Linx/Stuff/Junk - or Treat

Happy Halloween everyone! Here are a couple linx for you to check out before stealing candy from the little bastards in your neighborhood:

-This week's insideSTL article, giving you some last minute costume ideas. Shame on me for leaving out an insensitive Scott Spiezio entry. And thanks to the fine folks at iSTL for linking us yesterday. I have to clean their office bathroom for the next 12 weeks, but it was so worth it!

-Another k.u.chebag on Mizzourah.

That's all I'm good for today since I'm a selfish bastard.

-Oh, how about the Periodic Table of Awesoments. TGF sent me the link a month or so ago, I'm really on the ball with these things...

-And one last one for the pervs; the spirit of Halloween isn't in the candy or the fun of a haunted house or hayride. It's in the skanky costumes.

As my treat to you, here are a few of my favorites:

Skanky Dorothy -

Skanky Ed Hochuli -

Skanky Girl Scout (gotta teach 'em early, that's what I say) -

-And some local skanks (via RFT's website).


The Fine Line Between Fun and Terrorism

The for-serious journalizts at MSNBC.com are running with this at the top of the page this morning:

I'm still not sure whether the picture is post-victory-riot Philly or post-bombing India.

A Hard Nine With Minorleagueball.com's John Sickels

Well, crap. Now that the Tampa Bay Rays’ miracle season has come to a premature end, we’re 100+ days from spring training. Don’t worry – your friendly neighborhood BertFlex is here to keep the baseball chatter going during the long, cold, miserable offseason.

To wit: John Sickels is the auteur of minorleagueball.com and way too classy to speak with a fourth-rate blog like us. But don’t tell him that. We sat down with the Hammerin’ Sickels for another of our trademark, Jim Rome-approved interviews.

1. We at BertFlex are big fans of Brett Wallace. Some of us don't know if he can stick at third defensively. What's your expert opinion?

Well, I absolutely love the bat. I think he would be a better fit at first base, but obviously that's not an option for the Cardinals unless Albert has a catastrophic injury of some kind. From what I saw of Wallace in college, he has the arm for third base, and he is actually a pretty good athlete for his size, but his range is no better than average, and as he gets older and slows down that could deteriorate further. However, if he hits as expected, the tradeoff of mediocre defense/outstanding hitting is likely worthwhile.

2. Sticking on the Cardinals front: After Colby Rasmus's disappointing 2008 (granted, injuries played a major factor), have your thoughts on him changed at all? Do you see him as a sure thing or just the best the Cards have right now? Or is he even that?

I still love Rasmus, and I'm not worried about him at this point. The balance of skills is still there. He didn't lose his strike zone judgment. 2008 was the equivalent of his junior year in college, so just be patient. I think he will be fine.

3. How many minor league games do you attend in a season? Does one particular game/memory stick out?

Not enough. I live in Lawrence, KS, which is now about 150 miles from the nearest minor league city thanks to Wichita losing their team in 2008. In most seasons, I do a lot of driving around the Midwest and get good coverage of the Texas League, the Pacific Coast League, and the Midwest League, plus the Arizona Fall League, 25-30 games in a good year. But in 2007 and 2008, we had some family deaths and other tragedies that prevented me from traveling much during the season.

Hopefully, we can get some stability back in 2009 and I can get back on a normal schedule. This is a handicap at times, but it is what it is. I prefer to see players in person, but I have sources I trust who can see players that I can't see and who give me good information when needed. The explosion of video now available on the Internet has helped immensely.

As for 2008, probably the most interesting game I saw this year was a Texas League game in early April between Tulsa and San Antonio, featuring numerous strong prospects on both clubs. Will Inman of the Padres showed me one hell of a breaking ball in that game.

4. (Editor’s Note: The fourth Q&A has gone missing, possibly due to a cut-and-paste mishap. We believe in a hard nine rather than a hard eight (that’s what she said), so we’re including this placeholder. We hope to recover the missing question in time for inclusion on the BertFlex 30th Anniversary DVD.)

5. How much would I have to pay you to get my own entry in the 2009 Prospect Handbook? What's your process for putting that book together each season?

Well, I'm working on the book right now. It will have reports on more than 1,000 players, so space is at a premium ... sorry, at this point we aren't taking custom player orders.

Basically, I write it team-by-team. I usually start off with a list of 50-60 players in each system worth writing about, based on stats and scouting reports. The hardest part is paring that down to 36-38 players per team. Someone cool always gets left out, but if I included everyone the book would take five months to write instead of three, and would be so big no one could carry it to the bathroom to read. (Editor’s Note: Methinks he misunderestimates the BertFlex crowd.)

6. Judging by your SBNation profile, you're a big politics and history buff. Has the current election cycle bolstered or deflated your faith in Americans' ability to handle the responsibilities of democracy?

