Eat My Sports: A Natinals event

It is now the second week of June. This is typically the time when baseball’s elite start to distance themselves, and those nice little guys who flirted with .500 and had a division lead when they were 0-0 are starting to settle where they normally end up, and yes, welcome to baseball in D.C..

Baseball in the summertime in D.C. is a lot like football in Oakland, basketball for Clippers’ fans or Tiger Woods’ marriage: dead. If anyone can remember, the Nationals were last relevant in the summer of 2005. It was their first year in Washington, they had Alfonso Soriano and were a division leader going into the All-Star Game. To put this in perspective as to how long ago this was: Fall Out Boy was a “new” artist that year, Wedding Crashers was not in the $7.50 bin at Wal-Mart, SeriouslyGuys wasn’t even a thought, Chris, McBournie and myself were just out of college and batches of Jack Daniel’s that were being released had started aging in 1998. Continue reading Eat My Sports: A Natinals event

Cards get a big bat (and a little sac)

Everyone knows that the strongest muscle in a coach's arsenal is his biceps.St. Louis Cardinals manager Tony LaRussa will be back next season, but that’s not all. He’s bringing Mark McGwire on as the Cards’ new batting coach.

Hm, wonder which pharmacy nutritionist will sponsor his lesson plan.

But, seriously, what can he teach these young batters that isn’t already written on the back of the bottle?

And when they’re having trouble, can they trust him to actually tell them the truth, no matter how unpleasant it may be? (The “silent treatment” doesn’t work in America’s quietest pasttime.)

Eat My Sports: There’s only one Febtober

Everyone remembers the unforgettable “Celebrity Jeopardy” performances on SNL. There’s a “sword” comment one way or another in any conversation involving Sean Connery, it’s undeniable. My personal favorite was the skit where “Months That End In ‘tober'” is answered with a buzz and on cue “FEBTOBER!!!” delivered by Darell Hammond as the bearded Connery. Some of you may remember me starting writing about the 2009 MLB season way back in early February, and that got me thinking…

Febtober is the perfect way to describe a truly avid baseball fan’s passion for watching every pitch, agonizing over every box score, and blowing every loss out of proportion. While the casual sports’ fans were watching the NFL draft, we were watching pitch counts. When you were watching the Los Angeles Kobes, we were scrutinizing slugging percentages. And while you were debating whether Rafael Nadal would look better with a shorter haircut, we were debating whether or not Cliff Lee or Roy Halladay would make the better late season pitching acquisition. Continue reading Eat My Sports: There’s only one Febtober

A Rose by any other name …

… would be in the Major League Baseball Hall of Fame by now.

Pete Rose was kicked out of baseball in 1989 for betting on baseball while managing the Cincinatti Reds, a charge he finally admitted to in 2002.

Thanks to Hank Aaron, Joe Morgan and Frank Robinson,* however, Bud Selig is publicly considering reinstating Rose, which would put the all-time hits leader on the ballot for the museum that celebrates Ty Cobb, who once got into a fistfight with the Tigers’ groundskeeper and his wife.

But, even if he is made eligible, he would still have to receive enough Veterans Committee votes, which is made up of all the living Hall of Fame members.

*Is it just us, or does the Veterans Committee sound like the Justice League, especially with legendary names like Hank Aaron? Maybe if they forgive gambling, they can finally move on to real crimes.

Eat My Sports: Time to eat my medicine

So we’re officially past the halfway mark of the MLB season, to those of you who pay attention, it’s been a blur hasn’t it? We started this whole shebang back in April, and back then I also made some pretty big predictions, so let’s take a look at how much I actually know by grading my predictions from the Spring.

NL East
Predicted Winner: Atlanta Braves
Current Leader: Philadelphia Phillies
OK, so right now the above .500 Braves are six and a half games back of Philadelphia. This may sound weird, but out of all the teams in the putrid NL East, the Braves have played the most consistent ball. Philly can’t figure out how to win in Philly and the Mets are … the Mets, can’t change who you are, kid. I’m sticking with Atlanta winning this because of consistency.
Grade: B Continue reading Eat My Sports: Time to eat my medicine

The McBournie Minute: When do I get to riot?

Pittsburgh and Los Angeles had a heck of a weekend, as I understand it. I didn’t watch either game, mostly because I don’t care about any of the teams, but I know how they turned out. Kobe Bryant has a non-Shaq-related ring, and Bing Sidney Crosby gets to carry around a big silvery cup for a day.

I’m not here to talk about the sports, I’m not even here to talk about why I don’t care about who won and who lost. No, I am here to ask–why not my city? When will I get a chance to burn a police car?

This has been a recurring theme in my life. I never end up living in the city of a championship team, and when one of my teams does win the championship of whatever sport it is they play, everyone heads downtown to climb a few lamp posts and smash some windows. Meanwhile, I’m hundreds, if not thousands, of miles away. Continue reading The McBournie Minute: When do I get to riot?

