RUSTY'S WRANGLERS AMATEUR KICKBALL CLUB

I trust our reputation precedes us, but if for some reason you have been living under a rock for the last few years, you might want to read on. We are an adult kickball team kicking mad crunk in Chicago. We are really good.


WRANGLER NEWS

The Boston Herald LOVES the Wranglers....
So does The Globe...
For more on the Wranglers glorious ride into Boston for the World Championships of Kickball, click here!

WE ARE THE CHAMPIONS, MY FRIENDS!

The Wranglers are headed to Boston on Labor Day Weekend for the World Adult Kickball Association's World Championships!
Stay tuned for details.

Wednesday Morning Recap: July 25, 2007
Wranglers Hog Tie Chicago Division, Move Onto National Tournament

Nation,

It is with great pleasure that I announce to you the Wranglers have taken Chicago by storm once again! We won the division and we’re moving on to battle it out with the nation’s best kickballers in Boston on Labor Day weekend.

Sadly, I was not there live and in-person to witness the final game, but I was on speaker phone the whole time, and let me tell you, it was spectacular! A full recap from Timmy Dubs and his committee is below. All I will tell you is that Josh popped two balls (yowch!) and the commissioner of WAKA central in D.C. had to be called for a ruling.

So bring on Atlanta, bring on Dallas, this is for Rusty and Papa Bear Halas!

And yes, I’ll answer your question before you even ask… There will be a Super Bowl Shuffle-esque song and dance for the Wranglers. Cause we’ve had a goal since training camp to give Chicago a kickball champ. Uh-huh-huh-huh.

Peace. Love. The Wranglers.
Cap’n T-Dishin’ on a Mission

Here's Timmy and the gang...

GAME, SET, MATCH RUSTY!

Wow... where to begin? "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times"... only half right..
"Rosebud!"... nah, too dark.
"Holy Shnikeys, where's the Tylenol?"...getting warmer!
How about just saying, "The Wranglers are Champions!"

It feels so good to say it, I just wanna jump up and shout it from the rooftops!!! Actually, I think I will. Hang on, be right back. Mmm mmm, that felt good.

Without Cap'n T-Dizzy and playing shorthanded all night with only 4 cowboys, 5 cowgirls and 1 bull, Rusty's crew kicked and scratched their way to the title with two stirring victories that were worth sharing with the grandkids. There was so much drama and action on Tuesday night---enough action to fill 6 Arnold movies and enough drama for a whole month of TNT programming (and they know drama folks)---that I can't possibly begin to summarize it in words. So I'll just provide a brief recap of the games and let the Wranglers take it from there. A special thanks is in order to Claire's borther-in-law and his two kids, Betsy and Hayes, both future Wrangler stars. They were there all night and were one heck of a cheering section!

GAME 1 - WRANGLERS 3, The Shields 1 (SEMIFINAL)
As the score would indicate, this one was all about defense. The OZ pitched a gem out there despite a tight strike zone, and the Wranglers D again did their best impression of the Bears defense, which is to say a brick wall, by surrending --- begrudgingly I might add--- only 1 run. Or as the Spanish say, un momento. Rusty's crew tacked on 2 runs in the top of the 3rd and never looked back. The Whalebone, The Bedazzler, and the O-Face checked in with runs on RKI's by The Ryno, The McRoid, and The Ei Love It!
Highlights included not one, but two popped kickballs by the Wranglers (O-Face & Josh "I'm only on Andro not Roids" McKnight) and the booby bungler of the night (see below).

GAME 2 - WRANGLERS 4, Kit Shickers 3 (7 Innings) (FINAL)
The final game brought us a re-match with the only team to have vanquished the Wranglers in 2007: the Kit Shickers. In that fateful game, you may remember, we were also short-handed and without our fearless leader Cap'n T-Dizzy, and the Wranglers fell 3-1. Would history repeat itself??? Stay tuned! .

Annnd, we're back! Now, to say this game was all about defense is like saying Lindsay Lohan has a drinking problem...it was obvious. This game was as intense as ten cities, a nail biter that would make 80's TV star Jackee run out of nails, a stomach turner that would send Kobayashi to the DL! All of the plays were seemingly too close, calls were often argued, and both sides made great play after great play. The Wranglers scratched out a run on the hustle of O-face in the 2nd, but the Kits got even in the top of the 4th prodcuing a 1-1 tie at the end of regulation. Fast forward to the top of the 6th... wait, we were already there. Anyway, the Kits got hot and put up a 2-spot to grab a 3-1 lead. At this point, all of WranglerNation was thinking "here we go again." But then something happened...something a little bit country and a little bit rock and roll...our fans got a little more rowdy, the boom box got a little louder, and a bounce returned to the Wrangler step. The Whalebone lead off the bottom half of the 6th with a double...The Ryno sent a ball flying for a hit...Mahoney hit a sacrifice fly to score Whalen...only down one with our slugger McSteriod coming up to the plate...the crowd is on its feet as Josh swings and nails a beauty right up the middle...but a funny thing happens on the way to first base...the ball deflates in mid air resulting in an easy pop-out to the pitcher! Like the ball, the air has been let out of Rusty's season...out number 3...it's all over...BUT WAIT! As Cypress Hill so eloquently rapped, We ain't going out like that! The rules get busted out... WAKA Dan gets on the phone to the Commissioner in DC... Ryno and Tim make a wager (Tim - "it's covered in there, I can feel it!") Finally Ump Brad stumbles across rule 15.03...

"15.03 During any play where a ball is popped or deflates significantly, that play shall be replayed with a properly inflated ball."

Damn straight! Rusty has new life...the game must go on! The Jedi McKnight steps back into the box and delivers a game-tieing single to score Ryno. For good measure, he bowls over their first basewoman who was blocking the base after she couldn't handle the throw. A small bruhaha ensues, but order is restored... Game tied at 3-3, and onto to the 7th inning!

Battling darkness and a thirst for cold beer that just won't quit, Rusty holds the Kits down in top of the 7th. The OZ steps to the plate and raps a single off someone's head! (actually just to the left side of the field) Joy "UPS" Hayes is up next doing her best FedEx as she delivers a single, sending Oz to 2nd... In steps Timmy "the Bull" Whalebone - horns and all - who promptly delivers a shot to RF to send Oz home with the game winning run. In the words of Harry Doyle, The Wranglers win it, the Wranglers win it, oh my god the Wranglers win it!

Props to the Kits for playing one hell of a game. They were one of the toughest teams we've ever locked horns with...so just for good measure we beat them 3-2 in Flip Cup at Carol's Pub. Many a bucket was drunk in celebration as Rusty basked in the glow of another championship.

Other Wranglers remember their favorite moments...
Claire's brother-in-law saying "those are some AWESOME pants" about Dooley... when Claire's adorable little redheaded nephew proudly said that he was a BIG boy now and that he poops and pees on the toilet!... Hayes neighing from the fan bench...There are so many Josh moments, but especially the run from far center field to near right to catch a high pop fly. No question he'd beat any of us in a 100 meter dash... Heather's FABULOUS 1st base playing throughout - I think it was the shoes!... Josh and Oscar roiding up between games... Giving Cap'n T-Diz the good news of our victory over speaker phone after scoring the winning run. I also found out that she had an earlier conversation with Claire's little nephew Hayes ([Hayes enters church] Hayes: "Wow Claire, this is a nice store!").... When the Wranglers proved that we are just as dominant off the field as we are on, with our flip cup triumph!...Learning that Claire's nephew planted magic seeds and is growing a beanstalk... Earning the new nickname, Michelle "Now that I know my sparkle pants are hand washable, I'm most definitely going to slide safe into third base without losing one sequin" Dooley... Finally having the proof that we are the team that will "Bust your balls" til you got no more left. Maybe we should change our team name to The Ballbusters next year. Wow! That's so original. How in the world did I come up with such a clever idea?... Screaming into the phone to give Tang updates... Wolfy becoming the mayor of 1st Base! Way to mount up!... Bustin' Rynos chops at the bar about how he didn't single handedly win the whole game for us - what a slacker!... Josh on 'roids!... Props to McB for teaching me(Joy) how to play Flip Cup 2 years ago in D.C. When the Kit Shickers challenged us last night, I channeled McB and was SIMPLY AMAZED at my Flip Cup prowess. I can honestly say that I have improved my skills, and I owe that to McB... I had the best kick of my season when I accidentally played Marty's "Invisible Touch" instead of my "Bombs over Baghdad". I let that invisible touch land just outside the grasp of crazy Kit Shicker "I saw that Rick Brands catch and I want to be just like him" catcher and it was all because of Marty's tune!... Thinking that the last thing the chick at first saw before Josh plowed into her was Johnny Cash giving the middle finger... Karma coming back around Wrangler-style in that last game: the only team we lost to all season, only 10 Wranglers in the corral, yellow shirt ref. There were times in that game where my glass was definitely half empty. But we can safely say that even Karma loves the Wranglers, because at the end of the night, victory was ours!