We will know in another week. Yes, I am a big history buff; I have an MA in European history and worked on my PhD for three years before giving it up for baseball. American history is the long story of our struggle to live up to the ideals enshrined in the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. I try to keep my politics out of my baseball writing, but it sneaks in sometimes, and anyone who has read my work over the years can probably figure out where I stand on things.

7. Better classic rock drummer: Keith Moon or John Bonham? (Hint: The correct answer is John Bonham.)

I'm sorry, the correct answer is Nick Mason, circa 1973-1975.

8. Bold prediction time: Who will be the Evan Longoria of 2009?

Matt Wieters, who will hit .279 with a .353 OBP and 25 homers.

9. Do you play baseball/softball in any capacity? I only ask because we're going to be playing in a wiffle ball league this winter and could use another body.

I play catch in the spring and summer with my son, and was a decent wiffleball player in my youth. I had a good arm and could hit a little, but was an awful fielder, a slow runner, and a poor athlete overall. I never did much with actual Little League, which was too structured for my tastes. When I was a kid, I used to play whiffle ball with some neighbors across the street. One of them was Mike Mahoney, who eventually ended up playing some in the majors.

The BertFlex crew sincerely thanks Mr. Sickels for his time and tolerance.


The Mmm! Hall of Fame

I’ve been watching the World Series closely, scouting for additions to the Mad Librarian’s All-Star Fantasy Team, if you know what I mean. My top prospects:

Cole Hamels, Phillies, P. Cole, I’m going to throw something out there. If you like it, take it. If you don’t, send it on back. I want to be on you. No, shh, don’t talk; you sound like a schoolgirl. But still: I want to be on you.

Jayson Werth, Phillies, RF. As several members of the Flex noted independently, local boy Werth looks startlingly like Edge. Edge = hot. Werth = Edge. Therefore, by the transitive property of hotness, Werth = hot.

Chase Utley, Phillies, 2B. When it comes to lookers, the Phillies don’t have the depth of the Rays squad, but Utley’s a solid third. I wouldn’t mind seeing him down a couple sandwiches or some ‘roids to increase his tree-felling and bear-fighting abilities, but he’s a good-looking fellow and the only active second baseman with crush-worthy play.

David Price, Rays, P. I don’t have anything clever to say here. You’re adorable. Your fastball is smokin’. Marry me.

Evan Longoria, Rays, 3B. I missed my chance to slut it up on Longoria’s tour of downtown St. Charles, so my next best bet is joining him on field as an honorary third baseman. Think I can pass as a 12-year-old? (Either way you answer that, I'm probably going to be angry.)

Carl Crawford, Rays, LF. Boy, you look good sliding into home.* Hey-o!

* OK, obviously that’s not home. Looks like third? But I’m not one to let technicalities like “truth” and “accuracy” get in the way of a juvenile comment.

Breaking News: Espn.com Approves of Man-on-Man Love

Take a look at this banner ad I saw on espn.com:

Michael Strahan? Bending over and grunting? Vaseline? Exclusive video?

"Peak Performance"?!

Hey ESPN - I'm not falling for that one (again)!


Two Years Ago

We were sneaking into Busch, freezing, hugging random strangers, and eating celebratory White Castles in the middle of the night.

It was easily my favorite sports moment. Oh how the times have changed (come to think of it, not really...we still have a barely-above-.500 baseball team).

If you also like strolling down memory lane, read all about it here.

Or if you have time, take the month-long journey from a scrappy, young blogger's POV by clicking on my favorite tag: 2006 Playoffs.


Brett Wallace Believes in a More Reputable Blog

After HMW showed Cards 1st rounder Brett Wallace how this whole bloggin' thing works, B Dub decided to throw up his own post on a 'professional site' compared to Bertflex...and no mention of HMW or Bertflex.

Fucking sellout.

What's next: a black president?

It’s official (mostly … I won’t believe it until I hold it in my hands): Guns n’ Roses' Chinese Democracy will be released next month. I did some research (i.e., consulted Wikipedia) and learned that work on the sure-to-suck album began way back in 1994.

It was a different world back then. There was no easily accessible Internet (I don’t know if Al Gore had invented it for science nerds yet), cheese-in-crust pizza was still a ways away, and the Tampa Bay (Devil) Rays weren't even a gleam in Bud Selig's eye.

Think about that for a second. The (Devil) Rays and Diamondbacks were “born” on March 9, 1995. Both brand-new franchises reached the World Series before Axl Rose could bring himself to dump 12 crappy tracks on a public that had pretty much forgotten about him by 1996.

I'm all about procrastination, but that's ricockulous.


Let's start this week with Wednesday's insideSTL article, in which I included the brilliant MS Paint drawing artists' rendering of Mark Mulder going away. And it even drew the ire of three readers. Sorry to get you riled up guys.

-And last week's article. I honestly forgot what I wrote about, but there's the link.

