SHOTS!


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I Share Travel Plans With 66ers


Dear Jarret Stark [XXX; Inland Empire 66ers] and Sean Peterson {XXx; Inland empire 66ers]:

Good day, Gentleman. I am sure you missed my presence last night at San Manuel Stadium. After all, is it really a Taco Tuesday if Bads85 is not in attendance? Alas, I will not be seeing you for a while as I have to earn my keep as an MiLB ambassador. Right now, I am flying to jolly old England to promote the 66ers’ brand (along with a few others teams). It saddens me that I will be missing the exciting upcoming promotions, but Europe needs my services in the coming weeks. 

I am traveling with two 66ers’ employees though (Little Bads and Parking Lot Kevin), so it is not like the organization is not with me. Since the drinking age is eighteen in Europe, we will be able to share stories of San Manuel Stadium throughout pubs in England and France. We are even taking El Cucuy to the beaches of Normandy to save Private Ryan. Oh how Le  Resistance will love to hear tales of the Mexican boogeyman!

Please keep the spirits of Joe Hudson [General Manager; Inland Empire 66ers] high. He always gets a bit in the dumps when I travel as the cash register at The Garage does not ring as much when I am gone. One way to do that is to inform him that I am ready to retire from my primary job, and come work for him full time. After all, “Community Outreach” is my middle name, plus I am sure to lift the morale of the front office staff with my wit and charisma. Maybe we can get some new carpet too. And a kegerator along with an employee bar modeled after an Irish pub or an Wild West saloon.

Tell Joe I can start full time as soon as I finish my Northwest League/Pioneer League road trip that commences as soon as I reconquer Europe. Eugene, Spokane, Kalispell, Missoula, and Vancouver will be visited. Tell him I fully expect Allan Benadives [General Manager; Eugene Emeralds] to present me with a firm salary offer this trip, but I am sure Joe can top it. Joe will probably be pretty jealous when he finds out that I am visiting Allan, so ensure he does not take out his frustrations on small, fully creatures. Well, he can blow some kangaroo rats to hell though. 

Are you guys ready for the 66ers fantasy football draft? I was going to been preparing on this flight, but Air Canada does not have internet on this plane because not all nations are civilized. I mean, those people drink LaBatts and Hiram Walker booze. Many of their major cities no longer have professional baseball, and those that do play in places even the Visalia Rawhide and Modesto Nuts would not play. The San Jose Giants would because their park screams for the wrecking ball, plus those poor sots are owned by Endeavor now. Yes, corporate clowns have a foothold in the Cal League, and Governor Newsom plays his fiddle.

Speaking of fantasy football, only half of my now famous bet was paid off last season. The golf polos have not made an appearance in the team shop. I mean you guys could just give me one of those spiffy new white employee polos and we can call it even, especially since Mr. Hudson will be formally hiring me sooner than later. I do not think it would behoove the 66ers if other organizations discovered that their general manager did not fully pay out his fantasy football losses.

I do have some suggestions for the 66ers’ between inning promotions. For starters, allow Berne to win sometimes. In fact, let Bernie beat some ass! Put some competition in the games. Have Bernie race an adult around the bases, and make sure the adult does gets crushed so all of San Manuel Stadium can laugh at this person. Long time fans have grown tired of Bernie losing all the time, and some humiliating defeats of paying customers will ensure San Manuel Stadium roars. Dress some parking lot attendants like Kevin in black El Cucuy costumes and have them impede the contestant. Perhaps you can set up some trip wires for when the kids run across the outfield. Let those little plate breakers and curtain climbers tumble in the outfield for the fans’ amusement. 

Anyway, I need to go for now. Give everyone a hug for me, but nothing so intimate that will invoke sexual harassment claims.

