Category Archives: Baseball Tonight

Buster Olney on Jay Bruce’s glove last night (ESPN)

Buster Olney was on ESPN last night for a segment of Baseball Tonight and he was talking about Jay Bruce’s defense. They were showing ‘the catch’ (should be the only synonymous catch in Reds-lore for a while, so we can call it that) that won the ballgame the other night.

Olney said that he had talked to Jay Bruce (Buster talked to a Reds player? Refreshing!) and Bruce told him that before the 2009 season he knew he had to improve his defense. They were showing replays of the catch the other night and talking about how Bruce improved his defense by doing a lot of anticipating where the ball was going to be hit. Olney said if you watch the play the other night, Bruce got back to the wall and scaled it (more like sprinted on the warning track) which allowed the Reds to in turn add a win to their total.

They then showed that it was the #1 web gem of the night and gave it 7.0/10 Buehrle’s? (I’m out of the loop).

His UZR is 14.0, 43% better than the 2nd best RF, Ichiro. Ichiro has also won 9-straight Gold Glove awards. Again, if Bruce doesn’t win a Gold Glove Award this season, the award no longer holds any weight in my eyes. I’ve watched him play all year and there is no one better (although I haven’t seen Micheal Bourn play a whole lot and I hear he’s unreal in center field in Houston).

More then anything I had to transcribe that they were talking about our boy on ESPN.

Hot Stove taking BBTN out behind the woodshed

It’s looking like one of MLB Network’s primary goals has been accomplished. The offseason show Hot Stove is taking it to the competition in terms of customer reviews. This comes both from what we’ve read and in conversations with a few of our lucky peers that get the MLB Network as part of their regular old cable package.

And this is a sad day. Not all of us will be lucky to get MLB Network without adding satellite. And we don’t want the hassle of adding satellite. We want Baseball Tonight to the right thing and sack up.
It’s because for so many years Baseball Tonight was the baseball show on television. We watched it in the golden era, man. Whenever you saw a great play, you immediately wondered if it was web gem worthy. When your guy went deep, you were immediately saying in your head ‘that sure as hell better get on ‘going, going, gone’.’

Somewhere in all the bright lights and all the love Baseball Tonight got over the years, it lost the gleam. It just wasn’t a must see program for the die hard fan anymore. We’re sure in many cases that it still gained viewership because it was the only guy in town. Not anymore.

The most recent review cites the analysis, the topics, the highlights, the guests, the demonstrations and the women as reasons why the new show is kicking BBTN’s proverbial butt. Here’s what they said about the topics, and if true; fans of a small market team like us (Reds) will probably be finding a way to get MLB Network on our flatscreen by the time April rolls around.
The Topics: Agree with the “east coast bias” notion with ESPN or not, there’s no doubting they certainly talk about a few teams much more than others. The MLB Network so far hasn’t really done that. “Hot Stove” might leadoff with a Manny update, but they don’t spend half the show talking about only the Yankees and Red Sox. They seem to treat every and division equally, at least so far. We’ll see if that keeps up on the network in a couple months, but I love what I’m seeing.
Whatever is going on in the world of Major League Baseball, they’re talking about it. For example, since the launch of the network on January 1st, here’s how a typical show goes: latest signings and trades, rumors of moves that could come from Heyman and Verducci, previews of individual teams and divisions, discussion of the Hall of Fame candidates or now inductees with Rickey Henderson and Jim Rice getting in yesterday, interviews, physical demonstrations(I’ll talk about that below), etc.
Now this is big time. We remember plenty of nights in which our Redlegs were 4 games out and we had a comeback win in the ninth inning only to have Orestes Destrade and Karl Ravech give us an ‘oh by the way’. That’s shitty. We’d like it if everyone got equal air time in a perfect world. Sure the Yankees and Red Sox will always trump us in life, but we don’t wanna be reminded of it by having a Pettite 5-1 victory getting 20% of the air time while our walk-off win gets zero reaction. It’s not fair.
It will be interesting to see if BBTN ups things in these areas once Spring Training begins. There were certain things at one point in time (whether you hate ESPN or not) that Baseball Tonight did really well. They’ve got to be smart enough to figure out exactly what that is and lure the religious watchers back in slowly. If not, they’re going to take a major hit because clearly the MLB Network is hitting on the hot button points that viewers like.
MLB Network’s ‘Hot Stove’ blows away Baseball Tonight. [Sharapova’s Thigh]

I'm Down Here, Motherfuckers!

What the hell you keep squintin’ for? I said WHAT THE HELL YOU SQUINTIN’ FOR? BITCH! I’m right here? Am I transparent or something’? Man fuck this.

