To blog or not to blog

“So Mac,” people ask me, “What do you wonder about Jeff Francoeur?” Then I say, “Well, I look upon him as a figure of tragedy. What if Jeff Francoeur were Hamlet?” And they say, “Well, it would probably be a much shorter play.” And I think, they’re probably right.

Prince of Lilburn
A Tragedy in Three Scenes
By Wm. Shakespeare with Additional dialogue (mostly at the end) by Mc Thomason
Savagely cut by by Mc Thomason as it is a very wordy play


FRANCLET, a prince
HORACIO, a lefthanded pitcher, and friend to Franclet
MELKY, an outfielder of sorts
CLAUDELL, a king, and uncle to Franclet
ROSENCHIP, a play-by-play man, and sycophant
SIMPSONSTERN, a color commentator

FrancletSCENE II I. A room of state in the stadium.

FRANC: O, that this too too solid flesh would melt
Thaw and resolve itself into a dew!
Or that the Everlasting had not fix’d
His canon ‘gainst self-slaughter! O bunt! bunt!

HOR: Hail to your lordship!

FRANC: I am glad to see you well:
Horacio,–or I do forget myself.
How is thy elbow?

HOR: The same, my lord, and your poor servant ever.

FRANC: Sir, my good friend; I’ll change that name with you:
And what make you from Fresno, Horacio?

HOR: My lord, I came to see your father’s funeral.

FRANC: I pray thee, do not mock me, fellow-player;
I think it was to see my mother’s wedding.

HOR: Indeed, my lord, it follow’d hard upon.

FRANC: Thrift, thrift, Horacio! the funeral baked meats
Did coldly furnish forth the marriage tables.
Would I had met my dearest foe in heaven
Or ever I had seen that day, Horacio!
My father!–methinks I see my father.

HOR: Where, my lord?

FRANC: In my mind’s eye, Horacio.

HOR: I saw him once; he was a goodly king.

FRANC: He was a man, take him for all in all,
I shall not look upon his like again.

HOR: My lord, I think I saw him yesternight.

FRANC: Saw? who?

HOR: My lord, the king your father.

FRANC: The king my father!

HOR: Season your admiration for awhile
With an attent ear, till I may deliver,
Upon the witness of these gentlemen,
This marvel to you.

FRANC: For God’s love, let me hear.

HOR: Two nights together had these gentlemen,
Melky and Diory, on their watch,
In the dead vast and middle of the night,
Been thus encounter’d. A figure like your father,
And I with them the third night kept the watch;
Where, as they had deliver’d, both in time,
Form of the thing, each word made true and good,
The apparition comes: I knew your father;
These hands are not more like.

FRANC: But where was this?

MELKY: My lord, in the centerfield where I watch’d.

SCENE IV II. The platform.


FRANC: The air bites shrewdly; it is very cold.

HOR: ‘Tis also raining, yet the umpire will not stop the game.
A flourish of trumpets, and ordnance shot off, within
What does this mean, my lord?

FRANC: The organist plays to entertain the fans.
And to taunt our opponents with their failures.

HOR: Is it a custom?

FRANC: Ay, marry, is’t:
But to my mind, though ’twas once done ev’rywhere
In these days, it is a custom
More honour’d in the breach than the observance.

HOR: Look, my lord, it comes!

Enter Ghost

FRANC: Angels and ministers of grace defend us!
Be thou a spirit of health or Marlin damn’d,
Bring with thee airs from heaven or blasts from hell,
Be thy intents wicked or charitable,
Thou comest in such a questionable shape
That I will speak to thee: I’ll call thee Franclet,
King, father, royal Georgian: O, answer me!

Ghost beckons FRANCLET

HOR: It beckons you to go away with it,
As if it some impartment did desire
To you alone.

FRANC: It will not speak; then I will follow it.

HOR: Do not, my lord.

FRANC: It waves me still.
Go on; I’ll follow thee.

MELKY: You shall not go, my lord.

FRANC: Still am I call’d. Unhand me, gentlemen.
By heaven, I’ll make a ghost of him that lets me!
I say, away! Go on; I’ll follow thee.

Exeunt Ghost and FRANCLET

HO: He waxes desperate with imagination.

MELKY: Let’s follow; ’tis not fit thus to obey him.

HOR: Have after. To what issue will this come?