Your friend in baseball,

Bads85

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I Talk to Max About Rainouts and Cocaine Picnics


Dear Max Mennemeier [Ticket Sales Manager; Eugene Emeralds]:

Operation Sunshine had a bumpy start as the Emeralds’ home opener was rained out because Mother Nature is angry. I hope The Cooler had an ample supply of bourbon tonight to ensure the Ems’ front office could heal after the washout. Remember, all bandages are not cloth.

The weather was rather frightful down here in Southern California also. I had plans to attend the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes’ home opener, but the chill and the fierce wind originating from the Nordic regions convinced me to stay home to utilize MiLB.tv. Normally weather does not stop a veteran MiLB fan for going to a game but:

  1. I really do not like the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes.
  2. There was a small craft advisory in effect, and those are no joke.

I am sure you are saying, “Bads85, Rancho Cucamonga is landlocked! The only waterways there are some some old orange grove irrigation ditches and Deer Canyon Wash. Etiwanda Creek has a concrete bottom! Why would there be a small craft advisory in Rancho?”

I do not have an answer for that, but I trust meteorologists without hesitation. Capsized boats are something I avoid, especially on major interstates. Sometimes common sense is the best life jacket as we sail through this life. 

Your organization was kind enough to send me its rainout policy one hour after the game was postponed. Do patrons ever tell you that your policy is draconian, especially that picnic thing? Perhaps we should have a meeting with Allan Benavides [General Manager; Eugene Emeralds] to discuss some possible changes now that Operation Sunshine has commenced. No one likes to have a picnic in a steady drizzle. Eating fried chicken in the rain is a recipe for pneumonia, plus the rain makes the potato salad soggy. Perhaps we can create a picnic makeup day with food trucks and rivers of booze. A game does not even have to be played. Sluggo can wear something risqué.

I have some questions about the Emeralds’ promotion schedule. For instance, this “80’s in Aspen Night” coming up on April 13th. You do know that 80’s in Aspen is synonymous for rampant cocaine use, right? The town was names Toot City back then. Do not let all the neon and big hair fool you — it was not a time of innocence. If the Ems’ are going to step away from family entertainment to embrace this hedonism, well, I am getting a Squatch tattoo tomorrow.

Will the Emeralds’ still have a Beer Batter promotion this year? Your boss and my dear friend Allan has not answered that question, which is stoking the rumor fire, especially since Thirsty Thursday is now Triple Thursday. Has the good Governor of Oregon cracked down on drink specials? If so, do not the Ems still embrace the outlaw spirit that is the cornerstone a FREE AMERICA? Fortunately, I am confident that I purchased the winning Powerball ticket tonight, which means I will own the Ems soon, and you will get a very healthy raise while Allan will be assigned additional duties.

Talk to you soon. I have to talk to my assistant, Sneaky Boom, about his new MiLB attendance tracker.

Your friend in baseball,

Bads85

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I Write To Max from the Cactus League


Dear Max Mennemeier [Ticket Sales Manager; Eugene Emeralds]:

You are sorely missed in the Cactus League — all of the Ems’ front staff for that matter. Being with Allan Benavides [General Manager; Eugene Emeralds] and Matt Dompe [Assistant General Manager & Home Broadcaster] is swell and all, but we have not even sniffed an electric scooter the entire trip. Tomorrow, The Resurrectionists roll into town. I hope Allan can keep up.

How is morale in Eugene with Allan in Arizona? The Emeralds Twitter feed seems a little bit bitter, feeling abandoned. I can assure the entire staff that Allan has not forsaken you. He really has not stopped working, perpetually thinking of new promotions and ways to improve the Emeralds’ experience while also praising his staff. It is kind of annoying actually. Hey, Allan, give it a rest already, man. Focus on the now, Dude. It is your round, and this plastic cup is not going to magically fill itself with Corona Light. Do not forget the lime this time.

Could you please forward Allan the invoice of my Premium Season Ticket Package? As you well know, he is a forever Doubting Thomas, and does not think I really bought premium season tickets even though I live 900 miles away for PK Park. He did advise me to wait to travel to Eugene until at least May because of weather conditions. While I usually ignore Allan’s conservative directives, I think I will heed this one. Let’s plan on May for my first arrival.

