Friday, May 30, 2008

Celebrating Vina's 12 Year Bruise

As The Cleveland Fan points out, today is the 12 year anniversary of quite possibly one of the greatest moments in Indians history. On May 30th, 1996 Albert Belle ran full steam into the compact body of Fernando Vina, propelling all 4 of his limbs into mid-air. I have always thought this play summed up everything Belle was as a baseball player. After being told he wasn't running out plays hard enough he decided to prove his coaches wrong by crushing the 2nd baseman Vina (who was in the baseline) halfway between 1st and 2nd, completely leveling the pixie with no warning. "Is that hard enough?"

Legend has it that Vina's "peel-away" goatee actually detached from his face upon impact and doctors at Milwaukee Metro had to surgically repair it later that night.

The play is rarely seen on television and if you've never caught it, here is a fairly accurate depiction:

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Tribe Shower Report

The Plain Dealer's Paul Hoynes had a very intriguing/curious/bizarre/encouraging/semi-horrifying detail in his Indians article today. It was in regards to Rafael Betancourt, who after blowing another save apparently had further trouble bathing himself:

Several minutes after talking to reporters, Betancourt could be heard screaming in the showers. It sounded like furniture was being thrown around.

Wow. Either Betancourt is taking this slump really hard or there is some kind of "shower monster" terrorizing the Indians clubhouse. Maybe Carl Monday needs to investigate.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Major Leauge 3 and 1/2: How Mike Sarbaugh Saved Cleveland

I hate to get all "season's over, let's talk about Derek Anderson" on the Indians, but man, after another loss at Insurance Company Field this afternoon, things are looking pretty nasty. In fact, its kind of starting to feel like 2006 for the Tribe-- and if they keep losing games at an 80% rate, the season may even transform into 2003.

A few days ago I suggested manager Eric Wedge spark the team by igniting a bench clearing brawl. Despite the fact I sent multiple emails to the web address (come on, that's got to be him) Wedge clearly didn't listen and through 53 games the Indians are still brawl-less.

No worries though, because today I have a new million dollar plan to turn the 2008 Indians into division winners. This one is a bit more elaborate than a simple fight. It will involve Akron Aeros manager Mike Sarbaugh, Larry Dolan, and a copy of the script for Major League: Back to the Minors. That's right, the 3rd Major League movie--the one nobody in Cleveland likes to talk about or even acknowledge that stars Scott Bakula in one of his first post-Quantum Leap roles.

Anyway, Larry Dolan and Mike Sarbaugh will need to work together on this one. The end result will hopefully be a new attitude/outlook for the Indians both on and off the field. It will start with Dolan inviting the two managers to join him for a night out on the town. The three of them will enjoy drinks and finely prepared steaks at Morton's while chatting up old baseball stories and discussing Travis Hafner's face configuration. Then, when the dinner is winding down and both Sarbaugh and Dolan have loosened Wedge up real good, the plan will go into action. Sarbaugh will begin to tell Wedge what he would do differently if he were the manager of the Indians. He will go on and on about having a consistent everyday lineup, how to better utilize the pitching staff, ect. Wedge will become annoyed and eventually interrupt -- "well, Mike there's a reason I am up here in the big show and you are still coaching kids in Akron." Then its time for Sarbaugh's line, the line he must rehearse 100 times before this historic dinner even takes place:

"Listen Wedge, my guys verses your guys, anytime, anywhere."

After some initial wavering, the game will be arranged. The two teams will play an exhibition match in Cleveland with local television and radio coverage. The key to all of this is that Sarbaugh will be instructed by Dolan to throw the game and let the Indians slaughter his Aeros. A cash bonus will also be included if the Aeros are able to somehow allow a Victor Martinez home run. Meanwhile, Eric Wedge and the Indians (who are not aware the fix is in) will not only experience a victory, they will go through a total reevaluation of their lives, their existence, and what it means to play major league baseball -- thus sparking the turnaround that will win propel them to the top of the division. The defeated Akron Aeros on the other hand -- well who really gives a shit about them -- I root for the Indians and I want them to win this year.

