Friday, October 31, 2008


Before we get to the rumor stage, what are the the current big questions?
** The Red Sox have some BIG question marks in their future:
Will Varitek sign a smaller, shorter contract than everyone thinks he'll want?
Will Lowell recover from hip surgery (exactly how old is he?)?
Will Ortiz wrist ever be the same?
Are Beckett's injuries curable or is it something more permanent?
Unfortunately, these questions won't be answered till spring training and the top free agents will be gone by then and no one will make major trades during spring training, when everybody is a contender. I feel so bad for them. ...NOT!
**The Yankees problems are different:
Can they sign Sabbathia?
Can they sign Teixeira?
Can they sign Burnett?
Will they resign Mussina and/or Pettitte?
If they sign these guys, how long before Steinbrenner raises the ticket prices? Maybe he'll just have NYC float another bond.
**The big question:
Where will Manny go, or should I say, who will Scott "The Vampire" Boras suck the life blood out of?

I'm sure will have some pretty wild rumors before the first of the year.

Thursday, October 30, 2008


Welcome, sports fans, to the start of the Silly Season, a contest dedicated to rumors, guesses, suppositions and plain old day-dreaming.

**ESPN reports that Prince Fielder is available but the Yanks won't offer on him because "...they want to keep first base open for the eventual move of Derek Jeter to that position". ++I haven't heard this one before.++

**The Yanks may be interested in Mike Cameron of the Brewers for center field. ++Oh, yeah, that's what we need; another 35 year old outfielder.++

**Bob Brenly, Ken Macha and Willie Randolph are the top three choices for the Brewers job. ++Are you sure you want to do this, Willie?++

Picasner has decided he is going to campaign for the job as Baseball Commissioner. He will publish his platform later and asks for your support.

One final note on the Series. Congratulations to the Philadelphia Phillies. I'm glad you were able to eliminate your curse. What? You didn't know they had a curse?
Why, of course they did. The Phillies have not won a championship since they put up buildings in Philadelphia that were taller than the statue of William Penn. That was way, way back in...1984. Well, I guess it wasn't much of a curse, after all.

"Well Brad, your team has won the championship. How did you do it?"
++I think we won more games than everyone we played.++
Here's an interviewer with a great career ahead of him.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008


We MAY play some baseball tonight, weather permitting. One sportswriter says we should call this "The Rainfall Classic". Selig insists we will not have a world series game without a ninth inning. Tonight we could see the first three-inning game in history. Thanks, Bud.

Due to a scheduling problem (Chad - can't be!), the Tampa Bay Rays currently reside in Wilmington, Delaware, at the Historic DuPont Hotel. The DuPont hotel was built in 1911, which was when game 4 was played. Maybe it only seems like that.

We're in need of some changes and Picasner has some plans. Stay tuned.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008


**Baseball rules state that it is the UMPIRE'S decision to call the game, but it has become accepted practice that the Commissioner makes these decisions during the World Series. My problem is that the game should have been called much earlier, even if it meant replaying the whole thing. Of course, we wouldn't have to make these kinds of judgements if the games were being played earlier in the day...and earlier in the month. Some people make deals with the devil; Selig makes them with Fox Network.

**Certainly part of baseball. The important thing here, is that no one got thrown out for arguing or gesturing or "showing up" the umpire. I wish they would show that kind of restraint during the season. Let's not even go into the "personalized" strike zones. Not to take the umpire's side, but I wonder when Fox shows their little box indicating the strike zone, it they ever considered that THEIR box is wrong? Nah, McCarver is always right. Isn't he?

**I don't expect the weather to get any better. Do you think they'll play to the end tonight? Maybe they'll play one inning a day till it's over; then a travel day if the Rays win, then maybe two more games... Lets throw in a free turkey to the members of the winning team. It should be just in time for Thanksgiving.

