Howard 100 News reports that Baba Booey aka Fa-Fa-Flunky aka Ta-Ta-Toothy aka Ma-Ma-Monkey aka Boy Gary might be making a stop at Nationals Park sometime during the 2014 season to take in a game and scratch the Washington ballpark off his list of ballparks he has visited. Baba Booey is actually named Gary Dell’Abate and is the famed producer of the Howard Stern Show on SiruisXM. His boss, shock jock Howard Stern, once was employed by D.C. radio station DC101.
Dell’Abate (who we will refer to as Baba Booey from now on in this article because I hate that coma in his name) is an avid baseball fan and is in the process of organizing among his friends a tour that will eventually take them to every ballpark in the MLB. Right now, tentatively, Toronto or Washington are next on his list in 2014. Baba Booey forced himself into MLB infamy on May 9, 2009 when he threw out the first pitch at a New York Mets game that ended up doing a Matt Chico and hit an umpire. It is perhaps the worst first pitch in baseball history. You decide:
The NQ are huge Stern Show fans and the possibility of seeing Baba Booey in the crowd at a Nats game and getting the opportunity to shout “Baba Booey” or “Howard Stern’s penis” at him would probably be the apex of this blog’s existence.
It would be cool if the Nats could find out if and when he is coming and offer him a chance to redeem himself by letting him throw out the first pitch. Maybe he’ll finally swear off the Mets. Probably not, but one could hope.
By the way, check out that hyperlink above with the Booey Compilation. In it is a guy wearing a Nats hat who uses “Baba Booey” as code for something is wrong during a newscast.
Alright. The time has come. I am going to bare my ass to you all, my faithful ternion. For the past five years you have stuck with me, read my dribble and at least in my mind propelled this blog to the level of toilet porn which is farther than I ever thought it would ever reach.
You have probably noticed an extreme drop off of content on this blog over the past six or seven months. No, your old pal DangerNat hasn’t lost interest in the team or sport and no this isn’t some blog signing off post. It is just awhile back life sort of caught up with me. I was tired, put down, laid on, laid off and got myself into a rut. My wife started frequenting seedy bars and underground Chip and Dale joints while my kids started calling me by my first name and became Chipper Jones fans. Actually I am kidding about those last two parts, but my family life was suffering a bit I admit so perhaps you can understand that writing about rich athletes facial hair, bitchings and strangeness wasn’t really on the top of my list.
Deep depression set in. I was taking special Pez candies prescribed by my doctor and seeing strange, balding figures who where suffering their own midlife crisis and buying Mini-Coopers while trying to help me. It is like I became the poster love child to Zack Greinke and Ladycakes. Needless to say, I needed to get my shit together and thankfully I have or at least I am on the path to.
So I have taken the steps to begin a quest to become a mortician. That quest starts this coming Saturday (July 13th) as I start a position as a funeral assistant. Please, wish me luck.
That being said, I will be unable to do a whole bunch on the blog so sadly, there will not be an uptick in content, but there WILL be content. Just more spaced out and a little more selective. Don’t worry, if you like crap, there will still be crap too, but just selective crap. I have been working with my apprentice, Dr. W, who has been learning the ropes and growing by leaps and bounds. I am hoping (praying) he will continue to be interested in this sort of “all guts, no glory” type of blogging and help keep this blog alive by putting out more content. I haven’t given him a key to the apartment yet, but he is getting close.
I just thought you’d like to know. I sort of owe it to you. I also owe it to my staff and the blog itself which has been like a neglected baby the past few months and I’ve felt bad about it. I haven’t changed its diapers or anything.
So now you are all caught up.
And I am not kidding about the mortician part.
The Nationals Inquisition completed it’s grand runaround-cycle of the Nationals minor leagues by finally taking in a game of the Double-A Harrisburg Senators at Metro Bank Park on Saturday night in Harrisburg, PA. If there was ever a zombie apocalypse and you wanted to catch a baseball game during it, Metro Bank Park is the place to go as it is situated on an island in the middle of the Susquehanna River downtown Harrisburg, chock full of family entertainment.
Sadly the Sens did not fare as well as this blog’s good time. They dropped the game 3-2 to the Bowie Baysox (Orioles affiliate). Luckily it was Bryce Harper Pillowcase Night so it prevented me from crying myself to sleep because there is no crying in baseball.
Be as it may and be it that there is a blog that is laying around for content, I have some thoughts on the game. I know, I know, you’ve been waiting all day and are dying to know the opinions of some doof with a keyboard. So here you are you impatient, selfish people. I shall list you to death:
- So do remember Brian Goodwin? That kid drafted in the first round (34th) of the 2011 draft? Yeah, the young centerfielder is in Harrisburg and is leading off. Hopefully Saturday was an off night for him because from what we saw of him, he was not that impressive. In fact he sucked at the plate. The Bowie pitcher was no Cy Young and his off speed stuff was crap, but Goodwin just couldn’t lay off said crap and embarrassed himself a couple times at the plate.