And if for some reason Wedge doesn't agree to participate in this game, I say we just ship the Akron Aeros up to Cleveland for a game against the Tigers this summer while the Indians sit in the stands. I think that would get the message across just the same.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Oneli Perez: Indians Prospect and Genetic Freak

While the Indians battle their way through an impressive 7 game losing streak, I figure there's no better time to take a look into the (hopefully) bright future of the Tribe. One pitching prospect in particular, Oneli Perez, is garnering a lot of attention as of late. He's a young right-handed relief pitcher, acquired from the White Sox, who features a nasty sinker-ball and won "Pitcher of the Year" in the Dominican Winter League. Perez looks to be a quality major league arm and could be a nice addition to Cleveland's dilapidated bullpen.

Oh yeah, and he has 12 fingers.

Yep, that's right, 6 digits on each hand! Personally, I find this to be extremely exciting news-- its not too often Cleveland fans are able to head to the ole' ballpark and cheer for a "man monster" on the mound. He's currently in Triple-A Buffalo but the way the Indians are playing this season he could get promoted to Cleveland sooner than later. Man, I just can't wait for "Oneli Perez Night" at Insurance Company Field -- attachable latex fingers for all kids under 12!

After learning about our future six fingered pitcher I decided to poke around the current roster and overall history of the Indians to see if some other players had any known physical abnormalities. What I found was pretty fascinating:

--Pitcher Aaron Laffey is double-jointed from the waist up.

--Outfielder Franklin Gutierrez has a death allergy to graham crackers

--Former Indians third baseman Travis Fryman was born with two necks

--Outfielder David Dellucci is actually a well-tanned albino

--Because of a rare heart condition, if Ryan Garko runs at a speed over 4 mph he will transport back in time 5 minutes

--At the age of nine, Indians manager Eric Wedge was involved in a vicious car accident where he sprained both wrists, broke 2 ribs and lost his sense of humor

--Former Indians pitcher Chad Ogea learned to pitch the same way Henry Rowengartner did

--Jim Thome has a baby dick

--Former Indians second baseman Shawn Dunston had the ability levitate 2 inches off the ground, much like street magician David Blaine does

--According to the Cleveland Indians media guide, Casey Blake hasn't moved his bowels in over 2 and a half years

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Indians in Desperate need of Brawl

The Indians lost again last night to Chicago, 7-2, extending their losing streak to 5 games. And although Paul Byrd gave up 5 runs, the story of the game, and the season, is still the abnormally putrid offense. Did you know that its been a week and a half since the Tribe has scored more than 5 runs in a game? Horrible. I don't gamble on sports, but I'm pretty sure that the Indians currently have the best odds in Vegas for getting a no-hitter thrown against them.

The scary thing is that I'm no longer sure if this lineup is in a prolonged slump or if this is really just as productive as they get. The team needs some kind of quick spark and with one game remaining in Chicago I think there is only one thing left for Eric Wedge to do: start a bench clearing brawl.

Its time, we need one. The Grady Sizemores and Casey Blakes of the team need to either a.) roll around on the ground and punch someone in the face or b.) roll around on the ground and get punched in the face. And they need to do it quick. Sometimes a baseball fight will bring a team together in a way nothing else can -- its common baseball knowledge.

And with former Indian and first class a-hole Jim Thome on the opposing team, there is no better person to instigate such a brawl with. During Thome's second at bat tonight Aaron Laffey needs fire a fastball up near his head. If Thome doesn't bite, then Laffey should just charge the batters box. This is a flawless plan, I can't see anything going wrong with it.

In the meantime, here are some classic baseball fights to look at:

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

"Hey, what about that Barry Bonds guy?"

The question I am going to write at the end of this paragraph is going to look and feel very strange. At first it may seem like a completely preposterous and insanely stupid thing to even propose. However, the 2008 Cleveland Indians offense is beginning to look like its in the late stages of leukemia and as we all know -- desperate times call for, well, weird-looking questions. So, without further ado: Should the Indians sign Barry Bonds?

Woah, woah -- stop pooping your pants and wildly punching the air in all directions -- I know what you are thinking. When I first thought about Barry Bonds actually becoming a Cleveland Indian it took my brain .000001 seconds to compute "no" as well. Some time passed though (like 10 minutes) and I then vividly pictured something in my head: its an August night in Cleveland -- tie game in the late innings. Barry Bonds steps to the plate with 2 men on. First pitch he sees he hits an absolute bomb into the upper deck of right field. The crowd goes nuts and the Indians win the game.

