Small-Market Scribblings

Monday, August 4, 2008

NFL Hires Dissembler As Consultant

Posted by on Mon, Aug 4, 2008 at 9:23 AM

By CHRIS RASMUSSEN

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Hang loose, Chiefs fans, Ari's on the job.

The NFL hired a genius as a consultant.

Ari Fleischer, the most infamous White House press secretary since Ron Ziegler, is bringing his special brand of verbal gymnastics to professional sports players, providing seminars as president of Ari Fleischer Sports Communications.

His first tip -- “be honest” -- is a clear illustration of Fleischers’ public relations genius. First, its audacity in never conceding that he ever misled the American people from the White House podium puts his audience completely off-balance. Second, it distracts the audience from every previous lie uttered by Fleischer, no mean feat for the president’s primary spokesperson before the Iraq War.

Kansas City’s sports teams need Fleischer’s mendacity to distract local media from finishing in last place. For example, the Royals may no longer feel the need to give out poorly made crap to fans, instead opting for a press spokesman to peddle crap. After all, unlike a Billy Butler jersey, effective half-truths and deceptions are never demoted to Omaha.

The Chiefs would also eagerly seek a consult from Fleischer – after all, there is no better way to distract attention from Carl Peterson than have someone take abuse from Kansas City’s media on a weekly basis:

Q: They sacked Brodie Croyle 10 times today. Is the offensive line a concern?

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Friday, August 1, 2008

Mike Sweeney vs. Carlos Beltran, Reconsidered

Posted by on Fri, Aug 1, 2008 at 10:26 AM

By CHRIS RASMUSSEN

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Two events occurred that serve as a reminder concerning the most critical decision the Royals faced in the previous decade. First, Mike Sweeney’s left knee “locked up” this week, putting an end to his season and perhaps his major-league career. Second, the trade deadline passed – five years ago, the Royals traded away Carlos Beltran a month before the deadline.

There was a point in 2002 where the Royals opted to allocate its limited resources to Mike Sweeney and sign him to a lucrative long-term deal rather than allocate those resources to keep Beltran in Kansas City.

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Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Heaven Can't Wait, Actually

Posted by on Wed, Jul 30, 2008 at 1:59 PM

By CHRIS RASMUSSEN

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Why aren't there any Chiefs jerseys on the chosen?

The New York Times reported yesterday that Tyndale House Publishers, the publishers of Left Behind, are now publishing football books.

Left Behind, for those unfamiliar with the series of fifteen (!) books, begins with (spoiler alert!) the Rapture, describing a massive depopulation of the world that includes pilot-less aircraft and World War III. This is viewed by its readers as an event to be welcomed with anticipation (“at last: justification for my letters to advertisers on 'Desperate Housewives'”), sort of like porn for the excessively pious.

The Rapture then leads to the rise of the Antichrist, the Romanian Nicolae Carpathia, a charismatic head of the United Nations who seeks only to serve evil. This is clearly fiction, as I can think of no Romanian who is charismatic or an instance in which the United Nations is competent. Oh, and the protagonist is Buck Williams, who, much like the former Nets power forward with the same name, performs valiantly for a seemingly lost cause for years.

Some hate Left Behind. I welcome the publishers’ football venture for one major reason -- having the rest of the NFL swept up in a Rapture is the only possible scenario in which the Chiefs win the Super Bowl this year.

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Jose Guillen Asks Out, According to a Channel I Don't Receive

Posted by on Wed, Jul 30, 2008 at 11:19 AM

By CHRIS RASMUSSEN

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I’m no journalist.

That said, when a reporter not well-known for in-depth Royals coverage quotes an anonymous source and both principals in the story deny it, should a local talk radio host devote hours of coverage assuming that it were true?

More to the point, as Sam Mellinger points out, if it were true that Jose Guillen wanted out, this would be the first time Guillen did not shout his wishes and thoughts to the first passing reporter.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Countdown to Beijing Includes Pole Dancing Exposé

Posted by on Mon, Jul 28, 2008 at 9:35 AM

By CHRIS RASMUSSEN

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Yes, that is bamboo.

Today brings me to a subject that I often wanted to explore in this space with the intellectual depth that the topic deserves.

In advance of the Beijing Olympics and in a human interest story unlikely to be covered by NBC during its coverage, The New York Times on Friday reported that Chinese youths are participating in a fitness craze occurring in the States: pole dancing.

Pole Dancing is not yet an Olympic sport, while rhythmic gymnastics is, although the latter sounds dirtier, is more inexplicable and is far less practical from a commercial standpoint.

