Monday, March 31, 2008

Baseball In The Daytime: Opening Day!

Hail fucking Jesus. After an interminable winter, our nation turns its lonely eye to you, baseball. Woo woo woo. Today's slate is jammed full of day games and dynamite pitching matchups, as it's pretty much ace vs. ace across the board. Now, "ace" is a relative term, as Mark Hendrickson is scheduled to throw as well.

In the past I've loaded this space with all of the channels and frequencies you need to watch and listen to day games. This is a public service to both those who like to blow off wide swaths of man-hours at work (like me) and the chronically unemployed (like you, and Banky). There are some new advancements in the field of baseball intake, however, that have overwhelmed my limited ability to help you out, so please bookmark the following links:

XM Radio MLB game schedule

DirecTV Extra Innings schedule Available this year: satellite feeds from both the home and road teams' broadcasts and ten times more HD games--awesome.

MLB.TV entry page

I encourage you, horsehide freaks, to set aside a few hard-earned sawbucks for one or more of these services. It is absolutely nuts how easy it is to tap into almost constant baseball content these days. But even if your only means of access is the old transistor radio headphone routed up the sleeve, here's your Opening Day slate...

KC @ Detroit, 11:05 Mountain The underrated Gil Meche takes on Justin Verlander, the young master who's my pick for the AL Cy Young.

Toronto @ NY Yankees, 11:05 Roy Halladay, who in my opinion committed treason by signing a contract with a Canadian club, faces 80s pop icon and trendy SoHo nightspot Wang40. This is the last Opening Day in the history of old Yankee Stadium, which isn't really that old as it was completely rebuilt in the mid-70s. Regardless, expect lots of weeping over the fate of the Stadium, Bobby Murcer and Bob Shepherd. Soon they'll all pass away.

Arizona @ Cincinnati, 12:10 When I was a kid, the season always started in Cincinnati. They had a parade and everything. But those dumb traditions expire (for God's sake, they let teams other than Dallas and Detroit host Thanksgiving games now) and now the Reds game is pushed back behind a three-ring circus of Japanese morning games. On the hill at the deceptively corporate Great American Ballpark: Brandon Webb and Aaron Harang. And you will get a Reds lineup preview out of me before it's said and done, I'm predicting these guys will be good.

Milwaukee @ Chicago Cubs, 12:20 This one's lookin' iffy, as it's raining on the North Side, but what better omen could you have in the 100th anniversary season of the Cubs' last championship? Ben Sheets and Big Z toe the rubber, and fans better bring rubbers of their own.

Bay-Rays @ Baltimore, 1:05 This is one of the lousier pitching slates of the afternoon. James Shields and Jeremy Guthrie aren't bad by any means, but it's easy to get spoiled by hot ace-on-ace action.

Chicago White Sox @ Cleveland, 1:05 Mark Buehrle, whose name I can spell with ease thanks to a full season of writing Baseball In The Daytime, faces C.C. Sabathia, last year's AL Cy Younger.

Washington @ Philadelphia, 1:05 Congratulations, Nationals! You opened your new ballpark last night with a thrilling two-out, bottom-of-the-ninth walk-off jack by your franchise player! What do you win? A day game today on the road against wife abuser Brett Myers! No respect, I tell ya. But I guess when your No. 2 starter is Matt Chico, you don't deserve any. Let me reiterate--the schedule to start this season is fucked in the face.

San Francisco @ LA Dodgers, 2:10 I'm going to go ahead and pencil Barry Zito in for the first of the Giants' many, many losses this season. Congrats, Brad Penny. You owe me one.

NY Mets @ Florida, 2:10 Johan Santana's NL debut will take place in front of a huge South Florida crowd. Seriously, they could top a thousand, and I hope the elderly ushers at Dolphins Stadium can handle the crush. I have less faith in Mark Hendrickson handling the Mets' lineup.

Colorado @ St. Louis, 2:15 The Milwaukee Braves had a top-heavy pitching staff back in the 50s, and the hip slang was "Spahn and Sain and pray for rain." The Cardinals, who'll field a rotation of Adam Wainwright and four hobos they found at a bus stop, might go with "Wainwright, and then four days of rain, right?" Thanks, I'll be here all week. Please tip your servers and bartenders, and give Jeff Francis a hand--he's the Opening Day starter for your defending National League champions.

Texas @ Seattle, 4:40 This one barely slides in to BITD consideration, unless you're on the West Coast--damn Rocky Mountain bias. Kevin Milwood squares off against the newly acquired fireballin' lefty Erik Bedard. Winner gets first place for a day in the AL West.

Enjoy your holiday, kids, and make sure you send in those preseason picks--Play Ball!
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Saturday, March 29, 2008

Lineup Against The Wall: Colorado Rockies

We're but a day away from yet another fake Opening Day, and in 48 hours we can kick of the season for reals. We've meandered through a selection of promising offensive baseball teams (and the Royals), so we might as well spend some time on the home state nine.

You may have heard, even if the only sport you follow is dog tossing, about the Colorado ROCKies. They attended the World Series last October ROCKtober after winning something like a hundred games in a row. That's hard to do. They then lost, of course, but all forty-three baseball fans in the Centennial State have boners ROCK COCKS over the prospect of a decent team on Blake Street.

So follow me, friends and foes, to Clint Hurdle's lineup card...

1. Willy Taveras CF
2. Clap Clap Clap-Clap-Clap Clap-Clap Clap-Clap TULO! SS
3. Matt Holliday LF
4. Todd Helton 1B
5. Garrett Atkins 3B
6. Brad Hawpe RF
7. Yorvit Torrealba C
8. Jayson Nix 2B
9. Pass

Pretty nice, huh? This team's fate will not be determined in the batter's box, of course, but on the mound. Still, getting this kind of depth and power out of your sticks never hurts.

Taveras is not a very dynamic hitter, but someday the kid Dexter Fowler should supplant him. Willy is a masterful bunter and speed demon, and he sets the table for the lumber due up next.

And then the Murderer's Row begins. Tulowitzki clubbed six jacks in spring training, and he definitely has the frame to add power to his already mature plate resume. Holliday is in the perfect position--nestled amidst guys who will hit and two years away from a massive FA payday in another city. Helton's not a conventional cleanup hitter in that he rarely homers anymore, but every other peripheral he has is stellar.

I wish the Rockies had seized the opportunity to trade for starting pitching, with arms like Santana, Bedard and Haren on the block. Atkins would have been a perfect chip, as he's on the verge of stardom yet still young and cheap. This would also open up an everyday spot for Ian Stewart or Jeff Baker. But, alas, it was not to be, and so Mark Redman is a vital cog in returning to the playoffs. Hawpe's a nice lefty bat to have among all the northpaws, and if he could cut down on his strikeouts he might replace Holliday someday as the straw that stirs the drink.

Yorvit, in addition to carrying the name of my future son, has had a fantastic spring. He's an able handler of pitchers with just enough power to keep you honest. Nix fills in for the departed Kazuo "Sex" Matsui, whose tale is, well, I'll let you read about it. I'm glad the ROCKies picked Nix, the superior defensive player, over the other options at second. They didn't need more production from this spot, but hampering what was in '07 an incredible web of leather on the infield would have been a mistake.

Rock on, kids, rock on.
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Oh No


Looks like I need to find a new candidate. The Steelers fuck everything up.

Of course, it's no worse an offense than this:

More on a dark day in American history here. And vote Hillary! Oh, never mind.
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Friday, March 28, 2008

My Sports Life is a Rock Song: "Foreplay/Long Time"

Greetings, and welcome to the newest House of Georges feature entitled "My Sports Life is a Rock Song." The deal is this: every Friday (Editor's Note: Fat Chance.), we're gonna break down our tiny little world of sports, and, with the help of the selected song/our unmatchable journalistic prowess, compare the two.

