Baseball Toaster was unplugged on February 4, 2009.
westernhomes (at) yahoo (dot) com
For fun (and also because I am quite sick of George Frazier) I watched the game today with the sound off and my iPod on shuffle. The results were interesting.
Top of the first: As Joe Kennedy took the mound, the Stoogesâ âYour Pretty Face is Going to [Heck]â comes on. That canât be a good omen, I think, and it isnât, as Joe first loads the bases then lets a grounder go right through him on its way to scoring two runs. Before Kennedy gets out of the inning, Bob Dylanâs âI Shall Be Releasedâ (the version from Biograph) plays in its entirety. This could mean one of two things, I ponder. Either the Rockies are going to score a bunch of runs and get Joe off the hook, or heâs not long for this game.
Bottom of the first: Jose Limaâs entry theme is âWelcome to the Terrordomeâ by Public Enemy, and the terror in question I believe is in relation to Limaâs frightening blonde dye job. Or the fact that Eddy Garabito is the Rockiesâ leadoff hitter today. Garrett Atkins doubles to the Dismemberment Planâs âOne Too Many Blows to the Head,â which may well be the explanation for Limaâs hair. Lima gets his glove knocked of by a Todd Helton liner just in time for the trombone solo. His facial expression after Helton reaches on the infield hit looks appropriate for trombone accompaniment. Preston Wilson knocks the Rockiesâ first run as âBrooklyn Zooâ by ODB kicks in. I donât know what this presages. Maybe a trade to New York? Anyway, Helton scores on a groundout as Olâ Dirty taunts Lima. I canât here repeat how, but it sure made me laugh.
Top of the second: Calexicoâs funky instrumental âAttack El Robot! Attack!â is on as we resume play, and strangely there are motorycles on the field. The promotional significance of this escapes me because I donât have the sound on. Next, as Lima singles with one out, we have âTemporarily Blindâ by Built to Spill. Now Iâm going to watch the ball-strike calls very closely. Nothing controversial occurs, though, as David DeJesus lines to Helton, who tags a sheepish Lima out for an easy double play.
Bottom of the second: âCome Around,â Sugar. But whatâs coming around? The Rockiesâ offense? Limaâs season? Clint Hurdleâs shocking midgame firing? Maybe itâs J.D. Closserâs bat; the onscreen statistics seem to bear it out. Or maybe not, he pops up. Joe Kennedy lays down a sacrifice bunt. Uh-oh, here we have âRefugee,â by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. Not too difficult to apply that to the current situation. On cue, Garabito flies out to strand the runner.
Top of the third: No Frank White on Frazierâs list of the top five all-time Royals? Anyway, the soundtrack for this inning is Radioheadâs âWe [Blank] Young Blood,â which is what their respective leagues are doing to the pink-cheeked Royals and Rockies. Kennedy goes 1-2-3, how âbout that?
Bottom of the third: Yo La Tengoâs âDouble Dare,â as Shane Costa robs Atkins of a double. Lima goes 1-2-3 too.
Top of the fourth: Death Cab For Cutieâs âSurprisingly, Kennedy Continues to Cruise.â OK, I made that up, itâs âLittle Fury Bugs.â
Bottom of the fourth: Over the commercial we had âI Got a Woman,â by Ray Charles, which doesnât have anything to do with baseball but sure gets you moving in your seat. Next up: The Descendentsâ âMr. Bass.â OK, itâs a song about a fish, I got nothing there. The lack of synergy is really hurting the Rockiesâ offense, as Lima sets them down in order once again.
Top of the fifth: The Vines, âAutumn Shade.â Well, I assure you come autumn no one on the national scene is going to be paying attention to either of these teams. Perhaps Iâm stretching a bit. As Jurassic 5âs âI Am Somebodyâ livens the mood in my living room, Alberto Castillo livens up the game by singling. My sources however tell me that Castillo is not somebody. Ben Folds kicks into âYou To Thankâ and we have Lima to thank as he fails to get a bunt down and the Royals mount no further threat.
Bottom of the fifth: By this time Iâm wondering if I turn the shuffle off and start picking songs manually I can affect the teamsâ play. Maybe next game. Closser singles and Kennedy executes his second sacrifice of the afternoon. The Replacementsâ âBent Out of Shapeâ is the song and Lima certainly looks so on the replay from the last half-inning, after he struck out bunting. For the second time this game, Colorado gets an infield single off of Jose Limaâs glove as Atkins sends Closser home. A long Todd Helton at-bat takes almost the whole length of Joy Divisionâs âDisorder,â but it ends happily as Todd doubles down the rightfield line to score Atkins. Momentary disorder ensues in the visitorsâ dugout as the Royals start getting some relievers up. âReconnez Cherie,â Wreckless Eric, starts going as Preston Wilson steps in. Hmm, maybe a trade to Washington, formerly from that French-speaking Canadian province? Preston draws the unintentional intentional walk. Brad Hawpe walks, too, and Elvis Costelloâs âThatâs How You Got Killed Beforeâ comes on. I hope this means what I think it does. Itâs the end of the line for Lima, at least. It looks like Andy Sisco will be the Royalsâ next pitcher. Heâll enter to Led Zeppelinâs âThe Immigrant Song,â which seems appropriate enough for a Rule 5 guy. Sisco strikes out pinch-hitter Dustan Mohr, but the Rockies have gotten Joe Kennedy his lead.
Top of the sixth: âBe Mine,â by R.E.M. Iâm not sure if Iâm ready to ask Joe Kennedy to go steady quite yet, but he keeps this up, who knows. With two outs, Joe gives up a single to Mark Teahen, and I burst out laughing as a song by Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg, of which two of the three words in the title are inappropriate, bursts out and Kennedy notches his sixth strikeout. Ha ha, Royals ainât [blank] but [blank] and [blank].
