Apologies, Rangers, Wedge

I have been a bit busy as of late, and writing here has not been on top of my priority list. To the handful of you that come here on a daily basis, I apologize – I managed to get some contract work that started yesterday, and the past few of my nights have been full of pesky friends and their birthdays or visits from out of town. Also, as of today I am of the strong belief that I may have contracted something from somewhere that is currently resulting in me feeling rather run down and not at all my usual self; I am hoping that this latter is not the case, and that I am merely suffering from staying out too late last night and having to get up early this morning. I’m not ready for baseball to end, and I’m not ready to be sick.

I’m just not sure I know how I should feel about what all is going on in the wonderful world of baseball. This post-season has been unlike any I’ve seen before. Granted, I can count those on one hand still, and maybe I’m paying more attention to what goes on around me online, but it feels like these last few games of the year have been pretty hard-fought. Even my criticism of the Rays might have been a bit unwarranted – I tend to speak out of frustration a lot of the times with those I back, especially when those I back seem to suddenly lack bat power at home. I understand I missed a great outing by Cliff Lee last night, which I am sad about, but a friend in from Germany and a night out with my husband was scheduled a while ago, and life must go on, not matter how cool baseball is when it is. San Francisco took a bite out of Philadelphia today, with Matt Cain pitching what was apparently a better game than Cole Hamels. I don’t mind if the Giants win, I’d just rather that it be the Phillies – it’s a Mike Sweeney thing, you might not understand.

Today’s Yanks/Rangers game was mortifyingly slow. Four hours and five minutes or so, and there was a lot to watch and talk about. Let me just say, for the record, that I don’t believe in fan interference, regardless of the circumstances. Verbally let loose all you have to, but do not, under any circumstances, reach for a ball in play – active or foul – until you’re good and sure that there isn’t a player behind it or something else to be done.*  Two Yankees fans did exactly that today, one of them in the Rangers favor (a foul pop that could have been an out if the guy hadn’t blocked the NY player coming after it by leaning into the stands). I know that a lot of people feel it is their privilege and right to go after any ball that even so much as looks like it might come over the wall, but I watch baseball games to see players play, not fans interfere. The fact that the Rangers ran the Yankees down so hard today sort of makes up for the Yankees fan who kind of sort of didn’t actually catch a home run from Robinson Cano, while Nelson Cruz was chasing it down. This particular fan then decided to give Yankees fans everywhere a bad name by taunting Cruz after he finally re-cuped the ball. Seizing any chance to make fun of someone making a jackass of themselves on national TV, images and .gifs have already been made. I have heard some reports around Twitter of Yankees fans behaving badly by throwing things at Rangers fans in the lower deck, and spitting on Rangers players’ wives. I take stuff like this with a grain of salt, however – people are always eager to start stories like this, and I won’t get sucked in until I see video, a photo, or both. It’s not worth it to get worked up over something that may or may not have happened, and it’s really not quite my place to get worked up over that – maybe if it was the Mariners, I might feel more indignant; but I technically have no stakes here. Some more information on the game and some more in-depth description of the rumors over at the wonderful Baseball is My Boyfriend.

The game tonight was slow and grueling until the 6th inning, when Bengie Molina and company took advantage of Andy Pettitte being left in too long. The Rangers put two men on base, and Molina batted them in by slinging one
over the wall. Josh Hamilton also had a two-run HR night, the second coming in the top of the 9th inning. Tommy Hunter wasn’ stellar, but he didn’t get killed as badly as he could have. Derek Holland and Darren O’Day came in for relief, along with the horror of Clay Rapada, and then Darren Oliver, who stayed in to finish things out. eh, the game was still slow and grueling, but at least the Rangers offense quieted the Yankees fanboys in the TBS announcers booth. All playoffs really do is make me miss Niehaus, Rizzs, Blowers and Sims. Only five long cold dark months and change, right? Insert long, exhausted sigh here.

Ryan Divish at the TNT has a blog post up about Eric Wedge’s press conference today, and official welcome into the Seattle fold. There is some sort of lunch event for season ticket holders tomorrow that I received an invitation for, but the timing makes it impossible for me to go. I understand that the press conference was successful, and the general vibe around the internet is that Wedge is a good fit for us, although some are still wary. Looking through the list of quotes Divish has provided (and Divish’s own assessment), it does indeed look like Wedge might be a fiery-er version of Don Wakamatsu. Frankly at this point, I just want someone in the position who will be given the time to deal with whatever problems may come up during a bad season, and who will stand up to management and the players to make sure the team wins. And I think that needs to go both ways – Wedge absolutely has to get the backing of the front office, and the insane can not be allowed to run the asylum this time; so far, it doesn’t sound like he’ll let them. Hope it works.

Tomorrow’s games start at 1pm PST. I will have to hope that ESPN carries the earlier of the two, another Rangers/Yankees bout that may actually cause me to make a ruckus in the office.  Should be a hoot.

*This is just me and my opinion. I’m not telling anyone what to do, I simply deal with the game by some of my own sets of rules, and this is one of them. I prefer fair play that showcases the skills of the athletes in the game, and don’t feel it’s my job to manipulate that by sticking myself into the action. Your mileage may vary, of course; this is just my own guideline.

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