Thursday, September 22, 2005

Third Time's a Charm

For only the third day this season, the world awakes to find the Yank'ums on top of the AL East standings.

Since the last two times were extremely short-lived, I won't gloat or celebrate or even mention the fact that the Yanks have been written off more times than a corporate dinner. But here we are, with a "horrible rotation," a "terrible bullpen" and "a bench shorter than an Asian penis," swiping first place with only three series left to play. And tonight's game against the O's is key -- win it, and we've got a full one-game lead.

Now here's a point I've been dying to make since last night. As the "Papi 4 MVP" bandwagon runs out of room -- ESPN bought all the tickets and now they're handing them out as gifts -- A-Rod proved last night why he's the real AL MVP (and Travis Hafner proved why he might be next year's). Both Alex and Ortiz sucked it up at the plate: Papi went 0-4 with two strikeouts and a big ninth-inning groundout in a 7-4 loss; A-Rod went 0-3 with three strikeouts in a 2-1 win.

But while Ortiz had absolutely nothing to do with the 27 outs the Sawx recorded on defense, A-Rod made two great plays in the sixth inning to keep the Yanks up 2-1, a score that eventually held up for the win. First he held Bernie Castro to a single when he backhanded a grounder over the third-base bag, then he made a diving stab (Webgem!) to his right on a Javy Lopez two-out scorcher and threw to first to end the inning. The Unit pointed right at A-Rod, who pretty much thwarted a bigger inning all by himself. That's how he rolls.

And that's how the Devil Rays roll, jabbing the Yanks all season before making a secret backroom deal and turning on the Sawx. I thought Mr. Fuji was gonna come out at some point and take over for Sweet Lou. Much love to the D-Rays and the Orioles for playing their part.

Slack Admission of the Day: I watched a full episode of Lost for the first time last night. Well, I saw the series premiere and second episode, but then I dropped it. What a mistake! Everyone who's been telling me "This show is incredible" is 150 percent correct. For probably 40 of the 44 minutes I thought my heart would beat right out of my chest. Shit, now I have another show to watch every single week. Little boxes, they control me.

Slack Awesomeness of the Day: By now you've all heard about the famed JetBlue flight that couldn't land, and I'm sure many of you watched it in the skies. I love JetBlue, for one main reason: The in-flight entertainment. How could you dislike an airline with DirecTV in the seats?! So I forgot last night that the people on board were most likely watching themsleves on TV the whole time, wondering whether or not they'd go down in flames. Craisins.

Slack Song of the Day: This new iDigit site is so incredible that I thought I'd just do a Slack Setlist of the Day instead:

The Band's We Can Talk > Taking Heads' Found a Job > Allman Brothers Band's Whipping Post > Phish's Rift > The Who's The Punk and the Godfather > Van Morrison's TB Sheets > Rick Astley's Never Gonna Give You Up > Billy Ocean's Caribbean Queen > Talking Heads' Naive Melody (This Must Be the Place) > Mystery Train (John Butterfield & The Band from The Last Waltz)

If nothing else, listen to that first song, We Can Talk -- easily my favorite three-minute song in the history of music.


At 9:47 AM, Blogger offpeak34 said...

forget about the yankees, how are you feeling about the rangers these days? probably not very good after that thumping by the isles the other night!

don't worry, i'm just bitter cause i'm a mets fan and i got tickets for one of the last games of the season thinking they'd be in a playoff chase.

but still...the isles dominated.

At 9:52 AM, Anonymous HANDSTAND said...

If Hafner did not miss that month because of the concussion, we'd be looking at an even more difficult MVP race. Based on some quick math, his stats project to .300+/37/124 across the same amount of at bats A-Rod has had.

But I agree Ace, I can't fathom the idea of Ortiz getting it over A-Rod simply because of the DH factor. And all of the BoSox BlowHards probably don't realize that A-Rod actually has more GW RBI than Ortiz, at least according to the YES graphic the other night.

Come on Moose.....

At 10:04 AM, Blogger Don Fiedler said...

i'm incredibly psyched to be flying jetblue tomorrow. i hope i won't have to watch that channel on directv where they depict me being served bad snack mix and 8 oz. of cranberry juice while sitting upright for 5 1/2 hours in a tiny seat. what a horror show it must be.

the horror.

actually, the real horror is irene's irrational dread about having to fly jetblue tomorrow. there goes my fiance, cannonballing into the pool of paranoia.

At 10:14 AM, Blogger TJ in OH said...

I almost called you last night when I saw the scores, Acey. So what's your call...any way tow teams make it from the East?

At 10:21 AM, Blogger Ace Cowboy said...

