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Wednesday, September 16, 2009


So I woke up this morning after Phillies win 5-0 with a CG by Lee sprinkled in. 9 strikouts, 3 walks. AND OF COURSE PEOPLE ARE COMPLAINING. I should have known, I swear only here.

I am thinking to myself, What went wrong that people don't like?

- Did we not beat the Nationals by enough runs, therefore it doesn't really count as a win?

-Did the pitcher not pitch well enough?

-Did the offense not hit well?

-Are we not still up 8 games in the loss column?

No, people are complaining because Cliff Lee was left in to pitch the full game instead of putting the bullpen in for some time. Last I checked the bullpen was reeling and needed time off. Then people are complaining about Madson warming up when not being used. Big deal, he threw 20 pitches in the bullpen. I am positive that won't make his arm fall off. Sometimes BLers just need to enjoy the game. But After last night's thread, I am positive also that "enjoying" a Phillies game will never happen here.

Phillies don't have anyone tall enough to win MVP.

USA Today ha an short article on playoff contenders and their flaws:

This MVP chatter isn't happening here this year because the Phillies this year has 4 guys that have 30+ HR and all 4 of them are on pace to hit 100+ RBI's.

Pujols is always going to MVP candidate because he carries a majority of his teams offense. Pujols is the ONLY player on his roster that is going to have 30+ HR and only 1 other player is going to have 100+ RBI's this year.

Pujols will win it most years because simply Utley and Werth have been chipping away at Howard's numbers in the past. But now with Ibanez here, there is no way possible with 4 sluggers that any Phillie will put up the numbers compared to Pujols to steal the MVP crown.

cipper: the Giants just activated Randy Johnson and will use him in the bullpen. Randy is 6'10". Conincidence?

How did Chooch get his nickname?

Pete: CLEARLY not a coincidence. I also hear he'll play defensive sub at 3rd in later innings to guard the line.

Shawn: I once heard Chooch got his nick name because they actually call him "coochie", which isn't exactly family friendly on the TV or Radio, so Chooch I believe came around from that.

Shawn: He seems to say "CHUCHA" a lot which sounds like "Chooch". The term is derived from the Italian ciuccio and means dummy.

Clipper: "coochie"?? Are you serious. That is so wrong it isn't even funny. Also, the height thing is getting old.

mvp - explain to us all how having better players around you hurts your production, with the traditional categories like BA, HR, and RBI in mind. You'd think Pujols' .331/.449/.690, 47 HR, 126 RBI line despite being surrounded by a bunch of guys with OPS under .800 would be a testament to just how good he is. How do Utley and Ibanez HR decrease the number of HR Howard can hit?

Last year the Cards were 2nd in the NL in OPS. Pujols' numbers were not much different: .357/.462/.653. His production has been in the same ballpark since 2001, and I'm sure the Cards lineups has varied in that time, as it has from last year to this year.

Sophist: Not strictly HR's more on the RBI front. But the point I am making is with 4 guys with similiar HR and RBI numbers then how is the public suppossed to sort through and see who is the MVP on the team let alone for the league?

I know that it's hard to believe, but I agree 100% with MVPTommy's post at the top of this thread. I love complete game shutouts and so does Lee. Cliff has 6 complete games this year, trailing only Halladay's 7 by 1.

When the Phillies win by having their pitcher pitch a complete game shutout, I am completely happy. No complaints from me.

Now tonight's game is scary. I am concerned about Blanton. He didn't look good in his last outing. Let's hope that a steady diet of gNats will be just what the doctor ordered to cure Blanton's pitching ills.

Lake Fred: I hope Blanton reverts back to his old self. BUT his career 1-3 with a 7.46 ERA and 1.41 SO/BB against the Nats scares me.

T-Mac and his in-game interviews normally drive me a little nuts, but I enjoyed seeing Taylor & Drabek on the game last night.
Well spoken and interesting. Glad they are still in the organization after all the trade deadline speculation.

I'm just repeating what I told from a buddy that works with the Oriols... He heard and asked what it was from and that was the answer he got when he was in Philly.