- Ahoy LeCroy! Matt “Beer Truck” LeCroy is Harrisburg’s manager and he seems to be fermenting well in the manager position. Had to roll himself out of the dugout during a botched umpiring call where one of his players got hit by a pitch but the umpire called strike three. Polite to the ump, no heat, no threat of getting thrown out– and no getting the correct call. Blue said the out stood.
- Speaking of the umpiring crew, they blew goats and wooly mammoths. Both Harrisburg and Bowie got bad calls from a head umpire who couldn’t decide where the strike zone was and who made it obviously clear why he was umping Double-A baseball.
- The Senators patriotic jerseys made them look like they were going to run the Olympic torch in the 1980s or shoot up steroids before taking on the Tour De France.
Okay, so that is a crappy list. Sue me. But there is one odd footnote to all this: Bowie Baysox fans (Orioles fans?) are just plain weird. There was this old fart decked out in O’s gear sitting two seats away from me and just kept giving me the staredown. I have no idea why. He would watch the action on the field and when there was a break he would turn his head and just stare at me without saying anything, but obviously something had his gump. He was in his late 50s it looked and probably had some sort of dementia. Every Bowie pitch was a strike in his book and every pitch from the Sens Taylor Hill was way outside the zone and should have been a ball.
Somehow the NQ always gets the freaks.
But great time in Harrisburg in a beautiful park–
Christ, this post sucks. I haven’t been active a whole lot this season for certain reasons and the rust is showing. I feel like Dan Haren pitching only three innings: I suck.
Editor’s Note: We actually got a lot of good shots of this game, too many to put in our standard photo buffet. If you are interested in seeing some more shots they will be posted on the Nationals Inquisition Tumblr page sometime in the very near future. I am not going to tell you when. I have to keep some secrets.
For the first time in quite a while I made my way back to Woodbridge, the area where I grew up. I did not go to shop at Potomac Mills nor did I go to eat some veal marsala at Roma. I did not go to revisit my childhood. I made my way back home because I heard on MLB Network, during Quick Pitch, that the Nationals’ grizzled RF Jayson Werth was in town for his rehab assignment with the Nats Single-A affiliate, the Potomac Nationals.
With a ball in my hand and P-Natitude in my heart, I got in my truck to see the progress Werth has made since injuring his hamstring. Let me be the first to tell you that Werth appears to be locked and loaded. He went 1-2 in the game with a hard-hit single (pictured above). Watching him warm up and watching him in the outfield revealed that he appears to be comfortable on the field and whatever discomfort he may or may not still be feeling is not slowing him down at all.
Perhaps the most impressive thing about Werth on the Potomac Nationals was his presence. It is easy to feel the championship-caliber veteran presence Werth has to him when he plays in DC. But it is significantly more evident in the more intimate Pfitzner Stadium. Every time the ball left the barrel of a Salem player’s bat, you could hear Werth shouting in RF on how to field the ball. Whenever he walked back to the dugout, he was accompanied by the young CF, Michael Taylor, who was listening to Werth as if he were listening to a coach.
This is the kind of player Werth is. As much as he is a competitor on the field, he is also a mentor to the young talent that we can expect to know over the next few years. We all see his contributions on the field. We see the clutch hits, the home runs, the walk-offs, the long and collected at-bats, the beard, and his winning mentality. What many do not see is his off-the-field presence that is worth almost as much as his contributions on the field. It is for this reason that I would love to see Werth serve as a coach to this team when he retires from playing.
After the game, Werth delighted a lot of fans by talking with them and signing pretty much anything people put in his face. So Werth and I have crossed paths yet again and I was able to shake hands with the legend. I also managed to get a ball signed for a great friend of mine. Yes, the benefits for going French with the Werth mask keep pouring in!
Rest your weary heads Nationals fans, Werth will be back in no time and, from the looks of it, he will be back with a vengeance.
Ex-Nationals outfielder Nyjer Morgan is over in Japan right now playing for the Yokohama BayStars who apparently are one of those teams who have an illustrious history of winning but over the past decade or so they have been mired in a decline. If you need anymore evidence, they pay Nyjer Morgan a stipend.
Here is a near eight minute highlight reel of one of the Baystar’s games against the Dragons. The first 3:50 of the video captures the beauty of Morgan’s inability to play the game right by showing off a couple of his strike outs, f**k ups and sloppiness he displayed after the honeymoon with each of the MLB teams he was on. But then he starts hitting the ball, scoring and making scoring opportunities before finally making a dumb luck catch in an outfield full of circus clowns. The Baystars won the day.
But let’s forget about Morgan. Do you hear that atmosphere in the background? That is absolutely incredible and it isn’t even a playoff game.