MELKY: Something is rotten in the state of Georgia.
Nay, I must admit, that smell ’tis I.

SCENE V III. Another Part of the platform.

GHOST: My hour is almost come,
When I to sulphurous and tormenting flames
Must render up myself.

FRANC: Alas, poor ghost!

GHOST: Nay, ’tis only July in Georgia.
Pity me not, but lend thy serious hearing
To what I shall unfold.

FRANC: Speak; I am bound to hear.

GHOST: So art thou to revenge, when thou shalt hear.

FRANC: What?

GHOST: I am thy father’s spirit,
Doom’d for a certain term to walk the night,
And for the day confined to fast in fires,
Till the foul crimes done in my days of nature
Are burnt and purged away. But that I am forbid
To tell the secrets of my prison-house,
I could a tale unfold whose lightest word
Would harrow up thy soul, freeze thy young blood,
Make thy two eyes, like stars, start from their spheres,
Thy knotted and combined locks to part
And each particular hair to stand on end,
Like quills upon the fretful porpentine:
But this eternal blazon must not be
To ears of flesh and blood. List, list, O, list!
If thou didst ever thy dear father love–


GHOST: Revenge his foul and most unnatural murder.

FRANC: Murder!

GHOST: I find thee apt;
And duller shouldst thou be than the fat weed
That roots itself in ease on Lethe wharf,
Wouldst thou not stir in this. Now, Franclet, hear:
‘Tis given out that, sleeping in my orchard,
A serpent stung me; so the whole ear of Georgia
Is by a forged process of my death
Rankly abused: but know, thou noble youth,
The serpent that did sting thy father’s life
Now wears his crown.

FRANC: O my prophetic soul! My uncle!

GHOST: Ay, that incestuous, that adulterate beast,
With witchcraft of his wit, with traitorous gifts,–
O wicked wit and gifts, that have the power
So to seduce!–won to his shameful lust
The will of my most seeming-virtuous queen:
O Franclet, what a falling-off was there!
From me, whose love was of that dignity
That it went hand in hand even with the vow
I made to her in marriage, and to decline
Upon a wretch whose natural gifts were poor
To those of mine!
But virtue, as it —

FRANCLET sees CLAUDELL walking on the battlements

FRANC [INTERRUPING]: There he is! I’ll kill him!

FRANCLET swings his sword at CLAUDELL’S head but the latter ducks. FRANCLET misses completely and falls off the battlements to his death

ROSENCHIP: Swing and a miss!


ROS: Well, a rough time at the BATtlements
There for Prince Franclet.

SIM: If you’re going to try to cut off someone’s head like that,
You really need to inside-out with your sword.

ROS: If you’re just joining us,
Prince Franclet has plunged from the top of the wall
After trying to avenge his father’s death
At the hands of King Claudell.
We will have a report on his condition
As soon as it comes available.

SIM: I had thought the Prince
Had maybe just nicked the King’s neck
But no, he made no contact whatsoever.
‘Tis a pity, ’twas such a talented swordsman.

ROS: We have just received a report
That Prince Franclet is dead
Of massive trauma after he plunged
From the roof of this beautiful stadium.
We now have Horacio here
And he will comment upon these events.

HOR: Now cracks a noble heart.
Good night sweet prince:
And flights of angels sing thee to thy rest!
Why does the drum come hither?

ROS: Oh, ’tis an attempt
To get the Chop started again.
[aside] Shh, cut that out, guys!


(But Rosenchip and Simpsonstern will be back in Rosenchip and Simpsonstern Are Dead, And Good Thing, Too.)

192 thoughts on “To blog or not to blog”

  1. 4:35 local start time? I guess the playoffs really have started with the weird start times and the likely shadow issues. Have the Braves played another 4:35 game all year?

  2. Philosophical, therefore practically useless, questions:

    If Derek Lowe clinches game 7 of the NLCS by throwing a 2-hit shutout of the Phillies, do we never make fun of his contract again?

    If Nate McLouth somehow hits a pinch-hit HR in the 9th inning of that game to break up a Roy Halladay no-hitter, do we relegate him to kingly status?

    If Melky Cabrera robs Ryan Howard of a 2-out 2-run HR (with Victorino, of course on second) in the bottom of the ninth inning, shall we take back all negative comments about him?

