Friday, May 7, 2010

Friday with Franco

What's happening in sports? Anything?

In baseball...

Yesterday morning the Pirates had an Pythagorean expected W-L of 6-21 with an actual record of 12-15. After the beat down Randy Wells gave himself last night, our Pythag has moved to 8-20, with our actual record standing at 13-15. Obviously our theoretical mark is still feeling the effects of the 0-20 and 3-17 nights, and is probably a little stingier than we deserve. Make no bones about it though, we're a shit ball club that at any moment, could get creamed. The fact that we're out performing our old enemy, Math... well, that won't last forever. We'll look into this again next week.

In other news: Andy LaRoche? Dude may actually be coming out of his shell? Is it possible? Throughout his career he's shown a baseline ability to take a walk, as well as a chronically low BAbip (.265 in 1043 PAs), and mediocre power (.125 ISO). What we're seeing this year is a .350 BAbip and .147 ISO. My feeling is that his previous BAbip was unreasonably low not on account of luck, but on account of him having trouble adjusting his technique to the major league level. I think a .350 BAbip is partly due to luck, but such a jump also seems to indicate that he's figured out a thing or two. The power... it's just not significant, but if we could get a .280/.370/.430 out of ALaR, I wouldn't complain. I've lamented in the past that he seems like he's aging without improving; looking at Aramis Ramirez's career numbers, you see that he has one good season at 23, but generally remains clueless until age 26, which is how old LaRoche is now. Perhaps? Maybe? Is it possible?

I meant to write an article on Garrett Jones at the beginning of the season, but then got lazy and didn't. Basically, all I was going to say was that he's going to drop out of his 2009 form to something respectable but not dominant. If you want a career model, look at Carlos Pena. I expect .260/.370/.460, which is still quite decent, but not elite.

In hockey...

The last time we won a playoff series in the Igloo was May 18, 2008.

I don't know if this is true in Pittsburgh, but in Cleveland Pens' bars, when Geno has a break away, people say "Aw Geno sucks at this!" Like last night, 3rd period. Stole the puck, went one on one with Halak, got stonewalled. Last year in the playoffs, he got to take a penalty shot in the finals; same doofuses at the Winking Lizard: "I wish it was Letang or someone." Now I know that Malkin hasn't always been brilliant on the shootout, and prior to the slow-cooker goal he has against Jimmie Howard on national TV this year, even he was down on himself. But like, fuck the heck, people? Really?? You're going to bemoan Evgeni fucking Malkin having the puck on open ice? Maybe I'm missing something here -- and I'm sure you'll tell me in the comments section -- but fuck the "Geno's not clutch" crowd.

Regarding this epic insurgency that is the Montreal Canadiens: I think this series is going to be decided by the blue liners. The Habs have figured out some way of neutralizing the super-forwards of the world, and our best hockey came in game one, when we were attacking with the outside shots. Give me more of that, Pens. I don't want to have to tell you to strap it on.

In football...

They were selling "Rapelisberger" jerseys outside of Progressive Field in downtown Cleveland the other night. On the front it said "Keep Little Ben in," which I kind of agreed with. Still, I was considering telling the vendor that my sister had been raped (lie) just to shame him. I ultimately didn't because the light had changed color and lying about rape to be vindictive didn't feel like A+ work. In conclusion: yes, Ben is an embarrassment and the shame he's bringing the Steelers is being marketed. Fuck that guy.

Everything gets old, except for Dick LeBeau and his near-pederastic love of OLBs. The latest things to get old: the incumbent linebacking corps. Woodley is probably the only one who has a definite future with the team, past the next three years. Timmons is still awkward and could be Kendell Belled out. Farrior, Foote and Fox are nice guys who play well, but will soon collect Social Security. Harrison will be cut before his giant fucking deal ends; at which point the entire Rooney family will relocate into hiding, somewhere in Ireland.

Anyway, this brings us to the 2010 NFL draft, where we took three undersized DEs and a 7th round DT, despite having a fairly steady front 7, and fairly weak secondary. This isn't out of the normal for the Steelers. If you look at their draft history, you see that they've consistently brought in mid-round LBs despite having All-Pros already at the position. This draft reminds me of taking Joey Porter and Clark Haggans types in the middle, despite having Lloyd, Gildon and Kirkland in those years. And as for the lineman, Doug Worthington... I watched him play at OSU this year, and he's pretty much coming in with as much as Keisel did: big frame, some lateral quickness despite a high center of gravity. If he can play special teams immediately, then he stands a shot at becoming a 3-4 end in our system. Not a great shot, but neither was Keisel's.

Be excited about the fact that we got Bryant McFadden back. I know we were all hoping to draft a future heir to the hair in the secondary, but it wasn't meant to be. So, we did what all dudes do when they get desperate: we called our ex and asked for another chance. I assume it went something like this:
COLBERT: You look good.
McFADDEN: ...Thanks.
COLBERT: Listen--
McFADDEN: Keven...
COLBERT: I've been thinking about us, lately.
McFADDEN: Keven, please.
COLBERT: No, listen. I've been thinking about how it used to be. Look, we were going through a lot, and it just wasn't the right time.
McFADDEN: It was never the right time!
COLBERT: I don't want you as just a nickelback, Bryant.
McFADDEN: You... you don't?
COLBERT: And I'm not just saying all this because my special teams suck, either.
McFADDEN: Kevin, what are you trying to tell me?
COLBERT: I want you to start for us.
McFADDEN: Oh Kevin!
(They embrace and kiss passionately. The scene ends with gay sex, but not before KORDELL STEWART enters.)
SLASH: Wow, I did not see this, wow, I love women and their boobies I am not a gay male I am very, very hetero straight, if I cry it's because they're booing me.
Yeah, but no, this is good news having McFadden back. It instantly gives us a proven starter opposite of Ike, and doesn't force us to scrap the developmental projects that are: William Gay, Joe Burnett, and Keenan Lewis.

1 comment:

schuyler101 said...

A big reason for optimism with LaRoche is that he's hitting more line drives, the BABIP may not be sustainable at it's current level but I'm hoping it is sustainable at a level a bit higher than his career mark.