The Dord of Darien

Musings from the Mayor of the Internet

I told you so

Chipper Jones? Not quitting baseball.

August 13th, 2010 Posted by | Baseball | no comments

The Wrath of Klapisch

Have you heard the one about the Mets closer who’s on trial for assaulting his girlfriend’s father? Crazy K-Rod crazily punched a 53-year old man in his crazy mouth, and Bob Klapisch is on the scene, bringing the crazy to a new level with a crazy article entitled

Mets organization shows a lack of backbone

in which he has apparently forgotten that there are things like "laws" and "contracts" and "unions" standing in the way of his desire for vengeance.

Only the most naïve among us believed the Mets would finish their season in quiet desperation.

Yeah, pretty much only idiots ever expect the Mets not to get even funnier. And thanks for the diaeresis — I appreciate that.

Instead, Francisco Rodriguez spent Wednesday night in jail after allegedly pummeling his girlfriend’s father at Citi Field, exposing every last flaw of a team that’s missing a backbone.

The Mets have given 388 PA to Jeff Francoeur, who is extremely terrible at baseball. That is a flaw that K-Rod punching out an old guy did not expose.

I mean, just sayin’.

What was more outrageous: that K-Rod would reportedly punch a 53-year-old man in the face in full view of Mets’ family members — including children — or that not one of the reliever’s teammates had the guts to renounce such behavior?

I’m going to go with the punching, personally, since that was pretty goddamn outrageous. The dudes who didn’t want to talk to the media about it? Pretty non-outrageous.

The Mets were probably taking their cue from the owner, Jeff Wilpon, who should’ve made it his business to stand in the middle of the clubhouse and say thugs don’t work for the Mets – they get bounced out of town.

Yes, Jeff Wilpon should do that. Constantly. He should spend all of his time standing in the exact centre of the clubhouse and screaming at everybody who walks in the door that, hey, if you’re a thug, get the fuck out. The Mets would be a better team if they kept Wilpon distracted with shit like that, so he wasn’t making dumb decisions all the damn time.

Also, don’t the Mets have an ace currently being sued for rape? Oh. Yes they do. It’s kind of starting to look like thugs do work for the Mets.

Wilpon hid behind his word-processor, releasing a statement in which he said the Mets were "disappointed" by the incident, which "they take very seriously."

Asshole. Only one "very?" You clearly aren’t taking this seriously enough, Wilpon. The least you could have done was type it in all-caps.

Sure they do. The Mets suspended Rodriguez for all of two days, one of which he was already behind bars. But it gets better: Jerry Manuel said he would’ve gladly used K-Rod in Thursday afternoon’s game, had only the police played along and released him earlier.

Jerry Manuel’s job is to win baseball games, Sue-Ann, not to travel around the world fighting crime. K-Rod is the only reliever he has who doesn’t completely blow (Pedro Feliciano has been crazy lucky on home runs, which makes him look better than he really is), and his absence forced Manuel to use rape camp super-champ Santana for nine innings if he wanted a shot at closing that game out. So, yeah, would have been nice to have a decent reliever around.

Had Manuel bothered to think through his answer, he would’ve realized Rodriguez was in no position to pitch in a major league game, not after the trauma of being handcuffed, incarcerated and marched in front of a judge, all in a 12-hour span.

This reminds me of last year, when Miguel Cabrera clearly was in no condition to play baseball following his incarceration for drunkenness and alleged domestic violence. In fact, it’s the exact same claim! Which is hilarious, since Cabrera followed up with a monster offensive performance during which he almost single-handedly kept the Tigers in the game. He was worth .176 WPA to the Tigers that game.

So, yeah. Fuck that noise. Clearly broken and useless like a fragile little fairy.

Secondly, Manuel should’ve said that no Met deserves to wear the uniform after such a brutal assault.

Yeah, that seems like a good idea. That wouldn’t get the MLBPA up his ass at all. And it certainly wouldn’t cause any tension when Rodriguez returns.

The Mets shouldn’t go anywhere near Rodriguez until they know if he’s going to jail – having been charged with a Class A misdemeanor, he faces up to a year in prison.

He’s not going to jail. He has way too much money to go to jail for a misdemeanor. Worst-case scenario: he plea-bargains down to probation and a fine. Most likely scenario: he gives the dude a fat stack of cash.

At the very least, Rodriguez needs professional help before he resumes his career.

Alternative hypothesis: Rodriguez can get professional help while resuming his career. Just like Cabrera did.

That over-the-top personality is well known in the big leagues; Rodriguez’s reputation was damaged even before joining the Mets.

Clause 1 and clause 2 of that sentence are unrelated. Not the best use you could put that semicolon to.

