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Bong-Man

2012 Baseball Thread

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Jim Leyland is "crusty old baseball guy". What's not to love there. If the Tigers get the pitching they got last year, they win that division easy I think.

I'm looking forward to opening day next week (Mariners and A's in Japan today doesn't really count).

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Going to see the Yanks vs. Astros this saturday in Kissimmee!!!

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Tigers should easily win the division, question is can they compete for the AL pennant and get to the World Series. Miguel Cabrera/Prince Fielder may be the best duo in baseball, so their offense will be good. Verlander, Fister, and Scherzer are a great starting trio, just have to see if Porcello can get it together and if we can have a decent 5th starter. Defense will be the main question, can Cabrera play 3rd? With him, Fielder, and Peralta in the infield, that's not a lot of range. But they should be good, there's reason to be excited again!

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One thing I do know, Bobby Valentine who makes no secret of his dislike for the Yankees is now managing the Red Sox. He's already been throwing matches onto a simmering small fire. I think he started the first week of spring training actually.

I can't wait to see Yankees/Red Sox this year. The last few years the play on the field hasn't really matched the fevor the fans feel but with Bobby V. launching hand grenades I think it will this year.

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How dumb is it that the regular season opens today in Japan, while the rest of the league is still playing spring training games.

:slapface:

And Ichiro takes an early lead in the batting race with 4 hits! ;)

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One thing I do know, Bobby Valentine who makes no secret of his dislike for the Yankees is now managing the Red Sox. He's already been throwing matches onto a simmering small fire. I think he started the first week of spring training

Valentine will do well this season, IMO, with the sox. He always does well the first season with a team. Second season and beyond, well.... It will be interesting with the yanks and sox though. Will the yanks find some youth for their line-up? I love that Pettite is coming back! Tigers should win the AL, not sure about the NL, but I guess Philly is a solid choice. Plus let's put pressure on both of 'em and see how they handle it!

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I am curious to see how the Red Sox play after everything that happened at the end of last season. I think they can be 95 win team if all goes well. At least the booze is out of the clubhouse. :P

As a Cubs fan, I am not sure how long my excitement for Baseball this season will last. Rebuilding takes time, but sucks to watch. Theo is already doing good things.

WOW! I can't believe it's Baseball season already!

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I am curious to see how the Red Sox play after everything that happened at the end of last season. I think they can be 95 win team if all goes well. At least the booze is out of the clubhouse. :P

As a Cubs fan, I am not sure how long my excitement for Baseball this season will last. Rebuilding takes time, but sucks to watch. Theo is already doing good things.

WOW! I can't believe it's Baseball season already!

I do not know what is worse. Being a Cub's fan or an Oriole's fan like me? I do not even care about basball any more

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I do not know what is worse. Being a Cub's fan or an Oriole's fan like me? I do not even care about basball any more

Being a Mets fan is worse...... but I still love them anyway.

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I do not know what is worse. Being a Cub's fan or an Oriole's fan like me? I do not even care about basball any more

Oh dear... You're obviously still under the influence of the surgery. Go back to bed and rest up!

And feel better soon. It's almost baseball season :)

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well the red sox surely blew it last year but truth is they still have one hell of a team and now they have something to prove..........the american league as a whole seems so improved the competition should be some of the best ever

that being said the phillies would truly seem to be the team to beat.....year in year out

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Hey Bonger. Tell your boys to start swinging the lumber. Verlander has a two hitter through seven. I took the Tigers minus a run and half. Come on you damn Tigers

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I always have felt the Marlins were a joke, and if ever a team should be contracted, they are a leading candidate. But what the Marlins owner, Jeffrey Loria did today was almost beyond belief and pretty much cements him as the WORST OWNER IN SPORTS.

Muhammad Ali a Poor Choice for First Pitch

By: Deron Snyder | Posted: April 5, 2012

muhammad-ali-wrong-choice-040512-400ds.jpg

Muhammad Ali with Miami Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria (Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)

Maybe Muhammad Ali wanted to be on that golf cart Wednesday night. Maybe he wanted to hear a crowd's cheers one more time. Maybe he actually feels a real strong connection to Miami, where he beat Sonny Liston in 1964 and where the Marlins opened their brand-new stadium Wednesday.

If that's the case, if "the Greatest of All Time" was eager and anxious to be part of Opening Day ceremonies at Marlins Park, officials should have come up with something else. Perhaps a brief shot of him on the video screen, waving from the owner's suite. Because putting him on a golf cart for an excruciatingly slow ride from the bullpen to the pitcher's mound was a total buzzkill.

The scene didn't fit the rest of the evening, which was joyous, festive and celebratory. Instead, Ali's appearance was sad, awkward and eerie. When the crowd stopped trying to muster up cheers and a half-hearted "Ali, Ali!" chant, it watched in stunned silence. The 70-year-old former champion, his frail body ravaged by Parkinson's disease, trembled uncontrollably as Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria wrapped an arm around him.

