I’m crushing a few “man sodas” and watching the MLB draft

California high school POY.

I think it’s time to decompress, if only for a moment. The unfortunate and dynamic happenings of the past week has left anyone with an iota of compassion emotionally distressed and even questioning their own integrity and place in the social/political spectrum. But I digress– it’s time to embrace escapism and take a mental diversion by watching and then talking about the most brainless activity known to man…the MLB draft. In the past (pre-internet) this activity was relegated to a blurb in the local newspaper, but now must be scrutinized to the point of exhaustion on any self-respecting (don’t get any ideas about this particular one) baseball site. I’ve got the beers cooling and I’m already 4 deep. It’s high time I act like a professional journalist and do an impromptu review of the least hyped of the professional sports drafts. Let’s do this.

There is nothing more entertaining than watching a stiff Rob Manfred stand at a podium and announce a draft pick with the driest, most mundane zombie-like voice that any human can comprehend. Is there an elemental soul in there? The jury is still out if he’s a man, robot or a left-over from the cast of Night of the Living Dead. This is the type of show you’d want to watch if you actually hated sex because there is absolutely nothing on this earth that can turn off a woman more than Harold Reynolds talking about “statistical trajectory” or “cost/benefit analysis.” These guys are actually frothing at the mouth and full of hyperbole about guys that may never even sniff the majors but you’d think every single one of them was the next Mike Trout. It’s turned into an all out pissing contest. I’m 7 beers deep at this point. (hiccup)

It’s pick 26 and the Oakland ball club takes an 18 year old high school kid out of Turlock, a tiny valley town in California that is known for farming, meth busts and the Hell’s Angels that the locals have christened, “TurdLock.” This is a confusing pick because the A’s have made it a habit to take college players: at least during the Billy Beane era. Alas, this is the David Forst era. Tyler Soderstrom is a big kid with a big left-handed bat that probably will switch positions from catcher as he wasn’t even the best defensive catcher on his high school team. The most compelling aspect is that Soderstrom was voted the best high school player in California, a state traditionally deep in baseball talent. The sky’s the limit for this kid. He may be the next Terry Steinbach, may have a fledgling career in the minors, or may be packaged in a trade for a rent-a-player to help in a late season Wild Card run that has yet to be contemplated. Good luck young man, welcome to Oakland and good night. (hiccup)

6 thoughts on “I’m crushing a few “man sodas” and watching the MLB draft

  1. Jackie, The Baseball Bloggess

    I grew up in Modesto (well thru 6th grade anyway before the midwest and then the east coast beckoned) … and my dad would take me to Turlock each year for the county carnival and fair. When I heard the kid from Turlock in the draft last night I tried to remember anything about Turlock. I simply remember that we went there one night each year to the carnival and my mom refused to go. I guess that says it all.

  2. Steve Myers

    Gary, i love how this post moves from a hilarious and accurate description of the draft, in my estimation anyway, to some details of who the A’s took. Great writing!

      1. Steve Myers

        Gary, I’m not sure who the Brewers picked either. I was watching the draft, kind of drunk too, and fell asleep before the Brewers picked which I think was 20th.

  3. SeaGuy


    I have been an A’s fan since the very early 1970’s and Vida Blue has always been my favorite of all players.

    I discovered your blog several years ago, and I LOVE that I generally ‘know’ the names, even the obscure ones, of past A’s players mentioned here.

    I still have a “1973 World Champions” A’s pennant on the wall. And I lived through the lean (decades) since then. I know right where I was when Eckersley gave up the home run… And I made my way down to the Bay Area for what became the “Rattle of the Bay”. I was sitting on a motel bed in Redwood City thumbing through classified ads in hope of getting some Giant’s fans who’d already given up, to sell me a ticket to a later game, when the big one hit. (two days earlier I’d been on someone’s porch in the San Mateo area ready to spend $175 on a ticket to the earthquake game, BUT miraculously he would only sell them 2 at a time, and I only needed one)

    Lots of A’s lore never leaves my mind (Finley, attendance 653, Billy Ball – I still have some KFBK stickers that say “Billy Ball” – as I live out of town, I have only BEEN to the Oakland Coliseum once… but I had enough instinct to get up and leave my seat in the rafters down the left field line, and circle out toward center field to watch Mark McGwire’s 94th home run sail a couple of sections over. That day I also witnessed Billy Beane’s final career RBI, along with 2 of his career total of 30 runs scored.{just how many people do you know who have witnessed live BIlly Beane scoring 2 runs in a Major League game?} )

    In recent years I’ve not often remembered to tune in to your blog, because it isn’t predictable when there will be a new entry… BUT I love catching up… just seeing the old names mentioned in some way, is fun.

    Most of my live A’s action took place at the old Kingdome… and I was there on the day that King Kong delivered homers in each of his first 3 at-bats. The best pitcher’s duel I ever witnessed was Vida against Enrique Romo. I can also recall when the Tacoma minor league franchise of the A’s in the 1980’s produced 3 consecutive A.L. Rookies of the Year for the big club.

    Anyway, I just wanted to give you a sense for who else out here is reading your blog… and to let you know that all references to some of the semi-obscure A’s of yore, are usually appreciated in this corner.

    Thanks for your efforts, and I hope you don’t forget your password again.


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