Baseball Free!

One of my Yoga students came to class this week and asked, “What are you going to do now that there’s no baseball?”

Apparently, some people believe that I am small, uninspired, and one-dimensional in my interests.

There is plenty to do in the off season, I’m told, and I am ready to do all of it.

I won’t bore you with ALL the things I will be doing. But, I assure you there will be lots of them.

Here are just five.

1) Sort Photos. 

I took hundreds of photos at baseball games this season.  (Actually probably more like a thousand, but “thousand” makes me sound weirdo-y, so let’s say, hundreds and leave it at that.)

It’s time to paw through them and see who’s in there …

Like …


© The Baseball Bloggess

 San Francisco Giants reliever, and one-time University of Virginia pitcher, Javier Lopez who just won his 4th World Series ring on Wednesday night.

And …


© The Baseball Bloggess

Former Richmond Flying Squirrel and rookie Giant Joe Panik, who just won his first.

Congratulations, Giants!

This project trumps my other photo project – sorting through my grandfather’s slides from the 1950s and ‘60s of people and places I don’t know or can’t recognize. Boxes and boxes of slide carousels fill an entire closet in our guest room. I suppose I could go through them. Or, I could put it off another year and continue to pile all the things that should be stored in the closet on the floor in our bedroom.

2)  Bake.

It’s free-agent time in baseball, which means the Baltimore Orioles will cut loose many players who have multimillion-dollar paydays coming.

Yes, it’s the cruel financial reality of being a small-market team … we can no longer afford many of our best players.

Am I happy to say “goodbye” to Andrew Miller and his 94 mph fastball and spaghetti legs?  No. Do I understand why the Orioles probably won’t pay $10 million+ a year to resign a one-inning reliever? No.

I mean, yes.

But, really, no.

andrew miller

© The Baseball Bloggess

Andrew Miller & his spaghetti legs

Also in the free-agent pool is longtime Orioles right fielder Nick Markakis. The Orioles have declined his option for 2015, but still remain hopeful they can re-sign him.  Will they? Maybe. Will someone else swoop in with a better offer? Maybe.

But, not if I can help it.

I want to do my part to help collect the millions that the Orioles will need to keep Nick Markakis.

I’m thinking, bake sale.

I can’t bake enough to keep Andrew Miller, Nelson Cruz, and Nick.

I stick with Nick.

Anyway, cupcakes.


Thousand dollar cupcakes.

I encourage you to bake some cupcakes for Nick, too.

Just remember, take all the money you raise and send it to:

Baltimore Orioles

Let’s Pay Nick Fund

Camden Yards

Baltimore, Maryland

3) Care for Munchie.

Among the unusual birthday gifts Editor/Husband gave me this year was this …



Editor/Husband thought a venus flytrap would solve a long-standing  kitchen problem.

When the compost pail gets kinda full-ish, it attracts fruit flies. Now, sure, you might take a moment to comment below with your good ideas of how to stop attracting fruit flies in our kitchen.  “Take out the compost more regularly,” you might suggest, or “Get rid of the stupid compost pail.”

Your suggestions, while interesting, would be wrong.

The best and only way to deal with fruit flies is to get a venus flytrap and hope he has a taste for them.

We have had Munchie for a couple days now, I’m not sure he’s caught any flies yet.


My first question to Editor/Husband after “You got me a venus flytrap? Really?” was “Do we have to find food for him? Do we feed him meat?”

Apparently, no.  You do not feed them meat.


Except all the “flytrappists” online insist you must. They say you have to buy flies and bloodworms and feed them to your plant. They do suggest you be careful, though, since many people are highly allergic to bloodworms and just touching one could kill you.

If the venus flytrap doesn’t get you first.

I’ll let you know if one of the cats goes missing.


4) Read War & Peace.

I am not kidding.

Tolstoy’s War & Peace is almost always listed as one of the greatest novels ever written. Which is funny because I know only one person who has actually read it.

None of my friends – even the fussy ones – has read it.

So, I’m reading it. Because they won’t. And, you probably won’t either.

I’m doing it for you.


Look, I’m already a quarter of the way through!

It’s actually very good.

Although, you have to wade through an awful lot of war to get to the peace parts.


Public Domain, 1903.

Napoleon Lajoie, the “Little Frenchman” and namesake of the Cleveland Naps (today, the Cleveland Indians), is not in War & Peace.

napoleon bonaparte

Public Domain

Napoleon Bonaparte, also a “Little Frenchman”, is.

Fun Fact: The original title for War and Peace was War – What Is It Good For?  Tolstoy’s mistress didn’t like the title and insisted that he change it to War and Peace.

See …


I think I will need to read 15 pages a day to be done by Spring Training.

5) I’ll keep you posted.

Just 111 110 days until pitchers and catchers report.

Photos: San Francisco Giants vs. Washington Nationals, Nationals Park. August 24, 2014

St. Louis Cardinals vs. Baltimore Orioles, Camden Yards, Baltimore. August 10, 2014


16 thoughts on “Baseball Free!

  1. If The Baseball Bloggess isn’t one of the best blogs out there, I don’t know what is. Give Grandpa’s photos a step up on the priority list. Won’t that feel good? And a little fun, too, I think.Maybe there’s a rookie Brooks R. or a young Mark Belanger in there.

  2. You can count me as someone who has read “War and Peace”. It was, I’ll admit, many years ago, back when books were printed on paper, instead of hidden in these newfangled electronic gadgets, but still… I still recall the thrill of finding a relative in the book.

    My regards to Munchie. I’m sure he’ll fit right in with the rest of the gang. He and the cats will work out some sort of non-agression pact. Eventually.

    • You read War & Peace! (Don’t tell me what happens.) And, a relative in the book? Do tell. (Is it Napoleon?)

      We think Munchie has eaten a couple fruit flies … two of his little snappers have closed. I’m afraid to get to close to look, though, I might lose a finger.

      • Oops. Hit Post too quickly. Don’t worry, no spoilers. After mumbly-mumble years, I’m lucky to remember I read it, let alone what happened. And no, I’m not related to Napoleon. You should recognize my relative when you find him. He’s a minor character, but he does make a couple of appearances. In a book that long, he could appear two or three times as often and *still* be a minor character.

  3. If there is a Top Ten of your blogs, this has to be in it, if not at the top! I ran out of chuckles before I even got to Napoleon. Who else could tie together baseball with cupcakes, boxes in closets, composting, cats, literary classics, and, best of all, Seinfeld’s Classic Elaine? Only the Bloggess! P.S. If Munchie starts looking a bit peaked, I’d be happy to share some fruit flies.

  4. Love your blog as well. Looking to get mine more involved and add more content often! I appreciate your comment on a previous post and hope for more!

  5. I could never read War and Peace, but I never tried either; too may baseball books to read. I watched the curt flood documentary from HBO. It appeared as a download on kickass torrents. I was glad about that and even gladder or sadder to see the actual video. What a tragic life Curt flood endured and what a dynamic documentary.

    • My baseball book pile next to the bed keeps growing … but War and Peace is awfully good. I’m planning to be done by Spring Training, but it seems like such a long slog left.

      I saw that Curt Flood documentary, too … it was amazing! He was an odd soul. I hate all this off-season trading and swapping and million-dollar paydays, but then I saw what Flood endured … and I don’t begrudge these guys today a penny. I hope they realize how it used to be.

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