L.A. Happy Kemp-ers on Opening Day


Good to get the season started on the right foot (or the left foot, depending on how you think), as the Los Angeles Dodgers get a win against San Diego, 4-1.  Great game by Hiroki Kuroda (黒戸ーさん), and Big Jon Broxton got the Save.  Loney was the catalyst, but the Dodgers got some bang for their buck by a booming straightaway centerfield HR (in Petco Park, nonetheless) by their star OFer… Matt “The Bison” Kemp! 

Kemp might be making it on Bristol’s Top 10 tonight, as he had a stellar catch in centerfield that helped seal the game for the Blue at a critical juncture.  I could tell it was a stellar catch, because Charley Steiner was yelling at the top of his lungs.  I’m a Steiner fan, definitely snaps me back in the game if I start getting distracted.  You know, by schoolwork, drawing, or anything else I should be ignoring on Opening Day.

Now a puzzling day off, then the SoCal chapter of Baseball’s Senior Circuit go at it again.  After this long offseason, though, I’m sure I can find it in me to make it though this oddly-placed day off.

(picture based on a photograph by the AP’s Lenny Ignelzi)

Through with Waiting

We have a new toy, a drawing pad.  Trying to get better with it.  The two images are kinda similar, James Loney and Manny Ramirez leaning on the dugout rail.  That’s how I felt when I was drawing them… like leaning on a rail, waiting for what feels like forever.  Then when it starts up again, it feels like it was never gone in the first place.

Opening Day has finally come.  Good to hear Vin Scully’s voice again, the Dodgers finally breaking into the 2009 season against the Padres.  Peavy usually gives the team fits, but this is 2009, and he hasn’t done good against them this season.

It’s a good feeling getting to watch games that count again. 


Classic World Baseball

It’s spring training, and being a Dodger fan, the excitement ramped up an extra notch once Manny decided to seal the deal.  And the Dodgers have a new home in Camelback Ranch, which looks beautiful, and from all I’ve heard from others who’ve been, sounds like a great place to take in a spring game. 

But this baseball fan is amped up for another reason.  I’m all-out excited about the World Baseball Classic going on now.  There have been some clunkers out there (like the blowouts of China by Korea and Japan), but there have been some really great games.  Russell J. Martin, Jason Bay, Justin Morneau and Matt Stairs of Canada almost toppled the US in Toronto, a great game I found it hard to pull myself away from (so I didn’t).  The Netherlands’ upset of the Dominican Republic was a shocker.  And Italy’s upset of Canada yesterday in Toronto was a surprise itself, all they’d have to do to get in is beat Venezuela, no small task, but Venezuela’s had their troubles so far.

It’s too bad that the WBC has to disrupt ST, causing many MLB managers to be wary of letting their players play for their countries.  But I have to say, now I have something to look forward to every 4 years.  Hopefully, if the sport is reinstated by the Olympic Committee, there’ll be some way for the MLB to take a break to let the best ballplayers represent their country in world play on the ultimate stage.  But for now, I’m happy to “settle” for the WBC.

The Jell-o’s Not Quite Jiggling…

…But looks like the Dodgers are on the way to signing Manny, and judging from the L.A. Times report, it’s going to be the Manny with something to prove the Dodgers saw last year. Of course, that all depends on performance, so we’ll see how that goes.

Blogging from my Wii now, so forgive me if the article reads funny, if so, should be fixed tomorrow.

Yet, something tells me that the drama is just beginning, for better or for worse. Of course, the news media LOVES creating drama, so that shouldn’t come as a surprise.

I’ll save you any more wee hour ramblings, just had to say something now that there is something to say…. um… according to an unnamed source who spoke with ESPNDeportes.



“I’m disconnected by your smile
I disconnect a million miles
And what you promised me I hope will set you free
I’m disconnected by your smile…”

– The Smashing Pumpkins, “The Aeroplane Flies High (Turns Left, Looks Right)


As I am about to trudge off to my slightly-more-than-minimum-wage job to put in a lot less than a full day’s work in a place like much of the businesses in America is seeing dwindling business lately, please excuse me if I feel a little out of touch right now. 

At least it’s spring training, but I feel like I had to get this one off my chest (photoshopped, heheh).  I’m sure many feel the same way.  We love you Manny, but you’re playing with our emotions.  Take the money and run.  Please.  We want you back.

My spirit has not been broken, but I’m flabbergasted.  

NorthStateBlues is @ Twitter now. 


“And in my heart I know you’re there…
And in my heart I know you care…
And in my heart I know you’re gone”


Top Ten Time

Okay, from the Home Office in Chico, California: Top Ten Reasons why NorthStateBlues hasn’t blogged in a month:

10.) Jane Austen held me hostage with Pride AND Prejudice.

9.) All the NorCal “cardholders” are giving me a contact buzz.

8.) A self-held criterion that I have to include a drawing with every post.

7.) My Loney has a first name, it’s L-O-N-E-Y… oh wait, that’s the Dodgers’ #7 (Thanks to leekfink and Lny4Loney).

6.) After getting a Nintendo Wii and MLB Power Pros 2008, it’s tough to decide whether to write about baseball or play it.

5.) This offseason and the loss of L.A.’s pitching depth bring the Golden Rule to mind.

4.) A bunch of angry Giants fans tracked me down and gave my computer a Splash Landing.

3.) Jeff Gillooly.

2.) I’ve been keeping Joe Torre company leaning on the railing in the dugout.


And the number one reason NorthStateBlues hasn’t blogged in a month:


1.) I’m on strike ’til the return of Mannywood.


David Letterman is the man.  I’m just a ripoff.


P.S.: Follow me on Twitter for updates on new posts and baseball thoughts.  it’s NorthStateBlues.

Oh, Happy Day: From Dreams to Change



“The one constant through all the years, Ray, has been baseball.

America has rolled by like an army of steamrollers.

It’s been erased like a blackboard, rebuilt, and erased again.

But baseball has marked the time.

This field, this game, is a part of our past, Ray.

It reminds us of all that once was good, and that could be again.

Oh people will come, Ray. People will most definitely come”

-Terrence Mann – “Field of Dreams”


They say a picture says 1,000 words.  I burnt the midnight oil doing this one, so for now, the picture will have to say most of what I wanted. 

Don Newcombe once commented on Martin Luther King Jr. thanking him for what him, Campy and Jackie did in Brooklyn, saying they made the road that much easier for him to follow.  What Jackie, Newk, Campy and Larry Doby did in the late 40’s didn’t just affect baseball, it affected the nation for decades to come. 

Regardless of politics, today we enter a new era in this country, an era where our country is beginning to make good on MLK’s dream in a big way.  May better times follow in the days to come.

I’ll try to update this more elequently by the end of the day.  As for now, I’m beat.