Happy 27th Birthday Dexter Fowler !

Today is CLOLorado Rockies CF Dexter Fowler’s 27th birthday. He is my favorite player. Let’s celebrate.

Fowler is a switch hitting outfielder with plenty of range and a whole lot of offensive potential. He walks a lot, strikes out a lot, and has a decently attractive wife.  He’s also one of the more interesting players in baseball to watch off the field. This has been a very limited scouting report on Dexter Fowler. More importantly, here are some of my favorite pictures of Dexter Fowler:

Here are .gifs of Dexter Fowler doing the Cat Daddy and the Dougie:

PART 3: The Best of International Baseball Nomenclature

Click here for Part 2.

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COUNTRY: Panama

No available image online (he probably doesn’t exist)

Player: RHP Euclides Bethancour

ERMAHGERD Translation: ERCLERDERS BERTHERNCER

CFB Name: Youk Lids Beth Anchor

Name Unscrambled: Seduce Centaur

Player: IF Ashley Ponce

ERMAHGERD Translation: ERSHLER PERNC

CFB Name: A Sheep Once

Name Unscrambled: Leash Cone

Player: OF Jahdiel Santamaria

ERMAHGERD Translation: JERDERL SERNTERMAHRER

CFB Name: Chawed Hell Santa Mario

Name Unscrambled: Jailed Samaritan

***

COUNTRY: The Philippines

Player: IF Leighton Pangilinan

ERMAHGERD Translation: LERGHTERN PINERLERNERN

CFB Name: Late On Pan Jillian

Name Unscrambled: Thong Planning

Player: OF Saxon Omandac

ERMAHGERD Translation: SERXERN ERMAHNDERC

CFB Name: Sex On On My Dick

Name Unscrambled: Ox Nomad

Player: OF Jonash Ponce

ERMAHGERD Translation: JERNERSH PERNC

CFB Name: Joe Nash Ponds

Name Unscrambled: Johns ? Nope

***

COUNTRY: South Africa

Player: IF Gift Ngoepe

ERMAHGERD Translation: GERFT NGERP

CFB Name: .gif Nick Opi

Name Unscrambled: Fig Pong

alessio

Player: OF Alessio Angelucci

ERMAHGERD Translation: ERLERSER INERLERC

CFB Name: Alex Theo An Gel Deucy

Name Unscrambled: Seals Angelic

Player: OF Faizel Moosa

ERMAHGERD Translation: FERZERL MAHS

CFB Name: Fay Sell Moose Ah

Name Unscrambled: Fail Moo

***

COUNTRY: Thailand (if you actually expected pictures…you’re crazy. Here’s proof we’re not making these up).

Player: IF Jittipong Chong-On

ERMAHGERD Translation: JERTERPIN CHINERN

CFB Name: Titty Pong Thong On

Name Unscrambled: Tiptoing Congo

Player: IF Paramutt Meepakdee

ERMAHGERD Translation: PERERMAHT MAHPERKDER

CFB Name: Pair A Mutt Me Pack D

Name Unscrambled: Trauma Peaked

Player: IF Sanyalak Pitpatpinyo

ERMAHGERD Translation: SERNERLERK PERTPERTPERNER

CFB Name: Sand Ya’ll Yak Pit Pat Pin Yo

Name Unscrambled: Alaska Pinto

***

Baseball From the Holy Land

Israel is famous for many things. Hills, history, hummus, horrible drivers; the list goes on and on. Its past is littered with fascinating events that have helped shape human history. Israel has a lot to offer to a nice young Jewish boy like myself. It’s too bad baseball is not one of them.

I’m in this country for 3 months. Opening day will come and go without me. Some bad team will get off to a hot start and I won’t particularly care. Someone will do something insane with a glove or a bat or a microphone and it will fly right by my eyes.

Do I miss it? Of course. Do I wish I could sit on my couch and watch MLB Network until my brain turns to soup? Yes. But there’s nothing I can do now except watch highlights on my laptop while my roommates snore next to me.

Only now, after being forcefully divorced from baseball, have I come to realize just how much I love it. As I tour this beautiful country and soak in its natural beauty, baseball still dominates my mind. “Check out that hill” someone will say. “Will Aaron Hill be able to repeat his absurd 2012?” is what my mind wanders to. Today I learned about the father of modern Kabbalah, Rabbi Isaac Loria. Did anyone in the room know who Jeffrey Loria is? Probably not. But I giggled to myself anyway.

I’ll fly home on May 21st having had a life-changing experience. It’s comforting to know that when I return, baseball will be there with opens arms waiting to accept my sorry ass back.

Happy 32nd Birthday Bobby Jenks !

