How many times have you been at a baseball game and some clod next to you is gabbing away loudly on his cell phone about something not connected to the game and you just want to whack him upside the head and tell him to shut up? (They are second only to those idiots who discover themselves on TV and have to be on a cell at the same time.)
You have to love this. Yankee fan who wasn't paying attention and was too busy yakking on his cell got a faceful of baseball last night, as Rob Johnson of the Mariners hit a ground rule double and the ball whacked him in the face.
I guess the Yankee fan next to him with the glove was probably tired of him and just let justice be done. Sweet retribution.
Wednesday, June 30, 2010
How many times have you been at a baseball game and some clod next to you is gabbing away loudly on his cell phone about something not connected to the game and you just want to whack him upside the head and tell him to shut up? (They are second only to those idiots who discover themselves on TV and have to be on a cell at the same time.)
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 11:33 AM
Actually, we do, but the Red Sox didn't need him last night.
David Ortiz hit a three-run bomb off James (When Was The Last Time I Pitched a Big Game?) Shields in the fifth to break a scoreless tie and the Red Sox cruised into an 8-5 win. It was Papi's 17th dinger of 2010, and he now has 50 RBI.
Bill Hall hit a two-run shot and by the eighth it was 8-1. Tampa Bay tried to get back in the game, scoring two runs in each of the final innings, but try as they might, the Red Sox pen didn't give this one away. Jonathan Papelbon had to come in to get the final out for his 18th save, which on a night when you have a seven-run lead with six outs to get is just a little disconcerting.
John Lackey went seven innings, allowing eight hits and one run, while striking out three. Again not dominating, but he was good enough with all the run support. He stranded two Rays runners at third when the game was still scoreless.
Jason Varitek drove in two runs and Adrian Beltre continued his hot hitting, going 4-for-4.
Hideki Okajima continued his steep decline as he allowed a two-run home run to Willy Aybar in the 8th that made the game 8-3. It's pretty obvious where the Red Sox need to look for help as the July 31st trading deadline approaches: the bullpen.
The Mariners won in New York last night, so the Red Sox cut the deficit in the East to one game, and lead the Rays by two. It was the 3rd straight Red Sox win, and they close the brief two-game series with Tampa Bay tonight with Daisuke Matsuzaka taking on Matt Garza.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 11:20 AM
We had a huge crowd in for Trivia on Tuesday night, as 19 teams came in for the festivities, while there were tango lessons going on in the Loft above us. (I'm not making that up.)
It was nice to see many of the regulars back after all the movement we had to do earlier this month. We had some strong numbers for Q Are You?, but they tailed off for Oscar Winners' Films Trivia. They did rebound nicely for General Knowledge. We had three teams that were close throughout the night.
We actually had a team working on a "perfect game", namely the team of Robin Byrd: Putting the Bi in Bipartisanship. They had four perfect rounds, and made sure not to say anything as IQ Trivia was beginning. Didn't want to put the whammy on them, or worse, pull a Jim Joyce and cost them a perfect night. (At least I could go back and make a correction if I goof up.) They got 4 of 5 in IQ Trivia, falling just one answer of a perfecto, but it was still good enough to claim the Winners Circle, as they won by 6 points. Nice job to Matt and his winning crew.
1. A chest x-ray from this immortal Hollywood star was sold at auction last Sunday for a staggering $45,000, as it was expected to be sold for about $1,000.
2. John Isner defeated Nicolas Mahut at Wimbledon last week in the longest tennis match in history, played over 3 days. How many hours did the match take to play?
3. Julia Gillard became the first female prime minister of what country last Thursday?
4. A three-game series between the Philadelphia Phillies and this AL team had to be moved to Philadelphia from the other team's city last weekend due to security fears over the G-20 Summit being held there.
5. Pete Quaife, the original bass player and founding member of this English classic rock band of the 1960s, died last week at the age of 66.
6. A statue of this onetime Soviet leader was secretly removed in the middle of the night in his hometown in Georgia by the pro-Western government last week.
7. Robert Byrd, the current longest-serving member of Congress and senator representing this US state, died last Sunday at the age of 92.
Answers: 1. Marilyn Monroe; 2. eleven; 3. Australia; 4. Toronto Blue Jays; 5. The Kinks; 6. Josef Stalin; 7. West Virginia.
Q Are You?
1. This woman was born in New York City in 1986. She released her debut album in 2008, reaching #1 in many European countries and Top 10 in the US. Billboard ranked her as the 73rd biggest artist of the decade in their Top 100 ranking. She's sold over 40 million singles worldwide.
2. This man was born in New York City in 1936. He has had a stories career in movies and TV, winning 6 Emmy awards and 6 Golden Globe awards for his long-running 1970s TV series. He was nominated for an Oscar and a Tony Award in 2004 and 2005, respectively.
3. This man was born in Tampa, FL in 1944. He has had an historic career as a baseball manager, managing 3 teams over a 31-year period, winning the World Series twice and is now third all-time in total wins by a MLB manager.
4. This man was born in Everett, WA in 1964. He has had 6 NY Times-bestselling books and has a nationally-syndicated talk-radio show as well as a cable-news daily show which has gained a devoted following as well as many devoted detractors.
5. This man was born in Memphis, TN in 1937. He's been nominated for 4 Oscars, won once. He's known for his smooth voice, and has played roles as diverse as the President of the US, Director of the CIA and even God.
6. This woman was born in New Orleans, LA in 1941. She's one of the most widely read authors in history, selling over 100 million copies. She's best known for books with gothic, erotica and horror themes, and her most famous novel was made into a film with Tom Cruise in 1994.
7. This man was born in Boston, MA in 1948. He's a singer-songwriter and guitarist. He's won 5 Grammy Awards and was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2000, and did an acoustic version of the Star Spangled Banner at Fenway Park at both the 2004 and 2007 World Series.
Answers: 1. Lady Gaga; 2. Alan Alda; 3. Tony LaRussa; 4. Glenn Beck; 5. Morgan Freeman; 6. Anne Rice; 7. James Taylor.
Oscar Winners' Films Trivia ("The Q Train")
1. Paul Newman
2. Faye Dunaway
3. Jeremy Irons
4. Kathy Bates
5. Geoffrey Rush
6. Catherine Zeta-Jones
7. Christopher Walken
8. Cate Blanchett
9. Kevin Kline
10. Rachel Weisz
Answers: 1. The Color of Money; 2. Network; 3. Reversal of Fortune; 4. Misery; 5. Shine; 6. Chicago; 7. The Deer Hunter; 8. The Aviator; 9. A Fish Called Wanda; 10. The Constant Gardener.
1. Who directed the film "Platoon?" ( 1 pt)
2. Pinot Noir is what color wine? ( 1 pt)
3. What number is XLIV in Roman numerals? ( 1 pt)
4. Who was the first wife of King Henry VIII? ( 2 pt)
5. What did Louis Cartier famously invent in 1904? ( 2 pt)
6. What country in South America contains most of the Amazon rain forest? ( 2 pt)
7. "Semper Fidelis" is the motto of what branch of the US Armed Forces? ( 3 pt)
Answers: 1. Oliver Stone; 2. red; 3. 44; 4. Catherine of Aragon; 5. wristwatch; 6. Brazil; 7. Marine Corps.
1. What film did the American Film Institute vote as the greatest Western of all time? ( 5 points)
2. What country owns the Galapagos Islands? ( 4 points)
3. Which Roman emperor is said to have died by choking on a feather? ( 4 points)
4. Kato was the sidekick of what masked superhero? ( 3 points)
5. After the White House, what is the second most visited residence in the United States? ( 4 points)
Answers: 1. "The Searchers;" 2. Ecuador; 3. Claudius; 4. The Green Hornet; 5. Graceland.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 1:22 AM
Tuesday, June 29, 2010
My friend and fellow Red Sox fan John Pizzarelli was recently profiled on New York 1, the cable news channel in New York City, by Budd Mishkin. It's a good feature, about eight minutes in length, talking about his career as a jazz musician. John is also shown at the latest BLOHARDS meeting doing his "Carnac" impersonation. Check out this link for the full feature.
There was also some extras not included in the report, and one is of John's passion for being a Red Sox fan. Check that out here.
With thanks to the BLOHARDS for the link to the profile.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 12:16 PM
The weekend from hell in San Francisco left Dustin Pedroia on the DL, and today he will be joined by Victor Martinez, as the thumb fracture officially landed him there.
Fortunately, the injury isn't as serious as it sounds. He doesn't need surgery and should be back in two weeks. Jason Varitek will do most of the catching until Martinez returns. The Red Sox brought up Gustavo Molina from Pawtucket to back him up. (No, he's not one of those Molinas. He's from Venezuela, and the catching brothers are from Puerto Rico.)
The Red Sox have also activated Eric Patterson, who they acquired over the weekend from Oakland for a minor league pitcher, Fabian Williamson. He will platoon at second base with Bill Hall for the foreseeable future. He can alos play the outfield as well. Pedroia now figures not to need surgery,and will be out for about six weeks, and could return in time for the next series with the Yankees, which begins August 6th in New York.
Clay Buchholz has a hamstring strain, but figures to miss no significant time. His next start will be pushed back, probably early next week.
