Sunday, October 14, 2012

To Be Continued....

It's been one of those weeks - haven't had a moment to ruminate about about something coming up soon.                               

In the meantime: so sorry the Orioles, Nationals, and Reds all lost.   As far the as the National League is concerned, if the "big" one hit California today or tomorrow and it slid into the ocean with Giant and Cardinals - woudln't bother me at all.   The only horse I have left in the race is the Tigers. 

Sorry about Jeter's ankle - but the Yankees use that as an excuse for their performance so far, that really speaks volumes about their "team".

Cannot join the knee-jerking crowd that wants to clean house and trade everyone on the Rangers - that's not right, I don't know what the plan is, but I hope it's a much more specific, strategic and less emotional.

It's always a good day when the Cowboys lose.

I really need to buy a few more Aimee Mann songs off of I-Tunes.

And... this is the week one year ago that I lost Baseball Mom (October 16th).

Sometimes it feels like just yesterday, sometimes it feels like forever.

Miss you and will always love you Mom - love Marla


Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Um...I Guess I Forgot...Again

I became a Ranger fan August 1979. 

Since that time I’ve been through 6 General Managers: Eddie Robinson, Joe Klein, Tom Grieve, Doug Melvin, John Hart and Jon Daniels

5 different ownership groups:  Brad Corbett, Eddie Chiles and friends, George W. Bush, Tom Schieffer and a cast of thousands,  Tom Hicks and his creditors with a cameo by Bud Selig and now Nolan Ryan and company 

The one thing they all have in common is they keep doing the same thing over and over again – expecting a different result.  I’ve heard that’s the definition of insanity or at least Ranger insanity.

Our good friend TR Sullivan’s observation this morning’s on Postcards From Elysian Fields blog  is absolutely perfect on the subject of  Josh Hamilton/the playoff loss and the Rangers usual knee-jerk plan of action.  

I am looking right at you Nolan Ryan (and to some extent Jon Daniels) and shaking my head in frustration. 

With all the years of baseball experience Ryan has and that Cornell educated GM you think they would already know the maxim of  philosopher George Santayana (1863-1952) who said: "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it" (from "Life of Reason I").

-- waiting for Version 41 of the new and better Rangers team Nolan and Jon plan to pull out of a rabbit’s hat this off-season - Marla


Friday, October 5, 2012

This Day In History

-- French King Louis XI signs a peace agreement with Charles the Stout

-- City of Anaheim CA founded - and no playoff baseball game was played there that day either

-- First ballpoint pen patented by Alonzo T. Cross

-- Outlaw Frank James surrenders in Missouri six months after the death of his brother Jesse James

-- Philadelphia A's pitcher Rube Vickers no-hits the Washington Senators in a 5 inning game

-- The World Series is broadcast on the radio for the first time

-- First appearance in the NYC Daily News of the comic strip "Little Orphan Annie"

-- Hurricane Hazel hits the east coast of the United States

-- The Beatles release their first hit in England "Love Me Do"

-- A sodium cooling system malfunction causes a partial core meltdown at the Enrico Fermi nuclear power demonstration plant near Detroit, Michigan.  Radiation is contained (entire story detailed in the book "We Almost Lost Detroit")

-- "Monty Python's Flying Circus" begins its run on the BBC

-- Polish anti-communist union leader Lech Walesa wins the Nobel Peace Prize

-- Barry Bonds hits his HGH aided 71st and 72nd Home Runs to break Mark McGwire's androstene aided record of 71 Home Runs

-- Howard Stern announces he's leaving over the air radio for satellite radio company Sirius

--Dow Jones Industrial Averages drop 700 points signaling the beginning of the economic downturn/recession

-- The Rangers two year AL Dynasty ends.

--- Marla


Wednesday, October 3, 2012

It's The Curse of Game 6

I know I'm writing this before the game with Oakland ends - but does it matter?

I know how it's going to end. 

When the Red Sox broke the curse of Babe Ruth the baseball gods had to find another team to be there whipping boy - and thus we have Game 6 of the World Series 2011 which led to the great collapase of the Rangers 2012. 

Sorry Ranger fans we're going to be suffering from this curse for a long, long time.

