November 30, 2009

Back In The Basement

On the afternoon of August 4, the basement in our rented house -- where I have my office -- flooded.

I was at my desk at the time and, considering the amount of crap I had down there, I was able to move stuff upstairs fast enough so that pretty much nothing of value was destroyed. And now -- almost four months later -- I am moving back downstairs!

Our landlord made extensive improvements -- a wood floor to replace the carpet, a new ceiling with pot lights, a completely new bathroom. My office is now the nicest room in the house!

By the end of the week, everything should be back to normal.

November 26, 2009

Canadian Seabass

Alex Gonzalez has signed a $2.75 million contract for 2010 with the Blue Jays.

The Red Sox grabbed infielder Tug Hulett, who was DFAd by the Royals last week.

November 25, 2009

Hard Push For Halladay?

Daily News:
The Red Sox are "putting on a full-court press" to acquire Roy Halladay, according to a source, and are hoping to add the former Cy Young winner to the top of their rotation to go with Josh Beckett and Jon Lester.

"They would love to get it wrapped up before the winter meetings (beginning Dec. 7)," the source said of the Red Sox, who made a big push to deal for Halladay last summer.
Like the Daily News, the Globe also mentions Clay Buchholz and Casey Kelly as likely players in any deal ... SoSH TaLK.

November 24, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

On November 25, 1976, the five members of The Band -- Rick Danko, Levon Helm, Garth Hudson, Richard Manuel, and Robbie Robertson - played their last concert together. It was billed as The Last Waltz.

The Thanksgiving Day show (all 5,000 tickleholders were given a full sit-down turkey dinner before the show) was held at San Francisco's Winterland Ballroom and was filmed by Martin Scorsese. Besides the official releases, a black and white video of the entire show, filmed from the mixing desk, circulates as a bootleg ("The Lost Waltz") -- and the complete concert is also available. That's what we have here -- from the Mouth of the Beast label. (There does not seem to be any art for the MotB set; there is some here, but it's a different release.) Enjoy the show, Mike!
Disc 1
01 - Up On Cripple Creek
02 - The Shape I'm In
03 - It Makes No Difference
04 - Life Is A Carnival
05 - This Wheel's On Fire
06 - W.S. Walcott Medicine Show
07 - Georgia On My Mind
08 - Ophelia
09 - King Harvest
10 - The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down
11 - Stage Fright
12 - Rag Mama Rag
13 - Who Do You Love (Ronnie Hawkins)
14 - Such A Night (Dr. John)

Disc 2
01 - Down South In New Orleans (Bobby Charles)
02 - Mystery Train (Paul Butterfield)
03 - Caledonia (Muddy Waters)
04 - Mannish Boy (Waters)
05 - All Our Past Times (Eric Clapton)
06 - Further On Up The Road (Clapton)
07 - Helpless (Neil Young)
08 - Four Strong Winds (Young)
09 - Coyote (Joni Mitchell)
10 - Shadows & Light (Mitchell)
11 - Furry Sings The Blues (Mitchell/Young)

Disc 3
01 - Dry Your Eyes (Neil Diamond)
02 - Tura Lura Lura (Van Morrison)
03 - Caravan (Morrison)
04 - Acadian Driftwood
05 - Genetic Method
06 - Chest Fever
07 - The Last Waltz
08 - Evangeline
09 - The Weight
10 - Baby Let Me Follow You Down (Bob Dylan)
11 - Hazel (Dylan)
12 - I Don't Believe You (Dylan)
13 - Forever Young (Dylan)
14 - Baby Let Me Follow You Down (Dylan)

Disc 4
01 - I Shall Be Released
02 - Jam #1
03 - Jam #2
04 - Don't Do It
So what makes The Last Waltz the best rock and roll film of all time? There are the songs and the musicians, of course, but the key is Scorsese. He decided beforehand how he wanted to shoot every single song -- he storyboarded the entire show. I don't think I have ever seen video footage of a live band that has been shot like The Last Waltz (though it can't be unique). What you usually are given is seemingly random quick cuts between the various cameras, hectic and not timed in any way to the flow of music; any sense of the musicians playing as a group is lost (or maybe wasn't even considered as important). Scorsese framed several of the musicians in many shots, often stayed on one person for quite awhile, and captured subtle gestures and interactions between the musicians.

One great example of the camera work is towards the end of "It Makes No Difference" (why does this have subtitles?). A camera at stage right has a spotlighted Hudson and his sax in the foreground, then he steps back but we stay with that shot, with Robertson, Danko, and Helm further away, towards the middle of the stage, as Robertson solos a little bit. Then the camera pulls slightly back and Hudson steps forward again with his sax. It's one continuous camera angle. Brilliant.

