hardball's version of the Hall of Fame. To qualify for this honor, players must have demonstrated exceptional athleticism and sportsmanship on and off the field, but whose accomplishments are not celebrated in the Hall of Fame. For May, our inductee is Andre "The Hawk" Dawson.

"No player in baseball history worked harder, suffered more or did it better than Andre Dawson. He's the best I've ever seen. He did it the right way, the natural way." ~Ryne Sandberg

Dawson rose to stardom during his second season in Montreal, winning Rookie of the year for 1977. Although he was a formidable player with the Expos, ten years of playing on the artificial surface of Olympic Stadium devastated his knees. This fueled his decision to move to the natural grass of Chicago's Wrigley Field for the 1987 season. Dawson spent six seasons as a Cubbie, two with Boston, and two for Florida. A list of his achievements includes NL MVP (1987), 8 Golden Gloves - from 1980-1988 (except 1986), 4 Silver Sluggers, and 8 time all star. Dawson is also one of six members of the 300/300 club (300+ home runs/300+ stolen bases).

In his 9927 at bats, Dawson earned 1373 runs (95th over all players), 2774 hits (45th), 1591 rbi (34th), and 438 home runs (36th), an .279 batting average and .802 OPS, and a career fielding average of .983. Dawson epitomizes the "five tool" player. However, Dawson is also the prime example of the 'borderline' candidate for the Hall of Fame. The major obstacle preventing his admission is his average OBP (.323) coupled with slightly above average batting statistics (as opposed to a stellar average). Last year, Dawson received 358 ballots in favor of his inclusion, 50 votes shy of what he needed to be inducted.

Dawson never won a World Series, but did earn a ring in 2003 working as a member of the Florida Marlin's staff. Currently, he works as an assistant to the Marlin's president, David Samson. Dawson is also president of the Andre Dawson Foundation, which funds "education, social enrichment, and development of amateur athletics of the disadvantage youth" and "the education, testing and counseling of individuals in the fight against Sickle Cell Anemia, cancer, etc." by selling autographed Andre Dawson memorabilia.

Technically, Dawson is already in the Hall of Fame, as the 1994 recipient of the Hutch Award, whose display and list of recipients reside in the hallowed halls of Cooperstown.

Past Hardball Heroes inductees include: Harold Baines, Dale Murphy, and Bert Blyleven.

Outkast - The Way You Move

Monday, May 25, 2009

Caught Kissing

Apparently baseball is a game filled with kissing. Whether it be planting a big one on a fellow teammate, smooching a fan, caressing a manager, self-loving yourself, or saluting with your stanky fingers (see Sosa to right) it appears that this certainly is a sensual sport.

McGwire muses make out; Pudge ponders peck.

Glavine gleefuly gives glance; Guillen giddy or gay?

Brett baffled by busty brush; Buehrle bellows to belly.

Steroids sell sex...

Quadruple attack on the music videos today...

Sixpence None the Richer- Kiss Me

Red Hot Chili Peppers- Suck My Kiss

Kiss- Detroit Rock City

Violent Femmes- Kiss Off

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Gotta Have Defunct

The "official" date of the founding of professional league baseball is 1869. Since that time, many professional leagues have come and gone (including the Federal League) before the consolidation of the National League and the American League. Most of these leagues lasted only a year or so before going the way of the Dodo. These short-lived ventures include the National Association of Professional Base Ball Players (or NA - which is today not officially recognized as a major league organization, though it was at the time), the Union Association (UA), the Players' Association (PL), and the American Association (AA).

