Saturday, September 13, 2008
No Magical Run This Year: Dodgers 7, Rockies 2I have to admit that last year's run by the Rockies will live a long, long time as one of my most favorite baseball memories ever. Streaks like that aren't just rare, they're impossible; lose any one of several games and they're just another team that had a nice run late in the season, but too late. Game 163 doesn't happen, and neither do their NLDS or NLCS runs.
That's not happening for them this year; their luck on fifth starters ended, their run on health ended (Troy Tulowitzki, Todd Helton, and Matt Holliday have all spent substantial time on the DL), a lot of the things that went right for the team didn't break for them this year. Their young rotation (Ubaldo Jimenez in particular) has suffered in their sophomore year, and so when the Dodgers rolled into town, it wasn't much of a surprise to see them get clipped hard when they put Jeff Francis on the mound against Chad Billingsley. Francis is just about out of options, and the best case for him is a low-cost deal that sends him to Petco, where he can revive his fortunes and get a big contract with somebody else like the Rangers.
James Loney did most of his team-leading 3-RBI damage late, with a bases-clearing double. Chad Billingsley was darn good at altitude, giving up only a pair of runs (one a solo shot to Matt Holliday). A tag-team of relievers finished the game for the Dodgers without giving up a run.
With the win, the Dodgers stay 3.5 games over Arizona, whose 3-2 victory over Cincinnati marked the return of an effective Brandon Webb, who notched his 20th victory to lead the league. The Dodgers' magic number is down to 13.
Drayton McLane's SelfishnessWhy be so stubborn about playing at home? Forget the travel problems, forget the lights — Minute Maid Park itself survived Hurricane Ike intact — will the Astros even have any fans in the seats? They could have been at Miller Park or Turner Field had they elected to do so Friday morning when it was plain that no games would be played in Houston, yet he hemmed and hawed. He might have home field advantage now by default, but I'll be surprised if the stadium is more than half full.
Cards Throw In The Towel, Disable Carpenter And AnkielThe St. Louis Cardinals have thrown in the towel and shut down starter Chris Carpenter and outfielder Rick Ankiel. Carpenter has a muscle strain in his shoulder, while Ankiel has a lingering abdominal injury. I do wonder whether their 10-2 loss to Pittsburgh had any effect on their decision-making.
Chisox Disable Joe Crede For The SeasonOn the heels of yet another rainout at U.S. Cellular, the White Sox have shut down Joe Crede for the season with the back troubles that have plagued him on and off throughout his tenure in Chicago.
The Sox also hope to get Paul Konerko back for the upcoming New York series.
Besides Comiskey, Miller would be the worst choice for a "neutral site".
i guess McLane's greed is the big driving factor, but anywhere but "Wrigley North" for games that still matter.