Braves Journal, The House That Mac Built

Thanks to Mac's family, bravesjournal.com is back.

05 Oct

Health Update

I’ve been letting this go for awhile, until I was pretty sure… But it appears that the cancer is defeated, at least for now. You can never tell with this, but all the tests (blood work and PET scans) show up as cancer-free. The only lingering effect is some “peripheral neuropathy”, which basically means dead nerves in my feet and fingers, a common side effect of chemotherapy. It interferes with my typing, because I can’t feel the keyboard properly and my fingers slip, but that’s a small price to pay.

There will be continued follow-ups… but so far, so good.

182 Responses to “Health Update”

  1. 1
    BFedRec Says:

    YEAH! Go Mac!
    I have two of my good friends battling Breast Cancer and my father-in-law recovering from esophageal cancer… so maybe it’s a reflection on my circle of acquaintance that “peripheral neuropathy” sounds like it means “crazy around the edges” to me…

  2. 2
    Remy Says:

    Thanks for sharing your good news, Mac. Here’s to your making even more progress with your recovery!

  3. 3
    Johnny Says:

    ‘cancer is defeated’ better than Braves Win! to your future health Mr. Thomason.

  4. 4
    sdp Says:

    Thrilled to hear, Mac. Nerves grow at about an inch a month so with the chemo removed from your body, I expect you will regain sensation in the coming future.

  5. 5
    Stu Says:

    Wonderful news, Mac. Prayers from the Stuart household will of course continue on your behalf.

  6. 6
    JC Says:

    Excellent news! Stay well, Mac.

  7. 7
    HawkeyeFan Says:

    Mac, great to hear. Such a tough disease to combat, and it’s always good news when someone beats this mofo down.

    Thanks for all your work on the Braves this season too — can’t say I was too fired up they crapped the bed for the last six games, but the percentages weren’t in our favor to begin with.

  8. 8
    Seat Painter Says:

    Best. Braves Journal. News. Evah.

    Continued prayers and best wishes for you Mac.

    Edit: Oooh, I forgot the Frenchy trade news. Was that better than Mac beats Cancer??? Close, but I think it comes in second to today’s announcement.

  9. 9
    Ethan Says:

    Great news Mac. All the best in the future as well

  10. 10
    Colin Says:

    Great news, Mac!

  11. 11
    Randy Says:

    Super News!!!

  12. 12
    Smitty Says:

    Good job Mac. I never doubted you. I knew you had it beat when the cancer was forced to send Manny Acosta in to pitch.

    Let me know if you need any help writing up stuff (like the write up for the upcoming Lowe for Puljos trade.)

  13. 13
    sdp Says:

    Speaking of Frenchy, Jerry Manuel told reporters that acquiring Jeff Francoeur may be the best thing to happen to the Mets this season. Really? We think so, too, Jerry!

  14. 14
    Alex Says:

    F**k you, cancer. F**k you.

    Yay, Mac!

  15. 15
    hankonly Says:

    Mac rules.
    Cancer drools.

    Great, great news.

  16. 16
    Mark Graybill Says:

    Given the way things ended for the Braves, I’m sure everyone here needed a pick me up, and you provided that in spades!

    Congratulations and good luck, Mac.

  17. 17
    spike (back in the ATL) Says:

    Capital.

  18. 18
    Timo Says:

    Wonderful news, Mac. I am very happy for you.

  19. 19
    BFedRec Says:

    Incidentally… I found the organ music for the Washington batters at yesterday’s game amusing.

    Maxwell = Theme from Get Smart
    Desmond = can’t recall the song, think it was a Desmond Dekkar one.
    Pete Orr = Row Row Row your boat
    Elijah Dukes = Dukes of Hazzard theme OR Duke of Earl
    Morse = SOS in Morse Code
    Bard and Gonzalez I couldn’t figure out
    Jorge Padilla = George of the Jungle
    Martin = some Coldplay song

  20. 20
    Michael Says:

    Good news Mac…thanks for your coverage this season under trying circumstances.

    I’ll just credit your provocation of Ryan Howard this season to mis-typing. Perhaps he will understand and grant us leniency.

  21. 21
    Kevin Lee Says:

    That’s one for the good guys, Mac!

    Now if only Alabama doesn’t break your heart.

    With continued prayers, here’s hoping for a “Road From Bristol” this winter when all your parts catch up!

  22. 22
    csg Says:

    awesome news, Mac

  23. 23
    JonathanF Says:

    Bravo!

  24. 24
    ububba Says:

    Terrific, Mac. Here’s to continued & complete recovery. Best news in a while.

    #19
    Desmond Dekker & The Aces’ “Israelites,” the first reggae song most folks outside the islands ever heard.

  25. 25
    RobBroad4th Says:

    Wonderful news, Mac! Here’s hoping next year is kinder to the Braves and to your person.

  26. 26
    BFedRec Says:

    Thanks ububba… I didn’t dig through my records when I got home to try and figure it out.

  27. 27
    RobBroad4th Says:

    If you haven’t seen this…

    Wow.

    http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2009/10/minaya-interested-in-hiring-towers-ricciardi.html#comments

  28. 28
    Shawn Says:

    Fantastic news, Mac. Congratulations

  29. 29
    Weldon Says:

    Great news, Mac.

  30. 30
    Parish Says:

    Great news, Mac.

    Thanks for sharing.

  31. 31
    ububba Says:

    A little common sense from Tony Barnhart.

    http://tinyurl.com/ycnyb3t

    As one might imagine, I’m still a little sore about it.