The Red Sox also said that Boof Bonser cleared waivers after being DFA'd, and is now a free agent.
By the way, whatever happened to Jed Lowrie? He seems to have fallen off the face of the earth and even with Pedroia going down, I haven't heard his name mentioned as a replacement for him. I now wonder if he figures anywhere in the Red Sox future plans.
Tonight, the Red Sox face the struggling and bickering Tampa Bay Rays at Fenway, with John Lackey facing James (Have I Ever Pitched In a Big Game?) Shields.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 10:45 AM
Monday, June 28, 2010
The Special Category for our Trivia Night on Tuesday will be the June installment of "Q Are You?" trivia. That, of course, is where I give you clues to a current celebrity and you have to tell me who I am talking about.
The Q Train lightning round is "Oscar Winners' Films Trivia." I will give the names of 10 Oscar winning actors and actresses, and you have to tell me what film they won their golden statuette for. They will be of the recent vintage, most over the last 20 years or so, and they will be those actors who have one just one time.
The Sneak Peek question for this week is:
What country in South America contains most of the Amazon rain forest?
We'll get going at just about 9 PM. The Red Sox have a big game with the rival Tampa Bay Rays, but it will be on in the background as we get going with our Trivia Night. See you on Tuesday.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 11:21 AM
Courtesy of Deadspin, two memorable headlines from The Sun and The Daily Mail, about the English getting crushed by Germany yesterday in South Africa. I'm sure all the tabloids there have their knives out today.
The Daily Mail headline reminds me of a memorable line from the classic comedy, "Taxi," and the great Louie DePalma, dressing down the cab drivers:
"If you guys had been at Normandy, we'd all be eating strudel right now."
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 10:55 AM
Sunday, June 27, 2010
Good Lord. Can we have a Red Sox game where no Sox player gets hurt?
The Sox took two out of three from the Giants in San Francisco this weekend, as Jon Lester was superb, going the distance in a 5-1 win. But this weekend, the club paid a heavy price, losing Dustin Pedroia, then Clay Buchholz (don't get me started on that injury, but it doesn't appear to be serious), and now, Victor Martinez has a fractured thumb.
In the second inning, he took what looked to be a ball off his foot on a foul by Pablo Sandoval. He hopped around in considerable pain, but he stayed in the game. But finally, in the fourth, he left the game and Jason Varitek came in. It wasn't a foot injury but a thumb fracture. As I write this, there is talk he might not go on the DL, and it will depend on the swelling in his thumb recedes.
Lester was magnificent, allowing just one run in the first, and giving the pen a well-deserved day off. He struck out nine. Tim Lincecum lasted just three innings, allowing all four Sox runs, in the shortest outing of his career.
David Ortiz blasted a Lincecum pitch in the first for his 16th home run, and it landed in McCovey Cove. (I noticed the "Splash Hits" number did not increase after he hit it, so I guess they just count Giants who do that.)
The Red Sox added two in the second and one in the third, and Adrian Beltre completed the scoring with a home run in the ninth. The second run was on Jon Lester's first career RBI, a sacrifice fly to right (pictured) that might have been a grand slam in most other ballparks. The Red Sox limp back to Boston in second place, as Tampa Bay dropped another to Arizona, and the losing is making tempers boil over in the Rays dugout, with Evan Longoria wasn't too pleased to see B.J. Upton jog after Rusty Ryal's triple in the fifth inning.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 8:00 PM
Well, the USA took on Ghana yesterday in Rustenburg, South Africa and lost a heartbreaker, 2-1 in extra time. I took in the match at Professor Thom's, and it was without question one of the biggest crowds ever in the bar. There was a great atmosphere, and I saw some American flags, and some guy blowing a horn. (No, thankfully not a vuvuzella.)
They left it all out on the field. The U.S. allowed an early goal off a mistake by Ricardo Clark, and it remained 1-0 until the 62nd minute, when Landon Donovan nailed a penalty kick to tie it. (It actually hit the right goalpost first, but sailed in.)
Ghana scored early in the first extra time period. It was a full thirty minutes of extra time, as there is no sudden death in the World Cup knockout rounds. I wished the U.S. had attacked early to start the match, but they looked tentative to begin. There was some obvious nerves in such a high profile game.
But I am proud of the overall effort the Americans put out. They were beaten by a better Ghana side. Thankfully there were no obvious referee goofups, like goals taken away. (I can't imagine the reaction in England today, after the Germans pounded the English, 4-1. I am sure they are getting raked over the coals by the British tabloids.)
I have been a soccer fan since the late 1970s, and I enjoy the atmosphere of the World Cup, one of the "true" world championship sports on the planet. Listen, soccer will never match the four major team sports in America, as they have had a longer and more devoted following in this country. That's just the way it is here. Soccer has its following in the United States, and I believe it will continue as the years progress. I love how all the soccer-haters come out of the woodwork at World Cup time, as they feel so threatened by the planet's biggest sporting event.
Relax. Let soccer and its fans have their time. Ignore it if you don't like it. (That's what I do with MANY things in this life.) Soccer just wants to have its small niche here.
Anyway, I'm proud of the boys.
Let's hope for bigger and better things in Brazil in 2014.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 12:42 PM
Saturday, June 26, 2010
Clay Buchholz left today's game in San Francisco in the second inning after hyperextending his knee running the bases, after getting his first MLB hit.
You can take interleague play and shove it as far as I am concerned.
And thankfully, the travesty that is interleague play comes to a merciful end tomorrow. (And I don't give a damn that the Red Sox have a terrific record in it, or the fact that AL fans can see Ubaldo Jimenez, or NL fans can see Joe Mauer live. Who cares. Let those fans see them on TV. Interleague blows. Big time. It creates inequitable schedules, and now injuries to AL pitchers on the bases. Ask Yankee fans about Chien-Ming Wang.)
Fortunately, Scott Atchison and six other relievers came in and pitched well, allowing just two runs as the Sox won, 4-2. Jonathan Papelbon got the Giants 1-2-3 in the ninth. Terry Francona had to empty out the bullpen, but they got the win. Darnell McDonald and Mike Cameron blasted home runs, Cameron's being his first in a Red Sox uniform. He also made a highlight reel catch later in the game in center.
New York lost but Tampa Bay won, so the Red Sox and Rays are tied for second, two games back.
No word yet on the severity of Buchholz' injury. Just what the Sox needed, after the really bad news they got today about Dustin Pedroia's foot injury now being a small fracture. Dustin will be examined by a surgeon at Massachusetts General Hospital on Monday. Surgery on his foot has not been ruled out. He was put on the DL today and Angel Sanchez was brought up from Pawtucket.
The Sox season hangs in the balance with Pedroia's injury. Terry Francona has done a marvelous job getting this team through with the injuries to Jacoby Ellsbury, Mike Cameron, Josh Beckett and Daisuke Matsuzaka. I just don't see how the Red Sox can win without him.
If the news continues to be bleak on Pedroia, it will be up to Theo Epstein to replace him. And his job wasn't helped any with the news of Buchholz' injury today. I can accept what happened to Pedroia, a freak injury fouling a ball off his foot. But the injury to Buchholz (which thank goodness, appears to be minor)?
Thanks so much, interleague.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 10:18 PM
This is actually a pretty cool video, which my friend Clell brought to my attention on Facebook. It's been a sensation on YouTube, with nearly 5 million views. It is of a band called Rick K. and The Allnighters doing a cover version of ZZ Top's "Sharp Dressed Man."
But watch the drummer here. This guy does some incredible gyrations behind the drums like I've never seen before. Hilarious stuff. Get this guy a record contract!
In the immortal words of Felix Unger on "The Odd Couple": "He has all the dexterity of a lizard!"
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 11:08 AM
Abysmal night in San Francisco for the Red Sox on Friday.
They looked like crap in the clutch all night (2 for 11 with runners in scoring position, runners left everywhere). Left the bases loaded three times in the last four innings (scored just once, in the ninth) , and two on in the inning in-between. Kevin Youkilis hit a three-run dinger in the first, and that was the high water mark of the night.
They played a sloppy game in the field. Why in God's name did Tim Wakefield throw to first on Jonathan Sanchez' bunt?
Why did Terry Francona bring in the putrid Ramon Ramirez in the eighth while the game was still close? Naturally he gave up a run in the inning, and the Sox got one back in the ninth and fell one run short. The guy is a garbage time pitcher, and should at all costs not be brought into any kind of close game.
The bullpen continues to be the Red Sox' Achilles heel.
And why was J.D. Drew sitting on the bench in the ninth? Tito let Bill Hall and Darnell McDonald hit while Drew sat. I know that if the Sox grabbed the lead, he would have to have gone out to RF for the ninth. I'm sure that would be his excuse for not using him.
The Red Sox deserved to lose this game. But looming more ominous is that Dustin Pedroia left the game early after fouling off a ball off his foot, and they said later there was no break. But Pedroia was seen after the game leaving the park on crutches.
I've got a bad feeling about this. And I pray I am wrong. Boy, do I ever.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 1:35 AM
Friday, June 25, 2010
My pal Chris Wertz was part of an article in the New York Post today about bars in New York and their increased business with the U.S. success in the World Cup. Should be a big crowd tomorrow afternoon at Professor Thom's. They'll have plenty of suds on hand.
