Tuesday, December 23, 2008

5 comments Ten Things I Think I Think Peter King Has Not Thought Of: 0-16 Edition

I am so glad I am not a Detroit Lions fan. Though I used to play with the Lions because of Herman Moore and Barry Sanders on Tecmo Super Bowl, I fortunately never was a fan of the team. I remember what it is like to have a favorite team that struggles to win games so I feel bad for them. There is a lot of Lions talk out there for various reasons...mostly because JemeHill writes about them in nearly every single article for Page 2. As much as I complain Bill Simmons writes about the Boston area teams too often, JemeHill is just as bad about writing about Detroit all the time. The difference is that she has nothing to gloat about because the teams are all bad so it is not as annoying...but don't think I am not noticing.

1. JemeHill thinks the Lions have to go 0-16 to have changes happen. Let's see what poor reasoning she uses today.

The Detroit Lions must go 0-16.

Not 1-15.

Take it from me, there is really no difference in how depressed you get watching the team. It almost is worse to have one win because you sit there and wonder how the hell the team won a game and hold out a bizarre amount of hope it could happen again.

Things aren't good in my hometown right now. Unemployment is high, and confidence is low. Just this week, both Detroit newspapers announced that, because of the economic downturn, they will be delivering to homes only three days a week beginning in March -- making each of them a thricely instead of a daily.

Things aren't good in my hometown right now, there is a lot more traffic because it is Christmas, there is a lot of construction I have to go through on my way to work, and I am reading JemeHill's latest column. Let's call it even.

Congress is stalling regarding the Big Three automakers, having forgotten it just wrote a blank check to Wall Street without even asking for so much as a Christmas card in return.

If you don't have much to say, just write a shorter column. A lesson JemeHill should learn.

Nothing has worked in a half-century. You name it, they've failed at it. They've done the run 'n' shoot and the West Coast offense. They've drafted cornerbacks, Heisman Trophy winners, offensive linemen, defensive backs and, of course, wide receivers. They've hired inexperienced coaches and veteran ones. Barry Sanders is the best decision the Lions ever made. As for the worst, take your pick.

I genuinely don't remember the Run 'n' Shoot offense in Detroit but I may not have been paying much attention. They may have run something similar to that with Moore, Brett Perriman, and others but I don't think they called it that. Anyway, Lions suck and always have, what does this have to do with why they should not win a game?

If the Lions beat either New Orleans or Green Bay, Ford may be suckered into thinking he doesn't need to change as much as he thought. Already, some people have suggested that coach Rod Marinelli deserves to keep his job because the Lions have played hard despite losing their first 14 games.

Really, I do not know anyone who is a Lions fan, but if the Lions win a game against Green Bay this week and people suggest there may not need to be a coaching change because the team is playing hard...well I will just say they probably get the ownership they deserve.

Let's do some risky business with numbers and facts:

The 1976 Tampa Bay team that went 0-14 arguably was worse than the 2008 Lions, but the Bucs reached the NFC Championship Game in 1979 and ultimately won the Super Bowl after the 2002 season.

Two problems here: First, the Bucs did not fire their coach after the 0-14 year (granted they were an expansion team) and he led them to the 1979 NFC Championship Game in 1979. This is poor reasoning for why you should fire your present coach. Second, the Bucs stunk very badly for almost 20 years before they won the Super Bowl 23 years after 1979. It was not an overnight success. Maybe JemeHill is looking to turn the Lions around in 23 years but I am assuming ownership and the players would like to move a little faster. Bottom line is don't look to the Bucs as an example of a team that turned it around well in a short period of time.

The Arizona Cardinals -- Detroit's longtime rival for worst NFL franchise -- just won the NFC West and are in the playoffs for the first time in 10 years.

Again, a bad example of a team finding a way to pull it all together for a playoff run. By any stretch the Cardinals are in the second worst division in football and would not make the playoffs in any other division except the AFC West because they are 8-7. To take it down to your level, the only reason they are in the playoffs is because they have gotten to play teams almost as bad as the Lions every week.

So although Lions fans have the right to fear the thought of Ford's making even more decisions, here's another good reason to root for 0-16: Ford can't do worse than winless.

Ford can't really be stupid enough to think there should not be a coaching change if the Lions win one game would he? I hope not.

2. Rob Parker made a funny to Rod Marinelli that he did not find funny.

Parker asked Marinelli, "Do you wish your daughter would have married a better defensive coordinator?"

I really have no problem with this question from a joking standpoint. It does come off as unprofessional because Parker is a journalist who is supposed to ask serious questions. The insinuation in this is that the only reason Barry got the job was because he was married to Marinelli's daughter, which is kind of offensive. Parker apologized for the comment and I think it should be over now.

