Breaking Now, Fantasy, State of the Union

All My Fantasies Are Baseball Fantasies

SPRING TRAINING GEAR IS HERE!!!

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…It’s like ‘back to school’ swag for people who are too old for Five Star binders, but refuse to grow up & I am here for it.

Just like in the old days, I want it all.

I know I could make all that^ an outfit… all it would take is a LBD, hoops, & black PF Flyers… (&, from now on, that’s the outfit I will be wearing in all my daydreams b/c, sadly, my budget can’t keep up with my cinematic Fantasies.)

Speaking of Fantasies-

My heart stopped when I saw Noah Syndergaard in this promo video.

Fact: He is a Golden God & the only famous person I can remember having had a sex dream about-

It happened shortly after I was traded him in Fantasy last year… & I vaguely remember the words ‘fastball down the middle‘ being used. I woke up giggling… & my husband, already knowing this was baseball-related, sighed & turned his back to me.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Such is the life of the spouse of a Fantasy baseballer… & I feel for him, I really do, but-

NO WAY AM I GIVING UP FANTASY THIS YEAR, B/C I AM-

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Someone’s gotta tell Crabtree how lame ‘The Wave’ is & crush his hopes & dreams-

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& I am here for that too.

With Spring Training right around the corner, it is also almost time to resume our Silly Little Game.

Alas, without the Silver Lake ‘Staches, the only thing I’ve been managing is my brother-in-law’s love life… & I am ready to trade in studying selfies for studying players’ stats &, as Valerie Salembier, manager of Salembier’s Flambes, so aptly put it- ‘what they (have) in the back.

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Crabtree has ‘fessed up to already living the Fantasy podcast life. (He’s entertaining plans to build his team around Kershaw & delusions of grandeur.)

To which, I say-

Everyone has a strategy before 5+ shots of Crown.

Painted in Waterlogue

Draft Day, Easter 2016. …I went there.

Still-

It’s true that one can never be too prepared for Draft Day

But while some choose to dive in head first, I’ve always been a ❤ first kinda grl.

Baseball may be a notorious heart-breaker, but it’s all about courtship going into Spring Training.

1st- It teases you.

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Then- It presents you with shiny new swag.

Next- Pitchers & catchers report right around Valentine’s Day.

FINALLY- THE GAMES BEGIN

& you never know what might happen-

‘On March 13, 1954, Milwaukee Braves left fielder Bobby Thomson fractured his ankle while sliding into second base during a Spring Training game. The next day, (Hank) Aaron made his first Spring Training start for the Braves‘ major league team, playing in left field and hitting a home run.[11] This led Hank Aaron to a major league contract, signed on the final day of Spring Training…’

I’m not saying the O’s or the ‘Staches will be getting a Hank Aaron, but we do have Manny.

…I’m also really excited to get a 1st look @ Trey Mancini, Joey Rickard, & Hyun Soo Kim.

In my opinion, Kim is a sleeper going into 2017. He had a bad Spring Training last year & it took awhile for the O’s to really give him a chance, but when they did- he was great about capitalizing on opportunities to get on base. It was also his first year in the MLB, so I suspect he’ll get off to an easier start this year.

The O’s love the long ball, but I think guys like Kim (& Rickard) are going to be clutch when our sluggers are slumping…

Still- It’s ALL just Fantasy till the season officially starts.

❤ ❤ ❤

On Tenterhooks,

Your Grl On Base

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State of the Union

27 Going on 28: Return of EMO (A Grl’s Survival Guide)

fullsizerender1When I was in my early 20’s-

It took multiple glasses of wine & several episodes of The Hills to prepare me for the fresh hell that was going out on a Saturday night… which I’d feel obligated to do after a day of hiding out & eating eclectically (Ramen, canned beans, & Peanut Butter Puffins, anyone?) just b/c I didn’t want to go out, not even to buy groceries, b/c I just couldn’t deal w/ anyone.

So. Emo.

I remember telling myself, someday, I’ll be 28 &-

By the time I’m 28, I’ll be doing yoga every day.

&- By the time I’m 28, I won’t do that thing where I pick at my nail polish in the car when it starts to chip… & then store the shavings in my cup holders… & leave them there for weeks.

B/c- By the time, I’m 28, I’ll be perfect.

It was always just far enough away…

Until last year…

When I turned 28

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It was my first difficult birthday, but not for the reasons I might have come up with in my early 20’s. I don’t do yoga every day, but I have a gym membership that gets semi-regular use. I still pick at my nail polish, but there are currently no traces of it in my car. I’m far from perfect, but I’m happy with the choices I’ve made.

To my surprise, the MAJOR FEELZ that came up before my birthday had nothing to do with regretting not going to grad school or being upset that I still don’t own that dream pick-up. Instead, it had everything to do with saying good-bye to my early 20’s. Despite, the fact that I am arguably more perfect (& far less humble) now. 🙂

As a survivor-

I bring you this guide to Surviving:

27 Going on 28: Return of EMO

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Step 1: Turn & Face the Music (It’s where you’ll find your mantra.)

