Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Pirates not so bad; ESPN analysts bumbling idiots

1) This just in: the Texas Rangers just dropped 30 runs on the Baltimore Orioles in the first game of a doubleheader tonight. You read that correctly, THIRTY. The first time that's a long ass time, in any of our lifetimes. They scored 20 runs...and then scored 10 MORE. That's ridiculous.

The Rangers lineup tonight? Glad you asked: Frank Catalanotto, Ian Kinsler, Michael Young, your clean up hitter Marlon Byrd, Jason Botts, Nelson Cruz (not Jose), David Murphy (not Dale), Jarrod Saltalamacchia, and Ramon Vazquez. Travis Metcalf was a sub and hit a grand slam. Point is, that lineup isn't exactly Murderer's Row, and their 55-70 record shows it. Which led me to believe one thing: The Orioles pitching staff is terrible. And so today, even though we are in last place, I am thankful that the Pirates staff, despite the poor record, has not allowed more than 13 runs in a game this year......yet. We are at Coors Field tonight.

But put your mouth around that number: THIRTY! The Rangers scored (or if you prefer, the Orioles allowed) as many letters as there are in Saltalamacchia's last name....twice. And then they scored two more!

2) Earlier this evening, I had SportsCenter on, and the fine folks from Bristol, CT have decided to forgo the upcoming college football season and tell everybody who's going to win every single big game and crown a national champion now, so nobody can get hurt, I guess. What they do is they take one week a day, and they have their "experts" discuss and each cast a vote on who wins. If there's a tie, the moderator Rece Davis makes the deciding vote. They then update the standings and the rankings.

So tonight, they were on Oct. 27, the day that Ohio State will come into Happy Valley to play Penn State. Here's a paraphrase of what each analyst said:

Analyst #1: Lou Holtz (retired coach, about JoePa's age but with half the brain cells, has no business being on ESPN): It's gonna be hell in Beaver Stadium. Those fans will be nuts! You remember what happened to OSU last time they played there! Penn State will be the underdog in this game, but they always play so much better at home, and they're almost unbeatable there!..............I'm picking Ohio State.

Analyst #2: Mark May (went to Pitt, that pretty much says it all): Ohio State lost a lot from last year, but they're still gonna be really good and give the Lions a lot of trouble! They have player X to run the ball, player Y to throw it, and Meningitis to tackle some ass, and of course don't forget the stunningly handsome Jim Tressel on the sidelines! This is gonna be a better team than people think.....I'm picking Penn State.

WHAT?!? Each idiot gave all the reasons in the world why one team would win....and then picked the other. For the record, Rece Davis, with no explanation at all, picked Ohio start getting rid of those tickets now, Nittany Lion fans! You won't need them, the ESPN guys said so!

The point is....preseason predictions are utterly pointless. All these columnists and ex players and coaches give their "opinions" before anything happens on the playing field as if nothing different can possibly happen. They play the games on the field for a reason. Two years ago, PSU was unranked heading into the season. They wound up winning the Big Ten and finishing #3 in the country. Am I saying they will do the same this year? Not at all. I have no clue. Trying to forecast the outcome of sporting events is like trying to forecast the weather, only without the fundamental science principles to back it up. In other words, it's a waste of time.

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