MLB Photo Day 2013

JoshReddickWWEbelt

Josh Reddick showed off his beard and belt?

One of the best parts of spring training is team photo day! Lucky for us, many teams had their official photo day yesterday giving us some great shots of our favorite guys. (I suggest thumbing through the Getty Images’ photo gallery.) As I was perusing through the pictures, I came across some real gems, including the insanely crazy picture of Josh Reddick above. I did some Googling and found out there was a story behind the photos.

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I was there: US Cellular Field

Due to the wonders of Interleague (and my boyfriend’s aunt that lives in Chicago) we were able to knock another stadium off our list the weekend after we were in Minneapolis when we saw the Brewers play the White Sox on Chicago’s South Side.

Can we just go ahead and accept that I’m always going to call this stadium Comiskey? “The Cell” is a stupid nickname and US Cellular Field is too long. Plus, corporate naming is dumb (Et tu, Barclay’s Brooklyn?)

(Additionally, we have a US Cellular Arena here in Milwaukee which is called The Cell, leading to too much lame confusion)

Comiskey is super-accessible via the El, both the red and green lines are within a few blocks. The aunt had planned on us taking the red line, but we entered a station downtown that the red didn’t run through. Luckily, a nice man told me we didn’t have to go to another station, but could just hop on the green line.

Follow the jump for pics galore

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As delicious as a third steak

Here’s a little treat on your Good Friday. New Era, the company that brought you the brilliant Alec Baldwin-John Krasinski series of ads (I watch this one whenever I need cheering up), have launched an all-new rivalry featuring Nick Offerman and Craig Robinson. Yes, friends, Ron Swanson and Darryl Philbin, together at last. Sort of.

It goes without saying that this ranks highly on the Lady Bee Pyramid of Greatness. But I just said it anyway.

Down To The Wire

Say goodnight, Ozzie. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

It seems like only yesterday we were squealing with delight about the arrival of the 2010 Major League Baseball season. Now here we are in the final weeks of the regular season. Some fans will be packing away their Pirates and Mets tees away with their capri pants and strappy sandals, reflecting on a season that should have been. But others will be biting their nails and rocking back and forth on their couches, popping Tums and living in fear that the stupid Rays will take the AL East (OK, maybe that’s just me)

Here’s a quick look at how the race to the postseason is looking heading into tonight’s games, and how this prognosticator (HAHAHAHA!) sees it going down:

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Call-Up Cuties Returns: Welcome to the Show, Boys

It’s not quite September yet, but plenty of baseball teams  have already started calling up fresh faces for their major league debuts — which means even if your team is out of any meaningful chance at the playoffs (or if you’re trying to ignore the fact that your team is giving away the division right after reclaiming first place, sigh) there’s still plenty of good reasons to watch the games.  I mined the MLB transaction ledger to find every first-time call-up since July 31.  You can thank me later.

Ryan Kalish, LF Boston Red Sox

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We interrupt your regularly scheduled programmiOH MY GOD JIM THOME JIM THOME JI JIM THOME

In case you haven’t noticed, the Dodgers just traded a PTBNL and cash for Jim Thome.

That’s right, the one and only

JI

JIM THOME.

They say he’ll be a bat off the bench, but I say they should just put him at first base and let him play. But that’s not even the point. The point is, THE HERO OF THE DUGOUT IS COMING TO MY TOWN. HE WILL SMASH TATERS THAT WILL GO LIKE THIS:

OFF THE BAT, OFF AN AIRPLANE, AIRPLANE EXPLODES, PASSENGER CLINGS TO BALL AS IT FALLS, PASSENGER FALLS TO DOOM, OUT OF THE STADIUM.

Or maybe even like this:

OFF THE BAT, THE BALL DISINTEGRATES, THE ATOMIC RESIDUE TRAVELS FAR FROM THIS MORTAL PLANE, REFORMS IN HEAVEN, OFF THE FACE OF OUR LORD, OUT OF THE STADIUM.

Suddenly, I care about the Dodgers again.

To plunk or not to plunk – baseball’s “unwritten rules”

First it was the locker rooom charging anger of Prince Fielder, now it’s Ozzie Guillen threatening retaliation.

Plunking batters has become all the rage lately and it’s led to a lot of comments dismissing the process as “just baseball.” But is it?

I’ve had this conversation a few times this season, since the Brewers are second in the NL, fourth in MLB in hit batsmen, with 47. (The Dodgers are second to last, having been hit 23 times, so maybe that’s why they’re so angry about each one.)