Every Emo phase has a soundtrack & mine started w/ this Chainsmokers’ song-

I cranked this song up the first time I heard it on the radio… & then every time after that. My husband was sick of it before I even realized I was going through a thing- a thing that I didn’t even know was a thingCloser is a cautionary tale about back-sliding w/ an ex-

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But what it’s really about is masking one’s hurt & celebrating questionable decisions…

What’s more early 20’s than that?

Once you have your ‘OMG MY EARLY 20’s ARE BEHIND ME’ moment. You’re ready to go Full Emo.

tuws8g2-1465765220That’s right. Dust off that old Death Cab album.

Find the music that was once both the truest & most embarrassing thing about you…

For me, it’s that Good Ol’ Country Music

& Miranda Lambert‘s latest album, ‘The Weight of These Wings,’ couldn’t have dropped at a better time… I found the root of angst I was feeling & the mantra that would get me through in the divinely emo song, ‘Runnin’ Just in Case’-

‘Happiness ain’t prison
But there’s freedom in a broken heart.’

giphy-3.gifWhile I never questioned my happiness, I did question whether or not it was something I deserved & could maintain &

Ultimately,

Could I be happy & still be me?

I’d reached Full Emo.

Step 2: Burn, Baby, Burn.

Once you reach Full Emo, sh*t is going to come up & nobody can plunge your sh*t but you.

Do what you gotta do, but after you do-

Let It Burn.

This is my way of saying that while Aroldis Chapman, currently 28, was helping the Cubs win the World Series, I was creating a now-deleted Word document titled ‘Poems to Keep the Angst Alive.’ This resulted in 0 successful poems, but I still kept my favorite:

‘In the same building where we met, 

Well after you’d left me there,

A teacher told me I had to make my own black

(He also told me I couldn’t paint.)’

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…I know I know better & that’s the thing about getting older-

You start to understand what your black is made of.

Meaning-

Chances are you’re at least a little familiar with the sh*t that’s coming up, because it’s old sh*t. So, go ahead, write that letter to your ex or to your dead-beat dad, but after you do-

In the words of Bowie:

“The moment you know you know you know.”

&

Trust me, you know.

Step 3: Won’t You Please, Please Help Me? (Open up the doors!)

lifteachotherup_libbyvanderploeg

In my early 20’s, I probably wouldn’t have responded to a girlfriend’s “Happy Birthday! How are you?” text with an emotionally honest answer, but, at 28, I did.

To my surprise, she showed up where I work with flowers & an invitation to grab cocktails the following night.

After the tears have dried, it’s time for a drink… with a girlfriend who has been through what you’re going through.

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We met up & I told her about Miranda Lambert’s latest album, about all the looking back I’d been doing, about the blackness, & also about how mortifying it was to see clearly the selfishness I displayed in my youth& she totally got it.

It started to dawn on me that with age also comes the perspective necessary to helping both yourself & others.

Over the course of the evening, we talked about our exes, what we put our mothers through, & the importance of forgiving our younger selves

Which I thought I’d done until

I confessed to essentially ghosting all my exes from my early 20’s, because I was too scared to either respond or reach out.

“Why? What are you afraid might happen?”

I laughed, “Nothing!” It was that simple & easy & true. The fear was not coming from me as a 28 year old woman. It was coming from the grl I was in my early 20’s, stubbornly holding on to her feelings of guilt.

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(Burning sh*t is easy, but guilt tends to linger.)

Step 4: Give Yourself Permission (to give 0 f*cks.)

“I think you have to give yourself permission to do what you want,” she said.

&

For the first time, I really understood what that meant.

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When I really removed guilt & fear from the equation, I was left with 0 desire to re-connect with those who I once felt I ‘owed’ it to &, ironically, it made me feel 5 years younger. 😉

I was also able to make a couple new friends, but it took burning the letters/deleting the doc to open the door.

I came away with a sense of clarity-

Turning 28 was about saying goodbye to my early 20’s. That meant honoring my past, esp. the darkest parts, & then finally letting go of some of my old sh*t.

&

Being 28 is about what I do with the empowerment that comes from really knowing myself. That means being the one to validate my own decisions & forgive my own mistakes.

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&

If you still miss your early 20’s after reading this-

 An episode or two of The Hills (or The Bachelor) ought to bring the emo (& the horror) back into your life (shout out to Rachel, 31!)

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Also, Bachelor Fantasy Leagues are a thinggg!

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Anyone???

28 & Gr8,

Your Grl On Base.

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Fantasy, State of the Union

Mistakes Were Made – #2016

2016 contained so many endings that now that it has finally ended,

I still can’t believe it.

There’s been a lot of denial,
(I just started a 1,000 piece puzzle consisting of mostly foliage.)
But that, too, must end soon.
…I think a lot of us are in the same boat.

So,

What now?

ts-eliot

For me, that means going back to where I left off here @ Grl On Base & piecing together the personally significant moments that happened as what started off as a downright promising year finally came to an end…

We start,

In classic 2016 fashion,

With a tragic boating accident

&

The death of José Fernández.