On the eve of the 2008 All-Star Game at the Stadium, Mariano Rivera ordered clubhouse attendants to keep K-Rod’s locker as far away as possible. The Yankee closer, a deeply religious man, decided he couldn’t stand even one night of K-Rod’s excesses.

So one dude in baseball doesn’t like him? Gosh-all-get-out, that must be why Jeff Kent only played in the majors for three months: too many relief pitchers didn’t want their lockers near his at All-Star Games.

The Mets themselves were dropping hints about Rodriguez’s volatility. Carlos Beltran said the reliever, "has a temper."

Maybe I’m just jaded from so many years of the actually-crazy Carlos Zambrano. Does that really seem like the powerful accusation he’s playing it up as?

David Wright characterized him as "very fiery, very emotional."

Yeah, well, he’s hispanic. That’s the bog-standard characterisation of hispanic players.

Insiders say K-Rod exhibits wild mood swings: from good-teammate civility to a rage that makes it uncomfortable, if not unsafe, to be around him.

Thank god we have insiders to tell us these things, since we never could have determined it from his antics on the mound.

It’s hard to believe Rodriguez won’t be made an example of by the judicial system, and then by the commissioner’s office.

No it isn’t, due to those pesky "laws" and "unions" I talked about earlier. The judicial system doesn’t have the option of making much of an example of him; they can’t send him to the chair whether you’d like them to or not. And the commissioner’s office? Yeah, with the CBA coming due soon, this is the exact time Bud is going to want to pick a fight with the MLBPA.

If Wilpon and Manuel don’t have the stomach for this fight, someone else will do the dirty work for them. K-Rod may do time, but this much is certain: He’ll return to a clubhouse full of nice guys, not one of whom is a leader.

Leaders put politics above winning. They don’t care about their teammates at all, and never allow any friendships or mutual interest to mitigate their rage over anything that pisses reporters off. The Mets don’t have anybody like that because they’re gutless fuckfaces.

David Wright? He gets the most TV face time, but he’s a watered-down version of the ’80s-era Keith Hernandez.

David Wright’s better than Keith Hernandez. At baseball, I mean. I don’t really have any grounds for judging his watered-downness in regards to hating his teammates, but I do suspect Keith Hernandez would punch you in the fucking face for zinging him like that.

Beltran is the Mets’ most talented player, but he’s as non-confrontational as Wright.

You know what made that 2002 Giants team so good? The way Jeff Kent and Barry Bonds were constantly fucking fighting. That really helped them take it to the next level. It’s why the Cubs appreciated Carlos Zambrano flipping out on Derrek Lee for not diving after a single earlier this season.

Jose Reyes is just trying to stay healthy.

Choker. Doesn’t he realise that being righteously angry is far more important than being healthy enough that you can actually play baseball?

And what about Manuel? He’s just a short-timer with no credibility in the room, on his way to getting fired.

This describes all modern baseball managers. So: yes.

That, in part, is why Rodriguez went off on a family member on Wednesday, because somewhere in his consciousness he knew he could get away with it.

Also maybe it’s because the dude was ragging on him for pretty much no reason, and then started screaming at his mother. But, yeah, probably it was just because he knew Carlos Beltran wouldn’t be too angry with him. I’d punch old dudes in the face all day long if I thought Beltran would let me off the hook for it.

At no time did K-Rod stop to think, "These are my teammates’ wives, their children, they shouldn’t have to witness this."

Pretty sure that stopping to think doesn’t play a part in the decision to punch an old dude in the face. Remember when Pedro Martinez kicked Don Zimmer’s ass? I doubt Pedro was thinking "this is the whole world, and it’ll be super badass when they witness this!"

That deterrent should’ve stopped K-Rod, had he been more self-aware.

Can be tough to be "more self-aware" when you’re crazy insane to begin with, and you’re already pissed off, and some fucking guy you only put up with so you can get some tail starts riding your ass about nothing, and then that guy goes after your mother. But you’re right — K-Rod should have had the same level of cool uninvolvement as some asshole writing a self-righteous whine piece about him.

Rodriguez’s rage comes from the same place that makes him fearless in the ninth inning.

Yes: his crazy head.

Still, his sense of entitlement has to be reined in: He isn’t the closer he thinks he is, or the closer he used to be.

The implication here being, apparently, that if K-Rod had more saves, he could punch all the old dudes he wanted to. Only a churl would point out that K-Rod’s actually better than he’s been since 2006: his walks are down, his home runs are down, his strikeouts are up. He has fewer saves because the Mets are awful. And you think he’s not the closer he used to be because you are awful.

