Carlos Montoya: Best Guitar Ever

Flamenco is classical & gypsy folk music from Andalusia, Spain. The genre’s acknowledged master & most creative innovator was Carlos Montoya (1903-1993). Montoya had parents who came from gypsy parents, making him “gypsy on all four sides” as the saying goes. He always insisted that was required in order to play in true flamenco style.


The goal of life is to create yourself a soul.   –Alejandro Jodorowsky

Carlos Montoya was a prodigy from the start, then was disowned by purists who claimed he broke too many rules. Montoya mesmerizes in his speed, precision & dexterity. He did it with ease, and lasted forever. He played a sold-out Carnegie Hall on his 80th birthday, and his last public performance was at age 85. Here’s a final brief interview, describing himself & his life:

Eddie Van Halen is rock music’s hailed guitar master, and he acknowledges Carlos Montoya as “an inspiration & genius.” [1]

Photo by Larry Marano/Getty Images

Photo by Larry Marano/Getty Images

Montoya was unpopular among aficionados because he abandoned the compás (strict time signatures) which had evolved within flamenco over hundreds of years. Montoya typically does not keep perfect tempo, but speeds up & slows down on feel. The speed & precision of his picados is breathtaking & hypnotic, and his pace & stamina are superhuman. This is All-Universe on guitar:

For non-musicians information, it’s much harder to perform acoustically. Electronic amplification, sound processing & effects are all modern advents, which have made recording & live performance much easier for musicians. That’s why everyone uses it. Carlos Montoya plays under the strictest restrictions, performing with an unplugged acoustic guitar.

He creates the sound of at least two guitarists at most times and will often accent that with rhythmic tapping of his fingers, palms & heel stomps. That’s three musicians in one. No one else has ever approached that level of guitar mastery.


The first Carlos Montoya album to discover is Flamenco Fire (1958), probably the greatest post-war record of the genre. This is flamenco in its pure gypsy essence, with half of the eight songs played solo, and the other four accompanied by Tere Maya on vocals, heels, hand-claps & castanets.

No photos are to be found on the Internet of this gypsy woman, who was an artistic equal to the flamenco guitar master.


Malaguena (1961) is a concert recorded in NYC. Listeners are flabbergasted during every performance, only to erupt into uncontrolled applause immediately after. Wait in vain for the flubbed note or missed string during every difficult run, strum or transition– IT NEVER HAPPENS.


From St. Louis to Seville (1959) is an amusing record, in that it is a really bad idea to have any other guitar player with Carlos Montoya. As discussed above, Montoya sounds like a band all by himself, and there is simply no need for another (clearly inferior) guitar player cluttering up space which Montoya can use more creatively & effectively.


Whomever the ‘other guitarist’ is, he gets schooled early and after about two minutes of trying (hopelessly) to keep up, resigns himself to the background for most of the rest. In the middle of side two, Montoya starts a song and the drummer starts in with a bass beat, which quickly is cut-off, as Montoya starts with his percussive tapping & footwork. This automatically keeps the bass & ‘other guitar’ out, and it becomes the most amazing song on the album.


Hypothetical Situation
Hey Ric Size, wanna perform with Carlos Montoya?
NO! I just wanna watch & listen.


San Diego Padres 2016 Wrap-up

Last game @ Petco tonight, in this toughest of seasons for the Padres. This team (currently 68-90) will have to fight for 70 wins & avoiding the NL West cellar (ARZ), but they will be much better for it going forward. The Padres opponents tonight are the NL West champion LA Dodgers. It’s been a long, but winning season for the Dodgers, who now have a suspect starting rotation (due to injuries) behind ace LHP Clayton Kershaw.


Dodgers also have an inconsistent run-producing lineup, led (and too often carried) by ROY Corey Seager.  On the plus side, they do have good defense– rated 2nd in the NL in efficiency, behind the Cubs. Overall, the Dodgers look a bit thin matching-up against the Nationals in the divisional round, but the Gnats have never won anything themselves, so it could be an interesting series.


Padres finished just above league-average defensively, mostly due to their innovative use of shifting by new manager Andy Green. The Padres shifted more than any other team in MLB in 2016, and gained a huge advantage in outs recorded. Many Padres defenders individually were average (at best), or poor including: 3B Yangervis Solarte, RF Matt Kemp, second base, shortstop, and most of their bench.


Padres were last in the NL in OBP & 13th in SLG, yet they were 10th in runs scored. Again this is a testament to Andy Green & GM A.J. Preller working together with advanced metrics in everything, as the Padres offense had no business being as productive as it actually was. Their aggressiveness on the bases, in all aspects netted them several wins over the course of the season. Padres fans loved it.


Their GM traded away all their pitching by the 8/1 deadline, then acquired more-productive pitchers off the waiver wire in RHP Paul Clemens & LHP Clayton Richard. This cost savings allowed splurges in the amateur & international drafts, reaping a bonanza of talent for the organization. The Padres finished 10th in the NL in ERA, just behind PIT & STL.

Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Rule 5 selection Luis Perdomo, age 23, threw 146.2 IP and survived the season with an ERA of 5.71. His 60+% ground-ball rate was the best in MLB for starters. Most likely he’ll be the Padres opening day starter in 2017, with the health status of RHP Tyson Ross still in question?


Padres would love for Clemens and Richard to return at affordable deals, but it’s a barren pitching market so they may receive significant offers elsewhere. They may have a better chance of thriving in San Diego, but they’re each certainly better than RHP Edwin Jackson, who is finishing off his overpay contract with the Cubs in San Diego.  If the Padres can get RHP Jared Cosart (acquired in the Marlins ‘Cash Out’) healthy & right, he could be a rotation horse.


We’ll see what Preller, Green, pitching coach Darren Balsley, and their medical staff can come up with.  Pitching is the crux of any future success. Padres must develop power arms and keep them healthy, if they are ever to consistently compete for a World Series.

CREDIT: Heinz Kluetmeier Photo by Heinz Kluetmeier /Sports Illustrated/Getty Images

Photo by Heinz Kluetmeier /Sports Illustrated/Getty Images

The last Dodgers/Padres tilt of 2016 signals the end of Vin Scully & Dick Enberg behind the microphone, two of the All-time Golden Voices.  Each are amazing & incomparable in their resume & style. Each will be missed & forever loved by sports fans everywhere.



Final Wrap-up: 10-2-16

Tough season for the Padres, and their fans knew it was over after the first series, getting shut-out 26-0 vs. the Dodgers @ Petco. 3B Yangervis Solarte got hurt the next series against Colorado (pulling his hamstring rounding first base), and RHP Tyson Ross never pitched after opening day. Lots of work to be done in San Diego. Player development & medical issues– mainly keeping their pitchers healthy, are priorities after their talent-grab this year.

At some point after the trade deadline when RHP Luis Perdomo pitched, there were 6 rookies in the Padres starting lineup. The Padres staff to start the season was Ross, Shields, Cashner, Pomeranz & Rea: 3 traded & 2 DL’d. How this team didn’t lose 100 games is mostly about Andy Green, and some great dumpster acquisitions by AJP in 2B Schimpf, RHP Clemens, LHP Richard & SS Sardinas.

Padres ended up with the 3rd worst record in MLB at 68-94, behind the Twins & Reds. This determines their slot order for the next Rule 5, Amateur & International drafts; as well as priority for any waivers claims, in which AJP has proven very effective. He’s possibly the best GM at evaluating talent in the game right now, and he owns high-slot picks for all the upcoming drafts.

The International draft will surely be modified, as the current MLB collective bargaining agreement (2012-16) is set to expire. New rules will surely be set in place for the this draft, to ensure one team doesn’t acquire 30% of the top talent all to itself– the way AJ Preller did this 2016-17 signing period for the Padres.  [1]

AP Photo/Charles Krupa

AP Photo/Charles Krupa

One final off-season note: baseball fans should push to eliminate the DH under the new CBA. Papi is retiring, and David Ortiz was the best remaining argument for the DH. The DH has been kept in place by the MLBPA because it’s a high-salary, veteran player position. Unions like that. Unfortunately, the DH creates unfair AL line-ups, which abuse & destroy pitching.

It’s too much of a high-payroll advantage for the Boston Red Sox to start LHP David Price, and allow David Ortiz to hit for him. That’s 2 HoFer’s in one player, with no penalty for Ortiz’s bad defense. Also, the DH allows far too much throwing at hitters with no repercussions, since AL pitchers don’t bat. It’s not real baseball, and owners are going to want the savings. We’ll see…


Shittiest Election Ever

The great Russian revolutionary leader & theorist Leon Trotsky once explained why swearing needs to be checked & controlled. The synopsis is the reason people swear and use obscenity is because they have ceased to think and are acting on rage. This is dangerous behavior in that it inevitably leads to uncontrolled violence in the service of fascism. Trotsky, more than any political figure since Karl Marx needs to be understood in all his wisdom & prophecy.

With that understood, swear words are part of the human language and good writers are always compelled to use the best words– in terms of accuracy & description. In the 2016 U.S. presidential election, the best descriptive of everything that has been brought to the electorate by the ruling class, both political parties, and the corporate-owned mass media is shit.

This shit-show which has been thrown in the American public’s faces every day & night for over a year, is a disgrace to human culture and an abomination of anything decent in civilized history. There are at least 10 million American citizens over age 35, who are better qualified for the office of U.S. president than this shit.

These candidate are human feces. Just look at them physically, and you will see nothing attractive from either one. Just like what you see in the toilet before you flush. What comes out of their mouths, is even worse.

For those who advocate lesser-of-two-evilism, consider this analogy. You’re handed two plates of steaming shit, one conservative & one liberal. Which one do you choose?

When you boil it down to shit, it gets real quickly because everyone understands it. We all have shit, and most of us dump it into religion/politics. That’s why we have all this shit. People need to become active and starting organizing, before this shit gets any more out-of-hand. These shitheads are talking about nuclear war with Russia.

