Friday, July 15, 2005

Looking Back, Looking Forward

8-6: That's how you do it...that's how you debate.

All this week I've been telling everyone within earshot that I'd love for the Yank'ums to be trailing by a run in the 9th at Fenway, just so we could bash in a few runs against that Goateed Tub O' Goo with the fake chicken-blood on his sock.

Well, we weren't trailing for our last at-bats off Schilling, but I'll take the end result with glee: a double off the wall by Sheff, a bomb to center by the delicious A-Rod and a strike-out-the-side performance by Resurgent Mo. That's a spicy meat-a-ball, a huge 9th-inning win to give us a chance to leave Fenway with the division lead.

(I will admit, though, one glaring negative came out of this fantastic comeback victory: The Yanks desperately NEED a lights-out lefty in the bullpen for guys like Big Papi/Davey Coolbeard. This is not up for discussion, this is a necessity. Last night we survived an Ortiz Dongy Dong, but in the future we might not be so lucky).

So the game worked out almost exactly how I imagined it would. Of course, I seem to always make my most accurate predictions off the blog, where I have no proof of my excellent augury skills. The ones I decide to post? Yeah, they generally suck M&Ms right out of my ass.

Take my 2005 MLB predictions, for example, which shows I'm a genius in the American League, but a complete moron in every other aspect.

My predictions from a 4/4 Slack post (if I'm wrong, I put the correct team in parentheses):

AL East: Yank'ums (Sawx, but soon to be the Yanks)
AL Central: White Sox
AL West: Angels
Wild Card: Twins

OK, lookin' pretty solid off the bat -- if the Yanks indeed come back to take over the division lead, which is all but likely to this clearly unbiased reporter, I could end up calling this thing 100% accurate. And when everyone in America says, "Who woulda thunk the ChiSox could have won that division?," I can respond truthfully, "Um, me." Sometimes, just sometimes, I know what I'm talking about. But as you'll see, those occasions are rare.

NL East: Marlins (Nationals)
NL Central: Cubbies (Cards)
NL West: Padres
Wild Card: Braves

Again, not terrible. I mean, really, who woulda thunk the Nationals could win this division?! This time, not me. Plus, I wouldn't count out the Marlins from a second-half surge; this is a team that has been under-performing more than Wal-Mart's stock. The Cubs got some bad breaks, but I should have known better than to bet against the Cards. This St. Louis squad looks like a World Series team.

ALCS: Yanks over Angels
NLCS: Padres over Cubbies
World Series: Yanks over Padres

Take out the North-Siders from this equation and I'm still okay with this prediction. Even though in the above paragraph I called the Cards a World Series team, I think the Pods could come out of nowhere to surprise some people. Peavy, Lawrence, Eaton, they could take a series against anyone if they get hot. And hey, they've got Paul Qunatrill now, and he rocks.

AL MVP 1-2: Hideki Matsui, Vlad Guerrero
NL MVP 1-2: Carlos Delgado, Brian Giles
AL Cy Young 1-2: Randy Johnson, Bartolo Colon
NL Cy Young 1-2: Tim Hudson, Jake Peavy

Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. These predictions just suck. Let's forget I made some of these. Unless the Unit pitches three perfect games in a row, he's not winning any hardware in the offseason, except maybe a bionic knee. And don't get me started on Tim Hudson, who cockteased every fantasy owner into thinking he was the real deal, but then decided to blow goats (I have proof).

All I know is (I got a lotta balls), it's gonna be a good second half to the season, though. Rich Harden nearly pitched a perfect game last night, eight teams in each league have a legitimate shot at winning the wild card in addition to the races for division titles, Raffy's trying to be the third player ever with 3000 hits and 600 homeruns, Barry might never know what's going to happen this year.

As they say, "I live for this."

Slack Songs of the Day: I couldn't decide between two fantastic cover tunes, both played in Illinois, so I'm-a gonna give you both. Hopefully you'll listen to them and comment below on which one you like better.