Yesterday, Pi Day, was free agent relief pitcher Bobby Jenks’ 32nd birthday. I don’t have very much to say because he’s fat and probably won’t pitch again in the majors, but I wanna celebrate anyway. Also,  I’ll never forget his dominance in the 2005 World Series.

Here are some of my favorite pictures of Bobby Jenks:

Here is a .gif of Bobby Jenks doing a PSA about children’s safety:

PART 2: The Best of International Baseball Nomenclature

Click here for Part 1.

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COUNTRY: Great Britain

estevenson

Player: RHP Estevenson Encarnacion

ERMAHGERD Translation: ERSTERVERNSERN ERNCERNERCERN

CFB Name: Teste Van Zone Acorn A Scion

Name Unscrambled: Oneness Cocaine

Player: IF Aeden McQuery

ERMAHGERD Translation: ERDERN MCQERER

CFB Name: Aiding McKiwi

Name Unscrambled: Dean Mercy

Player: OF Bradley Marcelino

ERMAHGERD Translation: BRERDLER MAHRCERLERN

CFB Name: Bread Lemur Ceiling O’

Name Unscrambled: Dryable Cornmeal

***

COUNTRY: Israel

Player: RHP Shlomo Lipetz

ERMAHGERD Translation: SHLERM LERPERTZ

CFB Name: Slow Mole Lip Pets

Name Unscrambled: Homo Pile

Player: C Nick Rickles

ERMAHGERD Translation: NERCK RERCKLERS

CFB Name: Nig Riggles

Name Unscrambled: Ink Lickers

Player: OF Robbie Widlansky

ERMAHGERD Translation: RERBER WERDLERNSKER

CFB Name: Row Bee Wide Land Ski

Name Unscrambled: Bribe Swankily

***

COUNTRY: New Zealand

Player: C Beau Bishop

ERMAHGERD Translation: BER BERSHERP

CFB Name: Bob I Shop

Name Unscrambled: Be Posh

Player: IF Boss Moanaroa

ERMAHGERD Translation: BERS MAHNERER

CFB Name: Bozemon Arrow

Name Unscrambled: Sob Moron

Player: IF Daniel Lamb-Hunt

ERMAHGERD Translation: DERNERL LERMB-HERNT

CFB Name: Daniella Munt

Name Unscrambled: Nailed Blam-Hut

***

COUNTRY: Nicaragua

uber paz

Player: RHP Uber Paz

ERMAHGERD Translation: ERBER PERZ

CFB Name: You Burp As

Name Unscrambled: Rub Zap

Player: IF Ofilio Castro

ERMAHGERD Translation: ERFERLER CERSTR

CFB Name: Awful Leo Cats Row

Name Unscrambled: Fool Tacos

Player: IF Cheslor Cuthbert

ERMAHGERD Translation: CHERSLER CERTHBERT

CFB Name: Chest Lork Us Bert

Name Unscrambled: Horse Butcher

***

Happy 33rd Birthday Dan Uggla !

Atlanta #BARVES second baseman Dan Uggla turns 33 today. He is the only second baseman ever to hit at least 3o home runs in five consecutive seasons, and HIS NAME IS DAN UGGLA.

Uggla is one of my personal favorite players, combining below-average defense, gargantuan chaw, and youth sized jerseys to create a consistent dose of baseball awesomeness. Here are some of my favorite pictures of Dan Uggla:

Here is a .gif of Dan Uggla drying his hair:

Happy Birthday, Dan.

PART 1: The Best of International Baseball Nomenclature

If you couldn’t already tell, we love names here at Cespedes Family Barbecue. They’re fun, fascinating and provide us with far more material than you could ever imagine. When the rosters for this year’s World Baseball Classic were released, it was obvious we were gonna see some awesome names from around the globe. We were not disappointed. This six part series will take a look at the best of the best of the best. And no, we aren’t making any of these up. Enjoy !

***

COUNTRY: Colombia

Player: IF Iggy Suarez

ERMAHGERD Translation: ERGER SERERZ

CFB Name: Eh, Geese War Is

Name Unscrambled: Gig Arse

Player: IF Giovanny Urshela

ERMAHGERD Translation: GERVERNER ERSHERL

CFB Name: Gio Van Knee Hershey La

Name Unscrambled: Agony Haulers

Player: OF Steve Brown

ERMAHGERD Translation: STERV BRERN

CFB Name: Steve Brown

Name Unscrambled: Vest Born

***

COUNTRY: Czech Republic

Player: RHP Boris Bokaj

ERMAHGERD Translation: BERERS BERKERJ

CFB Name: Bores Bo Cage

Name Unscrambled: Ribs Job

Player: OF Martin Drong

ERMAHGERD Translation: MAHRTERN DRIN

CFB Name: Mar Tender Wrong

Name Unscrambled: Train Dong

Player: IF Petr Cech

ERMAHGERD Translation: PERTR CERCH

CFB Name: Pee Turdcheck

Name Unscrambled: Pet He

***

COUNTRY: France

Player: RHP Leonel Cespedes (I mean come on, obviously)

