Cub Den Crushes Spent Pen Once Again


October 21, 2016 by Shannon Michael Smith

The lack of starting depth, a spent pen, and the inability to hit left-handed pitching has doomed the Dogs to the verge of elimination. With Liberatore gone, the load falls on Baez and Blanton…who look more exhausted than whores after a Shriner’s Convention in Reno…and so, once again, the Dodgers hand their postseason hopes to Clayton Kershaw.

If Clayton Kershaw received a teardrop tattoo after every playoff failure, he’d resemble a Juggalo. He’s had a great run this year, but, even if he wins on Saturday, the likelihood of two Dodger road wins in Goat City is…unlikely.

Cue the rascalsoftheravine paragraph about how this is all the front office’s fault, the disastrous starting staff they assembled has crumbled to two…oh, don’t worry dear readers, the call for their heads will resume next week…

Even if a miracle in Chi-Town occurred, do you honestly think this broken pitching staff could work their way past the Indians? That’s a heap big no…

All the firewater in the world won’t drown the sorrows of another NLCS wash out for Los Dogs. Dodger fans were fed up going into this season…anything but a World Series appearance will be another sad failure.

Will Clay-ton unleash hate on the north side nancies? Will Kyle induce bile from Blue Crew stewers? Will rascalsoftheravine turn green after an obscene mujahedeen? Seen! Until next time, mirth-seekers!!!

Dodgers Disemboweled by Cub Grubs


October 20, 2016 by Shannon Michael Smith

While The Terrible Teen may have enjoyed “the beautiful experience”, we sure as hell didn’t, as Urias coughed up four runs in 3.2 innings worth of work…beautiful.

Stripling also stank it up to the tune of four runs as well…all-in-all, Los Dogs’ pitching staff gave up ten runs in the Game Four loss…Game Five looms large, as the series heads back to Chicago on Saturday…Los Dogs will be all but finished with a loss tonight.

Pampered scribes were dancing in the streets after the Dodger loss last night. Did you see the smiles on those faces after the game? Gone are the funeral tones. “We’re back,” say the suck-up scribes…eeesshhh.

The Dodgers have no choice but to roll out the hideous Kenta Maeda tonight. He’s been awful this postseason…this puts all the pressure on Kershaw to win on the road in Game 6…wonderful. The fact that the Dodgers have gotten this far with a two-man rotation (Kershaw, Hill) is a miracle…

Lester the Molester will take the hill for the crusty Cubs tonight.

Will Maeda make merry with Miguel Montero? Will he rankle Rizzo, Ross, and Russell? Will  Lester the Molester pest Puig and Pederson? Will rascalsoftheravine become a zine that blasts Queen??? If we did, it would be “Cool Cat” or “Back Chat!” All hail Mack and his production attack!!!! Until next time, mirth-seekers!

Dodgers Drub Cubs, Silence Schlubs


October 19, 2016 by Shannon Michael Smith

The Dodgers have mystified the baseball world. Last night’s 6-0 Cub drub had many-a dopey anchor reaching for their hankies.

“How can WE fix this,” moan the pampered scribes, through teary-eyes…they give the Dodgers no credit. This is a CUBS collapse, as far as they’re concerned…as if winning over 100 regular season games guarantees you a bling-ring at the end of the year…balderdash!

You can’t fix it with your funeral tones, ill-shills, Los Dogs are playing with house money, and there’s a goat that’s waiting in the wings…

Cubs fans that dared venture to Dodger Stadium (google Brian Stow) to haughtily cheer on their “team of destiny” were in for a shock. Beefy brat-heads stumbled out the Ravine last night in a daze, sure that they’d witness an Arrieta A-Bomb, instead Hill hurled six scoreless shockers to silence Chavez tourists.

Blanton (back in the saddle), Dayton, and Jansen mopped up nicely.

Grandal grooved a goner in the 4th (only because there was a questionable 2-2 call, according to scummy scribes, why give Grandal any credit?) Seager had three hits and an RBI, Pederson drove in a run, and Kringle added a little Christmas magic in the sixth with a solo shot that had Santa doing the samba all the way down Vin Scully Ave.