Pujols hits third in the Cards lineup, so the RBI opportunity comparison is to Utley.

Pujols: 171 PA, .368/.567/.726, 75 RBI
Utley: 177 PA, .295/.429/.460, 53 RBI

Note the similar number of opportunities and the wildly differing results.

Men on Base
Pujols: 307 PA, .332/.505/.650, 96 RBI
Utley: 281 PA, .314/.445/.547, 70 RBI

The lineup was pretty damn good when Howard won his MVP in 06, though maybe not as gaudy in terms of traditional categories as this one. Howard differentiated himself by putting up Pujols-like numbers. The Phils have two MVP in the past 4 years, testament to the fact that sportswriters haven't had a problem picking one from the many. I think if Utley breaks Rogers Hornsby's record for most HR by a 2nd in a season, he'd put himself in the conversation say. For now, his production doesn't compare to Albert's.

However, to piggyback my Blanton comment. Livan Hernandez is 1-1 with a 7.84 this year against the Phillies with a 0.80 SO/BB ratio. So I think you have to take the over in tonight's game.

"The lineup was pretty damn good when Howard won his MVP in 06, though maybe not as gaudy in terms of traditional categories as this one"

That is my WHOLE point and all I am trying to say....

I thought the Chooch nickname came from a comment a team member (don't remember who) thought Ruiz looked like a train when running the bases. You know, "choo choo choo..." and it became Chooch.

Re: Taylor and Drabek interviewed during the game last night. Made me excited for when they join the big Phils. But I wouldn't be a Phillie fan unless I had something to complain about. When Drabek was asked which player, other than his father, he liked to watch the most, he said, "Roger Clemens." The poltically correct thing would be to mention a Phillie, and one that isn't a punk/doper. But I guess my judgment is clouded because I always wished someone would punch Clemens in the neck (if they could find it.)

Reading Metsblog, Matt Cerrone thinks the Mets need to take a good, hard look at Carlos Zambrano this offseason as a compliment to Johan Santana.

A move like that has Minaya written all over it. Just another reason why the Mets are the Mets and the Phillies are the Phillies.

Kutztown- The kid is from TX and his father was a Pirate- I guess I didn't expect him to be a childhood Phillies fan- besides I like athletes who say what they think instead of what they think you want to hear.
So I'm OK with his answer not being an ex-Phillie.

MVP - Howard hit 58 HR in 2006. Differentiating himself from a bunch of 30+ HR hitters was not a problem. Howard has 38 HR this year, a pace for 43. Pujols already has 47. The lineups that sports two past MVP were nearly as good as this one. The difference wasn't the supporting cast but the years the MVP had: Howard's power numbers (as well as solid slash lines) and Rollins HR, 3B, 2B, steals, etc.. Rollins' year was nearly unprecedented historically.

If Utley is going to win an MVP, or if any of these guys wants to repeat, they need (another) break-out year. Pujols is just too good. Rollins and Howard beat Pujols, deservedly or not, despite the crowded field of colleagues, because they had break-out years. Not 35 HR, 110 RBI years.

What Phillie would Drabek have mentioned, Tyler Green?

Pedro could be a candidate for comeback player of the year, to be fair about individual accomplishments on the team this season.

I was reading an article on this subject earlier, saying how hard it would be for Utley to ever win the league MVP. Guys that do everything pretty well are way undervalued compared to guys who do one thing exceptionally well. 2006 aside, Utley has been a better offensive player overall (not to mention defense) than Howard yet has finished behind him in MVP voting and likely will continue to unless he has a really amazing year.

Chooch was Chooch way before the mispelled Chooch appeared on TV. Where'd the name come from? I don't know. For me, I first saw it on Beerleaguer. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Brad Lidge = come back down player of the year.

I hate being critical of the guy since he was a big piece in the WFC team, but he certainly made lofty expectations of him self with last years campaign that he just can't live up to.

