Have you heard that they will give pretty much anyone a website. I’m telling you it’s true. We got our handy-dandy URL all by ourselves. Apparently, Vinny Ravioli Raviele clued into that fact and ran with it. Unlike some, he used his to promote evil. Not like us. We run Fourth and Fifty to superman that ho! the causes of Houston sports, single-malt Scotch and butterfly kisses.
Vinny’s son, Jimmy used to play baseball for the University of Houston. I use the term “play” loosely since it seems there are 16,262 words (I counted) to contest that point at houstoncougarbaseball.com. Vinny is convinced that Jimmy’s playing career was retarded by Houston Cougar head coach, Rayner Noble. (As a warning, before you read that site-post, you should make sure you get a good night’s sleep, hydrate properly, get a big cup of coffee and a plastic cup to urinate in, and prepare yourself mentally. What is a site-post, you might ask? You remember how Athens was a city-state? A site-post is an entire site that is just one unnaturally-long post. Unnaturally as in we could not do something like that unless we made a Faustian deal with the devil.)
Three things to say before we start this off: What. The. Fuck. The site-post is such rich source material that all five of us worked on this post, and we only covered about 27% of what the guy says. It defeated us. Like the rock of Sisyphus, every time we thought we’d covered every angle, the story would roll to the bottom of the hill and begin anew. Wanks actually blew out his one good lung trying to man up to cover the whole story. But here goes anyway…
This guy is taking parenting to a whole new level. You thought that tennis parents were bad?
First off, Vinny wisely chose to wait until after the MLB draft to air his grievances, so that there would be no backlash against UH pitchers. That’s some serious chutzpah to think that one’s 18-point font rant would sway the opinions of GM’s charged with selecting the future talent of multi-million enterprises. Because you have your scouts, you have your analytics, and then you have parent blogs. That is the three-legged stool of talent evaluation.
Vinny then proceeds into a detailed history of little Jimmy’s glorious career, with his All-Star selections (often the 1st pick overall!) and ability to strike out the side in many innings. I’m no doctor, but doesn’t that happen all the time in Little League? TRG struck out 36 batters in 17 innings one Little League season with his 42-mph fastball. Maybe he should have played for the Coogs. One of Jimmy’s myriad accomplishments was running the 1.5 mile distance run very fast, which Vinny extrapolated to prove that he was the fastest player on a team in a game played in between spaces of 90 feet. Genius. Apparently Coach Noble made Jimmy do this 1.5 mile run in an UH athletics version of Battle of the Network Stars. By the way, there is only a 1% chance that all the UH coaches actually do this (what if one of their guys blew a hammy?), but if so, we’d be all over this event with grainy youtube footage and awkward Q&A sessions and everything. Please God let this be true.
Vinny is definitely worse than this guy. At least that guy had the balls to bash his coach/university himself through a series of succinct points demonstrating his awesomeness. He didn’t launch into a tirade while looking at old photo albums of his son’s glory days thrashing little league teams and making kids cry by hurling “knuckle balls”:
Since Jimmy was 11 he took pitching lessons from John Pope (Cy-Fair High School, presently the head coach at the new Cy-Ranch High School). John Pope started teaching school again and Jimmy then started taken lessons from Scipio Spinks, (St. Louis Cardinals). Jimmy had a knuckle ball like no other. It was killer! Whenever Jimmy got two strikes on a batter he would throw the knuckle and get the 3rd strike almost every time. This ball was un-hittable or if someone did get a piece of it – it usually wasn’t much of a hit and just rolled to an infielder to easily make the out.
Note to parents: it’s not a knuckle ball if your kid just throws the ball out there all limp-wristed and no one can hit it.
Vinny gives us Jimmy’s high school stats, which obviously would have been more convincing if he’d posted a picture of Jimmy’s baseball card. Also – ERA? Batting Average? What is this, 1972? What is Jimmy’s VORP? What is his OPS? How many Quality Starts did he have? Embrace sabermetrics, Vinny, or fess up to what you are trying to hide with your old-school stats.
He also details every game of Jimmy’s aborted college career and what he was thinking or eating or talking to his wife about during each game. It’s like reading a historical Twitter record of someone you don’t know. By the way, here is video of the legend himself displaying his burning talent:
You’ll see Jimmy is not wearing his traditional #8. In order to get number, Vinny alleges that Noble extorted $100 from Jimmy. Um Vinny, you sure Jimmy didn’t need the beer money and make up this story? We’ve all had slimy coaches in our lives, but never anyone who would be this dip of a dipshit. We’d start negotiations at Five Hundy and take nothing less than $275. $100 is just piss-away money.
Honestly, we all blew our load just making fun of the first 20% of the post and can’t really spend significantly more time providing savvy counterpoints to this drivel. The meat and potatoes is that he feels the Noble is a snake who favored certain players over others, and played them more. Big surprise, probably happens at every level of every sport. Also, the Raviele’s were apparently warned on numerous occasions that Noble couldn’t be trusted, didn’t play his best players, etc etc blah blah fucking blah. But they CHOSE to stay at UH. They even had offers to go to other schools. If someone really thought their son had the potential to be a stud, and felt that they weren’t being given a chance, shouldn’t they move on to a new opportunity? Test the waters elsewhere, perhaps? Don’t play the cry-baby routine if you voluntarily decided to stay to see if things would change.
Our elite* staff of investigative journalists made numerous attempts to contact Jimmy (read: looked for his facebook profile, since that’s the only legitimate form of communication these days), but was unsuccessful. The embarrassment one must feel from something like this being posted could be too much to bear on such a public fuck-fest as Facebook. We’d befriend him, but we only befriend successful college athletes, like ourselves. Between the 5 FaF staff, we have 4 UH Intramural Championships, in racquetball, softball, ping pong, and something else we can’t remember right now. The point is, we’re champions and Jimmy ain’t.
We here at Fourth and Fifty do not fear lawsuits containing “pejorative falsehoods,” “slander,”libel” and “you guys suck” allegations. We eat lawsuits for breakfast. What are you going to do? Tell on me for making fun of a ridiculous website? You know you can’t buddy; it’s guy code. Guys don’t tell on other guys, that’s what chicks do. You’re not a chick, are you?
[Photo from Wikimedia]
*Elite in the elitist sense of the word.
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