Monday, October 24, 2011

On a Collision Course -- Spencer @ Nick

Who's team met this fate? Read on...

Things got real interesting real quick as Nick and I met for the second AL time, pre-Tort Fort last Friday....

GAME 1 Cla Bucholtz @ Jake Peavy

Within the first four batters of the game, Spencer had rolled three bizarres. The last on resulting in a popup between Wilson Betemit and Matt Joyce. The two collided because Manager Nick does not preach fundamentals and no one called for the ball. Betemit landed himself on the DL for (2 games) and Joyce for the rest of the regular season (21 games).
In the game Nick struck first on a Thome HR. Spencer scored three in the Top of the 3rd, Nick answered with a 3-run Bautista bomb in the bottom of the third.
Spencer reclaimed the lead at 5-4 with a 2-run bomb from Big Bad Tex....Hmmmmmmmmm in the 5th. A Shin Shoo-Choo SAC tied the game at 5-5 in the 6th. Nick "By Cracky" Markakis's 2-RBI single in the 7th proved to be the winning hit. Nick did scratch one more run off of Joaquin "Chris" Benoit in the 8th, but failed in the 9th.


W - Benoit 2.0, 3H, ER, BB, 3K
L - Koji Bomb 2.0, 4H, 2ER, 2BB, 5K
S - Chris Perez 1.0, H, 2K
HR - Thome, Bautista, Texieria

GAME 2 - Matt "Mexican Mafia" Garza @ Shawn Marcum

The 2011 AL ERA leader, Shawn Marcum had been eating up the league like Jeremy Jacobs at the high school cafeteria (lol, he had a weight problem). Anyhoo......Marcum in his last start vs. Spencer threw a CG, 3-hitter, so Spencer shifted his lineup and came out swinging bats, like the 1960s Birmingham Police Dept.
The Youkilis Corker (new nickname) smacked a one out single then trotted home on the 2-run crunch from BIG BAD TEX Hmmmmmmmmmmmm. Turned out Marcum from the 2011 playoffs was pitching for Nick this game, and gave up another run in the 2nd on a run-scoring 2B buy Yuni E the Fly Fell-E (wait to you see his .AVE in a bit....scorching.)
However....Nick's merry band of future Hall of Famers, Pronks, Quenchers and Chinamen started taking pitches then mashing.
Garza got a little yippy in the 5th as he plunked John "Jaha" Jaso, walked Big Pronk (up from minors) and Bartlett Pears SAC to move the runners. Brett "Hart" Gardner then smacked a run scoring 1B and Jim Thome did the same thing. Spencer's lead now 3-2.
After that, both pitchers actually settled down. AN RBI SINGLE...FROM A-ROD sealed the deal, and Spencer's closer of the day Matt Guerrier made Nick go nigh-nigh the lst two.


W - Mexican Mafia Garza 7.0, 4H, 2ER, 2BB,5K
L - "Lost ERA lead" Marcum 7.2, 6H, BB, 5K, HR
S - Guerrier 2.0, BB
HR - Big Tex

GAME 3 Dan "The Man" Har-en @ Jeremy "Guttermouth" Guthrie

Spencer was feeling good at this point, a lot was due to the Busch Lite Silo Cans and playing in between a bar and a bowling pro shop, with little lighting.
Action Jackson made love to Vanity, then smacked a lead off single, then stole second. A-Rod got out, Youkilis Corker walked then was forced on a FC by Big Tex. With two out, B-Rob walked the bases loaded. In stepped Nick By-Cracky, out went the baseball. Grand Salami.
A Dominican Daddy Ortiz 2-Run HR the next inning cut the lead to 4-2 Spencer. A Big Pronk HR made it 4-3 Spencer.
In fact, after the first inning Guthrie and Nick's stoppers shut Spencer down.
Nick tied the game in the 5th on a Korean Delight RBI single. Nick took the lead for good in the 7th on yet another Jim Thome bomb. Dude is legit. NICK WINS 5-4.