Those who lecture “don’t complain if you don’t vote,” let their brains go to shit a long time ago. They make up the majority of voters. Can’t win against that shit, so don’t play.

Anyone with at least a partially-functioning brain can clearly see the whole capitalist system has gone to shit, with the ‘choice’ down to a fascist business gangster vs. an establishment political gangster.  All propped-up and defended with bullshit.

Any so-called ‘3rd party’ candidates funnel into the Republican (Libertarian) or Democrat (Green) party, proving their worthlessness. Same shit, different package.  Take notice how quickly the Bernie Sanders ‘revolution’ came & passed.  Like shit through a goose.


We need a revolution to avoid a really shitty ending for humanity. Anything less is just turds circling the bowl.

Working people & youth are better than this shit.

It’s time we start handling it.


Update 11-09-16:   Shit hits the fan.  Trump eats that bitch for breakfast.

The Corruption of Modern Sports

I write about sports a lot, and here is why? First of all, I love sports and have always good at them.  John McEnroe once stated in an interview, “I never met a sportswriter who didn’t want to be a professional athlete.”


In that pearl of wisdom, McEnroe summed up the male ego aspect of sports reporting, in which every sportswriter is a ‘wanna-be athlete’ at heart. This shows up usually in the forms of ignorance & bias, which have been discussed at length already.  [1] [2]

I must say in reply to McEnroe: I’ve seen very few professional athletes who DIDN’T  think they would be good journalists or broadcasters.  I freely admit I wanted to be a professional athlete when I was young, but injuries & other circumstances took me in another direction. There are literally millions of these ‘failed athlete’ stories, everywhere.  What’s special is that so few people actually care to find out why so many of these young boys & girls are being injured.  [3]

These youth injuries are mostly the result of ignorance in medical science, and an obsessive desire to win-at-all-costs, from the bulk of the youth sports coaches.  Most youth-level coaches are dads, who themselves are ‘failed athletes’ bringing their lack of skills & knowledge to a new generation. The motive to coach is (nearly) always nepotism, as they all stop coaching when their kid advances past their coaching level.

This is likely the main reason skills are largely lacking in ALL sports in America, despite the now-widespread availability of top-level instructional video via the Internet.

Shown above is a nearly-perfect serve from Serena Williams, broken down in super slow motion, with all the analysis one needs.  Every tennis coach in the world should use this video (or a similar version from Federer, etc…) to teach the proper technique to maximize power & skill, while avoiding injuries. Yet, most U.S. tennis instructors won’t even think to use something like this, as their own ego is their master.  That largely explains why there is no American ‘heir apparent’ to Serena in women’s tennis.

I learned much of this when I was young, so as a middle-aged adult I have no regrets about my life in recreational sports.  I am simply an athlete.  I’m not a professional one, and much happier for that.  Professional sports is a tightrope walk for an entire career, competing against the best, to become the best. That is how the best think.

That is also what drives them past the edge, when it comes to PED’s and other forms of cheating & unethical behavior. Eventually, everything comes down to winning, and ALL the best athletes (in every sport) are faced with this dilemma: do I lie & cheat to win?  It’s the proverbial Faustian deal, and it always haunts the athlete; whether it’s detrimental health side-effects & pain/addiction cycles, or the threat of blackmail and eventual public disgrace from those insiders who know, and always tell in the end.


I don’t regret my failed attempt to be a serious professional athlete, having to compete against this mentality, which is 90+% of the way top athletes think & act. I’d rather be able to actively enjoy my life into (and past) middle age. The demands & stress on those striving to be the best causes many of them to immediately go into ‘breakdown mode’ upon retirement. Notice how many former top athletes are overweight & unhealthy-looking in their middle age?


I’ve written about the NFL [4] [5], NBA [6] [7], soccer [8], tennis & the Olympics [9] [10].  MLB is my main sports beat, with the San Diego Padres as the home team.  Why the Padres?  Because they are my new favorite team, and they get very little coverage in mainstream sports media. [11]

Baseball is the most historical game, with precise accountability, making it the best sport for connecting deeper social narratives. Baseball, like all other sports, has been overrun by greedy billionaires, commercialism, militarism, and entitled ‘superstar’ athletes.

I spend time on all this because these ideas need to be discussed and understood. Right now, what is published on this site is considered ‘unmentionable’ in mainstream sports media.  Everyone mouths the truth, “Sports is a business,” and then immediately goes back to cheerleading their favorite teams and/or athletes.

All the staging for a sports event, with the incessant advertising & hype around it, are choreographed with specific ideological intentions. Values promoted by Madison Avenue in sports broadcasting include: alcohol use as a lure for sex, expensive & powerful motor vehicles for affirmation, militarism & conformity– all through brand association with top athletes. The best example of this is in NASCAR, which I’ve covered in great detail. [12] [13] [14]

Fantasy sports is a huge problem of sports addiction, meeting gambling addiction. Fantasy started in MLB, but is now most popular (by far) in the NFL. ESPN has been featuring Texas Hold ‘Em poker tournaments for over 10 years now, leading to all kinds of confusion over what is a sport, and what are the benefits of gambling? [15]

In short, Americans are addicted to sports. This wanna-be complex has destroyed the minds & bodies of several promising generations. Addiction to celebrity culture & winning is a crisis of capitalism, in which nothing matters except the brass ring. There is no longer any morality or ethics when it comes to professional sports, and when one realizes that every college, high school & youth league organization takes its cue for the professional leagues, then the magnitude of this human disaster starts to come into focus.


