Friday, May 30, 2008

Game updates

The DVs destroyed the Warpigs 4 games to 1 tonight. The DVs won the first four games, scoring double digit runs in all of them, before the Pigs salvaged the back end of a double header in game 5.

Tomorrow is the last day of May. The Zaps, Tweeners, Fungoes, Rhinos, and Warpigs are a few games shy of the 50 needed before June.

The Sidewinders have taken the lead in demerits, getting 3 for failing to send game results three different times. He reported his own shortcomings, and as a result, he gets the following considerations: none.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Game updates

The HEAD INMATE reports...

DVs thoroughly abused the Inmates in netplay tonite, winning 3 of 4. Inmates are now 32-22.

The Many Shades of Plaid

On the home page on the website, click on the picture of Herman. The page that opens (which I refer to as The Many Shades of Plaid) now has additional pictures and a scanned copy of the program from the funeral.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Game updates

The Drillers swept a pair at the BallPork. Aaron Cook and Josh Beckett proved too much for the pathetic Pig bats.

In three consecutive at bats in the second game, Vic Martinez rolled 2-6, 2-7, and 2-8. Now, 2-6 and 2-8 are clutch hits. 2-7 is just an out. Only one of the three at bats, though, came in a clutch situation. Guess which roll that one was.

The Drillers move to within a half game of first place in the NERDD. The Pigs move a step closer to grabbing Pig cut Cliff Lee with the first pick of the 2009 Draft.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Games

The Tweeners went 1-4 vs the Mavs and 3-2 vs the Buckeyes.

Tweeners report...

Tweeners are no match for the barnstorming Mavs. He mercifully started Homer Bailey in the last game of the series, but it still took 11 innings to get our only win.

Another Tweener report...

Apparently we failed to save the 6/6/08 box score. A strong performance by Harang gave us a 7 - 2 victory over Buehrle. The most memorable game was the 14 inning affair in game 4, won 1 - 0 by the Buckeyes on a Luke Scott homer.
Tweeners now 20-25; should be able to complete 5 more games this week to stay a step ahead of the hall monitor. It seems we finally have a serviceable pitching staff (team ERA 3.30 after 45 games), but there has not been enough offense to compete (team OPS of .662). We have only been outscored by 8 runs in 45 games, so I guess we won't give up hope just yet. Record 5-14 in one-run games and need to win a few of those on the road (12-8 at home, 8-17 on the road).

Saturday, May 24, 2008

About Today...

Today was Herman's funeral, and I feel the need to make a comment or two...

First of all, I don't have very many Strat-O memories that don't somehow involve Herman. My first game in NASOMA was against the Oilers. As we did in my old league, I sat down NEXT to Herman for our first game. In his slow, country drawl, he looked me up and down and said, "What are you doing?"

The Higdon dive happened at the clubhouse pool by my old house and came as the result of a comeback victory over the Oilers. The cuckoo clock game was between the FFTs and the Inmates, but it occurred at Herman's house. I was there for both of those. Three times the Oilers ALMOST made it to the World Series, and two of those losses were against my Warpigs in last second comebacks.

Probably my favorite memory of Herman was at the draft in Louisville. Herman, Derek, and I arrived together at the airport and shared a taxi to the hotel. There was a nice looking, scantily clad girl on the curb as our taxi pulled away. Derek and I were both watching her when Herman spoke up: "She's got the right kind of legs. Feet at one end and pussy at the other."

I've never thought the same way about him since.

This past Tuesday, I had taken the day off from school so I could be home for the plumber. And since the plumber wasn't coming until 2:00, I emailed Herman asking if I could come visit in the morning. He replied that he would love to see me. And let me tell you, I am SO glad he did. We had a great talk. He was so worried about how he was inconveniencing everyone... and worried about his team and how it would be managed... things like that. I told him to stop worrying and think about the trip he had coming up. He was headed to the place we all want to go someday. The greatest of all places. There would be no more pain. No more worry. I don't know if my visit or our talk helped him - I hope it did - but I know it helped me.

A funny, telling moment from that visit: He had not been out of bed for 36 hours when I visited, but he wanted to get up and get in his chair that day. It took three of us, but we got him sitting up. Then it took several minutes for him to get his breath under control. And after all that, what do you think he wanted to do? Play some games. Too funny. Too sweet. We didn't, of course. Carolyn wasn't going to allow it anyway.

