What I’m Watching [IB/FB/WMQ]
Apr 10th, 2011 by Dan

Source Code

Fan-Created Poster of Source Code by Matt Needle


Source Code – Some defect in the genetic composition of my brothers has caused them to write off this movie as garbage. I assure everyone reading that the numbers obtained by Rotten Tomatoes assuring the public that 90% of movie reviewers liked this movie are worth listening to. The “thinking man’s action blockbuster” seems to have become a thing with Inception last year and Duncan Jones delivers. It’s not quite as deep as Nolan’s epic, but still the best option in theaters at the moment.

Sucker Punch – I can’t think of a movie that has missed its mark harder than Sucker Punch did. It’s almost depressing to watch knowing what Zack Snyder intended. Instead we got a movie whose parts don’t gel and whose concept overmatches its director. It makes me want to propose co-directed movies. Let Snyder do the action while someone else handles all the dialog, character interaction, story, etc. It’s worth mentioning that the action sequences are super-cool and easily the only successful parts of the flick, which means if you get bored during straight action scenes, this movie has nothing for you.

Tangled – Naysayers who think Pixar is the only CG talent within Disney, look out. This movie proves that the magic from our collective youths has yet to be extinguished. Marketing would have you believe that Rider (the thief) and Maximus (the horse) would be the focus of the movie a la Aladdin. Marketing is wrong. Fearing that young boys wouldn’t come to the theater to watch a movie about a girl, they hid the fact that it’s a coming-of-age story about the very sheltered Rapunzel. Funny, charming, and worth renting.


Justified – Continues to be my favorite show each week. Tensions are running high in Harlan County and Raylan is stuck right in the middle. I’m not caught up with this week’s episode yet, but I’m sure it’ll continue to be great.

Archer – Oh god, last week’s episode about Cheryl was a riot. The writers are definitely on a roll

Tremé – When I wasn’t watching baseball this week I was catching up on Tremé OnDemand. David Simon’s look at post-Katrina New Orleans lacks some of the focus, direction, and structure that police work gave The Wire, but Tremé is still chock full of fleshed out characters that I cared about. Every episode is full of fantastic music (some might say just a little too much music), great drama, and believable events. Season 2 starts this month and I’ll definitely be tuning in.

Baseball – Surprise, surprise, right? This season has started out with some mega-interesting storylines. The Red Sox and Rays have baffled sportswriters with their inability to win, Manny Ramirez has retired in the face of drug-related sanctions, and, most importantly, the Marlins are off to a solid 5-3 start good enough for second in the NL East.

Fall [Wednesday Morning Quarterback]
Sep 15th, 2010 by Dan

Home Run Celebration - Florida Marlins at Philadelphia Phillies 17 April 2010

It's not over yet, but we're getting close

It seems that fall is rapidly approaching, despite my fiendish plot to seize control of the planet’s weather with my mind. With the change in the climate comes a change in sports programming. Back for two weeks is college football while the NFL opener was played over the past few days as well. Baseball no longer holds the brunt of the spotlight, but I guess that’s not all bad.


Since I started this blog the Marlins have never been in serious contention for a playoff spot, but the Rays always have. This year is no different. Tampa Bay seems a lock for at least the ALDS while Florida is scrapping for third and to possibly play spoiler to Philadelphia or Atlanta.

The season isn’t over yet, so (hopefully) expect more coverage until the last out is made in the World Series.

NCAA Football

Despite winning both games, the Gators are among the weakest looking top ten BCS teams this year. It’s entirely possible that John Brantley will have a much better season than he’s had so far, but these are definitely not the Tebow years.

Will they defeat Tennessee this week? I’m not really sure…


For literally the first time in my entire life, I actually sat down to watch a Dolphins game this past weekend. I only got to half time before I had to start heading back home to MD, but I didn’t want to miss getting the chance to gloat about the victory in my Bills fan friend’s face. Will this start a trend? Maybe…

Sacrifice [Wednesday Morning Quarterback]
Aug 18th, 2010 by Dan

My friends have been talking about sacrifice and I’m feeling out of the loop. Today I’m gonna talk about sacrifice too.

The sacrifice hit and the sacrifice bunt.

IMGP4061 Conor Jackson Sacrifice bunt - Arizona Diamondbacks

These two stats are among my favorite because they represent something rarely seen in modern American baseball today: small ball. Today’s MLB player is much more concerned with blasting a home run than bringing in a run with a well-placed pop up. MLB pitchers focus more on their devastating fastball than being able to drop a simple bunt on a given day. It’s atrocious.