The rules are simple; we'll make them up as we go, and, before Cecil feels his sac shrivel and crawl up into his manly core, rule #1 is that it doesn't have to be a rock song. It just gave the feature's title a little more proverbial punch. So, Cecil, if you ever choose to take part in this, or any other feature, (Note: See above note.), feel free to do a Screeching Weasel or a Chris Gaines song. Or whatever the hell it is you listen to.

Anyhoo. Find the goods after the jump.

I'm not gonna pull any punches, especially with tipoff under three hours away. Thus, I'm going to assume that, with the YouSpaces and eSeeds, and even the old-fangled radio frequencies out there, that everyone knows the jam. And, midwestern/redneck/fat-chick lover/drunken/sophomoric as it sounds, it is in fact a rockin' good song. Well, at least it was the first 6000 times I heard it. Now, what with the ridiculous number of pharmaceuticals I've consumed, and radio stations from which I've been banned, I couldn't distinguish between it and something from the new Jay-Z album.

My sports world, nevertheless, looks a bit like this in the summer:



this in the fall:



this in the winter:



and this in the spring:



Pretty rough. Or, as Old No. 7 would say, "That's uh, that's a lot of third place teams, dude." I, of course, am left with nothing to do but kick him in the shins out of sheer agreement.

The Blues, in case you don't know, dear reader, are a tiny handful of seasons removed from the longest playoff-appearance streak in all of professional sports. They of course reached the Conference Finals in the last year of said streak, not to even sniff the playoffs since. I like Andy Kitchen. I remain confident he's got the club headed in the right direction. But, Christ. Only a team I root for would make the cup finals the first three years of their existence (Note: Prior to mine own.), and never make it again.

And the Crimson and Blue, while on the verge of an Elite Eight appearance, have won a championship in my life -- 20 years ago, but nonetheless, they won -- have managed to get knocked off in ultra-disappointing fashion year after year since I entered high school. Seven, of course, has made a game out of tabbing their annual March Madness elimination, and he, of course, can duct tape himself to any ship's anchor.

Back to the song, though. The Foreplay portion of "Foreplay/Long Time" may as well be an audio advertisement for the Kansas City Royals. Last year the theme was "True. Blue. Tradition.", and I liked it. This year, it's "New. Blue. Tradition.", and I like that even better. Dayton Moore and Trey Hillman have this club headed in the right direction. Problem is, once you're on the path, it's the potholes ahead that keep the championship so far out of reach. Like, you know, the fact that there's a ton of good clubs in the American League, or the fact that the Royals have so little cash flow, or the fact that, according to my new favorite sports blogger, who happens to be right, they have no power at the plate. But the pipe-organ wizardry of Tom Scholz, man genius, begins as a delicate trickle, and builds into, surprise, a rocketesque explosion of tickled ivories plastics. It embodies the potential of the Kansas City Royals. They could explode from barely below-mediocre pitching to pretty okay, and they could -- could, I tell ya', could -- continue to show offensive improvement. If they could grasp these two things, they'll be on par to fulfill my prediction of .500 ball this year and an AL Central title the next.

This sentiment, of course, whirs us right in to the Long Time of the song. And that, if you haven't already figured it out, is the Kansas City Chiefs. It's not as if those two words don't speak a thousand verses, because they do. Brad Delp belts out a lot of lyrics that could summarize my life as a Chiefs fan, but we'll allow it to summarize the last 14 years of it. Which takes us back to the 1994 AFC Conference Championship Game, the only time in my life that the Chiefs were a tomahawk chop away from a Super Bowl berth. They of course, haven't won a post-season contest since, but us fools keep coming back for more, regardless of Delp's repeated phrase "Guess I should be goin', yeah."

No. Time didn't wait for him, and it doesn't wait for Chiefs fans either. It keeps on rollin'. (Note: If at any point you tire of the depressing theme of non-winning sports franchises, feel free to e-mail Old No. 7. He can tell you a bible's worth about championships. And soap on a rope, too, I hear.) So just when Scholz, Delp, Goodreau, and company have you convinced to bolt, and leave your headdress afire, they rock out. Which, to make a contemporary comparison, is kind of like the Chiefs defense under Herm Edwards and Gunther Cunningham, and you're tempted to stick around. Then Delp comes back with some less profound lyrics, and the taste of the Chiefs offense sets up camp on your tongue. (Note: This guy, who is by far the best editor I've ever worked with and/or for, would kill me for using the word "you" so often in this ramblage, but damn it, YOU know what I be sayin', precious readers.)

Like all songs, "Foreplay/Long Time" fades out, and the album ends, or the DJ follows it up with some Steely Dan, or a 2Pac track comes up next on your eSeeds in shuffle mode. And that blasted, confounded time, keeps on rollin', leaving us uneducated, drunken, fat-toofless-girlfriend-havin' hicks with the same old tired hardware on the shelf. And this hillbilly is tired of it, emotionally spent, and running on the fumes of the ideal. Never you fear, though, I'll be there, dumb as ever, for the next season. And the one after that. And the one after that. And one day, my son, will tell the same story that I shared with you today about some teams, and a song that came from an MIT grad that formed a band named after a city. A good Irish-Catholic city, no less.

Oh, and in the random thoughts department, words cannot describe how disappointed I am that the MyTubers removed the embed option from this (lyrics NSFW), although I'd probably get a whiny phone call from Seven about the kids, etc. being exposed to blah, blah, blah. But honestly, what hard-working American man doesn't have his car washed just like this. With this soundtrack, of course.
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Does This Look Like A Ballfield?

I'm a big geek when it comes to ballparks, so this stunt they're pulling Saturday in LA is interesting, at least to me. The Dodgers and Red Sox are playing a three-game exhibition series starting tonight, with two of the games being played at Chavez Ravine.

Saturday's game, however, will be at the Coliseum. Yes, that Coliseum, where Olympics have been staged, USC plays, and the Raiders once roamed (saw my first regular-season game there, matter of fact). The Dodgers played there for a few years after they moved from Brooklyn and their park was under construction, and they rigged up a 42-foot-high screen 250 feet from home to account for the goofy dimensions.

Tomorrow, that screen will be closer and higher, and Manny will take aim and pose. Take a look at this cool interactive graphic, and stay tuned after the jump for another Lineup Against The Wall, Dodger-style...

I don't know what Joe Torre will do, but if he's smart LA will sport a lineup like this:

1. Rafael Furcal SS
2. A second baseman
3. Matt Kemp LF
4. James Loney 1B
5. Andruw Jones CF
6. Russ martin C
7. Andre Ethier RF
8. A third baseman
9. A pitcher

You'll notice a few things here that may look a little weird. Porn-Stache Kent and Nomar aren't around, but that's because they're old, brittle and will most likely start the year on the DL.

The other veteran I've benched is Juan Pierre, because he's really an awful baseball player. Check out this Fire Joe Morgan sendup of this Bill Plaschke piece for an idea of the shittiness of Pierre and the myopia concerning his nonexistent talent. Look, I like Pierre. I liked what he did for the Rockies and the Marlins, and he was once an exciting player. But he can't hit a baseball and he throws like a penguin. And penguins don't have thumbs.

Play the kids. The kids are awesome. Few clubs have the kind of young core that the Dodgers have, and it's a waste to make Ethier sit behind Pierre. There's some dude named DeWitt who can play third and a second-sacker that goes by Hu, but Hu gives a fuck? The rest of these guys can hit.