One final note: the Milwaukee Brewers are apparently entertaining offers for Prince Fielder. It has nothing to do with his ability, his pay or clubhouse demeanor. Did you see him the last couple of weeks of the season? I think Milwaukee no longer has any uniforms that fit him. Fielder's road uniform actually has "Barnum & Bailey" on the back.

Monday, October 27, 2008


All of a sudden, the Rays don't look like the devil-may-care world beaters that we've come to know. If they lose tonight, the Rays will be wondering just what went wrong. Well...
**The 3 & 4 hitters, Pena & Longoria, are a combined 0-29.
**To say the fielding looks shaky is being complimentary.
**Maddon's managing? Well, if you go against conventional wisdom and win, you're a genius. When you do that and lose, people begin to wonder if those are really sunflower seeds you're chewing on.
**It could just be one of those minor glitches that teams have from time to time. This was just a bad time to have it.

Perhaps it's the curse of Bob "Wrong-Way" Matthews, who predicted the Rays in 6. Thanks a lot, Bob. He also wrote at length Saturday about how the Steelers would overwhelm the Giants.
I sure hope he picks the Yankees to win the pennant in 2009.

C'mon Rays, keep plugging!

Sunday, October 26, 2008


The media is doing their best to hype the World Series, citing a "return" to small ball, the way the game "used to be played." Well, excuse me, but I'm a Yankee fan, the Bronx Bombers, home of the five-0'clock-lightning.I don't ever recall the Yanks winning a WS game with a walk-off fielder's choice (THEY called it a hit, but c'mon).
The only ball that reached the outfield during the winning "rally", was an errant throw. Yeah, I know there were 3 home runs, but the other 6 runs were scored like a side order of fries. Okay, it's baseball and I can appreciate it, but it just doesn't feel the two league champions duking it out. It feels more like the JV game. At least this series will be remembered for the invention of a new position: The Rover Back.

Tommy Bowden: fired by Clemson. Still being paid.
Jeff Bowden: fired by Florida State. Still being paid.
Bobby Bowden: coaching Florida State.
That's three Bowdens, making a total of $6.5 million, only one with a job, and none actually earning it.

Here's the danger of big contracts to pitchers: $8 million to Curt Schilling for the year. One pitch (ceremonial) and that was in the dirt!

"Daunte Culpepper announced in September that he was retiring because no teams were interested. He now says he coming out of retirement so teams can continue to not be interested." - Greg Cote, Miami Herald

Fox certainly had enough time for introductions last night, didn't they?

Saturday, October 25, 2008


Dan Daly, Washington Times:
"Why did the Red Sox vote Manny Ramirez a two-thirds share? Probably because that's how far down the first-base line he usually got when he grounded out."

Jay Leno, after two housekeepers for David & Victoria Beckham were charged with theft: "The thieves took hundreds of dollars of cosmetics and beauty products. ...Oh, and they stole some of Victoria's stuff, too."

The Major League Baseball Players Association has accused owners of colluding and acting in concert against signing Barry Bonds.
...and the problem?

Greg Cote, Miami Herald:
"Fox Television is experiencing exceptionally low ratings (I wonder why - Picasner). Those people up there on the ledge threatening to jump? Well, they would be Fox officials if executives from AIG, Wachovia and Fannie Mae had left them any room."

See below for more on FOX!


"Ladies & Gentlemen, welcome to the 2008 World Series, starring...FOX NETWORK!" Please, sir, can we play a little baseball? This is ridiculous. First they tell us WHEN they can play, now they tell us WHO will be introduced. Fox will only announce the starters on both teams, no subs or coaches. These people helped their respective teams get to the Series but they aren't allowed to be applauded for their efforts. WHY? Because Fox wants to make sure the first pitch isn't delayed too long. Who are they kidding? How many of us just fell off the turnip truck? We certainly don't want to cut into any of their pre-game drivel. In a rare moment of concern for the players and fans, Fox has graciously allowed them to announce the non-starters and staff...while Fox is in commercial! Oh, thank you, thank you.

