Hit by a Pitch

Archive for the ‘Jose Mesa game count’ Category

Wii Pitchin’

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Watching baseball always makes me want to go out and do baseball-y stuff. I’ll watch Jim Thome hit a home run and want to go to the batting cages — I’m not good at it, though. Instead of hitting home runs, I’d miss the ball completely, spin around, and look completely ridiculous — think Byung-Hyun Kim, not Jim Thome. I’ll want to make like Bobby Jenks and throw ridiculous fastballs that nobody can hit, but I’d end up haplessly flailing my arm and watching the ball roll past the catcher — think, well, Byung-Hyun Kim, not Bobby Jenks. No disrespect to Kim intended, really (I love that guy).

So I was kind of dorkishly excited when we got The Bigs this weekend — it’s kind of like playing baseball, with no actual physical skill required. I hoped my first experience with this game wouldn’t turn out like that one time I tried to play Madden (the practice drills were fine, but as soon as I tried to control the whole team, I completely lost it, cursing Grossman, “THROW THE BALL YOU M-F BASTARD!!!” and eventually storming from the room disgusted, which, actually, probably is exactly what it’s like to be the Bears).

Learning how to do everything took a while. Pitching with the Wii remote is a delicate art, and you have to move it just so to throw one of the 9,000 possible pitches. Batting is easy, but fielding is hard — every time I try to get Podsednik to jump for the ball, he just falls to the ground. WHY?!! I hope he’s not hurt again.

I’m no video game expert — before getting the Wii, my video game experience was limited to Atari (I’m not even kidding). On day one of playing The Bigs, I quit after giving up a 20-run lead to the freaking Tigers. Fortunately, on day two, Jermaine Dye (me) beat Alfonso Soriano in the Home Run Derby. Things got ugly for a second when I tried to play Sox vs. Sox and got terribly confused when I thought I was Scott Podsednik running the bases but really was Scott Podsednik stupidly standing in the outfield watching the ball roll past. Ben and I both seemed to get the hang of it, though, and I suspect that the new way of settling arguments in our house will be a contentious game of Sox vs. Cubs (we’re 1-1 so far).

What’s really exciting is that you can create your own rookie. At first, I was overwhelmed. What would I call him? What number should he wear? If I were a professional baseball player (totally likely — good thing to think about ahead of time!), what number would I wear? Would I get in trouble for having J Dilla as my at bat music? Oh, wait a minute. Creating a baseball player should be easy for me. There’s only one name he could possibly have, and only one number he could possibly wear.

Ladies and gentlemen, meet the most promising White Sox rookie in years — number 49, Jose Mesa.

Yeah, you saw that coming, didn’t you? Unfortunately, your rookie can’t be a pitcher. This is terrible. So Jose Mesa plays second base, which seems like a respectable but not overwhelming position to play (although, bummer, it means my boy Tadaguchi will be spending a lot of time on the bench). Also unfortunate is the fact that I couldn’t make Jose Mesa look like Jose Mesa — he looks like a nondescript BIG white dude. He could use a little beard, you know, and some color, and a matching glove. But let’s not get distracted by the limited fashion choices available on video games — let’s get out and play some baseball!

Do you have any idea what Jose Mesa’s first job was? Do you? If you had to guess, you’d say that it was a game against the Giants, wouldn’t you? The game started with the announcer saying that the Giants are great and ready to win, and then an image of Omar Freakin’ Vizquel popped up on the screen, and the announcer said something like “especially their star shortstop, the amazing Omar Vizquel!” I am not making this up, I swear. And I have Jose Contreras on the mound and I haven’t yet mastered hitting the batters with a pitch (just so you know, Ben is really good at this and literally flattened Jim Thome, like, three times when we were playing last night, that bastard). The rookie Jose Mesa really sucked, by the way, striking out at his first at bat and then disappearing to go to bed after the first inning.

Fortunately, today, the real Jose Mesa became the eleventh MLB player to pitch in 1,000 games. From now on, July 26 is Jose Mesa Day, which is celebrated by wearing well-coordinated accessories, eating rice and beans, possibly lying about your age, heckling Omar Vizquel, and generally kicking some serious ass. Congratulations, Jose Mesa. You’re my favorite, ever, and I’ll try to make sure you don’t suck in video games ever again.

Written by Tracy

July 26th, 2007 at 7:26 pm

Jose Mesa: Older Than You Think?

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We are approaching the greatest milestone the sports world will see in 2007 — Jose Mesa’s 1,000th game as an MLB pitcher. Okay, maybe only Jose Mesa and I feel that way, but it’s nice to have something to get excited about considering all the crap that’s been going on in sports lately.

Jose Mesa pitched in his 998th game yesterday as the Phillies beat the Padres. While scoping out the internet for recent articles about our main man Joe Table, I found something interesting.

According to Jose’s bio, he was born on May 22, 1966, and he and his wife Mirla had their first child on June 29, 1979. Jose Mesa was 13 years old on June 29, 1979. That’s possible, but kind of odd, right?

