Posts Tagged ‘Matt Kemp’

A Reasonable Attempt to Explain Unreasonable Fandom

January 23, 2013

dodgers niners logoUsually when this topic comes up, I think, “Whatever! I don’t need to explain myself!

But upon further review, I really do have to justify it.

Such is the life of a Los Angeles Dodger/San Francisco 49er fan. It’s a strange, cross-state rivalry fandom that has just so many awkward, twisted aspects to it that it must not go ignored.

When my ecstatic tweets about the 49ers advancing to the Super Bowl subsided on Sunday, I had plenty of very confused and/or upset Dodgers followers who could not fathom me rooting for a team from San Francisco.

So let me offer my sincerest apologies for injuring said egos. But I will not apologize for my fandom. And this is why, from the beginning:

I’ve been a fan of both teams for so long that I can’t even remember the “Ah-ha!” moment of my fanhood. It’s just been ingrained in me since the day I was born, passed down from my father, who also supports both teams.

See, he grew up in Southern California and worshiped the Dodgers much like I do today. And while he was in the Raiders and Rams and Chargers zones down there, he appreciated the way the 49ers ran their organization. So, his favorite football team has always been the Niners, despite the geographic difference.

Luckily, he moved with my mom up to the Bay Area right before I was born. We got out of the smog and into my favorite place in the world. But even if we had stayed in SoCal, I would still be a 49ers fan. It’s in the family blood. That’s just how it works with sports.

Plus, L.A. is a football graveyard now. What I’m trying to say is…blame my dad if you want a scapegoat.

Just kidding. Sorta.

Yes, it’s weird growing up in Giants country as a Dodger fan. But from a young age I realized the theory of fair weather fandom and front-runner fandom and just thought it was plain stupid. So for the sports I cared about the most, it has been do-or-die, thick-and-thin, win-or-lose support for the last 24 years. That’s something any true fan should respect.

I’m writing this mostly for my Dodger fan friends who are aghast at the possibility of a member of the family rooting for anyone from San Francisco. Well let me tell you something, guys and gals. It’s not a geographic rivalry — it’s a sports rivalry.

Oh, don’t get me wrong. There is a geographic rivalry between SoCal and NorCal. I’m not sure why, since L.A. has the Dodgers, nice beaches, and a whole lot of nothing else. Whereas San Francisco has everything you could want in a hometown (to summarize: NorCal rules, SoCal drools).

So the hella dank California rivalry is kinda jaded bruh. It should not factor into the Dodgers-Giants rivalry (which, for those of you who have forgotten, started in NEW YORK). What should matter is that I always have, always do, and always will bleed Dodger Blue, whether I’m in San Francisco, L.A., Newfoundland or Timbuktu.

And another thing — 49ers fans here aren’t all Giants fans. Remember, there are two teams in each sport in the Bay Area, and all four teams have a large legion of fans. I know plenty of 49ers fans who despise the Giants and root for the A’s, and vice versa.

So…yes. I can love a team from San Francisco. I can also hate a team from San Francisco. And I do love a team from San Francisco, and hate a team from San Francisco. The only things those two teams have in common is they play within the same city limits.

kemp niners hat

All the while, I’ll love the city of San Francisco, love a team from L.A., and hate the city of L.A. These are values I’ve held since the day I was born (legend has it I wore a Dodgers hat and a Niners shirt in the womb, actually), and I don’t intend to give them up. I will not change my sports faith just because it’s logical.

To settle the final score, since this is mostly for people on Twitter, it seems like a good time to remind you who else roots for the Dodgers AND 49ers.

If you can’t accept any of the other reasons I’ve laid out for you; that I was born this way, stayed true, and don’t connect it to the geographic rivalry, then just tell people it’s because Matt Kemp is my idol.

After all, that’s true. And he plays for my favorite baseball team, while rooting for my favorite football team. Don’t forget it! Oh…and…um, please don’t unfollow me on Twitter. My social media presence is pathetic already…thanks.

So prepare to watch me happily tweet away as the 49ers take on the Ravens in about 10 days. And when Opening Day rolls around, you’ll see nonstop Dodger tweets filling your timeline. It’s up to you. Can you handle it? Can you make any sense of it? Either way, you better get used to it!

You can follow Jeremy on Twitter @Jamblinman. Until he tweets about the 49ers. Then you will unfollow me. Damn.

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The Art of Fair Weather Fandom

December 12, 2012

imageI know what you’re thinking: Jeremy, how would you know? You are the most hardcore, dedicated, handsome Dodgers and 49ers fan this side of Matt Kemp!

