ESPN reports that wrestling superstar Kurt Angle got some BP instruction from Pujols today. Angle was invited to Spring Training by David Eckstein, a big wrestling fan who recently managed along with A. J. Pierzynski at a pay-per-view event.
I hadn’t thought much about wrestling since I was in junior high until two weeks ago when I attended Lucha Va Voom in LA. It’s a biannual spectacle involving Mexican wrestling, comedy, and burlesque that plays to sold out crowds. The burlesque routines involved cirque du soleil antics, hula hoops, and pogo sticks. It’s truly an extravaganza beyond Vince McMahon’s wildest dreams.
Back in junior high, I was big wrestling fan. My favorite wrestler was "Rowdy" Roddy Piper and I once called in and read a poem I’d written about him when he appeared on a KMOX chat show hosted by Bob Costas. He was promoting Wrestlemania 2, when he boxed Mr. T. Roddy responded to my breathlessly-read love poem with some lewd remark, and Bob stated very sarcastically that he found the poem deeply moving. I still hold a grudge against Costas.
Spring Training haikus coming soon!
I’m not a Mets hater. As I mentioned before, I used to live in Woodside, Queens, just a couple 7 train stops from Shea. But there was a time in the 80s, when I was in junior high, and the Cards had a big rivalry with the Keith Hernandez-era Mets, when I was known to join the chant "Mets are Pond ****." I believe it was our Howard-Stern-Lite radio personality JC Corcoran who came up with this one, and I have to give him credit as it’s one of those chants that has stuck through the decades. I am sure we will see some Pond **** signs in Busch during this series. Obviously, the Mets are not pond **** – they have the best record in the NL. Besides, there are no ponds in Queens that I know of.
While searching for a photo of a vintage "Mets are Pond ****" t-shirt, I found an article on "art made from pond ****".
To describe the piece, the reporter wrote, "The dried ****, which looks a bit like a physical landscape map from
geography class, includes urban waste and snails that are woven into
the fabric of the material produced when the **** dried." Interesting, yes, but does it match the sofa?
(Note to MLB.com: can we relax the censoring of the word scuum during this playoff series?)
Today’s St. Louis Post Dispatch ran a huge photo of Mike Piazza missing the foul pop up yesterday, and various writers in the sports section mentioned it repeatedly as the key to the game. Yes, it was a big play. His lapse gave Pujols new life, and Pujols took advantage by launching a 2-run homer that landed somewhere near my house in Culver City. But the play for Piazza was by no means a gimme, nor was it possibly even makeable. Some said the ball hit the net and careened, although the ump didn’t see it that way. Given my history as catcher for the St. Christopher’s girls softball team from kindergarten – 8th grade, I can attest those are not easy plays when you have to spring up from your squat, lose the mask, deal with the backstop and try to find the ball in the sun.
I guess I just wish the Post could have focused more on all the positives in yesterday’s game and led with a photo of Pujols homering, Edmonds and Molina hitting RBI singles, Carp on the mound, Belliard making a great play at 2nd base, Molina turning a double play, etc. We won for many reasons; Piazza just helped a little.
Well, what can we glean from the Cardinal comments in their locker room celebration, as they squinted through the sting of champagne in their eyes? First off, I learned that nobody seems to like talking to Rich Gould. The poor Channel 11 reporter was completely ignored by Juan Encarnacion, and I don’t think it was an english-as-a-second language issue. When asked what he thought of TLR’s decision to pitch Reyes instead of Carp, Rolen clearly bit his tongue and said "well, it worked out." Eckstein looked a little dazed and kept running his hand through his hair as if the champagne was causing some allergic reaction. Belliard was excited as it’s a new experience for him. Yadi was completely incoherent. Carp looked ready to go. There was more emotion and excitement than I expected from a team who "backed in" to the division win. TLR even smiled before disappearing. Speizio talked about the playoffs being a clean start, a fresh slate, a tabula rasa, if you will (OK, he didn’t say that).
I think this team might surprise a few people in the playoffs. What we lack in healthy (mentally and physically) talent, we can make up for with heart and experience. We showed signs of determination and spark in this final week, and we’ll need to show a lot more against the Padres. I’ve got tickets to see Game 5 in San Diego, but, hey, Cardinals, feel free to wrap things up quicker.
Thanks again to Pete McCarthy for inviting me to be the ML Blogger of the Week on last night’s "Under the Lights" show on MLB Radio. It was great fun. We talked about everything from my dog’s recent spokemodel campaign to the downfall of Izzy to Pujols’ chances for MVP. Pete even indulged me by letting me read a few haikus. If you missed it, you can check out the archived interview on the ML Blogs homepage under the "You’re on the Air" section.
I’m excited to report that I will be the "Blogger of the Week" on the "Under the Lights" show on MLB Radio this Friday at 10:15 PM (EST). Tune in and let me know what you think. If you have any Cardinal thoughts you’d like me to share with the audience, please leave a comment. I can read haikus pretty quickly so I’m going to have to think of a few other profound(?) things to say.
I’m excited to announce that cardinalgirl.com has been named "Local Blog O’ The Week" in this week’s Riverfront Times. Many thanks to "Unreal" for bestowing this honor upon this lil ol’ blog. Somehow he managed to ignore all my haikus in his write-up. Perhaps that is for the best 😉 I always pick up an RFT when I’m in town. Baseball fans will enjoy their weekly feature – Ask a Negro Leaguer.