Friday, August 29, 2014

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

As if he wasn't going to be compared to Aaron Hernandez enough - new Patriots tight end Tim Wright will be wearing Hernandez's old number 81... Buying carbon off-sets to me always seemed like the modern equivalent of rich Northerners paying for replacements to fight for them in the Civil War. And just as hypocritical...  Carnal Acquaintance would be a good name for a band or a fantasy football team... Actual movie - MANBORG: a warrior who's half-man, half-machine, but all hero. Look awful... If Cubs fans were told before the season that Theo Epstein would have the team either ahead or tied by record with the Boston Red Sox - those Cubbie fans would have been pretty pleased.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

State of the Red Sox

The state of the Red Sox can be summed up in six words, "Too many outfielders, not enough starters."

Here's the outfielders Boston has under contract for next season; Yoenis Cespedes, Shane Victorino, Rusney Castillo, Allen Craig, Daniel Nava, Jackie Bradley Jr., Mookie Betts, and Brock Holt. You only play 3 outfielders at a time - so having 8 seems a bit much. Even if you say Brock Holt and Mookie Betts are really infielders - that still leaves 6 outfielders for 3 starting jobs. Something has to give.

Meanwhile - here are the starters that are under control for next year; Clay Buchholz, Joe Kelly, Brandon Workman, Rubby Del La Rosa, Anthony Ranaundo and Allen Webster. Does any of those names jump out at you as a number 1 or 2 starter? Me neither.

So what to do? The obvious first answer is to sign Jon Lester to a long term deal. At this point 6-years for $150 million is what it will probably take. Then you hope Lester is more like Andy Pettitte when it comes to durability and less like Jack McDowell. 

Even if you sign Lester - a rotation of Lester, Buchholz, Kelly, Del La Rosa and pick a name doesn't sound like a playoff contender. Signing free agent James Shields would obviously help but what are the odds of one team signing 2 of the top 3 free agent pitchers? That's why a starter is probably the number one trade priority for the team this off-season. The most obvious name would be Cole Hamels who is owed $94 million over the next 4 seasons. 

The good news is that the class of free agent outfielders this year is pretty weak - and guess who has outfielders to spare? Pretty sad but I'm looking forward more to the hot stove than to the rest of the season. I think many fans feel the same.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Tim Horton's and Burger King

Tim Horton's and Burger King are merging. The new company HQ will be based out of Canada. I have an idea on how this news could be played to increase Burger King's market share in the US.

The minimum wage in Canada is Province by Province. The lowest is Alberta at $9.95 Canadian and the highest is Ontario at $11 per hour Canadian. That $9.95 Canadian works out to about $9.07 in US dollars. Only the State of Washington has a higher minimum wage ($9.32) in the US.

The new combined Tim Horton's and Burger King (Burger Horton's?) announces that they will now be paying at the very least the Canadian minimum wage of $9.07 to all employees in the US. They are probably already paying that to most employees so it wouldn't cost the company very much but it would differentiate itself from McDonald's. When the Occupy Wall Street / Never Shop at Walmart crowd decide where to eat lunch - now the choice would be clear - Burger Horton's! Most of those folks live off the dollar menu anyway.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Larry Bird - Determination

This is why Larry Bird was so beloved in Boston. Larry freakin' Bird!

ALS Bucket Challenge

Just this morning I read that David Beckham, Britney Spears and Dave Grohl had all separately and independently "won" the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.

Sorry - to me Jacqueline Bisset is still the champ. Photos from her in the movie The Deep  single handedly created the wet t-shirt craze. I know no cause was involved but in my mind Jacqueline is still the champ.