Now come on, that would be awesome. When things like that happen, no one cares about steroids, locker room fights or contracts. Its irrelevant. Barry Bonds would just be smashing baseballs and making our lineup better as a whole.

Now, there are about four common arguments against the notion of Cleveland (or anyone) signing Barry Bonds: 1.) Money. 2.) How would we use him? 3.) He is a jerk and a clubhouse distraction. 4.) Him and his butt injections are a disgrace to the game and don't belong in a place like Ohio.

The first two are really not that big of a deal. I think we could swing a contract where we get Bonds this season for about as much as we are paying Paul Byrd. As far as how to utilize him, that is something I think Eric Wedge could figure out rather easily. A few suggestions would be to DH him and move Travis Hafner to 1st, then maybe trade Garko. Or we could just throw Bonds out in the field and let him take a shot at not embarrassing himself on a daily basis. Who knows -- the point is I'm sure room can be made for the all-time home run leader one way or another.

The criticism against signing Barry Bonds that gets the most mileage from baseball fans is the distraction component. "Cleveland has such great clubhouse chemistry, why would you want to spoil it by bringing in a world class dickhead like Barry Bonds?" Now, clubhouse chemistry has always seemed a bit overrated to me. I mean, I bet the Pittsburgh Pirates are all a bunch of cool dudes and have a great time with each other -- but they still suck. And really, who cares if he's a jerk -- I would be very disappointed if Grady Sizemore's numbers declined and he blamed it on Barry Bonds. "I would be getting on base more, but Barry Bonds is so mean and he keeps calling me a 'stupid nerd.'" How come every other job in the world can tolerate and function with assholes besides baseball?

And if Bond's attitude is really that much of an issue there are viable solutions. Cleveland could always put a "nice guy clause" in his contract stating the slugger is not permitted to speak aloud and must always have a smile on his face while on Indian's premises. Or better yet, he is only allowed to talk in question form, like on Who's Line is it Anyway. No one, not even Barry Bonds, can sound intimidating if they are smiling and repeatedly asking questions.

The last issue with Bonds is steroids/legal troubles. Sure, Barry Bonds has been branded a corrupt cheater and will be considered one for the rest of his life. He took performance enhancing drugs and clearly benefited from them. All I have to say to this is that we didn't care when Tim Laker did it, why should we now? Alright, that is a completely stupid thing to say, I know. But really, we can act like we're offended by the abuse of steroids in sports all day, but its really just a charade (and another discussion altogether).

If you are still reading this (I don't know why you would be) and are fuming at the idea of Barry Bonds sporting Chief Wahoo, don't worry. We all know Mark Shapiro would never even entertain the idea of calling up Bond's people. Shapiro has too much "class" and "character" and the Indians are "not the kind of team" that would take on a Barry Bonds type.

But why not? Why can't we ever be the kind of team that goes after these guys (the closest we got was acquiring Shawn Kemp)? Barry Bonds still has something to prove in baseball and the Indians could possibly get the steal of the season. I have said it before and I will say it again -- I want a championship in Cleveland, I really don't care how we get it done anymore.

And just admit it -- seeing Barry Bonds pull a ball into the stands at Insurance Company Field would be f'in hot. But who knows, I will probably change my mind about it in another 10 minutes.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Scenes from the Future: LeBron Becomes a Net

Brooklyn Nets Press Conference
July 1st, 2010
Prospect Heights, NY

Hip hop mogul and Brooklyn Nets co-owner Shawn "Jay-Z" Carter enters a crowded New York media room to an array of flash bulbs. He sits down and at a table draped with a Nets banner and removes his sunglasses.

Jay-Z: Ladies and gentlemen of the press, thank you for attending this very special occasion.

(he takes a sip of water)

Jay-Z: The past dozen years have treated me well -- I've made made more money than I can count, sold 50 million records worldwide, released my own clothing line, opened several successful clubs, and married the most beautiful woman on the planet.

(he smiles and nods his head at Beyonce, who is in the first row)

Jay-Z: However, today might just be the day that all those successes are finally topped. Ever since I was a boy I fantasized about playing in the NBA. However, given the fact I can't dribble 3 consecutive times in a row or jump higher than a fire hydrant, my playing days never really blossomed. Turns out owning a team isn't so bad though-- I can still use all my competitive energy on a daily basis, which is important, because when I got into this I did so to win. Winning titles is all that matters. A few years ago, around May 18th, 2008, I marked my calendar as day 1 of the Brooklyn Nets dynasty. I knew then I would get the last piece to my puzzle. Because we all know there is only one player that can instantly spark an NBA title run in New York. Ladies and gentleman, its time.

