Saturday, May 10, 2008

Daily Creature: Alf

This week is going to be a salute to childhood sitcoms on my part, and I figured there was no better place to start than the weirdest one of them all: Alf.

Basically, Alf is an alien who crash-lands on Earth and makes everything awkward beyond belief. It's a weird show with a weird premise.

Like I said...weird show.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Daily SAll-Star: Sir Charles

Charles Barkley was a damn fine basketball player. A former MVP, 5-time NBA 1st team selection, 5-time NBA 2nd team selection, an 11-time all-star, the 1980's SEC Player of the Decade, and a basketball Hall of Famer.

Now he's bloated and gambling away his fortune, but we here at Sal's All-Stars love him anyway. Charles has taken the persona that made him famous during his playing days and turned it into a lucrative studio gig along with Ernie Johnson and Kenny "The Jet" Smith to form the best studio analysis crew in any sport. Charles has always been candid, and that has helped him become a SAll-Star.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Operation Meltdown

Much like a NCAA tournament bracket that predicted George Mason's run to the Final Four, an accurate prognosis of the first 30+ games of the Major League Baseball season are difficult to find. We certainly didn't expect the AL Central to return to its 2001-ish reputation of stankitude from top to bottom--which, I must add, is presently inhabited by popular preseason World Series pick Detroit Tigers. I personally believed that the Tigers would destroy any and all opponents en route to a 100-win season and a World Series victory. Needless to say, their 14-20 record and 185 runs allowed belies their talent, which is plentiful.

So the Tigers have started bad and stayed bad. At least they've been consistent. Over in the National League, the only teams that have stayed the course of filth and depression have been the NL Worst's cellar-dwellers, the defending pennant-winning Colorado Rockies and recent division champions San Diego Padres. Sure, the Rockies' run might have been an obvious fluke, but a fluke yielding a .364 follow-up? Tough to predict.

Rarely in my life has the World Series matchup been so obvious so early in the season. Only five teams have won 20 games and only two--the Red Sox and the Diamondbacks--have had that 20th win for more than two days. They are in the driver's seat; they score runs and prevent runs. They've got veteran pitchers, power hitters, contact guys, base stealers, and glorified cheerleaders. So they'll motor along to the World Series in what will prove to be a spectacularly boring season for success and a wild ride for failure. Unless, of course, the season turns on its head again and the Rangers win the World Series.

What has been really fun, though, has been seeing the strange roller coaster ride of two of baseball's most tortured franchises, the Baltimore Orioles and the Chicago Cubs. The pain and confusion within the two clubs' fanbases have formed from different preseason expectations.

Yesterday was the tenth anniversary of Cubs pitcher Kerry Wood's 20-strikeout game. I actually remember watching that game live in my grandmother's apartment in Detroit (the game was on WGN) and wondering if I was witnessing the arrival of the greatest pitcher in history. Ten years later, Wood is the Cubs' closer with a bloated ERA and 14 starts in the last four years combined. He has yet to win 15 games in a season. Such is life in Wrigley Field, yet nobody notices. Year after year, it's "The Year" for the Lovable Losers. Yet 100 years after their last World Series victory, the Cubs continue to provide baseball fans with excruciatingly unpredictable seasons.

In Baltimore, one could argue it's been an easier ten years. The Birds haven't grasped at success the way the Cubs have, but ask any Oriole fan how he has prepared for baseball season over the last decade and he will tell you that he simply puts on his O's hat, sits back, and waits apathetically for the terribleness to flow forth. For three straight years, the AL East has concluded in identical order, with the Orioles sitting poorly, yet comfortably, in fourth place. When the season opened, it looked as though that trend might change in 2008 when they sat atop the division on April 26th. Twelve days later, they're two games under .500 and sprawled alone in dead last. Now, nobody can say definitively that they will stay there, especially considering the bizarre start throughout the major leagues, but it's nonetheless a fresh new way of torturing Baltimore's long-suffering fans.

