THUNDERWATCH 2008

10:43 PM | Comments (0) | by Rich Funk




The good news? It doesn't look like Thunder Matt Murton is going to Baltimore. I hear he's a fan of The Wire, but that's about as far as his involvement with Mob Town goes.

The bad news? Apparently the Cubs are having discussions trying to trade Thunder Matt to either the Red Sox or Rangers. But the Red Sox are saying that just Murton isn't enough to pry away Coco Crisp. Texas is saying the same in regards to Marlon Byrd.

I can understand why Texas would want Murton. They need all the help they can get. But Murton seems like a terrible fit for Boston. Sure the Red Sox want a decent player for Coco Crisp, but does it really make any sense to trade him for another corner outfielder? Right now Murton is stuck behind Soriano, Pie and Fukudome (and possibly Sam Fuld). In Beantown, he'd be stuck behind JD Drew, Jacoby Ellsbury and Manny.

Then again, the Red Sox have won a few World Series in the past 100 years, so maybe they know what they're doing.

Thunder Matt went 1-3 today in a 12-6 win against the Giants. Murton could easily have gone 3-3, but he didn't want to make the rookies in camp feel bad. What a teammate!

Other Cubs notes:

- Ryan Theriot went 3-3 today, scoring 3 runs and stealing a base. As everyone knows, Spring Training success always translates to regular season success, so expect nothing less than 600 hits and 162 steals from Ryan this year.
- Mike Fontenot hit a triple and a pinch-hit 3 run bomb. Apparently today was a great day for all the French Cubs. Ryan Dempster also won the game. Sure he's Canadian, but that's close enough. By the way, can we go back to calling Fontenot and Theriot "The French Connection" even if one of them is riding the bench all season?
- Mark DeRosa underwent what is known as the "Brant Brown Procedure" today and is expected to resume baseball activities next week. What does it mean when people are set to "resume baseball activities"? Does that mean if he sat around scratching his balls and showering with 10 other grown males before then that he could hurt himself? Anyway, Thunder Matt's Saloon sends its best to Mark.

Catch Your Cubs on the South Side?

9:14 PM | Comments (0) | by The Hundley

It's true. It may happen. Well, maybe. The only sources of information come via a Wrigleyville resident buddy of mine and also The Mully and Hanley show on WSCR-670AM in Chicago. There has been some discussion on major renovations of Wrigley Field, a project that would take up to a year. Okay, fine, it has to happen sooner or later, right? How long can the cargo nets hold back pieces of falling concrete?

And where exactly would the Cubs relocate to for a season? Kane County? Nah, it's too small, even by Wrigley standards. Elfstrom Stadium holds a measly 7,400 people. C'mon, I've stood behind that many people in the urinal line at Wrigley. Not gonna happen. And how happy would Derek Lee be playing games there, only to find that he has to wait to throw out grounders between innings because a 5 year old kid is having a footrace with a Cougar mascot riding a tri-cycle?

Schaumburg Flyers? Nah, brah. Seats even less than Kane County. Plus, no one likes Schaumburg.

Soldier Field? Just because The Bears used to play football at Wrigley doesn't mean that it works vice versa. You could have a pretty wicked game of 500, I suppose. You'd also have to think that the Bear faithful would approve. The Cubs actually have a chance to put more "points" on the board than the Bear offense.

Well, that leaves US Cellular. Now now, don't jump off a bridge just yet. It's obviously an attractive option, better than the barnstorming campaign the Expos embarked on earlier this century to be sure. 'The Cell' isn't such a bad place. Sure, it has no charm, and it's frequently occupied by meth-loving Sox fans, and the local neighborhoods have about as much charm as the on-location shoots during an episode of The Wire. That being said, where else are you going to fit that many people, in a stadium meant for baseball, in the city of Chicago?

Sure, there are a lot of details to be ironed out: scheduling of games, concessions, advertising, rent, gate receipts, would they sell Old Style or just Miller, long standing season tickets, etc. I guess it's akin to the Bears playing in Champaign for a year. Sure, it was a pain in the ass, but it worked out fine in the end. And instead of a 2-3 hour car ride, you're still in the same town. It makes sense, right?

But when they get back, will Wrigley become US Zellular Field?

War Criminal: Nickelback

12:58 PM | Comments (0) | by Rich Funk


Douchebags.

Many questions have plagued mankind since the beginning of time. Who built the pyramids? How many licks does it take to get to the center of a Tootsie Pop? What's this bump on my crotch?

Over the last 5 years, an even more confounding question has arisen:

Why the hell do people love Nickelback?

Perhaps we should look at things from the other angle. Why do people hate Nickelback?

My own personal hatred for Nickelback didn't start when they made a splash in the US in 2000. Hell, I actually enjoyed Leader of Men, the first single off The State. They seemed like one of the many flash-in-the-pan bands of the era, such as POD, Eve 6 and that Limp Bizkit fella.

2001 is when things got horribly, horribly out of control. The first time I heard How You Remind Me was shortly after I arrived at college. I thought it was a catchy little number, but ignored it for the most part. This must have angered the Gods of Crappy Music, because the song rose to such popularity that it could not be ignored. Resistance was futile. I would turn on the TV and Nickelback would be there. I'd wake up to my alarm in the morning and I would hear Nickelback. I'd walk to class and there on the front porch of his frat house would be "that guy" playing Nickelback on his acoustic guitar trying to get girls 6 years younger than him in bed.

And things only got worse from there. Nickelback followed up How You Remind Me with Too Bad, a rousing rock anthem about how instead of dealing with your hatred toward your father in a healthy way, you should just hang on to that anger and funnel it into an awful song.

From there, the crappy hits kept coming over the course of 3 albums, each worse than the last. The worst part is that the record companies kept releasing so many singles that by the time they ran out, Nickelback's next album would be ready for release. We haven't had a Nickelback-free month of radio since 2001.

So why exactly does everyone seem to hate Nickelback?

1. They're Canadian. Everyone knows that only 2 good things have ever come from Canada: Fergie Jenkins and porn.
2. The lyrics to their songs are terrible.

If everyone cared and nobody cried
If everyone loved and nobody lied
If everyone shared and swallowed their pride
We'd see the day when nobody died

Riiiiiight...(Those weren't even their worst lyrics. It's just the only one I could type out and still suppress the urge to vomit.)
3. Chad Kroger, lead singer of Nickelback, looks like a player in the WNBA.
4. A bystander once tried to politely tell Chad Kroger that he didn't care for Nickelback, and Chad punched him in the head.
5. Chad originally formed the band with 2 of his brothers. When they got famous, Chad kicked one of his own brothers out of the band.

Perhaps the biggest reason everyone in their right mind is anti-Nickelback is that they treat their fans like they have no intelligence. When How You Remind Me was such a big hit, Nickelback spoonfed America the same crappy song, only this time they called it Someday. After all, it had been 2 years since How You Remind Me had hit the airwaves. Who really remembered anything from 2 years ago? Nickelback probably looked at their average fan and thought they could totally fool them. And you know what? It worked! People loved Someday and it shot up the charts. All the while, Nickelback sat back and laughed at the inbred hicks that lapped up the same garbage they had been fed 2 years prior and counted their Euros or Shillings or whatever currency Canada has.

Luckily, not everyone was fooled. A website was assembled that pumped How You Remind Me through one headphone and Someday through the other, showing America that Nickelback had indeed been recycling their own crap. I guess that while they were busy interviewing melancholy teenage girls for potential song lyrics they forgot to change up their re-used garbage enough to sound different.

So now we're back to our original question: Why do people love Nickelback so much?

People love Nickelback because they're safe. Older guys like Nickelback because they think it makes them hip and cool to their kids. Older ladies love Nickelback because it lets them feel like they're "rocking out" without getting too heavy or offensive. Well guess what? Rock music isn't supposed to be "safe" or "friendly". Rock music is supposed to fill young minds with profanity and images of violence, demons, and fire. I've had enough of Nickelback playing it "safe" with their music, much like Canada itself. Where is Canada? On top of the United States, the safest place for a pansy-ass country to be! That's like living above Gary Busey for safety because you know that no one is gonna mess with the guy downstairs.