    If Jeff Francoeur hits into an inning-ending Triple play in the top of the ninth in Game 6 of the W.S. to allow an Atlanta clinch, does Mac rename the site, at least for a time, “Frenchyjournal”? (also, if this is allowed to occur, is Ron Washington senile?)

    If any of these events happen, do I drop out of college and hit Vegas?

  3. ROS: Well, a rough time at the BATtlements
    There for Prince Franclet.

    SIM: If you’re going to try to cut off someone’s head like that,
    You really need to inside-out with your sword.

    I could barely stop laughing enough to type this. well done sir.

  4. DOB tweets: Jurrjens threw 45-pitch bullpen. Still feels pain but saw significant improvement. Will see how knee responds thurs before decision re Fri.

    Marlins lineup
    Cousins CF
    Bonifacio SS
    Morrison LF
    Uggla 2B
    Sanchez 1B
    Tracy 3B
    Stanton RF
    Davis C
    Miller P

  5. There was a really, really wonderful Shakespearean baseball parody written by a DA from Birmingham called “Moose III”. I read it in the 80’s I think, or early 90’s and can’t find my copy anywhere.

  6. Bravo, Mac! Alas, poor Franclet, we knew his weaknesses well.

    (Watch – he’ll be a hero for the Rangers this offseason and snag a long-term deal.)

    Did I see this right? Vandy is a 7 1/2 point underdog at UCONN? Talk about reputations preceeding …

    This sounds like the easiest money in history.

    Surprised that the Gaytors are 9 point dogs, as well.

    Should we sign Uggla just so we don’t have to face him?

    Is Kimbrel as good as he has looked recently?

    If I’m Richt, AJ doesn’t start.

  7. Dumb question (as I only bet on horses):

    If I placed a bet on Vandy when the line was -10.5, do I get that spread or is it like horse racing where you get what the line is at the start of the race (game)?


  8. Thanks, guys. I’d been planning it for a couple of months, but actually writing it didn’t take too long — mostly cut-and-paste, as it’s largely Shakespeare’s words with a few replacements by me. The last part was easy once I realized that Chip and Joe’s blather could easily be put into something that at least looked like iambic pentameter.

  9. Very excellent Mac.

    @18 Well done Tom. I imagine he’d hate it if it ever caught on and yet I wish most desperately for it to be so.

  10. That was brilliant! Kudos, Mac. Kudos.

    “MELKY: Something is rotten in the state of Georgia.
    Nay, I must admit, that smell ’tis I.”

  11. Could be worse. Sadly, probably will be worse, as Joe Morgan will be regaling us with his tales of the teams he loves, neither of which will be the ones playing in front of him this afternoon.

  12. I got really pumped because I thought I would be able to watch the game on ESPN3 at work. Nope, frickin blacked out today. Such crap.

  13. Grounder to Lowe, who threw to AAG to retire Bonifacio. AAG dropped the ball trying to turn the double play. Cousins had advanced to 3rd and now raced for home. AAG threw Cousins out at the plate.

  14. Lowe threw to AAG for the first out, AAG dropped the ball on the transfer, then picked it up and threw out the runner at home.

  15. Brooks doesn’t have the arm to play as deep as he does at third. If he would move in a little he would obviously lose some range but might actually make plays on some of the balls he can reach.

  16. Wow Joe those were probably the worst ‘Keys to the Game’ ever. To be effective Miller needs to keep guys off base and develop a new pitch because the old ones aren’t working. Ford didn’t really get their money’s worth there.

  17. I know there’s no good reason for it, but I kinda like AGony.

    54—That was just before he started talking about the “new” statistic, WHIP.

  18. I know there’s no good reason for it, but I kinda like AGony.

    Funny how that works. I kind of like Melky. And there’s really no reason for that.

  19. 60—I don’t hate Melky. He’s too hilariously inept for me to really hate.

    Similarly, AGony gets so violently angry when he screws up — and, as you know, this happens with some frequency — that it cracks me up.


  20. 69-

    Because every once in a while we insist on playing small ball but don’t apparently know how to do it.

  21. When Melky was a Yankee, I liked the idea of Melky more than I actually liked him as a player.

    He wasn’t one of those players that only the Yankees could afford—Mussina, A-Rod, Giambi, the parade of $5M Setup Guys, etc.—so I kinda rooted for Melky on principle.

