1. Brutal second-half schedule.
Starting with four at Boston, then a trip to that Rangers Hell known as Tigers Ballpark (I know, it’s known as something else, but I refuse to use dooshy corporate ballpark names). Still have 14 games with Los Anaheim, as well as another series with Boston and the Yanks, not to mention road trips to Toronto, Tampa, Minnesooota, and I never thought I’d be weary of this one – a four game road trip to Baltimore. Oh, and 43 of the remaining 74 games are on the road.
2. Questionable pitching.
Even with the addition of His Leeness, this starting rotation is questionable at best. Feldman just flat-out sucks, C.J. is meh, the jury is still out on Colby Lewis, as it is on Tommy Hunter. The bullpen is warn out, though the Alexi Ogando call up and the acquisition of the inning-devouring Cliff Lee might ease the stress there. Who the hell knows what we’ll get from Rich Harden when he returns, and I have a hunch that Derek Holland is done for the year.
3. Molina? Really?
I don’t know what the hell J.D. was thinking with this trade. I thought the Treanor/Max Ramirez platoon behind the plate was working just fine. It is downright painful to watch Molina labor around the base pads… this coming from a fat guy (me) who is getting really sick of the de-humanization of fat people in today’s society. I might have been ok with JUST giving up Chris Ray for Molina, but wasting a good prospect like Michael Main? This reeks of farm system mistakes from front offices past. I’m told I’m wrong about this from baseball acquaintances seemingly more baseball sageier than I. I hope they are right, cuz it looks to me like we just gave away a good prospect for a guy who looks like me running the bases.
I know I could probably itemize some more, but I’m already getting bored with this post. It boils down to this: until this team makes it to, AT A MINIMUM, the ALCS, and AT LEAST puts up a hard-fought, go-to-seven-games fight, I will forever be a pessimist in the land of Rangerdom.
And please, don’t tell me to “just have faith”, “faith” is for…well, don’t get me started on that.
My baseball-widow of a wife has finally figured out how to resurrect precious QT inevitably lost during the 6+ months all of us here at MLBlogs know as “Baseball Season”: she’s started watching games with me on the tube when the Rangers are out of town or when I’m not MIA at Rangers Ballpark.
Now, I have no delusions that she’s actually becoming a baseball fan, that’s the stuff of Hollywood. I doubt she will ever appreciate the awesomeness of a nasty breaking ball, the grace of a 6-4-3 double-play, or the greatness that is Albert Pujols.
No, dear readers, the shared baseball experience between Mrs. J and moi will always take place in a place I call “The HGTV Zone”.
Here are some observations from “the other side” (of the couch):
1) The opening to “Baseball Tonight” is cute.
2) Wrigley Field would be a great place to visit because of the ivy.**
3) Rangers Ballpark should have ivy.
4) Vicente Padilla needs to take a shower. (I agree with this observation)
5) Players should be required to button the top button on their jerseys.
6) The long-pantleg look is sloppy. All players should wear stockings like that cutie Ian Kinsler. (Sadly, and this will cost me “man-points”, I agree. Not with the “cutie Kinsler” part, I’d have to burn my man-card for that, but with the pants leg thing)
7) The Rangers red uniforms are ugly. (Ok, that’s mine. I know, that’ll be two man-points)
8) It shouldn’t be called a walk-off, it should be called a hop-off, because they’re all hopping around at home-plate.
9) “Pujols” sounds a lot like Poo Holes. (Ok, that one was hardly HGTV, more MTV, but she made the phonetic observation, not me. I would never say something like that about His Albertness unless, of course, he hit a World Series Game 7 hop-off against the Rangers or Red Sox)
10) C.J. Wilson is sooooo cute!
11) Jacoby Ellsbury is soooo cute!
12) Stop looking at the Rangers ball-girl!!!
…and those are just some of the tidbits I’ve been treated to from our couch this season. Tonight, Mrs. J is actually going with me to see the Red Sox/Rangers game at the ballpark. I may be posting an “HGTV Zone: From-the-Ballpark Edition” entry tomorrow.
Wish me luck.
** I, of course, want to visit Wrigley Field for nostalgic baseball reasons, not the ivy. However, a certain MLBlogger once told me in so many words that I can actually get the Wrigley experience right here at my own ballpark, thus saving me the airfare, hotel, and the pain of having to watch the Cubs play baseball. Just follow these twelve simple steps:
1. Go to a game at your respective ballpark, in my case, Rangers Ballpark in Arlington.
2. During the seventh inning stretch, go to the mens room, especially if the PA guy is about to guilt you into standing for/listening to “God Bless America”.
3. Seek out the broken urinal that all of the man-pigs have been peeing in since the first inning, despite the clearly posted “out of order” sign.
4. Place ivy clippings you snuck in to the ball park atop said urinal.
5. Remove hidden flask you snuck into the ball park, take a giant swig.
6. Whiz. If you miss the urinal and spray the floor or your feet, all the better for your pseudo-Wrigley experience.
7. For those of you in stadiums built post-Spanish/American War, i.e. those lacking Wrigley troughs, fire a stream at your neighbor’s urinal for that true Wrigley communal feel. (This step courtesy of RaysFanboy over at More Cowbells)
8. Go to sink, turn on water for a three count. (This is considered a valid hand-wash by us man-pigs)
9. Cuss at the empty paper towel dispensor.
10. Take another swig from flask.
11. Whine and complain about how you’ve been wronged by intangibles and then turn around and punch someone in the face and call them a f^g. (This step courtesy of Jeff @ RSBS)
12. Stagger out of the men’s room yelling “This is our year!!!”
I may try this at tonight’s game, after all, one thing Ranger fans and Cubbie fans do share is futility.