Monday, May 18, 2009

LHP Obama to Join Struggling Phils' Pitching Staff

In a startling move today, the Philadelphia Phillies signed President Barack Obama in order to address the team's recent pitching struggles. It's unclear whether the 47 year old southpaw will compete for the 5th spot in the rotation or join a tired bullpen that has been forced to compensate for the ineffectiveness of the starting pitching.

Last year, the Phillies made a push for Obama during the stretch run of their eventual world championship season. However, Obama spurned the team's offers, citing the 2008 presidential campaign as his top priority. However, as this season has worn on, he claims his desire to get out of the Oval Office and onto the mound has intensified.

"My change-up has the Phillies. A season filled with hope will once fullfilled," said Obama, as he pulled on his jersey for the first time. "Prosperous times in Philadelphia will once enjoyed. The freedom of championship baseball...will continue."

News of the signing spread quickly throughout the Washington region, with many of those on Capitol Hill expressing support for the president's decision. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi in particular offered her endorsement.

"I think the president's decision to pitch for the Phillies is a commendable one," she said. "To not step up and help this team defend its title would be torture, but then again, I'm not familiar with how torture works."

Detractors to the Obama signing included former presidential candidate John McCain.

"My friends, if I could lift my arms above my shoulders and not wave to people like Frankenstein, I would have been the most logical choice to not only be president, but also to pitch for the Phillies," he said. "What the president has done in signing with this team is nothing short of mean-spirited."

Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. defended the Obama signing and hopes the president can help the team repeat as world champions.

"Last year, he did a hell of a job with his campaign while we were simultaneously on our way to winning the World Series," said Amaro. "I don't think that was any coincidence."

President Obama signs autographs for fans shortly after signing with the Phillies

Most Phillies themselves were nothing short of thrilled, starting with the team's skipper.

"You know like, we wanna win and you know, he's proven successfull know like, his presidential run, and we think he know like, help us eat up some innings," Phillies manager Charlie Manuel, whose pitchers have been scuffling, said with confidence. "I think he gives us like, you know, a chance to win."

Phillies' shortstop and nine year veteran, Jimmy Rollins said that he looks forward to becoming teammates with President Obama and cited himself as one of the main driving forces behind the completion of this deal.

"Last year, while I was making campaign calls on his behalf, I couldn't help but wonder if he'd keep that in mind while the '09 season played out," said Rollins. "I guess you could say at this point, with the change he'll bring to this clubhouse, there's no way the Mets should even bother stepping on the field against us!"

Other players couldn't contain their exuberance upon hearing the news of Obama's signing.

"Barack Obama...BARACK F@#%ING OBAMA!!!," exclaimed second baseman Chase Utley as he sat at his locker.

Despite overwhelming support, one Phillie in particular took exception to the Obama signing as a response to his recent struggles.

"I know I haven't pitched all that well lately," said pitcher Jamie Moyer. "But one thing I've always had going for me is being the oldest player in the game. Now even that's been taken away from me."

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

The Cost of Frugality

My wife and I went to a Phillies game last night. Nothing new. We've done this many times together and I've been to more Phillies games over the years than I'll ever remember. But when it comes to getting bang for your buck, nothing tops last night's game.

One of my coworkers emailed me several weeks ago to let me know he was getting a bunch of Phillies tickets through an organization at UPenn and wanted to know if I wanted any. They were $2 each, he said. I replied to his email, correcting him on the dollar figure. Surely, he must have meant to write $20 per ticket, right? No, they were $2 each. T-W-O! In this era of grossly inflated MLB ticket prices, I naturally couldn't pass that up and asked for two tickets for the May 12th game against the Los Angeles Dodgers (a team whom it bears repeating, the Phillies destroyed in last year's NLCS, en route to winning the World Series...but I digress). With the Yankees charging somewhere in the neighborhood of $300 PER TICKET if you want to sit anywhere in the lower level of their dumb new stadium, $4 for two Phillies tickets was more than getting away with murder!

Well it turns out that last night's game was also one of only a few annual "Dollar Dog" nights, meaning that hot dogs would only cost $1 each as compared to the normally horrendous $3.50. When I found this out, my goal was to see how I could make this the most cost-effective Phillies experience ever. When all was said and done, I thought it was too cool not to share. So here's how the night panned out financially:
  • $4 (two tickets)
  • $12 (four hot dogs & two drinks...yes, drinks were $4.00 each...ugh!)
  • $4 (round-trip subway fare for my wife)

    TOTAL COST: $20 (ie, priceless)

$20 will usually not gain even one person admission to a major league baseball game. Yet on this night, it provided two seats in the ballpark, dinner for two, and my wife's transportation to and from the game.

To make this amazingly cost-effective outing complete, the Phillies beat the Dodgers 5-3. Starting pitcher Chan Ho Park got his first win as a Phillie, outfielder Jayson Werth stole four bases (including a rare and dramatic steal of home plate!), and closer Brad Lidge survived a shaky 9th inning to record his 5th save of the season.

There are some things money can't buy...
...and those are Yankee tickets on a normal person's wages.

Go Phils!

Monday, May 4, 2009

We're Having a Baby!!!

Have I got your attention? Well, while the title statement is infact true, the method of doing so is a little slower, scarier, and a lot less predictable. However, the end result will surely prove to be worth all the time, energy, and effort.

My wife Tara and I have begun the process of adopting a baby through Bethany Christian Services. We're in the beginning stages and have a long way to go, but would like to invite people along for the ride.

In order to keep our friends, family, and the entire blogosphere in the loop, we've created The Atchison Adoption Story: a blog that will catalogue the journey, including all the positive and negative aspects of the adoption process. Please check it out when you get a chance and if I am able to persuade you to subscribe to it, I would be eternally grateful.