Tag Archive: michael martinez

The King of the Losers

April 3, 2012 Randy Neil

And the winner of this year’s NCAA March Madness Bracket is…..


MEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!! That’s right, folks. Ya boy took it down. The name of my bracket? A very simple, ‘Randy – The NBA is better.’ I wish I could describe some of my strategy, but to be quite honest, there wasn’t any. I spend the first round picking the higher seeds, then, I just started randomly promoting teams to the next round with no rhyme or reason. Before the tournament, the big buzz was that Kentucky was favored to be the champion, so that’s who I picked. And people say the NBA is predictable.

Please know there is a huge smile on my face because as I read that last paragraph, I could envision the bitter faces of NCAA fans everywhere. Sure, my argument isn’t always correct, but this time it is, and it feels good.

So, without out of the way, let me spend the rest of this post trying to win you over again.

Typically, the Sixers play on Monday nights but on this week, I was served a treat. Last night marked the first game in Citizens Bank Park for the Phillies. Damn, it feels good to say that.

The Phillies look completely different this year. Towards the end of the game, the lineup was full of players I had never seen before. I have noted most of the recent acquisitions, but one player I wasn’t aware we grabbed is Juan Pierre. I’m not sure how I feel about him yet. I didn’t much care for him in Chicago, but with this new-found emphasis on “small-ball”, Pierre could be a big play maker. That little guy Galvis looks pretty good, too. If there’s one thing the Phillies are good at, it’s replacing Utley/Rollins with some no-name shortstop or 2B that can pull his weight. Tadahito Iguchi, Michael Martinez, Pete Orr, Wilson Valdez, and now Galvis. There’s probably some I’m missing, too.

I would like to mention how sad it is that Valdez is no longer on the roster. The man pitched in the 19th inning for us last year! That’s Phillies history.

Jim Thome and Ty Wigginton are supposed to be our power hitters. Writing that makes me hope that the Phillies play small-ball more. Wigginton’s last four years look awful! Wigginton’s body looks awful. Yeesh. Isn’t Matt Stairs still playing somewhere?

Hats off to Jamie Moyer. He officially has the #2 spot in the rotation for the Colorado Rockies. Apparently he beat out some 20-something year old. The Rockies rotation is garbagio anyway. Aaron Cook cook is gone, Ubaldo is gone. Moyer is one of the only seasoned vets there!

Theheadrush had their annual fantasy baseball draft yesterday. I’m usually guilty of drafting one player that is on the DL or stricken with some sort of disease rendering him useless, and this year was no different! I didn’t put my time in for research, and thus drafted Victor Martinez. His career is probably over, so take him off the drafting block Yahoo! Come on, help me out!

This year we have a pretty light roster, and I have to admit I am a huge fan. 6 offensive spots, 4 starting pitchers, 2 relief pitchers. The draft was over in 20 minutes. That’s the way fantasy baseball should be. The deeper the lineup has to be, the more it feels like a job. By September, I almost want to be out of the playoff hunt because I’m tired of swapping pitchers in-and-out. Hopefully there will be some joy in it this time around.

Albeit I’m not a big hockey fan, but I did witness most of Sunday’s epic Flyers/Penguins hate-fest. I’m going to probably express an opinion that most Philadelphia fans won’t approve of. Yes, it was cool to see our coach climbing on top of the railing to yell at the other coach. It was cool to see Hartnell mocking the fans, and the fights, and the passion. I dig all of that. I don’t dig, however, the shove on Sidney Crosby. Don’t care who you are, don’t care what you’re doing, you don’t shove a player down from behind. Class-less. Laviolette is getting upset about the checking line coming out to rough up our players, but hey, that’s what happens when you “sucker-punch” their star player. There’s an unwritten code to fighting in hockey, and a blind shove from behind probably ranks right below a kick to the balls in my eyes.