Sabrematricians will tell you (probably correctly, I haven’t run the math) that the sac bunt or sac hit is more statistically damaging than worthwhile. The probability of scoring, according to them, is not significantly increased enough by exchanging an out for a base. It’s now “Common Baseball Knowledge” that you shouldn’t play like this, yet you still see successful managers, like Joe Maddon of the Tampa Bay Rays, make great use of this antiquated play. In fact, that’s probably why it’s so useful.

Consider the state of the modern third baseman before the slight shift back into defense in baseball. His job was to be big, burly, a slightly better defender than the first baseman, and to hit home runs. The hits he gave up being bad at his job would be made up for with his bat. As the league accepted this as truth and third basemen became less defensively sound, the field of play was ripe for someone like Joe Maddon to exploit it. More bunts down the third base line mean more chances for the sac bunt to turn into a bunt hit instead because the third baseman is not a good defender, see what I mean?

Beyond the power of the sac play in today’s baseball, I’d also like to touch upon the feel-good nature of the sac hit or bunt. It’s not glamorous, but it’s one of the few moments in life you’ll have where you are rewarded for a good deed. See, in a sacrifice play you’re giving up your at bat to do what’s best for the team. You earn an out to move a runner. If you were strict about your statistics measuring, that would drop your batting average each time you did it. However, because baseball is a feel good sport, the sac hitter does not have an at bat counted against him and just gets an increase to his sac count. Happiness all around.

The 2010 MLB All-Star Game [Wednesday Morning Quarterback]
Jul 13th, 2010 by Dan

It’s All-Star game time again! This year the game is being played in sunny Southern California, down in Anaheim. Thanks to the peculiarities of baseball scheduling and the east coast focus of television, the game is actually being started in daylight hours, 1700 PST.

The liveblogging experience of the year is about to begin yet again! Expect updates throughout the evening and night.

Time: 1944

My cable woes are keeping me from watching the MLB Network this year (I hate you Comcast!), so instead I’m watching ESPN’s coverage, which has been somewhat interrupted with news about George Steinbrenner’s death by massive heart attack. It’s an odd thing to not have him around the Yankees anymore, even if he hasn’t really running things for two or three years. Despite my dislike for the Yankees, he will be missed as a figure in baseball.


It begins! Looks like it’s displacing Hell’s Kitchen tonight. So far we’re starting with a super lame comparison of stars (like in space) to baseball players. “Daddy, what are stars made of?” I think the observatory in this intro comes from Anaheim, but it’s still pretty corny.

Also: the All-Star game is not “in the City of Angels”, it’s in Anaheim. Saw Longoria. I’m already happy. Starting for the teams, Ubaldo Jimenez and David Price.

Way to go broadcaster, you said David Wright instead of David Price for the starting pitcher. I’m only taking it personally because I’m a Rays fan.

I might have to take a break soon, my roommate is cooking dinner and I’ll have to catch up on the game using my newly acquired DVR.


Reserves Lineups!

WHOOPS! My DVR only buffers a half hour. I missed the reserve lineups. You’ll have to see them as the game goes on.

Now it’s time to try to play catch up.

Starting Lineups

National League

Manager: Charlie Manuel

SS – Hanley Ramirez
2B – Martin Prado
1B – Albert Pujols
DH – Ryan Howard
3B – David Wright
LF – Ryan Braun
CF – Andre Ethier
RF – Corey Hart
C – Yadier Molina
P – Ubaldo Jimenez

American League

Manager: Joe Girardi

RF – Ichiro Suzuki
SS – Derek Jeter
1B – Miguel Cabrera
CF – Josh Hamilton
DH – Vladimir Guerrero (big applause for the former hometown hero)
3B – Evan Longoria (I love this kid!)
C – Joe Mauer
2B – Robinson Cano
LF – Carl Crawford (Go Rays!)
P – David Price

Skipped the Star-Spangled Banner…sorry. Skipped the thing to honor real American heroes. Kind of bummed, because I saw Charlize Theron and she’s hot.

Amber Riley from Glee singing “Beautiful”. She’s got a great voice, but she supports the American League. Uncool. In fact, of her backup singers, only two is a National League supporter. What gives! I guess it is an AL city. Gonna skip the rest of this song.

Commercials…fast forwarding…

Honoring Steinbrenner, Amber takes on the National Anthem. Guess I didn’t skip it after all.

I love the Pepsi Refresh baseball commercial.

The commercial for NFL coming back…in bad taste on the All-Star game day.