One final note, about Andruw Jones. The two-year, $36 million deal he signed was one of the most widely ridiculed in baseball, but I thought it was brilliant. LA is a team that could easily win the NL this season. They needed a centerfielder to replace Old Penguin-Arm, and they needed a slugger to pick up the slack that Porn-Stache and Nomar invariably leave when they rip groin muscles from the bone and wash trucks. Andruw had the worst contract year in the history of baseball, when he showed up weighing about a Barkley and a half and he hit Pierre's weight. By giving him a short-term deal, he still has the incentive of playing for one more big payday (we forget this, but he's only 30). I expect Andruw to have a decent year at the plate and hustle his beer gut around the outfield.
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Thursday, March 27, 2008

Lineup Against The Wall: Cleveland Indians

Following yesterday's analysis of Who Sucks? in MLB, it was pointed out to me that I'm now obligated to present the other side of that coin. As in, who's like good? I'll take this assignment, but I'm also passing the buck to you, our loathed treasured reader. After the jump, please follow the instructions to participate in our huge Season Preview Orgy Fantastico.

And, oh by the way, read about your 2008 Cleveland Indians, one through nine...

1. Grady Sizemore CF
2. Asdrubal Cabrera 2B
3. Pronk DH
4. Victor Martinez C
5. Ryan Garko 1B
6. Jhonny Peralta SS
7. Franklin Gutierrez RF
8. Jason Michaels LF
9. Casey Blake 3B

I can see how, if you're a fan of either an NL or second-division AL team, this exercise might be frustrating. Because lineups like this are a joke. And Cleveland's batting order is actually less lethal than those in Detroit and The Bronx.

What you have here is a lot of transition, guys moving up or down a peg from last year. Sizemore and Martinez are franchise talents, although I think both will eventually morph into less dynamic players. Sizemore will embrace a more traditional middle-of-the-order role, and Martinez will find a new home elsewhere on the diamond. Both, however, provide massive offensive advantages at their respective positions.

Pronk had an off year by his standards, but I fully expect a return to his sweaty goliath ways. Garko, on the other hand should regress--he's not as good of a pure hitter as he showed in '07 and pitchers will catch up to him.

Peralta and Blake are not consistent hitters, but if either gets hot they can be scary. At some point Andy Marte may live up to his hype and take Blake's job.

Gutierrez and, to a lesser extent, Cabrera, are on their way. Both display more professionalism than they ought to at this stage of their careers.

The bench is nice as well, with supersub jamey Carroll coming over from the Rockies and teaming with David Delucci. Both provide versatility, clutch hitting and a late-game spark.

They can't hit like the Tigers, but their superior pitching means that the Indians will hang with Detroit all year.

HUGE SEASON PREVIEW ORGY FANTASTICO

All right, ladies and gentlemen, here's your chance to participate in our user-generated baseball webgasm. Simply take out an 8 1/2 by 11 sheet of paper, and write down your picks for the following:

NL West Champion
NL Central Champion
NL East Champion
AL West Champion
AL Central Champion
AL East Champion

Wild Card team for each league
Pennant winners and World Series Champion
MVP and Cy Young winner for each league

Then transfer the picks to an e-mail and throw that piece of paper away. Or recycle it. Whatever. Send those picks to houseofgeorges@gmail.com, and do it now. The season already started, slackers.
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Wednesday, March 26, 2008

We Are Hot Chicks Wednesday: Girls We Know, Girls We Don't, Part Deux

Hey, how's it goin'. Just like that, there's a ton circulating the MyTubes. So much so that it would appear we're busy out there in the CyberQuarters of the HoG. Rest assured, we are. Old No. 7 found that fat, juicy vein and has done gone and stuck himself full of stickball, to the point of jeopardizing his job and marriage. And the season hasn't even started yet. Alright, fine. There've been some stupid games in Japan in the middle of the night, and television satellite companies bobbled that routine fly in the glare of the Tokyo sun, but whatever.

And Cecil's outright holed himself up in a shanty, poring over self-compiled stacks of college football athlete statistics while urinating on semi-glossies of Mel Kiper, Jr. all the while. Meantime, I just keep the ol' orbs peeled for Chiefs/Broncos news with which to delight y'all precious readers. I haven't anything of that sort today, but, after the jizzy, there's some quality readin'. I promise.

Talent We Don't Know From Adam (but might like to, maybe)

Veronika Fasterova



The House of Georges has never officially heard of Miss Fasterova, but even so, we're considering putting her on the payroll for a new, no-tan-lines brand of sun oil we haven't yet invented. 'Cause we're schmoove like that.

Aria Giovanni



Aria Giovanni isn't just a household name, we're aware. We also acknowledge her ability to mimic statues, accent bathrooms, and, uh raise the awareness of our "audiences."

Bianca Beauchamp



Believe it or not, I made out with a couple of redhead sisters (Editor's Note: No, not at the same time, cruel, cruel world.) named Beauchamp (Bee-chem, as it were) in high school. They were wild. They may've been oiled up, even. But they never made that face at me. Nor did they display their top shelf in such a fashion. And I do mean fashion.

Jenny McClain



Never laid eyes on this young lady before. Nor have I ever seen a swimsuit of that variety. I'm glad now, though, that I have on both accounts.

Girls We May've Had Over For Dinner (but likely not)

Brooke Belle



I do believe Miss Belle has been featured on the HoG before. I can't recall in what capacity, but I had a hunch it was time to saddle up again. Count it!

Amanda Wright



Same goes for the lovely Amanda. What can I say? I'm a sucker for tattoos. And navel piercings. And blondes. And lingerie. And seductive head-cocked looks while leaning against wooden door frames. Oh. I guess boob freckles are pretty okay, too.

Lucy Pinder



Everyone knows Lucy Pinder. Even if there's only 1/3 of her to go around, Inspector Gadget would still say "Yow-zahs." And so do we.

Meghan Allen



See aforementioned text regarding Miss Wright. Minus all the jib jab, of course.

Michelle Marsh



Wherever there's a Lucy Pinder, a Michelle Marsh isn't far behind. Sometimes they're together, and slightly less clad, but hey -- we're trying to stay classy, YouSpaces.

Rebecca Romijn



I know I know her from somewhere, but every time I try to remember, that pesky sand distracts me. Stupid beaches.

Regina Deutinger



Those nerdy enough to monitor where traffic comes from on places like these here Houses of Georges, know that findings would suggest that we owe the dazzling Regina 3/4 of our income. Too bad for her that equals a hearty handful of stale, fake Easter grass.

Scarlett Johansson



This broad's been in some movies, a few YourHubs sites, and occasionally lands the one spot on Mr. Ufford's blog.

Girls We Have Slight Issues With (but some may substitute "Fetishes" for "Issues"

Gemma Atkinson



I've always had a thing for Gemma.



I can't decide if it's the sultry stares,



the gorgeous smiles, or, uh, something else. Either way, she's aces in my book.

Marissa Miller



Last but not least



is this year's SI cover girl.



Yes. She's amazing.



And, I felt compelled to include her, a five-spot no less,



since Cecil and TLR lost their flippin' minds here.

Thanks for stoppin' by. We'll do it again soon.

(Images courtesy of Gorilla Mask, Daily Niner, and that handy Googlage.)
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Who Will Suck Most?

Here at the House of Georges we don't exactly adhere to the established conventions of journalism. That can be a bad thing if you're into, like, facts and stuff. But it also frees us from being compelled to produce boring bullshit like season previews for the upcoming (actually already underway, sort of) baseball season.

But the reader (that would be you) is what drives both conventional journalism and the new school of craptastic slander you're currently enjoying. And you readers are a funny lot--you want these predictions, even from unqualified morons such as myself. More accurately, you want me to make predictions, and then you want these predictions to be wrong (especially if they are about the teams you love), and then you want to rub my face in it. I don't understand this, but I am a slave to my audience. After the jump I'll get into some ridiculously inaccurate prognostication concerning the 2008 season.