Well, maybe it’s not true. According to Jose’s Wikipedia entry:

On June 10, 2007 sportscaster John Clark of NBC10 Philadelphia reported on the TV show Sports Final that he had uncovered documents indicating that Mesa was in fact 47 years old. This would make Mesa one of the oldest active players currently in baseball and the oldest active pitcher today.

Also, Jose’s bio says that his daughter Yamely was born on January 15, 1984. A previous version listed her birthday as January 15, 1974. Was 1974 a typo? Does anybody out there know Yamely Mesa?

I’ll try to unravel the mystery of Jose Mesa’s age. I’d also welcome suggestions for fun ways to celebrate his 1,000th game — maybe I could bake a cake shaped like Omar Vizquel and have everybody throw scoops of ice cream at it.

Written by Tracy

July 22nd, 2007 at 11:38 am

Dear Mark Buehrle: We love you.

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The White Sox and Mark Buehrle finally worked out a deal yesterday, ending a little bit of the pain Sox fans have been suffering this summer. Buehrle agreed to a 4-year, $56 million contract that lacks the complete no-trade protection he wanted, but he says he’s happy with the deal. So are we, Mark. So are we.

Buerhle tarp

In Rockies news, Matt Holliday will participate in tonight’s Home Run Derby. My money, if I had any, would be on Justin Morneau to win the thing, not that it really matters.

Jose Mesa pitched his 994th game on Friday against the Rockies. Of course he didn’t play when I was at Coors Field (sitting next to the bullpen — pictures coming soon) on Saturday, but we were treated to a rain delay and some minor tarp drama (nothing like yesterday’s tarp drama, though).

Written by Tracy

July 9th, 2007 at 12:10 pm

Jose Mesa update 4/12/07

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Yesterday, Jose Mesa pitched in game 969 of his MLB career.

IP: 1.0; R: 2; ER: 2; BB: 1; K: 2; HR: 0; ERA: 15.43

Written by Tracy

April 13th, 2007 at 9:24 am

Jose Mesa update 4/9/07

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Jose Mesa pitched in his 968th game today and, fortunately, didn’t suck. He faced three batters, striking out one, in the Tigers’ 6-2 loss to Baltimore.

I’m not a statistics dork, but I might as well keep track of these things, seeing as I’m enough of a dork to post about Jose Mesa every day:

IP: 1.0; H: 0; R: 0; ER: 0; BB: 0; K: 1; HR: 0.

His ERA is down to 13.5.

Written by Tracy

April 9th, 2007 at 6:40 pm

His ERA is 54.

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No way, Jose.

Last night while getting ready to go to the Nuggets game, I was watching the Tigers game. I don’t really care about the Tigers, although they are one of the teams I don’t consider my teams, but kind of like anyway (see also Cubs, Angels (who will win the World Series this year), Marlins). I knew it could be Jose Mesa’s Tiger debut — they’d already played two games, but being who he is, Jose Mesa was suspended for the first two games of the year — a suspension that was imposed when he was still with the Rockies and hit San Francisco’s Mark Sweeney with a pitch.

When Mesa came on in the seventh inning, I did my usual routine where I yell “JOSE MESA!!!!” at least ten times (try it — it’s kind of fun). JOSE MESA! This was so exciting — I hadn’t seen him pitch since last September, when I was drunk and at Coors Field, wearing my “What would Jose Mesa do?” t-shirt (yes, I really have a shirt that says “What would Jose Mesa do?” and yes, I know that means there’s something seriously wrong with me) with no coat even though it was really freaking cold and I was probably five minutes from hypothermia.

So the Nuggets game was starting in like 20 minutes and I wasn’t even dressed, but there I was, sitting in the kitchen in front of MLB.TV, which I had only minutes earlier upgraded to the premium version. I mean, it’s Jose Mesa! He’s my favorite, and there he was, playing for a team that doesn’t suck. The only person happier than I was at that moment was Jose Mesa himself, although that’s probably debatable, because it was really freaking cold out there, and I reckon Jose Mesa doesn’t really like the cold.

It went downhill fast. The first guy doubled. There was a triple and a single and two runs scored. They took Mesa out pretty quickly, but the Tigers lost by two. So Jose Mesa is 0-1 for the season, with an ERA of 54. FIFTY-FOUR. Holy shit.

You know, it’s not very often that I find anything remotely nice about Jose Mesa on the internet, unless I wrote it myself (although there is some rousing discussion about his color-coordinated gloves out there). The other day, I found an article about his quest to pitch in 1,000 games, where people who aren’t me or Jose Mesa have good things to say about Jose Mesa. That made me happy, but now I’m just worried. Last night’s game was number 967 of Jose Mesa’s career. I hope it was just a terrible night from which he recovers right away, so 1,000 is possible.

Written by Tracy

April 7th, 2007 at 6:11 pm