Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Miscellaneous Ramblings

OK, this time its all over. And somehow I'm alright with it. No throwing objects at the TV. No silently staring at the TV as Gary Carter runs home. No getting sent to my room at age nine for using physical violence to shut up those who would taunt my Washington Redskins at halftime. No cursing at the radio (my Dad didn't let me watch the game on TV) when Magic hit the mini-hook. No silently staring at the TV as Aaron Boone circles the bases. Instead, I turned off the TV and went to sleep and slept soundly. Wow, maybe I really am maturing.

Nahhh!

Instead, I think I realized that the Red Sox went through holy hell just to get to game seven. They were a very good team with some flaws due to getting old and having a few injuries. Someone convince me that Mike Lowell playing instead of Mark Kotsay would not have made a difference (especially since Kotsay left 17 runners on base).

OK, onto my miscellaneous ramblings:

* Derek Lowe back in Boston. Come on, this would be so good (well, at least for the gossip columnists).

* Matt Cassel AFC Offensive Player of the Week? Puh-leeze, he was about the ninth most valuable offensive player on the Patriots Monday night. (What, you want me to back that up? Sure. Here's the list: 1. Sammy Morris 2. Randy Moss 3. Wes Welker 4. Matt Light 5. Logan Mankins 6. Dan Koppen 7. Heath Evans 8. Ben Watson 9. Matt Cassel. Nuff said.)

* The Celtics should continue to be fun this fall, winter, and spring (and hopefully summer as well). A few new nuggets unearthed from the draft yet again, and only the loss of James Posey to overcome (Tony Allen bounceback year, Tony Allen bounceback year, Tony Allen bounceback year).

* Seriously, are the Patriots bi-polar this season? Lose Brady, beat Favre, lose to the Dolphins, win, get blown out by the Chargers, and blow out the Broncos. It's like the Pete Carroll era all over again--that gnawing pain in the pit of the stomach all game. Uggh. I forgot about those days.

* Bruins? Seriously, the Bruins season already started? No way. Seriously?

* BC football back in the top 25. Time for a big letdown loss (I still can't believe the way they whupped VA Tech last week).

* Thank you to the Sci-Fi Channel for replaying LOST from the first episode. It was one of those shows I resisted because I knew I'd be hooked. So here I am totally freaking hooked and killing massive amounts of free time.

* I cannot wait to see how the Yankees try to buy their way back to the playoffs.

* AJ Burnett--somehow I think he ends up in Boston by hook or by crook.

* Thanks for all the effort, enthusiasm, and attitude, Bad Rodney. All Pats fans will miss you this season.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Thursday, October 16, 2008

It's all over...

I hope this is wrong, but the 2008 season ends not with a bang, but a whimper for the Red Sox.

From Curt Schilling shilling $8 million from the Sox, to the Big Papi wrist breakdown, to the Josh Beckett myriad injuries, to Mannygate, to the bad taste left by Jon Lester's last start in the ALCS, to tonight where the Rays are spanking the Sox (Upton, Longoria, and Pena--oh my!) once again and the season, minus a miracle comeback against ALL odds, ends in a mere four innings.

With Tom Brady down and out until 2009, the Patriots go only as far as Matt Cassel carries them (Seriously, who would ever believe I would wish for the halcyon days of Scott Zolak?). The Bruins still exist only in a time-warp back to when they were relevant so many years ago, and all eyes turn to the Celtics.

Good night Red Sox 2008 season. Sadly, it will be remembered much like 2005--a team so close, but too far away.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Sox Advance!!!

I write this at 11:30pm on Monday, October 6th after Jed Lowrie singled in Jason Bay to push the Red Sox past the California/Anaheim/Los Angeles Angels, and I have only one thing to say:

ANGELS MANAGER MIKE SCIOSCIA IS AN IDIOT.

If there are any Angels fans out there, believe me, Mike Scioscia just cost your team game five at home.

With pinch-runner Reggie Willits at third (bunted over for some absurd reason, giving up out number one), Scioscia opted for the suicide squeeze with a drawn-in infield and a fly-ball away from a lead. Of course, the gamble failed with Willits caught in no man's land as Aybar whiffed on the bunt attempt.

Scioscia, the "genius" small-ball manager once again proved that small ball is another word for a team that gives outs away and runs themselves out of runs (think of all that horrible "aggressive baserunning" that cost the Angels so many runs just in these four games (Vlad Guerrero gunned at third base by Youkilis anyone?).

Scioscia ran out to argue the play, obviously confused about the sport he was managing, because it appeared his argument entailed Jason Varitek not controlling the ball while getting two feet down in bounds while applying the tag.

But wait, that's not all!

