Okay, so Division play is winding down and most of the Playoff teams have been decided . If your team isn’t one of them who you gonna cheer for? I mean, what’s a girl to do? Personally, I’m going to be hollering for the Los Angeles Dodgers. I know, I know, I’m a Giants fan and I said I wouldn’t. Go figure. But hear me out because there’s some logic to it.
If your team is beaten by another team and that team makes the Playoff’s, what happens if they’re knocked out early? It probably means that your team “really” sucked. If, what if, on the other hand, the team that beat the socks out of you for the Division, goes on to win the Pennant? It means that you were probably beaten by a really good team, a team that’s better than 14 other teams. So now your team isn’t looking so bad.
And what if, by some miracle of a chance, that team goes on to win the World Series. Then you can stand up really proud and say you were beaten by the best team in baseball this year. And really, there’s some honor in that don’t you think?
But, if the Dodgers get whacked out of post season early we can always blame it on that little pipsqueak, Yasiel Puig, and not on the fact they’re a better team than we are. I know Puig’s good, well, really good, but he IS just a rookie and a bit of a smart aleck at that. And if they don’t do well, maybe we could also attribute it to Brian Wilson’s whining (think Larry Baer). Or to another 19-3 thrashing. I mean think of the options available if the Dodgers don’t produce in post-season. Just saying …..any way you look at it the Giants still come out smelling like a rose!
And you’ve got to hand it to the kids. They managed to stay out of the cellar (depending on the final three games to be determined) and at the end of a grueling, injury-filled season they’re wearing their last year’s World Series rings with smiles on their faces realizing the irony of it all. Baseball. You gotta love it.
“Congratulations to the AL Champion Detroit Tigers and the NL Champion San Francisco Giants!”
The Ship means “Championship” at least that’s what Sergio Romo told us back in 2010. This is going to be fun!
The Tigers posted a regular season record of 88 Wins and 74 Losses and ended up beating the socks off the New York Yankees, a team with 95 Wins and 67 Losses, for the American League Pennant. Not only did they beat the Yankees, they beat them really, really bad. Try 4-0 in a best out of 7 series. Weapons ~ Justin Verlander, last year’s Cy Young award winner AND MVP; Miguel Cabrera, first batter to win the AL Triple Crown since 1966 and Prince Fielder, who finished the 2012 Season with .313 Batting Average and 30 Home Runs.
Excuse me while I pinch myself. I still can’t figure out how the Giants ended up in the World Series this year. Spring training showed a recuperating Buster Posey, an out-for-the-year Brian Wilson and a pretty good, but not as-good-as-they-used-to-be pitching staff. There were no individual stand-outs, with maybe the exception of Posey, until these past few months and things just started to happen. That’s how they do it in San Francisco. They got together in the clubhouse, put their heads together, posted a 94-68 record and “believed”.
After one of the wildest Championship Division Series ever my prediction is the Detroit Tigers will win the first three games and the Giants will win the rest. I don’t know why, that’s just the way they do it in San Francisco.
First Game: Wednesday, October 24, 2012, Time TBA, at AT&T Park.
The National League won the annual All Star Game tonight for the second year in a row by a score of 5-1, giving home field advantage in the 2011 World Series to the National League. Here’s a few of my favorite moments ~
Adrian Gonzalez from the American League All Stars hit a home run off Cliff Lee to start the scoring that presented a sort of deja vu in my mind like “oh boy, here we go again!” Last year was the first time the National League had won in over 13 years finally beating the American League winning streak and I thought for sure the American League was on their way to starting a new streak.
But Prince Fielder blasted a three run homer that contributed to the final score and gave the National League their second All Star victory in a row.
One of the more hilarious moments in the game came when Heath Bell was called in from the bullpen and instead of jogging onto the field as a relief pitcher usually does, he decided to “run fast, really fast” to the pitcher’s mound arriving with a slide at the mound and ending up at the feet of Manager Bruce Bochy. Pablo Sandoval who was also standing on the mound at the time couldn’t contain his laughter like others around him, but not a smidgeon of a smile could be seen on Bochy’s face, at least not from my point of view from the couch.
Too funny was the replay of the momentous jog to the mound showing the TV camera man running behind Bell as fast as he could trying to keep up, but eventually gave it up as Bell out sprinted him by ….. a lot! Brian Wilson, the illustrious SF Giants closer made an appearance, beard and all, and, of course, closed out the game.
Did I mention how much I missed Derek Jeter? Derek you’ve probably heard was too tired, exhausted was the word he used, to play in the game. Last I heard he was seen having a good time dining at a Miami restaurant today with his girlfriend, not that there’s anything wrong with that. But since Jeter was “selected” as an All Star, he’ll be receiving a $500,000 bonus as part of his contract. I just think it would have been a nice gesture if he would have at least attended the game for his fans who, after all, are the ones paying the tab. But that’s just my opinion. And I’m sure he really was exhausted after the fantastic week he’d had with that 3000th hit and 5 for 5 game. Okay, well maybe next year. Baseball fans have an incredible tolerance for their perceived heroes and I’m sure they’ll be there waiting for him again unless he decides to grace them with his appearance. Nice job if you can get it.
All in all I felt it was one of the better All Star games. Probably because in spite of the 16 original contestants who were selected and couldn’t or wouldn’t be there, the ones who wanted to be there, were there.