Here's an interesting article from the New York Times earlier this week about a gentleman who recently passed away named Jack Rosenblatt. He was a budding author, and his friends got together and got a book he had written published after his death.
And another fascinating piece from Pete Nash's fine Hauls Of Shame site about stolen letters belonging to baseball Hall of Famer Harry Wright that he wanted dedicated to a library that turned for sale by MLB at auction in 2009.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 7:40 PM
Dustin Pedroia singlehandedly said with his bat last night, "We are not losing this game."
No matter how much Jonathan Papelbon was determined to give it away. Again.
Pedroia blasted three home runs in a marathon game against the Colorado Rockies last night, two in last two at-bats. 13-11 Red Sox in 10 innings. Pedey had the night of his life, and went 5-for-5 with 4 runs scored and 5 RBI.
You knew this was going to be a long one when Daisuke Matsuzaka, in his return from the DL, allowed two runs and had the bases loaded with no outs. But he did his patented escape routine, getting out with no further damage, and loaded the bases again, but got out of jail again with no damage.
Dice-K amazingly left with a 6-2 lead after five, courtesy of home runs by Pedroia and Adrian Beltre. But the bullpen was truly awful last night (with the exception of Scott Atchison) as Colorado came from behind twice, including Papelbon coughing up a two-run lead in the ninth for the second straight night.
Pedroia saved Pap's bacon with his two-run blast in the tenth, and the old Papelbon was back in the bottom of that innings, getting Colorado 1-2-3. Papelbon got the vulture win, and the Red Sox gained a half-game on idle New York, and are now 2 back in second.
Pedroia's laser show was the first Sox player to blast three homers in a game since the guy who wore 15 before him, Kevin Millar, did the hat trick on July 23, 2004 against New York, on the night before Jason Varitek had Alex Rodriguez taste his catcher's mitt.
Now it's off to San Francisco and a series with the Giants at AT&T Park, with Tim Wakefield on the mound tonight.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 11:23 AM
Here is a terrific video of the reactions from around America and the world of Landon Donovan's memorable winning goal from Wednesday's US World Cup 1-0 win over Algeria. (With thanks to Jeff Pearlman for the video.)
I was at home preparing for a softball game in Manhattan that afternoon while intently watching the match. (We wound up winning by forfeit.) I threw my arms in the air and felt more relieved than anything else that the US was on their way to the knockout round.
This video for me brings back memories of the US Olympic hockey team's incredible 1980 win over the Russians, and the Red Sox incredible ALCS comeback and World Series win in 2004.
Keep the dream alive on Saturday, USA. We're all behind you.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 1:15 AM
- Winner and 3 guests will enjoy a foursome for a round of golf at the July 1, 2010 Jason Varitek Celebrity Putt Putt Tournament; where all 18 holes are manned by a Celebrity Host. Confirmed celebrities include Josh Beckett, Mike Lowell, Jonathan Papelbon, Jason Varitek, Tim Wakefield, Mikey Ward, Cole Wright
- Winner and each guest (4 total) will receive VIP credentials to the celebrity reception and buffet prior to the Tournament
- Winner and each guest (4 total) will receive a Golfer Gift Bag
- Winner will receive 2 Golfer parking passes for the VIP Lot
- Winner will receive a cash prize in the amount of $272.25 to mitigate the Winner's tax liability that results from winning the raffle. This prize is withheld and paid, on behalf of the Winner, directly to the IRS ($225.00) and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts ($47.25)
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 12:42 AM
Thursday, June 24, 2010
Curt Schilling autographed a Baseball Ireland jersey in support of Irish baseball, and it currently up for bids over at eBay. My friend Cormac, who has played baseball in Ireland and runs the fine site Boston Irish, alerted to the auction, which will benefit Baseball Ireland's tour of Rhode Island this summer, which will help keep Baseball Ireland functioning on all levels.
If you'd like more information or to make a bid on the jersey, please go here, which is the site on eBay where it the bidding is taking place. Please note that the bidding is in Euros, and it ends next Wednesday.
Baseball Ireland is a great cause to support, the growth of baseball in the land of my forefathers.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 2:08 PM
Wednesday, June 23, 2010
Let me set the scene for you.
The Red Sox fall behind early and big in a game against one of the league's best pitchers. It looks like it's heading for the "L" column.
The Sox fight back. They get the game tied, then grab the lead. They hold the opposition scoreless from the middle innings until the ninth. A win is in sight.
Then their closer gives up two home runs, both bombs, one ties the game, and the other loses it, as the Sox drop a heartbreaker.
Sounds like May 17th against New York at Yankee Stadium, right? Correct.
It also happened tonight in Colorado.
Another inexcusably atrocious outing from Jonathan Papelbon.
I don't know why I'm not angrier about this. I guess deep down I was expecting something like this would happen.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 11:48 PM
The United States went undefeated in the group stage of the World Cup for the first time since 1930 with an exciting, nail-biting finish at Pretoria, as Landon Donovan scored one minute into added time to give the Americans a 1-0 win over Algeria.
The U.S. also won the group, as England beat Slovenia, 1-0, to take second place and eliminate Slovenia.
Clint Dempsey scored what appeared to be the first goal in the 21st minute, but the linesman called him offsides. It was tought to tell, but some replays appeared to show Dempsey level with the Algerian defenders. Oh boy, here we go again.
A tie for the US would have been fatal, as England led their match most of the way through, so a tie would have put Slovenia in the next round.
The US had many golden opportunities throughout the match, such as Dempsey hitting a post and then shot a rebound wide in the second half. Watching the match, I felt as if it was just a matter of time for the winning goal to be scored by the US. Algerian keeper Rais M'Bolhi played a very good match and made some terrific saves. He might have been the Man of the Match if had ended 0-0, but Donovan grabbed those honors with the biggest goal scored by the US in a very long time.
Here's more on today's match from ESPN.
The US now plays Ghana, Africa's last hope in this World Cup, at 2:30 PM on Saturday.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 5:03 PM
Trivia Night returned to Tuesday night with a large and rather boisterous crowd. We had 18 teams in, with a few of the missing regulars returning.
The Q Train we did tonight may have been one of the tougher ones I've ever done. It was "Name The Month Trivia," and one team got a prefect score, but most of the scores were around 4 and 5. Guess I made it too hard this week! Most teams did rather well with "Last Champions Trivia" as most got at least 10 points in the double-point round.
Most scores were rather good, especially General Knowledge. Tonight's Trivia winners were also the best team name winner: My Balls: Another Catholic Classic. Congratulations to Joe and his friends on a two-point win.
1. This comic strip ended its 86-year run last Sunday with a murky cliffhanger that left many readers confused.
2. This reality show is now the number one show in daytime TV, passing The Oprah Winfrey Show in the recent May sweeps period.
3. A 8-year-old boy in Rhode Island had a hat he was wearing banned by his school because it had these items on it, which the school said violated the district's zero-tolerance weapons policy.
4. The Vatican announced last week that this classic 1980 comedy film was declared a "Catholic classic" alongside other films such as "The Ten Commandments" and "The Passion of the Christ."
5. John Lennon's handwritten lyrics to the final song on this iconic Beatles album sold for $1.2 million at a New York auction last Friday.
6. Manute Bol, the tallest player in NBA history who played nine years and with four teams, died last Saturday at the age of 47. How tall was he?
7. Two film critics at the site Rotten Tomatoes gave this newly-released film negative reviews, preventing it from getting 100% positive reviews, which the film's two previous installments got.
Answers: 1. Annie; 2. Judge Judy; 3. Toy soldiers; 4. "The Blues Brothers;" 5. "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band;" 6. 7'7"; 7. "Toy Story 3."
Name The City's Last Champion Trivia
1. San Francisco
Answers: 1. 49ers (1994); 2. Phillies (2008); 3. Heat (2006); 4. Braves (1995); 5. Blackhawks (2010); 6. Celtics (2008); 7. Browns (1964).
Name That Month Trivia ("The Q Train")
1. The Titanic sank in the North Atlantic in 1912.
2. The Challenger space shuttle exploded after liftoff in 1986, killing all seven astonauts.
3. Japan signed the formal surrender in 1945 aboard the USS Missouri, ending WWII.
4. The Kentucky Derby is run on the first Saturday of this month every year.
5. Black History Month is this month every year.
6. The anniversary of the assassination of Julius Caesar is this month.
7. Breast Cancer Awareness Month is traditionally observed in this month.
8. The Stonewall riots, marking a turning point in the gay rights movement, occurred in 1969 in this month.
9. The Sturgis Motorcycle Rally takes place in South Dakota for one week each year this month.
10. Canada Day is celebrated by our neighbors to the north every year this month.
Answers: 1. April; 2. January; 3. September; 4. May; 5. February; 6. March; 7. October; 8. June; 9. August; 10. July.