I'll leave you with this to chew on: How You Remind Me started getting popular in September of 2001. Did anything else happen that month? Now I'm not saying that 9/11 happened as retaliation for releasing Nickelback onto the world...but I'm not not saying that either.


Think carefully...didn't this guy try to slip you a roofie your Sophomore year?

The Governor's 2008 Dodgers Preview

10:25 PM | Comments (0) | by Governor X

I know what you're thinking: "Oh, thats right, that Governor asshole is a Dodgers fan. I forgot." Yeah, thats right. I assume most of our readers (all five of them) are baseball fans in general and not just Cubs fans though, so I don't think these Dodgers posts are scrolled over quite as quickly as my Utah Jazz reports. Hey, a little inside info can't hurt for those six games a year the Dodgers and Cubs play each other.

Frankly, I'm not too excited about the 2008 Dodgers. They didn't really fix any of their problems from last year aside from upgrading to Joe Torre from Grady Gump. As I wrote at the time, they couldn't even do that right though. They offered Torre the job before having the common decency to fire Grady. I'm more and more pessimistic as it has become apparent that the Dodgers are subject to Frank McCourt's menstrual cycle. To keep it in perspective though, I still rate his ownership above The Evil Empire or the last few years of the O'Malley family after it was clear they lost interest.

My position by position (mostly) 2008 Dodgers preview:

Catcher - Russell Martin - Martin, 25 this year, was one of the few consistent Dodgers on offense last year hitting nearly .300 and driving in a team best 87 runs. His development into the best catcher in baseball will surely continue this year, although with the terrifying promise of more days off for him (Gary Bennett is the backup), those offensive numbers might stay static or drop a bit.

First Base - James Loney - The Black Mark Grace is now firmly entrenched at first and the team is better for it. Loney earned major respect not only for his performance on the field but for his willingness to stand up to the team's official bitter old fart Jeff Kent. Speaking of which...

Second Base - Jeff Kent - Closing in on 40, Kent's power is pretty much gone, but his shitty attitude remains. Unfortunately, he does as well. If the Dodgers don't do much early, I would not be surprised to see Kent shipped out of town midseason.

Short Stop - Rafael Furcal - I'll just be blunt, I don't like Furcal. Aside from his weak batting from the left side of the plate (where he took 72% of his swings in 2007), he's OK enough, but not good enough to earn the salary he commands. I would rather the team see what our 70 pound Asian wunderkind Chin-Lung Hu can do. At least this is Furcal's last year under that insane contract.

Third Base - Nomar Garciaparra/Andy LaRoche - The Dodgers have been looking for a third baseman since Ron Cey left town in 1982. Maybe they have one in LaRoche, maybe they don't. Its going to be hard to find out since they aren't likely to pay Nomar that huge salary to pinch hit.

Outfield - Juan Pierre, Andre Ethier, Matt Kemp, Delwyn Young, and AndrEw Jones - I didn't list these specifically since aside from my arch enemy Jones, I don't know where the hell any of them are going to play. If Kemp rots on the bench, I'm going to riot in the streets, so lets hope that doesn't happen. That leaves Ethier, Pierre, and Young fighting over the final outfield spot. Since Pierre makes as much as the entire Florida Marlins team, I don't see him spending too much time on the bench. Ethier and Young, who would be starting outfielders on many teams without any debate, look like the odd men out. Hey, look at the bright side, at least AndrEw Jones showed up to camp 15 pounds over weight... On second thought, I may riot in the streets because of this sorry outfield situation anyway.

Starting Pitching - Brad Penny, Derek Lowe, Jason Schmidt, Chad Billingsley, Hiroki Kuroda/Esteban Loaiza - Finally, back to a position that doesn't make me want to pull my hair out and scream like Fred Schneider in a titty bar. Penny and Billingsley are both legitimate Cy Young contenders and Lowe, Schmidt, and Kuroda should be solid. Loaiza has a neckbeard, so I can't trust him, but he's a capable fill in if Schmidt's arm falls off again (another brilliant acquisition by Ned Colletti)

Bullpen - Joe Beimel, Scott Proctor, Jonathan Broxton, Yhency Brazoban, and Hong Chih Kuo (and a bunch of other guys who could step in if they have to) - The Dodgers have enough middle relievers to field a second team, which is handy since a few of them usually drop like flies, or in Beimel's case, get injured in surly bar fights. Broxton is a 700 pound gastropod who leaves a trail of slime when he goes to the mound, but he's turned into one of the most reliable set-up men in the game.

Closer - Takashi "The Mole" Saito - The Mole saved 39 games and had an ERA of 1.40 last season. Eric who?

All in all, they may very well make the playoffs but for the moment I refuse to get my hopes up. The division took a step back. If you think Colorado is going to repeat their success, you're probably smoking the same tainted weed you were when you said they had a prayer against the Red Sox last October. The Padres didn't improve where they needed to and the Giants will be lucky if they keep it to 100 losses this year. Bengie Molina is going to be their cleanup hitter...good luck with that. The Diamondbacks are the only worrisome team. They, like the Dodgers, are loaded with young talent, but unlike the Dodgers they didn't throw away valuable money on aging vets who will do nothing but suck up the kids' playing time.

Prediction: 2nd place, 85-77....prove me wrong boys, prove me wrong.

A Special Note to Mark DeRosa

7:24 PM | Comments (0) | by Brant Brown

Who am I kidding? The chances are slim to none that Mark DeRosa has ever stumbled upon our measly little Cubs blog, nor will he. However, after reading his account of the symptoms and experience which led him to be taken to the hospital on Saturday, I couldn't help but say something. I have also dealt with tachycardia for a good portion of my life. When Mark said that he was diagnosed with an irregular heartbeat in high school, but had learned to adapt and control it with breathing exercises, I had eerie flashbacks.

When I was 17, I was diagnosed with Supraventricular Tachycardia. I would imagine Mark has the same thing, or at least a similar variant of tachycardia. The way he described the onset of the symptoms, whether it occurred during physical activity, or would just happen out of nowhere, is dead on. My best analogy when I first described it to my doctor was that I would be fine, and then I would do something as simple as bending down to pick up a pencil off of the floor and it would trigger a rapid heartbeat, just like turning on a switch. Imagine going from 70 beats per minute to 160 at the snap of a finger. Then, just as quickly as it started, it would suddenly switch off and go back to normal. Mark stated that he has always been able to control it with breathing techniques. That's how I learned to cope with it as well, just take some deep breaths, slow your body down, and the heart would eventually kick back into first gear. The scary part, as he said, is when its prolonged and doesn't stop like you are accustomed to. That's what lead me to finally speak out about it, and clearly that's what finally prompted Mark to take care of it as well.

Soon after I was diagnosed, I went to the University of Iowa hospital and had a radiofrequency ablation procedure performed. In such a procedure, a catheter is sent up to your heart through an artery to locate the tissue which is causing the "short circuit". Once it is identified, it can easily be burned and destroyed. It sounds rough, but it's really a fairly simple procedure, in and out of the hospital on the same day. Now 12 years later, I'm essentially tachycardia free, although I do experience an odd beat here or there. Hopefully Mark is able to take this route and rid himself of his tachycardia once and for all. It's a real pain in the ass, and can be a bit frightening, but he'll likely be back on the field within a few days.

I know we at TMS don't handle the sentimental stuff well, but this really struck a chord with me, and I wish Mark the best and a hell of a 2008 (championship) season. Oh yeah, and Mark DeRosa is officially my new favorite baseball player. Move over Craig Wilson!

80th Annual Academy Awards Drunkblog

12:01 AM | Comments (0) | by Chaim Witz

Hooray for Bollywood! Tonight marks the 80th Annual Academy Awards. A chance for Hollywood to pat itself on the back for continuing to put out quality cinema like Delta Farce, I Know Who Killed Me and Who's Your Caddy? It's also a chance for Jack Nicholson to get really, really drunk.