    When you go to the games over there & you’re not a Yankee fan, you have to create your own storylines. But it never occurred to me that I’d ever have to seriously root for him. He was always just a pinstriped cartoon character to me.

  22. Well it was probably either a bunt or double play or strikeout. I don’t really have a problem with staying out of the double play there.

  23. Lowe’s been one of our best hitters, lately.

    Man, wouldn’t it be awesome if Chip Caray just stopped talking, forever?

  24. By my math, the Braves have scored an average of 3.3 runs per game in September. That’s an excellent number if you allow that many, not so good if you score that many.

  25. I’m going to seriously consider not getting Extra Innings if Chip Caray is still the team’s TV announcer next year.

  26. “That furthers the old argument: What’s the more important stat? Hits and runs or on-base percentage?”

    -Chip Caray, professional play-by-play man for a MLB club.

  27. marlins and pirates end the season together. there’s hope for the first 0 attendance game in history.


  28. Folk hero time!

    If you buy the TV package (which is usually cheaper & actually has more games than Extra Innings), you have a choice as to which club’s announcers you hear. You can even listen to the radio feeds.

    BTW, nobody ever has to listen to the TV announcer.

  29. I’m excited about where this is going, but it does piss me off to see what happens when we use our bench (what could have been?). Paying attention Bobby?

  30. Andrew Miller is all kinds of bad. How long can a guy stay in a major league uniform based on a reputation forged in college?

  31. “Bobby said dont question him over the Conrad/Glaus thing”

    Fair enough. But I will continue to question Melky’s presence in the lineup until he is safely on another roster, wherever that AAA team may play.

  32. seriously, can we become an AL team and use mccann as our DH, or at least teach ross how to play first just in case freddie cant hit lefties?

  33. The thing about that Chip quote, apart from the fact that he doesn’t understand baseball, is that it’s not even coherent English.

    I hate him so much.

  34. I tell you, someone must have smacked Lowe upside his head for throwing so many sinkers. He’s in top form that he’s changes speeds and locations

  35. Brooks is showing you exactly why Prado shouldnt have been playing hurt. Braves really made another players injuries get worse here.

  36. I just remember in a game earlier this year where Lowe threw about 20 consecutive pitches between 86-89 MPH all on the outside corner. There was no game plan or anything, players just started sitting on that pitch

  37. question from the marlins broadcast: who played the most games under bobby cox?

    the first 2 are obvious (chipper and andruw)

    name the next two…

  38. Folk Hero is money, but I’m liking Faux Frank Wren’s contribution to the Brooks Conrad nickname fund:

    “Brooks Conrad’s new nickname should either be Late Show or Apache.”

  39. why is one of the Marlins prized rookies diving head first in a completely meaningless game to the entire state of Florida? Let that thing drop, jackass!

  40. @141 On the Marlins broadcasts they occasional interview one in the stands and go on and on about what a fan they are. It’s like they’ve discovered a rare species of bird and can’t stop gawking at it.


    Also, I second Nasa from france re the play:

  42. I tell you, someone must have smacked Lowe upside his head for throwing so many sinkers. He’s in top form that he’s changes speeds and locations

    Yeah, he’s reinvented himself as a slider pitcher. I wonder who’s idea that was.

  43. Bobby goes out to get Lowe, who just gave up his first run after dominating, and Chip seriously doesn’t know whether the applause is for Bobby or Lowe?

  44. venters was up in the pen and the marlins broadcast scanned down there to catch eddie perez taking the ball away from venters, and venters walking away in disgust. wonder what that was about?

  45. esp with two grounders to 3rd. Why not ask AAG to sac bunt and then Ross wouldve had a shot to drive him in from 3rd

  46. Assuming it happens, bringing in Freeman to play 1B is probably a defensive upgrade over Lee. I’m fine with that.

  47. according to fangraphs, Kimbrel has already been worth $2.1 mil

    and thats why Stanton should never see a fastball, he cant sniff a breaking pitch

  48. Where would we be without Kimbrel over the past month or so? Dude has been lights out when we most needed him, with Saito out and with Venters coming back to earth.

  49. Mac – he’s probably just trying to rest some of his starters (especially the ones that have been hurt) when the defensive drop will not be that great.

  50. When he’s looking for a job this offseason, Melky should consider becoming a catcher. That way, his offense wouldn’t look so bad, and he could fart in umpires’ faces and get away with it.

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