Wednesday, September 24, 2008

A Day Which Included Baseball

Red Sox win with key hit being a Bailey triple on a high fly ball to left center that missed dongtown by inches. For most others in the league, that's a double, just because they'd assume it's either a homer, or off the wall and two bases maximum. I'm tellin' ya, if I could just sneak onto a major league roster (Pirates?), I'd be stretchin' singles into doubles, doubles into triples, and constantly scoring from second on wild pitches, reaching on dropped third strikes, and getting two on a ball four that goes to the backstop.

Speaking of the Pirates, have you noticed a little bit of an underdog bandwagon going on there? Kim and I noticed a few Bucs caps one night, and then I saw on some website someone writing about how they live in NYC but "everybody" is wearing Pittsburgh hats. Since then I've see more. And it makes sense. What's not to like about the Pittsburgh Pirates? They haven't won shit in years so everyone who isn't a demagogue wants to see them finally break through. When they have won, they've done it fun fashion--We are Family! Pops and crew, '79! And even the early '90s teams--I know I quickly tired of the Braves back then. Would've liked to see the Buccos come through one of those years. And, actually, my Yankee fan friend and I, when we were like 13, kind of randomly picked an NL team we could both like, and fell in love with Jose Lind, Sid Bream (pre-Braves), Bonilla, skinny Bonds, Van Slyke (who I later stopped talking to when he robbed Greenwell of a hit in the All-Star Game), Lavalliere, Belliard--we even bought yellow Pirates shirts at Team Spirit in the Danbury Fair Mall. (I later sold mine for 13 dollars to my neighbor whose family came from western Pennsylvania.) The point is, everybody loves the Pirates. I think the nation is ready to fully see this through. Pirates: World Champs, 20...., well, let's not get crazy...2126! (Note: if at any point on this blog I've said I hate the Pirates and they're "dead to me" or anything like that, I'm sure I was just blowin' smoke. Ignore.)

Speaking of teams that just....don't win: The Orioles. For the last seven games, we've rooted for them to help us out, against the Yanks and Rays. Seven times, they've lost. Each one worst that the one before. Tonight it was a 6-0 they turned into an 11-6 loss. So, one more Rays win or Sox loss, and Tampa Bay are the east champs.

And the Mets. The poor Mets. Tied, bottom 9, man on third, no out. Then bases loaded, one out. They don't put it away, and the Cubs win it in extras. They're now tied for the wild card lead. And the Twins! They've cut the division lead to a half game. Will be fun these last four days....

[Update, midnight: I went to the Globe's Extra Bases "blog," and looked at the post title, in the back (front) of my mind thinking about how they got the final score wrong the other day. As I read "Game 2," I thought for a second that I technically could say that since it wasn't a doubleheader, that's misleading, etc., etc. But come on, that would just be nitpicking. Then it quickly hit me that it wasn't even game two of the series anyway! It was game three! Terrible! Can they get anything right? (And after seeing the guy who wrote this on NESN the past few nights, I feel bad since I'm sure he's trying his hardest and all--but who's in charge over there?!)]

With you on the Pirates thing. Rooted for them against the Braves, lo those many years ago, then, of course, married a 'Burgh native, who, while not a Buccos fan, still afforded me many chances to visit PNC Park. Despite all those commas, and Pirate losses, I've grown rather fond of them, especially since they were willing to cough up Bay for basically nothing. I have, and occasionally wear, a Pirates hat. Black with the yellow P. It's a nice lid. PNC is a damn fine park. And the fans, though seldom numerous, are pretty well educated baseball fans.

On a lighter note, one of my best friends is a life-long Cubbies fan. He's already having visions a seven-game Series loss to the Rays. Isn't it awesome we don't have that albatross and the inate pessimism that comes with it hanging around our necks anymore? Despite his paranoia and doomy gloomy approach to the playoffs, that made me smile.
Kim and I watched that HBO special on the Cubs tonight!

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Location: Rhode Island, United States