All posts by Matt Riebesell

Is the public ready for the return of a music icon?

Everyone shut the FRONT DOOR. I have some B.I.G. freakin news and it’s time to stop what you’re doing and pay some god damn attention to important shit that’s going down right in front of our very own eyes.

KESHA IS BACK AND BETTER THAN EVER. You heard me right jack knobs. She’s back and better than ever. And guess what. It may have taken her 5 years to put out her newest album, but Rome wasn’t built in a day you asshole. So cut her some slack and appreciate this shit because you are a communist if you didn’t sing along to TiK ToK, Your Love is My Drug, Die Young, Crazy Kids, We R Who We R, Blow, and my personal favorite Take it Off. Okay… maybe it was just me, but give her tunes a listen, they are fire. And just a reminder that her oldest album was released in 2010. Basically, she made middle schoolers feel like the most BAMF’ers in town at bar and bat mitzvahs.

But its 2017 so don’t just think that she won’t be good anymore because she dropped the $ in her name and replaced it with a more normal but boring “s”. Maybe she found herself. Maybe she can’t afford the $ no more after the 5 years off. Whatever the reason for abandoning the $ I am sure it was well thought out and a hard decision to make. Because Kesha doesn’t just do shit for no reason. And you BETTER respect that normal “s”.

So if you couldn’t tell already I am pretty passionate about this. Who tf can blame me though. Its Kesha. Listen to “Praying” from this new album and TRY not to cry. If you finish the song dry eyed you’re one of those cannibals (Ke$ha reference for the ignorant readers who don’t get the joke) who doesn’t tear up when you they almost don’t adopt J.P. in Angels in the Outfield.

But yea, Kesha is back, I hate you if you don’t think she is going to kill it. She’s a new woman and her voice is a medley between John Mayer, Celine Dion (only from “My Heart Will Go On”), and Jesus.

#DontStopMakeItPopDJBlowMySpeakersUp

Why NYC baseball should force a new City of Brotherly Love

New York City baseball is returning to its norm. The Yankees are making a playoff push and the Mets, well the Mets have come out screaming and shouting about this season being THE season. Of course, as the trade deadline approaches both the Mets and Yanks are in positions to make moves. The Mets as sellers, and the Yankees as buyers.

However, both of these franchises do not fit the stereotype that come along with the “buyer” or “seller” title. The Yankees sit with an absolutely LOADED farm system. But like any team with a gold mine in their minor league system, deciding to go all in and deal prospects is a hard and risky. The Mets on the other hand don’t want to admit that they are rebuilding. Selling off players who reached a World Series leaves a sour taste with the fans who want to believe the core pieces that got them to the 2015 Series will get them there again.

But I have an idea. An idea my non-Yankee-or-Met-fan-mind believes would put both teams in the right direction. Although I really don’t think this deal would ever occur, I am here to offer it. And I want feedback. If you hate it, rip me apart. If you love it, sign me to be your fantasy baseball team’s new GM. Either way, tell me what you think.

Image result for Sandy Alderson and Brian Cashman

So here it is, picture it being tweeted by Buster Onley or Kenny Rosenthal. Picture it popping up on your screen from the ESPN, Bleacher Report, and Fox Sports News apps all at the same time.

BREAKING: Yankees Acquire RHP Jacob deGrom and 1B/DH Lucas Duda. Mets Acquire MIF Starlin Castro, Prospects MIF Jorge Mateo, RHP Chance Adams and $4 Million

Now shut up and let that settle. Hear me out on why I think these are the pieces that would complete a fair trade which directs both ball clubs to the proper track.

Yanks, you’re adding exactly what you need. A guy with ace-quality stuff who has proven that he can not only pitch successfully in New York, but he can pitch successfully in the playoffs. deGrom is 3-1 in the postseason with a 2.88 ERA and 29 K. He could be the leader of a staff that is currently lead by a young rising star, which is okay… but risky. Take some of the load off of Sevvy, and make a  playoff rotation of deGrom, Severino, Sabathia, and Tanaka. That sounds a lot better than hearing the name Montgomery come from Joe Buck’s mouth come October. Plus, you have some control of deGrom. He doesn’t reach unrestricted free agency until 2021, and currently makes just over $4 mill. deGrom becoming the centerpiece of the rotation for 3 seasons means that is one less purchase the post-George ownership doesn’t have to make. When 2021 rolls around you wipe your hands clean being that deGrom will be going on his age 33 season. The timing is perfect. PLUS (most importantly, you and I both know you would rather have deGrom than Sonny Gray). Duda, on the other hand, is strictly a rental. Everyone is hyping up how amazing of a hitter he could be in Yankee Stadium. Why not take a low risk and find out. He may catch lighting in a bottle. Plus, it means you won’t have Garret Cooper and Chase Headley forced down your throats any longer.