I know this is an insane idea, but why not start the pre-game nonsense at 6:00, start the introductions at 6:45, and start the game at 7:00. Oh, sorry. My headband must be on too tight.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


Well here it is, October 22, and I still haven't seen a World Series game. In 1956, the Series had already been over with for TWO WEEKS. Thank you, Fox network.

Everyone seems to be picking the Rays to win it in 6 games. Picasner has also been leaning that way, until...Bob Matthews, Mr Wrong, picked the Rays in 6. Oh well, maybe this will be his accidental correct pick.

Jayson Stark writes that the last 4 WS haven't gone past 5 games. Think that has to do with one team sitting on their hands for 6 or 7 days? I do.

Willie Randolph is interviewing for the Milwaukee Brewers job. Good luck, Willie.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008


Since I have nothing to do until the networks decide I can watch the World Series, I'll just scan the sports world for silliness.

"Adam 'Pacman' Jones, Jerry Jones, Dow Jones. Keeping up with the Joneses just isn't what it used to be."
Speaking of Pacman, he has entered an alcohol treatment center. Is he supposed to be the featured speaker?

The Yankees have fired their special pitching coach. Why? Because the team didn't have any special pitching.

Bob Matthews, Rochester D & C, has to be my favorite whipping boy.You'd think he'd be right once in a while just by accident. In today's column, he "thinks" (& I use the term loosely) Manny Ramirez should have been the MVP of the NLCS. "Why can't the MVP be from the losing team if he is by far the most productive player in a series?" Bob, Bob, Bob. How "valuable" was Manny? If he wasn't on the team, would the Dodgers have lost FIVE games?
An interesting point made by Mike Wilbon, PTI, last night. Who's the MVP in the AFL so far? Why, it's Tom Brady. Silly? Yes, but think about it. The Pats went 18-1 last year and are lucky to be 4-2 this year. The biggest difference in the team? Right, it's Brady. Granted, this is a little overkill, but it does go to the heart of what MVP means.
Just Picasners opinion.

Monday, October 20, 2008


In his regular blog yesterday, Buster Olney mentioned that the Sox & the Rays had played 25 games against each other this season, so there should be no surprises in Sunday night's game...Except for David Price. Since Price only had 15 innings of Major League experience, no one on the Red Sox had ever faced him and he could make a difference. Exactly right.

He also implied that Varitek shouldn't be hitting in critical situations. Right again. Buster often starts the bandwagon as opposed to jumping on one that's already moving. Let's wait to hear his thoughts on the Series.

Speaking of which, when is the Series starting? Wednesday? Thursday? Next Shrove Tuesday? The Bimb says it's two east coast teams so we won't have to wait until some ungodly hour for the game to start. Oh, yeah? Wait 'til the networks get through with the schedule and the sponsors finish deciding how many commercials they want. I guarantee we won't see a pitch before 8:30 PM. That's the way to build a fan base: play the games when no one under 10 is allowed to stay up for the games. Ya gotta love Bud Selig.

Sunday, October 19, 2008


"Maybe we're supposed to win, maybe we're supposed to lose." Cliff Floyd of the Rays, doesn't sound very confident, does he? That's not the attitude I'd like to hear, if I were his coach. Just a reminder, Cliff, now YOU have to win, too.

Did anyone notice there was no left field ump for most of last night's game? I didn't think so. I always thought it was a ploy by the Umpires Assoc. to get two more umpires some playoff money. Ostensibly, they're there for fair/foul calls and occasional "trap" plays. I can only recall one instance when they were "needed", (NY-Balt playoff in the 90's) and then they got it wrong (Mr. Jeter thanks you).

Mr. Chamberlain was arrested in Nebraska (by their policeman) for DUI and speeding. Speeding, huh. I guess he can "bring it" in a car, too.

