Yakkin' About Baseball: Fake To Third, Fake To First

Managerial middle-schoolisms, the origins of the baseball term "poop towel," and other essentials
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He just wants your soul. Is that too much to ask? Give Danny Graves your soul. Don't be a jerk.

Image via Craigslist.

David Roth: My roommate is telling me which Indians he thinks are the best at lovemaking. He has really thought a lot about this.

David Raposa: The Cleveland Indian is the most sensual of the racist sports mascots.

David Roth: Here he is describing Chris Perez groupie luv: "I guess it probably hits the spot for the women who, like, want to do it with Chris Perez. But he's not blowing minds the way Lou Marson would." I don't want to give away any more, because this is going to be a six-part feature for The Classical as soon as I can figure out how to get some SFW original art for it.

David Raposa: "[B]lowing minds the way Lou Marson does" is not a phrase that will take hold in the cultural lexicon. Anyway, clearly the answer is Carlos Santana, because he's so smoo…I can't do it. I'm sorry, I can't.

David Roth: It's okay. It's better this way.

David Raposa: The Mets announcers are discussing the Joe Maddon/Davey Johnson kerfuffle. A grown man called another grown man a "weird wuss." Welcome to the 21st century.

David Roth: I assumed that was a joke. Mostly because I could not imagine an alternative.

David Raposa: It is not a joke. "davey johnson weird wuss" returns legitimate Google results. I expect Rays hitting coach Dave Martinez will now tell the press corps that Nats bullpen coach Jim Lett is a pants pooper.

David Roth: "Buck [Showalter] has been in the game a long time, I respect him as a baseball thinker, but the guy's a fartbucket and everyone knows it. Ask anyone who understands the game, that was a pee-pants move." – Davey Johnson after Showalter double-switched in an interleague series.

David Roth: So in what context did he say that? Because it's an awesome thing to imagine an adult saying.

David Raposa: In short: Johnson asked that Rays RP Joel Peralta's glove be examined, pine tar was found, Peralta was removed from the game. Maddon, post-game, calls the move by Johnson "cowardly." And then DJ goes HAM pre-game today. M standing for "middle-schooler," in this case. Mutually assured titty-twisters will invariably follow.

David Roth: Graffiti in various MLB visiting clubhouses. "Maddon's Mom + Sal Fasano."

David Raposa: Stealth hot foots at various public functions.

David Roth: So, from reading the comments themselves, it appears Johnson is calling Maddon a fancy pants. Or maybe sort of a gaylord? None of this computes terribly well.

David Raposa: “I looked [Maddon] up on the Internet and found out he has a Tweeter, so he can get to more people than me.” If a fifty-year-old can get sonned, I think it just happened.

David Roth: I also like Davey Johnson's defensiveness about his own bachelor's degree. "Joe Maddon isn't the only manager in baseball who has read Theodore Dreiser, okay?" I kind of like Maddon, but having a Tweeter does sort of make him a fat target.

David Raposa: I would offer a "woofer" joke in response, but those are for the dogs.

David Roth: Bye.

David Raposa: The Aristocrats! Now where's that gosh darn hara kiri sword?

David Roth: I am now feeling all kinds of weird possessiveness/protectiveness with regards to R.A. Dickey, who is remaining a thing. It's like if you were going to a favorite band's show for years, and then they got successful. Except in this case that band was like two guys playing harpsichords in Robert Smith makeup and a narcoleptic stand-up-drummer/vocalist. And instead of getting successful, the band was elected Secretary General of the United Nations. As much sense as that.

David Raposa: Best New Nobel Peace Prize Winner. "He was so much better before he tried to negotiate a lasting peace between Israel and Palestine." Followed by a divisive 5.9.

David Roth: The guy is a delight, though. I am by and large delighted that people are delighted by him. I want more knuckleballers with colorful names.

David Raposa: Poindexter Blarthen.

David Roth: "Smokey" Stu Lambstock.

David Raposa: Mordecai L. Knobstump.

David Roth: But really they should just all be named Charlie.

David Raposa: Not to ruin the mood, but in the interest of full disclosure, I'm treating this absurd hot streak Dickey's been on more like a "Gary Matthews Jr. wants to send his kids to college" kind of spike rather than a "Jose Bautista explains it all" paradigm shift.

David Roth: It's so hard to say, though. Knuckleballers don't make sense, so there isn't a template. He could be slightly less good than this for another 15 years. Charlie Hough looked like Ross Perot when he retired.