I was impressed with the interviews with Taylor and Drabek as well last night. Drabek was a little nervous but both sounded like very intelligent, well spoken individuals. That leads to a larger point about the team for me.

Not only do we have a competitive team. Not only do we have a pretty decent farm system that is gaining some steam. But we also have a team that is full of guys easy to like and is run like a professional organization. You can quibble with things like the amount of money they spend or personnel decisions they make but top to bottom this organization is filled with character guys from management to the field.

In the long run that will be a boon for the team. When the Phillies look for free agents they are looking a price obviously, but also at a guy who will fit the team dynamic. That's why we signed Ibanez and not a guy like Mliton Bradley. It's also why are team is not polluted by guys like Elijah Dukes who are immensely talented but won't reach their potential because they are too concernced with their ridiculous extracurricular activity. The biggest potential head case we have is maybe Jayson Werth, but the guy flat out produces.

But knowing they are coming to a well run organization will persuade some free agents to sign here over time. It is a really good time to be a Phillies fan.

What makes Jason Werth a head case? Just curious.

Seems like my earlier comment got deleted for some reason, but I can't really argue with Pujlos as MVP. Makes sense..

Loctastic: Some people get on his case for partying too hard sometimes and letting it affect his defensive abilities.

I don't think it's a big issue and find it a little overblown but on here you need to cover all bases or someone will jump in on one little word you say and ignore the larger point.

NL Rank for OPS by Position:
1B- Howard (.902) 8th
2B- Utley (.952) 1st
3B- Feliz (.704) 8th
SS- Rollins (.702) 8th
LF- Ibanez (.912) 3rd
CF- Victorino (.825) 2nd
RF- Werth (.893) 4th
C- Ruiz (.790) would be 2nd if he had enough at bats to qualify

Utley is the sh*t. He leads all NL 2nd basemen by at least 100 points in OPS. Once again Howard's OPS is far from the cream of the crop in the NL for first basemen. Hard to believe Raul still has a higher OPS than Ryan. Chooch has been killer lately.

Like I said, I think my judgment was clouded re: Drabek's pick of Clemens because I don't particularly like Clemens. If he had said Randy Johnson or Greg Maddux, even though they aren't current or ex-Phillies, I don't think it would have bothered me.

Sorry to divert.... back to discussions about MVP, etc. Interesting (and not in the Clout sense.)

JA Happ listed as probable starter for Friday vs. the Braves.
That's good news.

After listening to Taylor last night I would have to say that I am starting to develop a "man crush"

The reason no one on the Phillies is an MVP candidate is not because there are 4 different guys having big years; it's because none of those 4 guys is having remotely as good a year as Pujols. And the reason none of those 4 guys is having remotely as good a year as Pujols is not because they're all taking away each other's stats; it's because none of those 4 guys is remotely as good as Pujols. Nor is anyone else in the National League.

>What makes Jason Werth a head case?

Well, he did show up in spring training looking like he didn't stop holding a bottle in his hand since the parade...

There was the MMA debacle (he couldnt play (hungover?), Vic got tape-measure tossed, and Werth looked like ... a hungover guy in center field?

and as for MVP - I would put money on Vic getting an MVP before Utley.

Post season rotation and bullpen: Who's in and who's out?

The rotation as I see it almost has to be Lee, Pedro, Cole and Blanton.

You would have to assume that Happ, Moyer, Madson, Park, Condrey and Myers would be in the pen.

Do they burn a spot with Lidge? Did Walker demonstrate that he would be an asset in October? Would they go with a third potential innings eater in the pen in Kendrick?

Where do we stand today, and what would change that between now and the end of the regular season?

I think Werth got that knock from that 24 hr span when he went to the UFC match on a Sat night, then made a few bum plays during the 1pm game the next day. I hadn't heard any other anecdotes about him though.

My wife is a huge Werth fan, I know she'd love any and all Werth gossip.

So we are all in agreement I think that Pujols should and will be NL MVP. Now the AL MVP can go different directions. Do you go higher averages and vote Mauer, or go his teammate Morneau. The only other "real" options are Teixeira or Lind. If anybody else has any others, candidates would be appreciated. Right now I think you might just have to go the Tex route.