Some background: My libation of choice tonight appears to be the venerable vodka and tonic. This is my father's drink and he would approve. I have a good base stemming from a hearty meal of BBQ Cups and homemade mashed potatoes. What are BBQ Cups you ask? From God's lips to my fingers, it's basically a hollowed out biscuit filled with ground beef, lathered in BBQ sauce and shredded cheese. So now the Saloon has introduced you to both Scotch Eggs and BBQ Cups. You're welcome.

Last night I watched Michael Clayton 'On Demand' so I can now say that I've seen all of the Best Picture Nominees. Yes, even Atonement. I hope this adds an air of both credibility and snobbery to my writing.

I am in a $200 winner-take-all Oscar pool at work. Most of my picks are pretty obvious, so I'm counting on my upset pick of Amy Ryan winning Best Supporting Actress to carry me to victory. If this doesn't happen (and that is one of the first awards given out) then I can't promise that my interest won't wane. Expect the quality of my writing to suffer as well, though one could argue that it's already hit rock bottom. No worries, as no one reads this blog, not even our own writers. I'm looking at you Governor.

For the sake of brevity, some abbreviations will be used. For our retarded readers, I will spell it out. TWBB = There Will Be Blood. NCFOM = No Country for Old Men. Michael Clayton = MC. LOL = Laugh out Loud. NYFDOYID! = No You Fucking Diiiidnnnn't. Oh Yes I Did!

I've already had two vodka/tonics. My spelling and grammar cannot and will not be held accountable. The drinking rules are simple. One drink for every time the following occurs:

-Shot of Nicholson in the front row.
-Any joke pertaining to milkshakes.
-Writers Strike barbs/jokes.
-Jon Stewart makes a joke about the vanity of Hollywood that doesn't go over well with the extremely vain audience.
-A winner thanks their agent before their family.
-Jokes at the expense of poor Javier Bardem, whose lack of English will render him confused as he smiles politely.
-If I am particularly moved by the 'People that Have Died' segment, I will chug a whole drink in the honor of those who have passed on to the Lord. This will be in lieu of pouring out part of a 40'. I consider that practice to be both wasteful and outdated.

On with the show. Lights, Camera, Jews! (All times CST)

7:34: Wow, the 'vain Hollywood'/Writers Strikes jokes are coming fast and furious from Jon Stewart. I won't make it to the first commercial break at this point.

7:36: Nicholson! You son of a bitch. Followed up by a Norbit joke. Cha ching! Jon Stewart, you are no Whoopi Goldberg sir.

7:42: Costume Design - Elizabeth the Golden Age! Well thank Christ for that. Goodnight everyone!

7:48: 80 Years of Oscar. Here is the first of 80 clip montages. Soy bomb? Wait, I think that was the Grammys. I watch these clips and I see nothing worth liking. (TWBB joke #1 for those playing along at home)

7:52: Best Animated Feature - Ratatouille. Instead of Brad Bird accepting, can we get 5 minutes of Patton Oswalt stand-up instead? Edgy.

7:56: Christ, Norbit is up for an award! I'm not kidding. Best makeup. It lost. Eddie Murphy weeps into the heaving breasts of a tranny hooker, also played by Eddie Murphy.

8:07: Best Special Effects: The Golden Gompass wins. Take that God!

8:14: A clip of Cuba Gooding Jr. winning an award a few years ago. Presumably for Boat Trip.

8:16: Best Supporting Actor - Javier Bardem. The other nominees stood a better chance of surviving a forehead shot with an air compressor than winning this award.

8:27: Owen Wilson is presenting. Somebody get the man a hug and a vodka tonic.

8:35: Best Supporting Actress - This is the money pick for my pool. C'mon Amy Adams. NO! Tilda Swinton? This is an American travesty. I just watched Michael Clayton last night and made this pick based on the fact that Tilda Swinton wasn't anything special. Shit. She has flaming red hair. If I had known that I would have picked her in honor of Thunder Matt. Depression sprial. Need. More. Vodka.

8:52: Vodka Tonics. The silent killer.

8:53: Miley Cyrus. OMG! (texting young girls)

8:55: These Enchanted songs can go straight to hell. If Once doesn't win I will take an airgun to my testicles.

9:02: The speeches have thus far been mercifully short, much like my lovemaking skills. On a separate note, I've switched to light beer. That vodka doesn't pay for itself and I've been all but eliminated from the Oscar pool. I've gone from Tommy Lee Jones (vodka) to Paul Walker (light beer). God, what a horrible analogy. Conversely: Keri Russell - Underrated.

9:06: The Bourne Ultimatum just won for 'Best Shaky Camera'. That'll be fine. (TWBB joke #2!)

9:08: Fuck these clip montages.

9:12: Best Actress - Who is this chick from La Vie En Rose? Huh? Get that movie out of my life. It looks like Evita, but in Spanish. Wait, I think it was French. Who can tell these things? The vodka is playing tricks on my soul. Holy shit. The La Vie En Rose chick won! Judging from tonight's results the Academy hates Americans. Another hot chick that got all frumpy wins. And she sings too! Did anyone see that goddamn movie? No, they did not. There have been more acceptance speeches given in broken English than I care to count. I rambling. Another travesty in the female categories.

9:19: Once - 'Falling Slowly' is being performed. Fuck yes. This little Irish ditty better win Best Song. This song gives me chills (and shingles). No way are any of those other piece of shit songs better than this. I will fight any dissenters! Laura Linney seems to approve of this performance.

9:22: That was cool. I prefer the more sparse version, but shit it's the Oscars ya know?

9:23: Nicholson again. Who wears sunglasses more? Nicholson, Tony LaRussa or Bono?

9:26: More clips. Get rid of these damn things and the ceremony would clock in at a lean and respectable 2 hours. Stop living in the past Oscar. Move on with your life.

9:27: Did I mention that I am wearing a tux while I blog?

9:28: Renee Zellweger presenting. Could someone tell her to open her eyes? Oh wait, she's just got really thin eyes. My bad. The Bourne Ultimatum wins another technical award. It's cleaning house. Jason Bourne is delivering kidney blows left and right.

9:35: More clips! Some honorary recipient that I've never heard of. Lets be honest, none of these people giving him a standing 'O' have either. The Oscars are like a high school award assembly, except that everybody is rich, Jewish and secretly gay.

9:44: I don't know what is going on here. More broken English acceptance speeches. Does this ceremony even take place in America? I dub these awards, 'The Frenchies'. Who am I, Ted Nugent?

9:45: Another song from Enchanted. This is worse than that time I had shingles. Oh wait, I still have the shingles! Fuck. *Editors note: Author really does have the shingles. Author is not an 80 year old man.

9:50: Best song. Oh boy, here we go. Better be 'Falling Slowly'. Wow, here we go. YES. YES! My existence has now been vindicated by a bunch of crotchety old Academy members. I've never been more excited about an Oscar win. That's gotta be the best Oscar moment of the night. Scratch...the only good Oscar moment of the night. But the assholes cut off the girl before she could talk. Wait, now they're bring here back out to let her talk. (Slow clap) Stay classy Oscar.

9:58: Jon Stewart. Normally I would say he's overrated. But he's done a pretty good job with the one liners tonight. I would chest bump him. I don't give a shit.

10:01: Uh oh, the death roll call. The Academy apparently doesn't acknowledge the existence of Brad Renfro. They saved Ledger for the end of the clip. as expected. I'll finish the rest of my lite beer for the man. It's the least I can do. Heath seems to be more of a Guinness type chap, but Miller Lite will have to do. (Moment of blog silence)

10:10: Amy Adams presenting. She is a hot redhead. Somewhere, Thunder Matt nods approvingly. Probably from Baltimore or San Diego. (Sports reference!)

10:17: Arrr...no Michael Moore tonight. He will undoubtedly drown his sorrows with copious amounts of fried food, Scotch Eggs and BBQ Cups. 'Taxi to the Dark Side' wins best documentary. I have no idea what that is. I voted for 'No End in Sight' in my Oscar pool, based on the fact that it was about Iraq. Apparently, Iraq is so 2006.

10:21: Wives? Not fans of drunk blogging per se.