-Mizzourah is focusing on Colorado. I haven't watched the past two games, did I miss anything?

-The ML checks in with a couple new posts since the last time we spoke.

-How's the new poker league going?

Two others that don't have anything to do with us:

-The Mammary Game. There are safe and not safe for work versions, but you shouldn't be working anyway today.

-Will Ferrell returned to SNL's Weekend Update Thursday Edition:


Dirty Shirty Contest

I’m attending a birthday party next month for Hack’s lady, and the theme of the party is dirty shirty: that is, T-shirts with dirty slogans. Being an upstanding young lass, I have no such shirts, unless you count my Jason LaRue T-shirt jersey.

Anyway, I want the most awesome dirty shirt ever, so I’m tapping the most awesome dirty minds ever: Yours. Bonus points if you drop a librarian reference or create an idea so foul it offends even me. I will puff paint the winning slogan on a T-shirt and wear it amongst strangers, plus shower the winner with fabulous prizes (e.g., a lukewarm McRib).

So submit your dirty shirt ideas to the comments or haymang@yahoo.com. Do it. Now.

Stay Classy A-Town

I saw a news story yesterday that a few of the members of this site, as well as many friends of the site, will appreciate.

A female bartender (Jamie Day) from the Pub Room in Alton was arrested for bartending nekkid:

Someone called police to complain about the woman, who "was observed totally nude while tending bar at the Pub Room," a brief Alton Police Department report says.

Day reportedly had been performing for male customers and had donned a shirt by the time police arrived.

This type of stuff happens all the time at BertFlex World Headquarters, but I'm shocked that this could happen in a high-brow town like Alton.

If you are having hot, sexy fantasies about this smoking hot bartender, think again:

Barf. Once again: stay classy Alton.

We still need to hang out across the river more often, one would assume the naked talent could only get better...

But that's probably a bad assumption.


Are You a Real American?

If so, then you should follow my lead and only pay for things with the GREATEST. CURRENCY. EVAR. By that, I obviously mean the Brett Favre dollar coin and Brett Favre quarter.

For the low, low price of $9.95 (plus $9.90 shipping and handling?!?!) YOU can buy $1.25 in genuine 'Mericahn currency that has been covered with a microscopicly thin layer of gold, plus has an image of the GREATEST. AMERICAN. EVAR. on the face of each coin.

For everyone seeking shelter from the hard economic times we face, this has to be the best investment opportunity in our lifetimes. I mean, this would still be a value at twice the price, at least according to the website. They say the coin is already worth $29.95 and you can obviously trust the guys trying to sell you the coins.

Do what I would do and convert all your crappy stocks and bonds that aren't worth anything anyway into heroic Brett Favre currency. It's the only currency guaranteed to survive the current economic crisis. After all, it's backed by the full faith and awesomeness of Brett Favre.

A Long Post Making Something Out of Nothing

I've been doing a bad job of solid, quality posts lately (well, at least ones that require a smidgen of thought). So to make up for it, I have decided to bring to your attention to yesterday's UCB round table, featuring our own The Good Face.

Yesterday's question, posted on Fungoes.net:

If you could change anything about the Busch Stadium game experience and money were no object, what would it be?

TGF replied with, "I'm a smellyhead and I love carrots and celery. The end. Poop."

He continues, "Well, I’d like to see a team that features Albert, Hanley Ramirez, Chase Utley … but I don’t think that’s the "game experience" you’re talking about.

I don’t really have any complaints about the current set-up. I know I’m supposed to be nostalgic for the old Busch, but it never seemed like more than a place to watch a game.

Is there a way that we can outlaw the wave without violating people’s First Amendment rights?

Oooh, oooh, I do have one idea: It’s not fair that only the rich people get to see the Team Fredbird girls up close. How about some "discount" babes for those of us in the 400s?"

Starting at the beginning, yes, TGF loves him some celery and carrots. So much so that he skips out on eating steaks, shrimp, and beef (among other tasty treats) in favor of a "healthy lifestyle." Rob Deer never lived a healthy lifestyle. Are you going to question the Gospel of Rob Deer, TGF?

Normal people know that Rob Deer is always right. Mullets, mustaches, and donutburgers is where the party's at. Unfortunately TGF has a lifetime pass to the Suck Convention.

As for his other actual points about the new Busch...

-Wanting a team of Pujols, Hanley the Mangley, and Chase Butley is a blatant copyright infringement on yours truly. I'd like to point you to Xzibit A, the ML's Men of B-Flex survey in which I named all three as my official man-crushes. TGF will be hearing from my legal team shortly.

-The nostalgic part about the Old Busch is that it was the place to watch a game. No other redeeming qualities. Allegiances aside, BSII was a dump.