First of all, thank you. I agree. And yes – believe it or not, Dodgers star center fielder is a diehard 49ers fan.

But that doesn’t mean I don’t know a thing or two about fair weather fandom. Take, for example, the fact that I “root” for the Seattle Sounders because my ex-girlfriend’s dad got me hammered drunk at the only game I’ve attended.

As far as I know, that’s the coolest soccer team in the country because of one very hazy experience I had.

Or let’s talk about the Indiana Pacers; Reggie Miller was my favorite NBA player growing up, so naturally, I rooted for the Pacers. It was weird, unique, different. And like a good little Jew, I loved three-pointers (It’s the SAME thing, for one more point! Why doesn’t everyone just shoot threes?).

We all know Reggie was the three-point master. And don’t mistake “fair weather” for “frontrunner.” Those are vastly different labels. I liked the Pacers, good or bad, because I thought they were cool.

I like the Sounders because the beer at their stadium does very interesting things to my body when taken in large quantities. Honestly, I have no idea if they are any good and I don’t care.

Being a “frontrunner” means you live near the Bay Area and didn’t know what a baseball looked like until 2010 when the local San Francisco Giants won their first World Series title. If you now root for them, wear their gear, and try to tell me why they are the best team around – you are a frontrunner. Once they regress, so does your fandom. And that year’s World Series champion will grace your clothing.

On the contrary, being a fair weather fan means you root for a team for whatever reason, but only pay attention when you feel like it. That’s how it goes for me with basketball. It’s a sport I mostly understand, but never really played and definitely can’t objectively analyze.

I’ve been a fair weather Warriors fan for years (very obvious example of not rooting for a first-place team), but luckily I don’t have to put my heart and soul into rooting for them. So all those tortured fans out there probably both hate and envy me.

Tonight, the Warriors beat the defending-champion Miami Heat and reigning-MVP LeBron James. I turned it on for the sheer idea of a distraction and because my alma mater’s pride and joy, Klay Thompson, now graces the Warriors’ front court.

Twenty seven points for Klay later, the Warriors were jumping up and down on the Miami home floor, celebrating a two-point victory and the continuation of a gritty, undefeated (so far) road trip.

I found myself leaping out of my seat when the final buzzer sounded – emotions usually reserved for a Vernon Davis touchdown or Clayton Kershaw anything.

And that is the art of fair weather fandom. If you can watch a team play a game and feel no personal connection to them, but still become emotionally moved by their performance, you can root for them.

Just admit that you are fair weather, and nobody will get hurt. Tonight, I admit to being a fair weather Warriors fan. For the rest of this season, I am officially declared as a supporter of the Dubs (see, I even have the lingo down!).

I mean, why not? Technically my favorite basketball team is 1-0 this year when I watch them play and as their biggest fan, I couldn’t be happier.

If you are a fair weather blogger, follow Jeremy on Twitter @Jamblinman!

Top Ten Thursday

May 10, 2012

I was laughing at one of Brandon Phillips’ tweets yesterday (if you didn’t know who the Reds 2nd baseman was, get off your electronic device and go take a long walk off a short pier), and it got me to thinkin’…I love the game of baseball. But I also love the players.

At risk of sounding like a ditzy middle school girl who is making a list of cute boys she would kiss, here are my top ten “wanna meet” MLB players.

10. Brandon Phillips – Goofy, fun-loving and a hell of a second baseman, my primary high school position!

9. Andre Ethier – Because he’s gorgeous, obviously. Uhh what? No I’d like to ask him how he swings so sweet though.

8. Eric Chavez – One of my all time favorite players from the early 2000’s Oakland A’s. Seems like a nice dude.

7. Lance Berkman – The Big Puma looks like a huge teddy bear and has been one of the coolest dudes around for years.

6. Orlando Hudson – Does this really need explanation? The most badass guy in baseball.

5. Chipper Jones – One of the first guys I remember watching in the 90’s. Incredible player, class act, future hall of famer.

4. Josh Hamilton – He’s the best hitter in baseball right now and had an unbelievable story.

3. Gio Gonzalez – The former Athletic clinched himself a top-3 spot here with his giddy first career hit celebration this season for the Nats.

2. Derek Jeter/Mariano Rivera – Say what you will about the Yankees, but these two guys are classy and will go down in MLB history as two of the greatest players ever. I’d give a nut to shake their hands.