The real question I have is: what was Parker attempting to accomplish with this question? There is no good answer for it, so it is a wasted question and comes off as a potshot at Marinelli and his family.

Imagine if someone had asked the Browns General Manager at a press conference: "Do you wish your owner had not followed the Rooney Rule and given Romeo Crennel an interview?"

That may not be exactly similar to the Marinelli case but my premise is that either way it is a stupid question to ask.

3. Mike Freeman thinks the Lions have other things to worry about other than the questions Rob Parker asks.

But the joke was typical Rob. He went too far but anyone who knows Rob well knows he's usually very funny and is always cracking jokes. That's him. That's Rob. It's why I've always liked him. He never became one of these pompous ass columnists who looked down on his readership and other journalists in the business.

Mike Freeman manages to hover directly over the issue without ever actually getting to what the real problem was. I am sure Rob should be a stand up comedian in his spare time and is completely down to earth but neither of these are good reasons why he asked the question. He was not joking around with his buddies, he was at the press conference for a team that is 0-15. Bad feelings are bound to be hanging around the room just based on that. Bad timing...

My biggest problem is with the anonymous cowards who altered his Wiki page. My problem is with Terry Bradshaw, who took quite the hypocritical stand on Fox. Because Bradshaw has never, ever shot his mouth off before.

Both of these are great points and I agree with them. What is he writing about again? I have already forgotten.

Lions fans: Your team is about to set one of the all-time marks for sports futility. You have bigger fish to fry people.

This is one of my least favorite arguments people use. Simply because there is a more pressing matter at hand does not mean a lesser problem should not be discussed. If this reasoning was used in everyday life then any racist comment towards an African American could be dismissed with reasoning there are bigger fish to fry. This is like saying we should ignore a racist comment made publicly because of the large amount of single family households in the African American community and the large amounts of African American males in prison. This makes absolutely no sense but under the "bigger fish to fry" theory you can dismiss any remark and try to focus on a bigger problem. It's stupid and I hate it.

Again, let's make this clear. Rob went too far but all the venom aimed in his direction is just as wrong as the attempted piece of humor.

There should be no venom directed because this should all be over by now, but for those who are still offended, they can have anger directed at the Lions and Rob Parker at the same time. It is possible.

4. Bill Plaschke wants, needs, and has to have Mark Teixeira now.

Arte Moreno needs to swing away, swing big, swing with the power of more than $160 million, swing with the strength of eight years, swing for those fans who have lived with six years of failed October bunts.

Wait, wait, wait. I thought small ball was good. Remember 2002 David Eckstein, Adam Kennedy, and Erstad? Small ball, National League type hitting is muy bueno, remember this? Guess not.

As the Southland's two most prominent baseball players have been peddled from town to town this winter in boorish (or is that Boras?) fashion

Ba-da-(sound of self inflicted gunshot to my head).

Well, the Angels will be hurting a lot worse without Teixeira.

You mean unlike last year when they lost to the Red Sox, despite having homefield advantage, with Tex?

Teixeira was the prototypical Angel in all but one aspect -- he was actually a clutch hitter in the playoffs, batting .467 against the Red Sox.

There's no such thing as clutch hitting and the Angels still lost with him hitting .467, does that tell you he is the only missing piece to this team? If he is not, then might want to find that other piece while you are inking Tex to a $200 million deal or it will be wasted money. Maybe considering Vlad also hit .467 the Angels should look even harder and wonder why it is their two best players had great series and they STILL lost. I don't know the reason but clearly re-signing Tex will not fix it.

If the Dodgers do not sign Ramirez, they can find another outfielder who will work in their system, someone like Bobby Abreu.

Good move. The Angels need another high priced outfielder who underachieves. Bill Plaschke for Bucks GM!

With Teixeira back, with Maicer Izturis healthy, with Howie Kendrick older, with Gary Matthews Jr. making the right adjustments, the Angels are a legitimate World Series contender again.

You mean the exact same team that lost this year?

What the fuck kind of "right adjustments" is Matthews going to make? Learn to actually hit a baseball consistently, decrease his contract to his actual value, or some other mysterious adjustment he has failed to make over his career as a backup outfielder?

Think about it. Teixeira spends two months in this atmosphere, thrives without controversy, wins for the first real time in his career, is given a fair market offer of more money than generations of Teixeiras can spend . . . and he still chooses to leave?

Um yes. If you gave me the choice of hitting in a lineup surrounded by a 33 year old with a bad back, two outfielders who strike out all the time, a bunch of little runts in the infield who bunt really well and play good defense, and a pitching staff that has no closer or I could hit in a lineup with the MVP of the American League, David Ortiz, and a pitching staff that goes 6 starters deep with a solid bullpen, not to mention a short right field fence...the decision is not that hard.

