Okay, it’s the annual anti-predictions post! (I’ve never actually done it before, but I did make Hank Schulman do it last year. So it’s annual starting now.) Anti-predictions, in case you’re unfamiliar, are the who-will-finish-in-last-place predictions, aka the which-GM-is-spending-the-offseason-not-on-vacay-in-the-Bahamas predictions. Without further ado…
AL East – Boston Red Sox
AL Central – Kansas City Royals
AL West – Anaheim Angels (you heard me right, dead last)
NL East – Miami Marlins
NL Central – Chicago Cubs (sorry, Theo, but you predicted the lean years yourself)
NL West – San Diego Padres
I don’t have any magic anti-prediction formula, although looking over these, I do realize a number of these teams finished second to last this past season. So I’m mostly just here to crush their fans dreams of a brighter future. It’s all downhill from here, you know, and all that.
What are your anti-predictions, people? If you leave them in the comments I will give you absolutely nothing, but you should do it all the same.
I’m still alive! Bud Selig’s dreams of baseball becoming all international and Vladimir Putin giving Buster Posey honorary Russian citizenship because, hello, he was MVP? Not so alive. The WBC is all finished up, as far as I can tell, although as I said before, I wasn’t really following it that closely. Understatement of the century? Perhaps. Selig’s dreams and mine for the future of Major League Baseball don’t align very well. Maybe because he’s a Leo and I’m an Aries. That might be it, though the internet seems to think Leo and Aries get along just fine. I never trusted the internet anyway.
Or maybe it’s because I ran against him as commish, even if nobody really noticed that little stunt. In any case, I guess the finale was at AT&T Park, but it was raining and I had to paint my nails and there was no way I was going.
Congrats, Dominican Republic on this huge and important win—eh, forget it. I’m just going to stop trying.
Opening Day is fast approaching (less than two weeks, now!) and the rosters have been narrowed down significantly. Pablo Sandoval’s injury has been making a lot of headlines – mostly because people are bored and it’s Spring Training, but also because the extent of it is somewhat unknown and nothing gets people talking like mystery. Dave Groeschner who is (almost)always (never) reassuring said he thinks that Pablo will indeed be ready for Opening Day on April 1st, so it’s just wait and hope time.
Speaking of injuries, since this is mostly just a Yu Darvish fanblog, I feel I should mention that he missed his last start with a stiff neck. He’s scheduled to throw a bullpen tomorrow, so send good vibes and dreamcatchers his way, m’kay?
In other news, I saw Timmy as in Tim Lincecum spelled “Timmie” today. First time for everything.
If it were up to Bud Selig, the whole season would probably be interleague play with a little international and intergalactic play mixed in. Intergalactic play could actually be pretty cool, if Jar Jar Binks were involved, but I digress. It’s not – thankfully – entirely up to Selig, so for now, there’s not that much interleague play at all.
There is, however, Spring Training when the leagues kind of play musical chairs. Which leads to some pretty fabulous matchups. Bumgarner vs. Darvish kind of matchups. They were both rather good, as one would hope, and it didn’t feel much like a Spring Training game at all. Certainly not to Andres Torres, who took it all a little bit, er, seriously. A little bit more seriously than maybe was necessary, but that’s why we love him, right? Anyhow, Bumgarner beat Darvish as it were, which might have been a) a fluke b) Darvish’s hair was Sampson-like but silly Lincecum started a trend so the rest is history c) Bumgarner rules and his gift ideas do, too. (Nope, never dropping that one.)
In World Baseball Classic news, I do not get it. Any of it. I’m sure it’s not that complicated, but I can’t bring myself to understand how it works. Still waiting on the free gelato/pizza/Italian soda/caprese pasta/mint green Fiat.
That brawl was pretty epic, though. Speaking of people who take things too seriously.
In Canada, which is a country to the north…
Fortified with horchata and ready to go. What’s been happening, peoples?
The World Baseball Classic has overshadowed Spring Training in some ways because, seriously, there are few things more fun than watching teams from around the world play baseball. Not to mention that the final game of the WBC is going to be hosted right here in San Francisco at AT&T Park (well, hello, it wasn’t going to be at Candlestick), which is pretty darn exciting.
I haven’t watched much of it yet, because they play at sort of, er, odd hours and that would interrupt my late-night-must-clean-the-entire-house-before-I-go-to sleep sessions. I’m not very patriotic at all when it comes to sports (which might be why no one ever wants to watch the Olympics with me?) so I’m rooting for Team Italy. I was rooting for Team Australia, but they got eliminated, sadly. Team Australia was actually just the Oakland Athletics, as some people have helpfully pointed out on Twitter. And Team Italy, I don’t know, maybe they’ll give me free gelato/pizza/Italian soda/caprese pasta/mint green Fiat or something along those lines if they win it all? Girl can dream.
Back in Arizona, the Giants are 4-5 plus three ties – I dare you not to smile while writing those words – but no one’s that concerned with records. I’ve heard you crazy superstitious people say that a good Spring Training record means a terrible regular season, complete with ex-American Idol contestants singing concerts at your stadium and a goat hanging out in the stands. But the Giants had the best record in the Cactus League in 2010 and everything turned out okay that year, so have at it, Kansas City and Baltimore.
Worst case scenario, I mean, goats aren’t that bad. I fed some the other day and they were positively nice. I’ll bring the celery if the Royals and Orioles pay for the plane tickets.
Ex-American Idol contestants, however, are that bad.
So I was eating eggplant this evening, which was really good, and kind of thinking about things and Angel Pagan’s hair (Bay Area Sports Guy says it’s mullet-y, but I can’t decide if I believe that or not) and then I realized I hadn’t blogged in a week and so that was the end of the eggplant and time to blog.
Spring Training’s been pretty sleepy so far, with a whole bunch of ties, which would be nice and football-y, except there’s no David Beckham involved. So not all that nice at all. Brock Bond has not been sleepy at all and he got Bruce Bochy to say, “He’s going to get some playing time,” which is pretty much a revelation when you consider Bochy’s usual, “Mmm something about a platoon mmm probably get back to me in like 25 years and maybe I’ll give you a straight answer.”
Kind of mind-blowing, if you think about it.
One of the things that surprises me each year about Spring Training –and evidently I have the memory of a goldfish because I don’t, you know, remember year to year –is that they let the media speak to the players while games are still going on. It’s a bit like when they grab the players at breaks in basketball games, in that a) it’s freaky b) it’s uninformative. As far as I can tell they only interview baseball players who aren’t coming back into the game, which is different. But still.
Let’s all pause for a moment now to reflect on the brilliance of Yu Darvish, who made his 2013 debut a few day ago.
Also, remember how he has Ranger-themed headphones?!
On an unrelated note, happy 40th birthday to The Dark Side of the Moon! I know people like to listen to it while watching The Wizard of Oz, but has anyone tried it with Star Wars because I think it would blow your mind.