David Raposa: JONAH LEHRER ALERT!

David Roth: I retract that statement and regret the error and will return my speaking fees. Hough looked like Richard Farnsworth when he retired. And he only retired because he realized he was eligible for Medicare and didn't need the paycheck anymore.

David Raposa: Some dudes are just born spice-rubbed and hickory smoked.

David Roth: Hough was on a rookie card with a dead guy and Rockabilly Luke Perry.

David Raposa: Charlie Hough looks like Mets-era Gil Hodges in that pic.

David Roth: And he was like 24.

David Raposa: Progeria is a scourge. Also, Chesterfield cigarettes and unicycles.

David Roth: Love his BR page. The only one with a Page Two.

David Raposa: Leading the league in hits allowed, and still averaging less than a hit per inning = mad skills.

David Roth: Perhaps the most prolific "batters faced" stat-compiler ever.

David Raposa: Staying on the old dude front, let us now pour out some Metamucil for Vlad Guerrero and Manny Ramirez. Unless they catch on with other teams.

David Roth: It is a shame about Manny and Vlad. Well, about Vlad. I will always enjoy watching him hit. Manny, at this point, is just weird.

David Raposa: You're still holding the "stuffed towels in toilet"/"assaulted old man" stuff against him?

David Roth: I could never be mad at someone who stuffs towels in a toilet to prove a point. He was doing it to protest the treatment of indigenous peoples by petroleum companies in Brazil, right?

David Raposa: Undoubtedly. These were poop towels, though. They had intimate relations with his unclean hinder. Allegedly. Ipso facto. Habeus corpus. And so on.

David Roth: Now, I'm admittedly not that big a baseball fan. Is "poop towel" a euphemism for something? Does that mean "walking the pitcher with the bases loaded?" Because I saw Miguel Batista poop-towel once, then.

David Raposa: It's actually the official name of the fake-to-third/fake-to-first move. Odd that "poop towel" is official, but that's baseball for you.

David Roth: Get that sponsorship skrilla. Joe Buck mumbling something about "That Josh Beckett poop towel is brought to you by Pepsi Max, real Pepsi flavor, which I suppose is a good thing I guess, with a minimum of naturally occurring ingredients."

David Raposa: Regarding Vlad, I guess it's appropriate for a guy whose strike zone was the size of a stretch Hummer to expect to be back in The Show after eight lackluster days down on the farm.

David Roth: I was surprised he asked for the release. I wish there was work for him somewhere, though. He'd be the most amazing pinch-hitter. He'd see 35 pitches in 33 at-bats. I also remain surprised that he somehow can't play the outfield at all. Lucas Duda, bless his lumpy heart, plays right field like he has a buttered skateboard strapped to each foot.

David Raposa: In Vlad's case, though, the butter's turned and the wheels have come off. Years of toil on Montreal's turf turned those majestic stems of his into pipe-cleaners pulled from a third grader's Social Studies diorama.

David Roth: This seems to be a bad year for end-of-the-line hitters chasing round-number career landmarks.

David Raposa: CONFIRMED: Johnny Damon will have plenty of time to return Jon Heyman's texts next year.

David Roth: Definitely so. And Hideki Matsui is, at this point, just a version of Russell Branyan that is comfortable eating sea urchin. By the way, did you know that the Yankees have Jack Cust and Russa Russ batting back to back on their AAA team?

David Raposa: Co-opting TTO mojo for their nefarious purposes truly makes the Yankees the most evil of the empires.

David Raposa: Is Hideki actually pursuing a milestone? I just thought he needed to get out of the house.

David Roth: Right, I think that's it. He is not chasing anything. Hideki Matsui is already there.

David Raposa: I'm surprised there wasn't some awful movie starring Nick Swardson about an American player that undergoes plastic surgery and pretends to be a Japanese player for the $$$.

David Roth: Oh boy. Happy Madison on line one.

David Raposa: From the guys that brought you Slow Brain Death and Leukemia Of The Soul—Nick Swardson, the lead singer of Buckcherry, a handful of Kardashians, and Bruce Dern as Bott Scoreass in EGG YOU FUNGO, coming much too soon.

David Roth: Hilarious David Spade cameo. He's wearing a Bluetooth and negging a Playmate on it while ostensibly playing his scene. I loved the relievers that came over for a few years, chain-smoked in the bullpen and made a few million, and then went home to play golf.

David Roth: Shingo Takatsu was mostly about whiskey (neat) and having longish hair for a 39-year-old. Look at this fucking boss.