Daily Voice of God: Morgan Freeman

Sometimes, just sometimes, words are not necessary. Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you: Morgan Freeman.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Farting is always funny

Farting in the Womens Bathroom - Watch more free videos

Daily SAll-Star

Today's SAll-Star is a local hero: Jim Vance.
On a scale from 1 to Awesome for newscasters, Jim Vance is off the charts. He's a pioneer; one of the first African-American anchors in any major market. In addition, he's one the most professional, classy, and forthright individuals to ever deliver the news. His on-air demeanor is calm and cool but he's not afraid to crack a joke every now and then (see the video below with his good friend, the recently retired George Michael, a legend in his own right). Really, it's no surprise that NBC4 obliterates all local news competition for the 6 PM slot in the ratings.

Keep on being awesome in every way, Jim. And we'll keep on watching.

An Excellent Hockey Game

The Dallas Stars and San Jose Sharks went four overtimes on Sunday night in Game Six of the Western Conference Semifinals.

Monday, May 5, 2008

What a Hack

Ozzie Guillen, though it was never in question, is a bum. This time he's ripping on the good people of Chicago who are upset over the White Sox's (Guillen's team) performance, stating that everyone's panicking and will be upset no matter how many World Series rings he wins.

A few things:

1) Ozzie, you inherited a team that was luckily put together and got career years from the entire pitching staff. You didn't win a World Series ring. Your team did. The role of a manager to win games at the major league level is wildly overrated, especially with talented teams (like the 2005 White Sox). The role of a manager in the big leagues is to keep his players motivated and happy. Winning also does that. You have a talented team that begins well and managing is easy. Ozzie, you overestimate your value.

2) The fans are "panicking" because your team sucks. Who amongst the White Sox regulars strikes fear in the hearts of men? Jim Thome? Guy can't do anything but hit fastballs anymore. AJ Pierzynski? If you're worried about being in close proximity to a world class douchebag, then yes he's intimidating. Jermaine Dye? 7 years ago I'd consider pitching around him. Plus your pitching staff is no longer much to write home about. Face it Ozzie, the fans panic because they know terrible when they see it.

3) Under no circumstances, none whatsoever, should a manager be insulting the fans. Players shouldn't either, but it is more understandable as they are constantly under the microscope and in the spotlight and it is their performance that directly influences the outcome of the games. In contrast, the manager doesn't have to be in the spotlight at all, but Guillen is such an ego-maniacal asshole that makes everything about himself. Get over yourself, Ozzie. You suck at your job and you are far more trouble than you've ever been worth.

Daily Jeff Bridges: Jeff Bridges

Jeff Bridges, whose real name is Jeff Bridges, is Jeff Bridges. Sometimes when I'm talking about Jeff Bridges I call him "The Dude," because, seriously. Jeff Bridges was and is and always will be "The Dude." Thereby making him one of Hollywood's all-time greatest people ever.

Currently, Jeff Bridges is sporting a beard and an evil disposition.

You'll notice that even at his most villainous, Jeff Bridges can't help but lean against shit and give us that same contented smile that might as well say, "Here I am, I'm Jeff Bridges, and I'm having a good time." You know, this smile.

I think we can all learn a lesson from Jeff Bridges and his tremendous enjoyment of life.

Jeff Bridges is awesome because he is always in a good mood and he has never made a bad movie.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Daily Geriatric

There was sad news in sports this past weekend...

No, not the on-track euthanasia of Eight Belles (that was sad, yes, but unfortunately that's how it works in the horse world). The saddest piece of news was the retirement of Julio Franco.

Franco retired at age 49, just months before his 50th birthday. He started his professional baseball career in 1980 and debuted in MLB in 1982.

Franco will be remembered not only for being one of the oldest to ever play the game for money, but also as a consummate professional and teammate, the kind of guy that anyone would want on their team.

As the man himself so eloquently put: "I understand that my time has passed and the great men and athletes know when to say enough."

So Julio, we here at Sal Fasano's All-Stars salute you with the highest accords.