Dear John… – Gibbers Edition!


Howdy there, Gibbers, you ol’ sack of shit! How goes it?!? It’s me, Stoeten!

I know, I know, it’s been far too long since the two of us slugged back a few cold pops and got right proper shittered, but you were gone a long time, John. Shit, you were almost gone again before I could sober myself up long enough to get this letter written to you, weren’t you? Hahahaha!

Now, simmer down John! Simmer down. I’m not laughing like I’m Richard Griffin or Steve Simmons trying to convince mouth-breathers and the delinquents who skipped class the day they taught critical thinking that you’re not imbued with sufficient enough fucking magic to keep a team full of stars and veterans from not playing like shit just because they happen to be in your presence. This is me, John. This is Stoeten.

And it would seem to me that these guys in your employ wouldn’t have possibly needed you or anybody else to keep them focused on winning, baseball, fundamentals, and aware of the urgency of their situation as the losses racked up there in April– sure as shit not at this level, with multi-million dollar incentives hanging over the heads of guys who have been successful at so many levels, under good managers and bad, good coaches and bad, with good teammates and bad, and in good clubhouses and bad, to have weeded out the vast majority of those whose performance would be so dramatically impacted by any of that damn bullshit.

No! Come on, John– don’t look at me like that!– I’m not saying your job is pointless, or that these guys are damn robots. It’s just that they’ve already demonstrated themselves impervious to most of that hackneyed stuff concocted in the minds of lazy writers and analysts by virtue of the fact that they’re here in the big leagues in the first place, having achieved enough success at enough levels under enough circumstances to make it happen.

I’m sure there’s something to some of that kind of stuff. Not the “they don’t look prepared” kind of shit that nobody in his or her right mind could ever actually have the fucking gall to think they have reason, gleaned through their fucking TV screens, to really believe… but something– just not enough to make it worth pondering the way the clowns who’ve been calling for your head have been.

The team and its management knows that, John. I’m sure of it. Fuck, I think they knew it the first time they sent your shrapnel ass to the curb, but the old GM had to shitcan you anyway, just to save his own skin. The new guy wouldn’t do that, Gibbers, you ol’ fuck– at least not at this stage. Plus, I’m sure he sees that what really counts is to put your players in a position to succeed– and you usually do that John. Usually.

Yeah, we can quibble about your ever taking Colby Rasmus out of centre field for one of the scrubs on your bench. We can debate how the fuck Adam Lind– good game or not, double off a lefty in his previous at-bat or not– was allowed to go up there and face another lefty last night. I mean… hadn’t you gotten away with enough by then, John? Go cash in your chips and let Rajai Davis hit there, for fuck sakes, right?

Or tonight, maybe you won’t have noticed that Mark DeRosa actually looked awful comfy over at second base briefly the other night, and that maybe he and Izturis should be your middle infield, with Davis at DH and that ol’ reliable longhair motherfucker Rasmus in centre where he belongs, eh?

But fuck it, the magic’s back! At least for now. And that’s all you’re ever going to hear about anyway, I suspect, load of fucking you-know-what as it is. Shit, even a supposed demi-god like Joe Maddon sure doesn’t look like he’s got any of that ethereal bullshit left in him with his bullpen coughing up more shit than you and me on a Tuesday morning Motel 6 rug after a wild bender in Cabo, eh John?

So… you just keep on doing what you’re doing. Sometimes you’re going to look like a genius, other times you’re going to look like a dunce. Never will it be either, and the fuckers are just going to write whatever the hell they want to about you anyway. Just crack a tall one, pour it in that Gatorade cup of yours, get a monster-ass wad of chaw going, and watch them all eat crow as your team finally starts catching some breaks and playing some games the way we both know they know how.

You might not get back into the race at this point, John, but damn it, you just fucking might.

Stay gold, Ponyboy,


Comments (85)

  1. And finish with the crotch grab GIF

  2. Screws!

    As in, “right on the”

  3. ok, Stoeten, you won me over. I am now a fan of yours. This is fucking hilarious.

  4. Goddam, I missed these.

  5. Hahaha, that was good!

    Ray Liotta… what in the fuck is that all about?

  6. Thoroughly enjoyed as usual. Beautiful, and now i want to crack a tall boy.

  7. I fucking love you Andrew Stoeten! This shit is tight as my whities.

    • and almost as tight as your tongue in his ass.

