My Morning in Exile

1. Play emotionally-draining game;
2. Drink lots of beer and champagne;
3. Immediately board a flight to New York;
4. Arrive at, like, 3 A.M.;
5. Sleep the sleep of the drunk and the red eye air traveller;
6. Play game against the best team in baseball at 6 P.M.

Sounds like a recipe for winning to me!

  • Are the playoffs fair?
  • How much hate can you throw on Manny in 50 words or less?
  • The Cubs’ new owners are welcomed into the ownership club; will now control the British Crown and keep the metric system down.
  • The Yankees-Twins game is really going to blow. Like, literally.
  • The things I’ll put up with because I liked your father . . .
  • If, three months ago, I told you that Ronnie Belliard and Vicente Padilla would be playing prominent roles for the Dodgers in the playoffs, I’m assuming you’d call me crazy.
  • I know this is late today — and I apologize for the lack of content — but the law has been beating me like a rented mule. Besides, the first game just started. You should be watching that instead of reading my scribblings.

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    1. Larry said...

      Wow, and I thought I was the only one who played “Songs in the Key of Springfield” enough times to memorize the lyrics to the Stonecurtter’s song!  Bravo!

    2. Jake said...

      “The Yankees have 26 world championships,” Yankees general manager Brian Cashman says. “If we had played all of those years with divisions and wild cards, we would not have 26 world championships.”

      I see no problem here.

    3. Jed said...

      Those of us with busy schedules usually prefer reading your scribblings literate, concise summaries, Craig.  I work in a West Coast law office and have two young kids, so I don’t get to watch much baseball.

      Besides, I grew up listening to Vin Scully.  What am I going to hear from Chip Caray’s lips that I haven’t heard spoken more elegantly and mellifluously by Scully?

    4. YankeesfanLen said...

      Poor Chip- Had to have the bleacher’s Old Style and then didn’t like the tsste of Budweiser.  Wait-maybe that’s why ha makes it through a whole game after all.
      Worst play in Yankees history- never got Vin in the 60s, didn’t tade John for Harry in the 80s.
      John is close to making it now, something like Pavano.

    5. Chris H. said...

      “Wow, and I thought I was the only one who played “Songs in the Key of Springfield” enough times to memorize the lyrics to the Stonecurtter’s song!  Bravo! “

      Ah, I don’t have ‘em memorized.  They’re written down on my sacred parchment.

      (Patrick Stewart FTW!)

    6. Rob² said...

      “The Yankees have 26 world championships,” Yankees general manager Brian Cashman says. “If we had played all of those years with divisions and wild cards, we would not have 26 world championships.”

      Interesting that Cashman includes the 2000 WS.  Without the three-division structure, the Yankees would have been eliminated with a week to play.  FWIW, they wouldn’t have made the postseason in 1977 either.

    7. Chris W said...

      I’m curious what teams in the divisional format people think are “fluke teams” that won the world series?

      Beyond the Cardinals of 2006, it seems to me like most of the World Series winners of the past 14 years seem to have a pretty strong claim to “the best team in baseball” from a standpoint of either “pitching and defense” or hitting.

    8. Mike Dark said...

      Who are you rooting for in the playoffs this year Shyster?  Do you stick with the NL?  Or are the Phillies on your over-my-dead-body list like the Dodgers and Rockies are with me?

    9. Craig Calcaterra said...

      I have to go with the NL because that’s just how I do.  Probably the winner of the Dodgers-Cardinals series. I think I’m slightly favoring the Cards in this one (rooting-wise; I think they’ll win the series 3-1).  I’ll say, however, that it will only take one La Russa moment for me to switch sides.

    10. YankeesfanLen said...

      C’mon Craig, take a walk on the wild side and root for the Universe.  If you MUST do the NL thing, Cards are okay as victims.

