Tomorrow is the last day of April and the season is starting to take shape. Here are a few thoughts:
Billy Beene may, indeed, be a genius. He’s “rebuilding” the A’s from the top of the AL West. Although Eric Chavez may never again see the light of the field, Bobby Crosby is healthy [a shocker] and Daric Barton is about to emerge as a hitting machine. Travis Buck continues to struggle with injures, but Mike Sweeney has been terrific. Bringing F. Thomas back is a no brainer. Toronto pays millions, while Frank is sure to heat up with the summer weather.
The Giants dynamic young threesome of Lincecum, Cain, and Sanchez combined with young position players like Lewis, Valdez, and Bowker have generated more excitement in one month than I thought we’d get all season. Molina is a terrific catcher and clutch hitter. Zito announced on the first day of spring training last year that he was changing his delivery. Well, the change took. He sucks so very bad that it’s unlikely he’ll ever return to his old self… a good, but not great, #3 caliber starter.
The Mets just may have been better off firing Willie Ranolph. I doubt if they can remove the stench of last years el foldo with him at the helm. Alou is about to come off of the DL for a week or two and that should add some punch. Delgado is a dog with fleas, but Church has been better than expected. New York “fans” booed Santana early. They’d have lynched Zito by now.
The California Sea Otter [my Fantasy team] is coming around. Burrell has been great and Granderson and Putz are back from the DL. Towlowitzki and Garko tanked and I replaced them Johnny Peralta at short and emerging superstar Casey Kotchman at first. Adruw Jones is on the Dodger bench and the Otter’s rear-view mirror. Cub catcher Soto an Oriole reliever Sherrill have done me right.
In addition I’m playing the 1954 and 1973 seasons on my computer baseball game. Managing my favorite NY Giants team [’54] and favorite Mets team [’73] is a kick.
From Ilene Dunner:
“I am planning a Kittatinny Camp Reunion for everyone and anyone whoever went to Kittatinny Camp. The reunion is planned for Saturday July 4th 2009 at 1pm–rain or shine(one year from this July (SAVE THAT DATE) and will be held at Layton Bar (right near the camp)–The bar is still there and many of us went there or wanted to go there.
“Since most of us would love to have a reunion but no one really had the time to put in all the effort we can do this very easily. Everyone who reads this should locate as many people as they can and tell them about this plan and this site. Anyone planning to attend should put their name and e-mail address on this site–so we can know how many people will actually be there. When the time gets closer I will let Layton Bar know how many people to expect. So that is really it—
“Everyone who reads this should try to be very creative in terms of locating people who went to the camp, no matter what year. There were so many from Clifton New Jersey. Maybe someone from there would want to put an ad in the local paper. It will be amazing for everyone to show up at Layton Bar on Saturday July 4th 2009 1pm–and we can then all drive to the camp site.
“Layton Bar, Layton New Joisey ( I think it is in Layton—or Dingman’s Ferry—I am sure you can find it and get directions–also the Bar is now called Layton Bar and Hotel—or something like that—you can find it on the web.
People should come back to this site–off and on to see if there are any changes to this plan. On that day…”
I suggested a reunion site in Alameda California. Here are some pictures I took last week on a bike ride on Alameda Point [home of the SS Hornet Museum], site of the old Navy Base, overlooking San Francisco.
My Vote’s for Obama (if I could vote) …by Michael Moore
April 21st, 2008
I don’t get to vote for President this primary season. I live in Michigan. The party leaders (both here and in D.C.) couldn’t get their act together, and thus our votes will not be counted.
So, if you live in Pennsylvania, can you do me a favor? Will you please cast my vote — and yours — on Tuesday for Senator Barack Obama?
I haven’t spoken publicly ’til now as to who I would vote for, primarily for two reasons: 1) Who cares?; and 2) I (and most people I know) don’t give a rat’s ass whose name is on the ballot in November, as long as there’s a picture of JFK and FDR riding a donkey at the top of the ballot, and the word “Democratic” next to the candidate’s name.
Seriously, I know so many people who don’t care if the name under the Big “D” is Dancer, Prancer, Clinton or Blitzen. It can be Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Barry Obama or the Dalai Lama.