  32. 32
    Stu Says:

    I’m still sore about the ’05 VU-UF game in Gainesville, so I feel for you, ububba.

  33. 33
    Kevin Lee Says:

    Re: 31-ububba
    Saturday was my day I announced to my family we were now Bulldog fans. The red and black stuff would work with our Hoosiers stuff, too.

    Naturally, as we watch and cheer, I get stuck by one of my own hard-won arguments-no single call from an official should actually determine the outcome of the game.

    Not even Denkinger. Influnence, but not determine.
    Now I have to hear it from my family about that excessive celebration call cost the Dogs the game. I argued, but not with my heart.

  34. 34
    Smitty Says:

    Stu,

    That was the worst call in college football history. My brother is a Vandy fan and in his mind he gives the win to the Dores.

  35. 35
    clarke Says:

    Congrats Mac!

  36. 36
    Stephen in the UAE Says:

    Mac–Thanks for update and the news! Best of luck for the future!

    I want to also thank you once again for a fine season of insight, wit and commentary. Braves Journal has made a great contribution to Braves’ fans throughout the world. By coming to this site many of us are able to follow the team in ways which would not be possible otherwise.

    I might add that in some ways the site is even more important during the offseason–when Braves’ info is less plentiful. Therefore, I am grateful for your work during the season and look forward to many discussion on this site in the months to come.

    Keep Up the Good Work!

  37. 37
    P. W. Hjort Says:

    That’s great news, Mac. I’m happy for you.

  38. 38
    Tom O. Says:

    Fantastic, Mac! All the best for a speedy recovery

  39. 39
    Seat Painter Says:

    Now that Cancer is no longer in Mac’s long term outlook, do you think Wren could flip it for some middle relief help?

  40. 40
    braves14 Says:

    Happy to hear that Mac. Fantastic news.

  41. 41
    Ron E. Says:

    #39, he already flipped it for Ryan Church….

    (Glad to hear you are getting well, Mac.)

  42. 42
    Mac Thomason Says:

    Alex R. informs me that Fredi Gonzalez is apparently about to be fired. Odds on him being named manager-in-waiting sometime soon?

  43. 43
    Smitty Says:

    @42

    I bet Wren won’t commit to something like that.

  44. 44
    Hanan Says:

    Great news Mac!

  45. 45
    Mr.Swings@Everything Says:

    I agree with Mac’s other well wishers. Take care of yourself man.

  46. 46
    ububba Says:

    Re: Fredi Gonzalez
    I heard the same thing on WFAN today. I also heard that the Marlins (and Indians) may be interested in Bobby Valentine.

  47. 47
    ububba Says:

    WFAN host: Who did you enjoy watch play this year?

    Omar Minaya: You have to enjoy watching Francoeur going out there every day, especially with that broken thumb, and playing with that recklessness that he has.

  48. 48
    j-rod jones Says:

    Best news all season.

  49. 49
    sdp Says:

    @47: Like a dream come true. The Mets have an awful season after being anointed the NL East favorite and their GM is talking about enjoying watching Francoeur play right field for HIS team! Heaven!

  50. 50
    urlhix Says:

    Awesome news Mac.

  51. 51
    ryan c Says:

    from peanut:
    “In order to retain the financial flexibility to keep the club’s rotation strong and also address the needs at first base, outfield and the back end of the bullpen, Wren is expected to explore the possibility of trading Lowe, who is owed $45 million over the final three years of his contract.”

    he also goes on to say that the braves are going to decide what to do with tim hudson in the next few weeks. frank wren seems like he wants to get the offseason over in quite a hurry.

  52. 52
    csg Says:

    Frank said on air two weeks ago that the Hudson situation would need to be handled the week after the world series. Frank better put on his best selling pitch to move Lowe. Id take Fredi as Bobby’s replacement

  53. 53
    Coop Says:

    Mac, good things do happen to good people. God bless you/

  54. 54
    c. shorter Says:

    Mac, for the win!

    Glad to hear it.

  55. 55
    Brian J. Says:

    I’m glad to hear that, Mac. I’d say “may you see the Braves disappoint you for many years to come,” but that won’t be the case. You should enjoy all the championships the team will win, and we’ll be glad to have you running this site, with us along for the ride.

  56. 56
    Eric Says:

    Way to go Mac. It takes a tough S.O.B to beat that

  57. 57
    Dix Says:

    This is great news Mac. Well done.

  58. 58
    Dix Says:

    If Wren can trade Lowe then that would be pretty sweet. Maybe he can trade him to the Mets for JJ Putz’s 2010 option, which we could then decline.

  59. 59
    Sam Hutcheson Says:

    Perhaps Wren, unlike some folks, is smart enough not to pitch Lowe as “dude, I just need to move this contract.” Maybe he’s smart enough to find one of the many teams in the leagues who could benefit from a 200 innings, 4-something ERAish rotational anchor and see what they might have to offer in return.

    It’s a small sample size to date, but evidence suggests that Wren is better at this than some of the regulars around here.

    Many happy returns, Mac.

  60. 60
    mraver Says:

    Better than a playoff birth. :-)

    Glad to hear it, Mac.

  61. 61
    Rob Cope Says:

    My computer has been broken for a couple weeks, and I just got it working today. The first website I went to was yours, Mac. Even though I (thankfully) withdrew emotional from all things baseball when college football season started, I still gotta read Braves Journal. Of all the interneting I do and how much I missed having my computer, I think that it shows what Mac means to us. Even though you mentioned over Facebook that things were in the clear, it’s so good to hear you’re doing well.