(Remember that?)

The death of José Fernández was my first ‘Is this real life?’ moment of 2016.

I mean-

Fernández defected from Cuba.
It took four attempts.
He spent a year in Cuban prison for attempting to leave.
On his fourth & final attempt, a wave carried someone overboard & Fernández jumped in after them-
I dove to help a person not thinking who that person was. Imagine when I realized it was my own mother. If that does not leave a mark on you for the rest of your life, I don’t know what will.’
The 15-year-old Fernandez swam through the waves with Maritza clinging to his back and they reached the boat some 15 minutes later.”

That’s insane.

Then came the headlines-
Marlins ace Fernandez dies in boating accident
Jose Fernandez had cocaine, alcohol in system during fatal boat crash
Unable to fully process the reality of the situation,
The day after his death, I made a mistake-

A #BigSexy mistake…

I left Bartolo Colón in against the Marlins.

(2.1 IP, 27.00 ERA, 3.43 WHIP-

Not an ideal way to start the final week of Fantasy.)

I realized I would need to make some big moves if I really wanted to take it to Crabtree, my year-long nemesis, the one week it really mattered.

Afterall,

This was the end

&

The Wave* was coming.

(The Wave* is an easy listening radio station & what Crabtree took to calling the sizeable group of solid pitchers he had starting toward the end of the week. He liked it so much he changed his team name to ‘94.7 The Wave.’ Diabolical.)
What happened next might best be described by one whose eloquence certainly rivals that of T.S. Eliot-

Gwen Stefani,

In her 2004 anthem, ‘Hollaback Girl.’

Ahem-

Few times I’ve been around that track
So it’s not just gonna happen like that
‘Cause I ain’t no hollaback grl
I ain’t no hollaback grl
A couple days later, at 2 AM, it dawned on me-
Fantasy was ending & therefore nothing (& no one) was precious any more (except for Manny & MadBum, my two Keepers. ❤ )
Dramatic? Yes. But also effective.

2am

Crabtree was all in on The Wave. He even had a wave patch picked out for our league trophy jacket.
In the meantime, I started building shelter with walls made out of innings pitched (144.2 was the final count) & sandbags full of the best available streaming options.

 

my-sht

This my sh*t, this my sh*t. This my sh*t, This my sh*t. This my…

It still came down to a good ol’ fashioned Sunday Showdown,

So that’s right dude, meet me at the bleachers
No principals, no student-teachers
Both of us wanna be the winner, but there can only be oooone

The O’s were looking to lock up their place in the AL Wild Card Game & I was playing for all the marbles,

So I’m gonna fight, gonna give it my all
Gonna make you fall, gonna sock it to ya

&

On Oct. 2nd 2016,

NO mistakes were made.

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pitching-final

That’s right.
I’m the last one standing
&
Another one bites the dust.

…I won.

The O’s won-

It was a perfect day of perfect streaming.

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Yes, the O’s would go on to loose the Wild Card Game in extra innings without using Britton, MLB’s best closer.
Yes, Trevor Bauer CUT HIS FINGER ON A DRONE & had to leave a playoff game b/c it wouldn’t stop bleeding.
Yes, I tried getting into football, b/c, hey LA has a team again & Goff is pretty cute…

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Yes, Trump would wind up getting elected into office.

Yes, many more mistakes were made.

So many, in fact,

That come UFC 207-
The worst case scenario is sort of what I’d come to expect,

But I am a sucker for a comeback

rowdy

& a really great hat…

What I didn’t expect was Cody Freakin’ Garbrandt.

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In an epic 5 round fight that looked like it might have been 1/3 well-timed voguing,

Cody made UFC 207 his own Oct. 2nd 2016

&

Beat Dominick Cruz, becoming the new UFC bantamweight champ,

&

THEN HE CALLED OUT T.J. DILLASHAW

&

It

Was

HOT!

Perfect eyebrows aside, it was just an exemplary display of what sport is all about-
Exactly what’s possible when adequate training, full commitment, & a little bit of trash-talk are combined.

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So beautiful…

Ronda’s fight was the opposite.

It was like she’d manifested her own worst fears…

It was 2016’s final sucker-punch

&

It kinda broke my heart.

There’s a lot of speculation that she’ll retire now & a lot of people are weighing in with their opinions.

My feeling is-

Regardless, Ronda was the one who made it possible for women to headline a major UFC PPV event.
Now, Amanda Nunes, the first openly gay champion in UFC history, has defended her belt against THE Ronda Rousey (w/ a classic, old-school Ronda quick-finish, no less.)

That’s MMA herstory & both women have their place.

Should Ronda continue her story in the UFC?
I don’t know, but I liked what Jon Jones had to say-

jon-jones-on-ronda

&

What Trump had to say is a reminder why we all have to keep fighting in 2017…

TRUMP ON RONDA.png

But first, I’m going to finish that puzzle

&

Leave this here:

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

…Just b/c it’s 2017 doesn’t mean we can’t try

&

Live every day like it’s

Oct. 2nd 2016

&

Party like it’s 2004…

(39 days till pitchers & catchers report!)

