Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Pitt is Fixed

So we're moving the headquarters of SBF to the greater Pittsburgh area as of October 1. Yes, me, a die-hard, black & gold hating, Steelers bashing Pats fan will be calling the home of the crackback block and signature QB-knee-taker-outer-maneuver my home.
Right in the middle of football season. Nice one, Matty.

Speaking of Foulke, I was watching the end of '04 ALCS game 6 today, and man, looking back at it now, the bottom of the ninth sure seems fixed...The two walks, one of which involved a terribly blown missed strike call, the two baserunners, the strikeouts, especially of former Red Sock Tony Clark to end it, just after midnight, just so Joe Buck could gravely state, "It's just gone past midnight here in the east..." Looking back on it now, was there ever a question that series wasn't getting to a seventh game? Am I being too jaded here? Look at that series:

Game 1: Yanks jump out to big lead, silencing big mouth injured expensive free agent pitcher, but just as the casual fan is ready to call it a night and turn off the tube, BAM! Big Red Sox rally...but alas, it falls short.

Game 2: The straight game, so that three years later people can point to it and go, "No, that series wasn't fixed by FOX- I mean, look at game two for God's sake- very boring game...nothing fishy..."

Game 3: The gut-punching, at home blow out, sending our heroes to the brink...How Humiliating! How Horrible! How Obvious! I've seen batting practice pitchers fool more guys than Arroyo that night...didn't even look good...

Game 4: Mariano Rivera can't find the plate against Millar? Come on...Him blowing the save allowed FOX to play up another angle for the johnny-come-latelys and casual fans: that Mariano Rivera has blown 99% of his save opportunities against the Sox over the years. Incorrect of course, but Dramatic, yes! And that straight fastball he threw to Mueller? Pshaw...

Game 5: The Epic...probably played on the level, much like game 2. Just an anomaly. Although there were certainly things you could point to that were fishy...Ortiz stealing, lots of first pitch swinging by both teams in the later innings, an ever widening then shrinking strike zone...but a great game nonetheless...

Game 6: We discussed some of it above, but also the unprecedented TWO umpire conferences, the perfect positioning of the fan in the all black hoody who was the target, and clear background, for Mark Bellhorn's three-run homer. Gave Bellhorn something to zero in on, and made the shot look great on instant replay at home and in the booth, thereby allowing McCarver to, for once, make the right call. And the riot police ON THE FIELD? I'd forgotten all about that...what a stroke of genius...what better way to underscore The War that is Sox-Yanks than to actually require a troop deployment to finish the game. FOX News was definitely in on this one..."See, this is what Bagdhad is like now that we've 'won' the war! Just baseball, all the time! Nothing to worry about! Good job, W!" No explanation for the Slappy play- A-Rod's just a douche.

Game 7: Due to liability issues, i.e. thousands upon thousands of Sox fans having heart attacks and aneurysms then suing, FOX had to make this one a blowout from the get-go; once the Sox raced out to their big lead, and middle America started getting ready to switch to the local news, BAM! Pedro inexplicably comes in, though he started just two nights before, and re-electrifies Yankee Stadium, reeling back in the guy with the remote in his hand...Not to worry, though, FOX will make sure this is THE BIGGEST CHOKE IN THE HISTORY OF WORLD. Thanks, FOX! Good lookin' out...

And no, I don't really believe any of that. Well, ok, maybe a little of it. Either way, we're 8 up with 31 to play, and I don't think even FOX can do a damn thing about it.

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