Stupid is as Stupid Does, Mrs. Blue

Happy MLK Day!

Big things happening in San Diego… It’s a brotherly reunion not seen since Marcus and Brian Giles were patrolling Petco Park. Kevin Kouzmanoff and Eric Sogard were traded to the A’s for Scott Hairston and Aaron Cunningham, then the Padres signed Scott’s brother, Jerry. Believe it or not, these look like important moves for the Padres. Scott Hairston is a really good fit for Petco Park and can be a center fielder (who hits right-handed), Cunningham was good enough to be Oakland’s No. 4 prospect entering 2009 according to Baseball America, and Kouzmanoff leaving means third base opens up for Chase Headley, which means Fort Wayne alum Kyle Blanks might be able to take the job in left field and run with it. Then in Jerry Hairston, Jr., you have a guy who can play every position except first base and catcher, which is big for depth and experience (and it comes relatively inexpensively).

Of course, Scott Hairston has already been with the Padres. When I heard about how good his home stats were, I couldn’t help but remember back to the Winter Meetings, when I talked to Chris Long. His official title is Senior Quantitative Analyst for the Padres, meaning he’s the stat guy. So if Chris had anything to do with this trade and Scott Hairston is killing it in San Diego in 2010, remember the name… Chris Long. Stat master.

One thing I couldn’t help but think about is the inclusion of Eric Sogard. He is a second baseman who played at Double-A last year, so his departure could mean everybody behind him in the minor leagues gets bumped up a level in 2010. Or maybe the Padres go sign a minor-league free agent. I’d love to see Vince Belnome back in Fort Wayne in 2010 for selfish reasons (like his All-Star season in Eugene and ridiculous run here at the end of 2009), but this could mean he’s going elsewhere.

Now to more pressing matters, like the return of the TV show “24.” If you’ve never seen it before, it’s like the television version of [insert name of addictive substance here]. In fact, at our house we turned on the DVR and waited an extra 30 minutes. Then when we started watching, we could fast-forward through commercials and still watch the end right around the same time as the rest of the world. And in no way is that depressing.

If you have watched “24,” you know that, at one point during the show, Dennis Haysbert was the President of the United States. As in, the former Pedro Cerrano as the leader of the free world. That’s a stretch, but “24” isn’t a show you watch because of how realistic it is. Well, this season, Mykelti Williamson is playing the head of the “24” version of the Homeland Security Department. Yep, Benjamin Buford Blue of “Forrest Gump” fame is looking out for threats to our country. As ridiculous as that sounds, he pulls it off. I’m already looking forward to next season, when hopefully Val Kilmer is piloting Air Force One.

Of course, this weekend was also a football weekend. The one game that was any good was the Jets-Chargers game and for more reasons than because it was the only one that wasn’t over at halftime.

First of all, Nate Kaeding was jinxed from the start because CBS brought up some graphic about how he’d never missed a field goal in his entire life, including Pop Warner football. He then proceeded to miss three field goals. With all the shots of a “this is the worst day of my whole life” Kaeding standing on the sideline, I couldn’t help but notice that his helmet is freakishly larger than the rest of his body. Like, Kazoo from “The Flintstones” gigantic. I have a pretty gigantic melon myself and we’ve discussed Tony DesPlainesbulbous cranium several times, but Kaeding puts virtually everyone to shame.

Secondly, I think that despite all the things the Chargers’ players did poorly on Sunday, Norv Turner has officially cemented the “worst coach of a good team of all-time” award. You’re down three points. You’re kicking off with a timeout and the two-minute warning on your side. You know the Jets are going to run the ball. Call me crazy, but I would’ve kicked the ball deep, trusted my defense to make three tackles, get the ball back with a relatively short field and around 1:10 to go, and let my offense try to move the ball about 30 yards for a field goal. Unless, of course, you want to completely embarrass Kazoo by onside kicking with your punter, with the best-case scenario being you recover the onside, the offense drives for a touchdown and your Dark Helmet wannabe kicker only has to hit an extra point. The worst-case scenario is… what actually happened. The Jets recovered the onside kick with a short field, got a first down to end the game as Norv mismanaged the clock, and Nate Kaeding was later seen boarding a plane to Siberia piloted by Scott Norwood and Ray Finkle. I may have made that last part up.

One thing I noticed that should not be forgotten is this: When the Chargers onside kicked, the Jets brought out their onside kick recovery team. Also known as “the hands team.”  Well I’ll be darned if the one Jets player who I know to be a one-man “anti-hands team” is out there. Ladies and gentlemen, Braylon Edwards! I was so flabbergasted by this, I threw a shoe.

So now I’m confronted by the prospect of a Jets-Colts AFC Championship game. Obviously I can’t cheer for a team Braylon Edwards plays for. But I’ve already discussed my lukewarm feelings toward the Colts. And, aside from this gem from Kenny Mayne, the adopted Wisconsin Buzzcut in me can’t cheer for the Vikings. I guess it’s Saints or bust.

This is going extremely long, so I’ll cut out from here.

Take care, everybody!

DW

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