There are so many highlights -- from the interviews (the beginning of the beginning of the end of the beginning ... Marshmallow Overcoat ... an adult dose ... and what's it called?) and the concert (Manuel's jacket, Hawkins fanning Robbie's guitar with his hat, Morrison's jump-suited kicks, a cool Clapton playing rings around Robertson while Robbie sweats and thrashes about) -- but I'll single out my favourite.

I first saw The Last Waltz in 1986, back when Laura and I were still long distance. During one of my weekends in Brooklyn, we rented the movie. I was doing college radio at the time and was a big fan of the American roots rock/cow punk movement, but I was fairly ignorant about Dylan's rootsier rock.Near the end of the film, Dylan and the Band slid into "Baby Let Me Follow You Down" -- and I was floored. It was a revelation. And anytime I have seen it in the nearly 25 years (!) since that night -- including the maybe 10-15 times I either watched the clip or listened to the song while writing this post -- I have never been unfloored. Familiarity has not dulled any of its vitality.

Dylan recorded the traditional folk song way back in 1962 and it was part of his electric set on his infamous 1966 tour with the Band (known then as the Hawks). The song is played at a faster clip in The Last Waltz than it was 10 years earlier -- call it a funky gallop. For all the barbed-wire guitar and Dylan's stupendous vocals (his voice peaked in the mid-70s), the star of the song is Helm. He's doing a ton of shit on the drums -- the fantastic two-beat bump-bump after the main riff that acts like a little kick in the ass, the way he rides his cymbal during the riff, the "god almighty world" lines, and even some of Robbie's bits of solo. He makes the song dance, and never comes anywhere close to cluttering things up.

Watch and listen to this two-song clip. First up is "Forever Young", off Planet Waves, the 1973 album Dylan made with The Band; it did not break any new ground as far as Dylan's canon is concerned, but it's easily one of my Top 5 (maybe Top 3) Bob albums. And then it's into a reprise of BLMFYD, which Dylan had begun his short set with.

Check out Dylan noodling between the two songs at about 4:10. It's one of the best moments in the entire film. Helm is back behind the drums, head cocked, waiting, Robertson's eyes are darting from Dylan's hands to Dylan's face, down to his own hands, Danko is simply staring at Dylan with a fantastic look of anticipation. The final stray notes dissolve into the air, and everyone is watching Dylan -- except us! We have no idea what he is doing. Then Danko starts to slowly smile -- a split-second before the familiar chords start up again. YEAH!



More:
Hazel -- from The Lost Waltz bootleg
Cripple Creek, Rockin' Chair, King Harvest and Long Black Veil -- probably from 1970
Time to Kill -- Syria Mosque, Pittsburgh, November 1970
Just Another Whistle Stop -- Wembley Stadium, 1974
Highway 61 Revisited -- Dylan/The Band, Isle of Wight, 1969

November 23, 2009

Life [sic] Of A Blog Spammer

Jere has done some great research on someone named "Tom Palomino", who has been spamming Red Sox and Yankee blogs (and many, many others) with advertising clumsily wrapped in a seemingly on-topic comment. It's a must-read.

I can understand leaving bare links, but to actually write a relevant comment at every blog you visit -- that must take an extraordinary amount of time. (Maybe there are several "Tom"s who use the same account.) Is this his regular job at the memorabilia company or is he working free-lance? If the later, what does he get paid?

This is one more another reason why this blog will never have advertising on it. This type of spam pollutes and degrades a blog in the same way ticket broker widgets do.
Example
We are driving to New Jersey today for a Thanksgiving week with Laura's family, with a couple of days in Manhattan thrown in. Special Turkey Day post coming, probably Tuesday.

Sox Willing To Eat Half Of Lowell's Contract

Ken Rosenthal, MSN/Fox:
The Red Sox not only are shopping third baseman Mike Lowell but also are willing to pay $6 million of his $12 million salary for next season, according to major-league sources.

One rival executive, however, says he would be surprised if a team was willing to pay Lowell even $6 million. ...

His right-hip issues have limited his range and he ranks as one of the worst defensive third basemen in the majors, advanced metrics say. ... [Lowell] benefited greatly from playing at Fenway Park last season, posting a .932 OPS at home and .713 OPS on the road.

