Turkey Hangovers and *Of The Year* Awards

Well it’s “BLACK FRIDAY“, A.K.A the day after most of America gorged themselves on turkey and all the fixins. I hope all of you out there got to at least enjoy yourselves a little bit. I for one know how terribly awkward, annoying,  frustrating, and down right brutal big family dinners can be. And yesterday started the two month long marathon of get togethers, and holiday tradition most familys force upon themselves.

Now, I don’t get it. Why do we do this every year? Why do we force ourselves to spend time with people we hate? Or “strongly dislike” if hate is to strong of a word for you. Why are stupid traditions like these kept? It make no sense to me. I used to hate going to family reunions, turkey day dinners, and most other holiday meals. I got so tired of it, that once I was old enough, I tired to start my own tradition. I tried to get my friends  and I together and instead of getting up at 4am to put a dang bird in the oven, I suggested we grill steaks. Now, maybe it’s because the weather in Ohio in late November is so bad that grilling steaks on the grill was the worst idea since Dukakis went for a ride in a M1 Abrams Tank, or my friends simply did not dislike their immediate family as must as I disliked mine. But for whatever reasons it never caught on.

Well times have changed and with age my family as become less and less anoyning. But I still know there are many many people out there who hate going to Turkey Day dinner with family. And I just don’t get it. If you hate it so much, why go? But the first one of many holiday traditional dinners are now over, and hopefully for those of you out there who hate going to grandma’s and having to sit at the kids table for the 30th time, (I feel your pain, I really do,)I hope you wise up and skip the rest of these dinners for your own sake. And for everyone else, I hope you ate yourself into to tryptophan induced coma.

And if you are one of the millions of batshit crazy people who are actually at a mall today. WTF? Why set out all night long freezing you jingle bells off when you could sleep in, and go shopping in your bath robe? The internet people. We can now shop on-line for everything but a car. So why now in 2006 are we still doing this? Yet another tradition I just don’t get. And it’s not just a chick thing either guys. I saw on the news this morning that most of the shoppers were men. Come on guys! You are smarter than that! At least you should be. You know the deals are not that good! You also should know that by the time you get there, the one thing you are going to buy will be all sold out after 5 minutes. So unless you are first in line, your trip will be in vane. Don’t believe me? Well did any of you see what happened last week when everyone ran out of PS3’s? I will probably never again do my Xmas shopping in a mall. I hate the hassle. And now I don’t have to. In fact, unless I am buying jewelry, I connot forsee a reason to go to a store to do Xmas shopping ever again.

Ok, now onto the real reason this blog was started. As you might guess I am still really upset that not only was Carp shut out of the Cy Young, but Tony the Manager of the Year, and Duncan and Adam did not get ANY votes for Rookie of the Year. And now the BBWAA has done the unthinkable and voted ryan freakin howard for MVP. W T F?? Are you kidding me? When did doing nothing productive but hitting home runs, and driving in RBI’s mean you are a MVP? And that’s all howard is good for. He cannot play D. In fact, he COST’s the phillies runs because he is such a bad first baseman. He only hit for average because all his hits were either out of the park, or off the wall. Now I could quote you all kinds of numbers clearly showing to anyone with a pulse that Albert was head and shoulders above all other players in the running for the MVP this past season. But I won’t. Personally I am not a big “numbers” guy. I don’t know even know how to spell cybermatrix. But I do know baseball. And if there would have been a more deserving canadidate for MVP, I would acknowledge him. But there was not. So I will not.

I have read a lot who have said howard won because he had a better story than Albert. One guy from the windy city actually said thats why he voted for howard, he also felt that howard carried the phillies more than Albert carried the Cardinals. But it must also be pointed out that he still believes Santa Clause carries toys to millions of boys and girls every Christmas Eve. How could howard have had a better story? Unless howard played with one arm tied behind his back, hitting 58 home runs is not that special when he plays in a ballpark where the ball fly’s out of there faster than plasma TV’s will fly off the shelves of Best Buy this weekend. Driving in 149 RBI’s is not that special when you have jimmy rollins, chase utley in front of you, and pat “the bat” hitting behind you. And those are the only numbers I will quote here because it’s those numbers that won howard the award. More importantly it is those numbers that ESPN zeroed in on, and thus giving the voters all the ammo they need to screw Albert out of a much deserved MVP award yet again.