Opening pitch by Rod Carew. He doesn’t start on the mound, but he sidearms all the way to the plate without bouncing.


One announcer predicting AL victory, but the other guy is guessing NL thanks to the amazing NL pitching. Now a neat little feature about how the NL hasn’t won since 1996. GO NL!

Top 1
We’re live just in time for the first pitch to Hanley! Strike one!

David Price has the advantage of lighting in the ballpark as the sun falls. Offenses will probably start late in this game. Hanley falls behind 1-2…Price is hitting 99 mph. A tiny chopper straight to Cabrera at first and the first out has been recorded.

Martín Prado comes to try and face Price who hammers one in at 98. Wicked curvey thing gets him behind 0-2. I mean, come on, NL! Don’t let them dominate. Prado hits one to Cano who almost boots it, but Prado is thrown out 4-3.

Pujols, greatest ballplayer in the game, steps up to the place and actually gets himself a ball. This marks the first time Price starts an at-bat with a ball. Maybe he’s scared of Pujols? I don’t blame him. Price makes a mistake and Pujols almost rocks one deep into right, but Ichiro robs him of one with a running catch.


Bot 1

I’m missing Frutista Freeze commercials. I’m thinking I won’t see any at all and that’s a bummer, they were pretty good. Instead we get the lamer normal Taco Bell commercials.

Ichiro pops one up on the second pitch. Hanley ropes it in for the first out.

Bob Sheppard’s recorded voice introduces Derek Jeter. Famous voice and we’re all sad to have lost him. Jetes will get that intro for the rest of the season. Both Jimenez and Price are pretty lanky compared to a lot of pitchers. Craziness. Ubaldo falls behind on Derek with three straight balls, the third of which rides WAY in on him. Scary with this glare. Ubaldo manages to walk Jeter. This is frustrating already, haha. Pitching is supposed to be the NL forte.

Miguel Cabrera comes in and Ubaldo goes right after him. I’m loving how FOX is putting everyone’s infographic in team colors. Cabrera puts a little blooper into RF and it’s now first and third.

Things are already looking bad when Josh Hamilton steps up. A mean breaking ball starts the count off right and a 98 mph fastball keeps him up 0-2. Third pitch goes right back up the middle to Jimenez who turns a beautiful 1-6-3 with Hanley and Pujols. Phew…

Score: 0-0


Top 2nd

Ryan Howard comes in for the top of the second. All the batters are saying it’s near impossible to see in the batters box right now. This is bad, since the best offenses will be in early in the game. Howard falls behind early, but he battles back to 2-2. Unfortunately, he whiffs on a high fastball outside. He’s way underneath it.

David Wright comes out in one of the new helmets. It makes him look less ridiculous, but his head is still too small for this. Wright gets on thanks to a hard hit ball to Cano who boots it again. Will they rule it an error?

Ryan Braun now in to try and push David around the bases. broken bat grounder to Longo who makes a beautiful 5-4-3 double play. David Price almost ate a bat there.

Bot 2nd

Vladimir Guerrero takes the plate for the AL against Jimenez. He’s still going 98, but, then again, why save anything for the tank? The next NL pitcher will be in in an inning or two. In typical Vlad-fashion, he chases a pitch down in the dirt and strikes out.

Longo comes up! Almost eats a baseball or two. Longoria cracks a monster double on a mistake pitch by Jimenez. I mean, you don’t pitch Longoria fast and inside.

Mauer pops up to center. Whoops

Cano steps up. He almost spins around on the second pitch. Tiny grounder to Martín Prado, 4-3, inning half over. Black screen? I hope I didn’t lose cable in this thunderstorm.

Top 3rd

TV comes back when I futz with the DVR a bit, thankfully. Andy Pettitte now on the mound. Ethier at bat. He’s playing CF for the first time in his career, but he’s doing pretty well. That is, until he just struck out on a cut fastball low and outside.

Corey Hart’s insane season puts him in this game and he’s ready to hit (I hope). Update on the Cano fielding, no errors recorded. Hart falls behind, 1-2, and he swings and misses at another low cutter.

Yadier Molina grounds one right up the middle right after the announcer says he’s having a tough time at the plate.

Man on first for Hanley, but he grounds to his counterpart, Jeter, who puts Molina out at second.

Bot 3rd

Josh Johnson is now on the mound for the NL against Carl Crawford. Unlucky for JJ, since Crawford and Longo are probably the people on the AL squad who have seen him the most.

His strong pitching and a lucky reflex by Wright get Crawford on a liner to third.