Now for what you are giving up. Starlin is a loss, but saying he’s irreplaceable is an overstatement. Didi has the middle infield hatched down and has turned into a great player. Also 3 of the Yankees top 10 prospects are guys who could play second or short.  What I’m saying is Starlin wasn’t in your long term plan anyway, and your offense is explosive enough to make a playoff push without him. Mateo and Adams are the 2 pieces of this deal you should worry about the most, but if you want talent you have to give talent. Again, Mateo is more expendable than you think. Gleyber Torres is the future of the Yanks and him and Didi will be a force in 2018. And again, there are still 2 other prospects (Tyler Wade and Miguel Andujar) who are top 10 prospects at the ol’ farm. Young farm pitching is also deep for NYY, so even though Chance Adams is a great young pitcher, he’s 1) not a lefty, and 2) one of nine pitchers in their top 20 prospects. In my mind, sending Adams is worth the immediate results deGrom will add. Finally, the Yankees will send $4 mill to the Mets… ill get into that later.

As for the Metropolitans. In the big blue and orange eyes of Sandy Alderson he is able to complete this trade because he knows that even though fans will freak out,  the right move to make is one that helps next year’s squad. Watching deGrom become the pitcher he is today has been a thrill. But right now is a great time to sell him. He is doing great, and people forget he is already in his age 29 season even though he has only played 3 year in the bigs. The longer the Mets wait to trade him the more value will plummet because his time spent with another team decreases. Plus, when healthy the Mets staff is the one rotation in the majors who could handle losing their number 2 starter, especially when receiving Adams. Getting rid of Duda should be EASY. He is a free agent at the end of the season and at this point nothing he does in a Mets uniform will ever be remembered or meaningful.

But think about what you are receiving Mets fans… Starlin could be a great middle infield partner for Neil Walker in 2018 if Walker is resigned. If not, Starlin can fit right in at second. Then, in 2019 how about sliding Castro to 3rd, moving T.J. Rivera to first, and having Mateo and current Mets prospect Amed Rosario mature at short and second together. That is an infield which certainly will produce better defensive and offensive numbers than the little league infield they are running out there currently. So that is my pitch for how Mateo and Castro will play out and impact you. Defensive improvement, offensive improvement. Castro immediately and Mateo in 2018. No doubt about it. Adams is the player who can get to deGrom’s current level by 2019. He’s got the stuff to have a ceiling of potential that is deGrom-esque. Syndergaard, Matz, Wheeler, Adams, and Lugo/Montero/Pill… sounds pretty sick right? Finally, that 4 million dollars. What could that possibly be for? To buyout the club option the team has on Jose Reyes so they never have to see his face again. The man can’t field, is a cancer in the clubhouse, makes way too much money, and is just clogging up the roster. Also, he has hit .333 in July… and still is hitting .229 on the season in 332 at bats. The buyout is $4 million on Reyes and If the Yanks cover at least $2 mill I would accept the offer.

No more than 7 images from any single MLB game, workout, activity or event may be used (including online and on apps) while that game, activity or event is in progress.

So that’s it… Like I said, tell me how you feel about it. Are Yankee fans willing to give up good players at positions they are deep at to gain 2 guys who can not only get you to the playoffs, but help make a run in the playoffs? Are Mets fans willing to admit this year just isn’t their year, but actually put themselves back on the map for maybe 2018 but certainly 2019? Like I started this article with… there a 99% chance this trade won’t be a thought in Brian Cashman nor Sandy Alderson’s minds, but it would be pretty cool if it did.

El Gary needs to take an El Seat

Is this title terrible… absolutely.

Let’s shoot this year’s Home Run Derby straight… there is going to be some absolute POWER. Bombs will be dropped, balls will be punished, and I’m setting the over/under of fans leaving the ballpark with a black-eye at 4.5. But with that said… the MLB mishandled this year’s selection of home run hitters.

Now listen, I will be the first to admit, this year has been historic for home run hitting and there are a lot of dudes who deserve the nod to participate. But the MLB (and even our own beloved Stanzo) fell victim to an absolute plague… getting caught up with the New York Yankees. So now let me take a hot second to respond to our boy Stanz the Manz about why Gary Sanchez does NOT belong in this year’s Home Run Derby. Do me a favor Yankee fans… get rid of your ego’s for one second, look me in the eye, and admit it. Admit that Gary Sanchez should not be in this year’s Home Run Derby. His 13 home runs are not worthy at this point in the season. Here’s why. I get that he was hurt and that he could have more… but he doesn’t. The same reason applies why Didi shouldn’t make the All-Star team. Unfortunately, injuries do count against a player when it comes to the ASG and HRD. And it is such a Yankee fan thing to do to bring up what the team and their players have done in previous years but relax. The 2017 HRD literally has the year 2017 in the name of the event. There is a reason for that… because it takes 2017 stats and performance into account. Not 2016. Not 2009. And not 1927. Also… this competition is not for the big market teams to stomp all over the small market franchises. I don’t care who the fans want to see. Yankee fans already have Judge to cheer on and he should hit enough to home runs to leave a wet stain on all of your underwear… but why don’t small market teams fans deserve an equal opportunity for dirty laundry?