But now BSIII is a nicer venue, with a lot more distractions for the casual fan. It still serves its purposes of 1) watching a ballgame and 2) getting people drunk, but I think I'm safely speaking for everyone else when I say that we expected a little better.

I wouldn't say I have MAJOR-major complaints about the three year old stadium, but I have a shit-ton of minor ones. I shouldn't go into these, but why not: 1) Things such as "Casino Queen Party Porch" and "Big Mac Land" and "Coca-cola Rooftop Deck" and the "AT&T Something-Zone", etc get on my nerves. I'm as big of a proponent of advertising your business, possibly as much as everyone on this site combined...but in BSIII it is way overdone and looks cheesy. 2) The scoreboards suck in all aspects. Getting better by the year, but still sucks. 3) Even three seasons later, it still seems like they built the thing in a couple weeks (which isn't a huge stretch, really). 4) The food/drink prices are too ridiculous. I get the stadium mark-up, but in the whole scheme of things, they don't make that much on food. 5) The ushers are there to promote too civil of an atmosphere. I'm not a heckler by any means, but if you're lucky enough to get a seat close to any opposing player, you can't verbally taunt him, and God forbid if you try to stand and do it; an old lady will tell on you quicker than oops, she crapped her pants.

I could go on, but those are five to start with, none of which deter me from going to a game, but certain changes would improve my deep thoughts of BSIII.

-TGF is right in that we should ban the wave. No explanation could change my mind on that thing.

-I've had the rare privilege of seeing some of the Fredbird girls up close. It's not all it's cracked up to be. And "discount" Fredbird girls...in this city...would probably give you the clap.

Story Time: Big Sandwich, Pink Ass Ben, Black Rob, and I attended a game in '07 and we stood by the SRO section next to the previously mentioned Casino Queen Party Porch. An attractive lass from Team Fredbird was standing near us, most likely on the man-hunt. We may have glanced over in her direction once or twice and gave a classy approval of what we were looking at: a short red-head with long curly locks, nice boobies, and in shape. Unfortunately duty called, and she had to leave our area. As she walked away (behind us), we glanced back to see her walk towards the steps, only to be grossed out by her cottage cheese thighs. I'm in favor of a little thickness on the backside, but those legs were dis-gusting. If I remember correctly, a few of us threw up. Zero exaggeration here. It was bad.

Moral of the story: don't fantasize about the Team Fredbird girls.

Oh, and have a couple McRibs tomorrow night, celery guy.


Less Cowbell

Will Ferrell with a cowbell = comic gold.

More Cowbell - Watch the best video clips here

Rays fans with cowbells = fucking irritating.


Challenge Him!

In an attempt to gross everyone out and destroy the insides of my body even more, I would like to announce that I'll be eating the following for dinner before poker Wednesday night:

-One McRib
-One Triple Steak Burrito from Taco Bell

We found out earlier that the TSB costs over $4, so you know it's good. I'm already leading the poker league, so while I'm in a food coma of happiness, everyone else will have a tremendous shot of catching up.

If you want in on the McRib/TSB challenge, you're also a fat bastard.

And a damn fine American.

I Got Tired of Looking at the UCB Roundtable

This is much better. You're welcome.


Finally ... the UCB Roundtable Blogcrawl has COME BACK

... to BertFlex!

My thought-provoking question for the gang:

We've got more outfielders than J.D.'s got Salinger. How do you see our outfield shaking out in '09? You can answer with a starting three, a starting three vs. LHP, a starting three vs. RHP, however detailed you want to get.

Bonus points for any response that starts with, "First, we trade Adam Kennedy and Brad Thompson for Matt Holliday."

Beat that, Stat Boy. The bloggers’ responses follow:

Nick (Pitchers Hit Eighth): Because the Charlie Manning pickup makes me skeptical that they're planning to trade outfield surplus for help elsewhere, I'm not sure that the coming season's outfield will shake out any different than 2008.

vLHP - LF Brian Barton, CF Rick Ankiel, RF Ryan Ludwick
vRHP - LF Skip Schumaker, CF Rick Ankiel, RF Ryan Ludwick
5th OF: Joe Mather

I'm not convinced that Duncan will be able to easily (or at all) come back from the neck injury and resulting surgery. At the very least, there's no precedent, so it'll be interesting to see how he reacts and recovers.

I'm beginning to think that the Cards might take a page out of the Rays' book and move Colby Rasmus similarly to Evan Longoria. Start him in Memphis, let him (hopefully) tear things up there for a month, then bring him up sometime in May.

This approach would allow guys like Ludwick and Schumaker to have a month or two to prove that last season was no fluke, hopefully increasing their trade value by the deadline. Plug Rasmus in, then move one of Schu or Luddy for help on July 31.

