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So I finally broke down and committed to writing one of these here Game Reports.

Unfortunately, when I pledged my sacred honour and assured all and sundry that I would
show up for duty on the 30th, I forgot that it was Tuesday. On Tuesday, I'm usually
busy, and last night was no exception; I didn't get home until the game was nearly over.

Thankfully, I remembered to set up my VCR before I left this morning. So, ladies and gents, I bring you the
baseball edition of Fast Forward Theatre, or: Blue Jays In Fifteen Minutes (just heat and serve). Ready? Go!

Pregame: Shea Hillenbrand, pool shark.

Top 1: Bat. Oops. (Did somebody in the bullpen catch that?) Bat. Steroid-free whiff. To dugout without further damage.

Bot 1: Shot of Gibbons looking managerial. Do they teach that somewhere? Adams reaches base: yay, Russ. Adams steals second: yay, Russ. I pronounce the leadoff problem solved, thank you. V-Dub strikeout: Vern, don't you know that your job is to drive in every single runner in scoring position? Ya bum, ya.

Break: After seeing all those Wendy's commercials, I solemnly pledge never to have ranch dressing on anything ever again ever.

Top 2: Ground out, ground out, ground out. Keep hitting the top half, boys.

Bot 2: Outfielder fall down, Shea on third. (Remember, a long time ago, when the Orioles were justifiably proud of their team defense? Y'all are probably too young for that.) Zaun drives him in, making the score 1-1 and sparing us more complaints about the Jays not being able to bring runners home from third with less than two
out. Memo to everybody: stop, already. Two runners on base; two runners off base. Yay! Zaun nearly overrun by Sparky; Jays look like they have invented a new sport, Synchronized Baserunning.

Break: Shea pool shark again.

Top 3: Liner. Ground ball. Bunt. Bunt? How rude! Fly ball.

Break: Me no want Cogeco.

Bot 3: Koskie is now holding his bat upright, like Ichiro!, when settling into the box. Result is still the same: a right turn at first base. The Dude hits one to the base of the wall. All this, and bad luck too.

Top 4: Steroid-free popup. Squibbler. Whiffo: try the 9-iron, Jay. B.J. Surhoff is still playing!? I thought he had been embalmed by now! More squibbler.

Break: Ong Bak! No stunt doubles!

Bot 4: Just noticed that O's have all-Lopez battery. Memo: try using J-Lo instead of Rodrigo next time. Double from Gregg; our hero. Wild pitch. But then, the Jays, obviously lacking intestinal fortitude... (are you sitting down?) Fail To Get The Runner Home From Third! Will this be the Turning Point? (Hint: no.)

Break: Curt Schilling beaten like gong. Time waits for no man.

Top 5: Out. Out. Pokey little double. Liner up gap, held to single. Out. Zzzzzz. Wake me when they get within four. You mean they are within four? Oh.

Bot 5: Koskie doubles. Shea doubles. Mound conference. Hinske singles on grounder between first and second (i.e., the O-Dog Would Have Had That). Mound conference. Zaun singles. Phone rings in pen. Rodrigo nervously plays with gum. Johnson plates runner with Vital Less Than Two Out Ground Ball. Mound conference. Exit Rodrigo.

Top 6: Steroid-free lineout. Ball behind Javy. Error. Ye olde twin killing; O-Dog gets style points for sideways flip.

Bot 6: Out. Out. Hit. Out. Meh.

Break: I pity the advertiser whose job it is to make McDogfoods seem edible. Seriously: me no want Cogeco.

Top 7: Three outs later, it's safe to assume that this is one of Bush's good days.

Break: Ong-Bak! No wires!

Bot 7: Out. Out. Walk. Out. Yeah, like your life is interesting all the time.

Top 8: Jason in. Out. Squibbler. Steroid-free called strikeout. Jason out. Yay, Jason.

Break: The kinder, gentler Stephen Harper. Sorry to interject politics into this, but: bwa ha ha ha ha.

Bot 8: Nothing eventful happened in this inning either. Life is like that sometimes.

Top 9: Jason out. Justin in. Nice catch, Vernon! Justin out. That's all she wrote. Jays back over .500. Executive summary: yay.