Hey, this thing is FAR from over. It probably will come down to a Game 7, at least a 6. The fact, however, is that if the Dodgers win one more game, it’ll be the most NLCS games they’ve won since ’88.

Fit-to-be-tied freakazoid, John Lackey, will get the start for the Cubs tonight. The Terrible Teen will take the hill for Los Dogs.

Will tacky Lackey chew wacky tobaccy in the sacky? Will the Terrible Teen eat Jimmy Dean with Ellery Queen? Will rascalsoftheravine make the scene with brazen bream? Stay tuned!!! Until tomorrow, mirth-seekers!!!

King Kersh Commands Cubs in Windy City Win


October 17, 2016 by Shannon Michael Smith

The cries of a bleating goat could be heard faintly in the Chicago night…Clayton Kershaw “shook off the ghosts” of postseason past with a seven inning masterpiece that helped even the series with the Cubs, 1-1.

Jansen’s six-out save slaughtered Chi-town schemes as the series now heads back to Los Angeles.

Hey, did you hear the funeral they broadcast last night? Still think that every pampered scribe isn’t rooting for the Cubs? Man, those broadcasters were dejected! It’s another case of Midwest = good, West Coast = bad. If the Midwest is so great, then why do those creeps move here in droves? GO BACK!

If the Dodgers truly want to serve up some Goats Head Soup, they’ll have to get past Arrieta, the Garret Dillahunt lookalike. How many men has Arrieta gunned down on the mean streets of the Wrigley Field? Too many to count…

Rich Hill will take the hill for Los Dogs on Tuesday. We already squawked about Arrieta…

Will Hill heave ill-will to chill bold bats that kill? Will Jake the snake play pat-a-cake or pound a pickle milkshake? Will rascalsoftheravine forgive Jeff Fisher for not kicking the fiel—–no, we’re not going there…until next time, mirth-seekers!

Wa Wa Wigout! Dogs Knee Nats in Nuts


October 14, 2016 by Shannon Michael Smith

What a wild night in Wa Wa! Kershaw the closer??? Jansen the set-up man??? Kringle the clutch??? Well, we know Kringle’s Captain Clutch, his batting average  (.444 in 44 P.A.) in the postseason (career leaders) is numero uno.

In case you missed it, Los Dogs beat the Nats in Game Five last night to advance to the NLCS. The Dodgers have only faced the Cubs once in postseason play (can that be right?) We remember Game Three (Dodgers swept) of the 2008 NLDS, the parking lot at the Ravine rocked for hours after the game. Los Dogs hadn’t been to the NLCS since ’88…the ill Phills sent ‘em packing (ditto for 2009.)

Ya miss Ellis now? How about that Ruiz run!!! Pederson’s jack in the seventh was glorious! Geez, we sound like that old man in the Dodgers’ radio ads (“Kershaw was lights out!”) Okay, whew, we’ve calmed down…Saturday in Chi-Town (city of broads and shoulders) is on the horizon, the entire universe (except So-Cal) will be rooting against Los Dogs…pampered scribes think the Dodgers have zero chance…L.A. will play underdog to the Cubbies, and Bill Murray will don his goat t-shirt as Los Dogs play with house money.

Did we think any of this would happen? No. When you hear quotes from the players like “no one believed we could get here, they’ve doubted us all season”, they’re talking bitter creeps like us. We didn’t think the Dodgers would make the playoffs, let alone win the first round…maybe we should predict a washout in Chicago so that the Dodgers will get to the World Series. The Dodgers won’t get past the Cubs. See! That wasn’t so hard!

Here come the “Hollywood” references by the pampered scribes…they are so freaking stupid and lazy…Hollywood seems a million miles away from anything that happens at the Ravine…do all these bozos think that the beach runs up to Hollywood and that the Walk of Fame ends at Dodger Stadium? There are few celebs at these games. We’d hardly count Dennis Gilbert, Mary Hart, and Larry King as trendy Hollywood scenesters (but we love them anyway.)

We can’t get into pitching alliteration as we don’t know if Maeda will start for sure yet (the bullpen will be well rested by then, Los Dogs will certainly need them to support the ultimate Five-Inning Fanny, Go-Go Maeda.) It looks like Lester the molester will get the start for Chi-Town.