The Lineup: (aka the Rusty's Group of Ten)
(Michelle) Dooley "The Bedazzler", 2B 3-6, R, 1 pair of bedazzled pants
Ryan "PBRmeASAP" McLean, C 4-6, R, RKI, 1 bucket of PBR's (lost bet with Whalen)
Claire "Not Mahoney" Moroney, SS 2-5, RKI, Sac Fly, Catch of a Bungler
Josh "Cream and Clear" McKnight, RCF 4-6, 2 RKI, 2 popped kickballs (aka Torn Rubber)
Heather "The Stretch" Wolf, 1B 1-6, Spider-like Defense at first that made Derrek Lee jealous
Oscar "The O-Face" Hernandez, LF 2-3, 2 BB, 2 R, 1 popped kickball, 1 bean out from the OF
Dave "OZ" Osborne, P 1-4, R, RKI, Sac Fly, 12 IP, 3 ER
Eileen "Boot Camp" Lovett, RF 4 AB, RKI, big-time Sac bunt, 2 game winning cup flips
Joy "The Smack" Hayes, LCF 1-5, big-time hit in the 7th, noticable improvement in flip cup
Tim "The Whalebone" Whalen, 3B 4-5, 2B, 2 R, RKI, 1 game winning cup flip

To the Wranglers who could not be there, we missed you big time! Thanks for your hard work all season long to get us to the Prom (WAKA's version of the NCAA's "Big Dance"). To borrow a line from the "Defensive Downer" mix, you're the meaning in our life, you're the inspiration!

The Awards:
The RUSTY and the ALL-AROUND COWBOY/GIRL goes to the entire WranglerNation for a fantastic season. That just sums it up right there. If you need more proof, just read above.

The first BOOBY BUNGLER goes to Claire for catching a deflected ball off of a hustling McKnight and also avoiding a collision with Dooley to make the catch. The second BB goes to Josh and Oscar for destroying 3 kickballs in a span of two games. While steroid rumors were rampant, no proof has been offered. As Joy related, "While I always tell my kids that drugs are bad, in this case, I will just suggest some counseling for both Josh and Oscar, in hopes that they see the err of their ways and get off the juice."

That's all we got nation...we'll see you in Boston! MOUNT UP!!!!!

Wednesday Morning Recap: July 18, 2007
The Price Is Very Right for the Playoffs

WRANGLERS 13, SECOND GRADE WARRIORS 3

Oh, Nation, it’s been so long. So many long, desperate weeks without kickball. So many sleepless nights wondering when the Wranglers would finally take the field again in a glorious incarnation of what would surely be their most elaborate theme to date, The Price Is Right. Knowing that the Wranglers were cooking up something oh-so-good, yet never being able to taste it—torture!!

As seemingly one million Mondays passed swathed in sunshine, Tuesdays always brought T-storms. Sad. The rain gods taunted us over and over again. And what had we ever done to the rain gods, anyway? I have personally offered several of my patented anti-rain “Justin Timberlake meets Beyonce” dances to the rain gods in the last few weeks. And what did we get in return? Bupkus! It’s probably Matt Lubbers’ fault. Yes, that’s who I’ll blame. Don’t even get me started on that guy!

Well, anyway, I’ll now defer to Michelle “Always Look On The Bright Side” Dooley-Bops who pointed out that the weeks of repeated rain delay only gave her more time to perfect her nearly-life-size Plinko board. And perfect it was! Similarly perfect were the authentic T.P.I.R. games created by Eileen and Joy-Joy. That’s right, Nation, we didn’t just play kickball last night, we played The Dice Game, Clearance, and Plinko.

It should also be noted that I won at least $10,000 on the Plinko board, and a Chevy Aveo in The Dice Game, which was actually little solace considering I totally blew it on the Clearance game. I should have just gone with my gut that the Stove Top Stuffing was 74 cents! Dammit! Now that girl Bernadette from the blue team gets to enjoy those delicious dehydrated bread chunks coated in turkey-flavored partially hydrogenated soybean oil instead of me. Unfair! Just thinking of those chewy bits of imitation celery gets the saliva flowing. And it only takes 30 minutes to cook!

Oh, nuts, I forgot I was looking on the bright side: The game! We won! We won like crazy! We almost had to give the order to “OK, cool it!” yippppeeee! And it was the playoffs… did I mention that? Oh, yes, it was indeed. We were the #1-with-a-bullet seed in the championship tournament and we slapped dunce caps on those 8th seeded Second Grade Warriors like it was our J-O-B. All of them get names on the board with a check!!

Which reminds of the time when I was in first grade and I got my name on the board with a check, and it so happened that that night was Parents’ Night and my mean old teacher left my name up there on the board for all the parents in the world (including mine) to see! How mean! And what’s worse, I was innocent of the charges against me. You see, the “Art Lady” had visited our class that day and my best friend Joey Danielwicz kept on turning around and talking to me during the presentation. And I said, “Hush, you!” and then I was the one who got in trouble. Can you believe the injustice? Although, I suppose it was only fair since Joey took the fall on my account in a previous incident during “Show and Tell.” You see, Joey and I were best-best friends and we liked to say “Me no know” instead of “I don’t know.” We were silly like that. Well, there Joey stood in front of the whole class, explaining everything there was to know about his treasured object. Mrs. Banner (our teacher) asked Joey a question about said treasure, and that little devil looked right at me, locked eyes, and said, “Me no know!” And then we both crumpled into uncontrollable hysterical laughter! Oh, Joey! The poor kid had to spend 5 minutes in the “timeout” chair facing the back wall.

Well, back to the game. Those poor Second Grade Warriors may as well have been seated in miniature timeout chairs in a corner, because they were no match for our Price Is Right attack complete with Bob Barker & a skinny microphone, Rod Roddy in sequined sportcoat, 2 Barker’s Beauties, authentic price-tag shaped nametags, old ladies with hats, lots of Bob-themed T-shirts, and Happy Gilmore chasing Bob around with a golf club. Let’s roll the highlight reel:

We had to delay the start of the game a bit on account of Dooley and the Plinko board being stuck in traffic. Egad! You can’t have a TPIR theme night without Dooley and the Plinko board! [It should be noted here that, in case you didn’t know, Dooley is obsessed with TPIR and recently appeared on said program as a cheering audience member with a T-shirt that said: WWBD? (What Would Bob Do?)]

It felt wrong to start without Dools, but the ref was getting stinky about it. So we pressed on… with great success! Four runs right off the bat! It looked like it might get ugly early (in our favor), but then the Warriors pulled it together to end the inning. Lucky.

We let them off easy in the 2nd, allowing them only one run (see “lowlights” below). But the 3rd inning was a game show spectacular! Claire and Wolfie slammed singles, and waited for Josh “Ken Jennings of TPIR” McKnight to come to the plate. In true Josh fashion, he gave it a boot---high and long out into rightfield. Their fielder was right under it, staring up at it. And then DOOOSH! It bounced right off his face! He really took it on the chin. Another 3-run homer for good old Josh. He seems to be making a habit of those recently.

In an unusual 2-RBI out at first base scenario, Eileen “You Gotta” Lovett was at the heart of one of the most confusing plays in kickball history. Stay with me here, Nation, this one’s gonna get messy. Here’s the situation: Top of the 5th. Wranglers on a hot streak. Dave “Happy Gilmore” Osborne has just scored on a Heather “I Heart Josh” Wolf single. Josh singles as well. Eileen up to bat. The kick. The fielder bobbles it. Overthrows 3rd trying to get Wolfie out. Wolfie goes home. Josh stays on 2nd cause he doesn’t think he can make it, but Eileen keeps going. She’s nearly to 2nd when the other team realizes what’s happening. Chaos ensues. They throw to 1st to get Eileen out, but Josh turns on the gas and books it---not just to 3rd, but all the way home!!! YEEE-HAW!!!

And I think the highlight for the other team was how we were nice enough to let them play Plinko with us after the game.

Lowlights included:

When one of their dudes hit a long fly ball into the outfield and Gwen and Bob Barker and Joy all ran to catch it. But then Gwen said, “Not it,” only everybody thought she said “Got it,” so they stopped running because they thought Gwen was going to catch it. But Gwen did not even try to catch it (on account of having just yelled “Not it”), so as Gwen and Joy stood there and looked at each other, that big ‘ol ball went bouncy-bounce-bounce right over their heads. It was especially great when Joy chose to first ask Gwen “Did you just say ‘Not it?’” before running to get the ball that was by now out of the park. It would be the first of two homeruns for the dude with a beard on the other team. He was definitely the Gym Class Hero of the Second Grade Warriors.

When I lost the Rock-Paper-Scissors test again, so we lost home-field advantage. I just don’t have it in me this season. Time to retire.

When they made Swetty go back to 3rd when the brutha had a homer! The ref said the pitcher had the ball so timeout had been called. Now, while the pitcher did indeed have the ball in her possession, she was clear way the hell back behind second base! You got to be on the mound, Girl! Plus, Swetty was Bob Barker. You don’t tell Bob Barker what to do. Well, bygones.

The time their centerfielder was talking on his cellphone out in the outfield. We took votes on whether the guy was maybe a brain surgeon and someone was calling in with an emergency (“Dr. Herman. Paging Dr. Herman. Dr. P.W. Herman.”), or an equally urgent matter, and we decided in the negative. He was just “that” kind of guy.

