Yesterday, I started the pandemic season preview with the easiest divisions- the East. I feel very comfortable with those picks. As for today’s task, well, it won’t be as easy. Sure, I could pencil in the Twins and Cardinals and call it a day. But that’s boring. What about the old guard Cubs and Indians? Or the upstart Reds and White Sox? Or the pesky Brewers? There are other teams, I’m sure, because I have to predict ten. We’ll see who they are after the jump.PLAY BALL
So let’s just suppose that the MLB season actually happens. All 30 teams play all 60 games and there’s a postseason and everything. While I may be skeptical that we will get all the way to a World Series, it’s fun to think about something beyond the existential terror of everyday life in 2020. So, for now, let’s talk baseball.
We start with the two Eastern Divisions, which include the two most recent World Series champions, Boston (’18) and Washington (’19). Due to limitations in travel, these teams will not leave their Eastern bubble until the postseason- 40 games against in-division opponents, 20 games against opponents from the same division in the other league. Remember as you read my predictions, that no matter how much I know about baseball, this will be wrong.
In the third week of the season, trends begin to present themselves. The Samsung Lions and SK Wyverns and languishing at the bottom of the table. For Doosan, it is not the team’s record that is drawing attention, but their designated hitter’s ruthless tear through KBO pitching. The Dinos fell but remain the class of the KBO. I finally highlight some quality pitching, as well as a few swings-and-misses that will surely make you feel better about your ability to hit a 90mph fastball.Continue reading “KBO WEEK THREE WRAP-UP”
Week two in the Korea Baseball Orgnaization saw half of the league regress to the mean, one team flounder absolutely, and one team take command of the league. The NC Dinos, what some might consider to be America’s Team, failed to lose. Their early stranglehold on the league is an early indication as to why they were so highly touted in the offseason. The baseball year is long, and there is much yet to be played, but for the time being there is no reason to consider anyone above NC for the title. The story of the week, however, belongs to the Lotte Giants. As you’ll see below, they managed to run the full gamut of emotions on the field.Continue reading “KBO Week Two Wrap-up”
Desperate for sports, yearning for baseball, the Korea Baseball Organization has saved the world. I have been watching KBO games for almost a decade, mostly through bootleg web sites that are definitely not good for my computer. With the pandemic still definitely a thing, this may be the only baseball for a while. So get up (or stay up) early and flip on ESPN and enjoy the best pure baseball league in the world, while its here.Continue reading “KBO Week One Wrap-Up”
We’re all trapped in the amber of whatever this moment is, yet life goes on. It seems like eons ago that Planter’s killed off Mr. Peanut, beloved talking food item, only to resurrect him in the form of Baby Nut, one of the most vile and despicable creatures any of us have ever seen. Brands change, mascots need a refresh, and sometimes the hardest decision of all must come- to lose the mascot entirely. I awoke Saturday morning to the news that Land O’ Lakes, the butter behemoth based in Arden Hills, Minnesota, had ditched its mascot. To the uninitiated, Mia (she had a name, dammit!) appeared to be just a vague stereotype of a Native American woman. To me, she is something much more cognitively sinister.Continue reading “Minnesota Butter and the Droste Dimension: Farewell to the Land O’ Lakes Mascot”
Mythology in America is a funny concept. Sure, there have been people here for millennia and they all passed down stories and legends, but in relation to Middle-East and Mediterranean lore, our bowl sits nearly bare. Sports fill that void as the gladiators of modern times give life to moments that transcend just a game. The moment in question signaled a sea change in NBA history. On March 12, 1997, the Chicago Bulls were on their way to their second straight title, fresh off the undisputed greatest season in basketball history. They were at the height of their powers. But their superstar, the face of the sport, was aging. Before there was “The Last Dance,” there was a question as to when the great Michael Jordan would finally show cracks in the armor. Philadelphia had The Answer.Continue reading “A Godking Could Bleed: The Night Allen Iverson Humbled Michael Jordan (for a few seconds)”
At a time when one specific topic is all we can think, talk, read, or write about, one documentary came into our lives to save the day. Now, the sensation known as Tiger King has taken America by storm and definitely harmed our already bruised reputation worldwide. It is, quite possibly, the most important thing available to stream right now.
By all means, don’t read on if you have not completed the journey through the Netflix documentary. Spoilers abound. The following is my opinion and not the opinion of the Fancy Boys at large. In fact, most of the staff has no interest in watching Tiger King. Yours truly bit that bullet for you and loved every minute of it. Please, if you have any problems with my rankings, kiss my ass. I have 224 motherfucking tigers.
I am 33 years old. I first remember watching the Olympics when I was 5, though I had no idea what was happening. There was a magic to the Games, though. A sense that, even for a few weeks, the world can appreciate the best of what we are. I don’t know if it’s growing older or the feeling that the world keeps getting darker, but 2020 needed the Olympics. This morning, Japan Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach agreed in principle to postpone the Games until the summer of ’21 in effort to forego the danger of exacerbating the COVID pandemic. It is the right decision, but I’ll tell you, True Believers, it hurts.Continue reading “As Sure As There Is Winter: The 2021 Olympic Summer Games”
A baseball season can seem so long that a single plate appearance can seem largely insignificant. As summer’s long days turn cold and the importance of each game grows, pressure can change a batter’s approach. This is the essence of what you might hear as “postseason experience,” that enigmatic entity that seems to benefit some and forsake others. Perhaps there is little to all of that. If given only one opportunity at the highest stage, a player should, by that theory, crumble. But when the sample size is as low as possible, the predictability of the result is thrown into chaos. If given one at-bat in the World Series with the game in the balance, how would you fare? For Geoff Blum, the opportunity was there, all he had to do was decide what to do with it.Continue reading “Carpe Noctem: The Ballad of Geoff Blum”