I’m Baseball Tonight’s newest show host, it’s me, ‘E-Y’; Eric Young!

I tell you what. You know who’s game I’m likin’ this year bro? My man. Chone Figgins. That boy can ball, and he reminds me of me, ‘E-Y’. Don’t put on them shades just yet bro. You haven’t played a long career yet that stretched through the boroughs of San Diego, Colorado, Texas, and every afterthought team in between! You ain’t ‘E-Y’ kid, but you damn close.

What do you mean where is that voice comin’ from? Right fuckin’ here! I’m here! IN FRONT OF YOUR FACE! I tell you what, I’m yellin’ now. I better stop. I’m supposed to be the man to replace Harold Reynolds, not follow him through the door. But seriously man, this ain’t Honey I Shrunk the Brother!

I tell you what man. I like the way that the Cardinals are playing this year. You know who I miss, the man right here to my right. A player from my own mold, Fernando Vina. Fernando why don’t you….. Fernando!?!? Bro, shut the fuck up, I’m talking here!

[Vina continues talking about drag bunts]

Man, what is going on here. It’s like I’m not even noticed or something. I got an idea.

I tell you what. I’m gonna go sit on John Berthume’s lap and try and smell the side of his ear. I’ll show these showbiz pricks how ‘E-Y’ does it.

[Jumps into Berthume’s lap]

I tell you what. Hey BERTHUME! We’re on the set here bro! It’s my segment. Let me talk. What do you mean you hear something? You’re lucky we’re on a commercial break, cause if you say that shit about me on-air, I’m gonna wup that Princeton ass. What do you mean where’s ‘E-Y’?

I tell you what. Fuck this. I’m going to get an extra large slurpee.

Gammons praises the younger Upton

Now I don’t know if Peter Gammons was just in a jovial mood during tonight’s Baseball Tonight broadcast because he was about to watch his Red Sox take on the Yankees live at Fenway Park, but he was in the praising mood in talking about the reason for the DiamondBacks success this season: their emerging young players, and namely Justin Upton and Mark Reynolds.

“I spoke to a GM earlier this week and he told me that Justin Upton is the best 20-year old he’s ever seen.”

Not surprising. Players 20 years old don’t play in the big leagues that often, and rarely have they ever gotten off to a start like this. Still it’s high praise coming from Petey.

'Hot Karl' Ravech

Hello everybody. I’m ‘Hot Karl’ Ravech. Hot Karl for short. I earned the nickname honestly, because in this business everyone knows what I’m capable of doing. To you I’m just a show host. A guy who chaperones the likes of John Kruk, Buster Olney, Steve Phillips, Timmy Kurkjian, Eric Young, and in the past my partner Harold Reynolds through a night of baseball scores.

But there’s a reason that I am the best Baseball Tonight show host. There’s a way I differentiate myself from all the rest (you know who I mean: Brian Kenny, etc.), I seperate myself by breaking wind. I have learned to master this through the years. Sure there’s been a few rocky times, times when I didn’t know how things would turn out. I’ve shit my pants in the process a few times. But that happens to everyone in this business at sometime or another.

The year was 1995 when I received a change of fortune. I was gifted by my colleagues a leather rise chair. One that probably needs greased that can move up or down and increase or decrease in height behind that big highlight desk. I learned that if I lean forward at just the right angle during commercial breaks, I can create a sound coming from my posterior that is unmatched within the industry. When people tune into the show and they look at John Kruk; they see a man that they’d probably lay money down on when it comes to ripping nasty ass smacking, undulating farts. However, those who are truly behind the scenes and have been in this business know: there is no match for ‘Hot Karl’.

On most nights you see me as a guy who’s just going to tell you the storyline of the Atlanta-Philadelphia game. What you don’t know is at any moment, a very concentrated and sometimes warm puff of air has just crept out of my butt. Especially if I had thai or chinese food in the preceding 24 hours. You should smell it then. It’s awful. Awful in a good way. It hurts but it’s good kind of thing. It’s a good deal for me really.

In 2002 I re-negotiated my deal with ESPN with a clause in the contract that I would be able to fart whenever I want, and a side-clause that if I should shit my pants while on the set or while passing gas, I cannot be terminated for it. I’m untouchable now. Colleagues know that if they cross my path, the only answer they’ll get from me for their complaints sounds likeable to a crumpled trombone. You don’t fuck with ‘Hot Karl’ Ravech.

Many think that ballplayers are the only ones in this business that get their uniform dirty. I can tell you from firsthand experience that just isn’t true. You should see my laundry hamper. There’s poopy stains and streaks on I’d say 85% of my underwear. I’ve worn a mark on that leather hydraulic chair of mine. I am a guy who doesn’t mind getting his uniform dirty and those I work with have come to know and appreciate that about me.

