Week 5 Afire as Wright Up Yoenis Manager Unable or Unwilling to Reign in Chris Sale

manny-machado-050217-getty-ftr-usjpg_f5k93a2ztjdu14iukkihl7n1x.jpg

The battle between the 14th place Tulips and the 2nd place Wright Up Yoenis (WUY) came to a boil last night, as WUY pitcher Chris Sale attempted to hit Tulip Manny Machado.  Perhaps the stress came because, mid-week, the Tulips are leading WUY (14-5).  Machado has been the target of several pitchers in the Bigly Eagues this season so far because of his aggressive play and will-do attitude Alpren demands from his players.

“The Tulips are rising!” Alpren shouted to the media after freezing them out and banning them from the locker room for several days as he got his team in order.

In the 1st inning, after Sale threw behind Machado’s legs and received a warning from the umpire, Sale struck out Machado.  But in the 7th, Machado destroyed a Sale pitch for his second home run in two days.  (The Tulips are up in home runs against WUY 3-0. )

Another Tulip that is “rising” is Dee Gordon who is hitting .286 and already has three steals for the week, all occurring on the same day.  Gordon’s lack of production has been disappointing Alpren, who has not been stingy about giving Gordon the steal sign.  But from the looks of his steal-the-hat-trick, Gordon may have finally found his horse.

The relationship between Alpren and the media is still considered rocky after Alpren followed up his enthusiasm for the Tulips with a string of unprovoked invective directed at the reporter pool on Tuesday.

Similarly — perhaps a new “unhinged” strategy being employed by Alpren — after Tuesday’s game, Machado swore 12 times when describing his opponent Sale and his opponent’s team (Wright Up Yoenis):

“Getting thrown at my f— head, you’re throwing at f— everywhere. It’s f— bulls—. It’s f—ing bulls—. I’ve lost respect for that organization, for that coaching staff, for everyone over there.”

Manager JZ has not been reached for comment.

 

 

 

 

Ding Dong the Zilch is Dead!

91BPb0EKHPL._SL1500_.jpgIn week 4, the Totally Tulips defeated GIAC 9 to 7, as the Tulips notched their first win of the season.  Strong performances from Tulips stars Freddy Freeman (.381), who is living up to Manager Alpren’s expectations and from Manny Machado (8 walks) were bolstered by excellent hitting by Salvador Perez (.316), Josh Reddick (.333) and Ryan Schimpf, who hit three home runs in three consecutive games.  Perez seemed to be playing unconcerned with talk of widespread immigration investigations into MLB players and possible subsequent deportations.

Going into the final game, Alpren expressed confidence, but was cautious:  “We could still lose this.  If GIAC’s Kyle Henricks gets a quality start or the win and keeps his ERA down, we’ll lose.”  Hendricks did end up with a quality start, his second of the week, but he was relieved in the 6th after allowing a respectable 3 hits and two runs, walking only three and striking out 6.

“All we need to do is come in 8th,” Alpren said earlier in the week reminding the press that 8th place gets them in the right direction.  And this win starts them in the right direction.

 

 

 

 

 

Awaiting High Court Decision, Several Major League Baseball Players, Including Miguel Cabrera, Could Face Deportation

Panorama_of_United_States_Supreme_Court_Building_at_Dusk.jpgMajor League Baseball could be headed for a deportation crisis if the Supreme Court rules with the Justice Department in Maslenjak v. United States, No. 16-309, a case they heard this week.  If so, the Bigly Eagues would suffer in kind.

In Maslenjak v. United States, the Justice Department argued it was legal “to revoke the citizenship of Americans who made even trivial misstatements in their naturalization proceedings,” according to an April 2017 New York Times article.

In the case of Maslenjak, she was charged and convicted of having obtained her citizenship illegally. Then, she was deported.

This means that if the Trump administration’s Justice Department has its way, the government could investigate every single naturalized Major League Baseball player and if a player lied on their citizenship application, they could be denaturalized and deported.  This might lead some managers in the Bigly Eagues to wish they donated to the Trump campaign.

