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Posts Tagged ‘mlb playoffs’

Another October and another unimaginable comeback for the Boston Red Sox. If nothing more than this was just a fantastic game and story for baseball fans. On the other hand could we be in the midst of another improbable Red Sox comeback?

2004: Red Sox come down from 3-0 to beat the New York Yankees in the ALCS
2007: Red Sox come down from 3-1 to beat the Cleveland Indians in the ALCS
2008: ?

It isn’t possible, is it?

Just imagine that the Red Sox win on Saturday; just forcing a game 7 would be unthinkable the way this series has gone. And anything can happen in a game 7. Anything.

It obviously comes down to pitching. Can the Red Sox get a a quality start from Beckett? A quality start, by definition, is at least 6 innings and no more than 3 runs. Literally, a quality start is at least needed for the Red Sox to have a chance. The Rays young team has been hitting the cover off the ball all series. However, it certainly should be an asset to have Beckett on the mound in game 6 even if he isn’t 100%. It is a legitimate thought that the Rays could be affected by this loss but it is even more of a fact that they will definately be, for all intents and purposes, devastated if they lose game 6.

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LCS Lineups

MLB has released the dates of times of each game for the next round of the playoffs. The ALCS games will be on TBS and the NLCS games will be on FOX.

ALCS:                                                               NLCS:

Gm 1 Boston @ TB Fri Oct 10 8:37 pm            Gm 1 LA @ Phi Thu Oct 9 8:22 pm

Gm 2 Boston @ TB Sat Oct 11 8:07 pm           Gm 2 LA @ Phi Fri Oct 10 4:35 pm

Gm 3 TB @ Boston Mon Oct 13 4:37 pm         Gm 3 Phi @ LA Sun Oct 12 8:22 pm

Gm 4 TB @ Boston Tue Oct 14 8:07 pm         Gm 4 Phi @ LA Mon Oct 13 8:22 pm

Gm 5 TB @ Boston Thu Oct 16 8:07 pm          Gm 5 Phi @ LA Wed Oc 15 8:22 pm

Gm 6 Boston @ TB Sat Oct 18 4:37 pm           Gm 6 LA @ Phi Fri Oct 17 8:22 pm

Gm 7 Boston @ TB Sun Oct 19 8:07 pm          Gm 7 LA @ Phi Sat Oct 18 8:22 pm

*Games 5, 6, and 7 are played if necessary.

*Courtesy of mlb.com

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A friend of mine had an interesting take on Angel’s catcher Mike Napoli last night while watching game 3 of the Red Sox-Angels series. He said, “Napoli gives me hope that there is still a chance I can play major league baseball”. I found the comments to be quite funny; I’ve been harping about Napoli being a fat ass all series. I don’t like his double chins. I don’t like how his walk out song is Soulja Boy either but that’s neither here nor there.

That’s Mike on the far right inappropriately touching that poor girl. This is just one example in a number of photos that hit thedirty.com no long after the Angels clinched a playoff birth. Including this one where Napoli is once again touching the merch. I already knew he looked like a d-bag but now we know he can also back that look up with actions. At the same time, I love to see this stuff because it is healthy to laugh amd it’s the type of shenanigans that keep the site going.

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The Tampa Bay Tribune has the scoop on what caused Orlando Cabrera’s mini meltdown during the White Sox and Rays first game. Apparently Grant Balfour has made it a habit of swearing after throwing a pitch all year.

“All year, I fire myself up, and that’s what I do,” Balfour said. “That’s what I’ve been doing all year long, and I haven’t changed anything and I’m not going to change. That’s what I like to do when I pitch.”

Orlando Cabrera was unaware of this habit. When Balfour threw a first pitch ball that was well outside and then proceeded to drop a loud F-bomb, Cabrera took exception. He took a step forward and kicked dirt towards Balfour.

“They said that he always gets pumped up like that, he always says the F-word to the hitter every time they swing at his pitch,” Cabrera said. “I didn’t know that, so I just got mad a little bit and I was just pumped up.”

Now Balfour, assuming that everyone should know his tendency to yell the f-word, didn’t appreciate Cabrera kicking dirt in his direction. Catcher Dioner Navarro came to the defense of his pitcher.

“He’s been like that the whole year,” Navarro said, “and that’s what I was trying to tell Cabrera – ‘Hey, he’s been like that the whole year, he wasn’t even talking to the hitter, he wasn’t even talking to nobody.'”

So no harm done here really. It was almost better off unexplained because it looked really rediculous live on televsion.

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Here are the kinda words that came from Lackey’s mouth post game last night:

“We’ve got to find a way to score some runs it’s pretty frustrating when one pitch can lose the game for you.”