November 22, 2009

Drew Has Left Shoulder Surgery

Nick Cafardo reports that J.D. Drew
had surgery on his left shoulder last week to help alleviate the inflammation he was experiencing in the second half of the season. He should be able to take part in spring training without missing any time.
Another tidbit is that the idea of playing Mike Lowell at first base has been "discussed internally" by the front office.

Twenty-one-year-old fireballing lefty Aroldis Chapman, who pitched for Cuba in the 2009 WBC and defected in last July, is now represented by Hendricks Sports Management. Chapman visited Fenway Park last month.

November 20, 2009

Blogging In 1974

Daniel Shoptaw, the man behind the Baseball Bloggers Alliance, is posting short Q&As of BBA members. Here's mine.

One thought: this blog is a clear descendant of the sports pages I created on my parents' electric typewriter roughly 35 years ago. Also, I love hearing about other writers who did similar things when they were kids.

November 19, 2009

Bay Rejects Boston's 4/60 Offer

Not a surprise, as Theo Epstein said.

He may end up back in Fenway, but at age 31, Bay wants to see what is out there in the free agent waters.

Terry Francona held court on a number of matters, including Bay:
He has earned the right to be a free agent. This is his first time, and he wants to see it through. You know we're going to be a major player. We always are. Do I hope it gets done? Yeah.
The Red Sox's exclusive rights to negotiate with Bay end at midnight tonight.

While Tito would like the Sox to go after some pitching (like John Lackey), David Ortiz says the team needs a power bat:
I said that like a year ago and everybody was looking at me like I was a (expletive) clown. You know? I said we needed another 30-home run hitter. Everybody was talking trash. There you go. Now what? ... You want to compete with those guys across the street? You better bring it. Period.
The Sox have asked Atlanta for the medical records of free agent relievers Mike Gonzalez and Rafael Soriano.

November 18, 2009

Sox Release Kottaras

Zachary Nicholson, Sox Prospects:
With the deadline to add players to the 40-man roster and protect them from the Rule 5 Draft rapidly approaching, the Red Sox [Tuesday] made another move to clear space, releasing catcher George Kottaras. ...
Links: 40-man roster deadline and Rule 5 draft (to be held on December 10).

November 17, 2009

Greinke Wins AL Cy Young

It's a rout.
                      1st  2nd  3rd   Pts
Zack Greinke, KC 25 3 134
Felix Hernandez, SEA 2 23 1 80
Justin Verlander, DET 1 9 14
CC Sabathia, NYY 2 7 13
Roy Halladay, TOR 11 11
NL Cy on Thursday.

Rookies of the Year: Andrew Bailey (A's) and Chris Coghlan (Marlins).

November 14, 2009

Dock Ellis And The LSD No-No

On June 12, 1970, Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher Dock Ellis took the mound in San Diego while high on LSD.

A video from No Mas and James Blagden.



Ellis:
I started having a crazy idea in the fourth inning that Richard Nixon was the home plate umpire, and once I thought I was pitching a baseball to Jimi Hendrix, who to me was holding a guitar and swinging it over the plate.
The audio in the video comes from an interview Ellis did with NPR shortly before his death last December.

November 13, 2009

Secret Source Of Yankees Cash Flow Revealed

Now we know how the Yankees have been able to spend so much money:
New York Yankees team ownership revealed Tuesday that the phrase "Yankees suck," one of the most popular chants in sports, was trademarked by the 27-time World Series champions prior to the 1996 season, a business strategy that has earned the team close to $100 billion over the past 13 years.

U.S. Patent and Trademark Office records show that every time an individual chants, shouts, or writes the words "Yankees suck," the New York Yankees organization earns at least $2.15 ...

Furthermore, financial records indicate that by also owning the rights to the common anti-Yankee epithet "Jeter blows," the team earned much of the money needed to sign Alex Rodriguez in 2004. ...

General Manager Brian Cashman told reporters that baseball fans who muttered "Yankees suck" to themselves while on the grounds of major-league ballparks during the second half of the 2007 season alone essentially funded the team's new $1.2 billion stadium.

The organization also has reason to be optimistic about the future of "Yankees suck" revenue: Accountants project that, as the Internet and cable television bring the team into millions more homes across the globe, there could soon come a time when the Yankees are told they suck three times a second on every continent.

Trivia

From Baseball Reference's blog:
Name the only two players in the last 56 years to have at least 16 total bases in a game without hitting four home runs in the contest.