1. Matt Kemp/Clayton Kershaw – If I would give a nut for DJ and Mo, imagine what I would do to meet my favorite player and favorite pitcher on my favorite team. Hall of Fame talents and great guys. Arguably the best pitcher and hitter in baseball today!

There you have it. Let me know who you would want to meet! But I don’t need to know which body parts you’d sacrifice so skip that part. Until tomorrow, thanks for reading Jam Shots! Tune back in tomorrow.

Don’t forget to follow me on Twitter @Jamblinman!

Defending Dodger Fans’ Honor

May 8, 2012

You know…there are some days when I log on to this blog and go, “What the HELL am I going to write about today?” When that happens, sometimes I post a bunch of crap. Other times, like today, something magically appears that I feel strongly about and feel inclined to write about.

When I was perusing the blogosphere this morning (yes, I do that), I came across THIS madness

Henry Schulman, I’m not one to call names. But you are a raging douche canoe. And you should be fired as a Giants beat writer, because you clearly don’t understand their most important rivalry.

Schulman was literally the only person in Los Angeles last night who thought Dodger fans were booing Matt Kemp. We are talking about a legitimate MVP candidate every season, who is hitting over .400 by the way.

Dodger fans may show up late, they may leave early. But they don’t boo their own players undeservedly. I want to punch Schulman’s puppy. Right in the face. Twice.

Also, I’m not one to engage in petty bloguments (yes I am), but if you want to attack Dodger fans, two can play at this game.

Let me just point out that Dodgers fans boo whenever the Giants score a run. And I don’t mean just against us. I mean when we see on TV that they score a run, we boo. In our living rooms. That’s what a rivalry IS. We wish ill will on the Giants in the form of going 0-162 every…single…season.

And we expect the same to happen the other way around. That being said, I’ve BEEN to AT&T for games multiple times. I live there, I can’t stay away from baseball. And I’ve sat in the bleachers, and never been more disappointed by a general group of sober fans’ lack of knowledge about their team.

I’m not saying those fans aren’t legit, and I definitely don’t think that faction represents the general knowledge level of Giants fans (trust me…tons of my friends are SF fans and they know their shit). But if this Schulman guy thinks he knows the rivalry, he needs to take a step back and make sure he’s not part of that bleacher crew himself.

Because even true Giants fans know that Dodgers fans wouldn’t boo our franchise player. We’ve been tortured since 1988, and the only thing we’ve done wrong since then is not sat in three hours of traffic to see them play in person.

Forget Tim Lincecum…Henry Schulman is now public enemy number one.

Follow me on Twitter @Jamblinman!

The Windy City

May 3, 2012

I really got the travel bug last summer when I went on Semester at Sea (to date, the greatest experience of my life!). I feel that after these past few weeks, I’ve now hit nearly every major city in America. Still missing are Washington D.C., Philadelphia, Miami and Dallas.

But today, I arrived in Chicago. I like it already, but I’ve yet to fully explore what it has to offer. As I told my girlfriend earlier, I’ve never met a place I didn’t fall in love with, whether that be for ten minutes or ten years.

Luckily for me, the Dodgers are coming into town to play the Cubs this weekend! So I’ll definitely be looking for tickets. Okay, so I sort of already did. A million times. WHY the hell are bleacher seats at Wrigley Field nearly $60?

Is it because it’s a Saturday afternoon? Doubtful, considering the same tickets on Sunday are under $25 a pop. Is it because the Cubs are winning so much? HAHAHAHA. No.

So, I’ve come to the only logical conclusion – that it’s because they are playing the epic, talented, first-place Los Angeles Dodgers. And yes, while I’ll probably pay the higher fees to see Matt Kemp shred Matt Garza in the Chicago wind, it’s still annoying.

Maybe I need to come home, where the A’s offer $2 tickets to anyone with a pulse. Granted, it’s a much worse baseball experience, but at least it’s easier on the wallet.

Check back in after the game to see what I thought of my experience in the legendary Wrigley Field bleachers!

Follow me on Twitter @Jamblinman!

If You Give a Mouse a Cookie

April 27, 2012

If you give a mouse a cookie…

…the Nationals will call up a rookie.

If you give that rookie a chance…

…he’ll get a kick in the pants.

If you kick him in the pants…

…the rookie will go on a rant.

If he rants like a little bitch…

…he’ll get hit in the head by a pitch.

If that pitch is thrown by a Dodger…

…the Nats may as well not bother.

If they bother to retaliate…

…Matt Kemp will make them pay.