Remember back in April when it seamed like Albert was crushing every other pitch he saw out of the park? And a guy named Chris Shelton was as well? Why is that? Well, because it is what ESPN led off of every single SportsCenter with. Well, after the NFL draft, NCAA and NBA highlights. Anyone remember what happend to shelton after april? Well, he fell off the planet and was eventually banished back to AAA Toledo. Once he stopped hitting home runs, the tigers instantly started looking for his replacement. They finally got Casey, which led the way for sheltons one way trip to lovely Toledo. My whole point of this is, ESPN lost Albert the MVP. That and the laziness of the writers who let ESPN do the voting for them. Same thing that happened to Shelton happened to Albert when he got hurt. ESPN got board, and never again had Albert on their radar. They simply take for granted his greatness. Albert is unappreciated by ESPN because he is not a “sexy” story. Meaning, he does not swing for the fences at every single at bat. Eventhough Albert hit only 9 fewer home runs that howard, that was not enough for the “world wide leader in sports”. Whoops, there was another number. My bad. Albert is and has been the best complete player in the major leagues since his rookie year of 2001. And that’s who is susposed to get the MVP. He is very much the Hank Aaron of our generation. And it’s those type of players that ESPN hates. They hate showing a hitter choke up, and go to the opposite field to bring in a run. When it’s far more sexy for them to show a guy coming out of his shoes to barley squeak one over the fence. Albert has lost out to Barry Bonds, and now ryan howard for the MVP every year. And what do those players do more than Albert? That’s right. They hit the long ball. And since ESPN says hitting home runs is the only thing that counts in baseball, the majority of the lazy BBWAA writers have seemingly bought into this as well.  

This years voting by the BBWAA has driven me to curse. their complete lack of knowledge and respect for their jobs will very soon make their awards obsolute. if all they are going to do is listen to whoever ESPN says to vote for, and not vote for the player who actually deserves the award, why even have a BBWAA vote? why not stop the charade,make it official and just let ESPN make their espy’s the year end awards?

This of course does not explain why Justin Morneau won the Al MVP over Jeter. I have no idea what the BBWAA were smoking when they cast those ballots. And I don’t think I will ever want to either. Morneau was not even the MVP of his own team.It’s a toss up between Santana and Mauer. Granted Morneau from June something to the end of the season was the best hitter in the league. But Mauer and Santana were far more instrumental in the Twins winning than Morneau was. And Jeter was the best player in the AL all year long. He won a gold glove at short. He hit for average, some power and he did it on a Yankees team that was at less than full strength for most of the season. I have to think that some writers hate the Yankees so much, that they could not bring themselves to vote for Jeter. That has to be the reason he lost. But it still does not explain Morneau winning. I guess we will never understand that.