Picasner's opinion: Dallas isn't going to go anywhere with Romo and Terrell Owens. This week, Romo was out with an injury (his pinkie, poor boy), so Owens was going to have to screw up the team by himself. Luckily, he was up to the task.

The Rays have come back all year when no one thought they could. I won't be that surprised if they do it again tonight, But there is no way I would ever lay any money against this Red Sox team. It will be interesting to see if anyone succumbs to the pressure tonight.

Friday, October 17, 2008


MLBPA says they have discovered "evidence" to back up their accusation of collusion against Barry Bonds. Well, what's the evidence? Where's the grievance filing? Picasner's opinion: If everyone feels that Bonds would come with too much baggage, is that collusion? Who needs this; just go away!

A 7 foot 9 inch Mongolian (& his wife, of course), have just given birth to a son. Congratulatory cards were sent from every basketball coach in the ACC, SEC, Big Ten, Big East, etc.

George King of the NY Post, says the Yanks are going hard after...Coach Larry Bowa. Bowa probably doesn't want to go down with the sinking ship that is Joe Torre. I'll bet Hank S. thinks Bowa's going to be the new 2nd baseman. Uh, not quite, Hank.

Maddon says it was right to let Balfour pitch against Papi instead of bringing in a lefty. "It worked all year," he said. The playoffs are a new year, Joe.
Cliff Floyd is already explaining a possible defeat in game 6: "This is the luxury of a 3-1 lead. We don't have to win, they do." Lose one more, and YOU have to win, too, Cliff.

The Red Sox have voted Manny (Being Money) a 2/3 playoff share. It's wonderful that they would help these indigent players who unfortunately don't make the World Series.
The fact that Manny has enough money to buy a third-world nation, doesn't matter. A current Red Sox said he saw Manny stuff a paycheck into his locker with two others. According to him, Manny's bi-monthly check was for $964,000. Make that TWO third-world nations.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


There are strong rumors that both Pettite AND Mussina want to return for another year. So next year, instead of two 20-yr olds being the basis of the Yankee staff, it will be two 40-yr olds. As always with the Yanks, it may not be logical but it's always interesting.

Scot Boras (remember him?), is looking for a 6-year deal at "top" money for Ramirez. So it's become: MANNY BEING MONEY.

Word out of California is the Joe Torre Love-fest is over.

Meacham is out, does this mean Willie is in?

Tuesday, October 14, 2008


Actually it looked more like Sumo wrestling, all that belly-bumping. Except for Manny: hat off, dreadlocks in the wind, a crazed look on his face. For a while I thought a 64-year old Traveling Secretary had come on to the field.

TORRE, THE GENIUS...well, maybe not:
Joe is being attacked from every side. Everything he does is wrong. He didn't go out to calm Billingsley down. He took Lowe out too soon. He brought in a 20-year old pitcher in a 1-run game. He's even being hit for the buggy Cleveland game last year.
Even Clemens, that bastion of truth & honor, said he and Pettite both would have walked off the mound in Cleveland. Guess you're only as smart as your last World Series win, Joe.

I'm not a Red Sox fan, but it's sad to see a strong and valuable player lose it. Varitek looks lost at the plate and his reflexes seem shot. A passed ball by Varitek? Can't be! He doesn't seem to catch the pitches crisply; it's more like he's just stopping them. I don't think he's in line for any Posada-like contracts this winter.

Big Popi's not scaring anyone, either. His swing looks rusty and even when he hits the power. I wonder if he'll ever get it back. The Sox are getting a lot of praise for their youngsters, but I think the older players are dropping faster than replacements are being found: Ortiz, Varitek, Lowell, etc.

#1. Chinese authorities to investigate ages of Chinese gymnasts.
#2. Scott Boras to teach Ethics class at Harvard Law School.
#3. A fox has been slated to guard the henhouse.

