Peyton Hillis – A Memoriam Circa 2010

9044009-largeThe year was 2010. It was the morning of week three. The Cleveland Browns were doing things that the Cleveland Browns typically do. Getting ready to lose a football game….

Jerome Harrison was the “featured tailback” and he stunk. I believe I was in six fantasy football leagues that year. I had Peyton Hillis as a sleeper in all six leagues. The Browns were not giving him the ball enough at this time. Week three though I took a chance and started Hillis in all six leagues despite the Browns playing the Baltimore Raven vaunted defense. He went off for 144 yards and touchdown on 22 carries one of which was this run. Also chipping in with 7 receptions for 36 yards.

A fantasy football star was born in Cleveland. At last a player with a Browns uniform that you could actually start and depend on for fantasy points.

This is the part where I tell you that I hate the Browns. I’ve hated them for my entire life. When I tell people this they usually say something like, “You must be a dirty Steelers fan then.” No quite the contrary. I actually like no NFL teams and do not like football in general. I have no dog in this fight except I thoroughly enjoy when the Browns lose football games. Generally speaking, most Sundays have been good days for me over the years . Continue reading

Small Spaces

What struck me the first time I saw it was the smallness of the space. one-heartbeat

Not just the smallness of the town or the high school, but the smallness of the actual, physical place where it all occurred. It’s tiny. Being there and seeing it brought home just how tiny it is. And being there, and walking into and out of the cafeteria at Chardon High School, brought home just how horrific February 27, 2012 had to have been for anyone there who experienced it.

I’d been to Chardon High School many times, but I was never inside until the fall of 2012, months after TJ Lane opened fire on his fellow school mates in that cafeteria, killing teenage students Daniel Parmertor, Russell King and Demetrius Hewlin, and paralyzing another, Nick Walczak, for life. Lane shot them, and two others who escaped with minor physical injuries, with a .22 caliber handgun while they sat in that small cafeteria waiting for their school day to begin, or for buses that would take them to specialized classes.

He shot them up close and personal, because in that community, in that school, and in that cafeteria specifically, there is no other possible way to do it. Continue reading

Oh Twitter… Cleveland Indians #TribeSpring Photo Day

1It appears to be media day in Goodyear Thursday morning. The players are posing for their pictures and signing the camera lens. Most of these pictures are being tweeted on the Indians twitter account @Indians.

Twitter is like the ultimate bully in high school. They are usually faceless people. Even I have a picture of Carlos Santana as my avatar. Most of all though it is really easy to just be a jerk when you have the security of the Internet protecting you from seeing somebody.

While I do enjoy most media pieces the Indians tweet out, I LOVE to read the replies some people tweet out. Lets have some laughs together?? Continue reading

Cleveland Indians State of the Union at the Corner of Carnegie and Ontario

Can Michael Brantley rub off on Nick Swisher and Michael Bourn? I sure hope so.

Can Michael Brantley rub off on Nick Swisher and Michael Bourn? I sure hope so.

You can almost smell it, can’t you.

If you close your eyes and take a deep breath, you can catch a distant whiff of baseball at Progressive Field; the hot dogs covered in Ball Park Mustard, the leather of freshly oiled baseball gloves, and the fresh cut grass of finally coiffed turf.

You can hear it too, that symphony of sound that any true baseball fan dreams of on the coldest of nights during the dead of winter.

If you tilt your head just right, you can hear a Corey Kluber fastball popping into Yan Gomes framed glove. You can catch the crack of Carlos Santana‘s bat after working a 10-pitch count before lacing a home run. There’s nothing more satisfying than hearing spikes on cement, or the tapping of a bat on home plate, or a sliding runner, or a middle infielder and basestealer hitting the bag at the same time.

It’s almost spring here at the Corner of Carnegie and Ontario, and while the North Coast has been overcome by what can only be described as the second ice age, visions of baseball sugar plums have begun to dance in our heads.

Spring training has arrived. Continue reading

History Repeats itself for the Cleveland Indians

Go Home SnowIndians baseball is back in Goodyear, Arizona.

As I gaze out my window in the heart of the snowbelt Lake County, Ohio the classic Spring Training cliche (and I love me a good cliche) “Hope springs eternal” comes to mind. This thought rings true each February even though there is over 2 feet of snow in my yard and the temperature might reach a robust 40 degrees this weekend.

But I digress…

When looking at the 2015 Cleveland Indians there are a lot of positives on the surface. The team is getting a lot of run from national media outlets. This is a good thing obviously, even though it holds not weight because they still need to play the games, obviously. In the perfect world where everyone plays at expectation and stays healthy this team looks primed to make a run at the Central Division and even an elongated postseason run. So, that is unlikely to happen. Even though everyone in camp is in “the best shape of their life” (told you I love a cliche) guys will get dinged up, players will have ups and downs, more or less baseball will happen. And when baseball happens, aside from being a beautiful thing, it is also an unpredictable thing. Continue reading

Rearview Mirror: The Browns Logo-Gate

temp022315-logolaunch-2--nfl_mezz_1280_1024The Cleveland Browns are an endless supply of things to talk about, even during a time of the year when there shouldn’t be anything to talk about. If only they could be so interesting on the field…

Let’s talk about the Browns “new” logo.