Oh, WHAMMY! I just got word that Rod Roddy Whalen is ready with the awards for this week. Hit it, Rod:

"Price" is to "Right" as "McKnight" is to "RBI." (Or as our brothers in York, PA, say, RKI - Runs Kicked In). Josh pulls in the RUSTY this week due to his huge night at the plate: 3-3, 2B, HR, 2 R, 7 RKI (I think). The field was like a plinko board last night, and Josh kept ringing up 5000 with each at bat. McKnight, come on down! You're the next recipient of the rusty! Josh, you’ve just won a Maytag washer-dryer combination valued at $2399.25!!

The ALL-AROUND COWBOY for the week goes to the Price is Right. What? Can the award go to a theme? Huh? You bet your backside it can! Now we've had some great themes over the years, and this one will certainly be mentioned with the greats. Like Barker gets hit with harassment suits, the Wranglers were getting hit with praise at Carol's Pub. Special mention to Eileen, Joy, and Dooley for the fantastic games and to Ryan Swett for playing the role of Bob Barker despite the sauna-like conditions. And who can forget Barker's Beauties Allison and T-Dix...yowsers! Price Is Right theme, you’ve just won a dining room set for 6!!

The BOOBY BUNGLER award goes to Tim, Gwen, Eileen and Oz for agreeing to "double up" in the flip cup tournament. Since our numbers were low, we drew inspiration from the Price is Right game "Double Prices" and agreed to go twice each game. Each match was a best of 3...and of course the first match went to 3 games. The Wranglers - who were joined by Kickball Dan - went on win. The next match we were minus Oz, but once again won in 3 games. Onto to the finals against the Hokies where we narrowly lost in 2...all told, we played the equivalent of 16 games of flip cup...perfect for a Tuesday night! I for one felt all 16 the next morning. Ahh, good times though. And special thanks to Kickball Dan for joining our ranks! Kickball Dan, you and a guest will spend 5 amazing nights and 6 stupendous days in the majesty of Maui, Hawaii!!

Well, that's it for me...I just drew my "Third Strike" so I'm out!
Thanks, Timmy. Did you wear your sequined sportcoat to work? I sure hope so!

Well, me and the O.Z. are off to the IMAX 3D presentation of Harry Potter 5: The Order of the Phoenix. My sincerest apologies to all of you suckers who saw it in plain old 1D. 1D is so 20th century.

There are some HI-larious photos of last night’s festivities on our website, so check that shizzle out: www.rustyswranglers.com

The Championships are next Tuesday at 7:00pm. We’ll be in full Wrangler Wregalia: cowboy hats & boots, pistols, and mighty steeds. MOUNT UP, WRANGLERS!! Let’s take Chicago!! Until then….

Peace. Love. The Wranglers.
Cap’n T-Dizzy Fizzy

Wednesday Morning Recap: June 20, 2007
Wranglers Pull Off Caper of the Century, Rob Gobblers of Even Their Dignity

CopsAndRobbersWranglers 10, Fighting Gobblers 0

Despite a large police presence at the park, including a bike cop, sergeant, and a couple sheriffs, the Wranglers stole another victory last night, leaving the Fighting Gobblers feeling like a little old lady who just got her purse snatched. It was the perfect crime, really, executed to perfection against the second best team in the league. In all-black outfits with pantyhose pulled over our faces, we were like little criminal stealth bombers, evading their radar and dropping loads! (I’d say they never saw us coming, but I think those two 3-run homers gave us away.) Even the cops on our team turned crooks and socked it to the Gobblers.

After a stunning defeat last week that shall never be spoken of again except later in this recap, we pulled ourselves up by our bootstraps and spurs and kicked some hot arse last night! An unprecedented mix of scenes from a Dunkin’ Donuts shop and Where in the World is Carmen SanDiego?, the Wrangler’s “Cops & Robbers” rout was a sight for sore eyes, my friends!

And was it just me, or was the boom box extra loud last night? I think it was. Dooley must have juiced it up with some extra-special space-age batteries or something. Maybe something off the black market. I don’t know, but it was crazy. We were probably breaking some kind of noise pollution law in the city, but that’s just the kind of hardened criminals we are. We scoff at your laws! And guess what else: I’m not buying a city sticker this year! Eat it, cops!

In this week’s Police Blotter:

Ryan Swett, 29, of Chicago was arrested for kicking the ball too far and running way too fast in the 6th inning when he sent a bomber into the outfield and scored two baserunners. As Swetty rounded second, I heard one of their girls scream, “He stole my bon-bons!”

Pitcher David “Sean Connery” Osborne, 31, pushed a perfectly capable Michelle “Catherine Zeta-Jones” Dooley out of the way to catch an infield fly. How rude! Osborne invoked the “Entrapment” defense, but we weren’t buying it. I mean seriously, who’s conning who in this scenario?

Timmy “Sarge” Whalen and Ryan “Hey, Sarge!” McLean rounded up several nare-do-wells from the Gobbler bench, issuing citations for ineptitude at kickball (a crime in this state, I hope you know). One girl who whiffed at the plate had to be brought down to the station for questioning and resisted arrest when she learned she’d have to ride doubles on McLean’s bicycle handlebars.

The “Three Bungles, You’re Out” law had to be invoked against a dedicated Wrangler this week. Tara “I Got It, Except I Don’t” Osborne, 30, of the 1900 block of West Newport, faces sentencing for a majorly flubbed fly ball fumble, among other things. It seems the pantyhose on her head was cutting off circulation to her motor skills, because she called for a high fly ball over second base and then completely did not catch it. Strike One!

Strike Two came at the postgame party just before the start of Beer Olympics. A Rock-Paper-Scissors contest was required to see which team would go first in Beer Pong. As team captain, Osborne’s teammates demanded that she step up for the R-P-S challenge despite her desperate 1-6 record at R-P-S challenges this season. Osborne protested to teammates, “Please, don’t make me do it! I’ve lost my R-P-S mojo!” But they insisted. OK, fine. Well, the girl from the other team thought it was 1-2-Shoot, not 1-2-3-Shoot, so Other Girl shot on “3” with Scissors. And despite having a full second to gaze upon the Scissors before her, Osborne inexplicably shot Paper! Paper! Can you believe it? The whole room went silent. Strike Two!

Osborne was finally taken into custody when she almost blew the beer pong match for the Wranglers by allowing an opponent’s shot to bounce off her forehead into the cup. Strike Three! Had she not already scored 3 points on offense for Rusty’s gang (“I got 3! You are pee!”), it seemed certain the Sarge would have subjected her to police brutality. And because it was her third strike, she faces a minimum sentence of eating the $3 fried veal sandwich at Carol’s Pub next week and a maximum sentence of actually touching her bumcheeks to the toilet seat at Carol’s instead of just hovering.

Oh, Whammy! I'm getting a message that Tim "Sarge" Whalen is ready with this week's awards! 10-4, Good buddy!

---
Thanks, Captain.

The RUSTY goes to Josh "The Stretch" McKnight whose game was so good last night it can only be described as criminal. 'Ole Train Robbin' Josh as they call him blasted a 3 run homer in the 4th to seal the victory after playing some maximum security type prison defense. Several perps from the Gobblers were busted right off the field thanks to his play. McKnight had his police riot gear on and was cracking skulls!

The ALL-AROUND COWGIRL - or should I say girls - goes to the Wrangler Women who have gotten the job done all season long both in the field and at the plate. To quote the recently incarcerated criminal / prophet Paris Hilton, "you're hot". Like a shaving razorblade at the end of a prison yard shiv, you're what gives us our edge...our moxy if you will. You put the Wrangle in Wrangler. I think you get the point.

The BOOBY BUNGLER was an all-Osborne affair last night. Bonnie and Clyde (aka Tara and Dave) pulled a smash and grab on the award, hopped in the getaway car, and never looked back. Tara's exploits were well documented in the wrap-up (bobbled catch, and not one but two own goals in the beer pong match off her face) while Dave managed to spill a female gobblers drink via a wicked foul ball. Just for the record, the drink ended up on the girl's shirt (too bad she wasn't wearing white, eh fellas? Eh?).

Well that's it for me. Last I checked, the BLUE JUMPSUIT COMMITTEE was still in session...

------
Thanks, Sarge!

That’s about it for this week. Next week is the last game of the regular season and the theme is our piece de resistance: The Price Is Right. If you’ve been thinking about coming out to see a Wrangler game, but just haven’t done it yet, I highly recommend this particular night for optimum viewing of silliness.

And if you’re out there in WranglerNation wondering why the hell you didn’t hear from me last week, well, I’ll tell you. The O.Z. and me were away on family vacation, and game time back in Chicago didn’t go so well. We suffered our first loss and are now officially un-undefeated. I think the kids at the “80s Roller Skate Birthday Party” must have had a little too much sugar and things quickly spun out of control. Recap from Timmy is below….

Peace. Love. The Wranglers.

Cap’n T-Dizzy Fo Shizzy

P.S.
If you haven’t heard of this new show on HBO called “Flight of the Conchords,” I highly recommend it. It’s hysterical. Check out the clip called "Hot Women."

Wednesday Morning Recap: June 13, 2007
Wranglers Get Kit Shicked 3-1

Unlike the storied run of "Family Ties," this one is gonna be brief as there's not a lot to take from this game. Like the drummer from Def Leppard, the Wranglers started the game short-handed and never seemed to recover. Maybe it was the absence of our Captains Tara and Dave...maybe it was Yellow-Clad Ref Guy...maybe it was Cubs game traffic...maybe we all were distracted dreaming of the post-game ribs or thinking of our favorite 80's TV stars (Alyssa Milano...guhhh)...either way, Mighty Rusty went down for the count for the first time all season.