Loria, who isn't very popular among fans, likely would have been booed if Ali weren't next to him. That's one reason the move to include Ali seemed so exploitative -- Loria using him as a shield and as an unnecessary, high-profile prop.

"I wanted to give the fans a sense that we're doing special things for them," Loria told reporters after Miami's 4-1 loss to the St. Louis Cardinals. Loria said that he convinced Ali to participate about two months ago. "I thought it would be nostalgic, and his wife [Lonnie] thought it might be fun for him to come here," Loria said.

If it was fun for the champ, we couldn't tell. He wore dark glasses and a blank expression, with no visible connection to the happenings around him. Incapable of throwing the first pitch, Ali was handed a ball and handed it to a player when the ride ended. The moment was nothing like the image of Ali lighting the 1996 Olympic Torch in Atlanta, when the trembling didn't overshadow his dignity, strength and conquering spirit.

As the Huffington Post noted, "The crowd both in stadium and on Twitter reacted with an apparent mix of depressed sympathy, mass confusion, and, at least online, open suspicion over Loria's motives."

Is it selfish not to want to see Ali like that? Absolutely. We have our memories and don't want them ruffled by disturbing images from the present. Surely Ali's loved ones understand, keeping his public appearances to a bare minimum. Surely they don't want Ali to be a downer to his fans.

Ali's connection to Miami is so faint -- a fight that occurred 48 years ago -- that he seemed out of place at Marlins Park. Especially since there are no known ties to baseball itself. Again, having him wave at fans from a suite would have been one thing, sparing everyone the prolonged image of his shaky ride. But putting him on full display for several minutes in the middle of the field seemed like a cheap publicity stunt gone horribly wrong.

"The opening of Marlins Park started off with a parade of showgirls and Jose Feliciano singing the National Anthem," wrote Deadspin's Erik Malinowski. "It ended with the sad, shameless sight of Loria trotting out Ali's disease-ravaged body for a forced on-field ceremony. Happy Opening Day, everyone."

Loria was as clueless afterward as he was when the idea struck him. "The disease is debilitating, but he is still the most famous person on the face of the earth," the owner said. "It's a big up for the crowd and for me. That's what it's all about."

No, it was about using an all-time legend for selfish purposes. It was a disgrace. Ali deserved better, and so did everyone who watched.

Edited by Strider

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Dumb ass Leland. Verlander has a two hitter going but he has to to with the modern day mentality that you have to put a closer in. Stupid bullshit. Leave the fucking guy in to pitch a complete game like in the old days you fucking dumb ass's.

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^ You know this early in the season they rarely let them go the full 9, big picture....

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Strider, I was also horrified at what Loria did last night. He really shouldn't be allowed to own a team since he pretty much ruined the Expos/Nats so he could "move up" to a "better" franchise. Blech...

That said - Opening Day tomorrow in Baltimore!!!!!! I'm sure I'll have a picture or two that I'll force you all to look at :D

Can't wait!!!!!!!

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^^^ Awww...thanks for asking :) It was a lovely day (shoulda brought gloves, but otherwise it wasn't too uncomfortable).

Here's the most important picture! :D

092.jpg

And here are the rest (along with some spring training ones), if you want to browse...

http://s272.photobuc...g%20Day%202012/

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I thought of you yesterday as I watched the game on TV wondering if you were there EBK. I guessed right. I am delighted we got the win and have no doubt Arietta is probably our ace. It will be interesting to see how Hunter does? We must get pitching. If we are to escape the misery of the last 30 or so years. I cannot help but think better days are ahead. Nobody will take us seriously until we accomplish it. I am hoping we prove all the so called experts wrong and knock the usual contenders from their seat. Boston and the Yankees are enough to overcome but Tampa and Toronto are no joke either. GO BIRDS!!!! As for my post yesterday I stand by what I said. The Tigers did indeed win, but I do not like their decision to pull Verlander. No way. The guy has a 2 hitter and you pull him and blow the win for him. And almost the game. Chime in Bonger.

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Nice photos ebk, quite enjoyable to view. Thanks.

I've been on the Orioles bandwagon since 1966 and it's too late to fall off now. They gave me a "grandfather" clause for being an offical fan even though I live in New York state and am surrounded by Yankee or Met fans.

Go O's!

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Nice photos ebk, quite enjoyable to view. Thanks.

I've been on the Orioles bandwagon since 1966 and it's too late to fall off now. They gave me a "grandfather" clause for being an offical fan even though I live in New York state and am surrounded by Yankee or Met fans.

Go O's!

So glad you enjoyed the pictures!

It's been tough being an O's fan for the past, oh, 15 or so years... I'm happy for all the company I can find! :D

That said... break up the O's! We're 2 and 0!!! Yay!!!

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