SCRATCH ONE OFF THE BUCKET LIST. THE EDDIE KRANEPOOL SOCIETY MEETS EDDIE KRANEPOOL!

My bucket list isn’t very long just few things I’d like to do before my ass burns in hell:

 

Capture Osama Bin Laden and put him on display at Astroland there by saving Coney Island.

 

Land a jetliner in the Hudson River (yeah I know that Sully guy did it already but it looked so cool on the video I’d just like to try it once)

 

Watch baseball highlights in a heart shaped bath tub with Hazel Mae

 

Go clothes shopping with Don Cherry 

 

Hit Mega-Millions and use the money to reopen CBGB and wear spandex and boa everyday and hang out with David Johansen.

 

Meet my favorite Mets player of all time Ed Kranepool

 

Well, scratch that last one of the list as yesterday my 44 year journey was complete as I finally met my Mr. Met, steady Eddie Kranepool. Oh I’ve come close a few other times. Once at a bank opening on 18th Ave in Brooklyn, Kranepool and Mets bullpen coach Joe Pignatano were at the grand opening signing autographed 8 X 10’s. When I arrived at the bank, Ed had already left but “Piggy” was there and not only gave me and my kids autographed pics but also found a few that Eddie had signed to give out later so needless to say the are prominently displayed at the World Headquarters of The Eddie Kranepool Society (a/k/a my basement) next to my Mr. Met bubble bath and my Ron Swoboda 12 oz tumbler from Sunoco.

 

A second time was at Keyspan Park when Ed was doing color commentary on a Brooklyn Cyclones game and I tried very hard to conceal my fanboy admiration so I could infiltrate up to the press box (this is how I get around Highlander Stadium like a Special Opps agent I go in watch the game and get out and none of the Highlander faithful know there is a spy amongst them) so when I received an e mail about yesterdays event I was as happy as Navin R Johnson (Steve Martin’s character in The Jerk) when he got his new phone book. I called right away and reserved my seat.

 

So now here I am bopping into Gallagher’s Restaurant yesterday and the first thing that I notice was the plethora of fat, bald middle aged guys in attendance (as opposed to moi as I may be bald and middle aged but I’m svelte <sticks out tongue>) and I thought here we are on the eve of the 40th anniversary of the 1969 World Champion team and the vast majority of the attendees were teenagers back then and for the next couple of hours we are all teenagers again. As I look around the bar I see Ron Swoboda holding court with a small group of businessmen (by the way I didn’t know what the dress code was for this event so I decided to gussie myself up real nice and wear a collar shirt over my orange Mets t-shirt that I got for filling out my 485th Bank of America Master Card application at Shea. That’s why I have more blankets than the Red Cross) I saw Emerson Boozer and shook his hand (which still has an ice pack on it from his grip) I acknowledged Art Shamsky (I’m sure you all read the NY Post this morning and I wish I hung around longer as I would have ran inference for Art when the ex came after him) and then as I made my around the bar there he was, Steady Eddie.

 

At first I felt a little intimidated to speak to him. When I told him I’m the guy who named his blog after him I didn’t know if he’d take it as the compliment I set it out to be or if he start screaming “You? YOU”RE THE GUY”? but thankfully it was the former. Krane seemed to get a kick out it and said he heard about it and asked me if I had a card with the website on it which of course I did, and then Ed gave me HIS BUSSINESS CARD!!!!.

 

I don’t know if it was fear of him being mad about the blog or just the anticipation of meeting him that my childhood was flashing before my eyes (visions of Ebingers Bakery, egg creams, The Sea Beach Line, The Worlds Fair, The Beatles on Ed Sullivan, my Mr. Met megaphone that I just ate popcorn out of, and cans of Rheingold the Orange and Blue aluminum shingles of early Shea, all set to the sound track of Jane Jarvis and her Thomas Organ) but I was nervous talking to Ed and he was just the opposite calm and relaxed, Steady Eddie. He got a laugh as I told him that he was and still is my favorite Mets player of all time because I was a left hand and played first base and not fleet of foot and went by the nickname “Kranepool” and how I had a Mets uniform with 7 on it and how I wish the Mets would retire that number since he still holds or is in the top ten in most Mets lifetime hitting categories. I tried not to ramble but I’m sure I did but he seemed to enjoy my carrying on.