Dan (C70 at the Bat): I'm starting to think along the lines of Nick.  Barton, I believe, will wind up in AAA to get more ABs.  Rasmus will start down there as well.  We'll have Schumaker/Mather, Ankiel, and Ludwick playing on a fairly regular basis.  I really don't know if we'll see Chris Duncan again or not, but I figure he'll start the season on the DL, if nothing else, and then get some rehab time in the minors before we have to worry about him.

As Nick notes, the problem is that the trade value of our outfielders has taken a hit.  Schumaker is what he is, but people don't know if Duncan (and, to a lesser extent, Ankiel) can recover from injuries or if Ludwick's a one-year wonder.  So while we have a lot of them, we'd have to sell low on some of them to move them.

Bryan (Rockin’ the Red): I think the outfield is going to be a place that's addressed in the off-season. Whether it's Skip Schumaker, Chris Duncan, Joe Mather, or even Colby Rasmus (I hope not), there will be a trade dealing from our area of relative strength. If we keep Rasmus, he, Ryan Ludwick, and Rick Ankiel will form the regular outfield, but against lefties that outfield could look like Joe Mather/Brian Barton, Colby Rasmus, and Ryan Ludwick.

Personally, I would look to deal Skip Schumaker, considering that his value has never been higher right now and the Cardinals have plenty of lefthanded outfielders.

Scott (Cardinal Nation Globe): Here's my take on the outfield situation. I think Barton needs more ABs so he should probably start out at AAA, as should Rasmus (unless he shows some major improvement in spring training). I've got a bad feeling about Duncan, I don't think we'll see much more of him - we should have traded him last off season. I think Ankiel will recover but will still be injury-prone and will probably only play 100-120 games next season. I do think we need to trade someone, maybe Schumaker ... Ludwick's stock is high but I'd hate to see him go after what he did in 2008. I see the Cards’ outfield in 2009 as being Ankiel, Ludwick, and Schumaker/Mather. We'll probably see Rasmus move up to the big league club by mid-late next summer.

John (The Cardinal Virtue): I think that we need to get more for the overachievers. And it pains me to say this but the smart move is to deal Luds. The fan in me wants to keep him. However, Rasmus is on the way up, and at this stage we can deal an "All-Star" to shore up the OF. I'd deal Ankiel too -- I don't see him having a season like the one he just did. I'd like to see more of a regular outfield from day to day -- but asking that of TLR is asking a Zebra to change his stripes. Ankiel, Luds, and Schu will get the nod most nights. However, if Rasmus does well in AAA (where I expect him to start out) then we should deal Luds early -- if not before the season starts.

Pip (Fungoes): The most likely scenario as it stands today is that the opening-day outfielders will be a lot like 2008: Ankiel, Schumaker, Ludwick, Duncan, and, depending on Spring Training, Mather or Barton. Status quo in the outfield is actually a good thing: The Cardinal outfield was tops in the league in total runs created in 2008. That affords them the luxury of further development of Rasmus and Mather/Barton at Memphis. And of course, they have enough interchangeable parts to be able to trade one or more, which they should do before Opening Day.

As for who plays where, as much as fans oohed and aahed over Ankiel's throws (well, some of them), the probable fact is that he, Ludwick, and Schumaker are all comparable fielders, which is to say that they're all slightly above average (Schumaker's OOZ in CF was .920; Ankiel's was .921).

Mike (Stan Musial’s Stance): I don't have much to add to the discussion on the OF. I think Ludwick, Ankiel, and Schumaker will get the majority of the ABs next year, unless/until Rasmus is deemed ready for prime time by LaRussa/the organization.

However, as has been mentioned, the best way to relieve the logjam in the outfield is to move someone. Duncan was the most attractive (at least in my mind) trade chip until he got hurt last year. As much as I enjoyed Ludwick's renaissance, he's the most marketable commodity we've got right now (assuming the organization has no intention to move either Ankiel or Rasmus). Making the broad assumption that 2008 was a career year for Ryan, and his trade value is about as high as it will ever get, what about swapping him and Anderson to the Padres for Jake Peavy?

  • SD needs another impact bat to protect Adrian Gonzalez; Ludwick would bring that.
  • SD's catchers were notoriously bad last season (couldn't hit, couldn't throw anyone out). Anderson can at least hit, and by most estimates is a good defensive catcher.
  • Peavy would anchor a good (and potentially great, pending Carpenter's return) rotation in St Louis.
  • Peavy is being shopped (although it is unclear who initiated the trade talks, the Padres or Peavy's people), and St. Louis is on the short list of teams he'd be willing to OK a trade to; he also really wants to stay in the NL.

    I don't mean to hijack the thread, but since Peavy trade rumors are the rage right now in San Diego baseball circles, I thought it was an interesting discussion point. (Editor’s Note: Stay classy, San Diego!)