The lineup rolls around to Ichiro. JJ is continuing the fast pitching with 97 fastballs all over. Ichiro is looking good, but he falls behind in the count 1-2 before he whiffs on an outside fastball at 98 mph.

JJ now faces Jeter and the trend of backing him off with high fastballs continues. Yadier is like a gymnast behind the plate with the way he sits and bends. Jeter breaks his bat fouling off a JJ pitch. Full count to the Yankee slugger who’s probably also seen JJ once. A beautiful breaking ball takes Jeter out for strike three. He just looks at it and knows he should have swung. The NL gets out of the 3rd safe.

Score: 0-0

Top 4th

Torii Hunter comes into CF and Ichiro comes out. Prado grounds to Jeter, 6-3. Cliff Lee is on the mound too, btw. One inning for Pettitte? Really?

Pujols at the plate. He uncharacteristically takes three strikes from Lee, but at least he goes down swinging. I don’t think I’ve ever seen Pujols do ridiculous stuff in any All-Star games.

Howard broken bat grounder to Cano. Inning over.

Bot 4th

I’m really not liking any of these commercials. They’re not great songs.

JJ stays on the mound against Cabrera. Adrian Gonzalez takes over at first. Weak hit to Wright and Cabrera is out.

Josh Hamilton comes back up to face the Marlins fireballer. There’s ridiculous echo on the pitches. Like a booming echo every time it hits the catcher’s mitt. What’s up with that? Ryan Braun makes a fantastic catch to ob Hamilton of a hit, but his wrist bends like crazy. I can’t believe he came out of that ok. JJ is grateful.

Vlad, naturally, swings at a fastball way high and inside, but somehow lays off a more reasonable outside pitch. Vlad lines out to Gonzalez at first and we’re in the 5th.

Top 5th

Justin Verlander on the mound for the AL. David Wright nabs a single on the first pitch. First lead-off batter to get on in the game.

Braun steps up to face the Tigers hurler. Ryan needs to not hit into a double play tonight. David Wright goes to steal, Mauer throws it FAR away, but David doesn’t notice and he stays on 2nd. Missed opportunity. There was a funny moment before where they showed Howard joking that Braun’s catch was just for tv and he could have made it. Verlander hits 99 and Braun fouls. The AL has another pitcher loose in the bullpen. I like the way Manuel is managing instead. Gotta save some! The at-bat continues…Ryan Braun misses the opportunity to get stuff moving swinging over an inside fastball.

Andre Ethier comes up to try and make up for his strikeout last at-bat. It’s been 30 years since the last Dodgers player was voted in to play. Insane. He ropes one into right for a single and we’re first and third. Wright intelligently is held up, which is safe.

Now we’ve got Corey Hart, who I think is lucky to be in this game. Sorry Corey. If he can make an RBI happen…Unfortunately it seems that Verlander’s got his number as he falls behind 0-2. He gets struck out on an appeal, but it was close. Just a little too far.

Yadier is out for Brian McCann, a more offensive catcher. Let’s hope he doesn’t squander the NL’s best chance for the night. It’s funny to see the camera men perched on the rocks in the Angels batters eye/waterfall. His first strike almost kills Hanley Ramirez as his bat flies out of his hands. McCann is battling, but Verlander seems to have the upper hands as the count shifts to 3-2. The ball goes way far out back in RF, but it stops at the track, one out too late for the sac fly.


Bot 5th

Scott Rolen takes over at third while Matt Holliday and Marlon Byrd move in. Hong-Chih Kuo steps in to pitch for the NL. The lefty specialist gets to face many after Longo. Kuo hasn’t allowed a hit to a leftie all season and he’ll get three after Longo. The Dodgers hurler fills up the count pitching around the hot Longoria, but he walks him on a breaker that goes way inside.

Time for Kuo’s lefty powers to take form as Joe Mauer steps in. Just learned that Kuo is the first Taiwanese all-star. Mauer takes two strikes, but the commentators are saying Kuo’s specialties, hard and outside, are actually Mauer’s specialties too. I’m a little worried. A slow chopper to Kuo which should be a routine out at first, but Kuo throws it far over Adrian Gonzalez’s head, earning him an error and runners on 2nd and 3rd.

Cano, a dangerous hitter, steps up to challenge Kuo. Goddammit…this situation is awful. Long fly ball into LF, which means sac fly. Longoria scores and the AL pulls ahead. One out.

