In 1881 the future National League wanted to upgrade its image and target a more upscale fan base by doubling ticket prices, banning gambling, and outlawing alcohol sales. Several team owners who happened to be brewers refused to accept the new rules and banded together to form what would eventually become the American League. The National League attempted to discredit the new league by dubbing it the Beer and Whiskey League. This, of course only made the new league more popular. Duh!

Thursday, July 29, 2004

If Only I Could Hunt the Hunter

It's the bottom of the 7th inning and the White Sox trail the Twins by a run, 4-3. Here's what the first six batters do:

Jose Valentin walks (1).
Juan Uribe singles (2).
Joe Crede singles.
Aaron Rowand walks.
Joe Borchard walks.
Timo Perez singles.

Total runs scored: 1

Footnotes: 1) Valentin, thinking that catcher Henry Blanco was going to throw behind him (but not waiting for an actual throw) takes off for third and is out by about 10 feet); 2) Juan Uribe, practicing the "Who Cares? Be Aggressive" style of White Sox baseball, is easily thrown out trying to steal second.

Bottom of the ninth, tie game now, 4-4.

Juan Uribe strikes out. Joe Crede singles. Jamie Burke singles. Runners on the corners, one out. Joe Borchard (1) swings at the first pitch he sees and grounds into a 5-4-3 double play. Inning over.

Footnote: 1) Joe Borchard pinch-hit for Ben Davis in the seventh; Davis had hit a home run in his previous at-bat.

Top of the tenth, still tied, Shingo Takatsu on the mound. Two outs. Jacque Jones hits a pop-up in foul ground on the third base side. Jose Valentin calls everyone off, gets under the ball and, with plenty of room between himself and the stands, has it go off his glove. Soon thereafter, Jones soft-serves a single to left and drives in the go-ahead run.

It's bad enough that this White Sox team didn't have enough character to take care of things after Torii Hunter needlessly knocked over and concussed their catcher, who a) didn't have the ball and b) wasn't blocking the plate. That's bad enough.  Something should have been done and wasn't. But to give away the final game of a series in which you've been outplayed on every front by trying to be aggressive--i.e., trying to make up for not taking care of business in the first place--is just plain pathetic. 

The Sox have an easier schedule the rest of the way than do the Twins, but if they can't play better than my rec league team, it isn't going to matter.