November 10, 2009

"Pay Attention Jack-ass!" Or, A Few Thoughts On Canadian (Non-)Confrontation And An Admission Of My Own Paranoia

I came out of a store yesterday afternoon and found this stuck under one of my wiper blades.Actually, I did not see it until I was driving out of the parking lot. I wondered why I had received a ticket. Where I had parked was not part of a handicapped zone. ... Then I noticed that part of the ticket was green. That's when I thought it might be one of those fake tickets. I had another stop maybe two minutes away, so I looked at it then. Yup.

1. This guy was not "waiting for" the parking space. Thinking back on the situation, he was roughly two or three seconds ahead of me and had driven his car past the empty space.

2. Because of this "citation", I believe he had driven past the empty space he wished to park in because he planned on backing up into the space.

2a. Backing up into parking spaces is a strange phenomenon I have found quite common in Canada, though since I lived in New York City for 17 years prior to moving here in 2005 -- and there are not many parking lots in Manhattan and we did not have a car -- maybe this is a fairly common practice since the mid-1980s.

2b. Why do people do this? I will sometimes drive through an empty space to park in the empty space that adjacent to it, so I can drive out of the space when I leave. However, I see no point in backing carefully into a space so I can drive directly out later on. What's the benefit? You either drive in and then back out -- or you back in and then drive out?

3. Regardless, this guy had not yet put his car into reverse when I pulled into the empty space. There were no white taillights. He was not "waiting for" the space. No spot was stolen.

4. I pulled in and got out of my car. He could have upbraided me right then and there. I think he was pulling into a space maybe four or five spaces away from where I was parked -- Oh, what a much longer walk he had to make! -- when I got out of my car. Why not say something then?

4a. Canadians are not big on direct one-on-one confrontations. That's a generalization -- and Laura touched on an aspect of it here -- but this webpage of the Council of Ministers of Education backs me up:
Canadians, in general, avoid conflict and confrontation and thus it is not common for people to intervene directly.
4b. This theory goes right out the fucking window, though, once you get on the highway. If you want or need to change lanes, the driver that you will be pulling in ahead of will speed up to deny you the opportunity to change lanes. Also, if you are on an on-ramp and about to enter highway traffic and someone else is about to get off the highway via an the off-ramp that is a bit ahead of where the on-ramp is letting you in, rather than slow down -- which he has to do anyway to go down the off-ramp -- and pull in behind you -- which makes common sense since at the time he is slowing down, you are accelerating to get up to highway speed, he will stomp on his accelerator like a goddamn maniac, cut directly in front of you, meaning you have to suddenly brake and slow down, THEN he'll get off the highway and slow down.

4c. Though being in a car is not a direct confrontation.

4d. This guy didn't even bother to honk his horn when he saw me pulling into what he believed was his rightful spot in the parking lot.

5. He saw these "citations" in a store, thought "This is what I need in my non-confrontational crusade to 'make the world a better place to park'! Look at all these possible instances I can use then in." and bought them.

6. He keeps them in his car, with a pen.

7. He fucking USES them!

8. After feeling seriously aggrieved, this guy grabs his pad of citations (are they in his glove box? does he keep them on the passenger seat?) and his pen, fills the thing out, gets out of his car, walks over to the car and leaves the citation under a wiper blade -- but only after he has clearly seen the other person go into the store and knows damn well he or she will not be coming right out.

8a. I am 100% sure this was a guy.

8b. And I'm not expecting any confrontation to be necessarily loud or obnoxious or laced with profanity. He could make his case clearly and in a normal tone of voice. He could not bring himself to do even that.

9. He filled in the name of the store (Canadian Tire) -- AND the date! Beautiful!

9a. Checking the appropriate box was not enough. He also circled the "infraction" and added some editorial comment. It also looks like he traced over the X to emphasis his disapproval.
Example
I went over to the shopping centre nearby and parked and went off to buy wine. I came back to put the wine in the car and then go grocery shopping. I had parked aways from the store and now there was a car pulled up in the space next to mine. It seemed odd to park right alongside a car when there were so many other spaces around. A guy was standing near the car talking on a cell phone. I went into the store and started shopping. But now I'm thinking that maybe that was the guy who left the note. Maybe he followed me over here and is going to damage my car. And I'm in here shopping. Shit. After a few minutes of increasing paranoia, I leave the cart and walk out back to my car. The other car is there, but the guy is not. My car seems fine. I fake getting something out of the car, note his license plate, walk back into the store, walk past my cart to a section where I know there is a pencil, and jot down the plate number on my shopping list. I then continue shopping and when I get out, the other car is gone and my car is fine.