W - Koji Bomb - 2.0, HBP, H, 3K
L - Benoit - 2.0, H, 2ER, K, HR
S - Feliz - 2.0, 2H, K,
HR -

SPENCER WIN SERIES 2-1. Offically earns nickname of "Mr. 2-1"

Fun series, as always. The environment consisting of a bowling alley, bar w/ curious bartender, restaurant and arcade all together was a little overwhelming, but then I realized how bad Nick's defense and ranges are and I grinned...

Friday, October 21, 2011

I gotcher defense right here!

Future hall of famer, Jim Thome, long before hitting 600 big league homers.

Fish and I each clobbered each other around in games one and two, before we actually played a tight, competitive game in the series finale.


Jered Weaver, recently traded from Mario, tossed a complete game shutout in his first game as a Mariner, while the ever-powerful offense tallied eight runs. Fish’s starter, Gio Gonzalez, was chased after just four innings, yielding five runs. Jose Bautista hit a homer and scored two runs. Ian Kinsler drove in two runs on three hits, while Luis Valbuena and Mike Napoli and Jason Bartlett each collected two hits apiece. Vlady Guerrero was a perfect 4 x 4 for Fish in the loss.


W – Weaver, L – Gonzalez


Fish turned the tables in game two, destroying starter Jeremy “Dimples” Guthrie who lasted just three innings. Vlady hit a two-run homer in the first inning, before Fish added another five runs in the third thanks to a Justin Morneau three-run bomb and a J.D. Drew two-run round tripper. The birther Luke Scott, another new acquisition, hit a two-run homer for Nick in the loss. Trevor Cahill, Fish’s lone righty, pitched a solid game going 7 2/3 innings, surrendering just three runs and five hits.


W – Cahill, L – Woody Guthrie


Future hall of famer Jim Thome hit a three-run bombski in the top of the eighth, against – get this - a lefty, to secure a series win for the Mariners. Luis Valbuena, of all people, hit a solo homer in the first for Nick, before Fish tied things in the bottom of the inning on a Morneau single that scored Alex Rios. “Cranky pants” Shawn Marcum exited the game after just 3 and 1/3 innings and his arm problems look to be semi-serious (out 15 games). Fish got right after reliever Darren O’Day taking the lead in the fourth on a David DeJesus RBI single. Nalco’s employee of the year held the lead until Thome’s moonshot in the eighth. Vlady, finished off his excellent series with a solo homer in the bottom of 8, but Nick’s closer Neftali Feliz shut the door, earning a win in 1 and 2/3 innings of work.

Though he’s known as one of the better in-game managers in PTP history, Fish’s strategy in the bottom of the ninth still has fans talking. His first two hitters reached base before Cervelli sac bunted the runners to second and third. With one out Ramon Santiago attempted to suicide squeeze in Rajai Davis (the pinch runner) from third only to strikeout. Davis was then tagged at the plate and the game ended. Great drama; great series.


W – Feliz, L – Thornton

Nick wins series in two of three games.

Defense matters - Nick @ Torto

Another series update comin' atcha!  This one is from the spacious confines of Comerica Park, where Nick and I played the 2nd of our 2 AL series.  Nick was nearly swept in the first meeting, were it not for the walk-off 3-R HR from one Brennan "The Big Puppy" Boesch.  This time it was Boesch who had hand in ensuring Nick got swept.
Brennan Boesch - about to drop the ball and cost Nick 2-runs, but only before a Mike Napoli error cost him 1
Game 1 - Zack Greinke @ Doug Fister (I hardly know her):
The Tigers jumped out early in this one, getting a Boring Barton solo shot in the bottom of the 1st, followed by 2 more in the 2nd, on a 2-out single from Juan Pierre, making it 3-0 Torto. Nick's batters spent much of the first 5 innings with the bat on their shoulders, earning only 1 hit (a Bautista double), but 5 walks.  None of the uncharacteristic walky-ness of Fister cost him any runs however.  The Tigers got one more in the 4th, on a solo HR from the newly acquired B.J.Upton.  Nick got off the schnide in the 6th, on a Pronk Hafner sac fly.  Nothing doing after that, as lefty long specialist Brian Duensing came in for the final 2 and 2/3rds, and closed it out for an old school save.  It was not without some drama though, as Nick got solo jobbers from Brett Gardner and a pinch-hitting Mike Napoli in the 9th, before Shin Soo-Choo made the final out.  Nick's defense full of low error ratings and 'C' and 'D' ranges seemed to hold up for him in this one, but it wouldn't last.
Torto wins 4-3