What do we think about these “unwritten rules?” Do you agree with them? Are they part of the game?

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MLB Hotties on the Move

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No, no! He's not going anywhere!

Somewhere, in a vast wilderness where cell phones signals go to die and there is no SportsCenter, Crane is feeling a psychic wave of untold joy and relief. That’s because the trade deadline has passed and Roy Halladay stayed in Toronto. Hey, Riccardi, thanks for playing with the heads of Jays’ fans these last few weeks! There’s a special place in hell for GMs like you – right beside John Ferguson Jr.

It’s been a busy few days. Let’s put all the nonsense of PEDs and Papi behind us and concentrate on the actual game of baseball baseball transactions. If your fave player left on a jet plane today for another team and you don’t know when he’ll be back again (hint: check the team schedule), I’m sorry to hear that. On the other hand, if your team has been injected with newfound playoff hope, congratulations! Hope that works out for you guys! Unless you like the Red Sox, and then…you know how I feel. Continue reading

Ladies… Linkups

Man, have I ever been cranky this week! First, I nearly choked on my evening beer a few nights ago when I saw this on CNN (please, don’t buy into that crap, America!) And then, the whole Roethlisberger thing, and the whole ESPN-waiting-nearly-a-week to report on the Roethlisberger thing (I’ll reserve comment and leave it to the writers at Feministing, who bring an excellent perspective on this. And for that matter, Erin Andrews.)

I think we could all use a little levity, no? I swear, Foodie Friday will be filed later today. I’m thinking dessert.

In the meantime, here’s your Ladies… Linkups for Friday (yes, this is new! Just go with it!) Continue reading

Hit and Run: With a Perfect Buehrle

Rays White Sox Baseball

So it was a busy week as baseball got back into the groove of things after the All Star break. There was a whole lot going on. Brand new division leaders, a naked Tony Bernazard, and to top it all off, a PERFECT GAME! More on all of this week’s happenings after the jump.

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The Last Time Your Team Won it All: Baseball Teams

world-series-trophy

I got the idea for this post when I was talking to my friend about the last time the Yankees won the World Series. It’s almost going to be nine years, but nine years isn’t that long. If I ever complained about a nine-year World Series drought to a Cubs fan, I would more than likely get a smack in the face…and it would be completely warranted.

However, when I think back to where I was the 2000, it seems like ages ago. The last time the Yankees won it all I was a freshman in High School. It feels like I graduated from H.S. ages ago; forget about actually being a freshman. The bottom line is we all follow our team with one goal: to see them win it all at the end. Don’t get me wrong, you can still enjoy the season, but you are never fully satisfied unless your team is the last one standing. Unless you root for the Phillies, Red Sox or Cardinals, the last time your team won it all can seem like a lifetime ago.

So let’s take a little trip down memory lane and see what life was like the last time your team were World Champions. Sorry to all Washington, Milwaukee, Houston, San Diego, Colorado, Tampa Bay, Texas, and Seattle fans. You need to have won at least one to qualify.

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Misery Loves Company… In The Land of Lincoln!

In my latest installment of “Misery Loves Company,” we head west from Ohio and land in the lovely state of Illinois.  Home of the first McDonald’s, Blagojevich, and Wayne and Garth, would more could these fine people want… how bout a few more rings!

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Hit and Run: In Which Barry Zito’s BABIP Regresses, Right Before Our Eyes!

A.k.a. the “Complete MLB Rundown (To The Exclusion Of Everything Else)” edition. Why? Because I can. Yesterday’s scores presented BBC-style for extra hilarity and confusion.