1. Who wrote the novels "Carrie" and "Misery?" ( 1 pt)
2. Hybrid vehicles are generally powered by both gas and what else? ( 1 pt)
3. What star is currently the host of "The Daily Show?" ( 1 pt)
4. The quote "Love means never having to say you're sorry" is from what 1970 film? ( 2 pt)
5. In what African country was the film "Blackhawk Down" set in? ( 2 pt)
6. In Christianity, what are the four weeks prior to Christmas called? ( 2 pt)
7. From what tribe did Sitting Bull hail? ( 3 pt)
Answers: 1. Stephen King; 2. electricity; 3. Jon Stewart; 4. "Love Story;" 5. Somalia; 6. Advent; 7. Lakota Sioux.
1. Matthew Webb was the first man to accomplish what feat in 1875? ( 4 points)
2. What restaurant chain is owned by Demi Moore, Bruce Willis, Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger? ( 3 points)
3. "La Gioconda" is another name for what famous painting? ( 4 points)
4. What does a philographist collect? ( 4 points)
5. What Oscar-winning actor, who holds the record for most leading roles in film, turned down the role of Dirty Harry in 1971? ( 5 points)
Answers: 1. Swim the English Channel; 2. Planet Hollywood; 3. Mona Lisa; 4. autographs; 5. John Wayne.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 1:27 AM
Monday, June 21, 2010
This week's Special Category for Trivia Night will be "Last Champions Trivia." I will give you the names of seven American cities, and you will tell me what was the last team in that city to win a championship. They will be a team from the four major sports, and the titles are World Series, Super Bowl (or NFL title), Stanley Cup and NBA title. It will also be double points, as you will get an extra point if you get the year they did it correct as well.
Hybrid vehicles are generally powered by both gas and what else?
I am really pleased to say that we are finally back on Tuesday nights where we belong. Again, I appreciate all of you who adjusted your schedules and were in the last two Monday nights. And we will be on every Tuesday night until at least October, when the MLB playoffs begin. We get going right around 9 PM on Tuesday night. Hope to see many of you then.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 11:11 AM
Sunday, June 20, 2010
I guess the Red Sox successfully avenged the Celtics NBA Finals loss for their fans by sweeping the LA Dodgers out of Fenway Park with a 2-0 win on Sunday night.
Clay Buchholz struggled early, as LA had the bases loaded in the first with one out but did not score. The Sox scored a run in the first on two hits that never left the infield. They added another run on David Ortiz' sacrifice fly in the third.
Buchholz went 6 2/3 innings to get his AL-leading 10th win (with David Price and Phil Hughes), with Daniel Bard and Jonathan Papelbon adding terrific relief. Pap went 1-2-3 in getting his 16th save of the season.
The Sox are now tied with Tampa Bay for second behind New York, as the Rays were beaten in Florida. They are both one back. The Red Sox are now an amazing 39-19 since April 20th, when they were 4-9. That's the best record in MLB since then.
We saw an unusually high number of Dodgers fans this weekend at Fenway. But one stuck out. Tonight I saw a really dopey female Dodgers fan holding up a sign that said this:
"The Curse of Manny: 2007-2093."
I suppose she figures that Manny will "curse" the Sox and they won't win for another 86 years. Where have I seen this lame BS before? Oh yeah, remember when those pathetic MFY fans tried to market "2090" after the Sox won in 2004? Really laughable nonsense to look back on.
Anyway, I hope some Sox fans found that sign and burned it after the game. I wonder if this genius knows that her team hasn't won a World Series in 22 years. (I bet most LA fans couldn't tell you that.)
Have a safe trip back to Mannywood, dumbass.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 11:52 PM
Saturday, June 19, 2010
I had the pleasure of being at MCU Park (formerly known as KeySpan, but the name was changed because KeySpan no longer exists) tonight to see the Brooklyn Cyclones open their home season against the rival Staten Island Yankees.
The park was mostly filled, and the game was just the second game for most of the players (the Cyclones beat the Yankees the night before at Staten Island), as the Cyclones play in the New York-Penn League, which is rookie league, short-season. The game was no thing of beauty, but the Cyclones did win, 9-6. There were 7 errors ( 5 by SI) and 6 hit batters (4 by the Cyclones). But, a win is a win.
A few observations: The Cyclones have a pitcher named Pedro P. Martinez, who also pitched with them in 2009. And yes, he wears number 45. I don't believe he's any relation to the future Hall of Famer. But if he's on the Cyclones two straight seasons, he can't be as talented. The Cyclones also have a shortstop named John Franco. I have no idea if he's related to the former Mets pitcher.
The Staten Island Yankees manager is an old Red Sox infielder. Remember Jody Reed? Good ballplayer in the late 1980s and early 1990s. And the Cyclones batting coach is Benny DiStefano, a Brooklyn-born former MLB infielder who is best known for breaking up a no-hitter David Cone was pitching at Shea in 1992 while with the Pirates.
It was also a pleasure to see my old friend Kyle, who does a juggling act at the park while selling peanuts in the crowd. He's really talented, and even juggles pins while riding a unicycle on the Cyclones dugout.
I only caught about three innings of the Red Sox-Dodgers game on Fox before I left for the game. Red Sox made four errors, Manny Ramirez went deep (as did Victor Martinez and Kevin Youkilis), but Dustin Pedroia sent everyone home happy with an RBI single in the ninth to give the Sox a 5-4 win. I followed that game on my cell, in the middle of a four-run fifth inning for the Cyclones.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 10:51 PM
Each of the 18 holes of the golf course will be hosting by a Red Sox player or another Boston celebrity. Fans can either play in foursomes and meet the celebrities or buy a spectator ticket. For a $15 donation, spectators can enter raffles, auctions and win prizes. Tickets can be purchased from Ticketmaster.
Sounds like a good deal to me. If you'd like more information on the tournament, please go to the organization's web site. You can also call 978-749-6700.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 2:20 PM
When I was listening to the feed on my pal Matt's iPad about Manny Ramirez' first at-bat last night, Joe Castiglione said that while it was going on, guess who stuck his head in the broadcast booth to say hello? None other than the Texas Con Man himself, Roger Clemens.
And later in that inning, Clemens was seen by the NESN cameras in the Monster seats watching the game. No one else seemed to notice him there.
What was he doing in the ballpark he grew to dislike, among the fans who really grew to despise him more than any other ex-Red Sox player? (Far more than Johnny Damon, believe me.) And how did he score a prime ticket like that?
Makes me wonder if he's making nice with Red Sox officials. Manny Ramirez may have gotten a decidely mixed reception upon his return last night, but I really can't ever envision a day when Clemens will be back in the good graces of Red Sox fans.
He burned those bridges years ago. I don't think they can ever be repaired, even if he should be warming up to the idea. Personally, I'm looking forward to Roger Clemens Incarceration Day, the day the feds ship TCM off to prison for six months or so for lying about his obvious steroid use.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 11:06 AM
Friday, June 18, 2010
Manny Ramirez returned to Fenway Park tonight, and my buddy Jere over at A Red Sox Fan From Pinstripe Territory says that the crowd was overwhelmingly cheering him while he took batting practice.
J.D. Drew, David Ortiz and Adrian Beltre all blasted home runs tonight, as the Sox again feasted on mediocre NL pitching. (Unfortunately, Drew left with a hamstring injury in the third inning, and a DL stint seems likely.) The Sox jumped out 3-0 in the first, in support of rookie Felix Doubront, making his MLB debut. He looked good overall, as he was economical in his pitching. He pitched 5+ innings, got the side in order three times (including the first and second). But he ran into trouble in the third, allowing three runs, aided by his own error.
New York and Tampa Bay both lost yet again, so the Red Sox are now 1 game out, in third place.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 11:28 PM
The United States was robbed today against Slovenia.
They pulled off a great comeback after being down 2-0 at halftime. Landon Donovan and Michael Bradley tallied for the Americans, and with five minutes to play, it appeared that Maurice Edu did as well. But the Mali referee, Koman Coulibaly, who was so bad he'd probably make a good MLB umpire, waved it off, and the game wound up tied at 2.
The U.S. defense was to say the least porous in the first half, and it looked like the American World Cup dream might just be dying right there in Johannesburg.
But the U.S. had the better of the second half, and the tie puts the Americans at 0-0-2, with one last game against Algeria to complete the opening round. Slovenia has four points, and England and Algeria play later today. (They played to a draw, so the US and England both have two points.)
FIFA won't let the Mali ref explain himself to the media for his horrific call. At least Jim Joyce was allowed to apologize.
Here's more on today's match from ESPN.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 2:24 PM
Thursday, June 17, 2010
The Red Sox completed a clean sweep over the Arizona Diamondbacks tonight, with a 8-5 win, despite another shaky start from John Lackey.
David Ortiz hit his 14th dong of the season, and Daniel Nava had a terrific evening, getting three hits in the late innings. He had an RBI double and scored a run. Marco Scutaro had three RBI and two hits, and Adrian Beltre scored two runs and had an RBI.
Lackey went six innings and allowed four runs. He struggled in most innings, and only in his final inning did he get a 1-2-3 inning. Lackey is now 8-3, with an ERA of 4.53.
New York and Tampa Bay both lost again, so the Red Sox are now just two games back in third place. Seems like a couple of years ago the Red Sox were 8 1/2 back in fourth place, but it was on May 23rd, just 25 days ago.
OK, bring on the return of Manny Ramirez and Joe Torre to Fenway.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 10:41 PM
OK, so it's my turn.
