This State Farm® Commercial is the bane of my existence

Every once in a while there is a commercial that simply gets under my skin. And this State Farm® commercial is one.

And I guess falling into their trap, I am going to show you a commercial on my blog.

This commercial is shown CONSTANTLY on MLB Network… the channel that if my home was a Nielsen Family, you would think was the most popular network on TV.

I am not a State Farm® customer, and who knows? They might have a great insurance plan. But this ad is like a sesame seed stuck between my teeth, and I can’t look away when it is on.

So the least I can do is have you feel MY pain as well.

OK, let’s review all the things I hate about this commercial.

:00 – They are trying the “long tracking shot starting with a simple close up action” as if they are doing the Copacabana sequence in Goodfellas. Stop trying to impress us, Scorsese. You are selling car insurance. Besides, I don’t believe Squinty Tom Cruise looking guy is buying a hot dog… and you’ll see why later.

:03 – Squinty Tom Cruise looking guy says “Our real national pastime? Saving money.” Um REALLY? Is that what got us into this financial mess? A lot of people saving money and using their money wisely? Oh wait. The exact OPPOSITE is true.

:05 –Baseball people love their stats.” First of all, don’t condescend to me Squinty Tom Cruise looking guy! You are AT a baseball game. You are being seen on a baseball network. Don’t be that douchey “observing from a far… I’m not like these other people… I’m here ironically” a–hole. Also this line has no connection to the first line. He might as well say “Hot Dogs tend to come in buns. My aunt is named Martha.”

But it isn’t Squinty Tom Cruise looking guy’s fault. He’s just saying lines that some poor schmuck copy writer had to write. I am sure some client thought they were being super clever tying in “national pastime” and “stats” to the commercial.

Creative stuff should be left to creative people.

:07 – Squinty Tom Cruise looking guy is now the creepy guy eavesdropping onto a conversation… and rather smugly if I might add.

:09 – “I started bringing my lunch to work… $50 in my pocket.” Tell you what… I’ll put ANOTHER $50 in your pocket if you show me any conversation at a ballpark that sounds remotely like that. Two guys going to a day game aren’t talking about lunch or work. They are talking about the game or whether or not they have the nerve to talk to the hot girl sitting in the row in front of them.

Also, if these guys were so sensible about what they spend on lunch, then why the hell are they buying ball park concessions? Last time I checked, if you got your proverbial peanuts and Cracker Jack, you’ll be out that $50 you just saved on your lunches.

:11 –Here’s a good one…” Squinty Tom Cruise looking guy starts doing his hard sell for State Farm. “Oooo we’re so much better than Progressive and Geico” blah blah blah. Meanwhile he starts walking down to his section towards his seat.

Did you notice what he DIDN’T do? He didn’t get any condiments for his hot dog. No relish? No mustard? No ketchup? No onions?

“Nah, I just take my hot dog with NOTHING on it!”
Bull sh*t! NOBODY eats a hot dog like that! Which goes to my original point that Squinty Tom Cruise looking guy was just buying a hot dog to try to fit in with us “baseball people” while in reality he is, in his mind, spitting on us.

:15 – Woman fan with fake generic hat interrupts his talk into the camera, which in a way disrupts the whole “Greek Chorus” universe that we have set up.

Squinty Tom Cruise looking guy talks to us but nobody else sees that he is talking to us… but somehow woman fan with fake generic hat can also KIND OF talk to us.

Then she says… something. I honestly don’t have a clue what she said. I’ve seen this commerical 4,392,113 times in the last 2 months. And for all I know she is speaking the Basque language spoken only in regions of Northeastern Spain.

I just watched it again… nope. No clue. Maybe she is speaking in tongues.

:23 – Check out the guy just behind Squinty Tom Cruise looking guy on screen left. The guy who also has a fakey “B” hat on and sipping a drink and pause it at 0:23.

He is staring RIGHT INTO THE CAMERA. And his eyes are wide open. Which means one of two things:

1) He is a ham of a background actor and is calling attention to himself… and besides his staring into the camera, it was the best overall take and they decided to use it anyway.