10:24: Best Original Screenplay - Diablo Cody - Juno. You know what? Screw it. Juno started out as a critical darling but now it's cool for everybody to hate it. So now I think it has come full circle...since it's experiencing the traditional backlash associated with the 'indie-film makes it big' (a la Little Miss Sunshine), I say it's now once again cool to like Juno since everybody seems to dog it. Does that make sense? Probably not, on account of the alcohol and shingles. *Editors note. First 30 minutes of Juno - Overrated. Last hour and change - Underrated. Ellen Page? Better than that French lady.

10:30: Best Actor - Daniel Day Lewis - There Will Be Blood. I've abandoned my boy! (TWBB joke #3...though was that really a joke or just me regurgitating a classic line? I vote 'nay' on Proposition 'Was that a TWBB Joke?'). Love the movie or loathe it, c'mon. He deserved this. How many times do you watch a performance where you are not consciously aware of who the actor is inhabiting the role? Michael Clayton? Yeah, that's George Clooney. DDL owned that fucking performance. I read a good article recently that compared TWBB to Apocolypse Now. When that one came out, a lot of people were like 'What the fuck?' Thirty years later, it's hailed as a masterpiece. Milkshakes for everyone! (TWBB joke/reference #4)

10:43: Best Director(s): NCFOM - The Coens. What is there to say? If you didn't see this coming, then you're just not a smart person. Martin Scorsese presented. He has Harry Caray glasses. Holy Cow! (Dear God, please end this)

10:45: Oh shit, that was quick. Denzel out to give away Best Picture. Denzel looks to be preparing for the role of an intimidating and strong willed black man. This would be a stretch for him. The smart money is on NCFOM. (Drumroll) Yep. No upsets here. NCFOM takes a silenced shotgun to the rest of the nominees. Though the producer just said that it was a 'complete surprise'. Really? The Coens look like they would probably be dicks if you went to dinner with them. They would stick you with the bill and be typing furiously on their Blackberrys the whole time. Ah, such is life. I enjoyed the movie, so what am I bitching about? The Coens could increase their likability factor is they grew beards, a la Spieberg.

10:52: What did we learn from all this? The Academy loves foreigners and milkshakes. Women love themselves a good flowing dress. Tilda Swinton? Oscar Pool killer. Keri Russell, Jennifer Garner and Amy Adams are all pretty hot. George Clooney is our generation's Hugh Hefner. I have shingles. Vodka? Stronger than you may suspect. Lite beer? As watered down as you may suspect. Brad Renfro? Not dead according to Hollywood. 'Once' is as good as advertised (by me). Owen Wilson needs a hug. Hal Holbrook is still alive. BBQ Cups? Email me for the recipe.

Chicago Bears: FAILURE!!!

1:14 PM | Comments (0) | by Rich Funk



"Hey, who was that guy on our team that sucked really bad for the last couple years?"
"Oh, I think I know who you're talking about. Rex something..."
"Yeah, that's the guy. Rex...Manning? Was that him?"
"Sounds close enough. What about him?"
"Bring him back next year."
"Excellent idea. I hear anyone with the last name Manning is a guaranteed Super Bowl champ!"

That very conversation, as confusing as it may seem, actually happened in the Bears front office. How do I know this? Because Rex Grossman is going to be back with the Bears again next season.

This signing means that the Bears probably don't have any interest in bringing in another quarterback via trade or free agency. The draft is now our only hope...for 2009. I've already written 2008 off.

Cubs fans know it by heart, and Bears fans should learn it too:

"There's always next year"*


*"Next year" being 2009 in this case. 2008 is already over after this signing.

TMS Oscar Picks 2008

2:33 PM | Comments (0) | by Rich Funk



Everyone knows that watching the Oscars is a disappointment every year. The event never lives up to the hype and, unlike the Golden Globes, there is no alcohol present. Jack Nicholson is in the front row? Who cares?

At least we can make Oscar picks. And who better to make those bold predictions than people who haven't even seen all of the movies that were nominated! Actually, that's something the bartenders here at TMS have in common with the actual Academy voters. Another thing in common? Erectile dysfunction.

So without further ado, here are the official Thunder Matt's Saloon Oscar Picks for 2008:

Daft Funk:



Best Picture: No Country For Old Men
Best Actor: Daniel Day-Lewis
Best Actress: Julie Christie
Best Supporting Actor: Javier Bardem
Best Supporting Actress: Amy Ryan

No Country was my favorite movie of the year. And unlike There Will Be Blood, the only other serious contender, just about everyone who saw it loved it. Just like the last 2 years, there's little-to-no contest for Best Actor. Daniel Day-Lewis gave a performance that no one else could ever duplicate. Who else could have played Daniel Plainview? Brad Pitt? Leonardo DiCaprio? Best Actress is an educated guess, since the only one of the nominated performances I saw was Juno. Javier Bardem has had his Oscar wrapped up for months now. And as there's usually at least one upset in the Supporting categories, I'm going with Amy Ryan over the favored Cate Blanchett.

Governor Gray Davis:



Best Picture - No Country For Old Men
Best Actor - Johnny Depp
Best Actress - Cate Blanchett
Best Supporting Actor - Javier Bardem
Best Supporting Actress - Ruby Dee

The Gov went with some interesting picks here. I'm not sure why he picked Johnny Depp to win when he basically looks like Edward Scissorhands again. What can be explained is his support for Ruby Dee. The Governor has always had an attraction to 97 year old women.

Chip Wesley:



Best Picture: There Will Be Blood
Best Actor: Daniel Day-Lewis
Best Actress: Laura Linney
Best Supporting Actor: Javier Bardem
Best Supporting Actress: Amy Ryan

It seems Mr. Wesley and I agree on everything but Best Actress. This doesn't surprise me. Chip has said for years that Laura Linney's nude scenes in Further Tales of the City and Kinsey should have won their own Oscars. I guess winning a Best Actress Oscar is the same thing in his mind.

The Hundley:



Best Picture: No Country for Old Men (TWBB is a long shot)
Best Actor: Daniel Day-Lewis (who else is close?)
Best Actress: anyone but that bitch from Juno.
Best Supporting Actor: Javier Bardem (who else is even close?)
Best Supporting Actress: Couldn't say, haven't seen anything. The stepmom from Juno? She was good.

Direct from The Hundley: I've only seen Juno, TWBB, No Country, and Sweeney Todd. I thought Depp was good, but certainly not Oscar-worthy. He'll get some hardware, though, well, at least the movie will (Best Musical and maybe something for set design).

Chaim Witz:



Actor - Daniel Day-Lewis (no one else stands a chance except possibly Clooney)
Actress - Julie Christie will; Ellen Page should
Supporting Actor - Javier Bardem will (no contest here) and probably should; I wouldn't mind seeing Hal Holbrook win for Into the Wild or PSH for Charlie Wilson
Supporting Actress - Cate Blanchett Will; Amy Ryan should (Ruby Dee? Her role was essentially a cameo in that movie.)
Best Picture - No Country will; No Country or TWBB should...
Others: Juno will win best original screenplay, No Country will win adapted. And here's to hoping 'Falling Slowly' from Once wins best song over those 3 goddamn Enchanted songs.

TMS 30 Greatest Movies: #17 Saving Private Ryan

8:30 AM | Comments (0) | by The Hundley

Title: Saving Private Ryan
Year: 1998
Genre: War
Main Actors: Tom Hanks, Tom Sizemore, Ed Burns, Barry Pepper, Jeremy Davies, Adam Goldberg, Giovanni Ribisi, Matt Damon
Ranked: Dave Thomas #10, The Hundley #3

Synopsis
A specially assembled unit of soldiers from the 101st Rangers Division are ordered to track down James Ryan (Damon) to send him home to his mother, who is grieving the loss of his three brothers. Captain John Miller (Hanks) is chosen as the leader of the group, who must go behind enemy lines to track down Private Ryan. Along the way we are introduced to the other members of the search party and their attitudes and opinions on war and what saving James Ryan means.