In recent years, others that talk about the game have tried to replicate and all have failed. There is no replacement and there is none higher. For every baseball show with highlights–there’s a host somewhere within that show who’s tried to produce the way I do–out of their O-ring orifice. No one can do what I do.

Karl Ravech in his kitchen. July 18th, 2005:

Baseball Tonight has a new playmate

Today on the Worldwide Leader, much to my delightful surprise; Baseball Tonight presented by Dick’s Sporting Goods was on. This is a very happy time of year, another sign that spring is here and the sports purgatory part of the year that happens annually every February and early March is coming to an end.

Looked like Baseball Tonight’s lineup of characters will feature the steady and strong Karl Ravech, John Kruk as the 2nd in command, Eric Young, and Steve Phillips. In the crowd was the strong presence of Tim Kurkjian; who seemed to be enjoying himself at Disney for ‘ESPN: The Weekend’.

Look, Baseball Tonight has it’s faults, but it’s damn good to see those guys. It’s like those relatives you have that really get on your nerves when you’re an adolescent, but eventually you come to accept them for what they are and the older you get; you realize they’re all that’s left and you love them for their weird quirks and faults. If it’s been long enough and you haven’t seen them, then you really are excited for a visit.

Baseball Tonight also has a new sponsor, Dick’s Sporting Goods. This is interesting, because I think that Baseball Tonight (being the premiere baseball show on television) could find a better sponsor than a second rate chain of sporting good stores. I know, I been within the company confines of Dick’s.

When I graduated college, I worked for an NFL Football team. It was a paid internship. A cool gig by any stretch. After that, I moved back to Columbus to pursue a full-time job and be close to my fiance. I had to do something to pay the bills. For about 6 weeks, I was a pizza boy. It fucking sucked; but only because I had to admit that I was that with a college degree. I had to do something to make some money while interviewing for jobs. After my 6 weeks when things were really starting to get rolling, I was fired. I was told that I didn’t know the routes well enough. I was hurting the productivity of the workplace. Can’t blame them, I was lousy with directions. It was a bummer, getting fired from a pizza place.

Thats when I was taken in by the friendly folks at Dick’s. I had some sales experience (from the NFL team), and they really liked that. They said they had a good idea of what role they could fit me into at the company. They were going to put me on the sales floor. It was around Christmas time, and I was brought on as holiday help to work in the baseball department (since I played college baseball) on the sales floor. What would ensue was a couple very, very mundane and brutal months.

I feel bad about the way things ended at Dick’s. No-call, no-show, and no two weeks notice as I’d left immediately for greener pastures. But during my time there, no amount of boredome could compare to a simple 6 hour shift standing around the baseball department at Dick’s. I tried everything. I even eventually found a warehouse-room hiding place in which I could go up in on my lunch breaks, put in a big fat dipper and sit and reflect on what it was I was doing with my life: sitting in a Dick’s warehouse room dipping and hiding out.

It wasn’t that the company was second rate. It was the product. The wood bats weren’t good wood. The gloves weren’t of good quality. The metal bat selection was shit. Many of the equipment pieces sold there were lame. The one good thing was batting gloves. As far as baseball equipment goes, please don’t take your kid to Dick’s to buy it. He won’t turn into any type of player if you do that. I figure some of the smart parents know that, because often I was ‘selling’ to little league moms who didn’t know what the fuck they were looking for. That, and I was the leading ping-pong table salesman in my 3 months there (try putting that on a resume, please). I feel that the wise parents who knew something about baseball knew that Dick’s product was crap, so they prefer to order equipment from a quality selection operation like Baseball Express or other mom and pop sporting goods outfits. Dick’s just falls short in quality.

That place could turn any 4 hours of a perfectly fine sunday into feeling like you were there for 12. It was amazing and tying on my soul. That coupled with the $7.75 an hour, it’s just not worth it. I haven’t been in a Dick’s since, not for anything. Please, stay away from Dick’s.

If it were a video game, the reset button would have been used

It’s not every morning that I can lead off with something that hasn’t happened in 110 years. They couldn’t believe what they saw over at Lone Star Ball. Jared Saltalmacchia as well as Ramon Vazquez each drove in 7 runs. There were two Rangers grand slams hit in the game.

The classic part? The Orioles led 3-0 after a few innings of play. Texas then scored 30 unanswered runs, 4 touchdowns and a safety before regulation expired.