    How old is the website by the way? I’m trying to figure out how long I’ve been reading this. I wanna say it’s been since 2001.

  62. 62
    P. W. Hjort Says:

    From reading David O’Brien’s comments on his blog it sounds like there’s a decent chance the Braves keep KJ. I hope they do.

    By the way, Coach, I saw your comments on the latest Chop-N-Change post and I think it’s disgraceful you would be so unwilling to visit another side of an issue.

  63. 63
    McCann the Man Says:

    Mac, great to hear. Chemo-induced peripheral neuropathy isn’t cured by medications or treatments, but should go away on its own as long as the damage isn’t too severe. Medications may manage the pain and symptoms. Here’s hoping to a full recovery, side effects included!

  64. 64
    Mac Thomason Says:

    The earliest version of the website was April of 1998, but the move to blogging software was in 2002.

  65. 65
    sdp Says:

    I’m kinda a health nut, so I know my vitamins–but keep your diet rich in B-6, B-12, alphalipoic acid, carnitine (supplements, red meat, nuts, seeds, dark green vegetables), and magnesium/calcium and there’s a great chance the neuropathy will heal. These nutrients give your body those necessary for nerve regeneration and healing.

  66. 66
    desert Says:

    Great job, Mac. Great job.

    Ryan C,

    Although I would love to see the scenario presented out in your off season predictions, I can’t say that I agree that Smoltz will be back. I think that bridge is burned, and I can’t imagine that the Braves will try to bring him back.

    My question is, can Kenshin Kawakami close? I understand that he would be a great long relief man in the bullpen, but if he can learn how to work out of a daily relief spot during the off-season, I would feel a lot better about next year.

    I also want to analyze the team’s needs before we start throwing out trades. What do we need going forward? I don’t think that we will (or should) start Heyward in right field next year, so as it stands (if Kawakami can indeed be a serviceable closer), do we need middle relief help, a first baseman, and one solid outfielder?

  67. 67
    TomL Says:

    Fantastic news Mac!

  68. 68
    Pierce Says:

    Good on ya, Mac. I come to you for every post game writeup and I’m glad to know I’ll get to keep that habit. :)

  69. 69
    Stephen in the UAE Says:

    #51–Bring it on! If the Braves can move Lowe, then a lot of good things can and should happen….

  70. 70
    Adam M Says:

    Congratulations, Mac!

  71. 71
    Linkmeister Says:

    Jeebus, Mac, you never mentioned this at the TT site, so I just found out about your health “issues.” I’m certainly glad it appears to have been successfully treated!

    Peripheral neuropathy has myriad forms of manifestation (my mother has it). Some are very painful, others are pain-free. I hope yours is the latter.

    We’ve found info from The Neuropathy Association to be useful.

  72. 72
    Jaik Jarrkjens Says:

    Wow, that’s a huge relief, Mac. Very nice.

  73. 73
    billy-jay Says:

    Fantastic news, Mac.

  74. 74
    ASG Says:

    Great news Mac. I’m very happy to hear it.

  75. 75
    cliff Says:

    More weird medical stuff for athletes, this time it’s Donovan Tate.

    Hmmm?

    http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20090930&content_id=7252502&vkey=affililiate&fext=.jsp&c_id=sd

  76. 76
    Kevin Lee Says:

    Re: Fredi Gonzalez
    I’m a fan. His situation was discussed on the MLB Network shows last night. Some points:
    1) Ownership may want a new manager in place for the new stadium in two years.I missed that, didn’t know a new stadium had been approved.
    2)Some owners grumbled about team “not living up to expectations this year.” I think they’re stoned. That team won 87 games and were a bitch to play.
    3) Bobby Valentine (Ugh!) is in play. The network guys don’t buy it. Valentine earns in the $4M range and that’s more than all but maybe two of the Marlins players.

    I hope they do let Fredi go. I think he’ll make them sorry down the line.

  77. 77
    td Says:

    I would like to join the chorus of those who are thrilled with the good news Mac!

    As far as Gonzalez goes, didn’t he used to be 3rd base coach? My recollection is that we have a 3rd base coach who isn’t exactly appreciated as one of the best in baseball – let’s bring Fredi back if he’s let go! If not, can we get someone else to coach 3rd? I know the Diaz play that mathematically eliminated us was probably not Snitker’s fault, but I found it ironic that our season ended on a baserunning blunder at 3rd – an all too common occurance.

  78. 78
    csg Says:

    “I always thought the knuckleball was the easiest pitch to catch. Wait’ll it stops rolling, then go to the backstop and pick it up.” ― Bob Uecker

    just laughed when I read it

  79. 79
    Bert Says:

    Great news!!

  80. 80
    oldtimer? Says:

    Great news Mac.
    Thanks again for providing us with this venue to discuss our favorite team.

  81. 81
    bwarrend Says:

    Glad to hear that the prognosis is good. Thanks for the dedication to this site and tolerating all of us for bitching about things that were far less important than what you were going through.

  82. 82
    joesteve Says:

    Mac, I’m late to the party but I just saw this and wanted to rejoice with you. Will be praying that the Lord will uphold and protect you.

  83. 83
    ububba Says:

    Anybody care between Tigers & Twins?

    I kinda like both towns, but I think the Tigers (with Verlander) would have a better chance vs. NYY.

  84. 84
    BFedRec Says:

    I hope the WS is Twins vs Cards and Smoltz gets some revenge for ’91

  85. 85
    Stu Says:

    I hope the Cards lose in the first round and that Smoltz is the primary culprit.