November 9, 2009

Red Sox Decline Option On Varitek

UPPER-DATE: Peter Abraham, Globe:
Just spoke to Theo Epstein [late Monday night]. Contrary to a report, Jason Varitek has not yet exercised his $3 million player option for 2010. ... To be sure, the Sox expect Varitek to trigger that option. But it hasn't happened yet.
Example
UPDATE: NESN reports that Varitek will exercise his $3 million option:
The move is expected to be formalized on Tuesday ... With the incentives, Varitek would earn an additional $400,000 for starting 80 games in 2010 and another bonus for every 10 starts thereafter.
Example
Rob Bradford:
Red Sox will not pick up Jason Varitek's $5 million team option. Now [Varitek] has 5 days to make decision on $3 million player option.

Red Sox, Wakefield Agree On 2/5 Deal

Tim Wakefield has agreed to a two-year deal with the Red Sox for a total of $5 million. Wakefield will be paid $3.5 in 2010 and $1.5 in 2011 (with more incentives in the second year).

Tony Massarotti reported that the Sox had "some concerns about exercising the regenerating, $4 million option ... in the wake of surgery to remove disc fragments" from Wakefield's back.

I'm assuming the $5 million is guaranteed. That way, Wakefield gets a bit more dough in case age/injuries limit him to pitching only in 2010 and team gets a discount if Wakefield is able to pitch in 2011. If it's not guaranteed, I'm not sure why Wakefield would agree to a lower salary in 2010, if it could possibly be his final season. I doubt the Red Sox would decline the option over a half-million dollars.

The team picked up the $7.1 option on Victor Martinez, but declined $6 option on Alex Gonzalez. No public decision has been made re Jason Varitek.

November 8, 2009

Gaudeamus Igitur


It may be a mess, but it's a very careful mess. A lot of work went into making it look like that. ... I wanted to write something that would make somebody say, "Holy, shit, I've got to read this," and then seduce them into doing a certain amount of work.
The JoS IJ read begins today.

November 5, 2009

Red Sox Trade For OF Jeremy Hermida

The Red Sox have acquired outfielder Jeremy Hermida from the Marlins for left-handed pitchers Hunter Jones and Jose Alvarez (who spent 2009 in A ball). [SoSH]

Also: Fernando Cabrera, Joey Gathright and Nick Green have been optioned to Pawtucket.

Decisions On Gonzalez, Varitek Due

In the next five days, the Red Sox will likely exercise the club options for 2010 on Victor Martinez ($7 million) and Tim Wakefield ($4).

They have seven days to decide on Alex Gonzalez ($6), though Seabass can opt out of the option even if the club picks it up. There is also a decision to be made regarding Jason Varitek ($5), who has a $3 player option.

Theo Epstein said that David Ortiz has been working out at Fenway Park almost every day since the ALDS ended. "It's still early in the offseason, but he looks like he's in great shape." 2010 is the final year of Ortiz's contract; the Red Sox hold a $12.5 option for 2011.

November 4, 2009

WS6: Yankees 7, Phillies 3

Phillies - 001 002 000 - 3  6  0
Yankees - 022 030 00x - 7 8 0
MVP: Shemp (8-for-13, 3 HR, 8 RBI; 6 RBI in Game 6).
Example
Pedro Martinez (G2: 6-6-3-2-8, 107) / Andy Pettitte (G3: 6-5-4-3-7, 104)
Two old goats out there doing the best they can and having fun with it. I don't have enough words to describe how excited I am about being here. This is just a great gift to me.
Example
Chris Jaffe, Hardball Times:
[T]here have been 57 previous best-of-seven World Series that reached a Game Six. In the sixth contest*, the trailing [team] has amassed an impressive record of 35-22. Not too shabby. Actually, it was achieved in a very odd manner. The first two dozen such games were split evenly 12-12 between leaders and trailers. The most recent 18 games have been likewise split down the middle, 50% each. However, from 1955 to 1975, 15 World Series reached Game Six - and the trailing team went 14-1 in those games. Only in 1959 did the Series end in the sixth contest. Weird.

[*:Note: for purposes of this research, the tie in the 1912 World Series never happened. Thus Game Eight is considered Game Seven, and so on down the line).]

Anyhow, that's only half the battle. After going 35-22 in Game Six, the survivors went 17-18 in Game Seven. Overall then, teams trailing 3 games to 2 in a best of seven World Series go 17-40 in their quest for the World Championship, so odds are a bit over one-third.
Example
The Daily News sounds somewhat worried:

The "Derek Jeter Bridge"

The New York Post reports that Bronx politicans are considering naming a soon-to-be-built bridge after Derek Jeter.

Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. says he has a "man crush" on CI:
There have been conversations at the community board, and I know the idea is being examined. It's something I am ready to support.
The bridge will span the Metro-North tracks that bisect East 153rd Street between Park Avenue and the Grand Concourse.
Example
Maybe some of CI's back taxes could help pay for the $87 million bridge. Back in late 2007, the New York State Division of Tax Appeals said that Jeter had cheated New York out of millions of dollars by claiming he lived in Florida when he was residing in Manhattan.

Beckett To Meet With Sox Re Contract

Josh Beckett and his agent will meet with Theo Epstein in the next few weeks to discuss Beckett's future in Boston.

Beckett signed a 3/30 extension in mid-2006 and the club option for 2010 will pay him $12. He turns 30 next May.
I want to see where they're going, if I'm even in their plans. If I'm not it was an awesome run. I really haven't sat down and thought about it too much, but at the end of the year we will sit down and at least have a talk.
I assume Beckett is expecting (at least) something similar to what A.J. Burnett got from the Yankees (5/82.5). A five-year deal would cover Beckett's age 31-35 seasons. (SoSH discusses the pros and cons.)

November 3, 2009

Schadenfreude 93 (A Continuing Series)

Mark Hale, Post:
Mark Teixeira is in a prolonged slump right now that's starting to become alarming. ... Teixeira is a woeful 2-for-19 with seven strikeouts in this World Series. ... Teixeira has been abysmal in the postseason, hitting just .172 (10-for-58) with 16 strikeouts.
Mike Puma, Post:
Derek Jeter occasionally wears postseason goat horns, too.

Last night the Yankees captain had a chance to embellish his November legacy -- he is, after all, the original Mr. November -- but couldn't produce in the ninth inning. Jeter hit into a double play, all but killing the Yankees' comeback hopes in their 8-6 loss to the Phillies in Game 5 of the World Series.
A.J. Burnett:
I let 25 guys down. I let a whole city down. It's the worst feeling in the world.
Mike Vaccaro, Post:
When it was over, the clubhouse boys were stuffing gear into bags rather than wrapping plastic over lockers. Instead of uncorking champagne, the Yankees were tossing socks and sanitary hose into big laundry bins. Bud Selig, with no presentation to make, walked briskly and bypassed the room altogether.

There was no music, no laughter, very little conversation, very little interaction at all.

November 2, 2009

WS5: Phillies 8, Yankees 6

Yankees  - 100 010 031 - 6 10  0
Phillies - 303 000 20x - 8 9 0
Chase Utley: 2 more home runs, 4 RBI; ties Reggie Jackson with 5 HR in a WS; ties Willie Aikens with two 2-HR games in a WS.

Burnett: 2-4-6-4-2, 53!Derek Jeter was the potential tying run with no outs in the top of the ninth. And ..... GIDP!

Pedro in New York on Wednesday!
Example
A.J. Burnett (G2: 7-4-1-2-9, 108) / Cliff Lee (G1: 9-6-1-0-10, 122)

Forty-three teams have held a 3-1 lead in the World Series, and 37 of those teams went on to win the championship. The six that could not close the deal?
1903 Pirates - lost to Boston Americans (best of 9)
1925 Senators - lost to Pirates
1958 Milwaukee - lost to Yankees
1968 Cardinals - lost to Tigers
1979 Orioles - lost to Pirates
1985 Cardinals - lost to Royals
Can the Yankees, no strangers to choking in the post-season, become #7?

Since 1969, of the 16 times a team has held a 3-1 lead in the World Series, only three times has the series even gone to a Game 7 -- no matter who won.

Jim Salisbury, Philadelphia Inquirer:
The Phillies had 12 winning streaks of three or more games this season.

Do they have one more in them?
If the Phillies win tonight, there will be a World Series Game 6 for the first time since 2003. The five World Series since then have been sweeps or gone five games.

Also: GDGD, 1911.

November 1, 2009

WS4: Yankees 7, Phillies 4

Yankees  - 200 020 003 - 7  9  1
Phillies - 100 100 110 - 4 8 1
Way to go, Lidge.
Example
CC Sabathia (G1: 7-4-2-3-6, 113) / Joe Blanton (4.05, 106 ERA+)

Did you know that Sabathia has a higher career slugging percentage (.391) than the mighty Melky Cabrera (.385)?

Well, there's a lot, a lot of reasons why the Phillies have to win tonight's game.