 

One of the dangers in meeting someone who you grew up being a huge fan of is when you do get to meet them the experience is not what you had hoped, but I would like to thank Ed Kranepool for not disappointing me by being so gracious and making yesterday even better than I had hoped it would.

 

Now back to that bucket list. I wonder what Gretchen Mol is doing Saturday night?

 

 

   

 

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WILD THING, YOU MAKE ME SICK!

If I’m ESPN and a producer of their BASEBALL TONIGHT show I’d be sweating a bit that after just five days MLBN’ Hot Stove Shove has become must see TV for all baseball fans. I really like Harold Reynolds and ESPN made a big mistake letting him go. What’s the problem with a little grab ass in Bristol? Hell if I worked there I’d be chasing Rachel Nichols all around the campus. HR loves baseball and he loves talking baseball and it comes through the TV in something stronger than HD, PASSION.

 

Joe Magrane has the makings of a very strong game analyst. I always felt that he and Dewayne Staats while doing Rays games very vastly underrated. Victor Rojas runs a tight desk moving the discussions from chair to chair. Trenni Kusnierck will take time for me to warm up to because my girl Hazel Mae is the total package. And then there is Mitch Williams.

 

No good Phillie-ass kissing Mitch Williams. I can see where Williams is just going to piss me off all season with his Phillies loving ways. Last night HR, Joe Magrane and Wild Thing were discussing the New Years resolutions for the NL East teams. When it got to the Mets, Wild Thing wigged out big time with the same old Cheesesteak bullshit about Jose Reyes and his antics. Give props to HR for knocking Wild Thing down a peg while defending Jose, Jose, Jose. The voice of reason was Magrane who kind of poo-pooed the antics angle for the Collapse I & II and put the blame where we have been saying it should be in the clubhouse and the veteran leadership.

 

If that wasn’t enough for a Monday bonanza, none other than Scott Boras took a trip to Secaucus to plead his case for his millionaires in waiting. HR, questioned Boras on how he could be looking for #1 starter money for Kevin Lowe when he’s not an Ace? Boras did a little dance and jive and the best he could come with is the disgrace that is Barry Zito. If that’s his defense in getting Lowe the dough he wants, then Omar has them both by the cajones.

 

I wish I could get in side the head of Lastings Milledge and rearrange some of the furniture in there and toss out the bassinette and changing table and put some big boy stuff in there. Milledge is going to be challenged by the Nationals and Elijah Dukes for the Nats centerfield job and I would guess a spot on the DC 25 man roster. If he fails he’ll either be dealt or released. I have told kids that have played for me in leagues that just when you think you’re all that, remember there are 1,000 guys out there better than you and just because you have some talent but your attitude sucks will be the difference of making a team and being cut. You have to be one outstanding ball player (Manny Ramirez) to have a piss poor attitude to make in the big leagues. I’ve never met Milledge or dealt with him but from folks I know who have told me he has been a big dick head. Time for LMillz to man up and grow up and be a big leaguer, if not the Atlantic League ain’t so bad.

 

 Joe McDonald posts some pics of the dismantling of Shea. This is like watching a family member die a slow death just put us and Shea out of our misery already.

 

From a link at the BBTF site I found Tim Marchman’ new website so to Repoz and Marchman, thank you!

 

So J.C Romero went into the local GNC bought some kind of supplement, took it and is now banned from playing for the Phillies for 50 days. According to Romero, he called the Union and told them what he was taking and they thought it was fine. He spoke with the Phillies training staff and they found nothing wrong with the supplement either. The one place Romero didn’t go for guidance was the Hot Line that is set up by MLB that is the be all end all of what’s approved and disapproved under the new and tougher baseball drug code. This is why when you have a tooth ache you don’t go to the chiropractor.   First, Mets-killer Pat Burrell goes to Tampa and now Romero in lock up maybe the Philly worm is turning?