(Jay-Z stand up with his arms spread out. Loud, bass-heavy music begins to blar)

Jay-Z: (yelling in his signature "Jay-Z" voice that he does during the beginning of songs) They said it couldn't happen! They said not in New York baby! 2 Kings unite! Young Hova! 2-3! New York, I give you...LeBron James!

(LeBron, decked out in a pinstriped 3-piece suit, emerges from the back of the room. He hugs Jay-Z and is given a number 23 Brooklyn Nets jersey which he shows off to the room of reporters. After 3 minutes of holding each others hands in the air the two sit down.)

LeBron: (smiling) Thank you, thank you. Wow, this is amazing. First off I just want to thank Jay, the Brooklyn Nets, and the city of New York for what has been an incredible 48 hours.

Jay-Z: 2 Kings baby! 2 Kings in one castle, ready to take the top!

LeBron: (laughing) As you can see, this has been a long time coming for Jay.

LeBron: I want to keep this short. Let me just say what an honor it is to be coming to New York and to be part of Brooklyn basketball's inaugural season. This city has always felt like a second home to me and I am now proud to make it my first. I look forward to getting involved in the community and bringing a championship back to the city of New York.


LeBron: I always knew I would end up here -- the east coast was the next step logical in my career as a professional/entrepreneur. Its the big time baby, N-Y. With that said I want to also say that playing for Cleveland the past seven years was terrific-- it was a great place to start my career. It was just time to move on. I still feel nothing but love for the city and am sorry we were never able to put together a championship. Regardless, the fans there will always hold a special place in my heart and I hope they feel the same for me as I take this next step. I will finish here what I tried to start in Ohio and by the time I am done playing I will be wearing enough rings for two hands. Thank you.

(the music is cued up again while Jay-Z and LeBron walk off the stage together)

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Siete. Septyni. Siedem. Sjö. Seven.

How many articles written within the last 30 hours about tomorrow's Game 7 do you think start with the line, "well, this is it." I've got to ballpark its in the 60 percentile range. With that said, it is hard to deny that "this is" in fact "it." Another Game 7 for the city of Cleveland. The last 3 haven't gone so well and for the sake of winning let's hope both Jose Mesa and Joel Skinner have been barred from the arena (although it is fun to imagine them hanging out together, as friends. "Hey Joel, what you wanna do tonight, the Cavs said we can't show up, wanna just see Iron Man instead?")

I am hopeful for the game, kind of. LeBron James still plays for Cleveland and he has yet to explode and control a game in this series-- maybe Nike paid him to hold off and wait for a dramatic Game 7. I just hope he's able to take Boston out tomorrow, I really don't want to lose another sports series to those buttholes again.

On a side note, I think if I were Doc Rivers I would have my players rolling their bodies around in flowers, grass and any other pollinated plants before the game tomorrow. This would totally take out the interior defense and rebounding of Ben Wallace. I mean, did you see him, he is so allergy pron he had to stand alone in a hallway during the smoke and fire introductions. Pollinated basketball players would drop him like a fly.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

TDBR Interviews Jim Poole

The Dave Burba Revolution recently had the pleasure of chatting with former Cleveland Indians pitcher Jim Poole. Poole was a solid relief arm for the Tribe in the 1990's, however most fans will always associate him with 6 of the 1995 World Series--he was the losing pitcher of record. We spoke with Jim last Thursday from his home in Webster, NY.

TDBR: Hello Mr. Poole, how are you?

Poole: I'm doing alright, taking it easy.

TDBR: That's good to hear. So tell me, what's a day in the life of Jim Poole like these days?

Poole: Well, its not too exciting I'm afraid. I wake up around 7, go for a quick jog, head to work for about 8 hours, and then just come home and spend some time with my family. That's really it. I like to ride my four-wheeler, but that's more of a Saturday thing, you know?

TDBR: Sure do. What field of work are you in?

Poole: I work for my wife's father, at a place called Sorbodex Inc. We buy and sell gages for propane tanks.

TDBR: Very cool.

