Category Archives: Sports

All-Time Obscure Rangers: First Base

That's one large feline...I wonder how it relates to Blake's obscure first baseman pick...

Now that all that Le-Drama is over, it’s time to get back to business here at the Locker. A couple of days ago I named the All-Time Obscure catcher, and today we’ll delve into first base.

This one may be the skimpiest list we’ll run in to. The Rangers have had a long history of solid first basemen (Rafael Palmeiro, Will Clark, Mark Teixeira, Chris Davis…wait, one of those doesn’t fit…). Aside from the past couple of years, Ranger fans have been spoiled at the position.

And without further ado…

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The ESPN/LeBron Problem

LeBron and ESPN, a vomit-inducing match made in heaven.

I get it. Even as an admittedly passive observer of the NBA for the past four years (the ’06 finals and the Mavs’ first-round exit in ’07 killed my love for the league), I get it. LeBron James is a big freaking deal. Biggest free agent maybe ever. And I get that ESPN loves telling me about it ad nauseum. Almost as much as the network enjoyed stalking Brett Favre.

But they don’t need to. Sports fans don’t need an hour-long special tomorrow night to get amped up about where he’s going. After all, ESPN has spent every last minute since the NBA season ended stoking the hype fire on, well, every conceivable platform: SportsCenter, PTI and Around the Horn not enough for you? Luckily you’ve got ESPN News for that. Oh, don’t forget about and Twitter. And ESPN: The Magazine.

And they present all of this speculation and, for lack of the better word, bull shit as news, with the sole intent of keeping you, the die-hard sports fan informed and on the cutting edge. But people need to understand that ESPN stopped becoming a news organization a long time ago. Sure, they still break news and report on all the happenings around the sports world, but dollar signs and the entertainment side of its operation has become way more important.

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All-Time Obscure Rangers: Catcher

It’s been about a week since my last post. Blame it on a trip to Austin, Sporcle and vacation planning. Also blame it on my desire not to force a post just for the sake of posting. Sure, there’s plenty going on in the sports world–NBA free agency, World Cup, the approaching All-Star game, and so on. But I really don’t have anything groundbreaking to say on those topics at the moment.

And that’s how we find ourselves at this juncture. What do I fall back on when current events just aren’t doing it for me? The 1990s Rangers, of course.

Bengie Molina moves up to No. 2 on my "Favorite Bengie/ji's to play for the Rangers" behind the immortal Benji Gil.

I’ve always been a sucker for transactions, particularly in baseball. I love it when players change teams, if only to see how they look in a different uniform. When the Rangers acquired catcher/sloth Bengie Molina last week, I was eager to catch a game just to see what he looked like in the red and blue.

Call me weird, call me whatever, but these kind of things lead to a list like this. Over the next few days I’ll be unveiling my list of all-time favorite obscure Rangers that will make you think “Oh yeah! I completely forgot about Ben Broussard!”

Today, we start with catcher:

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Saturday Vid- Reversing the Jinx

Here’s the second installment in my sometimes-regular Saturday feature. Since I jinxed the Rangers’ win streak yesterday, hopefully this will make up for it. If you haven’t seen this yet and consider yourself a Ranger fan, you might need to rethink your devotion. It will also make you look back fondly on Ron Washington’s cocaine mishap:

The inspiration after the jump. Continue reading

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And now Blake jinxes the Rangers*

The Texas Rangers have won 11 straight games, the second best streak in club history. Blake Hurtik has not yet blogged/Tweeted/Facebook-status’d about this yet. Coincidence?

I think not.

Hambone with the newly occurring "air-five-to-the-dugout," which really means, screw you, Pirates. Source: AP

My cyber silence on the issue has been partly due to a busy schedule and partly self-imposed. I didn’t want to jinx it. But I am comfortable enough with how this team has been playing that I don’t think I can do much hard. I believe (and really, really, really hope) that the Rangers have moved beyond the reach of superstition and have started to become masters of their own destiny.

And this is a good thing.

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Saturday vid

This may or may not become a Locker tradition, but I learned from my good friend Robert Rich’s forays into blogging: never make promises.

Still, this could be fun. I was going to kick it off with a US/England-related video to get you even more jazzed, but I don’t think you crazy Americans need any more help (maybe just more Sam Adams). But you can take something away from this beauty of a clip. Carry this kind of passion (and bat-throwing ability) with you in whatever you may do. Make sure you at least through the four-minute mark.

As The Big Lead said, I would like to have a beer with this man. (Or maybe that wouldn’t be such a good idea. Apparently Backman was arrested for DUI a few years back). If the MLB wants to improve ratings, get Wally Backman up there ASAP and get him mic’d up. Actually, I think it should be a requirement to have every MLB manager mic’d up. Fascinating people.

Again, U-S-A! Do what Wally Backman would do!

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Why to love the World Cup

Before you soccer…er…football…jump on that utterly obvious title, just hear me out. I’m here representing the somewhat common American man. One that loves BBQ, beer, baseball, football and kickin’ ass. Soccer doesn’t fit into that equation very often…more like only every four years.

But every time the World Cup rolls around now, I find myself swept up in the excitement and actually devoting days to watching Uruguay and France duel. (I honestly had forgotten that Uruguay was a country.) I’ve never particularly cared for soccer. I played it for one year when I was four and promptly quit after taking a ball to the face. That’s probably why I stuck to sports that involved protective head gear from there on out. That, and the fact that I was terrible.

But the 2002 Cup resurrected my interest of the game. I stayed up for the 3 a.m. start of the U.S.-Mexico second-round match and it was the first time I had been riveted by soccer. I’ll never forget Brian McBride and Landon Donovan and that 2-0 win. And this year I’m all sorts of amped up for the U.S.-England match tomorrow. Why? Well, here are my reasons to love the World Cup after the jump:

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