Well, that sounded good last year, but over the past two months, the actions and words of Hillary Clinton have gone from being merely disappointing to downright disgusting. I guess the debate last week was the final straw. I’ve watched Senator Clinton and her husband play this game of appealing to the worst side of white people, but last Wednesday, when she hurled the name “Farrakhan” out of nowhere, well that’s when the silly season came to an early end for me. She said the “F” word to scare white people, pure and simple. Of course, Obama has no connection to Farrakhan. But, according to Senator Clinton, Obama’s pastor does — AND the “church bulletin” once included a Los Angeles Times op-ed from some guy with Hamas! No, not the church bulletin!
This sleazy attempt to smear Obama was brilliantly explained the following night by Stephen Colbert. He pointed out that if Obama is supported by Ted Kennedy, who is Catholic, and the Catholic Church is led by a Pope who was in the Hitler Youth, that can mean only one thing: OBAMA LOVES HITLER!
Yes, Senator Clinton, that’s how you sounded. Like you were nuts. Like you were a bigot stoking the fires of stupidity. How sad that I would ever have to write those words about you. You have devoted your life to good causes and good deeds. And now to throw it all away for an office you can’t win unless you smear the black man so much that the superdelegates cry “Uncle (Tom)” and give it all to you.
But that can’t happen. You cast your die when you voted to start this bloody war. When you did that you were like Moses who lost it for a moment and, because of that, was prohibited from entering the Promised Land.
How sad for a country that wanted to see the first woman elected to the White House. That day will come — but it won’t be you. We’ll have to wait for the current Democratic governor of Kansas to run in 2016 (you read it here first!).
There are those who say Obama isn’t ready, or he’s voted wrong on this or that. But that’s looking at the trees and not the forest. What we are witnessing is not just a candidate but a profound, massive public movement for change. My endorsement is more for Obama The Movement than it is for Obama the candidate.
That is not to take anything away from this exceptional man. But what’s going on is bigger than him at this point, and that’s a good thing for the country. Because, when he wins in November, that Obama Movement is going to have to stay alert and active. Corporate America is not going to give up their hold on our government just because we say so. President Obama is going to need a nation of millions to stand behind him.
I know some of you will say, ‘Mike, what have the Democrats done to deserve our vote?’ That’s a damn good question. In November of ’06, the country loudly sent a message that we wanted the war to end. Yet the Democrats have done nothing. So why should we be so eager to line up happily behind them?
I’ll tell you why. Because I can’t stand one more friggin’ minute of this administration and the permanent, irreversible damage it has done to our people and to this world. I’m almost at the point where I don’t care if the Democrats don’t have a backbone or a kneebone or a thought in their dizzy little heads. Just as long as their name ain’t “Bush” and the word “Republican” is not beside theirs on the ballot, then that’s good enough for me.
I, like the majority of Americans, have been pummeled senseless for 8 long years. That’s why I will join millions of citizens and stagger into the voting booth come November, like a boxer in the 12th round, all bloodied and bruised with one eye swollen shut, looking for the only thing that matters — that big “D” on the ballot.
Don’t get me wrong. I lost my rose-colored glasses a long time ago.
It’s foolish to see the Democrats as anything but a nicer version of a party that exists to do the bidding of the corporate elite in this country. Any endorsement of a Democrat must be done with this acknowledgement and a hope that one day we will have a party that’ll represent the people first, and laws that allow that party an equal voice.
Finally, I want to say a word about the basic decency I have seen in Mr. Obama. Mrs. Clinton continues to throw the Rev. Wright up in his face as part of her mission to keep stoking the fears of White America. Every time she does this I shout at the TV, “Say it, Obama! Say that when she and her husband were having marital difficulties regarding Monica Lewinsky, who did she and Bill bring to the White House for ‘spiritual counseling?’ THE REVEREND JEREMIAH WRIGHT!”
But no, Obama won’t throw that at her. It wouldn’t be right. It wouldn’t be decent. She’s been through enough hurt. And so he remains silent and takes the mud she throws in his face.
That’s why the crowds who come to see him are so large. That’s why he’ll take us down a more decent path. That’s why I would vote for him if Michigan were allowed to have an election.
But the question I keep hearing is… ‘can he win? Can he win in November?’ In the distance we hear the siren of the death train called the Straight Talk Express. We know it’s possible to hear the words “President McCain” on January 20th. We know there are still many Americans who will never vote for a black man. Hillary knows it, too. She’s counting on it.