I left there that day so grateful that I had gotten to visit with him one more time, but knowing too that his time was short. I could not imagine him surviving many more days in that kind of pain and suffering. I called Derek as soon as I left and told him as much. Derek had seen him on Sunday and felt Herman was basically telling him goodbye that day.

Our visit Tuesday was the highlight of my week. Wednesday night (early Thursday morning, actually), Herman passed on. Quietly. In his sleep. I knew before getting up that morning that he was gone. I don't know how I knew, but I did.

I saw Carolyn and Glenn again on Friday. Dr. and Mrs. FFT are on vacation, but they arranged to have a ham sent to the Wheeler house. I was the delivery boy, and used my conference period at school to make the house call. The Wheelers were holding up well, and there was the sense of relief that our friend was finally free from the pain.

It was a wonderful funeral. At Herman's request, the program was broken down by innings - yep, there were nine of them. And it's not every day you attend a funeral where everybody stands up and sings "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" during the 7th inning stretch; but then, it's not every funeral that has music performed by the "Hee Haw Gospel Quartet."

I will scan or re-type the program and put that on Big Innings as soon as I can.

NASOMA was well-represented despite the FFTs, DVs, and Rhinos being out of town. Besides the Buckeyes and Tweeners, we also had Warpigs, Wahoos, Fungoes, Inmates, and Mavs. The spouses were all there as well (except for the Inmates who left his cats at home). Even the original MavGirl showed up to pay her respects. Former NASOMA owner Dennis Gray was there. The Zapper sent a beautiful spray of flowers. There was a spray of flowers from NASOMA as well.

Herman was laid to rest about 90 feet from my mother's gravesite. There's a bit of weird coincidence in that. Both my mother and Herman were born in 1938. My mother died in March of 1998, just over a month before she would have turned 60. Herman passed in May of 2008, just over a month before he would have turned 70. Herman married Carolyn, which was also my mother's name. And now they're the distance from home plate to first apart.

I don't know how it works with everyone else, but funerals make me step back and take a look at myself and my life. Will I be able to face things as stoically as Herman did? Do I have my ducks in a row with my family? With my friends? With God?

Sadly, right now the answer to all of these is probably no. I know I'm not an easy friend. It takes more effort to be friends with me than most people are willing to put forth, and it's entirely my own fault. As someone once told me, I tend to push people away. I'd like to say days like today will help me to change, but I also know I'm weak.

All I can promise is that I will try. I would hate to have a funeral and have no one come. (The Snakeman promised, assuming I die at a convenient time for him, to come to my funeral and bring a date. So there's two. He also volunteered to bring some strippers to make the turnout look larger.)

Anyway... somewhere in Heaven tonight, there are at least four guys sitting at a table rolling dice. I can hear it now: "Craaaack!" "Lift up your skirt, Margo!" "Mr. Wheeler, you're gonna get to watch me eat." and "What in the world is that?"

Rest easy, Herman. And stay in the good column.

Retaliation

Late in the 2006 season, Travis Hafner was on his way to a possible MVP when he was beaned by Wahoo C.J. Wilson. Pronk has never really been the same since.

This week, Warpig team captain Albert Pujols got a little bit of retaliation by lining a ball off the face of Wahoo starter Chris Young, breaking Young's nose in several places.

Go Pigs!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Herman

July 13, 1938 - May 22, 2008

Rest in peace.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Baseball

Scattershooting while wondering whats up with the REDS this year!

I'm finally getting around to writing about my favorite moments in baseball. This red ink is my way of paying a bit of homage to the Cincinnati Reds!

Herman, this is for you!

Fungoes began watching baseball in 1968. My dad was a big fan of baseball and he was stationed at Wright Patterson AFB (Ohio), and so, he was a Reds fan. You would think that would make me a Reds fan too wouldn't ya? Nope. The Tigers won the World Series that season and my lifelong love for the Detroit Tigers began! Sorry Judy!

Al Kaline, Norm Cash, Bill Freehand, Mickey Stanley, Jim Northrup, Denny McClain and Mickey Lolich....those guys became my heroes!

One of my favorite things about baseball? Going to Reds games with my dad. He would keep score during the game. That's how I learned how to keep score, and that comes in handy for anyone in NASOMA!

I watched a guy named Johnny Edwards catch for the Reds until he was replaced by Johnny Bench. I saw another of my heroes play live as well, that was Pete Rose. Wouldn't it be great to be able to watch those guys play again in their prime?