Question: You are going to split up Lee and Hamels? That is insane if you are. Rotation will be Lee, Hamels, Pedro, "Bam-Bam". The rest of your questions are legitimate and I am sure Charlie isn't even sure yet.

Locastic: Werth is a well known partier around the Olde City and Rittenhouse scene. Also, him and Vic have been known to enjoy the other "cigar". But as long as he cranks out 30+ HR and 100 RBI's, he can get blitzed evernight for all I care.

By the way, I keep hearing that our magic number is 12 -- meaning that any combination of 12 Phillies wins and Marlins losses & we clinch. In fact, I just read this very claim this morning on Lauber's blog. But it's really not accurate, since the Braves are only a half game behind the Marlins & tied in the loss column. That means, a Marlins loss, by itself, does not reduce our magic number. Our magic number only gets reduced if the Phillies win or BOTH Florida and Atlanta lose.

So it's not quite accurate to say the magic number is 12. It's more accurate to think of us in 2 separate races against 2 different foes, with the magic number 12 as to each of them.

BAP- I think that's why MLB uses E# for the contenders rather than Magic # for the leaders.

BAP: Ok, so the Magic number in the end is still 12.

"as for MVP - I would put money on Vic getting an MVP before Utley."

I'll take that bet and I'll give you 20 to 1 odds.

"and as for MVP - I would put money on Vic getting an MVP before Utley."

Can Joe's post stating this please replace my error concerning height of a 3rd baseman as the most ridiculed statement made on this site.

Thank You,

mvp: Well, no. My point was that a "magic number," by definition, only applies vis-a-vis one other team. The Yankees have a magic number of 12 in the true sense, since there is only one other team that is mathematically capable of catching them. The Phillies have 2 separate magic numbers of 12 against 2 separate rivals. That is quite different from what we traditionally think of as a magic number. So, when Lauber wrote that the playoffs will be upon us "with any combination of 12 Phillies wins or Marlins losses," he was mistaken.

It's is BLer Trivia Question of the day time! This question involved this exact thread. And please no cheating!

In the past 20 years, Who are the only 4 guys to be awarded the NL or AL MVP awards WITHOUT have at a .300 BA?

Answer revealed at a later time. The answer may be surprising to some.

MVP: If I were you I would wear that Tall 3b comment as a badge of honor. You post all the time on this site and by doing so a silly comment will be made. Embrace it because I do not think it will ever die.

BAP: Yea, he was wrong when he wrote that. But if he included Braves in that mix then he would have been correct. Since usually it is indeed between 2 teams, it is easy to follow. But now since it is actually 3 teams it can be a bit confusing. But say the Phillies win tonight, Marlins win and the Braves lose. Then our magic number will only be listed as 11. NOT as 11/10 to include both the Braves AND Marlins.

Is Utley tall enough to be MVP? I mean, yeah Jimmy won it at his height but that was unique circumstances. Both Pujols and Howard are significantly taller than Chase...thus part of the reason he has been shut out.

Okay that's the last time I'll tweak you on the height thing.

Vic will never win an MVP. Utley has a legit shot every year as he's a top player in the game.

Pujols will win the NL MVP without question and Teixeira will likely win the AL as he has the big HR/RBI numbers.

Mauer SHOULD win the AL MVP though. His season is ridiculous, especially out of a catcher. The fact that Morneau was just shut down for the year kinda hurts his chances.

Correct. It would be listed as 11 under that scenario -- since it's always listed vis-a-vis the team currently in 2nd place. Likewise, if the Phillies win, the Braves win, & the Marlins lose, it would also be listed as 11 in tomorrow's paper, though it would actually be 10 vis-a-vis Florida.

By the way, I hate the phrase "vis-a-vis," and all other Latin phrases. But "vis-a-vis" seems to be the phrase that best fits what I'm attempting to say.

