Thursday, July 05, 2007
This stinks, not just because I think Jeff's career has been mishandled by the various organizations he's been with, but because of the timing. There was a nice write-up about Jeff and Wayne Lydon, both former B-Mets, only two weeks ago. (The third party of that mix, Angel Pagan, is now playing with the Cubs.
Tuesday, July 03, 2007
Which Way - Syracuse, in keeping with the spirit of the city, continues to take small steps backwards. They got rid of the SkyChief name--fans continued to call the team the Chiefs no matter how much the new brand was pushed. The also got rid of the SkyChiefs' logo--a bat with fighter wings, reminiscent of WWII--and replaced it with a steam engine, purportedly to honor Syracuse's railroading history--the trains used to come right through the middle of the downtown streets. The letters on the uniforms were changed to reflect the train motif, but there are three different, clashing fonts, one for the team name on the front, another for the player's name on the back and a third for the player's number. They didn't retired the mascot Scooch--an orange blobby critter--but added a second, Pops the engineer.
Finally, though, they have taken a step backwards that is a good one. They (the county) are going to replace the hideous artificial turf with grass before the next season. Although it hasn't been officially voted on, it's considered a done deal. The day after it was announced in the paper, they had shirts proclaiming the return for sale at the park. On the front it says "got grass?" and on the back "we do, coming 2008".
Got my fix on Tuesday. Earl's looking good, even if his BA this season is hovering below the Mendoza Line, around .185. His weight has always been listed as 200, but it clearly has gone up and come back down over the years. He's slim again, and his hair is longer, sticking out behind his helmet.
He had an okay game, 0-3 with a walk and a run, made a couple routine (for him) plays at third.
The highlight of the game was a pair of guys echoing in a sing-song the park's loudest and most annoying fan. The whole place was laughing after the first few echoes and awaiting the next outburst.
Wednesday was a rainy day, so I didn't make the trip.
Thursday I decided not to go, figuring since I had already seen him play, Earl would probably sit this one out, and the negativity at the park is getting too tough to take.
Around 8:15 I remembered that the local sports channel sometimes broadcasts Chiefs' games, so I turned it on and there they were. Apparently, though, I turned it on right after Earl had batted. When he came up in the ninth, the Knights down 3-1, with a runner on, the sportscasters commented that Earl has been a leading home run hitter and while he has been hitting poorly so far this season, the Chiefs would hate to see him get his power stroke back at that point. No home run, he singled, but he ended up scoring what proved to be the winning run. He had a good night, 2-4, with a strike out.
While I love watching him play in person, watching him play on television has the added benefit of close ups.