The game began with Interim Captain "Stuebing" Wheels winning the "toss" only to have to switch and bat us first in an attempt to bide some time. The result: a 3-up 3-down inning that lasted about as long as the Growing Pains spinoff "Just the Ten of Us". "Nostradamus" Swetty summed it up with "Well that didn't work". And, as forecasted, not much else did at the plate all game until the 5th inning when "G.I. Joe" Oscar scratched out a run on a hit by McKnight Rider, tearing around the bases like a Real American Hero.

In the field however, the Wranglers fought valiantly like the Ghostbusters against paranormal activity. Amazingly enough we only surrendered 1 run in the first and 2 in the second despite having the bases-loaded multiple times and being short-handed. G.I. Oscar stepped in at the rubber and pitched (for the first time mind you) a strong few innings. Perfect Stranger Joy (get it? happy happy joy joy? anyone?) also chipped in with a big put-out at home plate to save a run. After The Ryno, K-Dawg, My Favorite Martyan, and I'm Rick Brands "Bitch" arrived, the Wranglers went into full lock-down mode like NORAD at the end of WarGames. I think I saw a young Matthew Broderick prowling the sidelines at one point.

In the end, like the huge 80's flop Howard the Duck, the Wranglers just couldn't recover from the bad start.

Onto the awards...

The RUSTY goes to the 80's birthday girl herself, Michelle "It's my party and I'll catch it if I want to" Dooley who was catching anything and everything hit within her parameter. She even called off P-Mel at one point to snag a sky-high pop up which produced applause all-around - even from the opposing team. I think a "you go girl" was thrown out as well.

The ALL-AROUND COWBOY was indeed Oh, Oh, Oh Oscar for stepping up both at the plate and in the field. Like Tom Cruise in the Color of Money, he was hustlin' baby! To lock up the award, he even stayed behind to ref the next game. (but uhh, we'll leave what happened in that game off the record for Oscar's safety).

The BOOBY BUNGLER award goes to the ladies at the bar for showing a little skin in an effort to get Toto's classic hit "Africa" played by the DJ. I think we may also have the blue jumpsuit winners then...did Africa ever get played by the way?

Well, it was a tough night overall. But in true Wrangler fashion, we retired to the bar and had a good ole time drinking buckets, eating ribs, and celebrating Dooley's b-day. I think Josh "Return of The Jedi" McKnight summed it up best by saying "Now I know how the '85 Bears felt after the Miami game." Now, we're a long way from being mentioned even in the same breath as the greatest team of all time, but the point is well taken. The '85 Bears took that loss and went on to dominate the rest of their season like no other team before or after...can Rusty's bunch do the same and get Back to the Future of winning? Stay tuned...

Wednesday Morning Recap: June 6, 2007
SuperWranglers Save the Day

This just in from Jimmy Olsen at the Daily Planet:

WRANGLERS DEFEAT FIGHTING GOBBLERS, SAVE FREE WORLD FROM CERTAIN DESTRUCTION

June 5, 2007

CHICAGO---With an unprecedented mix of laser beams, sugar wafers, rhinestones and PBR, Rusty's Wranglers Amateur Kickball Club has done it again, pounding archenemy The Fighting Gobblers in a 8-3 rout to preserve a perfect 5-0 record in the regular season. Patrick "Greatest American Hero" Melson lead the charge with a 2-run homer and amazing moves on defense that can only be described as silly.

"Believe it or not, I was walking on air. I never thought I could feel so free," Melson said after the game. "But I have to give credit to SuperGrandpa and that big old belly of his. Without him, my play would have been simply spectacular. Together, we made it legendary."

Melson was most certainly referring to the Chevrolet Play of the Game when a Gobbler Big-Papa launched a monster kick off a Super Dave Osborne fastball. As the ball soared high into deep centerfield, Melson charged in from right-center and Ryan "SuperGramps" Swett charged in from the left. Fans braced themselves for a sure collision, but before the two should meet, the ball sailed right through SuperGrandpa's waiting arms, careening off his massive and slightly hairy belly at a 45-degree angle headed directly ar Melson's face. Melson's SuperHero reflexes kicked in, and, as if possessing magnetic hands, he drew the ball into his clutches with the strength of 40 men! A catch! Incredible!

Needless to say, the crowd went wild. "He truly is the Greatest American Hero!" screamed one fan.

Melson shrugged off the flattery with his classic humility. "I'm no hero," he said. "The real heroes of this world are people like 'Hero' on 'Heroes.'"

Swett/Gramps, on the other hand, seemed a little down in the mouth after the play, complaining that his corns were killing him and that's why he missed the catch. Swett showed similar frustration earlier in the game after fans booed him for refusing to step through a puddle in order to catch a deep fly ball, resulting in a homerun for the Gobblers. He became enraged when reporters questioned him at the post-game press conference. "Son of a bee-sting!" Swett shouted at one point, "Those were brand new shoes I was wearing! You whippersnappers wouldn't know the value of a dollar if it bit yer whoozywutzit!"

Manager Tara Osborne said that Swett's behavior would be discussed at a team meeting later this week.

Osborne herself was nearly ejected in the 4th inning when she came up to bat and the home plate umpire asked if that was the first time she had worn her Pink Power Ranger costume (complete with moon boots and a belt that says "Go! Go! PowerRangers! when you press the button). "Are you crazy?!" she screamed, brazenly thrusting her right armpit at the man and pointing to a gaping hole in her PowerSuit, "This shizzle doesn't happen overnight!"

Fortunately for Osborne, the ref realized what a ridiculous mistake he had made and called for the game to promptly resume.

All in all, the Wranglers finished with 8 fat ones, while the Gobblers only came up with 3 (possibly 4, no one is sure). It's not that the Gobblers didn't put up their namesake fight, it's just that their turkey scratch was no match for the Wranglers superpowers. The Gobblers had some big boots and some dazzling catches in the outfield, robbing the Wranglers of several more runs that would have been in the proverbial "bag" against any other opponent. Who were those masked men anyway? (Actually, they were Aaron and Adrian and that other guy who no one knows his name but last week he was inexplicably wearing a suit at Carol's Pub.)

But that Gobbler triple threat just couldn't overcome the many feats of strength by the Wranglers, such as Ryno "Super PBR Guy" McLean's heroics at first base, including a diving stop on a line drive. At one point he even put his marriage on the line to get a Gobbler Girl out by giving her the old tag-her-out-and-touch-her-jumblies-combination right in front of his wife and infant son. McLean's wife, Allison, was very understanding about the whole situation, saying, "Ryan says he never made actual contact with the breast, and I believe him."

Other highlights included another great game for Super Dave Osborne on the mound, rolling major heat despite the 2-foot-high grass on the playing field. On offense the Super One was slammin', too, with a 2-RBI triple in the first inning. Only once did Super's sidekick/engineer Fuji Hakayito miscalculate the trajectory of his kick and send the ball into foul territory. Had it gone straight, it surely would have been a homer.

And who could forget The BeDazzler, Michelle "$400 Weave" Dooley? When she ran to first base, it was like a Rainbow of sparkles exploding all over the field. The Gobblers were blinded by the light!

Wrangler fan Robin Boywonder, 25, of Gotham City, witnessed the Gobbler-Wrangler showdown and commented, "Holy turkey poop, Batman! The Wranglers creamed those fowl villains! It was like Sock! Pow! Whamm-o!" His friend, B. Wayne, also of Gotham City, added, "I know, I had no idea PBR Man was so nimble. The way he dove for that line drive, his bathrobe fluttering in the wind, it was like... It was like... I don't know what it was like, but it was beautiful."

Truly this was one for the comicbooks.

-------

Wow, that was no faint praise from The Daily Planet this week, Nation!! Pretty impressive, eh? What's next... sketch drawings of us in the Wall Street Journal? Hopefully that sweet Jimmy Olsen will come back to cover more of our games this season.

And now, the moment you've been waiting for! THE AWARDS! Here's Tim "PBRmeASAP" Whalen live from Wrangler HQ with this week's trophies..

********
Hey Cap…this was a tough one since we all played such a darn fine game last night, but as they say in the biz, get 'r done! Huh?

Onto the awards! To borrow an equation from Bill Nye, RUSTY (in the presence of a superhero costume) = PMel. The Greatest American Hero, or GAH! as he is known to the SuperFriends, showed up in costume and ready to play. Melson was a GAH! at the plate - checking in with a 2-run HR amongst other feats. But perhaps his greatest feat occurred in the field as he managed to catch the aforementioned deeply hit fly ball after it ricocheted off Super Grandpa's belly! It was an amazing HR-saving play that would have made FBI agent Bill Maxwell proud (GAH reference, fyi). The Maroon 5's should consider themselves lucky that PMel did not have a curly blonde wig with him!

And, who is that at 1st base? Dad, I can’t see so good, is that Tony Meola over there? No wait, it's the ALL-AROUND COWBOY - Pabst Guy (aka Ryan McLean)! The Ryno hustled his horn off to make a soccer-style save of a line drive hit hard down the first base line. Not even the great Pele - a known PBR fiend - could've gotten that ball past Ryno. The play saved the Wranglers from a Gobbler sure-fire homer, and the Wranglers escaped without serious damage. Anyone who thought Pabst Guy wasn't a true SuperHero stands corrected. PBR this man ASAP!!!!

