November 30, 2009

Twitter Tuesday...December 1, 2009

It's officially December (where did the year go?) and we're in prime "Hot Stove" season. Last month, I suggested you follow MLBTradeRumors...are you?

Why not?!?




A couple days ago, Dodgers outfielder Matt Kemp received this tweet from Los Angeles radio personality (and former girlfriend of Kevin Federline) Liz Hernandez.

AnditisLiz: You should start your own FOOD twitter page. You only tweet about grubbing. Ha ha...

And while her taste in men might be suspect (Federline, really?), Hernandez is right about one thing...plenty of baseball players do have food on the mind.

Especially following Thanksgiving.

Brum24 (Cliff Brumbaugh): Happy Bird Day To All!!! Bout to fry dis Big ASS TURKEY!!! http://twitpic.com/r1qlu

mattkemp27 (Matt Kemp): Guys, when u have 115 people in da house u can't eat on the best of plates. Straight plastic baby!!!
club

GrillCheese49 (Jason Grilli): Unreal Thanksgiving! Ate all day. Made a killer soup out of the leftovers! Guess what is for lunch! Going for a nice Run today

Jerry_Remy (Jerry Remy): Had a great Thanksgiving-ate too much-paying the price today-the thought about going out to eat tonight is enough to make me ill-Jerry

str8edgeracer (CJ Wilson): Just saw a sign for a greek place in az: "chicago style gyro" -- that only works for pizza, right?





Before the season started, I predicted over at (and here comes the shameless plug) RBI Magazine that Grady Sizemore would bring home the American League MVP Award.

Eight months, his worst year as a pro and a season ending injury later...we've learned a little more about my MVP pick. One...he's learned nothing from Vanessa Hudgens. Next, he is apparently a big fan of the iPhone. Lastly, the dude needs a case of Band-Aids...because he's all cut up.

Zing!

Here's what you (mostly the ladies) are saying about the Indians centerfielder.

AarSim: Well, hello Grady Sizemore. Could I have a cup of tea?

DanBudreika: i wonder how grady sizemore feels right now?

The_Real_LLC: I've seen way more of Grady Sizemore than I ever wanted to in these last few days.

LaraD2mRdr: I think I'm a fan of the Indians now because of Grady Sizemore.

JillyLava: In other news, just saw the nearly naked Grady Sizemore photos floating around, is it just me or are those awesomely gay?





I realized early on in the process this week that I've been reading alot from Matt Kemp. That being said...I think it is time that he gets recognized!

From his courtside tweets watching the Oklahoma City Thunder to his Twitpic of his Thanksgiving meal (turkey, macaroni and cheese and mashed potatoes on styrofoam trays), he is quickly becoming baseball's version of Chad Ochocinco.

And no, people...that is NOT a bad thing.

Have someone you think everyone should follow? Perhaps you yourself have read some interesting tweets in the past week…drop me a line or leave a comment below. See you next Tuesday!


BallHype: hype it up!

November 25, 2009

Another (g)old glove ends up in Chicago

I'm inclined to say something because as recent as 2007, it appeared as Andruw Jones could very well end up in Cooperstown some day.

Then he went to the Dodgers....and we all know how that ended up.


Well, today, the ten-time Gold Glove winner (and, yes, he did win them consecutively) is heading to the Chicago White Sox to resurrect what used to be a Hall of Fame caliber career.

Now, I'm sure some of you are laughing. I mean, how could this bloated shell of what used to be the Majors best centerfielder be the least bit valuable to the Southsiders?

Easy.

He brings veteran leadership to a club that is now lacking Jim Thome, Jermaine Dye and, more than likely, Paul Konerko. Along with fellow former Texas Ranger and newly acquired Omar Vizquel...the Sox have two of the game's best all-time fielders to help mentor their younger players.

Second, thanks to last season's injury to Josh Hamilton, the five-time All-Star appears to still be hungry to play. Sure, he still struck up a bunch (72 times in 331 plate appearances), but nearly a third of his hits were home runs.

