Tuesday, April 29, 2008

The Rocket Implodes

The most recent plot twist in the B-level soap opera that has become Roger Clemens’ post-baseball life is that he apparently had a 10-year affair with a country singer named Mindy McCready. A few places have called her a “country star,” but my friends who actually listen to country music tell me that’s being pretty generous to the songstress’ career.

At first glance, who cares? A Major League Baseball player cheating on his wife isn’t exactly something worth stopping the presses over. But here's the kicker: Apparently Ms. McCready was only 15 when she first got involved with The Rocket’s Rocke…. you know what, I’m too grossed out to even finish that pun.

So now Clemens is: (a) a cheater, (b) a liar, (c) an adulterer, (d) a statutory rapist and (e) a man over 21 with frosted tips. Allegedly. Way to go from sure-fire first ballot Hall of Famer to The Male Lead in Every Lifetime Television Movie Ever Made, Roger. The K Kids must be proud.*

*The author has personal issues with Clemens dating back to his days with the Red Sox when his numbers declined, he showed up to spring training out of shape for 4 years straight, then got mad when the Sox wouldn't give him what, at the time, would have been the biggest contract ever for a pitcher. He then proceded to go to Toronto, show up in the best shape of his life and win a Cy Young. See that picture on his Rookie Card in the upper right hand corner? The author enjoys looking at it and telling the smug young man in the picture, "Just wait, buddy. Just wait." The author acknowledges this makes her insane.

In which Liz attempts to discuss basketball (Vol. I)

Wait, the Hawks are good? I was lead to believe otherwise. Liars! How dare you lead me astray?!

Friday, April 25, 2008

Women's Hoops Highlights

Just a quick post before the weekend, to let you know that some of these girls DO have game. Could the next Sue Bird be playing for Eastern Washington?

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Color Me Surprised

It's been a surprising start for the Padres this 2008 season, but I can't decide what's been the most surprising aspect. Perhaps you can help me out. Here are your choices:

The suckage of the pitching staff - Other than Wolf and Pevey, every pitcher has had a fairly disastrous outing (even my beloved Heath Bell).

Bard throwing out baserunners - Every time it happens, it seems like a miracle.

Going 100+ innings without a home run - Okay. That's not really very surprising.

Well? Help me out here.

Perhaps the nicest surprise? How dreamy Justin Huber is...

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Nor-Cal Prospective: NFL Draft

This year, I will be unable to participate in my annual tradition of waking up each 4th Sunday in April, whip up an order of my famous eggs benedict, crawl back into bed, and spend the next 12 hours watching Mel, Boomer, __insert your ex-NFL black analyst vying for some potential HOF exposure___ and the rest of the gang crunching depth charts, team needs, and forever laughing at the Vikings missing their pick in 2003. This year I will be knee-deep in bachelor party heaven and unable to veg out in I have come to term "Lazymania".  For those in the San Diego area, represent your lightning bolt here.   

As a passionate Niners fan, the NFL Draft has recently become Must See TV.  Coach Nolan and his wicked thieves view Draft Day not as a time to cash in their picks, take their players, step aside, NEXT...  (See: Soup Nazi)  Nolan has given his fans savy backroom dealings, most recently the trading of our 2008 1st Rd. pick to to New England for the chance to draft Joe Staley (OT) in 2007.  In order to CTA, they traded for Indy's 2008 1st Rd.  Yes, it's a shame that New England was able to benefit with each dreadful, painfully excruciating Niners loss, coupled with each passing Indy win, pushing the Niners back, back, back down the draft board. But I'm still ok with the move.  We pretty much got a 2008 OT with one year of pro experience. Pending any last minute trades, we sit on Draft Day with the 29th pick.  

Picking 29th usually means BPA-territory, but none-the-less, Niner folks are looking at specific names.  While WR is the position that seems to have the biggest need on the surface, I don't like 1st Rd. WR's.  2007 alone:  Robert Meachum, Craig Davis, and it can even be argued that Calvin Johnson did not live up to the billing.  And let us never forget of the Rashaun Woods Implosion of of 2004. The Niners don't need any more #2 and #3 WR's...and there just isn't a bonafied #1 in the draft, let alone at #29.  Granted, new OC Mike Martz will be licking his lips should DeSean Jackson slide, but we all know it's Nolan, AND ONLY Nolan who has final say. Look at WR in Rd. 2 if need be.

