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Archive for October, 2008

I am really excited about this.  As you might imagine.  It was only a five game Series, but it lacked the massively anti-climactic feel of most five game Series.  Possibly because Game Five took three days.  But whatever.

Slightly after Brad Lidge got destroyed by Ryan Howard.

Slightly after Brad Lidge got destroyed by Ryan Howard.

And you know why this is so awesome?  Because it means that Philadelphia has won a major championship in my lifetime.  (Don’t talk to me about the Soul.  That was like a kick in the teeth.)  I never get to complain again.  And I am really, really excited about this.  Pity parties are fun.  I like being able to stew in my misery with my friends from Buffalo and Cleveland.

Do you know what is way more awesome than misery poker?

WINNING A WORLD SERIES.

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Yes, I’m glad because this means the Rays haven’t lost yet.  I’m rooting for the Rays; this has been established.

But let’s say I’m rooting for the Phillies.  Then I am SO glad.  I guess some Phillies fans are bitter because the powers that be waited to suspend the game until the Rays tied it up.  I can see their logic, but they’re wrong.  Yes, this situation does seem to indicate that the umpires did not want to see the Rays lose the World Series on a called game.  You can assume that this is because the umpires want the Rays to win, or you can assume that the umpires just love baseball, and wanted to see the game finish properly.  Only in the latter case would you be correct.

And here’s the thing.  The Phillies will probably win.  A three inning game would seem to favor the Phillies, who don’t really ever give up runs in the 8th and 9th.  And even if they lose, they should have a fully-rested Cole Hamels to go in Tampa Bay for game seven–if it’s even necessary.  You want to see this thing finish.  You want your boys to be able to rush the mound and tackle Brad Lidge.  Soaking each other in Mums is just kind of awkward when you’ve been watching the rain and not playing baseball for the past couple hours.

Chase Utley gets it.  Listen to Chase Utley.  And look at him too, because that’s always fun:

Still cute, even if I kind of hope he gets dysentery for a couple days.

Still cute, even if I kind of hope he gets dysentery for a couple days.

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No one should play hurt.

I’m not saying no one should tough it out through some pain.  Novak Djokovic needs to stop whining.  Forever.

But there is clearly a line, which is crossed all the time.  Donovan McNabb sprains his ankle, plays on it anyway, ends his season.  Chris Simms ruptures his spleen, plays anyway, ends his career.  How is either of these a good thing?  Tough?  Sure, why not.  Stupid?  Definitely.

Brian Westbrook and Jason Witten both have broken ribs.  Both are planning to play or have played.  Sure, they help their teams, probably, in the short run (yes, I am aware of this past Sunday).  However, broken ribs have a nasty way of breaking other things, don’t they?  When the fancy term “rupture” is used?  Is this just me?  Also, I know that sports medicine is pretty advanced, but I’m pretty sure the optimal way to recover from broken bones does not involve getting beaten up every Sunday afternoon.

There’s a lot of money involved.  Maybe it’s a contract year.  If you sprained your thumb or your hamstring is whining a little, you should probably play.  But the potential for ending a season or a career should far outweigh putative monetary gain.

And now, because ruptured spleens aren’t cute, but Chris Simms definitely is:

Freakishly like his dad.

Freakishly like his dad.

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In fact, he’s most of the reason this blog exists.  I think he’s a misogynist man-child.  Also I hate Boston sports.

But you know why I really hate Bill Simmons?  He has apparently wussed out of writing the supposedly inevitable “Actually, the Red Sox are not the Second Coming” column.  Instead, he has chosen to tell us why he loves sports.  And he doesn’t even have the decency not to be smug.

I was so looking forward to mocking his pain.  I was so looking forward to pointing out that his team got steamed by the Tampa Bay Devil Rays, who are still in their acne-ridden, squeaky-voiced years and can’t even stand up to daddy enough to keep their totally legitimate zoological name (PS I like the Rays, actually.  I think they’re scrappy and adorable.  But they’re not exactly a powerhouse tradition.).  I was so looking forward to his crying like a little girl because sporting Everest has already happened but he can’t keep it.

