Arbitrary Randomness
Wednesday, May 30, 2001
One of Russ' ponderings (the one about Todd Jones) made me think of one thing i don't understand about baseball.... Closers....

I understand the concept, and can appreciate it to some degree. The fact that this great pitcher can secure a lead late in the game and retire a side in the ninth inning to get the win for the team is a great idea. But if the existing pitcher is doing fine, why the need to pull him out?? I've seen games where the pitcher is pitching fine, and sometimes for less then an inning, but since it's the ninth inning, we have to bring in the closer. WHY?? just to pad his stats?? (more on that later...) And that whole left handed pitchers to left handed batters thing (or whatever it is, i can never remember who has the advantage). The will bring in a pitcher for one batter, just for the advantage. But heaven forbid we take out the closer if he isn't doing well. Last week, Todd Jones came in the game in the 9th inning with a 2 run lead (replacing a pitcher who faced just one batter in the previous inning. clearly, he can't be tired yet!!!). Two outs in the 9th, and they still have a 2 run lead, but Jones allowed 2 men on in the process. another hit.... one run scores.... maybe we should get another pitcher in??? nope... let's let him pitch some more....another hit.... another run scores..... tie game..... replace the pitcher?? nope, not yet. ground ball back to the pitcher, easy out of the inning, and got into the bottom of the 9th tied, right??? WRONG!!!! NEXT ISSUE (sorry, got carried away).... Error on the pitcher, bases loaded!!! take Jones out yet???? NOPE!!! what happens?? a double, THREE MORE RUNS SCORE!!!!!! OK, at this point, Jones has let in 5 runs (after getting two outs), and had a fielding error that could have ended the side of the inning. Do we take him out??? NOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!! Let's let him give up another hit, letting in another run!!!!! WHAT IS THE THINKING BEHIND THIS?!?!?!?!?!

That's why i don't get closers.

OK, this is a long blog while i'm on my complaining spree. Is there anything more pointless than most pitching stats???? I get strikeouts and walks, and ERA is pretty valid, but as far as Wins, Losses, and Saves.... these stats serve no purpose in my mind. They are very dependant on your teams ability to score runs and win the game, and have very little to do with your pitching abilities. Pitcher A can pitch a complete game and give up just one hit... a home run, but since his team doesn't score, he get's a loss. Pitcher B can pitch six or seven innings, give up 6 runs on 9 hits... but, since his team had a good day with the bats and scored 10 runs, Pitcher B gets the win. So what's the point of that stat??

And Saves are similar. I don't know all the details, but don't you have to face the tying run or something to get a save?? I could be wrong on this one, but a team could get to the 9th inning being up 5-0, and then the CLOSER comes on in the ninth, and gives up 4 runs, but since he didn't lose the game, he gets a save. that makes no sense to me at all.

OK, enough complaining.... one of these days, i'll add that comments thinger, so you can reply and tell me that i'm wrong.
OK, this may not be as good of a question as Russ', but here goes...

Of the 121 teams in the four major sports, which three states are home to the most teams (combining for over 25% of all teams)??

(Before anyone complains.... the 121 teams include the expansion Houston Texans, who will be joining the NFL in 2002)
Tuesday, May 29, 2001
Yeah, I know, this has been a pretty lame blog... I'll try to get better at posting more often. The last week or so, it seems like this sight has been really flaky and I haven't had the time or patience to update it. OK, enough whining.....

For the past few years, I've been trying to get into baseball. I would consider myself a pretty big sports fan, although I've never really got into baseball. the last few years, i've tried to force myself to get into it, but just couldn't. At the beginning of this year, I think i figured out my problem, I'm trying to take on too much at once, so this year, i've started just watching the Tigers. I couldn't tell you anything about the rest of the league, but I have been able to watch the Tigers. I've also joined a fantasy baseball league which should help get some more interest in the sport, although i haven't done much with it, since i'm sharing the team with Bill, who has far superior baseball knowledge, so I defer decisions to him.

In the little that i did follow baseball in the past, I do know that three or four years ago, if you would have said that the Seattle Mariners would be leading the league this year, without Griffey, Rodrigez, and Johnson, that probably would have sounded pretty funny.

Oh, one more thing BIll, that conversation about cornhuskers, were we trying to figure out if anything else had husks?? or if anything else was shucked. Because oysters are shucked, and then of course, there is shucka chan (OK, bad joke).
Friday, May 18, 2001
I have to applaud Jason Williams of Duke. At a time when many players are skipping college all together, let alone those who leave college early to enter the NBA, Willams has decided to state at Duke another year. And even though that he will most likely leave after next year (with eligibility left), he is taking summer courses to ensure that he leaves Duke with a diploma.