By now you have probably heard that I have been relieved of my Twitter duties with the Inland Empire 66ers. The official reason is they have finally hired a full time social media person, but I think when I told the Fresno Grizzlies that the only thing they led the California League in was stadium debt, some feathers were ruffled. Imagine the kerfuffle had I not deleted “You also lead the league in getting dumped — the Giants, Astros, the Nationals, and your own league.” I really am not too broken up about being let go because Twitter is a limited forum in terms of expressing my creativity, plus I need to get back to promoting all of minor league baseball — or at least the Eugene Emeralds.

Speaking of promotions, you guys should immediately announce a “Sometimes Too Much Lotrimin is Never Enough Night” in which fans will be encouraged to walk through the concourse, dropping their drawers at any given time and giving their nutsacks a little blast of the cool, wonderful relief. It is not as if Allan is going to leave the Cactus League to return to Eugene to stop it. Maybe next time he ventures to the Cactus League, he will think of it as an inclusive front office bonding activity.

Anyway, I have to run. Continue to burn witches and pound nails. Beware of the javelinas, and embrace the Jackalopes. As always, HYDRATE OR DIE!”

Your friend in baseball,

Bads85

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I Talk To Max About An Impending Trip To Eugene


Dear Max Mennemeier [Ticket Sales Manager; Eugene Emeralds]:

Thank you for your response and forwarding my email to Allan Benadives [General Manager; Eugene Emeralds]. Imagine my thrill when I discovered he actually read it! Here is some professional advice: do not send Allen too many emails, or he will tell you that his mom checks up on him less that you do.

I do understand Allan’s concern about presenting me a non-replica ring on Ring Ceremony Night, even though I was an emotional rock for the front office during the 2020 campaign. To be honest, I just need an official invitation to the ceremony from Allan so I can justify the trip to my wife and document the expenses for tax purposes. I know Allan is a busy man with all that stadium funding rolling in these days, so I will even write the letter for him so he can just copy and paste it to send to me.

“Dear Bads85:

I know I have been remiss in our communication the last couple of months, but you have never been far from my mind. I hope you can attend our Ring Ceremony Night on April 14th because you were such an integral part of the 2021 campaign. We know your humble self would balk at a construction of statue, but we request your presence that weekend in to honor you in the way you would deem most fit: late night drinking at The Cooler.

Your great pal,

Allan

PS: I really miss you.”

Anyway, you requested more information about my itinerary. I commend you on your proper spelling of that word, which has always given me fits. I do not have a full list of traveling companions yet. I do know that my son, Little Bads [Promotion Assistant; Inland Empire 66ers], is making the trip. He could shoot some hotdogs from a slingshot it your organization desires, although you would have to provide the equipment as TSA frowns upon launch weapons. He sort of looks like you, so perhaps he can use one of your IDs to access Eugene bars, not to drink mind you because that would be illegal, but to socialize and tell stories of the MiLB trade.

The current plan is to arrive on Thursday afternoon so we can be refreshed for the College Night Toga Party. Since my son will be leaving for college in the fall, I hope he gains some insight about what is in store from your highly educated front office. Perhaps you could arrange transportation for us from the airport. I do not know where we are staying yet? How big is your place? I hear Chris Bowers [Director of Corporate Events; Eugene Emeralds] has a new house.

I should be able to finalize my plans this weekend, even though suddenly I have to put together Cactus League trips. You see, I started my own tour company, Unknown Legends MiLB and Spring Training Tours, because I need a tax write off because my children have become adults. As always though, the Emeralds come first, well except for sometimes the Inland Empire 66ers.

Oh, if Allan changes his mind about giving me the bona fide ring, well, I would not be disappointed.

