hincandenza's profile

Name: Hal Incandenza
Gender: Manly-man
Member since: January 29, 2002
Last visit: February 05, 2016

hincandenza has posted 47 links and 1766 comments to SportsFilter and 4 links and 51 comments to the Locker Room.

Sports Bio

My name? Same reasoning as at my Metafilter page... from the book "Infinite Jest".

Grew up as a long time New Hampshire-ite, and thus a New England sports fan: die-hard passion about the Red Sox, enjoy the Celtics and Patriots, but honestly couldn't care less about the Bruins.

I still recall being 11 years old, leaping up and down in the living room with my dad standing up as the Red Sox were one strike away in 1986. I hollered for my mom to come in and witness history, and she called from the other room "Ah, they're just going to blow it." Mere moments later, Schiraldi's passed ball, etc. etc. Forget the Bambino- my mom is the reason the Sox lost that year.

Currently live in Seattle, big into the Mariners. I root for them as much as the Red Sox these days, and would love to see them win the championship. However: while last year, during that magical 116-win season I realized would have actually rooted for the M's over the Sox had they met in the ALCS (only because of the 116 wins, you understand, and because it didn't "feel" like the Sox year that year- fortunately the Sox imploded and that dilemma was avoided for a season), as a general rule I root for the Sox first and foremost. And since the Sox and M's both have exceptionally good chances to make the playoffs, I hope they don't go directly head to head because then I'd have to root against the M's.

This year, with the Sox playing historically well, I'm hoping they can finally make all us long-suffering Red Sox fans complete.

But my mom's right- they'll probably just blow it anyway.

Recent Links

John Oliver tackles the NCAA and student athletes: In an extended segment on Sunday's "Last Week Tonight", John Oliver delved into the issue of unpaid "student-athletes" and the onerous and exploitative NCAA money machine.

posted by hincandenza to basketball at 12:50 AM on March 17 - 2 comments

Ichiro reaches 4,000 hit milestone between Japan (1,278) and MLB (2,722 and counting).: While his production is a shadow of those early Mariners years when he was a 200+ hit machine for more than a decade (just LOOK at that rookie spike of 242 hits, or the record-setting 262 hit season), the 39-year-old Yankee outfielder continues to produce at a decent if unremarkable level.

Questions arise over how long Ichiro will continue to suit up (he's signed with the Yankees through the 2014 season), but even at his reduced performance level, if he can stay an every day player into the 2015 season he'll almost surely eclipse the 3,000 hit mark in MLB.

posted by hincandenza to baseball at 10:08 PM on August 22 - 17 comments

Comment Editing: Wow, I'm not really not cool with the comment editing- chide me if you must, but if you're going to rewrite comments (and without clear indication, to boot), this site just became a whole lot less friendly.

posted by hincandenza to editorial policy at 05:57 PM on September 05 - 33 comments

NFL Pick 'Em, SUPERBOWL and final results: The final standings are in after all four founds of the Sportsfilter 2010-2011 NFL Playoffs Pick 'Em... and we have a winner!

posted by hincandenza to fantasy at 02:33 PM on February 08 - 6 comments

NFL Pick 'em, SUPERBOWL Round: : It's finally here: the last Sportsfilter Pick 'Em of the 2010-2011 NFL Season. A veritable smorgasbord of picks are to be found inside!

posted by hincandenza to fantasy at 12:17 AM on February 03 - 16 comments

Recent Comments

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

Damn, maybe it's because my formative years were in the 80's, but Ann Wilson was a *fox*.

posted by hincandenza at 08:23 PM on January 21

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

yerfatma: ESPN ran a stat saying this weekend will be Tom Brady's 10th Conference Championship, which is more than 27 teams. It's also the 11th in 22 years for the Pats under Kraft after 1 in the first 40 or so.
There are a lot of crazy stats about Brady, Belichick, and the Patriots at this point, such as some of his post-season records besting that of most teams. For example, if they do make the Super Bowl, the Patriots will take over the slot of most SB appearances with 9; Brady/Belichick would account for 7 of those, meaning each would have more Superbowl appearances than all franchises except the Cowboys and Steelers with 8 each.

However, this is my personal favorite:

  • The single-season record for pass completion is held by Drew Brees, when he completed 71.2% of passes in 2011
  • With 10 AFCCG appearances in 14 seasons (ignoring 2008 when he was out all year with an injury), Tom Brady has appeared in 71.4% of the AFCCGs during his career as a starting QB
It is therefore statistically more likely at the start of a given season that Tom Brady will end up playing in the AFCCG, than it is that any quarterback, cherry-picked from any point in history, will complete a given pass.

