Wednesday, June 16, 2010

What's Up with Yonder Alonso?

When we were in High School, a couple of my buddies and I would call local (Chicago) and National sports talk radio programs and assume the personalities of many, many characters. We were sort of like the "sports jerky boys" before "The Jerky Boys" became thousandaires.*

*is it possible that The Jerkey Boys became millionaires when our sports calls were even funnier but resulted in less than a hundred dollars in revenue?

Among our characters, we had: Highland Park Bob, Reggie from Gurnee**, Christian from St. Louis, Tutti Giovani from the Bronx***, Jorge from Los Angeles (pronounced 'horhay from los anheles'), and there were a few White Sox fans named Milk, Roheet, & Balfro.

**I thought describing our sports talk radio experiences would take its own series of posts, but we're actually going to do it here and now. (Please, whatever you do, do not get me started on "The Adventures of Dickie and Lionel: Along the Way".)

***I looked on google for an image to represent Tutti Giovani from the Bronx, and after typing different derogatory Italian terms, an image from the movie "Doubt" came up. I thought that was oxymornically funny.

Reggie from Gurnee stole the show several times. More than once, he talked about how the NBA was fixed. It has become popular to believe the NBA is fixed over the last 8 or 9 years. This was 1995. For example, Reggie would say, "What's the difference between wrestling and NBA?... Nothing, ain't no difference."

In fact, most of his fame came from the infamous Nick Anderson call with Norm Van Lier on the other end of the line. Reggie wanted to use Nick Anderson's experience missing four consecutive free throws as exhibits A, B, C, and D to demonstrate how fixed the NBA actually was. He evoked the memory of Nick Anderson at the University of Illinois, stating that Nick Anderson would never miss four free throws in a row. The Late Great Stormin' Norman tried reasoning with Reggie by describing the pressure: "when your butthole tightens up so much you can't stick a pin in it." Reggie opportunistically interrupted him by saying, "There ain't no way Nick Anderson misses four free throws in a row." Norm Van Lier gave Reggie a chance to speak for himself... if he could answer about the pressure, by asking him straight up: "You've never missed four free throws in a row?" Reggie valiantly answered with one word: "Never". The radio hosts erupted in approving disgust.

"Ohhhhhh, sign him up!" bellowed Van Lier.

Christian from St. Louis was an effeminate male who spoke up when the National radio show hosts were asking to hear from anyone who'd ever been to a nudist camp. For some reason****, nudists camps were being discussed by the hosts, and the hosts were leaning towards the side of the argument that nudist camps were for wierdo's.

****With Weino's help, we actually recall the reason: There was a Little League team that unexpectedly survived late into the tournament for the Little League World Series, but their unexpected success left them without hotel rooms for the upcoming games. So, they (a little league team) were basically forced to stay at a nudist colony.

To continue, Christian calls in talking about how there is nothing wrong with nudist colonies. They are "beautiful". "People's bodies are beautiful. There is so much beauty in the worlds besides sports. Don't get me wrong; I love sports. I love watching my athletes perform. There is nothing more beautiful than the human body. Etc, etc."

Jorge defended Christian with his famous with his line: "When I get hot, I get naked!" As he valiantly defended his actions: "What's wrong with that? I am with my family. It's okay. Nobody cares because it is at home, with my family. It's okay."

Can we continue talking about more characters? We haven't talked about any of our "Sox Fans", with all their Harold Baines stories, Cal Ripken opinions, and thoughts about society in general.*****

*****It turns out, we were right in the first place. We cannot possibly come close to describing all the remarkable calls we had in one post. Hopefully, we'll have another time soon to delve into these experiences a bit more, if you brilliant readers are interested. Roheet, Milk, and Balfro will need to wait for their own moment to shine in the BAseball Reality Tour spotlight.

After all this, the inspiration for this post has remained unspoken. There was one time when we thought it'd be funny to mimic callers who would call and say, "Hey, what's up with So-and-So?"

Normally, they would call up asking about someone who was potentially injured/recovered or someone who was vaguely rumored about in certain circles.

We thought it'd be funny to call and ask "What's up with So-and-So, when 'so-and-so' was neither in the news nor remarkable in any way." We discussed it and decided Will Perdue was the one athlete in Chicago where absolutely nothing was up with him. He was the backup Center for the Bulls. He was a role player with little, to no, personality.

Michael Jordan would infamously call him Will Vanderbilt because he went to Vanderbilt and was not good enough of a player to namely represent a (as my best friend likes to say) 'quote unquote' state school.

The Chicago media froze. They clammed up. They'd say things like, "what do you mean, 'what's up with him'?", and we would stand firm and say nothing more than, "what's up with him?"

It honestly lead to comedy gold - or at least bronze. There's no doubt the comedy was in the money. There was absolutely nothing "going on" with Will Perdue. So, we knew we chose the right guy.

Earlier tonight, I was thinking about one of the prospects I was most excited about this offseason: Yonder Alonso. I first became really aware of Mr. Alonso when mlbtr's Mike Axisa blogged about him this past offseason.

He was one of the more clearly blocked prospects in the game, as a heavy hitting 1st baseman behind 26-year old Joey Votto.

We aren't surprised by the Reds competing this year. So, it's interesting to check out if Yonder Alonso is performing well to gauge his interest/abilities as a trade chip or late season thunder in the lineup as a pinch hitter or corner outfielder.

So far this season, in 143 plate appearances, he's only producing a .244/.301/.359 line. He's just 23 years old, but that is not exactly the production of a future super stud. Maybe it's a result of a small sample size, or perhaps he's been overrated to this point... after careless consideration, we will lean towards him being a bit overrated. If he's going to be "the guy to get them the piece needed to put them over the top", he might have to perform a little bit 'quote unquote' better."

1 comment:

  1. Good post. You have to call up these stations and see if they have archived footage.

    FYI, Yonder was a stud at the U. I saw him play a few times. However, once you take a big headed guy like Yonder out of the MIA, where he was probably elbow deep in pink taco, that's strike one. If he's playing in Sarasota, Louisville and Raleigh then that mofo needs to be overnighted arroz con frijoles negro on a daily basis cause there ain't no good Cuban food to be had locally. Plus, everyone knows that you can't separate a Cuban mama's boy from his family.