Your friend in baseball,

Bads85

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Anderson and I Discuss My New Baseball Tour Company


Dear Anderson Rathbun [General Manager, Burlington Sock Puppets]:

I apologize for the lack of communication lately, but I have been starting a tour company — a baseball tour company. I do not expect to make money; in fact. I fully expect to lose money so I can write it off come tax time. Every trip to a baseball stadium is now an expense. Bads85 now is more than a one man traveling show; he is a LLC. I need a cool name for my company that expresses the savagery of these tours. This is not about idyllic entertainment; it is about rendering flesh from bone in the pursuit fleeting pleasure in world that only gives us a small amount of time. Family values? The only value offered on these tours are cheap concessions and dive bars.

But I digress. The main purpose of this missive is to inform you that I have awarded myself a more appropriate title. Henceforth, I am the Sock Puppets’ Minister of Industry. After all, a minister is much cooler than an ambassador, which has become a symbol of impotence in modern times. I would be forever in your debt if you had some official Sock Puppet Minister of Industry business cards printed for me. I of course will pay for the expense, especially since I can write it now that I am a business owner (how does “Unknown Legends Tours” sound to you?”

I am sure you have perused the Inland Empire 66er’s 2022 Promotion Schedule by now as it is the talk of the industry because it so excellent because it was highly influenced by me. I take full credit for beer on Thirsty Thursday being reduced by 50% from last season. Return of the  Bacon Night is another one of my influences also. Hey, I just thought of something: due to my unique relationship with MiLB front offices, the tour company can charge for advice to MiLB clubs about what road warriors are expecting on a tour stop at their park. I will not charge you guys though because we are tight (as long as those business cards get printed).

I have a front office story you will appreciate: As you certainly know, affiliated MiLB teams are not allowed to use Robert Manfred’s likeness on t-shirts for sale to the general public. Recently, this has become a joke amongst certain west coast MiLB offices. Instead of remaining productive with assigned tasks (selling tickets, taking the mascot costume to the dry cleaners, ordering condiments, etc.), certain employees in the [Redacted] have been designing shirts that trash Manfred. Most of them are in the vein that since Manfred’s face cannot be used, another face is substituted with a caption. These shirts will never be made, nor will their designs be seen outside of an office or email.

Or so we thought.

Last week, I had a graphic design dude of a certain of organization design a shirt with Vladimir Putin’s face with a clown nose on shirt with the caption “Big Vladdy Manfred” under the image. It was shared, we laughed, and life went on. It was hardly one of the better ones, and it was soon forgotten… except Goddamn [REDACTED] sent it to someone OUTSIDE THE CIRCLE through her work email, and a certain organization is displeased and sent a certain front office a strongly worded letter that is now on a certain dart board.

It is not east being an outlaw. We are REPO MEN. Life is always intense.

Allow met to to address a circulating rumor: yes, I purchased a Premium Season Ticket Plan for the Eugene Emeralds even though I live 900 miles away from their stadium and technically work for them. I did this so when I am an earnest discussion with Allan Benavides [General Manager; Eugene Emeralds], I can say, “You know, Allan, as a Premium Season Ticket holder, I can confidently say you are mistaken about how fans feel about Princess Night.”

Your friend in baseball,

Bads85

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I Talk to Max about My Season Tickets and Lost Mascots


Dear Max Mennemeier [Ticket Sales Manger; Eugene Emeralds]:

Thank you for your impeccable service in closing my season ticket deal with the Eugene Emeralds. The fact that you closed a full season ticket deal with Bads85 even though his primary residence is almost a thousand miles away is going to look very good on your resume’. Only one other person in MiLB ever was able to convince me to sign a full season deal, and that is the legendary Sean Peterson [Sr. Director of Ticketing and Ballpark Operations]. You are in some rarefied air, and MiLB executives will step aside when you confidently stride through the winter meetings.