Reasons This Movie Kicks Ass
Patriotism. It's almost un-American to NOT like this movie. The opening 25 minutes of this movie is perhaps the best war reenactment ever filmed. So great in fact, that many veterans of the actual D-Day have marveled at it's authenticity. Many veterans have also found that opening scene very intense and difficult to watch because of its realistic portrayal, and many had to leave the theatre. The supporting cast also plays a big role in the success. Ed Burns gives a great performance as a tough talking Brooklynite and Barry Pepper as a Bible quoting bumpkin sniper with a thick southern accent. If you pay attention you'll also catch some great cameos by Ted Danson providing morals, Dennis Farina living the good life while on the battlefield, and Paul Giamatti stealing scenes where he portrays a nervous (and bald) sergeant.

Monster Role
It's easy to point out the great performance turned in by Tom Hanks. More than anyone else in the movie, he is the main character and the Moral Majority for the audience, showing his John Wayne type bravery while also showing a vulnerable, compassionate side that will do whatever it takes to get home. However, the monster role was turned in by the translator-turned-battlefield soldier, Timothy Upham (Jeremy Davies). Portrayed as a naive and often cowardly individual, Jeremy Davies makes you want to walk through the television and punch him. Particularly when he is frozen with fear as his comrade (Adam Goldberg) is being stabbed to death by a German soldier, knowing that he could help, but ultimately crying and shaking with fear. Very reminiscent of when you see The Green Mile and want to take an axe handle to the sniveling guard Percy (Doug Hutchinson). Any time a movie can elicit that kind of emotion from an audience is an excellent example of truly talented craftsmanship.

Make Your Weiner Tingle Moment
Opening beach scene, duh.

On the human side, when the group is in chaos over what they're doing, and a mutiny and public killing is at risk, Captain Miller finally reveals that he is an English teacher back home, thereby settling the nerves of his fellow comrades, and reminding them that they are all the same. They all just want to be done with war and will do whatever they have to do to get back home.

Did You Know?
The famous Omaha Beach scene in the opening 25 minutes was actually filmed on the coast of Ireland. Many of the extras during the invasion were actual members of the Irish Army. Yes, apparently Ireland has an army. Also, Saving Private Ryan is one of the few movies that features scenes with Vin Diesel where the audience doesn't gag or roll their eyes.

Watch this movie if you like.....
War movies, Tom Hanks always being the good guy, saluting The Flag, playing baseball, apple pie.

WTF?

10:11 AM | Comments (0) | by Rich Funk


This is the new stadium that the Devil Rays...er...I mean Rays...are probably going to get. The general consensus is that it's an amazing design and should be a great draw for fans.

Umm...am I missing something?

I hope I'm not the only person that thinks this stadium looks like crap. Maybe a lot of people think that different = good. Come on, people! This stadium has a freakin' sail on it!!! I'm sure what they were trying to do is make sure the stadium could block the sun for the 134 year old residents of Tampa Bay while still maintaining that "outdoor stadium" feel. Why not just put in the normal retractable roof? And since a lot of the Rays' games are going to be at night AND right off the water, it should stay nice and cool without having the sail.

This stadium is ugly as hell. And yet, most of the comments I'm reading all praise the design. To prove I'm not crazy, I decided to poll my fellow bartenders to get their thoughts as well:

Chip Wesley: "Is that Aubrey Huff Cove?"
Dave Thomas: "I think I see Gene Simmons in the left field bleachers."
LB: "Finally, Tony Montana has a nice place to park his cigarette boat."
Tommy Buzanis: "Why does that stadium have foreskin?"

Not exactly the sparkling remarks the stadium designers were hoping for I guess.

THUNDERWATCH: 2008

11:25 AM | Comments (0) | by Rich Funk




Welcome to the first edition of THUNDERWATCH: 2008, where the Saloon will keep you updated on the status of our favorite redhead and our very namesake. Sure, Thunder Matt's name has been thrown around in trade rumors since December, but he's not gone yet. And yes, we do have a contingency plan just in case he is shipped somewhere else, but that doesn't mean that we've given up all hope and accepted the fact that he's gone.

So what's new on the Thunder Matt Murton front? There seems to have been a false alarm this morning. News broke out that Brian Roberts, the player Murton is most likely going to be traded for, was not in camp today. Moreover, he was at the doctor's office. Pre-trade physical? Nope, he's just sick.

Rumor has it that the more time that goes by, the less of a chance there seems to be that Mr. Murton will be traded. Personally, if I were the Orioles, I would hang on to Roberts until mid-season and trade him at the deadline. Sure, they could get a few young players from the Cubs right now, but how much more could they get if July rolls around and the Cubs are crapping out on offense and have the Brewers breathing down their necks? What if another contending team loses their 2B and needs a quick fix trade? If the Santana Circlejerk taught us anything, it's that you'll never get as much as you want in a trade if there's only a few willing trade partners.

I just hope that the Cubs don't overpay if they do end up with Roberts. Sure, it may seem like we have 8 people vying for the 5 rotation spots, but we don't want to deplete that depth too much. I'm almost 100% certain that the rotation won't repeat their health of last year, and we're going to need some replacements. What if Lieber doesn't pan out? What if Marquis is as bad as the second half of 2007 for the whole year? The Cubs have already said they won't part with Felix Pie, so that's a good start. The only current Cub I have no problem shipping out is Ronny Cedeno. Nothing against the kid, but he seems like one of those guys that is stuck between being able to murder AAA pitching and not being able to handle big league stuff. He's the new Corey Patterson.

Speaking of Corey Patterson, what happens if Pie goes the same route and just downright stinks. When he goes back to AAA and Fukudome moves to center, who's gonna play right field? Cliff Floyd? Gone. Jock Jones? Gone.

That leaves one man. The one man that, at least for now, is still a Cub.


TMS 30 Greatest Movies: #18 Raising Arizona

9:11 AM | Comments (1) | by Governor X

Title: Raising Arizona
Year: 1987
Genre: Comedy
Main Actors: Nicolas Cage, Holly Hunter, John Goodman
Ranked: Governor Gray Davis #6, Chip Wesley #9

Synopsis
Criminal H. I. McDunnough (Nicolas Cage), you can call him Hi, marries Tempe cop Ed (Holly Hunter), short for Edwina and they want a baby. One problem - she's barren, as explained by a gynecologist holding a cigar. Solution: steal one of the "Arizona Quints" recently fathered by unpainted furniture mogul Nathan Arizona. To complicate matters, Hi's buddies from the joint, Gale and Evelle Snoats bust out of jail and shack up with the new family. Hilarity ensues as they try to keep the baby out of the hands of The Lone Biker of the Apocalypse.

Reasons This Movie Kicks Ass
This was my introduction to the brilliance of the Coen Brothers and the underrated acting of Nicolas Cage. The rest is history. Beyond that, it features a lot of timely screaming and takes place in an almost mythical Arizona where everyone talks with a southern accent and fires guns wildly into the night.

Monster Role
Raising Arizona more or less launched John Goodman's comedy career and we're all thankful for it. Without his slovenly, loud mouthed Gale Snoats, we never would have had Walter Sobchak or even that poor bastard who was married to Roseanne all those years.

Knock Your Dick in the Dirt Moment
I can't decide, so I give you two. First, about halfway through the film, your dick will go in the dirt because of the chase scene that comes after Hi attempts to steal some Huggies for the baby.

Secondly, after Gale and Evelle accidentally leave the baby at the convenience store, they realize it and scream all the way back to the shop. Basically, this is a solid minute of John Goodman and William Forsythe screaming at the top of their lungs and punching the dashboard of their stolen car. I've been watching this movie repeatedly for 20 years now and this still got a chuckle out of me.

Watch This Movie if You Like
The Coen Brothers, grown men screaming, kidnapping or Barry Goldwater

2008 Cubs Forecast: Gazing into Ronald's Crystal (Meth) Ball

1:00 PM | Comments (0) | by Chaim Witz

Each week, Ronald McDonald will bring you his fearless, if not slightly inebriated Cubs forecast, position by position. His attempts to stay on subject will most likely fail and this experiment will be probably be abandoned quicker than you can say 'mustache diary'. Say what you will, but at least these are Cubs related. Sort of.