Throw in the fact the Red Sox are clearly committed to winning 100 World Series in a row...and there is no reason Tex would not sign with them.

Sign Teixeira, and replace it with a homer.

Actually, re-sign Teixeira and they lost with him last year.

5. Woody Paige hates the Broncos this week.

Jay Cutler said, "Next question." He's the one who threw the interception. "We didn't get it done," Brandon Marshall grumbled. He's the one who caught the ball and fumbled.

Marshall grumbled? No way, remember he has matured!

The playoff clinch became a wretched grinch of a game.

Fa-la-la-la . . . aaaahhhh, baaaahhhh!

If Woody Paige were my uncle and I had to endure shit like this every Christmas, I would turn him into Child Protective Services claiming he molested me. Sure it would ruin his life but every joke like this would make me dumber and that serves a greater insult to the community than placing a man with bad jokes in jail on a fake molestation charge.

However, when the Broncos were reduced to kicking a field goal, visions of sugar plums danced in the Bills' minds.

This is supposed to be a serious article and it is hard to take anything Woody says seriously when he makes third grade jokes like this. This is not journalism.

When Mike Shanahan asked Matt Prater to attempt a 54-yard field goal with two minutes to go before halftime, he might as well have asked a chimney sweep.

A Mary Poppins reference? If not, why would Santa need a chimney sweep and why am I dissecting this idiocy?

The Broncos were the real grinches on Sunday. As Dr. Seuss would suggest, they stole Christmas from themselves.

As Dr. Seuss would also suggest, if I were Horton, I would hear a dumbass.

6. Joe Posnanski asks if it is fair to judge old players on new criteria for the Hall of Fame.

So the question here is: Is it fair to use forced fumbles to judge a Hall of Fame case when the statistic is so new? My feeling is absolutely clear on that: OF COURSE it's fair. It's more than fair.

I agree 100%.

People start freaking out when Jim Rice and Jack Morris are not let into the Hall of Fame and I don't think they should make it for various reasons, but mostly because I don't think they were good enough to be considered among the best at their positions.

I like Joe Posnanski and he wrote a great article in SI about the Winter Meetings in baseball this week. Has nothing to do with what I am talking about, but I thought I would mention it.

That's how it works as we make discoveries. We find new ways to look at the game. Some will look better in retrospect. And some players will not look as good. Some players will stand up to our memories and some will surpass our memories and some, like movies we may have liked 20 years ago, will not stand up at all. That's not being unfair. That's perspective.

Exactly. One of the reasons I think many old time baseball guys are afraid of the new statistics is they believe it is some way to be used to diminish past accomplishments and that is not true. It is just discovering a different way to look at statistics and maybe give people a chance to see a player's real worth to a team and compare it to other players of different eras and today.

Still some people are afraid of the stats and want to remember these players as greats in their head and just count on their memory as a reason to vote them in the Hall of Fame. That is absurd but still people like, of course, Joe Morgan want to downplay new statistical methods because it scares them. Insanity.

7. I can't even get that far into TMQ with Easterbrook without getting a headache.

It's Armageddon for the NFL's division-based postseason format. For an 8-8 NFL team to reach the postseason while an 11-5 team does not would be like if, in Major League Baseball, an 81-81 team made the playoffs while a 111-51 team did not.

I am glad TMQ understand the similarity in those situations but I also don't want to disappoint Gregg and tell him this could very well happen in Major League Baseball. Nothing is stopping a 81-81 team from making the playoffs in the National League but a 111-51 team could not in the American League. In fact the Dodgers were not that far above .500 this year, so if there happen to be four powerhouse teams in the AL in two divisions, I imagine this could happen.

It's bad enough that Arizona, which has lost four of its past five games, could finish 8-8 and host a playoff game against a team that finished 11-5.

Of course, this is incredibly shitty but it is also the rules of the NFL playoffs system. Sometimes it works out, other times it does not. This makes even less sense if you think the Cardinals could very well play an 11-5 team (Panthers) they actually have already lost to this year, but because of the division set up the Cardinals get a home game the Panthers actually deserve based on their record. It is the rules though. We have bigger fish to fry though Gregg, our economy is in the shitter right now. Let's direct all of our anger there.

8. Ok, one more TMQ.

Worst Crowd Reaction: With Carolina leading 21-13 late in the second quarter, the Giants gave up a sack and, facing third-and-16 in their own territory, threw a flare to Derrick Ward, who lost yardage. The G-Persons home fans booed lustily. Sure, you just won the Super Bowl, you're 11-3 and on the cusp of home-field advantage throughout the playoffs, but what have you done for us lately! Ward ended the night gaining 210 yards from scrimmage, so giving him the ball was not such a bad idea, even if it didn't work on that down.