I would have thanked you immediately, but I became tangled in that Portland Pickle mascot theft fiasco. Dillon T. Pickle was stolen in early hours of the morning at the tail end of a comedy of errors on the Pickles’ part. I mean sure, it is awful the mascot costume was stolen of their porch, but what type of a professional organization lets their mascot out of their sight on their travels? You don’t check your mascot costume into a cargo hold; you put into two or three bags you can put in the overhead storage bins. As you well know, a mascot costume is worth more than two tickets sales representatives. Do not think for a second that Allan Benavides [General Manager; Eugene Emeralds] would choose you over Sluggo. If it came down to a life or death choice, Allan would say, “You know we are really going to miss Max…”

One of the cardinal rules in minor league baseball is to never let your mascot costume out of sight unless it is locked in its storage closet. The world is full of thieves and cutthroats who would like nothing more than to have a mascot uniform in a trophy case. The baseball gods invented minor league interns to watch mascot uniforms, especially in transit. If a college wood bat league cannot afford the intern to watch the costume, then perhaps they should not be taking the costume abroad. Yes, it is a harsh lesson, but MiLB is only suited for the strong and the swift. Hey, maybe you organization should insinuate that the Hillsboro Hops stole Dillon. Those guys do not believe in the Beer Batter or Thirsty Thursdays, so they should be likely suspects anyway.

How is Allan taking the news that I am a full time season ticket holder? His liver is probably already screaming for mercy. Is he apprehensive of a new era of responsibility because a galvanized fanbase will demand more from management? He should be. Having Squatch shot glasses in the team store would go a long way to appeasing a fan base that demands more for it entertainment dollar. Roving vendors that sell those little bottle of Fireball would be grand also.

How is the 2022 Promotion Schedule coming along? Your organization has my permission to use any likenesses of my ruggedly handsome face to get fans to come to the park. In fact, perhaps one the games I attend can be “Gorgeous Night”, and lucky fans who desire to have their picture taken with me can wait in a long line to seal the deal.

Hey, just where are my seats? I forgot to tell you where I preferred to sit — somewhere near the top near the beer stand on the third base side, preferably in the shade. I am at the age now where getting too much sun can wreak havoc with my sensitive skin. Hopefully Mayor Lucy Vinis will be sitting close by as she and I have a great deal to talk about.

Your friend in baseball,
Bads85

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I Ask Max to Fix Things


Dear Max Mennemeier [Ticket Sales Manger; Eugene Emeralds]:

Hello, my good friend! The last time I saw you, I left you to your own devices in a bar in Spokane after last call. Leaving you that night has haunted me, but Danny Cowley [Graphic Designer & Game Director, Eugene Emeralds] assured me it was the correct thing to do. I was going to reach out to you since then, but I became very busy designing golf polos for MiLB teams, running the Inland Empire 66ers Twitter account, and laying on the couch, searching for something to scratch. I hope you have been well over these past months.

I have a request for you. I have been on the Eugene Emeralds’ season ticket waiting list, and my number came up. Some dude named the New Alex called me (not Alex Stimson, who was conscripted by the Merchant Marines) to get me to buy a ticket, so I wrote him a letter inquiry, and the next thing I know, he sent me an invoice for $3150 for four season tickets and parking passes. I tried to explain to him that I only want one ticket with no parking because I plan on riding to the games in Allan Benavides’ truck, but I never heard from the lad again. I am sure he was thought he was part of an elaborate prank (maybe Allan told him not to respond to me anymore), but I really want one season ticket so I am not squeezed out when the new stadium opens. By then, I could very well be retired, living in Eugene waiting for all to offer me some side job with the Ems. Just think, you could be my boss one day!