😉

#NotRetired,

Your Grl On Base

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Breaking Now, Foul Ball, Playing Defense

This One’s For My GRLz- In Defense of Hillary Clinton & Taylor Swift

We live in a crazy world.

Donald Trump is running for President

Against

HILLARY CLINTON.

It’s not a trick question.

It’s a n0-brainer.

(O, the irony!)

What part of this is hard?

…Is it harder than NOT calling a woman a b*tch?

Apparently so

&

That makes me sad, ya’ll,

B/c it’s clear to me that

What’s hard is sexism.

😦

What’s hard is this argument I keep running into online-

‘She thinks she’s better than everyone else.’

I’ve seen it written, repeatedly, about both Hillary Clinton & Taylor Swift

&

I find it very troubling

(Aside from the fact that, yea, they ARE)

Esp. when I look at who they find themselves up against-

Donald Trump & Kanye West.

Am I missing something?! Are these men known for their HUMILITY?!

NO!

They are misogynist egomaniacs & publicity addicts.

Would you EVER hear Taylor Swift OR Hillary Clinton say that they think they’re better than everyone else?!

NO!

They are two accomplished women, who both continue to be successful amidst harsh criticism while also maintaining a constant state of DIGNITY.

I think it’s actually their uncompromising DIGNITY that’s hard for people…

&

It’s probably harder for those who are deeply insecure…

&

Those who are scared of strong women…

&

Those who might hide behind their own special brand of blinding narcissism…

What’s actually at the heart of Kimye‘s beef stew w/ TayTay is the fact that-

Kanye West did not make Taylor Swift famous!

Taylor made Kanye infamous

W/out even trying

giphy-1.gif

&

He has never forgiven her.

:/

Me?

 I cannot forgive Kanye for Famous

B/c

REGARDLESS of how much Taylor knew about the lyrics-

Why would he call this lovely, accomplished young woman, who has had the grace & dignity to publicly forgive HIM,

A B*TCH?!

B/c felt he threatened

&

Upset by the fact that she has more of what he values most-

Fame.

Taylor’s Fame has thus far been a special kind,

Bathed in golden light-

A kind that takes work to achieve.

Taylor did the work.

We all watched as she did it

&

Grew up in the process.

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We watched as she somehow thrived in an industry that is not known to respect women

&

Managed to survive w/out a blemish on her reputation-

Taylor Swift is a real-life female role-model,

Who Kanye is seeking to

Destroy

&

Rob

(Of what she has earned through a lifetime of hard work.)

He’s already tried it once,

Thoughtlessly & drunkenly,

But this time-

He did it more thoughtfully,

W/ the help of an enabler-

Kim Kardashian West

(Just the name makes me shudder.)

Let’s face it-

Kimye set a trap.

Remember the Benghazi hearing?

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Now, the Republicans weren’t able to catch Hillary w/ the hearing,

But they’re not letting go of those emails…

Just sayin’.

What it really comes down to w/ both women is-

They got caught protecting themselves at all costs

&

That’s not ‘lady-like,’

But what is & isn’t ‘lady-like’ is the battle that’s being fought

&

The struggle is real.

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Look at the other side-

Do Kanye West & Donald Trump play fair themselves?

&

Do we, as women, want to be represented by Kim Kardashian & Melania Trump,

The leading ladies of Kanye West & Donald Trump?!

Or

Do we want to be represented by empowered women who are actual leaders?

Go on,

Tell me again how you’re ‘tired’ of Hillary & Taylor

&

I will show you two women who work harder for good on a near daily basis than many people do in a lifetime.

200

That is all.

I’m w/ them,

Forever

&

Always,

Your grl on base.

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Breaking Now, Fantasy

BAE-WULF: A Bad *ss BAE’s Guide to Victory

ALRIGHT! GUYS, IT’S SUNDAY MORNING & BASEBALL IS BEING PLAYED ON THE FINAL DAY OF THE FANTASY WEEK!

This week, I am up against the sole undefeated team in our league, the Culver CrackerJacks

& I AM WINNING 7-3, which has to be a disappointment to the team’s manager- a careful & cunning man by the name of Crabtree.

Crabtree’s known interests include collecting vinyl, uneven trades in his favor, & fanciful facial hair- in other words, he’s a monster.

He is my Grendel

&

I am BAE-wulf.

😉

But-

I didn’t just become BAE-wulf overnight.

See-

The first boy I ever liked used to chase me around chanting, ‘paper dolls & sushi!!’ Over & over again. …Those were my known interests, so he tried to annoy me by mocking me with them.

It worked-

I retaliated by throwing things.

He threw things back.

Every day, at recess, we chased each other around, throwing weeds, pine cones, & various food items at each other.

It was exhausting &, ultimately, fruitless

When he finally tried to kiss me following our 5th grade graduation, I ran away…

& I never saw him again. (We went to different schools the next year.)

My mistake, I realize now, was my inability to think more than one step at a time.

If I’d been able to apply strategy to my situation, I certainly could have destroyed this boy in both love & war.