Four Texas hitters had 4 RBI or more, and the point that made Tim Kurkjian orgasm live on Baseball Tonight? The 7,8, and 9 hitters went 13 for 19 and drove in 16 runs. According to Timmy: “That has NEVER happened!”. Kurkjian went on oogling, and cooing and cawing for the entire 3 minute call that was shown. I’m pretty sure he jerked off immediately after hanging up.

It’s pretty amazing when you consider this was done by a last place team that the two nights prior had been owned by Johann Santana and Erik Bedard.

[Box Score]

Buster Olney weighs in on Adam Dunn situation

Today we had the chance to speak with Buster Olney from ESPN. Here is what he had to say about the Adam Dunn situation which has about another week to fester itself before coming to some type of head:

Diamond Hoggers: Buster, can you talk at length with what you see shaking down with the Adam Dunn situation and his future in Cincinnati?

Buster Olney, ESPN: Dunn is considered a mega-star in Cincinnati, while other teams see Dunn as an amazing power hitter with some flaws in regard to defense and strike-outs. What I’m hearing is that the Reds asking price due to how they value him is so very high, making it tough to trade him. Tough situation….

"Roger Clemens pooped in Trenton last night; in minor news President Reagan was assasinated…."

Ok so last night I am watching Baseball Tonight, and with a full slate of games going on; it’s bad enough that we get the usual lead off of the Yankees and Red Sox. I figure that was to be expected, so after the extra long Yankees and Red Sox highlight in which we get to see each and every dramatic and climatic moment in which the ESPN Big Market Homers deem necessary, it’s finally time to get on with life as one-third of the program is now gone because we got to see Dough Mienkiewicz tie his shoes and Steve Phillips has to analyze it.

Then we get the bombshell news of the night. I mean; in case you didn’t have the 3 hours in the middle of your day to like; skip out on how you make money and watch Double-A baseball; have no fear. Baseball Tonight is about to give you every little bit and piece you wanted and then some about Roger Clemens.

I don’t know if it is because he’s going to pitch for the Yanks; or because he’s “Rajah Clemens-the greatest pitcha who eva fhackin’ pitched in Beantown”. It’s probably a little bit of both. When discussing the Yankees this season; whom of which I believe still have a large successful run left in them; they’re just another team for Christ sakes. Sure they’re the Yanks but how much can you ram them down our throat? They aren’t all that interesting. Believe me. They’re an older, uninteresting, slow, tired team of vets that have put together a team of late 90’s All-Stars. Why not add Clemens right?

Back to my topic, Baseball Tonight is going to grade Clemens’ start for us now folks. They’re going to break it down in several areas for us, and just so it’s as accurate as possible; they’ve even nicely weighted the grades for us at home! Aw, isn’t that cute, ESPN’s really gone the extra mile to put their dick in the Yankees mouth once again and leave me wondering what the scores of the Indians and Tigers games was.

Baseball Tonight's May predictions

You see my beloved and appreciated readers, I remember ESPN’s Baseball Tonight when it was truly a show worthy of staying up late for. I remember the days when it seemed like all that mattered was seeing the highlights and at the end, that screaming baseball for ‘Going…going…gone’ and it left you feeling fulfilled. What other half hour show could bring so much joy at that hour without showing obscene things, huh? Well, maybe you shouldn’t answer that.

I watch ESPN each night because it’s the only game in town. Not because I enjoy Stu Scott’s googly eye, or because I can’t get enough of Kenny Mayne’s condescending little prick demeanor. They’ve gone too hollywood on us all, you know. They’ve really made a mockery of the sports highlight-which is something that should have been impossible to do. I don’t know exactly what it is about ESPN that irks me but it feels like everything.

I always thought one thing would remain sacred. I thought they’d watch over Baseball Tonight like it was their last surviving virgin daughter. I thought they’d protect and for Gods sakes not change a thing about the show which was so great. No matter what age I was, it always took me back to those warm mid-summer July nights that no matter if my team won or lost, I could enjoy a good solid hour of baseball highlights and commentary.

I was so wrong. I’ve already documented why it sucks now. The best part of the show is no longer Ravvy and Gammons, as they’re rarely paired together anymore. ESPN has instructed Ravech to keep his fool mouth shut and Gammons is too often gone in appearance, chasing Red Sox cleats until his heart’s content. The best part about the show is Tim Kurkjan (I’m sorry tim I know there is an ‘i’ in that last name somewhere, but fuck it), and he’s one dick joke away from killing everyone in sight.

Last night, for some reason I really got myself pumped up to watch BBTN. I thought about doing the right thing, going to bed with the wifey and calling it a night. It was 11:40 and I had to get up early. But you know what I did out of the goodness of my fool heart? I said, “No honey, you go to bed. I’m hitting the couch and watching baseball tonight”. Afterall, my Redlegs had a big night, Dunn and Griff homered and hell, they might even talk about them a little bit if I’m lucky. Stupid me.