I will probably only make it to Eugene once or twice this season, because I have to go promote MILB in Europe for most of June. I will have some companions with me, probably some of the most savage people you will have the good fortune to meet in your life. These guys do not ride electric scooters, Max, but I am getting ahead of myself here. I want to buy one season ticket and utilize your Flexible Ticket Exchange Program to the utmost extent. If the New Alex’s invoice is correct, a single seat is going for $745, which sure fine, but I bet you can give a Fellow Companion of the Road discount after our time in Spokane. In fact, my financial advisor says once all the appropriate discounts are applied to my account, the Emeralds owe me a considerable amount of money. Being the giver I am, I would never accept that, but I am sure we could come to a fair agreement and kick some funds to an Ems’ charity.

I just received an email from your organization trying to get me to buy group tickets, and I thought. “That is rather discriminatory to all the lonely people who do not have the capacity to attend a game with a group.” Immediately, I had another BOOM MOMENT. How about a promotion in which people with no one to attend their their name could sign up with people just like them, and they can all attend the game together? Just like that, we have created a social mixer. We can call it, “You Do Not Have to Die Alone Night” (or your crack promotions team can come up with some more soothing).

Is Allan doing well? I often worry that the stress of securing a new stadium will rob him of his youth and beauty. Had he let me wine and dine Mayor Lucy Vinis, the concrete for the new stadium would probably have been poured by now, but no sense looking back. We must look to the future, and what type of future would it be if Allan developed something like mange on the back of his head because of his anxieties? Perhaps we you see his eyes start to twitch a bit, you should give him a shoulder massage to help keep him young so he does not reach that grumpy old man stage quite yet.

I have to run. Give everyone in the front office my finest regards, even The New Alex.

Your friend in baseball,

Bads85

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I Talk Sermons on the Mound with the Sock Puppets


Dear Anderson Rathbun [General Manager, Burlington Sock Puppets]:

Good day. Sir! I realize you must be very busy since you have not answered any of my missives, so I took it upon myself to analyze the Sock Puppets’ 2021 attendance numbers. I must say, the gates were not exactly spinning on Sundays as 897, 818, 817 and 969 were you total attendance for you four Sunday dates. Lucky for you, I am a man of solutions.

As you well know, increasing full season ticket packages is a sure fire way to increase Sunday attendance is to increase your full season ticket package sales. However, to paraphrase Wash from Moneyball, that’s incredibly hard. One solution is to target church groups, but that can be tough also. Here is a solution though: Sermons on the Mound, which is my most recent epiphany. Now that you have a catchy name for the promotion, invite all the pastors, priests, clergy, chaplains, and preachers to the game to throw out a ceremonial first pitch. Tell them to bring their flock, and the group that cheers the loudest gets discounted ice cream while the winning man of the cloth gets a snazzy designer t-shirt. Perhaps give patrons who show their church bulletin at the ticket booth a discount.

Pitch the entire thing to the leaders of the congregations as a giant Sunday picnic with a great deal of lemonade and iced tea. Let that good ol’ PREACHER EGO work for the Sock Puppets. No man (or woman) of the pulpit can resist a cheering crowd, and throwing out the first pitch his a chance for THE CLOTH to shine. If the leader of the church says it is time to go to a ballgame, the flock will follow, and the flock will want to release PRIMAL SCREAMS when it is their turn to cheer for their leader. I know you are thinking, “But Bads85, what about the atheists and agnostics?” They get Wednesdays, another low attendance day which will address later in another missive.

Hey, your NASCAR team, Kaulig Racing, was speeding around the Los Angeles Coliseum this weekend. Do you have any plans to set up a Sock Puppet booth at the Fontana Speedway later this month at the Auto Club Speedway for the Wise Power 400? I realize that might be too much of an expense to send a crew from Burlington for that, but Fontana is practically in my back yard. I could easily put together a crew in Sock Puppet gear for photo ops to help promote your national brand. Maybe we could give away cookies or something. Perhaps you should make the trip. There is room at Casa de Bads85. Do you think it is ironic that a solar panel company is sponsoring a race of internal combustion engines?