See, here is the thing shitbag. The Giants fans are like many other humans in that they can't tell the fucking future, so at that point they did not know Ward was going to run for 210 yards later in the game. The fans just saw a conservative play call that was, for once, sniffed out by the defense. It's not "what have you done for us lately" it is, "we have no fucking idea how this game is going to turn out and we are losing and did not like the play call."

You little fuckhead you can't take immedate reactions to play calls and then criticize them based on future information that you only have acquired from hindsight. That's like insulting our grandparents and great grandparents for fucking up the environment 100 years ago.

I would say go write for a different company but ESPN is perfect for your dumbassery.

9. I think we are looking at a Giants-Steelers Super Bowl at this point. I think the Steelers learn from their mistakes the first time around against the Titans and are able to beat them at home this time. I also think the Giants will end up hosting the Falcons at home and ending up in the Super Bowl again. This is not my official prediction, but just a gut feeling I have gotten from actually watching these four teams play. I may be completely wrong because both teams have pretty obvious weaknesses that I can see but they also have defenses that are not going to give up a lot of points and can create turnovers.

10. Why are Ben Sheets and Randy Johnson not getting more interest on the free agent market?

I just don't see how A.J. Burnett has teams willing to give him $16 million per year but Ben Sheets doesn't get offers from any teams that are even worth half of that. Maybe he has and I have not heard anything about it, which is possible, or maybe Sheets is injured and wants to rehab a little before he starts fielding offers, that is also possible. Either way, it doesn't make sense that some team has not put an offer to Sheets out there in some capacity. I am sure he wants some sort of guaranteed contract instead of a contract that is based on how many starts he makes but if you are going to give Burnett $16 million wouldn't Sheets be worth half of that amount for five years? Maybe everyone thinks he is injured too often, I don't really understand completely.

I also realize Randy Johnson is bordering on 90 years old but he had a good season last year considering his age and I think he would be worth a shot for a team looking for a back of the rotation starter. He may want too much, which is highly possible, but I know for a 5th starter there are a lot worse options out there. I guess maybe a team does not want to give a 40+ year old starter a spot in the rotation a younger guy might use. What do I know though?


Fred Trigger said...

"I could hit in a lineup with the MVP of the American League, David Ortiz, and a pitching staff that goes 6 starters deep with a solid bullpen, not to mention a short right field fence...the decision is not that hard."

ummm....I think your confusing Fenway Park with Yankee Stadium. I mean, I know what your saying, but, unless you have pinpoint accuracy, and can curve the ball around pesky's pole at will, fenway park has one of the deeper right fields (380, I think, I didnt look it up). Unless you hit David Ortiz moonshots, fenway can be brutal on lefthanded power hitters such as, JD Drew, or Coco Crisp (I know hes a switch hitter, but the majority of his AB's are from the left side). Or did you mean short, as in height wise, because, yeah, that fence is a little taller than Dustin Pedroia. ZING! Ya burnt, you Eckstein wannabe!

Bengoodfella said...

Yeah, I am an idiot, I did actually confuse it with Yankee Stadium. My fault on that one. I will end it with this then...(even though the point is moot now)

"that goes 6 starters deep with a solid bullpen, not to mention a fan base that knows the dimensions of its own stadiums much better than normal idiot bloggers do...the decision is not that hard...unless the Yankees throw a bunch of money at you."

I think that fixes it.

Fred Trigger said...

Fair enough. I mean, you werent wrong (its only 302 down the line. Yes, afterwards, I did look up the dimesions), but to take advantedge of that, you need to have pinpoint accuracy. Its cool, man. I'll keep reading. I just saw it and was like.....nooooo, that is not right. No harm done. BTW, I thought the BA-DA-(self inflicted gunshot wound to the head) was pretty fucking funny.

Fred Trigger said...


you should include:Fanbase that has been following the team for more than 5 years.

Bengoodfella said...

That is very true about the fan base. I am glad you will keep reading, that makes me feel better people can get past my mistakes. The problem lies in that I do most of my blogging while I am actually at work, which means I get interrupted and my train of thought comes and goes. So there is my excuse for my inaccuracies, most of the time I write something and mean to fact check it later and just never do.

Anything that I am not sure about I try to look up but then I forget sometimes. I am glad there are those that point out my inaccuracies to me. I really thought Pesky's Pole was like 280 feet from home plate but I think that is Yankee Stadium (the old one).

I guess I can stop talking about Tex now that he signed with the Yankees. By the way, I did some math at work and when Sabathia is pitching the Yankees infield, pitcher and catcher are making more than all but like 3 teams in the major leagues entire payroll. The Yankees have gone back to buying players, no matter what anyone says.