July 30, 2008

Digging In the Batters Box

My newest web obsession is a channel on YouTube called Batting Stance Guy. This fellow does some uncanny impressions of hundreds of modern baseball players' batting stances. I have tried this before with friends. It's not easy.

Seemingly ambidextrous, Batting Stance Guy often impersonates an entire team in succession with no edits, jumping easily from lefty to righty as his friends shout out the names.

But Batting Stance Guy doesn't just do Batting Stances. He masters the body language of the post-swing follow-through, the toss of the bat, facial expressions and other idiosyncrasies.

His impressions are solid, inventive and hilarious. He's a batting stance savant.

July 26, 2008

Love Story in the Bronx.

For a number of years now, I have been a subscriber to the MLB baseball package. For a fee, I see games broadcast from every team's city through the inept Time Warner Cable.

I get to see some great play-by-play and color tandems, and some that put me to sleep. Of particular interest are the Tampa Bay Rays who have TWO teams of mediocre announcers that switch duties mid-game.

Thankfully, the Yankees and Red Sox are the only teams that didn't sell out to Fox Sports, who broadcast the remaining teams' games in the league.

The Yankees and Red Sox established their own lucrative cable-subscription networks apart from FOX. And in a world where there are only a handful of media entities controlling what we see and hear, it's nice to have YES' individual voice.

That said, many of YES Network's commercial and promotional spots often feel like a Leni Reifenstahl propaganda flick. Self-congratulatory and patriotic, the constant stream of spots are icky and hard to take. So, today I've taken a stab at YES...

July 22, 2008

Cardboard Gods is Heavenly!

Last night I was feverishly searching google images for a photo of Oscar Gamble.

Oscar plays a brief role in an upcoming 'Sports Short' I'm making. One of my searches led me to an incredible website called Cardboard Gods.

The blog uses baseball cards, whose imagery are indelibly burned in the minds of many baseball fanatics, as a means to discuss players and the game. 

His post on Reggie Jackson's 1975 Topps card was spectacular, like listening to my art history professors at Boston University do forensics on a painting.

He's very funny and very observant. I encourage you to check out his site: Cardboard Gods.

July 20, 2008

Halo Again

If you were a GM, which charismatic, power-hitting, Dominican outfielder would you rather have anchoring your lineup - the Red Sox Manny Ramirez or the Angels' Vladimir Guererro?

Manny puts up solid numbers on a more consistent basis, but Vladi is just as dangerous a bat, and has a lethal gun for an arm.

I watched Josh Beckett go up against Joe Saunders at Angels Stadium saturday, and asked the fans for their opinion before and after the game. Looks like Angel fans are honest after a beer or two.

July 14, 2008

That's Heavy!

Last week, the Milwaukee Brewers traded their top prospect, Matt LaPorta, to the Cleveland Indians. In exchange, the Brew Crew received ace starter CC Sabathia, who tips the scales somewhere around 300 pounds.

Joining portly Prince Fielder, listed at 270, the Brewers are now baseball's official weight-watchers. With Seth McLung and Eric Gagne each weighing in around 250, you can rest assured the Brewers clubhouse cold-cut spread looks more like a convention buffet.

Just don't get in an old elevator with CC and Prince. And there is no truth to the rumor that these guys will participate in Milwaukee's famed (stuffed) sausage race. Although the sight of Fielder dressed as a kielbasa would be amusing.

One suggestion to management: I think the team bus would get improved gas mileage if they dumped 235-pound backup catcher Mike Rivera in exchange for Jenny Craig.

July 11, 2008

Red Sox Nation Gets Animated!

Boston's cramped Fenway Park in Kenmore Square has history and fans like no other team. From The Babe until Billy Buckner, the team suffered.

But since Pedro Martinez' arrival, the Sox have been on a roll, and regularly feature an incredible cast of personalities and talent.

This year is no different, so its time for a musical homage to baseball's best and most charismatic team - the Boston Red Sox. A totally animated rap video about the Old Towne Team.

One line that never made it: "Meryl Streep dvd's - the choice is Sophie's...We've got two shiny world series trophies"

July 6, 2008

LaRussa needs to listen to some John Phillip Sousa

I read today that St. Louis Cardinals manager Tony LaRussa resents former center-fielder Jim Edmonds now that Edmonds is a Cub and has put his Cardinals days behind him.

What? LaRussa is out of line. And waaay over-rated. Cito Gaston has twice as many rings as LaRussa in half the time yet no-one is anointing Gaston the official genius of baseball.

The article explained that the falling out was not as severe as the one LaRussa had with former tough-as-nails third baseman Scott Rolen.

Poor Tony, so much drama in the clubhouse. Come to think of it, didn't LaRussa have a falling out with Stan Musial, Red Schoendienst, Budweiser and the Cards' batboy?

I've seen Tony regularly don a lucky ballet t-shirt under that classic jersey. Maybe its time for Tony to lace up the slippers and cool down. Just not with an ice cold one, Tony. In the car. Asleep. Please.

July 4, 2008

Lenny & Squiggy, Madge & Stray-Rod

Major League Baseball has to be very flustered right now. They predicated their All Star TV campaign on Alex Rodriguez, who is now making headlines for all the wrong reasons.

MLB can't get anything right. What's next? Milton Bradley surrounded by a sea of kindergardeners, extolling the virtues of teamwork?

Meanwhile, Madge has just released "You Must Be My Lucky All-Star", and ever the competitive recording artist, Kravitz responded by dropping a new mash-up: "Latin-American Woman"

July 1, 2008

Madonna & A Rod and more...

Well, it didn't take the material girl long to hook up with the material guy.

The papers were buzzing - Madge was seen donning a Yankees lid! So, what's next? Rodriguez wears cone-shaped bra over the pinstripes?

Is the Kabala next for the Yankee slugger? I think Rodriguez would look nifty in a smart yamulke with the #13 embroidered on the side.

The future of this relationship? Like a Prayer, as Maddy once said...

Elton Brand and Corey Magette opted out of the last year of their contract with the Clippers - big surprise there... Yankees so desperate for pitching they bring notorious malcontent Sidney Ponson aboard... new, fully animated sports rap video coming next week! pedro