  86. 86
    spike (back in the ATL) Says:

    I have to admit a mild averse rooting interest in the fate of Smoltz. It wouldn’t break my heart to see him get shelled once or twice. WRT to the postseason, I would of course prefer an NL (non-Phillie) win.

  87. 87
    BFedRec Says:

    A) I don’t have the animosity towards Smoltz that some here do.
    B) I can’t bring myself to want the Dodgers/Phils/Rockies to win… and I’d have a really hard time wanting Boston or the Yankees to win… Angels and Tigers I’d be OK with, Twins I’d be marginally OK with I guess… but I’d rather see somebody beat them in 7 games in the Metrodome (seeing Sid on Sunday may have reminded me how much that loss sucked).
    C) To top it off, I’d rather have Pujols get a ring in a season when we don’t make it to the playoffs than have him want it even more the next time we’re in it and have him beat us.

  88. 88
    Stu Says:

    A) Obviously. He was my all-time favorite baseball player, but he’s run his mouth to the point that I want him to fail.
    B) Rockies, Angels, Twins/Tigers are the teams I’ll be rooting for. Pulling against the Red Sox, as always.
    C) I don’t think Pujols’ level of wanting has much effect on his or his team’s postseason successes, and I seriously doubt winning a championship this year would lessen his desire to win another one in a future season. In addition to the Smoltz thing, I can never support Tony LaRussa.

  89. 89
    Timo Says:

    I love Smoltzie (the baseball player) and would like him to get a WS ring. He deserves it.

  90. 90
    Stephen in the UAE Says:

    Smoltzie already has a World Series ring…..

  91. 91
    ububba Says:

    Smoltz has a WS ring, of course, and it’s ironic that he, the winningest pitcher in post-season history, didn’t win any games in the 1995 post-season.

    I’m a little conflicted on Smoltz because he’s become annoying & I rarely root for the Cardinals. (Even as a Brave, some of Smoltz’s comments bothered me.)

    I think I’d like to see the Cards lose in the first or second round & have Smoltz get a win or two along the way, so that he can maintain his all-time post-season wins record (15-4).

    Why? This year, there’s no telling how many chances Andy Pettitte (14-9) will get to break it.

  92. 92
    Parish Says:

    Exactly what I was thinking – Smoltz gets a couple of post season wins and Pettite does not.

    By the way, Angels over the Cards.

  93. 93
    BFedRec Says:

    Yeah ububba, that record is the other part of it for me too… I want “our guy” to have the winningest post season record and not a Yankee (even if he isn’t our guy anymore).

    Stu has a point about LaRussa… and Pujols…

    The two big reasons are that I want Smoltz to keep his winningest post-season pitcher record AND I (especially 15 year old me from ’91, three days before my 16th birthday… I knew I wasn’t getting a car for that birthday, but I sure wanted the Braves to bring back a WS win) would love to see him beat the Twins in the WS. It wouldn’t be the same without Puckett taking part in the loss… but it would be a great way to shut-up the Metrodome and a hell of a way for Smoltz to be able to hang them up (assuming he does… who knows).

  94. 94
    Jason C Says:

    Just read the news. Congrats, Mac! And a big THANK YOU for keeping Braves Journal going through it all.

  95. 95
    Johnny Says:

    I have a hard time getting into baseball once he Braves are out of it. I usually get into anyone but the Yankees or Red Sox mode. I want an NL team to win. The team with the best chance IMHO is the Cards. But who knows its a crap shoot from here on out.

  96. 96
    Kirk H. Says:

    Don’t post often, but read frequently. Thanks Mac for the site, and best wishes for your continued recovery.

  97. 97
    RobBroad4th Says:

    Yankees and Dodgers is my personal prediction, Yankees taking it all.

  98. 98
    Stephen in the UAE Says:

    In fact, Smoltz has a WS ring and a great reputation as a post season pitcher, but he actually got hit hard in the 1995 World Series….

  99. 99
    BFedRec Says:

    Mark Bradley making the case for why the Braves need to keep Norton around:

    http://blogs.ajc.com/mark-bradley-blog/2009/10/06/why-the-braves-must-keep-greg-norton-at-all-costs/

    I know he was trying to be funny in there… but I just couldn’t be amused by it.

  100. 100
    Mr.Swings@Everything Says:

    I always root for the NL team in the World Series unless it’s the Cardinals. If it’s Yankees vs. Cardinals I will find something else to do aside from watching baseball. The DH is an abomination surpassed only by Cardinals baseball.

  101. 101
    Sam Hutcheson Says:

    If I had to root for one of the teams in the playoffs it would be Anaheim or LA. I will never root for a wild card team. I will not root for an NEC team. I’m bailing out Detroit’s economy as is, a WS win isn’t something I think they need on top of that.

    Between LaRussa and Smoltz, I can’t fathom sheer level of self-righteous prickishness in STL.

    I’d like to see an LA/LA Series, just to annoying Bristol, CT.

    I can’t root for Anaheim, outright, because that don’t play real baseball. I won’t root for a Torre based club, but I’d enjoy seeing the steroid nannies freak out if Manny got another ring.

  102. 102
    Stephen in the UAE Says:

    I also usually root for the NL team, but this year I just want to see the Yanks go down in flames. Unfortunately, I think they are the team to beat…..

  103. 103
    hankonly Says:

    Stu,

    I know what you mean about Smoltz. But don’t we all have a friend that just will not shut up and simply must show his behind in public, but he’s still earned the title of “friend”?