1. Yonder Mountain String Band with the Grateful Dead's New Speedway Boogie from the July 9th Big Summer Classic in Schaumburg's Alexian Field. I mean, vocally, you can't touch Jerry's voice on this song, but musically I think they do a pretty cool job.

2. Umphrey's McGee with the Doobie Brother's Black Water from the Canopy Club in Champaign-Urbana on April 15th. Again, vocally, I don't think this version holds up, but musically, I like it. I like it a lot.


At 10:19 AM, Anonymous BPP said...

Ace i know you love Brian Giles (as you made anyone who would listen aware during that marathon of a fantasy draft), but get off his nut, or nuts as the case may be.

At 10:44 AM, Blogger Ace Cowboy said...

That makes no sense.

I picked him as the back-up MVP in April and said today that I think my picks sucked. So I'm pretty sure I'm off those nuts. Are you saying this because I picked the Padres to make it to the WS? As I think I clearly explained, that would be because of good pitching, not because of Giles.

Your unwarranted attack has failed.

At 10:50 AM, Blogger PaulNoonan said...

That was an impressive win last night, and probably demoralizing for the BoSox (remember all of that bitching about Schill in the pen? This will just intensify it).

It's too bad your team broke their Wang though.

At 10:52 AM, Blogger Matty Mac said...

We are exactly one game past the halfway point. It's a little bold to be predicting the Yanks blowing the Sox out of the water at this point. I have no doubt that Georgie will grab a lefty for the pen. Tanyan Sturtze is pitching batting practice at this point. With that said, the Sox bullpen is obviously as shaky, even with fat bastard in there. But I am also confident that Theo wil go out and grab someone as well to close the door. He hasn't let us down yet. The Angels will blow it by season's end. Sox-Yanks ALCS, no doubt.

At 10:56 AM, Blogger Ace Cowboy said...

Sox/Yanks ALCS...that much is obvious. Round 3.

At 12:28 PM, Blogger ethan said...

sure the yanks rotation is in tatters, but this whole thing should make sox fans everywhere feel back to normal - they can now spend the rest of the summer expecting to blow it.

the decision to insert schilling last night was terrible. first off, he's not ready (or even that close - fastball topping at 90-91) to face major league hitters. second, timlin and his microscopic era should've stayed in. but hey i loved it. go tito.

At 2:00 PM, Anonymous Josh said...

Just wait, the Yankees have done this all year, go on a simple win streak, then lose 13 of 16, win 5 in a row, lose 8 in a row. How soon Yankees fans forget that the Sox were down 0-3 in the ALCS, and we all know how that turned out. Even Memorial Day weekend started out the same, Sox Nation winning and blowing the game, then taking the next two easily. The Sox will win the next three and take the division, while Jeter will be sucking on A-Rod. Yankees SUCK!

At 2:25 PM, Blogger ethan said...

jeter and arod being gay together - the creativity is just oozing out of your pores.

At 3:23 PM, Blogger Matty Mac said...

Schilling topped out at 94, which wasn't bad. It was his splitter that sucked, and a few location problems too. I agree with the Timlin comment. Healthy Schilling wouldn't locate a 91 mph fastball at the belt to a hitter like A-Rod. 99 times out of 100 A-Rod hits that 450 feet. 99 times out of 100 I can hit that out. Okay, that's a small lie, but still, it's the easiest pitch to hit (see: Gordon, Tom).

Personally, I am kind of on the fence with the insertion of Schilling last night. Is he ready mentally? Yes. His arm is there but his location isn't. Was it good for the psyche of the Sox? I think so. Was blowing the game good? Obviously not. I think that the fact that he is out there while Foulke is in a mental institution just makes the team more comfortable toward the end of the game. Schilling isn't going to blow it every time, or at least I hope not.

Tim Redding is pitching for the Yankums tonight, I would really focus on him more than anything right now. Papi is going to eat him alive.

At 4:56 PM, Blogger Dorsey said...

Josh, given the sox "defending champs" status, the whole angry guy, defiant rant thing is a bit weird, no? Go hump a fridge, you tool.


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