Image result for logan morrison

The competition should have nothing to do with whether I have heard of a player, root for a player, or if the MLB will make money off of a player. I want the best home run hitters of the current year squaring off. This year whether you like it or not, guys like Eric Thames and Logan Morrison fit into to that category. Maybe Gary will have the numbers for next year, or maybe every year for the next 10 years. But not this year. And it is not Sanchez’s fault… I repeat, GARY SANCHEZ IS NOT TO BLAME FOR BEING ASKED TO PARTICIPATE IN THE HOME RUN DERBY, but the MLB has to FITFO and realize that there are 72 players with more home runs than Gary Sanchez right now, and 50% deserve to be there more than he does.

But Yankee fans, I’m not just hating on you clowns. I will even go a step farther and say that Charlie Blackmon, my man crush, doesn’t belong in the Derby. Not this year at least. The man has 17 jacks, and although his beard should count toward 3 more home runs that still doesn’t put him in the top 10 this season.

Image result for charlie blackmon

Logan Morrison and Eric Thames are massive snubs from the competition. And what is even better is that they have both spoken out about not receiving invitations. Thames took more of a comical route. After all, this guy was the Aaron Judge of April. He was this year’s version of every annoying stat cruncher’s comment that says “at this pace Eric Thames is on pace to hit 1,928.7 home runs this year! WOW”.  In my opinion, the headline of a Barstool Sports article worded the snub of Thames best: “Eric Thames Not Getting Invited To The Home Run Derby Is An Absolute Fucking Travesty”

Morrison on the other hand was… well… pissed. He actually called out the league for selecting Sanchez instead of him. Logan is absolutely right. Maybe a little sassy, but what he is saying makes total sense. And Morrison said it best when he was asked about if he thought the big market vs. small market team rivalry had anything to do with the snub.

http://www.espn.com/video/clip?id=19835104

If playing for the Rays isn’t bad enough, Morrison’s one opportunity to actually have some fun was fittingly, but unfortunately ripped away by none other than a Yankee. Personally, I think the media set him up to sound bad, but I commend Morrison for saying Gary is a great player, and acknowledging that it is not Sanchez’s fault he was selected, rather a blunder by the MLB.

Will the Home Run Derby still be exciting? Yes. Will Judge punish baseballs? Yes. Will the MLB lose anything from not including two players from small market teams? Probably not.  But the MLB botched this one. Plain and simple. MLB… You are better than that.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Another Champion Goes Into the Books for the Greatest Playoff Tournament There is in Sports

Wow…

That’s all that can really be said after another absolutely magnificent College World Series. And I was one who thought the 2016 Coastal Carolina comeback couldn’t be topped, but man did the 2017 tournament showcase so many amazing aspects about college baseball on and off the field.

Personally, I think one of the most moving moments was even before the final 8 teams secured their spots in Omaha. 64 teams played in 16 different regionals with the winner of each regional squaring off in a 3 game series dubbed the “super regional”. One of these super regional matchups that caught the attention of some baseball fans was the Florida State – Sam Houston State super regional. Like many of you, I had never heard a peep about Sam Houston State previous to this year, and the games and line scores isn’t exactly what made this matchup memorable. Sam Houston lost the series in two games. Game 1’s score was 7-6 and then in game two they got their doors blown off 19-0. The press conference following game 2… in a word… chilling. It gave a sense of what it means to be a team and a family, what the sacrifice of such a team is like, and what it takes to be a true winner. What may be shocking to many is that all of this was spoken by the losing teams coach. And if you haven’t already and you’re a sports fan (which you should be if you are on this blog… if you’re not a sports fan and you have read this much gtfo of my article) this stuff is must watch (and conveniently right below).

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sEPNkUrwS7U

Then, right before the 8 team tournament was about to begin the 1-seed, Oregon State, suffered a pretty big blow off the field. A Beavers’ top pitcher who was leading the 54-4 team had sex crime charges reach the public. After a couple of days of speculation before the tournament kicked off, the team and pitcher decided it was best for him not to participate in the College World Series.

When the tournament kicked off the play didn’t let the fans down either. Teams like Florida State, Cal State Fullerton, and Texas A&M who weren’t even ranked on certain polls were some of the final 8 teams left to fight for a national championship. A few of the most intriguing matchups were Oregon State against LSU and Florida against TCU. Both matchups had 3 games apiece and both matchups also ended in a double elimination game. Oregon State won the first matchup between them and LSU sending LSU to the loser’s bracket. LSU then had to complete the impossible… defeat Oregon St. 2 games in a row to make it to the CWS Final. A feat that seemed highly unlikely considering Oregon hadn’t lost 2 consecutive games all season. In 2 games that featured some wild defense, a few sick dingers, and some controversial calls LSU came advanced. A lot of the same could be said about the Florida TCU matchup. The main difference was that that Florida jumped to the 1-0 series lead before TCU answered back in a game that many thought would carry over into game 3. TCU put together a 9-2 win in game 2 and their whole team effort stood out. However, Florida punched their ticket into the Final with a 3-0 win in game 3.