    Tom (Cardinals GM): I think we see a very different outfield than what ended the year of 2008. I believe that Rasmus and possibly Ludwick will be moved for an impact player. Duncan, much to my chagrin, will start with the team at the completion of Spring Training. Barton will start in AAA or be moved as another player in a trade. Ankiel, Schumaker, Duncan, Mather, and the new impact player will be on the team. Then, of course, add any infielder to add to the outfield surplus.

    Don (Redbirg Blog): First, we trade Adam Kennedy and Brad Thompson for Matt Holliday.  I see no reason why the Rockies wouldn't make this deal. (Editor’s Note: We have a winner!)

    In all seriousness, I see the Cardinals trying to get into the mix on Jake Peavy, and my guess is that would mean moving Rasmus and one of either Ludwick or Ankiel (along with an additional minor league prospect or two).  If the Cards can't swing the deal, my guess is the team will still move at least one of Schumaker or Barton this offseason, and will start the 2009 season with a lineup that includes Ankiel and Ludwick.  They'll mix in Duncan, Mather, and the survivor of the Barton/Schumaker movement.  By May 30 (at the latest), Rasmus assumes the everyday CF job with Ankiel moving to RF and Ludwick to LF.

    If the Cards are successful on the Peavy front (and depending on who gets moved in that deal), the Cards may have to go out and sign (or trade for) an OF bat this offseason. Pat Burrell anyone?

    Daniel (Redbirds Fun): Count me in as a fan of trying to land Burrell.

  • Man Eats 15lb Burger, becomes New Honorary Flexer!

    Brad Sciullo a Pennsylvania man took 4 hours and 39 minutes to eat an entire 15 pound hamburger himself. With a bun and condiments, the burger weighed in at just over 20 pounds, including, a bun, lettuce, tomatoes, cheese, onions, mild banana peppers and a cup each of mayonnaise, ketchup, mustard and relish. The burger is sold at Denny's Beer Barrel pub in Clearfield, PA, better known as being featured in some Hardee's commericals.

    I think Sir needs to take a trip to Clearfield to see if he can beat the record.

    Greatest Invention Ever!

    Check out this article from today's Post-Dispatch. It appears as if someone has come up with the best vending machine ever! It's been a hard day at the office. You have been working since 7am on a project. The boss has been calling you non-stop, asking questions on cases you just had him review a letter about. On top of it, the senior guy brings in 5 new cases for you to work on, and another case that someone else in the firm has been working on for 3 years, is in a million boxes, but just on a whim, the boss decided to change horses mid stream....... Okay, off of the rant. Anyway, you get hungry at the office. You walk into the lunch room, and what do you find? A hot dog machine!



    Fancy Joe Morgan

    Doesn't Joe Morgan look cute in his little hat and sweater?

    I'm shocked that he had a few minutes to appear on SportsCenter, you know, with all that pre-game preparation...he...does...


    A Financial Update (With Violence)

    I meant to post the link to this article back when it popped up almost 10 days ago, but I've been having too much fun lately neglecting all of you.

    Anyway, news of this financial crisis isn't all bad, check out this story from CNBC:

    While former Lehman CEO Richard Fuld was testifying before the House Oversight Committee Oct. 6, CNBC reported he had been punched in the face at the Lehman Brothers gym after it was announced the firm was going bankrupt.

    It goes on to say:

    From two very senior sources – one incredibly senior source – that he went to the gym after … Lehman was announced as going under. He was on a treadmill with a heart monitor on. Someone was in the corner, pumping iron and he walked over and he knocked him out cold.

    Apparently no one else but those two were in the gym, but I'd like to assume Smokey was there for a timely "You got knocked THEFUCKOUT!"

    The best part is that the puncher was pumping iron, getting huge, before decking that old guy. That's what we call "Honorary Flexer Status".

    Live it, learn it.

    A Big Fat Post About Food

    I'm sure I could have come up with something witty, but once you see pictures of bacon, meaningless words won't matter.

    Since we've become the local experts on bacon, we receive links about bacon from time to time (haymang@yahoo.com). The first one is sent from friend of the site Andy, about the Minnesota State Fair (which has since gone by). Some of the food choices included "Pig Lickers, Pickle Pops and Big Fat Bacon."

    Let's get the pickle pop out of the way first - it has nothing to do with meat.

    The Pig Lickers (great fantasy team name, or band name) is chocolate-covered bacon, which has been discussed here before. CCB is very good, you should try it sometime.

    On to the Big Fat Bacon. With a name like that, it's got to be good, right? It is one-third pound of bacon, fried, and caramelized with maple syrup. And just to get the Bert Flex seal of approval, they serve it on a stick.

    That wins.

    Link two is from chow.com, listing 10 Ways to Eat More Bacon. It includes the standard bacon vodka, lollipops, and chocolate. A new idea is bacon-wrapped tater tots. That's brilliant.