Will the ghost of Harry Carey descend upon Wrigley and get wiggly? Will Bill Murray perform unnatural acts with a goat in a moat? Will the North Side Nine dine on brine? Stay tuned! Until next time, mirth-seekers!!!

Dogs Stay Alive for Game 5


October 12, 2016 by Shannon Michael Smith

After a wobbly first inning, King Kersh settled down on his throne and beheaded eleven batters…a welcome site to those who had witnessed postgame meltdowns in the past. Jansen? He remained steady and brought the hammer…one day after getting keelhauled by those needlin’ Nationals in the ninth. Final score? L.A. 6, Washington 5

Sadly, we’ll have to wait until Thursday to watch Los Dogs try to squash those pesky Nats…L.A. fans will be hovering around their televisions with Texas Fly Swatters, anxious to see Washington’s insects put down.

Big ups (we did not just write that) to Chase Utley, not only for his game-winning single yesterday, but for his performance all season. Most thought Utley would ride the bench and provide some solid D occasionally. Who could have imagined the spicy season he’s had…138 games? Let’s hear it for the Prince of Pasadena!

We should mention that Gonzo woke up from his postseason snooze with a two-run shot in the first inning, Los Dogs will need his power against Max Scherzer, a man whose name belongs on a movie poster from 1936…THE FLYING WILLIES, A MAX SCHERZER PRODUCTION!!!

How ‘bout that game in Fran Fran last night? Battery chucks were gagging on their bread bowls as the Cubs rallied in the ninth to end the supposed “even-number-year-magic” (give us a break with that crap.) We’ll admit, though, we would have liked to see Los Dogs and the hated ones collide in a NLCS (even though the Cubs are destined to choke and would probably be a better match up.)

Rich Hill will more than likely start for the Dodgers. The Terrible Teen is also a possibility. We’ll save our asinine arm alliteration for tomorrow’s turbulent tawdriness when the pitchers are picked (geez, we can’t hold off for ten seconds…)

Until then, mirth-seekers!

Nats Nuke Dismal Dodgers, 8-3


October 10, 2016 by Shannon Michael Smith

The Dodgers continued their sprint towards another October washout with an 8-3 loss to the Nats today at the Ravine. Sadly, first round exits are becoming par for the course for Los Dogs, a team that hasn’t had a decent playoff run since 1988.

The pampered scribes picked Wash to waste L.A. today, and right they were, although, they actually called Maeda “the Japanese Koufax” during the broadcast…yeah, right, ol’ “Koufax” coughed up four runs in the third inning to put the Nats up ahead for good.

Ruiz hit a two-run blast in the fifth to make it 4-3. The Nats added four more in the ninth off Jansen. Los Dogs’ unclutch bats wilted in the late innings, big shocker…

It’s autumn! That time of year when the colors turn to brown, orange, red, or purple…we’re talking about Bob Costas’ hair, of course…at this point he may just want to go X-Men and lay down a frosty white for winter, Apres-Ski A Go-Go!

Tonight’s Arrieta/Mad Bum battle should be one for the…bums.

All kidding aside, this should be a barnburner…wouldn’t it be great if after nine scoreless innings, the two maniacs concede to abandon the pitching and decide the outcome based on a one-on-one knife fight? Maybe it’s just us…

Tomorrow Los Dogs will throw in the towel by tossing Julio Urias out on the hill, one can imagine he’ll be obliterated by Washington swinging. The funeral begins at 2:00 PM.

Will Urias urge Uruguay to use underwater underwear? Okay, the Nats haven’t announced the starter that will finish the Dodgers tomorrow, so we can’t blow you away with idiotic alliteration about him…prepare for our season-ending report card in a couple of days (it ain’t gonna be pretty) until then, mirth-seekers!

Lo-Blow Dooms Dogs in D.C.


October 10, 2016 by Shannon Michael Smith

Jose Lobaton’s shot heard round the world came in the fourth inning. The three-run blast from lowly lo-lo (Lobaton barely made the playoff roster) dented Dodger dreams of a D.C. take two…final score: Nats 5 Dodgers 2. Los Dogs will trot out the ultimate Five-Inning Fanny, Kenta Maeda, this afternoon for Game Three.