      • For all my buddies at the score:

        I think you mean “as tight as his asshole on your tongue” as it wouldn’t be the tongue that was tight.

  8. Shame on you, Andrew. There’s no Motel 6 in Cabo.

  9. pretty convenient the jays determined their managers all have to have john as a first name.

  10. Wiser’s clap…

  11. Yup well said. The guy is just fine so far. Most in-game decisions concern the bullpen and the bullpen has been a strong point thus far.

    I keep saying that if a boxer or MMA fighter loses, no one asks who his trainer is. I’m not saying the trainer is irrelevant. But no one pins the whole thing on him. And it should be the same in baseball. Yes Gibbons, over the long term, can directly influence the team. But there isn’t that much he can do once the fight starts.

    There is a reason he makes far less than the players, despite being “their boss”.

    • Do not equate MMA with anything to do with baseball.

      • why?
        seems like a perfectly reasonable comparison.

        • Because MMA is the domain of neanderthals. A spectacle more than a sport. Regardless, comparing the role of someone who advises an individual rather than a team is complete apples and oranges.

          • Spoken like a true fucking idiot, James.

            • Okay, MMA and UFC are two totally different things. I should have said as much. One is a sport built on centuries of strategic male aggression that I couldn’t give a shit about. The other is more spectacle than sport; a concoction of the 24/7 sports universe that’s little more than a WWF dog and pony show with real face pounding. Put it in a time capsule so somebody will find it buried in the ashes of civilization and be able to figure out what the fuck happened. In the end it’ll be society’s little black box. Let the dissertation begin.

          • MMA is not a sport? WOW…. you are a fucking idiot

          • Great comparison. Trainers try to put their pupils in a position to win their match. Gibby tries to put his players in the position to succeed. And I hope he can right this ship because I like what I see, with the exception of scrubs playing in center here and there, but we’ll never have a manager where we agree with 100% of the moves they make. I think a full season of John, and a little luck, our bullpen could be top 3 in the AL. Given the dire circumstances last night, his use of the pen (with the execution of the athletes) perfectly, and it allowed us to get back in the game. Not all decisions are going to be golden, but I like our chances a lot better long term with this John compared to the last.

      • My point is just that it is a better comparison than the traditional boss that earns MORE than you and IS responsible for the final outcome and (supposedly) can do your job just as well or better.

    • Excellent comparison.

  12. Never thought I’d ever say this but put Mark D in the line up at DH vs lefties and give him some games at second and izzy at SS until somebody on this team who’s supposed to hit shows up and puts Mark D back on the veteran doesn’t play routine.

  13. “No! Come on, John– don’t look at me like that!– I’m not saying your job is pointless, or that these guys are damn robots.” Actually, that pretty much does sound like what you are saying.

    Still think you give the athletes too much credit. Even if they are playing at the highest level and with top dollars on the line, they are still human. They will sometimes be unmotivated, lazy, depressed, etc. and like every other profession, there has to be a boss ensuring they are at peak performance. We’ve all had coaches/teachers/bosses that for one reason or another helped us perform better. We’ve also all probably had encounters with coaches/teachers/bosses.that made us miserable.

    In closing, of course any talk already of Gibbons being fired is absurd but I find you are too quick to dismiss a coach’s impact on player performance.

    • Stoeten doesn’t agree with you, but I do, for what it’s worth.

    • When they interviewed Marco Scutaro after the Giants won the world series last year – the first person he thanked for helping the team was the Manager Bochy. What the fuck was he thanking him for; he didn’t get any strikeouts or hit any homeruns? No all he did was treat everybody around him like they were important, and provided the knowledge on how to approach the opposition, and use the right people for the right situations. RESPECT and fairness. There is more to managing then knowing when to change pitchers. Gibbons doesn’t appear to me to be the kind of guy who engenders that kind of LOVE, Farrel certainly wasn’t , but maybe I’m wrong and the Gibbers is a fountain of inspiration.

  14. What has Kawasaki done so wrong that he shouldnt be playing short? Second highest OBP on the team.

    • He is 6th in the AL in WAR (the espn version?) among SS.

      I’m with you, what the fuck more could people want?

      • WAR in early May? Seriously?

        • Ok, enlighten me, when should I begin to pay attention to WAR in this circumstance?

          It’s not like it’s April 17th.