The Florida v. LSU Final was set, and all that the fans had to do was sit back, relax, and enjoy the excellence that was about to come. Actually, if you are an LSU fan you also probably threw some garbage on the field, remotes at your television, and tantrums to your mother at some point during the series because you are uneducated about the rules of the game and thought you were getting screwed on every close play. Game one was and down to the wire with Florida eventually pulling away with the 4-3 win. Florida’s Brady Singer fired 7 solid innings, always pitching with a lead. Singer’s performance was one of my favorite of the tournament throwing 112 pitches and truly emptying the tank. It wasn’t a perfect outing, Singer gave up 8 hits and 3 runs, but his 12 strikeouts were dominating and you could tell that he left all that he had on the field.

Game 2 may have ended with a 6-1 score, giving Florida their first National Championship in school history, but the craziness to get to that point started in the 7th inning. With runners on first and third, no outs, and down by one LSU hit a chopper to the right side which was fielded, tossed to second, and thrown to first completing the double play – but also tying the game. Immediately after the slide at second, the second base umpire CORRECTLY called a dead ball caused by a reckless slide into second base, called the runner out at first, and sent the runner who originally scored back to third. And the game remained 2-1 with two outs. The next batter lined out squashing the LSU rally. In the bottom of 8th LSU rallied again. The leadoff runner reached base, got to second on a wild pitch, and was bunted to third and Florida unable to catch the speedy bunter was left to defend another situation with runners on first and third and no outs. Again, they found a way to do so. With LSU’s 3,4, and 5 hitters up the 3rd batter struck out, the 4th batter failed a hit and run and hit a ground ball that Florida’s first baseman snagged and threw home to get the runner on third, and the 5th hitter lined out to end another rally. Florida tacked on 4 in the top of the 9th and dogpiled after 3 quick outs in the bottom of the 9th.

https://twitter.com/NCAACWS/status/879904502484258820

You know… It’s watching games like the ones we constantly see in the CWS that give me the most excitement as a fan. I give ESPN a lot of shit, but I gotta give them props for giving an amazing level of the world’s greatest sport national airtime. To me, this tournament is slowly creeping its way up my list of annul sports tournaments that are must watch, and if you haven’t already, you need to give these guys a shot to get your attention. I guarantee after watching a few innings of one of these games you won’t want to change the channel.

https://twitter.com/Shelby_Granath/status/879884729155244032

Do NBA Fans Enjoy Participation Trophies?

Listen, as I’ve openly announced before I am not a loyal basketball fan. I know the basics. I know the stars. But if you ask me to name more than 3 players on any of the “home town” teams I might tell you that Deron Williams is still a Net, or that the Knicks starting point guard is still Stephon Marbury. Okay… I’m not that absurd, but I really just want to get across the point that basketball ain’t my main thing.

With that said, I have a 2 hour commute to work each day so sports radio has kind of taken over my life, because although I love Ed Sheeran’s “Shape of You” I have had enough after 3 listens in an hour. What I am starting to gather from talk radio in the past week or so is that there have become 2 political parties of the NBA. No matter what team you actually are a fan of, when the Finals roll around you either are a LeBron supporter, or a Warriors supporter.

One of the biggest complaints I have been hearing on talk shows like the Michael Kay Show, Stephen A. Smith’s blabber factory, and other Metropolitan area shows is that the LeBronians are throwing shade at KD for joining a team that was stacked… Are you people dense? Is that seriously a reason for a person to bash a player…going to a team that is already great. In my opinion it’s a great move for KD. The Warriors are going to win for a long time with him, and all of the LeBron people re getting on him for going to a team that was already good. Honestly, you have got to be some type of moron to get on a guy for joining a great team, getting a big paycheck, and leaving one of the most selfish teammates in the NBA @RussellWestbrook. If any person on this planet was KD after last year and was approached by the Warriors I’m calling that there is about a 110% chance you sign the contract within the first 10 minutes of getting the call. It is an absolute no-brainer.  KD going to the Warriors is only bad because it makes the only hurdle in front of LeBron a little higher, and the end goal is to win. So what are you people complaining about saying KD is soft because he joined a good team?

My next issue with this nonsense is that people are calling out the NBA for having competitive balance issues. Literally these are the people that want everyone to get a trophy. Seriously, people are saying competitive inequality is an… “issue”. You’re right morons, there is a competitive balance issue. And it is great. You want me to tell you why it’s good that there is an issue with the competitive balance in the NBA? Because it takes the business out of the NBA and makes it more about winning. The Warriors will do what it takes. Now its time for other teams to put up or shut up. Spend the money. Develop a team that players want to come to. Listen, its alright to go 5, 10, even 15 years without winning. Look at the Cubs. The survived 108 years without a championship and I would put them up there for one of the top franchises in all of sports right now. Every team is going to have its big years, and for the Warriors this is it. Maintaining this level in the future (I’m talking 10 years down the road) is going to be tough as nails, but they want to win now, so they are going all in NOW. And as I have said, that’s okay NBA fans. Not every team should have an equal chance to win a title. That is not how sports work.