Poole: Its actually a really fun job, believe it or not. Everyday is a new adventure.

TDBR: Do you miss baseball?

Poole: I would be lying if I said I didn't. I just miss being around the guys I played with day in and day out. They really become like your family, and then they disappear from your life.

TDBR: When's the last time you threw a baseball?

Poole: Well, I threw one the night before last, I was trying to hit a raccoon that was in my garbage. And I also play catch with my kids all the time.

TDBR: Nice. So, I'm from Cleveland -- I'm just going to get right into what all us Indians fans are wanting to hear you talk about. 1995 World Series, 6th inning of game 6.

Poole: Yeah, I knew that was coming. It is what it is. We had a great team that year.

TDBR: Do you remember the pitch you threw to David Justice?

Poole: Yeah, I remember the entire at-bat. I can remember the exact moment when I gave that pitch to David. He put a great swing on it and hit a world class home run off me. That entire season was such a great ride though, I hate to focus on the losses.

TDBR: Hold on, did you say "gave" him that pitch?

Poole: Yeah, I did. I served it up for him, total BP meatball. Looking back I suppose it was an important HR. At the time though I thought our offense would easily win that game for us--but they didn't.

TDBR: What? I'm not following, why would you give the Braves a run?

Poole: Haha, I wasn't giving the Braves a run, I was giving David Justice a home run. Listen, you have to remember, this was 1995. This was the World Series and this was David Justice. Remember his smile? He was it man, the hottest thing in sports. It was like taking a punch from Muhammad Ali, throwing a pass to Jerry Rice, or getting a kiss from Matthew McConaughey-- if your a woman that is.

TDBR: What!?

Poole: Come on man, pitchers in the NL were doing it all the time -- its was sort of in the baseball code. I mean, have you never seen Dave's dimples?

TDBR: Yes, I have seen them, but I just don't understand--

Poole: I know, I know I am aware this was game 6 of the World Series and Cleveland hadn't won since like 1742 and everything. I should elaborate on the whole situation. You see, a day before that game Paul Sorrento and myself visited a children's hospital. It was heartbreaking to see those kids. And each one I talked to had the same request, "give one up to Dave...for me." Now you try to look into the eyes of a sick kid, who's only request is to see their hero David Justice hit a World Series home run, and say no.

TDBR: They actually asked you to serve one up to Justice?

Poole: Yep, my own kids did as well. They wanted to brag to their friends.

TDBR: Did Mike Hargrove know about this?

Poole: He put on the official call for it. He actually ordered Ken Hill to do the same thing in game 4 but Ken refused. Ken was also not on the team in 1996.

TDBR: Wow, this is astounding. David Justice kept Cleveland from winning a championship in a way I never knew.

Poole: Hey, you guys will get there some day, that Derek Anderson guy is pretty awesome.

TDBR: Alright, thanks for your time Jim.

Poole: You got it.

This interview was conducted -- in my head -- on Thursday, May 8th via telephone.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Does LeBron Dream About Basketball?

The Cavaliers have found themselves in a best of 3 series with the Boston Celtics. Last night's win was pretty refreshing. Daniel Gibson and Wally Szczerbiak hit their perimeter shots, Anderson Varejao and company played suffocating 4th quarter defense, and LeBron James did his thing (and according to TNT broadcasters he did it "with no regard for human life", which was something I thought was illegal not only in the NBA but in, you know, real life). I guess LeBron owning a home in Bath, Ohio -- home of super killer Jeffrey Dahmer -- makes a little more sense now. Hey, everyone has their heroes.

So here we are, on the eve of one of the biggest game 5's in Cavs history. As a fan I'm feeling pretty good. Surely LeBron can turn his "on" switch "ON" and we can take at least one game in Boston. This is an important series though, more signifigant than I think we realize right now. If the Cavs can manage to defeat the team with the best regular season record and reach the conference finals for a second striaght year, I think all the "fluke" talk will go away.

As I write this its almost 11pm. I can't help but wonder what LeBron James is doing right this moment. I want to think he is tucked away in a soft bed at a pleasant Boston hotel, watching a rerun of "Full House" as he falls asleep. He has a big day tomorrow and he knows he needs his rest. However, in reality I'm sure he is probably drinking $1,000 a sip champagne while texting Jay-Z and and getting his crotch massaged by a model.