    But the winner from the entire top 10 looks to be a draw between bacon chocolate chip cookies (pictured) and a Fool's Gold Loaf. What the hell is Fool's Gold Loaf? Here is the description:

    This specialty from the late Colorado Gold Mine Restaurant features an entire loaf of Italian bread hollowed out and filled with peanut butter, grape jelly, and a full pound of fried bacon. The loaf technically serves 8 to 10 people—but its most famous fan, Elvis, would often chow down on the 42,000-calorie sandwich alone, as a midnight snack.

    That is alarming. And I want one.

    Last but not least, let's check in with Joey Chestnut's latest eating contest victory at the Famous Famiglia World Pizza Eating Championship (taken from cnn.com)

    Joey's the man. Way to represent 'Mericah!


    On The Dirty, Derrty

    I'm a little surprised that HMW hasn't jumped on this, but TLR's favorite, Adam Kennedy stars in his own post on The Dirty. It's skanktacular.

    Pujols' Elbow Surgery? I'm Lovin' It

    We at BertFlex were ready to rant about Bert's elbow surgery and the secretive Cardinals medical staff, but then we discovered something even more earth-shattering: The McRib is back!

    Says HMW: "I bet the Cardinals had something to do with the advertising here. Pujols has surprise surgery, and they try to distract us with the deliciousness of the McRib ... and it works."

    Damn right it works. I'll be moving into McDonald's for a limited time.


    Just Sayin'

    Kevin Youkilis = Yukon Cornelius.

    Philly is Back/Still on the Hate Map

    In case you forgot who the jerkiest fans are in the US, Philadelphia reminds you that they are the champs. Check out the video of Sarah Palin getting booed by Flyer fans:

    Actually it's been a while since we've had any infamous Philly moments like this...and then they TOTALLY redeem themselves!

    I think the rule in Philadelphia is to boo any politician when they walk on the ice. And it's always a given that you should boo any woman when they walk on the ice, so combining the two was a deadly combination that we can all enjoy.

    Good job Philly.

    And for the wrasslin' fans, here is some more from the fine citizens at Philadelphia's ECW Arena. It's definitely worth your time to kill the next hour watching ECW clips on YouTube. I wouldn't lie to ya.


    Give It To Me... Bacon?

    I suspect Jimmy John's overstates the powers of its new pork-laden sandwich.

    Bacon works wonders, but I somehow doubt it's the ultimate porkin' experience. Just sayin'.

    So This is Why Ken Rosenthal Never Gets to Interview Players

    He is three feet tall. Or Pat the Girl Burrell should be in the NBA. Stick to the rumor mill Kenny.

    (And he dresses like Forrest Gump.)


    How Bad Do You Want Your Shit Back?

    It's pretty common around BFHQ where something is taken out of someone else's possession (like Maltliquorman's man card), then playfully held in return for some measure of violence. As of press time, cooler heads have always prevailed, but realistically that could change at the drop of a poop hat.

    Well up in Des Moines, Iowa, this is happening fo' real. Here's all you need to know from the Des Moines Register:

    A man who is alleged to have taken another man's property from his house in a recent burglary has challenged the victim of the crime to a fight, Des Moines police are reporting this morning. The winner takes all.

    That's awesome! (Serious guy speaking for a sec: okay kids, burglary isn't cool, even if Hazelwood is the misdemeanor capital of the world - I can't promote stealing shit from someone else's house unless you own it. That said, this story is f'n hilarious.)

    The article goes on to say that the victim is 66 years old, so you have to figure this is some punk kid picking on an older guy, but the burglar is reported to be in his mid 50's. I guess times are tough up in Des Moines as well; old guys' have to survive too.

    But damn, Likes to Fight Guy, back off. You stole the man's shit, now shut up and go about your business. You're already ahead, don't come back for more. It's really a lose-lose situation for the burglar. Bad play on his part, and I hope he's the one who gets his ass beat.

    UCB Blog Crawl

    In our efforts to dominate the Innerwebs as much as possible, we’re participating in the United Cardinals Bloggers’ offseason roundtable. Approximately everyday (in keeping with bloggers’ inability to adhere to any kind of schedule), a different Cardinals-related blog will host a discussion of a given topic.

    It’s kind of like “Around the Horn,” except you can read it on the can if you have the right equipment.


    I've got a little catching up to do with the Links this week, so here goes:

    -Yesterday's insideSTL article, which encourages you to jump on the Rays bandwagon. It actually pulled two comments from people, I was impressed.

    -And last week's article, about the Kyle Lohse signing.

    -Mizzourah is still coming off that high from the Nebraska clubberin'. After a short visit to CoMo on Saturday I came off a Shakespeare's Pizza high sometime around Tuesday. Mmm mmm bitch. Big Head posted the Mike Gundy rant from last year. He's a man! He's forty!

    -The ML has some new shit up at OMG! Hit that up.

    -In case anyone was curious as to whooomm conquered the Hardcore League, find out.