But he denied me that pleasure.  Well, screw him, I’m starting a “schadenfreude” tag anyway.

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Sometimes the good guys win.

I had about given up on baseball.  Baseball was pissing me off.  Baseball wasn’t following the script.  You know the script.  The ragtag bunch of upstarts overcomes the odds and dethrones the big, gross, happiness-guzzling machine.  A nation–a real nation, not the Red Sox nation–rejoices.  The guy in the third row of Tropicana in Sox garb with the sign that reads “It ain’t over yet” and the smug look on his face files out of the stadium, pondering what went wrong.  Kevin Youkilis agrees to wear a bag over his head for the rest of his life.  The script is good, but baseball wasn’t following it.  In baseball, the bad guys always won in the end, and it was killing me.

But I didn’t die.  And neither did the Rays.

The Good Guys.

Now bring on the Phillies, Dottie be damned.

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I mean soccer, by the way.

Rio Ferdinand is all peeved with FIFA or UEFA or someone because of racist insults hurled at Emile Heskey during a match against Croatia.  Croatia has been fined.  This is apparently insufficient.

Now, I am not saying that crowds should yell racist imprecations at Emile Heskey.  If you need insulting things to shout at Emile Heskey, I have lots that aren’t racist, like, for instance, that he’s a completely pants footballer.

All joking aside, however, such behavior is reprehensible.

I don’t know that it’s more reprehensible than the kind of revolting, coarse treatment meted out to David Beckham when he got married.  There were disgusting chants reflecting on his wife’s virtue.  You stay classy, Britain.

But racist chants are certainly not more reprehensible than actual, real violence.  Where people get beat up and sometimes killed in and around the stadium.

Atlético Madrid was supposed to play some Champions League ties away from its home stadium because fans apparently cannot refrain from attacking each other.  They appealed it, and will be playing in the Vicente Calderón, but…wait…hold up…am I serious?  That’s right.  There are people out there who cannot bear not to beat someone up for the whole ninety minutes of a football match.  And they’re not even all English.  These are grown men.  Well, for a given value of “grown men” that involves being raging, immature psychopaths when at sporting events.

In the United States, opposing fans do not risk their lives when sitting in the home seats.  They get yelled at, and insulted, but relatively few punches are thrown, and riot police are seldom if ever necessary.  Supporters’ sections are a preference, not a necessity.

Racist chants are definitely ignorant, offensive, and undesirable.  But there are other problems to be addressed first–problems that have life or death consequences.  Admirable sentiment, Rio, but there are bigger fish to fry.

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Tony Romo broke his pinkie.

I’m sure it hurts, and to be fair I can’t throw a spiral with all five fingers perfectly healthy, but…seriously?  His pinkie?  That’s got to be the most embarrassing injury ever.  Ruptured spleen, shattered metatarsal, step back.  We have a new winner!

For a while, all the headlines I saw were “Romo breaks finger, out for a month.”  Which is totally fair.  When quarterbacks break their hands, it’s a problem.  Unless they’re Brett Favre, and they play with broken thumbs, and are not noticeably less accurate.  But I buy it.

And then I found out it was his pinkie.  After picking myself up off the floor and applying cold compresses to my aching sides, well, quite frankly, I laughed some more.  Clearly it will be an issue in Tony Romo’s future life if his finger sticks out at the wrong angle when he’s having tea.  I bet he and TO have an elaborate pinky-swear system whereby they don’t make fun of each other, and this injury will result in multiple crazy TO press conferences.  The surgical tape on his splint will become inextricably stuck to the gauze on his chin injury, and he’ll have to ask Miss Simpson to help him out and she will probably manage to break his nose in the process.

No, seriously, I wish him a speedy recovery so the Cowboys can’t make excuses for losing.

Hahaha.  Ha.

Hahaha. Ha.

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