Monday, February 19, 2007

The Big Guy: On March 4th, I’ll be Balder than Britney

I’ll be honest with you. I’m much happier than even Ryan Gomes right now [see picture 1]. For those of you lucky enough to not know, Gomes is currently serving his second year of a three year sentence with the Boston Celtics, a team that recently damaged their chances in the Greg Oden/Kevin Durant Sweepstakes by ending their historically pathetic 18 game losing streak. But I’m getting ahead of myself.
I’m a happy guy for one reason and one alone. Fantasy Baseball. 7 unadulterated months of failing relationships, ceaseless sweating, aggressive swearing, and of course, encroaching joblessness. And the inception point? Only the most important day of the year… March 4th, 800 PM EST. The Fantasy Baseball Draft. It’s a two hour emotional rollercoaster, after which you either pass out from sheer exhaustion – given a successful draft – or you shave your head as an act of contrition like Brittany Spears – realizing a few bad decisions will haunt you for the foreseeable future.

If you are not an avid baseball fan, then just stop reading here and skip forward to the final note.

Just ahead of Jim Edmonds on ESPN’s Top 250 stands Vanderbilt’s own and current Cleveland Indians starting pitcher Jeremy Sowers who I’m assuming all of you who are still reading this know. Sowers grabbed headlines last year after tossing back-to-back complete game shutouts in July 2006, the first against the potent Twins offense and the second a 1-0 pitching duel against Seattle’s rising star [and then member of my stalwart fantasy team] “King Felix” Hernandez. The shutout against the Twins came one start after he gave up 5 runs in 7 innings to that same team. This bit of indisputable evidence clearly reveals a resiliency typical of both Vanderbilt athletes and students [me and you]. This also seems as good a time as any to redact a completely relevant and statistically irrefutable analogy: Sowers > Hernandez : Vanderbilt > Florida.

I found a few other interesting stats regarding Vandy’s most recent phenom. In his next start following the Seattle shutout, Sowers recorded three strikeouts against David Ortiz in Boston on August 2, 2006, the only rookie pitcher to do so. In this same game, he extended his scoreless innings streak to an Orel Hersheiser-esque 22. Finally, Sowers is currently 6-0 with a 1.93 ERA with 2 shutouts in 9 starts since July 22 [both his record and ERA are tops in the Majors]. I’m not saying Sowers is Johan Santana, but I am saying he will be a force to be reckoned with. Given his current ranking of 242 in ESPN’s top 250, he will inarguably be a 2007 fantasy dark horse.

As for the other Vandy alums in the Majors, Matt Kata has been relegated to Rangers’ farm system, and Josh Paul will serve the entire season as the Devil Ray’s backup catcher [Oh yeah, Paul recently lost $315,000 in salary arbitration, about 8 times my yearly salary, ouch for both him and me].

I will not be surprised when the time has come in the 2007 Fantasy Baseball draft to pick up Jeremy Sowers only to be beaten to the punch by an avid VSL reader leaching off the superior, infinitely-wise words of JB, MD. In this event, I will reach for my razor and hack faster than Britney Spears, recognizing the mistake of imparting my genius on rank amateurs.
On a side note and of absolutely zero relevance to this misguided attempt at cogent humor, I would like to personally apologize for my disparaging remarks about Kevin Stallings following this season’s early losses versus Appy State and Furman. If confessing my sins is not enough for some, I have put words to action and joined the facebook group “Kevin Stallings: The Sexiest Coach in the NCAA.” Weird? Maybe. But even weirder? His son formed the group.

Until next time
J.B., M.D.


J.B., M.D. said...

Plain and simple, this is a remarkable piece of literary genius. - The New York Times

Unknown said...

There's only one word that truly describes this piece.. scrumtulescent.