  • Red Sox 3 – 5 Blue Jays. Sevven sollid innings from Tallet (see what I did there?) provide a lead for Scott Downs to preserve, bringing them back into 2nd place in the mighty AL East. Go Jays!
  • Marlins 7 – 3 Mets. Tim Redding sucks. Josh Johnson doesn’t. Go Fish!
  • Braves 2 – 3 Diamondbacks. There are a lot of 3s today. Eric Byrnes finally does something good; namely, driving in the winning run in the 11th. No, wearing awesome socks doesn’t automatically mean that you’ve done something good.
  • Dodgers 0 – 7 Cubs. Eric Stults fails as Dodgers get shut out for the first time all year. You know, I like the guy, but hey dude, put up or shut up. As in, put up zeros on the scoreboard, or shut the hell up when the reporters interview you and ask why you sucked. Go ahead, say, “I sucked”. David Ortiz did, you can too! Ugh. STULTS. My boy Brent Leach faces 1 batter, records 2 groundouts, because he’s cool like that. Go Dodgers.
  • Twins 2 – 5 Rays. David Price blah blah blah 11 strikeouts blah blah blah 1st Major League win blah blah blah Free Rick Porcello!
  • Reds 5 – 9 Brewers. Some dudes hit some home runs.
  • Tigers 6 – 3 Orioles. Is Luke Scott on steroids? Naw, he’s just in an un-slump.
  • Astros 4 – 7 Pirates. Hey guys, the Pirates just won another game. Meanwhile, the Astros lost another one and are hopelessly out of contention. Kind of like the Nationals.
  • Yankees 10 – 5 Indians. Your first double-digit scoring game of the night was notable only for the fact that CC Sabathia gave up runs. I really hate that guy. Oh, and Nick Swisher (perhaps better known simply as AJ Burnett’s new boyfriend) hit a home run. I’m sure they celebrated in an entirely appropriate fashion that didn’t involve ice cream or maple syrup or leather and chains. No, I didn’t just imply that.
  • Nationals 6 – 9 Phillies. Cole Hamels gets shelled but gets the win anyway. Disgusting. Lidge doesn’t implode, but his ERA is still above 8. Good luck with that, buddy.
  • White Sox 5 – 3 Royals. Gil Meche gets no love from the bullpen. Which sucks.
  • Athletics 1 – 14 Rangers. The average Leverage Index for this game was so low that it actually may have caused a Fangraphs implosion. Seriously, check it out:

  • Padres 7 – 8 Rockies. This game is actually so boring that there’s no proof it happened, so I can’t tell you what happened, although I’m sure if you really want to know you can look it up somewhere.
  • Mariners 4 – 3 Angels. If you’re a Mariners fan, then Jose Lopez is your saviour. On the other hand, if you’re a Mariners fan, then you probably have bigger problems, including the fact that your #5 starter is actually a vampire. That’s my clever way of saying that I sort of have a crush on Jason Vargas.
  • Cardinals 6 – 2 Giants. Zito was doing fine until he gave up 3 consecutive doubles in the 7th. Actually, on a team that didn’t epitomize suckitude, he would’ve had an easy shot at winning this game, except that 1) Albert Pujols is on steroids and 2) The Giants suck, ergo, their bullpen sucks, ergo, their starters don’t win unless they pitch complete game shutouts. Except for that one time, but I’m pretty sure that was an accident. Oh, and Albert Pujols did do something good; namely, he struck out looking on a curveball from Zito that came thisclose to making me scream in delight. (I did actually sort of whimper, but the sexual power of a pitch like that is a discussion for another time. Just watch any Roy Halladay start, or a good AJ Burnett start. You’ll understand.)

Good morning. I know in darkness I will find you giving up inside like me.

The All-Star Break Called…

MP_BaseballThere’s a magical thing that happens every year after the All-Star break… the Yankees start winning!  In an attempt to summon those W’s into our current state of affairs, I thought we’d explore a little all-star action… Ladies style of course!

Earl Weaver would not be happy with our depth at certain positions, but I can’t help that hotties gravitate towards center field and the pitchers’ mound!  There has to be some scientific explanation for this phenomenon.

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Theme Thursday Strikes Back

As promised last week, Theme Thursday has returned with a new batch of mysteriously connected hotties.  This week’s trio was suggested by gretchenarchangel after she was the first to successfully guess the inaugural Theme Thursday puzzle.

Once again, the first person to correctly guess the theme in the comments gets to suggest a future Theme Thursday post.

This week’s guys certainly seem like an eclectic bunch at first glance — and you may want to take a couple of extra glances, you know, just to make sure you’ve gathered all the necessary information.

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The Ladies … Pick the Postseason (Baseball Edition)

AP/Mark Avery)

Will anyone take the Angels out? (Source: AP/Mark Avery)

October is my favorite sports month of the year, mainly for two reasons.  We’ll talk about the second one next week.  This week, I switched days with SA so I could start October off right: talking about postseason baseball.

This is the first time in many seasons I have not had a clear favorite in either league.  I kind of think people are forgetting about the Angels, though, just because they clinched their division ages ago.  So my picks for the postseason are:
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Stranger in a Strange Land: My Trip to U.S. Cellular Field

My best friend, a diehard White Sox fan, emailed me on Wednesday:

What are you up to on Friday night? I have 4 Club level tickets to the Sox

game (I'll give you some time to groan, go ahead) and I thought maybe you

would like to come with.

