Sunday, December 31, 2006

God Looks After Fools and Little Children

The fool is me and the child is my son, 9 month old Trot. He had taken his afternoon nap, and was sitting in my lap while I was on the computer. He got fidgety, as all little babies do, and wanted down. I sat him down, picked up a flower he's always pulling over on him, put it up, and when I turned back around, all I saw was his foot turn the corner toward the stairs.

When I got to the stairs, he was already half way down, rolling like a barell. I don't remember how I got down the stairs, just that he and I reached the bottom at the same time. My wife, who had been laying down, was there to meet us. She told me later she heard me hollering, and when she looked up, I was in the air like some kind of deranged Superman. The fact that my back feels like I got hit with a 2x4 kinda supports the fact I did not get down the stairs in the conventional way.

He wasn't making a sound, and my wife thought the worst. But I had him cradled and could see his face: he was crying without making a sound. I guess the wind got knocked out of him, and in about a minute, he proceeded with the expected caterwauling. Except for a good little bump on his head, he doesn't seem any worse for wear.

His Mom and I, we're a different story. I shook for a good 30 minutes. If you're reading this and you have children, you know what I mean when I say I have NEVER been as scared for one of my children.

As 2006 ends tonight, I have alot to be thankful for: A great wife, 3 wonderful kids, a home, food to eat, and clothes to wear.

Most of all: I'm thankful that God watched over my child today. And that he takes care of fools.

And their little children.

Saturday, December 30, 2006

The Steal

Dave Freakin' Roberts.

Spent less than 4 months as a Red Sox, but will be a legend in Red Sox Nation forever. Millar's walk, Francona putting in Roberts to pinch run, and The Steal. He doesn't make it, the greatest comeback in sports history never happens. The Sox don't break 86 years of frustration, don't become World Champs, nothing. Just more heartbreak, more agony.

But he DID make it. And all of a sudden, the guy is on the cover of books and magazines, and his name will be reverently mentioned for the rest of time by Sox fans. Every year it seems like one guy comes outa nowhere and becomes a cult hero to the fans of Boston. Brian Daubauch, Kevin"Cowboy Up"Millar, Pokey Reese, Roberts, YOOOOUUUUKilis. It even happened last year, even though from August 1st, it seemed like the team was more a M.A.S.H. unit than a ballclub.

Guys like Pedroia, Carlos Pena, and Lester. Even Julian Tavarez went from being unmercifully boo'd to a fan favorite by acting like he had completely lost his mind. He was jumping around, pointing to which base the ball needed to go to, pumping his fist at all times, and generally acting like a kid. Which was great. I wish more players would act that way.

So, who's it gonna be in 2007? Daisuke? Lugo? WMP? Personally, I think it'll be someone Theo picks up in July. Just like Roberts. Someone out of the blue, who will capture the heart of Sox fan's everywhere.

I can't wait to see who it is.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

My case for Josh Beckett

On my very first maiden blog, I asked if the Boston media was too tough on Josh Beckett. I've been a fan of his since 2003, when he earned a special place in my baseball heart for driving the final stake through the black heart of the Yankees. Game 6 of the World Series, the upstart Marlins vs. George's stormtroopers. What does the then 23 year old kid do? He strolls into Yankee Stadium and proceeds to stomp, spit, cuss, and pitch his way to a complete game victory and a World Series Championship for the Marlins.

Since that post, I've been doing a little research and waiting for Barry Zito to land. Now that Zito is a SF Giant, after agreeing to a 7 year, $126 million dollar deal, I'm gonna state my case.

Josh Beckett

6years in MLB

WL%: .559

Wins: 57 Losses: 45

Games Pitched: 139

Innings Pitched: 813.7

Compete Games: 3

Stike Outs: 765

ERA: 3.85

2006 Stats: 16W 11L, 33 games, 204.7 IP, 0 CG, 158 punch outs, and a 5.01 ERA
Barry Zito
7 years in MLB
WL%: .618
Win: 102 Losses: 63
Games Pitched: 222
Innings Pitched: 1,430.3
Complete Games: 9
Stike Outs: 1096
ERA: 3.55
2006 Stats: 16W 10L, 34 games, 221.0 IP, 0 CG, 151 SO, and a 3.83 ERA.
So we have 2 pitchers in their prime, one who is 28{Zito}, and one who is 26{Beckett}. Zito will
make $18 million dollars per year over the next 7 years. Beckett will make $10 million over the
next 3 years. For $8 million per year, and for 4 less years commitment, the Red Sox have a
player 2 years younger, with a career ERA just above his counterpoint, and the makeup of a
With Zito, you have a very good pitcher, with good career numbers that has pitched in relative
anonimity on the West Coast. I like Zito as a pitcher: but when you look at the numbers, is he
REALLY that much better than Beckett? A man who has been under the most intense pressure
a MLB player can be under? Game 6 in Yankee Stadium, with all the ghosts, history, and all he
did was stomp a mudhole in the stomach of the Yankees and their fans? A man who, in his first
year in Boston, posted career highs in wins, innings pitched, and strikeouts, and who avoided
going on the DL for the first time in his 6 year career?
I wish Zito nothing but the best, and I am ecstatic he did not end up in New York. But I'll take
Josh Beckett and his screaming, stomping, cussing ways over Barry Zito and his $126 million
any day of the week.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006