The Mets would be smart to explore a trade for Rodriguez this off-season, and it’s not because the return on their investment isn’t quite what they expected.

Well, yeah. The Mets paid way too much money. Like, way, way, fuck-you too much money. Which is exactly why they aren’t going to be able to trade him — K-Rod makes like $15M next season. Nobody’s going to pay that, considering he already plays for the only team that would.

K-Rod goes because there’s too much Vince Coleman in him, too much Bobby Bonilla.

"Do you have a little Bobby Bonilla in you? Would you like to?"

That’s awesome on two different levels.

Wednesday’s incidents harken back to the early ’90s, when Jeff Torborg was afraid to take control of his clubhouse. Today, Manuel is guilty of the same crime.

Does Manuel have a device that allows him to set K-Rod to "crazy" mode so he’ll punch old guys or "sane" mode so he won’t? Because, otherwise, I gotta say that Wednesday doesn’t seem to reflect on Manuel much at all.

He’s smoother and hipper than Torborg, but just as unwilling to assert his authority over K-Rod.

The only reason K-Rod punched an old guy: Jerry Manuel was unwilling to tell him not to.

Also, Jerry Manuel is hip? He looks like Morgan Freeman’s nerdy younger brother.

Just watch, the reliever will be welcomed back with handshakes and hugs, a million alibis and rationalizations.

Yeah, probably. I mean, except for the alibis, since that makes no goddamn sense.

The Mets will suck up to Rodriguez’s good-guy half because it’s the easier, safer way to go.

Yeah, seems more sensible than starting a big fight with a co-worker, doesn’t it? Especially a co-worker with a documented history of punching dudes in the face when they rag on him.

Everyone will talk about bonding, pulling together, moving forward – right into the last six weeks of another lost season.

Hi, Bob! Welcome to the Mets! Please enjoy your stay.

August 13th, 2010 Posted by | Baseball | one comment

Just one of those days

Ever wake up and find yourself agreeing with Glenn Beck? That’s happened to me:

O’REILLY: Do you believe — do you believe that gay marriage is a threat to the country in any way?
BECK: A threat to the country?
O’REILLY: Yeah, it going to harm the country?
BECK: No, I don’t. Will the gays come and get us?

Not only do I agree with Beck, I also approve of the quality of the zing. Though it’s worth noting that Dave and Stephen have been trying to get me for years, and, if they could get married, who knows what might happen.

Some days you agree with Glenn Beck, and then some days you agree with Glenn Beck:

BECK: I believe — I believe what Thomas Jefferson said. If it neither breaks my leg nor picks my pocket, what difference is it to me?

Holy shit, Glenn. You’ve been talking to the Judge again, haven’t you?

The whole article I’m quoting is here, but that’s the gist of it. The only other thing I have to say that’s worth mentioning on a blog about words and swear words is that apparently I’m the only analyst anywhere on the internet who has the stones to point out that the graph of the acceptance of gay marriage in America:

Nutty homos

looks like a penis.

Thank you, and good night.

August 13th, 2010 Posted by | Bullshit | one comment

Hey gang, Chipper Jones is in trouble! Let’s put on a show cry big crocodile tears!

Chipper has torn his ACL doing this, which some people suspect may be the end of his career. I personally am not convinced of that, though it’s certainly the case that Chipper’s been a big damn drama queen lately, so who knows. There’s a post on Fangraphs talking about his Hall of Fame potential, which I think is idiotic, since Chipper was fucking amazing and is almost definitely first-ballot material. But that’s not what I came to talk about tonight. I’d just like to address this one little snippet in isolation:

While he’s been one of the best-hitting third basemen of all time, his defense has been below-average at best. And his admitted marital infidelity is pretty hard to defend, as well.

In re: Chipper’s marital infidelity:

Who cares.

Is that baseball-related? No. So should it impact his Hall of Fame chances? No. And, hey, riddle me this, caped crusader: do you suspect Chipper is entirely unusual in his infidelity? I’d submit that if you had a job that kept you on the road a third of the year, and at which you worked long, grueling hours even when you weren’t on the road, and you constantly had attractive young women throwing themselves at you, you may very well be unfaithful to your wife as well.

So can we can the holier-than-thou routine and just talk about baseball maybe?

August 12th, 2010 Posted by | Baseball | no comments

How to make hipsters pose on demand

Step one: Buy a copy of this book.

Step two: Insert a bookmark somewhere near the middle.

Step three: Go out to dinner at a trendy restaurant, or, if you happen to be in a college town, damn near anyplace.

Step four: Let the posing begin!