 …

I’ve come a long way since my days of chasing boys on the playground-

I mean, I still like paper dolls & sushi…

But, now,

I’ve got game

& I love kicking *ss.

I may be new to the game of Fantasy baseball-

But, I’ve been playing boys for years…

If my 5th grade crush taught me anything, it’s that acts of love can often resemble acts of ‘war’ & vice versa.

This week, I tried to employ my proven strategy for getting a guy to my endeavor to destroy one in a Fantasy baseball match-up

After all-

The harder you try to destroy your opponent,

the more you show just how much you care.

😉 ❤

Let’s go through the steps.

Step 1- Look hot.

Applying it to Fantasy- I am a desirable opponent for Crabtree, one worth crushing… one who tied him the last time we were matched up… & I am the one who is now just hours away from spoiling his unBAEten record. (See what I did there?)

Step 2- Let him know it’s on.

In love, this can be as easy as meeting your BAE’s gaze at the right time.

In Fantasy- This means talking sh*t.

IMG_1939

Step 3- Ignore him a little (while still clocking his every move) & flirt with other desirable guys.

…So what if Crabtree has Kershaw? I picked up Jose Ramirez.

(Did you know that you can put Ramirez in at 2B, 3B, SS, & OF? Now, that’s hot.)

WARNING: Men can be incredibly insecure, especially when they are losing. …Sometimes, they will lash out in desperation

Screen Shot 2016-06-02 at 10.07.23 AM

…Leading us to the next step-

Step 4- the ‘intentional walk.’

Now that it’s clear both parties are invested & eager to break the game open- it’s time for the intentional walk.

The intentional walk is all about recognizing the other player’s strengths, while playing to yours.

Say your date is a fantastic pool player-

‘Forget‘ how to play, walk him… & then destroy him.

…If pool’s not your game, pick the next game- one you’re really, really good at- & score big in the next inning.

(WARNING: Pool players love stealing second.)

I have no idea whether or not Crabtree is good pool player, but I do know that he thinks his pitching staff is the sh*t &, so far, he’s been a good streamer…

But!

This week, his pitching faltered early & I saw my opening…

See-

I got a quality start out of Sabathia on the same day that Crabtree made the mistake of starting James Shields, giving me an early lead in ERA & WHIP…

I chose to absorb risk early by deciding then to concede Ks, Ws, & possibly SVs.

Welcome to first base, Crabtree, because that’s as far as you’ll ever get.

…I used Bumgarner & tried & true RPs to improve my lead…

Then, I benched my entire pitching staff, forcing Crabtree to try & catch me…

& also, to take on all the risk that comes with trying to win those two categories…

while I just chilled.

🙂

Meanwhile, my offense was easily outperforming his in every category except SBs- which I took care of yesterday.

The score went from 6 – 4 to 7 – 3.

Step 5- Execute your game while constantly checking the stats-

How many dates has BAE suggested on their own? How close are they to scoring? (Maybe consider a pick off attempt.)

Alternately

What categories are you winning? HRs, RBIs, SBs, AVG, OBP, ERA, & WHIP.

Are they the ones you thought you’d take? Well, not necessarily ERA & WHIP….

Are all of those leads sustainable? Hopefully.

This week-

I thoroughly analyzed every pitching match-up before filling in my lineup each day…

& my hard work paid off.

All the while-

I kept my eye on Crabtree’s ERA & WHIP to see if I might need to put in some RPs or start Strasburg. (Thank God I didn’t.)

& I’m still holding…

Which brings me to the last step,

Step 6-

Hope for the best

&

Keep representin’

BAD *SS BAES.

Off to finish sanding that wall, your grl on base.

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Breaking Now, Fantasy, Foul Ball

Behaving Badly – No Biggie?

*Please note that this post was written yesterday (Sunday, the 15th) as I was watching my Fantasy opponent make a Royals (circa 2014-2015) style comeback on me. Also, the Rangers/Blue Jays brawl (which I’ll get to) happened while I was writing this. …What a crazy f*ckin’ day.

So yeah-

MY GOD, it’s been awhile since my last post &, you might’ve guessed it, Fantasy’s to blame…

I’ve reached the point where I need someone to check me into Fantasy rehab (& it’s only week 6!) but I’d also never be able to speak to that person again… & I’m finally at a place in my life where I like everyone I know. :/

Oh well, it’s my problem, & I’ll deal with it, right after I check on today’s games…


F*ck. Why’d I stream Devenski??? Damn rookie pitchers… They’re like virgins, you have to wait for them to get really good &, in Fantasy, where time crawls, ain’t nobody got time for that sh*t. At least, I don’t. Been there. Done that. Over it. Totally dropping Devenski, dropping him so hard, just like I dropped Berrios.


…Yes, I’m a monster, but this is sports, so, as Aroldis Chapman and Jon Jones can tell you, a little monstrosity is no biggie (as long as you keep playing the game well.)