The BOOBY BUNGLER award is a split decision this week. First, Ryno checks in yet again for literally bungling boobies during a play at first (or coming close). The second part is a tandem gig a'la Batman & Robin. The new super duo you ask? Super Grandpa & The Puddle!
And I just want to give a round of PBR to the entire Wrangler Nation for a great all-around performance. After last week's debacle, we needed this game. Hoist your Pabst high Wranglers, you've earned the Blue Ribbon this week!

And this week a new award is actually in order, the BELLY BUNGLER! That's right, that un-repeatable ricochet off Grampy's belly qualifies for its very own award. We've never seen anything like it, and we hope we never do again.

Well, time for me to go fight the evils of the world with delicious, award-winning beer. Somewhere, I hear a party in distress…

------------

Thanks, Timmy. Well done.

Whoa! now I'm getting a message in my earpiece that SuperBaby Payton Whalen has some breaking news for us:

"csx d41r4d1d\qa3gyyy3h34he3he3 hyu4743h4f3hf4e35555sdr"
Can we get another baby to translate? This sounds important.

Moving on...

Let's all mark our calendars for June 22-24 in Los Angeles for PowerMorphicon, the first fan-run convention commemorating nearly 15 years of Power Rangers and its worldwide audience. It sounds awesome, I'm definitely going. FYI, there are also SuperMan and BatMan conventions in the month of June in various locations. Roadtrip, anyone?

Next week is 80's Roller Rink Birthday Party. It's Dooley Bops' bday FO REAL, and we'll be celebrating with couple-skates, hokey pokey, 80's outfits, 80's hair, and 80's music.

Until then....

peace. love. the wranglers.
Cap'n T-Dizzy Wizzy

Wednesday Morning Recap: May 30, 2007
'Shields' Fall Victim to Super-Secret Navy Seal Attack

Wranglers 3, The Shields 0

Where can you find pleasure, search the world for treasure, learn science technology?
Where can you begin to make all your dreams come true on the land or on the sea?
Where can you learn to fly, play in sports and skin dive, study oceanography?
In the Navy! In the Navy!

Greetings, Nation, from Wrangler Headquarters on this hot summer day in Chicago with clouds moving in this afternoon and a slight chance of rain.

I have to tell you right off the bat that last night was one of my least favorite games ever, although our theme was top-notch (Or should I say Top Gun?! [snurf.]) Don't worry, Nation, we won the game, it's just that it was done with very little fanfare as far as actual play on the field. The game went by so fast, 3-up 3-downs all over the place, and then there was "the fight," and then it was over. And something about that other team really got under my skin.

I think it started when their pitcher said about Ryno's theme song ("You're the Best Around"):
"Hey, Man, this music is pumping me up way more than you, I guarantee."
Oh yeah, well I guarantee you're an A-wipe. And I bet he didn't feel so 'pumped' when we played "Take My Breath Away" when he came up to bat. 'Watching every motion in this foolish lover's game; On this endless ocean, finally lovers know no shame...' Whoa, I'm getting sleepy already!

And does anyone even know what "The Shields" means anyway? What are they, cops or something? Or simply aficionados of the Sneeze-Gard at your local Ponderosa salad bar? Anyway, their shields, whatever form they took, were no match for the Wranglers and our super-secret covert op's!!

Swetty powered a single into a 2-bagger to start off the festivities. Then Michelle "I Heart Top Gun" Dooley bopped a sac bunt, and Swetty took liberties all the way home. They never saw him coming!! Yippppeeeee!

But then Ryno and I got out on account of that oblong, warbly-shaped ball we had to play with that would not straighten up and fly right! That thing was like a Physics-in-Action experiment I did in high school. Hypothesis: The trajectory of an asymmetrical, ovalesque, red rubber ball is totally unpredictable and will inevitably pop up in the infield. Conclusion: True. What the F-bombers was up with that ball?

Well, bygones. The 2nd inning was an impressive repeat of the first with a Josh "McKnight Rider" double followed by a Katie "Bunt Cake" Whalen sac bunt. You can... put it on the board!!

Then there is some confusion on account of one of the innings is not recorded in the score book. We'll talk about that later. But the real confusion came later over extremely controversial base running by The Shields. It will hitherto be known simply as "The Fight."

Now, the Wranglers are not generally the "argue with the ref" types, but we also don't take the shizzle lyin' down, if you know what I mean. So when the situation calls for an argument, we're obliged to give it. And in this case, it had to be done. The game was on the line.

Picture it: Chicago. 2007. A muggy summer night. Wranglers are up 3-0 in the top of the 4th. Guy with goatee comes up to bat. Dave "The Wizard of" Osborne pitches. Goatee guy swings. Kicks. Gets to first somehow, don't really remember. Next person up to bat. The pitch, the swing, a hit! Oh no! But we get her out at first. Goatee makes it to 2nd... and keeps on running!! Now Ryno's got the ball at short, and he's furious! Goatee puts on the brakes and hightails it back to 2nd. Ryno cocks his arm for the hurling bean-out. Several fielders scream in slow motion "Noooooooooo!" But it's too late; the ball is already hurtling through space toward Goatee at a high-rate of speed. And it's way off course! The ball goes soaring into the outfield and Goatee turns on a dime and heads for 3rd again! Holy Shnikeys! Oscar "Show 'em Your O-Face" Hernandez scoops up the ball from short center and then he hurls it to Timmy (Or was it Swetty?) at 3rd. Goatee slides in time but comes up WAY short and off to the side of the bag... BUT WHERE IS THE BAG? Holy crap, nobody knows! In all the confusion, the flimsy plastic base has taken a vacation into the grassy area in foul territory! But Goatee is laying there in the dirt in what is clearly nowhere near the original location of the base. So Timmy/Swetty winds up and beans him. He Gone! Or is he? Well, the other team says safe, and the ref, for reasons that will never ever be known to us, also says safe! Chaos ensues.

Other team tries to invoke the "You get one base on an overthrow" rule, but any do-do knows that only applies when the ball goes out of play, i.e. foul territory, and our overthrow went into the outfield. And anyway, you don't get one base for free on an overthrow, you just have the opportunity to run to the next base at your own risk, and may not take more than one base. Well, Dave is pig-biting mad and whips out the rulebook, gesticulating madly and flipping pages like a man possessed. As the argument escalates, Goatee kindly offers to go back to 2nd, but this offer is rejected both by his own teammates and by Dave.

Meanwhile, the head honcho of our league, WAKA-Chicago himself, Daniel "Johnny Rulebook" Richards sees trouble brewing from across the park and makes his way over to see what all the commotion is about.

"You get one base on overthrow!" shouts Shields Girl #1.
"Nooooooooooooooooooooooooo!" screams The Wiz.
"The ref's call is final!" shouts Shields Girl #2.
"Yes, but he has to follow the rulebook," says Daniel. (Yeah, Daniel!)
"He was out!" yells The Wiz.
"You're right," the ump says to Dave, "But I already made the call, and it stands."
"Insanity!" wails Dave. And so on . . .

As I explained to Claire "Blue Jumpsuit Award Winner" Mahoney last night, Dave doesn't get angry very often, so when he does, I like to just let him ride it out. It's good for him. So while he was fighting for our team's honor with the ump, Claire, Dooley, and I decided to have a dance party at 2nd base. We got seriously down. By the time dance party was over, the dust had settled and Goatee got to stay at 3rd and, as Joy would say, "Whatevva, Whatevva, Whatevva." On the next play we got the 3rd out and that was the end of that! Oh my, that was something!

Whoa, I just got word that Timmy "Yaaaaaar" Whalen is ready with this week's awards. Anchors Away, Timmy!

------

Thanks, T-Diz. I'm actually coming to you live via satellite aboard the U.S.S. Wrangler this fine evening. You've probably never heard of it because it's a supersonic submarine in an undisclosed location. But I'm there. And here's the awards:

This week the RUSTY goes to the entire team for playing some darn fine defense out there in the field. That's right… as a unit, Rusty's bunch was tighter than my belt after thanksgiving dinner (with one shining exception - see below under "Bungler, Boobie"). We were like the freakin' naval blockade of Cuba out there… ain't no ship - or baserunner - gettin' by! Special mention to The Blizzard of OZ for his second straight quality start and first shutout on the mound. Our defense was like the Bears last night… which is to say a brick wall… and we all know you can't go true 'em!!!!

The ALL-AROUND COWBOY this week was in fact a judge in a sailing blazer. Ryan "Judge Smails" Swett takes home the honor for scoring what became the winning run from second on a sac bunt from Maverick "The Maverick is silent" Dooley. Honorable mention to Admiral Josh McKnight for nearly sacrificing his loins to force a bad throw, thus allowing him to score all the way from 1st after a bunt by Katie "First Mate" Wheels. Josh and Swett's anchors were indeed a'weigh as they were like a cigarette boat on the base paths.