But first, this link comes via the fine Rockie scribes at Purple Row. Read it, and several things might happen to you. You might be really, really ready to watch some baseball, especially baseball played in the United fucking States of America on natural grass at a decent hour of the day. You might be particularly excited to watch what transpires between the Rox and the D'Bags this season. You might want to pay a little more attention to amateur ball this year, as well as the June draft. And finally, you may feel the desire to throw down a few clams for a Tulo jersey, if you're into that sort of gay shit.

So here we are, on the cusp of Opening Day Version 2.2(a). If you look at all the clubs, all of their offseason moves, the trends in Spring Training, and injuries, you can pick up some distinct patterns. The popular parlor game in every sport is determining which teams will improve, the "sleepers" if you will. I can play that game, but what's just as fun is figuring out who will really, really suck. First, the up-and-comers (teams I think will improve on their '07 win totals by five or more):

TEAMS THAT WILL SUCK LESS

Toronto (83 wins in '07, 85.5 over/under for '08)
The Jays have excellent starting pitching and can mash a little, but they got nailed by injuries last season. They may be cursed, as Casey Janssen and Scott Rolen already went down in March. Or Canada may just suck at baseball like they do at everything else. If they're healthy at all, they could win 88.

Tampa Bay (66 in '07, 73.5 o/u)
That over/under indicates the fact that a lot of folks expect improvement in Tampa. The Bay-Rays are stocked with stud everyday players and promising young pitchers, and they added a few smart vets in Troy Percival and Cliff Floyd. Will they go to the playoffs? Absolutely not, but the gay Jays and the Bay-Rays should ensure that the AL wild card does not come out of the East.

Detroit (88 in '07, 93.5 o/u)
They'll have a great lineup, but many are worried about their pitching--especially the bullpen. Not me.

Kansas City (69 in '07. 71.5 o/u)
I already went over these guys.

N.Y. Mets (88 in '07, 93.5 o/u)
They absolutely collapsed down the stretch, and they got Johan Santana. If you average all of that out, I don't see how you don't find five more wins.

Atlanta (84 in '07. 84.5 o/u)
The Braves of the 90s are not back, but they could have outstanding pitching if they stay healthy (big if) and adding Teixeira to an already pretty-balanced lineup is a big plus.

Cincinnati (72 in '07, 79.5 o/u)
Another trendy pick, but I actually believe in these guys. I ought to, because I drafted virtually the entire roster for my fantasy team. But I see a real breakout in store. They have a potent mix of savvy old-timers like Griff, Dunn and Harang, an entering-his-prime superstar in Brandon Phillips, and a ton of badass prospects: Jay Bruce, Joey Votto, Edinson Volquez, and Johnny Cueto. Their bullpen is deep and potentially fearsome. And--sigh--Dusty Baker is running the show. Say what you will about the Lizard--I certainly have--but the man inexplicably wins in his first few years on the job. He's like the Herm Edwards of baseball. Mark it down, kids, the Reds will make the Central interesting, challenging the Cubs and Brewers and vaulting way past the Astros and Cards.

L.A. Dodgers (82 in '07, 87.5 o/u)
Fuck, I hate the Dodgers. Most people do, except gang members and old people. But this is, after all, a game with no salary cap, and when you spend a lot of money you occasionally get results. Combine those resources with a productive farm system and good pitching, and they might not underachieve again. How's that for a lefthanded compliment?

TEAMS THAT WILL SUCK MORE (at least five fewer wins than '07)

Baltimore (69 in '07, 65.5 o/u)
Someone has to move into the cellar of the AL East, and that somebody is the Orioles. They shipped out Bedard and Tejada and are trying like hell to do the same with Brian Roberts. Their bullpen blows. They do have Nick Markakis, however.

Minnesota (79 in '07, 72.5 o/u)
I'm beginning to think that Mauer and Morneau are incredibly overrated.

Oakland (76 in '07, 73.5 o/u)
You've got to give it to Billy Beane, he's trying to suck this year. He'd love to find takers for Joe Blanton and Eric Chavez, he'll give his kids playing time, and then re-emerge as a force next decade with a new park.

Philadelphia (89 in '07, 87.5 o/u)
Their pitching really stinks.

St. Louis (78 in '07, 78.5 o/u)
Their pitching really stinks.

Houston (73 in '07, 72.5 o/u)
Their pitching really stinks.

San Diego (89 in '07, 84.5 o/u)
Their pitching is good if aging, but I don't see them scoring enough runs to be a threat. They do have Mark Prior though.

San Francisco (71 in '07, 71.5 o/u)
They have a chance to be the worst baseball offense the world has ever seen. Bengie Molina is batting cleanup. Even if they pitch their ass off--and the rotation of Cain, Zito, Lincecum, Lowry, Correia and Dirty Sanchez could be great--they will lose a ton of games in a very deep division.

TEAMS THAT WILL SUCK ROUGHLY THE SAME (within five wins of their '07 total)

That would be everyone else, ace. If you want to make a few bucks, take the overs on the Rockies (82.5), Indians (88.5), Brewers (84.5) and the under on the Nats (70.5), in addition to the horrible insight I've given you above.

TEAMS THAT WILL SUCK THE MOST

Your preseason Bottom Twelve:

30. San Francisco
29. Baltimore
28. Washington
27. St. Louis
26. Pittsburgh
25. Oakland
24. Kansas City
23. Florida
22. Houston
21. Minnesota
20. Tampa
19. Texas
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Meanwhile, On The Outskirts Of Kansas City...

While shaking off yet another early morning of baseball--this time a loss for the champs--I stumbled across this.

There's not really much I can add to this one. Read more

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Tradition Tuesday: Scoping the Choncosphere: 3-25-2008

Welcome back for only the second another installment of "Scoping the Choncosphere", where the House of Georges takes a peek at what's goin' down in both Bronco Country and Chiefs Nation. This feature always promises breaking news headlines, professional and objective scopes, and, if we can help it, a few chuckles, even if they are in reaction to the first half of this sentence. We are, nevertheless, here to bring you the scoop on Chiefs/Broncos football, and that's what we aim to do, even if we do it in the form of a link dump. The drill, as it's come to be known, unfolds after the jump. Enjoy.

Where to start, o where to start with the Orange and Blue. I suppose we'll start with the most straight-forward bit, a scoop we're clearly the first to break, as no other sporting agent has yet to report on it. Someone, an offensive lineman who I used to know as Casey Wiegmann -- he's dead to me now, though -- has taken pen to paper, and done the impermissible. What a jackass. That is, way to piss away seven solid seasons, to only be now recognized as a nothing.

Elsewhere in Bronco news, the former Mrs. Horse-Faced Colts Draft has sold some acreage to La Familia Raton. And, it is, allegedly, a doozy, both in terms of the transaction, and the estate that will be. Apparently, Janet, Miss Nasty if you're lucky, was awarded the lot as part of the divorce settlement, while Tanahan's wife Peggy, has some elaborate plans for the homestead:

It includes three Jacuzzis, an 80-square-foot steam room, a 108-square-foot sauna, a 2,299-square-foot heated garage, a 2,100-square-foot swimming pool, a 165-square-foot hot tub. It was built in 2000 and has slate mission tile on the roof.

Two buildings are on the land, one with three bedrooms and six fireplaces; the other with two bedrooms.

The first building has 7,733 square feet, a 7,272-square-foot open porch, a 2,857-square-foot terrace and a 2,353-square-foot wood balcony. The second home has 1,089 square feet.