Never sexy, but this year's OT class is deep. Stayley will be moving over to the LT position, taking over for the retired Larry Allen, opening up RT, and a possible vacant position as Jonas Jennings status is questionable at best.  While Ninerbrass is fiendin' for the Otah-funk, he wont be there; "Don't Call Me Cherry" Gosder Cherilus from BC will be.  Nolan isn't one much for offense... but he does love his chubby manwalls protecting his golden boy Alex Smith.

On to Nolan's bailiwick, Auburn's Quentin Groves has been viewed as the latest NCAA DE to NFL OLB project.  This isn't a bad thing, as he would compliment Mr. Wetdream Willis, but the Niners could also roll the dice and possibly pick him up in the early second round (2RD - 7th). Considering Nolan likes to take boys he worked out during his annual Senior Bowl appearance (please tell me why Raider and Niner staffs are mentoring our youths??), I could see him pull the trigger on Groovy Groves early.

All in all, many draft days under the Nolan regime have been entertaining.  Vernon Davis Click Clacking abound, Alex Smith, the #1 no one wanted, etc..., but this is the year of the Z.  No, not Dr. Z.... but as in Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.    With the departure of Derek Smith in the LB position, Mr. Roseanne (Dan Connor - from the LB Factory of PappyJoe St.) looks to wet Nolan's whistle.  Winner of the Chuck Bednarik Award for best defensive player (LaVar Arrington, Dan Morgan, Julius Peppers, etc...) a safe bet would be to go for a nice convenient great white hope.  Granted, Groves is the name that the Niner Faithful are rooting for, but this plate of eggs benedict is zigging, while all others are zagging, and expect to see Nolan get his man in Connor. But then again, he lacks fluid hips, so what do I know?   

I suppose I will wake up Saturday morning with the subtle taste of jager yak and pair of panties on my head, and see if I was correct in missing this year's Lazymania.  Zzzzzzzzzzzz.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Throwback/Fitted Update

A throwback salute to EJ.

For the people out there who find rare and alternate throwback jerseys and caps, here are a couple of interesting finds:

-Mitchell and Ness give a nod to the NBA's Rookie Game, and more importantly to underrated college and professional player Eddie Jones. Stellar defense and an outstanding all around offensive game were his trademarks. This and other Hardwood Classics can be found here at the M & N store.

-The people at Rock 'N Jocks in Ohio have become known for their original and often outlandish designs and color remixes of fitted baseball caps. Tons of different designs are available at their online store, with one of the latest designs being a New York Mets "Rastafari" colorway hat:

And of course, your PHN Inspirational Sports Quote of the Day:

“I function better as an underdog in everything I do in life, with my back against the wall. That's why I hold on to my past.”

-Middleweight champion Bernard "The Executioner" Hopkins, who served five years in prison at age 17 before winning the title.

A B-Hop and Gangstarr mash-up. Literally.

Friday, April 18, 2008

The other Hoffman blows one

This guy's probably out.

Any good baseball coach will tell you, "DO NOT MAKE THE FIRST OUT AT THIRD BASE." A man on second with no outs is practically money in the bank if all you need is one run to win a game. Move him over with a bunt, get a sacrifice or a hit in the next two at bats, and you've pushed the runner across the dish. Just don't do anything stupid. Don't get caught stealing, and don't get thrown out stretching a double into a triple. This is exactly what happened in last night's 22-inning torturous debacle of a baseball game at Petco:

The Padres blew a golden opportunity to win the game in the bottom of the 13th.

McAnulty led off the inning with a double into the right field corner.At least he should of stopped with a double. McAnulty, who was looking at third base coach Glenn Hoffman as he rounded second, tried for a triple and was thrown out at third.

