5-at-10: Monster mailbag with Bull Durham quotes, NFL preseason picks, Rushmores, Robo-Ump, Dak, Auburn homerism and Hate Mail

5-at-10: Monster mailbag with Bull Durham quotes, NFL preseason picks, Rushmores, Robo-Ump, Dak, Auburn homerism and Hate Mail

August 16th, 2019 by Jay Greeson in Breaking News
Jay Greeson

Jay Greeson

Photo by Dan Henry /Times Free Press.

Paraphrased from a slew of you

Thanks for the preseason picks; what are your 'overreactions'?

Gang —

You are welcome, and while there are like a million quotable lines from Crash Davis in "Bull Durham" one of the most truthful ones has to be, "A player on a streak has to respect the streak. You know why? Because they don't, they don't happen very often."

Uh oh. Feeling a theme show coming on. Yep. The Friday mailbag with Crash and the Durham crew. Giddy-up.

So, we're riding a heater. We're 7-2 after last night and could easily be one better — why we went total instead of just going against the Falcons and Dan Quinn is anyone's guess. Not sure it's "a neewwwwww league record" or anything, That will do.

As for the next three over the next couple of days, well, let's review:

Dallas-Los Angeles under whatever it is. "What's our record? Eight and 16. How'd we'd ever win eight? It's a miracle." Two teams that truly could not care less about the preseason flying to Hawaii to play? Final score 13-9. (The total is 41, by the way.)
 

Miami plus-3 over Tampa Bay. The over has surged, and that is tempting considering the preseason lines are dominated by the sharps and if they are on the over, then the over is the play. Wait. Don't think Meat, just give 'em the gas. Go over the 43 here too if you are feeling overly frisky.


Cleveland plus-3 at Indy. Can't you see some veteran telling hotshot Browns QB Baker Mayfield, "You got a Hall of Fame right arm and you're pissing it away." And Mayfield screams "I ain't pissing nothing away. I got a Porsche already, a 911 with a quadraphonic Blaupunkt." Still the Browns have as good a 1-through-53 as anyone in the league.

As for the preseason — remember, Annie tells us early on that the season is long and you have to trust it — here are three quick takeaways:

> Wow, the Redskins stink. Seriously. Now it's clear why Jay Gruden is a 3-to-1 favorite to be the first NFL coach fired this season.

> Interesting storyline in the desert last night. NFL officials called Kyler Murray for multiple false starts while in shotgun and doing various hand clapping moves. My initial review is clapping your hands and no ball snap is fine, not unlike a quarterback saying, "Hut, hut, hut HUT, HUT hut." As for the fake clap, well, I can see that being viewed a false start. Thoughts? (And while we are here, has any rule devolved more than the false start with linemen pointing and pulling up to listen to the quarterback or asking questions? Discuss.) Also of note, Kyler Murray looked overmatched last night. Against the Raiders for Pete's sake.

> As a Falcons fan, you are predestined to worry. Comes with the territory I suppose. (What we need is a rain-out.) And yes, Annie the season is long and we will trust it. But listless efforts to the Jets and the stinky Dolphins are not good looks for anyone. Anytime.

From Drew

Hey man it's drew, I call into the show from time to time, what do you think about Florida -7 next Saturday?

Drew

First, as Max told Annie, "I love it."

Miami with Manny Diaz making his first head coaching debut against a guy like Dan Mullen, who is well-prepped and will run-it-up if give the chance. Plus, Diaz and the 'Canes are turning to a QB who is making his first start.

So the Gators have the experience and talent edge at coach and QB. In a neutral site that likely will be 70-30 Gators.

Yes, please. (Also get it now — and buy the hook — because I'd wager that it will be closer to 10 by this time next week.)

More importantly, I love the question because we are are now eight days from college football.

"C'mon. Let's step outside and party man."  

From Tike

Jay, in baseball why is a lazy fly ball called a can of corn?

Tike

Simply put, back in the day, when baseball was romanticized and really was the national pastime, the grocers would help their customers get cans of produce off the top shelves of their stores.