Bottom of the sixth: Kid Millionâs âUnwanted Toy.â Kid Million were a mid-â90s band from my hometown of Chicago, and this song could apply to Sisco, who the Cubs didnât want. Desi Relaford draws a walk and steals second. Closser moves Relaford over with a flyout, andâ¦whatâs this, Kennedy is going to hit for himself. OK, Clint. But hey look, the Rockies perfectly execute the suicide squeeze, and itâs 5-2. Itâs Dylan again, âMaggieâs Farm,â and Iâm not sure what to make of that. The relationship between Hurdle and Dan OâDowd, perhaps: âHe gives you a nickel and he gives you a dime, and he asks you if youâre having a good time.â The Rockies are playing like a pocketful of shiny quarters today, as Garabito and Atkins follow the sacrifice play with back-to-back singles. A coachâs visit to the mound is underscored by 2Pacâs âKeep Ya Head Up,â which is kind of funny. Either the coachâs words or 2Pacâs must have done the trick, because Sisco pops out Helton to end the inning.
Top of the seventh: Alejandro Escovedoâs âThe Last to Knowâ includes a phrase that could be applied to Dan Miceli, now up in the Colorado bullpen: âmore miles than money.â Apparently I am the last to know that Joe Kennedy has been replaced by a strike-throwing lefty cyborg from the future. Seriously, this is the best heâs looked all year. His pitch count is under a hundred, too -- he could finish this thing.
Bottom of the seventh: âTho Dem Wrappas,â by noted Cardinal fan Nelly. Heâs obviously referring to Kennedyâs curveball, which has wrapped nicely to the fringes of the strike zone all day today. On TV some kids areâthoâ-ing things from the press box into the stands below. Leo NuÃ±ez -- the Leo NuÃ±ez â" is on the mound for Kansas City. âAngelâ by Belly is the next song to come up and amazingly, Dustan Mohr, originally drafted by the Angels in 1994, hits a homer. OK, he didnât sign, but still, thatâs pretty cool. Superchunkâs âBecoming a Speckâ follows, obviously regarding the Royalsâ chances of pulling out a victory in this one. Poor NuÃ±ez is getting brutalized out there as Desi Relaford smokes one to right for a triple.
Top of the eighth: The title track from Nick Drakeâs Bryter Layter plays over the commercials and the very beginning of the inning, as Jay Witasick takes the bump for the Rockies. Like any good Colo-blogger would, I will take this as proof of the Rockiesâ bright future. Next track is Elvis Costelloâs âGirls Talk,â for which I have nothing. If youâre a girl and were talking about the Rockies during the top of the eighth of todayâs game, please let me know. I must be hitting a cold streak, because as Witasick is walking Tony Graffanino, âThe Abandoned Hospital Shipâ by the Flaming Lips starts up. I donât have any idea what any of the Flaming Lipsâ songs are about, let alone what their tenuous connections to Colorado baseball may be. Maybe something about the disabled list somehow?
Bottom of the eighth: âAfter This Time is Gone,â by Eleventh Dream Day, which is just a flat-out great song. Letâs see -- after this game, I will probably watch another baseball game. I may have a bowl of cereal. And I will almost certainly go get another Diet Coke. Mike MacDougal enters to pitch for the Royals to another classic, Yo La Tengoâs âAs the Hour Grows Late.â Itâs the bottom of the eighth -- the hour could hardly be later. Ooh, and MacDougal pegs Eddy Garabito, right in the small of the back. That looked like it hurt. The Clashâs âThe Guns of Brixtonâ is the soundtrack for the Rockies piling it on, as Atkins doubles to score two. Heâs having a nice little game. I would have to say he and Kennedy have been the biggest beneficiaries of the iPod experiment thus far. Nirvanaâs âPennyroyal Tea" hmm, that one stumps me. Good song, though. Still nobody out as Helton walks and Wilson steps up again. Letâs see, whereâs he going to be traded this inning? Well, his song is The Orbâs âPomme Fritz,â so to England, I guess. Or to A Huge Evergrowing Pulsating Brain That Rules from the Center of the Ultraworld. Wilson walks and thereâs still nobody out. The Royals finally get a force at home on a Brad Hawpe ground ball. Ooh, and new reliever Jonah Bayliss plunks Desi to force in another run. Rockies 9, Royals 2.
Top of the ninth: I swear upon all that is holy that I am not making this up: Entering the triumphant final half-inning of this convincing sweep, the iPod coughed out Princeâs âPurple Rain.â Really. No, really. I havenât made anything up so far, so why would I now? I was hoping that that Orb song was BjÃ¶rk, because Preston Wilson being traded to Iceland is much funnier than England, and I really couldnât tell at first. But I stuck to the truth. And itâs all paid back in spades. Come to think of it, why donât they play âPurple Rainâ after every Rockies home win the way they do âDirty Waterâ in Boston or âNa Na, Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbyeâ on the South Side of Chicago? I guess all of those extended lighters would constitute some kind of fire hazard. Great, great song though. And a pretty nice win, too. Remember, the Royals swept the Yankees earlier this season. Anyway, David Cortes comes in to mop up for Colorado over the funkin' strains of OutKast's "Player's Ball." Bring on the Astros! Oh, wait, Matt Anderson is coming in with two out and nobody on. Well, I supposed it can't hurt for him to pitch to a batter or two in a low-leverage situation. To Superchunk's "Tiny Bombs," Matt Stairs hits a pinch-hit two-run homer. Terrence Long singles, and finally Anderson induces a lineout to end it. Well, that could have could have gone a little more smoothly. We'll take the W's any way they come.
Comment status: comments have been closed. Baseball Toaster is now out of business.