Just a complete bonehead decision. All Hoffmans should be fired. McAnulty should know better, but he gets a pass for the play being behind his back in right. Far be it for me to accuse the Padres of nepotism by employing "Glenn" as their third base coach, but I will anyways. The issue here really is accountability. If the Padres finish in fourth this year, or even worse, the organization puts out a vanilla product that plays 4 months of largely boring and uninspired baseball, will there be changes? Absolutely not. It'll be another year of veteran fill-ins, a sputtering offense, overhyped prospects and great Jake Peavy starts going to waste.

Oh yeah, and what kind of franchise decides not to give away ANY bobbleheads? Retards.

I want our new stadium to have a steadfast foundation of imported Asian sandstone and perpetual mediocrity.

Extra Innings are for Losers

I hate extra innings. I firmly believe all baseball games should be wrapped up in 9 innings and then go straight to a Home Run Derby type tie breaker situation, if necessary.

Last night, the Padres and the Rockies gave a whole new meaning to extra innings when they played 22 innings of baseball. The game ended at 1:21am! (Did anyone stay up to watch? I bet Matt and Mudd were pretty loopy/hilarious towards the end). Imagine if, after 9 innings (which came at about 9:30pm) the teams started a Home Run Derby. It would be fun/entertaining and the game would be over probably a half-hour later at the most. This idea is genius. I should be commissioner of baseball.

By the way, this is the 200th post here at PHN. Yay us!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Baron Davis stars in "One Shot"

When ex-UCLA star Baron Davis isn't busy being an all-star point guard for the Golden State Warriors, he spends time with his other passion: film. After financing and receiving co-executive producer credits for Stacy Peralta's gang doncumentary, Made in America, Dizzle now straps on his roller skates to "act" in this Emmanuelle Chriqui short. Featuring tight 80's shorts, a boom box, and New Edition, hopefully you'll dig it as much as I did:

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Things to See Before I Die: Vol 1

Randy Wolf pitched one hell of a game last night. I'm really liking this addition to the Padres lineup...and he's a ginger (like me) so that makes him extra awesome. His no hitter through 6 3/4 was terrific (even if I missed most of it to watch American Idol) and it made me think...I've never seen a no hitter (the closest I came was a Cubs game last year when Zambrano took a no hitter into the 9th (I think). It was the same game where Lee and Young got in the fight. Best game ever!) and I'd really like to see one before I die. It's the little things, friends, that keep me going.

Go Padres!

Monday, April 14, 2008

Monday Flashback

Was surfing YouTube over the weekend and randomly found this Magic Johnson mix, with some suprisingly clever editing. Hopefully hearing Janet Jackson's "Control" brings back some bad memories for you:

And now onto the PHN Inspirational Sports Quote of the Day:

"Failure is not fatal, but failure to change might be."

-John Wooden, Legendary UCLA basketball coach

Friday, April 11, 2008

My Dinner With Michael Barrett

Okay, fine. My Dinner Next to Michael Barrett.

Wednesday night, a friend and I went to watch the Padres game at Seau's (judge if you must) and joining us in the booth next door was the Padres #2 catcher, Michael Barrett. It took me a few minutes to really believe it was him (the scar under his right eye finally convinced me for sure). So, of course, I spent the entire evening eavesdropping on him and making loud pronouncements about how he totally tagged out Matt Holiday (who never touched the plate!) during the tiebreaker game last year. Here's what I learned about Barrett:

1. He thinks Khalil is weird, too: At one point he said, "Sometimes I don't understand what Khalil is thinking." Join the club, buddy.

2. He gets really annoyed when the Pads leave guys on base: The stars are just like us!

3. He's gonna have an even harder time throwing guys out when he comes of the DL: Great. Like we don't have enough issues with that.

4. His kids are really cute: You know, if you care about stuff like that.

5. He and his wife don't talk much: The stars are just like us!!

That's about it. He was really into the game, but his wife made him leave before it was over (and Heath Bell blew it). He wasn't very friendly, but he did smile at me as he walked out. At least he didn't punch me in the face.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Heath Bell for Closer Vol. 4: Maybe Not

After seeing the extent of Trevor's job security, apparently the rest of the Padres bullpen has decided, "If you can't replace 'em, join 'em."

