July 25 – This, That And The Other Thing
This - Game Report: – Oklahoma Redhawks at Round Rock (Houston): Friday July 20th and Saturday July 21st. Although the humidity and clouds made it feel more like Houston – it was indeed Dell Diamond, one of the best places to watch minor league games and that’s just what we did. Friday night the combo of Alfredo Simon, Francisco Cruceta and Randy Williams struck out 17 batters – Tug Hulett and Kevin Mahar each homered in their first AB’s. OKC won 7-1. I’ll admit it: there were fireworks scheduled after the game, a big crowd and a bottle of wine waiting back at the hotel – we didn’t stay for the entire game.
However, we did stay for the whole game on Saturday night. Not only did we get a close up look at the stitches on Jason Botts ring finger, but we also watched a matchup between two highly touted pitchers – Troy Patton and Eric Hurley. Turns out that Patton and Hurley have known eachother since high school and this was not the first time they’ve faced off. Both were good – actually better than that – they were pretty good. The Redhawks struck first when Freddy Guzman walked, moved to second when Nelson Cruz went to first on catcher’s interference. Guzman tagged up and moved to third on Nate Gold’s long fly ball out – then stole home, Patton didn’t even make a throw, didn’t look like he knew what just happened to him. After that the fans were treated to an old fashioned pitchers duel until the bottom of the 6th inning, when Adam Fox (who was having a really tough night fielding) threw away an easy sacrifice bunt opening the door to three unearned Express runs. The final line for Hurley – 6IP – 5 H – 1 BB – 6 K’s for Patton 7 IP – 2 H – 1BB – 6 K’s. That part of the game was fun to watch – but the end of the game was not. Wes Littleton took over in the 7th and another mix-up involving Fox and Littleton fielding a bunt started the blow out by Round Rock who scored 6 runs off of Wes, the Redhawks scored 2 runs in the eight – but wound up on the losing end of a 9-3 score.
That - Random Thoughts:
Doing the numbers – Our occasional check up on the Danks/McCarthy trade.
Since June 1:
John Danks – 50 1/3 IP – 54 Hits – 21BB – 40 K – 5.18 ERA
Brandon McCarthy – 26 1/3 IP – 26 Hits – 10 BB – 17 K – 4.64 ERA
And that San Diego trade, not trying to defend it because it’s one of the worst in team history. But those hot starts by Termel Sledge and Adrian Gonzalez have gone ice cold. Sledge is now playing part time, hitting just .234 since June 1st. Adrian’s very good April and May (.297 12 HR) has been followed by a not so good June and July – .222 3 HR’s.
Just one thing about Chris Young, his road ERA is a respectable 3.13 in 54 1/3 IP – his home ERA an unbelievable 0.73 in 62 IP at very pitcher friendly PETCO Park.
Checking in on some of the gone and not forgotten:
LHP John Koronka at AAA Buffalo: 8 2/3 IP – 11 Hits – 6 ER – 4 BB – 7 K’s – 6.23 ERA
RHP Nick Masset recently sent back to AAA Charlotte: 4 1/3 IP – 4 Hits – 3 ER – 2 BB 1 K – 6.23 ERA
LHP Fabio Castro at AAA Ottawa: 28 IP – 23 Hits – 9 ER- 19 BB – 25 K – 2.89 ERA
Oh and that other trade with San Diego:
OF Vincent Sinisi’s fast start (.328) slowed down in June (.276) and he’s now on the DL. While RedHawk’s OF Freddy Guzman’s slow start sped up in June as he hit .283 with 12 SB (only 1 CS).
The Other Thing - Compare and Contrast:
"St. Elsewhere" vs "ER"
Both shows featured “heartthrob” doctors, ER’s George Clooney and St. Elsewhere’s Mark Harmon both of whom left their shows for the silver screen. I’ll give this one to Clooney who has been much more successful or at least George has made more interesting choices than Mark. However, that’s about the only thing ER has over St. Elsewhere
St. Elsewhere alumni include Academy Award winners Denzel Washington, and Helen Hunt as well as Howie Mandel, Stephen Furst, Alfre Woodard, Ed Begley Jr, David Morse, Norman Lloyd, the vastly underrated Williams Daniels and Ed Flanders. It also included former "M*A*S*H" cast member G.W. Bailey (who is now regularly stealing scenes from Kyra Sedgewick on TNT’s “The Closer”).
ER’s alumni – aside from Clooney – there is Beach Boy wannabe John Stamos, star of "Top Gun" and "Revenge of the Nerds" Anthony Edwards, and Noah Wylie who left for lead roles in such epics as “The Librarian: Return to King Solomon’s Mines”.
Overall – St. Elsewhere’s cast was and remains far superior to ER’s.
Both shows covered the “disease” of the week – the predictable ER bringing in a crisis neatly resolved at the end of the hour. St. Elsewhere was one of the first television shows to deal with AIDS, Alzheimer’s, spousal abuse and terrorism (an episode featuring a young Tim Robbins) in a realistic, frank manner that, as often happens in life, did not include happy endings.
ER’s most notable foray away from the predictable was a live show broadcast. St. Elsewhere’s ventures away from the commonplace included an episode that followed a woman patient with a running calculation of the cost of each procedure as the doctors attempted to diagnose her malady (and this was 20 years before healthcare became a buzzword issue). One my personal favorites was a “dream” sequence/parody of Dante’s "Inferno" as Howie Mandel’s character recovered from a gunshot wound and visited the three realms of the dead: ****, Purgatory and Heaven.
In case you haven’t figured it out – I’m not a fan of ER and have never understood the reason for it’s ongoing popularity – other than the fact that it’s made up of the two characteristics TV programmers love: peril and soap opera type romance. St. Elsewhere was thought provoking, intelligent, sly, witty – and struggled in the ratings for the six seasons it was on NBC. Unfortunately, only the first season of St. Elsewhere is available on DVD – and it’s been re-run on TV Land sporadically – but when St. Elsewhere is shown again or if you can get your hands on the DVD – take the time to watch , you won’t regret it.
The Most Important Thing – Friendship, the best medicine – If you are down in the dumps, not feeling well – I recommend having lunch with three friends who you treasure and adore – it will cure the blues and make you forget all that ails you immediately.
Finally - I am going on the DL, having some surgery that will keep me away from the computer for, what I hope, is only a short time. While I’m away my good friend (who is also my younger sister) former Arlington Stadium usher, program seller and babysitter to the stars, Mrs. Schmenge will be blogging here.
This week I’m signing off with a self -indulgent Hello to a few friends and family who are faithful readers : Hi to Mom, Neil (best stepdad, ever), Glenna Hartman, Joe Hartman, Alice Baker (without you Round Rock wasn’t as much fun) Kit Boggs, greg rogers, Jack Miller (my Canadad – okay your picture is finally on the blog) Tom Galbraith, Aunt Rita, Judy (my mango margarita sister), Rob Gibson (best stepbrother, ever) JDN, MJH, the incomparable Henry Chadwick, cousin Chris (how about them Rockies) Jose Sagen, Grant and Mike Schiller, Todd Trice, Mr. Shroom, my once and future fiancé Marc Barenblat, and Mrs. Schmenge. Thanks for reading – Go Rangers – Free Jason Botts – I’ll be back…soon – Marla Hooch