Did you hear that I saved Thirsty Thursday at San Manuel Stadium? After long consultations with his Thirsty Thursday Ambassador (me), Joe Hudson [General Manager; IE 66ers] made the decision to reduce beer prices in 2022 on certain beers on that night from $4.00 to $2.00. Plus, every Thirsty Thursday is a theme night, say like like Bacon Night. I truly am a social justice warrior. I also know how to solve that trucker problem north of the border — one tank. One rolling tank.

Speaking of rolling, I gotta go. My season ticket package with the Emeralds has still not been resolved. I am going to have to contact Max Mennemeier [Ticket Sales Manager; Eugene Emeralds]. They call him The Hammer for good reason.

Your friend in Baseball,

Bads85

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I Explain To Anderson That Eden Is Burning


Dear Anderson Rathburn [General Manager, Burlington Sock Puppets]:

I hope you are well as I have not heard from you in these troubled times. The Bengals as well as OBJ are going to the Super Bowl, Mariah Caray’s career is in the shitter, and the Kingsport Axmen are cutting into the Sock Puppets’ popularity in the Appalachian League. Eden is burning, Anderson. I hope you are not in the throes of a wicked bender, or worse, working on a PhD. A call to arms has been issued. How we respond will determine who walks tall in the Appalachian League and who eats pork ’n beans out of a can with the hobos. 

Hey, do you follow the Sock Puppets’ Twitter? If so, you caught a glimpse of a ruggedly handsome man with Sock Puppets’ hat holding one the last remaining bottles of Jim Beam Maple at his bar in his backyard. That was me, showing my vulnerability. Whoever is running your Twitter account wanted to come over, which I though was very forward as there are all sorts of psycho strangers on the internet. But I digress.

We need to erect a sign that says. “Without Trauma or Generational Burden” over the main gate at Burlington Athletic Park. One of the appeals of the minors is that we are not burdened by the past. Team failures are not passed down to children. The only true anguish of the minors is when the cotton candy machine breaks, although a toilet clog ain’t no fun. We need to live this mantra — tattoo it to our souls and flesh. Since there are seventeen tattoo parlors in Burlington, this flesh tattoos should not be hard. The soul tattoos, well, that is a state of mind.

We should also ban Johnny Manziel forever from Burlington Athletic Park. We could gain even more national attention if we turned this decree into a promotion called “Go Home Loser Night”. You know he will respond, mostly in monosyllabic words. Burn cardboard effigies of him between innings. Hire some dancing clowns wearing cheap swag. Invite Nick Cannon to the game (but do not let him in either). I know you are thinking, “But Bads85, what if a crazed, drug fueled Johnny Manziel comes to our stadium?” A well placed sniper solves many problems, Anderson. Once you are in the industry longer, you will fully understand that.

Speaking of Burlington Athletic Park, what does outfield signage for for these days? While I am a simple, humble man, I do have connections around this country. When people discovered I had appointed myself your director of promotions, I became inundated with requests from local businesses to purchase ads at you stadium. Since I do not have my official Sock
Puppet credentials yet, I could not give them a quote. BTW, have you discussed my coming aboard with Ryan Keur [Owner and Appalachian League Legend]? Having that official Sock Puppet email address could really get the ball moving on my end. Also, a list of current corporate partnerships would be greatly appreciated, even if it is just a picture of your outfield wall.

Some other promotion ideas:

1.    Sock Puppet Can Opener/Pork N Beans Night. Fans will not only receive a Sock Puppets can opener that they will cherish forever, but they will receive a can of Campbell’s Baked Beans on the way out the gates (a can of beans can turn a vicious weapon with one bad call from an umpire). Get your corporate people to lock in Campbell’s as the night’s sponsor because every good American – never mind, this is not going anywhere. Sometime you have to kill your babies and move forward. Toss this one around the office to see if one of your masterminds can breathe life into it because it started with promise, but who wants a goddamn can opener in the year 2022?

