You know, it's funny. We decided to put off looking at Dick Griffin's Fan-E-Mail Shenanigans (TM) for a while, and we felt so much better about the world.
Our heart rate evened out. Our blood pressure returned to somewhere vaguely close to normal. Things were good.
Of course, Dick's mailbag is something that we know have to face eventually, like taxes and changing our bedsheets. You can only put it off so long before the wrong people start to notice.
Anyways, on with the takedown.
This week scores surprisingly low on the butt kissing. There is a rather dull joke about being a "long-time-reader-first-time-writer" from someone in Fredericton (the town the Wit forgot), and another writer invited Dick to imagine himself as the GM. On the whole, there isn't the usual collection of writers exclaiming "I love you Richie!" and "Kiss my taint, Griff!" Maybe there's a Star editor who managed to intervene?
Even if the dittoheads were all busy getting soused on Lakeport, that wasn't going to stop Dicky G from stroking his greazy beard and letting fly with all sorts of self-aggrandizing nonsense.
On Gregg Zaun: Initially, Dick doesn't even answer Gregg Zaun question. (Which begs the question, why even bother with the questions, if this is really just another opportunity for Griffin-bore to wank off publicly?) Instead, he again invokes the signings of Ohka, Zambrano, and Thomson as some sort of stupendously monstrous mistake. This, in spite of the fact that the Jays did pretty much all they could to sign Gil Meche, and Lilly wasn't coming back here at any price. And morover, those signings didn't cripple the team's payroll, and were designed as low-risk, low reward moves.
OK, for real...about Gregg Zaun: When he comes around to it, Dick's whole point is that Zaun wasn't the Jays first choice, but then they screwed it up by not being nicer to Rod Barajas. His point that Zaun's skills might be diminishing is nothing particularly earth-shattering, but his assertion that the master plan for Curtis Thigpen was to turn him into the next Craig Biggio by switching to second is a vast overstatement of the facts. Sure, the Jays tried him out for a couple of games there, but then again, they had Reed Johnson take ground balls at second last year...you can't fault the organization for trying to assess all options.
Uncle Richard, tell us about "real" baseball: Griffin's assertion that the Angels are "cutting edge" for employing small ball gives the Anaheim brain trust way too much credit for what is likely a bit of a fluke. Last year, the Angels struggled to produce any runs, and they addressed this shortcoming by signing noted speedster Shea Hillenbrand. (Oh, and Sarge Junior, sure...because if you're going to enter the post-steroid era, you start with him.) But the truth is, no one foresaw the steep reduction in power that has occurred. A trending back to normal, maybe, but nothing like this.
Five year plans? Griff got no use for 'em. Which is interesting, because neither did J.P., no matter what some douche from Whitby who knows Paul Godfrey's son's college roommate's friend's dealer's ho's kid's kindgarten teacher has heard. It's a figment of your fixated imagination, Dick. Drop it, for the love of God.
The Dave Dombrowski Man-Crush? Do you suppose that Dick had this sort of wood for "Double-D" when he was losing 120+ games as Tigers GM? Dombrowski's Tigers, incidentally, are 2.5 games ahead of the Jays right now. Then again, Dombrowski used to work for the Expos...and hey, did you know that Tricky Dick worked for the Expos too?
Pitching from the stretch? You should probably know what that means if you're a baseball fan. Then again, if you're not a baseball fan, that probably explains why you read Richard Griffin.
"Proven Leader"? Sorry, wasn't this question intended for the Leafs mailbag? We love how the writer drops Dave Winfield's name as an example...I mean, if you're pulling names of great ballplayers out of your ass, why not Roberto Clemente, or Babe Fucking Ruth. Yeah...that's exactly what the Jays need!
Anyways, we're exhausted. Suffice to say, we slogged through, and we learned nothing. Another fine Wednesday, wasted away with the mailbag.