2) Only characters wearing the fake “B” hat can penetrate the 4th wall and join Squinty Tom Cruise looking guy in communicating with us.

:25 – So Squinty Tom Cruise looking guy stops in the middle of the aisle to tell us how awesome State Farm is. And guess what? Fake “B” hat guy, his girlfriend and everyone else trying to get to their seat are stuck waiting for Squinty Tom Cruise looking guy to wrap up his sales pitch.

Seriously, if you ever have been to a ball park, the guy who stops in the middle of a busy aisle is universally hated. People behind have all sorts of concessions and chances are they missed an inning waiting in line to get some lousy food. The last thing they want to do is have to wait while some condescending prick tells us about car insurance while holding a hot dog with no condiments.

OK, was this post excessive?
Perhaps, but I will admit it feels good to get this off of my chest. I can’t be the only person annoyed by this ad.

And let the record show, I have nothing personal against Squinty Tom Cruise looking guy. I’m sure you are a nice guy and a talented working actor. It drives me bonkers that you were cast essentially because someone said “You know, if you squint, he LOOKS like Tom Cruise.”

OK, back to baseball.

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Welcome home Rich Hill

Boston native Rich Hill made his Red Sox debut today and it looked like a true mop up roll. They had blown a 4-2 lead and the newly acquired lefty finished up the 7th inning facing one batter.

Naturally he got the win.

Now people who hate the win stat will say “Was throwing to that one batter worth a win while David Price and CC Sabathia threw brilliantly yesterday and neither got a win?”

And I would respond “Shove it… he’s a native of Boston who got a win in his first Red Sox appearance. There is some poetry there.”

There’s also poetry in Jed Lowrie’s bat coming back and Big Papi getting homer #30 and closing in on RBI #100 in a season where he looked like he was through.

And guess what?
As long as the Sox are not eliminated, I will update this tally.


