Yakkin' About Baseball: Jonathan Papelbon's Monogrammed Ski-Doo

Farewell tours for the players that need them, egg-eating challenges for the relief pitchers that don't.
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David Roth: First things first: I am happy that Carlos Pena hit a home run that landed in a pot of stadium meat. That is a good baseball thing.

David Raposa: Most definitely. Renewed my faith in both baseball and long-cooked meats. On the not-so-cool side, though: Way to put Pretty Girl That Doesn't Really Want To Be On Camera right in your crosshairs, dude that found the ball and TV guy.

David Roth: #YesAllMen #YesAllMenThatOwnMitchMorelandShirseys

David Raposa: Dude is out for the year right now; that might actually be Mitch Moreland.

David Roth: There's no way of knowing, sadly. "She didn't recognize me or whatever, so I gave her this beef-covered baseball."

David Raposa: "I wrote my cell phone number on there in pickle chip grease." It is pretty great that Pena's back with the team that first doubted his abilities.

David Roth: I hope he does the whole circuit again.

David Raposa: Damn straight. Fuck Jeter; give the farewell tours to the guys that could actually use the swag.

David Roth: Like if teams started giving BJ Upton mementos and engraved flip-down sunglasses. And he was like, "I have three years and $45 million left on my deal, and my Baseball-Reference comps are Austin Kearns and Corey Patterson." And the owner presenting the sunglasses will be like, "absolutely, you surely do."

David Roth: Everyone keeps giving Papelbon monogrammed Ski-Doo's and he's like "FINALLY, I'm getting the treatment I deserve."

David Raposa: Victory laps for all the overpaid vets. Every Phillies game would be like Mardi Gras.

David Roth: It sort of already is, just in terms of white guys almost barfing on you.

David Raposa: "Ryan, I ran out of beads hours ago; please stop showing me your tits."

David Raposa: CHANGING GEARS: On a scale of wtf to WTF, please rate Marcell Ozuna's defensive performance against the Mets last weekend.

David Roth: I don't know the appropriate font or a sufficiently high enough number for the text size. 666,666 x 1069 Wingdings WTF.

David Roth: His last throw was ridiculous, Cespedes-grade nonsense. That was good enough that I was able to enjoy it and hate it at the same time. It was like being kicked in the throat by a pair of lovely, hand-sewn butter-soft loafers.

David Raposa: Just another day in the life on an obscenely talented Marlins farmhand. I love, with the largest of scare-quotes, that the dude that stole two bases and scored a key run for the Marlins in what will forever be known as The Fucking Ozuna Game is A) part of their return from that roster-dump trade with the Blue Jays, B) their most vaunted non-pitching prospect and C) currently SOL in the majors (barring an injury) because of the other three home-grown outfielders they're starting.

David Roth: I still think they're mostly bullshit, at least insofar as most of their hitters are not good.

David Raposa: True, their infield is the hottest garbage, no matter how much smoke Keith Hernandez blows up Casey McGehee's five-hole. But the aforementioned outfield is ridiculously young, and they have an equally young and ridiculous set of starting pitchers.

David Roth: Also, they are better than the Mets and the whole team is playing for around what the Mets paid Johan last year SO MAYBE I NEED TO LOOK AT MY DEFINITION OF BULLSHIT. Maybe I've been a Marlins fan all along.

David Roth: I'm going to add this to my working theory that life is more like the Rebecca De Mornay vehicle Never Talk To Strangers. My (spoiler!) violent alternate personality has probably been a Marlins fan for years. He wears a Greg Dobbs shirsey and is leasing a speedboat.

David Raposa: Look on the bright side: At least your violent alternate personality isn't having stand-up sex with Tom Cruise on a subway.

David Roth: I recently watched Daniel Murphy do a thing I've never seen anyone do before a few days ago. He declined to tag a base-stealer who would obviously have been out, for the last out of the inning, so he could throw to third to keep the player on third from breaking for home. They are barely a baseball team. They're fucking Negativland.

David Raposa: Robert Silverman said it best:

It's a shame David Wright, after years of outclassing everyone and everything associated with the Mets, FINALLY decided to play down to the level of his teammates. Do the Mets have anything movable or flippable? Besides cheap tables? Can they trade Terry Collins for a Weeble or substandard RealDoll?

David Roth: /Too many gross fleshlight jokes deleted /Three days of silent meditation and contemplation in mountaintop monastery to consider the problems in my life that would lead me to make a Terry Collins fleshlight joke

David Roth: Hey I'm back. The answer is no, not really.

David Raposa: They can probably get themselves a six-inch BMT for Bobby Abreu. Hold the bread.

