Fan Mail Friday, May 29th

You asked for to post their rankings, and sure enough you got what you wanted…well to some extent.  They posted and you did move up.  But not all the way.  4th place is a nice jump, but still not to the top…your thoughts?
Kiley R., Seattle, WA

First things first, thanks for noticing they posted the rankings and thanks for noticing I made the largest jump within the top 10 in recent memory.  Or at least in my memory of how far I’ve jumped in the past because I don’t give a hoot how many spots the other contestants may or may not have jumped before.

When I saw my ranking in the 4 hole, I figured maybe this month they decided to make out a pseudo lineup.  It would make sense having me hitting cleanup because I am the best blogger on the “team” and am most likely to hit one out of the park with any given post.  Sorry Mr. Ethier, but I hope you enjoy facing pitchers from the windup cause I’m prone to hitting it “pa’ la calle” (a Spanish term for uber home runs that clear the stadium completely and end up “on the street”).  Oh, and Bengie…you’re welcome for all the fastballs you’ll be seeing with me on deck.

Aww, who am I kidding?  It’s a ranking system, not a lineup, and I’m fourth.  I’m not the cleanup hitter; I’m an also-ran.

I still have three spots to climb, but I will make it to the top.  Mlblogs makes some claim about rankings being based on page views during the given time frame.  I’m gonna have to take down the top-ranked blogger each month, so today I’ll try to chip away at the current #1.

Reed Johnson (Cubs OF)- Reed Between the Lines

My Take:
What lines, Reed?  5 posts for the entire month of May?  Is that all you can muster?  And this is our champion?  I understand the gravitation pull the Cubs have in this universe (my wife and I live 6 blocks from Wrigley in the off-season, so trust me, I know first hand), but 5 posts puts him atop the leader board based on page visits?  If Elvis Presley wrote 5 blogs this May, I’d be fine taking a back seat to him for a month based solely on the sheer accomplishment of writing 5 blogs post mortem, but this guy plays most of his games in the afternoon, allowing for ample time to write, AND is alive.  I’m not impressed by any of this and don’t see why even Cubs fans would be.

My synopsis so you won’t have to visit:
Most recent post entitled “Who’s the Lion?” has a 3 word question title which starts with “Who’s the” and yet has no reference to Tony Danza.  If that’s not already in the bylaws as minus a thousand page visits, I’m nominating a new law stating exactly this.  Reed’s main weapon for being interesting:  he drops names like my boy (and fellow bullpen mate in NW Arkansas) Dan “Duce” Cevette drops records with Corleone Music Productions (two can play this game, Reed).  Let’s see, what else is there in his blog?  He plays for the Cubs.  Like the actual Cubs, not in the minors.  He wrote a blog about his facial hair.  And how he cut it but it wasn’t out of slump-breaking desperation.  He has been known to use an ellipsis in his blog titles which is a sign of weakness and perhaps a lack of trust-worthiness.  What’s there to hide?  I feel like we’re not getting the entire story here.  Oh great, this just in.  To spite me for being late on my Fan Mail Friday for the first time, Reed decides to go 3 for 3 with a homer, 2 RBI’s, a walk, and a stolen base on Saturday.  Well, perfect, now I’ve lost everyone to go check out Reed’s blog…

Two questions: 1) What is the definition of “Awesome?” 2) Pirates or Ninjas?
Richard D., Kansas City, KS

You’ve put me in a predicament, “Richard D.”.  And it has to do with punctuation.  You see, I was unsure where the first sentence in this response ended until I put quote marks and then another period after your name in quotes.  A bit ambiguous, wouldn’t ya say?  But in your question, you clearly ask me what the definition of “Awesome?” is.  I scoured Webster’s finest works (poor Merriam, by the way, but that’s an entirely different topic) and have found no definitions that accounted for punctuation.  If you were to ask me what “Awesome!” meant, I’d have a decent idea.  But “Awesome?”?  My mind is reeling a bit.

Richard, the best I think I can do for you is to answer your question with a scenario and hope it helps.