Game 2 - Ricky Romero @ Gavin Floyd:
Nick started of with some solid offense, getting 2 runs in the 1st on a Gardner lead-off single, a Bautista walk, and a 2-RBI double by the Korean Delight, Shin Soo-Choo.  However, Nick's lone lefty starter got battered around early in this one, and was chase him after 1.1 IP.  Defense didn't help him early either, as 2-out errors by Romero and Wilson Betemit extended the 1st inning and allowed 3 more runs across homeplate.  The 2 walks into the 2nd, and that was it for Romero.  Nick turned it over to his righty long - Sergio Mitre, who was no better, allowing 4 more runs in by the end of the 2nd, culminated in a 2-RBI B.J.Upton triple.  Nick got 2 back in the 4th on a Jason Bartlett RBI-double, and a bases loaded walk issued to Jim Thome - 7 to 4, Torto.  My Tigers tacked on runs again in the bottom of the 4th (1), 6th (1), and 7th (2),  while Nick mustered only a solo HR by John Jaso the rest of the way.
Torto wins 11-5

Game 3 - Jake Peavy @ Joel Pineiro:
Pineiro, who was coming off his best outing of the year vs. Spence (8+ innings of 1 run ball), was dealing again in this one.  And Peavy, while sharp early had his outing cut short due to questionable defense.  The Tigers got on the board first, on a classic NL ball sequence - The O-Dog singled, then stole his way to 2nd, was sacrificed over to 3rd by Elvis, and then sac flied home by Boring Barton.  The 5th spelled disaster for Nick - after giving up singles to Zobrist and Pierre, Mike Napoli sailed his throw into center on the Pierre steal attempt of 2nd, scoring Zobrist.  Peavy then issued a 2-out walk to Mr. Boring, Joe Mauer sprayed a ball out to left, where Brennan Boesch attempted to track it down (filling in for the previously ejected Shin Soo-Choo, who argued balls & strikes).  The Big Puppy flubbed the play, for a 3-base error, making the lead now 4 to zip.  Mike Napoli attempted to atone for his error by getting Nick his lone RBI of the game, an RBI doubling home of Jason Bartlett.  The Tigers tacked on one more in the 6th (O-Dog RBI double), and the scoring ended for both teams there.
Torto wins 5-1

Torto wins series 3-0

Tough series for Nick, as his high powered offense was limited to just 3 home runs, and costly errors  and base hits allowed due to poor defensive ranges proved the difference in this one.  Ironically, Shin Soo-Choo's ejection cost him any further playing time on Nick's squad, as he was promptly traded to Mario's Blue Jays the next morning.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Put a cork in it Youklis! Spencer @ Torto from the Tort Fort

Another series update from the Tort Fort outing.  My Tigers at his BoSox - Spence took the series, but asked that I do the write up, as he still had to do his for his series vs. Mar and Nick.  I won't waste a lot of set up here, just dive right in.