Player Name: Derrek Lee
Position: Missionary
Nicknames: Long Dong, Black Al Pacino
Looks Like: The African American dude from the All State insurance commercials.
2007 Stats: .317 AVG, 22HR, 82 RBI's, 6 SB
2008 Forecast: .325 AVG, 62 HRS, 75 RBI's, 0 SB

Overview: Derrek Lee is a monster. He had a somewhat down year in 2007 but he looks to grab 2008 by the lapel and punch it in the Adam's Apple like it's name was Chris Young. An improved work out regime and hot sex life will play a part in his resurgence.

Derrek will break Roger Maris' single season home run record by hitting 62 long dongs. The last one will come on the final day of the season, probably against Steve Traschel. His stolen bases will decline due in large part to laziness.

Most, if not all of his homers will be solo shots. He will begin to question his bad luck and for a while he will blame that new Japanese guy. Racial tensions in the clubhouse will run high, but then Sammy 'Say It Ain't' Sosa will throw on some salsa music and everybody will be like, 'Hey what is this and why is Sammy in here? I will admit, this song does have a pretty good beat. Ay yi yi!' Lou Pinella will throw on a fake mustache and everybody will be dancing around and shit and then the next day Derrek will hit a 2 run-homer (his only of the year) and the racial stuff will all go away until the next losing streak hits.

Derrek Lee will not win MVP but he may win some community service-type award for his charitable contributions. He will also appear in a local Chevy commercial.

Chaiming In

7:09 AM | Comments (0) | by Chaim Witz

-For the first time since the Taft Administration, I watched the NBA Slam Dunk contest over the weekend. Oddly enough, I enjoyed it. Dwight Howard's 'Superman Dunk' made me leap from the couch and scream 'Spud Webb!' I was about 3/4 of the way through a bottle of Pinot Noir at that point. Magic Johnson was one of the judges/announcers. Pretty sure he still has AIDS.

-Clemens vs. McNamee. I've never been a fan of courtroom dramas. C'mon, is there any doubt that Clemens is guilty? I love how he tried to pawn everything off on his wife. Oh Rog. You're silly.

-What a devastating winter this has been in the Midwest. Just a swift kick to the genitals that makes you rethink your life and where it all went wrong. I can't leave my home. I'm about to go all 'Donner Party'.

-I'm excited for baseball. At least once a day I curl up in the fetal position (nude), with my face buried in a leather glove, weeping.

-I'm too lazy to type up full reviews, but for now, in short: In Bruges: See it. Semi-Pro: Rent It. Horton Hears a Who: Skip It.

-School shootings. Enough already. Needless to say...War Criminal: School Shootings. May those cowards responsible burn on the lowest circle of hell.

-I'm really excited for this Fukudome character. I think he's gonna be one of those guys who is much more valuable for his 'intangibles' than his raw numbers. He should get on base a ton, play great defense and deliver clutch hits when needed. He might not put up huge numbers but I think (damn you 'hope'!) that we've got ourselves a 'gamer'.

-Cubs sign Alex Cintron. Is this a concession to the fact that the Brian Roberts trade isn't going to get done? Or, as the Tribune suggests, a harbinger of another trade?

-Thunder Watch: Still here. Still our fourth outfielder. Still underrated.

-Lindsay Lohan nude in the New York Magazine. Sweet, I can probably legitimately buy that magazine and say that I'm buying it 'for the articles'. It's a flimsy excuse that wouldn't be admissible in a court of law, but much more plausible than if it were Playboy. (That link is work suitable, don't worry.)

Raves: Pinot Noir, Cardigans, Goose Island 312, dinosaurs (particularly the Triceratops), Spring Training, Adidas Onitsuka Tigers, Trader Joes' 'Tortilla Chips with an Identity Crisis' (horrible name for a great chip), iPod speaker docks.

Rants: Snow, cold, wind, shingles, The Knight Rider movie.

A Thunder Matt Movie Minute: Jumper

7:00 AM | Comments (0) | by Governor X

Jumper promises very little and delivers almost nothing. The story is essentially about a young man who can “jump,” that is teleport anywhere he wants in an instant. As the poster says, anything is possible. Unfortunately, that may have been too much for the writers to handle. These guys clearly need boundaries as Jumper meanders all over the place without bothering to explain much of anything.

Hayden Christensen is the young man, David Rice with the extraordinary gift. Why? No one knows, and no one in this movie really cares, not even him. Watching the Star Wars films, it was hard to get a good gauge of how good or bad an actor Christensen is. Let’s face it, the Star Wars films are not known for their dialogue and emotion. Post Star Wars, we now get to see what he can do with another script. Well, he’s bad. You could basically replace him with a ham sandwich and get a similar performance. Perhaps there is a career out there for him playing a Terminator since they are supposed to be void of passion anyway.

Back to the film. Rice vanishes one day after falling in a river. He is presumed dead but in reality he jumped out of there and into the Ann Arbor Public Library. The girl he had his eye on believes he is alive though since before leaving town for good, he drops by to leave a snowglobe on her swing. This is clearly an attempt to put Jumper into the category of Citizen Kane. The writers fell short.

He runs off to New York, on a bus, since Greyhound is clearly preferable to teleporting and robs a bank. The bank robbery raises a lot of eyebrows because no one actually opened the door. This brings the unwanted attention of Roland Cox (Samuel L Jackson with white hair) who is a Paladin. The Paladins kill jumpers because “only God should have this power!” OK then. Rice narrowly escapes a run in with Roland in his lavish New York loft and jumps back to Ann Arbor.

Back in Ann Arbor, not appearing to be too concerned about the lunatic that just tried to kill him, he looks up his old flame, now played ably by The OC’s Rachel Bilson. After dispatching with the local douchebag, he starts to chat with her and quickly offers to take her to see Rome, her lifelong dream. She agrees and they’re off to Rome, first class of course, and once in the hotel she promptly has sex with him. Honestly though, after a free first class trip to Rome, she pretty much had to.

They’re off sightseeing, but damn it, wouldn’t you know the Coliseum is closed. No worries, Rice manages to find an open door. Tee hee. In they go, but their self guided tour is interrupted when Rice bumps into a surly Englishman pissing on the Roman ruins. He’s a jumper…”Did you think you were the only one?!?!?” he asks. Clearly the answer is yes, since Rice is so self-absorbed it’s unlikely he realizes anyone else exists at all, much less a fellow jumper. Then some Paladins come and a battle ensues. Shockingly enough, both jumpers escape the Paladins, but Rice isn’t so lucky with the Italian police. They catch him and take him to the station for questioning. It doesn’t look good for him, but out of nowhere his long lost mother (Diane Lane) appears and tells him to run. He does, and he promptly abandons Rachel Bilson at the airport. It’s OK bud, I’ve got her back.

Here’s where I really start to lose interest in both the movie and this post. Rice jumps to the new British jumper’s lair where they discuss what’s going on. British guy, I’m just going to call him Bub since I forget his name, kills Paladins. That sounds good to Rice who proposes an alliance, but Bub wants nothing of it. He works alone. He teleports off, but Rice is quickly behind and harasses him until he relents. Roland is going down.

I’m just going to jump a bit myself and go to the part where Rice liberates Rachel Bilson from Roland. Yeah, that happens. Rice strands Roland in the Grand Canyon. He’s not going to kill him because he’s different. Satisfied with leaving this homicidal loon on the loose (for the sequel), Rice sets off to find Mom. Well, there she is living in a white palace on a river. She’s a Paladin…oh no! Its OK though, she always lets him go because she loves him. The end.

Anything is possible. OK, but if anything is possible, are you really going to eat a Subway sandwich (yes, you can make out the wrapper) on top of the Sphinx? I doubt I would. Also, how the hell do the Paladins not wipe these guys out? The little electrode weapon seems to really have their number, but the jumpers always get away. George Bush must be the head Paladin.

Richard Roeper called the film “good looking crap” – I can think of no better description.