One night after Cla Meredith gave up a walkoff homerun, PHN favorite Heath Bell coughed up the game Wednesday night. It wasn't a save situation, he came out with the game tied, but it is evidence that maybe the Titan from Tustin isn't quite as equipped to take over Trevor Time as we thought.

So now what? Where have you gone Scott Linebrink? San Diego turns its lonely eyes to you.

Fantasyland Update

Johnny Cueto, the next big thing?

Here's few notes on some interesting fantasy developments, hopefully of some use to those reading:

Who's Hot:

Lastings Milledge, OF, WSH
With Elijah Dukes and Willy Mo Pena out, Milledge looks like he's on the way to fulfilling the huge promise he showed on the Mets. Now batting .316 with 6 RBI's, he makes a great speculative add or reserve outfielder. It's never bad to have a guy with .300, 30/30 potential on your team.

Michael Bourn, OF, Astros
Only two runs on the season, and an OBP that couse use some major improvement, but leading the majors in steals with 6. You heard it here first, by now most fantasy owners know Bourn's identity.

Johnny Cueto, SP, Reds
Cueto-mania has been the number one force in fantasyland thus far. Two starts, 18 K's, and an ERA barely above 2.00 have owners seeing the next breakout pitchers. Kurkjian likes him, he's from the Dominican baseball hotbed of San Pedro de Macaris, so you know the guy has potential. Don't sell high, either, this is the type of guy that can win you the league.

Honorable Mention: Corey Patterson (CIN), Xavier Nady (PIT), Aubrey Huff (BAL), Joe Saunders (LAA), Daisuke Matsuzaka (BOS), George Sherrill (BAL)

Who's Not:

Russ Martin, C, Dodgers
Clocking in with a .250 OBP, with only one homer and one steal, Martin is not off to the start owners were hoping for, especially as a top 3 catcher. But Martin is too good a player not to turn it around. An excellent buy low candidate.

Jacoby Ellsbury, OF, Red Sox
As if batting .176 wasn't bad enough, it appears that the young outfielder will be splitting playing time with Coco Crisp for the foreseeable future. While owners were hoping for a breakout year, it looks like it might not be this year. There are worse options for a bench spot, but there are also quite a few better ones. If there's a Red Sox fan in your league, offer him up and take what you can get.

Kelvim Escobar, SP, Angels
An 18 game winner expected to contribute to many fantasy teams this season, there seems to be no timetable set for Escobar's return from shoulder surgery. Owners will be lucky to see Kelvim back by September, which means put him on your DL, and if that's full, just drop him and target Angels AAA stud Nick Adenhart when he gets called up.

Dishonorable Mention: Robinson Cano (NYY), Gary Sheffield (DET), Andrew Jones (LAD), C.C. Sabathia (CLE), Ted Lilly (CHC), Trevor Hoffman (SD)

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Links Ahoy

Losing Westbrook and two other stars will almost surely hurt the Bruins' Final Four chances in 2009.

-UCLA will probably be losing three starters to the NBA draft. Kevin Love and Darren Collison have all but declared, and sophomore Russell Westbrook is expected to leave as well. Alfred Aboya may forego his final year of eligibility to earn his master's degree. [LATimes.com]

-Giants and Padres bloggers rap about their teams and the upcoming season. BP also breaks down one of Bruce Bochy's asinine managerial moves in last night's game. [Disfrute El Lefty Malo, Baseball Prospectus]

-Kenny Phillips is likely still the #1 safety in the NFL draft. Get a full positional preview here. [Rumors & Rants]

-The New Orleans Hornets "Fleur de Bee" patch is available for purchase online. One of the more unique logos created in recent memory. [HornetsNestOnline.com]

-For the jersey and uniform obsessed, there is forum called Next Level Talk. Looking for that rare throwback or just want to chat with other uni nerds? This is your place, [www.nextleveltalk.com]

-Memo to the Chargers PR staff: Please play the following clip from be Cool anytime Eric Weddle makes a big play. "E-WEEEEEZY! Twinkle Twinkle, baby!"