ERMAHGERD Translation: LERNERL CERSPERDERS

CFB Name: Lee Own Else Speed Is

Name Unscrambled: Lone Secedes

Player: RHP Eloi Secleppe

ERMAHGERD Translation: ERLER SERCLERP

CFB Name: L. Wah Sea Clap Ay

Name Unscrambled: Oil Peels

Player: IF Florian Peyrichou

ERMAHGERD Translation: FLERERN PERERCHER

CFB Name: Flo Rida Pikachu

Name Unscrambled: Final Euphoric

***

COUNTRY: Germany

Player: LHP Enorbel Marquez

ERMAHGERD Translation: ERNERBERL MAHRQERZ

CFB Name: E. Normal Mark Is

Name Unscrambled: Noble Azure

Player: IF Maximilian Boldt

ERMAHGERD Translation: MAHXERMAHLERN BERLDT

CFB Name: Maximal Ian Bolt

Name Unscrambled: Mailman Old

Player: IF Jendrick Speer

ERMAHGERD Translation: JERNDRERCK SPER

CFB Name: Gender Ick Sphere

Name Unscrambled: Inked Pees

***

The Third World Baseball Classic: A Preview/Introduction

TWBC

The World Baseball Classic is under way. Players from all around the world have come together in empty stadiums to engage in the pleasures of sport. But while the fun and games are going on, there is a more important issue to address. You see, this WBC has created some confusion in regards to the title. It has been confused with another, more competitive, international baseball tournament; the Third World Baseball Classic.

Every year, the TWBC invites underdeveloped countries to compete for the title of “Best Underprivileged Baseball Squadron”. While the quality of baseball is significantly lower than that of the WBC, the TWBC has story lines that would make Putin cry. Players born without the ability to see, hear, or even play baseball thrive on an international stage in front of millions.

What makes the TWBC really unique is the resourcefulness present among the organizers. Instead of bats; teams use pipes and other assorted metal scraps lying around their respective dilapidated cities. Instead of real rubber bases, lines are drawn in the dirt to symbolize where bases would be. This causes an understandable number of delays after slides. Another charming quality of the TWBC is that the 7th inning stretch is actually the entire game because none of the stadiums have comfortable seats.

Spread the word about this tournament. While the World Baseball Classic is full of awesome talent and national pride, this month’s real gem is the Third World Baseball Classic which shines as a beacon for the underdeveloped across the world.

***

Pool A: Games played in Mogadishu Stadium — Mogadishu, Somalia

  • Iraq
  • Trinidad
  • Somalia
  • Yemen

Somalia’s militia/middle infielders

Favorites: As a perennial poverty powerhouse playing on its home turf, Somalia has to be the head honcho in this pool. Whether or not the Trinidadian team can find a ride to Mogadishu will dictate whether or not they get out of this group.

Stadium Preview: Mogadishu Stadium

It’s not exactly in the best condition, and it’s a bit unclear where the bullpens, dugouts, bases, field, fences and pretty much everything will be. The photo on the right seems to indicate a pitcher’s park, with straightaway center field roughly about 500 feet away from home plate. As if that wasn’t enough, the half demolished press box is clearly in the hitter’s sight lines. And we know what effect that kind of thing has.The photo on the left indicates a wildlife presence, which most park factors don’t account for. Assuming the teams bring their automatic weapons, this shouldn’t be much of an issue. I’m curious to see how the slick Iraqi infielders handle grounders on this rugged surface. The outfielders should be in a fairly normal alignment, except of course when facing the strangely 100% left-handed Yemen squad. Very excited to see some baseball here.

***

Pool B: Games played in National Sports Stadium — Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia

  • Mongolia
  • Afghanistan
  • Tanzania
  • Papa New Guinea

Genghis Khan: Mongolia’s Only Hall of Famer

Favorites: Afghanistan has dominated international competition since 2001, but have a weaker team this go round. That being said, they should get out of a relatively weak group. Tourney dark horse Mongolia should also be competitive. Not many people know about this team, who haven’t won anything significant since the 14th century.

