Inching towards mediocrity.


Bronx Bombed. (Now with 99% less chance of the Angels making it to the World Series!)

american league championship seriesWell.

The Angels pretty much sealed their postseason fate Tuesday night, losing 10-1 to the New York Yankees in game four of the American League Championship Series. The Angels now have the unenviable task of facing the Yankees in game five, trailing them in the series 3-1. If they lose this game, it’s over. And that makes me sad.

Sadder still, is the fact that the Los Angeles Dodger’s bid for the World Series also fell short – the Philadelphia Phillies beat them in Game Four last night, becoming the National League Champions for the second year in a row.

My predictions? The Yankees are definitely going to win tonight, leading to the (what some people I’m sure saw as inevitable) World Series showdown between the Yankees and the Phillies. I’ll watch, I’m sure, but I honestly don’t know who to root for.

Oh well. I guess it’s about time to start looking ahead to next year. This may be my last regular baseball post for a while – unless the Angels mount a comeback, or I somehow get interested in a Yankees/Phillies World Series.

Regardless…I think it’s about time for a damn salary cap!



Go West, Angels. (Now with 39% more erros by the Angels!)

american league championship series

Well.

The Angels did not live up to my expectations this weekend. At all.

They now trail the Yankees by two games in this seven game series. Game three is this afternoon, and will be taking place in sunny California. Andy Pettitte will take the mound for the Yankees; Jared Weaver for the Angels.

The Halos really need to step it up today. Not only are they already two games behind the Yankees, but they haven’t been playing very good baseball. Countless errors have mired an otherwise decent coulple of outings by the Angels, and the Yankees have been unapologetic about making them pay for them.

Regardless, despite losing some confidence in their ability to ruin the All-Mighty Yankees (shudder), I’m hopeful that a move back to the warmer Californian climate and friendlier fans will jumpstart their playoff chances.

I just hope it’s not to late.



Angels in the outfield. (Now with 84% more runs scored against the Yankees! I hope.)

american league championship series

Well.

Here we are.

Another quick baseball related post, as we reach Game 1 of the American League Championship Series. This is it. This is for all the marbles. (In the American League, anyways.)

Game 1 of the National League Championship Series was last night, and it was a nailbiter. The Phillies edged the Dodgers in the end, but it’s far from over. My dream of an Angels/Dodgers World Series is FAR from over.

But that’s the National League. Big whoop.

The real fun begins when the two leading teams in the American League go head-to-head for the first time, post-season. The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim vs. the much-hated (by me, anyways) New York Yankees.

Here’s the projected lineups for both teams:

LA Angels:

  1. 3B Chone Figgins (.298, 5 HR, 54 RBI, 42 SB, .395 OBP)
  2. RF Bobby Abreu (.293, 16 HR, 103 RBI, 30 SB)
  3. CF Torii Hunter (.299, 22 HR, 90 RBI, 18 SB)
  4. DH Vladimir Guerrero (.295, 15 HR, 50 RBI)
  5. 1B Kendry Morales (.306, 34 HR, 108 RBI)
  6. LF Juan Rivera (.287, 25 HR, 88 RBI)
  7. 2B Howie Kendrick (.291, 10 HR, 61 RBI)
  8. C Mike Napoli (.272, 20 HR, 56 RBI)
  9. SS Erick Aybar (.312, 5 HR, 58 RBI)

RHP John Lackey (11-8, 3.83 ERA)

LHP Joe Saunders (16-7, 4.60 ERA)

RHP Jared Weaver (16-8, 3.75 ERA)

LHP Scott Kazmir (10-9, 4.89 ERA combined Rays and Angels)

New York Yankees

  1. SS Derek Jeter (.334, 18 HR, 66 RBI, 30 SB)
  2. LF Johnny Damon (.282, 24, 82 RBI)
  3. 1B Mark Teixeira (.292, 39 HR, 122 RBI)
  4. 3B Alex Rodriguez (.286, 30 HR, 100 RBI)
  5. DH Hideki Matsui (.274, 28 HR, 90 RBI)
  6. C Jorge Posada (.285, 22 HR, 81 RBI)
  7. 2B Robinson Cano (.320, 25 HR, 85 RBI)
  8. RF Nick Swisher (.249, 29 HR, 82 RBI)
  9. CF Melky Cabrera (.274, 13 HR, 68 RBI)

LHP CC Sabathia (19-8, 3.37 ERA)

RHP A.J. Burnett (13-9, 4.04 ERA)

LHP Andy Pettitte (14-8, 4.16 ERA)

It’s gonna be a helluva barnbuster, as they say. Or would say, 72 years ago. Alex Rodriquez’s usual post season slumping seems to have lifted…and that worries me to no end. The fact that they’re starting the series at Yankee Stadium also worries me. But I have faith in the venerable Angels. The Yankees need to be stopped…FOR GOOD.

Go Angels.



The Red Sox are very sore losers. (Now with 62% more bitchin’ about Boston!)

(Edit – Sweet gravy Jesus! Halladay nailed David Ortiz in the second inning! I did NOT think the Doc had it in him! Way to go, Roy!)

Well.

Excellent game last night. The Jays offense was on fire (as it has been for most of September – I like to pretend it’s June!) and they continued to take their newfound role of Wild Card spoiler very seriously. Unfortunately, thanks to the Texas Rangers losing to the Angels last night, it was all for not.

Still, it was nice to see the Jays finally beat the Sox at Fenway this year (twice in a row, no less!), and they did it in impeccable style. (Stylish up until the bullpen almost blew the game in the eighth, allowing the Sox to rally to a 8-7 deficit.) Toronto now leads the American League in home runs this month, and they made sure to add to that tally tonight. The Jays knocked it out of the park six times – Jose Bautista, Kevin Millar and Aaron Hill all went yard, with the ever reliable Adam Lind adding three (count them! Three!) of his own, a career best for him.