Also in the plans for the 35,000-square-foot home in the posh Cherry Hills Village suburb are a bowling alley, a poker room, a video-golf room and a kids' arcade. It will have at least six bedrooms, including a master suite with his-and-hers closets. That story embodies cute. And by "cute," I of course mean this. I'm sure these plans are totally unrelated to Uncle Mike's firing of the Broncos' decision to let GM Ted Sundquist go.

In slightly less-gay, more hilariousish Denver Bronco news, is the agility/athleticism of wide receiver Brandon Marshall. For those who haven't read the news, Marshall allegedly slipped on a McDonald's to go back, put his arm through the glass of an entertainment center, and, uh, got a boo boo that will leave him in a cast for two weeks.

Uh. Yeah. That and some post-touchdown snow throwing will get you 15 yards for unsportsmanlike conduct/being a total 'tard. Nice work, B-Marsh. This sort of injury doesn't sound familiar to me at all.

In Chiefs news, Herm Edwards is claiming -- without claiming -- that there's been some tampering going on. I suppose he's irked because, after 10 picks in the upcoming draft, Kansas City apparently needs to tack on an additional 20. Good thing for Herm there's no roster limit for the Chiefs. Oh, and good thing he's never been accused of tampering himself. Sorry, Cecil, for the PK link.

Elsewhere in Chiefs news, Defensive Coordinator Gunther Cunningham will also take on the responsibility of coaching the linebackers. Logistically speaking, I have no idea what this might mean. Historically, the Chiefs had a stellar D when Gun had a more hands-on role as DC. Ultimately, the one truth I can give you is that the more power you give this feisty old codger, the more sheer entertainment you're going to get, in one form or another.

Finally, Herm has told the papers that the Chiefs will strongly consider selecting a quarterback in next month's draft, which of course would mean Kansas City really puts the youth-movement stamp on their roster and enters the season with three under-25 QBs. Yikes.

And that's a wrap. I now turn the readership loose, free and able to scour the CyberSpaces for Chiefs/Broncos news not broken here on the HoG.
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Lineup Against The Wall: Boston Red Sox (Win Game 1)

Well, that was frustrating. After concocting an elaborate scheme to TiVo the start of this morning's Red Sox-A's game from Japan, then wake up and watch a compressed version before coming to work, all I got was--nothing.

Thanks, DirecTV. I pay you for basic service, hi-def service, premium channels, a digital video recorder, and the Major League Baseball package, and on the first day of the year you black out. Assholes.

Regardless, the Sox won in the tenth, or so I hear. J.D. Drew was hurt. And this gives us an opportunity to preview the lineup of your defending World Series champions. Here are the Red Sox, one through nine...

1. Dustin Pedroia 2B
2. Kevin Youkilis 1B
3. David Ortiz DH
4. Manny Ramirez LF
5. Mike Lowell 3B
6. J.D. Drew RF
7. Jason Varitek C
8. Julio Lugo SS
9. Jacoby Ellsbury CF

Brandon Moss filled in for Drew this morning and had a jack and 2 RBI. Don't expect much of that--Moss is a fringe big-leaguer who'll see no more than spot duty. If Drew is indeed out for a while--and when is that not the case?--you will see Coco Crisp back on the field, with Bobby Kielty probably seeing a little time once the rosters settle back in the States.

Ellsbury batted eighth in the opener, but the argument I've heard for batting him nine is to split up all the righties (Lugo, Pedroia and Yook). Regardless, I think the team ultimately likes Ellsbury as the leadoff hitter as he provides much more speed than the current top two. He's had a rough spring, though, and only 120 major league at bats. Don't forget the amount of patience Boston showed in Pedroia last season--he had a horrid April, they stuck with him, and he ended up as the rookie of the year. Jacoby will get every opportunity to play daily and eventually hit leadoff.

Coco Crisp, obviously, is the odd man out, but unless the Sox get a whopper of an offer I see him staying put as the fourth outfielder. He'll bitch, but he's getting paid, and so long as Drew is around he'll play a lot.

As for the lineup as it stands now, it's your basic big-money American League meat grinder. Aside from Papi and Manny, there's not a lot of huge home-run power, just a bunch of dudes that get on base and smoke a lot of doubles into the odd crannies of Fenway. Everyone grinds at-bats, everyone wears out pitchers, and the collective effort gets to bullpens quickly. This is a big edge in the AL, considering the fact that two big contenders--Detroit and the Yankees--have major pen issues. Cleveland is more solid, and Los Anaheim is OK, but if you don't have a steady stream of arms you'll have a tough time with these guys--ask Oakland.

The Red Sox are a very good lineup. They don't have the power of the Tigers or the depth of the Yankees, but they utilize the combination of Moneyball on-base obsessiveness and John Henry's checkbook as well as anyone. Combine that with the quality of their pitching and you have a balanced club poised for a possible run at the R-word. If only we could watch it on the TV box.
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Monday, March 24, 2008

Only the Finest Hockey Coverage, Here on the HoG



And my teammates call me the knuckle-pucker. Ouch. Read more

Thursday, March 20, 2008

All Hands On Deck

I want to preface this post with the notion that there is nothing funny about it. At all. Also, there is no sports content, and there is nothing linked to it, there are no images, no nothing of that sort.

I know that mentioning of this sort of thing isn't something that would normally happen on a blog of this sort, but in this case, it's relevant to me, to the House of Georges, and to anyone that's paid any mind to it whatsoever in the last year.

This morning, after a gruelling battle with cancer, Ann Wilke, the wonderful-and-loving mother of our very own Lone Reader, passed away.

While those words may mean little, if anything to any of the House of Georges readers, please know that it means quite a bit to me, and to everybody in our community that has known her for as long as we can remember.

I'll put it out there like this:

Imagine that one friend. That one guy who, in the world of failed relationships, divorces and family dysfunction, has the cool parents. The guy whose folks always understand, no matter how foolish your mistakes, no matter how many times you've been told, against better judgment, not to do that thing -- yet you do it anyway -- your folks understand and forgive you. The guy who has the folks that are geared up for every sporting event, every wedding shower, every holiday, every new relationship, every life success, and, equally, every failure. That guy, ladies and gentleman, is The Lone Reader.

And today, our very own TLR is minus a mama.

At this very moment, right now, hovering in the very instant of CyberSpace, I'm torn between whether or not I should go on about the dynamic, incredible person that Mama Lone Reader was, and, in the time it took me to write that half of a sentence, I've decided: I won't.

You never knew Mama LR, and you never will. But, I'm confident that you've known someone like her. Well, someone almost like her, anyway.

So, I have a favor to ask of you: whether you've come to the HoG because you're a faithful reader, or because a Google search has brought you here, I'll ask you to raise a glass to MLR. I'll then ask you to pound the table, or other surface before you -- not a shattering type of pound, but a hearty tap of sorts -- and then consume your spirit, to the Lone Reader in all of us.

And I'll ask you, as you swallow said spirit, to remember someone you've met that made you wish to make your own life more like the life of the person to whom your cheersing. Read more

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Land of Linkin'


The wife is watching American Idol, I'm drinking vodka and misdirecting your tour through the (insert clever ironic amalgam). Time, she is a wastin'...

Ed Orgeron may not be the coach at Ol' Miss (I refuse that fucking "ole" bullshit--what, they do a lot of bullfighting in Biloxi?) any longer, but doesn't mean this isn't hilarious.

Mike Florio at profootballtalk notes a story in the Post about the Broncos firing 8 employees, which dovetails well with our earlier suggestion that the franchise is either having cash issues or--more likely--Bowlen is laying the groundwork for he and his fellow owners to cry poverty and bag out of the CBA. Dark days ahead for our fandom, kids. Positively gloaming. Thank goodness baseball doesn't have labor problems.