``I wouldn't give it up for anything,'' Williams said . ``I don't know that I'm ready to enter the real world. I don't know if I'm ready to grow up and worry about bills and stuff like that. I'm getting there. I'll have my own apartment for the first time in my life this year.

``I think a lot of kids miss out when they leave early. College presents a lot of that for you, growing up.''

Although i had to laugh at the "worry about bills" comment. Something tells me that paying the electric bill won't put too much of a dent in his pocket = )
I have to agree with HateHateHate in response to Zesty's criticism of the West Wing build up to next season. The show was great. I enjoyed seeing the background of the relationship between Bartlet and Mrs. Liningham(Sp?). Just like the first episode of this season, while Josh was in the hospital, and they flashed back and showed on the senior staff came to be during the campaign. I thought both episodes were awesome.
Friday, May 11, 2001
Good Eats is one of the best shows on TV (if you like food-type programming). Alton Brown combines humor with information regarding food.

What I like most is that Alton shows us items that I would actually make. Most of the things i see on other cooking shows contain odd items, or are really unique, or call for that one spice that you've never heard of that costs $18 a bottle that you'll use only for this recipe.

Alton will take some type of food, or genre of food, and make a few recipies with that item. But the show doesn't stop at the recipies. He also shows some history of the food, and what different ingredients do, which help you know why you are putting baking soda and baking powder into those muffins on that recipe that you got from your mom.

He also makes frequent trips to the local store to tell you what features you want to look for on different types of Kitchen appliances.

If you are interested in food and cooking, give Good Eats a watch (9:00PM/12AM Wednesday nights, 9:30PM/12:30AM Saturday nights, 6:30 PM Sunday evenings). I'm guessing you'll learn a thing or two about cooking, or why you do certain things in cooking, and you will probably laugh once or twice in the process. If you try it let me know what you think.
Thursday, May 10, 2001
In reading other blogs, now i'm on the TV show topic in my head. I want to give some notice to a probably lesser known TV show, that I'll probably get made fun of for mentioning, as it is me admitting to the fact that I watch the show. But I am not ashamed.

Iron Chef is on the Food Network. For those who haven't seen it before, it is a Japanese tv show that is a game show of sorts. but not your typical game show. The premise of the show is that there are "Iron Chefs" who are the top chefs with certain culinary expertise. The 4 Iron Chefs specialize in Chinese cuisine, Japanese, French, and Italian.

The "contestents" are chefs from restuarants from all over, but primarily Japan. A theme ingredient is unveiled, and the challenger and Iron Chef have one hour to come up with as many tasty dishes as they can, using the theme ingredient.

The theme ingredient ranges from scallions to squid to potatoes to sea urchin. Most dishes created are newly created items "never tasted before outside of Kitchen Stadium (the set for Iron Chef)."

What is most entertaining (at least for me) is the dubbing. The show is Japanese, but they have English dubbed in for all the voices, but the dubbing shows inflection just as if they were the people talking, including "oooooohhhhhs" and "aaaahhhhhs".

All the voices are dubbed, except for Chairman Kaga (the "inventor" of Iron Chef and Kitchen Stadium) who is subtitled (don't ask me why). His stories always start with, "If memory serves me right...."

So the next time you have nothing to do at 10PM or 1AM on Friday or Saturday night (and Sat/sun morning for 1AM) flip on the Food Network, and give it a try.

Next blog..... Good Eats.......
Tuesday, May 08, 2001
HATEHATEHATE had an interesting trivia question. It took me a little bit of time, but i finally figured it out.

now to bounce one back....

Name the 5 pairs of teams (in the 4 major sports) that share a nickname. I would give a bonus point for the newest member of the 5, but that seems too easy (newest due to expansion/teams moving). Two bonus points if you can name the two pairs of teams that were knocked off this list within the last 10 years due to teams relocating and changing their names (i.e. when the NFL Browns moved to Baltimore, they changed their names to the Ravens, which isn't one of the answers here, but might help on HATEHATEHATE's trivia question)
Friday, May 04, 2001
I came to the realization awhile back that my birthday is on a special day. No matter what day of the year it is..... it's always within 6 months of my birthday. Go figure.

Unfortunately, i just checked again, and Russ is still older than me by 2 days. One of these days, i'm gonna catch up. we're coming up on our 10,000th day birthday. man, that sounds old.
OK, so i thought i would be funny, and pick the "Cutesy" template, but didn't realize what it would look like. but i'll keep it for now.
OK, I finally got a blog going. Not that Bill had to push me too much. My description said that i would enter random thoughts that go through my mind. Not all of them, cuz to be frank (well, actually, my name isn't frank), some of my random thoughts don't make sense. I will post some of these, because Bill will understand them. I will also post my comments to other blogs that i read, cuz when reading them lately, i have responses, but don't know what to do with them, and they are filling up my brain and i need to empty them somewhere.

OK, enough blabbing..... let the blogging begin.....

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