          He’s a short to medium term solution, and amongst his peers, despite a not being here since the start of the season, while remembering that WAR is a somewhat cumulative stat, he has, in a generally type value of WAR, been middle of the pack in his value.

          Or is there any other rational that you have that is immune to sample size?

    • Look at his numbers against LHP. I wouldn’t sit him against a right hander, and I know it’s an astronomically small sample (35 career PA), but his wOBA against lefties so far in his career is .180.

      I know that can change dramatically with a couple hits because the sample is so small, but I don’t think there’s much in his bat against lefties, and whatever improvement he brings defensively is offset real easily, I’d wager.

      • Hasn’t Gibby already begun doing that over the past week?

      • except……KAWA gives you like 11 pitches every at bat.

        and you can swap him out for DeRosa or Izturis or whatever later in the game…after you’ve used KAWA to help run up the count on the starter. then bring in DeRosa to give you a possible impact bat.

        what i’m saying is that………….from a managing the linup POV, I agree that Gibby is good.

        and for once I’m saying you’re actually not giving him ENOUGH credit….

        (sometimes I surprise even myself)

        • The problem with that argument is that those who worship wOBA are blinded by their faith, and forget that one of the reasons baseball is so wonderful is that there are so many variables to it.

  15. My thoughts (that and $2 will get you a large Timmy’s):

    The late inning pinch hit for Kawasaki, Izturis to SS and DeRosa to 2B makes sense. DeRosa looks comfortable at 2B and looks to have some pop in his bat.

    I think, for most part, his bullpen management has been very good (and it was before). Hopefully, he has seen that Delabar has issues with inherited runners.

    I had no issue with trying Blanco behind the plate for Buerle’s start the other night. Gives Buerle another look (better framer, different pitch calling) and lights a fire under Arencibia, who has his uses but should not feel that he has everything figured out. Now, Buerle just needs to stop throwing meatballs. If Buerle got the calls that Jansen got last night, he would be Cy Young.

  16. The magic will have to be in full force when Ricky faces a line up stacked with lefties.

    The six LHB PA’s in Ricky’s last start was not a an encouraging sign.

    So Stoeten, I suggest that as an sacrifice to to the BABIP gods, you delete that AA story you’ve been waiting to publish. That kinda Voodoo will be needed tonight.

  17. The Motel 6 in Cabo line killed me

  18. I like John Gibbons. I loathe John Farrell. But if I didn’t give Farrell a pass, I’ll not give one to Gibbons. I absolutely don’t think he should be fired but I do think he and AA should have a long chat about what went wrong in April and whether any of their decisions had to do with it. Also, I hate to say it, but we don’t know the mess is over yet. They’ve played really well for three games and yesterday’s game in particular they shone even after they lost their pitcher in frightening circumstances and I hope it continues. But still, some soul-searching is in order, in my opinion, both from the GM and the manager.

    • Way to skim over the part where you might have actually offered some suggestion as to what could have possibly been his fault.

      • I’ve no idea whether or not there was a conversation. I’m not suggesting there wasn’t. I’m simply pointing out that a convo was in order. As for what was Gibbons’ fault, his players appeared to be listless and inattentive throughout the course of a number of games in April. That may not have been his direct fault but we have not heard that he addressed this problem with them although we did hear that De Rosa called a players-only meeting. Again, I don’t want him fired and for the most part I agree with you. But not entirely.

      • I don’t agree with Wilner. Players are not robots. When you are among the top 750 players in the world in MLB, your mind and body have to be working together. Hitting streaks and lack of hitting streaks are not purely of chance. Funks happen, extraordinary hitting results, and in the end, you have an average.

        But what causes the funks and streaks? I don’t know. It can be a string of facing pitchers who are very good against you. It can be because your brain’s in a funk. It could be the distraction of your relationship with your manager. I’m saying it could be. I don’t know if it is.

        There are times when the manager is to blame. The manager and the coaching staff are half responsible for the relationships with the players. To some players, their performance and their relationship with their coaching staff means bumpkins. To other players, the off-field shit translates to on-field performance. Coaches are there for a reason, and it goes beyond an in-game, on field decision.

        Now, should they fire Gibbons based on on-field decisions? No! Should AA be looking at the relationships between Gibbons’ staff and the players. Ya! Do we have any idea of what those relationships look like. Hell no.

        But when you see (saw) plenty of players and pitchers performing as a group below their averages as a whole, fans start looking for a simple cause: management.

