Nothing like a Game 7 …

And tonight is the first one since, well, last year, when the Cardinals and Mets went the distance in the NLCS. The tension, the pressure, the drama. I have to say going in that I can’t imagine the Red Sox losing this one. They are almost impossible to beat at home, and they have dealt with this pressure before. The Indians simply didn’t get the performances they were expecting this postseason from C.C. Sabathia or Fausto Carmona. … It’s also hard for me to imagine the Rockies continuing their historic surge and winning the World Series after this nine-day layoff. Major League Baseball had its heart in the right place when it added all these extra off-days into the playoff schedule. The thought was to reduce taxing on the players’ bodies and to have built-in fallbacks in the event of rainouts. But this is a little ridiculous. No other team in the history of baseball has had more than a six-day layoff during the postseason. I agree with the addition of a travel day between Games 4 and 5 of the division series — last year, if the Dodgers and Mets had split the first four games of their division series, they would have had to fly back to New York after a Sunday game at Dodger Stadium and played on Monday at Shea, which would have been a little ridiculous. But an off-day between Games 4 and 5 of the League Championship Series, when the series isn’t even changing cities? Not sure I understand that one. And why do they need TWO off-days between Game 7 of the ALCS tonight and Game 1 of the World Series on Wednesday? The most ridiculous result of all this isn’t that Game 7 of the World Series would happen in November. It’s that one World Series team will be coming off a two-day break, while the other will be coming off a nine-day break. … Was driving on the 10 Freeway a couple of weeks ago and had one of the early playoff games on the radio. Joe Morgan made a good point during that broadcast. One of the teams had runners on the corners with nobody out, and Morgan mentioned Reggie Smith, the former Dodgers RF. Reggie once told Joe that in that situation, if the infield was playing back, he always tried to hit the ball on the ground. As wrong as that sounds, it actually makes sense. Reggie’s thinking was that if he GIDP’d, it meant the run would score, and he figured his job in that at-bat was to get the run home any way he possibly could. To me, this is the ultimate in being a team player. Try to hit a sac fly, which would give you an RBI and save you an at-bat if you succeed, and you might pop up instead. But in a GIDP, the batter gets nothing — no RBI, no sacrifice, nothing, he just gets charged with an at-bat and a GIDP. But HE GETS THE RUN HOME AND HELPS THE TEAM. Now, contrast that against the thinking of many (most) modern players, who would look at you like you had a second head if you suggested something like this to them. Reggie Smith was no Hall of Famer, to be sure. But there is no denying that he represents an era in Dodgers history that was considerably more successful than the present one.

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