June 21, 2013

Let's try something different

So the other night… Tuesday night, in fact – Cheryl and I are sitting in the View MVP section with friends and this guy starts walking around with a neon colored sign with the words “Show me the money Josh Hamilton” and “He’s robbing you blind, Arte.”

Now, the first question you have to ask yourself is what possesses a person to come to a ball game with such a sign.  The man happened to be at the game with three young boys, who I assume were his own.  Was he there to teach them a life lesson?  Was he looking for his fifteen minutes of fame and wanted to make sure his boys got to share in the experience?  Or was he simply looking to get a little air before he crawled back under the rock he lived under?

The interesting thing is that he didn’t really get a reaction from anyone – except for the security person who showed up to make him put his sign away.  No one seemed to care and although some were probably annoyed – they probably realized he wasn’t worth the energy.  Even when security had him put the sing away, no one made a peep.  When he left the game early… nada.  Nothing. 

No doubt he wanted the cameras to find him, but apparently he wasn’t bright enough to understand that wasn’t going to happen and the only camera that was going to notice him were the ones being viewed by security.

So – here’s the deal.  Showing up to rant about a player isn’t going to get you much.  For one thing – I’m certain Josh Hamilton couldn’t hear the man shout things like “I want your paycheck.”  Sitting in the upper level should be an obvious road block to your goal of having the player actually hear you.    Common sense should prevail in these situations, but I guess one has to have it to use it.

Think about it.  Hamilton can’t hear you and the cameras aren’t going to put you on a big screen.  At this point you have to realize you’re only annoying the fans sitting in the area and what you’re doing is making a much bigger statement about yourself than it does about Josh Hamilton.  And then there’s the kids… think about the kids, man.  Do you really want them growing up with this imbedded in their memory?

You have to be more creative than that. 

So here are some suggestions for anyone who wants to make a statement about Josh Hamilton’s struggles.  These things will at the very least, elicit a chuckle or two from the fans in the stands.

Make a voodoo doll.  No, not of Josh Hamilton, stupid; after all, we are still Angel fans – but one of the opposing pitcher.  Every time the pitcher goes to wind up – have his arm go crazy and throw the ball into the stands.  You accomplish two things this way.  One, the fans in the area will appreciate the souvenir and two, Josh Hamilton will get a walk and his on-base percentage will go up.   Now, I don’t believe in voodoo, but at this point anything might help.  Just make sure the voodoo doll is huge for impact.

This one is for the Hamiltown crowd – the group that sits in the right field pavilion holding up the sign.  Every time Hamilton makes an out – downgrade the sign.  For his first at-bat, you’re a town… if he makes an out – you’re a community then a cul-de-sac, and then a small house and last, but not least – an outhouse – which could have a couple different meanings, if you catch my drift.  What would all of that look like?  You figure it out – I’m just throwing out ideas.

Okay… enough of that.  And quite frankly - the Hamiltown crowd is a great group trying to do something positive. In fact - we need more fans to follow their example.

So... you know what would really be cool?  This would be sure to make its way to ESPN or at the very least the local news.  What if every time Hamilton came up to bat – we all stood and clapped and chanted Ham-il-ton! I’m not talking about a patch of people here or there – I’m talking about an entire stadium; standing in support of a man who desperately wants to live up to expectations.  To make it even more amazing – what if every fan was wearing a Josh Hamilton t-shirt or jersey?

Imagine the impact.

It’s too easy to sit and complain about how badly Hamilton has performed.  And booing?  That’s just weak.  Boo A.J. Pierzysnki or Ian Kinsler – but booing Josh Hamilton is pointless.  Do you really think that’s going to make him play better?  Would it make you perform better?

My crazy idea isn’t likely to take hold.  There are too many cynics and complainers in the world.  That’s not a group I want to associate with. 

I can only do what I can do.  I’m going to make a point of showing my support for Hamilton from now on.  This team needs him and baseball will be a lot more fun - if and when he starts playing like the player he can be.

Something has to change.  As fans we have no control over what happens on the field, but we can have an impact on the environment the player performs in.  Think about it.

June 17, 2013

You can call him Al

If Albert Pujols is going to be a shell of himself, we might as well call him Al instead of Albert.  Think about the song by Paul Simon…

A man walks down the street
He says why am I soft in the middle now

Okay, Al may not be soft in the middle per say, but he’s certainly soft in the middle of the Angels lineup.

Why am I soft in the middle
The rest of my life is so hard

We’d like to know why you’re so soft too, Al.  The rest of your life is going to be hard?  Not with the kind of cash you’re making – now your life on the baseball field… well, we shall see.

I need a photo-opportunity
I want a shot at redemption

A walk off hit yesterday would have gone a long way toward both.

Don't want to end up a cartoon
In a cartoon graveyard

Too late...

Image borrowed from:  The Jert Blog

Bonedigger Bonedigger
Dogs in the moonlight
Far away my well-lit door
Mr. Beerbelly Beerbelly
Get these mutts away from me
You know I don't find this stuff amusing anymore

Well... Al, we are not amused with the lack of production in key moments of a game.  This is not the Albert Pujols we thought we were getting.  The “dogs” in the moonlight – are you and Josh Hamilton who aren’t living up to expectations.  The media here is soft, but every now and then they might nip at your heels...if you want them away from you - start producing.

If you'll be my bodyguard
I can be your long lost pal
I can call you Betty
And Betty when you call me
You can call me Al

Mark Trumbo has done everything he can to protect you… but I don’t think you should call him Betty.  Now, about being called “Al;” I’m all for that.

A man walks down the street
He says why am I short of attention
Got a short little span of attention
And wo my nights are so long

Focus bro; focus.  See the ball; hit the ball.  Got it?

Where's my wife and family?

I hope they’re not back in St. Louis.  I hope that distraction has been resolved.  Just saying.

What if I die here?

Well… you’re killing us, Al.

Who'll be my role-model
Now that my role-model is
Gone Gone

You mean Torii?  Yeah, we miss him too.

He ducked back down the alley
With some roly-poly little bat-faced girl
All along along
There were incidents and accidents
There were hints and allegations

The only hints and allegations around here about whether or not you should be on the DL and although some people question your actual age – I’m not going there.

If you'll be my bodyguard
I can be your long lost pal
I can call you Betty
And Betty when you call me
You can call me Al
Call me Al

Again, talk to Mark Trumbo.

A man walks down the street
It's a street in a strange world
Maybe it's the Third World
Maybe it's his first time around
He doesn't speak the language
He holds no currency
He is a foreign man

I know this hitting .250ish is a strange new world for you.  We don’t like it much either.  Something has to give.

He is surrounded by the sound
The sound
Cattle in the marketplace
Scatterlings and orphanages
He looks around, around
He sees angels in the architecture
Spinning in infinity
He says Amen and Hallelujah!

Umm… those are Angel fans.  Most haven’t taken to booing you just yet… and I for one, would never do that – but the natives are getting restless.

If you'll be my bodyguard
I can be your long lost pal
I can call you Betty
And Betty when you call me
You can call me Al
Call me Al

You got it, Al.  You’re Al to me until Albert reappears.