The Crypt Keeper puzzles over Al Davis. What's the point?

Tracy Ringolsby's ego can barely fit under his oversized hat, but he is at least partly right here.

Oh, and the Broncos want a guy the Chiefs let go. Nice.

This approaches zen.

Please let this be the end of the Dewayne Robertson rumors. Please.

And here is the rest of it. Read more

Lineup Against The Wall: The Evil Empire

We just need to make one thing clear at the House of Georges: the Anaheim River German Pepper Angels are the best team in baseball. It's been made abundantly clear that not only will they win the World Series, they'll probably win between 140 and 162 games. We apologize for missing the obvious fact that they have zero weaknesses and are also blessed by the Lord with utter infallibility. Please forgive us, Jesus and Angels fans.

Now let's move on to yet another team who will be shittier than the Angels, which of course is every one of them. The New York Yankees, who've made the playoffs every year since gas was a nickel, return with yet another $200 million payroll, yet another powerhouse lineup and yet another fan base full of dicks (Full disclosure: the Red Sox are just as bad, only they win these.). They're like Al Qaeda, only less huggable.

Once again, this club will win, but once again, their ultimate success will be determined by their pitching staff. It's looking shaky on the mound, what with an ace that strikes nobody out, a horse who wants to quit, a fading star, a wunderkind with no defined role, and a bunch of kids.

But they'll score. A lot. here are your 2008 Yankees, one through nine:

1. Robinson Cano 2B
2. Derek Jeter SS
3. Bobby Abreu RF
4. Alex Rodriguez 3B
5. Hideki Matsui DH
6. Jorge Posada C
7. Johnny Damon LF
8. Jason Giambi 1B
9. Melky Cabrera CF

If you have the means to field an All-Star at every position, kids, and care only about winning this year, this is the lineup you end up with. Everyone will score 80+ runs and most everyone will drive in 80+ runs. I'd still bat Damon leadoff, as he's fully healthy this year for the first time in a while, but there's nothing wrong with getting Cano (a rising superstar) more at-bats. Most everyone here can run, and it's possible that everyone except Matsui, Posada and the first basemen will steal double-digit bases.

I have no idea how Joe Girardi will juggle at-bats and the DH spot. Obviously, all these veterans will need rest (and many will get hurt). Cabrera has gone from supersub to a deserved full-time role, but Shelly Duncan has had a scorching spring (although he'll get detention for some frisky sliding). He'll spell the corner OF spots as well as giving Giambi a break against lefties.

Wilson Betemit and Morgan Ensberg will serve as infield reserves, and one or more Molina brothers back up Posada.

Last year this club was first in the AL in everything: batting average, OPS, runs and home runs. Expect similar output, which should still be good for near the top of the league no matter how awesome Detroit's offense is. As a fantasy geek alert, look for a big year out of Abreu, who's in the last year of his contract. He, along with Giambi, Mussina and (probably) Pettitte will all come off the books next winter, so here come C.C. Sabathia, Mark Teixeria and ten other awesome dudes. Fuckers.
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Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Poring the Draft, v. Volume, Volume, Volume


And now time for a fun bit of speculation on what the Broncos and Chiefs will do with their picks in the upcoming draft. What's that? Not fun? OK, busted. No one thinks this is fun but me, and I once spent a few ferocious weeks gnawing an antique rocking chair because I thought I was a beaver.

First, the Chefs. Who need all the firsts they can muster..


Unless kcchiefs.com is wrong, the Chefs have 10 picks in the upcoming draft; their full slate, plus additional in the 5th, 6th and 7th rounds. That's a fair amount, which would lead one to speculate that they might trade up in some fashion, but I think Carl Peterson can't be bothered with that kind of shit these days. He's busy doing __. Anyway, these picks will all be better than the ones that long-suffering Arrowheaders will get in April--so enjoy, kids!

Round 1. Jeff Otah. LT Pitt

Sticking with this for now, although word is they were at Matt Ryan's workout. Could it be? Another young QB to throw into the briar patch?

Round 2. Jerod Mayo. LB Tennessee

If this guy lasts to KC in the second round, The Administrator should wet himself with joy. He won't, though, since his stock has been steadily rising, but I'm sticking with the mock for now--in real life this is more like a cornerback, maybe an Aqib Talib.

Round 3. Tommy Blake. DE TCU

Trying to find a true gem amidst the pile of Mountain West poop, King Carl reaches for a guy with mental problems--but who can also rush the passer. Then again, so could this guy.

Round 4. Chad Henne. QB Michigan

An actually smart pick, as opposed to the one that brought Mr. Glass to the City of Fountains. Henne played well in a big conference, has a big arm and doesn't look so fucking emo.

Round 5, #1. Davone Bess. WR Hawaii

This guy caught a ton of passes, and has the potential to be a good slot receiver, but beware of anything Hawaii in the NFL, unless it comes in a package with "Ma'a Tanuvasa" written on it. Also spent 15 months in Juvie, so he'll fit right in out on the plains.

Round 5, #2. Chris McDuffie. OG Clemson

I know nothing about this dude, other than that he's 6-6" and weighs 331.

Round 6, #1. Mike Hart. RB Michigan

The all-time leader at Go Blue is too slow and small to get drafted higher than this--could be a fine pick. Or not.

Round 6, #2. Kory Sperry. TE Colorado State

I'm giving you this guy as a fucking gift, and you'd best remember it. You can thank me later.

Round 7, #1. Jamey Richard. C Buffalo

Jesus, I'm too nice. This is a guy I'd love to have given to Denver--but hey, here you go...remember, though, that Buffalo has been the worst team in organized sports for a long time and this guy might be the reason. Not saying is, but, well, you know.


Ah, glad that's over. A quick chemical shower and it's time to get cracking on Denver...

Round 1. Rashard Mendenhall. RB Illinois

I'm sticking with this for this one last post, even though I've already changed my mind.

Round 2. Curtis Lofton. ILB Oklahoma

A true middleman to eventually step into the starter's role; for now, a solid backup and special teamer. (Note: I changed my mind about this since typing it, but I'll let it stand for now, because otherwise I'll never get to sleep.)

Round 4, #1. Steve Justice. C Wake Forest
Zone-blocking center. We'll coach him up into career-ruining stage quickly.

Round 4, #2. Andre Fluellen. DT Florida State

Sure, this is a little bit of wishful thinking, but what's this whole exercise? Penetrating tackle who played hurt as a senior.

Round 5, #1. Tom Zbikowski. S Notre Dame

Overrated, obnoxious, short and slow. And those are his good points. Still, he actually likes to play football, and Denver could use more of that. Also can return punts.

Round 6. Maurice Purify. WR Nebraska

Not only has he been arrested twice, he's slow and inconsistent. Did beat up on Aqib Talib, though...

Round 7, #1. Tyler Polumbus. OT Colorado

Every year, the Broncos bring in a few CU linemen. This one might actually make the team.

Round 7, #2. Barry Booker. DT Virgina Tech

Cheating again. He's probably more like a 5th rounder, but still--undersized tackle with quickness and the ability to penetrate, which Denver chicks love. Ba-bang!

There you have it. I swear I won't change my mind. For a few days, anyway.

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Monday, March 17, 2008

Lineup Against The Wall: Los Angels Of Los Anaheim

The House of Georges celebrated our first anniversary last night, in true blogger fashion. We huddled in our moms' basements all over the country and drafted fake baseball teams on the StubTubeWebNets. It was rip-roarin' good time, and if you missed it you are totally lame.

Many of the usual suspects of this grand parade were present, including your Administrator Banky, your favorite author Cecil, and yours truly. Muscular commenters Rustoleum, Waveland21 and Brian also participated, as well as some other dumb asses suave cats. It got us all lathered up for the onset of baseball season, which is still over a week away, fuck.