Is third base synonymous with BOOBIE BUNGLER? Well it sure as hell was last night. The seaman manning third for the gan-grene team had his troubles as he attempted - and failed - to field grounders throughout the game. And, as mentioned in the Rusty, the Wranglers needed their exception to prove the rule of good defense, and that exception was provided by Tim "Demoted from Captain Morgan to Admiral Nelson" Whalen. Whalen managed to take a routine pop fly and screw it up worse than the maiden voyage of the Titantic as he had his hands on the ball once, twice, three times a lady before finally letting the ball drop to the ground.

Well, I'm taking on water, so back to you T-Diddy.

-------

Thanks, sailor!

So that was the game, and now let's talk about our theme! "In the Navy: Homage to Lt. Oscar" was a big hit all around. We had 2 authentic Navy jumpsuits, a Navy seal, a sailor, 2 pirates, a yacht captain (Judge Smails), and a sea of Navy blue! It was a sight to behold, America! And even though we forgot (again) to do the National Anthem and Color Guard before the game, I know that naval officers everywhere would have been proud to see us last night. What better Memorial Day tribute than a team of ballers kickin' it live military style?

My only disappointment is that we didn't have any of the other Village People out there. But, again, bygones.

And now there is the important matter of: Dooley keeping score + being the DJ = confused. There's an inning missing in the score book, people! Now what the hell am I supposed to do?! Can somebody help a sista out next week?! Michelle "I'm the DJ and the scorekeeper?" Dooley needs to focus on spinning the tunes, not keeping the score. So next week, somebody's got to step up for scoring duties. And also, next week Swetty should not steal Dooley's place in the lineup. Imagine the confusion last night: 1st inning, ump says "batter up," Swetty steps to the plate, someone asks me "Who's up second?", I check the handy-dandy lineup and it says "2: Swetty." Wha-wha-wha-WHAT?! If Swetty's up 2nd, then who's up 1st?? (aside from Swetty who has actually just kicked the ball and run to first base) Of course, it was actually Dooley who was supposed to be up first, but that incorrigible Ryan Swett got a little carried away. He's just too enthusiastic, that guy! A real warrior for the cause.

Well, Nation, that about does it for this week. Next week is Super Heroes, and I personally can't wait to see all the Wranglers in a glorious rainbow of tights and capes! Standard super heroes, as well as made-up ones, are very welcome. And let's not forget Super Villains. You can't have super heroes without super villains.


Peace. Love. The Wranglers.
Captain T-DoWhatchaWanna

Wednesday Morning Recap: May 23, 2007
Second Grade Warriors Held Back

Wranglers 5, Second Grade Warriors 4

We put them on the bus and took them to school!
Here's a shovel: Can you dig it, fool?

The score makes it sound closer than it was, folks. With Dave "The Wizard of" Osborne on the mound zippin hot ones at the plate, those 8-year-old has-beens never really had a chance. I think there was actually only one inning that they got through more than 4 batters. At the end of regulation (5 innings) we were up 4-0, but we decided to keep playing til the next teams showed up, and then we accidentally let them get 4 runs in the 2 extra innings! E-gads! But luckily, we scored one more for ourselves, and preserved the win and our pride on the kickball field. Nice work, Wranglers!

We recorded several 3-up, 3-down innings on the defensive end, and on offense we bombarded them with 21 hits!! In our glorious all-white outfits, sprays of red sashes glimmering in the hot summer sun, we took those 2nd graders out into the streets of Pamplona and gored their arses! Viva Espana! Y Viva el BULL!

Speaking of the bull, kudos are most certainly in order to the resident Wrangler bull, Timmy "It's getting hot in here" Whalen, who kept his bull costume on the whole game despite 80 degree temperatures and despite frightening small children on the sidelines. Now that's dedication to the cause! After all, what would a Running of the Bulls theme be without a bull? Just a bunch of dorks in white outfits, that's what. Kudos as well to the chick on the other team who did not "get" our costumes.  

But back to the game, I'm afraid those 2nd-grade poopers had a bit of a premature pop-up problem (nothing a little Cialis couldn't fix), and they repeatedly flicked high-fly bloopers in the inner-inner-infield where pitcher Dave "'I got it!' (Ball hog)" Osborne just kept reeling 'em in. For a while there, it was like the Dave Osborne show. I mean, I was starting to wonder why I came. And every time they popped it up we'd have Dave, Rick, & Ryno all crowding around underneath it, and one time the 3 guys even made a girl-from-the-other-team-club-sandwich with their manuevering (she was the turkey, they were the bread). But then every time Dave would just shout, "I got it!" and the other guys would get a sad look on their faces, and then Dave would catch it, and that was that.

But the best was when this guy tried to bunt, but he popped it up ever so slightly and Rick "I'm the catcher, B*tch" Brands reached out his long and lovely arm and one-handed caught that shizzle! That dude had no idea that Rick caught it on the fly and he kept running so hard to first! I think he felt really silly once he got to first and realized he'd been out for like 2 years! In that guy's defense, though, who (that is not a Wrangler) would ever suspect that the catcher would be SO MONEY?!! Who would imagine that he could catch a bunt on the fly?! But he can!! He did!!

Other highlights included:

Courageous base-running by Eileen "You Gotta" Lovettt.

A big-time catch in the outfield by Heather Wolf McKnight.

Several clutch bunts by Oscar "Real Men Bunt" Hernandez.

And a T-Dix slide into third.** They overthrew the base trying to get me out, and I got up and ran home!! I was so dirty!!

[**Reminder: When over 30 years of age, think twice before attempting to slide in a kickball game. It hurts. Especially the next day. Especially the arm you sort of landed on, which in turn caused a muscle pull in your chest, which in turn causes you to say "yowch" every time you take a deep breath. And also your butt. That hurts, too. And then when you get home, if you try to go sit in your hot tub to ease the pain, make sure to check the chemical levels in the water, and if the Phenol Red test comes up flaming purple (as in: way too much acid in the water), don't get in anyway, thinking "What harm could it really do?" The answer is a lot. And also then if the next morning you put the tea kettle on and then it starts to boil and make that SCREEEEEEchy sound and so you run as fast you can to the kitchen to stop the god-awful noise don't put the brakes on so fast for a quick turn to the stovetop or you'll tweak your quad. That hurts, too. And finally, if you're babysitting a small child, don't turn your head when you are within his striking range, because it's highly possible that, just to add insult to injury, he may jam his miniature finger up your nose and make it bleed. But, hey, Nation, it was the winning run, so fuggedaboutit! Pulled muscles, chemically burned skin and a bloody nose are well-worth a Wrangler victory!]

Lowlights of the game included:

1) how their team kept catching really good kicks by our team. I mean, they had some serious chicks out there with sticky fingers, grabbin up every fly ball we sent their way. We was robbed like a million times.

2) how that handsome 3rd baseman kept chatting up Dooley every chance he got, but then we found out his girlfriend was on the team! What a man-skank! And we only found out becuse he happened to be on second base when that girl on their team came up to bat who had the unfortunate problem of not being able to kick the ball. And when I expressed sympathy for said girl, he told me that she had actually injured her right foot which was why she was trying (unsuccessfully) to kick with her left. And how did he know? I'll tell you how he knew: THEY ARE LOVERS!! It's true, he told me. And I said, "Oh no you di-int! Did you just say you have a girlfriend?!"

Don't all you single ladies on the team love how I'm that annoying married lady who's always trying to work the angle for you? "Oh, I'm sorry, hot referee guy, but I'm going to have to ask you to give your name and number to my friend over here because she has a few questions about the rules of the game." [snurf! snurf!]

oh, WHAMMY! I just got word that Timmy is ready with the awards for this week. Here he is live via satellite from Wrangler Headquarters on Roscoe Street (which is incidentally where my nose was involuntarily picked earlier today). What's the good word, Timbo?

----------
Well, T-Diz, the votes are in and it looks like everything's coming up Osborne this week.

Ozzie Smith, the hall of fame shortstop, has been known as the Wizard (of Oz) for the better part of three decades. Well, it's time to grab some pine Ozzie, there's a new wizard in town. Dave "The New Wizard of" Osborne stepped in to the pitchers spot last night and delivered a beauty, thus picking up the RUSTY in the process. The Second Grade Warriors might as well have been dressed up as blue bowling pins, 'cause Oz was mowing 'em down during the complete game effort. I don't think a charging bull from Pamplona would've stood a chance!

You wanna see hustle, just watch Captain T-Dizzy on the basepaths. T-Diz - hustling like she was being chased by a half-ton bull - scored what became the winning run by simply refusing to stop running. After getting on base with a solid rip, T-Diz rounded second on the next at-bat and headed for third. Your friendly neighborhood thirdbaseman from the Blue team attempted a bean-out, but thanks to a heads up slide by T-Diz, he managed to only get her head. Refusing to stop, T-Diz got up and dashed for home - earning the ALL-AROUND COWGIRL for the week. Her hustle also prompted this witty retort from the thirdbaseman "y'all got some fast friends!"

The Charlene Hustle Award goes to Come on, Eileen for her fearless scamper from 1st to 3rd. Well, you know what they say, that Eileen sure knows her way around the bases!

And for the booby bungler:
I hate to do it, but it's got to be the aforementioned girl from the Second Grade Warriors who had what could only be described as a difficult time at the plate and fouled out late in the game. She also managed to completely whiff on a kick in that at-bat.

---------

Thanks, Timmy!

