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Off to see the A’s vs. Italy

Mar 5, 2013, 8:05 AM EDT

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I’m going to Phoenix Municipal Stadium today to see the Oakland A’s play a game against team Italy from the WBC. It’s a warmup game for everyone, obviously. I just don’t know for which team it is a greater formality.

The big names on team Italy: Anthony Rizzo. Chris Denorfia. Nick Punto, who I’ve already seen play three friggin’ times in the past six days. Jason GrilliDrew Butera and Tyler De La Torre are the team’s catchers, but Mike Piazza is a coach and even at this point might still be a better option. Pat Venditte will be there. That’s the guy who can pitch with either arm. I sorta want to see his two-thumb glove.

I’m about as hazy about WBC things as anyone you’ll meet, but my understanding is that once a team loses two games in the first round they’re done. Italy plays Mexico in its first real WBC game and should likely get beat. Then Canada. If they somehow make it through that they probably have the United States to deal with. What I’m saying is, today’s exhibition against the A’s is one of the final few games this squad is going to play together.

But it should be fun anyway. Maybe the uniforms will be nice. And heck, with my last name perhaps I can convince someone to let me play a little.

  1. heyblueyoustink - Mar 5, 2013 at 8:13 AM

    Aside from your last name, they may ask for other forms of identification…. like the quality of your back hair…. or your skills with plaster, concrete, or painting.

    • barrywhererufrom - Mar 5, 2013 at 8:43 AM

      Heyblueyoustink..as a italian-american maybe we can ask us for your country back..we dominated in culture, politics, athletics and in our greatest conflict ever to face the US and the world more italian Americans served in the military in WWII. No go get me a canola and go bleep yourself!!

      • heyblueyoustink - Mar 5, 2013 at 9:06 AM

        My family hails from Calabria, kiddo, so it’s normal humor for us. And normally I’m not a grammar police type, but I had to read that three times to get your total jist, so in reply:

        1) I’m proud that I come from a culture of builders, artists, and historically political groundbreakers, like the Roman Senate.

        2) It’s hard to speak highly of Italians in American politics if you consider some basic history

        3) If you’re looking for a culture of immigrants having it rough involving coming to the US and wars, see the Irish and the Civil War. There’s no comparison

        4) Go get your own damn cannoli, and bleep your sister.

    • stlouis1baseball - Mar 5, 2013 at 10:07 AM

      I am not real sure what just happened here.
      But I think Barry insulted you and you returned the favor.
      I read each post numerous times. This is the conclusion I arrived at.
      Amiright?
      Either way…props to you on this one.
      It appears you won this round.

      • heyblueyoustink - Mar 5, 2013 at 10:22 AM

        I’m always surprised at how sensitive some folks are to things around here. I try to keep things vanilla, I should have known better in this case.

        I just thought i’d add a little perspective to Barry’s, well, whatever that was. So yeah, you got that one just about right, and maybe you’ll get crucified for it! ;-)

      • paperlions - Mar 5, 2013 at 12:10 PM

        Yeah, there are some fan bases that if you don’t say they are the best team with the most awesome players ever who will probably win every WS over the next decade….they label you a troll….as if, somehow being object and having an information based opinion relegates one to living under bridges.

  2. cktai - Mar 5, 2013 at 8:38 AM

    The first round of this edition of the WBC is a single round robin, so there is a scenario where one team wins all and three teams end with a 1-2 record, where the head-to-head records decide which one will be placed second.

    • Francisco (FC) - Mar 5, 2013 at 10:39 AM

      Which is why I dislike the format, for this few teams in a pool, double elimination is much better, though an argument can be made that if you couldn’t manage to win two games out of three you deserve to lose on whatever tie-breaker bones you.

      Of course exhibition wise, it’s much nicer to see all teams play each other in the same bracket.

      • cktai - Mar 5, 2013 at 10:55 AM

        Yeah it’d be much better with more games, but if people freak out about player health with the current format, can you imagine how it will be with a proper schedule?

      • Francisco (FC) - Mar 5, 2013 at 10:58 AM

        Which is silly since players get hurt all the time in ST.

  3. ctony1216 - Mar 5, 2013 at 9:06 AM

    Bravo. A country that gave us Joe DiMaggio, Yogi Berra, and Tony Lazzeri has to have at least a slugger’s chance.