Finally, my last main point really has to do with the hypocrisy of both sides of the debate. Here is my final take on this issue. And yes, both sides are to blame.

To those who say LeBron started this whole “Big 3” trend in the NBA… get out. You people are worse than FAKE NEWS. SAD. It has been happening in the NBA forever and it has always correlated to success. Don’t act like LeBron was the first. He was just the first to make it into a television show and make a decision like a contestant on Say Yes to the Dress or House Hunters (International of course, everyone likes International way better).

To those who say KD is a coward for going to the Warriors… Shut up and read above. LeBron made his big move a Big 3 and you were perfectly fine with it then.

To those who still ramble about competitive balance… if you have kids you are teaching them the wrong principals of sport, and if you don’t have kids you will be the parent screaming at the umpire when your child takes strike 3 right down the middle belt high. It’s not the umpire that lost you the game… it’s the thought process you are instilling in your children.

To those who are YANKEE FANS who complain about competitive balance… you are literally the worst people on this planet because I know you are the same assholes saying “2019 will be the year of Machado and Harper in Pinstripes”. That is the opposite of competitive balance. If it happens I am alright with it, but for your sake, don’t complain about it in one sport and love it when your team is going against it. I get the sports are different, but adding 2 superstars of that magnitude to a roster of 10 is pretty much the same as adding KD to a roster of 5.

So that is my thoughts. Honestly the more I hear people complaining about the NBA and Lebron and KD it reminds me that NBA fans are the most annoying in all the land. You people are giving yourselves a bad name. And you can take this as “here goes this nimrod who knows nothing about basketball sounding off” or, you can be mature and think “hmmm, maybe an outside perspective on this is what can make our group more a better, more cohesive one”. Either way, in the words of Mr. Met:

Image result for Mr. MEt finger

Birds Fly High at Citi Field

Well gang, we now are aware that we have a famous reader following BTB… Mr. Met! How do I know that you ask? Well, did you see what happened Wednesday night after a supposed fan told him that I put the Mets AAA mascot on my “honorable mention” list for worst mascots in the Minor Leagues? Have a look:

Well… actually only some of that story is true. Yes, Mr. Met gave a fan the finger, but no it was not because I put the 51’s on my worst mascot list (however they would probably crack the top 5 after this stunt).

This jogged my memory to other mascot incidents sports has encountered in the past. Here are a few videos of some fan favorites:

How about a college example? In this clip the Ohio University Bobcat was supposed to have a fake tussle with the OSU Buckeye. As Ron Burgundy would attest… it escalated quickly internal fight and the Bobcat needed to be escorted off the field by the po-po.

We then move on to the Philly phanatic and Tommy Lasorda going at it. The two never got along, but this was one of their finest moments. Ultimatley, Lasorda got the best of the famous phanatic and taught him who’s boss.

Although planned, there is nothing like a Giant mythical bunny assaulting some of our founding fathers in the traditional President’s Race at Nationals Park. Personally, I think terrorists could be responsible for planting the rabbit but who am I to question.

Finally, in a non-violent example, here is a video of some sort of Rockets mascot (I don’t know what the Rockets mascot actually is and I don’t really care if this is the creature they use or not) scaring the pants off some players including Dwight Howard who answers with a kick in the jimmies.

Getting back on track… in the hours following this incident many have come out and said although Mr. Met’s actions were extremely uncalled for mascots do take a lot from fans. I am sure you can imagine (whether it be you or someone you know) what goes through a drunk fan’s mind when the mascot comes around. In an article by current ESPN Staff Writer and former Mr. Met, AJ Mass, (that’s right… there actually may be a future for the people in those costumes) mascots are known for taking a lot of crap. My favorite explanation from his piece is “I’ve been there. I’ve had beers poured on me. I’ve had drunken fans attack me from behind in an attempt to knock me to the ground. And yes, when the Mets were losing big — which happened quite a bit during my tenure in the suit, from 1994 to 1997 — I was on the receiving end of many four-letter words that weren’t ‘M-E-T-S'”.

In any case, it seems that Mr. Met has had enough of our shit, and he isn’t afraid to let loose anymore. Under that jolly old costume there is was an angry elf. That smile is just a mask for a mascot.

What About the Children?!

If you were to ask me who the biggest jerk in the new SunTrust park has been this season my mind jumps to Jose Batista who christened the new Braves home with an obnoxious batflip.

 

HOWEVER, I would be wrong. This past week the most absurd case of terrible PR hit the  Braves in the following video…

 

First of all, this screams Paul Blart spinoff… instead of saving the malls of America from terror, he saves the stadiums of America from evil parents trying to get a ball for their children.