In 2017, a record 29.8 percent of major leaguers at the start of the season were born outside the country; several of these have become naturalized citizens.

Before you think that baseball players would have had to tell significant lies on their citizenship applications to matter, think again. This was precisely what was at issue this week:

Chief Justice Roberts asked Robert Parker, a Justice Department lawyer, whether not having reported driving five miles over the speed limit – even if one was never caught – could be a cause for denaturalization (and deportation)?  Parker said it could.

(The question on the citizenship application is: “Have you EVER committed, assisted in committing or attempted to commit, a crime or offense for which you were NOT arrested?”)

Justice Sonia Sotomayor asked about whether the Justice Department could seek to deport someone if they failed to disclose an embarrassing nickname.  Again, Parker said this could be enough to charge someone with illegally obtaining citizenship.

And Justice Kagan was met with the same response about lying about one’s weight.

This is significant because it is widely known that athletes mis-report their height and weight for marketing purposes and nicknames given by cruel little league coaches often stick, to the chagrin of athletes who would like to leave them behind when they make it to the bigs.

(It is unclear if baseball players break the law, including driving five miles over the speed limit.  However, one imagines — even if an athlete is not caught – they would disclose their infractions on their citizenship application.)

In practical terms, if Bad Hombre’s Aroldis Chapman, who became a US citizen in April 2016, failed to properly disclose that he once walked out on a check thinking his agent would cover it or that he hit once hit wife and she didn’t call the police, the Trump administration could seek to deport him.

If Dutch National’s Miguel Cabrera did not disclose the nickname “Miggy” or “MC Hammer” on his application, he may find himself on his way back to Venezuela.  And despite it being a mark of humility, the application of Klockalamadingdong’s Felix Hernandez could be considered fraudulent if he did not note that most call him “King.”

It is unknown if the following Tulips players have filed for citizenship or if they are in the country on work visas (see below).  But, depending on the Supreme Court ruling, Manager Alpren may want to prepare for the deportation of foreign-born:

  • Salvador Perez, from Venezuela
  • Carlos Martinez, from Domincan Republic
  • Jose Quintana, from Colombia

For the record, since his midweek rant, Manager Alpren has walked back his vain hope that some of his poor performing players be deported.

Little did he know that — indications being to the contrary given the tenor and direction of the Court’s questioning — there’s a chance they might be.

Hoping to Save Their Jobs, Tulips Pivot

Three Totally Tulips outfielders, misinterpreting Manager Alpren’s remarks, donned football gear this week in order to appease him after he expressed his fondness for the game.

“I don’t know what they’re thinking,” Manager Alpren said.  “But I do hope with the new protection, they’re willing to give a little more to the team.  Make some sacrifices once in a while.”

The new uniforms also may help prevent more bang-ups which the Tulips have suffered in the recent past.  At one point last week, the Tulips were down to seven players.  Alpren would either have to field a squad without a shortstop or centerfielder.

Screen Shot 2017-04-25 at 10.31.54 PM.png

Tulips Outfielder George Springer

10834_main.jpg

Tulips Outfielder Joc Pederson

Screen Shot 2017-04-25 at 10.20.56 PM.png

Tulips Outfielder Josh Reddick

Tulips Manager Looks Forward to Football Season, But Stands by His Squad

 

dying-tulips-detail-andrew-wohl.jpgA week after the Tulips suffered their third defeat of the season — as bad a start as they have had since joining the league in 2006 — Manager Alpren looked less confident about his Week Two guarantee of a league championship.

“My team is in crisis mode.  And honestly, I don’t really care about baseball.  Not real baseball, and not fantasy baseball.  I care about football.”

Despite this, Alpren was staunchly — fiercely — committed to managing his team. Because, when reminded that some recent acquisitions, such as pitcher Marc Rzepczynski, nicknamed “Scrabble,” may help the team, Alpren agreed.

“And then there’s that other pitcher I picked up, who had pitched 17 scoreless innings … I picked him up and then he gave up 6 runs in 4 innings.”  (Alpren was referring to right handed pitcher Andrew Triggs.)

