Thursday, June 07, 2007

This One Hurts

Incredible. Unbelievable. Unfathomable. A slow roller, a couple flubbed plays and just plain bad luck did us in tonight. I fell in love with Baseball because of games like this. Unfortunately, the Blue Crew was on the losing end. Oh Well.

It's hard to place any blame on any singular player. Broxton got some ground balls that, if not for the misalignment of the planets, would have resulted in a couple of outs. Kent would have had to make an great play on that first groundball. Nomar is probably the largest contributor to tonight's ninth inning loss, but his desire to turn two and a high chopper can hardly be blamed on him.

I guess at the end of the day we should try to forget this game. Of course, that's easier said than done.

Drunk Dodger Revelers

A couple of Dodger yahoos decide to try to steal Hoffman's thunder in last night's game. They run onto the field while he is warming up and get tackled by security.

YouTube Link:
HatTip: Gaslamp Ball:

Dodgers Pick Chris Withrow in the First Round of the Draft

Logan White has been a magician. He is one of the great soothsayers of the amateur Baseball draft. Hopefully he has done it again with the Dodgers first selection in this summers amateur Baseball draft. High school right-hander Chris Withrow is now in the Dodgers sights.

Withrow went 8-1 with a 1.32 ERA, 90 strikeouts and eight walks his senior year. He was ranked as the 44th-best player available by Baseball America.

"The year we took Chad Billingsley [in 2003], some people said we were reaching," said Logan White, vice president of scouting. "I'm excited. We got a tall, rangy, athletic kid with outstanding mechanics and his arm action is as good as I've seen. He's a player with a very high ceiling, a frontline starter that we just need to develop the right way."

Withrow is 6-foot-3, 195 pounds, and White compared him to a young John Smoltz in delivery and body type. Withrow's father, Mike, pitched in the White Sox Minor League system.

He's like John Smoltz. I like the sound of that.

Story Link:

UPDATE: See a complete listing of all Dodger draft picks here:

Congratulations Ducks!

The Ducks are the champions of the hockey world. As a long time Kings fan it pains me to mention those words, but the Ducks deserve it. They were clearly the best team in the NHL. They played a high intensity grinding style of hockey that reminded me of my youth. When toughness was the name of the game and perseverance was key. The Ducks did that and more.

For long suffering Kings fans my words may not assuage the anguish felt by die-hard fans. Nevertheless, it will pass. I would like to point to a post recently put on the Lets Go Kings fan website as necessary reading for the despondent members of the Kings nation.

...And countless LGKers follow him over the edge in some sort of pied piper moment of mass ritual self-pity, I'm not following and I hope LGKers don't also.

First: Congratulations to the Ducks. The won the Cup fair and square, with the best team the league has seen in quite some time, and I still think they never played up to their full potential. Nice job. They earned it.

Second: Yes, this stings. It hurts. It is quite painful to watch this. It's frustrating, painful, hurtful, last night was definitely "Black Wednesday" to the honest, loyal King fans that have hung around through it all. Me, for 25-odd years now.

Third, and perhaps most importantly: This is an excellent thing for SoCal hockey. You can take the lumps and embrace the future or you can whine and complain that that Kings weren't "first." Yeah, maybe it sucks the Kings weren't first, but how is that really going to affect the way you feel when the Kings do win their first? Something tells me you won't be crying about not being first on that day.

Hockey is a business. When there are multiple business in the same place and one attains great success, the other must follow suit to remain in business. Ducks CFO Tim Ryan (I think that's his name) demonstrated tremendous class and respect last night when he was asked about the importance of this Cup win for SoCal hockey. He said: "This is great for the Ducks, it's great for the Los Angeles Kings, and great for hockey in Southern California."

He's right. Period.

The Kings (hopefully) have the right leadership in place, a stable of excellent young talent, and quite possibly the greatest motivation of all 35 miles down the street. The Kings are at the bottom, beginning an up-swing, and will be in this happy place in a few seasons. I still have hope. I have never been more proud to be a Kings fan than today...oddly enough.

I guess I'm proud because I never left them for the new team in town. I'm proud because I recieved a call last night from a buddy who was a Ducks season ticket holder, "quit" the Ducks when Kariya & Selanne left, hasn't been a Ducks fan since...but yet somehow was as excited a little school girl last night. He was hardly legible on the phone. He sounded like ...hell, I don't even know how to explain it. I'm proud because I'm not him and never will be. Why? Because I've never quit the Kings!!!

So, go jump off the cliff if you choose to. Go into a hole of self pity and whine about everything you can come up with from last nights Cup win for the Ducks. Or man up, take your lumps, and be thankful and optimistic for the very bright future the Kings have in front of them. Look at it this way, the Ducks are returning the favor. If not for Gretzky & the Kings in the first place, the Ducks wouldn't exist. We made them, now they are forcing our hand. Win or become forgotten. Win or become the Clippers.

I am not a Ducks fan. Never have been, never will be. This hurts me as much as the next Kings die hard fan. Believe me. But I recognize what it means. I recognize the enormous motivation for success this means for the Kings. This will be a good thing.

It hurts now. It won't later. And if you're so wrapped up in the fact that the Kings weren't "first", then that's your shortcoming. That is an insignificant piece of worthless barroom trivia. The kind you win a bottle of scotch on.

Congratulations Ducks. Nice win. That's the last time I say it.


I've been waiting nearly 25 years myself. So, all I can add is that patience is a virtue.

Photo Link: Ticket News: