Tradebaitin’

It’s been a while since I posted about actual baseball, so I thought I would do something that I absolutely love to do: make predictions that won’t happen in a million years.  With a team with nearly no trade bait, let’s take a look at the trades that will be made, according to Chorizy.

Xavier Cedeno and Joakim Soria

These two bullpen pieces have been solid as of late and there are a ton of teams that will be looking for help there.  You don’t have to look outside of our division to find a playoff team with a dumpster fire of a pen.  With Andrew Miller currently out Cleveland’s bullpen is especially bad.  But even when he comes back, it won’t be enough to make them good.  So we ship not 1 but 2 relievers to the Indians so we can get an actual player in return.  I know this is a stretch, but solidifying their bullpen will come at a cost and that cost will be Bradley Zimmer.   Zimmer was a hot name with the Indians winning the starting CF job this year, but his high strike out rate landed him in AAA and now he’s on the shelf with a shoulder injury.  Might be the perfect time to buy low on Zimmer and plan for him to take on CF in 2019.

James Shields

You knew we were gonna talk about my favorite guy.  His ability to not be terrible this year has thrown him into the trade rumor mix.  Unfortunately, you’re not gonna get much for Shields and it’s going to become important to move him to make way for Michael Kopech.  So I think the Sox will be an a position where a move is forced and a team in need of a starter, ut not willing to risk much because of the strength of their division will step in.  That team is Angels.  And what will we get?  Of course, our guy Cash Considerations.

Jose Abreu

This will basically come down to who gets desperate at the deadline.  I wouldn’t be surprised if that were the Yankees with the shit season Greg Bird is having at the plate.  Looking at their prospects, Dillon Tate and Dermis Garcia look like Sox.  Tate is basically Carson Fulmer and Garcia is pretty much Matt Davidson.  Seems like the exact guys Hahn would go after once he realizes the market won’t produce a team’s top prospect.

Leury Garcia

If you have been down with anything above, I can guarantee I lose you now.   I like Leury.  I like his position flexibility.  I like his speed.  I like his contract.  But these are all things that other teams would like as well, I mean, Brandon Phillips just got picked up.  And when it comes time for a playoff run having a guy with those attributes is very helpful.  So where does he go?  I’m gonna send him to the Mariners and in return…Robinson Cano.  This sounds insane, I know.  But think about it.  Cano is now a problem for the Mariners, since when he comes back from his suspension he can contribute but he can’t play in the playoffs.  Also, he has a gigantic contract that he’s into the back half of.  After this season, he has 5/120 left on his contract, taking him to year 40.  I say the Mariners pick up at least half of that and stick with Dee Gordon at 2b.  The Sox move Cano to 3B where he can be less mobile than at 2B for the next 5 yrs.  He would have been a SS had it not been for Derek Jeter, so he should have the arm to grow old at 3B.  His type of tools age well, so you should get production out of him.  Plus, might get Jay-Z to come to a few games.

-Chorizy-E

 

The 5 – Better ways to do the Sandlot promotion

I’m not totally blaming the Sox here.  Sounds like this is a league-wide promotion and it’s probably happening the same way everywhere.  But Beefloaf and I were discussing this the other day and there are some better ways to do this.  If you don’t know what I am talking about, after the Sox game on Saturday, they played the move The Sandlot on the scoreboard.  The only concessions seemed to be popcorn and candy.  People were able to sit in their seats and watch the movie.

On the Field

Instead of doing this after a game, do this on a day when the Sox aren’t even in town and let the fans sit on the field.  You can have a limited set of tickets at a really low price and let families come in and watch the movie on the field.  This is a far better experience for the fans and there is a reason to watch it in the park instead of just watching it at home.

Before the Game

Having the movie play pre-game instead of post-game is so much better.  Get some asses in the seats early.  Sell a bunch of concessions.  At the conclusion of the movie, you can have one of the guys from the movie throw out the first pitch while Benny the Jet steals home.

Alternate Baseball Movie in the Bars

If it has to be post-game, let’s have some other baseball movies going in the bar areas.  Maybe Bull Durham or Major League.  Of course I won’t Bingo Long.  Hell, why not make this an actual thing.  Post-game Friday night movie at Chi-Sox.  Of course, they’ll close the kitchen 5 seconds after people get there and the promotion will be worthless.

Live Action

Find the 10 drunkest people in the park and give them $20 in Comiskey Cash to act out the movie in the concourse.  This will only last about 5 mins before someone goes full Diego Maradona and starts flipping people off, but it’ll be extremely entertaining.

Replace the Movie with Ozzie Guillen Video Clips

Instead of playing a movie at the end of the game, every game should end with snippets of Ozzie interviews.  When the Sox lose it should be angry Ozzie after a past loss.  After a win, you get the “winning is fung” Ozzie.  In a rain delay, you get a mix of Howard Ankin commercials and Ozzie saying things he’ll get in trouble for like stuff about Fidel Castro and Jay Marriotti.

-Chorizy-E

The 5 – Daniel Palka Defense

The White Sox have tons and tons of holes, and truth be told, it is too much of a burden for the front office and coaching staff to handle on their own.  This is where we “the fans” come in.  Our suggestions or even solutions could make the difference between actual real life wins.  I had heard, via Twitter dot com, that DBo (Daryl Boston) had been working extensively with Daniel Palka in the outfield to get him more reps and refine his technique.  This is exactly the type of route that “coaching staffs” always go, the route of boring, straight-line, safe thinking that will make it look like they are implementing real change.  Look, for a big change, like making Daniel Palka into the type of outfielder that won’t induce dry-heaving from your pitching staff every time a fly ball is swatted his way, you need to think outside the box, you need ideas that are unconventional, but have a substantial upside.  You need, THE 5, from your friends at the 108.
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5 – Super Big Glove
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From what I can tell, Mr. Palka has a normal sized glove, and that’s all well and good for the regular ass outfielder, who has regular ass range, and a regular ass ability to judge fly balls.  The early returns on Daniel Palka’s outfield defense is that he is none of those.  One thing we do know, is this guy has a big strong frame.  His calves could intimidate Mark Pryor’s calves, so you know a Super Big Glove wouldn’t bother him one bit.  The last time this was tried in MLB was with Yasiel Puig back when he was coming up with the Dodgers, but it didn’t take.  Daniel Palka seems like a better test case for this.
4. Camouflage Trayce Thompson out there as a 4th OF
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I know Trayce is likely to be DFA’d when Avi Garcia comes back, but this is going to be a covert operation and we don’t even want people to know he’s out there, so it doesn’t really matter.  Trayce will likely need to wear the sort of garb that will allow him blend right in with the grass, the outfield wall, possibly even those scoreboards that sometimes line the lower sections of the outfield.
3 . When you shift, let him play where the ball won’t be hit
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The first two suggestions were ones that I think we could get by Ricky Rents, but this one might be a problem.  Ricky is “OLD SCHOOL” or something like that, so it might be tough to have this one tried.  One way to cut down on his issues is when you shift, just switch him to the spot least likely to see the ball.  You know how teams shift a Left handed hitter, to the right and leave the 3b back on the other side, just to catch a throw to 2nd occasionally.  This is where you put Daniel Palka.  In fact you can shift him all around the field, Steve Lyons style to try and reduce the amount of plays he’s forced to make.  It’ll be like having a 2nd DH.
2. Hoverboard
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The Hoverboard is a terrible invention.  I really see no use for it….other than this….now, I don’t want Daniel Palka controlling the hoverboard, because he already has issues tracking fly balls, so much like the 2004 Red Sox did with Manny Ramirez using a hoverboard and Dave Roberts on the bench controlling it, the White Sox are going to need a bench confidant to control the board.  I think the most likely candidates are probably James Shields or Omar Narvaez.
1. Different spectacle options
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It is very possible that the dude just can’t see fly balls too good and that’s why he’s having problems.  I remember how much of a difference some good specs made to the young fire baller Ricky Vaughn, why not to our young masher Daniel Palka?
These are just ideas, but they could be BIG ideas that actually help a contending club at some point figure out that teeny, tiny bit of edge they need to eek out an extra win in a pennant race.  Just think, that idea could come from you.  Hit me up on the twitters with any suggestions you haz.
– BeefLoaf

Mullet Night 2013

Those guys skipped bowling tonight to make sure they could be here for this.” – Biguns
The 108ers have a deep, rich history of attending games together and when you hang out with the same crew year in and year out attending events together, especially “special” events, peculiar occurrences can happen.  This is one of dem.
Friday, June 28, 2013 – White Sox vs. Indians
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This mullet night began much like previous mullet nights before it that the 108ers attended together, with ice cold brews going down easy, some great conversation….ooh and a White Sox game going on in the background.  I could tell though, very early in this night that something else was adrift.
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For those that don’t know wtf “Mullet Night” is exactly, it is a promotional event at Sox Park that features people sporting REAL, but mostly NOT REAL mullets for the evening.  The event is usually sponsored by some low-rent hair cutting chain.  In this instance it was sponsored by Great Clips.  The fine folks from Great Clips position themselves at various spots throughout the first level of the concourse and will cut hair for donations to a specified charity.  It is fun!!  Obviously, the authentic mullets are much more fun than the mullet wigs, although to each their own.  The opening quote of this post is a Mullet Night in the past, when the crew was having a ball watching a gentleman who was really getting into his new found status because of his beautiful and natural flowing “business up front and party in the back” hair cut.  I wish I had a picture of that mutherfucker, cupping an ear and listening to the crowd like he was a professional wrestler at a championship bout.  He was something…..anywho, I think you get the jist of this now, its FUCKING FUN!  Now back to the night in question.
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The 108ers, at least in this era, would sit mainly in a 2 x 2 formation, with Slumpbuster and yours truly in the #1 seats (Slumpbuster in front of the BeefLoaf) and Biguns and Chorizy each in the #2 hole respectively.  That’s not a euphemism, they were literally in the #2 seats.  Anyhow, early on in the game, I could tell that Slumpbuster was a little more poignant and measured than usual, he had something on his mind.  To get a feel for Slumpbuster, he’s a salesman by trade, but he’s pretty much talking, fist bumping and clapping from soup to nuts at a ball game.  He’s not one to allow a moment of silence to rest, so for him to be a little more measured, did sort of create a tension…..then he hit me.
Hey BeefLoaf, I’ll pay $200 to get a mullet shaved into your head.
*Record scratch*
Inner Monologue – Lots of dares and bets and other bullshit do actually occur amongst our friends.  Not just our 108 friends but in the larger group of friends.  As someone (along with Chorizy) who has had portions of my life were I have made a good chunk of my living betting on stuff, there are a couple of things you need to figure out in a situation like this…..
1. How difficult is the task to accomplish?
Getting a mullet cut is pretty fucking easy, in principle.  I do however have a wife and child….OH and my in-laws are in town and we are planning to go out to dinner the next night.  This moves the task from no-brainer to reasonably easy, but with a few obstacles.
2. How likely am I to get paid?
Slumpbuster may be a lot of things, but he ain’t welching on a thing like this.  100% chance of payment is what I was thinking.  But wait!  Slumpbuster is the deepest pocketed of the original 108ers.  He has a good job, plus, he has no family.
After weighing the two main issues, I decided that A) I needed to clear this with Mrs. BeefLoaf, or at a minimum let her know it is coming before pictures of me end up all over Facebook and Twitter with a mullet and she’s at home with her folks thinking WTF?  B) I think I can get more than $200 out of Slumpbuster.  This man is on a mission to have me do the dance for him in front of (we had like a dozen people out at this game with us) a crowd.  He wants to be the MC, and I his main performer…..so
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I respond to Slumpbuster “Let me think about it.” to that he immediately retorts..”$300″.
Inner Monologue II – I’ve got him!  I know there is more than $300 there, so I push him off again and realize I need to talk to Mrs. BeefLoaf ASAP so I know I can play this charade and get this shit done.
I respond to Slumpbuster  “Let me think about it.  Let’s just watch the game for now.”
He has to know that I am at least mildly interested, since I didn’t back down immediately.  I finish my beer and we order another round.  I find a reason to excuse myself from my seat (bathroom or whatever) and I go up to the concourse and call Mrs. BeefLoaf.  The phone conversation with Mrs. BeefLoaf is why I have an awesome wife and pretty much nobody is in a position to dispute it.  I call, tell her the lowdown and there are two main tenets that come away from the conversation.  #1 Mrs. BeefLoaf dgaf if I get a mullet or not, she basically said, she dunt care if I get it for no money.  #2 Mrs. BeefLoaf tells me I can get AT LEAST $500 out of Slumpbuster.  Atta girl.  Practical and a stone cold killer all at once.
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The game continues and we are in about the 5th inning by now, beers have been flowing, everyone is feeling good. bullshitting and laughing.  Slumpbuster finally turns around and comes over the top of his original two offers and says….”BeefLoaf, $500″.  I SNAP CALL.  “Let’s go!!”.  Everyone in the crew turns around as I pop up and start strolling up the concourse.  The herd follows.  Slumpbuster and I lead the crew, as we go directly to the conveniently located Great Clips station right above Section 107.  I wait for a chair to open up and I plop down on it.  The young lady looks at me and I look back and instruct her.  “I want you to give me a mullet and this gentleman here will take care of the donation.”  She gives a little grin, as if she has been waiting all fucking night to cut some dumbass’ hair into a gigantic drunken mistake.  Slumpbuster grabs a couple of twenty dollar bills and throws down a healthy donation considering the circumstance (he’s an EXTREMELY generous dude, so this surprises nobody).   The young lady gets to work on my hair.  As she does, the 108ers and their friends start snapping pictures.  Before I know it, mufuckas we dont even know are snapping pictures as a crowd is starting to gather around us.  The young lady cutting my hair is getting towards the end of the cut.  I can tell A LOT of hair is on the ground and that the top is pretty short as are the sides.  Then she turns to Slumpbuster (as by this point she knows he’s really in charge of this situation) and asks him something that I was not expecting.  “Do we want lines?”
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Inner Monologue III – LINES?  I don’t want any fucking LINES cut into my head.  I’m going to look like an idiot.  Also, I have to work on Monday and I can get the rest of this bullshit cut into shape, but if they cut lines into my head, I can’t do shit.  I’ll be the dumbass at work, with LINES cut into their head.  AH FUCK!!!
Slumpbuster gives me a look and a classic devious Slumpbuster smile and turns back to the hairdresser and says “Oh yea, we want lines.”   It was rare to see such devious joy pouring out of this dude.  I can hear the clippers getting in there nice and tight and giving me lines, but it’s too late to fight it.  I’m going to have lines and there is nothing I can do about it.  I stand up, once the cut is completely done.  Thank the hairdresser and start walking towards my seat.  The group dissipates and just as soon as it had started, minutes later, my thick mane of hair was cut down into an NWI special (no offense to my brothers and sisters in the NWI, this is an inside joke).  Slumpbuster lobbed me $200 that minute and vowed to pay me the rest the next game we went to together (which he did).
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So there you have it, the next time you happen to be talking to someone about Mullet Night, you can say, “Hey, I know some dumbass who got a mullet ON MULLET NIGHT!”  and it won’t be a lie.
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PS – I did go to the bar that night after getting a mullet cut in my head, because when you #108ing, you just keep on #108ing until it’s time to stop
– BeefLoaf

Managers in Uniform

I often enjoy a man in uniform.
It is appropriate for many managers to wear the same uniforms as their team members. High ranking public officials such as police officers or firefighters wear the same uniforms as the people they employee. Nurse managers may also wear the same scrubs as more junior nursing staff.  With these examples, there is usually a functionality to why managers wear the same uniform as their players. Not only from a utility standpoint – bullet-proof vests, flame-retardant jackets and scrubs that are easy-to wash bodily fluids off of, safely – but also from a recognition standpoint.
There are other professions wear it would be silly for a manager to wear the same uniform as their employees and where the recognition, could be misleading.
Picture if you will, the CEO of any of the major airlines, wearing a pilot’s uniform.  Or how about Gregg Popovich wearing what his players wear?  It seems ridiculous. So why do baseball managers wear the same uniform as the players?

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Photo Credit Mohtashim Khan
Professional athletes are usually in peak physical condition, save for a few more robust gents.  Managers on the other hand, are usually well past their prime in physique.
Even in modern times, it still causes me to make a double-take, when watching a baseball game at home and when a pitching change happens, for a split second, I think Ricky is going to pitch! I know this is ridiculous, but since he is wearing the same uniform as the players, it is sometimes hard to tell who is actually playing in the game.
So what could they wear instead of the team uniform?
I am not suggesting the only option is to wear suits like coaches in basketball wear – these are indoor games, in temperature controlled environments.  But let’s think about what they could wear that would differentiate them from the players and not look as ridiculous…
Managers
In doing the research for this post, I perused literally hundreds of pictures of baseball managers in uniform.  I found the most unsettling part of their uniform is the pants. Wearing the jerseys may look like any other fan – but it’s the pants that for sure, need to go.  Even our very own “D-Bo” could look better if the uniform were better.

 

Of course wearing just the jersey, with a different pant or short could be an option.  If we determine that the whole ensemble needs to go, let’s review the potential options.
Option 1
Polo shirts. Although this option is ultra-preppy, it could be a fairly cool option for hot, day games. Shown below, Ron Gardenhire decides on a more casual version, wearing shorts with his polo.
Gardy
Option 2
Suits. I am not a fan. Don’t get me wrong, the “men of the 108” (calendar pending…) look good in suits,
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BUT it gets hot in there.  I have seen BeefLoaf in a suit in the summer – there is a lot of sweat – and that is in the church for a wedding, not on a field, in the sun.
Option 3
T-shirts and Shorts. I am going to suggest that although this notion seems crazy casual, it is better-looking than the uniforms currently worn. This option could be classed up by the t-shirts being a dry-fit quality, and same with the shorts. Nike or UnderArmour would surely line up to sponsor these uniforms. Below we have Joe Girardi in his current manager uniform, likely saying, “Hey ladies.” And then in a more reasonable t-shirt version of what could be a new direction for managers’ uniforms.
Option 4
Hawaiian shirts.  Men of a more mature age seem to love Hawaiian shirts.  Take Larry Dierker, for example. Although he no longer manages, he is known for wearing a signature look that. Should current managers choose to adopt this look, they would definitely be differentiated from their players.  There may be some pushback from the younger managers – Kevin Cash of the Rays and Andy Green of the Padres come to mind – but they may come around to the novelty of the new uni.
For my vote, it’s really a tough one. I like the idea of t-shirts and shorts (Option 3). Many games are during the summer, so it trumps suits in my opinion.  Option 3 is also closer to wearing the uniforms, so coaches will transition easily, in my humble opinion.  However, the Hawaiian shirts are ridiculous and I am always up for some fun.
Look for a poll on Twitter following this post so you can weigh in. Of course you can always tweet your own ideas on manager uniforms, if you’ve got an idea that should be represented @KRamos25.

Mrs. BeefLoaf

 

The 5 – Trade Jose Abreu

“But you know what the best part of my day is? It’s for about ten seconds from when I pull up to the curb to when I get to your door. Because I think maybe I’ll get up there and I’ll knock on the door and you won’t be there. No goodbye, no see you later, no nothin’. Just left. I don’t know much, but I know that.” – Chuckie Sullivan (Good Will Hunting)
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All of us get sad or sentimental about loss, it’s a human condition, it cannot be avoided.  Some folks try to ignore it, or try to pretend like it doesn’t matter, but we all know that it does and it affects us in a variety of ways.  I don’t want the White Sox to trade Jose Abreu.  You don’t want the White Sox to trade Jose Abreu, but it has to be done, and if not now, soon, otherwise we are going to regret it.  YOU HEAR ME @NotRickHahn!!!???!!!????!!!!  That’s why today, I bring you, “THE 5 – Trade Jose Abreu”.
5. Peak Value 
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Whether we want to admit this or not, every day that Jose Abreu doesn’t get traded, the more his trade value depreciates.  It’s a fact.  We absolutely destroy the Orioles for hanging on to Manny Machado as his trade value depreciates by the day, but Our Lord and Savior Rick Hahn seems to be immune to said criticism.  We know there is a limited market for Abreu, you aren’t getting a Sale or Quintana return, this is a corner infielder.  If you get the Frazier / Kahnle / Robertson blob return for Abreu that should be enough, given the limited market place.
4. Relationship with team allows for no issue in resigning him in free agency
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From everything I’m hearing, remember, we are fans we aren’t in the lockerroom ($1 Mike Murphy) Jose Abreu’s great relationship with the ball club is what is allowing the White Sox to let this play out and to not have extended him already to a deal that covers some competitive years.  If that’s the case, then what’s the big fucking hold up to trading him to some current contender?  Let old Pito play in the playoffs for a season or two, then he can come back here, older and wiser for the contending seasons.
3. My Loins Yearn for more Daniel Palka playing time

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Danny Palka Smashing HR
This is no secret to yous, the dozens of loyal readers of the @fromthe108 twitter and blog.  I fucking LOVE Daniel Palka.  My favorite moment of the season so far is his pinch hit HR versus the Brewers last weekend.  He absolutely smashed that fucking ball.  He absolutely fucking smashes A LOT of balls and that is why he needs to be in the lineup nearly every day.  This sort of reminds me of the movie “Moneyball” where Billy Beane (played by Brad Pitt) has to trade away a few of his better players in order to get guys in the lineup that he wants playing.  That’s right, Daniel Palka is this rebuild’s Scott Hatteberg and goddamnit if we can’t find some way to get his arse into the lineup.
2. Yoan Moncada no longer needs him as a mentor
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I know this was a great feel good story at the beginning of the Moncada / White Sox courtship, how they had Jose Abreu in tow to help the kid adjust to the big leagues.  There was even that cute video of two grown men (Abreu and Moncada) crushing an entire table full of Cuban food.  So sweet.  But let’s get real, at some point, the legend from your childhood needs to move aside and you need to become the MANG ($1 Ozzie Guillen)!  That time could be now for Moncada.  This kid already knows all the important lessons that a Jose Abreu could teach him (except for eating too many Twinkies, you know, because YOLO!), so why not get this over with?  Oh, and the 108ers will gladly order him in some Cuban food if that sweetens the deal.
1. Furthers the agenda of the rebuild
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“BeefLoaf, you aren’t being patient, you don’t understand the rebuild….yada, yada, yada” all you mufuckas on twitter tryna tell me how to fan, tryna tell me how a rebuild works, should LURVE a move like this.  Trading Jose Abreu furthers the rebuild in a way that keeping him most certainly does not.  That’s what you want right?  It’s true.  Keeping Jose Abreu and offering him the qualifying offer at the end of 2019 won’t secure better goods for the rebuild than trading him now will….it just won’t.  PLUS, if your belief is that the White Sox will resign Jose Abreu, then this is a total freeroll.  Boy that sounds great.  This makes sense intellectually, I’m just trying to make it make sense for you emotionally as well.  I’m trying to make us all like Chuckie Sullivan.
– BeefLoaf