Well, Manny Ramirez makes his return to Fenway Park on Friday night (and will be facing rookie Felix Doubront) and now all the speculation centers on how he'll be received by the Fenway Faithful when he comes up to bat.
I'm not going to do what many writers are doing now: listing their Top 10 Favorite Manny Moments. Listen, everyone knows all the good stuff, as well as the bad stuff.
For me, this reminds me a lot of Johnny Damon's return to Fenway in 2006. And on that day, I suggested that the crowd give him a standing ovation in his first at-bat, and then treat him like an enemy player the remainder of his career. Didn't work out that way, of course.
I feel the same way about Ramirez. He deserves a standing ovation on that first at-bat for being one of the centerpieces in the two Red Sox championships of the last decade, and for being one of the best hitters in Red Sox history. If I were at Fenway, I'd be standing and applauding that first at-bat.
But that's it. Once that's finished, that ends it for me. He's now an enemy who disgraced himself on the deplorable way he got out of Boston. I won't rehash it all here. I wouldn't be booing if I there from the second at-bat on, just not applauding him any more.
So it will be interesting to see what happens Friday night. I'll be watching and applauding his first at-bat, wherever I am tomorrow. I'll be thanking Manny for those two titles with that at-bat.
After that, we move on.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 11:13 AM
Wednesday, June 16, 2010
Dustin Pedroia was in a big time slump for a good part of May. But nobody seemed worried about it, as Pedey still was having a great season in the field. There were some rumors about a knee injury, but they proved baseless.
Now, Pedroia is on a tear. He's 10-for-20 and launched a two-run shot that banged into the Monster seats (and came back on the field) to put the Red Sox up, 2-0. (BTW, I also recently finally saw "Avatar." Not bad actually. So why do I mention this in this post? One of the stars was Giovanni Ribisi. Sorry, I still can't look at him and not think of Pedey.)
Jon Lester gave back that 2-0 lead in the second, as he gave up a bomb of a shot to Justin Upton. At times it looked like a struggle for Lester, as he loaded the bases in the fourth with one out, but got out of it with no damage. The Red Sox scored twice in the third, their best inning out of all nine this season. (They've scored 56 runs in that frame.)
Kevin Youkilis hit a two-run shot in the seventh, his 13th home run.
Lester went seven, allowed just four hits and struck out seven. Daniel Bard pitched an efficient eight, but Ramon Ramirez, who always gives me the willies, put on two before Jonathan Papelbon came in with two outs to get the final out and his 15th save.
Tampa Bay and New York both lost, so the Red Sox are now 3 games behind them both.
BTW, CBS Sports tonight said that the sound of a vuvuzela was heard at Fenway Park during the game. Could these things make their way out of South Africa and the World Cup and infest sporting events around the world?
I hope not. They make those stupid thundersticks seem tolerable.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 11:10 PM
Tuesday, June 15, 2010
As the city of Boston was concentrating on the Celtics tonight (did you notice all the green worn in the stands at Fenway tonight?), the Red Sox went out and had a quietly efficient game against the Arizona Diamondbacks on Tuesday night.
Clay Buchholz struggled in the first and fourth, but got through 5 2/3 innings and picked up his ninth win of the season. (And did you know that the Sox are the only team in the majors with three seven-game winners so far?)
Arizona got a run in the first, but the Sox answered it back, as David Ortiz took former Yankee great Ian Kennedy over the Red Sox bullpen in center with one on to put the Sox ahead, and ahead to stay as it turned out.
The Sox expanded their lead to 5-1 in the third. Arizona answered back with two in the fourth. But Buchholz got the Sox to the sixth with the lead, and the bullpen took over from there. Hideki Okajima, Manny Delcarmen, Daniel Bard and Jonathan Papelbon allowed just one hit the remainder of the way, with Pap nailing down his 14th save with a 1-2-3 ninth and a 6-3 final.
Dustin Pedroia had two hits, an RBI and scored three times, and Papi, Kevin Youkilis and J.D. Drew each had two hits.
After the game, the Sox announced that big time pitching prospect Felix Doubront will be brought up on Friday and make his MLB debut against the Dodgers, on the day Manny Ramirez makes his return to Fenway. Doubront has made four starts at Pawtucket, and he's pitched 16 2/3 innings, giving up two runs while striking out 16 and walking five. He also has eight starts in Double-A Portland, posting a 4-0 record and a 2.51 ERA.
Also, the Red Sox announced a change in time for the game on Thursday, to 6 PM, to accomodate those fans wishing to see Game 7 of the NBA Finals that night, which starts at 9 PM.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 11:38 PM
This video is a real hoot. It's of the England-USA World Cup match of last Saturday, with the English TV sound feed. But it's the highlights of the two goals that were scored, but done in Lego (and courtesy of The Guardian newspaper).
I always loved Lego as a kid. Also thanks to a fellow in Northern Ireland who brought this to my attention, whose name also happens to be the same as mine. Cheers, John Quinn!
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 1:29 AM
About fifteen minutes before our scheduled Trivia Night start on Monday night, Professor Thom's was nearly empty, and I was really worried we might have to bag it for the first time in many years. I was worried about the switch in days (it was fine last week, but it seemed to have tailed off last night). But fortunately, we had a late arriving crowd, with a few regulars who thankfully changed around their schedules and took part.
We had 10 teams in, and the scores for Current Events was rather low, but they picked up with Soccer Trivia (which I made rather easy). They tailed off a bit with 21-30 Trivia, but General Knowledge once again saw the scores get better.
IQ Trivia was another tough round, and only one team got as many as three out five correct. And that team, Is That a Vuvuzela In Your Pocket Or Are You Just Happy To See Me wound up winning by five points, and also won the double on the night with Best Team Name as well. It was their first win for both categories, and my congratulations to them.
Once again, I am pleased to say that Trivia Night returns to its rightful home on Tuesday nights next week, on June 22nd at 9 PM. It will be good to get back to normal again.
1. Spike TV honored this Oscar-winning actress last week with their "Decade of Hotness" Award from the show "Guys Choice."
2. The NY State Broadcasters Assn. picked this newsman as their 2010 Broadcaster of the Year Award winner, despite the fact he was last on the air last December.
3. The owners of the Empire State Building recently denied a request to light the building in blue and white on the 100th anniversary of the birth of this religious icon this August.
4. Noynoy Aquino was elected president of this Asian country last week, following in the footsteps of his mother, who once ruled that nation as well.
5. In a cave in Armenia last week, this kind of artifact, over 5500 years old, was found in perfectly preserved condition and is the world's oldest of its kind.
6. This Academy Award-winning actress has been accused of battery by a 17-year-old boy after he claims she attacked him after he attempted to take a photo of her.
7. Red Sox rookie outfielder Daniel Nava became just the 4th player in MLB history to accomplish this rare feat last Saturday.
Answers: 1. Charlize Theron; 2. Charles Gibson; 3. Mother Teresa; 4. The Philippines; 5. leather shoe; 6. Jodie Foster; 7. Hit a grand slam in his first MLB at-bat.
1. What country was the legendary Pele originally from? a. Brazil; b. Spain; c. Argentina; d. Portugal.
2. What team is the current defending World Cup champions? a. France; b. Brazil; c. Italy; d. Germany.
3. True or False: This year's World Cup is the first one ever played on African soil.
4. What year were the World Cup Finals held in the United States? a. 1986; b. 1990; c. 1994; d. 1998.
5. True or False: The United States has never played in a World Cup final.
6. It was recently announced that Glasgow Celtic and Sporting Lisbon will play an exhibition match this July in what American venue? a. Rose Bowl; b. New Meadowlands Stadium; c. Cowboys Stadium; d. Fenway Park.
7. Name 2 of the 5 nations that have won the World Cup at least twice.
Answers: 1. a; 2. c; 3. true; 4. c; 5. true (I also accepted "false" as I did not specify men's or women's teams); 6. d; 7. Brazil (5), Italy(4), Germany(3), Uruguay(2), Argentina(2).
21-30 Trivia ("The Q Train")
1. This is the number of MLB Hall of Famers Willie Mays, Tony Perez and Rickey Henderson.
2. The number of days February has in leap years.
3. This was the number amendment that ended Prohibition in 1933.
4. In a normal deck of cards, there are this many number red cards, as well as black cards.
5. The most famous Psalm in the Bible was this number, also known as the Shepherd Psalm.
6. The Arabic alphabet has this many letters.
7. Judas Iscariot betrayed Jesus for this many pieces of silver.
8. This is the current roster size number for all MLB teams.
9. Rock stars Jimi Hendrix, Jim Morrison, Janis Joplin, Kurt Cobain and Brian Jones all died at this age.
10. This is the total number of soccer players that can be on the field active at any one time.
Answers: 1. 24; 2. 29; 3. 21; 4. 26; 5. 23; 6. 28; 7. 30; 8. 25; 9. 27; 10. 22.
