Sunday, October 20, 2013

October Baseball

There was really no way to lose with those four teams (Red Sox, Tigers, Cardinals and Dodgers) in their respective league championship series.  Four teams with a ton of history, all playing in beautiful, outdoor parks with mostly rabid fans behind them.  I'm happy the Dodgers will go yet another year without a championship, since with their payroll it seems almost inevitable that they'll capture one - it would be hard to avoid with that payroll.  They also have two of the most exciting talents in the game, both of who happen to be a little nuts - Kershaw and Puig.  But at least for now, I can keep making jokes about how many it's been since the Blue brought home a title.

We've seen the Red Sox face off against the Cardinals twice in my lifetime, but I don't have any memory of the 1967 Series - it was the following year, when St. Louis was defeated in 7 games by Detroit, that I have my first clear memories of a World Series.  But all baseball fans should remember the 2004 Series, when Boston finally broke the curse and swept the Cardinals just after completing a remarkable comeback from 3-0 down against the Yankees juggernaut.

I don't think I've rooted for St. Louis since the early 1980s, and I won't be rooting for them this year.  And I don't watch baseball closely enough anymore to make a prediction based on anything but sheer guesswork.  Based on what I've seen in the postseason it seems like a tossup, but just remember last year when Detroit went into the Series against the Giants as "overwhelming favorites" and ended up having their heads handed to them on a platter.  The Sox seem to have a "just can't lose right now" feel about them, but who knows.

And I'm glad that it's Joe Buck and Tim McCarver calling the games.  I've had my share of complaints about both of them over the years, but after being subjected to the TBS team in the past month, it's pretty clear that Buck & McCarver are the only announcers who appreciate the fact that these are playoff games, and that lending the proceedings a little excitement is the least they can do.  Ernie Johnson tried his best, but let's face it, he's not a play-by-play guy.  And coupled with Cal Ripken and Ron Darling, both with somnambulist tendencies, he was doomed to fighting a losing battle.

I almost hope it goes 7 games, because then we'll be treated to Halloween baseball.  Spooky indeed.

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