If Matt makes them pay…

…it’ll ruin the Nats’ big day.

If you haven’t yet figured out…

…who the hell I’m talking about.

It’s that little punk ass Harper, Bryce…

…getting called up to play tomorrow night.

If Harper thinks he is here to stay…

…he’ll get a reality check in L.A.

Go Dodgers. Screw Bryce Harper. Thanks for reading.

Don’t forget to follow me on Twitter @Jamblinman for more awful poetry!

1st-Place Teams So Far

April 20, 2012

Well, folks…we’re 13 games into the 2012 regular season. If you didn’t notice, some crazy things are happening. For example, the Orioles are doing it again – leading the AL East early. And there’s anarchy in L.A. – The Dodgers are in first by three games and the Angels…well, the Angels are paying Albert Pujols nine figures; one for each loss.

There are six divisions, so six first place teams, so six things for me to talk about:

AL East:

Really? The Baltimore Orioles? One of four teams I figured would have a legitimate shot at losing 95 games this year?

I know what you’re thinking. Is it for real? Well, put simply, no. Expect this division to be flipped by next month. It’s just one of those random hot streaks paired with some poor play by division favorites. Four of the five teams are within 1.5 games already, and the Red Sox being in dead last will change soon.

The A.L. East will still finish Yankees, Red Sox, Rays, Blue Jays, Orioles.

AL Central:

Detroit Tigers…obviously, bro. They haven’t disappointed, coming out of the gates hot and laying the smack down on the Red Sox to open the season.

One team I’m disappointed with so far is the Kansas City Royals. I am very bromantic about guys like Billy Butler, Eric Hosmer and Luke Hochevar. I’m not too worried about the Royals climbing back into contention, but will it be too late?

The Tigers are leading the Central and that won’t change anytime soon. The order will be: Tigers, Royals, Indians, Twins, White Sox.

AL West:

The Rangers are 11-2, have a 4.5 game lead in the division and the best record in baseball. Where have we seen this story before? Texas might be even better than the last two seasons. That’s terrifying.

The A’s and Mariners are both 7-7 and have played each other about 14 times in 2012. Or so it seems. How about the poor A’s having to face Felix Hernandez THRICE already? Ouch. Am I worried about the Angels? No, but thanks for asking. Let them figure it out and talk to me in a month when they are alone in second place, hot on the Rangers trail.

Despite how incredible Bartolo Colon is, the A’s are still a last-place team. They could lose 100 games. So, the division order will still be Angels, Rangers, Mariners, A’s.

NL East:

Told ya so, told ya so, told ya so, told ya so, told ya so, told ya so, told ya so, told ya so, told ya so, told ya so, TOLD YA SO. Suck it. The Nationals are in first place with a 10-4 record. And Mike Morse hasn’t even played one game yet.

You have to love seeing the Phillies in last place, a game under .500, despite the ridiculous pitching staff. They are really hurting for offense. When are Ryan Howard and Chase Utley coming back again? The Braves have bounced back impressively from an opening weekend sweep at the hands of the Mets. Speaking of the other New York team, they have started to fall back down to Earth a little bit.

Expect the result to stick: Nationals in first, then Philly, Miami, Atlanta, and New York.

NL Central:

Isn’t it cliche these days to say the Cardinals are in first? Well the word “cliche” makes me feel fancy. And I like that. So, the Cardinals are in first. Again.

They have a three-game lead and have by far looked like the most complete team in the division. I still think it’s going to be Cincinnati at the end, but the more I see Milwaukee and Pittsburgh play, the less impressed I’ve been. Ryan Braun just went 0-12 with a ton of strikeouts in three games against the Dodgers. But one guy who IS having success if Carlos Beltran in St. Louis. He has five more home runs than Albert Pujols in L.A. Oh, and Beltran has five homers total. Sooo…do the math.

This division will eventually be: Reds, Cardinals, Brewers, Pirates, Cubs, Astros

NL West:

*Coughs*. *Makes throat sounds suggesting “hey look at this”*. *Winks*. Allllll that nonsense can only mean one thing. My Los Angeles Dodgers are sitting pretty atop the NL West. And it feels so good.

Is it real? Well, biases aside…this is one of the greatest rosters ever assembled in any sport in the history of the universe. And yes, they can continue this success into the postseason. It’s not just Matt Kemp and Clayton Kershaw this season. In fact, Kershaw hasn’t even gotten warmed up yet. But Andre Ethier is raking, Juan Rivera is driving in runs like nobody’s business, and the rest of the rotation has done wonders. Oh, right. There are four other teams in the West. But…whatever.