Tell that bitch to be cool...say "Bitch be cool."

I think this is the best time ever to fly JetBlue. I mean, firstly, their pilots are clearly trained well. Secondably, what the fuck are the odds that'll happen again? Don't you think they'll be triple-checking that shit?

Handstand, agreed on Hafner, which is why I dropped his name there. That month off killed him, bit even if he'd been a monster that month he was hurt, you think voters are gonna give it to him over Papi or A-Rod?

Elliot, are you talking about hockey? What the hell is that? This is baseball playoffs time and the beginning of football season, and you're talkin pucks? I admire your hockey chops, but let's put that on the backburner for a while.

At 10:25 AM, Blogger John Howard said...


At 10:30 AM, Blogger Ace Cowboy said...

Joke, John.

TJ, I agree, I think both AL East teams will end up just seems right that way. East Coast bias? Eat me.

At 10:30 AM, Blogger offpeak34 said...

I definately agree that it's a great time to fly JetBlue. The pilots did a great job, as far as I can tell, in a very dangerous situation. I know their pilots can handle it, can Delta's? I don't know.

Ace...I've got my mind on hockey all the time. I played and watched for so many years and have not had anything to do with the sport for almost 2 years now. I'm itching for the season to start. I just got myself some Isles-Rangers tickets in the Garden for 10/29.

And yeah, the Jets are #1 concern for me right now. You going to this week's game? Let me know if you are, we do a tailgate each week if you'd wanna join.

At 10:38 AM, Blogger TJ in OH said...

The worst thing about hockey coming back is that you no longer get a daily dose of Brass Bonanza, the theme of Hartford - The Whale - playing daily on the SportsBash on ESPN Radio. That song has soul.

At 10:58 AM, Blogger ethan said...

independent of the concussing, hafner dh's plenty and plays the one bagger - definitely an underated position with respect to defensive importance, but not comparable to any other infield position. i mean, arod could easily be a gold glover at 1b, but hafner would never EVER find himself at the hotcorner. that first-third transition is solely for soft-handed agile guys like donnie baseball (yes the yanks played a lefty at third once or twice in the 80's).

i also want to point out the play arod made on tuesday nite - 2 outs in the 9th, 2 runners on, and he made a nice backhanded stab on a tweener hop. it was definitely overlooked.

At 11:25 AM, Blogger ahren said...

"definitely an underated position with respect to defensive importance"

>>surely you jest.

At 12:03 PM, Anonymous Rashid Muhammad said...

Lost is freakin awesome. The first 30 minutes of the premiere were 30 of the illest minutes that I've ever spent watching any screen of any type.

The only problem is that it raises the Giligan's Island conundrum: How many contrived scenarios can they dream up with until their cash cow runs out of milk?

At 12:06 PM, Blogger ethan said...

ahren are you saying you think defense at first doesn't matter?

At 12:09 PM, Blogger Ace Cowboy said...

Rashid, I heard next week's episode features an appearance by the Harlem Globetrotters.

Defense at first is more important than people think, but less important than you're probably making it out to be. I mean, if Ortiz was the Sawx full-time first baseman, do you think they'd be down like 8 games in the division? Eh, probably not. Maybe an extra game or two, sure, but you can get by with the right guy.

At 12:21 PM, Blogger Jason Mulgrew said...

Hafner has played 1B in exactly ONE game next year, DH'ing the rest.

That means next year for fantasy drafts he'll fall into that dreaded Frank Thomas/Edgar Martinez "DH-only" category. Yuck.

At 12:41 PM, Blogger MDS said...

I've never seen even a minute of Lost, but it seems like I can't visit a blog today without reading about how great it was. So here's the question: If I start watching it now (or, more likely, in a few months, when I won't be quite so busy), will I have any clue what the fuck is going on?

(The word I have to type is bidntuz, but when I first glanced at it I thought it said big nutz.)

At 12:45 PM, Blogger ethan said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 12:48 PM, Blogger ethan said...

ace you're making my point for me. 2 games right now would seem important to the yanks, sox, tribe, a's, angels, chisox, astros, phils, fish, giants, etc.

there's obviously a trade off between offense and defense, and first is often a place to take o over d. for example, starting doug minkevietaxcv at first purely because he's good defensively is dumb. but so may be starting kevin millar there because he's "good" offensively, when you could have olerud there (maybe a slight decrease in offense for a major upgrade defensively).

anyway, my original point was just that sometimes it's taken for granted that you can just stick anyone who can hit at first, but that can have a pretty big impact on a game. just ask those 2000 mets if they would've gone that far with piazza at first.


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