I sent that to a Seahawks fan friend of mine in a text the other day, and his only reply was "You are now dead to me". I suppose my timing could have been better...

posted by hincandenza at 03:52 PM on January 21

Steelers Coach Should've Been Flagged for Being on Field

I'm not saying Porter is a saint, nor that he shouldn't be fined, nor even that the refs didn't let this one get out of control long before this play. But a penalty flag would be undeserved, and is just irrational sour grapes. Also, it'd be nice to have someone other than Bengals players or coaches telling us what he allegedly did or said. There is also this reddit comment, and subsequent replies, that seem to paint out what happened on the field.

Putting it bluntly, there is something ethically bankrupt about trying to equate teammates/personnel improperly being on the field while an injured player is being tended to- a technical rule violation that is never really enforced even though maybe it should be- and attempting to hit/strike an opponent like Jones did, regardless of what was said. Is there a rule in the NFL that allows for alleged trash-talking to be met directly with violence? I wasn't aware of that rule. Burfict really missed the boat in that case; he should have told a ref that Brown was a-lookin' at him all funny-like, then the ref would have no choice but to rescind the penalty flag on the personal foul. Real men gotta stand up and demand respect, by whatever means necessary.

Le sigh. In any case, this image also showed up on reddit; by my count of the green circles, that's like 1, 2, 3... 9 penalties on the Bengals right there. Nine! Boy howdy, it's a good thing the NFL officials routinely call out players and personnel on the field during an injury timeout, which as we all remember is why the Bengals were then assessed 135 yards in penalties.

posted by hincandenza at 12:05 AM on January 12

Steelers Coach Should've Been Flagged for Being on Field

Regardless of his team role, when have NFL refs ever thrown a flag at any players/personnel on the field during an injury timeout, especially one where the player was knocked unconscious? The 15yd for the dirty hit was unquestionable, but as grum points out, Porter didn't actually do anything or make contact- unlike 95 who bumped him into a group of Bengals, or Pacman's I-don't-know-what attempt that resulted in him hitting a ref. That second and game-defining penalty came when the hotheaded Bengals initiated further contact in the form of Jones taking a swing at Porter and hitting a ref, which was the only other egregious contact after play stopped.

posted by hincandenza at 06:28 PM on January 10

Play SportsFilter's NFL Playoff Pick 'Em Contest

Kansas City over Houston by 10
Cincinnati over Pittsburgh by 7
Seattle over Minnesota by 14 *LOCK*
Washington over Green Bay by 10

Russell Wilson will be the quarterback with the most passing yards.
Jeremy Hill will be the running back with the most rushing yards.
Antonion Brown will be the player with the most receiving yards.
JJ Watt will be a player who will record a sack or partial sack.

Seattle better win on Sunday or this first round is going to be a bloodbath for a lot of us. :)

posted by hincandenza at 01:12 AM on January 09

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

holden: I do find the lack of follow up on the story interesting/curious, but does anyone give a shit whether an aging QB coming off of a major surgery potentially used something to aid/speed his recovery?
I have for years on this site made clear that my feelings about PEDs in general are that they should be a) no less legal than they would for non-athletes, and b) should be allowed provided a reputable doctor (one who is in some way insulated from the pressure of overprescribing, i.e., not one working for the team/league, nor being paid directly by the athlete) is prescribing them and monitoring the patient. This would help the people who are in the .001% of fitness and extremes of human physical activity to have access to medicines that spur healing and bodily repair that they may benefit from in their line of work, while balancing the competitive drive and greed that would lead someone to take unnecessary risks.

That said, the CBA rules agreed upon mandate that PED abuses warrant a 4-game suspension, in much the same way a minor equipment violation maxes out at $25K fine. Ha ha. There should be much more discussion about whether Manning should even be allowed into the playoffs, since the key element- that HGH was sent to his home- is apparently not denied even by Manning himself (if I recall the facts correctly). Players have gotten suspended for less proof, and this has the interesting "water cooler discussion" wrinkle that the violation occurred while he was with another team. If Commissioner Tommy Boy wasn't ethically challenged, would he be fair in penalizing the "wrong" team if he suspended Manning when this story broke? And unlike football PSI changing in inclement weather, this is a clearly delineated rule, that has been applied repeatedly in the past.

So why is it different for the legacy golden boy? Why is Manning not getting the Bonds or Clemens treatment- or even the Ricky Williams treatment? It's a telling thing watching the NFL and its paid-for media representatives in ESPN and elsewhere successfully dance around this. I have yet to see a former QB crying on TV about Manning's "betrayal" of the sport and his team. It's a healthy reminder that the sports media, like the larger media, is fundamentally useless at exposing any truth that is not desired by the powers-that-be; a healthy reminder that people in general are often terrible judges of the merit of ther own logical conclusions.