Which brings me to this...Jones is 12 longballs shy of 400 for his career. And nothing makes someone turn it up half a notch more than being on the cusp of a milestone.

Lastly, he'll enter the season just short of his 33rd birthday and at only half a million a year...the White Sox actually look smart bringing in a slugger with a fantastic glove to spell Alex Rios and Carlos Quentin in the outfield and whoever ends up playing first.

And if Jones DOESN'T work out...I hear Minnie Minoso is just a phone call away. You see, like Vizquel and Jones...he's old too.
Zing!


BallHype: hype it up!

November 24, 2009

Twitter Tuesday...November 24, 2009


In a seemingly unprecedented move, friend of The Hall and Twitter Tuesday regular Jason Grilli hit the interwebs last night to announce that he has signed with a new club.

GrillCheese49: Well it is official. I am signing with my 7th team. Can you guess? Drum roll please! Will let ya know when I am able.

And even though he didn't officially with who...the tweet still generated a ton of buzz. Who needs the "where will Roy Halladay end up" talk!




In case you were wondering what baseball players think in the offseason...wonder no more. Indians outfielder Matt LaPorta pretty much sums it up.

Gator4God: Football, pizza, football, nap, football.

Here's what everyone else is thinking about.

str8edgeracer (CJ Wilson): took my little cousins to see planet 51 tonight, glad they're 3 and 7 and not 13 and 17- didn't have to sit through twilight haha

CJNitkowski (CJ Nitkowski): On the back porch on a beautiful night, looking at the stars, smoking a Cuban with a glass of shochu & listening to music. Almost perfect..

jonadkins96 (Jon Adkins): Hanging the treestand today and waking up at REALLY early to get out in the woods! Deer beware, I will be sitting 16ft above the ground!

mattkemp27 (Matt Kemp): Gelato in Ceasar Palace, is the best!!!!

hyphen18 (Ryan Rowland-Smith): Can't find my favourite 80's movie 'Thrashin' anywhere here!

ToddStottlemyre (Todd Stottlemyre): wow, sitting on my hands, bored to death





As this year's MLB Awards season comes to a close, I can't help but be reminded of the online hate spewed in the direction of Keith Law.

Who?

Law is the ESPN writer who didn't throw a Cy Young vote Chris Carpenter's way. Oh, the horror...too bad no one (including Cardinals fans) will remember three months from now.

mattynuetz: can thank keith law for that cy young travesty. seriously, does he even watch baseball? vaszquez ahead of carp AND wainwright?

DanielFredman: so, keith law wont vote for Carp because he was out for a month, but, presumably, votes Mauer number 1?

yowhatupT: Keith Law is a moron. You don't lead NL in ERA and not be a Top 3 pitcher

Kurt_Steinberg: Keith Law, do you have a learning disability? You are a disgrace and should be stripped of your Cy Young voting rights!

bbates44: Good Morning!!! One day closer to spring training but Keith law is still an idiot.





Back in June, Rangers reliever CJ Wilson talked to The Hall about his life in the Majors.

On the strength of "excuse me sir in seat 21B your sweater is giving us all motion sickness" and "thought I saw stephen king in the baton rouge airport, but it was just a creepy 45 yr old guy in a quasi-members only jacket", I've been reminded how fun Wilson is to follow.

If you're not already...do so!

Have someone you think everyone should follow? Perhaps you yourself have read some interesting tweets in the past week…drop me a line or leave a comment below. See you next Tuesday!


BallHype: hype it up!

November 23, 2009

Ozzie...Omar. Omar...Ozzie.

The baseball free-agent signing period has kicked off, gang!

After days of speculation, the "will he" or "won't he" talk of whether or not Omar Vizquel would join the Chicago White Sox has come to a close.

Wait...Omar Vizquel?!?

Anyway.

On Monday, Vizquel inked a 1.375 million dollar deal with the Southsiders and along with it...joined his longtime friend (and fellow Venezuelan), Chicago manager Ozzie Guillen. The 42 year-old shortstop will will be expected to serve as a mentor to White Sox budding stars Alexei Ramirez and Gordon Beckham.