    If some folks can let Manny be Manny (I’m not one of those), I can let Johnny be Johnny.

    DeRosa, Pujols and Smoltz? Yeah, I’m pulling for the Cardinals and hoping that LaRussa makes such an ass of himself that he gets none of the credit.

  104. 104
    hankonly Says:

    The cool thing if Detroit wins is how colorfully they celebrate. As in:

    “I’m so happy, I think I’ll burn this car!”

  105. 105
    ububba Says:

    Man, listening to a Charlie Manuel press conference is hysterical.

    FWIW, Jurrjens was named NL pitcher of the month for September. (5 starts, 4-1 w/ 1.25 ERA)

  106. 106
    Stu Says:

    hank,
    I do have such friends, and they’re often in severe need of lesson-teaching. I am often one of those friends to other people.

    I didn’t mean to imply that I don’t still love John Smoltz. I do. I just want him to get his ass handed to him, and I want it to be a learning experience.

  107. 107
    BFedRec Says:

    Stu, I think he had his ass handed to him pretty well in Boston… and some of the post Boston statements seemed to indicate that he had grown a bit because of the experience (not saying he’s prefect mind you, just seemed to have learned/grown a bit).

  108. 108
    spike (back in the ATL) Says:

    Mark Bradley, although I agree with him sometimes, is a douchebag. It ain’t Nortons fault Cox kept running him out there. And I never heard much in the way of snark when Norton turned in a great season as a pinch hitter last year. It’s a crap job that is very hard to be successful at, and while I too would have advocated a change, there is just no call for that kind of article.

  109. 109
    Ron E. Says:

    What I think will happen: Yankees over Cardinals
    What I would prefer: Rockies over Angels

    I don’t have a much of a rooting interest in any of this year’s playoff teams. I hate the Dodgers, Phillies, Cardinals, and Yankees. I don’t hate the Red Sox, but 2 championships is enough in one decade for them. Let them wait a few decades before they get another. I have relatives in Colorado so I sometimes root for their sports teams when a Georgia team isn’t involved. I can’t root for Detroit because of Leyland. I’m indifferent to the Angels, so let them win the AL.

  110. 110
    sdp Says:

    @108: Right on. Norton didn’t put himself on the field–Cox did. Norton was a fine pickup in 2008 but it just didn’t happen this year. He wasn’t even making a million dollars so the Braves could have inconsequentially cut ties with him a long time before he started damaging our offense on a continual basis. Frank and Bobby might have butted heads over what to do about him, with Bobby advocating his retention.

  111. 111
    ububba Says:

    spike/sdp,
    Compared to what I read & hear every day, that “kind of article” is about as rough as daisies & dandelions. Didn’t raise a blip on my radar.

    And it is Norton’s fault that he hit .145.

  112. 112
    spike (back in the ATL) Says:

    Well you do work in New York, noted for it’s genteel brand of journalism. But so what? Just because hatchet jobs have become de rigeur in your industry doesn’t make them any less objectionable. PH is a tough job to do well, and the sample size gods magnify your performance for good or ill. It’s Norton’s fault he hit .145. He’s probably out of baseball as a result too. Fine, call for his release, or whatever, but he’s done nothing, either in comportment or play, to warrant some dumbass hyuk-hyuk column from a “journalist” who was starved for something to fill his column that day.

    I admire him for having the emotional stamina to make a career after being faced with a situation that would have made a lot of us give up our dreams. A far better, and more interesting piece, would have been to interview him about his future, how he views the time spent in MLB as a journeyman, and how this season has affected him. But that would require both insight and effort, something which journalism in general, and sports journalism in particular, doesn’t seem to do too much of these days.

  113. 113
    hankonly Says:

    I think Spike nailed it as far as Bradley is concerned.

  114. 114
    barrycuda Says:

    ububba………how was Lucinda? i saw her about 18 months ago at a nice venue here and still get chills thinking about it. what a voice, what a songwriter…………..as far as baseball goes, i think i’ll root for the twins and rockies just so we can see Bud tapdance around while he tries to sell that one to the country. especially with those horrible stadiums. lets hope for blizzards in Colorado. ………………the last few years, with no Braves in it, i’ve kinda skipped the post-season but now my football season has already gone so far south that it’s springtime so i’ll be wwatching the playoffs closely.

  115. 115
    ububba Says:

    Spike,
    Tough titty, that’s life in the big city.

    Guess Cabrera’s not hung over today.

  116. 116
    Adam M Says:

    Chip Carey really is an irritating man, isn’t he?

  117. 117
    barrycuda Says:

    Adam..thats what happens when you stop being an irritating boy.

  118. 118
    Adam M Says:

    Here’s what we’ve learned so far…

    Jim Leyland on Magglio’s improvement: “He stopped being tentative, started being aggressive.”

    Ron Gardenhire on his players: “I got a bunch of baseball players.”

  119. 119
    spike (back in the ATL) Says:

    Tough titty, that’s life in the big city.

    Oh agreed. But just so I understand you clearly – are you advocating this style of “sportswriting”, or just saying that people engage in it and it’s an occupational hazard. If the latter, I am sure Norton’s not losing any sleep over it, and neither am I, but the fact that it is common, like Norton’s .145, doesn’t exempt it from criticism.

  120. 120
    ububba Says:

    Spike,
    What are you, Greg Norton’s agent?

    That column/blog was just a joke—some found it amusing, some didn’t. (FWIW, I liked the anecdote about his daughter.) It was one of those what-are-we-gonna-do-without-him-to-kick-around-anymore columns.