That’s right, Aroldis Chapman is back from his 30 game suspension & he is throwing heat with the same powerful hands that got him suspended (‘according to a police report, he placed his hands around his girlfriend’s neck during an argument and fired a gun eight times.’)

‘Chapman’s case was one of three investigated by MLB this offseason as part of the new domestic violence policy. The others involved Jose Reyes of the Colorado Rockies and Yasiel Puig of the Los Angeles Dodgers.’

Reyes, it turns out, will also be suspended.

Frankly, it’s about damn time the MLB started cracking down on domestic violence… but are they going far enough?

I mean-

Chapman was an original draft pick in my 6 person Fantasy league, even with the suspension, because when it comes down to it, in baseball, a 30 game suspension is no biggie…

Meanwhile, my bestie (now to be referred to as my bestie again & not as ‘LameFace McGillicuddy’) was forced to drop Dee Gordon, who was suspended 80 games for using PEDs, from his Fantasy roster. It’s a tough loss for him (&, I suppose, for the Marlins as well.) 😛

My point is-

Shouldn’t Chapman have been suspended at least as many games as Gordon for scaring his girlfriend so bad that she ‘hid in the bushes outside his home while she phoned police dispatchers for help.What an *sshole, right?

…So, why aren’t people judging him the way they’re judging Dee Gordon?

Probably because most people don’t know what ‘domestic violence’ actually means.

What I mean by that is-

When I asked some fantasy baseballers I know if they knew exactly what Chapman did to get suspended, none of them knew. All they knew was that he’d been suspended for ‘domestic violence’ & now he’s back & throwing fast fastballs. (Well yeah, the dude is strong…)

I can only assume that if he’d been given a longer suspension, more people would know the details of what he did-

& that matters.

(Say what you want about Dee, but at least he risked his own life.)

…So, as long as we’re on the subject of *ssholes, let’s talk about someone who I’ve become more & more convinced is an *sshole-

Jon Bones Jones.

In 2015, Jones ‘pleaded guilty to a charge stemming from a hit-and-run crash in April that injured a pregnant woman.’ (He served no jail time for the hit-and-run.)

Before that, ‘he was involved in four previous documented incidents, ranging from driving with a suspended license to running his car into a utility pole.’

…The part where he was stripped of his UFC title?

No biggie-

He’s fighting to reclaim it AT UFC 200 IN THE MAIN EVENT SPOT.

What I find troubling is that, according to Jones, he never actually lost the title or the belt:

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While it’s true that Cormier didn’t beat him for the belt in the octagon…

Cormier also never tested positive for cocaine or fled the scene of a hit-and-run.

I was rooting for Jones when he defended his title against Cormier at UFC 182, but I’ll be rooting for Cormier at UFC 200, because

I believe Jon Jones deserves to feel like a loser

&

If Cormier could give him the gift of his first real loss in the octagon, that would be a biggie-

A biggie, like Conor McGregor NOT fighting in UFC 200 (Jon Jones got his spot after Conor failed/refused to meet his press obligations.)

Basically, Conor’s saying he’s a big enough star that he’s literally earned ($$$) the right to dictate his own terms for fighting- but the UFC said, nope.

Conor has built his UFC career on being confrontational & ostentatious…& winning (till recently.) So, it makes sense that he’d take on Dana White with the same cocksure-ity he’s employed against his opponents in the octagon…

But you can’t knock out Dana White… or win by decision when your opponent is the decider.

So, what was/is Conor thinking?

 Who knows? It’s possible that Conor may well be a little too intoxicated with his own McGregor, but this fight with Dana White does raise a good question:

With the UFC more popular than ever & no UFC union, what are the limits of the UFC’s powers’ ?

Here’s another one-

Is Bryce Harper MLB’s Conor McGregor?

Yup. They’re quite a pair of shrinking violets, aren’t they?

But-

Love them or hate them, swagger is good for business… & they’ve got it in spades.

&, really-

How can you *not* want to ‘make baseball fun again?’

Sometimes, however, a fun little bat flip

Leads to-

(Read more about the Rangers/Blue Jays brawl here.)

When it comes to the Rangers vs. the Blue Jays, I think the Rangers might be the *ssholes…

…which isn’t to say Rougned Odor doesn’t have a mean right hook. He does…

But he’s probably going to be suspended for a balls’ age

 (&, of course, I have him in Fantasy.)

Maybe, there’s a place for him in the UFC?

(…Too soon?)

Trying to stay out of trouble till next time, your grl on base.

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Breaking Now, Fantasy, Playing Defense, State of the Union

When Fantasy & Reality Collide…

Fantasy Vs. Reality?

Today, I choose Reality. The Reality is- it’s a beautiful Saturday morning & just last night, my husband & I had a fantastic date night… that ended with us naked …in bed …making fun of Leonardo DiCaprio.

Awesome Friday Night.

(The Reality is also that we were coming off of an emotional Thursday night, during which I must’ve lost half my body-weight in tears.

It was a classic little-thing-blowing-up-quickly scenario, like the walk that leads to a ‘four-homer, nine-run seventh.’)