Instead of running down ladders everywhere, the clerks had these long sticks and knocked the cans off the shelf.

They would be waiting with their apron extended and catch the can — standing right in their tracks mind you — nice and easily.

Those cans were filled with peas and carrots and beans and of course, corn. Can of corn is the one that stuck.

At least that's the story I heard. Spy, you are 108 or so years old, did I get that one right?

Also, one of my favorite and arguably underrated scenes in 'Bull Durham' is when Crash gets hammered and goes into the speech about the difference between hitting .250 — ground ball with eyes — and .300 is one hit a week. There's some deep stuff in that bar gang. Deep.  

From Joe Don

JG
 
Was reading more about the Atlantic League's robo-ump and started pondering the notion of WHEN it gets to MLB in some fashion. Will it:
 
a) Benefit the pitcher more because FINALLY the high strike will get called like is should?

b) Benefit the hitter more because FINALLY the low and low-and-outside ball will get called like it should?

c) Will it increase the foul ball frequency?

d) Will it increase the strike out frequency?
 
This a great research article on umpire accuracy.
 
Two quick excerpts worth noting:

> In 2018, MLB umpires made 34,294 incorrect ball and strike calls for an average of 14 per game or 1.6 per inning.
 
> MLB umpires make certain incorrect calls at least 20 percent of the time, or one in every five calls. Research results revealed clear two-strike bias and pronounced strike-zone blind spots. Less-experienced younger umpires in their prime routinely outperformed veterans, and umpires selected in recent World Series were not the best performers.
 
When robo-ump makes a debut, somewhere Earl Weaver will be turning over in his grave.

Joe Don

Amazing question, and thanks for the link, that is interesting research.

Well, it certainly decrease a lot of arguments, right? "You want to call you a . Pretty please beg. Pretty please beg. You're a ." Frankly fans I've never seen Crash so angry.

OK, let's take your points but the letter, but do it in reverse order.

D) Not sure there is any possible way to increase the strikeout rate of today's game. In 1997, when Tony Gwynn won his last batting title, he struck out 28 times all year. Ronald Acuña struck out 33 times in July, and Acuña is a dude.

C) Yes, it will increase the foul ball frequency because it will increase swing frequency, which is a good thing. Baseball's biggest problem these days, in my open, is not the length of games as much as it is the lack of action. Watching the Braves last Sunday and in a pivotal inning against the Marlins, the Braves went walk, walk, strikeout, strikeout, Ender Inciarte three-run jack. The inning was the difference in the game and as far as in-game action, there was not a single play made by any defensive player. No es bueno.

A and B) To expand on the above point, I think both sides will benefit to certain degrees for reasons you stated. There are a lot of guys who pitch away from contact, I think calling a legitimate and consistent strike zone would re-introduce guys pitching to contact, which as we mentioned, increases live-ball action, which increases the enjoyment of the game.

Great question, and for even more interesting takes on the Rabo-Ump and is inevitable arrival into the Majors and the fears of some of the current major leaguers, here's Hall of Famer Jayson Stark on the matter.

From Stark's piece from The Athletic, which is well worth your time:

Clayton Kershaw: "It's just going to change a lot of things, and I just don't think that's what we're after."

Buster Posey: "I would venture to say that more pitches would be called balls that are called strikes now."

York Revolution catcher James Skelton: Now with TrackMan it's got to go over the plate. So it's going to be frustrating for pitchers who get that pitch in or get that pitch out (called a strike) because of tenure in the big leagues or whatever the reason Guys that have been in the league a little bit longer, they normally get those calls. It won't happen anymore.

Revolution pitcher Mitch Atkins: I throw a 12-6 curveball that's coming from up to down, and it'll hit the top of the zone, I mean, right at the guy's shoulder coming down. And the hitter's never going to swing at that pitch because it's always been a ball. I personally don't think it's a strike now — but it's being called a strike.

Interesting times, thanks again for the question Joe Don.