1. What MLB Hall of Famer wrote the autobiography, "Say Hey?" ( 1 pt)
2. What time zone is Denver, CO found in? ( 1 pt)
3. In 1848, what was famously discovered at Sutter's Mill in California? ( 1 pt)
4. Joseph Smith founded what religion in the early 19th century in upstate New York? ( 2 pt)
5. "Submitted For Your Approval" was a 1995 documentary about what TV legend? ( 2 pt)
6. Winnipeg is located in what Canadian province? ( 2 pt)
7. Last March, what web site passed Google to become the web's most visited domain for the first time? ( 3 pt)
Answers: 1. Willie Mays; 2. Mountain; 3. gold; 4. Mormon; 5. Rod Serling; 6. Manitoba; 7. Facebook.
1. What planet did British astronomer William Hershel discover on March 13, 1781? ( 4 points)
2. Lookout Mountain overlooks what southern US city? ( 4 points)
3. What male tennis player has played in the most Grand Slam finals? ( 5 points)
4. What female pop singer died of cancer in 1999, on the same day that she was to receive the OBE (Order of the British Empire) at Buckingham Palace? ( 4 points)
5. What iconic 18th century American is pictured on the Pulitzer Prize medal? ( 3 points)
1. Uranus; 2. Chattanooga, TN; 3. Ivan Lendl; 4. Dusty Springfield; 5. Benjamin Franklin.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 1:08 AM
Monday, June 14, 2010
Ever since I got my first iPod in late 2008, I've been obsessed with it. I love music with a passion, and the fact I can put my own music into my own personal listening device and not have to worry about things like commercials and songs I don't particularly care for.
I got iTunes, and I liked the fact that it kept track of when each song was played on it, and how times it's been played.
The current iPod I have is the 16GB Red Nano. It works great and I've had no major trouble with it. (I'm knocking wood as I write this.) I use it on my Trivia nights as background music for the categories and that's worked out well, too.
But I've run into a problem I can't seem to figure out why it's happening. Whenever I sync my iPod to iTunes to recharge, it no longer seems to update the play counts. I noticed it happening a couple of months back, but sometimes it would update and sometimes it wouldn't. Now, over the last 4 or 5 times I've synched it, nothing updates at all.
I've gone to two different Apple stores in Manhattan, and they both looked at me like I was crazy and seemed to have little idea what I was talking about. So, I was wondering if any of you out there in cyberspace have also had this problem, and how did you resolve it?
You can leave any responses here on the blog, or drop me a line at: firstname.lastname@example.org. I also checked some of those online forums that Apple has, but I couldn't seem to get any straight answers there either.
UPDATE: My friend Ken suggested to me that I press "Menu" and the center button at the same time before I sync the iPod, so that the gray "Apple" logo appears. Then sync the iPod. I did that, and guess what? It worked! It updated my last played songs. Hopefully that will continue to work. Thanks, Ken.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 10:38 AM
Sunday, June 13, 2010
Tim Wakefield had just one really bad inning today out of 7 1/3 he pitched today, but it was a killer.
The Phillies got five straight hits, including a Raul Ibanez two-run shot, and got four runs off Wake, and that's all they needed in getting a 5-3 win.
The game looked like it was going to get out of hand in the first, as Wake hit the first batter, Shane Victorino ("The fix is on" I always think to myself when that happens, a reference to "Eight Men Out") and the next two hitters got on. Bases jammed, none out, but Wake got out of it, on a fly to right and a round-the-horn DP. He had two terrific stretches in the game, but the fourth in-between did him in.
Adrian Beltre hit one into the Monster Seats to make 1-0 in the second. I had thoughts of a sweep, but it was not to be. Two of three from the defending NL title holders? I'll take it.
Next up, the Arizona Diamondbacks on Tuesday night for three. New York won, and Tampa Bay lost to Florida (Is their starting pitching crashing to earth or what?), so now New York and the Rays are tied for first and the Red Sox are four back.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 11:18 PM
As you all know, we will be doing Trivia Night on Monday this upcoming week, as the NBA Finals will have a Game 6 on Tuesday. In honor of the 2010 World Cup soccer tournament that just started this past Friday, we will have as our special category a round of "Soccer Trivia." It will actually be a mixed bag of questions: some multiple choice, some true or false, and one bonus points question.
The Q Train lightning round will be "21-30 Trivia." It will be ten questions whose answers will be a number between 21 and 30, with no repeat answers.
The Sneak Peek question for this week is:
In 1848, what was famously discovered at Sutter's Mill in California?
We will get going at 9 PM on Monday night. This will be the final time we will be moving Trivia Night off Tuesdays, and we will go back to our usual night of Tuesday on June 22nd. We won't have to worry about moving again until at least October, when the baseball postseason begins.
Once again, thanks to all of you who have adjusted your schedules and have come out on Mondays. See you tomorrow night.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 11:22 AM
Saturday, June 12, 2010
When the England-USA World Cup match ended at Thom's earlier today, the TVs immediately switched over to the Red Sox-Phillies game, which had begun about ten minutes earlier.
And to my utter chagrin, Scott Atchison was pitching for the Sox. Uh-oh. This ain't good.
After a few minutes of checking, I discovered that Daisuke Matsuzaka had been scratched while warming up in the bullpen, as he was suffering from forearm soreness. It was so bad that the Red Sox immediately disabled him and called up Dustin Richardson from Pawtucket.
Atchison gave up two runs in the second, and I thought this was the start of a miserable day in Boston.
The Red Sox got a run back in the bottom of the inning, and with the bases loaded, up stepped Daniel Nava, an outfielder I hadn't heard of until a couple of days ago. He was a guy the Sox found in independent ball a few years back and was having a terrific year at AAA.
He got the start in left, and Joe Blanton threw him a meatball down the middle of the plate. Nava jumped all over it and crushed it into the Red Sox bullpen (with Manny Delcarmen making a fabulous catch). My friends and I couldn't believe it, as Nava became just the fourth player in history to hit a grand slam in his MLB first plate appearance (the first since Kevin Kouzmanoff in 2005; Jeremy Hermida also hit a salami in his first MLB at-bat). Rip Repulski also did it for the Red Sox in his first PA with the club in 1960. And Nava did it on the first pitch he saw (as did Kouzmanoff). Just incredible.
And Nava came up a second time with the bases loaded in the third. Second at-bat, but this time he struck out on a check swing.
Once again, the Red Sox crushed Philly pitching, as it was a 10-2 final. For the second straight day, a Phillies pitcher gave up nine earned runs to the hot Sox bats. Kevin Youkilis was hit on the elbow with a pitch and was replaced by Mike Lowell in the 6th. He is day-to-day.
But the man of the hour is one Daniel Nava, who etched his name in the record books on Saturday. He also doubled in his third at-bat. One of my friends remarked to me, "I bet Jeremy Hermida is kicking his dog right about now."
He sure will be if Daniel Nava keeps playing like this.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 11:47 PM
I went to Professor Thom's today to watch the England-USA match on Day 2 of the 2010 World Cup. I figured they'd have a good crowd on hand, and I knew a few friends would be dropping in as well.
When I got off the subway at Union Square, I noticed a few bars absolutely packed with people. I thought to myself, "Uh-oh, could Thom's be jammed too?" And sure enough, it was, and it reminded me of Game 4 of the 2007 World Series, when the floor was so crowded you couldn't seem to fit another person in the building. (Finnerty's next door was also packed, as I guess World Cup fever truly hit the American masses today.)
The crowd in the bar was about 80-20 in favor of the USA. (And BTW, I've said this before and I'll say this again. You know how can tell when someone knows nothing about soccer? They refer to the U.S. team as "Team USA." Ugh.) When England scored the first goal (by Steven Gerrard of Liverpool), two guys with an English flag began chanting and making sure the entire bar saw the flag. There was no trouble, just lots of chanting by both crowds throughout the match.
England had some chances, the US had its chances as well. By the 40th minute, it looked like England would head to the locker room with the lead. But English keeper Robert Green totally goofed up Clint Dempsey's shot, as it bounced off his hands (I think he took his eye off the ball) and it squirted by him to tie it up. The bar went crazy, and I turned to my friends and said "Robert Green better pray England wins this match." And I couldn't help think that Green was having his "Buckner moment." But I didn't say that to anyone out loud.
Tim Howard, the U.S. keeper, was my Man of the Match. He made some outstanding saves behind the suspect U.S. defense. England had the better of the play in the second half, and I think that 1-1 and each team getting one point is ultimately a fair result. My friend Adam may have summed it up best at the end, "The U.S. won, 1-1." It was a gritty game for the Americans, and they held their own with the favored English.
Green's goof cost England two points, but I bet it ultimately won't cost England in the standings. Both teams play Algeria and Slovenia to wrap up Group C. Neither is a feared world soccer power, and I would bet that both England and the U.S. will advance.
The U.S. got a gift today from Robert Green, and they can use every advantage they can get.
We thank you, sir.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 10:28 PM
Friday, June 11, 2010
The Red Sox pulled out the whoopin' sticks early and often tonight, and Jamie Moyer got raked over the coals for nine earned runs as the Red Sox won a nice easy one over the defending NL champion Phillies, 12-2.
The Red Sox hit eight doubles, and Mike Lowell hit the only home run. John Lackey pitched seven solid innings, allowing two runs in picking up his seventh win of 2010.