So-

It was also a Recovery Friday Night & it started with a date…

When Reality sucks, I choose Fantasy… Baseball. My husband, accepting this, took me to a bar where the Dodgers game was on (I have BOTH Kershaw & Bumgarner in Fantasy) & got some whiskey & wings in me (& that is how you get me naked.)

What was awesome for me in Reality, was not awesome for me in Fantasy

I was expecting double-digit Ks (a category I was losing) from both starters… & that is not what I got.

There’s the rub, but that’s the game.

In the after-math, I’m left leading in Ks… but barely …& my opponent has Wainwright & Price starting today.

Who do I have starting today & tomorrow? NOBODY.

…& we’re tied, 5 -5…

So, with two days of games left, it’s time for some lady-balls-

Are there any SPs I can add that’ll be available & starting tomorrow? Yes.

Is one of them, the O’s very own, Mike Wright? Yes.

Was he sort of sh*tty his last time out? Yes.

Is the other Wright (Steven Wright) maybe a better option? Yes.

But-

Do I just have a feeling about this guy? Yes.

DID I JUST DROP STARLIN CASTRO & PICK UP MIKE WRIGHT FOR TOMORROW?!

YES.

&-

Why the hell not put my lady-balls to the wall & go with my heart? The O’s ARE WINNING!

(Let’s face it-

Any time the O’s are winning it’s a Fantasy turned Reality.)

So-

With Schoop, Trumbo, & Rickard all in for today,

if I go down this week- I go down the honorable way.

 I mean-

In Reality & Fantasy this week, I’ve made some mistakes-

Like shutting a door at the wrong time & benching SO MANY PLAYERS WHEN THEY’VE HOMERED (hilariously leaving me perpetually 1 HR behind my opponent.)

Still-

I’ve have had some high-highs…

Like trading-

Not just Salvador Pérez & Victor Martinez for Matt Wieters & Andrew Miller

But also-

Watching that crazy 7th inning when we got home from the bar last night for going to bed with my husband.

Best Trade Ever.

So now-

I pray

&

plug back in

(I set my lineup early this morning & have opted to write this post without checking the status of the games.)

Just in time for-

The O’s, getting back at it, in just a few short hours…

Once again-

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Cheers, your grl on base.

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Fantasy, Word on the Streak

Catching Up + a Fantasy & BTS Doubleheader!

A lot has happened since my last post:

– I watched the Tampa Bay Rays play an exhibition game in Cuba. It gave me major baseball feels. I cried-

I mean, c’mon, 28-year-old Dayron Varona, the Rays’ leadoff hitter that game, became the first Cuban baseball player to defect & return to play ball in Cuba. He also got to see his sister for the first time in 3 years!

What else?

-O, right:

The Republican candidates got super upset about Obama attending that game after the terrorist attacks in Brussels…

From my POV?

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Photo Credit: Chip Somodevilla – Getty Images

Obama = that game’s MVP (#baller)

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Photo Credit: Spencer Platt – Getty Images

Cruz = living proof that if you keep making that face it’ll stay that way (#hater)

…Also, let us not forget that Cruz IS CUBAN AMERICAN, which begs the question-

What is wrong with him?!

O, right:

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Photo Credit: Spencer Platt – Getty Images

Speaking of haters…

-In MMA/UFC news, Cormier pulled out of his fight against Jon Bones Jones due to a leg injury, which sucks because I was really looking forward to it… but at least their Twitter feud is almost as entertaining.

(Before Cormier pulled out, Jones posed an open question on Twitter, asking what tactics he should employ against Cormier- I suggested rear naked cupcakes, ‘cause Cormier strikes me as a guy who can’t resist a cupcake. 😛 Not surprisingly, I didn’t get a response.)

-BUT BACK TO BASEBALL, ‘CAUSE BASEBALL’S BACK-

& that means…

-Fantasy baseball & Beat The Streak are also back & that’s what today’s doubleheader is all about.

I’m no expert on either, but-

…What I like about fantasy baseball is that, as far as I can tell, it’s like playing the ultimate Stratego game with the ultimate nerds & I love me some Stratego. (I used to beat the boys at daycare so bad…)

So, on Easter Sunday, my H2H league had an awesome, old school off-line draft, with one out-of-towner phoning in. The draft took place at my (& 3 other league members’) place of employment- a frame shop. We set up in the back room, which, to me, was so cool- like holding a meeting in a secret clubhouse. Our resident Selfie King documented the proceedings & throughout the rest of this post you’ll get to see some of his fine photojournalism, which I have put through a beer-goggle-like filter to reflect everyone’s level of inebriation… But, also, to give everyone some anonymity, so that I don’t embarrass anyone (including myself.) Before you say, ‘Aww, how sweet,’ keep reading-

We’re nearing the end of week 1 of fantasy &, just like in daycare, I am SLAYING.

To be fair,

I am in the shallowest league ever (6 teams) &…

-The person I’m playing this week, who I thought was going to be one of the biggest threats, DIDN’T EVEN SET A LINEUP TILL TUESDAY, ‘CAUSE HE COULDN’T FIGURE OUT HOW TO USE THE YAHOO FANTASY APP.