As a society, we must STOP pushing our children towards sports glory & professional athletic aspirations. In the vast majority of cases, it is one (or both) parents(s) pushing their own dreams upon their children. The child ends up resenting their parents, and either 1) gets hurt & gives up sports;  and/or 2) ends up absorbing the values & methods of their hated father/mother when they reach adulthood.

Sports are about fun, fitness & healthy interaction. Those are its best values which need to be re-embraced.  Money corrupts everything under capitalism. Therefore, the filth that seethes around professional sports must be rejected as a mortal threat to a healthy human society.  If universal rottenness is the fate of our sports & recreation, then what prospects do we have in political economy & the rest?

The message is: Never give up on yourself as an athlete. Never cease maintaining & improving your level of overall fitness. [16]  Do this without delusions of grandeur, unless you are already a genius:

Become a student of anatomy & physiology. Stay away from the pharmacology, as much as possible– all drugs have side-effects which is a serious issue.  Pursue internal vs. external goals.

This is what a true athlete does.


Shifting & Drifting: NASCAR Chase Nonsense

NASCAR kicked off it’s 2016 ‘Chase for the Cup’ at Chicagoland Speedway last weekend. The best promoter for the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 400 was (as usual), a non-Chase driver:


The actual race was a microcosm of the entire 2016 NASCAR season, as Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) Toyota’s were the fastest cars in the field.  Martin Truex, Jr. (#78) is not officially affiliated with JGR, but his Furniture Row Racing team receives plenty of support and he is considered a ‘5th driver’ for Gibbs Racing.


The story on Sunday was #78 dominance on the track, then its failing the post-race laser inspection station (LIS).   The LIS measures tolerances for aerodynamics of the car  body, which are set by NASCAR.  Jimmie Johnson (#48 Hendricks Racing) also failed post-race LIS.  Under the existing rules, as ‘P2’ penalty would have to have been enforced on both drivers, with the 10-point deduction being more severe for Johnson, who would have been in immediate danger of missing the next round of cuts in the Chase.


NASCAR couldn’t let that happen to one of their most-popular drivers, so it changed the rules (again) in the middle of the season to clear both Martin Truex, Jr & Jimmie Johnson.  This is the final NASCAR penalty report from Chicagoland 2016:


As you can (or can’t) see, #16 Greg Biffle & #43 Aric Almirola (both non-Chase drivers) were assessed the severest sanctions, P3 penalties for a missing lug nut and a broken stud.  Newly-modified rules on lug nuts are already being pushed to (and past) their limits by many teams.  Six to eight cars are chosen at random for post-race inspection. How random, is anyone’s guess?  If every car was inspected after every race, surely more than half wouldn’t pass an inspection at this point.


NASCAR just announced that it will change its post-race inspection penalty structure for infractions stemming from the LIS, eliminating the P2 and P3 levels for those violations. The P4 level for LIS infractions remains, and violations at this level will remain “encumbered.”  NASCAR is the only sport I know that constantly changes its rules during its regular & play-off season.  [1]

NASCAR defines the concept of an ‘encumbered victory,’ meaning a driver would keep the trophy but would lose the other benefits of a win, meaning it would not ensure advancement to the next round of the Chase.  The idea is to discourage blatant infractions of the rules, but still allow cheating at a certain level. The drivers and their teams are already two steps ahead of this NASCAR rule-tweaking, you can be sure. [2]


Note that having the fastest car doesn’t make Truex the best driver. Not by a long-shot. Check out his performance in NASCAR ScanAll starting at 2:45.  [3]

2:45: #78 Martin Truex Jr. (the fastest car all day) crawls up her ass and exclaims, “Get that (expletive) #10 car out of the way. I want the bottom.”
2:48: #10 Danica Patrick (at the top of the track, up against the wall) says to her spotter, “I give these guys the bottom lane and it just confuses them I think.”

She’s correct, and once again proven a better driver than the race winner (and current Chase leader); she just has no speed in her team or car. Typical NASCAR nonsense, and this is how some people feel about them and their HQ in Charlotte right now:



How to Take Down a Genius

MLB’s 30-day suspension of San Diego Padres GM A.J. Preller for no explained reason is stunning. What’s even more strange are the continuing reports of possible further sanctions against Preller & the Padres organization. Can the Padres be punished twice without an official explanation? It seems it may be possible in this bizarro sports-media world.

AJ Preller: Padres GM

This leads to the question: why are so many people out to get A.J. Preller?

