you needed me

Sometimes, at the end of the baseball season, a newspaper might do a team assessment article and give school-grades from A to F to all the players, the manager, and the team as a whole. Cute, right?

I don't want to do that. I can't even remember any outfielders... well, the sight of Chris Carter lummoxing around in left or right will never fade. But other than that... okay, I remember Sean Danielson, who only played in like, four games. But he was friendly, like the kid next door to you who is also your paper boy.

Except Danielson is totally secretly freaky! AWWWW YEEAAAAH!!!

In lieu of player assessment (no one's getting above a 'C' anyway), I'm gonna grade items of miscellany.

OVERALL 2009 MCCOY STADIUM EXPERIENCE: C+. It rained a lot. (The Yankees ballpark was rendered a stank quagmire and a total embarrassment because of it.) Julio Lugo came with the rain and left in a cloud. Something on the first base side smelled perpetually like hair relaxing chemicals. The alternative food stand was closed a lot. Angel Chavez blew off the fans all year, without a fraction of Billy Traber's assholish panache. I cried into my scorecard.

ALTERNATE BALLPARK ENTERTAINMENT: B+. Hello, Star Wars Day? Bob Dylan played as well, but I didn't go even though I'm wildly wealthy. Also, Dontrelle Willis showed up! YES.

PARKING: A. I always get killer parking spots.

P.A. GUY: B+. I love this guy. I can still hear the former P.A. guy saying, "Here is tonight's Citgo Hot Seat Quiz game!" But the newer guy, well, he's terrific. I should know his name.

BILLY TRABER'S PERSONALITY: A+! Kind of weird, kind of an asshole, yet lovable and talented. This is why he has so many more friends than Jeff Natale does.

POSTER NIGHT: C-. Held indoors due to rain. I think the first autograph I got was Junichi Tazawa. Weak.

BULLPEN ANTICS: D. They grew tomato plants, flipped cups around, tossed pieces of paper. ZZZZZZZ.

VISITING TEAM EXCITEMENT: D. Way too many Iron Pigs games. Come on, now.

SCOREBOARD EXTRAS: B-. I liked the players going over the rules and regs, even if toward the end of the year, half the guys were gone. I enjoyed the way Chip Ambres said "running rowdyism" when he was listing ballpark infractions as if it were one concept. I may have to work it into a conversation. "Last Saturday my sister and I were totally running rowdyism downtown!" And who can forget Gil Velazquez' star turn when he said, "Keep cell phone conversations private"?

WHAT HAPPENS BETWEEN INNINGS: B-. They're still doing the fifth inning Mighty Molar Soft Toss, where Paws and Sox toss/shoot balls into the stands. My question is this: Who is Mighty Molar? What does he/she have to do with anything? WHO IS MIGHTY MOLAR?!

Also between innings: The trivia question, GBA, birthdays, Carly Simon, and, sadly, Sweet Caroline. Sometimes a Boston score update.

Wish me luck.

Aaron Bates update. Gil Velazquez update. Ivan Ochoa update.

Aaron Bates has been on the 60 day DL since 9/28.

Gil Velazquez is a coach at the Las Vegas baseball Acadamy. He was in Mexicali getting ready to play baseball before he was called up, but it doesn't seem like he returned.

Ivan Ochoa is playing winter ball, possibly in Venezuela.


Mysterious Players who Appeared in the 2006 PawSox official Program

1. David Bacani - Eentsy utility infielder who last played for Portland in 2007. Was last spotted in the independent leagues (Orange County Flyers). Boston picked him up in the AAA rule 5 draft from the Mets in 2005.

2. Randy Beam - Randall Cartee(?) Beam last pitched for Portland in 2006. Disappeared for a while but resurfaced in 2009 with the Pensacola Pelicans (IND).

3. Chris Durbin - Outfielder who last played in Portland in 2006. I saw him at one of the Xmas parties. He quit baseball. He just quit. Creepy.

4. Pat Magness - WHO?! DH/1B/corner outfielder type who was released by the org in 2006 without playing a single game for us. Last seen in the independent leagues (Kansas City T-Bones)in 2008. Again, WHO?!

5. Josh Pressley - Played seven games at first base for Pawtucket in 2006. Another guy doing the independent thing.

6. Victor Ramos - RHP, worked 29 games in Portland in 2006 and was released in July of that year. Could be dead for all I know.

7. Cameron Reimers - Big RHP from Montana. Kinda sexy. Drafted as a minor league free agent in January '06, then released that April. Then nothing more. Aw.

8. Jason Richardson - RHP picked up from the Braves in the AAA rule 5. Actually pitched in two games for Pawtucket in '06. I cannot believe I have forgotten this guy. Currently in the Atlantic League, which is the fanciest of the independents. Their rosters are STACKED, unlike the small potatoes Can-Am League.

9. Jon Searles - RHP signed as a minor league FA. Was a reliever in Portland in 2006 and then moved on. Last seen... yeah, you get the idea.

That was so exciting! I'm easing my way back in, guys.

I love you so much.

Unexpected PawSox players

1. Enrique Wilson
2. Junior Spivey
3. Bobby Kielty
4. Jason Lane
5. Joey Gathright
6. Hee-Seop Choi
7. Ken Huckaby
8. Royce Clayton
9. Dustan Mohr
10. Runelvys Hernandez
11. Alex Prieto
12. Joe McEwing
13. Kerry Robinson
14. Alex Ochoa
15. Michael Tucker
16. Shawn Wooten
17. Jeremi Gonzalez
18. Josh Wilson

Dustan Mohr was a jerk!