Altoona Mountain City (UA)
Baltimore Canaries (NA)
Baltimore Marylands (NA)
Baltimore Monumentals (UA)
Baltimore Orioles (AA 1882-91)
Baltimore Orioles (NL 1892-99)
Baltimore Terrapins (FL)
Boston Red Stockings (NA - 1871-75); currently the Atlanta Braves
Boston Reds (UA 1884)
Boston Reds (AA/PL 1890-91)
Brooklyn Atlantics (NA)
Brooklyn Eckfords (NA)
Brooklyn Gladiators (AA)
Brooklyn Tip-Tops (FL)
Brooklyn Ward's Wonders (PL)
Buffalo Bisons (NL - 1879-85)
Buffalo Bisons (PL - 1890)
Buffalo Bisons (FL - 1914-15)
Chicago Pirates (PL)
Chicago Whales (FL)
Chicago/Pittsburgh (UA 1884)
Chicago White Stockings (NA 1871-75); currently the Chicago Cubs
Cincinnati Kelly's Killers (AA)
Cincinnati Outlaw Reds (UA)
Cincinnati Reds (NL 1876-80)
Cleveland Blues (NL)
Cleveland Forest Citys (NA)
Cleveland Infants (PL)
Cleveland Spiders (AA; Became Cleveland Blues)
Columbus Buckeyes (AA)
Columbus Solons (AA)
Detroit Wolverines (NL)
Elizabeth Resolutes (NA)
Fort Wayne Kekiongas (NA)
Hartford Dark Blues (NA 1874-75)
Hartford Dark Blues (NL 1876-77)
Indianapolis Blues (NL)
Indianapolis Hoosiers (AA 1884)
Indianapolis Hoosiers (NL 1887-89)
Indianapolis Hoosiers (FL 1914)
Kansas City Cowboys (UA 1884)
Kansas City Cowboys (NL 1886)
Kansas City Cowboys (AA 1888-89)
Kansas City Packers (FL)
Keokuk Westerns (NA)
Louisville Colonels (AA 1885-91, NL 1891-99 was Eclipse)
Lousiville Eclipse (AA 1882-84)
Louisville Grays (NL)
Middletown Mansfields (NA)
Milwaukee Brewers (UA 1884)
Milwaukee Brewers (AA 1891)
Milwaukee Grays (NL)
New Haven Elm Citys (NA)
New York Giants (PL)
New York Metropolitans (AA 1883-87)
New York Mutuals (NA 1871-75; went to NL 1876)
Newark Pepper (FL 1915; was Indianapolis Hoosiers)
Philadelphia Athletics (NA 1871-75 became NL in 1876)
Philadelphia Athletics (NL 1876)
Philadelphia Athletics (AA 1882-90)
Philadelphia Athletics (PL/AA 1890-91)
Philadelphia Keystones (UA)
Pittsburgh Burghers (PL)
Philadelphia Centennials (NA)
Philadelphia White Stockings (NA)
Pittsburgh Rebels (FL)
Providence Grays (NL)
Richmond Virginians (AA)
Rochester Broncos (AA)
Rockford Forest Citys (NA)
St. Louis Brown Stockings (NA; became NL 1876-77)
St. Louis Maroons (UA/NL)
St. Louis Red Stockings (NA)
St. Louis Terriers (FL)
St. Paul Apostles/St. Paul White Caps (UA)
Syracuse Stars (NL 1879)
Syracuse Stars (AA 1890)
Toledo Blue Stockings (AA)
Toledo Maumees (AA)
Troy Haymakers (NA)
Troy Trojans (NL)
Washington Blue Legs (NA)
Washington Nationals (NA 1872)
Washington Nationals (NA 1875)
Washington Nationals (UA 1884)
Washington Nationals (AA 1884)
Washington Nationals (1886)
Washington Olympics (NA)
Washington Senators (1881-89)
Washington Senators (NL 1892-99)
Washington Statesmen (UA 1884)
Wilmington Quicksteps (UA)
Worcester Ruby Legs (NL)

Other teams have come and gone, only to emerge as today's franchises.
Atlanta Braves
-Boston Red Stockings
-Boston Red Caps
-Boston Beaneaters
-Boston Doves
-Boston Rustlers
-Boston Bees
-Boston Braves
-Milwaukee Braves
Baltimore Orioles
-St Louis Browns
-Milwaukee Brewers
Boston Red Sox
-Boston Americans
Chicago Cubs
-Chicago White Stockings
-Chicago Colts
-Chicago Orphans
Cincinnati Reds
-Cincinnati Red Stockings
-Cincinnati Redlegs
Cleveland Indians
-Cleveland Blues
-Cleveland Bronchos
-Cleveland Naps
Houston Astros
-Houston Colt .45's
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
-Los Angeles Angels
-California Angels
-Anaheim Angels
Los Angeles Dodgers
-Brooklyn Atlantics
-Brooklyn Grays
-Brooklyn Grooms
-Brooklyn Bridegrooms
-Brooklyn Superbas
-Brooklyn Robins
-Brooklyn Dodgers
Milwaukee Brewers
-Seattle Pilots
Minnesota Twins
-Washington Senators (AL 1901-1960)
Montreal Expos
-Washington Nationals
New York Yankees
-Baltimore Orioles
-New York Highlanders
Oakland Athletics
-Kansas City Athletics
Philadelphia Phillies
-Philadelphia Quakers
-Philadelphia Blue Jays
Pittsburg Pirates
-Pittsburg Alleghenys
San Francisco Giants-New York Gothams
-New York Giants
St. Louis Cardinals
-St. Louis Brown Stockings
-St. Louis Browns
-St. Louis Perfectos
Texas Rangers
-Washington Senators (AL 1961-1971)
Washingotn Nationals
-Montreal Expos

Parliament Funkadelic-Tear The Roof Off The Sucka