Wednesday, April 29, 2009

The Dog Ate My Homework

It's one of the oldest excuses in the world - the problem is that I don't have a dog and I haven't done homework for at least two decades - but somehow "the dog ate my keyboard" sounded even worse (and I couldn't find a cute picture to illustrate it). I'm working from behind in the count, just ask the nineteen people to whom I owe e-mails.

The Battle of April: as I write this blog during the rain delay the Rangers are a .500 team, comfortably ensconced in second place in the AL West. I suppose that means we can all rest easy – the worst that can happen is they’ll lose the next two games which would put them at 10-12, by far their best April since the 2004 season, which apparently means that the season is a success in the front office’s opinion, why worry about the other 140 games?

Deal or No Deal: I’ve been reading the articles about Tom Hicks financial predicament, and I have to say I’m not surprised. This is the owner who said to his hockey fan base that they “unfortunately” won the Stanley Cup in 1999. Think about it: he’s offering 49% of his teams for sale. So what he’s saying is: please invest a huge amount of money in these teams, but you really won’t have any say in how the franchises are operated, or the decisions that are made or even in choosing my successor when I retire since I still control the majority of shares. Now explain to me why any right thinking businessman would want to do that? Seems kind of apparent why Mr. Hicks hasn’t found a buyer, or why he’s in so much trouble in the first place. He’d be better off asking Congress for some bailout money. If he would offer exactly 50% I’m pretty sure he’d find more than a few willing investors, and in the end the Rangers/Stars might wind up with the best part of the deal since he’d have a partner who could reign in Mr. Hicks – which is something that’s needed to be done for a long time.

Good Things Happen, Bad Things Happen: Let me start by saying I would still rather see Derek Holland in the OKC boxscores starting every fifth day. However, I was pleased to read the managers remarks on how he is going to going to handle Derek’s workload. But I still refuse to join the chorus of Holland Hype. Ask me at the end of the 2010 season.

Catch as Catch Can: I think I’ve written this before: Ranger fans have been spoiled by the org’s very good luck with producing very skilled defensive catchers who also had some offensive talent. Which means it is time for me to admit to believing in what some fans would consider heresy – defense is a bit overrated. Well, not overrated, but there is nothing wrong with having an average defensive catcher. The reason I’m babbling on about this is that I am throwing my support behind Salty as the Rangers catcher for the next few years. Salty is younger that Teagarden, apparently his defensive skill admittedly are work in progress, but appear to be getting better. Jarrod is a switch hitter – who by the way has been hitting .298 since July 1st of 2008 through today. As far as pitchers preferring to throw to Taylor Teagarden because he supposedly calls a better game: the 1996, 1998 and 1999 championship Ranger teams made it to the post-season with a catcher who supposedly was terrible at calling games. Good pitchers know how to pitch no matter who is receiving behind the plate. If what we read this past winter is true quite a few teams covet Teagarden. If I were Jon Daniels (and thank goodness I’m not) I’d have Taylor Teagarden playing every day at OKC – building up his reputation (and trade value) as well as proving he can stay healthy for an entire season.

"Dōmo arigatō, Mr. Roboto": Did you watch the season (could be series ) finale of “Chuck” on Monday? Then the opening line of this paragraph should make perfect sense to you. Chances are that yet another of my season passes on TIVO will be deleted soon, “Chuck” is on the bubble and that bubble is losing air according to the ratings. Aside from the fact that the show is amusing (Casey’s catalogue of grunts, Jeffster, everyone at the Buy More and “Awesome”) the producers of the show have achieved a minor miracle: they’ve opened my stuck in the 70’s taste to some terrific new music that I’ve actually downloaded to my IPod. Here's the link to the show's music page.

Finally: Winning in April is nice, but it’s a long way off from September. I’ll take good battle for a playoff spot in September over a few skirmishes for a W in April any time.

Praise the Lord and pass the pine tar – Marla Hooch