Thursday, August 17, 2006

Imitation: The sincerest form of flattery, or the lamest attempt to pull together a post ever?

The Setup Guy

I. Ray of Hope
For the second night in a row, the Yankees were unable to figure out a young Orioles left-hander, losing 3-2 at the Stadium to Adam Loewen (5.2 IP, 2 ER, 5Ks). Loewen has now beaten NY twice in the last month. Despite Sam Perlozzo's best attempt to throw this game away (I mean, does he watch LaTroy Hawkins pitch?), Orioles closer Chris Ray saved his ass by earning a 2 inning save, giving him 28 on the year. For all you O's fans out there, at least you can root for Bedard, Loewen, Ray and Markakis (Nicky hit a HR last night). The rest of the bunch, not so much. Have I mentioned Peter Angelos sucks balls? The Yankees lead in the AL East is now down to two games...but Octavio Dotel seems healthy, which is nice. Does this mean we can end the Ponson in Pinstripes Era?

II. It's the Spanish Kramer vs. Kramer
The battle for NL Central supremacy was won by the Reds' Edwin Encarnacion last night, as he connected for 2 long balls and 4 RBI in the Reds 7-2 win over the Cardinals. Redbird Juan Encarnacion did nothing to help his team, taking an 0-4 and leaving 2 guys on base. This entire season the Reds pitching staff has been mocked, but all you need to do is look across the field and see the chumps the Cards are running out to realize St. Louis might not only lose the NL Central, they might miss the playoffs altogether (As Bill Walton might say, Jason Marquis is HORRRIBLE). By the way, Cornrow Arroyo finally earned his 10th win of the season...on his 11th try.

III. I really thought they were finishing 47-1
When I saw the Dodgers lost yesterday, I was genuinely shocked. With the level of competition in the NL (the West division in particular) being so suspect, I was pretty sure L.A. wasn't losing another game for the rest of the year. Miguel Cabrera homered twice and drove in five for the Marlins in the 15-4 rout, Cody Ross thanked his former team by driving in four and Jeffrey Loria managed to not fire Joe Girardi for yet another game (Loria is a close second to Angelos as my least favorite owner in baseball...just thought you'd want to know). By the way, the Marlins are only 6 back in the NL wild card race and just might be clueless enough to make this interesting. Apropo of nothing...Dan Uggla!

IV. Do...not...pitch...to...him...EVER
Mr. Leyland, please take the Marlboro out of your mouth and put up the four fingers. I realize the autistic guy hitting behind David Ortiz can do some damage as well, but you simply cannot pitch to him...ever. The Red Sox managed to avoid a sweep at the hands of the Tigers last night, winning at Fenway 6-4. David Wells got the win, Ortiz of course homered at a crucial time and Coco Crisp even got involved from the leadoff spot. And I'm not one to point any fingers, but that Pudge Rodriguez fella looks like he's auditioning for the Grand Rapids summer stock production of Philadelphia. Can we at least all agree to stop calling him Pudge?

V. 18 innings will do that to you
The only thing missing from the Cubs/Astros 18 inning affair Tuesday night were Cesar Cedeno, Bob Watson and the Bears (sorry to sound like Mr. Simmons there). Michael Barrett, who won the game with his sixth inning homer, is having a tremendous year, hitting .325 for hapless Chicago (not too shabby for a catcher not named Mauer). The good news for the Astros in their 1-0 loss to the Cubbies: Brad Lidge didn't blow a save. The bad news: the 'Stros score runs about as often as this girl eats. Amazingly, the Cubs are 35-27 against their division...and a brutal 17-41 against everyone else.

[Any resemblance to Deadspin's "The Closer" segment is completely coincidental...as long as coincidental still means "intentional and shameless"]

23 comments:

TJ said...

I missed this, but the A's beat the Mariners for the 15th straight time last night...which is great and all, but doesn't translate into postseason wins, at least from this guy's perspective.

Mark said...

The Cards staff is poop. Encarnacion is worse. I kind of don't want them to make the playoffs just so LaRussa and Jocketty will admit that this season (and the offseason) is a failure.

Marlins won 15-4, not 14-5. Get it together.

TJ said...

Dyslexic am I...

Greg said...

TJ, maybe if you spent more time working on your research than you did drinking straight Kahlua in the bathroom at work, you wouldn't make those kinds of mistakes.

TJ said...

That's not chocolate milk?

Mini Me said...

What about the Angels-Rangers brawl baby!

TJ said...

Hey Jaret Wright, why don't you suck my balls...

Whitney said...

Be careful what you wish for.

TJ said...

Won't have to worry...after today's performance, Vinny from the Bronx will be murdering Mr. Wright on his way home from the water treatment plant (Vinny, not Jaret)

rob said...

alright, tommy, care to make this weekend even more interesting than it already should be?

TJ said...

Forget betting on a five game series with 40+ games still left to play (including 4 more a month from now). If you want to make a wager, we're either betting on the AL East title or the Wild Card.

TJ said...

"I've had it with these mother fucking snakes on this mother fucking plane!"

Mark said...

Tell me you didn't see that movie last night.

TJ said...

I haven't seen it...yet...

Mark said...

Good, I was getting jealous.

Whitney said...

It might be true, but you have to know when not to say it. SportsGuy is crossing some of Rob's "hubris" lines with today's column.

Not only has the National League transformed into Quadruple-A, as far as I can tell the Dodgers and Mets are the only two NL teams capable of doing anything in October. And by "anything," I mean not "getting swept in the World Series."

Rob, can we start the predictions page with that one?

Whitney said...

Oh, and when I said a few years back that Bill Simmons knows the Red Sox and Yankees and nothing else about baseball? I was right.

"and yet, the O's gave up Jorge Julio (a quality reliever in an era where everyone's looking for quality relievers) for Kris Benson (currently working on a 4.74 ERA)."

I don't care what Julio's done in the desert. This is a moronic comment on all counts.

TJ said...

He's got a few gaffs in that column, but overall I found it a good read. And yes, we all know Jorge Julio is a complete disaster.

rob said...

roger on the simmons thing, tho i'm not sure there's a backlash target for his hubris unless the sox get to the world series. in which case i'll hunt him down and punch him in the neck.

teejay - what kind of odds are you giving me for the al east?

TJ said...

You are such a schmuck - why the hell would you get odds for the AL East? Because you're currently two back in the loss column? Please...

rob said...

well, fucking duh.

Mark said...

Settle down Ace and Gary.

The Drizzle said...

I thought I was going to get to see SoaP last night, 10 o'clock showing through some carefully placed contacts that work with/for New Line, but sadly that didn't come together. Odds of it being seen within the next 24 hours are sitting at about 100% though.

Also, since we don't have a lot good going on in Atlanta right now, it wouldn't hurt to throw McCann's name in there next to Mauer when you're talking about big hitting catchers.