Let’s get this out of the way–
It is ridiculous to judge a baseball team playing a 162-game season after only 12 games. In fact, I advocate completely ignoring the baseball season in the way of stats, standings and record until at least 20 games are under a team’s belt. Maybe more, but to make rash judgements at this time is just silly.
But this is a blog and it needs word porn. So let’s talk about the elephant in the room– Drew Storen.
No Nats fan wants to talk about closer Drew Storen. We don’t. We want to sit there with a hot dog up our noses and beer in our pants pretending all is well and we have at least the third or fourth coming of Mariano Rivera. After blowing the most important game in Nationals history in shocking fashion in the 2012 playoffs we want to believe that Storen spent the off season getting his head together and is ready to redeem himself.
But has he? After such a definitive, career defining moment– has Storen gotten his head around it? As I said at the beginning: I’m an asshole if I judge Storen on just 12 games and a 3.38 ERA so I will give him the benefit of the doubt– but….
I don’t think he has. My gut says so. His face says so when he gives up a play or a run. Storen used to have the look and confidence of a young buck who was deep in the rut and knew he’d have a choice of does. Now, I have a feeling his mind is constantly stained and stuck on that long, cold October night. After a quote like this, how could it not? Associated Press:
“We had it right there, and the most disappointing thing I’ll say is that I just let these guys down,” Storen said. “I know there’s an unbelievable crowd and unbelievable support, but for the amount of adversity we dealt with this year, for it to come down to that was kind of tough.”
Christ. I feel so bad for the kid and so early in his career. But, greatness, legend, “that time” comes even at the most unwanted of times. And he blew it. He absolutely blew it. People remember those who have moments of greatness but equally remember those who shit the bed. Nats fans will always remember Drew Storen and unless he closes the final game of a World Series game or even more important playoff series in the Nats favor, he will be remembered for all the wrong reasons.
I can only think of Brad Lidge at times like these and when you think of Brad Lidge you most likely think of Game 5 of the 2005 National League Championship Series where Lidge’s moment came caving in when Albert Pujols mortared a Lidge pitch for an eventual game winning home run when the Astros, relying on Lidge, where one out away from a World Series berth. Gone went the baseball as well as Houston’s last post season dreams of glory, Lidge’s soul and pretty much Lidge’s career. Ever since he really hasn’t gotten back on the horse entirely. The young, naive, closer was scared out of him. I am sure he still wakes up in the middle of the nights in drenching sweats.
Everyone fears the same happened to Storen. Everyone. All of us, even though we pretend to sip the Kool Aid with smiles on our faces and give the kid pats on the back saying, “Next time, killer.” I hate to admit it, but I don’t feel the confidence in Drew Storen right now. I really would rather him not close out games or at least close games at this juncture. Not until he can find his Apollo Creed to hug in the waves. Not until he truly finds his head.
Benching him won’t do anything for him. Like Maverick in ‘Top Gun’ they need to get him back out on the mound as soon as they can after crashing and killing the Goose. But start him small, have him pitch relief in innings of low pressure and against scrub teams. Build up his confidence before he engages the Russians again. I would say maybe a quick trip to Syracuse might do him some good, but I know it will never happen and that might do him more damage than good.
It really is looking like the big problem for Washington this season is going to be the bullpen. The starters are doing alright, the offense is showing up more often than not, but that bullpen with a messed up Drew Storen in it is looking a little exposed. Pitching mechanics can be fixed and tweaked. Head jobs require a little more work.
It is hard working with a mind job. Trust me, I have a staff full of them.
This is already a couple days old and you have probably already have seen it, but I might as well post it up anyway because D.C. United was nice enough to send this our way and this is my blog and I will post what I want.
Before he got pwned on Sunday by Atlanta, Nationals pitcher Gio Gonzalez took in a D.C. United game at RFK stadium on Saturday night. D.C. United. Washington’s professional Major League Soccer team. Yes, D.C. has a soccer team and they win more gear than pretty much all the other D.C. sports teams– at least they have in the past. Before the game Gio served as a cross-sport ambassador and met with fans, signed autographs and hopefully left before United was sent to a crushing, miserable 2-0 defeat.
From the video I see Gonzalez met with some of the local supporter’s groups or if you want to go all European on us, the “firms.” Definitely see some members of La Barra Barva and the Screaming Eagles. Great photo of a RVA-DCU rep. Gio probably hit the other groups too, like the District Ultras (my fav) and La Norte.
I love it when the Nationals get together with other D.C. sports teams to show support, especially D.C. United. I’ve been saying for awhile now that a Nats-United combo is potential gold. United fans are absolutely incredible and I wish that energy and creativity would translate over to baseball, but sadly I think baseball is stuck in the its own muck of snobbery and tradition to actually “get it.”
Oh, stop it. Don’t act like drum beating, singing and smoke bombs wouldn’t have improved the atmosphere at Nats Park this past weekend.
From all reports it sounds like more people attended a funeral rather than a baseball game.