Two people are watching a VH1 reality show on a TV in a public area.  Person 1 grimaces as a contestant who is looking for a chance at love begins to make out with a guy less famous than anyone my buddy Reed mentions in his blog (though just famous enough to be the “prize” of a reality show) only seconds after vomiting in the hot tub.  Person 2 seizes the opportunity to pass gas.  Person 1, still grimacing, begins to notice something is wrong not only with the reality show, but in the air in reality.  Person 1 begins to say, “Oh my goodness.  That is…” at the same time a third person is entering the room.  Person 3 notices the TV and to his excitement finds said vomiter trying to share the acidity in her mouth with the D-lister who now wishes he hadn’t gone for the easy reality TV paycheck.  Person 3, who happens to be addicted to bad reality TV, is excited the show is on and says, “Awesome!”  Person 1, now confused and slightly offended, both olfactorily and socially, disgustedly turns to Person 3 and says, “Awesome?”

Ninjas.  Until I finally get on Wheel of Fortune and win that Somalian Cruise I’ve been wanting to go on for years.

Could you explain to me the anatomy of the post-game celebratory high five. It seems to me that 2 lines somehow form in what appears to be in perfect conjunction with one another. Both lines dutifully high five one another while the pitcher inadvertently gets his butt slapped. What I don’t understand is who and how do the players decide to get in which line? What happens if you get in the wrong line, and are there any consequences?
Aaron D., Kansas City, MO

Walk-off wins are the only wins that don’t have a prescribed choreography (I wanted to use the term “blocking” here instead but didn’t because I figured my fan-base didn’t overlap with theater fans…I’ve made myself laugh now in proofreading that I ironically settled on “choreography”).  Walk-offs are also the wins that make relief pitchers feel really awkward.  It’s getting off topic, but next time you get the opportunity to see a walk-off win, just watch the relievers and enjoy their awkwardness.  They are way late to the party and don’t really know how much jumping is enough, yet not too much.

Back on topic.  For all non-walk-offs, the pitcher and catcher will meet halfway between the mound and the plate and shake hands.  The rest of the fielders who were in the game will congregate just behind second base and congratulate each other and make small talk and then form a line and begin walking towards the mound from second base.  The pitcher and catcher will then walk towards the mound from home plate.  The bench players will join behind the pitcher and catcher in walking away from home towards the mound in a line.  As the two lines meet, the players will high five, knock knuckles, side bump, or execute a hand shake all their own.  Once the line moving away from home gets to the end of the line moving towards home, they do an about-face and now become part
of the line moving towards home (think trumpet line in a marching band).  The manager and a few of his coaches will stay at the foul line and await all the players to eventually make their way back towards the dugout.  The fielders who started the line in from second base will make it to the manager first and then the rest will eventually fall in line.

“Inadvertent” butt slaps are a foreign concept to me as all butt slaps I have been a part of (both as slapper and slappee) have been executed knowingly.  And consequences for entering the wrong line would probably be pretty severe from both your team and the winning team if you shook off the loss quickly enough to join the butt slap line of the team who just beat you.

Just wanted to let you know that now 3 times I tried to cut and paste this post into an e-mail to a friend so they could enter the strange, magical, wonderful world of Disco.  Unfortunately, as I do a Ctrl-V into Microsoft Outlook, it has crashed my computer.  I did figure out that by pasting into NotePad and THEN copying that and pasting into Outlook seems to work.
Anyways, if you have some free time (and since you were a Comp Sci major), I was wondering if you would also be setting up a tech support e-mail for your blog as well.  
Tim K.,  Georgetown, MA

Tim, here at Disco Hayes Blog, INC, we very much appreciate your email and your allegiance to Disco’s blog.  We understand you have a number of options (no matter how Tony Danza-free they may be) when choosing which mlblog to obsess over and we are glad you chose us.  We apologize for the inconvenience this extra step may have caused you and we have gone ahead and created a tech support email address so if you have further problems with Disco’s blog, please send requests to  We totally understand having to remember and type out “” would be annoying, so now Disco has gone overseas and hired a team of recent grads in Bangladesh who will be awaiting your emails.

Thanks again, Tim.

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