Well, kids, that about does it. Next week's theme is "In the Navy: Homage to Oscar," which we've determined can include anything U.S. Navy, nautical or just plain water-related. Heck, you could even just wear a navy blue outfit if that tickles your fancy. Oscar is coming in his dress whites, but the rest of us will just have to get creative. I think we're going to have at least one Top Gun pilot on hand, and maybe someone else could be Tom "I Want the Truth!" Cruise in his other memorable Navy-man role, "A Few Good Men."  But please no foreign Navy stuff, i.e. Russian Navy gear; that's just tacky.

Star Spangled Banner and Color Guard starts at 7:25, so be there early for pregame festivities. At the 7th inning stretch we'll sing "Proud to be an American" by that guy who I think his name is Glen something. Anchors Away!

I'm working on getting our website up and running again for this year. We got some great photos last night and hopefully I'll have them up by tomorrow. And if they're not up by tomorrow, just wait longer.

Love ya like a sis,

Captain T-DizzyWizzy 

"Wednesday" Morning Recap: May 17, 2007
It's Wednesday Somewhere

OK, so technically it's not Wednesday anymore here in the good old U.S. of A., but it must be Wednesday somewhere, right? Like what about Australia or China or something? Don't you think it's probably still Wednesday there? And even if it's actually already Friday there, don't you think that Aussies would be good sports enough to pretend? (We won't count on the Chinese, they seem like they might be sticklers for the rules over there.) I checked with Alan Jackson, and he confirmed that, indeed, it must be Wednesday somewhere. (Jimmy Buffet concurred.)

So, here it is, the Wednesday Wrangler Wrecap! The fact is, Nation, that our game was rained out on Tuesday night, and what's the point of Wednesday when there was no game on Tuesday? Really, what's the point of living at all? And maybe on Wednesday you were so depressed from not having a game the night before that you couldn't bring yourself to write a recap of nothing, even if all of WranglerNation was on the edge of its collective seat waiting for word of a victory. And if you can't write to loyal fans with word of a Wrangler victory, then really what use are you in the big scheme of things anyway? These are the questions I dealt with yesterday.   

Well, we spent all day Tuesday holding our breath waiting to see if that God-forsaken thunderstorm would come before 6:30pm, and then it did, but then it went away, but then it came back, and then it went away, and then it came back, and actually I thought we probably might still play, but it was not to be. On the other hand, the muddy conditions would not have been favorable for our all-white Running of the Bulls costumes, so perhaps it was really a blessing in disguise (or elaborate costume). Perhaps God is truly on our side. 

Last year when we had a rainout there was at least still something exciting to write about the next day because, if you recall, I had accidentally served pasta with broken glass to my husband and myself. Remember that? That was awesome. But this week there was NADA! All that happened was a gentle breeze singing through our windows and the little pit-pats of rain on the roof. There wasn't even anything good on TV! So Dave "The O.Z." Osborne and I watched an extremely violent movie called "Man on Fire," starring Denzel "Alternately Evil and Sympathetic in This Particular Movie" Washington and the indefatigably-adorable-despite-having-been-kidnapped Dakota Fanning, who plays the very improbable biological child of Marc Anthony.     

And the only thing of interest to write about currently is that the smell emanating from Baby Payton's diaper makes me strongly suspect that his mother fed him a Taco Bell triple-cheese Meximelt for breakfast. Now, most babies cry when their diaper is dirty, but Payton is unique in that he cries (screams, actually) when you try to give him a clean one. It's true. Try to put him on his back to change that diaper and he will howl and scream like you're stabbing him, which can make life difficult for everyone involved. God love him, but I think that wee tike truly enjoys a dirty diaper. Well, as the Good Book says, "Different strokes for different folks!" 

Next week we play at 6:30 again, and we'll hold fast to the Running of the Bulls theme.  Until next Wednesday,

Peace. Love. The Wranglers. 
Captain T-Diddy  B/F/F

Wednesday Morning Recap: May 9, 2007
Goodnight, Irene! A Wrangler Coup d'Kicktators

Today’s recap is also available in French under the title “Voulez vous couchez avec moi?” or “Wranglers Put Kicktators in Sleeper Hold, Make Tator Tots Out of Silly Baby Complainers in Blue.”

I’m still waiting on the full Spanish translation, but I think it starts with “¿Tú prefieres   salsa de tomate con eso?” or “Would You Like Ketchup With That?”

Well, it was a hot (almost) summer night in the city yesterday, so the Wranglers had to get a little skimpy and saucy with the Pajammy Jam theme. Perhaps when you heard we were planning a Pajammy Jam in early May in Chicago , you thought it would be mostly flannel footie pj’s and robes with wooly slippers. But let me tell you, there were a lot more lacy lingerie bits than flannel pants out there, if you know what I mean! Even Josh “Cat Scratch Fever” McKnight and Dave “Hef” Osborne busted out some silk for the ladies to claw at! RRRREEEEEOOOWWW! [insert cougar roar sound effect here]

This was no junior high slumber party, ladies and gentlemen, this was a veritable playboy mansion soiree! (With the possible exception of Tim’s Zubaz Pants, which would definitely not have been allowed through the gates at the mansion.) We were crazy from the heat! We were delirious with mercury rising! We were high on greenhouse gas!

And the best part for me personally is that now the whole league knows that Wrangler Nation thong underwear is available in a stunning array of sizes but not colors! The orders have been pouring in like crazy ever since! Operators are standing by! (
http://www.cafepress.com/buy/rustys+wranglers)

Now, if the Wranglers were a party in Malibu , the other team, sad to say, was Ralph Wiggum’s birthday party. (Teacher, I glued my head to my shoulder.) And actually, as I found out at the captains’ meeting, they are all (or most) philosophy graduate students. So I’m afraid they never had a chance at all. No, not ever. Particularly not the guy in the Fidel/CheGuevara army green hat. As Joy would be fast to tell you: “I’m as serious as cancer when I say that Communism is a dancer.”

I’m not actually sure what that means, but it reminds me of the time I got into a political “discussion” with Katie’s mom, and she called me a communist and she thought I would be offended but I wasn’t.

So I guess that dude with the ponytail was invoking Nietzsche’s postmodern distaste for authority when he argued AT LENGTH with the ref about exactly how high a pitched ball must bounce in order to be called a ball instead of a strike. The answer was, of course, 12 inches, but then their whole team chimed in with picky-oony questions for the ref like “12 inches from the ground at the base of the ball, or at the top?” and “What if the batter is much shorter or taller than average?” and so on and so on. But if a pitch bounces in the woods, would anyone hear it?

And I guess Dave “Lord of the Dance” Osborne was invoking the spirit of Michael Flatley and The Karate Kid all at once when he decided that he would try to leap at the ball before he kicked it. But if you leap at the ball and you miss, would you ever land?

Oh! I’m getting a report that Timmy’s ready with the awards. So here he is live via satellite from Wrangler HQ:

-------------------------------------

Thanks, T-DoWhatchaWanna.

This week the "Rusty" goes to the Thought Squad (the couple formerly known as The Wolves, or simply Heather Wolf and Josh McKnight). Not only did they cover the umping duties for the early game, they hustled their collective butts off on the field and at the plate. In fact, Josh's arse almost literally fell off when he swerved to avoid a collision with the Baby Blue Brick Wall after making a running catch in foul territory. Josh was all over the place last night, catching everything in a 20-mile radius. It was as if he truly became one with that cheetah-print teddy he was wearing. And Heather was a vision in blue lacy lingerie. Those nearly-matching sleepy-time outfits were a big hit! The Thought Squad thought long and hard about last night, and it showed!

The "Booby Bungler" of week 2 is the first basemen of the kickTators for not one, but TWO major bungles. He took a nasty tumble after a near-catch of a foul kick and provided spectators with a few other laughs for his antics, including a catch involving the use of his face. Then when he was up to bat, the dude decided he was Pete Rose and tried to slide into first base! Only it was more like a swimming pool dive than a baseball slide, and that could not have been good for business, if you know what I mean. Ummm, and also he got called out. And also he fell down like 20 other times during the game.

A dishonorable mention goes to none other than my bad-self, Tim "Keep 'em in the Game" Whalen, who forgot that you're only supposed to kick the ball at the plate and not in the field. What a goon!

Now, when I say "All-Around Cowgirl", do you think of an iSpeaker? Well in week 2, you should! Dooley's recent purchase - while small in size - was big in stature. The iSpeaker walked tall and carried a big tune. As one Wrangler said late in the game, "I think that thing is getting louder!" Damn right it was…and so was the Wrangler offense in the 3rd inning. The speaker's shining moment (in my eyes at least) was during Gwen's marathon at-bat against the ponytailed pitcher in baby blue (aka Michael Bolton's brother* and Joe Dirt**). Thanks to the soothing sounds of Bell Biv DeVoe's "Poison," Gwen survived the near meltdown of Baby Bolton on the mound and kept the inning alive. As the song says, "never trust a big butt and smile, that girl is poison, poison." Wait, what? I don't even know how that relates…anyway, the iWrangles mounted a big iCharge that inning and it was iThanks to the iSpeaker!

*iSource - Ric “iReady to be a dad” Brands
**Heather iMuth
Can't…iStop…the…ii's...Back to you iCaptain!

----------------------------------------------------
Thanks, Timmy. Well done once again. I think that the ponytail guy was actually nominated for some other awards as we debriefed over brewskies post-game. But I’m afraid those awards do not contain suitable language for print material.