In my summary coverage of this year’s MLB trade deadline, I wrote about the consequences of what A.J. Preller did, which was control an entire trade season up through the deadline. He dumped everything he needed to unload (Shields, Upton, Cashner & primarily Matt Kemp), while killing the market for much of the rest. He owned most of the available pitching, and brilliantly timed & maximized each deal. I also mentioned there would be repercussions, and here they are. [1]

Preller’s most controversial deal was the ‘Cash Out’ which deserves close scrutiny.  At least 10-12 teams were interested in RHP Andrew Cashner as the 8/1 deadline approached.  A few dropped out, but at least half a dozen were still interested when the deal to Miami was announced. It was a shocker to Padres fans, as rookie RHP Colin Rea was included. The Padres were never shopping him, and he was approaching his innings limit. Skipping starts and/or shutting him down, became issues discussed in the Padres fan forums.  Note, these are people with ZERO inside knowledge concerning scouting or team medical, and yet they knew more than the Miami GM, front office, scouting & medical staff.

Marlin’s GM & team president Mike Hill was interviewed during their broadcast that evening, saying how pleased they were to not only get Andrew Cashner, but “also Colin Rea for many years to come.”  Rea was then rushed onto the mound the next evening for the pitching-desperate Marlins, and after 3.1 IP, his right elbow ligament snapped. The Marlins then screamed ‘damaged goods’ as loudly as they could.  AJP was compelled to revisit the deal, and took Rea back in exchange for the A-level reliever prospect in the original deal. The Padres received RHP Jared Cosart, closer Carter Capps (recovering from TJ surgery) and top 1B prospect Josh Naylor– for 2 months of Andrew Cashner.

Andrew Cashner_2

Cashner is 1-4 in eight starts with the Marlins, with an ERA of 6.13 as of this writing. He’s had blister issues in Miami. He’s had nearly every other kind of injury issue in San Diego, so a ‘damaged goods’ claim won’t hold here. Padres fans are glad their GM doesn’t have to worry about making a qualifying free-agent offer to this bum.  Simply bad deal-making by the Marlins who overpaid on Cashner. They probably lost this deal twice, by insisting the Padres immediately take Colin Rea back. Rea is rehabilitating without surgery (for now), and will likely be ready for 2018 either way. That’s probably more valuable than a reliever prospect, even one who throws 100 MPH. This was finalized before the deadline on Monday, August 1; and the Marlins didn’t even bother for a MRI on Colin Rea.

So Preller invents a way to win a deal twice, and the Marlins season goes down the tubes immediately after. Guess who’s help responsible?  Certainly not the incompetent GM’s. Preller managed to scoop up ~30% of the top talent during this year’s International Draft, which will give the Padres a huge competitive advantage for years to come.  That wasn’t supposed to happen.  For all this & more, A.J. Preller (the genius) is punished.

The biggest reason ex-Padres pitchers don’t do well for their new teams is pitching coach Darren Balsley. Andy Green is a brilliant young manager, but Balsley is long-recognized as one of the best. LHP Drew Pomeranz was acquired from the A’s (by AJP) in the off-season for 1B Yonder Alonso.  Padres were in need of starters entering 2016, so an open competition was created. Pomeranz had here-to-fore been a reliever, but he went into Green’s office and asked for an opportunity to start. He did very well, and made the rotation as their #4 starter out of spring training.

He steadily listened & learned, and by mid-season he was their best starter. Pomeranz wasn’t initially selected for the ASG, but was added when Clayton Kershaw went on the DL. Green & Preller encouraged NL manager Terry Collins to use him in the game (played in SD), when many managers didn’t even want their pitchers used. Drew Pomeranz pitched a clean inning, and it turned out to be a showcase, as he was flipped to the Red Sox before his next start.

Drew Pomeranz was never hurt, and this whole MLB investigation/punishment is about Preller fleecing the Red Sox (and a few other teams), that did a poor job SCOUTING. There were no unknown injuries to Fernando Rodney, James Shields, Drew Pomeranz or Andrew Cashner. The Padres immediately took back Colin Rea, with the understanding that was to be the end of it.  As it turns out, some East-coast people lied about that. The Red Sox accusing any other team of cheating is beyond hypocritical. [2]

The real issue is the Red Sox were expecting a #2 starter for top RHP prospect Anderson Espinoza, and they got a #3/4 instead. Preller sold high on Pomeranz, which is what a good GM does.  As far as the accusation of “doctoring up medical records to make their players look better to the opposition”, here it seems comparable to washing & detailing a used car before selling it.  If either seller doesn’t do this, they’re a loser and everyone knows it.  Most importantly, it’s the buyers’ obligation to look carefully & extensively under the hood before any final agreement.

That’s why Preller has 100% support from Padres ownership and his organization. Red Sox GM Dave Dombrowski got swindled in the Kimbrel deal last off-season too, so he was already looking bad. Therefore the Red Sox called in their daddy (MLB) and big-bully brother (ESPN) to help them out with AJP.