From Mike  

It's hard to believe it has been five years since SEC Network launched don't you agree? What do you think the biggest changes have been in those five years and what would you say the five best highlights have been in those five years?

Also, my friend and I wanted to know how much is too much of your college teams stuff on your car?

Thanks, and we read the 5@10 every day.

Mike

Thanks for playing along with the silliness and tell your friend thanks, too.

I'm a little old school on this one. (Zip it up, 'Dro, because while you're thinking it, I am not old school on everything. Country music, yes. Co-Colas. Yes. Cocktails. Yes. Values. Yes. Well, zip it anyway 'Dro. I've met your mother. Zip. It.)

I have an AU tag plate, and that's enough. If you want to have one on the front and something on the back fine.

The exception here is if you are headed to a football game. Flags, those stick-on magnets, the more the merrier.

But in the day-to-day, we get it. You're a fan, but do you really need a 17* (or how many ever nattys Alabama claims) front tag plate, a Houndstooth hat sticker, the big cursive 'A,' the "Got Saban" bumper sticker and the personalized 'Bearlvr' tag.

"You told him I was going throw the deuce, didn't ya?"

"Yep. That thing got outta here in a hurry."

As for the SEC Network, I believe it has helped the profile — and the bank accounts — of the non-football sports as much if not more than anything in the last five years. David Paschall mentioned this on Press Row earlier this week, especially in connection with SEC basketball, which now has every league game broadcasted.

As for the top three highlights, well, that's tough my man.

Give me the Mississippi State girl toppling UConn in hoops. Give me (turn away Jules and 'Dro) second-and-26. I know I was glued to the SEC Network a few years ago when Auburn made a softball run.

What did I miss?

From Jules

So, here's a question. In today's NFL atmosphere, is Dak worth a few more dollars bc so far he seems to be a stand-up guy and will not be a legal liability? The other players like him (which it's to everyone's advantage to get along with their QB), but he seems genuinely one of the guys. Sometimes who you know is better than who you don't.

Jules

Such a great point and one I likely undervalue in terms of strict salary cap analysis.
Working well with your staff. Being a good teammate. Being a guy that leads, with words and by example.

Those elements and qualities certainly add value, especially at that position.

And by almost every measure, Dak Prescott is flush with them. He got Mississippi State to No. 1 in country for crying out loud. Mississippi State.

And I have forever been a proponent of the 'who know is better than who you don't' in moments like this.

Changing coaches is a prime example. Unless it's a dire circumstance, like it was with Butch at the end of his time in Knoxville, making sure you have a line on a better coach is the first step before talking to me about replacing the current coach.

"You think I could make it to the show as a manager?"

"I'd think you'd be great." (Side question: I understand the full circle of the love story, but who else just stops watching after Nuke's interview with RayAnne — she's a stay'an — at the end?)

From BigBamaBacker

You are such a Barner homer on the radio and the only reason people listen to your stupid show is because of Paschall.

Just wanted to make sure you and your stupid 'Rushmores' knew that. Hell I wouldn't be surrpised with the way you hate on NASCAR Racing if you had one of your cute Rushmore of plane crashes after what happened to Dale Jr (Thursday) up in Bristol because you would think that would be funny wouldn't you, (expletive)?

Have a nice day.

NOT!

BigBamaBacker

Thank you sir/madame. You made my week with this email. (And yes, that this did not make the hate mail should let a lot of you know the playground of misfit toys and misused grammar that my email has become.)

First BBB — which seems like the redneck version of the Big Baller Brand — I love the NOT ending. That is glorious. And perfect. In 1997.

Second, and this comes from a guy who makes a slew of mistakes and writes a whole lot of words a week. But, maybe mix in a couple of punctuation marks here and there. Just an idea, but you know us Auburn folks, we get set in our ways and persnickety.

Third, you are 100 percent right. David is the man.

As Nuke says when Crash clocks him, "Nice punch."
 

And you keep doing you, BBB.    