Marco Scutaro and David Ortiz each had three hits, and seven of the nine starters had at least two. Papi also drove in four runs. The Sox scored all 12 runs in the first three innings: 5 in the first, 4 in the second and 3 in the third.
Sox made a number of moves before the game. Jonathan Papelbon was reactivated and Scott Atchison made yet another trip on the Pawtucket Shuttle, and now he's back. Jeremy Hermida was placed on the DL, and now it has been determined that his crash with Adrian Beltre broke five of his ribs. The Sox also DFA'd Joe Nelson.
The Red Sox gained a game on Tampa Bay, who lost at home, but not New York, who won. The Sox trail the Rays by four games.
BTW, speaking of people being out, what exactly is wrong with Don Orsillo? He missed his second straight telecast on NESN, and was replaced tonight by Eric Frede.
Get well soon, Announcer Boy.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 10:41 PM
My friends and fellow Sox bloggers Matt and David over at Fenway West, the fine Red Sox blog based in California, will be having a special benefit coming up when the Red Sox hit the West Coast later this month.
It will be at The Connecticut Yankee, the noted Red Sox bar in San Francisco, and will benefit The Jimmy Fund and The Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. "The Cancer Sucks Band", which David plays in, will be on hand to play some classic rock tunes.
The goal of the benefit is to raise $5000 as part of the Rally Against Cancer campaign.
So if you're in San Francisco later this month when the Red Sox take on the Giants at AT&T Park, you can also help the boys out with this worthy cause. It's taking place on Saturday, June 26th after the Sox-Giants game concludes, and The Connecticut Yankee is less than two miles from the park.
If you like tickets to the benefit, or if you can't make it out west and you want to contribute, please go to RockAndSox.com for more information.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 4:39 PM
Thursday, June 10, 2010
The Celtics won tonight in Boston to even the NBA Finals at 2-2, so you know what that means: our Trivia Night next week will be on a Monday night again, June 14th at 9 PM. (Game 6 of the NBA Finals will be on Tuesday night next week.)
The Sneak Peek question will be posted on Sunday morning.
Fortunately, this will be the final time we will have to move Trivia Night off Tuesday night until at least October, as the Red Sox schedule benefits us until the postseason. (The remaining games against the Yankees will all be on the weekends.)
We will be back on Tuesdays nights on June 22nd, and I hope many of you can once again come out this Monday night.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 11:45 PM
When an offense hands a pitcher five early runs, and the pitcher is of the quality of Jon Lester, you are so tempted to say that this one is in the W column and move on.
Lester wasn't good tonight, and gave all those runs back, as the Indians scored three runs in the third and three more in the sixth. Granted, some of the hits were really of the cheap variety, but Lester wasn't sharp at all.
The Red Sox also wasted some opportunities to put the dagger in the Tribe, as they left the bases loaded in the second and got just one run. Former future superstar Andy Marte made three errors in the first inning and it looked like the cakewalk was on, as the Red Sox jumped out 4-0.
It looked like it was going to be a 6-5 Indians win, as the Sox did nothing against the Tribe pen. But J.D. Drew was hit by a pitch with two outs against Kerry Wood, and Adrian Beltre looked like he was saving the Sox' bacon as he blasted a shot into the left field seats. 7-6.
But Daniel Bard was shaky yet again as the sub closer. (Do you appreciate Jonathan Papelbon a little more now?) He loaded the bases with no outs, but got the next two outs. But he gave up a rinky-dink bloop to Russell Branyan that brought the winning runs in, and a really revolting 8-7 loss, to a team with a rotten bullpen and not the best offense in the league. (I really didn't care much about Wednesday's loss, as the Sox ran into a buzzsaw and got beat. But tonight? Awful.)
Only good thing I can say about tonight was that Tampa Bay and New York both lost, but the Sox missed a golden opportunity to gain a game on them both.
The Red Sox are now 10-10 against three of the AL's lightweights combined: Indians, Orioles and Royals. Ugh.
BTW, if I had said to you that after the Sox won the first two games of this series, and with the Sox' two best pitchers going to conclude it, that the Indians would score 19 runs and win them both, would you believe me?
Papelbon will return as closer tomorrow night. And the general unfairness that is interleague play returns, as the Red Sox renew their "rivalry" with the Phillies at Fenway on Friday night.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 11:01 PM
I made a very smart decision last night.
I avoided last night's Red Sox-Indians game. I went instead to jazz great John Pizzarelli's gig at the Blue Note in Greenwich Village. I would follow the game on my cell during pauses in the concert, which I did.
And the news was always lousy when I did. The Sox ran into old friend Justin Masterson, who pitched a two-hit shutout, and the Indians rolled, 11-0. (It was a lot closer than that, as the Tribe scored eight in the eighth against Boof Bonser and Joe Nelson.) Clay Buchholz wasn't bad over seven, but Masterson was simply superb.
Anyway, it was the first time I saw John live. And he was as great as Masterson last night.
I've gotten to know John over the years, as he is a regular like myself at the BLOHARDS meetings. He's a huge Red Sox fan as well as a real gentleman, and he's been my "helper" in giving out my prizes when I do trivia there. (John also did a really funny "Carnac" bit this last May.) John played 13 songs with his quartet, which included his brother Martin. (And no, he didn't play anything connected to the "Foxwoods" commercial he is most famous for doing.)
He has a great report with the audience, and his banter in-between tunes is terrific. (He even kidded his dad Bucky, who was in the audience, about only being there because "the Mets game was rained out.") John played many songs from his newest album, "Rockin' In Rhythm" and the band sounded tight and very focused.
John concluded the night with one of my favorites, "I Like Jersey Best," the song by my friend and fellow BLOHARDS member, Joe Cosgriff (who I was with last night). The song is a tour-de-force for John, and he sings it in "mashup" style, mimicking many singers, like Paul Simon, Bruce Springsteen, Bob Dylan and even Billie Holiday. It was a terrific way to conclude a great show.
I got a chance to be with John after the show and meet the other band members. (And I also enjoyed meeting Tom Bailey, the GM of the Blue Note. He's also a Sox fan and BLOHARDS member, and he was wearing a "2004 ALCS Chokers" shirt. He's my friend for life!) If you ever get a chance to see John live and in person, I would recommend you certainly do so.
Whether the Red Sox are scheduled to play or not.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 10:50 AM
The Washington Post had an article on that guy who threw back the home run ball that Stephen Strasburg gave up Tuesday night.
Security nearly tossed him out but the other Nats fans saved his ass, and security relented. Like at Fenway, Nationals Park doesn't allow fans throwing balls back on the field. Good for them.
Because of the hoopla surrounding Strasburg, a memorabilia dealer figures that home run ball might be worth as much as $1,000.
Good move, pal.
The Nats fans actually considered this guy to be some kind of "hero" for "watching Strasburg's back." As you may know, I have always hated that stupid trend the Cubs fans began some years ago of throwing opposition home runs back on the field.
I have never gotten a ball at a game in the decades I have been going to games, and it is still my hope before I die that I get one. And it doesn't matter if it's fair or foul, or hit by the opposition or my team. If I were ever at Wrigley and got an opponent's homer in the bleachers, you'd have to force me at gunpoint to get me to release it.
It goes home to my trophy case, and it stays there.
With thanks to my friend Lisa for bringing this article to my attention.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 12:21 AM
Tuesday, June 08, 2010
Stephen Strasburg wasn't bad tonight. 14 strikeouts in 7 innings against the Pirates in his MLB debut.
He brought back clear, vivid memories for me of Dwight Gooden. That is, the pleasant kind, when he was setting the world on fire in 1984.
Strasburg lived up to the hype on this night. They call him "Baseball Jesus" in D.C.
Just slightly ironic that he has The Devil Incarnate as his money man.
And BTW, I'll never understand some of these dimwit "fans." Delwyn Young hit the first home run off Strasburg tonight (and becomes the answer to a trivia question some day), and some idiot Nats fan tossed it back on the field. Doesn't this birdbrain have any sense of history? If Strasburg lives up to hype down the road, that's a ball that could be worth something one day. At least he could brag to his friends one day that he had a ball that Strasburg pitched in his MLB debut, even if it was hit out for a home run.
I guess he'd rather have about five seconds of cheering that comes from doing something stupid like throwing that ball back.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 11:22 PM
Tim Wakefield went 7 1/3 innings tonight, and was sharp. And because he went that long, he broke the record of Roger Clemens (aka The Texas Con Man) for most innings pitched in a Red Sox career with 2,777 innings.
Pretty good for a guy Dan Duquette claimed off waivers in 1995.
Timmeh got the win as the Red Sox edged the Indians tonight, 3-2. Wake allowed just one earned run and four hits, and the combo of Hideki Okajima, Ramon Ramirez and Daniel bard shut the Tribe down the rest of the way.
The Sox got three gift runs in the fourth as Trevor Crowe dropped a fly ball to center that would have ended the inning, but four hits later, it was 3-1. The RBIs went to Kevin Youkilis, David Ortiz and Bill Hall.
The Indians grabbed the early lead in the first, as Adrian Beltre made his league-leading 11th error of the season that brought in a run. The Tribe got their other run on Shelley (I Autograph Baseballs With Insulting Things About The Red Sox To Little Kids) Duncan's homer in the seventh.