A couple of notes, while I still have your attention:

- So I gather that Rafael Palmeiro is less than popular in Toronto. Good Lord, that was a lot of booing. I suppose that Palmeiro's wearing ear plugs only encouraged the fans to boo louder. Not that I'm opposed to booing Raffy, mind. How many times has he beaten the Jays with what could allegedly have been artificially-enhanced long bombs? And are we going to get any of those wins back? Are we heck. Booo!

- Dave Bush is going hard core: he's got the shaved head / square chin with stubble look. He is beginning to resemble Henry Rollins. He looks like he could have stepped in and taken over Black Flag's singing duties without a moment's hesitation. Rise above, Dave! Rise above!

- Life is good when the Jays beat the Evil Baltimores. (As for why the Baltimores are evil: that's a topic for another day.)

P.S.: Magpie, I eat pressure for breakfast.
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The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
Pistol - Wednesday, August 31 2005 @ 08:40 AM EDT (#127072) #
Corey Koskie is doing pretty well lately hitting .444/.600/.667 over his last 6 games.

That brings his season totals from:
.234/.309/.394 on Aug 24th to:
.249/.334/.412 on Aug 30th

Jump on the bandwagon while I'm still the only one on it! A year from now we'll be laughing at all of the contract albatross talk when he's hitting .260/.360/.460.
jsut - Wednesday, August 31 2005 @ 09:23 AM EDT (#127073) #
bush will have to put on about 60 pounds of muscle and get a lot more tattoos if he's really going to look like henry rollins.
Cristian - Wednesday, August 31 2005 @ 10:32 AM EDT (#127076) #
He'll probably also need to sing a lot worse than he already does. Oh yeah, and learn to write awful poetry.
Blue in SK - Wednesday, August 31 2005 @ 11:23 AM EDT (#127079) #
Cogeco may be bad, but those PVRs rock! As do the HD telecasts of Blue Jays games.
Named For Hank - Wednesday, August 31 2005 @ 11:58 AM EDT (#127087) #
Koskie is doing well because I traded him away from my fantasy team. It's a no-fail way to make a Jay heat up.

Mojo update: so remember I got that Shea Hillenbrand All-Star jersey, right? Well,'s shop messed it up and neglected to include the Jays team shoulder patch -- the end result being that there was nothing on the jersey to identify what team Hillenbrand plays for. When I called to complain, they told me that the teams didn't wear shoulder patches on the field, that Hillenbrand didn't play in the All-Star game, that Majestic wasn't including shoulder patches on "customized" player jerseys (i.e. players they don't keep in stock)... different story each time, with the end result being that they weren't going to fix it. None of their excuses were very good, as the tag on the jersey itself reads "Authentic, right down to the stitching. The MLB Authentic Collection (TM) is what the players wear on the field", and the on-field jerseys certainly had the team's shoulder patch. I even found an image of Hillenbrand in his (from the Home Run derby, sitting and watching -- the All-Star jerseys were only worn for the derby and batting practice) where the shoulder patch was visible to prove to myself that I wasn't crazy.

So I contacted Majestic, who were very helpful. I sent the jersey to them and they added the shoulder patch at no charge and returned it to me a couple of days later -- Monday morning, in fact. So there's a new piece of unbeaten mojo in town.
Rob - Wednesday, August 31 2005 @ 12:15 PM EDT (#127088) #
Casey Blake and Aaron Boone didn't like Josh Towers' statements earlier this week, says the Plain-Dealer:

To refresh your memory, Towers gave up two homers to the above hitters and later said, "Those just happened to be perfect mistakes for those hitters. Those two home runs, they aren't very good hitters. Nothing for nothing, but they are hitting .240 for a reason."

Blake: "He was personally attacking me and Aaron. I've had success off him before. This game is about respecting everyone in the game. There's no room for bashing other players. You have to own up for getting beat...I have a lot of things in my mind that I'd like to say. If I was talking to him face-to-face, I don't think we'd be talking long...I'm only kidding, only kidding."

Boone, after getting a copy of Towers' career statistics from Kevin Millwood: "I'm now a follower of his mediocre career." Also: "I look at it as kind of a frustrated, idiotic thing to say...especially when you look at what he's slopping up there [to the plate]"

Personally, I don't really care who said what -- but I find it amazing that Aaron Boone was given a copy of Towers' career statistics. When's the last time you gave or received copy of anyone's statistics?