(As for the Rushmore of sports airplane crashes, well, sadly, you'd have to go Marshall, Thurman Munson, Payne Stewart and the Notre Dame crash that killed Knute Rockne, no? And thank goodness Dale Jr. and his family were not seriously hurt. Dale Jr. was the best all-around speaker all things considered in my opinion in the history of the Best of Preps banquets. Rushmore of Best of Preps speakers, you say? Uh, Phelps because he raised it to another level. Bill Curry delivered the best speech. Dale Jr. was amazing. Then I would probably go Chipper, but I have not been to the last few.)


As for this week's Rushmores

Rushmore of current Hollywood A-list celebs: OK, to be fair, we focused on the traditional 'Hollywood' and the traditional A-list actors and actresses, because if you go true celebs, this Forbes story has the The Rock 15th among the highest paid celebs of 2019 and he is the highest paid actor. Bigwig Numero Uno is Taylor Swift and that's hard to deny. No. 2? That's Kendall Jenner, also, hard to deny in terms of star power in this social media realm. But as for as Hollywood types, I think The Rock is on this Rushmore. Leo has to be there too, right? Jennifer Lawrence is pretty close, no? Then I'd likely go Bradley Cooper.

Rushmore of college football uniforms: Georgia is boss, and FSU as long as it doesn't go crazy — not too many tomahawks and do-dads — is super strong. Great helmets. Great schemes. My third would be USC's classic look, which edges UCLA's classic and clean look. Love Michigan's helmet, but that has become the most emulated helmet specifically and helmet in general across all of high school football. My fourth and final spot is  Auburn's white on white unis, which is my personal favorites. Hey, ownership has its privileges no? (That said, there are a slew out there — I really like Georgia Tech's uniform — that I like way more than most. And a slew of others that I dislike despite a slew of folks really liking them. Not a fan of LSU's helmet — sorry FV — and think Bama and Penn State are boring. Not a huge fan of Notre Dame's men of the cloth either. Wait, that didn't come out right.)

Rushmore of famous/infamous crime duos: Bonnie and Clyde, Butch and Sundance, Thelma and Louise, and from a song a listened to this morning, I'll go Pancho and Lefty.

Rushmore of iconic album covers: Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon; Bruce's Born in the USA; Nirvana's Nevermind; Beatles Abbey Road. Dang that was a tough one considering Elvis Presley did not make it. NWA Straight Outta Compton did not make it. Beastie Boys License to Ill did not make it. Saturday Night Fever, Sgt. Pepper's, no Zeppelin, noQueen, no Velvet Underground, no Bowie, no Biggie Smalls, man, this one was tough.

Hate mail

They weren't protesting their country, Gree. They were protesting inhumane and un-American conditions in their country you would be applauding if they were athletes say from China, Iran, Venezuela or some other country America considered a hostile nation. Why should America get a free pass on human rights violations? What better way to get the word out than on a world stage? In a sense, Gree, through their protest they were actually honoring the America that should be, the one they grew up believing it, through their protests, and not the present America that is.

OK, there's that

Jay, 

Why didn't you just say "send them back" like your idol trump says?  It's time like these that we need young people to protest.  My generation stopped the immoral war in Vietnam by protesting.  It's time for this generation to stop the hate and bullshit promulgated by your president. Standing for a piece of cloth doesn't make you a patriot.  If you're such a patriot why didn't you serve your country?  What was your excuse? Here's a good quote from Facebook about your column today: "Taking an issue with other people exerting their rights. Flag humping fake patriots that want to strip you of your right to not stand when you don't want to, and not sing a song if you don't want to, while exclaiming that we have the best freedoms, and "if you don't like it, leave" are kind of missing the point of freedom aren't they? Tell ya what. If YOU hate MY freedom so much, YOU leave." Go back to sports Greeson, you're embarrassing yourself. No awards on page A2 for you.  

Getting closer

Jay, do you even think about what your saying and how you are a hateful white racist? You need to quit doing what your doing and do something else.

Finally

I will never read another one of your hate-filled, racist columns. I hope you get fired.

Yep that will do it.

Have a good weekend friends.

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