Last year in Texas, Vizquel hit .266 with one homer and 14 RBIs in 62 games. In 207 chances, he committed no errors.

Here at The Hall, discussion about the Cooperstown-bound shortstop has been as bountiful as the mustaches that overtook the Brewers clubhouse in 1982! This season alone, there has been talk about Vizquel's
Hall of Fame credentials, as well as hit by hit coverage of his assault on Luis Aparicio's all-time hit mark.

Shortly after Vizquel topped Aparicio and became the all-time hit leader among Venezuelan boen players...I asked Rangers reliever CJ Wilson if his former teammate was the best shortstop ever.

"I think with the 'best shortstop ever' discussion, it all comes down to Ozzie Smith versus Omar," Wilson said of the 11-time Gold Glove award winner.


BallHype: hype it up!


November 16, 2009

Twitter Tuesday...November 17, 2009


I'll admit it, I had no idea how to start this week's installment. Then I saw this tweet from former big league hurler Todd Stottlemyre:

ToddStottlemyre: will be giving my sword a bubble bath and massage tonight

Unfortunately, I still have no clue how to kick this thing off other than to say...me too!




Now, if there has been one thing I've learned so far it is this...baseball players are worried about much more than next season during the off season. Popular topics of discussion include food, fantasy football and...home entertainment.

ToddStottlemyre (Todd Stottlemyre): movie night at home with the wife and kids, life doesnt get any better

GrillCheese49 (Jason Grilli): Going to watch some Lost Episodes. Fired up about that show! Ms. Evangeline Lilly would be ok to be stuck on an island with I suppose

73_MC (Seth McClung): Rob Dyrdek is very freaking funny!! Loving the Rob and Big Re-runs on mtv2

mattkemp27 (Matt Kemp): This movie 2012 is crazy!!!!

gehrig38 (Curt Schilling): Digging the hell out of Modern Warfare 2, XBox360 style.

73_MC (McClung): Ghost adventures, the travel channel.They R terrible!nothing worse than ghost hunters wearing there sisters afliction shirts and overacting





Last week, baseball commissioner Bud Selig sat down and was interviewed by Bob Costas. Shortly thereafter...you talked about it.

injuryrate: Bud Selig wisely decides not to expand replay after the worst umped MLB postseason ever. Boggles the mind....

scotsedley: Bud Selig interview in MLB Network is top notch. I am one of Selig's Soldiers! What an underated commish.

davidshanker: Bud Selig on MLBTV being interviewed by Bob Costas and he is a horses ass. MLB needs a new commish - NOW.

BellaMarci: Watching Bob Costas interview Bud Selig. Selig excuses meth n steroid users, but not Pete Rose.

TheAllanMuir: I really don't see why some people hate Bud Selig.

PattyVestal: Alright its official, Bud Selig is determined to see the MLB fall to the 4th spot in pro sports league, behind Hockey





Mustache May came and went months ago.

A few weeks back, The American Mustache Institute held their annual 'Stache Bash.

This month...it's Movember!

One man who is single handedly trying to bring the mustache back is Anaheim Los Angeles Angels (of Anaheim) reliever Rich Thompson. The Aussie has been posting updates throughout the month on Twitter and I encourage you to follow him and if you feel so inclined...donate.

And since it is too late to start your Movember 'stache, gang...start planning for Mustache May 2010!

Have someone you think everyone should follow? Perhaps you yourself have read some interesting tweets in the past week…drop me a line or leave a comment below. See you next Tuesday!


BallHype: hype it up!





November 11, 2009

Not so fast, Cooperstown!

According to Larry Stone of the Seattle Times, Ken Griffey Jr. is pushing back his Hall of Fame induction speech for one more season and re-signing (again) with the Seattle Mariners.

Sitting at 630 career home runs, Junior (and when exactly can we stop calling him "Junior"?) is 30 longballs from overtaking Willie Mays on the all-time list. This past season, he hit .214 with 19 home runs.