And yes, I'm still salty at how even here on SpoFi, I had to sit through months of nonsense by so many otherwise intelligent people over the Deflategate idiocy. Where are the outraged pearl-clutching dearies who swore up and down that their own misunderstanding of the ideal gas law should lead to lost championships, lifetime bans, and other absurdly harsh punishments?

Seriously, where are they? Why is no one here commenting on this Manning story like they did the Brady one, when there's both more proof of wrongdoing and a clearer punishment that is not being applied?

posted by hincandenza at 12:54 AM on January 09

Baseball Hall of Fame adds "The Kid" and the catcher in 2016.

Not that it isn't deserved- like his fellow Mariner Johnson, he should have been 100%- but I'm actually surprised it was only three ballots that didn't include Griffey. Does this mean the curmudgeonly "No one should be unanimous" crowd is finally dying off, or is it some kind of subtle statement about Griffey being untainted by even a whiff of PEDs? Although I think Bonds and Clemens both improved their vote total this year, so maybe this is an overall recalibration from the era of PED witch hunt hysteria.

posted by hincandenza at 06:46 PM on January 06

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

That's awesome. I guess it makes me see a little of the virtue in a sport like golf's obsession with an honor system (even though it still seems nitpicky about inconsequential things); good sportsmanship elevates the spirit of the game.

posted by hincandenza at 06:38 PM on January 06

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

So... are any of the "CHEATRIOTS!!!!!11111" brigade going to even acknowledge the Manning PED allegations? Are we going to see former QBs break down in tears on ESPN, or the same rage-over-facts self-righteous indignation in the comments sections of sports related websites?

Just kidding, that was a rhetorical question...

posted by hincandenza at 05:09 PM on December 29

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

From 2010-2014, Gronkowski had 7 total OPI calls in his career. So far this season he's gotten 6, which is why NE leads the NFL in OPI. The next highest team is the Redskins at 5.

That suggest either he's suddenly altered his style of play, or the refs are now calling OPI for reasons they never did before. The OPI in yesterday's game is the kind of casual contact made all the time, but it seems Gronk is now treated like young Shaq, getting dinged for fouls simply because he's bigger and stronger than everyone else.

Here's hoping the Patriots still finish 18-1... :)

posted by hincandenza at 11:29 PM on November 30

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

That NE-Broncos game had some of the sketchiest officiating I've seen in years. Congrats to Roger Goodell on his victory.

posted by hincandenza at 01:09 AM on November 30

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

Ah, I just read that quote from somewhere, but can't recall where... sbnation maybe? Yep, from this recap of all the zany hijinks just in one inning.

Didn't watch the game live, but just watched the craziness on mlb.com. I'm reminded why baseball is the best sport: weird, wild, wacky things can happen in any game.

posted by hincandenza at 11:51 PM on October 14

SportsFilter: The Tuesday Huddle

What tron7 said; I'm reminded often when browsing the web (in particular, the comments section of most any site where people debate law, politics, or sports) of Kohlberg's three general stages of moral development: pure obedience, law and order, and principled conscience. Most sports commentary- unsurprisingly, given how sports media doesn't exactly select for insight or intellect- is stuck in stage 2, with an obsession of rules for rule's sake.

Sure, the obscure rule says you can't do that, but if we ponder why such a rule exists, I think it's because everywhere else on the field, you have dozens of yards to recover a fumbled ball and retain possession, but in the end zone there is no such leeway because there is an invisible back wall. However, watching the replay... that ball was going out of bounds. Maybe an incredible play by Riddick who I saw come in from the bottom of the frame at the end of the clip, might have dived and stopped it, but he wasn't diving when the ball was touched a foot or so from the back of the end zone. For all intents and purposes, that was a fumble that went out of the back of the end zone, namely a touchback. And for me, it looked like Wright had a very brief hesitation between grabbing it, slapping it, or letting it go- aren't defensive players taught to slap the ball out of bounds most anywhere else on the field?- but in any case it's not like a Lion was going to get the ball. I prefer refs that consider the context and nature of this specific play to decide if an obscure rule should even be invoked.

posted by hincandenza at 01:33 AM on October 07

NFL Source: 'No Doubt' Brady Will Sit 4 Games This Season

Sheesh... if you didn't already think this was a witch hunt with no goal but for the league to blatantly attempt to sabotage one specific team's entire season...

Now the question you should ask yourself is: why would any self-respecting journalists keep using these NFL sources that are either obvious NFL propaganda or outright false, or both?

posted by hincandenza at 11:45 PM on September 27

Super Bowl Ditches Roman Numerals

Okay Howard, that was gold. :)

posted by hincandenza at 05:21 PM on September 10