Painted in Waterlogue

As our production manager at work would say, AWW, C’MON, MAN!!

-Then, there’s our commissioner who choked at the end of the draft & drafted 5 ATHLETICS IN A ROW…

Note: We had a draft by-law that stated that a shot must be taken each time you draft a player from ‘your team’ (in my case, the O’s/in his case, the A’s.)

Painted in Waterlogue

Mistakes being made.

…It was also reported by his girlfriend, who was present at the draft, that he drunkenly sang ‘Down Under’ by Men At Work on the car ride home, protesting each time she tried to turn down the volume on the car radio. So, shout-out to the spouses & significant others of fantasy baseballers, the unsung heroes of fantasy baseball.

-Finally, there’s our out-of-towner, aka LameFace McGillicuddy, who did NO DRAFT PREP WHATSOEVER, made everyone else do the strange, thankless task of drafting his team for him &, ultimately, hung up on us not even 5 rounds in. :/

I got a text from him saying just, ‘I’m going to eat I’ll ttyl.’ He was not heard from again for the remainder of the draft.

He did however set his lineup on time & IS SOMEHOW DOING OK?! 😡

…In my opinion? We were far too good to him when drafting his team. What he really deserved was- Coco Crisp, some Phillies, & a bunch of sh*tty non-closer relievers. Instead- our aforementioned commissioner & Men At Work enthusiast GAVE HIM CHRIS DAVIS. I still cannot believe it.

Clearly, we’re not professionals, but there are a few things you can learn from us:

  1. The draft is important, do your damn homework. (You could even just make a short list of players you want to prioritize & then download a top 300 list from a fantasy blogger or podcaster you like… bonus points if you do a mock draft or listen to one being done on a podcast, like I did while doing cardio at the gym. It’s that easy.)
  2. Know how to use your league’s agreed upon fantasy platform…
  3. You should probably not draft 5 Athletics in a row under any circumstances. (The Blue Jays, the Cubs, & maaaaybeee the Astros are the only teams I can think of off of the top of my head that I’d even want 5 players from… I’m purposefully leaving out the Royals, because ew, just ew.)
  4. Finally, know that 5+ shots of Crown inevitably leads to madness.

In the end, this is the team I ended up with:

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Not Pictured: Cole Hamels Tex – SP

…Why, yes, Tulo did hit the 1st HR of the 2016 season & Archer did get 12 Ks in his first outing- Thanks for noticing. 🙂

Who’d I draft 1st? Kershaw, ‘cause Machado was taken.

What’s my biggest regret? Not drafting one or two more closers.

Was Schoop worth the shot? In the words of a good friend, ‘Schoop is my boy, good height, decent hitting, gritty attitude.’ Personally, I think Schoop has the potential to lead second basemen in HRs this year & I really enjoyed this article on him.

Now, while fantasy baseball is about strategy & maintaining relative sobriety (esp. during your draft,) Beat The Streak is about the RUSH.

BTS is like baseball crack, you live & die for your next hit & you pray that you know where, or who rather, it’s coming from…

It involves high highs & low lows. You try to push it on your friends & once they’re also addicted, everyone turns against each other. It makes you paranoid. It becomes harder & harder to maintain relationships with people who aren’t also addicts. It drives you toward irrational behavior, like locking yourself in the bathroom at a wine bar because you want a safe place to curse at your phone while fighting back tears. (Or, maybe, that’s just me?)

Don’t even get me started on what it did to my marriage last year-

My husband, up for sainthood any day now, likes to sleep in & snuggle on Sunday mornings. (Who doesn’t?)

…Did I allow him that one simple pleasure? No. I was up at 6 AM on Sunday mornings, pouring over my BTS Excel spreadsheet, trying to determine who to pick to get a hit. Pretty eccentric. But. That’s what BTS does to you.

I became convinced it was my job & that beating the streak was within the realm of possibility. I forgot the insane odds & became obsessed.

So, instead of getting to sleep in & spoon, my husband would wake up to the glow of my computer screen, make a face like Ted Cruz, mumble unintelligibly, then turn away in defeat.

…After all that work, what was my highest streak? Sixteen. SIXTEEN. Pathetic.

This year, however, there will be no Excel spreadsheet & more snugz.

Why? Because I finally have some perspective & value my marriage?? Yes. But also– the BTS app now has some handy filters that takes a lot of the work out of making an educated pick. For instance- you can now search for all batters facing a pitcher that throws with the opposite hand, batters who bat toward the top of the lineup & therefore get more at bats, etc… I’m looking forward to getting more sleep (even if all I’ll be dreaming of are sweet, sweet hits.) SEVENTEEN, here I come! 😉

Now, go download the app so we can all be junkies together!

From here on out, I’ll be regularly updating you on my fantasy and BTS progress (I picked Machado yesterday, today I have Dexter Fowler, & I put in Prince Fielder for tomorrow,) but-

Right now? I gotta go tinker with today’s fantasy lineup!

Painted in Waterlogue

Cheers, your grl on base.

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