        It doesn’t matter anyway. AA’s dug his trench, and he’s standing pat with Gibbons.

    • all while assuming that conversation didn’t happen.

    • What did AA do wrong exactly? Do you think because he is given a job title that this makes him able to predict the future of each player? He filled out the bullpen and some utility positions and added all star calibre LF, SS, and two all star calibre starting pitchers and a 200 inning eater. All for ~40M in increased payroll. Without losing anyone that was going to play this year and be significant..

    • The theory I go for is the slow start is attributable to the WBC. Large number were there so the team needed time to gel. Having the catcher there was probably detrimental too – his is one of the roles for which pre-season training is most critical. Especially with the need to get to know some key new pitchers.

      I’d be curious if the results are better for returning pitchers than the new pitchers so far. If so, I would speculate that the catcher’s unfamiliarity is a factor.

      I can’t see any fault on Gibby. Actually he seems to be doing his job very well. It’s been great seeing all his calls working out this week while maddon has been pulling a Farrel and outsmarting himself.

  19. When will mlb be updating the all star ballet with derosa as our 2b, or will i have to write him in?

  20. Out loud here:

    Whether or not it was the right move, I think Rajai was coming in for Rasmus had Lind survived that PA without killing the inning. Given that double plays happen on something like 9% of the [runner on 1st, less than 2 outs] situations, and given that Mark Derosa was already in the game, you put in Davis for Lind (better OBP, fewer K’s, etc. than Rasmus), you’re still forcing a lefty to face Ramos in that spot. Had Lind drawn a walk or popped out or whatever, I don’t think this would have been anywhere near the kerfuff that it turned in to.

  21. Hells Bells, managers lose games, they don’t win them…wll maybe a handful, maybe. Anyway. Good on Gibby not panicking, he figures they will light up at some point, they are too good for their record so far, and ole John is right. Gibby is my guy, he knows how to handle a bullpen over the long haul. He knows who can play over the long haul, and who can’t.
    Check in at the AllStar break, people. My guess, the Jays will be within easy striking distance, and with a good rotation, a smokin’ bullpen, and a scary lineup, the nd half of the season is gonna be a treat. So, just lighten up, those of feint of heart, and low brain cell count.

  22. That was just awesome! Stoeten your grasp of the redneck vocabulary is fantastic!

  23. If Gibbons could read I’d fear for your safety Stoeten.

  24. Gibbons doesn’t call team meetings … Mark DeRosa does.

    Gibby can’t straighten out Lawrie … DeRosa can.

    38-years-old with an .843 OPS and 7 of 9 hits for extra bases.

    John Gibbons isn’t running this team … Mark DeRosa is.

  25. Good post. Zaun brought up the fact that most of the players are locked up for a few years.

    Lind Rasmus Cecil and josh Johnson are the only players who have incentive to excel.

    Lind isn’t going to get a raise next year. He is being platooned. Johnson has to come back strong to get a multi year deal.

    Jays won’t lock up Colby unless he becomes a better hitter

    • Sounds like a feeble attempt at explaining shitty results.

      Who, exactly, appears to not be “trying hard enough” or apathetic anyway?

    • I have no idea the context of Zaun ‘commentary’ but what the hell are you talking about…that players locked in have no incentive to try hard??? Tha fuck???

      • @meow. The context that Zaun said was no players on the team except the ones I mentioned above are in danger of being DFA’d or are playing for a big free agent contract.

        I suppose Zaun’s theory is that Edwin had a career year in 2012, before he signed his 3 year extension, so he isn’t as worried about poor performance in 2013.

        Same thing with Bautista, Buehrle, etc….

        Didn’t Bautista play with a hernia in 2010 when he hit 54 HR’s.?

        I know it is standard to say that player try hard every day etc.. but wouldn’t a young player who is desperate for playing time & or afraid of being demoted give a little more “heart & hustle”?

        Doesn’t player performance usually drop after a big free agent contract is signed? See Vernon Wells, Alex Rios, Adam Lind, Aaron Hill etc???

  26. Amazing post Stoeten. Gold.

  27. Ya, you had some good ones. like seriously how long has it been since you brought out the book of Morons. Good read.

  28. C’mon, I just meant funny. You know- how you tell the story…it’s funny, that’s all. What the fuck?

  29. Operation Shutdown never happened, because Derek Bell was a major leaguer who didn’t need no motivation from nobody!

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