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Monday, October 26, 2009
Baseball is my sport, but NBC pays me, so I'm torn:
In a television matchup of New York sports teams, baseball’s Yankees were more popular than football’s Giants.
But with all due respect to my NBC overlords, anyone watching the Giants and the Cardinals over the Yankees-Angels who wasn't being paid to do so needs their head examined.
I've written in the past about Fenway Sports Group and its not-subject-to-revenue-sharing money. The Red Sox are not the only team getting in on the act:
The Chicago White Sox are stepping up to the plate in the digital media arena.
If David Glass were serious about making the Royals a winner he'd rebrand the pharmacies and sporting goods sections of every Wal-Mart store "Royal-Mart" and give Dayton Moore a billion dollars to play with every year.
Well, not the Dayton Moore part.
NPR's Ken Rudin has a story on politicians riding on the coattails of baseball teams. After rolling his eyes at Bloomberg being an attention whore in the Yankees' locker room last night, Rudin asks an intriguing question: what do the people running for Governor of New Jersey do about the World Series? What plays in Camden doesn't necessarily play in Hoboken! And Game 5 is scheduled for the night before the election . . .
I got 99 problems but delaying the first pitch ain't one:
Finally, though I didn't weigh in on it in a formal post, I am struck by the notion that three nights of bad judgment as a playa did for Steve Phillips what five years of bad judgment as an analyst couldn't do: get him fired. There's probably a lesson in there somewhere, but I'm too busy planning a rendezvous with my portly mistress to think too hard about it . . .
I handled the McGwire story seriously here, so now let's have some fun with it:
[scene: Cardinals-Cubs game, summer 2010. Yadier Molina just struck out on four pitches and goes to talk to the hitting coach]
Molina: Hey Mac, Zambrano got me with the changeup last time. So I was looking changeup, and he busted me with the fastball. Did it look like I was cheating changeup?
McGwire: I'm not here to talk about the past. I'm here to be positive about this subject. You took a good hack at that last one.
Molina: Um, sure, but I need some help with my approach here. I feel lost up there today. Should I move back in the box a bit?
McGwire: Asking me or anyone else to answer questions about where to stand in the box will not solve the problem. If I answer 'No,' he will just come with the changeup again and you'll be further out in front. If I answer 'Yes,' you risk public scorn and endless second guessing when you wait too long to react to the pitch.
Molina: Jesus, coach, you got anything for me?
McGwire: My lawyers have advised me that I cannot answer these questions without jeopardizing my friends, my family, and myself. I will say, however, that it remains a fact in this country that a man, any man, should look at more film before facing a crafty veteran like Carlos Zambrano.
Molina: Uh, thanks, coach.
Yankees 5, Angels 2: "At times we played good baseball. At times we shot ourselves in the foot," Mike Scioscia said after the game. Someone's gonna have to point out the good for me, because I missed most of it. Eight errors in the series. Saunders walked five guys last night. Scioscia made baffling move after baffling move. Guerrero getting doubled off first base on that shallow fly ball. Just a lot of ugly baseball from a team that's alleged to be fundamentally sound.
But like the Phillies over the Dodgers, this is the case of the better team winning, not some default job. It was like old times seeing Pettitte and Rivera taking care of business. It was like an alternate universe seeing A-Rod repeatedly come up strong in the postseason (I love me some CC, but I really think Rodriguez deserved the MVP). Based on how my postseason predictions have gone it'll make Philly fans happy to hear that I think the Yankees are gonna take this thing, but this time I don't think even my prognostication will prove poor. Here's hoping the weather holds up.