The new logo was about as exciting as a luke-warm glass of water. And with the big deal they made out of it, it was very Cleveland Brown-y to have such an underwhelming offering. Oh, those Browns. They can’t get out of their own way. Continue reading

“What About Aviles?”

“What about Mike Aviles?”

That was a question seriously posed by a follower of the Cleveland Indians Twitter account after this tweet:

The second reply was “Don’t forget aviles” [sic]

Why shouldn’t we forget Mike Aviles? August Fagerstrom, one of my favorite Indians writers, captured Aviles perfectly in his Fangraphs+ profile of the Tribesman. Fagerstrom wrote:

“Mike Aviles is a super-utility man with an 80-grade personality. Aviles’s bat used to be nice for a utility man, but four consecutive seasons of declining power combined with a nonexistent walk rate makes him pretty useless at the plate.”

I’m a sabermetrician, but I’m not a black and white guy when it comes to players like Aviles, or recently retired Jason Giambi. These veterans do have value that cannot be quantified by statistics. It’d be better to see them in a coaching capacity rather than on the field, but it is what it is and it will always be that way. Good guy teammates earn roster spots solely because of what they mean to the camaraderie and morale of the team. Continue reading

The Cleveland Browns logo, the sports media in Cleveland and beyond, and Kendrick Perkins–EHC Podcast 12–2/24/2015

Really?

Really?

WFNY’s & FoxSportsOhio.com’s Rick Grayshock joins the show with our first podcast talking Cleveland sports. We dive right into it, talking how the sports media portrays Cleveland, why the Browns should (or shouldn’t) change the logo, the role of Kendrick Perkins, Josh Gordon, and whether or not J.R. Smith can keep it together in 2015 and beyond.

Rick was a co-founder at WFNY, along with Scott Sargent and Andrew Schnitkey. Make sure you check out all of their stuff at http://www.waitingfornextyear.com. There isn’t a better all-encompassing Cleveland sports website on the interwebs. You can also check out Rick’s work at FoxSportsOhio.com.

Subscribe to EHC the Podcast on iTunes right here.

Subscribe to the Everybody Hates Cleveland YouTube channel right here.

Check out the podcast, after the jump: Continue reading

Orbiting Cleveland: Appreciating the spectacle that is LeBron James and the Cavaliers

Orbiting

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Photo by Nathaniel Butler/NBAE via Getty Images

Perspective is everything. I gained a little bit of that Sunday.

Fifteen years ago, when I first fell in love in with the NBA, it was because of Allen Iverson.

Sure, I, like many other elementary school students at the time, proudly wore a Michael Jordan Chicago Bulls jersey incessantly throughout my early formative years.

M.J., I would tell you, was the greatest basketball player on the planet. He was the ultimate professional — a champion — and no one could top him.

But did I really and truly appreciate Jordan? I was, after all, just 11 years old when he played his final game with the Chicago Bulls.

Iverson was a different story though.

From the moment I witnessed his signature crossover, I was hooked. The tenacity, bullish attitude, competitiveness — I fell in love with every bit of it. Continue reading

A message from an ailing 76ers fan: It’s all your fault Cleveland!

mcw-76ersFrom all of us Sixers fans to you, the Cleveland Cavaliers: it’s all your fault.

Oh, you don’t know? Understandable. You’re on Cloud Nine now thanks to a resurgent squad that’s made your early-season dumpster fire seem like a distant memory. Kevin Love is getting the rock. Kyrie Irving is doing pretty much whatever he wants still, only it’s working now. Timofy “Named By Penny Hardaway’s Parents” Mozgov has played well enough to make the price Cleveland paid to acquire him look slightly less ridiculous. And J.R. Smith has swayed firmly to the “Dr. Jekyl” side of his personality, at least for this season. (Be warned, though: if Johnny Football can find debaucherous activity in Cleveland, so can J.R.)

We haven’t even mentioned human steamroller LeBron James morphing back into “Oh My God” LeBron since returning from a midseason maintenance break disguised as an injury. He’s even treating coach David Blatt like an actual adult now. Cleveland is making a beeline for, at minimum, the second seed in the East, and all is hunky-dory.

So we’ll forgive you for ignoring the plight of the Philadelphia semi-professional basketball franchise whose general manager just dealt away their supposed franchise point guard Michael Carter-Williams and their gobsmacking second-round standout K.J. McDaniels. In return, the team acquired more draft picks; the Biblical city of Canaan; and JaVale McGee, a government experiment to see if a gazelle crossbred with a puppy could learn to play basketball (it can’t). Continue reading