Second, how about we get that man a contract to pinch run for some team with not too much depth. My mans sprint to that kid was fast enough to tag up on a medium deep flyball hit to left. Nice athleticism, but how about we use that on saving someone from a line drive foul ball coming into your section, or tackling a rouge streaker?

Clearly, what ticked people off was not the Guard forcing the fan who reached on the field to leave. That’s typical procedure. Taking the ball from the 6 year old… Extra. Luckily, the Braves management (who were probably cringing as they watched an employee rip the ball out of a child’s hands and throw the kids father out of the stadium) did the best they could by giving Sparky a team signed ball and hooking pops up with some tickets to a future game. Good save for the Braves. I mean in the Dad’s eyes he probably bought the tickets for that section in hopes of a souvenir knowing that is the only fence the Braves can hit the ball over. Also, props to the man for handling his ejection so well. If we could all keep our cool like he did would there ever be war? The dude takes his glove off, gives it to his wife, and leaves peacefully even though he was dealing with Agent Try-Hard.

Relax Sun Trust mall cop. You have officially completed the security guard equivalent of brown-nosing a coach. You probably didn’t let anyone in your section even though the stadium was no more than 20% full. You take your job way too seriously, and you know damn well there was no threat to anything or person you are in charge of securing. Take L’s Braves Security… take L’s.

And You Thought Your School Had a Bad Mascot?

Mascots and logos are for the love of the game. Personally, I am a huge fan of the MiLB’s (Minor League Baseball) marketing strategy to come up with some of the craziest and far out ideas to represent different farm system’s teams. Coming from a school where I once was an almighty Spartan, I am now a Mule. And yes, every time someone asks what my school’s mascot Is with my dad in earshot, his line of “I always knew you would grow up to be an ass” seems to explode out of his mouth.

 

The criteria I used to develop this list was based in concrete algorithms and intense scientific research and surveying. Jk I decided based on what I thought was cool so deal with it. Hopefully you laugh a little, but if you choose not to have a sense of humor so be it. All of these teams are some sort of a Class AAA, AA, or A team in MiLB. Without further interruption, here are my top 5 mascots, and the 5 that need to go… with honorable mentions of course.

BOTTOM 5:


5: TIE – Winston-Salem Dash – Class A Advanced – Chicago White Sox

Fort Myers Miracle – Class A Advanced – Minnesota Twins

I know. What a flaky way to start the list. With a tie. Good job Matt, your one job was to pick 5 yet you somehow screwed that up. Well hear me out before you are finished sipping on that hatorade. I put the Dash and the Miracle together because to me they scream the same thing. Little League softball. For me these two mascots just remind me all of the absurd chants I hear at a little league game from the bench. You know those ones like “We need a single just a little single! S-I-N-G-L-E sinnnngle!”. Hopefully, that is not what is coming out of the dugout when these two teams take the field, but with names like Dash and Miracle they might as well be.

Image result for fort myers miracle logo

Image result for winston salem dash

4: Chattanooga Lookouts – Class AA – Minnesota Twins

Ohh Chattanooga Lookouts, what were you thinking. First of all, what the hell are you looking at. Those big creepy eyes give me the chills and I just cant get past that. I don’t know what two big old eyes represent, especially when they are looking away from you at all times. You know what that means? That they are not honest. I need those eyes to look me in the eyes and try and come up with some explanation for why they deserve to represent a ball club.  Cant do it.

Image result for chattanooga lookouts

3: Albuquerque Isotopes – Class AAA – Colorado Rockies

What gets the Isotopes on this list is the is extremely childlike artwork that went into this one. I’m not saying I need the Mona Lisa but Jesus is this the most creative thing we got for a freaking Isotope. First of all I have the slightest idea what an Isotope is (shout out to Chemistry Honors junior year of high school), but I sure hope it looks more interesting than an A with a few lines around it. The writing is also subpar. I think the Isotopes have the potential to get creative, but really pissed it away with this one. No wonder why everyone hates Chemistry.

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2: Clinton LumberKings – Class A – Seattle Marniers

HOW DO YOU NOT NAME YOURSELVES THE LUMBERJACKS?!?! This literally defines the “You almost had it… Gotta be quicker than that” commercial. LumberKings is just weird. I get that it means king of the bats, but jacks still has relevance to baseball. Plus the guy they use in their logo doesn’t look like a king… take that cartoon crown off, put on a backwards hat, and have him jacking balls out of the yard. Totally more fitting than that dopey crown. This mascot is too big of a tease. And for that reason… I’m out.  

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1: Lakeland Flying Tigers – Class A Advanced – Detroit Tigers

So the Flying Tigers is my personal worst of the worst. I get the history reference, and really think that if they used a plane instead of a tiger to represent the history it would be in the top 5. But they didn’t. They put wings on a tiger and created a logo that belongs on the back of a leather jacket for the worst biker gang squad of all time. That is all this logo is to me… a biker gang logo. I can see the flying tigers being bedazzled and all. As you will see in the top 5, there is a way do make a cool historical reference, but this is simply too far out and irrelevant. Good try Detroit Tigers, but you went way too far with this one.

