Tuesday, October 11, 2005


3 Out Of 4 Ain't Bad

Well, the Cards spanked the Pads, the Angels and Yanks played a predictably air-tight series decided by two runs, and the Astros and Braves participated in one of the greatest playoff games of all time before Houston finally pulled away. It was only the White Sox who succeeded in making me look like a total ass, pulping their red-colored counterparts in three straight after I predicted they would meekly go down in four. Let's look at what I said about this series:

"The Red Soxs’ pitching has been crummy all year, but that’s going to be more of an issue against a team like the Angels or the Yanks, not one with an offense as piddling as the Chicago’s."

Silly me. I guess Boston's pitching was that bad, as they gave up seven Chicago home runs (including Scott Podsednik's first bomb all season!), and 21 runs in the three games.

"Sure, the White Sox got here with good pitching, and good pitching supposedly always beats good hitting in the postseason, but would you feel confident with Jon Garland going against Manny, Papi, Jesus Damon, et al.?"

Welp, that's more egg on my face. The Red Sox scored just nine runs in the three games and got on base at a .295 clip. Granted, the fact that Boston was outscored 21-9 is skewed a bit by the Game 1 trouncing, in which Boston was basically done after the first inning, but Chicago's pitching staff still played a huge role in neutering the Red Sock attack in the more closely contested Games 2 and 3.

All right, enough of what I did wrong. Didn't I predict something accurate? Here's what I said about Atlanta-Houston:

"The kind of matchup that usually features close and late nail-biters inexplicably being decided by guys like Pete Orr and Jose Vizcaino."

Orr and Vizcaino didn't do much, but Chris Burke, who launched the game-winning home run in Sunday's 18-inning marathon, certainly merits the obscure description. With one swing, Burke firmly ensconced his place in baseball lore, in the same category as Bucky Dent or Al Weis.

"The Braves and the first round of the playoffs go together about as well as Michael Rapaport and well-timed comedy."

It's got to be brutal to be a Braves fan these past few years, constantly winning division titles, confident that this will be The Year, like 1995, only to see your team knocked out of the playoffs in increasingly gruesome ways. Surrendering a series-ending blast to a weak-hitting utility player just has to be the icing on the Castor Oil-flavored cake.

Oh, and if you've haven't subjected yourself to The War at Home, consider yourself very, very lucky.

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