Picks of the Pen

There’s nothing more dignified than two grown men in similar outfits trying to box each other’s ears, and David Ortiz and Kevin Gregg proved that Friday night in Boston.  Personally, I like anything that shows the O’s still have some life in them, which makes me utter for the first and probably last time ever, “I respect what you’ve done, Kevin Gregg.”  His post game comments–regarding the Red Sox taking exception to him pitching inside and Ortiz not running out a pop-up–were to die for.

“They are going to whine and complain about it because they think they are better than everybody else. But no, we have just as much right to pitch inside as they do.”

What did FanSided’s bloggists have to say?

I do not condone fighting but if you’re going to charge the mound Ortiz, please try to land a punch. Watching Kevin Gregg try to explain himself after the bench-clearing brawl was pathetic.  Gregg probably won’t get hit by a member of the Red Sox. He may, however, get hit by one of his teammates when a Red Sox pitcher decides to throw at one of them.

–Bryan Belliveau, BoSox Injection

So let me get this straight. Ortiz is a 6 foot 4, 230 pound man who allegedly took steroids and likes to point his finger and act like a tough guy. Meanwhile he is so scared of a baseball he has to wear a giant elbow guard so he can crowd the plate. Then when a pitcher does try to pitch inside he gets mad.

–Lauren Tilly, Birds Watcher

Hey wait a second!  This story didn’t contain anything about Derek Jeter!  Why the hell did you bother reading it?  If you’d like all of your internet to appear Jeterless, please hurry up and download the Jeter Filter, now available for Google Chrome.  Seriously.



As I’m typing this–right now, as the letters appear on the screen–the Pittsburgh Pirates have undone close to two decades of Barry Bonds-less mayhem.  Not really. But the second place Pirates have given their fans something to pay attention to, and not just with the vacant stares of the eternally victimized.  As the sun rises over Buctown, they stumble out of their hibernation chambers.

What is this strange game played with balls and sticks?  Who are these gentlemen wearing the Steelers’ colors, but playing a foreign game?  Be they foreigners themselves?  Should we defend our fair city from this strange assault?

Nay, let us… let us sit and watch for a moment.  I find myself quickly enchanted by these trodding on dirt and grass; swinging clubs and hurling spheres.  The summer sun… it feels warm and comforting on my face.

Yes.  Yes, this is a good thing.

With Leather offers a look back at what the Bucs have been doing for the past 18 years in commemoration of this day, should its mirth be ever fleeting.  And Rum Bunter is… well.  Rum Bunter loves it.


As we approach the All-Star break, everyone and their mother are coming out with their first half awards, our site included.  One that I’ve read that’s a little out of the ordinary is Jayson Stark’s piece he wrote this week at ESPN.com.  Stark lists the usual MVP’s, Cy Young’s and manager of the year’s, but he also gives readers his picks for LVP (Least Valuable Player) as well as my favorite honor, the Cy Yuk.

While there were all kinds of stories this week, capped off by the thing that he who will not be named of New York did this weekend.  But one of the larger events that has gone unnoticed because of brawls and milestones has been the call up of stud prospect Mike Trout.  The Angels brought the 19 year old up to the bigs after they lost their primary center fielder to injury.  Kalup Alexander over at Halo Hangout talked about the significance of the roster move.


The Rays have been very successful for the past few years thanks in large part to their General Manager Andrew Friedman. Rays fans are hoping that the front office stays intact for the foreseeable, but Rays Index wonders whether that will be the case. It’s all about the money and the Astros could certainly offer a raise that Friedman could be hard pressed to refuse.

A friend of mine called me this past week to ask, among other things, if the Pirates were for real. I’m not positive that they are, but one thing is for certain–they need to try do something to end this long, long string of losing seasons. Rum Bunter looks at the possibility that the Pirates would go after someone like Carlos Pena from the Cubs. At least, if nothing else, Pena plays well against the other NL Central clubs.

Tags: Baltimore Orioles Boston Red Sox David Ortiz Kevin Gregg Pittsburgh Pirates Tampa Bay Rays

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