    11. The Rabbit said...

      In yet another example when a father should have demanded genetic testing (I’m once again avoiding politics), Chip Caray clearly didn’t inherit his father’s talent.  I could listen to Skip and Don Sutton (or the equally entertaining, informative team of Richie Ashburn and Harry Kalas) read the phone book.  If I think about it, Skip and Don may have actually read the phone book during a blowout. 
      Now, I have to watch the games without sound.
      I am totally mystified by the networks’ choices of announcers. Terrible is an understatement.

    12. The Rabbit said...

      The best series in the first round may be BOS-LAA.  Thanks for the tip….At least I’ll start with sound audible.
      People thought Philip Nolan had it tough.  I’m a National League fan without a team.  It’s much worse.

    13. Joe said...

      Furthermore, the wild card team often comes from the same division as the team with the best record.  This year it would be the Angels and Phillies getting the benefit of the favorable wild card-opponent series schedule, not the best-in-league Yankees and Dodgers.  That’s not better, IMO.

    14. MikeLavalliereDiet said...

      I like BillyBeaneismyHero’s idea, but we won’t see a balanced schedule anytime soon.  The reason rhymes with “ESPN wants the Sox and Yankees to play each other a million times a year.”

    15. Mode: Theif and Lair said...

      (I realize I asked this in the NBC post, but I was hoping you’d sate my curiosity this time.)

      What was the reasoning behind using Cashman’s quote in a post you(do you do the headlines?) headlined “Are the playoffs fair?”

      Cashman’s quote had nothing to do with the fairness of the current playoff system, but was actually a good take on what may have been if the current playoff format had always been in place.

      However, Mike Scioscia had a quote that directly related to the headline. “‘The wild-card team should have a much tougher road,’ Scioscia says. ‘It should be a much greater challenge where you have to scratch and claw.’”

      But you chose the Cashman quote.

    16. Craig Calcaterra said...

      Mode: I don’t know that I had any real reasoning. I usually don’t put too much thought into which quotes I pick when many are available and somewhat interesting. I think I was interested in (a) having a quote from someone associated with the Yankees, simply because they’re the top seed this year; and (b) I’ve always been partial to anything that reminds us that it was much easier to win a championship years ago, what with the single playoff series.

    17. Mode: Theif and Lair said...

      Thanks Craig.

      In regards to point (b), I seem to rememeber enjoying a few articles on THBT that attempted to do a “what if” on historic seasons under the current system of leagues, divisions, etc…

    18. kardo said...

      Interesting how over half of the guys commenting on the playoff post seem to have misunderstood you (or prehaps they stopped reading half way through?).

      Also interesting how someone uses the Premier League 3rd and 4th places as an example of unimportant, when really it matters for next years Champions League qualifiers and preseason preperations.

    19. BillyBeaneismyHero said...

      This is in reference to the “Are the playoffs fair?” article.  I tried putting this comment in the field, but it doesn’t appear that it posted.

      Why is the wild card team the one that should have to be penalized?  Let’s be honest.  In the American League, the wild card has frequently gone to the team with the second or third best record in the league (2002 Angels, 2004 Red Sox, 2006 Tigers, 2007 Yankees, 2008 Red Sox, 2009 Red Sox come to mind).  In these circumstances, you’d be penalizing a team because of the division they play in, not the quality of the team. 

      I propose abolishing the division format and unbalanced schedule formats entirely( like pre-1969), while keeping the leagues separate (with the exception to interleague play).  Each team would play 18 interleague games, and a balanced league schedule.  At the end of the season, the top four teams in each league would receive postseason births.  The teams with the best record in each round would have home field advantage (including the World Series).  This would balance schedule difficulties (especially for teams like Baltimore, Toronto, and Tampa whom have to pay 38 games against the Yankees and Red Sox every year), and potentially neutralize a big market team’s ability to get to the playoffs by dominating a weak division.

    20. tadthebad said...

      Don Orsillo, who is the play-by-play man for NESN, is working the BOS-LAA series on TBS.  I think you’ll like him.

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