 

Saw this on the Sox & Dawgs site. There is a pettion out there to get Ted Williams’ likeness on a postage stamp. Go there and sign it as if there ever were a real American hero it’s the Splendid Splinter and he should be honored on a stamp.

 

Don’t forget to make a not to join me and Joe McDonald on Thursday at 9PM EST for Pro Baseball Central on Blog Talk Radio.

  

 

 

 

 

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2 MORE DAYS THEN NO MORE CHRISTMAS MUSIC HUUUURRRAAYYYY!

It’s not that I don’t like Christmas, I do but not as much as Thanksgiving as the Pilgrims are my heroes because any day I can sit home eat, drink  and watch sports with my pants unbuttoned is a damn good day. But Christmas music makes my ears bleed. Plus if my in-laws give me pajamas again this year I’m going to show them EXACTLY what I sleep in.

Early day today and tonight we have Pro Central Baseball at 9PM so I hope you will join Joe McDonald and I for that. I have a nice bottle of Manhattan Special chilling in the fridge and anyone who knows the effects of Manhattan Special knows it makes Red Bull like Kool Aid.

According to this site (grain of salt required) Mark Teixeira will sign with the Boston Red Sox for 8yr/$170 mil. Hopefully this is true as it not only gets the Teixeira minutia off the back page but it also means the Red Sox are not a player for Derek Lowe and opens up the Mets as a Lowe suitor.

Thanks to Neil Best and his Watchdog site as he saved me a phone call to DirecTV customer service to find out what channel the MLB Network will be on. Also thanks for the pic of my darling Hazel Mae.   

More tonight on Pro Baseball Central but last but not least Happy Birthday to Jerry Koosman and to our  Gangsta’ In Charge Jerry Manuel.

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IT’S ALL ABOUT THE PITCHING

If you missed last night’s edition of Pro Baseball Central you missed a spirited discussion by Joe McDonald and I over the issued of re-signing Oliver Perez (Joe’s guy) over signing Derek Lowe (my guy) after going back and forth on the issued Joe played the Tom Glavine card that had me reassessing my opinion. We also looked at the Skill Sets finances and spoke about J J Putz. So check out the podcast for more entertaining baseball talk.

 

Greg Prince at Faith and Fear in Flushing has been checking out a sneak preview of the MLB Network which goes live Jan 1. From reading the site there looks to be some fine programming on the channel plus the WBC and there will be live games during the season and the lovely Hazel Mae in studio.

 

Story in NEWSDAY today about the unknown of the nation rescission and its effect on the Mets and Highlanders and are they rescission proof? Andrew Zimbalist the noted economist believes both teams are in a dangerous territory and I agree as what fuels both teams are the high rollers on Wall St who are either broke or ready to be indicated. The story also looks at the real baseball fans like us who work hard and like to spend our discretionary funds on our favorite baseball team but the Mets have to be very careful as not to price out the hard core workingman Mets fan as that and not the Madoff scam will be the ruinations of the franchise.

 

On this day in Mets history, remember 1986 World Series Game 6 parachutist Michael Sergio? He was sentenced to 100 hours of community service and fined $500 for his stunt. Try that today and I’m sure you’d get a stiffer sentence.

 

Metsblog has a breakdown on the stories of the pitchers who the Mets have interest in. From the looks of things Omar’s pitching wish list looks like this:

 

  1. Derek Lowe
  2. Ollie Perez
  3. Randy Wolf (who needs to get over his 3yr/$30mil asking price)
  4. Tim Redding
  5. An assortment of non-tender, rehabbing stumblebums.

 

I’m on the Derek Lowe bandwagon with his sinking fastball and slider that fits the Mets need perfectly. He is durable and consistency and even at 36 years old I’d offer him 3 yrs/$50 mil with an option on a 4th

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