In typical ESPN fashion they sent out the puppets to carry out their wishes. After leading off the show with the usual Yankees cock-gobbling and letting Phil Hughes call in, they used up 10 minutes devoted to the Yanks in all. Understandable I suppose-the kid had a no-no going. Then the Red Sox. How long can you highlight a fucking Papelbon blown save? Jesus. How many meaningless moments can you pack into a highlight of the Red Sox? Get over it, turn the page, dickwads. If baseball can go along with revenue sharing, the television waves of ESPN Baseball tonight should start sharing some love instead of continually blow-jobbing one team. They do it each night in their cute little segment of “most important thing” it seems. It should be “Most important thing about the Yankees or Red Sox, Or Mets, or whoever is the trendy team lately”.

They devote a 20 second highlight to the Reds-which is cool and all because the Reds are kind of brutal I’ll admit. They show Dunn’s homer, Griff’s homer, and well that’s a wrap. Sorry Reds fans, no mas. People who don’t live and breathe the game wouldn’t have even known the Reds’ opponent if they stopped to blink or cough during the ‘segment’.

Then they lead into something that I guess got me a bit excited. It was time at the end of the show; not for “Baseball tonight’s panel of Most important things”, but “may predictions”. Ohhhh boy, this could get interesting. Something new, something fresh. I like it. Maybe my waiting up will pay off.

Here’s how it went:

John Kruk: (snorting and gasping for air) “Well you know what Karl, I’ll tell ya what. The Pittsburgh Pirates are going to be in first place by the end of this month. The Brewers are a great team, but the Pirates are gonna catch em’. They’ve got the pitching, and well, they’re going to be in first place. The biggest reason other than that pitching is because of this guy, Adam Laroche! He’s the key to this team! That’s my May prediction.”

Jesus Kruk. If that happens I’ll stop calling you a fat, smelly, pig. I promise. That’s bad fellas. Real bad. I mean what the fuck? Laroche? The only thing I can say about Laroche is the Braves got rid of him because he annoyed the fuck out of Chipper Jones–true story. Sure the Pirates are pesky and pain’s in the ass each night to someone, but they aren’t getting into first place. Mark it down, Baseball tonight shits the bed and a blogger calls them out on it. I do give them props for not involving the Yankees.

Next up:

Fernando Vina: “Alright guys, well my prediction might come of a bit of shock to you all, but Gary Sheffield is gonna go wild this month! The Baltimore Orioles woke up a sleeping giant the other night when they beaned ‘Sheff, and he’s one of my buddies my all time favorites! He’s gonna be the player to watch this month and he’s gonna really give a lift to the Tigers! See here, he homered in the next at-bat after getting hit by the pitch last night, see! Here he comes, look out American League, Sheffield has arrived. Look at that cock!”

I really, really thought Fernando would provide some kind of analysis not dealing with trendy speculation but once again I took the bait, hook-line-sinker. Fernando simply took the team next in line for an ESPN bukkake shot, the Detroit Tigers, and glorified them. They’re a good ballclub, don’t get me wrong, but couldn’t we have something not dealing with the Yanks-Sawks-Mets-Trendy team of last year for just one second? Sheffield isn’t gonna do shit this month, fuckhead. He had a brutal april, and no amount of hit by pitch’s are going to bring him out of it. No basis, nothing, just because he got hit by a pitch and homered the next at-bat, we’re gonna see him go wild this month, oh and because he’s your buddy right? I’m sure he is.

Once again, if Vina is right about Sheffield having a big month, I’ll go without buying toilet paper for the month of june. Mark my words. We’ll check back in on these predictions at months end and when I’m right, I’ll talk about how much Baseball Tonight suck
s again, and that’ll be that.

Eggs benedict ruined my fuckin' life

I was once a big league star. I’m not here to simply tell you about my glory days as a big league player, look, we all know how that went. I was on the last throwback ballclub in baseball, the 1993 Phillies. I played 10 big league seasons, which was probably about 9 more then I was due. My playing weight was once at 204 pounds. I retired with a career average of exactly .300, 1170 for 3897, do the math poindexter. I had 199 career doubles, and I stole 58 bases. That’s almost 6 times a year that I was fast enough to run 90 fuckin’ feet with a rocket arm behind the plate trying to throw me out. You people have the audacity to sit there, stare me in the eye and call me a fat slob?

I’ll tell you what drove me out of the league early, in hopes that some of these younger players can stay clean and not let it happen to them. It’s something more potent than mixing steroid cocktails, more lethal than drinking every night (although it goes well with it) and more addicting then a prostitute fresh on the streets in Pittsburgh. Eggs benedict.