The win was Tim Wakefield's 2nd of the year, and his 177th of his Sox career. Just 15 more to break another of the Texas Con Man's records, the career Red Sox win mark he holds with the great Cy Young.
New York and Tampa Bay both won, so the Sox remain four games out.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 11:03 PM
Fenway Park will host its first soccer match in 42 years on July 21st when an exhibition match between Glasgow Celtic and Sporting Clube de Portugal (also known by some as Sporting Lisbon) takes place.
It will be the 19th soccer match ever played at Fenway. The Red Sox will be in the middle of a West Coast road trip when the match takes place, and won't be back at Fenway until July 30th. I hope the field can take it, and the weather holds up as well.
Courtesy of the Boston Globe, here is the layout at what Fenway would look like for a soccer match, along with the prices of the tickets to the match (click to make it larger).
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 12:52 PM
Victor Martinez had a successful return to his old stomping grounds in Cleveland, and he went 2-for-4 as the Red Sox beat the Indians, 4-1.
The Good Dice-K was also on hand, as Mr. Matsuzaka pitched eight strong, shutout innings. He gave up just 4 hits, walked only 2, and struck out 5. He lowered his ERA to 4.59.
Marco Scutaro had three doubles in the winning cause. Jonathan Papelbon was unavailable, as he was placed on the bereavement list for a family emergency (no details were given). He is scheduled to be back on Thursday.
The Red Sox also activated Boof Bonser off the 60 day-DL to take Papelbon's place.
Daniel Bard was the closer last night, and he gave up a home run to Austin Kearns and a single, but shut the door on the Indians in the ninth.
And while the game was going on, the MLB Draft was going on. The Red Sox selected Ball State infielder Kolbrin Vitek as their first round pick, number 20. He agreed to a contract and will probably start the season at Lowell.
The Sox also had two additional picks after the first round and selected two other college players: Middle Tennessee outfielder Bryce Brentz with the 36th overall pick and LSU righthander Anthony Ranaudo at No. 39.
The draft continues with the second round today.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 12:36 PM
We had 13 teams in for Trivia Night on Monday, which wasn't a bad number considering we had to move it a night earlier, which is a notoriously slow night at Thom's. I also saw a few regulars in the crowd, which was nice to see.
The crowd seemed really into the Trivia on this night. The numbers on Q Tip Trivia were fairly strong, and they were pretty good for True or False Trivia. They were a bit off for General Knowledge.
IQ Trivia was a tough round, and only one team got as many as three out of five right, and that the eventual winners, Suck It, BP! They wound up pulling away with a strong last round score and won by seven points. Nice job to Matt and his friends, who were back after a short hiatus.
At this time, we don't know which day we will be doing Trivia Night next week. We are currently at the mercy of the NBA Finals. If the series ends in five games on Sunday night, we WILL have Trivia Night next Tuesday, June 15th at 9 PM. However if the series goes to a sixth game, we will be doing Trivia next week again on Monday night, June 14th at 9 PM.
Stay tuned to this blog for updates as they become available. No matter what happens, the Sneak Peek question will be up next Sunday.
Thanks to all of you who rearranged your schedules to join us on Monday. It is really appreciated!
1. This retail warehouse giant was the number one ranked store by 30,000 consumers in a recent poll by Consumer Reports of the best retailers in the US.
2. This rock legend was recently awarded the Gershwin Prize by the Library of Congress and performed at the White House last Wednesday.
3. Billboard magazine reported that the current tour of these two rock legends is the number 1 Hot Tour in North America right now.
4. This American actor was appointed as Goodwill Ambassador for the UN environment agency during a ceremony in Rwanda, which was the site of a 2004 film he made.
5. Francesca Schiavone became the first woman ever from this country to win the French Open women's tennis singles final last Saturday.
6. Armando Galarraga, a pitcher for the Detroit Tigers, retired 26 straight batters against this AL team before ump Jim Joyce mistakenly called a batter safe at first last Wednesday, denying the pitcher a perfect game.
7. This actress made an appearance at the MTV Music Awards on Sunday night, received a huge ovation and said she just "wants to go back to normal" and she's "not going anywhere."
Answers: 1. Costco; 2. Paul McCartney; 3. James Taylor and Carole King; 4. Don Cheadle; 5. Italy; 6. Cleveland Indians; 7. Sandra Bullock.
Q Tip Trivia
1. Which of these countries were officially neutral during WWII? a. Switzerland; b. Ireland; c. Canada; d. Greece.
2. Which of these films starred Will Ferrell? a. Semi-Pro; b. Step Brothers; c. Blades of Glory; d. Bewitched.
3. Which of these US presidents also once served as Vice-President? a. John Adams; b. Dwight D. Eisenhower; c. Theodore Roosevelt; d. John F. Kennedy.
4. Which of these actors/actresses have never won an Oscar? a. Robert Duvall; b. Angelina Jolie; c. Julia Roberts; d. Tim Robbins.
5. Which of these states were not in the Original 13 Colonies? a. Tennessee; b. Georgia; c. Florida; d. Kentucky.
6. Which of these cities has never hosted the Super Bowl? a. San Francisco; b. Minneapolis; c. Atlanta; d. Houston.
7. Which of the following albums were recorded by Green Day? a. Disciplined Breakdown; b. Kerplunk; c. American Idiot; d. Riot Act.
Answers: 1. a & b; 2. all; 3. a & c; 4. none; 5. a, c, & d; 6. a; 7. b & c.
True or False Trivia ("The Q Train")
1. The dime is the only US coin that no reference to either "cent" or "dollar" on it.
2. The pursuit of jumping off cliffs into the sea is called tombstoning.
3. Rod Stewart was actually born in Scotland.
4. The Bronx is the largest of NYC's five boroughs in terms of area.
5. Venezuela was one of the five founding members of OPEC.
6. Frank Sinatra's hit song "My Way," was written by singer/songwriter Randy Newman.
7. Actor Jack Lemmon was actually born in an elevator.
8. Diamond is the hardest naturally-occurring substance on earth.
9. Fingernails grow faster than toenails.
10. John F. Kennedy was the first US president to visit China while in office.
Answers: 1. true; 2. true; 3. false, London; 4. false, Queens; 5. true; 6. false, Paul Anka; 7. true; 8. true; 9. true; 10. false, Richard Nixon.
1. What part of the body is inflamed by hepatitis? ( 1 pt)
2. In "Blazing Saddles," everyone in the town of Rock Ridge has what last name? ( 1 pt)
3. On what day of the year is Boxing Day celebrated? ( 1 pt)
4. The Kimodo dragon is native to what country? ( 2 pt)
5. What US president got Menachem Begin and Anwar Sadat together at Camp David? ( 2 pt)
6. For what film did Susan Sarandon win the Oscar for Best Actress in 1995? ( 2 pt)
7. In Morse Code, what letter is denoted by a single dash? ( 3 pt)
Answers: 1. liver; 2. Johnson; 3. December 26; 4. Indonesia; 5. Jimmy Carter; 6. "Dead Man Walking;" 7. T.
1. The State of Franklin was an autonomous 18th century American territory that today is part of what US state? ( 3 points)
2. What 17th century Frenchman is credited with inventing the game of roulette? ( 5 points)
3. Who is America's only Nobel Prize-winning playwright? ( 4 points)
4. In Greek mythology, who fired the arrow that hit Achilles in the heel? ( 4 points)
5. "Climb Mount Niitaka" was the code signal for what famous event to begin? ( 4 points)
Answers: 1. Tennessee; 2. Blaise Pascal; 3. Eugene O'Neill; 4. Paris; 5. The attack on Pearl Harbor.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 1:25 AM
Monday, June 07, 2010
The Red Sox missed getting a sweep over the Orioles over the weekend, as the Birds came back to end their 10-game losing streak and get Juan Samuel his first win as their interim manager, 3-2 in 11 innings.
John Lackey pitched seven good innings, allowing just two runs. He struggled a bit at times, giving up the two runs in the second after Victor Martinez hit a two-run shot in the top of the inning.
The Red Sox left the bases loaded twice, but tied the game in the ninth after Baltimore grabbed the lead in the bottom of the eighth, on Dustin Pedroia's sacrifice fly.
The Orioles won it in the 11th off Hideki Okajima, as Nick Markakis hit a bloop single that scored Cesar Izturis from second base.
The Red Sox are now 4 1/2 games back, as Tampa Bay won in Texas to salvage that series, as did New York, who came from behind to beat the Blue Jays. The Sox trail New York by 2 1/2, as they begin a four-game series in Cleveland tonight with the Indians. Daisuke Matsuzaka takes the hill for the Red Sox.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 11:07 AM
Sunday, June 06, 2010
Two kids of those sick individuals known as the "Westboro Baptist Church." One kid is trampling on a US flag and the other is holding up a sign that you can read for yourself.
I have seen some twisted, mindless, disgusting individuals in my life, but few are lower than these notorious people. (I saw this on Facebook tonight and I was just totally sickened by it. With thanks to the Never Forget 9/11 Facebook page.)
You can google their so-called "church" to read more about what these soulless people espouse.
They better pray they never cross paths with me in my lifetime.
Posted by The Omnipotent Q at 11:44 PM