1.5 wooden Hayden Christensen performances out of 5

TMS 30 Greatest Movies: #19 Caddyshack

3:37 PM | Comments (0) | by Jake the Terrible Cubs Fan

Title: Caddyshack
Year: 1980
Genre: Comedy
Main Actors: Michael O'Keefe, Bill Murray, Chevy Chase, Rodney Dangerfield, Ted Knight
Ranked: Dave Thomas #3, Chip Wesley #14

Synopsis
From Rotten Tomatoes: This hysterical farce, set against the backdrop of the typically hoity-toity Bushwood Country club, pits the caddies vs. the establishment with riotous results. Danny, a poor kid from the wrong side of the tracks, is struggling to make it as a caddy at Bushwood. Terrified of being a caddy for life, he is dying to win the Bushwood annual caddy scholarship and is willing to do whomever and whatever it takes. The caddies carouse, smoke, and curse their way around Bushwood, wrecking havoc on the uptight rules and regulations strictly adhered to by most of the members of the club. Chevy Chase stars as Ty Webb, a wealthy antiestablishment member of Bushwood who tries to convince Danny that there is more to life than playing by the rules. This wacky comedy also features an insanely delightful performance by Bill Murray, as the local groundskeeper who becomes obsessed with killing off the gophers who have infested the golf course, with bang-up results. When Al Czervik (Rodney Dangerfield) comes to town he sets the country club--and Judge Smails, played by the fabulous Ted Knight--on end with his poor taste, bad humor, and big money. The final showdown between the snobs and the slobs is not to be missed.

Reasons This Movie Kicks Ass
This movie single-handedly gave birth to the growing guy fad of constantly quoting films, much to the chagrin of females everywhere. Next time you are out on the golf course with your friends, see how long it takes before a Caddyshack quote is whipped out. Given my skill at golf, or utter lack thereof, I tend to stick to Spalding quotes. "DOUBLE TURD!"

Monster Role
There's really a quadfecta of monster roles here. A perfect storm of comedy between Bill Murray's oddball groundskeeper Carl ("Bark like a dog for me!"), Chevy Chase's eccentric Ty Webb ("Your uncle molests collies."), Rodney Dangerfield's blue collar hero Al Czervik ("Hey Wang this place is restrictive so don't tell them your Jewish."), and the inimitable Ted Knight as Judge Smails ("How bout a Fresca?").

But for the biggest monster role I'll go with Lacey Underall (Cindy Morgan) and Lacey Underall's breasts.

Make Your Weiner Tingle Moment
Again, Lacey Underall and Lacey Underall's breasts.

Did You Know?
Michael O'Keefe, who plays Danny Noonan in the movie was married to Bonnie Raitt for 8 years. He's also a Zen Buddhist priest.

Watch this movie if you like.....
Understanding the context of many of your friend's stupid movie quotes, fake puppet gophers, 80's movies and Kenny Loggins music (I really don't think those two are mutually exclusive in any way), Rodney Dangerfield playing Rodney Dangerfield, Brian-Doyle Murray before he got fat, Chevy Chase when he was still funny, Baby Ruths, Cannonball, cannonball coming!

WELL? We're WAITING!

You Make The Call

12:39 PM | Comments (0) | by Rich Funk

Brian McNamee.................................................or.....................................................Brian McNamee

Jazz Domination Update

12:45 PM | Comments (0) | by Governor X

We've come to the NBA's All Star Break and the Utah Jazz are on a roll winning 12 of 13. This is of course your first Jazz Domination Update of the 07/08 season, but since the NBA doesn't really get interesting until this time of year there wasn't much point.

With all the hoopla over Shaq, Pau Gasshole, and Jason Kidd, you may have forgotten the earlier trade Utah pulled off of Giricek for Kyle Korver. Korver has been a solid addition to the Jazz and in the area it matters most, they're 18-3 since that trade. Kidd and Shaq are both washed up. The only deal that concerns me in the slightest is Pau Gasshole going to the Lakers. They basically traded a box of last weeks bagels for him. Fuck you Memphis. Fortunately, since he's good, Kobe "Summer's Eve" Bryant will eventually butt heads with him and drive him out of town.

Then there's AK47. As you may recall, Kirilenko was designated a
person of interest after espousing his desire to be traded on a Russian blog. Well, you haven't heard much from him since. There is still the occasional trade rumor popping up, but they're usually bogus like the Ben Wallace for AK47 rumor coming out of Chicago. Wishful thinking Bulls fans.

On a final note, you may not have heard, since the sports media largely ignores the Jazz, but C-Booze put up his first career triple double against the Sonics last night.

TMS Fantasy Baseball Rankings '08

12:28 PM | Comments (0) | by Jake the Terrible Cubs Fan

Back by popular demand, it's my positional fantasy rankings. I've been working feverishly in my nerd cave and now have the first draft ready to go.

I will be updating this throughout Spring Training. Check back often.

LAST UPDATED: Mar. 10

CATCHER
1. Victor Martinez, CLE
2. Russell Martin, LAD
3. Joe Mauer, MIN
4. Brian McCann, ATL
5. Jorge Posada, NYY
6. Kenji Johjima, SEA
7. Ivan Rodriguez, DET
8. Bengie Molina, SF
9. Jason Varitek, BOS
10. Jarrod Saltalamacchia, TEX
11. Ramon Hernandez, BAL
12. Geovany Soto, CHC
13. A.J. Pierzynski, CHW
14. Mike Napoli, ANA
15. Carlos Ruiz, PHI
16. Ronny Paulino, PIT
17. J.R. Towles, HOU
18. Kurt Suzuki, OAK
19. John Buck, KC
20. Ryan Doumit, PIT
21. Paul Lo Duca, WAS
22. Chris Snyder, ARI
23. Josh Bard, SD
24. Dioner Navarro, TB
25. Yorvit Torrealba, COL
26. Yadier Molina, STL
27. Jason Kendall, MIL
28. Michael Barrett, SD
29. David Ross, CIN
30. Gregg Zaun, TB


FIRST BASE
1. Albert Pujols, STL
2. Ryan Howard, PHI
3. David Ortiz, BOS
4. Prince Fielder, MIL
5. Mark Teixeira, ATL
6. Lance Berkman, HOU
7. Justin Morneau, MIN
8. Derrek Lee, CHC
9. Garrett Atkins, COL
10. Travis Hafner, CLE
11. Victor Martinez, CLE
12. Carlos Guillen, DET
13. Adrian Gonzalez, SD
14. Carlos Pena, TB
15. Paul Konerko, CHW
16. Nick Swisher, CHW
17. Todd Helton, COL
18. Alex Gordon, KC
19. James Loney, LAD
20. Adam LaRoche, PIT
21. Carlos Delgado, NYM
22. Kevin Youkilis, BOS
23. Ryan Garko, CLE
24. Conor Jackson, ARI
25. Billy Butler, KC
26. Ty Wigginton, HOU
27. Casey Kotchman, ANA
28. Lyle Overbay, TOR
29. Joey Votto, CIN
30. Jarrod Saltalamacchia, TEX


SECOND BASE
1. Chase Utley, PHI
2. Brandon Phillips, CIN
3. B.J. Upton, TB
4. Robinson Cano, NYY
5. Chone Figgins, ANA
6. Brian Roberts, BAL
7. Ian Kinsler, TEX
8. Rickie Weeks, MIL
9. Dan Uggla, FLA
10. Howie Kendrick, ANA
11. Placido Polanco, DET
12. Jeff Kent, LAD
13. Kelly Johnson, ATL
14. Dustin Pedroia, BOS
15. Aaron Hill, TOR
16. Orlando Hudson, ARI
17. Freddy Sanchez, PIT
18. Ty Wigginton, HOU
19. Yunel Escobar, ATL
20. Luis Castillo, NYM
21. Ryan Theriot, CHC
22. Kaz Matsui, HOU
23. Mark Ellis, OAK
24. Felipe Lopez, WAS
25. Asdrubal Cabrera, CLE
26. Tadahito Iguchi, SD
27. Jose Lopez, SEA
28. Mark DeRosa, CHC
29. Brendan Harris, MIN
30. Ray Durham, SF