But when LeBron does finally fall onto a bed tonight and shuts his eyes, what do you think happens next, dream wise? What on Earth could LeBron James, the most celebrated athlete in the world, possibly dream about? For some reason I've been thinking a lot about this and its proving to be some kind of a "Da Vinci code style reexamination of the human condition" brain buster.

Does he have nightmares about waking up with 2 left hands? Does he dream about basketball games where all the balls have been replaced with party balloons? Does he have some kind of horrid nightmare where he is at the foul line for a championship winning shot--only he is told if he makes it Wally Szczerbiak will instantly lose all his limbs. What to do--take the shot and make the Cavs champs or save your (3 month old) friend Wally? Maybe he just has dreams where he wakes up, gets dressed, eats some Cracklin' Oat Brand, and goes to work as an editorial assistant at the Akron Beacon Journal. Well, I suppose that would actually be a nightmare for LeBron.

Who knows? Let's just hope whatever it is he dreams about tonight doesn't affect his shooting tomorrow against the Celtics.


Asdrubal Cabrera did something tonight at Progressive Field that only 13th players in the history of Major League Baseball have ever done: he turned an unassisted triple play. It happened in the 5th inning when Toronto sent the runners on a pitch that Lyle Overbay eventually lined to a diving Cabrera at second base. Asdrubal got up, stepped on the bag and tagged out the runner from first.

As he headed to the dugout, Cabrera tossed the ultra-rare baseball into the crowd. "He flipped it into the stands and right as he did cried out, 'Oh, no!' " first-base coach Luis Rivera.

Can you imagine being the fan who caught the ball? Who can say they have a baseball from an unassisted triple play? I mean, I wonder where the other 13 are -- I'm assuming either in the Hall of Fame or being used by super secret scientists to research time-travel or something.

All I know is the person who now has it is probably either going to win the pick-six lottery or get struck by lightning. Maybe both.

Monday, May 12, 2008

4 Albert Belle's and 1 LeBron = NBA Title

LeBron James is arguably the greatest Cleveland sports star of all time. In fact, LeBron James is arguably one of the greatest athletes to ever walk the Earth. And for the record, LeBron James is kind of a giant pussy.

It pains me to write that about a Cleveland athlete but after 4 years of watching James play I can come to no other conclusion. Its pretty much expected that he will take a phantom hit at least 2 or 3 times a game and roll around on the ground while his teammates run down the court to defend. At this point in LeBron's career I feel his ratio of points scored to face winces is about the same, somewhere around 30 a night.

I used to think the constant checking of the lips for blood and flaying around was his way of convincing everyone into thinking he was some kind of basketball warrior. "Oh man, LeBron is down you guys, this looks bad." 2 minutes later -- "Hey LeBron is up and running and he just dunked over 3 guys. That guy is so tough!" This was what I figured he was going for, trick everyone into thinking he's hurt and then wow them by playing through it. However, now I just think he has an abnormally low tolerance for pain. Why else would he continue this charade? It doesn't make any sense. The dude is 6'8, 250 lbs. -- he has more muscle in his neck than Asdrubal Cabrera has on his entire body. So why when he gets slapped in the face does it look like he is being shot in the taint with a pellet gun?

Listen, DeShawn Stevenson and the Wizards calling LeBron 'overrated' was moronic. However, Brendan Haywood's comments and cry baby impersonation was not only funny but fairly accurate.

So what's the solution? I think we need to embrace LeBron's pain issues but also try and counter balance them by turning his teammates into a bad-ass gang of wild animals. Surround the King with thugs and take a cue from the Wizard's and turn the trash talking up 1,000 percent. Cleveland has never had a team of bad boys. We are a city of Mark Price, Omar Vizquel, Bernie Kosar, and Brad Daugherty. The closest we got to a legitimate goon was Albert Belle. Let's transform the Cavs into a roster of Albert Belle's -- 4 guys on a court spitin' shit and beating ass while paving the way for LeBron to tear apart the opposition. I know its not an ideal strategy but 1964 was like a hundred years ago and at this point I really don't care how the city of Cleveland gets their championship anymore.

To help Mike Brown out here are a few suggestions to kick start the new Cleveland Cavilers bad boy campaign:

Start calling up D-League players and put them in for one play. That one play will be to "accidentally" pass the ball as hard as they can into the crotch of the opposing team's star player.
Start wearing leather pull-away pants.