The suspension came with no official explanation from anyone. Just implications from Buster Olney who acts a mouthpiece for the Red Sox. His ESPN articles are full of innuendo, with no hard proof of any malfeasance, hence the collective ‘no comment’ from all the other teams involved. It appears we’re down to therapeutic rubdowns and Ibuprofen not being documented on the medical side.  Sloppy & incomplete?  Yes. But not even close to a reason for nixing any of these deals. The fact that MLB had to dig this deep, to find this little, proves a significant level of enabling for the Boston Red Sox by MLB & ESPN.

Any mention from Olney that the Padres discovered bone chips in Anderson Espinoza’s elbow? The Padres aren’t blaming the Red Sox for not telling them, they are managing the issue with medical science & diligence.  MLB likely pried open Padres proprietary team data in order to educate a few patsy GMs who were behind the curve in scouting & medical evaluation. A fan can actually understand why no one wants to talk about that.


Padres GM A.J. Preller Clipped by MLB Old-Guard

MLB suspends Padres GM Preller for 30 days  9-15-16  [1]

Major League Baseball (MLB) announced today that A.J. Preller, Executive Vice President and General Manager of the Padres, has received a 30-day suspension without pay.  MLB considers the matter closed and has no further comment.


No explanation from MLB!


What this is really about is punishment for A.J. Preller winning the trade deadline, dumping all his junk ahead of everyone else and getting the best prospects while glutting the market.  Padres aren’t supposed to do that. It would have been alright for the Yanks or Sox, but not the Friars. Therefore, MLB steps in and ‘corrects’ the situation. [2]


Every team submits player medical records to a central database, while maintaining their own records & opinions of their players. This is proprietary to each organization, as each seeks an edge over the rest. It isn’t unethical to withhold that data, in fact it’s considered best-practice for the industry.

Jerry Reinsdorf

Each team has the right to a player undergoing a complete physical before any trade is approved by MLB. This should be more than a cursory review of the partner organization’s records, but an independent evaluation by their own medical staff. MLB plays the role of enabler here, trying to make up for the lack of diligence on behalf of their chosen favorites.


One final note on the Buster Olney piece up on ESPN, which amounts to a hatchet job on the Padres.  It is very clear that the White Sox & Marlins are in on this with the Red Sox. These teams got fleeced by A.J. Preller during the trade season because their GM’s & scouting failed. James Shields, Fernando Rodney, Drew Pomeranz & Andrew Cashner were all overpays for their buyers, and this story is an attempt to defect the blame away from their front office incompetence.

Colin Rea_Marlins

RHP Colin Rea was near his innings limit, yet still rushed into the Marlins rotation the day after the deal was made, and immediately injured by the Marlins. In the end, the Padres took 3 Tommy John pitchers from the Marlins (Chris Paddack, Carter Capps & Rea), without complaint. This punishment for Preller is hypocrisy, but it helps to maintain ‘team integrity’ and the proper ‘competitive balance” which is very important to MLB & ESPN.

Jeffrey Loria

Now that’s it’s over and Preller & the Padres have accepted their punishment, is there any comment from the owners & front offices of the Red/White Sox & Marlins?  Their collective silence speaks for itself as cowardly & pathetic.


Hip & Back Rehabilitation Protocol

Now that we have identified major hip & back injuries, a rehabilitation & training plan is needed. This article extends what was discussed previously in Undiagnosed Hip Injuries & Stubborn Fat Loss.” [1]

The first major issue in recovery is dealing with the psychological pain. The injury victim is now realizing the full extent of their injury, which is equivalent to a gunshot wound to the groin that nicks the back. It is useful to think of ‘expelling the bullet’ during the pain-releasing process, because that is what it feels like. There are likely many fragments, as the groin & lower back have been wiped out, and superficial muscle sheaths have been herniated. The cause of the injury may have been a malicious teacher/coach, ignorant/uncaring parents, or a friend’s betrayal. Anger, blame and acceptance are issues that need to be addressed during recovery. This is very much part of the mental aspect.

Pain is stored energy, and the proper method is to release it and immediately put it to good use. Tai chi & yoga principles are used in rehabilitation of hip & back injuries. This means creating energy with minimal circular movements, then flowing it through the body to release pent-up pain. This will create ‘popping’ sensations all along the nerve/muscle chain, activating atrophied muscle– all down the line. It will ‘pop’ at the downstream insertion and often flow to the next insertion point. This quickly activates long-line muscle tissue, which will stabilize & strengthen the injury victim.

It is wise to apply engineering principles to musculo-skeletal development, by creating triangles of muscle bands. Triangles are strong and allow a framework to ‘fill-in,’ as a road worker fills in a pothole with asphalt. Once a band of muscle has been lashed together triangularly, that area can now be flexed. Muscle groups can quickly be rebuilt in this manner, with maximum efficiency and minimal pain.

A couch or love seat can be useful, as the injury victim’s back will need soft support. Gently throw the hips onto the arm with the legs extended over. Work the injured side primarily, while releasing to the contralateral hip. The idea is to control the femur, hip and back in positions of flexion & extension. Work around the deepest source of pain to strengthen surrounding muscle. This bracing support is needed to go after deeper injuries. A beanbag on the floor is a great tool for this.


