Monday, June 25, 2007

Summer Solstice Festival, Comparing Mustached Brewers to Non-Mustached Brewers, and more Showtime on Demand

On Saturday night, former roomie B and I met J&S at the East Side Summer Solstice Music Festival. It's basically a block party on North Ave. between Oakland and Farwell, on the "fashionable" east side. B was a bachelor for the weekend because the missus was in DC. I'm a big fan of these block party type festivals. I know Summerfest is the "Big Gig" around here, but I actually prefer these smaller down-town festivals. I think what I really enjoy more than anything on the planet is drinking beer outside. Call me easy to please, but if it's a nice night and I'm outside with a cold beer, I'm a happy man. We mostly just hung around, listened to some bands, watched some guy juggle stuff that was on fire, and listened to J's fiance tell me that I'm sexist. Good times were had by all.

I went in to the office during the day on Saturday. One of my bosses, who is a big Brewer fan, was there as well. We got to talking about how the current Crew would stack up against the '82 squad.

[By the way, is anyone else around here getting a little sick of this 25th anniversary of the 1982 AL Champion Brewers thing? It's everywhere. Vintage commercials, promo DVDs, bobblehead dolls of the '82 squad... I mean, it was a great team and all, but we LOST the '82 World Series for Chrisake. I realize that this is all the success the Milwaukee Brewers ever had [so far], and that it's not as much about the record as it is about how the mustached personality of the Crew reflected the beer-bellied culture of the city, but let's start concentrating on this year's team.]

So the boss was pretty sure that the '82 squad and their mustaches were measurably better than the 2007 Crew. He noted that they hit an insane amount of home runs. I replied that we've hit more dingers than all but one other team in baseball right now and we're in the National League. He mentioned the rotation anchored by filthy mustached pitchers Vuckavich and Caldwell. I replied that we have like 8 guys on our team that would start for most teams in baseball, and a solid ace in Sheets. He mentioned mustached reliever Rollie Fingers. I responded that numbers-wise, Cordero is better. He mentioned that 82 defense, with Yount at Shortstop and Molitor at second. I... had to concede that one.

Anyway, I decided to consult the ol' baseball almanac to see how the offense on the current roster stacks up against the 82 squad. To begin with, as I'm writing this, the Crew is 43-32. The '82 squad was 42-32-1 after 75 games. So that's slightly better. I just looked at offensive stats for the top 8 starters for both teams since the 82 team was in the American League and it doesn't seem fair to compare a pitcher-less offense to one with a pitcher.

The Mustached squad of Ted Simmons, Cecil Cooper, Jim Gantner, Paul Molitor [the only non-mustached player on the team, presumably clean-shaven to facilitate his cocaine use], Robin Yount, Ben Oglivie, Gorman Thomas and Charlie Moore hit for an average of 282, an OBP of 337, SLG of 462, and 186 dingers.

The non-mustached squad of Johnny Estrada, Prince Fielder, Rickie Weeks, Ryan Braun, JJ Hardy, Geoff Jenkins, Billy Hall and Corey Hart are currently hitting for a 288 average, a 353 OBP, 514 SLG and are on pace to hit 196 dingers.

I'm no mathematician, but this strikes me as a better offense. I should note that, due to my laziness, Ryan Braun's projected home runs in this model are only 11 because I used the same multiplier I did for the rest of the team even though he's hit 5 in like just 23 games rather than in the 75 games or whatever. I think, realistically, he could hit 20 or 25. It's also interesting to note that the average age on this team is like thirteen or something.

I've been watching a lot of Showtime On Demand lately because [the pricks at] Time Warner Cable gave me six months free. I just watched Season 1 of Dexter. That is one messed up television program. The plot of the show is that the dude from Six Feet Under is a serial killer, but as a child, his step father realized he was fucked up and sort of taught him how to manage his little problem. So Dexter lives by this "Code of Harry" under which he kills people, but he only kills killers. He works as a forensics analyst specializing in "blood spatter analysis" (is that a real job?) for the Miami police. It's a pretty good show. From the very get-go, I told myself "there is no way they can make me like this character." But they did. Which kind of freaks me out. There are some very serious plausibility issues going on in the show, but overall, it's entertaining and different. And the Six Feet Under dude plays "creepy" very very well.


Anonymous said...

Yes, the lesser known festivals do allow for drinking Miller Light out of plastic bottles on the street, as opposed to glass bottles of Miller Light in the bars. They are fun, and you don't feel like you were a failure for having not a totally awesome time, like I do when I have an OK time at Summerfest.

However, I think that these festivals should be upgraded into brewery sponsored mini-affairs, not unlike those found in my ancestoral father land. There, breweries will host bands or other entertainment in order to entice citizens (Buergers) to drink that brewery's beer, which is of course nearby. And you drink it out of huge glass mugs, which you pay a deposit for, of course, but you get it back when you return the mug.

There are enough breweries in Milwaukee, or at least nearby. I think that would be really worthwile to do.

Amanda Lee! said...

Hahaaha, now you have an interesting anecdote to add the next time you're discussion moustachioed athletes!

P.S. Moustaches are usually pretty gross. I bet the reason why the current Brewers are better is entirely aerodynamics and aesthetics! But consider the source of this opinion!

Dan said...

-Yes, the brew-festivals you describe sound awesome. If your fatherland is anything like it is portrayed in the documentary film "beerfest" it is a truly wonderful place.

-Yes, mustaches are gross, but there's something awesome about the mustached squad from '82. I think that the fact that they were all dirty guys with biker mustaches made them a very representative team for the city of Milwaukee. I think that the current team, or at least Derrick Turnbow, should grow some facial hair.

Anonymous said...

The first time I saw Turbnbow bound out from the Bull Pen, which was also my first Brewer's game, his movement and shaggy-ness reminded me of like a Mule Deer or a Mountain Ram. He might as well get more hair, it would look natural.