Oh no! Not Roy Oswalt! This video just shows how close these guys are to disaster with every pitch! This is scary stuff! As you’re probably aware, Roy’s one of the Phab Four for the Phillies this year and expectations are high for them and also for the Phillies. Back in the old days, dad always said a pitcher was supposed to be ready to field after the delivery. Get yourself right back in position with your mitt in front of you to protect from this very thing. But back in the 40’s and 50’s, I doubt very much the pitchers were throwing with the same intensity and velocity they are today. Who has time to do that; get back into position I mean? Baseball’s changed. They may have thrown just as fast back then, but the players now are huge in comparison and my thought is their reflexes are not as fast as the smaller pitchers. I don’t know, I’m just saying, there’s a reason those old fashioned rules don’t seem to apply anymore. Pitchers now aren’t expected to play the entire nine innings like they routinely did back in the old days. They give it their best shot, and a reliever comes in to continue where the starter left off. And then in comes the closer! So I doubt very much dad’s thinking would apply now.
Last reports are that Oswalt is doing well, and except for the baseball-sized welt on the back of his neck he should be able to start the regular season as scheduled. He’s lucky. His teammate Chase utley is facing surgery after his bout this spring with tendinitis in his knee, and most likely will miss a good part of the season, after missing a majority of 2010. Heartbreaking for the players and heartbreaking for the fans.
Spring training! A must for getting back into shape and letting the players gel with each other. But what a price to pay for these guys! The Giants closer, Brian Wilson, suffered a strained oblique muscle, and is looking at possibly sitting out just the first couple of regular season games, if he’s lucky. It could be much more and Cody Ross caught what appeared to be a routine fly ball yesterday, only to limp off the field with a calf strain. A visit to an MRI center resulted in a walking “boot” and crutches for Ross. It’s anyone’s guess how long he’ll be out. Here’s a list of a few other incidents this spring:
St Louis Cardinals starting pitcher, Adam Wainwright had Tommy John surgery last week and will most likely miss the entire 2012 season.
Milwaukee Brewers starting pitcher, Shaun Marcum, suffered a “tight shoulder” after his last outing. Whether he’ll be sidelined for the beginning of the season is questionable.
Milwaukee Brewers starting pitcher, Zach Greinke, broke a rib in a “basketball game” and remains on the disabled list this spring training. (Okay, okay, probably not entirely related to spring training!)
Los Angeles Angels First Baseman Kendry Morales was sidelined with a broken foot for the majority of 2010, and spring training hasn’t been able to help Morales get back on “foot” still. Looks like more rehab time for him before he’s back in the regular season.
Yankees lead-off hitter, Brett Gardner, is back in the line-up after suffering a bruised shin during spring training.
The list goes on and on. But wait! Believe it or not, there’s actually some good news for the rest of us. The 2012 Regular Baseball Season begins next week! So it’s time to clean up the barbecue, get out those scorecards, stock up on popcorn and hotdogs, and get out the gear. Makes me all emotional just thinking about it.
And cross your fingers for all those guys on the disabled list so they’ll be able to join us soon. Let’s face it. It’s just not the same playing a game with one or more of your guys sitting on the bench with a disability! Too bad we can’t just go from post season to regular season and skip the Spring Training! Save us all some headaches!
Well, to be honest with you, I’ve always liked Roy Halladay, even if he is a Phillie! I saw this video for the first time today and wondered if all Major League pitchers feel the same way about their catchers as Roy feels about his. I can see Lincecum and Cain showing Buster a little love, but all bets are off when it comes to Wilson. Can you just see Brian Wilson in the kitchen, making pancakes while discussing the morning with a balloon replica of Buster Posey?
I saw an interview with Buster Posey after the season was over, and as I recall, Buster said at one point he started to go out on the mound to talk with Wilson, took one look at those dark green eyes glaring off into space, promptly turned around and went back behind the plate. Later he explained, he just thought it was something he should do, not that Wilson wanted it or needed it. Posey didn’t say he was intimidated, but that was the implication.
One can only hope Roy Halladay spends a lot of time in the kitchen talking to blow-up dummies for the next six months. Is it post season yet?
"I was the worst hitter ever. I never even broke a bat until last year when I was backing out of the garage." Lefty Gomez, Yankees pitcher.
Baseball, it is said, is only a game. True. And the Grand Canyon is only a hole in Arizona. ~George F. Will.
"Does Pete Rose hustle? Before the All Star game he came into the clubhouse and took off his shoes and they ran another mile without him." Hank Aaron.
More Baseball Quotes!
“You see, you spend a good piece of your life gripping a baseball, and in the end it turns out that it was the other way around all the time.” - Jim Bouton
"I was such a dangerous hitter I even got intentional walks during batting practice." - Casey Stengel
"This isn't a job. This is a privilege, that's what this is!" - Mike Krukow, TV Commentator, on being at the ballpark each day.
"I've found that the knowledge of the game is usually in inverse proportion to the price of the seats." -Bill Veeck, Chicago White Sox owner.
"Derek Jeter's accomplishment puts Pete Rose's hits record in perspective. 3,000 hits is phenomenal. 4,000? Freakish!" - Anthony Castrovince via Twitter
"The best possible thing in baseball is winning the World Series. The second best thing is losing the World Series." - Tommy Lasorda
"You teach me baseball and I’ll teach you relativity.... You will learn about relativity faster than I learn baseball." - Albert Einstein
"Baseball is a game of race, creed, and color. The race is to first base. The creed is the rules of the game. The color? Well, the home team wears white uniforms, and the visiting team wears gray."
GARLICFRIESANDBASEBALL is written by a long-time fan who simply loves the game. I write my own articles (hence the grammar and occasional misspellings). If I include an article from another source, credit is given to that source and will include links when appropriate. The opinions are my own.