Crawford steps up to bat. Another lefty for Kuo to handle. A hard hit goes to Hanley who makes a heads-up play and throws Mauer out at third. It was really aggressive baserunning by Mauer and an intelligent move for Hanley. Kuo’s done for the night, Heath Bell moves in.

Torii Hunter is at bat for the AL. First Angels player at the plate. McCann drops a pitch getting up too early to get Crawford before he stole 2nd and he’s now at 2B. Hunter smacks one to the RF corner, ending the inning with Andre Ethier’s catch.

Top 6th

Hanley Ramirez is still in the game, facing Jon Lester and Jon Buck. Ian Kinsler is at 2B and Vernon Wells is in LF. Small chopper doesn’t get Hanley a base, Lester fields it with difficulty and manages to underhand to first.

Martín Prado shows bunt, but doesn’t connect and the at-bat moves to 3-1. He nearly makes a dramatic hit for a homer, but he’s way, way early. Count goes full, but Prado stays alive. It’s a pop up to Jeter for the second out.

The NL’s next batter, Adrian Gonzalez, steps up against Lester. I’m hoping for good things. The count goes full. Can he do something big? Small grounder to second and Ian Kinsler throws him out.

Inception sneak peak coming up. I kind of don’t want to see it, I mean, I want to see this movie and not have it be spoiled.

Bot 6th

Looks like Longo is all the offense so far. Halladay is the pitcher for the NL, but Jeter barely gets a hit past Marlon Byrd. He’s pinch run for with Elvis Andrus.

Brandon Phillips at second, Rafael Furcal at short. Paul Konerko at bat. A foul ball pushes Andrus back to first on an attempted steal. Halladay is going pretty strong against Konerko, but he’s having problems punching him out. Andrus runs, Konerko misses and strikes out, McCann almost loses the ball and Brandon Phillips tags Andrus out after he passes the bag.

Now it’s time for Josh Hamilton, thankfully with two outs. Roy likes to stay ahead of his hitters as he gets both to 1-2 relatively quickly before trying to get them on the outside stuff. He can’t get Hamilton to take the bait when he offers and the count fills up. He belts one past Gonzalez and lands on first.

David Ortiz, Big Papi, makes his way to the plate. Halladay is out. Hamilton gets pinch run for too, but I miss who it is. Jose Bautista is the runner and Matt Capps of the Nats steps up to take on Ortiz. His fastball down the pipe gets Ortiz looking to end the inning.

Top 7th

Joey Votto at DH with Phil Hughes pitching. Grounds out to second.

This interview with Jeter is making it hard for me to WATCH THE GAME! Scott Rolen is now at 2-1 when we decide to watch him hit. He manages a base hit to center.

Matt Holliday takes over batting duties next. Another ball down the middle and Scott Rolen takes advantage of the opportunity to run to third. He’s very lucky the throw was off-line. First and third, nice.

Matt Thornton is called in to pitch to pinch hitter Chris Young. He’s got a big chance here, but Thornton is a strikeout pitcher. He hits a pop up right to first. Dammit.

Marlon Byrd’s got a chance to make something happen now. The NL really needs this. Thankfully, Thornton loads the count up for Byrd. It’s been a beautiful at-bat, considering it started out 0-2. Another ball loads up the bases.

This puts Brian McCann at the plate with the chance to pull ahead with a strong hit. He thankfully fouls it just out of play on the first pitch. Patience, grasshopper. Make sure it’s a good pitch! Ripped into the RF corner and THREE RUNS SCORE! The announcers are calling it the “biggest NL hit in 13 years”.

Thornton is out of the game with the score 3-1. Now pitching for the AL, Andrew Bailey. Rafael Furcal up to bat for the NL. Wiggington is in the game now? When did that happen. Walk.

First and second and we’ve got Brandon Phillips up to bat, but he swings at a dirty, dirty breaking ball that lands in the dirt.

Score: 3-1

Bot 7th

Who’s Colbie Callat? She’s singing “God Bless America” and she’s a country singer. Stereotypical Southern California blonde beauty. Damn, I love a girl in a jersey and I’m digging this simple acoustic version. Nice cowboy boots too.

Nick Swisher at bat. Adam Wainwright pitching. He totally burns Swisher with a beautiful curve. Brutal.

John Buck steps up to bat now. He hits a bullet to LF, but Holliday lets the pitch bounce right out of his glove. Is it just me or does Matt Holliday make a lot of errors in important places? Buck is on second with one out.

Now Wainwright’s got to face Kinsler as the tying run. Vernon Wells is on deck. This is a bad situation. I wonder how many of these players McCann has strategies for facing. He walks Kinsler, setting it up for a strong power hitter.

