Wednesday, April 9, 2008

The Thursday Lineup Card: Beginings And Endings

Stormy weather and rain mean intermittent broadband outages at Hooch World HQ, therefore we’ll dispense with eloquent reveries on the nature of baseball and Ron Washington’s ineffective lineups and get to the heart of the matter.

Confessions: I did not make the expected trip to OKC this past Sunday. The schedule I was working with was not correct – the start time for Sunday’s game was changed to 4:05, and unfortunately some of us have jobs that require getting up early on Monday morning. A midnight return time just didn’t fit into the plan.

Nice Day – Not So Nice Game: I did attend opening day at the Ballpark. As always Chuck Morgan and his crew did a bang up job on the pre-game festivities – special nod to the Ranger Legacy program, loved seeing all the alumni on the field.

Too bad the rest of the afternoon between the lines was not nearly as good.

However, I would like to point out that 10 years ago the Rangers lost their home opener to the Chicago White Sox and went on to win the AL West that year (the same thing happened in 1999 after Rick Helling gave up a HR to Juan Encarnacion on the first pitch of the game – and that might have been the best Rangers team ever).

The Kids Are Alright: As of the day I write this the Frisco Roughriders are undefeated, heading home for their first homestand of the season. My suggestion is if you are planning on seeing Chris Davis, better get out to Frisco sooner than later. In just 5 games he has 1 HR, 4 doubles and 6 RBI - I don’t know how much longer the Texas League pitching will be able to withstand the pounding he’s already giving it (.391 BA/ .375 OBP / .625 SLG for 1.087 OPS).

Speaking of the Roughriders, 37 year old Chris Michalak on the roster – are you kidding me?

Not So Glorious: This item on the problems with the financing for Greed…er… Glorypark from last week’s Startlegram:

Keep this in mind, the first two restaurants built on the edge of the Ballpark premises at Copeland Rd and Nolan Ryan Expressway (right under the Rangers electronic billboard facing I-30) – Shady Oak Barbeque and The Mexican Inn have already closed and have for sale/for lease signs. The Mexican Inn is a Tarrant County legend with its own following – and obviously couldn’t draw enough of a crowd to keep that location in business. I’m just wondering why the backers of Greed … er… Glorypark think anyone is going to drive out to Arlington just to hang around the Ballpark in the offseason (hey, I live in Arlington and since the Friday’s closed at the Ballpark I never go near the place except during the season).

Under the radar: From this week’s Baseball America Chat Session:

"Ben Badler: 'In our issue of the magazine that hits news stands on April 7,
we list the Top 10 POY candidates, along with a follow list of other players to watch. I'll give you a sneak peak and tell you guys that Clayton Kershaw was #1 and Travis Snider was #2. For bonus, if you're looking for a bit of a dark horse, I think Kasey Kiker is poised for a big year, although I'm not sure how quickly the Rangers would want to push him through the system.' "

Coming Up: Normally I’d look at the minor league schedule for the week ahead, but as mentioned above – the string between the tin cans Time Warner uses to provide my internet service is a little wet and won’t stretch all the way to Clinton, Bakersfield and OKC tonight. We’ll have a little more in depth information, if it's not raining, next week.

Non-Sequitor: We were saddened to learn of the passing of Charlton Heston this past weekend. As mentioned in a previous entry – he was Baseball Mom’s very favorite. While we living at home in Toledo, Mrs. Schmenge, Jeanne The New Mexico Bean and I saw quite a few of his movies, more than once.

I’ll admit there were a few them that I really liked and would recommend : “Will Penny” (with Joan Hackett - a kind of anti-western), “The Private War of Major Benson” (definite B movie comedy, that is a family …ahem…favorite), “Omega Man” (shame on you Will Smith for even attempting to re-make this one) and the best of them all "Ben Hur" (the definition of an epic movie)

Heston had a superb cameo in Kenneth Branagh’s “Hamlet” as the Player King (terrific, if a little long, movie overall) which appropriately brings us to the close of this week's entry:

“Now cracks a noble heart.
Good-night, sweet prince;
And flights of angels sing thee to thy rest.”
--“Hamlet” Act V, Scene II

-- Marla Hooch


mrs. schmenge said...

Who were the alumni at the park on opening day? Channel 4 didn't show any of that -- in fact, they missed the first 1/2 of the team introductions....

Don't forget the ant movie -- marabunta! (sp?)

EMC said...

Schmenge -

Click on the picture from opening day - you can see all the Ranger alumni standing behind second base - don't you recognize them? Just kidding - Steve Buchele, Pete O'Brien, John Wetteland, Jeff Russell, Gino Petralli, and Roger Pavlik (!) are just a few names I know you'd recognize - (but no John Ellis - sorry).

I didn't forget the ant movie - but I did forget to mention the "Three Musketeers" (the 1970's version)- he played a wicked Cardinal Richileu.


Anonymous said...

Mexican Inn and Shady Oak both closed because of the highway construction. They're both owned by Spring Creek, and the owner decided to cut their losses because access to the 2 restaurants was going to be limited. It had nothing to do with the overall viability of the site, and it certainly isn't indicative of what will happen with Glorypark.

Also, wasn't real estate development around the Ballpark in the original plans when Arlington voters approved the taxes to pay for it? Why then is it Greedy for Mr. Hicks to build there?

Anonymous said...

You've made the point yourself -- when the bonds went out and the hands went out for fans to contribute to building the new stadium - much was promised beyond the stadium. "entertainment area" and "retail", "vibrant destination" I think may have been used. And what happened when voters gave money and bought bonds? The stadium. And how many years ago was that???

Hicks didn't invest anything in the community or development. (Although he did find time/money to buy a soccer team in another country). Not until Jones, with his hands out to voters, came around did the 'development' begin.

EMC said...

Well, both of the "anonymous" comments have given me fodder for my blog entry this week... stay tuned for my thoughts on Thursday.

-- Marla