MLB The Show is going multi-platform for the first time, and that could be big; Baby Yoda reacts to the winter meetings; city flags symbolize a lot about MLB teams
Does anyone actually believe Albert Pujols isn’t the Angels’ best player?
While it may be easy to root for certain ballplayers, we have to be open to honest assessments of their abilities.
The Anaheim Angels finished the 2001 season 41 games out of first place, so you would be forgiven if their World Series victory last fall surprised you. It surprised all of us. All of us except Phil Rogers, that is. He saw it coming.
“John Henry and the Red Sox were great to me. They were willing to pay me more money than I could believe. But it’s more than money, I’ve never been about money. I made one decision based on money in my life–when I signed with the Mets rather than go to Stanford–and I promised I’d never do it again.” –Billy Beane, Athletics general manager, on turning down an offer to join the Red Sox
“I could imagine it in my dreams, but I never thought I’d do it until now. It helped take the tension down a little bit for us, but games aren’t won in the first or second inning. They’re won in the ninth inning.” –Barry Bonds, Giants outfielder, on homering in his first World Series at-bat
This series is almost remarkable in its absence of “hooks.” Sure, you’ve got the “Pastaman’s Progeny” angle, as two putative Sons of Lasorda duke it out from the dugouts. As regional incest goes, the Bay Area versus the Angeleno megalopolis doesn’t really rise to Boston-New York, and certainly ranks as much more on the level than the low-water mark of the 2000 World Series.
The Angels beat the Yankees, the Twins beat the A’s. Are teams that depend on
the single and the stolen base better in the post-season than teams that play
for the three run-home run?
To better serve our readers and enhance shareholder value, we’ve compiled a list of who you should be cheering for, and why.
So here we are, in the “underdog” series, in no small part because this series is the one featuring the two American League playoff teams that New Yorkers don’t know about. One team wasn’t supposed to be able to beat the Yankees, and the other wasn’t supposed to beat the team that was supposed to beat the Yankees. Dominant provincialism is so cute, isn’t it?
The Week in Quotes, September 30-October 6.
The scene outside Edison Field Saturday following the Angels’ first playoff series win in its 42 years of existence was unlike any I’d ever seen.
Watching the playoffs the last two nights, the Prospectus staff sounds off. We pick it up at the end of Angels-Yankees, Game 1.
This is a match-up of opposites in many ways, not the least being the teams’ post-season histories. The Yankees have won the World Series 26 times, including four of the past six years. To achieve a similar level of dominance, the Angels would have had to win 10 championships in their 41 years of existence. Instead, they enter the playoffs with the most meager post-season tradition of any Divisional Series participant, with three first-round exits in as many tries.
It’s Wednesday night, and I didn’t write my column early because I was watching the Mariners-Athletics game. Now I sit down, feeling a little vindicated for my season-long fight against local anti-Mike Cameron sentiment.
The Mariners face the A’s again tomorrow, starting Joel Pineiro against Cory Lidle. The Angels have John Lackey facing Colby Lewis. I don’t think this particularly unfair to the Mariners; it’s not as if they didn’t have their chances to beat up on bad teams, or anything. Their pit is one they’ve dug themselves with crappy pickups and a low-key battle between the manager and GM, where Piniella seems determined to put the awful pieces he’s been given (like Jose Offerman) in crucial game situations where their failures are magnified. Gillick in retaliation doesn’t care.
People complain that it’s unfair to some teams chasing the wild card. Perhaps, but with “natural rivalries” and bizarre interleague schedules, fairness has already been tossed out the window.