    Norton, apparently & sadly, had become a hot topic in AJC forum land, so the column was more about the idea of diminishing page views (with Norton gone) than anything else. Big deal.

    And yeah, there’s the occupational-hazard element: Don’t wanna get kicked when you’re down or headed out the door? Don’t wanna have columnists’ daughters make jokes about you?

    Then don’t kill the team by hitting .145.

  121. 121
    ububba Says:

    Lucinda Sunday Night

    barry,
    I got lucky. She played a three-night stand at Irving Plaza, this wonderful 2-level venue in Manhattan that fits about 1,100 people, and apparently I got the best show of the lot. (In fact, I’m told that it was the gig of the tour so far.) A coworker saw her Saturday & told me she had one of her little meltdowns. Apparently, there was a little more of that last night. The middle show, my show, was the best Lucinda I’ve ever seen.

    Her voice was in spectacular form & so was her mood. (It was her husband’s birthday—that might’ve had something to do with it.) She did chunks of albums in order: 4 songs from “Sweet Old World”; 7 songs from “Car Wheels on the Gravel Road”; 4 songs from “Essence”; 1 from “West”; 7 from “Little Honey.” (Nothing I remember from “World Without Tears.”)

    Except for the AC/DC cover (“It’s a Long Way to the Top If You Wanna Rock-n-Roll”) & the regulation blues rockout of “Joy,” it didn’t get too raucous. The band, Buick 6, went the understatement route & the tunes weren’t all the obvious ones. Nonetheless, she was pretty captivating on things like “Blue,” “Something About What Happens When We Talk” and, of course, “Essence,” which is always spellbinding.

    My highlight: Alone with an acoustic guitar, she dedicated a cover of Jimi Hendrix’s “Angel” to the recently departed Jim Carroll (of “People Who Died” fame). Her voice was so clear, the accents so right, that it just burned holes in me. I looked around & people were welling up. It was awesome.

  122. 122
    Tom Says:

    Boy is Skip Caray bad. Hyping every f*****g single and even the laziest flyballs.

  123. 123
    Tony Says:

    Good for you Mac….

  124. 124
    sdp Says:

    @122: Blasphemy, Tom! Horrible typo.

    On another note, does anyone remember Jason Varitek’s “majestic” foul down the right field line last year in Tampa? Haha.

  125. 125
    Smitty Says:

    I hate the fucking Twins! Go Tigers!

  126. 126
    Adam M Says:

    Is it me, or was the middle infield NOT at double play depth there? The Tigers’ defense has been beyond horrible this inning.

  127. 127
    Adam M Says:

    Chip Carey just screamed “line drive base hit!” on that inning ending double play. That was awesome.

    Also, are the announcers or anyone else gonna deal with the fact that the runner was actually safe?

  128. 128
    NickC Says:

    Haha. Chip is so used to saying “Line drive! Base hit!”.

  129. 129
    TomL Says:

    I haven’t used mlb.tv in a while. Anyone know how to fix the “you pick the camera and that’s the only camera you get to watch” thing they got going on? It’s miserable

  130. 130
    rehabreject Says:

    hahaha! I literally ran here to post Chip being an absolute tool but I guess I was beaten!!

    hahaha!!

  131. 131
    Mike N. Says:

    What in the hell was he thinking there? He had absolutely no chance to score there.

  132. 132
    sdp Says:

    http://www.scribd.com/doc/20721751/Frank-Wren-Transaction-History

    I didn’t feel like screwing up my alternating rows to get rid of Dessens.

  133. 133
    NickC Says:

    Watching from high behind home plate on mlb.tv really shows the ineptitude of Chip Carey.

    *Ball hit to shallow center field, Granderson sees it all the way*
    Chip Carey: Granderson got a late break, charges in! Makes the catch!
    Ron Darling: Granderson got a good break on that.

    *Ball hit to straight away center field*
    Chip Carey: Gomez, charging in!
    *Gomez stands completely still and catches the ball*

  134. 134
    Adam M Says:

    I actually think that the “line drive! base hit!” call is so bad that it might get national attention. But really, for me, it’s the fact that he keeps having to change his pants every time the ball is hit to the outfield.

  135. 135
    Dan Says:

    I like that TBS is doing games for all these different teams now and that Chip Caray is calling them and this long 1-game playoff.

    Maybe now a national audience will finally realize that it isn’t Joe Buck or Joe Morgan or Tim McCarver who is the worst announcer in the game.

  136. 136
    Dan Says:

    Twins win the right to lose to the Yankees!

  137. 137
    Stephen in the UAE Says:

    Lets go Twins….and in 2010 save us from Chip Caray….

  138. 138
    Weldon Says:

    At least Chip isn’t likely to take over for Boog. It’d be nice if we could get Jim Powell to migrate over from radio. Hell, I wouldn’t mind if we had Simpson, Sutton and Powell if it meant no Torborg, Rathbun or Chip.

    ububba – I didn’t know Jim Carroll had died, but there are very few deaths I would find less surprising.

  139. 139
    kc Says:

    Mac, just read your news, I am so happy for you. Well done!!! Take some good rest during this offseason because we will be awesome in 2010.

  140. 140
    Coz Says:

    That’s excellent news, Mac! Wonderful to hear!

  141. 141
    Adam M Says:

    Awesome: http://twitpic.com/kjp8k

  142. 142
    Stephen in the UAE Says:

    Thanks Adam M.—sometimes a picture is really worth more than words….

