Archive for April 13th, 2006

Norton Moses of Billings had to write in to the Billings Gazette to display his Civil War knowledge: 

Antietnam not bloodiest American battle

Contrary to the April 9 “On television” column, the Battle of Antietam was not “the bloodiest battle in American history.” At about 23,000 dead and wounded, it was not even the bloodiest battle in the Civil War. Gettysburg cost 51,000 casualties (both dead and wounded), and Chickamauga about 35,000. Is The Gazette using Dan Rather as its fact checker?

Ignoring the gratuitous swipe at Rather, I’d like to point out a couple of things. First, it’s “Antietam,” not “Antietnam.” Second, Antietam was the single bloodiest day in U.S. military history. I believe the 20,000+ casualties from that battle occured on September 17, 1862. Gettysburg casualties were spread across three days, as were Chickamauga’s. 

Jus’ sayin’.

Baseball chatter…

Our government is contemplating dropping the bomb on Iran, our corrupt big $ hand-maiden Senator is about to gut state insurance regulations and drive me into poverty, and the Montana blogosphere squabbles over partisanship and civility…

Yes, folks, it's time for a little baseball chatter!

Pronk & Papi

I'm a Red Sox fan, okay? Chances are that you know one of us. We're arrogant. We're mercurial. We're annoying. We think we know everything there is to know about baseball. And g*dd*amn if David Ortiz isn't the best hitter in baseball!

So imagine my shock when my preseason fantasy baseball guide ("Fantasy Baseball Index") said this about Travis Hafner: "His rate stats were on par with those of David Ortiz, and he put up better rate stats on the road, so there's a solid argument to be made that he's the better hitter." …!… Blasphemy! Except…

Hafner: .433, 6 HR, 13 R, 9 RBI

Ortiz: .379, 3 HR, 6 R, 6 RBI

Yeah, well, it's only a week into the season, people!

The most entertaining pitcher in baseball

Daniel Cabrera, Apr 12 vs TB:

5.0 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 9 BB, 10K

Why, yes! He is on my fantasy baseball roster! Why do you ask?

Question marks become exclamation points

The Red Sox have raced out to a 6-2 start, and they look good. In my pre-season post, I said that the Sox have too many question marks — Schilling's health, Foulke's knees, the revamped infield — to win the division. But already, only a week into the season, some of these questions have been answered.

Schilling is back on track. He's 2-0 with an ERA under two, and he struck out 9 in 14 innings. Obviously the injuries that plagued him last year aren't bothering him now.

Foulke still looks shaky, but now there's Jonathan Papelbon! Four saves in four chances! Five Ks in five IP! One baserunner this year! So who needs Foulke! Still if Foulke recovers and regains his closer's spot, that allows Papelbon to start, do long relief, or anything, really! The kid wants to pitch and he'll do whatever Francona asks him to do. Invaluable. Clutch. Talented. Selfless. Gush gush gush…

While SS Gonzalez…stinks….at the plate, 3Ber Mike Lowell has been a pleasant surprise hitting .321 with a dinger and some RBIs and is making last year look like the exception. He won't compete for MVP, but .270 with 18 dingers looks like a conservative projection and would be just fine at the bottom of the Sox' lineup.

Beckett looks motivated, Ortiz picked up where he left off last year, the bullpen is rested, the bench is deep even with injuries to Coco Crisp and Trot Nixon. They're scoring runs, and Manny hasn't started hitting yet.

Yes, it's early. Yes, yes. Two-game lead over the Yankees in a week! Let's see…that'll be eight games a month…six months…that comes out to a 48-game lead over New York by the end of September!

I was…er…wrong

To the good people of Cleveland: when I wrote,

…how often have we seen a team finish strong the year before, get picked the next preseason as the Second Coming, then fall flat on their faces? Meet your 2006 Cleveland Indians.

Apparently I had been sniffing glue that day. The Indians look good, much better than the Twins, who I picked to finish higher. (I still stand by my claim that Detroit is "U-G-L-Y" despite a 5-3 start.)

I also want to apologize to the fans of the San Diego Padres. I said they'd win this year, but after a week of play I now predict they won't. (I may change my mind next week.)


Jane at Firedoglake rips Powell. “Powell needs to be telling us why he didn’t have the courage to say what needed to be said…”

Here’s the awesome Frontline report on “China’s Tank Man,” the guy who blocked a line of tanks with his body after the massacre on Tiananmen Square. I highly recommend a look-see.

AT&T built a secret room for NSA wiretapping. Apparently the feds have been funneling Internet traffic through their servers. Yup, data mining. Yup, the feds are building profiles of all of us. Yup, Congress is going to sit on its hands.

Isaiah speaks out against our president.

Dan Savage posts a very cool map of the US based on religious adherence. Oh yeah, he also posts a letter from his brother, which pretty much sums up how the Bush administration has f*cked up the country: “…their fear, their madness, and their incompetence has filtered down to every level of American society.”

Brad DeLong illustrates the difference between a good and a bad newspaper report.

In another example of bad reporting, a WaPo editorial denies its own paper’s report on the timeline for Iranian nuclear capability.

Speaking of good newspaper reporters, Press Think has a fantastic post up about journalist Murray Waas. This is a guy who might actually save the republic…by simply doing his job.

And of course, there’s Seymour Hersch, who has a pack of fools dogging him for his reporting.

I’m surprised at how little surprised I was to find out that ex-“Facts of Life” star, Lisa Whelchel, is a religious fundie, excited about Congressional prayer groups.

A cool article on savants and how their brains work. Check out the drawing of the horse by a 3-year-old savant! (via BoingBoing)

Kevin Drum explores Tiger Wood’s use of the word, “spaz,” and the media’s reaction. 4&20 blackbirds brings you nothing but the most important news!

Let the World Cup frenzy begin! Here’s a nostalgic romp of the Cup’s best “water carriers,” the defensive midfielders. Oh yeah, I wonder why Ronaldo is not spending much time on the pitch?

William Sloane Coffin, progressive moralist and religious leader, and immortalized as “Reverend Sloan” in Doonesbury, died yesterday. WSC: “When you see uncaring people in high places, everybody should be mad as hell.” God bless, Reverend.

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