Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Weddings, KC's Tommy Boy, Jeter & Thunder-Upton

My brother got married on Saturday. It was just an all-around great day. The ceremony, the people, the weather, the reception; outstanding stuff. It seems a little surreal for me when my brother or a close friend gets married, but maybe I'm getting used to it. Plus my brother and Tiffany make a great couple. Great reception, too. I survived another toast.

One aside on wedding receptions, I sometimes find it odd how passionate a lot of people are about whether or not there is alcohol at a reception, and whether or not it is free. This goes both ways, both pro and con. I would imagine families watching the televised military draft during the Vietnam War had more reserved reactions than some people upon learning they won't be rewarded with free booze for going to a wedding reception. No booze?!? I'm not coming! ... A CASH bar?!? Outrage! ... They're having alcohol at it?!? Sinners! ... Basically, here's my point: It's not about you. Whether the couple is providing a Mad Men-esque amount of alcohol or simply serving tap water, it's not you call. It doesn't matter what you want. Just go support the couple. (And this isn't a stone-casting lecture; I'll freely admit I can be a complainer. The text of my tuxedo-shoe complaints would be longer than this blog post. Just consider this a reminder for all of us to take the focus off ourselves on others' special day.)

"Tommy Boy" in charge of the Royals?:
The Royals' ownership might still have a nagging cheapness problem. It wouldn't have broken anyone's bank to sign Derek Lowe or Edwin Jackson, starting pitching Kansas City desperately needs, but they didn't. I'm thinking any movement built on youth and developing talent from within needs to be supplemented with at least a few modest free agent acquisitions. (Update: after tonight's shellacking/awful starting pitching, the Royals are 6-16.)

But there may be another issue with the team's ownership. Owner and CEO David Glass made his fortune with Wal-Mart. His biggest trick may have been simply cutting costs more and more, but he is clearly a successful businessman. But now he is in his 76 and reportedly spends most of his time in Arkansas. He installed his son, Dan, as the team's President. The dad made the money with his business savvy, and now the son is put in an important position. Sports radio people in Kansas City once referred to Dan Glass as "Tommy Boy," the in-over-his-head lout with the rich dad. I also heard one of these sports radio people (who has great sources) say today that people in the Royals organization sometimes refer to Dan Glass as Tommy Boy in private conversations. I like to think G.M. Dayton Moore is making the bulk of the biggest decisions, but surely Dan Glass has an impact on this franchise, one way or another. And if his own employees are calling him Tommy Boy, well that can't be good.

Jeter and hits records:
In his poignant poem, "The Wasteland," T.S. Eliot wrote, "April is the cruelest month," meaning nature gets renewed and fresh and young again, but people only get older each year. (But, I'd add, we do get more memories and experiences each year.) And yet here is Derek Jeter, 37, getting more hits this April than in any April of his storied career.

I think it's still a long-shot for Jeter to catch Pete Rose for the all-time hits record (4,256), but I think he can go very high on the hits list. As of 8:38 p.m. central time, counting his three hits so far tonight, Jeter has 3,128 hits. He is still 1,128 hits behind Rose. Jeter stays in great shape, always hustles to first, and gets tons of at-bats atop the Yankees' mighty lineup. If he plays a few years into his 40s, it could happen, but still a long ways to go.

However, I could really see him making a run at Hank Aaron's record of the most hits by a righthanded batter (3,771). Jeter is 643 hits behind Aaron, which obviously feels more attainable. Jeter is signed with the Yankees through 2013, with a player option for 2014. If he plays in 2015, when he'll turn 41 in June, he could maybe pass Aaron that year. And as you may know, quite a few righthanded people have played this game of baseball. I understand why a lot of people root against the Yankees, but Jeter is one Yankee who seems easy to root for (along with the Great Rivera).

As a reward for any brave souls who have made it to the end of this post, here's a funny video about the Thunder's Kevin Durant (and some other player I recall having oddly heated discussions about) taking Kate Upton to work. You may have heard of Kate. You can Google her "Cat Daddy" dance video on your own time.