Ducey - Wednesday, August 31 2005 @ 12:57 PM EDT (#127091) #
Baltimore looked soo done last night. It appeared they did not even care. Say so long to the new manager.

Give the Jays credit, they looked like they were grinding it out.

Baltimore seems like they are on the verge of crisis. Other than Bedard they don't seem to have a lot of starting pitching, they have Sosa's decline/ contract, Raffy's earplugs, a weak minor league system, a maniacal owner, and competition from Washington. They do have J Lop, Tejada, Mora, and Roberts (if he can sustain his improvement) and a lot of money (does anyone know what they got from MLB) but I can't see a lot of free agents wanting into Baltimore. At best they are looking mediocre next year.
Magpie - Wednesday, August 31 2005 @ 01:25 PM EDT (#127093) #
Say so long to the new manager.

Actually, I'm not so sure about that. The two-headed GM might be in Big Trouble. Apparently it was Jim Beattie who pushed very hard for Lee Mazzilli as the manager, while Angelos wanted Perlozzo all along.

Mazzilli lost the players very early (Tejada called a team meeting and essentially told the other players that they'd have to try to win despite the manager.)

Sosa and Ponson are huge, disastrous contracts. But there are still some young arms, Angelos is certainly willing to spend on the team...

R Billie - Wednesday, August 31 2005 @ 02:33 PM EDT (#127101) #
The Orioles did get Tejada to join them when things were going just as bad or worse than this year. Simply speaking, if you offer the most money and most years, you have a real shot at getting free agents.

The O's have some very good players near the top of the order. They have some good young pitching talent with an unknown date of maturity. They have a good hitter coming in Nick Markakis. They also have Sammy Sosa and Sidney Ponson who I wouldn't have touched with a ten foot pole at the money they were pulling in. As far as Palmeiro...there was a time where I thought it was a decent gamble for the Jays to pursue him.

But outside of this there is still something to build on there. This team was leading the division for two months or so when they were playing their best. They do need a better rotation and their lineup isn't that strong beyond the first four. It's just a matter of continuing to build on what is there.
Elijah - Wednesday, August 31 2005 @ 04:18 PM EDT (#127117) #
Sosa's contract isn't so disastrous because the Cubs paid most of it and the contract ends this season. Ponson's contract is bad but it's only for one more year after this.

I don't know if Perlozzo will be back but he's probably at least safe for an on-field job next year if he wants one because Angelos likes him and he's been with the franchise for a long time.

The season is starting to remind me the Orioles a couple years ago when they lost 34 of their last 38 or something ridiculous along those lines. They need to rebuild their farm system and get away from old veterans like Palmeiro, Sosa and Surhoff. I'm not sure they have a legitimate shot to sign any impact free agents (or even whether they even should).
Rob - Wednesday, August 31 2005 @ 04:43 PM EDT (#127122) #
The season is starting to remind me the Orioles a couple years ago when they lost 34 of their last 38 or something ridiculous along those lines.

Yeah, 2002 -- 32 of 36. They weren't so hot at the end of 2003, either: lost 24 of 34.

John Northey - Wednesday, August 31 2005 @ 05:27 PM EDT (#127127) #
Poor Orioles fans. Having your team tank at the end that bad would make it hard. Checking good ol' Baseball Reference for August/September/October records...

2001 - 19-35
2002 - 18-40
2003 - 21-36
2004 - 31-25
2005 - 10-17 so far with 2 five game losing streaks and the start of the month was the last 3 games of an eight game losing streak

How about our Blue Jays?
2001 - 31-24
2002 - 32-25
2003 - 32-22
2004 - 22-36 (year from hell indeed)
2005 - 13-14 so far with a 4 game winning streak and a 5 game losing streak mixed in

So the two are basically mirrors. The Orioles ending badly in all but one year (2004) while the Jays ended well in all but one year (2004 as well). Add 10 more wins over those last two months for the Jays while removing them from the Orioles (ie: assume they finished like they both usually do) and the Jays would've held onto 3rd last year. Heck, just 1/2 of that would've put the Jays in almost a dead heat for 3rd (10 1/2 behind Baltimore in 2004).

Lets hope the Jays get that good finishing kick in September eh?
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