  143. 143
    Alex Remington (Another Alex R.) Says:

    Mac, I’m thrilled to hear that you’re doing better, physically and otherwise. Like Stu said, you’ll remain in my thoughts.

  144. 144
    bandit31312 Says:

    Mac, your site has made a more enjoyable Braves experience, Thanks for all your hard work. Best wishes on continued good health.

  145. 145
    ububba Says:

    FWIW, Playoff Picks

    Pha in 4
    StL in 4

    NYY in 3
    LAA in 5

    Fave Playoff Tidbit from NY Times:
    “Nothing better epitomizes Alex Rodriguez’s October futility than this astounding fact: since Game 4 of the 2004 A.L.C.S., Rodriguez is 0 for 27 with runners on base in the postseason. He has come to bat with 38 runners on base and stranded every one.”

    He’s certainly playing the right team this week.

  146. 146
    spike (back in the ATL) Says:

    Player A Postseason, career – .279/.373/.483/.856
    Player B Postseason, career – .309/.377/.469/.845

    One deified, one vilified.

  147. 147
    Johnny Says:

    A. Arod?
    B. Big Pappy?

  148. 148
    ububba Says:

    B is Jeter, A is A-Rod.

    The vast majority of A-Rod’s good numbers come from his time in Seattle. As a Yankee, he’s not been good. The 0-for-27 stat should speak volumes.

    Additionally, Jeter has done it in way, way more games, which should count for something. Then there’s that matter about big hits in big games which resulted in titles.

    BTW, super high winds in NYC today, 40 MPH. Gonna be an interesting game in The Bronx.

  149. 149
    sdp Says:

    McCann wants more Lasik

  150. 150
    cliff Says:

    @149,

    If McCann goes back under the laser, he better only do it with an expert at a high end university medical complex. “Second Lasiks” are even more likely to cause complications including but not limited to kerataconus.

  151. 151
    spike (back in the ATL) Says:

    The 0-for-27 stat should speak volumes

    It does. What it says to me is 27 AB’s distributed over 4 years is, how you say, noise. But it fits nicely with a meme that is near and dear to a large number of folks, so I am cool with it stranding for the massive FAIL of A-FRAUD.

  152. 152
    RobBroad4th Says:

    @151,

    Well said.

    Call me crazy, but I really like this McCann fellow.

  153. 153
    RobBroad4th Says:

    I had a dream last night that we traded Derek Lowe. I was curious who we traded him to, but I was too busy celebrating to ask. Then Derek Lowe walked in the room and heard us celebrating and walked away looking very sad.

    I should stop eating before bed.

  154. 154
    ububba Says:

    So, Jeter’s 12 post-season results are what? Music?

    No matter how you slice it, no matter how dear the notion of sample size warms your heart, that’s awful—certainly unacceptable for the cleanup hitter of the New York Yankees, whether his name is Alex Rodriguez or Mel Hall.

    When the highest-paid player in baseball can’t do better than 0 for 27 with runners on base in 4 consecutive series that his team loses, that’s a gag-o-rama. If you’re a Yankee fan, that’s gag-a-licious. If you hung out with A-Rod, you’d be a gag hag. OK, I’ll stop.

    It’s not a meme, Spike, it’s a genuine pattern with real numbers that indict A-Rod.

  155. 155
    sdp Says:

    The efficacy of Lasik is hotly contested anyways. Mac should do his best to adjust and stay away from lasers.

  156. 156
    RobBroad4th Says:

    Ha, misunderstood the 0-27 stat. I thought that was the one postseason where they moved him down to the 8th spot, not 4 consecutive series with runners on base. That’s a bit harder to justify.

  157. 157
    sdp Says:

    Guys, I’m such a sucker. I had a Hottie McTottie bartender last night. She gave me some attention and was friendly and so I left a $20.

  158. 158
    Jason C Says:

    The efficacy of Lasik is hotly contested anyways.

    It’s definately a case-by-case basis. I had lasik done about 10 years ago, and couldn’t be happier. But, messing with the eyes is a pretty scary thing, and I doubt I’d go through it a 2nd time.

    I’d skip it too, if I were him.

  159. 159
    spike (back in the ATL) Says:

    It’s not a meme, Spike, it’s a genuine pattern with real numbers that indict A-Rod.

    Since 2007, Jeter is a shocking 1 for his last 11 w RoB. Kill him too.

    4 consecutive series with runners on base*

    *over four year time span

    Count tha ringzzz, Chocker!!1!!!11

  160. 160
    Seat Painter Says:

    @157

    I definitely think a cite would’ve been appropriate there sdp.

  161. 161
    Johnny Says:

    I’d give my left nut for 20/20 vision.

    @157 don’t sweat it. The combination of hormones and alcohol always leaves men with much less money.

  162. 162
    Marc Schneider Says:

    Great news Mac. Best wishes for continued health.

  163. 163
    ububba Says:

    Spike,
    A pinstriped false equivalent.

    Jeter has had tons of post-season success (personal & team) with the Yankees. A-Rod has had tons of failure with the Yankees.

    And that recent 1/11? That’s coming off a series where he hit .500. Jeter has hit .300 or better in 16 of the 25 series he’s played.

    What’s fascinating to me—aside from that fact that someone is out there trying to defend A-Rod’s Yankee post-seasons by pointing to Jeter—is that you’d be hard-pressed to find another great player who has coughed it up so hard in the bright lights.