In fact, prior to being picked up by the Tulips, Triggs had not given up an earned run this season and stood atop the ERA leaderboard for pitchers who had pitched at least 10 innings.

But then, after reporting to the Tulips, Triggs gave up a bases loaded walk and then a grand slam to Miss da’ Meaner’s Taylor Motter.   When asked why Triggs was still available to be acquired after having such a good start, Alpren characteristically praised the other managers in the league.

“People are smarter than I am.  Like everyone, I also assumed he would eventually right himself, but I didn’t think that it would be the first time I pitched him.”

Before ending the press conference, Alpren wondered aloud about how many of his pitchers were “true Americans” and about whether the commissioner would allow the Tulips extra pick-ups if some or all of his pitchers were deported.   Before being switched off, microphones in the room picked up a question from Manager Alpren about whether there was an ICE hotline. rustic_wood_fence_pink_tulips_crochet_image_on_football-rff91978afae5482b81e6b64c2fe471ef_677yb_630

 

The Dragon, the Rock and the Hard Place

1024x1024.jpg

Tulip Chris Devenski anticipating the diffculty of having to please both of his managers.

On Tuesday morning, Manager Alpren asked excitedly “Who got the hold?!”  His team was off to a good start against this week’s matchup, Mean’s Maggots. (Please note that the official name of the team is “mEaN’s mAgGoTs,” but we will call them Mean’s Maggots without the shifting because it is too much work and trust our readers to understand.)

And Manager Alpren expressed high enthusiasm for his pitchers.

“I’ll tell you what … the best thing is that a couple of my bullshit starters are going to get demoted to the bullpen because they suck.  And then I’ll get some more of those sweet ass holds.”

Alpren’s speculation was off, however; it was not one of Alpren’s “bullshit” pitchers who got him the hold, but Chris Devenski, who pitched two perfect innings and struck out four on Monday, including striking out GIAC’s Mike Trout on three pitches to end the seventh.  His fiery start has made his nickname “The Dragon” understandable.

There has been talk in Houston that manager A.J. Hinch might end up moving The Dragon into the starting rotation.  If so, he will have an angry Tulips manager to contend with.

Pitchers’ psyches are delicate birds and given that this would put Devenski in a position trying to please both managers and implement their plans for him this season, fans are hoping Hinch does not make this decision unilaterally, but consults with his Tulips counterpart.

Freeman and Swanson Perfecting Their Moves

image.jpg

Freddy Freeman celebrating with Hauz Broken’s Dansby Swanson in what was their most awkward expressions of joy so far this season.

Responding to Manager Alpren’s insistence his team begin their push to first place, Tulips first baseman, Freddy Freeman started the week out right going 4 for 4 including two doubles and two home runs.  This is the second time in ten days, Freeman has had four hits in a game with two home runs, matching the feat on April 9, 2017.

Freeman and rival Dansby Swanson, from Hauz Broken, have been surprisingly supportive of each other, most likely because of their teams’ similar slow starts. (Misery loves company.) Hauz Broken is currently in 17th; the Tulips are in 20th.  In recent past, Freeman and Swanson have been seen practicing different congratulatory celebrations and trotting them out at appropriate times.   Reporters near enough to the pair have noted they shout out the name of their handshake either before or right after their celebration (see below):

10003086-mlb-atlanta-braves-at-pittsburgh-pirates-850x560.jpeg

The “I Thought We Said the Right Hand”

9530047-adonis-garcia-freddie-freeman-dansby-swanson-mlb-new-york-mets-atlanta-braves.jpg

The “Don’t Look At Me Man”

3ebb67e234bb3af5e33c5f9d4a097ace-original.jpg

The “How Could You Miss Me I’m Standing Still”

9febbcbd3a9b080d20d1525fe83362fb.jpg

The “I’m Over Here No No Over Here Dansby”

Reporters were not close enough to overhear the name of today’s celebration because Freeman and Swanson asked for enough room to coordinate the move.