-The football movie "Leatherheads" does a few things right, but overall it's not funny according to this review. [MovieBlog.com]

-Finally, UC Berkeley has hired ex-Stanfurd coach Mike Montgomery to coach the basketball team. Fan reaction seems to be mixed, but anyone who saw Ben Braun's teams underperform knows this is an improvement. [SFGate]

Happy Wednesday everyone!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

So Long, NCAA Tournament

A great final game capping off a great tournament. Epic underdog performances by Davidson and San Diego highlighted the tournament, and Lionel Chalmers from Kansas added the cherry on top with his game tying shot Monday night. Congrats to the Jayhawks, and here is the 2008 version of Luther Vandross' "One Shining Moment," a tournament tradition (some people think this is cheesy but so what, just be a sucker for it for 3 and half minutes):

Monday, April 7, 2008

Heath Bell for Closer Vol. 3

This is getting ridiculous. Trevor blew another save yesterday. I'm not even a full-time Padres fan and I'm getting frustrated by this. They've got to get rid of him. As I see it, there's three ways it can go down:

1) Bud Black quietly stops sending him out there. Heath Bell comes out in the 8th, and stays through the 9th. More subtle than just sending Bell out in the 9th.

B) Sometime next week, it's announced that Trevor has an "injury" and ends up missing pretty much the entire rest of the season. Bell takes over as closer.

3rd) Black very un-subtley just sends Bell out for the 9th. Maybe even has them play "Hell's Bells" while Trevor sits on the bench. This results in Bud Black mysteriously driving his car off the Coronado Bridge one night. The new manager hastily puts Trevor back in the lineup.

I'm leaning toward option 2 myself, though the last one would be pretty dramatic. It might - might - even end up on Sports Center. But probably not.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Heath Bell for Closer Vol 2

Okay, people. Time to get serious about this. Trevor has blown 3 of his last 4 saves. The man is done. Heath Bell is the future. Heath Bell is our only hope. Heath Bell is the second coming of Jesus! (what? too much?)

Heath Bell for Closer!

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

A New Breed of Pink

This comes courtesy of Joe Sports Fan. Pink Hat fans + Michael's = This:

I'm assuming our readership is mature enough not to make "Poo-holes" jokes in the comments section.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Gus Johnson Remix

In celebration of the NCAA Final Four, please enjoy this remix of Gus Johnson's greatest 2007 tournament moments, aka "Rise and Fire." The man brings unparalelled passion to the announcing booth, and be sure to catch the Gonzaga/UCLA clip around the 45 second mark.

Really, don't we have a lot to learn from Gus? Shouldn't we all "Rise and Fire" when encountering pressure situations in life? And screaming, that's another thing we should be doing a lot of. You can also check out www.gusjohnsonsports.com for your Gus ringtones.

Hope eneryone is enjoying the start of baseball, check back as we should be posting more frequently.

Tying one on for McAnulty

The San Diego Padres have had a tough time keeping an outfield together lately. And by lately, I mean since the turn of the century. They’ve had a different 7, 8, 9 combo nearly every year since the start of this decade. Last night, they started Brian Giles in right, Scott Hairston in center and Paul McAnulty in left. No one is really expecting this to be the setup all year.

Well, we here at Pink Hat Nation are hoping at least one guy will stay on – and that’s Paulie. Not because of any great athletic ability (he seems serviceable in that department) but because of his name. See, we’re all big fans of the show The Wire, and one of the heroes of that dearly departed program was a morally challenged detective named Jimmy McNulty. McNulty, McAnulty. It’s so close, we might as well just say they’re the same.

And we do! PHN has officially dubbed McAnulty “McNulty” and have yelled for him accordingly, much to the confusion and chagrin of those standing near us at Petco the other night. In solidarity with keeping Mc(A)Nulty in the outfield, we’re going to tie red ribbons around our wrists. (If you get that reference, you’re as cool as Stringer Bell, friendo). We encourage all Padres fans to join us. They’re probably planning on rotating about 7 guys through the outfield over the course of the season anyway, why not save everyone a lot of time and effort and leave a decent player with an underground following out there? Maybe with enough encouragement, he’ll start drinking fifths of Jameson and having sex with people on the hoods of cars during the games. Fingers crossed!

See, walking through left field is a lot like walking through the garden, and .... You know what guys, it's a long season, get used to this nonsense.