I would take this opportunity to simultaneously critique my opponents' clubs and brag about my dominant team, but that would create a shitstorm no one wants. Nothing makes a man more sensitive and bitchy than criticizing his fantasy baseball team, and there are not enough tampons available to stem the tide of whine that would erupt if I went at it. So instead of highlighting the missteps of, say, Brian, in last night's draft, I'll simply take a swing at his favorite big-leaguers, the red-clad Angels of Orange County, California...

The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim (literal translation: The Angels of The Angels of the Green Chili Pepper) won the American League West last season, and seemed poised to run away with it again in '08 until their pitchers started dropping like flies. With Lackey and Escobar on the shelf, the Mariners are suddenly squarely in the picture (and don't sleep on the Rangers--just a hunch).

This leaves us with a scary proposition--the Angels may need to rely on their offense to make the playoffs this season.

Los Anaheim once again failed to land a franchise stick over the winter, so they will follow their tried-and-true formula: Sign an overpriced, complimentary centerfielder coming off a career year, run like hell, and hope for solid pitching.

Hey, it worked last year, even if the recipe didn't match up with the big guns in the AL playoffs. Mike Scoscia is the best manager in the game, and one of few that can actually impose a distinct style of play on millionaire asshole players. From that standpoint, perhaps it's better to acquire the Gary Matthewses and Torii Hunters of the baseball world, guys so thankful to be making huge salaries that they won't hesitate when asked to lay down a bunt or hit-and-run. I wonder if, had the Angels actually closed the deal on A-Rod or Miguel Cabrera, they would have transformed into a more traditional AL lineup and abandoned the old school baserunning chaos. That would have been a shame.

Anyway, here are your 2008 Angels, one through nine:

1. Gary Matthews Jr. LF
2. Chone Figgins 3B
3. Vladimir Guererro RF
4. Garret Anderson DH
5. Torii Hunter CF
6. Casey Kotchman 1B
7. Howie Kendrick 2B
8. Mike Napoli C
9. A shortstop

Right off the top, this team will feel the impact of losing Orlando Cabrera immediately. OC was a force in the 2-spot last year, and is the kind of all-around glue player that teams only miss when they're gone. The Red Sox have never replaced him. Look at what Orlando Hudson means to the Diamondbacks or Derek Jeter means to the Yankees, guys that do all the little things in all phases of the game.

I think it's a mistake to bat Little Sarge leadoff, that ought to be Chone Figgins territory. I would slot Kendrick second and see if the hype is legitimate. There's no real cleanup guy (this would have been A-Rod or Cabrera's spot), so bat Hunter fourth, Matthews fifth and let the rest sort itself out. You've got a big problem scoring, since you're starting below-average power at four power positions (DH, left, third and first). So you run, which again Scosci does better than anyone.

If Brandon Wood makes the club, you might get some slugging out of the shortstop spot again, and there's a chance Napoli blossoms or the Hunter/Matthews combo regain some of their contract-year pop. Kotchman is a good, patient hitter with gap power.

At best the Angels will deliver what they did last year, when they were an explosive, ferocious ground-based attack. They passed on the aerial circus of their eastern counterparts and turned in a symphony of magic on the basepaths. It's a tried-and-true, Joe-Morgan-endorsed strategy that requires a high level of discipline. I just worry that removing the Cabrera cog in the machine may cause the whole engine to sputter.

But if Jon Garland, who was traded for OC and is now a vital starting pitcher with Lackey and Escobar out, can't excel, it may not matter. Seattle, with a much easier April schedule, may open a lead on their SoCal counterparts that would be tough to trump. Until then, enjoy watching the Chili Peppers of the Right Angles sprint around the diamond.
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Sunday, March 16, 2008

Travashamockery!


I've put it off long enough. It's Sunday, I'm nursing a hangover, but you want--nay, need--to read my first, tossed-off mock draft, which I might very well have just copied and pasted from some poor internet sap without his knowledge. Hah. I didn't, but I could have. And you wouldn't know because they all look the same. To the fakery!


(This is all assuming no trades or other such shenanigans, even though those will certainly happen, and probably with Dallas and Oakland. But I'm not feeling the creative muse today, so suck on it.)

1. Miami Dolphins. Vernon Gholston. OLB Ohio State
Steroids work, kids! Parcells gets his foundation 3-4 DE/LB combo.

2. St. Louis Rams. Chris Long. DE Virginia/Howie's Nuts
They need defense, and Jake Long makes too much sense. Fuck this team, anyway.

3. Atlanta Falcons. Jake Long. LT Michigan
They've gotta build from inside-out, because this team stinks like last week's toilet paper.

4. Oakland Raiders. Darren McFadden. RB Arkansas
I wanted to write in Glenn Dorsey or Sedrick Ellis, both of which would be better picks, but Al Davis loves him some prolific sprinters.

5. Kansas City Chefs. Jeff Otah. LT Pittsburgh
No, I'm not trying to cook the books for Denver to get Ryan Clady--I just think the talent evaluators in KC want a big-ass mauler type instead. I don't have to have a fucking reason why, so don't bother asking...OK, it's because of Herm's Kangol.

6. New York Jets. Glenn Dorsey. DT LSU
He's too good to drop this far, but they'll pick him because he's a bad fit for their 3-4 and the Jets suck horse testes on draft day.

7. New England Patriots. Sedrick Ellis. DT USC
The rich get richer, blah blah fucking blah.

8. Baltimore Ravens. Ryan Clady. LT Boise State
With Jonathan Ogden and his freakishly long arms retiring, there's a need. And he's the best guy on the board and Ozzie Newsome knows what he's doing, even if he played on a bunch of loser teams.

9. Cincinnati Bengal. Phillip Merling. DE Clemson
We can only assume he's running an elaborate interstate mail fraud operation if he lands in Cincy.

10. New Orleans Saints. Leodis McKelvin. CB Troy
Man, how the fuck did Troy start putting so many guys in the NFL? The Aints need some help here after screwing up with Jason David, who carried the suck of Indy south. It's like an infection, the Coltsness.

11. Buffalo Bills. DeSean Jackson. WR/RS California
They need juice on offense, and they love drafting little guys. For the record, this pick will make me very glad, because the Broncos won't make the mistake of picking him, going instead for...

12. Denver Broncos. Rashard Mendenhall. RB Illinois
Surprise! The team that never drafts runners higher than the second round picks maybe the best back in the draft--he only has one season of work on him, played against big-time competition (busted long run against USC in the midst of Illinois' bowl blowout), came through in the clutch and is the kind of person you hope never decides to punch you in the face. Also: likes to read. So my mom will dig this pick, and that's important.

13. Carolina Panthers. Chris Williams. LT Vanderbilt.
Does anyone truly care about this franchise? I've never met 'em. Anyway, a hedge against Jordan Gross leaving.

14. Chicago Bears. Malcolm Kelly. WR Oklahoma
At some point, this team needs to hit on an offensive prospect other than Devin Hester. Has to. Not that it will matter with the Sex Cannon behind center.

15. Detroit Lions. Derrick Harvey. DE Florida
Out with Kalimba Edwards,, in with someone whose name isn't nearly as rad.

16. Arizona Cardinals. Felix Jones. RB Arkansas
The speedy backup to McFadden, who was also speedy. Definite upgrade over the aged Edgerrin.

17. Minnesota Vikings. Mike Jenkins. CB/RS South Florida
Because I don't have to have a reason why, as stated earlier...and this time, I really don't.

18. Houston Texans. Aqib Talib. CB Kansas
The best name in the first round goes to the Kubester. Gary, we miss you. Come back.