Stadium Preview: National Sports Stadium

monglolia

The picture on the left is a pretty clear shot of this beautiful facility. The picture on the right is a larger scale version of the majority of the results when you Google Image “National Sports Stadium Mongolia”. No, seriously. Anyway, this looks to be a more neutral park, with fairly deep gaps but short down the lines. These teams are much more fortunate to be playing on a field with actual grass and even in front of a few fans. Much like Oakland, there is plenty of foul territory. This should give the defensive wizard playing catcher for Team Tanzania a considerable advantage. I expect some low scoring affairs.

***

Pool C: Games played in the fields surrounding Osama Bin Laden’s Compound — Abbottabad, Pakistan

  • Pakistan
  • Congo
  • Sierra Leone
  • Haiti

Home-field Advantage Might Not Be Enough for Pakistan

Favorites: The Haitian team has true star potential. They left home on a raft two years ago to save travel costs and should arrive in Pakistan this week. Despite a strong home-field advantage, the Pakistanis won’t get out of this tough group whose last spot will go to whichever poor African country is in the news at that particular time.

Stadium Preview: Garden Outside Bin Laden’s Crib

This is the Coors Field of the TWBC; the offenses could really get going here. If the Haitian team’s pull hitters can start roping some line drives into the cracks of the wall and into the compound, we will most likely be seeing some inside-the-park home run records, as the compound is obviously completely off limits. It’s unclear if the men sitting against the wall in the distance are where the bullpen will be, but if it is, this might be a factor. The sheer distance that a reliever will have to run to get to the mound could have a huge effect, especially when we have no idea where the mound even is. It’s certainly a short fence, which should play well for Team Sierra Leone, who is notorious for their fly ball rate. This will be a very interesting pool to follow. I’m sticking with Haiti.

***

Pool D: Games played in Tropicana Field – Tampa, Florida

  • Madagascar
  • Ethiopia
  • Antarctica Scientific Research Base
  • Bangladesh

Bangladesh: A Home For Color Blind Japanese People

Favorites: Stocked with Americans, the Antarctic research team should be a good bet to make it out of this group.  Madagascar, another island team with travel problems, might have too much to overcome in this pool. The Ethiopian team has historically been weak because they approach baseball like food so they just sit down and play with the dirt the whole time. Also, Bangladesh.

Stadium Preview: Tropicana Field

Simply the worst of the worst. On the totem pole of disastrous baseball fields, this is clearly at the bottom. These teams will struggle to maintain their enthusiasm for the event, but hopefully they can get through it. The abysmal lighting, the horrendous roof…the artificial turf…these four unlucky teams just wish they were in Pool A, playing in the friendly confines  of Mogadishu Stadium.

***

#CFB

Walk-Up Music, Part 5: The NL Central

While there are a seemingly unlimited number of ways to experience the game of baseball through social media from the comfort of your own home, there are a few things that you can only truly get by attending a game. One of these, is the walk-up music chosen by the players of the home team. I’ve recently been exposed to the fact that many of the walk-up songs for specific players are available online on each team’s respective site. This is fantastic news for those of us who aren’t so lucky as to visit every MLB park and hear each player’s music. Here at CFB I’m gonna take a look at some of the highlights of this rather awful collection of music that MLB players have decided represent them/pump them up/introduce them best.

(You can find the collection of music by going to a team’s website and looking under the “FANS” tab for a section called “Ballpark Music” or something similar to it.)

Chicago Cubs:

cubs team.

Unlike some of the teams that don’t even bother to put their music up at all, the Cubs have decided to list these three players and these three players only. Two of them are recent acquisitions. Anthony Recker was recently designated for assignment and was claimed by the Mets. I understand the Cubs want to keep their century long traditions and old-time feel for both their ballpark and their team, but Theo should probably get this shit together so we can know once and for all what Luis Valbuena‘s walk-up music is.

Cincinnati Reds:

todd frazier

The name Todd Frazier alone sounds like some guy from Sinatra’s time, but the fact that he needed two different Sinatra songs, both of which include flying in it, has to make me question how old he really is and if he is actually from this time period. You also have to wonder what percentage of his teammates have even heard of Mr. Sinatra. For example,

manny burriss

How in the world Manny Burriss earned himself four different walk-up songs, I have no clue. But it’s the reality, and I love it. Favorite Burriss stat: He hasn’t hit a ball over an outfielder’s head in the majors since May 2009. Couldn’t possibly make that up.

shin soo choo

Yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes and yes. Duh.