Lind’s incredible achievement was short lived though, when in the ninth inning the Red Sox once again proved to be one of the dirtiest and cheapest teams in the MLB – sore losers who act out and throw temper tantrums when things don’t go their way, and when they find out that they ain’t all that. After retiring Bautista and Hill, Boston’s closer Jon Papelbon apparently decided that Adam Lind didn’t deserve his shot at a fourth home run, and proceeded to – on the FIRST PITCH, mind you – launch an inside fastball at Lind, painfully drilling him on his right elbow. Lind dropped to all fours, grimacing in pain, but managed to stay in the game, trotting over to first. Better luck next time, Papelbon!

Vernon Wells hit next, and I wanted nothing more than to see V-Dub drop one over the Green Monster, or better yet, knock a line drive into the front of Papelbon’s skull. Alas, it was not to be, and Vernon predictably popped out. Jason Frasor was closing for the Jays, and managed to not only clean up reliever Shawn Camp’s mess from the eighth inning, but shut down the Sox for good in the bottom of the ninth – ending the game with a strike-out on Red Sox meathead Kevin Youkilis. This allowed rookie Ricky Romero, our starter this evening, to finally pick up his first career win against Boston.

I gotta say though, it’s frustrating to see our guys get hit so much this season. The Red Sox and the Yankees have been particularly nasty with this. It’s dirty, pathetic, and just not good baseball.

Now to be a hippocrite for a second, if I may.

The worst part is, we don’t retaliate! They keep doing it because they keep getting away with it! Papelbon attacks Lind tonight, and we barely even get a hissy fit from our manager, Cito Gaston! Show some passion, Cito! Don’t have a kindly discussion with the umpire…get all up in his face, yo! Sure, maybe you’ll get kicked out, but you’ll rally your team and at least look like you give a damn!

Unfortunately though, like all bullies, the Sox and the Yankees can dish it out but they can’t take it. When we finally did retaliate, as we did in New York a few weeks ago, they throw temper tantrums. And Jesse Carlson didn’t even bean Jorge Posada; he just threw AROUND him, as a warning. And still, the Yankees act as though they’re the ones being mistreated.

Again, I do not condone hitting batters in baseball. Nor do I condone fighting in baseball. But I don’t condone bullying, either, and sometimes you just have to stand up for yourself to get that message through that THIS HAS TO STOP. And this is the perfect time, too. The season is over for us…we have like, what? Four games left? Let the benches clearing brawls begin! Suspensions? Injuries? We’ve got nothing to lose!

But the Red Sox sure do.

Now, while I think it’s totally beneath him and not even remotely in his character, nor his game plan, I gotta say this. You wanna send a message? Tonight, have Roy Halladay knock out one of the Sox (preferably Dustin Pedroia or Youkilis), and then have him just stare them down with that scary laser beam he’s-not-thinking-about-anything-other-than-baseball-at-this-moment-and-that-includes-his-family-or-even-his-own-survival-at-this-or-any-point-within-the-next-nine-innings stare to REALLY drive home the message. Why would a hit from Halladay especially be effective? Because Halladay DOESN’T MISS. If you get beaned by him, you damn well know he meant to do it. And it’s completely unexpected, too, as Halladay has too much respect for the game and the other players to ever lower himself to that level. Which, sadly, is exactly why I DON’T want him to go that route.

But man, would it ever be sweet if he did.

(Or hell…let Roy have his seven innings or whatever, and then get League to drill Veritek or something.)



Another weekend wrap-up. (now with 39% more babbling!)

Well.

Another great series in Toronto this weekend – the Jays managed to win three out of four against the Seattle Mariners, Aaron Hill and Adam Lind continued to be awesome, and Roy Halladay was, well, Roy Halladay.

The Doc played his last home gameĀ  of the season on Friday (and, maybe forever), and the Doc was , of course, outstanding.

Nine complete innings pitched? Check. Nine strikeouts? Check. No walks? Check. How many runs does that add up to for Seattle?

None.

Yep, Roy pitched a complete game shut-out, securing his sixteenth win of the season – a five nothing victory for the Jays.

It was a beautiful performance that became all to poignant by the ninth inning, when Halladay returned to the mound to finish what he started. The crowd was on his feet after he left during the eighth; and they stayed that way through most of the ninth. Poignant, because this was his last game at home this season. Even more poignant, because the folks at Rogers have drilled it into our heads that this might be his last game pitching in Toronto as a Blue Jay EVER.

Now, I can’t say for sure whether or not this is true. (Though, to be perfectly honest, I don’t think it is.) The fact is, I’m tired of hearing about it. Especially from the good folks at Rogers Sportsnet. It was pretty damn embarrassing to see Halladay pitch such a magnificent game only to have Sam Cosentino start asking him more trade questions afterwards.

Give it a rest! Please! He doesn’t want to talk about it – I don’t blame him!

And right now…THERE’S NOTHING TO TALK ABOUT.

Yikes.

So. Regardless of the continual Halladay trade fumbling by both the media and the damn Blue Jays management…it was a pretty fun weekend to be a Jays fan.

I even went to Saturday’s game to bid farewell for the season. And, in doing so, had the pleasure of watching Adam Lind knock two out of the park.

(Incidentally, the Jays have more home runs this month than any other team in the American League. Coulda used those numbers in July.)

I seem to have gone out of my way to make these wrap-up posts as incoherently rambling as possible. I’d say the best way to end this post is abruptly.

(and that’s what I did.)