It started my rookie year in San diego and soon after that I couldn’t stay away from the shit. One night I went out with Steve Garvey and Greg Nettles, they gave me shots of tequila; I think it was Petron. Some of the nastiest stuff you can pour down you. I get back to the hotel bar and this little asian woman keeps yelling at me to go back to my room, I’m scaring her, this and that. I was in my underwear but no matter. I sat down at the hotel dining room bar and I pounded my fist on the table.

“Fucking fix somethin’….fix it or I’ll take a shit in your pretty little fountain over there.”

So she rushes over to the phone, calls up the cook, he comes down from his suite there at the Hyatt, and I tell him I just want the best thing he can cook up. He was in a bad mood but he knew he had a job to do and I told him to lay down a sacrifice bunt for the good of the team. That was easily the biggest mistake of my life. I’ve never been in love with a woman before, but right there in that hotel lounge it was paradise by the dashboard lights.

With that first bite of biscuit-egg white/yoak-ham-whipped butter combination, I discovered something that brought me a high; no; an ecstasy that the big league diamonds could not. Like I said, I weighed 204 pounds coming in as a rookie, thats technically muscular on any BMI chart. The next day I went 4 for 4 with a few hits off Doc Gooden. That night again, I returned to the lounge and ordered a double of eggs benedict. It was better than the first time, down right orgasmic to my tongue.

For the next 9 years, about 5 to 6 times a week, I would repeat this routine in any big league city I played in. Every night, I’d eat eggs benedict before bed. It started to catch up with me. I got all the stretches in different places around my body, and over time my body would morph into a tumor with hair-like figure. I didn’t care, another order of eggs benedict, another 3 hit ballgame. I’d wake up in the morning many days with very severe chest pains. My stomach would actually ache each night until I fed this monster below.

Then, I got testicular cancer. The doctor said that it was a good chance that the cancer was caused by all those years of eating unborn and unhatched chicken babies on an english muffin like patty, sometimes I’d have some spicy mayonaise on it if they had it. I was careless, and then I was sick. I knew my career was coming to an end.

My wife ended up leaving me after retirement, but the cravings never sufficed. I continued this abuse, this gluttony of craving and to be honest with you; it got worse. I started having it for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. When I started working for ESPN they even talked about having a weight clause in my contract that said if I ballooned to over 300 pounds, I could be subject to termination.

I started ordering my benedict in the morning in this diner near my home, then I’d drive 45 minutes to another diner and order the same thing just hoping no one would recognize me and by chance say something like: “Daddy I saw that man at the other diner earlier this morning.”

My life became a repeated routine of eat, eat, eat, do a show, nap, scratch my nuts, another eggs benedict, and then another show, and an another eggs benedict before bed. I’ve had food poisoning some 300 times. I’ve vomited in my mouth and kept it down because I didn’t wanna lose the nourishment. I didn’t wanna give up those calories, they were mine and I needed them.

Now here I am, the laughing stock of baseball commentary, all because of a dish of ham and eggs on bread that I cannot quit. Fuck you Eggs benedict. Fuck you.

The 'other' Tim Kurkjan

Hi there everyone! I’m ESPN’s Tim Kurkjan and you probably think I’m here to talk about a heart-warming story about Oakland A’s GM Billy Beane, or Sammy Sosa’s heroic comeback. Well I’m not. This is my time, and I’m operating on my watch today. I’m here for something totally different. I’m tired of being pushed around by the big-whigs at ESPN and I’m tired of being lacky to that Gobbler-Chin fuck, Gammons and that fat Hawaiian shirt-wearing swine Chris Berman. I’m tired of people calling me an egg-head, and I’m tired of ‘coloring within the lines’ of commentary. No more Mr. nice guy, got it? I’m running the fucking show today and turn off that fucking tele-prompter because I’m not reading the cues anymore.

You think I don’t hear what people say about me? You think I don’t have two ears that hear just like yours? Well fuck you, asshat, because I have two ears that do hear, and they hear quite well. No, I have never played the game of baseball, but just to clear things up, I know the game better than any of you fat, stitched to couch lowlifes that sit and watch me and try and live the big league dream every day bicariously through my words. I take a dream and put it in the form of a baseball highlight every night for you people and this is the thanks I get in return? Suck my fucking pecan skinned cock!

I passed Stuart Scott at the Oasis water fountain in the company cafeteria the other day and you know what he asked me? “Hey there, do you know where you’re at? Can I help you?”, then the prick tried to have me taken in by security and escorted off the premisis. Well I have a nugget for you, Mr. Scott, you oatmeal-smelling fuck, I do know where I’m at and I am where I’m supposed to be. Where are you supposed to be, you Jackie Robinson immortalizing piece of shit, cheating on your wife, perhaps? Fuck you and the Rolls-Royce you rode into town on.