Vic was also not supposed to be a major leaguer (rule 5, you know the story). When he first came up was a flash in the pan. Last year was supposed to be a career year. He was never supposed to make an All-Star team.

Disclaimer: I'm not agreeing that he'll win an mvp before Utley, but at the same time I'm not going to sell Vic short either. He's continued to produce and improve every year.

Remember he was supposed to be a low-ceiling player, but every year that ceiling has gone up. What is his true ceiling?

mvp - Yeah people flipped out about unduly about Lee (frankly the only really foolish thing was warming up Madson in a 5-0 game with 1 out in the 9th).

Right or wrong, expectations from the general fan have been raised considerably given the success this team has had the past two years. Happens in sports and in almost every other area of life.

Just the way it is especially when you have people who follow something fairly closely, know a fair degree about it, and have a forum which allows them to express a strong opinion with some of the other social norms that limit such expression.

I may complain about something in the game/team but it doesn't mean I don't appreciate what I see or give credit where credit is due. Majority of the posters on here are the same to varying degrees and police themselves accordingly. One reason why this blog works so well.

As for this year, I will be more than happy even if the Phils get bounced 3-0 in the opening round if they win the NL East and win 90+ games. That is a successful season and it was fun to watch this team a majority of the time this season with some notable exceptions in the 9th inning.

***What is his true ceiling?****

5'10"...maybe 5'11". I think he's pretty complete at this point. His BB levels might increase as he continues to learn patience but physically he's probably at his peak.

Okay, I swear I'll stop about the height thing.

Kruk -

Exactly. Vic has been misunderestimated many a times, by many a person. Hell, he led the team in BA last year. He was a terror in the playoffs.

20-1 odds? come on. that's just ridiculous. if Vic's baseball IQ improves a little, he would be even more of a monster than he is today.

BAP. Do you really hate visa-versa? Ad infinitum?

b_a_p: Won't professing a hatred of all Latin phrases in a public forum such as this get you disbarred?

here you go loctastic, for the wife. not very exciting, but it's something:
apparently he likes Ed Hardy hats. whatever that means.

Maybe i am the only Pujols-hater out there.
I wish MLB would catch up the undetectable roids Pujols takes and expose him for the fraud he is...
He is on a team managed by the most notorious roid enabler.
He works out with Mark Maquire in the offseason.
I never saw a Dominican that huge before. Somethings just not right.

Alls I'm sayin...

Is everyone ready for the answers to my trivia question above:

In the past 20 years, Who are the only 4 guys to be awarded the NL or AL MVP awards WITHOUT having at least a .300 BA?

Answers: 1988 Kirk Gibson batted .290, 1989 Kevin Mitchell batted .291, 1992 Dennis Eckersley was a pitcher in AL, and 2007 Jimmy Rollins.

Out of 40 players, only 4 batted below .300. That is pretty amazing to me.

Wow, Kevin Mitchell ... there's a name I haven't seen/heard of in a long damn time.

G-town: Yea, Pablo Sandoval reminds me of a poor-man's Kevin Mitchell.

BAP: vis-a-vis is of french origin, not Latin. And why the hate for Latin?

mancrushing michael taylor is the most acceptable mancrushing I can think of.

G-Town: Actually, I subscribe to the view that legal writing which relies on Latin phrases is almost always BAD legal writing. There are a few "industry terms" (res judicata, stare decisis, sua sponte) where you can't really get around using the Latin phrase. But if you're just using Latin as a substitute for something that could be said just as easily in English, then you're just being pretentious -- and that pretentiousness distracts from whatever point you are trying to make.

Phlipper: Vice-versa is an English word. It's just of Latin origin. And "ad infinitum" is almost like American slang. No one uses the phrase in any kind of professional setting. If they do, they're guilty of bad writing.

Phillies Red: French, Spanish and all the Romance languages are descendants of Latin, so technically, you are both correct.

