Oh sure, nearly everyone here as a Twitter and/or Facebook account where updates or musings about the local flavor here in Indianapolis (a bit more about the local history later), and it’s difficult to imagine Jimmy Cannon hunched over his Blackberry with his thumbs racing to tweet some little nugget of news while talking shop with Horace Stoneham.
Go look it up on Wikipedia, kids.
Sure, things have changed a bit when it comes to the media and the coverage of sports (for the better), but even with all the technology things still only get done and reported the old fashioned way. That’s where a little mingling, a hotel lobby and a whole bunch of beer comes in. Gently mix those elements and then back up and watch the tweets fly.
So when I woke up this morning to the sound of a shovel scraping across concrete from beyond windows and walls as thin as graham crackers and the red light blinking on my Blackberry like a lantern or far off beacon, I was able to deduce a lot.
For one, it snowed last night. If it hadn’t, why shovel? And two, something went down in the lobby of the Downtown Marriott.
From all the tweets and modern plays on the smoke signal, we learned that future Hall-of-Fame catcher (is he?) Ivan Rodriguez agreed to a two-year deal with the Washington Nationals. This is quite interesting considering how bad the Nats are, how old Rodriguez is, and the two years he was offered. Plus, since the Phillies play the Nationals 18 times a season, it means we will see Pudge a lot.
In 2003 when the Marlins slipped past the Phillies to capture the wild card and then the World Series, Rodriguez was integral capturing the MVP of the NLCS as his club upset the Yankees. Better yet, 10 years ago Pudge was the best catcher on the planet. In 1999 he was the MVP of the American League and has posted numbers that align with the likes of Carlton Fisk and Gary Carter.
Still, Rodriguez turned 38 last week and will get a significant raise to be the Nationals’ catcher for the next two seasons at $3 million per year. Just what were the Nats thinking?
Conversely, the fact that Rodriguez is clearly in the twilight of his career, has won an MVP, a World Series, gone to the playoffs with three different teams and the World Series with the Marlins and Tigers while earning well more than nine figures in salary during his career, what in the hell is he doing signing with the Nats?
Really, what the hell is Pudge thinking?
A story from the Washington Post with the headline, “Why Pudge? Why two years?” kind of sums it up.
Meanwhile, one of our all-time favorite guys, Randy Wolf, reportedly has a three-year offer on the table from the Brewers. Three years for a pitcher—particularly one like Wolf—is about the max that any team will go. In fact, Phils’ GM Ruben Amaro Jr. told us yesterday that he feels, “less comfortable going more than three years on any pitcher.”
Obviously the Brewers really want Wolf, but so do the Mets. Reportedly the offer from the Brewers is approximately $30 million, which means Wolf’s agent Arn Tellem will go back to the Mets and get the auction going.
All things being equal, I’d go to Milwaukee if I were Wolfie. A guy like him could run that town pretty quickly.
Now back to the local history of Indianapolis, or, more specifically, the historical markers sprinkled around town… yeah, they are wacky. Better yet, here in Indianapolis the historical society in charge of posting some rather dubious moments in time aren’t into the whole “window dressing” thing.
It’s as if the subtext of the two markers (directly across the street from the capitol, I might add) photographed and posted on this site are saying, “Some stuff happened a long time ago and, well, it was kind of stupid. But sometimes bad stuff happens, too.”
So to the folks of Indiana, thank you for the transparency. Speaking for all of the old students of American history (if I may be so bold as to take the rostrum), we appreciate your candor.
Meanwhile, tomorrow I will seek out the marker for mass genocide of natives peoples or maybe a plaque for the spot where little Scott Rolen had his SuperGoose BMX bike stolen.