The A's are the team of destiny.  The Rangers are the team destined to self-destruct. -- Marla


Tuesday, October 2, 2012

These Are Not The 1996 Rangers And Shouldn't Even Be Mentioned In The Same Sentence

I have a long, rambling, essay that I've been working on for 2 days to explain my feelings about the current state of the Rangers.  Fortunately for you dear reader, TR Sullivan posted an excellent entry on his blog Postcards From Elysian Fields that I felt compelled to comment on, and in the process of doing so was able to distill my feelings into a wordy paragraph.   TR compared the current Rangers to the 1996 Rangers and this is what I wrote in reply:

"Think this [2012 Rangers] team is more like the 1996 Mariners – a very talented team, expected to win – then in September ultimately failed in the clutch. There aren’t any Burkett’s or Hill’s on this Rangers team – except for Michael Young who has stepped up this month. Seems like the offense was on cruise control all season and now they don’t know how to kick into high gear while all the pitching has been at best inconsistent – I’ve been a Ranger fan long enough to say they don’t deserve a playoff berth this year. Maybe that would be the kickstart they need to learn to concentrate and play the game the right way with a little humility and a lot more hunger."

After reading it again a few hours later, I stand by my statement.  Doesn't matter what happens tonight or tomorrow - I don't feel good about the 2012 Rangers, and I've felt that way since about mid-July.  I don't think they are lazy, inflated egos - maybe just a bit.  What they do suffer from is lack of memory and concentration.  Big numbers = big money contracts,  doing the little things right = championship rings. Gotta wonder which equation the veterans on this team were thinking about this season.   

What is frustrating and sad for we the long suffering Ranger fans is that most of us know how small that window of opportunity is for any team to get into the playoffs and how much smaller it gets to go to the World Series more than twice in a decade  (take a look at the last 10 years and see how many teams other than NY have been there more than twice).  I'm sayng it right now: that window is shut this year.  Shame on the veterans on this 2012 Ranger team . They seem to be suffering from short term memory loss - they've forgotten what got them there and more importantly what it was like being the ones who were watching playoff games from the couch instead from the dugout.   I have a feeling that by this time next week, the Rangers will have a quick trip down memory lane as they pack up their bags and get ready to watch the rest of the post-season from their couches.   

Angry in Arlington - Marla  

(P.S. That's my new couch which I really love, and the next blog will be much less poison filled - I hope)

Sunday, September 30, 2012

September 30, 2012 One Sentence Reaction

No matter what the magic number is, you should not feel good about this 2012 Rangers team.

(More on that tomorrow)

-- No kidding around - Marla


Wednesday, September 26, 2012

September 26, 2012 One Word Reaction

That one word is: Pathetic

It's third inning and I'm already giving up on this game.

Forget about signing Josh Hamilton this off-season. Instead, get some scouts and minor keague coaches who can actually develop real pitchers - starters and relievers -because they've done a pretty lousy job so far and the future doesn't look any better.

Goodbye AL West Division title - hello one game wild card playoff.

Pathetic, pathetic, pathetic -- Marla


Tuesday, September 25, 2012

September 25, 2012: One Sentence Reaction

Mark Lowe pitching in a yet-to-be-decided division race game, really Wash?



Monday, September 24, 2012

Once Sentence Reaction: Rangers 5, A's 4 (10 innings)

My evening prayer: dear baseball gods, let the Rangers wrap this thing up by Thursday so Adrian Beltre's teammates don't re-injure him  during their celebrations (as Tom Grieve pleaded with them tonight).

Sunday, September 16, 2012

One Sentence Reaction: Rangers 2 - Seattle 1

Still kind of worried, only 3 game lead with 6 left against Oakland.

-- Marla

(P.S. Justin Smoak showed us why he hates hitting at Safeco Field)

Planing My Nights By The TV Guide

There was a pop song (masquerading on the country charts) a few years ago with the lyric "she was at home planning her nights by the TV Guide."  I absconded with that line for today's blog. 

My sister the New Mexico Bean has a PHD in psychology - she told me  it's documented that women my age start watching more television - good I like watching TV, not ashamed of it, and love writing about it.

Top 10 Season Passes on the DVR:
1. The Good Wife - love Josh Charles, love Josh Charles. This is the "water cooler" series with my friends at work.
2. Parenthood - Produced and written by Jason Katims (sp?) who did the same for Friday Night Lights (my 2nd favorite TV series ever) - There's a big blog post coming up on Lauren Graham/Sarah Braverman soon.
3. Smash - I'm a Broadway/Musicals junkie - Megan Hilty is the best singer on TV today (take that Lea Michele)
4. Mad Men - yeah, I bought into the hype - but that's because it's a really, really good show.
5. Modern Family - Ty Burrell is so underrated.
6. Suits - it's just enough over the top to be fun, without being in your face unwatchable (as alot of cable series can be).
7. Leverage - see #6 - the chemistry and asides from Elliot, Parker and Hardison are worth the price of admission.
8. Psych - I don't always get all the references (it's an age thing) but it's fun to watch.
9. White Collar - Speaking of fun to watch - Matt Bomer is gorgeous
10. Glee - Has really fallen off since the first season, most of the time I fast forward through the plots to the musical numbers - which are still the best (come back Krisen Chenowith and Gwyneth Paltrow- please - Kate Hudson is kind of meh)