    Speaking of the Yankees, here’s the latest from The Yankee Doom Watch (courtesy of ESPN.com’s Andy Marchand):
    “If this season is doomed — as many of you seem to think it is — Mesa or Almonte playing on Opening Day will be a signal of the beginning of a decline.”

    Link: http://espn.go.com/blog/new-york/yankees/post/_/id/50246/first-pitch-judgement-days

  4. barrywhererufrom - Mar 5, 2013 at 10:08 AM

    My family hails from Calabria, kiddo, so it’s normal humor for us. And normally I’m not a grammar police type, but I had to read that three times to get your total jist, so in reply:

    1) I’m proud that I come from a culture of builders, artists, and historically political groundbreakers, like the Roman Senate.

    2) It’s hard to speak highly of Italians in American politics if you consider some basic history..hey doofus did you hear of LaGuardia, Giuliano, Cuomo? Governor: Ella T. Grasso, Supreme Court Judge Anton Scalia..to name a few.. Even the form of our govt a representative democracy comes from the people you mocked..

    3) If you’re looking for a culture of immigrants having it rough involving coming to the US and wars, see the Irish and the Civil War. There’s no comparison..like you said no comparision..you are right more people died in WW II then any other conflict..and the most represented and decorated soldiers in our military where ITALIAN-AMERICANS..

    4) Go get your own damn cannoli, and bleep your sister…and finally since you do have some Irish blood in you and I am not a half breed like yourself..in the spirit of St.Patricks’s Day I say go blow a leprechann you self hating Italian..

    • historiophiliac - Mar 5, 2013 at 11:17 AM

      Half breed? There’s no need to bring Cher into this.

      (Psst, more Staters died in the Civil War than WW2 — just FYI.)

    • paperlions - Mar 5, 2013 at 12:52 PM

      Just curious, which side of the conflict were Italian-Italians on?

  5. barrywhererufrom - Mar 5, 2013 at 10:10 AM

    sorry my grammar was not up to Mrs. Crabtree’s standards. I was in a rush I will make sure it doesn’t happen again..

  6. ianrbarbo - Mar 5, 2013 at 11:26 AM

    Craig — Did they really fashion a two-thumb glove for this guy?

  7. barrywhererufrom - Mar 5, 2013 at 11:30 AM

    historiophilac..any history neophyte knows that fact about the Civil War..both sides CSA and US were mostly Americans..my point was like we all know the Civil War if lost by the North would of changed the history of our republic. Now that being said, if the Allies lost WW II not only would our country would not exist as we know it.. so would the rest of the world. In lay mans terms or historiophilac terms greater chance for disaster worlwide if we lost WW II..

    • historiophiliac - Mar 5, 2013 at 11:49 AM

      You are making assumptions you cannot prove there. I think you are just mad, and the best thing is to not try to argue in that condition. No one here hates Italian-Americans. heyblue just made a bad joke. Booo and throw some peanuts at him and move on.

    • stlouis1baseball - Mar 5, 2013 at 12:21 PM

      Barry:
      You aren’t going to win a world history argument, debate, etc… with Philac.
      She will dust you my friend.
      I love history. It was/is easily my favorite subject. And yet…I still don’t bite.

      • historiophiliac - Mar 5, 2013 at 12:33 PM

        Thanks, Woodpecker. he he

  8. barrywhererufrom - Mar 5, 2013 at 11:33 AM

    PSST..I never said more Americans died in WW II then any other war..I said more people..reaading is fundamental..

    • historiophiliac - Mar 5, 2013 at 11:46 AM

      Yes, but you were using that as a plus for Italian-Americans and really, that’s a plus for the Soviets, if you want to be factual about it. American casualties were paltry in comparison.

  9. barrywhererufrom - Mar 5, 2013 at 11:36 AM

    evidently typing is not part of my fundamentals!!

  10. barrywhererufrom - Mar 5, 2013 at 1:12 PM

    historiophiliac yes you are correct..but they(the soviets) would of not won the war by themselves..

    • Reflex - Mar 5, 2013 at 1:26 PM

      Could say that about any of the Allies, including the USA.