Club level seats? Baseball? A buffalo chicken sandwich and beer delivered to me in my seat? Sure, why the hell not. I could put aside years of hatred for the South Siders, right? It would be a fun night out with the girls, and I didn’t want to ruin that kind of night with hating the home team. Plus, my best friend threatened to clock me if I cheered for the Angels.

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So Close!

Chicago White Sox cutie Gavin Floyd came thisclose to a no-hitter tonight. His no-hit bid was stopped by a Joe Mauer (speaking of cuties) double at one out in the ninth inning.

I am no fan of the South Siders. In fact, I live on the North Side of Chicago, and have been a Cubs fan since birth. However, I couldn’t help but cheer on Floyd. This was his second brush with the no-hitter; he took one into the eighth inning on April 12. Methinks that Floyd will get a no-no before long. Congratulations to Gavin Floyd! Maybe Ozzie’s motivation techniques do work, after all.

Hit and Run: LOUD NOISES!


JIM THOME IS NAUGHT BUT A HOPELESS ROMANTIC

THOOOOOOOOME! Pictured here smooching his wife Andrea (note: not our Andrea), Ol’ Hambone Thome hit No. 500 yesterday, and did it in grand fashion: a two-run walkoff jack, and on Jim Thome bobblehead day. The fellow who caught the milestone ball gave it right back to Jim, and Thome announced after the game that he and his father would deliver it to Cooperstown together.

Excuse me, but it’s gotten dusty in my office all of a sudden. [Sniffle.]

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Bringing the Heat: Chicago White Sox

The folks of Chicago have it pretty good. We have the Cubs, and all the awesomeness of gameday at Wrigley Field. We have Sexy Rexy Grossman and his downfield throwing mechanics. We have the Bulls and the Blackhawks (for better or for worse). And since 2005, everyone happily claims the White Sox again.

But don’t dismiss the boys of the South Side as second-class citizens… because there are a TON of hotties to be found inside the Not-So-Friendly Confines of the Cell.


Jon and the rest of the Sox want YOU! to check them out

Peruse your way through all the South Side hotties after the jump…

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Hump Day Hottie: Scott Podsednik

On the occasion of his return from the DL over the weekend, let’s take a closer look at hottie White Sox leftfielder Scott Podsednik.

Scott is beautiful. Let’s just get that out of the way up front. He’s from the tiny little town of West, Texas (which, oddly enough, is in Central Texas), so he has a charming soft Texas drawl. He’s also fast- he turned down several scholly offers to run track (including the University of Texas), and instead headed straight to the minors. He worked his butt off for nine years in the farm systems, and finally broke through to The Show in 2003 with that trademark speed… earning him the fans’ vote as Rookie of the Year. He’s been injury prone his whole career, but always bounced back… and thank goodness for that. He’s a humble, small-town country boy who’s made good- and if he wasn’t so damned cute, I couldn’t have forgiven him for that walkoff-HR against Lidge in the ’05 World Series.

Welcome back from the DL, Scotty- thanks for restoring the heat to LF at the Cell.

Tons more lovely Scott goodies after the jump (including video)…

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Hottie Hit and Run

* I’ve got blue and gold on the brain, which I blame entirely on Tom Zbikowski and his fantastically gorgeous body. In addition to looking lovely at this weekend’s spring game, it seems Tommy has gotten a tattoo. Don’t worry, like he said, “It’s not like I have some stupid barbed wire on my arm.” [I respectfully request a private showing]

* David Wright was quite the fashion plate this weekend, wearing his pants above the calf (which is the right way, I might add) to show off his brand new Wright cleats from Nike. [He really should compensate Metschick for wearing a "Wright" shirt to the game yesterday (talk about attention grabbing!)]

* With the NFL draft looming, let’s check in with Chicago’s favorite guy, Rex Grossman. Guess the Bears’ front office is as enamored with Rexy as most of the female population in the lower 48 (and certain Canadian provinces)- because there’s little chance they’ll draft a QB in the first round. [So there's plenty of the Sex Cannon to come]

* I like a guy with a bit of meat on his bones, but for patriotic reasons I must note that American runner Ryan Hall broke the US athlete’s debut time record this weekend at the London Marathon. [U.S.A.! U.S.A.!]

* Scott Podsednik has hurt his groin again, this time injuring himself on his day off. While doing agility drills. Normally, injuring a groin might indicate a guy has gotten extraordinarily lucky- but Scott’s injury history begs to differ. [Scotty, please protect that region a little more carefully. Love, the women of Chicago]