It's pretty tough to keep track of what's going on in the world when you're spending an entire weekend at a cabin without a computer and limited/no cell phone reception. Of course, the trade off is that you get to spend the whole time alternating between drinking, fishing, and drinking and fishing. Pretty sweet deal. Plus I caught a monster Swamp Muskie. A monster.
WHO WAS AWESOME
1. Roy Halladay. I, of course, missed this until I got back into town, but it seems Doc twirled himself a no-hitter this weekend. That gets him to 7-3, with an ERA of 1.99 and a WHIP of 0.99, all while sporting a nice 70-12 strikeout-to-walk ratio. So he's pretty much dominating the national league, just like I said, and has a shot to actually win 25 games, which I also said. That's the reason I wanted to draft him early in our fantasy draft. To which, Snake said, "I wouldn't draft Halladay if he was still there in the fifth round."
2. Jon Lester. Remember watching this guy carve up the Twins a couple weeks ago? Well that wasn't a fluke, and he continued mowing down hitters this week, going 2-0 and racking up 14 strikeouts in 13 innings while giving up just five hits and one run. He's now #2 in the league in strikeouts and ranks in the top ten in both ERA and WHIP. For years when I read about top prospects there was talk about the two Red Sock arms: Lester and Clay Buchholz. And now they've both actually developed and become top pitchers in the American League. Since the Red Sox have more money than Scrooge McDuck they'll never have to worry about losing these guys in free agency and can just ride them for the next decade. Great. I really hate Boston.
3. Buster Posey. Besides having a sweet name, Posey is one of the top hitting prospects in all of baseball, but the Giants have kept him down at AAA because they are trying to figure out a position for him. He's a catcher officially, but I think he's a catcher more like how Brian McCann and Brian Harper were catchers more than how Joe Mauer and the Molina's are catchers. But when the bat talks, the bat talks, and after hitting .349/.442/.552 at Fresno the Giants made the call and brought him up this weekend. He responded well. In his first game, he went 3-4 with 3 RBI, and in game two on Sunday he 3-5 with two doubles and an RBI. Sounds very Wilson Ramos-y, but I'm no anticipating that same dropoff for Posey. Oh, and remember how I said he was a bad defensive catcher? He played first base in both games.
4. Jason Kubel. He's heating up folks. Lock up your wives and daughters people, Kubel is heating up. He hit .375 this week with 2 homers and 3 doubles, and continued to walk like a madman with an OBP of .500 - by far his overall best week this season. What's crazy is even with his average languishing down in the .230s (and that's a big improvement lately), he's still OBPing at .355 and is second on the team in RBI. If he can keep up this hot streak, I think we're talking possible triple-crown winner. Yes, this year.
5. The Daytona 500. What a race! It was amazing how all those guys drove in a circle so fast. I'm kidding of course, because this stupid race is only thing that sucks about Memorial Day weekend. I'd rather remove my own eyeballs with a shrimp fork than watch racing of any kind. Not counting the Kentucky Derby.
1. Phillies. It seems a titch weird to be putting a team who had a pitcher throw a no-hitter for them into the sucked category, but that was only one of two games they won this week, going 2-4. Going 2-4 might not necessarily warrant inclusion in the bottom section on it's own, but here are their run totals for the week: 0, 0, 0, 3, 1, 0. And here is the illustrious group of pitchers who held them to four total runs for the week: R.A. Dickey, Hisanori Takahashi (2 career starts), Mike Pelphrey, Chris Volstad, Josh Johnson (he's actually good), and Anibal Sanchez - and this doesn't even include the near no-hitter Dice-K tossed at them last Saturday. I have a theory. When Rollins was out, their midset was just "hold it together until J-Roll comes back." Then he did, and there was much rejoicing. But, as you would know if you have him on your fantasy team, he got hurt again and is back on the DL, and this time they're pretty bummed. They're still going to end up winning the World Series, but they'll just do it in a less dominating fashion.
2. Kendry Morales. Remember when one of the Gramatica brothers blew out his knee after celebrating like he scored a goal in the World Cup? This is like that, except not quite as funny. In case you missed it, Morales hit a game-winning Grand Slam to beat the Mariners. For some reason, despite it being a game in late May and not in September, the entire team met him at home plate to celebrate. Morales jumped up to land on the plate, and somehow came out of it with a broken leg - a broken leg that might have ended his season. Morales leads the team in average, home runs, and RBI and led in HRs, RBI, and OPS last year, so this is a pretty significant blow. Seriously guys, I know it's exciting to win on a walk-off grand slam, but it's pretty hard to feel sympathy considering they were acting like they won Game 7 of the World Series. Karma is always watching, and Karma hates jackassery.
3. Bobby Jenks. This guy sucks so hard. He came into a non-save situation and gave up 3 hits and 3 runs while walking another 3 guys, and his ERA now stands at 6.35, and his WHIP is 2.06. Somehow he's 7 out of 8 in save opportunities, but when he comes in and it's not a save opp he can't find the plate, and when he does he just gets ripped. Plus he's a big fat idiot who sucks. He's like Charlie Kerfeld crossed with Guy Fieri, with a dash of Jesse Crain.
4. Vince Carter. Bill Simmons long-running opinion of Vince Carter as a player you can't build a team around just continues to get validated over and over again, and really, just a bang-up job against the Celtics. In the three games this week, Vinsanity managed to shoot 10-34, highlighted by an awesome 1-9 in game 4. I saw the one basket he made, and it was a very nice take to the rim, one where he got hit pretty hard and made the free throw for a 3-point play. But, just like Simmons says, if he gets hit he stops getting to the paint and settles for jumpers. And that's exactly what he did. The Magic are screwed with him on the team, but he's under contract for two more years. Even more tragic: he and Rashard Lewis (who also disappeared this postseason) will make a combined $36 million next year. Thirty. Six. Million. Dollars.
5. NBA Finals. Speaking of basketball, I'm bored by this matchup. I'll be rooting for the Celtics, because I love watching Ray Allen shoot the J and I still kind of like Kevin Garnett and I hate Kobe Bryant and basically every other Laker other than Shannon Brown, but I'm bored with it. It will actually be pretty fascinating to watch and see how Kobe deals with such a solid defensive team and if he is willing to keep getting Gasol involved or if he goes into one man show mode and how the Lakers are going to deal with Rondo/Allen/Pierce when Derek Fisher is going to be involved defensively. Maybe it's really not all that bad of a matchup. There are some good story lines and strategy decisions that need to be made here. I take it back, it should be a pretty good finals.
Lastly, I didn't really want to put him in the official awesome section, but it should be noted here for posterity that Snacks had one of the best fishing weekends I've been privileged to see. Apparently a chartreuse single-bladed spinner with a skirt guarantees you won't have to worry about going more than three casts in a row without catching something. Nicely done. Although I still caught the biggest swamp muskie (and the biggest crappie).