“You’ve got to find a way to score runs in the postseason. You face good pitching every night.”

“The fact we’re talking about one pitch? Let’s be honest… I felt like I did fine.”

I understand he is frustrated. Totally do but this is game 1 of series 1 of which Lackey hopes there are 2 more. You cannot go throwing your entire team under the bus. No one said it was Lackey’s fault, he pitched very well.

It has been obvious for quite sometime that Lackey has a potty mouth on the field. Last night he was visibly angered when he was taken from the mound, letting out a nice F-bomb. I thought that would be the worst that would come from Lackey’s mouth last night.

When he was asked if he wished he had that pitch back he replied, “The fact we’re talking about one pitch? Let’s be honest… I felt like I did fine”. It’s like it his first time being around baseball. You have never seen a low scoring game before, John? It happens in this sport. Don’t ruin the mojo of the entire team one game in to the second season.

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Bengals sign Cedric Benson — (SportsNetwork.com)

The Cincinnati Bengals signed running back Cedric Benson on Tuesday and placed running back DeDe Dorsey on injured reserve, ending his season.  Benson was waived by the Chicago Bears in June following a pair of alcohol- related incidents in the off-season. Benson was charged with boating while intoxicated and resisting arrest, then was charged with driving while intoxicated and released on bond just over a month later. He was recently cleared of all charges in both cases.

Phillies taking good with the Brad — (Philly.com)

ALL RIGHT, so that Freddy Garcia trade didn’t work out so well. And signing Adam Eaton to that 3-year, $24.5 million contract doesn’t seem like the brightest idea at this point. And Geoff Jenkins pretty much lost his job to Jayson Werth.

Nobody’s perfect, and that includes Phillies general manager Pat Gillick.

At the same time, give Gillick credit for the deals that clicked. And in a bottom-line business – you either make it to the playoffs or you don’t – the one he made during the general managers’ meetings in Orlando last November might have been the most pivotal of his Philadelphia tenure.

Baseball Fever Sweeps White Sox, Cubs Fans — (cbs2chicago.com)

The last time both the Cubs and White Sox were in the playoffs, Teddy Roosevelt was in his second term as president.  Now, for the first time in 102 years, it’s happening again, and baseball fever is descending on every part of the city.  As CBS 2’s Joanie Lum reports, to say fans of the Cubs and White Sox are infamous for their rivalry is the understatement of the century. But the good news about that is the home games do not compete against each other. The Cubs’ first playoff game against the Los Angeles Dodgers is set for Wednesday at Wrigley Field, while the White Sox are traveling for their first game against the Tampa Bay Rays Thursday.

Blue Jays decide to keep Gaston’s staff together — (sportsline.com)

The Blue Jays will keep their coaching staff intact for next season. The team agreed to two-year contract extensions Tuesday with pitching coach Brad Arnsberg, bench coach Brian Butterfield, third base coach Nick Leyva, first base coach Dwayne Murphy, hitting coach Gene Tenace and bullpen coach Bruce Walton.  Leyva, Murphy and Tenace were hired June 20 when Cito Gaston replaced John Gibbons as manager, while Arnsberg, Butterfield and Walton are holdovers from Gibbons’ staff.  Gaston, who led Toronto to a 51-37 record after being hired, signed a two-year extension last week.

With Troubles Behind It, N.H.L. Tries to Build Momentum — (nytimes.com)

“He’s their LeBron,” said Bruce Jacobson, creative consultant at Young & Rubicam, the advertising agency that created the N.H.L.’s new television spots that will begin appearing Wednesday as part of a campaign valued at more than $15 million.

“He’s their Jordan, their Bird,” said Cliff Skeete, also a creative consultant at Young & Rubicam.

On Saturday, the N.H.L. opens its 2008-9 season, putting yet more distance between the league and its former financial troubles, which wiped out the entire season four years ago after management and the players union failed to reach a collective bargaining agreement

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Thanks to Jim Thome and the arms of John Danks and Ken Griffey Jr., the White Sox will represent the Central in the 2008 MLB Playoffs. John Danks pitched 8 shutout innings and Jim Thome broke up a 0-0 stalemate with a solo shot in the 7th. This all would not have been possible if it weren’t for the defensive play of Ken Griffey Jr.  With one out and Cuddyer on third, Griffey caught a medium flyball and thre the runner out at home on a nice scoop and tag by AJ Pierzynski. Bobby Jenks preserved it in the ninth for the 1-0 shutout.

Next up for them is a Thursday afternoon matchup with the Rays.  Should be a good one, it is even going to be in front of a packed house in Tampa.

It was a great way to start October baseball..

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