Say it ain't so Youk - say it ain't so...
Game 1: Joel Pineiro @ Jeff Niemann: This game started off slow for both squads, but things got rolling for my Tigers and Joseph P. Mauer in the 4th and 5th (Mauer RBI double in 4th and Niemann walked Mauer with the bases juiced) in the 5th). Then they got worse for Spencer in the 6th, where Niemann completely lost his composure - giving up 4 runs, 2 on a HR to the Grandyman, and 2 more on a 2-out single from Elvis Andrus.  Spencer mustered 1 run in the 9th off of Pineiro (sac fly from Big Tex), who was then thwarted from the complete game, and yielded the remainder of the 9th to Frankie Francisco.
Torto wins 6-1
Note:  One interesting event of note, was the suspicious bat Kevin Youklis was using during the game.  The home plate umpire must have noticed a sound off the bat from his 7th inning double, and asked for the bat at the end of the game. It was thereafter found to have been corked.
***Kevin Youklis suspended for 10 games***

Game 2: Justin Vargas @ Cliff Lee
This battle of the lefty starters was not the run-fest some might have thought - rather it was a well-pitched duel of southpaws.  Spencer struck first with a solo shot from Adam 'Pacman' Jones in the bottom of the 2nd, and then got 2 more runs in the 3rd, on the strength of doubles from Yunelly "the Fly Felly" Escobar and Austin "Action" Jackson.  The Tigers clawed back in the 5th, with a 2-out, 2-RBI double from Daric "Boring" Barton.  But the scoring would end there, not without drama though.  In the top of the 9th, the Tigers got freshly called up Edwin Encarncion on base with a single, and Elvis Andrus pinch ran for him, stealing his way around to 3rd on the ignorance of Chris Perez.  Denard Span (an A-bunter) attempted to squeeze in the tying run, but tapped it right back to the pitcher for a LEAD OUT (DAMMIT).  Span then stole his way over to 2nd, and the wild Perez walked both Juan Pierre and Daric Barton, loading the bases for Paully "Player-Manager?" Konerko - who proceeded to hit an outfield range to Adam Jones, who made the sliding catch to end the game.  Defense Nick - are you paying attention?
Spencer wins 3-2

Game 3: King Felix @ Clay Bucholz: Another pitcher's duel for this one friends - Spencer got on the board first with an "A-bomb for A-Rod", then followed up with a sac fly from Derek Jeter (following an A-Jax triple).  The good guys struck back with back-to-back solo jacks from Boring Barton and Cap'n Paully in the 4th.  Spence took the lead back for good on another sac fly, this time from Nick Markakis in the bottom of the 4th.  No runs crossed the plate from thereon, although the Tigers had their chances with at least 1 baserunner (and usually 2) from the 4th on. King Felix did his job, Seattle-style, a complete game loss.
Spencer wins 3-2 (again, sigh)

Spence wins series 2-1.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Like Pitching? Read on.....Spencer @ Mario

Mario and I met up for the first time this AL season at the Tort Fort. Here's the details!!

GAME 1 Matt "Mexian Mafia" Garza @ Carl "Boring" Pavano

Game was a tight pitching duel through six innings as both pitchers had allowed on two baserunners each. Pavano started the Top of the 7th by giving up a Big Tex solo bomb. A B-Rob (Brian Roberts) double and RBI single from Adam "PacMan" Jones made it 2-0 Spencer.
A-Rod smacked a RBI double in the 8th to make it 3-0 Spencer. Spencer would add three more runs in the Top of the 9th on a bases clearing double by Action Jackson. SPENCER WINS 6-0
Real story here was Garza who scattered three baserunners and struckout seven.

W-Garza (CG, 3H, 7K)
L - Pavano (CG, 11H, 6ER, 1BB, 4K, 1HR)
HR - Big Bad Tex....Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm

GAME 2 Dan "The Man" Har-en @ Brett "Mr." Anderson

This game was the exact same game as Game 1, except Spencer was the hard luck loser.
The only scoring in the game came from Mario in the bottom of 7. Vern Wells, Jose Lopez and Misty May-Treanor's husband all singled to load the bases with no outs. Alexi "Skeletor" "Alfonso Soriano Lite" Ramirez jimmy-jacked a Grand Slam over the CF fence. MARIO WINS 4-0
Again, real story of the game was Brett Anderson. Scattered six hits and walked only one.
Two games. Four pitchers. Four CGs.