David Roth: Sandy Alderson holding a press conference next to a pile of wan salami flaps with some lettuce on top of it. "We think he's ready to contribute right away, push Ruben Tejada for playing time. We're excited. We love Wan Salami Flaps' potential."

David Raposa: I'd love to know how Jeffrey Loria gets skilled talent evaluators to work for him. It can't be the salaries. And I don't want to know what kind of "perks" he offers.

David Roth: He finds people that like being berated by a mean muppet on a golf cart, and then he hires them.

David Raposa: "Hi ho, Kermit The Racist Triple Chin here."

David Roth: He tells you he's going to give you one of the many Ed Ruscha paintings he owns, but instead he sends an unpaid 19-year-old intern to fire you while you're in the bathroom. Classic bait and switch.

David Raposa: I can see that floaty winning his 3rd World Series in the next couple of years. And then blowing up the team again, riding the home run contraption like Slim Pickens in Dr. Strangelove while doing so.

David Roth: Alex Anthopoulos on the phone with Loria like "Jeffrey, of course I like to say hello."

David Raposa: Speaking of former Marlin greats: What the fuck is Tino Martinez doing getting a spot in Yankee Stadium's Monument Park?

David Roth: They've expanded it significantly at the new stadium. He's being inducted along with John Wetteland, Danny Tartabull, Jaret Wright and Clay Bellinger.

David Raposa: No Shawn Chacon, no peace. But seriously, folks, if the Yankees are equating Tino with folks like Babe Ruth and Reggie Jackson, then the Red Sox should retire Javier Vazquez's number.

David Raposa: Between that and Jeter's woeful farewell tour, the Yankees are really pissing away whatever goodwill they still had left.

David Roth: I am the opposite of sentimental about Jeter, but seeing him bumping around the middle of the first page of Available Free Agents in my fantasy baseball leagues with Cody Ross is kind of a drag.

David Raposa: No schadenfreude at all for you? I'm kinda loving it. Dude’s reaping what he sowed. Not that I can actually watch him struggle. I might wallow in misery like Ann-Margaret wallows in baked beans, but even I have my limits.

David Raposa: Still, I'd love to tell my job I'll be quitting in a year, and spend the rest of my tenure making it harder for my co-workers to get their work done.

David Roth: Eh, I'm fine with it. It was his choice to go out OPS'ing .680 and getting weird souvenirs from the White Sox.

David Raposa: Also, he's earning more this year than I'll earn in my lifetime.

David Roth: More than you and I and everyone reading this will earn in our collective lifetimes.

David Roth: Depending upon whether longtime Yakkin' superfan Vernon Wells is reading this edition. If so obviously hey what up Vern.

David Raposa: Angel investment, V-Dub. Think about it.

David Roth: Angel Berroa's venture firm, Angel Investment, started out very strong. I still believe in it.

David Raposa: Now I don’t know if I want to make an Albert Pujols joke or a Josh Hamilton joke.

David Raposa: I want to make sure that we discuss Jumbo Diaz. Todd Coffey would have our heads, otherwise. That is, have them sandwiched between two pieces of cheese-infused foccacia, topped with a garlic aioli and an entire Taco Bell quesarito infused with Baja Blast Mountain Dew. Also: it would be infused.

David Roth: Deeply infused. Every sentence written about Todd Coffey has cheddar in it. That's implied.

David Roth: And man, Jumbo Diaz is a light. I wrote a Bowman card for him way back in the day. Like 2005, when I was at Topps.

David Raposa: Really?!?

David Roth: Those cards were formatted as scouting reports and basically all there was at the time was "extremely large, scouts believe he could grow even larger." I have been here before.

David Raposa: Scouts be buyin’ into entropy.

David Roth: He looks like someone Bartolo Colon would hire as a bodyguard. Not because he's tough or mean or whatever, but because he knows of a secret 24-hour Jimmy John's in every MLB city.

David Raposa: Now I'm hungry-sad because there are no Jimmy John's in CT. Man cannot live on D’Angelo Steak Bombs alone.

David Roth: What does a 310-pound 26-year-old professional athlete do for fun in Bowie, Maryland? Besides get side-eyed at Golden Corral.

David Raposa: Win a lot of food-related dares.

David Roth: Without even knowing he's participating in them. "I'd just assumed nobody could eat 50 hard-boiled eggs, I wasn't, like, asking you to do that. But that was really impressive. Do you want $20 or something?"

David Raposa: A Werner-Herzog-Eats-His-Shoe style documentary could probably be made about Diaz's minor league years. Except it'd be as long as the entire run of Law & Order.

David Roth: Herzog listens to radio broadcast of Diaz giving up back-to-back doubles to Brandon Wood and DeWayne Wise in 2009. "No one must hear this recording."