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Honorable mention: These were bad, but just survived my wrath. Congrats, but improvement is still recommended.

Las Vegas 51’s – Class AAA – New York Mets

Salt Lake Bees – Class AAA – Los Angeles Angels

Tacoma Rainers – Class AAA – Seattle Mariners

 

TOP 5:

5: Auburn Doubledays – Class A Short Season – Washington Nationals

Good thinking Nationals. You guys will do anything to remind people you aren’t in Canada anymore. Incorporating a person who is debatably the greatest human being to walk the earth into a punny name gets you on this list. My man Abner Doubleday was not only credited with inventing baseball (even though this isn’t actually true we loyal baseball fans say f off science. Doubleday is our man), but also the officer who fired the first shot of the battle of Fort Sumter in the American Civil War.  His kickass mustache and American AF backstory gets the Auburn Doubledays on my list.

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4: Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp – Class AA – Miami Marlins

The Marlins staying aquatic is a pretty strong move, however what hands them a spot  on my list is their effort to push the limits of toughness. Shrimp… normally not tough. If you call someone a shrimp you better be insulting them. Add Jumbo, whole new animal. Try and eat a jumbo shrimp guyer in one bite and you’re gonna end up in a hospital bed. They ain’t here to mess around with your petty shit and you know damn well they are the sauciest crustaceans on the block. Props to you Miami. It’s 2017. Shrimp can be tough too.
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3: Cedar Rapids Kernels – Class A –  Minnesota Twins

Thank god. Finally, we can pronounce this word the way it fucking looks. What in gods name Is a Colonel. Who thought that should be pronounced like the real kernel. The kernel as in piece of corn. They make my list because corn is fantastic and the amount of times I have spelt colonel wrong has me fired up. Thank you Minnesota. We are baseball fans. Not spelling be champions going for our Ph.D’s in silent letters. Thank you for your help and kindness, for giving us a mascot who you can sound out and still spell right.

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2: Modesto Nuts – Advanced Class A – Seattle Mariners

Deez Nuts have been passed around more than a bag of sunflower seeds at a summer ball game. The Modesto Nuts have been owned by 11 different MLB franchises, so I personally praise the Nuts for having the strength to survive all of that shifting. Their twitter is also pretty hilarious, even when they don’t mean to be. But that may just be for the fans with minds as childish as mine. Their use of Gifs are pretty spot on too (https://twitter.com/ModestoNuts/status/867576503118077952).
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1: New Orleans Baby Cakes – Class AAA – Miami Marlins

So there has been a lot of food on this list. Maybe it shows what my priorities are, and maybe you are judging me for it. I don’t blame you, and your assumptions are probably correct. The New Orleans Baby Cakes have the best mascot in the MiLB. Not only is it a wicked fierce baby who looks like the asshole kid who wears all black from Toy Story, but his crown and colors top off his awesome outfit, fit for a king. The baby cakes used to be the zephyrs, which would have made the worst 5 list if they hadn’t changed. The change to baby cakes sparked 2 pretty amazing promotions that make them the best mascot in the game. 1) any child born in Louisianan in 2017 is eligible for a lifetime pass to Baby Cakes games. 2) any Louisiana baby who takes that offer will be put into a raffle and will have the chance to win a free tuition at any Louisiana state school, paid for by the Baby Cakes. Now I know that a Louisiana State school is pretty compatible to a kindergarten in the north east, or middle school in the Midwest, but it is still a free tuition, and that’s pretty alright with me. Baby Cakes, way to make baseball fun(ny) again. Bryce Harper is probably proud. And for the Baby Cake players, you must have a pretty cool conversation starter when you walk into a bar.

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Honorable Mention:

The following will not be officially on my list, but deserve a shout out for creativity, how punny they are, and savage they are. As the teacher everyone hated in high school would say: if you’d like to know more about these you will have to look them up on your own.

El Paso Chihuahuas – Class AAA – San Diego Padres

Louisville Bats – Class AAA – Cincinatti Reds

Bowling Green Hot Rods – Class A – Tampa Bay Rays

Lansing Lugnuts – Class A – Toronto Blue Jays

Fort Wayne Tin Caps – Class A – San Diego Padres

Colorado is doing something right… and I am not talking about the weed laws.

As a Giants fan this article kills me but also excites me at the same time. I will get the sad part (at least for me) out of the way because who cares about a pity party for some blogger you have never heard of. BREAKING NEWS: The San Francisco Giants will not make the playoffs. As a life long fan it sucks to eliminate your team on May 26th, but behind 3 teams, 11 games back, Madison Bumgarner gone dirt biking until August 1, and an offense that only hits solo home runs the hope is fading quick.

