Thursday, September 21, 2017

Eight is Better than Zero

The Red Sox beat the Orioles last night. That combined with the Angels loss later that evening meant that the Sox officially clinched a playoff spot.

Thankfully it happened after the team had left the park, so we don't have to deal with all the analysis today over whether they celebrated the appropriate amount. Because however much they would have, or did, whoop it up about clinching a spot...they know they're not done. Because, it's not even really a playoff spot.

It's the abomination that is the wild card. It's a coin flip playoff game to see who gets to play in a real playoff series. (Well, as real as a playoff series can be.) Nobody wants any part of that game. You don't want your hopes riding on a game with so much luck involved. Pitching match-ups. Injuries. Flukes. The Red Sox want no part in that.

And they know it. 

Which is why they'll keep trying. They're on to Cincinnati with one thing on their mind. Win as many games as they possibly can. They know if they win every series from here on out, they're World Champions.

So, it's nice to have the wild card to fall back on. Something under glass to release in an emergency. But the division is the real intermediate goal. That's the one that  lets you settle in. That's the one you need.

That's the first step towards another title. 

Monday, September 18, 2017

The 30-Day Baseball Card Challenge: Day #23

Tony, the wonderful writer of the “Off Hiatus Baseball” blog, started a fun activity based off the “30-Day Music Challenge” that Twitter users were taking. The list of challenges looks like this:

Today, we’ll continue with Challenge #23: A favorite oddball card from the 1950's.

I knew this one was going to be tough. After all, as I mentioned before, my collection isn't exactly full of cards from the 1950's. So, when there are only a handful (if that many) available to choose from, finding an oddball is a bit tricky. So, I decided to go with a card that, when you think about it, is pretty odd.

I mean, imagine being a kid in 1951. You were used to cards basically being the same sort of thing. A painting of a baseball player, portrait usually, within a simple border. Maybe the name would be on the front. It was like that during the 40's, whether it was Leaf or Bowman, or even Playball making the cards. The 1950 Bowman set certainly followed that design.

Then, along came this new issue from this "Topps" company. What on earth was this? It wasn't even really a card...was it? Is it a game piece? Even today, with the prestige awarded the 1952 Topps set, the 1951 set is destined to be a little bit...


Saturday, September 16, 2017

Morning Confusion

I'm not ashamed to admit it. I didn't make it through the entire game last night. Round about the tenth inning I decided that my comfort today was more important than seeing one more inning. I'm glad I made that decision. But, it did lead to some momentary confusion.

The first thing I did when I woke up, as usual, was to open my At Bat app, wondering if the Sox pulled it out. Looking at the line score, I was confused for a bit. 13 runs? I must have the wrong game. It was 5-5 when I left. So, what are these totals from? No, it looks like an extra inning game. But, nobody scored until...the 14th? Then how did...holy crap...the Sox scored seven runs? In the fifteenth?!?

Of course, the thought come pretty quick after that. Wow, 15 innings again! Wow, the Sox won another extra innings game. Wow, I wonder if there was a point in the fifteenth when the Rays would have gladly quit just to get the game over with.

Of course, whenever there's a crazy game like this one, there are more wonders to be found by digging a little deeper. Dustin Pedroia was 0-9 and left 13 runners on base. Yikes. Clutch as ever. 

Second base was one of those fun revolving door positions. Holt started the game, and had Sam Travis hit for him who then had Tzu-Wei Lin immediately hit for him instead. He was eventually removed when Christian Vazquez hit for him, until he was lifted for pinch runner Rajai Davis. He was then lifted defensively in favor of Deven Marrero. So, six players occupied that spot in the batting order at one point or another during the game. Gotta love September baseball.

It's also easy to forget the three key innings Joe Kelly threw. Those kept the Sox in the game when they really needed it. That's a great piece to have out in the bullpen.

So, once the confusion passed, this was a great result to discover. The Sox kept pace with the Yankees, and probably really annoyed them in the process...especially if they were watching the game. They get closer to that division title we've all been waiting for. The team showed they can win a tough game when they need it. The limited the damage when they could, and exploded when given the opportunity. They can win a game when Chris Sale isn't at his best. I don't want to take too much from a single game against the Rays. But, the was a pretty good team win.

Now they just need a bunch more.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

It's a Sale Day!

No, no, no. Not that sale day. This one is even better!

That's right. Today marks the start of limited time sale prices at the Section 36 store! Today through Friday, you'll have the chance to buy the items you love at discount prices!

I know you've been looking at all the great items offered in the Section 36 store, and thought that you really should have something yourself. Well, get something now during the limited time sale!

So, head over right now and select something that you like. But, don't delay. Remember, the sale only runs through Friday! That's right only a couple days before prices go back to their regular levels.

And, as always, when you do get an item, send me a picture wearing it for me to share with the world! The blogFacebook, and even Instagram!

Like Kylee did to show off her amazing new tank top.

This tank is 27% off!

Or Holly did with her cozy new hoodie.

This hoodie is 21% off!
But, first you need to buy something you like. There's a lot to choose from.

What will you get?

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Curse You Cleveland

There was supposed to be a safety net. A "in case of emergency break glass" sort of reserve. If the Red Sox, for some reason, really needed them there were supposed to be waiting there.

Those four Houston games.

When Houston was cruising along the top of the American League, you looked at the season ending four game series against Houston as an opportunity. Surely the Astros would be resting players. The Red Sox would be facing their AAA team for at least most of those games. If the Sox needed some easy wins, they would be there waiting for them. After the Yankees handed those games to the Rays in 2012, it would be some nice irony if that same tactic came back to bite them.

Then the Indians had to go and ruin it. Their 19 game winning streak not only put them in the race for the number one put them ahead. Suddenly those fours games aren't quite the cakewalk.

Of course, it might not matter. The Sox probably won't need those games anyway. Or, maybe the Red Sox, Indians, and Astros could all decide that having home field isn't as important as, say, not pitching Chris Sale in game 162.

But, it would have been nice to use those games to put some distance between them an New York. Or, even pick up a couple games on the Indians if that was important. But that's all ruined. Cleveland went and made a game of it.

Guess the Sox will just have to take care of it all themselves now.

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