Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Hair of the Dog, Wednesday, 8/27/08

That's what they call an ass-kicking. The Brewers scored 12 runs on 16 hits and Ben Sheets [sort of] came back to form, throwing six scoreless innings to put the Brewers up 4.5 games on the Red Birds, and the Mets, in the Wild Card race. Nice. Braun went yard, but since I wasn't able to watch the game, I have no idea whether or not he watched it. Did he? There were lots of big performances--even the normally useless Craig Counsell was 3-for-4. I'll call this a message to the Cards, but only if we can win tomorrow [Today? What day is it?] too.

Meanwhile, I was attending the San Francisco Giants vs. Colorado Rockies game at AT&T Park. It wasn't a particularly impressive game. Former Brewer Jorge de la Rosa started for the Rockies, and took a really really long time to throw each pitch, San Francisco center fielder Aaron Rowand made some monstrous throws to home that came up just short, and in the end, the Rockies won 7-2. AT&T Park is very nice. The food is great, and you can get field-level ticket for $50. The scoreboard said there were 32,000-odd people in attendance, but if there was actually more than 25,000 I'd be shocked. One thing that I thought was slightly cool is that I saw no fewer than three Brewers hats! Two on the train and one at the stadium. I admit that I find it wierd that someone would wear the gear of a team that isn't even playing to a ballpark, but still, it was nice to see the Brewers love.

An honest politician, or mere poltical pandering? When ESPN's "special" correspondent, Stu Scott asked Barack Obama whether he preferred the Cubs or White Sox, Obama replied:

"Oh that's easy, White Sox. I'm not one of those fair weather fans. The Cubs, they're nice, you go to Wrigley Field, you have a beer, the beautiful people out there, people aren't watching the game. It's not serious. White Sox; that's baseball."

Most people are framing this bit of "news" as a North Side vs. South Side gaff. But is it? First of all, it's basically true. That is what Cubs games are like. They're fun and all, but people are on their cell phones. The fans are pretty yuppies. They aren't from Chicago, so they aren't really Cubs' fans. So does this make Obama the rare honest politician? Did he speak the truth even though it may have annoyed a substantial part of his base? Not really. He already has Illinois locked up, and he just endeared himself to Missouri, Wisconsin, Ohio, Pennsylvania etc. etc. Is there a larger voting block than "people that find Cubs fans annoying"?

Enough about politics, let's talk about an issue on which we can all agree: instant replay in baseball. Major League Baseball announced that it would begin using replay to call boundary issues in home runs. This much, I think, is obviously a great idea. The real questions is, what's next? Balls and strikes? Some people claim to appreciate "the human element" of the game. But aren't they just saying they appreciate bad calls? One of my favorite law professors used to tell this joke. It's an old man joke, so it's not really "funny" in a conventional sense, but I always found it somewhat profound, especially in a legal context:

There are three home plate umpires discussing how they call balls and strikes. The first umpire says, "I calls 'em as I sees 'em." The second umpire says, "I calls 'em as they is." The third umpire says, "they ain't nothin 'til I calls 'em."

The point is, that how a judge rules is more important than whether he's wrong or right. But wouldn't it be better if the judge was always right? If it can be done, and it can, why not make every strike zone the same? The only reason I can think of is that Professor McCauley would need to learn a new joke.

Here's a little puff-piece from Fanhouse's Bruce Ciskie about a day at Lambeau Field. I've had that exact same day before but the guys riding bikes were Tony Mandrich and Pookie Workman.

Todays hair of the dog was brought to you buy Red Hook ESB, which they sell at AT&T park.

1 comment:

PaulNoonan said...

My computer was freaking out last night, so I'm not sure if he watched or not.