In April, Griffey (who turns 40 later this month) became the only player in baseball history to notch more than 400 home runs with one team and 200 with another. Even more interesting...he has hit home runs off of 407 different pitchers (second only to Sammy Sosa's 449), in 44 different ballparks and against every team except Cincinnati.


BallHype: hype it up!

November 9, 2009

Twitter Tuesday...November 10, 2009

Last week, Twitter was abuzz with talk about the New York Yankees capturing their record 27th World Championship. To put that into perspective...that's 27 more than the Cubs have won in the last 101 years.

ZING!

Still don't know what Twitter Tuesday is? Don't waste Google's time...click the link.




It seems like Yankees chatter wasn't confined solely to those who never set foot on the playing field. Bring on the chatter, gang!

73_MC (Seth McClung): Congrats to the yankees, it's still very hard to watch.

jonadkins96 (Jon Adkins): Congrats to the Yankees. Great team and some great leaders. Jeter and Rivera are two standup guys!

chopper63 (Rich Thompson): Angels champs 2010!

str8edgeracer (CJ Wilson): what if hideki said "konichiwa bitches!!!" like the chappelle show episode

GrillCheese49 (Jason Grilli): Nice that the network follows up a World Series with none other than Jerry Springer- I slept with a miget stripper! The offseason begins

Brum24 (Cliff Brumbaugh): Congrats to the NY Yankees!! What a team!!! Impressive all around! Also to my Phils, congrats and way to BATTLE!

mattkemp27 (Matt Kemp): In the studio right now working on my album.

NickSwisher (Nick Swisher): HELL YEAH! THE NEW YORK YANKEES ARE THE WORLD CHAMPS!!!




Last week, Josh Bacott over at Joe Sports Fan put together a list of rejected ESPN 30 for 30 concepts. From that, grew quite the trending topic over at Twitter...here are some baseball related faves.

JerodMSF: At Long Last: How the Cubs Reversed 100+ Years of Frustration

thegnc: Catcher of the Decade: How Mike Matheny changed the culture in Milwaukee.

jonpyle: Operation Shutdown: A Season with Derek Bell

chrislittman: Behind The Goggles: The Chris Sabo Story

sepinwall: Double Clutch: The Mackey Sasser Story

DocZeus: Throwing Gasoline On The Flame: The Story Of Ugueth Urbina

JordanSK: Belle: From Joey to Albert

drewunga: Day of a Lifetime: The Tuffy Rhodes Story

djmelvis: Bo Diaz: Cable Guy




Since I pretty much took Bacott's idea and ran with it when I compiled this week's Buzz...I have to recommend my friends over at Joe Sports Fan. Sure, I suggested you all follow them a couple months ago, but c'mon...they're worth it.

So what are you waiting for...follow joesportsfan!

Have someone you think everyone should follow? Perhaps you yourself have read some interesting tweets in the past week…drop me a line or leave a comment below. See you next Tuesday!


BallHype: hype it up!


November 5, 2009

And in other news...the Yankees won

All in all…the World Series was pretty entertaining. I am not a fan of either teams, but still, I was really, REALLY looking forward to last night’s Game Six.

All day, I was bouncing around work telling people how “epic” I thought Pedro Martinez versus Andy Pettitte was bound to be.

And it should have been.

I mean, here they are…448 and 235 (a staggering .656 winning percentage) for their stories careers, a combined 3.42 ERA, 5304 strikeouts and the eyes of Philadelphia and New York watching their every pitch.

In the past, Pedro had allowed the Yankees to be his “Daddy”…could he exorcise those demons?

With his Game Three victory, Pettitte became the all-time leader in postseason wins with 17….could he add to that total?

And after all, this was a Game Six and as we know, ANYTHING can happen and often times (ask the 1975 Red Sox, 1986 Mets or the 1993 Blue Jays)…it does.

So there I was, ready to call it a night, watch some baseball and grant myself a reprieve from contributing to anything online when I received the following tweet from good friend of The Hall (and frequent contributor over at Full Count Pitch) David Allan:

“Can we stop with the Pettitte for Hall of Fame love fest?”