Monday, October 13, 2008


I used to think that sportswriters were the gurus of sport, all-knowing dispensers of the inside info that gave us insight into the game. Alas, this is no longer true. Television, the internet and the preponderance of former athletes disclose the here-to-fore hidden facts like so many grains of sand. Since writers no longer possess these secrets, they now express their opinions, good or bad, right or wrong. They have become...FANS. While reading and hearing their opinions is interesting, we have also discovered they are not infallible.

TJ Simers of the LA Times, writes that Manny has become a team leader. Sorry, TJ, the words "Manny" and "team", do not belong in the same paragraph.

Mike Wilbon, PTI, says the Dodgers are a better team than the Yankees, based solely on the fact that the Dodgers are in the playoffs. Well Mike, that logic would lead us to believe that the Batavia Muckdogs (honest to God, Muckdogs) are also a better team because they won the Single A, NY-Penn League title. Set up a playoff round, Mike. I'll take the "underdog" Yanks.

A couple of weeks ago, Joel Sherman described the Mets as "The Best Uncrowned Team" in baseball. You're half right, Joel. They are uncrowned.

Gee, this is fun. 30 years ago, you didn't dare disagree with the likes of Dick Young or Jim Murray. Besides, they were "smart".

One final observation: The LA-Philly Beanball Wars were in full swing last night. Typical baseball fight, no hitting, just shoving and hugging, except for one glaring difference: NO UMPIRE INTERFERENCE. Yeah they helped keep the peace and issued their warnings, but nobody got thrown out. Thats as it should be. The players will handle these things, let them alone. Thanks, umps!

Saturday, October 11, 2008


If you want to know why there seem to be so many "upsets" in college football, you might want to look at the football polls. If the No. 4 team is beaten by the No.18 team, it's called an upset. OK, sports fans, riddle me this:
BYU jumps three spots in the AP Top 25 during a BYE week, then drops one spot after beating Utah State by 20 points. Excuse me?

Carl Edwards NASCAR driver, after causing a multi-car pileup at Talladega: "I always worry about the idiots when I come here. Today it was me."

Note: Syracuse University plays Oswego High today. Oswego is a 4-point favorite.

Thursday, October 09, 2008


That's all we've been hearing. How Manny saved the Dodgers. A monster 2nd half season for Manny. Sure enough, 1st inning and Manny powers a ball over 400 feet to within a foot or so of being a home run and Joe Buck & Tim McCarver are more than effusive in their praise. They are so proud of being correct in their pre-game analysis.


All the time, Manny was being Manny. Posing at the plate; smugly enjoying the flight of the ball, and not giving much thought to running. He ends up at 2nd instead of third, which he probably would have made. From there he would have scored on the passed ball, but nooo. More than likely cost the Dodgers a run, which, in a one-run game, is significant. His two "press agents", Buck & McCarver, never mentioned it. Didn't fit your analysis, huh?

Let's see if this gets any play in tomorrow's sports news.

(Added Friday morning, 10:00 AM) Well, I didn't read anything or hear anything. I can't believe no one else recognized this. Granted, if Manny's on third, they may have pitched differently, but still, the possibility's there. I believe Michael Kay would have mentioned it. This is one of his favorite complaints on baseball: players not hustling.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008


The Yankees are discovering that their high-priced seats are not selling as fast as they thought. A block of 4 seats behind home plate is priced at $10,000 per game. And they're not selling? I'm shocked! SHOCKED! I wonder if I can find any coupons.

The Colorado Rockies have fired their entire coaching staff; on a team that went to the World Series in 2007. Boy, those guys sure got awfully dumb, awfully fast.

Mariano Rivera had his scheduled shoulder surgery yesterday. All is well and he'll be ready to throw in 3 months. However, additional surgery on his hip to remove a lump was aborted when it was discovered the "lump" was his 2008 $15 million salary. Mariano was quoted as saying he will "deal with it this year" in hopes that it will improve when next year's "lump" will even everything out.

The Yanks announced that Yankee Stadium is officially closed. That's funny, I thought that happened in August.