April 4 – 9-7 win against Yankees (On Opening Night, the Red Sox overcome a 5-1 Yankee lead with a game tying HR by Pedroia and a go ahead passed ball.)
April 10 – 8-3 win against Kansas City (Beckett out pitches Zack Greinke and nearly gets decapitated by a line drive.)
April 14 – 6-3 win in Minnesota. (Okajima gets Morneau to pop up with the bases loaded in the 7th and Papelbon wiggled out of a 9th inning jam.)
April 20 – 7-6 win against Texas. (Darnell McDonald introduces himself to Boston with an 8th inning game tying homer and a walk off hit in the 9th.)
April 21 – 8-7 win against Texas. (The Red Sox were down 4-0 early only to win it on Youk’s 2 out 11th inning double.)
April 23 – 4-3 win against Baltimore. (The Sox blow a 3-0 lead but win it on Adrian Beltre’s bases loaded walk.)
April 24 – 7-6 win against Baltimore. (The Red Sox score 6 in the 7th and hold off a late Baltimore comeback attempt.)
April 26 – 13-12 win at Toronto. (The Sox blow an early 5-0 lead but hang on for dear life in a slugfest.)
April 27 – 2-1 win at Toronto. (Buchholz holds the Jays down for 8 but it takes a bases loaded walk in the 8th to go ahead.)
April 28 – 2-0 win at Toronto. (Daniel Bard wiggles out of trouble in the 8th to help Lester shut down the Blue Jays and finish the sweep.)
May 4 – 5-1 win against the Angels. (Juan Rivera misplays Jeremy Hermedia’s 2 out flyball into a 3 run game winning double)
May 5 – 3-1 win against the Angels. (Papi and Beltre homer and the Sox hang on despite squandering many potential rallies.)
May 6 – 11-6 win against the Angels. (Dice-K puts the Red Sox in a 4-0 hole before they even bat. The Sox bats respond.)
May 10 – 7-6 win against the Blue Jays. (Sox blow an early 2-0 lead, take advantage of some errors and hang on.)
May 18 – 7-5 win in New York. (Sox climb back from a 5-1 hole. A day after hitting a walk off homer, Marcus Thames drops a fly ball to start the winning rally for the Sox.)
May 25 – 2-0 win in Tampa. (Big Papi supplies all the offense as Papelbon wiggles out of a 9th inning jam.)
May 29 – 1-0 win against Kansas City. (Zack Greinke holds the Sox to one run, but they make it stick)
June 1 – 9-4 win against Oakland. (Lackey puts the Sox in a 4-0 hole but Victor Martinez goes 5-5 and the Sox score 9 runs late.)
June 2 – 6-4 win against Oakland. (Dice-K puts the Sox in a 3-0 hole before they come to bat, but come back thanks to Papi’s homer.)
June 8 – 3-2 win at Cleveland. (With Papelbon unavailable, Okajima, Ramirez and Bard hang on to make a winner out of Wakefield.)
June 19 – 5-4 win against the Dodgers. (Sox make 4 errors, blow a late lead and let Manny homer, but they win it in the bottom of the 9th on a Pedroia single.)
June 20 – 2-0 win against the Dodgers. (Dodgers blow an early bases loaded scoring opportunity and allow Buchholz to settle down for the win.)
June 24 – 13-11 win in Colorado. (The bullpen lets up 9 runs in 5 innings, but Pedroia homers 3 times including with 2 outs in the 10th to win a wild and stupid game.)
June 26 – 4-2 win in San Francisco. (An injury running the bases takes Buchholz out in the second, but the bullpen and Mike Cameron’s bat and glove win the game.)
July 2 – 3-2 win against the Orioles. (Wakefield gets the win and J.D. Drew homers twice, but it is Nava’s 2 out 8th inning bloop that landed between three fielders that breaks the tie.)
July 11 – 3-2 win in Toronto. (Jesse Litch took a no hitter into the 6th but back to back homers by McDonald and Big Papi win the game.)
July 17 – 3-2 win against Texas. (Youk ties the game in the 9th off of Cliff Lee and wins it in the 11th with a sacrifuce fly)
July 19 – 2-1 win at Oakland. (Beltre homers and Dice-K holds on to the win.)
July 22 – 8-6 win at Seattle. (Lackey lost a no hit bid in the 8th and the Mariners scored 5 in the 9th to tie before the Sox won in 13)
July 23 – 2-1 win at Seattle. (Bill Hall’s barely fair homer gives the Sox the win on Beckett’s return.)
July 26 – 6-3 win in Anaheim. (Papi homers twice and Buccholz and Papelbon each wiggle out of jams to get the win.)
July 27 – 4-2 win in Anaheim. (Jed Lowrie’s 2 run 7th inning double gives the Sox the lead and makes a winner out of John Lackey. )
July 28 – 7-3 win in Anaheim. (Youk ties the game in the 7th with a homer and Scutaro wins it with an 8th inning grand slam to sweep the Angels.)
July 31 – 5-4 win against Detrout. (Big Papi hits a 3 run walk off double to crush the Tigers in the 9th.)
August 1 – 4-3 win against Detroit. (Sox blow a 3 run 9th inning lead but the Tigers throw away a 9th inning sacrifice bunt to give the Sox the win.
August 3 – 3-1 win against Cleveland. (Lowell homers on his first pitch back and plays sparkling defense to preserve the win.)
August 6 – 6-3 win in Yankee Stadium. (Cervelli drops an easy pop up, setting up the winning rally for the Sox.)
August 9 – 2-1 win in Yankees Stadium. (Marcus Thames’ bid for a game tying homer hits the top of the wall as Lester, Bard and Papelbon hold on for the win.)
August 10 – 7-5 win in Toronto. (The Sox blow a late lead but Mike Lowell puts them on top for good with an 8th inning homer.)
August 14 – 3-1 win in Texas. (Lester wiggles out of jams and a botched hit and run play kills a potential 9th inning Texas rally.)
August 18 – 7-5 win against the Angels. (The Sox fell behind 5-2, but came back with Beltre’s homer, a wild pitch, a hit by pitch and some great Nava defense)
August 21 – 5-4 win against Toronto. (Jed Lowrie hits a walk off 11th inning homer, masking a come back rally by the Jays against Dice-K.)
August 23 – 6-3 win against Seattle. (Scuatro drives in the go ahead runs and Lackey throws a gritty 8 innings)
August 25 – 5-3 win against Seattle. (Beckett throws a shutout into the 7th and the Sox rally for 4 in the 6th in the rain and fog, including a strange RBI single off the pitcher by Beltre.)
August 27 – 3-1 win at Tampa Bay. (Victor Martinez homers twice and Papelbon wiggles out of a 9th inning jam as Lester out duels David Price.)
September 1 – 9-6 win in Baltimore. (A 6 run seventh inning uprising turns an early Orioles lead into a Sox win.)
September 2 – 6-4 win in Baltimore. (The Sox score 5 in the second and hang on for dear life.)
September 12 – 5-3 win in Oakland. (J. D. sparks a comeback win and Beckett gets the win.)
September 14 – 9-6 win in Seattle. (The Sox come back in the 8th thanks to Ortiz’s 30th homer.)