Hire Kimbo Slice as team counsel and advisor.

Have players and coaches make wild accusations during pre-game press conferences -- ex: Flip Saunders never graduated high school, Kirk Hinrich is a hermaphrodite and have Sasha Pavlovich threaten to burn down Steve Nash's home if he scores more than 10 points.

Make Wally Szczerbiak wear black eyeliner during games.

And while on the subject of crying basketball players, why is this video not being shown when Kevin Garnett is introduced at the Q?

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Tapping Some Zydrunas Rage

Down 0-2 the Cavs bounced back tonight, kicking the crap out of the Boston Celtics, 108-84. LeBron James struggled again, shooting only 5-0f-16 from the field, but was rescued by cookie-making elf Delonte West.

After the game however, is when I feel the first great sub-plot of this series began. When Manchester United mega-fan Zydrunas Ilgauskas was told Kevin Garnett was pulling for Chelsea, Man. U's opponent in the English Premier League title game, he lost his shit. "He's a fake fan," said Ilgauskas. "What, did he become a fan when he went to London?"

Ohhhhhhhhh snap!

I love this. Zydrunas, who has never really talked shit about anyone ever just can't help but say something when the thought of Garnett rooting against his beloved soccer team is brought up.

Garnett himself has not responded to being called a "fake fan" but I'm really hope he does. At this point, anything to get Z pissed off and motivated during the series is positive for the Cavs. I want to see Garnett show up to 'The Q' Monday in a Chelsea jersey or start using British slang in his interviews. In fact, I hope Chelsea wins the stupid title game and its announced during the 4th quarter of game 4 or 5. After hearing the news Man. U lost and seeing Kevin Garnett on the floor, Z will probably explode for like 30 points.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

A Trip to Ricky Ledee's Old Stomping Grounds

Last night I went to the Bronx and personally watched Cliff Lee and the Indians systematically shut down the New York Yankees. It was the last Cleveland night game at Yankee Stadium ever (history!). I haven't been to Jacobs/Progressive Field since the last game of the 2005 season (when the team completed their fine late season meltdown) but last night I was surrounded by so many Indians fans it seemed at times I was in Ohio. I could have heard John Adams and not even thought twice about it. Don't get me wrong, I was still plenty exposed to the usual arrogant-ass Yankee fans. At one point I was even told by one that hiring Joe Girardi was a mistake and the team should have stuck it out with Joe Torre because "he had way more class." Comments like that are why I am so happy to be from Cleveland. If anyone ever said anything along those lines in Ohio they would be promptly told to shut the F' up. In NY though, its a legitimate argument. "Joe Torre is a class act, he drinks expensive wine, goes to more Operas and always looks you in the eye when he shakes your hand. Why would you get rid of him?"

Also noteworthy is the fact I was almost borderline arrested minutes after the final out. I partially blame Indians radio announcer Mike Heagan for what happened. Here's how it went down: Rafael Betancourt records the save and as "New York, New York" starts playing I do what any Cleveland fan within eyesight of Hegan would do: I shout his name over and over and over. He doesn't respond though, not even a wave, which was all I really wanted. So for like 5 minutes I would shout "Hegan, hey Mike Hegan", then take a dance break to celebrate the Tribe win, and shout "Heagan" some more. An usher came over and told my buddy and me we had to leave but I just smiled and ignored him. I then went back to work on Hegan. No response. Maybe he really couldn't hear me. Still though, I feel like if this were Tom Hamilton I would've gotten some action. Hamilton probably would've started waving back and then climb out of the press box, scale the upper deck awning, come over to my section and give me a high five.

As I screamed my lungs out I noticed my buddy shuffling away and as I looked to my right I saw why. It was a cop -- and he was pissed. "You were told to leave now get out of here! If you want to stay you can stay across the street at Central Booking! Blah blah blah blah blah," he said as he followed me up the stairs. "Geez Louise officer, I was hurting anyone. Just yelling at a baseball game, kind of what your suppose to do" (is what I should have said instead of "I appologize"). Anyway he was a total dick and I know that wouldn't happen in Cleveland. Maybe its a "class" thing.

Monday, May 5, 2008

Tribe Drops Abercrombie & Fitch Model/Outfielder

The Indians cut left fielder Jason Michaels today, clearing roster space to promote Ben "I left my heart in San" Francisco (suck it Chris Berman). Anyway, goodbye .207 batting average and nine RBI's, you will be missed.