While there is no MVP talk, this is also the first season I can ever remember with the Phils where they a positional player a majority of the games and not end up being a huge weakness defensively or offensively

Even JRoll hasn't been horrendous offensively because of the power numbers and the upswing in his numbers since July 1st. Same with Ruiz who has had a very nice 2nd after his usual midseason doldrums for 6 weeks in June/early July.

That and for the 2nd year in a row this team has been very good offensively with almost no meaningful contributions from their minor league tools. Rarity you see a team this good offensively who doesn't have a younger bat come up from there system and give them a boost.

They didn't last year either on the pitching side of the equation but Happ has definitely filled that role this year.

PR: Hmm. I guess it IS French (although most French comes from Latin). But it makes no difference. My general observation was that there's rarely a need to use foreign phrases when the same point can be made in Englsh. "Vis-a-vis" basically means "as to" (i.e., the Phils' magic number is 12 games as to Florida). But, since Beerleager is not a professional context, and since everyone knows what it means, I broke my own rule and used it anyhow.

BAP -- I completely agree on latin. I'm a transactional lawyer and I almost never, ever see latin being used. Non-lawyers trying to sound like lawyers use it far more. You can make a document completely incomprehensible in english without ever having to resort to latin.

I did like a colleague's law firm which had "sometimes you win, sometimes you lose and sometimes you get rained out" in latin on the firm's softball t-shirts.

Speaking of odd stats:

- The Opening Day rotation of Hamels/Myers/Blanton/Moyer/Park has a whopping 37 wins (and I think 4 of those have come from these guys in relief).

- Happ/Lee/Pedro/Lopez have 25 wins by comparison.

Just goes to show you that the Opening Day rotation doesn't necessary mean all that much. If you would have told me that no one on the Opening Day rotation would likely win more than 12 games and that they would have maybe only 2 guys in double digit wins, I would have thought this team would have been decimated by injuries and shoddy starting pitching with a likely record around .500.

I'm well aware that romance languages come from Latin. But vis-a-vis is a french phrase.

"You can make a document completely incomprehensible in english without ever having to resort to latin."

The legal profession in a nutshell.

And one can always use "with respect to" or "in regards to" instead of vis-a-vis.

The amount of posters on here who are lawyers is crazy. Seems like at least a dozen semi-regular posters have a JD.

The technology profession makes the legal profession seem tame by comparison. Tech writing is some serious BS.

MG: You're not kidding. So, my question is...when my lawyer husband says how busy he is every day/night, is he completely full of crap or just somewhat full of crap (since so many lawyers have time to post here all day long)?

hh: Depends where he works & what kind of lawyer he is. If he works for a big firm and has huge billable hour requirements, he's not full of crap at all. If he's a trial lawyer and in the midst of trial, he's only somewhat full of crap. If he works for himself or for the government, and is not in the midst of a trial, he's completely, 100% full of crap.

Hope that answered your question. Here's your bill:

$300 X .1 hours = $30

Roy Halladay's birth name is Harry Leroy Halladay? No wonder he goes by Roy. Ugh.

hh - I think you know the answer already. He's merely prioritizing. Sorry.

Geez... How can you tell that the NL East race is (all but) over?

The guys on beerleaguer are talking about legal writing, the appropriateness of Latin in said writing, and the origin of words.

Can't we get anyone to complain about the Abreu trade? anything? Bueller?

curt: I'm really not sure what you're trying to say but if your point is that he'd rather stay at work than be home with his wife and son, then you couldn't be more wrong.

We all like to have moments away from our family and daily hectic routines, but this man has it pretty good. How many wives love sports as much (if mot more) than their husbands?

You can save this latin phrase for the Mets trolls, if they ever return.

Caesar si viveret, ad remum dareris (If Caesar were alive, you'd be chained to an oar).

Ultimately the appropriateness of utilizing Latin is an aesthetic matter. Consider the Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus. How much grander and more mysterious that is, as opposed to the dreary English (Philosophical Logic). Very much befitting the work's stark and semi-mystical content.

Joe: Yea no kidding. Even the always entertaining Ibanez vs. Burrell argument has been so one-sided, it isn't fun to debate anymore.