Milwaukee Brewers:

aoki

I’m gonna assume this is the first song Aoki heard in the Milwaukee airport when he arrived from Japan in early 2012. This is unfortunate, as Aoki seems like the type to choose something a bit weirder. On the other hand, “Right Round” could be referring to Aoki after this swing.

gorzelanny

Chalk another one up in the “well duh” category. It’s such an innocent yet quietly tortured face… “There’s a crazy man that’s creeping outside my door/ I live on the corner of Grey Street and the end of the world”… aw Tom Gorzelenny :(

fiers

This is the Theme From “Saw”. Fiers clearly does not care at all for the young children just wanting to attend a nice baseball game with their ol’ man or come to see Ryan Braun play. He wants to Scare The Shit Out Of You. And then he throws his fastball at 87 MPH and all fear instilled by this haunting music is flushed right down the toilet. Nice try, Michael Fiers. It takes more than out-of-place music from horror movies to intimidate batters.

Pittsburgh Pirates:

josh harrison

I’m like 74% sure that all three of these songs, which are strangely listed without an artist, are just some not-so-elaborate attempt to promote Harrison’s secret side life as an aspiring rapper. I’m assuming this is because he realized he has close to no shot to start on this team any time soon. I respect it.

gaby sanchez

This was Bubba Sparxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx’s first hit song before dropping to the lyrical standards of “booty booty booty booty”. I’m not entirely sure what this says about Gaby Sanchez’ taste in music, other than that he probably just wants you to know he likes Bubba Sparxxx for something other than Ms. New Booty. Sounds like insecurity to me.

travis snider

Brief scouting report from when Snider was a nineTEEN year old in Low-A. “Snider is one of the top hitting prospects in baseball. He has a very patient approach, plus power to all fields, and hits lefties and righties with equal effectiveness–projecting for legitimate MVP-level numbers down the road. He’s a hard worker with great makeup who has survived personal adversity and appreciates where he is.” All of the sadface :(

St. Louis Cardinals:

adron chambers

You Better Believe It, This Is The Life that Adron Chambers always dreamed of. Perennial fifth outfielder in probably the best organization in baseball. Enjoy it, Adron Chambers. His name sounds like a place someone would put toxic materials. “This looks awfully dangerous Professor…” “There’s only one safe place we can put that substance…in the Adron Chambers.”

jason motte

Jason Motte actually eats Brain Stew every morning when he’s done digesting his Fibula Soup. Seriously.

steven hill

I like to think I know a lot of players…but I’m pretty sure this average mid-western guy just showed up at Cardinals photo day and lied to the right people. Here is the first verse of “Got My Country On”, to help prove my theory:

“I worked all week to make me some money,
Bring it back to mama bet she’d give me some honey, yeah
Cashed my check got a pocket of dollars
Loosenin’ the buttons on my blue-collar, yeah.”

Yeah. No way this guy is a professional baseball player.

Part 4: ARE THEY RELATED ?!?!?!?!?!?!?

This is what baseball is like in Japan.

Part 1.

Part 2.

Part 3.

MARK AND MR. ROGERS

Not gonna lie, I don’t know very much about Brewers pitcher Mark Rogers other than that he tested positive twice for DRUGZ and was suspended for 25 games in 2011. Wikipedia also tells me he was drafted 5th overall in 2004, one pick after the beautiful Jeff Niemann. It’s hard to imagine anyone even distantly related to the unbearably nice Mr. Rogers breaking any sort of rule in any situation, so I’m gonna put this one pretty low.

% CHANCE THEY’RE RELATED: 12%

STARLIN AND FIDEL CASTRO

While Starlin remains incredibly young and most likely unable to grow the type of facial hair that Fidel possesses, there are definite similarities here. It’s no coincidence that that helmet that Starlin wears every year has the letter C on it (this is a reference to the word/name Cuba, which happens to be Fidel’s area of expertise (you have to really dig deep to see this stuff)). Fidel is/was not one to care about what is/was going on in the world around him, much like our favorite Chicago “shortstop” in this little sequence of events. It’s far from certain, but I’m liking this match.

% CHANCE THEY’RE RELATED: 32%

IAN AND MARTHA STEWART

If we’re judging this based on their arm-crossing techniques, there’s a legitimate chance that these two are long lost twins. Unfortunately, there are other factors in play. Also many would notice that the fingers on Martha’s left hand rest slightly on her right bicep. Ian wouldn’t stand for that shit, because he needs to hide his glove. While Martha has struggled to stay out of legal trouble, she’s climbed her way back to a personal net worth of an astounding $638 MILLION. This number is suspiciously close to Ian’s OPS from last year for the dreadful Cubs: .633. Did you know Martha Stewart used to babysit for Mickey Mantle’s kids? BASEBALL CONNECTION MAKES ALL OTHER POINTS INVALID.

% CHANCE THEY’RE RELATED: 61%