THIRD BASE
1. Alex Rodriguez, NYY
2. David Wright, NYM
3. Miguel Cabrera, DET
4. Ryan Braun, MIL
5. Aramis Ramirez, CHC
6. Garrett Atkins, COL
7. Chone Figgins, ANA
8. Chipper Jones, ATL
9. Ryan Zimmerman, WAS
10. Adrian Beltre, SEA
11. Mike Lowell, BOS
12. Alex Gordon, KC
13. Edwin Encarnacion, CIN
14. Kevin Youkilis, BOS
15. Hank Blalock, TEX
16. Troy Glaus, STL
17. Kevin Kouzmanoff, SD
18. Ty Wigginton, HOU
19. Josh Fields, CHW
20. Yunel Escobar, ATL
21. Scott Rolen, TOR
22. Evan Longoria, TB
23. Melvin Mora, BAL
24. Akinori Iwamura, TB
25. Eric Chavez, OAK
26. Casey Blake, CLE
27. Mark Reynolds, ARI
28. Pedro Feliz, PHI
29. Aubrey Huff, BAL
30. Chad Tracy, ARI


SHORTSTOP
1. Hanley Ramirez, FLA
2. Jose Reyes, NYM
3. Jimmy Rollins, PHI
4. Derek Jeter, NYY
5. Troy Tulowitzki, COL
6. Carlos Guillen, DET
7. Miguel Tejada, HOU
8. Michael Young, TEX
9. Rafael Furcal, LAD
10. Orlando Cabrera, CHW
11. Edgar Renteria, DET
12. Jhonny Peralta, CLE
13. Khalil Greene, SD
14. J.J. Hardy, MIL
15. Julio Lugo, BOS
16. Stephen Drew, ARI
17. Yunel Escobar, ATL
18. Ryan Theriot, CHC
19. Felipe Lopez, WAS
20. Jason Bartlett, TB
21. Yuniesky Betancourt, SEA
22. Brendan Harris, MIN
23. David Eckstein, TOR
24. Bobby Crosby, OAK
25. Jack Wilson, PIT
26. Alex Gonzalez, CIN
27. Omar Vizquel, SF
28. Erick Aybar, ANA
29. Juan Uribe, CHW
30. Nick Punto, MIN


OUTFIELD
1. Matt Holliday, COL
2. Carl Crawford, TB
3. Grady Sizemore, CLE
4. Alfonso Soriano, CHC
5. Vladimir Guerrero, ANA
6. Carlos Beltran, NYM
7. Ichiro Suzuki, SEA
8. Carlos Lee, HOU
9. Alex Rios, TOR
10. Lance Berkman, HOU
11. B.J. Upton, TB
12. Magglio Ordonez, DET
13. Curtis Granderson, DET
14. Nick Markakis, BAL
15. Eric Byrnes, ARI
16. Manny Ramirez, BOS
17. Bobby Abreu, NYY
18. Chone Figgins, ANA
19. Corey Hart, MIL
20. Adam Dunn, CIN
21. Hunter Pence, HOU
22. Chris Young, ARI
23. Torii Hunter, ANA
24. Vernon Wells, TOR
25. Gary Sheffield, DET
26. Delmon Young, TB
27. Hideki Matsui, NYY
28. Jeff Francoeur, ATL
29. Nick Swisher, CHW
30. Jason Bay, PIT
31. Brad Hawpe, COL
32. Matt Kemp, LAD
33. Shane Victorino, PHI
34. Juan Pierre, LAD
35. Johnny Damon, NYY
36. Andruw Jones, LAD
37. Jermaine Dye, CHW
38. Raul Ibanez, SEA
39. Josh Hamilton, TEX
40. Willy Taveras, COL
41. Jeremy Hermida, FLA
42. Aaron Rowand, SF
43. Jacoby Ellsbury, BOS
44. Pat Burrell, PHI
45. Kosuke Fukudome, CHC
46. Michael Cuddyer, MIN
47. Ken Griffey Jr., CIN
48. Josh Willingham, FLA
49. Jose Guillen, KC
50. Michael Bourn, HOU
51. Chris Duncan, STL
52. Mark Teahen, KC
53. Billy Butler, KC
54. J.D. Drew, BOS
55. Rick Ankiel, STL
56. Justin Upton, ARI
57. Gary Matthews Jr., ANA
58. Jay Bruce, CIN
59. Josh Fields, CHW
60. Austin Kearns, CIN


STARTING PITCHER
1. Johan Santana, NYM
2. Jake Peavy, SD
3. Brandon Webb, ARI
4. C.C. Sabathia, CLE
5. Erik Bedard, SEA
6. Josh Beckett, BOS
7. Justin Verlander, DET
8. Cole Hamels, PHI
9. John Lackey, ANA
10. Dan Haren, ARI
11. Aaron Harang, CIN
12. John Smoltz, ATL
13. Roy Oswalt, HOU
14. Scott Kazmir, TB
15. Roy Halladay, TOR
16. Felix Hernandez, SEA
17. Carlos Zambrano, CHC
18. Chris Young, SD
19. Fausto Carmona, CLE
20. Daisuke Matsuzaka, BOS
21. Javier Vazquez, CHW
22. James Shields, TB
23. Rich Hill, CHC
24. Matt Cain, SF
25. Tim Lincecum, SF
26. Brett Myers, PHI
27. A.J. Burnett, TOR
28. Ben Sheets, MIL
29. Francisco Liriano, MIN
30. Yovani Gallardo, MIL
31. Tim Hudson, ATL
32. John Maine, NYM
33. Kelvim Escobar, ANA
34. Pedro Martinez, NYM
35. Chien-Ming Wang, NYY
36. Chad Billingsley, LAD
37. Brad Penny, LAD
38. Ted Lilly, CHC
39. Ian Snell, PIT
40. Joba Chamberlain, NYY
41. Jered Weaver, ANA
42. Jeff Francis, COL
43. Derek Lowe, LAD
44. Jeremy Bonderman, DET
45. Adam Wainwright, STL
46. Dustin McGowan, TOR
47. Joe Blanton, OAK
48. Oliver Perez, NYM
49. Phil Hughes, NYY
50. Bronson Arroyo, CIN
51. Tom Gorzelanny, PIT
52. Clay Buchholz, BOS
53. Andy Pettitte, NYY
54. Mark Buehrle, CHW
55. Zack Greinke, KC
56. Gil Meche, KC
57. Rich Harden, OAK
58. Greg Maddux, SD
59. Barry Zito, SF
60. Dontrelle Willis, DET


RELIEF PITCHER
1. J.J. Putz, SEA
2. Jonathan Papelbon, BOS
3. Joe Nathan, MIN
4. Francisco Rodriguez, ANA
5. Takashi Saito, LAD
6. Mariano Rivera, NYY
7. Billy Wagner, NYM
8. Bobby Jenks, CHW
9. Jose Valverde, HOU
10. Huston Street, OAK
11. Francisco Cordero, CIN
12. Rafael Soriano, ATL
13. Matt Capps, PIT
14. Jason Isringhausen, STL
15. Trevor Hoffman, SD
16. Manny Corpas, COL
17. Joakim Soria, KC
18. Brad Lidge, PHI
19. Chad Cordero, WAS
20. Carlos Marmol, CHC
21. Kevin Gregg, FLA
22. B.J. Ryan, TOR
23. Joe Borowski, CLE
24. Todd Jones, DET
25. Eric Gagne, MIL
26. Jonathan Broxton, LAD
27. Troy Percival, TB
28. Brian Wilson, SF
29. Rafael Betancourt, CLE
30. Brandon Lyon, ARI
31.
Pat Neshek, MIN
32.
C.J. Wilson, TEX
33.
Bob Howry, CHC
34.
Jeremy Accardo, TOR
35.
Tony Pena, ARI
36.
Heath Bell, SD
37.
George Sherrill, BAL
38.
Kerry Wood, CHC
39.
Joaquin Benoit, TEX
40.
Scot Shields, ANA