I one time dove/fell out of the stands for a foul ball at Arlington Stadium at a Rangers game.......after I got up I retrieved that ball, but I didn't get to keep it. I was given the choice of keeping it and leaving the game or giving it back and staying for the rest of the game......it was an easy choice.....but the usher got an ear full from the future Owner of the Warpigs!

I was in attendance when Nolan Ryan picked up K number 5000! Thanks Rick!

I watched the All-Star game in 1995 at the Ballpark in Arlington. Thanks Jose!

I was in attendance when Kenny Rogers pitched his perfect game! That was awesome!

I was in attendance at Arlington Stadium for the very first home game of the Texas Rangers! In that game, the first major league hit ever at Arlington Stadium was a mammoth two-run homer hit by Frank Howard! The Rangers won that game 7-6 over the Angels.

The one time I ever pulled for the Yankees? When Don Mattingly was wearing pinstripes. He was great but they sucked!

The one time I ever pulled the the Padres? Well, never I guess....certainly not 1984!

What was my biggest Baseball thrill? Winning NASOMA Championship in 2006, of course!

What else is awesome about Baseball? I've been to games with Herman Wheeler, and that's something I'll never forget......

I Love ya Herman!

Derek

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Games

from the Fungoes...

Fungoes made a trip to Oilerville Sunday and paid for it with 5 losses! Oilers pitching was too much for the hapless Fungoids as much maligned Barry Zito contributed 7 innings toward a 4-0 drubbing in game 1. Fungoes lost both sides of a double-header next, 7-5 and then the 3-0 shutout in the nightcap!

Game 4 was a 7-6 drubbing followed by a 7-4 pounding in the finale!

Papelbon faced 5 batters in the series........4 of them scored and the Papster recorded zero outs!

Yippee......
GO Fungoes!

Fungobummin

And from the Oilers...

This is not a misprint. Oilers and Fungoes 5 game series. Oilers win all 5.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Game updates

Update from the HEAD INMATE...

Mavs made the drive to the Baptist Bowl and were treated very shabbily today. Inmates won 10 of 14, including the last two by scores of 20-3 and 11-3. Mavs had very bad day; not much went right.

Inmates are now 31-19.


And from the Snakeman...

SSWs split a 2 game netplay series with DV and we swept a 5 game set with the Mavs.

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Games

From the Snakeman...

From Seinfeld, on the answering machine,
" Hey it's George. I have nothing to say."
We split 10 with the FFTs and took a short 2 game set from the Drillers. We stand at 25-22, looking for that tweener pick in next years draft.....

Saturday, May 03, 2008

Standings Update 5/3/08

What a difference a year makes. Last year at the end of April, 5 teams had not reported any games played and 4 others had played less than 30. This year, all 16 teams have reached the minimum 35 game mark by the end of April. The standings page on the website and below is current (and includes some May games just sent in by the Snakeman).

Two reminders: When you send me your results, CC them to your opponent. Or send them to your opponent and CC them to me. This acts as confirmation and keeps your opponent from needing to send me the results. Also, the minimum number of games for the end of May is 50.

Hey, maybe we should get demerits for playing our games TOO fast. LOL

B.U.D. W L % GB Remaining Games Last Update
Rhinos 28 19 .596 --
115 4/8/08
Wahoos 29 25 .537 2.5
108 4/29/08
Oilers 22 36 .379 11.5
104 4/26/08
Warpigs 13 27 .325 11.5
122 4/27/08
M.F.D. W L % GB
Buckeyes 32 22 .593 --
108 4/27/08
Inmates 21 15 .583 2.0
126 4/27/08
Nads 40 34 .541 2.0
88 3/20/08
Mavs 19 36 .345 13.5
107 4/19/08
A.W.D. W L % GB
Killer Bees 53 27 .663 --
82 4/23/08
Sidewinders 25 22 .532 11.5
115 5/3/08
Zaps 23 21 .523 12.0
118 4/6/08
Tweeners 16 19 .457 14.5
127 4/27/08
N.E.R.D.D. W L % GB
DVs 37 26 .587 --
99 4/18/08
Drillers 51 43 .543 1.5
68 5/3/08
Fungoes 18 24 .429 8.5
120 4/29/08
FFTs 34 65 .343 21.0
63 5/3/08