W- Anderson CG, 6H, 1BB, 3K
L - Haren CG, 7H, 4ER, 6K, 1HR
HR - Skeletor Ramirez (GS)

GAME 3 Brett Cecil the Turtle @ Andy "Retired Living in Palm Springs" Pettitte

Bullpens were actually used in this game. Brett Cecil, by the way, was replacing the demoted to the bullpen Jeff Niemann.
Score was tied 1-1 after 9 innings. Spencer scored first on a Action Jackson RBI single. Mario countered with a Mags "Not Rey" Ordonez solo HR.
The 10th inning went by without any hiccups for either team. In the 11th, Yunelly the Fly Felly led off with his 4th hit of the game, a double. He scored on Action Jackson's second RBI. A 2-run A-BOMB FOR A-ROD sealed the deal. Joaquin "Chris" Benoit closed the door in the bottom of the 11th. Brett Cecil, went 8 IP, 1ER, 3H, 4BB. SPENCER WINS 4-1. SPENCER TAKES 2 of 3.

W-Matt Gurrier 2.0 IP, 0H, 0K, 0BB
L - Jeff Francis 1.2, 3R, 3H, 2K
S - Benoit IP, 2H, 2K

Aside from the Brewers getting spanked that night and plastic chair wild fire interuptions, it was a good, fun, fast, crisp series between Mario and I.

10-5 now, ya'll bitches!!!!!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Trades, trades, and more trades

This Friday night/Saturday evening at the Tort Fort bore witness to a number of series, played by Nick, Spencer, Mario, and myself (updates forthcoming).  More exciting than that, was the number of trades that went down.  Here's the recap:

Things got started Friday night, when Spencer and I exchanged a pair of centerfielders.
Spencer got - Curtis Granderson (CF)
Torto got - B.J.Upton (CF)

The trades continued in the morning, after a late night Mario/Torto deal had been shelved for the evening:
Mario got - Juan Pierre (LF), Gavin Floyd (SP), and Frank Francisco (RP)
Torto got - Maggs Ordonez (RF), Brett Anderson (SP), and Ryan Sweeny (CF)

Later that same morning, Mario got tradey again - this time with Nick, continuing to retool his entire roster:
Mario got - Shin Soo-Choo (RF), David Ortiz (1B/DH), and Zack Greinke (SP)
Nick got - Miguel Cabrera (1B), Jared Weaver (SP), and Luke "The Birther" Scott (1B/LF)

That's it for now, look for the series updates later on in the coming week, standings to be updated soon.  A quick summary from Friday night has:
Spencer going 6-3 (2-1 vs. Nick; 2-1 vs. Torto, 2-1 vs. Mario)
Torto going 4-2 (1-2 vs. Spencer, 3-0 vs. Nick)
Nick going 1-5 (1-2 vs. Spencer, 0-3 vs. Torto)
Mario going 1-2 (vs. Spencer)

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Don Kelly. Laurent's long lost brother?

Not sure how I didn't see it sooner.  Perhaps chalk it up to his increased playing time in the playoffs with the injury to Magglio, and Leyland's need to platoon at 3B, but Don Kelly of the Detroit Tigers has gotten plenty of TBS and Fox camera closeups.  Jess immediately pointed it out to me - Don Kelly bears a striking resemblance to one Thomas King Laurent.

Exhibit A - Mr. Don Kelly, Detroit Tigers Utilityman Extrordonaire

Exhibit B - Tom Laurent (pay no attention to that handsome Tigers fan in the background)

Tom's long lost little brother (Kelly is 31 years old)? Kelly is also tall and lanky (6'4", 190)  Or am I just seeing things.  You be the judge.