Anyway Albert loosing the MVP is also another case of blatant east coast bias on ESPN’s and the writers part. and don’t even get me started that this is a “old&tired” argument. it may be for some, but its completely relveant here. howard plays on the east coast, and all he does is hit home runs. Umm, sounds like another lefty we never stop hearing about who plays in ESPN’s back yard. What’s his team again? The boston what? howard is black and Albert is latin, so there is no raciest element here. as much as steven A smith would like to make one, there isn’t. his argument is about as revelant as if richard justice would say that fat elvis should win the mvp because most baseball fans are fat white guys. so their mvp should look like them. something he would never do of course. but what steven did is just as bad. how great was it to read on Viva El Birdos from one of howard’s neighbors saying he is not a poor kid from east St.Louis. but a Dr’s son from a rich part of town? I for one LOVED reading that. Not only does it prove steven A wrong, but it yet again is another blatant example of how little research ESPN actually does for their stories. All summer long, all we heard was howard was a poor black kid, and now, his “rags to riches” story doesn’t have a leg to stand on. back to howard, his team didn’t make the playoffs. isn’t that the “tie breaker” in deciding who is mvp? sure was in 98. in fact the phillies fell off the table completly. so did howards play as many have pointed out. he pretty much stopped hitting anything when the pitchers stopped grooving him pitches. His strikes outs when way up because he never made the adjustment necessary to keep hitting home runs. Even after his injury Albert kept his great season going, all the while it was our pitching that let us down. Albert isn’t bugs bunny. he can’t play the field and pitch at the same time. it can’t be steroids. but then if it was, why has Barry Bonds won 7 mvp’s if the suspicion of using steroids keeps you from winning any kind of awards? nope. no double standard by the writers there. They say he is a cheater, yet they still gave him the MVP award. How does that happen when Albert is setting records not seen since guys like Dimaggio played the game. Let me just throw this out and see if it sticks to anything. IF(GOD forbid)Albert played for the yankees, houston,  mets, ATL, chicago, bosox, or LA , heck I’ll throw the Nats&the marlins on the pile, how many MVP’s do you honestly think he would have won? Now let that marinate for a while.

This is all ESPN’s fault. they played howard up all the way till the end of the season. even when his numbers were not even close in some aspects to Alberts. if it does not happen on the east coast, chicago, houston, or LA, ESPN ignores it. always has. and always will. and the BWWAA are full of lazy morons who’s relevancy will soon be no more if they keep following ESPN lead.

I am really mad about this and I would like it if someone from the Cardinals would show some anger too. but, unlike me, they don’t really care about personal year end awards. good thing too. awards like this are more for the fans and agents and selfish players that only want big money anyway. not guys like Albert, or any other Cardials player. and that’s one of the things that makes them the best franchise in baseball. all they care about is winning rings. and guess what? we got one this year. so no, Albert won’t say he is mad that once again he got over looked for a much deserved award. Albert did not return any calls or take any questions last week when howard was announced as the winner.  He simply had his agents say no comment. but I am sure if he did comment, he will be very gracious and say howard was the best this past season, and he deserved it. he and the rest of the Cardinals are far more gracious that I will ever be in this respect.

besides, when it’s all said and done. when Albert is giving his speech at his hall of fame induction,going in as the greatest player to ever walk onto a diamond. no one will even remember who ryan howard was. Hear me now. Belive me later.

BREAKING NEWS:

Carlos Lee just got a 6 year $100 Million dollar contract from houston. Let me be the first to congratulate houston for flushing more money down the toilet. It’s bad enough that they gave oswalt 5 years $75 Million dollars. A guy who seams to always have some kind  of hammie issues and other mystery ailments. But this is just to perfect. Lee is getting fatter and fatter. And they expect him to play where? Left or right? I bet it’s left. No way they are stupid enough to do put his fat butt in right. In a way houston had to do this. Their offense outside of fat elvis is non existent. But a 6 year $100 million deal? I’d give Soriano that, but not a guy who can’t stay away from the buffet table after games. Of course playing in that little league park you  can expect his power numbers to be good. If Lee stayed in any kind of shape he could be down right deadly in the juice box. But all reports are that’s not the case. So houston will have to fat guys back to back in the line up that can hit in their little league park, if you grove it to them. But nowhere else. Good for them. Let them keep flushing money down the toilet and the Cardinals will keep spending their money wisley and keep winning rings. It also is reported that Woody Williams is going back home to houston. Bad idea Woody. Not that I wanted him back with the Cardinals. But he is not the type of pitcher I would want pitching in the juice box. For his sake, I hope he got a big deal because the beatings he is going to take pitching in houston might force him to retire by June.

Enjoy your football and shopping folks. I’ll be back sometime next week with more brilliant thoughts and observations. Have a good one. Good night now.

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