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T-Bones Remember the Forogtten Kansas City Athletics

Posted by on Mon, Jul 28, 2008 at 7:31 AM

By ERIC BARTON

The Kansas City T-Bones announced recently that they will honor former Kansas City Athletics players at this promotion on August 16. It may seem odd for one team to honor another, especially one that fizzled out so famously.

It's a curious thing about sports how fans forget a departing team so fast. Take the Royals, for instance. Here's a team that's likely on its way to yet another 100-loss season. It hasn't made a run at the playoffs in a decade. Yes, a decade. But still you see guys dressed in Royals gear from visor to shoelaces, headphones tuned to the radio broadcast, keeping score at every home game. But if the Royals were to head to, say, the friendly confines of Las Vegas? The City Union Mission thrift store would be inundated with Royals clothes.

So while you don't see any remnant of the long-departed KC Athletics around town, there's plenty of documentation on the Web. Like this sweet photo of Municipal Stadium.

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There's also plenty of trinkets for sale on the online auctions. The best of them has to be this asexual doll that any father would surely be proud to give to his son.

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Friday, July 25, 2008

Royals Snub Dude Seeking Pink Hat

Posted by on Fri, Jul 25, 2008 at 2:26 PM

By ERIC BARTON

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The pink-and-rhinestone hat in question.

Earlier today, Dave "Chilidog" Crawford, the cross-dressing local punk rocker, sent out a MySpace bulletin titled "I don't get a free pink hat? Well fuck you."

Crawford's message explained that he went to the Royals game last night and expected he would be one of 20,000 fans given a pink Royals hat adorned with rhinestones for the team's "Girls' Night Out" promotion. "I Love pink and often choose to wear this color as an expression of who I am," Crawford wrote. Then he explained what happened when he asked for a hat:

"To be told (in a loud obnoxious voice by an employee named Bill) 'What's to talk about? It's ladies night and you're not a lady.' When I questioned him about why I couldn't receive a hat, he was hurtful and infuriating. While I eventually was able to calm down and enjoy the victory by our Royals, I still harbor a resentment and feeling of exclusion that will, in the future, prompt me to consider entertainment options other that baseball."

Well, Chilidog, I've got some good news.

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ESPN Blogger Should Aplogize for Linking George Brett and Cocaine

Posted by on Fri, Jul 25, 2008 at 10:22 AM

By CHRIS RASMUSSEN

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You really want to mess with Brett?

ESPN.com's Rob Neyer posted this piece on George Brett yesterday, attempting to link the former Royals star to coke (in order to read Neyer's writing, click here):

“In the early 1980s, many baseball players were using cocaine. Some of them got into trouble, and a few of Brett’s Kansas City teammates went to prison. Now, I’m not going to suggest that Brett was using cocaine, but I do know he was considered one of the hardest partiers in the Midwest at that time. Funny thing, though … Brett never got into any trouble. None that made the papers, anyway.”

Rob Neyer is Big Media, although he won't admit it. He is a published author and a frequent contributor to what is as close as we're going to come to a monopoly in sports journalism. He, like Bill James when he mused that Gaetti and Puckett might have used steroids, should give us all an explanation.

Look, I know that with a blog it is easy to publish un-vetted musings. That said, Neyer presumably has an editor and Neyer (with a column and a book or two under his belt) knows better.

He should explain himself, apologize and preferably both.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Jimmy Gobble Injured by Ineffectiveness

Posted by on Thu, Jul 24, 2008 at 12:31 PM

By CHRIS RASMUSSEN

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This week, the Royals placed Jimmy Gobble on the disabled list. This comes even though the only visible pain he's been pitching with is that which he inflicts on those rooting for him.

According to the Royals, he “admitted to back pain,” which I suspect was not a product of a Gitmo interrogation or an examination by Dr. Christian Szell. He also admitted to having a 20.77ERA over the last 10 games – more than two runs for each inning pitched.

“Back pain” is a better description in the disabled list ledger than the following potential entry: Jimmy Gobble, 15-day DL on July 21, ineffectiveness.”

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Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Small Market Mailbag!

Posted by on Tue, Jul 22, 2008 at 9:14 PM

By CHRIS RASMUSSEN

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Even in today’s information age, the media ignores Kansas City sports fans.

The Star is here to help with the Star Voices column, which lets anyone who calls in with an opinion about the city’s teams to get it printed in the daily newspaper. This isn’t to mock the Star -- it's just providing a voice to the KC sports fan’s id.

I, for one, find a hotline devoted to musings, rants and comments immensely beneficial and tempting. If I didn’t already have a blog, I might call with the following musings tonight:

“There are too many World Team Tennis teams in today’s standings – please eliminate three.”

“Bradford Doolittle needs a shave.”

“WHERE THE HELL DID I PUT MY CAR KEYS?”

But often the Star Voices poses questions that are unanswered. That’s where I come in.

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