Do this rehabilitation at climate. That means no A/C or heat.  Make your body one with nature, and it will be better. Use ice locally to cool overheated spots, and COLD showers for rapid body cooling. A fan is helpful for cooling during the workout.  Fat-burning requires water, so hydrate often. If you have 12 pounds (typical) of stubborn fat to lose, you will add ~4 pounds of muscle, for a net weight-loss of ~8 pounds. That difference in muscle-to-fat ratio, is all the difference in the world.


Since all movements inferior to the head start with the hip & back, the flash-release of the stored energy (chi) will reveal other injuries downstream into all the extremities. The injury victim will soon realize that most of these injuries were caused by the original hip/back injury. A breakdown of the central hub, causes later breakdowns all along the human kinetic chain.

How do you know when you’re completely recovered?  When the last of the pent-up energy transfers directly from the injured hip, into the opposing hip.  Now the hips are re-connected, and the injury victim can work towards a one-armed push-up & Russian pistol on each side, cleanly & repetitively. That will prove total body fitness and protect against future injury. These exercises were reviewed in an earlier piece titled “You Must Be Physically Strong.” [2]

A clue as to when the injury victim is nearing completion is when he/she can identify the true injury line from hip to back, to contralateral shoulder. Since this is a spinal injury, there is a measure of paralysis in the back, meaning the contralateral vertebral spine is compromised. Some contralateral hip and trapezoid neural connections are short-circuited, leading to atrophy. How much depends on the origin & severity of the injury, but it always has some negative effect.

The hip needs to be mostly healed before the back can be aggressively rehabilitated. Protecting the back (which carries the spinal cord) is always primary to the human condition. Once the injured vertebrae are released (with fresh muscle support), the hip-back-shoulder injury line can be established. The hip-back-shoulder line is the true axis of this injury. It is around this line that the injury can be quickly & safely rehabilitated.

Energy can be safely flowed circularly around this axis, without risk of aggravating the deep injury. The energy that transfers directly through the injury line must still be controlled. This hip/back injury cut its victim in half. If they don’t rehabilitate, they will never be able to transfer energy from their legs & glutes, up through their torso, to their chest & arms for maximum torque & power. The untreated injury victim will always have to ‘leak out’ most of the energy, to avoid sharp pain in their hips & back. If asked to perform under this stress, in a life-or-death situation, they would certainly fail.

One way to train transferring energy from legs to arms is standing under an open door frame, pushing up with the hands and down (through the floor) with the feet. The areas that don’t allow transfer due to ‘leakage’ are the injury points. Work around them, to get to them. Expel all the bullets.

A few health benefits were discussed in the initial piece, so a few others of interest (to most) will be cited. Improved skin tone and health is a given here. More restful sleep and feeling much better about oneself are huge psychological benefits. As mentioned above, there are many types of pain involved here, so dealing with this will make one stronger in character as well. Whatever happened to originally cripple the injury victim may have be cruel & unfair, but that doesn’t allow it to become an excuse for not facing it and recovering. If one does have the strength & fortitude for this, he/she will have to put themselves through self-torture, in order to come out better than ever.


Undiagnosed Hip Injuries & Stubborn Fat Loss

There are two types of fat which people are concerned with losing. Visceral fat surrounds your internal organs, like the intestines. When you see someone with a huge gut, that’s visceral fat. This type of fat is relatively easy to lose with a sensible diet & exercise.


Subcutaneous fat is the ‘stubborn fat’ that stays, even through dieting & regular exercise. It becomes even more difficult to remove after the human athletic peak (around) age 27.


There is much literature on ‘stubborn fat’ and much of the science is recognized. [1]  But what actually causes this fat to be so stubborn?  I propose the answer is: hip & back injuries which people don’t recognize they have, until it’s too late.


Women tear their hip, abdominal and back muscles during childbirth, so this pertains to all mothers.  [2]


Everything thing we physically do starts with our hips & back, and these are the most powerful skeletal muscles in the human body. They are also often the most neglected. You never hear any barbell guys in the gym say, “I’m going to work my lower back and hip stabilizers today.”


Other athletes are the same way, focusing too much on arms & legs, and not enough on their core– which means hips, back & abdominals. These are the muscles that true athletes maintain throughout their lives.


If these groin injuries aren’t properly & completely rehabilitated, then a semi-paralysis of the mid-section ensues.  This injury victim will not be able to rotate their spine freely in the affected vertebrae, which are located in the lower back. This leads directly to weight (fat) gain.  Other common issues become incontinence, colon cancer, and loss of virility.


The skin around stubborn fat becomes cold & lifeless. This is because there is no muscular activity, therefore little bloodflow to these areas. This is the pooch gut, love handles, cottage cheese thighs & butt, and back fat which honestly are disgusting.  The injury victim will not be able to activate these areas because the deep muscles are torn, and atrophy has set in on the superficial muscles as well.  The victim needs to focus on activating the deep injury, gently at first, then more actively & aggressively, but always under control.  If done with persistent focus & vigilance, these muscles can be rebuilt and reinforced in a short period of time.