I don't watch reality TV shows, or competition shows. Not the least bit interested

The New Stuff:

Community - My close personal friend Sir Basil Gucci and fellow DTFCer Justin kept telling me watch this show.  I hesitated because I really don't like Joel McHale - but I finally caught up with it on Hulu the last few weeks - Troy and Abed - I know these kinds of guys and  I love them.

The Big Bang Theory - didn't start watching it until one one Saturday night a couple months ago when there was nothing else on -now I'm hooked.  Would loved to have seen Jim Parson in the revival of "Harvey" on Broadway this past summer.

The New Normal - liked this more than I thought I would - if they'd tone down Ellen Barkin's character, make her understated - it would be even better (and she'd be much funnier).

Go On - I want to like this series, really I would - I'm rooting for Matthew Perry  (loved Mr. Sunshine - I think Sir Basil and I were the only ones who watched it.  Plus I'm pretty sure I'm  the only one who watched Studio 60 to the bitter end).

Major Crimes - I watched "The Closer" - it took a couple of episodes to get used to the new "format" - but like a fungus, it's grown on me.

Waiting for the DVD's Because I Don't Have HBO:

Treme (2nd season) - From David Simon who created my favorite TV show ever "Homicide" - just wish John Goodman had stayed with the series.

The Newsroom - it's Jeff Daniels, Sam Waterston and Aaron Sorkin - what other reason do you need?

As I mentioned to someone recently - I rarely go to the movies anymore.  In my never humble opinion 98% of them are unwatchable and even worse uninteresting - unless you are a 12 year old boy who reads comic books. Isn't it astounding how many movies are based on old TV series - studios are looking to TV for ideas - because no one who makes movies seems to have an original thought anymore.

Planning my nights by the TV Guide - you bet. Television series these day are smarter, funnier, more thoughtful, well done and very importantly the more interesting medium worth watching these days.

I want to live in Aaron Sorkin's world! - Marla Hooch

One Of Those Navel Gazing, Soul Baring, Self Indugent Explanations

Well kids I am going to take another run at blogging - but - this time it's not going to be strictly baseball.

When I stopped writing regularly a couple of years ago it was for a number of unrelated reasons.  Mainly because of my own laziness and too much white noise.  Laziness is its own explanation, it's a fault I've been working to overcome my entire life and will continue to do so.  White noise is a little different: there are so many baseball blogs, twitter accounts, and God-Know-What-Else on the web boasting useful and useless opinions, most of the time with the same information slanted to reflect the author's point of view (I do include myself in that generalization).  I wasn't sure that I wanted to continue adding decibels to that growing din.

What made me change my mind?  A life changing event.   As most of you know my beloved baseball Mom died very suddenly last October.  The last conversation we had as I was leaving her house was a plan for a World Series watching party with hot dogs, peanuts and cracker jacks.  Two hours after that she was gone.

Since that day my world has turned upside down. I have this gaping hole in my sense of being that I know I can't fill. I've struggled with the stages of grief, trying to figure out what the new normal is and getting used to it. The best I seem to able to do is try to find a little peace and hope in the things left that I love, and one of those is writing.   My mom loved reading the blog and last year when I wrote as Toby on Postcards from Elysian Fields. Writing again not only gives me a sense of relief-distraction-fulfillment- it makes me feel close to her again.

Like any other skill, you have to practice to stay in shape, and I'm obviously way out of shape, please be patient.  I will get there.

How often will I write? I don't know, but I'm guessing on the weekend and days off from work.  What will I write about? No idea - but as the amended blog title implies not just baseball could be just about anything.  So this is self-therapy - does that mean lots of digging into your psyche? No, I get enough of that elsewhere, yes I'm doing it to help myself - I know I can be depressing and sentimental - I promise to limit the navel gazing.   Are you finished talking to yourself on this entry? Yes.

In fact, instead of ending with a question, let's end with a declaration of a new beginning: Watch This Space For Further Developments.

Back at the keyboard - Marla Hooch