Seems that Price hit 100 mph while Verlander and JJ both hit 99. Vernon Wells has been bouncing back this year with strong numbers, but he grounds to SS who makes an awful toss to Phillips at 2B. No double play.

Now it’s Torii Hunter who had a good hit to right last time up. Can Wainwright stay safe in this game? I love a good curveball. I got to see Torii Hunter’s knees buckle on a great Wainwright curve. What does Adam do? Pitch a brilliant ball to the outside to strike out Hunter. End of 7th.

Top 8th

How many new Firestone tire commercials are there? I hate these “Legendary Drivers” commercials. The song is stupid.

Now would be a fantastic time for the NL to add on some insurance runs. Rafael Soriano comes in for the AL and he induces a fly out to LF.

Joey Votto back up to bat. Hits it deep to center, but not deep enough. Two out.

Rolen is up now! Flies out to LF.

Bot 8th

Michael Bourn takes LF. Brian Wilson is up to keep the NL in contention. Elvis Andrus is trying to catch up for the AL, but he grounds out softly to second.

The AL puts Paul Konerko up to bat. He grounds to the third basemen who GUNS it for no reason.

And now it’s Bautista! Pops up to first.

Top 9th!

NL is still up. Can they win this thing? Hopefully they put an insurance run on the board just in case.

Jose Valverde is the AL pitcher for the 9th. Michael Bourn up to bat, but he strikes out.

The NL has Chris Young to pin their hopes on now. Can they get an extra run in? Chris Young chases too and it’s two outs for Valverde.

Marlon Byrd! Valverde’s stuff is pretty dirty. Byrd makes it to 3-2, but he strikes out.


Jonathan Broxton in to close the game for the NL. Can he do it? Big Papi gets a single.

Now Adrian Beltre comes up to bat. Whoa, strong 99 mph fastball up and in, but Beltre chases for strike three. Ugly pitch to swing, but at that speed, you’re almost just guessing.

Catcher John Buck can’t be pinch hit for, so he’s up. Can Broxton induce a double play? Don’t walk Buck, A-Rod will come up! 3-0 at this point…3-1, swinging strike. Lucky, lucky. Second swinging strike almost right down the pipe. Full count, full drama. Pop fly to RF that Byrd has to run to. Ortiz can’t run just in case it drops, giving Byrd the chance to throw him out at second. Beautiful.

Just one more out. Ian Kinsler comes up to bat instead of Rodriguez. Fly to CF, Chris Young nabs it and the NL does what it hasn’t been able to do since 1996! FINALLY! Go NL! WOO!

The Marlins Need Some Work: The Weekend’s Scores That Matter [WMQ]
Jun 28th, 2010 by Dan

Ian's Bachelor Party 047

The Fish were involved in a sweep again and it definitely wasn’t the good time. I know the Padres are really strong this year, but this is pathetic. Someone needs to fix this. Maybe Bobby V?

25 June

Hiroshima Carp (1) at Chunichi Dragons (3). An off day from Maeda denies him his first 10-game win season of the year by another start (hopefully). It’s uncharacteristic for Kenta Maeda to allow even three runs, so let’s hope this was an aberration.

Softbank Hawks (6) at Rakuten Eagles (2). This one went into the tenth thanks to a strong start by Iwakuma, but the Golden Eagles blew it in the tenth, allowing four runs.

Washington Nationals (6) at Baltimore Orioles (7). This weekend didn’t go very well for Washington either. Tyler Clippard blows the hold/save/win and gives away the game to the Orioles on their home turf.

San Diego Padres (3) at Florida Marlins (0). The one all NL series of the weekend starts bad and gets worse. Volstad doesn’t have a terrible start at all, but where are the Marlins bats?!

Arizona Diamondbacks (1) at Tampa Bay Rays (0). ANOTHER EMBARRASSING NO-HITTER THROWN AGAINST A FLORIDA TEAM. Congrats Edwin Jackson, but I’m angry about your success.

26 June

Hawks (2) at Eagles (1). Everything about this weekend is frustrating for me. Seriously, I think I may only have one win among the teams I actually care about. Satoshi Nagai only gives up two, but the Eagles can’t make up for it and they go down yet again.

Carp (0) at Dragons (1). An optimist would be proud of Giancarlo Alvorado for pitching eight innings and only giving up one. Everyone else in the world is wondering when Kenta Kurihara will be back to get these bats swinging.

