Here's some stuff on our minds:
Look, we played sports at a pretty high level for a lot of years. We have argued, seemingly to no one, that teams should not interact after the game ends. We're a big believer in shaking hands before the game. Once the game starts, we are not your friend. Asking a young man to 'shut it off', especially in a sport that requires as much aggression as football, is a much harder task that non-athletic media members realize. Players should shake hands before the game and then retire to separate quarters. We're amazed there aren't more of these incidents in sports. 'WTF do you mean good game? You beat me and now I have to look at you and shake your hand and pretend it isn't eating at my soul?'
We learned our lesson the hard way when, after a regional game as a 14 year old, a 15 year old from Macon, GA punched our mouth after we told him 'great game' (we won 13-2). Pre-game shake people.
-Football is back.
We said football, but really meant absurdly large breasts... no, we meant football. Here's our quick hitting NFL preview so that you won't have to waste the next 26 weeks:
NFC Playoff teams: Giants, Eagles, Carolina, Minnesota, Green Bay, Seattle.
NFC Championship Game: Eagles/Green Bay - Eagles Win (we throw up on repeat)
AFC Playoff teams: New England, Indianapolis, San Diego, Pittsburgh, Baltimore, Tennessee
AFC Championship Game: New England/Baltimore - Baltimore Win
Superbowl: Eagles/Ravens - Ravens win and a crisis is averted.
-MLB Pennant Races
The Yankees are running away with the division. Their playoff rotation seems solid (Sabathia, Burnett, and Petite) but there are still some questions. They don't seem to know what to do about a 4th and 5th starter. No one notices because they score 46 runs per game right now but that's not how the playoffs go. Seems to us, the best chance they have to win this year is to make Joba the Hutt a reliever again. We think that's the secret behind the 3 inning performances of late. He turns into a weapon in a series. You can use him for 2-3 innings to get to Riviera. It shortens the game and he can just go out and pitch instead of trying to economize and pace himself. Who knows if that's what they do, but it's what we would do if we actually wanted to win the World Series.
The Angels and Tigers are both a little bit nasty but also flawed right now. Who knows who gets hot? (Cardinals '06 for example)but right now, we'd be nervous both as fans of these squads or as fans opposing them.
Short series with Detroit? It's cold and I have to see Verlander and Jackson twice? You might also get one of those 'rookie with huge sack' outings from Rick Porcello. Then again, you can pitch to most of their bats. Bunch of strikeout guys and spare parts around Miguel Cabrera so their offense is as scary as a Lifetime movie.
The Angels have a complete lineup that wears pitching down. The whole lineup is above .300 and they can all do it against good pitching because they don't muscle up. Their problem? What pitchers scare you? Lackey and Weaver are not the kind of power arms that usually rule the post season. After that? We went 2/2 vs Joe Saunders and hit a line drive so hard, he hurt his neck spinning around (no he didn't).
In the NL, Philly looks old all of a sudden don't they? Rollins isn't the same and Ibanez realized that he is, in fact, Raul Ibanez and stopped the fantasy ruining nonsense. The Dodgers have a different lineup every day and their pitching is kind of breaking down. The Cards look great but that's just it. When was the last time the team that was 'supposed to' won the NL? It's always a wild card team or some forgotten division winner. Go back and look. The Cards are complete but you still see a weakness or 2 in there (bullpen has been a little shaky of late, someone between Ankiel/Duncan/Rasmus/DeRosa has to hit).
Still, the prediction is...
Yankees vs Cardinals - Yanks win. Annoying.
More to come.