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April 2008

And Another Thing (Baseball Edition)

Yes, it's been a long time.  Hey, I've been busy OK?  Lots of stuff in development, but you'll just have to wait.  But this stuff, I just have to get it off my chest so I can move on to stuff that Really Matters.

  • Opening Day.  When was opening day in baseball this year? And do we add or subtract a day for crossing the international dateline to play in Japan?  Hey, I'm all for playing an exhibition in Japan (once the owners were made to cough up salary for the non-playing personnel--what, were they just supposed to commute?).  That's not my beef.  No, I want to know when I missed the memo.  You know, the one that says the Cincinnati Reds will no longer play the first game on Opening Day... like they have for a hundred years before Marge Schott got a hold of the team.  Whose bright idea was that?
  • The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.  I've got no problem with artistic license when it comes to linking the team and the city.  After all, no one cares that the New York (Football) Giants and Jets play in New Jersey.  But come on!  First of all, this is an insult to the original Los Angeles Angels (of Los Angeles).  Yeah, they stank (think, the LA Clippers of baseball) but they gave you someone to root for if you didn't care for the Dodgers.  And I realize that for many people "Los Angeles" and "Southern California" (aka "the southland") are synonymous... Kind of like those New Yorker posters that showed a map of the US consisting of New York, a tiny tower about Chicago's distance, and then "LA".  But any Angeleno would scoff at the idea of confusing Anaheim with Los Angeles.  The "Big A" (brought to you by whoever bought the naming rights) is at least three freeway interchanges from anywhere in Los Angeles proper, so ipso facto it can't be in Los Angeles.  But I know why they came up with this name:  ESPN.  And specifically, ESPN's use of three-letter abbreviations when showing the box score on the "crawl" during their telecasts.  That's when the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim--LAAOA--become the Los Angeles Angels, LAA.  Suddenly, they've left their suburban past behind! A new stadium can't be far behind!  I say, call them the Angels of Anaheim:  AOA.  It conjures up images of KOA Kampgrounds (no, they're not German.  Someone thought camping in a dirt lot would seem more quaint if they spelled "campground" with a "k".) and AAA, who you'll need to call when you run out of gas idling on the Golden State Freeway in the post-game traffic jam.
  • Jose Canseco.  Andy Warhol said something about how we all get our fifteen minutes of fame, and I'm trying to find out whose fifteen minutes Jose is stealing--again.  If Jose's original kiss-and-tell book on steroid use in baseball helped lead to cleaning up the sport, then good for him.  But what's with the "oops, I forgot to mention so and so" follow up book?  Jose now thinks he's a national hero and we should all rush out and buy his new book... come on!  This is the guy that let a fly ball bounce off his head and into the stands for a ground rule double instead of an out.  Worse, this is the guy who asked to pitch as a reliever, got shelled (no surprise there) and injured his shoulder in the process!  What kind of judgment does that represent?  To paraphrase the saying, "how can we miss you if you won't go away?"