Nationals (5) at Orioles (6). Washington may have blown this one in the late stages, yet again, but the real question is how this game was so close when Baltimore outhit Washington by seven hits to fourteen.

Diamondbacks (3) at Rays (5). This one ends as it should for Arizona, one of the worst in the league, thanks to David Price’s fantastic pitching. Justin Upton did get to notch one against his brother’s team, but still lost.

Padres (2) at Marlins (1). Surely Josh Johnson can stop the bleeding? No? All it takes are a few mistakes and JJ’s sleeping offense can’t compensate.

27 June

Hawks (1) at Eagles (1). Rakuten takes its second tie of the season, but, would you believe it, their struggles have put them behind the god-awful Fighters with their 32-37-2 record. Shameful.

Carp (6) at Dragons (4). The Carp finally remember how to score runs and it’s thanks to Kurihara’s replacement, Justin Huber, remembering that he’s supposed to hit for power again. Those two runs prove to be pretty decisive as the Carp record improves to 27-39-2, still a long ways away from third.

Padres (4) at Marlins (2). The Fish aren’t playing terribly, but they’re not playing particularly spectacularly either. This game was lost by the bullpen (shocker), but it could have gone either way. Florida ends the weekend 35-40, still far from third too. We need something to change and quick. Maybe Bobby V will help?

Nationals (3) at Orioles (4). Clippard’s slipping a little. The guy wasn’t giving up anything at the start of the season, but it looks like the law of averages is catching up to him. Washington slips to 33-43 while Baltimore is looking good at 23-52.

Diamondbacks (2) at Rays (1). Another well pitched game by Wade Davis, but the inconsistent Rays bats can’t buoy him up. Tampa Bay ends the weekend in third with their 44-31 record. Time to turn the jets back on and catch up to the other AL powerhouses. The deficit is only three games at this point.

Orioles Actually Win One: Yesterday’s Scores That Matter [WMQ]
Jun 25th, 2010 by Dan


Which is great, except it was against my team. At least I got me another Adam Jones bobblehead.

24 June

Saitama Seibu Lions (2) at Rakuten Eagles (6). Ryohei Isaka tosses his first complete game win as the Eagles dominate Seibu for the win, improving their record to 32-35-1 in fifth. Getting close to fourth…

San Diego Padres (3) at Tampa Bay Rays (5). The Rays FINALLY snap their losing streak and prevent the sweep. Hopefully this is a sign that Tampa Bay is turning things around. They get to face the weak Diamondbacks this weekend allowing the Upton brothers to battle. Their record improves to 43-29, still tied for second.

Florida Marlins (5) at Baltimore Orioles (11). Kept forgetting that Baltimore scored 11 when I recounted the score. Oh well, the Fish were miserable. Nate Robertson only went two and one-thirds and the Fish lost their lead in the 3rd, never able to come back. At least Alex Sanabia’s debut went ok (not the best, but ok). The Orioles just kept POUNDING the outside corner and the Marlins kept swinging at those bad pitches. I swear I saw five straight strikeouts with that happening over and over again. Florida stays just shy of 0.500 at 35-37 while Baltimore improves to 0.278 with 20-52.

Marlins at Orioles: Yesterday’s Scores That Matter [WMQ]
Jun 23rd, 2010 by Dan

Hanley Ramirez Warming Up

Action shot!

I just can’t miss seeing the Fish when they’re in town. I let nothing stand in my way, even the dental surgery I had last night. It was with a sore jaw that I saw them rock Baltimore last night. New York got its chance to beat up on the Orioles and the Indians to improve their record. Now it’s time for Florida.

22 June

Hanshin Tigers (13) at Hiroshima Carp (7). A real brutal game for the pitchers. Kan Otake has a bad night, but my boy Higashide manages two RBIs. The Carp still hold on to fourth, but their record drops to 26-35-2.

Saitama Seibu Lions (5) at Rakuten Eagles (3). Could moving Ma-kun’s starts around have affected his rhythm? It’s odd for Tanaka to give up five. We’ll see if he’s this bad next week too. The Golden Eagles are now 30-34-1 in fifth.

Florida Marlins (10) at Baltimore Orioles (4). Not Anibal Sanchez’ best pitched game, but not a total wash either. I think I see Wieters homer most games I go to. The kid’s got some pop. Florida’s record improves to 34-36 in fourth while Baltimore drops to 19-51 in a historically bad last.

