Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Revisiting Dawson

Thanks to Paul Noonan at Electric Commentary who has directed me to another site with the odd name Fire Joe Morgan (just guessing there is some slight animosity ... hopefully not with Joe's playing career). A contributor who goes by the name of Ken Tremendous (a spectacular name, btw) disagrees with another over Andre Dawson's Hall of Fame credentials. As his disagreement therefore becomes a disagreement with my thoughts on Dawson's eligibility, I thought I would showcase some of his arguments and discuss.

Mr. Tremendous disagrees with the argument that Dawson should be in the HOF because his numbers are comparable to others who have been elected like Kirby Puckett, Tony Perez, Ryne Sandberg and Gary Carter.

I happen to agree that comparing numbers is not always an adequate measure of a player's performance, but they do provide starting points for consideration. Tremendous says this:

Tony Perez shouldn't be in the Hall. Gary Carter is arguable, but he's a catcher. Ryno...eh. Ozzie Smith is in for defense and one memorable home run in the postseason. So, yes, you are indeed comparing apples to oranges. The closest actual comparison is Puckett, but Puckett's injury was non-baseball-related, which makes it a special circumstance.
I agree Perez shouldn't be in the Hall, and I agree that special dispensation be given to Carter because he was a catcher... blah blah. But I have an issue with the special circumstances that hurried Puckett's induction (and don't go nuts on me ... I loved Kirby Puckett).

Anyway, forgive me if I don't cry a river. While it is true that injuries are a part of the game and have sidetracked any number of promising careers, Dawson continued to play at a high level on knees that would eventually need to be replaced. His career was not sidetracked, he played through the pain and continued to put up HOF qualifying numbers. In fact, his slugging percentage was higher than Puckett's.

From 1977 to 1992, Dawson's 162-game average was:

Despite playing on knees that would have felled a lesser man, Dawson continued to put together consistently good seasons for horrible clubs, including one season that saw him win the MVP though playing for a last place team. When was the last time that happened?

Additionally, he played half those 16 years on a rock-hard surface that accelerated the deterioration of his knees and STILL won eight Gold Gloves. Mr. Tremendous downplays the fielding awards, but Dawson's peers and sportswriters don't. They understand the importance of defense. Dawson stood above the rest during that 16-year stretch.

With respect to Mr. Tremendous' opinion, Dawson deserves enshrinement.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Faux Outrage of the Week

Considering that I don't have the time to spend on this blog as I used to or would like, naming this piece Faux Outrage of the Week might seem presumptuous ... it likely won't come out weekly though if I did have the time I can guarantee that material for this award would be ample from our mirthless friends on the extreme right side of the cheddarsphere.

Anyway, this inaugural award covers the lather Owen Robinson at Boots & Sabers worked himself into over a post by Michael Mathias. Proving that a sense of humor is not something you are born with, Robinson self-righteously took offense at Mathias' posting of the following picture.

Below the picture, Mathias added the following.

I’d say this photo is proof positive that Gableman is going to be captive to the state's most extreme special interests should he be elected to the Wisconsin Supreme Court.
I laughed. So did James Wigderson (pictured on the far left), proving that not all righties are hopeless lost causes. It was a funny caption to the picture, certainly not one to be taken seriously. Except perhaps by those afflicted with a serious case of pretentiousness like Robinson (far right in picture) and Fred -- Mr. Outrage -- Dooley (second to left). FYI: That's Judge Gableman standing between Dooley and Robinson. No word yet on whether he was offended, though I'm surprised he managed to survive the blasts of hot air coming from the defiled duo.

Anyway, I was directed to Robinson's blog and read his retort. I was amused by this.

Furthermore, what is Mathias’ definition of “extreme special interests?” The three bloggers appearing in that picture are just that - bloggers. The only extreme special interest that I represent is myself and my family. Am I not allowed to speak to candidates and tell them my opinions about things? If I do so, does that make the candidate beholden to me? If Mathias speaks with a candidate will that candidate then be beholden to him? Of course not. It’s a ridiculous claim.
Yes, it would be a ridiculous claim, if that claim had ever been made. And even if it had, it would not be nearly as ridiculous as the huffing and puffing that Robinson resorts to. Are you serious, Owen? This coming from the man who previously and melodramatically lamented that he has not been able to shed his blood for his country (er, join up). This from the man who famously claimed foul play by Democrats during Copiergate, only to discover later that he had been played like an out-of-tune instrument. Chill out.

Then there is Fred. The arbiter of all that is good and holy, Saint Fred comes down on Mathias with a splat, kind of like dough hitting the baker's kneading table. Unaware that he has been rolled, Fred proves that the ability to fathom sarcasm is directly related to the abilty to jerk a knee. In other words, if you're a partisan right-wing jerk like Fred, sarcasm will always be an assault on your beliefs. Witness his response in the comment thread.

Michael, you are an idiot.

A picture of anyone talking to anyone does not prove anything.

Chances are if you aranged a party and 45 active people showed up Judge Gabelman would be more than happy to talk to you.

He might even have his picture taken with you.
Huh? Aside from the rude name-calling (yeah, Fred never does that) that series of sentences could only have been written by someone who takes himself way too seriously. Keep in mind, too, that in previous communications, Fred has written he can't understand why lefties find it necessary to attack "normal" and "ordinary tax payers" like himself. The inference being that somehow the rest of us don't quite add up.

Lastly, space is reserved for our favorite Clown Prince, the ever profound mangler of syntax and the rules of grammar, Chris, formerly of Spotted Mouse 2. Revel in his wit and proclivity!

Ah the typical and ever so predictable asshat Mike “Oh I was only joking” excuse

He does this all the time he takes shots at people and when called out right away does not have the guts to stand behind what he said.

Instead he tired to play it off as a “joke”

the best way to handle this asshat it to either give him the finger(worked for me) or just ignore him in the end he really is not worth any of our time
Most entertaining from that passage is the revelation that Chris has given himself the finger at least once in the past. We can't help but wonder where Chris' finger wound up and did it taste rosy?

Anyway, to Owen, Fred and the redoubtable Chris ... the first F-Bomb of 2008.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Year in Review, Part Two

Thanks again, Tom Tomorrow.

A Good Way to Start the New Year

Italian Text

Nessun dorma! Nessun dorma!
Tu pure, o, Principessa,
nella tua fredda stanza,
guardi le stelle
che tremano d'amore
e di speranza.
Ma il mio mistero è chiuso in me,
il nome mio nessun saprà!
No, no, sulla tua bocca lo dirò
quando la luce splenderà!
Ed il mio bacio scioglierà il silenzio
che ti fa mia!
(Il nome suo nessun saprà!...
e noi dovrem, ahime, morir!)
Dilegua, o notte!
Tramontate, stelle!
Tramontate, stelle!
All'alba vincerò!
vincerò, vincerò!

English Translation of "Nessun Dorma"

Nobody shall sleep!...
Nobody shall sleep!
Even you, o Princess,
in your cold room,
watch the stars,
that tremble with love and with hope.
But my secret is hidden within me,
my name no one shall know...
On your mouth I will tell it when the light shines.
And my kiss will dissolve the silence that makes you mine!...
(No one will know his name and we must, alas, die.)
Vanish, o night!
Set, stars! Set, stars!
At dawn, I will win! I will win! I will win!