You Missed It: We interrupt this broadcast edition

It’s not easy writing these things when big, tragic news happens during the week. You see, we can’t just ignore significant happenings, but we can’t make jokes about it either. This week is one of those weeks. I am speaking, of course, about the news that Chastity Bono is getting a sex change. Hope all of you are OK out there. If you were busy checking into rehab for depression and alcoholism–again, Mr. Congressman–odds are you missed it.

The transition will not be televised
By midnight, every television station has to stop broadcasting its analog signals and switch over to digital. This means that over 2 million people who depend on rabbit ears but don’t have a converter will be without their favorite appliance. On a more serious note, this also means that they will be without important information like emergency broadcast-type stuff. But for everyone else, it means you can watch the lame summer shows the big four air during the summer months sharper than ever before!

Tobacco, why do you make us keep hitting you?
Members of Congress, many of whom smoke or are backed by tobacco companies, passed a bill that gives the Food and Drug Administration regulation powers over tobacco. President Barack Obama, who himself smokes, said he looks forward to signing the bill, much like he looked forward to increasing federal taxes on tobacco products earlier this year. So for those of you playing along at home, yes, smoking is still cool, but it’s even cooler to be dependent on the tobacco industry in some way and slight it every chance you get. Self-loathing is what’s hip. Smoke, then hit yourself until you cry.

And ESPN still plays up the rivalry angle
Finishing up their third series of the 2009 season, the Boston Red Sox are a perfect 8-0 against the New York Yankees, a feat that has never happened in 90 or so years of baseball. Not saying that to gloat, or to point out that the Yankees’ season seems to be one of the most happily frustrating season we’ve seen in a while. I am not about to draw any parity to a perfect Boston-based team going up against a New York team some view as underrated. No, there’s no parallel in any other sport. On an unrelated note, how weird was it that there was no Super Bowl this year?

Eat My Sports: Early season report

For those of you who don’t follow baseball from early February through October, you wouldn’t know that the season is almost one-third of the way over with. It’s been a weird one, with the Pirates and Marlins contending early, the Rays already fading out of contention, and Roger Clemens not hitting on any underage country stars, yet. But if you have been living a sheltered life and have not been paying attention to baseball, here have been the top five stories of the early season.

5. The rise, fall and rise of the Yankees
No one can figure the pattern of this team out, period. One night they’re hammering a team for 14 runs, the next night C.C. Sabathia is serving up fastballs like his butler feeds him steaks with a donut glaze. The return of A-Rod has brought back some sense of normalcy, but the inconsistent pitching could pose a problem down the stretch for the Yanks. Continue reading Eat My Sports: Early season report

Take it from Snee: Let the bums into the Hall of Fame (A-Rod Edition)

Now that the press is soiling itself over Alex Rodriquez’s admission to using steroids (courageously made after his failed test results hit the press), I’ve been thinking more about a piece I wrote back in 2007 when the Mitchell Report was released.

Personally, I’ve always taken it with a grain of salt anytime someone waxes philosophically about the “Clean Days of Baseball.” The history of the sport’s more saccharine than a fundamentalist’s interpretation of the 1950s: everyone got along (in their segregated leagues), they were good sports (Chicago Black Sox) and substance-free (Dock Ellis).

Now that he’s “come clean,” I was wondering when the League would get involved. I mean, either they’re against doping or they are for it. A lack of consequences is clearly a silent vote for “Please break some more crusty old records and raise our ticket sales!”

True to fashion, Rodriguez practiced with his team, uneventfully. There’s been no talk of suspension, fines or even mandatory PSA from the Yankees or MLB. Meanwhile, Michael Phelps faced criminal charges for a f#%king photograph and fortunately avoided arrest by not admitting that the pipe contained marijuana.

So, let me restate for the record: let the bums into the Hall of Fame. If professional athletes want to use steroids, HGH and whatever else sucks nads to grow muscles, go ahead. Continue reading Take it from Snee: Let the bums into the Hall of Fame (A-Rod Edition)

Eat My Sports: You Missed It

Now that it’s over, 2008 was one of the most memorable years for sports. Given that all sports have memories, and until Armageddon we’ll continue to have years, I guess you could say that for any year really. But 2008 was special. It brought us Roger Clemens and Plaxico Burress shooting themselves in the ass and leg, respectively. It brought us the second full season of Michael Vick-free football while he was in the dog bighouse. It gave us Scott Boras coming out of his shell as Satan. So in case you were busy growing a beard and dodging US troops in Afghanistan, odds are you missed it.

One Giant catch, one Patriot meltdown
In easily the best Super Bowl of all-time, the heavily favored New England Patriots fell to the mighty underdog New York Giants. Down 14-10 in the fourth quarter, Elisha Manning led a touchdown drive that cemented David Tyree in Super Bowl lore, and resulted in Plaxico Burress thinking gun permits were just polite suggestions. The resulting touchdown led to a 17-14 upset, as well as year-long gripefest from Bryan McBournie and Bill Simmons about how the Patriots had only won three Lombardi Trophies this decade. Continue reading Eat My Sports: You Missed It