    -Or the MASH League.

    -And hey, we started a poker league. If you're interested, let us know.

    -One last silly link: Mark Wahlberg Talks to Animals from last week's SNL. Dumb humor, but terrific stuff.

    Say hi to ya motha for me.


    Kiss and Tell

    Bengals wideout Chad Ocho Cinco is one crazy motherfucker. His gold grill and gold mohawk: crazy. His touchdown celebrations: crazy. The fines he racks up for talking shit: crazy. His kids' names (Chad II, Jicyra, Chade, and Chaiel): three-quarters crazy.

    But perhaps most perlexing of all: He acknowledges that he planted one on Bengals coach Marvin Lewis during Sunday's game against the Cowboys. "He whispered something in my ear that I really liked, so I kissed him," Ocho Cinco said.

    Um, gross. Let's save that for the showers, boys.


    Prospect Pron: Arizona Fall League Opens Today

    Loyal Flexicans know that we love ourselves some prospects. It should come as no surprise, then, that we regard the opening of the Arizona Fall League as something of a national holiday. An annual showcase for the game’s top prospects, the AFL welcomes big names like Matt Wieters, Brett Wallace (BFlex Stamp of Approval), Gordon Beckham, and Justin Smoak this season.

    But you can read about those guys at any two-bit Baseball America wannabe blog. The Flex goes a little deeper to find the names you really need to know.

    Doug Fister, P, Seattle: You can pretty well stop reading now. He’s the whole reason I wrote this thing.

    Rowdy Hardy, P, Kansas City: I’m calling shenanigans. You know his real name is Leslie.

    Andrew Laughter, P, Texas: ROTFLMFAO!

    Maurice Gartrell, OF, Chicago White Sox: I call him the Gangster of Love.

    Stephen Head, OF, Cleveland: The "head" chants he'll inspire will remind you of Al Snow's glory days.

    Tobi Stoner, P, New York Mets: Word is he has an awesome mustache.

    Mike Wlodarczyk, P, 2008 World Series Champion Tampa Bay Devil Rays: He has hopes of pitching on a team with Mark Grudzielanek, Doug Mientkiewicz, and Tom Xkndklyzkxxo#!.


    Agent 15?

    Since Jim Edmonds signed with the Cubs, I've secretly hoped that in a key playoff game he'd watch a playable fly out to center drop in front of him, allowing a walk-off run to score, then tear open his Cubs jersey to reveal a Cardinals uniform beneath.

    Maybe next year. For now, at least I got to see some old lady Cubs fans cry.*

    * Yup, I'm a jerk.


    The '86 Dodgers Had Rhythm?

    So one of my co-workers shared this little piece of video greatness with me, and now I share it with you. That's right, it's the '86 Dodgers dancing in baseball pants and satin jackets. I'm so glad I've decided that the 1980's didn't exist in my world. I couldn't sit through the whole thing, but you will...

    Ryan Ludwick: Kind of a Big Deal

    Has anyone caught the new commercial for American (the furniture/electronics place)?

    It features Cardinal OF Ryan Ludwick, who has officially "made it."

    The spot is slightly better than JD Drew hawking some used cars a couple years ago, but obviously not as good as Andy Benes promoting SLU grad school. Congrats Ryan, way to cash in on that big season, and hopefully you have a nicer living room set than before.


    The Cinnamon Roll of Meats

    You need to make these for us. Now. (Thanks to friend of the site Melissa for introducing us to this "sugary, cinnamony, bacony" wonder... which, yes, includes icing.)

    P.S. Bacon Today = best site e-v-a-r. We've already got bacon-flavored rolling papers on order so we can enjoy a bacon smoke while drinking bacon bloody marys.

    BLT is Finally Back

    The long-awaited return of Brad Lidge Time was rewarded yesterday with the National League Comeback Player of the Year Award. I'm sure that's a huge trophy, maybe even a meat tray similar to what the women get at Wimbledon. It's been a long journey back from that soul-eating moment in October 2005.

    Lidge was actually crazy good this season, blowing none saves...none. As much as we like to make fun of Lidge, he gets props for at least picking himself back up, putting on a pink jumpsuit, and running through the streets of New York, while Doc rides a bicycle in front of him. Wait, who we talking about again?

    When I read Lidge and Cliff Lee won this year's CPOY Award, I thought, "that's nice, but not as impressive as Josh Hamilton and Jon Lester's comebacks last year."

    Wrong. Wrong!

    Carlos Pena and D'meathook won it last year. They were good and all, but looking back: oops.

    Also, for further reading on mlb.com, be sure to check out this article titled "Yanks fans divided on Cubs-Dodgers."


    (I apologize to those who just threw up, but I'm only the messenger.)

    PS. Once more for good measure, as I know Sir enjoys Brad Ausmus' reaction:

    PSS. And the video too. "Collld-blooded..."