You see these loafers? Look closer, look at the tread on the soles. You see that green? That came from Camden Yards in Baltimore. Have you ever stepped foot on the shrouds of Camden? That’s what I thought. Take a whiff, that smells of success you horse manure-eating, self-suffocating prick. Don’t you dare turn those cameras off. I’ll go so fucking postal that you people won’t even know the light of day. I’ll bury this company. If you know what you’re doing Miguel, you’ll keep those fucking cameras rolling. This is my spotlight and I’m finishing the segment.

So what, you hear my voice and because it’s soft you think I haven’t done great things in life? You think I’m here for your amusement? Wrong again. Last time I looked at my watch, it was telling the right time and it told me to tell you people to blow me! Let me let you all in on a little secret: last night, I had the most incredible sex of my life, she was a prostitute named Veronica. She blew me twice in the parking lot, I made her stop, then I slapped her in the face, pulled on her tits while I gave her a monstrous money shot of cum right to her nose. I had never done that before but it was so gratifying. I asked her how it felt to be Daddy Tim’s little whore and she said it was great. To top everything else off, I did something else totally shocking. I used that dick move most used by Keith Olbermann and I didn’t even pay her when she was finished licking the nectar off my boton. I told hear to “lick the meatus, lick the meatus. That meatus is sensitive, lick it, lick” and she did. I shriveled myself up, short of energy and hollered the bitch right out of my car. That’s right, so blow me! You people have no clue what I’m capable of.

I was the kid in gym class that always got shit on and picked last. I was the son that the father never hugged. I was the kid who got his tooth brush stolen from his sleepover bag at slumber parties by “friends” and had them pass it around in a circle and wipe their ass with it right before I brushed my teeth for the night. No more of that shit! I’m not brushing my teeth with a fecal mattered fucking toothbrush anymore here at the world-wide leader in sports. I’ve got something more valuable than that fucking worthless paystub you provide me with: Kurkjan Pride! I am a man, and none of you will ever be able to take that away from me. Fuck you!

I have an agenda as well, that I am giving my attentions to at the moment. Usually that agenda included 12 hours of sleep, cleaning in all the areas that I should, abstinence, vegtables, a nice interview or segment in which I was forced to play the fiddle of kindness for you fucking people and your big-shot prick athletes, and lots of other things that kept my body in homeostasis! Well no more, it’s new-agenda time here for Timmy boy, how do you like me now, fucking cum rags.

This morning I awoke, ate 12 slices of bacon, scratched my fucking nards, and went out of the house only commando underneath my dress-khakis–which were still smelling of shit in the seat of them because I didn’t wash them! Is that man enough for you fucking macho-big shot assholes? How about this, I went into the gas station, asked for a pack of Marlboro Reds, when I was asked to be ID’d for them I told the fucking heeb behind the counter that I had a knife in my suit jacket, and he handed them over. Amazing how a little swagger can change a man’s fortunes in this country. I then lit one after the other driving on the way to work on an empty tank and opened my window and yelled obscenities all the way to the studio parking lot. I yelled them until I couldn’t catch my breath in between puffs. I don’t mind the cigarettes, there not bad really. When I walked in, some nice little pretty girl in the green room gave me a fake “hello how’s your day Mr. Kurkjan?”. Wrong day for that missy. I replied with “I don’t fucking know you, don’t pretend like you know me unless you’re ready to hand over whats between those thieghs,” and walked away. It got Harold Reynolds released from this captive island of fucking hostility, maybe it will work for me.

Is that fucking camera still on? It better be.

Maybe you people have seen the movie Falling Down, with Micheal Douglas. I’ve seen it and that is how I feel. I’ve been pushed around, and pushed around, and be-littled, and underappreciated for too long. The world will pay it’s price now. That’s right. I’ve lost my fucking little toy mind. I’m sitting here with my pants down to my ankles, belt undone, and I’m jerking off thinking of images of Marilyn Monroe. When I am finished relieving myself under this desk I’m walking out to my car, grabbing a sniper rifle I just purchased and I’m going to the top of the highest building in this city and I’m going to treat the city streets like they are my ant farm. Guess what, you people out there are all my ants! I’m the kid now with the magnifying glass. I’m going to pick you off one by one until my fucking hearts content. Then I’m going to pull out my cock and blow my brains out.