April 6 – 6-4 loss against the Yankees. (Scutaro’s error leads to the winning run.)
April 7 – 3-1 loss against the Yankees. (Sox leave the winning run on in the 9th only to lose on Granderson’s 10th inning homer)
April 9 – 4-3 loss in Kansas City. (Bard coughs up the lead, denying Wakefield a win.)
April 17 – 3-1 loss to Tampa Bay. (The Sox can’t score with the bases loaded and nobody out in the 11th… lost it in the 12th.)
April 17 – 6-5 loss to Tampa Bay. (The Red Sox comeback falls a run short, leaving two on in the 8th)
April 25 – 7-6 loss to Baltimore. (The Sox blow a 4-1 lead, leave the winning run on second in the 9th, let up 3 in the 10th and could only score 2 in the bottom of the 10th)
April 30 – 5-4 loss in Baltimore. (Tejada ties the game with a 2 out 8th inning homer and wins it with a bloop in the 10th)
May 1 – 12-9 loss in Baltimore. (Dice-K and Wakes get pounded, wasting 2 homers from Ortiz and an early 4-1 lead.)
May 2 – 3-2 loss in Baltimore. (Varitek is thrown at home trying to score with 2 outs in the 8th. Sox get swept in the 10th.
May 12 – 3-2 loss against the Blue Jays. (The Sox rally in the 9th comes up a run short and Kevin Gregg gets an ugly save.)
May 15 – 7-6 loss in Detroit. (The Sox blow a 6-1 lead and lose it on a 2 out bases loaded walk in the 12th.)
May 17 – 11-9 loss in New York. (The Sox come all the way back from a 5-0 first inning hole to take a 9-7 lead in the 9th… but Papelbon lets up a 2 run game tying shot to A-Rod and a 2 run walk off shot to Marcus Thames.)
May 21 – 5-1 loss in Philadelphia. (Big Papi’s bid for a game tying 9th inning grand slam is caught at the warning track.)
May 274-3 loss to Kansas City. (Dice-K walks the go ahead run in and lets another score on a wild pitch as the Royals no name bullpen shut down the Hot Sox.)
May 28 – 12-5 loss to Kansas City. (Sox blow a 3-0 first inning lead to be blown out in Fenway.)
June 3 – 9-8 loss to Oakland. (Sox lose a slugfest where two Boston runners are thrown out at home.)