The only division I’ll change my order in: Diamondbacks, Dodgers, Giants, Rockies, Padres

Don’t forget to follow me on Twitter @Jamblinman!

Word Association

April 18, 2012

Let’s play word association. I’ll type a word, and then say what first comes to my mind. Yeah, that’s right. You don’t get to play. Sucker.

BASEBALL –> Dodgers.

ORLANDO (FL) –> Magic. Johnson. Dodgers.

DISNEY (WORLD) –> Magic. Johnson. Dodgers.

MONEY –> Magic Johnson. Dodgers.

RAINBOW –> Double. Red. Orange. Yellow. Green. Indigo. Blue. Dodgers.

CAR –> Drive. Swing and a drive. Home run. Matt Kemp. Dodgers.

PODCAST –> Three Up, Three Down. Rules. Baseball. Dodgers.

T-SHIRT –> Collared. Jersey. James Loney. Dodgers.

BEER –> Budweiser. Dos Equis. Ball park. Dodger Stadium. Dodgers.

CRAZY –> Horse. What? Me. Loves. Dodgers.

SUN –> Shine. Florida. Spring Training. Dodgers.

EFFERVESCENT –> Kelsey Shea. Cardinals. Inferior. To the Dodgers.

And now you see why my life revolves around baseball. There isn’t one damn thing you can say that won’t end with me thinking about my favorite team. Until tomorrow, enjoy eating the Dodgers’ dust, other teams!

Thanks for reading, and don’t forget to follow me on Twitter @Jamblinman!

Happy Jackie Robinson Day!

April 15, 2012

Ugh. What I would give for one of those “42” jerseys. Needless to say, Jackie Robinson is one of the most important people in the history of…well…anything. But especially baseball.

I’ve been watching baseball all day (I know, rough life), and I was thinking how we would not be seeing certain things today if not for Robinson breaking the color barrier.

Here’s a few of those things:

Matt Kemp might not have slugged his SIXTH home run of the young 2012 season.

Adam Jones might not have continued his rise to stardom with another long ball.

Jimmy Rollins might not have gotten two hits, an RBI and a stolen base.

Dee Gordon might not have hit a walk-off single.

Jason Heyward might not have continued his resurgence with a solo homer.

Prince Fielder might not have raised his average to .353.

Chris Young might not have had three hits, a homer and a stolen base.

And then today would have been really, really boring. Happy Jackie Robinson Day, and don’t forget why some of your favorite players are in the game today.

Follow me on Twitter @Jamblinman

Clayton Kershaw Gives Vin Scully the Flu

April 10, 2012

Good news! Clayton Kershaw is feeling better and ready to roll in his first real start of the season today. Keep an eye out on MLB.tv if you have it, or just follow my frantic tweets @Jamblinman, as first pitch is in about FIVE MINUTES!

Unfortunately for Dodger fans and baseball fans everywhere, Vin Scully is under the weather and won’t be able to call the home opener for the first time in almost 30 years. As entertaining as he is to listen to, Scully isn’t on the field.

But the guys that are taking the field soon are impressing me so far.

Kershaw, despite being limited to 3 innings in his Opening Day start, looked great. He’s defending his Cy Young campaign of 2011 and looks to get off to a hot start with his first win today against Pittsburgh.

The ultimate MVP snub of 2011, Matt Kemp, has started the season hitting .421 with 2 home runs, 8 RBI and a stolen base. His partner in crime is Andre Ethier, who also has 8 RBI and a home run thus far.

What I’m looking for today is how Dee Gordon bounces back from an ugly game against the Padres in the series finale on Sunday. He made an error at shortstop and was nowhere to be found offensively. I fully expect a couple hits and stolen bases in today’s game.

James Loney should bounce back. He hit the ball hard three times on Sunday, but they were right at people. He comes into today’s game 0-for-12 on the season.

My biggest worry is the bullpen. Luckily, with Kershaw on the hill, it’s reasonable to expect him to go 7 innings and then hand the ball over to Kenley Jansen and Javy Guerra for the last two innings. As long as Todd Coffey and Jamey Wright aren’t trusted with leads, we should pull out the home opener.

I wish I could be down in L.A. to see this game – the house should be rockin’ what with the fans’ renewed faith in the new ownership. Baseball is back in Chavez Ravine, and it’s finally FUN again.

Here’s to a big win. Go Blue!


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