Taylor's Twins Talk

Focusing on the Twins, with a few ramblings on other things that catch my attention

Sunday, October 28, 2007

World Series Notes

It's about 3 hours before the start of Game 4, and possibly the end of the 2007 MLB season -- that makes this an appropriate time to collect my thoughts on what we've seen through the first three games of this series, and what I suspect we'll see tonight (for what it's worth).

1.) First, let me say that I really didn't see this coming. I expected Game 1 to go to the Red Sox, because Josh Beckett is awesome in the post-season, and because I thought the Rockies bats would be a little sluggish after the long layoff. Check and check -- 13-1 was a bit excessive, but in the end, the result was exactly what was supposed to happen. Game 2 I thought could go either way -- I expected Curt Schilling to be good but not great, Ubaldo Jimenez to keep the Rockies in the game, and the Rockies bats to start to heat up. Unfortunately, Schilling was very good, and the bats didn't get started. Since I rated Game 2 a tossup, a 2-0 Red Sox lead in the Series wasn't that surprising either.

Ah, but then there was Game 3, where things went completely haywire. Josh Fogg is not a particularly good pitcher, but he's been money when it counted for the Rockies this year, and I expected him to be comfortable in Coors Field. More importantly, I expected that Daisuke Matsuzaka would be anything but comfortable in Coors -- and I didn't think he'd last more than 4 innings. Instead, he made it into the 6th, drove in a couple of runs with a hit, and gave his team exactly what they needed. While the Rockies bats came alive to a certain degree, the poor pitching of Fogg and Brian Fuentes was just too much. So, I guess I read this thing completely wrong.

2.) For the record, I'm rating tonight's Game 4 a tossup. Aaron Cook hasn't pitched in forever, but that's been the case for the rest of the Rockies starters as well, so what the heck. Jon Lester is a good pitcher but hasn't had to face the pressure of pitching with a chance to win the World Series. The Rockies bats seemed to start up again last night, and I expect them to stay hotter than they were in Games 1 & 2. Finally, the Rockies weren't able to take advantage of Manny Ramirez or David Ortiz in the field yesterday, and I think that could play a role in tonight's game. On the other hand, the Red Sox are clearly the better team. As I said before -- tossup.

3.) Even though I'm rating the game a tossup, I'm pulling hard for a Rockies victory. For one thing, they're my adopted team this post-season, so I'm still rooting for an improbable come from behind World Series title. Simply as a baseball fan, though, I'm hoping for some World Series drama for a change -- we haven't even seen a Game 6, let alone a Game 7, since 2003 -- and if this series ends in a sweep, it'll mark the third sweep in the last four years. I'd say that clearly demonstrates the superiority of of the AL -- but last year's 4-1 win by the Cardinals over the Tigers makes that a slightly harder argument to make. Still, that looks like an anomaly when compared with the sweeps by the Red Sox over those same Cardinals, and the White Sox over the Astros (anyone remember that World Series? Anyone? Bueller?).

4.) Onto some non-Series news, it sounds as if Joe Girardi is going to be the next manager of the Yankees. There seem to be two really big questions about Girardi as a Yankee, however: (1) will he be too independent-minded and resistant to the "suggestions" that I'm guessing periodically come down from on high, and (2) will he be too abrasive with the veterans on this very veteran team? Once this becomes official I might take a deeper look at those questions, but for now I just pose them for your consideration.

5.) If the Series ends tonight, the off-season will officially begin tomorrow with the start of the free agency filing period. Let's hope that doesn't happen quite yet. Go Rockies!



  • At Sun Oct 28, 08:02:00 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    "Jon Lester is a good pitcher but hasn't had to face the pressure of pitching with a chance to win the World Series."

    Besides Beckett and Schilling, how many have??


  • At Sun Oct 28, 08:04:00 PM , Blogger JST said...

    Very few, and that was the point -- you never know how a pitcher is going to do under pressure. That's part of why I rated this game a tossup.

    Looks like a moot point, though -- he's pitched pretty darned well as I write this, and it looks like he's going to have a pretty happy night.


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