Corey Seager has decided that he’s going to hit a home run in every playoff game he participates in. We just had a vision of Chris Berman shouting “Corey Seager and his Silver Bullet Band goes yard!” Do they not have hair care people on the East Coast? Is Berman just cheap or disillusioned or both? Does he have stock in Ron Popeil’s GLH?? For the uninformed, GLH is spray-on “Great Looking Hair” (see attached pic.) Berman should just go Hunger Games, whip out a pink wig, and abandon the Ronco products…

Will mighty Maeda mince Murphy into mini-Mounds? Will Gio Gonzalez get grooved by Grandal and Gonzo? Will rascalsoftheravine recover from a Rams ruin by the ill Bills? Stay tuned!!! Until tomorrow, mirth-seekers!!!!

Kershaw Cleans Up Washington, Angers Obama


October 7, 2016 by Shannon Michael Smith

FS1 rolled out a bizarre gallery of freaks for their pre-game slimefest…Pete Rose in a Willy Wonka getup, Alex Rodriguez (who appeared to have Cindy Brady’s TV-ITIS), Tonya Harding, The Amazing Criswell, and several other grotesque horrors.

They all weighed in wonderfully on the outcome of the Nats/Dogs drunken punch-up in the nebulous Nation of Ulysses, Washington, D.C.

“Take your powder, and take your gun, report to General Washington!”

Seager smoked a screaming solo shot in the first to bring the Dogs up, 1-0. Shertz smashed Kringle’s hand in the next AB to the happiness of that fanfreak behind home plate (did you see that creepy Macbeth-looking witch nodding with glee??? A CURSE UPON HER DEPRAVED SOUL!!!)

All demons aside, Los Dogs’ confidence level soared with that early run, FEAR OF SHUT OUT all but dissipated with Corey’s ka-boom. Kringle had his revenge on Satan’s daughter in the stands…he smoked a two-run jack in the third to bring the Dodgers up, 4-0.

King Kersh coughed up three before he was swapped out for the ultra-reliable Blanton, who was jobbed on some Frank Underwood (Devil’s Ham?) driven-calls before he got the heave-ho in the sixth…

Jansen sprayed Caribbean fury upon the hapless Nats in the 8th and 9th…final score, Dodgers 4 Nats 3…

Flippant Fran Fran refuses to frooom froom—we’ll have more on the Cubs’ kibooossshhh on their dreams tomorrow…

Until then, mirth-seekers!!!!

Autumn Action and Postseason Palaver


October 4, 2016 by Shannon Michael Smith

“I’m Lester the Nightfly, hello Baton Rouge…”

Ahhh, autumn is here…we can tell because of the avalanche of pumpkin spice hair care accessories, deodorant sticks, staples, car batteries, and our favorite, pumpkin spice wart removal kits.

The pampered scribes are laying out some heavy predictions for the playoffs…if you tune into the ___ Network, you might hear such gems as this…

“What the Dodgers need to do is find a way to get the bats going…if they can score some runs, and their starters can hold things down until the bullpen takes over, they could win this series…”

We don’t know whether to laugh or cry sometimes. All jiving aside, Los Dogs will win at least one of these games in DC…if they can just score some runs and get to the bullp—hey, wait a minute!

We’ve received emails from some Worried Willies out there…we hear you, peanut gallery, we don’t like the fact that the Dodgers lost the last five of six, but if they had swept in Fran Fran, we’d be worried that the four-day rest would cool them off…

That’s all fine, you say, but who does rascalsoftheravine listen to when the leaves start tumbling outside? What do they play when the light rain begins to tap against the windows of their shabby headquarters? Well, it hasn’t rained in over three years in Los Angeles, so there’s no hope of any weather change, but the trees do turn color and lose their leaves, and we DO play music to mix our spiked cider to…like this:


Duke Ellington Money Jungle (1963)

According to “Money Jungle: 50 Years After the Summit” Ellington popped by producer Alan Douglas’ house one fall day in 1962 and said that he’d like to record a piano-based album as a trio. Douglas recommended Charles Mingus, who then insisted on Max Roach on the skins. Like many piano-based jazz albums of the time, it evokes acorns and flasks of brandy (probably due to Vince Guaraldi’s magic in C.B.’s seasonal toons—) with all the elegance that Ellington can muster.