A little under a year ago, David Ortiz visited The Hospital General de la Plaza de Salud in Santo Domingo. Touched by what he saw, the big man promised to come back. And he did: with a $200,00 check. And I know, $200,000 to Papi is like $200 to you and me. But that's not the point. The point is he GAVE back.
Unlike alot of baseball players, Big Papi did what he said he'd do. He went back to this poor town, with these poor children, and he gave. I'm not naive enough to think he did this completely out of the goodness of his own heart. {Though I'd like to.} I know he get's a tax break and some great P.R. out of this, but that does'nt matter.
He came through, just like he always does, whether it's on the field, or in some impoverished hospital in the Dominican. And unlike Manny Ramirez, he walks what he talks. Manny promised to start a charity upon signing his $160 million dollar deal, and as far as I know, the only charity that has benifited from Manny's good fortune is the Ramirez family. And that's O.K.
Manny does not have to give his money away. It's his to do with as he wishes. Just don't say you're gonna do it, then decide not too. David Ortiz is a rarity among ballplayers: the guy who seems to be too good to be true actually is.
David Ortiz: MVP.
Most Valuable Person.

Monday, December 25, 2006

Christmas Wishes

Since Christmas Day is about over, I thought I might give out some wishes I have for the upcoming year.

For Jason Varitek: A healthy and productive year as Red Sox Captain.

For Curt Schilling: One last great year, with you going out in a blaze of glory with another WS ring.

For David Ortiz: The A.L. MVP Award: You shoulda won it last year.

For Jon Lester: Health. Anything else is gravy.

For Manny: 40 HR, 135 RBI, a plus .300 avg, and happiness in Boston.

For Trot Nixon: A place to play everyday, a healthy year, and a return to the Sox one day in the not too distant future.

For Daisuke Matsuzaka: 15-20 wins and a thick skin. I'm afraid you're gonna need it.

And finally, for the New York Yankees and their fans: 3rd place in the A.L. East. Because I would only wish that on my worst enemy.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Another Christmas Eve

Went to the in-laws for Christmas tonight, and after eating too much followed by 30 minutes of frantically cleaning the floor of paper, ribbons, and trash {The frantic part coming because the 9 month old puts EVERYTHING in his mouth, faster than God should really allow}, we packed up, headed home, and finally, thankfully, everyone one is in bed and quiet.

As I get older, the holidays become more stressful, more exhausting, more hectic every year. They also get better. Because every year, I see new excitement and happiness from my little heathens. Watching them rip open presents like Taz in the old Bugs Bunny cartoons reminds me of ME when I was a kid. Taking them to see Santa and the 3 year old forgetting he screamed bloody murder last year, causing me to almost lose the will to go on, jump up in the old guys lap and proceed to rattle off every thing he had seen on TV that he wanted. Watching their eye's light up after we said prayers and told them to go to sleep quick, because Santa could not come to their house until they were sound asleep. Translation: Dad and Mom have ALOT to do, and would like to get at least 2 hours sleep.

We even had my brother-in-law call today, put him on speaker, and he proceeded to rattle off a pretty dadgum good imitation of St. Nick. The level of coolness Dad has now, due to the fact that Santa knows MY cell phone number is off the charts.

So, as you stay up until 4 this morning putting together that toy that either will get broken, lost, or just shoved in a corner in a week, remember you get to experience what your parents did. The exhaustion, stress, and aggravation that is Christmas. But also the joy, happiness, and excitement.

The best kind of joy.

That of a child.

Merry Christmas everyone.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

First Time

This is my first ever post on my brand new blog. 3 years ago I did'nt even know what a blog was, and now I've got one. Thanks go out to Tex{You know who you are!} for kinda giving me the shove I needed!

Since I'm new at this, I'll start my first post with a question.

Is it just me, or are the Boston media WAY off base with their criticism of Josh Beckett and his performance last year? First year in the A.L., 16 wins, 200+ innings, and healthy for the first time for a whole year?

In Beckett, the Red Sox have a 26 year old flamethrower locked up for the next 3 years. He's a kid who will learn that in order to reach his peak, he'll have to learn how to pitch, not just throw.

Beckett, Pap, Daisuke, Schill, and Wake for 2007.

Sounds good to me.