This will allow the injury victim to regain a youthful gait & look, as compared to most who limp & slump into middle age & beyond. These ‘dead backs’ exist in ~80% of the U.S. population, by my casual inspection.  This means tens (hundreds?) of millions of American adults are suffering (right now) from an undiagnosed apophyseal avulsion fracture. The most common hip injury locations are shown below:


The apophysis is the projection on the spine that links the brain & spinal cord (CNS) to every skeletal muscle.  This is what is fractured, as the hip muscles are torn from the bone.


Victims of an apophyseal avulsion fracture should be able to recall a specific event that triggered the pain; a traumatic injury on the sports field, playground, gym class or while alone.  In children, adolescents & teenagers these injuries occur so frequently, and are often dismissed as ‘minor tweaks,’ so they often remain undiagnosed into adulthood.

The pain is most severe during activity and improves with rest. Tenderness can be appreciated by palpation, and the injury victim may actively guard against contraction of the musculature attached to the injured apophysis. Passive stretch of these muscles will reproduce the pain. [3]

The injury victim will recover (somewhat), but he/she will never be the same. Their strength and coordination will be eroded by this deep groin/back injury, which limits and restricts certain directional movements. Over time (years/decades), these injuries become disabling to those who don’t deal with them directly.


Into adulthood, a limp will often present itself, and there is a noticeable atrophy in the muscle group attached to the avulsed apophysis compared to the contralateral side. [4]

Hip fractures are common in the elderly, and often attributable to these injuries.  The atrophied hip muscles leave only skin & bone, with fatty protection.  Elderly men & women fall everyday and never get up.

An atrophied hip has no muscle tissue to protect the femoral arteries, and many geriatric hip fractures slice this vital vessel.  The injury victim can bleed out in seconds.

This ignoble fate can be avoided by rehabilitating & strengthening your hips for life.  The knowledge is here, but you must have the most serious dedication because this injury is very deep, meaning true rehabilitation will be intense & painful. It will take a period (weeks/months) for successful and complete activation of this atrophied muscle tissue, buried in stubborn fat.

Stubborn fat is a protective mechanism. Since the injury victim didn’t rehabilitate their injury, a layer of fat is deposited to protect the muscle from further injury. This causes the muscle to atrophy over time– since it can’t be used until healed.  If it never heals, the stubborn fat remains.

Once the injury victim reactivates this long-atrophied muscle tissue, new muscle can quickly be rebuilt, and the stubborn fat in that area will melt away. This means that when the injury victim finally fixes all the torn muscles in their back, hips & abdominals (deep to superficial & back again), then all their stubborn fat will disappear. This is the best weight-loss program, as it is natural with no PED’s or crazy diets.  I do recommend marijuana for the pain, as you’ll likely need something. It’s the most organic choice, and easiest to quit when you’re finished.


Note that you must maintain a calorie deficit to lose weight.  You need plenty of sleep to lose fat, as that’s the primary fat burning period (diagram above). Eat a sensible whole food diet, that is high in fresh vegetables (juicing) with minimal lean protein, as most of the amino acid building blocks will come from your stubborn fat burn-off. Carbohydrates should be (mostly) organic and minimal, for energy boost and craving relief.  Imagine this to be your normal diet, just in smaller proportions until you lose all of your stubborn fat.

Once you are truly lean & healthy, you will see life in a new way. Your thinking will be sharper and eyesight clearer. Former injury victims will now feel many years/decades younger, with more power, better coordination and longer stamina. Future injury-risk is sensibly minimized with a complete rehabilitation of these nasty hip/back injuries. The alternative is more pain & suffering. [5]


It’s not really a choice, once you know what to do– so do it now.

Hip & Back Rehabilitation Protocol


Seventh Inning Stretch

The lyrics to “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” were written in 1908 by Vaudevillian songwriter Jack Norworth, in 15 minutes while riding an elevated NYC subway train.  Albert Von Tilzer (his publisher), then composed the music.

Take Me Out to the Ballgame

* a sou is an old French coin of low denomination

“Take Me Out to the Ballgame” has been in the public domain since 1936, and some would argue that a finer song has never been written.  The purpose here is to present the original-length version in modern form, hopefully sparking an interest in our national pastime.

Baseball 7

The song first became a hit in nickelodeons, which were early movie theaters charging 5 cents admission.  It was presented between silent film features– as an illustrated song, using a pictured set of slides.

Baseball 12

“Take Me Out to the Ballgame” is baseball’s anthem, and it surely beats any national anthem for fun & singabililty. Norworth’s composition has been squeezed out, by the MLB powers-that-be since 9/11, often in favor of Irving Berlin’s “God Bless America.”  Militarism, politics & religion need to be left out of sports as much as possible.

Baseball 2

Recorded @ the Last Minute
Production & Video by TomP;  some still photos by Ric
RS: vocal  
TomP: percussion,  piano MIDI patch & chorus vocal along w/ Maya & Brighton

Copyright/Publishing–Infinitelink Records/No Cliché Songs