Pennsylvania, the state that gave birth to this great country, has a chance to set things right. It has not had a moment to shine like this since 1787 when our Constitution was written there. In that Constitution, they wrote that a black man or woman was only “three fifths” human. On Tuesday, the good people of Pennsylvania have a chance for redemption.
His name, from the start, was “Phillie Willie Mose” [after my Pop Phil Niss, his mom’s grandfather Phil, Willie Mays, and Mose Allison], although his terrific mutha, Diane Satin, and I formally named him Phillip Satin Tyko. To us he is, and always has been, “The Boy.” Today he comes of age. What a mindfuck. He can, and will, vote this November. He describes himself as a “life long Democrat [thank gawd] and aspiring film maker.” He thinks “outside of the box,” loves animals, and hates this war.
First Jewish President? It could happen, but I doubt if he’d wear a necktie or socks to the inauguration.
Prez or not, I’m a very proud, and happy dad.
Remember this story the next time someone who knows nothing and cares less tries to make your life miserable with negativity.
A woman was at her hairdresser’s getting her hair styled for a trip towith her husband. She mentioned the trip to the hairdresser, who responded: ? Why would anyone want to go there? It’s crowded and dirty. You’re crazy to go to . So, how are you getting there?’
We’re taking Continental’ was the reply. ‘We got a great rate!’
‘Continental?’ exclaimed the hairdresser. ‘That’s a terrible airline. Their planes are old, their flight attendants are ugly and they’re always late. So where are you staying in?’
‘We’ll be at this exclusive little place over on Rome’scalled Teste.’
‘Don’t go any further. I know that place. Everybody thinks its gonna be something special and exclusive, but it’s really a dump, the worst hotel in the city! The rooms are small, the service is surly, and they’re overpriced. So, whatcha’ doing when you get there?’
‘We’re going to go to see theand we hope to see the Pope.’
‘That’s rich,’ laughed the hairdresser. ‘You and a million other people trying to see him. He’ll look the size of an ant. Boy, good luck on this lousy trip of yours. You’re going to need it.’
A month later, the woman again came in for a hairdo. The hairdresser asked her about her trip to. ‘It was wonderful,’ explained the woman, ‘not only were we on time in one of Continentals brand new planes, but it was overbooked and they bumped us up to first class. The food and wine were wonderful, and I had a handsome 28-year-old steward who waited on me hand and foot.
And the hotel was great! They’d just finished a $5 million remodeling job and now it’s a jewel, the finest hotel in the city. They, too, were overbooked, so they apologized and gave us their owner’s suite at no extra charge!’
‘Well,’ muttered the hairdresser, ‘that’s all well and good, but I know you didn’t get to see the Pope.’
‘Actually, we were quite lucky, because as we toured the, a Swiss Guard tapped me on the shoulder, and explained that the Pope likes to meet some of the visitors, and if I’d be so kind as to step into his private room and wait, the Pope would personally greet me. Sure enough, Five minutes later, the Pope walked through the door and shook my hand! I knelt down and he spoke a few words to me.’
‘Oh really! What’d he say?’
He said: ‘Where’d you get that shitty hairdo?’
The New York Mets lost one of our own
BOCA RATON, Fla. — Tommy Holmes, who hit in 37 consecutive games in 1945 to set a modern National League record that stood until it was broken by Pete Rose, died Monday. He was 91.
Tommy Holmes had a .302 batting average, 88 home runs and 581 RBIs in 11 years in the majors.
Holmes died of natural causes at an assisted living facility, daughter Patricia Stone said.
Holmes’ hitting streak came while he played for the Boston Braves and is the ninth longest in major-league history. Rose hit in 44 in a row in 1978, the post-1900 NL mark.
In 11 years in the majors with the Braves and Brooklyn Dodgers, Holmes had a .302 batting average, 88 home runs and 581 RBIs. From 1973 to 2003, he worked for the New York Mets as director of amateur baseball relations.
“Tommy Holmes was one of our sport’s truest gentlemen,” said Jeff Wilpon, chief operating officer of the Mets. “His passion for the game and up-and-coming players, along with his 30-year association with our franchise, was unsurpassed.”
Stone said her father loved baseball and watched games until the end of his life.
“When he played baseball, there would be days he’d leave early and he’d pass children playing and he’d stop to play with them,” she said.
Besides his daughter, Holmes is survived by his wife of 67 years, the former Lillian Petterson; a son, Tommy Holmes Jr.; two sisters; two grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.
Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press