19. Philadelphia Eagles. Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie. CB Tennessee State
Fresh blood for a team that always has a killer secondary.

20. Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Limas Sweed. WR Texas
Perfect fit for Gruden's offense; flexible enough to twist for Brian Griese floaters.

21. Washington Redskins. James Hardy. WR Indiana
Burned by short dudes, the 'Skins reach for a really tall (6'6") one.

22. Dallas Cowboys. Reggie Smith. CB/FS/PR Oklahoma
They need help in the back 4, he's got the versatility. In no way will this team actually pick here.

23. Pittsburgh Steelers. Brandon Albert. G/LT Virginia
Big, mobile and a perfect fit. Fuck this team anyway, too.

24. Tennessee Titans. Kentwan Balmer. DT North Carolina State
They should pick up a wideout, but they don't, and go with a guy unlikely to stomp on anyone's face.

25. Seattle Seahawks. Jonathan Stewart. RB Oregon
He was a top 15 pick until news about his supposedly injured toe came out, and the 'Hawks get a gift.

26. Jacksonville Jaguars. Brandon Flowers. CB Virginia Tech
It really doesn't need to be said, but--fuck this team, anyway. Why do we play them every fucking year?

27. San Diego Chargers. Calais Campbell. DE Miami
They're deep, so they can bring this unfinished Denver South product along slowly. Fuck. This. Team. Anyway.

28. Dallas Cowboys. Devin Thomas. WR/KR Michigan State
They need a wide receiver, and can't get one in free agency without hackin' off T.O.

29. San Francisco 49ers. Keith Rivers. LB USC
Pair him with Patrick Willis and the Niners look a lot better at the linebacker spot--except their line still sucks, so...

30. Green Bay Packers. Dustin Keller. TE Purdue
Athletic TE for non-Favre to grow, change and cry with.

31. New England Patriots. Big Fat Sack of Fucking Nada, for being cheaty ass cheaterfaces. Fuck this team, anyway.

32. New York Giants. Gosder Cherilus. LT Boston College
Big guy, may fit best as right tackle, but seriously--Gosder?





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Saturday, March 15, 2008

Insert Hilarious Whinny Sound In Lieu of Headline

Well, not much ado in the world of sports this morning. Guess we'll just have to have a peek into the world of sustained excellence over yonder in Bronco Country. For starters, I stumbled across this mildly dated, interesting tidbit.

Then there's the more current, localized slant on all things Bronco. Oh, Kiszla. Say it ain't so.

When finished sniffling and weeping over that, this is what it sounds like, when Doves cry.

It would appear that both Denver rags are angry with Tanahan.

Geez, even some of the retired Doncs are in hot water.

Even ol' Herc' Rock from the Sun has thrown down the ultimatum.

Leaves one to wonder what the players think...



...or does it?
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Friday, March 14, 2008

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Land of Linkin'


Again with these. Soon this site will be a link dump with no text beyond the occasional spare "n00bz." Here's some stuff anyway.

Non-sports: this is an animated version of a conversation on Yahoo! answers, where the Hoi Polloi ask questions that their fellows attempt to answer. If that sounded snotty and elitist, it's because it was. Anyway, The first time I watched this, I nearly peed myself.

Catfish probably doesn't read this blog, but he sure wouldn't appreciate some easterner in pancake makeup bagging on his team.

You probably avoided this story because it made the throwup show up. I should have.

Oh my goodness.

Pro Day workout updates, courtesy of paleolithic football figure Gil Brandt, who revolutionized scouting with the Dallas Cowboys and also took part in the Diet of Worms.

Some dude named Scott Wright thinks the Chefs will beat us to Ryan Clady, which would cause me to shake a closed fist menacingly in that city's direction. He also has us taking a linebacker who will probably drop to the bottom third of the round.

Yahoo! puts the draft on its front page.

And finally, just for fun, one of my relatives.



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The HoG One-Year Anniversary Presents "Things We Actually Covered Well": Part Three, WAHCW

As our year-anniversary, self-inflicted crotch rub celebration continues (Editor's Note: We can't thank the hordes of you who've sent cakes and cards enough), it's time to re-visit another aspect of our coverages that might be found synonymous with words like successful, laudatory, bravado. And this feature hasn't been an easy one to upkeep. As later noted, there are a few gaps in the consistency of its appearance, but being that we operate on a pretty small budget, it's not easy to keep flying in talent, schedule the photographers, etc., etc.

That said, there have been a few installments of the WATCH, as Seven likes to call it, that have in fact given us the esteemed red-letter day on occasion over these past 12 months. We've taken it upon ourselves to share a few of those with our readers, after the jump, this time sparing the eyes and the wrists of those oft-obnoxious links. Well, most of them, anyway. (Note: We've recruited a very special narrator to re-hash the year. Enjoy.)

"Yeeeaaaah....hey, reader. How's it going?

"Mmm-hmm. Wanted to talk to you about this Hot Chicks Wednesday business. Yeeaah. I'm gonna have to go ahead and say that these, uh, yeeah, Houses of George characters haven't exactly done the most efficient job in this series, but, uh...well, we'll cover that later, 'kay?"

April



"Let's see. So, the, uh, House, of, uh, Georges team didn't really have a whole lot going on in April. Pretty, uh, amateur stuff, if you will. They did have this post on Monica Bellucci, but, uh, yeah...not a whole lot more."



"So, I, uh, took the liberty of including this photo. She seems like an intelligent young gal, someone I'd like on board with me at my company. Keeping busy. Reading. Probably works weekends without being asked. Mm-hmm."

May



"Right. Apparently, May was famous people month for the team of Georges."



"Couldn't get any local talent, so they had to make do with images of folks we already knew were talented."



"Yeeah. Pretty me-di-ocre in my estimation."

June



"June included some posts of some interesting names,



like 'The Sultry Stare,' and 'Cat Scratch Fever,' and 'Who's the Boss?'"



"Yeeah. Clever, but, uh, not very original. I'd give that month a C-."

July



"In my eyes, July tended to get a little out of hand."



"And really, what do we mean by 'out of hand'?"



"We pretty much mean lazy, unoriginal, lots of, uh, (throws finger quotes in air) 'shock value' material, if you will."



"But, uh, you know, this house full of georges



may as well've called themselves a house of rookies this first go around."

August

"Yeah. Now that I've gone out on that limb,



August did show marked signs of improvement.



"Although there was some material here that I, uh, yeah, well, I'm not really sure if I got it.



"Nevertheless, it was a busy month for this feature



as it generated five installments and included some clever names like 'Top Shelf',



'The Buddy System', etc."

September



"Mmm-hmm. And then there's September.



"Right back into the thick of laze. Generic posturing,



footballish scenes,



and, uh, overall monotony.



"The Georges plugged along, but, yeah, originality



really faltered in September.



"Maybe one of their, uh, weakest months thus far. In fact, if they could avoid that trend for all of 2008, that'd be grreat.

October



"And we see it continuing in October,



only this time with less output.



January



"Yeeah, and that brings us to November and December where, we, uh, don't see much of anything from these Georges. Pretty embarrassing.



"At least there's the token January post.

February



"February we see a little more effort, sort of coming out



of that winter's coma, if you will.

March



"And March is, uh, still ongoing, of course.



"I suppose if you wanted to inspect one specimen of this year's worth



of installments, it might behoove you to do so for the lone March edition.



"It's got nice variety and generated some conversation, and, uh, in all likelihood, can be found here.

"So, um. Yeah. I'm gonna need the Georges to go ahead and work weekends to make this feature better if they want me to re-cap it again next year. If they, uh, if they can make that happen, that'd be grreat."
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