With his 62 save superstar K-Rod on the bullpen bench rubbing ben-gay all over his arm, Scioscia decided to go out with his supposed best pitcher sitting down and hoping he remembers not to scratch his crotch. Leaving in Scott Shields, Jason Bay doubled down the right-field line (just a bounce to stay on the field away from a walk-off inside-the-park homer) and Jed Lowrie singled him home. K-Rod? Nowhere to be seen.

Nice work once again, Scioscia! Thanks for the freebie, everyone in Boston appreciates it, you big, fat idiot! Go buy a copy of Baseball Prospectus, you moron (or better yet, don't. It just helps the Red Sox more and more when you play smallball and go with these Jimy Williams "hunches").

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Bring out the Rally Weasel!

Quick story here before we get to the Red Sox: waaaaaaaaaaaaaaay back in 2004 when the Red Sox were in the ALDS versus the California/Anaheim/Los Angeles Angels, one has to remember that this was still the era of the Rally Monkey in Cali. Yes, that idiotic monkey flashing on the screen and everyone in Southern Cal all giddy over a flipping monkey hopping up and down (seriously, give me "Sweet Caroline" anyday!). So, determined to crush this rally monkey and allow the Sox a way to move past this modern-day Bonzo-led squad, I pondered the eternal question: what the heck eats monkeys anyway?

Certainly, Bucky Katt from Get Fuzzy qualified, but with five cats at the time, none of them were quite "monkey killers". Therefore, I decided it had to be a weasel that would kill and eat a monkey (whether this is true or not, I have no idea nor the inclination to Google it, but it would be one hell of fight as I imagine it!). So, watching the Sox on the telly while sitting in the old condo (where we were back in the days--oh, how I miss not having to mow the lawn--but I digress) I turned to the wifey and said: "we need a rally weasel to combat this idiotic rally monkey against the Angels."

Immediately after, she turns to Hal IV (then about 3 years old) and says: "Bear, we need a rally weasel about right now!" Immedidately, he starts running around in a circle as fast as he can and shouting at the top of his lungs: "RAL-LY WEAS-EL, RAL-LY WEAS-EL, RAL-LY WEAS-EL, RAL-LY WEAS-EL, RAL-LY WEAS-EL, RAL-LY WEAS-EL!"

After that, well, it was obvious that the Angels and their hideous, filthy monkey were history.

* * *

OK, onto game three, which will probably start around 7:30/8pm since it is at Fenway and may end before midnight so there remains a chance I can stay awake for it. I was fading in and out of game two, and barely remembered what I saw. By the time I woke-up, I had no memory of whether they had won or not, and strangely remembered Jonathan Papelbon turning into a Volkswagon Bug, which I was pretty sure was a dream. Finally, checking ESPN the next morning, I was pleasantly pleased to see that whatever I had dreamt was fantasy and the Sox had won (I was convinced the J.D. Drew homer was something a J.D. Drew homer like me could only dream-up).

Now, waiting for game three has me feeling that twinge in my stomach (oh wait, that is from watching Matt Cassel quarterback the Patriots). I love having Josh Beckett pitching game three, but I worry about a strained oblique muscle hampering his power on the mound. Mike Lowell's and J.D. Drew's health are serious issues also. With Youkilis and Pedrioa slumping, can the rest of the line-up continue to produce for the Sox? Will the two-out magic continue in game three?

One thing I know for sure, the Rally Weasel will be on hand with me to cheer on the Sox.

Patriots Daze

Let me make this clear: No matter what I said in a moment of excitement, no matter what Matt Cassel does the rest of this season, I am going to go with my initial pre-season assessment and tell you this: he's a bum. He belongs in NFLEurope (even though it no longer exists). He belongs in the CFL (if he can beat out the immortal Quincy Carter). He was a bum in college (never started) and he's a bum now. He belongs on the practice squad of a bottom of the divison team. He is no diamond in the rough. He is a bum.

Yes, Tom Brady is great. In fact, in his absense, it only serves to highlight how great he actually is and how everyone in New England has taken him for granted (myself included). Considering he almost got a team with Reche Caldwell as his number one receiver to the super bowl, I don't know how fans ever took him for granted. Simply the best quarterback of my generation (you hear that Peyton Manning, you arm-flapping, commercial-making, sally-boy!).

No matter how bad the defense has been for the Patriots this season, it all comes down to who is under center. Entering game four, I feel ready to pass judgement on Matt Cassel and I can say that free agency cannot come soon enough so he can be shown the door and allow for Brady to come back. Let Kevin O'Connell back Brady up (heck, let horrible actor Jerry O'Connell back him up for all I care!). But no more Matt Cassel. Please, I implore Bill Belichick to swallow his pride and put O'Connell behind center (Kevin or Jerry...it couldn't be worse than Cassel). But no more Cassel.

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