“The generational difference was strengthened by Ellington being a guiding figure for the other two, who were born when Ellington was becoming an influence on music.” One can certainly feel Ellington’s fatherly presence over the wily Mingus and Roach (“Fleurette Africaine” is a good example of how he reels in their thunder gracefully), Ellington’s guiding hand seems to ease their fevered tempers (Mingus stomped out of the session at one point, pissed at Roach’s playing…which is funny, since he recommended Roach…Ellington stopped him and talked him into coming back to the studio) although not completely (“On the track “Money Jungle”…”Mingus pluck the strings with his fingernails, Roach fires up the music with polyrhythms…it represents the apex of the group’s inner tension.”)

The result is a must-listen for the last three months of the year…


Miles Davis Workin’ with the Miles Davis Quintet (1959)

Culled from two sessions in 1956 (May 11th and October 26th) this crisp autumn delight bops along with class and is a must-listen every year at rascalsoftheravine headquarters.

John Coltrane on tenor, Red Garland on piano (buy any of his trio albums from the late ‘50s for more autumn fun), Paul Chambers on bass, and Philly Joe Jones on drums support the Prince of Darkness on this clean October swinger.

It opens with a pretty version of “It Never Entered My Mind” from the Rogers and Hart musical, Higher and Higher. “Ahmad’s Blues” features Garland’s prowess on the ivories. A fingerpopping version of “In Your Own Sweet Way” by Brubeck compliments the album as well.

On a glorious personal note, a rascalsoftheravine staffer was turned on to this record by a friend as they waited to go into a Jack Jones concert at De Anza College in October of 1987. Oh yeah.


Chico Hamilton The Chico Hamilton Special (1961)

Louis Gutierrez from The Three O’ Clock turned us onto this album back when we shared a loft in downtown L.A. (early ‘90s?) and it has been a fave ever since.

Allmusic says “This would be the last album in Hamilton’s famous string of cello groups before the drummer changed directions…essential music.”

The album features Charles Lloyd on alto and flute, Nate Gershman on cello, Harry Pope on guitar, Robert Haynes on bass, and Chico on drums, of course.

There’s a touch of the spy here, but it’s autumn alright, and it’s definitely in New York. “Autumn Leaves” conjures up a boozy, cloudy afternoon in Don Draper’s office as we watch the girls go by. Lloyd’s flute skitters along like the leaves on a Central Park sidewalk and will have you wishing for a spiced rum at the Tavern on the Green. Don’t forget the cinnamon swizzle.


Wynton Marsalis Think of One (1983)

This rascalsoftheravine staffer played this cassette exclusively when he learned to drive in the ‘80s. It’s our favorite of the early Marsalis albums (Black Codes from the Underground is a close second) and is still spun today by our swinging staff.

Wynton’s bro, Branford, plays sax (alto, tenor and soprano), Kenny Kirkland commands the keys, “Tain” Watts beats the skins, and Phil Bowler (not W.M.’s usual guy) plays bass.

Marsalis was 22 years old when he released this Grammy winning smoker. The title of the album comes from the Monk track that he covers, “Think of One.” Our fave is “Knozz-Moe-King”, an original, up tempo sizzler that Marsalis often used as a recurring theme live. He’d play about four different versions of it throughout his set.

Kenny Kirkland’s “Fuchsia” is a beautiful piece, Branford Marsalis’ solo is full of multi-moods, from the sad and lonely blues of New Orleans, to Coltrane’s soaring soul.  You might remember Branford and Kirkland’s brilliant playing from Sting’s first two solo albums and tours (Dream of the Blue Turtles, Nothing Like the Sun.)

 So…core out those apples and fill ‘em full of whisky, construct a scarecrow made of Old Grand Dad bottles, bake an apple pie in the shape of a baseball, and fill those corncob pipes with pumpkin spice cause the MLB playoffs are here!!!!

Until tomorrow, mirth-seekers!!!