David Raposa: Just to circle back to Rebecca DeMornay for a moment, perhaps you're secretly a Royals fan? That'd be a bandwagon to hop on right now. Somehow.

David Roth: I've made a point of not investigating it too hard. Like, I know I'll jinx it if I check to see whether Kelvin Herrera has given up a run this year. As far as I know he hasn't.

David Raposa: They are only 4.5 games back despite having an anti-power-hitting shortstop with a higher slugging percentage than their corner infielders AND their DH.

David Roth: I was sure the Tigers would have 55 wins by this point.

David Raposa: Given Verlander's non-Verlander-like performance so far, I'm surprised Mitch Albom hasn't written some sort of anti-Kate-Upton screed.

David Roth: "As sure as [golf joke] is [grousing about political correctness] this one's on Kate. (New paragraph) The breast-laid plans of mice and men... GOLF."

David Raposa: I didn't know Rick Reilly gave a shit about baseball!

David Roth: What a cautionary tale. There are so many bad ways to get old. Jeter's trip versus Ichiro and Beltran, basically, played out in other less public or popular fields of endeavor.

David Raposa: Yep—betraying your gifts, talking to empty chairs. Beltran's still got it, though. He hit a game-winning homer and (reportedly) Michael Kay referred to that as his signature Yankee moment. Because #TRADITION

David Roth: Oh man. Finally Beltran has a Hall of Fame case. He hit a game-winning homer in June for a Yankee team full of old grumps.

David Raposa: If you can hit it into the right field stands in Yankee Stadium in 2014, you can fly out in just about every other park. I think that's how the song goes.

David Raposa: All MLB teams should have the same sense of disproportionate entitlement as the Yankees.

David Roth: I remember an ad they used to run on YES for tickets that had this like fake Handel fanfare with French Horns that I always used to find amusing.

David Raposa: Oh yeah, with the John Sterling voiceover? "Witness the storied squalor and filth in person."

David Roth: I wish they'd had that music laid over footage of fans with chin-strap beards making the universally understood blowjob gesture at Edwin Encarnacion and some guy named Sal trying to punch an Orioles fan in the back. Find the lady I heard singing "Rob Deer takes it up the ass, doo-daa, doo-daa" in the bleachers when I was a kid and put her front and center. Ask her about rap music.

David Raposa: Yeah, the chasm between the Yankees and their fanbase couldn't be bridged with a stargate.

David Roth: Pom-pom-pom-pom-POM /Bleacher fans sing the "At The Gang Bang" song

David Roth: I actually remember a song that went like that from when I used to sit in the bleachers at the old Yankee Stadium when I was in high school. Tickets were like $5, it was cheaper than going to the Meadowlands Racetrack, so we went a lot. I heard like dozens of Yankee fans sing "Brady Anderson dropped the soap/at the gang bang/da-da-da-da/da-da-da-da-da-da-da-da"

David Roth: So basically it's a miracle that I can hold a job today.

David Raposa: On the other hand, puberty must've been a cinch.

David Roth: Kind of implied when you think "bookish, mid-30s Jewish male."

David Raposa: Are there any good owners out there? Maybe John Henry? Or the 20 other folks that no one ever talks about? Granted, the only owners that have any sort of national public profile are notoriously shitty.

David Roth: Yeah, that's sort of how it goes. I sense they're no better or worse than other super-rich people in their geographic region. And so are probably representative in a way. Like, in a very basic sense, Jeffrey Loria is exactly the right owner for the Marlins. Just as a weird incompetent real estate goofus from Long Island is the right owner for the Mets, or the crass heir of a bullying arriviste butthead should own the Yankees.

David Raposa: Thank you for introducing me to "arriviste!" And yeah, there's some sort of sociopathic manifest destiny with these dudes. The head-wiring that got them to where they are is also what makes them loathsome goofuses.

David Roth: I had this conversation with someone else earlier this week. It was very undergrad smoked-out dorm sesh. Like, "could Daniel Snyder or Hank Steinbrenner BE OTHERWISE?" And then we both pretended to have read Kant or whatever.

David Roth: But it does seem like, in general, being that rich makes you 1) a dickhole and 2) maybe slightly less competent in terms of managing a business like a baseball team. John Henry is obviously very rich, but he does seem to pay attention and hire good people. It's gotten his team to third place!

David Raposa: He was also portrayed by Arliss Howard in Moneyball, which is the owner equivalent of Brad Pitt playing Billy Beane.

David Roth: Is that true? That's awesome. I would love to be portrayed by Arliss Howard in any capacity.

David Raposa: Man, Arliss Howard is 59? Fucking TIME.

David Roth: And still without a Yankee Moment. This got really sad at the end.


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