  11. barrywhererufrom - Mar 5, 2013 at 1:24 PM

    historiophiliac when did the war with Germany change? When the US came into the war and the Germans had to worry about the western front too it started to go downhill for them. And of course that was a direct result in our entering of the war. Also the Soviets were not winning the war. How close were the Germans to Moscow? The same thing happened with the Japanese. Without our blood both axis parties would not of been defeated. More Soviets may have died but like Churchill stated ‘when the US entered the war it was the first time that he was able to sleep soundly..here is another quote from him about our entry into the war…Now at this very moment I knew that the United States was in the war, up to the neck and in to the death. So we had won after all! … How long the war would last or in what fashion it would end no man could tell, nor did I at this moment care … We should not be wiped out. Our history would not come to an end … Hitler’s fate was sealed. Mussolini’s fate was sealed. As for the Japanese, they would be ground to a powder. All the rest was merely the proper application of overwhelming force.”
    ― Winston Churchill

    • Reflex - Mar 5, 2013 at 1:36 PM

      Um, the Soviets stopped Germany at Stalingrad and it was well on its way to wrapping up the eastern front by the time the US entered the war in 1944. The eastern front was won without any assistance or diversion from the United States. We did not enter the war until June 1944 and Germany surrendered in May of 1945. By the time we entered the war the Soviets had already retaken most of their territory, and only a month after D-Day they were at the Polish border.

      I’m sorry to inform you of this, but the US was the final nail in the coffin for Germany, but we were NOT the deciding factor, not even close.

      • Reflex - Mar 5, 2013 at 1:37 PM

        One correction: We entered the war prior to June 1944, but we did not enter Europe until then with the Normandy landings(D-Day).

      • barrywhererufrom - Mar 5, 2013 at 2:00 PM

        So you actually believe that if we were not attack on Dec 7th that the Allies still would of won the war? I think not..I also believe if we had to go it alone it would of took much longer but we still would of won by ourselves..

      • barrywhererufrom - Mar 5, 2013 at 2:00 PM

        So you actually believe that if we were not attacked on Dec 7th that the Allies still would of won the war? I think not..I also believe if we had to go it alone it would of took much longer but we still would of won by ourselves..

      • Reflex - Mar 5, 2013 at 2:04 PM

        Based on the fact that the Allies were winning before the US entered the war, yes I do believe that. Germany was already crumbling and overextended, Japan was already losing to Russia as well. The US wrapped things up cleanly and certainly more speedily than otherwise.

        Also, your nuts if you think the US could have won that war alone. It took us years to even build up the production capacity to enter that war, had we been attacked outright by a force like Germany initially we’d have been sunk.

  12. hojo20 - Mar 5, 2013 at 1:29 PM

    My condolences to you.

  13. barrywhererufrom - Mar 5, 2013 at 1:55 PM

    Reflex-I will take Churchill’s word over yours. And if we weren’t the final nail in the coffin for Germany than who was? And who defeated the Japanese? I don’t know were you learned your history but it is dead wrong. Finally we entered the war in 41. Gernany had to a much tougher foe to deal with. They were defeating the Allies before we entered. The final nail in the coffin of Germany was our invasion of Normandy in 44. Maybe you forgot about Dunkirk and all the other defeats that the Allies before our entry into the war..

    • Reflex - Mar 5, 2013 at 2:07 PM

      *sigh* What are they teaching birthers these days anyways?

    • historiophiliac - Mar 5, 2013 at 2:17 PM

      Oh, yeah, because Churchill was NEVER one to pander or exaggerate…smh

      You read Reflex’s post wrong. He said the US *was* the final nail in the coffin. Also, you must read too much of that greatest generation/cold war version of history. I don’t know that I think destroying a nation via war crimes is something to tout about yourself.

  14. barrywhererufrom - Mar 5, 2013 at 2:55 PM

    Birthers? what are you talking about?

  15. barrywhererufrom - Mar 5, 2013 at 3:41 PM

    You read Reflex’s post wrong. He said the US *was* the final nail in the coffin. Also, you must read too much of that greatest generation/cold war version of history. I don’t know that I think destroying a nation via war crimes is something to tout about yourself.

    Actually I took humbridge with his comment that the World War II wasn’t a greater threat world wide then the Civil War. Finally my uncle was in the Big Red One First Army Division from the beginning of the war to the end. If you knew the history of his division you would know where he was. Finally my other uncle was wounded on Iwo Jima. He was in the 5th Marine Division he also was wounded during the Korean War. I believe they were both part of the greatest generation. They did more to ensure freedom than you and I would ever do!

    • Reflex - Mar 5, 2013 at 5:53 PM

      I don’t know who said the Civil War was the greater global threat than WW2. Can’t find that in this thread. I can see people pointing out that the Civil War was the deadliest war ever for americans, but that tends to happen when all sides of a conflict are within the same nation.

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