August 8th, 2010 Posted by | Bullshit | no comments

Mission Complete

So when I first signed up for Facebook, I tried out a whole bunch of games. Generally they were terrible, but fun for a little while; I hadn’t really played a door game in ages, man. But I stuck with this Pirates game, because I’d set a goal for myself, and I was bound and determined to see it through. And I finally have.

Behold my true form and despair!

The Widow-Maker Cannon: the most powerful weapon in the game. It took me a full year to gather enough iron ores to build the goddamn thing, but it’s finally done. So congratulations to me.

August 6th, 2010 Posted by | Bullshit | no comments

And now: Bigfoot!

Welcome back, old buddy. It’s like you never left.

August 6th, 2010 Posted by | Bullshit | no comments

Most Overrated Games #2

Fucking Myst
Myst (PC, 1995)

Oh God. I’m going to need to go back to therapy after writing this one. Why do you think I kept putting it off?

Seriously, fuck this game. Myst is the most obnoxious entry in the awful "multimedia CD-ROM game" genre that popped up about as soon as CD-ROM drives became cheap enough that everybody had one. This was a genre of games that consisted of nothing but FMV cutscenes interrupted periodically for stupid minigames. If that sounds a lot like every video game to you, well, now you understand the depth of loathing that I hold for the multimedia CD-ROM genre, since I consider it responsible for everything that’s awful about modern games.

This genre produced exactly one game that was any damn use at all, and it sure wasn’t fucking Myst (for reference, it was Trilobyte’s The 7th Guest, which wasn’t a masterpiece, but had some decent Layton-y brainteasers and cutscenes that were both acceptable quality and fairly short). Myst was quite possibly the worst of a bad lot. Nominally an adventure game — never a good sign — Myst actually turns into nothing so much as a whole lot of random clicking while you wait for something to happen. If that sounds like fun to you, consider that, when something does happen, all it means is that you get to watch a movie that makes no fucking sense at all and has no context.

Myst has no gameplay. None at all. You transition from static screen to static screen as you walk around the "islands," and periodically you find the correct pixel to click on to start a "puzzle." The puzzles are utterly inorganic and lacking in context, but, worse than that, they are frequently arbitrary and senseless, and you are generally given no guidance at all, so you end up stumbling around in circles until you hit on just the right sequence of actions to solve a puzzle. True story: the game is so heavily dependent on aimless wandering and confusion to pad out its length that you can actually complete the whole thing in ten minutes if you know the solutions to the puzzles. There’s that little substance here.

Plotwise, the game is about some damn thing. Who knows, really? It’s one of those fucking "arty" games that tries to make a big secret of what it’s actually about, but it’s so disjointed and boring that, by the time you find out, you don’t really care. You read this book called Myst, and it transports you to an island, where you bumble around looking for magic books. Then the game ends and you can go play something else, which is the best part.

For some reason, people went completely bullshit for this game. I can kind of understand it at the time — the popularity of games like Myst and The 7th Guest was rooted in the fact that, until the CD-ROM drive became a common item, game developers didn’t have enough storage space to tart up their games with hours of prerendered cutscenes and voice acting, and so, when those games finally started hitting the market, they were exciting mainly because they were something new, which I dig to an extent. But come on; when was the last time you thought about The 7th Guest? Phantasmagoria? Return to Zork? But some people apparently think there’s a reason to play Myst in the year 2010, since it’s just recently had a DS remake, and just today launched on fucking Steam. These people are bad and wrong, and nobody should ever go anywhere near this thing again. It’s not even worth the five dollars they want for it on Steam.

August 6th, 2010 Posted by | Most Overrated Games Ever | 2 comments

Sit right back and you’ll hear a tale

So I’m doing this thing. I’ve decided that, since I never seem to finish a novel, I’ll write a serial instead. That way, since it’s in discrete chunks, even if I never finish the whole entire thing I’ll still have something.

I’ve also decided to write it in blog format, so people can follow it and comment on it as it goes along. It’s over here, and you’re welcome to do whatever it is you people do when I write things. Print them out and hang them on the fridge, I guess.

August 6th, 2010 Posted by | Meta-meta | no comments

A funny thing happened at work the other day…

So one of my coworkers was talking to this little kid (probably, I dunno, eight or so) who had a question: "what’s in the birch beer?" My coworker’s reply was "well, it’s a lot like root beer, except that it’s made with…"

And then there was a big awkward pause. A pause which I improved upon by offering him five American dollars to tell this poor kid that it’s just like root beer, only it’s made with birch instead of roots.

My response would have been along the lines of "you know what’s in root beer, kid? That’s right: roots and beer. Now you tell me what’s in birch beer."

August 4th, 2010 Posted by | Bullshit, Food | no comments