It has also come to my attention that this week a special award is in order, the “We Was Robbed” Al Gore Memorial Trophy. This week it goes to Claire “$” Moroney. She made a super crazy-arse catch at short center and then one-arm hurled the magical red orb at lightning speed all the way over to first base where the base-runner was way off the base and was totally out but the do-do ref called him safe!! What a joke!! We was robbed.

So that about wraps it up for today, kids. Sorry the recap was so late today, Nation, but I was feeling a little sleepy today! Last night’s theme really touched me and all I could think about today was snuggling up in a silky nighty with a white plastic home-plate for a pillow. I had to pull a mucho late-nighter last night because former Wrangler Robin Behre has me slaving away on a consulting project (clearly without regard for my Wrangler commitments). And then after a rigorous morning of looking after one of the littlest Wranglers, Baby Payton “Noggin Noggin” Whalen, I was just plain pooped! A nap was in order!

These are the joys of working from home, my friends. Would that you all may take a nap at 2 o’clock on a weekday someday soon. 

Next week’s game is at 6:30 and the theme is Running With the Bulls. That means white shirt and shorts/pants with a red sash. Unless you are Tim and in that case you are required to wear a full bull costume complete with horns. Paella and sangria will be served.

Peace. Love. The Wranglers.
Cap’n T-Sassy

Wednesday Morning Recap: May 2, 2007
Kansas City, Here We Come!

----------Wranglers 4, Red Rubber Balls 3------------------------------

Damn it feels good to be a Wrangler.

Wasn’t it lovely? Wasn’t it wonderful? To be back out on that kickball field last night was like… was like… I don’t even know what it was like! It was like when you’re waiting for a flight on standby and they call your name! Like prancing through a field of bluebells naked as a jay-bird! Like when you see the very first tulip of spring and you take a few steps back, wind up, and kick the crap out of it! Like being king of the world!

Goodness gracious, how I missed you, Wranglers. It was truly a long, dark winter waiting to see your bewigged little faces out there on the k-ball diamond. And what a colorful bunch you were, a bouquet of fluorescent pink Club Girl styles, giant green Marge “Dave” Simpson beehives, luxurious blonde Britney Spears tresses, black as night Elvis poofs, Slash hair-band madness, and of course, the ubiquitous afro. That’s right, Nation, it was WIG NIGHT! And it was glorious! Even the new folks wigged out, and I particularly enjoyed Oscar “O-Face” Hernandez’ ZZ Top beard.

Oh, wig night is truly an oldie but goodie. The perfect start to a perfect season.

And we’re well on our way to that coveted undefeated title, as we made shredded rubber out of the Red Rubber Balls. (More like Red Rubber Poo, if you ask me.) It was an extremely decisive 4-3 victory. They got all 3 runs in the first inning, and I don’t have to tell you, it made me a little nervous. But then we rolled their rubber balls right back into the toy bin! We sunk our teeth into their fleshy red rubber and tore them in half, Dulci-style. We savagely inserted the air pump needle into their little holes and allowed the air to---ever so slowly---leak out. It was a triumph. I’ll roll the highlight reel:

The aforementioned 1st inning was a little lackluster on the offensive side as well. But the 2nd inning, oh boy! We started off by learning a new move from one of our new players. Gwen Fay. When the ball was pitched to her and was about to reach the plate, she suddenly jumped to the side in a spinny bippidy bop diddly move that really threw the pitcher off his game and caused him to allow 3 hits in a row, including a sweet bunt by Heather “Hun” Wolf.

But we would be held scoreless until the 3rd, when Allison “A-Rod” McLean reached on a squibbly dibbly, followed up by a 2-base blast from O-Face. Another banger from Lisa “You didn’t see that one comin” Burgess, and … you can put it on the board! Actually, you could put 2 on the board, cause that’s how many we got.

The fourth inning was big time with a Ryan “You make me sweaty” Swett big booter and a Dooley Bops bop to score Swett-tastic! And then after Dooley, somone else kicked it and Dooley ended up scoring, too, but I am unclear as to how this actually transpired. And now the Wranglers are up by 1 heading into the final inning.

The one shining moment, however, had to be when Michelle “$400 Weave” Dooley ended the inning with a single-handed double play. And it wasn’t a double play like when the person on base is totally oblivious to the “Can’t run on a fly ball” rule and they just stand there like a helpless little bunny rabbit waiting to get pegged. It was a double play like when the batter sends a fly ball floozie high into the air toward the second base line, and the dude on first starts to run because he sees the ball is sailing toward one of our fielders of the female persuasion (in this case, Dooley Bops), so he thinks she’s not gonna catch it (misogynist piece of crap), but of course she does and then he’s all, “Oh no, I’m stuck out on the baseline! Help me, please!” And Dooley’s all: “NO! I hate you! I’m throwing the ball at you!”

Remember that? That was awesome.

And there was also this other time when I was playing second and I bopped a girl with the ball to get her out and I made a sound effect, but no one heard it but me.

Oh, I'm getting a message here in my earpiece that Timmy "Slash" Whalen is phoning in his commentary from the super-secret satellite feed at Wrangler HQ:

---------------------------------- 

Thanks, T-Diz. Timmy here with the weekly awards...

The Rusty (our weekly MVP award) goes to the newest members of the Wrangler family, who come to us by way of D.C. Oscar, Gwen, Jenn, and Lisa - affectionately dubbed "The Rooks" - all played some damn fine kickball both in the field and at the plate and were key to the Wranglers coming out on top. And I think we already have another rally cry to add to the arsenal: "Show 'em your O-Face!!!!"

The All-Around Cowgirl goes to Michelle "the Michelle is silent" Dooley for scoring the winning run from second base in the bottom of the 4th inning. Knowing there would be a play at the plate, she hustled down the 3rd base line and slid to avoid the bean-out tag at home plate. One Wrangler asked Dooley "Why the jeans tonight?" to which she replied "I'll show you why in the bottom of the 4th!"

( please note the preceding quotes are recreations and may not have happened)

The Booby-Bungler award for the night goes to the tall dude in the white shirt from the opposing team who performed a classic cartoon-style slip-fall after kicking a foul ball. Pick yourself up and dust off white shirt guy, you've earned the booby-bungler. 

------------------------------

Well Wranglers, I better wrap this up, as I’m coming to you live via satellite from an airplane to New Orleans. Good morning, America ! How are ya? Say, don’t you know me? I’m your native son! A little piece of Wrangler Nation is headed down to Jazzfest for some good old-fashioned Mississippi Delta silliness.

WHOA, I think I just saw Bill Paxson on the plane. Let me check. Nope. A lookalike. Rats! I’m totally in celebrity sighting mode because you always see a few good ones at Jazzfest, and plus I’m working at a Habitat for Humanity site this week in Musicians’ Village, and lots of the fancy Jazzfest stars like to come and swing a hammer and donate moola. So I’m hoping to rub tool belts with John Mayer or Harry Connick, Jr. (Just kidding, Husband Dave! I promise I won’t touch anyone’s tool belt.)

Unfortunately I am currently seated next to the notorious Elbows McGee, who believes that the armrest is a more of a guideline, really. He’s got his whole arm hanging over onto my side! He’s touching me! He’s touching me! I love him because he is one of God’s creatures, but I do not like him. 

But back to the matter at hand, I’m not sure if the Blue Jumpsuit Committee, which in the past had taken votes on who was the hottest girl on the other team, is even in session anymore due to the non-singleness of the majority of the Wrangler Men these days. (Permission to join the validity committee!), but if you’re out there BJC, feel free to chime in. The Ladies, however, spoke loud and clear last night and informed me that the 2 cutie-patootie referees we had last night are the first 2007 winners of the Boss Hog Award. Woo Woo! I think they were duly impressed by Dooley’s double play and lifelike ponytail.

OK, I’m outta here like Vladimir. It’s good to be back Wranglers.

Love ya like a sis,
Captain T-Dizzy Fo Shizzy in the Hizzy


P.S.
Tim’s got the beat
Tim’s got the beat…. YA! Tim’s got the beat!

Read up on the Wranglers' 2006 Season

2005 Season:
Wranglers go to the World Championships
of the World Adult Kickball Association

We started this kickball club in the summer of 2004. Some might call it dumb luck, some might call it serendipity, still others might even say it was a most blessed miracle. But anyway you slice it, we're all better people for being Wranglers.

It turns out there's a kickball craze that's sweeping the nation ... and we got swept up sho' nuf. It started out innocently enough, about 15 friends getting together for a little recreational sport and socialization along the beautiful lake shore of Chicago. But the first week of league play was rained out, and we found ourselves at the Bird's Nest pub deciding that each week should have its own theme, and a costume to go with it, and each player should have a theme song that we would play when that person came up to bat. And Tim would keep stats. Yes, that would be important.

The first week was Cabana Night, and from there it just got sillier, including season highlights like Toga Party, Get Your Wig On, and Running of the Bulls. We're now in our second season. We play every Monday night, so every Tuesday there's a new weekly recap, and we'll put up some silly pictures, too.

And remember: Stay Classy, Wrangler Fans.

for more information about the Wranglers email: tara@taradix.com

all material is copyrighted by Tara Dix Osborne, 2007