June 6 – 4-3 loss in Baltimore. (Sox rally to tie the game in the 9th only to lose it on a small ball rally in the 11th.)
June 10 – 8-7 loss in Cleveland. (Sox blow an early 5-0 lead and then after rallying in the 9th to take the lead coughed it up with 2 outs in the bottom of the 9th)
June 13 – 5-3 loss to Philadelphia. (Sox 9th inning rally comes up short)
June 22 – 2-1 loss in Colorado. (The Sox waste a solid Lester start and twice leave the bases loaded.)
June 23 – 8-6 loss in Colorado. (The Sox batter Ubaldo Jimenez around but Papelbon lets up 2 homers in the 9th to lose it.)
June 25 – 5-4 loss in San Francisco. (The Sox strand 11 runners in the last 4 innings wasting a solid Wakefield performance.)
July 5 – 6-5 loss in Tampa Bay. (Sox spoil a 5-1 lead and 2 homers by Eric Patterson when Dice-K and the bullpen couldn’t hold down the Rays.)
July 6 – 3-2 loss in Tampa Bay. (Sox bats go dead and Kevin Youkilis goes down to injury.)
July 7 – 6-4 loss in Tampa Bay. (Matt Garza comes out of the pen, shuts down a late rally as the Rays sweep the Sox.)

July 10 – 9-5 loss in Toronto. (The Sox give Lackey an early 5-3 lead that he couldn’t hold.)
July 18 – 4-2 loss to the Rangers. (Lester loses a rare game at home that included a Rangers steal of home.)
July 20 – 5-4 loss in Oakland. (The Sox go up 4-0 after 2 but don’t score again and lose it in the 10th)
July 21 – 6-4 loss in Oakland. (Buchholz can’t hold on to an early lead as the Sox lose the series.)
July 24 – 5-1 loss in Seattle. (Lester’s perfect game is foiled and the Red Sox bats die.)
July 25 – 4-2 loss in Seattle. (Okajima misplays a sacrifice bunt and the Mariners rally in the 8th to win.)
July 30 – 6-5 loss to Detroit. (Papi’s grand slam makes it a 1 run game in the 9th but Cameron strikes out looking with the winning runs on base.)
August 2 – 6-5 loss to Cleveland. (Beltre drives in 5 runs by himself but the Red Sox leave the tying run on base with Big Papi on deck.)
August 12 – 6-5 loss in Toronto. (The Jays score 4 in the 9th inning to avoid the sweep.)
August 13 – 10-9 loss in Texas. (Beckett can’t hold an early 8-1 lead as the Sox lose in 11.)
August 15 – 7-3 loss in Texas. (Young’s homer breaks open a tight game.)
August 25 – 4-2 loss to Seattle. (The Sox knock out King Felix but can’t score on the bullpen.)
August 28 – 3-2 loss in Tampa. (Buchholz was wonderful but Upton’s homer in the 8th tied it and Dan Johnson’s homer in the 10th was the winner)
August 29 – 5-3 loss in Tampa. (Dan Johnson once again sinks the Sox with a late game RBI single)

August 31 – 5-2 loss in Baltimore. (Beckett pitches well but 2 8th inning homers sink the Sox.)
September 4 – 3-1 loss to Chicago. (Manny acts contrite, Konerko gets 3 hits and Danks shuts down a lifeless Sox team.)
September 4 – 3-1 loss to Chicago. (Nope, it isn’t a typo. They lost twice in the same day by the same score.)
September 5 – 7-5 loss to Chicago. (Papelbon implodes as the Red Sox blow a 5-3 lead in the 9th thanks to 5 ninth inning walks.)
September 11 – 4-3 loss in Oakland. (Lackey pitches well but the A’s rally in the 7th, highlighted by a Rajai Davis triple just out of Ryan Kalish’s reach.)

Up to +5.

It’s too bad Rich Hill was acquired too late to be put on the playoff roster.
(Hey, I’m being optimistic!)

Go for the sweep tomorrow!

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Hey! The Giants threw a one hitter!

Seriously, when a team in the heat of a pennant race keeps their archrival down to 1 hit an no earned runs, you’ve got to be happy, right?

Oh wait…
The Giants offense went away again and made Vin Scully mention Clayton Kershaw and Fernando Valenzuela in the same breath.

And oh yeah, suddenly the Padres remembered how to win.
Find those bats, Giants. Visit BALCO if you have to.

There’s a pennant to win and 0 runs won’t cut it.

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