Last week when I wrote about the Sixers, we were the 4th seed. Now, we’re the 7th. There isn’t much margin for error. The playoffs are quickly approaching and I’m not very excited about tonight’s game against the Heat in Miami. If things stay the way they are, we’ll be facing these guys in the first round of the playoffs. It would be nice to show we can win a game against Miami in the 2012 season.

New York is falling apart with injuries, so the Sixers have been given a little breathing room from being knocked out of the playoffs, but Boston has just won 5 straight. The goal of winning the Atlantic Division seems doubtful, as the Sixers have plateaued. For a season that started with so much promise…..

Just recently, Red Frog Events announced a new music festival featuring some huge headliners like The Black Keys, The Killers, Lupe Fiasco, Jack White, John Legend, The Flaming Lips, and more. That’s not that epic, EXCEPT THAT IT’S IN DELAWARE!! When, ever, has a concert of this magnitude come to Delaware? Did the promoters happen to omit the details to the performers? Are they aware it’s going to be in Delaware?

It’s awesome to see something this size put us on the map. The hope is that if all goes well, it will be an annual event. I’m getting my tickets when they go on sale April 5th.


Alrighty kids, keep your heads up and GO SIXERS!!

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Where Are The Bats??

May 18, 2011 Randy Neil

I know, I know. Stop hitting the panic button. It’s mid-May and the Phillies’ offensive slump has hit. We all knew it was coming since Spring Training. The entire off-season people were concerned with Jayson Werth’s absence hurting the line up and now they have fuel for the fire.

Last night might have been the most frustrating. After a dismal 8 innings of poor offensive production, the Phils got a break when defensive replacement Tyler Greene dropped a routine pop-fly allowing a runner on base.

Naturally, when an error occurs in baseball, it often spells doom. Martinez gets a single to drive Rollins over to 3rd, and Polanco drives deep to bring in the run. It worked out, and got us back in the game.

Then, Danny Baez gives up 3 straight singles in the 9th to load up the bases with no outs. He gets into an epic pitch battle with Matt Holiday and induces a ground ball allowing a force-out at home. 1 out, bases still loaded. Then Charlie Manuel calls in J.C. Romero to go lefty v. lefty against Lance Berkman, and if you sneezed you would have missed the walk-off single, because it happened on the first pitch. Game over. Frowny face.

There’s not much you can do there. You’d like to think that we shouldn’t have been in such a vulnerable position if we scored more runs. Danny Baez was flirting with fire in the 9th, and he now has a disgusting E.R.A. for the year. He’s allowed 6 runs in his last 4 innings pitched. Yuck.

Speaking of bad pitching… Cliff Lee’s numbers aren’t looking so hot either. No one is pressing the panic button for him because we all know he’s a stud that will figure it out, but he’s got a 4.38 ERA his last 2 starts and also gave up more walks than he ever has in his career. He’s winless in his last 6 starts. Just saying.

Oswalt looked good coming off of his DL placement, which is incredibly beneficial for my fantasy team. It was an encouraging sign that things will return to normal with him and I will reign supreme in fantasy. One inning more and I would have gotten a quality start out of him. Manuel needs to be aware of these things….

But that bats man!! We need some more bats!! Chooch is going through a 1-32 slump right now, which is horrid because we need his defense when Manuel opts to place Sardinha in and errors occur. I don’t know what it is, I just don’t like Sardinha.

So this could be one of two things. Either we’re in a panic for no reason and this 4 game losing streak is a minor stint, OR we finally are starting to see the signs of a diminished offensive lineup. I’m gonna go with minor losing stint. We were the last team in the MLB to lose 3 games in a row this year. Even the “best team in baseball” Cleveland Indians couldn’t say that.

Tonight we start a 3 game home-stand against the Colorado Rockies and this guy, Troy Tulowitzki. The king of the mullets.

Hate to say it, but I think Hamels is going to have some trouble tonight. Cole going against a young, swing-first, line-up never fairs well. Hopefully the Phillies talk some shit on Tulo’s hair and it gets him all worked up and in a mess.