Pennant fever in baseball
September 30, 2005
Can you believe these baseball pennant races? This has been a season that diehard baseball fans dream about.
Other than the Cardinals clinching early in the NL Central, everything else came down to the final week of the season, and that’s the way it should be every year. You can bet there will be more than a little attention devoted to the Red Sox-Yankees games today and Sunday, and that might take some viewers away from college and pro football.
And speaking of baseball, kudos to both the A’s and Giants for hanging in there until the bitter end.
You know that if Moises Alou doesn’t get hurt two different times and if Barry Bonds plays even half a season, the Giants win the crummy NL West division title.
The A’s had their opportunities, but Bobby Crosby’s broken ankle hurt the A’s offense and defense. The pitchers got off to a slow start, and the absence of Rich Harden certainly made a difference the past couple of weeks. Joe Kennedy isn’t even close to Harden when it comes to talent. Kennedy is an OK middle relief guy who you can throw out there for an occasional start. Nothing more. Nothing less.
Like the Brooklyn Dodgers’ fans used to say “Wait Until Next Year.” I will do that with the hope that both Bay Area baseball teams make it back to the postseason.
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TAKING A SHOT
Reece Davis of ESPN took a shot at the Harris Interactive Poll, and this time he was correct on one of the two teams he mentioned.
According to Davis, somebody among the 100-plus voting members voted winless Idaho somewhere in the top 25. As a voting member of the Harris poll, that voter should be removed. Davis also lambasted Harris voters for keeping Michigan in the top 25, and the Wolverines were at No. 25.
Granted the Wolverines didn’t make my top 25, but I’m sure that they got enough votes because of strength of schedule, and in making my selections, I do look at who a team is playing.
That’s the main reason why Louisville dropped so much because they were a three-touchdown favorite and got bashed by an unranked team. That’s why I didn’t drop Purdue down much on the basis of their overtime loss to an unbeaten team last weekend.
I’m finding voting isn’t as easy as I expected it would be, especially when teams lose. It’s not easy to figure out how many spots they should be dropped or whether they should be dropped altogether out of the top 25, but I’m certainly enjoying the challenge.
PACK ISN’T SUPERSTITIOUS
Nevada’s eight-game road losing streak made me think back to my Bay Area days when I covered the Oakland Raiders.
The Raiders’ management was an extremely superstitious bunch. If they were staying at a Marriott in Denver and lost the game, you knew they would be in a different hotel the following season.
Nevada’s Chris Ault isn’t considering changing how early he gets to a city and stadium or the team’s hotel. He doesn’t believe in that.
One Nevada player hinted that maybe the focus of the team changes when they are on the road. Shoot, if that’s the case maybe the Pack ought to stay in a Motel 6 instead of a Hyatt or Marriott. You know the players would be so ticked off at those Spartan surroundings, they probably couldn’t wait to get to the stadium and wreak havoc. Oh well, just a thought.