Kansas City Royals (3) at Washington Nationals (4). Atilano managed a decent start after a few miscues the last few times up. Facing the Royals can only be good for Washington and tonight’s matchup is bound to be yet another impressive Strasburg start. Washington is still in fifth with their 33-39 record.

San Diego Padres (2) at Tampa Bay Rays (1). This is as hard-luck as they get. Wade Davis has really been struggling, but this could have been turned around with a little more offense. The Rays retain their tie with Boston for second, 1.5 games back with a 42-28 record.

Only One Game: Yesterday’s Scores That Matter [WMQ]
Jun 22nd, 2010 by Dan

Wrigley Sign

Ok, so this doesn't totally prove I was there, but I took this.

Try not to be too disappointed Min, but there was only one game.

21 June


Kansas City Royals (1) at Washington Nationals (2). Liván Hernández returned to form against a weak Royals squad to end the losing streak. Washington’s win doesn’t take them out of last, but it puts them at 32-39, only eight back from first.

I Saw A Game At Wrigley: The Weekend’s Scores That Matter [WMQ]
Jun 21st, 2010 by Dan

The Chicago Bean

I wasn't at the Bean, but it's also in Chicago. My photos aren't uploaded yet.

Lots of action this weekend, including a game I attended in the Friendly Confines that will not be mentioned because I don’t cover the Cubs or the Angels.

18 June

Yakult Swallows at Hiroshima Carp. Rain delayed.

Rakuten Eagles at Chiba Lotte Marines. Rain delayed.

Chicago White Sox (2) at Washington Nationals (1). Strasburg went out for his second home outing and pitched another stellar game, allowing only one over seven innings and striking out another 10. This kid is insane. The game is lost on a bad throw in the 11th, and Strasburg gets his first no decision.

Tampa Bay Rays (4) at Florida Marlins (7). I turn off my Rays switch again to root for another great Marlins game. I’m super bummed I missed it, but this game had Mike Stanton’s first home run and boy was it a doozy. First homers don’t get any better than grand slams.

Baltimore Orioles (2) at San Diego Padres (3). The Padres are the biggest surprise this year. The Orioles, not so much.

19 June

Swallows (1) at Carp (5). The Carp have to wait a day to kick off non-interleague play, but they come out with a bang. It’s no surprise Yakult’s score is so low, it was a Kenta Maeda start. That guy is a monster.

Eagles (3) at Marines (0). Iwakuma returns to form against the PL as he blanks the hard-hitting Marines.

White Sox (1) at Nationals (0). Jake Peavy throws an incredible game and the Nats just keep on losing and sliding down.

Rays (9) at Marlins (8). A wild game that went into extras was blown by Jorge Sosa walking in two in the 11th. The Marlins came within one, but couldn’t tack that final one down.

Orioles (5) at Padres (4). Stop the presses, Kevin Milwood FINALLY got his first win of the season. Congrats, buddy, you didn’t deserve to go this long without one.

20 June

Eagles (1) at Marines (3). Rakuten went through with its plan to separate Tanaka and Iwakuma, but that means they won’t be winning back-to-back almost every Saturday and Sunday. Rakuten closes the weekend in fifth with a 30-34-1 record.

Swallows (4) at Carp (2). I hate losing to the Swallows. A lot. It’s especially bad when it’s all thanks to the bullpen. The Carp are now 26-35-2 in fourth

Rays (1) at Marlins (4). Price vs. Johnson was one of the best matchups of the weekend, but David was no match for the Fish while the Rays struggled against the Marlins ace. Way to go Florida, you’re now 33-36 in fourth while Tampa drops to 42-27, tied with Boston for second.

White Sox (6) at Nationals (3). The losing streak continues. It’s starting to get really ugly in Washington again. They are now 31-39 in last. Do they have any other rookie phenoms to call up?

Orioles (4) at Padres (9). 19-50. Yikes. Enough said.

Traveling: Yesterday’s Scores That Matter [WMQ]
Jun 18th, 2010 by Dan

Domo on a suitcase

Gonna see the Cubs this weekend!

17 June


Washington Nationals (3) at Detroit Tigers (8). Deja vu. Atilano loses again. Change of scenery tomorrow, but this sweep was ugly. 31-36 in last.

Texas Rangers (6) at Florida Marlins (4). Ricky Nolasco just hasn’t been the same in so long. Guy gets two earned, but the other unearned were on errors by him. 31-35 barely in fourth.

Tampa Bay Rays (1) at Atlanta Braves (3). Jason Heyward and the Bravos beat the struggling Shields. The Rays have not played well this month at all. They are still tied for first with their 41-25 record.

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