Victorino gets doused with beer at Wrigley

During the Phillies’ 12-5 trouncing of the Cubs at Wrigley Field on Wednesday night, Philadelphia outfielder Shane Victorino received a beer shower from some idiot fan while trying to catch a fly ball on the warning track.

Here’s a complete breakdown of the scene, including how security busted the wrong guy:

Couple thoughts:

1. What concentration shown by Victorino to still make the play while the beer (and cup) was being poured on him. It wasn’t like he caught the ball after the beer bath – he caught it during it.

2. It’s a crime against humanity that the ass clown in the white T-shirt and novelty wristband (did he think if he wore a wristband to the stadium that they would let him into the game or something?) didn’t get tossed from the game, but the innocent bystander to his left did. Gotta love how he allowed someone else to receive blame for the incident while he got to stay and watch the rest of the game.

3. Any fan that intentionally throws something onto the field (save for an opposing team’s home run ball) or touches a ball along the side of the field while it’s still in play deserves to be thrown off the top of the stadium. I can’t for the life of me figure out why you would pay upwards of $75 to go to a game and either throw something at a player or touch a ball while it’s still in play.

4. That fan deserved to watch the Phillies lay the wood to his hapless team. And any time he goes to Wrigley from here on out, may the Cubs lose.

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Victorino ejected for arguing balls and strikes…from centerfield.

It’s not everyday that you see a player get ejected for arguing balls and strikes from centerfield. But that’s exactly what happened on Sunday when Phillies’ outfielder Shane Victorino was tossed during a loss to the Marlins.

Here’s the umpire’s explanation for ejecting Victorino from the Philadelphia Inquirer:

“The third pitch was called a ball and he was out there waving his arms like this,” said Rapuano, imitating Victorino. “So I stepped out, took my mask off, looked out there and gestured. Again, he went [waving his arms] and I said that’s it. You can’t do that from center field. I gave him the chance to not do it again.”

Wow – great explanation. I don’t think I’ve ever heard of a player being ejected for raising his arms in frustration over an umpire’s (brutal) ball and strike calls.

Umpires feel way too empowered these days.

2009 MLB Preview: #8 Philadelphia Phillies

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Offseason Movement: The defending World Series champs added 2B Miguel Cairo, OF Raul Ibanez, C Ronny Paulino and pitchers Gary Majewski and Chan Ho Park this offseason. Philly also parted with OF Pat Burrell, OF So Taguchi and pitchers Adam Eaton, Tom Gordon and Rudy Seanez.

Top Prospect: Carlos Carrasco, RHP
Carrasco enters 2009 as one of the top pitching prospects in all of baseball and if Chan Ho Park struggles as the fifth starter, there’s a chance that Carrasco might make an appearance at some point this season. He appears to have a very high ceiling and while he’s still a bit erratic at times, Carrasco will likely smooth out his rough spots in Triple-A before making the big league roster.

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Team USA heading to WBC semis

Thanks to David Wright and Kevin Youkilis, Team USA is heading to the semis of the World Baseball Classic.

David Wright delivered a game-winning single in the bottom of the ninth to propel Team USA past Puerto Rico and into the semis of the World Baseball Classic.

Talent won out in the end, even though Team USA has constantly stepped on its own feet by trying to get everyone into the game and still not play matchups at all. Down 5-3 in the ninth, Team USA got back-to-back singles from Shane Victorino and Brian Roberts against J.C. Romero. Derek Jeter then grounded out, advancing only the lead runner. However, Roberts stole second base and Jimmy Rollins walked to load them, resulting in Romero’s departure. After Fernando Cabrera came in, Kevin Youkilis, who homered earlier, walked to force in a run, and Wright dumped a ball into right field to score two runs. It was his third hit of the game.

I’ll be the first to admit that I didn’t think that USA’s pitching staff would carry them this far. And really, the pitching hasn’t been that great (USA’s team ERA is 6.10) but guys like Wright, Roberts, Victorino, Ryan Braun, Adam Dunn and Jimmy Rollins have been killing the ball. Hopefully the bats stay alive and we can all see a Team USA gold medal.

2009 Fantasy Baseball Preview: Outfielders

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The great thing about addressing your outfielder positions on draft day is that there are so many to choose from that chances are if you don’t like one facet about a certain player (i.e. age, inexperience, he plays for the Red Sox and you’re a Yankees fan, etc.), you can move on to one of the many other choices available.

Conversely, with so many players to choose from, you’re liable to stick your head in an oven in order to avoid having to decide between which outfielders will explode and which will wind up on your league’s wavier wire after making you suffer for the first couple months of the season.

The nice thing about having so many choices for outfielders is that you can draft certain players to fill certain needs. As your roster starts to take shape on draft day, if you desire more power, then there are plenty of outfielders that can address that specific need. If your team is lacking speed, there are outfielders that you can target to rack up stolen bases. And if you were able to draft for both speed and power in previous rounds, then adding a couple outfielders that can hit for average will only help you in the long run.

That said, if you’re smart, you’ll pinpoint the outfielders that can do it all. Sure, they might not excel in any one area, but over the course of the season if you can land a guy that can spread out his production in home runs, RBIs, runs and average, it will do wonders for your team in the end. After all, balance is key in fantasy baseball and after you land your studs early on, you’re going to need to complete your roster with players that can produce in all areas.

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