Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Thanks, Angels.

So we're in. Thanks to a collapse by the Rangers and a late-season surge by the Halos, Soxtober is about to begin once again. Maybe this wasn't the way you wanted to clinch a playoff spot? I'll admit, it isn't exactly what I had envisioned either, but Tim Wakefield had something to say about that. I don't know about you guys, but when Timmy Wakefield speaks, I listen.
"There's so much work that goes on, from the offseason, into spring training, with one goal in mind: to get to the postseason and win the World Series. It doesn't matter how you get in, as long as you get in."

Truer words were never spoken. I know watching Kevin Youkilis watch strike three was painful, especially after mounting what seemed like a magical comeback that would carry its momentum all the way through the World Series. And now, it's likely that we'll see a parade of second-stringers and late-season call-ups so that the veterans can get their rest in before the meaningful games start up again next week.

Though the ending left something to be desired, last night's game was exactly why I love baseball. It was suspenseful and exciting to the very last pitch, despite a less than encouraging performance by starter Clay Buchholz. I'm going to take the view that Clay is getting all the suck out of his system now, when it doesn't really matter, and that with a healthy Becks, Jonny Lester, and Daisuke, our playoff rotation will be formidable. I suspect we'll see more about the playoff roster in the coming days, and while most of it is already determined, there are a few mysteries I'm waiting to see solved: Tim Wakefield or Paul Byrd as a longman? George Kottaras or Dusty Brown as the third catcher (or no third catcher at all, should Tito choose an extra arm instead)? Is Nick Green healthy enough to be the utility guy, or will we see Jed Lowrie?

I know I'll continue to watch the games in the next few days, despite their apparent lack of meaning. Sooner than I want to admit, the World Series will be over, the champagne will have dried up, and another lucky city will have its celebratory parade (cross your fingers). And after that? Nothing. No baseball until spring training. Since those months without baseball are a sort of torture in my opinion, I plan to watch until there's nothing left. See you at 7:10!

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