David Raposa: Finally, a baseball equivalent of that "physiologically unpossible Catwoman as fanboy meatbag" illustration.

David Roth: This is off topic, but this image really reminds me of how scary I found the end of The Blair Witch Project.

David Raposa: The fact that it's a Billy Koch bobblehead increases the terror quotient tenfold. Though I think Koch's facial hair might have the upper hand in that frightfest.

David Roth: I want to make bobbleheads our official art. But it's very disturbing to see what comes up on some of these image searches.

David Raposa: What were you searching for? "Human sacrifice blown saves"?

David Roth: "Handheld nausea bobblehead closer"

David Raposa: “Suddenly, Candyman and Beetlejuice found themselves saddled with the strangest boners.”

David Roth: Also a Larry Bowa bobble head is headed to your house. I didn't order it, it's just coming to curse at you and maybe kill you. Probably kill you.

David Raposa: Nice to see they're not sparing any expense with the Child's Play reboot.

David Raposa: "My name is Larry. Wanna drink some f*cking Bushmill's, *sshole?" Smash cut to Betty White screaming, ineffectually shaking the doll as it pours whiskey all over her face.

David Raposa: Maybe we should talk about the Clemens trial? Granted, I know so little about what's actually happened in this trial, I feel like I should be a member of the jury. I could use the sleep.

David Roth: I don't care about it, really. I did enjoy seeing headlines like "Charlie O'Brien Testifies."

David Raposa: Oh that COB perm.

David Roth: He just brought a teacher of my third grade teacher to Supercuts throughout his career and was like "THIS, I WANT TO LOOK LIKE THIS."

David Raposa: It would not surprise me to learn that Charlie O'Brien used Jheri Curl.

David Roth: He was under oath, so it would've been a good time to ask. "At any point did you use any hair-enhancing substances?" "Yes. Jason Grimsley sold them to me."

David Raposa: And then he could get indicted for lying about using a generic substitute. AMERICA!

David Roth: I actually actively avoided the Clemens thing. Just no good guys at all, the whole thing bummed me out in a dozen different ways. But I suppose I'm glad he got off, if only because expensive perjury cases against steakfaced athletes seems as bad an expenditure of public funds as we've got, this side of most agriculture subsidies.

David Raposa: Maybe, instead of paying farmers not to plant crops, the government should pay courts not to litigate? Or maybe subsidize sports journalists so they don't feel the need to mount a soapbox and sound off every time an athlete might or might not have used PEDs?

David Roth: I feel like that is, as we speak, passing from the earth. I am grateful that there are still people who want to write gamers and be beat reporters. They do things I don't really want to do, and generally do them well and I appreciate their work like crazy. But no one—not them, not me, no one I can imagine—wants to grow up to be Murray Chass. Shuffling around some assisted living garret in a mustard-stained bathrobe, speculating darkly about various power hitters' insufficiently explained backne. That is no way to go out. It's like a Beckett play, but with a glowering, muffin-crumbs-in-the-beard Philip Roth character in the lead role.

David Raposa: The fact that Chass seems to believe he's fighting the good fight on the blemish front makes it all the sadder. He should really focus his efforts on making Productive Outs a Triple Crown statistic.

David Roth: Steroids are a bad look, I'm fine testing for them. And of course I feel for Freddy Galvis, who may yet become the Thinking Man's Wilson Valdez.

David Raposa: Do men think of Wilson Valdez? What happens to a Wilson Valdez deferred? Does he dry up like a raisin that accidentally fell into a bowl of Ryan Howard's Cheetos/pork rind/pizza-flavored Combos trail mix?

David Roth: But the "Oh No Steroids" columnist thing I sense is more or less done.

David Raposa: Here's hoping. That said, I fear those assisted-living complexes, in 40 years, will be filled with people shouting about Top 15 Hot Baseball Wives listicles while their ass gets aired out.

David Roth: Oh, I'm sure of it. I have put it in my living will that if I'm ever somehow destined for Bleacher Report Estates, I want to be executed. Not necessarily swiftly or painlessly, either.

David Raposa: You'll need the clicks, after all.

David Roth: Just decisively, before I get to the solarium full of guys being like "NUMBER 14 BASEBALL MILF IS ANNA BENSON. HUSBAND KRIS COULDN'T STAY HEALTHY I WONDER WHY!!?!!! PROBABLY SEX."

David Raposa: Here's hoping your "Rosebud" isn't "Kate Upton nipple slips."


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