The tragic fall of an American masterpiece

To baseball fans, this show is (was) the Holy Grail. It is to the baseball fan what the market report or Mad Money is to stockholders and money junkies. When your team or player leads off baseball tonight, it’s instantaneous hard-on. Nothing, and I mean nothing can make a man’s night like that happening. A close second is seeing 5 of your fantasy baseball team members on the ‘Going…Going…Gone’ list at the end of the show, one with a multiple homerun game. But to have Ravech and Gammons lead off the show with your boys, well you knew it was either an amazing win, or they got their ass kicked in startling fashion.

But that was then. There’s something different now isn’t there. I can’t quite put my finger on ‘it’, but something is definitely not the same. The treat has been stolen off the top of the cupcake, or something. It’s still an enjoyable program, because it’s the only thing we’ve got. ESPN’s Baseball Tonight has lost its swagger. The gleam is gone.

The biggest complaint I have with the show’s fall from grace of the Golden Years (1990-2002ish, R.I.P.), is it went away from everything that brought it to the dance. Back in those years, you could count on it being on every night, the 10:30 edition, and the 12:00 late edition. The only night you wouldn’t be able to see it was when Wednesday and Sunday Night Baseball got the stage, and on those nights you could see it before the game came on after Sportscenter. Now you’re forced to play a game of ‘poke and hope’ with the remote control. Some nights it can be found on ESPN at 10:00 ET. Some nights it’s on at 10:40, (given a shitty 20 minute timeslot to promote the ‘trifecta’). Other nights it gets ESPN2 all to it’s lonesome, oh goody, but it is on only at midnight, and by then you think it’s been replaced for the night by the chess world #1 contender match that runs right up until midnight when you’re tired of the guessing games. Is it that hard to leave the time slots the fuck alone for the most part ESPN? Your best show, the one thing you haven’t sold out on over the years–isn’t anything sacred anymore? You people are monsters.

I’ll tell you why I still watch. Every once in a while there is that golden glimmer that takes you back years, and reminds you of the good ol’ days in BBTN broadcasting. Karl Ravech and Petey Gammons being alive and on the show will give you that much (although Gammons gave us a scare when he had a stroke). They get rid of Dave ‘Soup’ Campbell and Harold Reynolds for bullshit reasons. They replace the pair with Rob Dibble (no longer on the show) and John Kruk, with all due respect, two guys who have NO BUSINESS telling me analysis on how the game should be played. Then they go and try to shove a pompus asshole like Steve Phillips down our throats nightly. Phillips uses the show, what used to be ‘our’ show, the people’s show, as his own personal spotlight and agenda to spout off about what is important to him or what a winning GM does.

That brings me to my next point. There is a new segment on the show, outlined as ‘Most Important Thing’. This segment features analysts’ comments on the most important story from the day’s happenings in MLB. This is usually the final segment of the show. Where do they get off thinking we give a fuck. I don’t know how many times that I’ve heard Kruk or Phillips say, “well it was huge for that team that Pedro came in the 5th inning before he left the ballgame and get a 1-2-3 inning even though he was roughed up for the rest of the day. That will be huge for this team down the stretch.” Hey, ESPN, how about you stop worrying about what is most important to your analysts and start focusing on what is the real ‘most important thing’, people like me who kept your show afloat for years.

Two things on the show I cannot complain about aside from Gammons and Ravech, would be that they’ve kept Web Gems around, and they put that little needle-dick Tim Kurkjan on the show. You know, I’m pretty sure Kurkjan never played baseball. In fact, I promise he never did. I’m not sure how he got mis-aligned from the world of cyber-pedophiling and building space shuttles, onto covering baseball, but I am sure glad he did it. He’s a wonderful addition. You’ll never see him meddling into other’s affairs and constantly reminding us of his accomplishments on the Major League Baseball stage. Just good, solid, analysis from a journalist that cares, even if he probably couldn’t last 4 minutes in the sack with a naked woman.

They can throw segments like ‘Extra bases’ and ‘On the Phone’ down the shitter along with ‘touch em all’. Fuck that. Extra bases is basically them dedicating 10-12 minutes of the show talking about the daily Red Sox or Yankees game. Every once in a while they’ll throw in a no-hitter by the Indians or Marlins, or someone on the Reds hitting 3 homeruns, maybe. On the Phone is cool, to a point, but not every night. Especially not when they were trying to market that shitty ESPN Mobile phone that didn’t work worth a fuck. And I’ll say it again: Isn’t anything sacred? Do the pricks at ESPN have to sell out everything? Even something as good and American as Baseball tonight?

I’ll watch again this year, every night, endlessly surfing through the channels trying to wonder what went wrong with this once great show. I’m dream of the boyhood days when the graphics and colors were bad, but the content was great on baseball tonight. That was then, this is now.