2.    1K Beer Stroll. Many organizations have Beer Runs, but running is for chumps, and there is a great deal of vomiting. Let people amble with their beer on the field after the game, waving to loved ones in the stands. Some will prefer to drink alone, but who are we to judge?

Anyway, I have to run because I have to haggle with the Eugene Emeralds over future travel expenses. I am grateful I do not have that problem your organization.

Your friend in baseball,

Bads85

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I Negotiate a Fair Price with the Emeralds


Dear Alex Cirina [Ticket Representative; Eugene Emeralds]:

Thank you for your prompt response to my missive about season tickets for your organization. We will talk more about that clever invoice you sent me in a bit, but before we get to that, you said if I had any questions, I could ask you. Well, Alex, I have many questions, so many questions. Thank you so much for offering to answer them.

  1. Train A leaves the station traveling at 30 miles per hour. Two hours later train В leaves the same station traveling in the same direction at 40 miles per hour. How far from the station was train A overtaken by train B?
  2. What is the meaning of a good life?
  3. What in life is truly objective and not subjective?
  4. Is there an alternative to capitalism?
  5. Is there a difference between fair and free trade?
  6. Does Allan Benavides [General Manager; Eugene Emeralds] miss me? Or was I just another notch in his belt?
  7. When is the Emeralds’ 2022 promotion schedule going to be released?
  8. Have you ever heard of anyone that has raised over $1900 dollars for a minor league charity in less than twenty-four hours after the general manager strongly suggested it was impossible?
  9. Has Allan Benavides ever mentioned that if I retired and moved to Eugene, he would bring me aboard the Emeralds’ staff?
  10. Would you, Alex Cirinia [Ticket Representative; Eugene Emerlads] kill ten people to save the lives of one hundred people?

I ask the last question because you sent me an invoice for $3,150 for season tickets and parking passes. I mean, that is psychopath behavior. Or sociopath. I always get those two confused. I must compliment you on the aggressiveness of the sales’ pitch, but I question how serious the Emeralds are at retaining my companionship. I do not need four tickets for sixty-five dates. Because of my extreme spiritual wealth, I could purchase all four tickets and ensure that four of Eugene’s most savage hobos sit in those seats sixty times a year, but I am firm believer that the homeless should not be pawns in this game called life.

Let’s approach this as a business deal. I only need two tickets for a couple of dates, but would like all the privileges that come with being a season ticket holder, especially first rights to procuring tickets to the new stadium that will soon be built at the fairgrounds. However, unlike many full season clubs like the Inland Empire 66ersm the Ems’ season ticket privileges seem kind of lacking. 20% off the Team Shop is nice, but I already own most of the merchandise in your team shop. I am sure we can negotiate some additional privileges for ol’ Bads85, but that is for another missive. One certain perk would be the front office is drinking with my traveling party after the games at The Cooler.

Since your organization has a Flexible Ticket Exchange Policy (one of MiLB’s greatest inventions), I only need one season ticket because I can double up on games, so that is $745. As everyone in all of MiLB front offices know, Bads85 does not have to pay for parking, so we do not have to worry about parking passes. Just put me on Allan’s parking list.

$745 is quite expensive for a couple of games even if I have a moderate group, but privilege comes with a cost – a cost that I am willing to pay. However, in the sense of equity (remember, I am all about the rights of the working fan), I think we should apply some discounts. Sure, we could dicker over these discounts like commoners in a open air market, or we could be gentlemen and establish what each consider a fair price. Keep in mind that I will gladly let the Ems sell my seat on nights I will not using it (or I a could come up with a really mind blowing promotion for that unused seat).

I realize that you might feel uncomfortable making this decision by yourself, so feel free to ask Allan what he considers a fair price. If he is grumpy, feel free to ask Kennedy Schull [Director of Tickets; Eugene Emeralds]. I ask you one last question: what price is the right price?

Your friend in baseball,

Bads85

PS: Make sure Allan keeps his hair trimmed as he will probably be getting interviewed much more often in the near future.

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