John Lackey has been quoted as saying, "We lost to a team that's not better than us." When asked for his reaction to being eliminated, He said, "I felt like throwing something through a wall." Too bad it wasn't a ball...during the game.

Monday, October 06, 2008


Mitch Albom, of the Detroit Free Press, repeated my comments on the Univ. of Wisconsin Band on the Sports Reporters yesterday (with a little paraphrasing). OK Mitch, glad I could help. There will be a fee charged in the future, however.

Here's how my interest in baseball has waned now that the Yanks are out. As I watched the Angels-Red Sox game last night, the only thing that caught my attention is how knock-kneed Josh Beckett is. It looks like he could stand on 1st AND 2nd base at the same time.

Jerry Manuel, mgr of the Mets, talked about the off-season planning. "We have to see where we failed." Jerry, maybe you should start by looking into the Ambiorix Burgos situation, one of your pitchers who is currently evading an arrest warrant in relation to a fatal traffic accident. Failed driving test, perhaps?

Plaxico Burress, NY Giants wide receiver, has the best job he's ever going to get in football and he still acts like team rules are just guidelines. The fines are going to start cutting into that big salary very soon, Plaxico.

It's very possible that we be heading for a Dodgers-Red Sox World Series. Manny-being-Manny being introduced in Fenway Park in a Dodger uniform. THAT I will watch!

You have to love ESPN's Bill Simmon's description of Scott Boras:

"Let's pretend you were Boras last spring. First, grow fangs and imagine you sleep in a coffin. Second, divorce yourself from all parameters of human decency. (Concentrate on those dollars signs. Keep concentrating. Block everything else out.) Third, convince yourself the relationship between a player and his fans, no matter how long it has been cultivated, doesn't matter even remotely. Fourth, keep reminding yourself, as long as you can weasel Manny out of that '09 option with Boston, you're looking at a four-year contract elsewhere for $80-100 million ... as well as a big fat commission for yourself. You feeling it? You feeling like Boras yet? (Touch your new fangs to be sure.)" (Thanks Vod, for pointing out this article)

Saturday, October 04, 2008

VOD IS RIGHT! (As always)

Why can't I get interested in the playoffs? According to the news media, the games are exciting, yet I find myself watching reruns of "Third Rock from the Sun". It probably doesn't help that Picasner's "pick", the Cubs, are down 2-0 and heading into Lala-land. Maybe the next round will hold more interest. Yeah, Tampa-Philly, I can hardly wait. Interestingly enough, in March, Las Vegas offered odds of 150-1 for Tampa winning everything. I'll bet even Little Watusi never got on that bandwagon.

The name change hasn't made Chad Ocho Cinco (Johnson) any smarter: "Our '05 season we were unbelievable. That was the year everybody got arrested and went to jail and it was one of the best years in our history. Maybe, I don't know, maybe I should go out have a drink, get in trouble." Isn't this crazy? Hey Chad, what's the record for the most TD catches in a jail cell? What a role model. Change your number to Zero-Zero.

Sadly, another sports group has been suspended for allegations of hazing, alcohol abuse and sexual misconduct. A high school team? Cheerleaders? The Cincinnati Bengals (a good guess)? No, it was the Univ. of Wisconsin Marching Band. The Band? THE BAND?? This sounds like a tough school. Does the football team have to play wearing handcuffs? Do the cheerleaders have to shave every day? Legs and face? THE BAND?? I knew those Tuba players were up to no good. Sounds like a good candidate for an "Ocho-Cinco Scholarship".

One final note: Picasner is irritated with the constant listing of "Playoff Records". Even into the World Series. What happened to "World Series Records"? Mantle has 18 World Series homers. Manny has 26 playoff homers. Good for you, Manny, but they all aren't WS homers. And I don't want to hear the "well, they played in so many World Series" excuse. They played good enough to get there, didn't they? Keep your "Playoff Records", just make the distinction...please.