My fear is that no, we can’t…and won’t.

Anytime that a Yankee has the success that Pettitte has had, particularly on the biggest stage possible (Hell, I’ve even been reading “Jorge Posada for the Hall of Fame” stories lately)…there is going to be talk.

Unlike Posada (who is not a potential Hall of Famer), with Pettitte, it is hard to discern at first glance, whether or not it is warranted.

Sure, you can do what Colin Linneweber at Bleacher Report did and simply state “Andy Pettitte is a Hall of Fame Pitcher” and cite solely his winning percentage (.629) World Series rings (now, five) as the reason.

But you’d be dead wrong and come across as not very knowledgeable.

The problem with Colin’s statements are many. Most noticeably, is the fact that five rings with the Yankees isn’t THAT impressive (David Cone has five rings and can’t sniff Cooperstown, Paul O’Neill has the same amount and won’t see the mandatory five percent to stay on the ballot) and the winning percentage (while impressive) is only good for ninth among active players.

Sure, a 229-135 record is good, don’t get me wrong, but in an era where Pettitte competed alongside such Hall of Fame shoe-ins as Greg Maddux (355 wins), Roger Clemens (354), Tom Glavine (305) and Randy Johnson (303)…being 63rd all-time isn’t turning any heads.

Now, while it is true that there are those in Cooperstown (Catfish Hunter has 224 wins) or on the verge of getting there (Pedro Martinez is at 219), but they both have something Pettitte never brought home.

Hardware.

If you’ve read anything here at The Hall, you know I’m big on the accolades and unlike Hunter and Martinez who have four Cy Young Awards and 11 top four finishes between them…Pettitte only once came close to sniffing the award.

In 1996, his second year in the bigs, Pettitte finished 21-8 and could easily have been considered the ace on a staff that guided the Yankees to 92 wins and a World Series ring. That is the same year, he grabbed 11 first place votes and finished second to the Blue Jays Pat Hentgen.

Ironically, if Mariano Rivera doesn’t get a first place vote and it goes to Pettitte…the big Texan brings home the award.

All that aside, I can’t belittle a guy for his lack of Cy Young Awards and paltry two All-Star appearances when he has a fist full of rings and the most victories in postseason history.

And how about those 18 postseason wins that everyone (myself included) seems to eventually bring up?

Pretty impressive, right?!?

Wrong.

No one ever brings up that he also has the most starts (40) and third most losses (nine) all-time in the postseason. Bless me with having the best closer ever behind me and an offense that produces runs at an All-World clip and I, too, will win close to two-thirds of my starts.

I guarantee it.

Now, I want to go back to the regular season and call out the two biggest gorillas in the room…ERA and strikeouts.

Pettitte’s career ERA is 3.91.

Let me repeat that. Pettitte’s career ERA is 3.91 and if he would happen to make it to the podium for that hot July speech, he would go in with the highest ERA (by far) of anyone else enshrined.

It can be defended that this is a hitters’ era, but when you look at the guys I mentioned before (Maddux, Clemens, Glavine and Johnson), the highest ERA in the bunch is Glavine’s 3.54 and while not spectacular…300-plus wins and 2700 Ks will help garner a few votes.

The baseball writers are silly like that.

And what about Pettitte’s strikeout totals?

While he was never considered a power pitcher (his 2.8 walks per nine innings shows he was more of a control guy), his 2150 strikeouts isn’t likely to turn many heads when it comes to a Hall vote.

Strikeouts, like home runs, are a stat that voters can look at and qualify based on certain, pre-determined benchmarks.

For example…all but one eligible player (Mark McGwire) with more than 500 home runs is in the Hall. Similarly, there is only one eligible pitcher (Bert Blyleven) with more than 3000 strikeouts that is on the outside looking in.

Failing to meet some of the minimum requirements, if you will, won’t help Pettitte earn any favors.

Lastly, there is that press conference from February 2008 where he admitted to using HGH while playing in New York in 2002 and with the Astros in 2004.