HH: Cliff Lee's birth name is Clifton Phifer Lee. Not much better.

joe - At least it beats the stereotype. Instead of a guy in his mom's basement it is a lawyer billing at $125+/hr writing on here instead.

If the Phillies are on national TV, I typically find out about it because the mrs. as already programmed it into the DVR reminder list. She's not even a baseball fan so you have to respect that. She'll typically mention "There's a game on tonight" to remind me as I usually forget (and end up watching on my laptop otherwise).

mvptommyd: Yeah, but Clifton Lee is still OK. Harry Halladay? That's just awful.

Mind you, I could live with it if he was in a Phillies uniform, but I just have a thing with the HH (even though I've been cursed with it myself through marriage).

hh - Just saying that a lawyer who is too busy to do what he really wants to do is probably well-positioned to solve the problem.

BAP - I don't get how you determine that vice versa is an English term.

I don't agree that ad infinitum couldn't properly be used in any professional writing (although there might not be much call for it to be used in legal writing).

And just looking at the V's I see a number of Latin terms that I wouldn't consider to be pretentious or an indication of poor writing: verbatum, versus, via

Not to mention, there are the abbreviations such as: i.e., and e.g., which qualify as Latin, and work quite well to make writing clear and concise.

Of course, you could say "in other words," and "for example," but I don't think that using abbreviations for the Latin is particularly pretentious.

And certainly, etc. goes in the same category.

Maybe you're a tad rigid there, BAP. As with the blanket determination that UC should have taken Lee out in the 9th last night because the game was well in hand?

An amazing bit of Halladay related trivia here. After beating the Yanks last nite, he is 18-6 vs. them,second highest(.750) winning pct. all time with at least 20 decisions. You will never guess who is #1 vs. Yanks. Answer in next post.

Argh there is such a legitmate Chase Utley MVP case, and this town can't produce a columnist or beat reporter to write it. Ryan Howard on the other hand should even be near the MVP discussion. His value is right there with all 3 outfielders, all of whom are worth roughly half as many wins as Utley. I guess the best thing to do is just appreciate the players and understand that the award system is so awful that Mauer and/or Greinke may not win the 2 AL awards when they are clearly the MVP/Cy Young.

Argh there is such a legitmate Chase Utley MVP case, and this town can't produce a columnist or beat reporter to write it. Ryan Howard on the other hand shouldn't even be near the MVP discussion. His value is right there with all 3 outfielders, all of whom are worth roughly half as many wins as Utley. I guess the best thing to do is just appreciate the players and understand that the award system is so awful that Mauer and/or Greinke may not win the 2 AL awards when they are clearly the MVP/Cy Young.

Thanks for the response re: carlos ruiz nickname. Although there may be no definitive answer to how his nickname came about, I can, without a doubt, get behind the name.


@bap -- instead of "vis-a-vis," try "wrt" (for "with respect to"). Or spell out "with respect to." Either way, not nearly so frilly as "vis-a-vis," you can almost type it without sticking your pinkie in the air, even.

HH is one of my favorite posters on here...she even threatened to give me spanish lessons once when I was butchering the language during the 'bastardo is awesome' days.

but I love the fact that both my wives (the ex and the current one) couldn't give a damn about sports. it's my thing. they have their things. it works for me.

if my history is any indication, i'll probably be shopping for a third wife sometime in the future. interviews will involve the question of how much they like sports, baseball and college hoops in particular. if they love it and watch it all the time, they are immediately escorted into the friend zone.

as far as occupations/professions go, I'd be fascinated to have a thread sometime in Dec/Jan dedicated to what all the people here who's 'IMO' I spend countless hours reading on a regular basis.

The intellect quotient on this site is leaps and bounds superior to that of most blogs, disintegrating (as someone mentioned already) the stereotype of the basement dweller.

I'm fond of the phrase 'it takes all kinds to make the world go round.' I'd be willing to bet that there's a veritable rotary club of occupations represented here on BL...

...and of course, what clout does for a living is beyond, well, interesting...

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