However, there is a gem out in the NL West that is not getting enough spotlight, but hey maybe that’s why they are so exciting to watch. If you told me the Colorado Rockies would be the second best team in the league when Memorial Day Weekend rolls around I’d ask if you thought the Browns would contend for the Super Bowl. Anyway, this is a team I don’t see fading. They have been doing some pretty special things on the field this season, and I don’t think its crazy to claim that the Rockies can compete with the Nationals (sorry Mets fans), and Cubs for a National League Championship.

I get it, every time the Rockies win a game everyone screams and yells about how easy it is to play in their home ballpark. And those morons are right for the most part. Right this moment Coors Field ranks second in runs scored, but this year the stadium has only had the 10th most homeruns per game. But what is pretty telling of their success is that they have played less than half their games at home, and still have a 31-18 record. And splits are pretty even. 33 dingers at home, 31 away. 125 runs scored at home, 124 runs away. Yes, they have played 3 more road then home games, but looking at the numbers right now, their bats are still hot on the road. The way I see it, the Rockies use Coors field as an advantage, and they have seemed to fix the worst part of their game, which was playing anywhere but Denver. The Rockies have more games at home than games on the road remaining. The last time I checked playoff series are played at both teams stadiums. The Rockies own Coors field, and being a solid team at home and a .500 team on the road is all they have to do to win this division.

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Like my explanation about their splits? Want to argue actual players suiting up every day? Talk to me about their pitchers. Chances are you probably can’t name more than one guy in the rotation. Right now their starters are Tyler Chatwood, Tyler Anderson, Antonio Senzatela, Kyle Freeland, and German Marquez. Their top guy coming in to the season, Jon Gray, is out and will start throwing bullpens this weekend. As a starting staff Rockies are 11th in baseball in ERA, 7th in innings. Not stellar, but both top half of the MLB. As the 2015 Royals were able to prove, you don’t need big names in the rotation. If you can get the game to the pen in the 7th and have a few great relievers the game becomes a lot easier. And as of now that is the model this Rockies team has taken. When the decision comes to the Rockies backend the record is 8-3. They also lead the league in saves because of red hot Greg Holland. The man is 19 for 19 with a .96 ERA. Only one of the top 5 relieves in innings pitched has an ERA over 2.80. Don’t get so caught up that there is no clear ace on this staff. Baseball is changing and it isn’t as necessary as it used to be. In 2014 the Giants won a chip with Tim Hudson, Jake Peavy, and Ryan Vogelsong behind MadBum. Miracles are real.

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Now let’s think about their offense. This is the easy part to convince you of. As a team they rake. They score the second most runs in baseball and hit for the second highest average. This year their lineup bolsters 3 hitters with over 10 bombs in Nolan Arenado, Mark Reynolds, and Charlie Blackmon. Trevor Story isn’t as big of a headline as last season, but he does have 7 homers and 7 doubles. Their outfield may be the best in baseball. From left to right the Rockies put out a strong platoon in left between Alexi Amerista, who is hitting .365 in 26 games, and Gerardo Parra. In center is Blackmon who is a true 5 tool player at the top of the order. Cargo in right has been a 3 time All-Star and adds power to the middle of the lineup. Their lineup will continue to mash, and will carry this team through the season and make them a legit contender.

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Listen y’all, the Rockies are here to stay, at least for 2017. They may pull of a one hit wonder act @Royals @Mets (at least the Royals actually got a ring), but a 1 hit wonder is better a no hit blunder. Not a great day to be a Giants fan…

Gisele Speaks… NFL cringes

Oh Gisele, you are better than that. Earlier this week when the supermodel/supermom/superwife announced that her husband, Jesus Christ… I mean Tom Brady had played the 2016-17 season with a concussion all the NFL could do was cringe. It seems as if every year the NFL botches some form of an investigation relating to player safety, cheating, or ya know, basic humanity (@ every NFL player who has been given a slap on the wrist for domestic violence).

Gisele uttering about Tommy Traffic’s head injury

This year, Gisele is coming in hot, and even though her interview with CBS Boston doesn’t sound like she knows a lick about concussions, or football for that matter, the fact that she spewed this information is the perfect diving board for the media to use to bait the NFL to looking stupid being that they now have to launch another investigation.

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↑↑↑ @ NFL ↑↑↑

At this point I wonder why the NFL even bothers with any of this nonsense anymore. A player’s wife crying concussion should have absolutely no grounds to launch an investigation, especially one that everyone knows the answer to. The Brady side has already come out trying to erase the slipup by Gisele. The Patriots have said there has been no reports of head injuries to Brady. Brady’s agent has agreed. It didn’t look like Brady was hindered by any type of injury, protocal, or defense last season either. Barring anything wild happening everyone and their mother knows that Brady’s medical records will come back clean. The only matter more certain than Brady not being concussed is that the NFL, once again, is wasting their time on a situation that the media has dubbed a scandal.

Being that this will be the second loss the NFL is about to take to Brady this year (Deflategate obviously being the first) you can now pencil Brady beating 4 teams twice this year, the Jets, Bills, Dolphins, and the NFL.