Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Head of the (Cl)Asshole

Meet Arvid Engen, mathematical genius from the eighties sitcom "Head of the Class." When it comes to numbers, there's no stopping Arvid. Unfortunately, Arvid is extremely awkward when it comes to social situations. Witty repartee is not his thing. Arvid is good at some things, terrible at others. Such is life. Arvid is a lot like Ken Macha. Even looks a lot like a younger Macha. They're both awkward in social settings, as each will stumble with his dialogue. The only difference between the two is that, unlike Arvid, instead of being a mathematical genius, Macha's a mathematical douchebag. And he sucks at bullpen management, too. Like, really fucking sucks.

Rincon in the 7th? So you can turn around a switch hitter who isn't particularly good from either side? And are you aware of Rincon's struggles against righties? It's not like this is a new thing for him. Rincon's career numbers against righties has been downright pathetic. The difference is staggering. I would hazard a guess that even ol' Arvid could have figured that out.

What about Calero in the 7th? It's not as if the guy has a track record of getting lefties out or anything, right? Oh, my bad. I guess my problem is that I can read. Maybe if I smack myself on the head with a 2 x 4 for the next 12 years, I can start thinking like Macha. On second though, better make it 49 years. You know, just in case.

7th inning lead. Calero for the 7th. Duke for the 8th. Street for the 9th. Bada-bing, bada-boom. Stop getting cute with the matchups, Ken. You trying to think ahead is like Webster playing Center in a game of pickup basketball. You trying to think at all is like..... I don't even know what it's like. But it's bad. And you're stupid. And I hate you.

When I was 16 years old, I took my Toyota Camry in for an oil change. The attendant presented my used air filter to me, which had a small, but tangible amount of dirt and soot on it, and asked if I would like to buy a new one for 25 dollars. I asked the attendant what he thought, and he said it was up to me. Said I could pay 25 dollars now, or potentially pay thousands in the future if my engine should crap out. I went ahead and bought it. My dad saw the used filter in the back of my car, and informed me I'd been taken. I was a novice driver, and knew very little about cars. I didn't need a new air filter at all. It may have been a bit dirty, but it was still very usable, and had a lot of mileage left. But I had to admit, it was a nice scam by the gas station worker. Shame on him for fooling me once. But guess what? I've never been taken like that again. Even though I've been asked if I want to buy a new filter every single time I get an oil change. 8 years ago, I learned a 25 dollar lesson the hard way. However, that lesson's residual value has been significantly greater than that. Perhaps I should send that Arco station a thank you card. I grew up a little that day.

So what gets me is how Macha can make the same mistake over and over and over again, and never learn. Never. It's no longer a question of whether or not Macha will do something stupid. It's just a matter of when, and if it will cost us the game. Tonight it didn't. Thank fucking god for that.

So I'd like to introduce a new phrase into the lexicon of A's fans. Every time Macha fails to make an obvious move such as a pitching change or pinch hitter, or makes a move, but it's the wrong one, we'll say that Macha "bought the filter." This probably won't catch on, because nobody reads this site anyway, but dare to dream, they say. Dare to dream.

Macha's stupidity grab-bag:

1) "It's been a joy in that dugout for the last three weeks or so. They believe in what they're doing right now, everything I've been beating the drum on for a long time now."

--Ken Macha, July 3rd.
Ken gets some points for trying to make up his own cliche, but loses all of those points, plus infinity more, because it was the stupidest god-damn cliche in the history of the universe. "I've been beating the drum on?" You've been beating the moron drum. You're last chair of the percussion section in the Douchebag Symphony. So congrats on that.

2) Macha has ordered his players not to show up before 4 p.m. for Wednesday's 7 p.m. game. Macha said his team always struggles in the second game of East Coast trip, so he wants them well rested. There is a $450 fine for an early arrival.
Newsflash, Ken. They've sucked on the road, period. There's nothing magical about the second game of East Coast Road Trips. They've lost 25 of their 39 road games. If it was only a matter of not playing well in the second game, maybe you'd be on to something. Unfortunately, the only thing you're on to are the record books of the Imbecile Hall of Fame. So at least you've got that going for you, which is nice. But with any luck, maybe all 25 guys will arrive early, and you can net 11,250 dollars for the lobotomy you so deperately need. Were you the kid, when asked by his teacher the product of 8 x 7, who replied "87?" I bet you were. You know, because you're a moron.


Blogger Kenny said...

I knew somebody over here was going to have a field day on Macha's, um, innovative bullpen usage in the game. I'm still fuming over Street's five out save attempt.

I fear his arm is being abused.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005 12:53:00 AM  
Anonymous Dave R said...

Is it the 5 out save attempt? No. The biggest disaster is just about anytime Rincon comes into a game. Get rid of loser pitchers and Macha becomes smarter, because they are not there to use. Just wait until Bradford comes back, Macha will have even more bad decisions to make.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005 9:01:00 AM  
Blogger Greg said...

A common misconception is that Rincon is a bad pitcher. That couldn't be further from the truth. He's a specialist, and a damn good one at that. When your drain is clogged, you're damn glad that you have a plumber around. When you need a heart transplant, the plumber really isn't a lot of help. Lefties don't stand a chance against Rincon. He's one of the top 5 LOOGY's in baseball. Plain and simple, he is a huge asset to this team.

The problem, like always, is that Macha misutilizes him. Whenever he faces righties, bad things happen. Very bad things. Sadly, Macha doesn't possess the ability to run this through his head:

1) time for a new pitcher, lefty up, bring in Rincon.

2) Opposing manager brings in righty.

3) bring in a righty who is warming up in the pen.

Now you've got a favorable matchup. But Macha can't ever make it to step 3. And it costs us games. It's not difficult to do this. But for 2 years, 3 months, and counting, Macha hasn't. Which is why he needs to go.

The problem is not Rincon. Not even remotely.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005 9:20:00 AM  
Anonymous smac said...

so wait, in the Psuedo-Cliche Popularity Contest you're voting against "banging the drum on," but casting FOR "bought the filter?"

I fail to see even the slightest difference in their awfulness.

I do like "last chair in the percussion section in the Douchebag Symphony."

Wednesday, July 06, 2005 3:43:00 PM  
Anonymous dave r said...

Umm, Greg, last time I checked, the pitcher has to face one batter when he's brought in. So step 3 is not an option. Again, just don't do step one to solve the problem. If Rincon is just a LOOGY, then he's not a real baseball player and not really an asset to the team.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005 5:21:00 PM  

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