The video below is TDBR's farewell to Michaels.

I bet you he signs with the Royals and hits a clutch HR against us sometime in September.

Julio Franco Hangs it Up

Former Cleveland Indian and borderline mummy Julio Franco has retired from professional baseball. Besides his age, the only other noteworthy thing I can recall about Franco was that he was the first player I ever heard get affectionately "booed" by Indians fans (Juuuuliooooo). I remember having that explained to me by my older brother and it blew my frickin' mind.

Anyway, to put Franco's long career in perspective, here is a snapshot of the country the year Julio began playing:

Number of MLB teams: 26
U.S. President: Herbert Hoover
Top Grossing Film: The Day the Earth Stood Still
Price of a gallon of gas: 30 cents
Hair Conditioner is invented by Swiss chemist Dirm Von Stefanos
The first Woolworth store opens in New York
World Series Champion: Harrisburg Diplomats

Friday, May 2, 2008

Paul Byrd: Potential Gold Mine

The Indians pulled out a 3-2 extra innings win last night despite a milky offense and Casey Blake's usual antics. The hero of the game was the double-pump wonder Paul Byrd who went 7.2 shutout innings, allowing only 4 hits.

At this point I could dissect and analyze the actual game -- talk about the Tribe's shaky bullpen, poor defense or limp lineup. However, that seems unimportant when I consider the real problem in last night's game: the Indians consistent inability to properly market and promote Paul Byrd.

Do you realize how rare it is to have a player on your team who has an animal as a last name? The only other current players I can think of are Randy Wolf, Brandon Lyon and of course Tampa Bay outfielder John Elephant. Its an extremely short list and Cleveland is fortunate enough to have a player on it. The Indians front office seems disinterested though and if they are to capitalize on what could become Byrd-mania, they need to act now. Below is a six point plan to begin the efforts:

1. Have a representative from the Cleveland Metro Parks Zoo release a red-tailed hawk (or 6) as Paul takes the hill.

2. Every strikeout should be accompanied by a cockatoo squawking sound effect over the PA.

3. During Paul's warm ups this video should be played on the jumbotron.

4. Free strap-on beaks to first 10,000 kids.

5. "Paul Byrd-Seed Night" (sunflower seeds cleverly packaged).

6. Finally, and most importantly, I have a way to truly turn Paul Byrd into a full blown hero while at the same time ending speculation about his HGH use. I am going to officially start an Internet rumor about Byrd. I will then sell the rights of the rumor to the Cleveland Indians for 1 million dollars. Based off the rumor, here is the press release that should follow:

From: Cleveland Indians

Date: May 2, 2008

Re: Paul Byrd's Medical Condition

It has come to the attention of the Cleveland Indians that Paul Byrd has a medical condition that must be addressed to the media. First of all, it should be known that Paul Byrd's birth name is Paul Stevens. During a little league game when he was 9-years-old Paul was attacked by a white-beaked Kentucky eagle. The bird was abnormally aggressive and young Paul was severely mangled. Moreover, he was so viciously wounded by the eagle that a sufficient amount of "bird DNA" was interwoven with his human genotype. During puberty Paul went through changes no other young men experience. He showed bird-like symptoms and developed an appetite for worms and a variety of seeds. Paul, being the intense person he is, decided not to run from his situation. He fully embraced what was happening to him and on his 18th birthday he officially left behind the name Paul Stevens and became Paul Byrd. Though proud of his eagle heritage, Paul is forced to inject himself with a certain amount of human hormones every month. If he fails to do so his body will break down and the animal inside him will take over. This explains his involvement in the HGH/Mitchell Report scandal. Paul Byrd does not take HGH to overcome an injury or gain strength, Paul Byrd takes HGH so he won't transform into a white-beaked Kentucky eagle and attack those around him.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Viva la Burba!

Welcome to The Dave Burba Revolution. The idea behind this site is simple: we shall discuss Cleveland sports and alien beings with the same attitude and tenacity of the great baseball warrior, Dave Burba.

The Dave Burba Revolution is not your run-of-the-mill sports/extraterrestrial blog -- so prepare your eyeballs to view the same stuff AL batters facing Burba in the late 90's saw: absolute carnage.