  164. 164
    spike (back in the ATL) Says:

    What I find fascinating is that some can take 27 disparate events over the course of literally THOUSANDS of at bats, separated by entire seasons, on aggregate overwhelmingly successful, an find a “pattern” of failure. When it is pointed that this same pattern can exist for examples that are held to be “successful”, a tautology is employed wherein the initial statement is shown as proof of itself.

    Fact – Alex Rodriguez has enjoyed postseason success.
    Fact – Derek Jeter has enjoyed postseason success
    Fact – Alex Rodriguez has enjoyed postseason success as a Yankee(2004 ALDS,ALCS)
    Fact – Derek Jeter has enjoyed postseason success as a Yankee (numerous)
    Fact – Alex Rodriguez has experienced postseason failure as a Yankee(2005,6,7 ALDS)
    Fact – Derek Jeter has experienced postseason failure as a Yankee (2004 ALCS, 2007 ALDS)

    INESCAPABLE CONCLUSION – A-WAD IS TEH SUXXORS IN OCTOBER!!!

  165. 165
    RobBroad4th Says:

    157,

    Did she at least give you a few free beers? I can justify tipping well if I got a few free drinks out of it.

    And how much was your tab? A $20 tip in NY isn’t that crazy unfortunately…

  166. 166
    hankonly Says:

    In the spirit of getting no respect from stunning bartendresses:

    So this girl comes up to me and says, “Give me a hundred dollars and I’ll do anything you want.”

    I said, “Sold! Now paint my house.”

    In the absence of another “sansho scores!” string, perhaps this will incite some Rodney love.

  167. 167
    sdp Says:

    @165: No, I had a Yuengling and a strong as hell Long Island Iced Tea. My tab was ~$7 bucks. She was a college student and I’m a generous guy.

  168. 168
    csg Says:

    so Soriano and Gonzo are type A FA, and Anderson and Laroche are both type B. Seems like we could be in line for a pretty good draft

  169. 169
    ububba Says:

    spike,
    Comparing the Yankee post-seasons of those 2 players really isn’t a good idea. Jeter blows him away in that category.

    Those 27 “disparate” events are huge. They’re consecutive. They occured in the past 17 post-season games, 13 of which the Yankees have lost. They contributed to his team’s failure in those 4 consecutive series.

    I’ll say it again, one should expect the highest paid player in baseball to be a lot better than that. He’s deserved the heat.

  170. 170
    RobBroad4th Says:

    167,

    Less than $7?! I need to move.

    No wait a minute…no, I don’t.

  171. 171
    spike (back in the ATL) Says:

    They’re consecutive.

    Events separated by a year of the same event happening 500+ times do not count as “consecutive” to me. I am fine with not liking A-Rod, personally professionally or any other way for that matter. Cherry picking 27 AB’s out of his career to “demonstrate” he is a postseason failure is not only intellectually dishonest in context of his career postseason numbers (see above), but even in terms of his Yankee career. He has had two series (and fifty at bats) of superior performance. That doesn’t really work conveniently with the A-Rod as postseason failure narrative, so they are conveniently ignored in favor of the 27 that support it.

    But by all means, have it your way.

  172. 172
    Smitty Says:

    sdp,

    Did you get her number? Was the $20 for cab money home the next day?

    SHAWIIIING!

  173. 173
    Mr.Swings@Everything Says:

    Would it be possible to get some conspicous consumption worked into the rebuttal?

  174. 174
    spike (back in the ATL) Says:

    Look I’ll dial it back – ububba is one of my very favorite people on this site, and I value his opinion on baseball and music, among other things very highly. What cheeses me off so on this topic is that the Yankees of late can’t just lose – they have to have a scapegoat. “Someone stabbed us in the back and prevented the Yankees from their rightful prize!” Arod certainly leads with his chin, PR-wise, and doesn’t seem to be a particularly astute guy. But I’ll be damned if I won’t speak up for an inner circle HOF, one of the three or so best guys ever at his position, who has done nothing but hit the crap out of the ball during his tenure in NY, be held out as the reason for their post series failures.

  175. 175
    sdp Says:

    @170: Upstate SC…no, you don’t need to move. :)

    @172: No number. She didn’t seem like my type and I think she was a smoker. I’ve never rode in a cab.

  176. 176
    RobBroad4th Says:

    A guy who gets paid $30 million a year shouldn’t be oh-for-anything. That’s the reality of it.

    I hate the Yankees, but not nearly as much as I hate the Red Sox and their cah-pahk-chowder-bowl-eating fan base.

  177. 177
    RobBroad4th Says:

    175,

    I think he meant the $20 was cab money for HER. ;)

  178. 178
    ububba Says:

    sdp,
    I think she liked you.

    WFAN interview with Yanks GM Brian Cashman: “In the post-season, it’s not about ‘small-sample size’ because one punch can change the whole series.”

    And now he’s 0 for his last 28.

    Spike,
    You gotta admit, that ain’t too good no matter how you slice it.

  179. 179
    cliff Says:

    csg at 168,

    You do realize that you don’t get draft picks unless you offer arbitration?

    I don’t think we need to offer arb to Garret. He might take it and we need him gone.

    On Soriano, he would be expensive, too.

    LaRoche is a no brainer. If he does a one year at an arb inflated 10 or so, then fine. Freeman can take over next year.

    Gonzo also might be o.k. to offer as he probably won’t come in over 5.

  180. 180
    RobBroad4th Says:

    I didn’t realize we could decline Hudson’s option and still offer him a smaller contract. Wonder if that’ll happen.

  181. 181
    drewdat Says:

    That’s great to hear, Mac!

  182. 182
    Mac Thomason Says:

    New thread/poll.

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