Monday, October 25, 2004

Dogs and cats, living together!

Game 2: Boston 6, St. Louis 2.

This grows serious.

Now, there was one positive about the whole Red Sox rally - the New York Daily News ran a great picture of Ed Westphal, captain of the 1975 Islanders, the last professional team to rally from 3-nil to win a playoff round. Always nice to see America's Hockey Team in the news for something other than screwing up.

(By the way - in the real world, where there's no lockout? Islanders are 3-0-1 following Saturday's 7-1 defeat of the Washington Capitals, who are truly terrible even when they do not play.)

OK, I lied, two positives - Curt Schilling is a freakin' stud. If he wasn't a Red Socker, they'd have mailed it in against the Yanks after that Game 3 wipeout. As it is, they may make Terry Francona the first talk-show side man to manage a World Series winner. (Davey Johnson, '86 Mets, already holds the distinction of first Porn-Star moustache to manage a WS winner.)

Cities (or regions, in this case) do this from time to time. They get hot and suddenly everyone starts winning at once. Think about 1969-73 in New York: Namath's guarantee, the Amazin' Mets, two Knicks titles, and Tug McGraw's "Ya Gotta Believe." Immediately following, Philly took the stage from '74-'83, opening that stretch with back-to-back Stanley Cups for the Flyers, ending with the Sixers winning in the NBA, and picking up the Phillies' only World Series in '80. Now things are Boston's way - the Pats, maybe the Sox, almost the Celtics a few years ago... If the Bruins could win in April something would be happening.

On the TV today, one of the NFL shows asked which was more important, the Patriots' streak or the Red Sox rally? The Pats, of course. Without that, would the Sox rally have been possible? Call me odd (take a number and wait your turn for that) - but I don't think that the Sox would have gotten Schilling without the Pats' example of excellence. They'd have settled for Jamie Moyer or something. Neither would they have dealt Nomar (the turning point of their year) without the example of the Pats dealing Drew Bledsoe.

I offer no predictions, but I do play a lot of High Heat Baseball. I swiped Nomar from the Sox in the game. (This is the 2001 Nomar, by the way - got him for Mike Hampton and Tsuyoshi Shinjo. Bill Simmons threw up in his mouth.) It worked, long term, but Boston won the Series that year. It was 2002. That's why I do not predict. And if you saw my office pool this week, you'd thank me.

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