Monday, October 24, 2005

PLAYOFFS HERE WE COME

The Bills, the Dolphins, the Jets: BWAH-HAH-HAH-HAH! Kelly Holcombe, Gus Ferotte, and Vinny Testaverde are just waiting to lead these teams to the promised land: the promised land of top ten draft picks that is. The Pats have six games remaining against these clunkers; if they screw up any of those six games, it will be because the worse team won. No excuses for not winning any of those games. None.

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BASEBALL:

WHIRLED SERIOUS:

I hate to belabor the point, but these games starting after 8:30 are ridiculous. No way can I stay up that late and then function the next day at work. Of course, baseball will never start games earlier for one simple reason: money. I listened to Dennis & Callahan go back and forth on it and rip Bud Selig all morning, but no one brought up the point that the advertisers want to be in primetime, not 6:30 pm on the East Coast or 4:00 pm on the West Coast: primetime advertising is what the network demands and what the network demands it will receive.

ROGER THE DODGER AND CODGER:

I try to root for Roger Clemens, I really do. I mean, this guy was one of the greatest pitchers in Red Sox history. He was THE FRANCHISE from the mid-eighties until finally leaving in a well-publicized spat with then GM Dan Duquette. Roger, of course, either gave up on the season in game six of the 1986 World Series, or else then manager John McNamara made a horrible decision to take him out of the game. After going back and forth for years (heck, decades) I finally have decided to blame the both of them equally. Of course, anyone who feels absolved by the 2004 World Series obviously was either not a fan in 1986 or was in a cocaine induced stupor all those years like 1986 New York Met heroes Darryl Strawberry and Dwight Gooden.

As far as I am concerned, 1986 remains an open, festering wound. Also, 1988 and 1990 are not much better, and as far as I am concerned, the eye-black wearing, Teen-age Mutant Ninja Turtle wearing Clemens deserves much of the blame for not being able to shoulder the burden as a number one starter in the post-season. Also, I do not want to hear about how he won two rings for the Yankees: 1. the fans would have preferred the team kept David Wells, and 2. Clemens was the number three starter at best, if not the number four starter on those strong, deep, solid rotations of Yankees teams of past.

Of course, in between were the years where he left the Sox to be closer to his family in Texas: by going to Toronto. Finally free of the nagging injuries and nagging media, fans, and management in Boston, Clemens came in renewed and in good health and spirits for the first time in years and promptly went back to dominating hitters. I saw the return of the rocket game, his first game back in Boston, where he was a man on a mission. I truly thought he would get 20 strikeouts again that game. He was beyond nasty. Of course, overshadowed in that game, it was probably the greatest game ever pitched by Aaron Sele in a Boston uniform.

Why do I bring up the pain associated with seeing Roger Clemens in a Boston uniform? Because Roger, un-retired for the past two season (way to kick the Yankees in the rear. Roger) is back in the World Series. Big game pitcher that he is, Clemens, who lost game seven of the NLCS for the Astros last season, came up big (as in a big, steaming pile of you-know-what) by promptly exiting after two innings and three runs and, as always, the Rocket was lightning quick to point to a physical malady in his excuse for a bad performance. Gee, Roger, we never heard that one before.

So Clemens despite being one of, if not THE, best pitcher of this modern era that I have witnessed in my lifespan, again lacks the strength of character to match the strength of body, as for the umpteenth time he latches onto the most convenient excuse available rather than stepping up and facing the criticism head-on.

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FOOTBALL:

AFC LEAST:

Was it only three years ago that the AFC East was the best division in football? The Patriots, fresh off their first Super Bowl victory, the Jets, with a rejuvenated Curtis Martin leading a fast, aggressive young squad, and the Dolphins, winning with great defense and overcoming the Lip Hampster of Indecision himself, Dave Wannestadt, at coach. Now, the Patriots, facing the toughest schedule EVER in the first six games of the season (Note: none against any division foe), come out battered and bruised and clinging to a 3-3 record, yet during a bye week move into first place all by their lonesome. Amazing.

THE JETS:
The only team in the division that gripe along with the Patriots as far as injuries are concerned is the Jets. Granted, everyone but GM Terry Bradway knew that Chad Pennington had a right arm made of spaghetti. Of course, the Jets are built for this season, not the future, as they are over $30 million over the cap for next season. Looking at them fumbling, bumbling, and stumbling against Hotlanta, it just further reinforces my claim that Bradway and Herm Edwards is akin to Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis running the team. Or is it Laurel and Hardy?

THE BILLS:
When fans are clamoring for Drew Bledsoe in 2005, it is not good. This team had a Super Bowl defense the last few years with a horrible offense. Now, they are slowly eroding on defense, but the offense still stinks. Tom Donahoe apparently is no Scott Pioli as he has been unable to put together a complete team. Oh yeah, JP Losman is not going to improve sitting on the bench and the playoffs are a distant thought.

THE DOLPHINS:
Ricky Williams, Nick Saban, Gus Ferotte, Ronnie Brown, and God knows who else is suffering down in the peninsula. This team needs a dismantling, although I think Saban thinks that the defense is OK and he can quick-fix the offense. Umm, no, sorry Nick. Dismantle the whole she-bang.

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