Would Pettitte have come out and admitted use had he not been fingered by both former teammate Jason Grimsley and former trainer Brian McNamee? Probably not.

Would he have come clean had he not been one of the biggest names to have been named in the Mitchell Report? Probably not.

Can we be sure that those were the only times that Pettitte used the drugs and his reasons were legitimate? Probably not.

Will the writers forget all this when it is Pettitte’s time to face the jury and be selected for enshrinement? Say it with me…probably not.

As it is, the BBWAA has only had one player to vilify so far and while he, Mark McGwire, was only suspected of using performance enhancers, odds are he is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to NOT allowing substance abusers (or those suspected of being one) into the Hall of Fame.

My gut tells me that, if, for some reason, Pettitte’s numbers upon retirement garner him any sort of Hall of Fame consideration (and honestly, I am not sure they will), his coming clean about steroids won’t help his cause.

And since you made it this far, I am obligated to finish this thing with the trite…“the Yankees beat the Phillies to capture their record 27th championship”.

Now, I know you knew that already…but isn’t that much better than spending the last sentence of an “is Andy Pettitte a Hall of Famer” talking about how steroids will likely be the biggest contributing factor as to why Pettitte does not get into the Hall?

Wait…I think I just did.




BallHype: hype it up!

November 3, 2009

Twitter Tuesday...November 3, 2009

So here we are...it's November 3 and we have yet to crown a World Series champion. Instead of people bitching about it (I mean, we did start the season almost a week later than normal), embrace a great series and root against the Yankees!

Still don't know what Twitter Tuesday is? Don't waste Google's time...click the link.




Only a small percentage of players out there on Twitter have a vested interest in what is going on with the World Series. For the rest of them...their minds seem to be on Halloween.

BrentMayne (Brent Mayne): Spike Jonze should've titled "Where The Wild Things Are" "Overly Emotional Muppets." Not good for me. I give it a soft 6.

chadhermansen (Chad Hermansen): Chase Utely would be a great vampire for Halloween with that slicked back hair!

ESPY_TEAHEN (Mark Teahen): Kurt Warner dressed as Jake Delohmme for Halloween. Bad showing by my Cards. Luckly the rest of the NFC West struggled today too.

APacBama (Adam Pavkovich): "Paranormal Activity" must see movie. Even better seeing it on Halloween night

73_MC (Seth McClung): 8:30 and I am out of candy. I gave away a lot way to early. Hope the house doesn't get egged!!!

jonadkins96 (Jon Adkins): Is all of Korea watching the World Series? Chan Ho Park is gettin loose in the bullpen with the full beard. Nice look Chan Hizzy!

NickSwisher (Nick Swisher): 2 great teams going at it in the World Series! Let's go Yankees!




A little more than six years ago (October 14, 2003), the Chicago Cubs were able to push aside goats and black cats and blame a postseason misstep on an unsuspecting fan from the Chicago suburbs.

This year, I broke out the headphones and went out on Halloween as Steve Bartman.

But as late as I was on the joke, I'm not the only one still thinking of him.

soulblack: Brad Lidge is to Philly what Steve Bartman was to Chicago

gp1477: I say we go all Steve Bartman on that f-ing camera in right field...

DustinHouston: My waiter is dressed up as Steve Bartman. Headphones and Cubs cap and all. So funny.

michelle779: I love these 30 for 30 documentaries ESPN is doing. I can't wait for the one on Steve Bartman.

BBernsen: My Steve Bartman Halloween costume http://twitpic.com/ny3up






Pretty soon, the hot stove will be starting up. Suffice it to say, if you are not following Tim Dierkes and the gang over at MLB Trade Rumors, you're bound to be left out in the cold.

See what I did there?

But seriously, the cats over at MLB Trade Rumors put together more baseball news than anywhere else I can find...follow them and behold their wisdom!

Have someone you think everyone should follow? Perhaps you yourself have read some interesting tweets in the past week…drop me a line or leave a comment below. See you next Tuesday!


BallHype: hype it up!