Sober Rankings

1. New York Yankees (101-56) The Yanks have spent far too long without a championship in the eyes of the evil empire. Is it possible the Yanks go an entire decade without winning the World Series?

2. Los Angeles Dodgers (93-64) The hitting looks good, the bullpen looks good, the starting pitching looks bad – I mean really, really bad. It’s going to be really tough to advance in the playoffs if you can’t count on one single pitcher to shut down the opposition. Who will Joe Torre pick to pitch?

3. Los Angeles Angels (92-64) The celebration on Nick Adenhart’s jersey was sort of weird, but I guess they wanted to involve him in the festivities as well. The Halos will look to Adenhart for some guidance on how to throttle the Sox – their kryptonite.

4. Boston Red Sox (91-65) Boston will wrap up a playoff appearance within the next few days. They get the Angels who they’ve owned in the playoffs, and then would probably have to face the Yankees in the ALCS – can you say dream match up?

5. St. Louis Cardinals (90-66) Albert Pujols and Matt Holliday – that’s just scary as the playoffs approach. Adam Wainwright and Chris Carpenter – that’s just scary as the playoffs approach. This team may have what it takes to win it all with the best 3-4 combo and the best 1-2 combo in the game. Continue reading

Sober Rankings

1. New York Yankees (95-55) The Yanks are the first team to clinch a berth to the postseason. They will have home field advantage throughout the playoffs, so the pressure is on…

2. Boston Red Sox (89-59) The Sox really pulled away from the pack of wild card hopefuls. A familiar foe, the Angels, are waiting for them in the playoffs.

3. Los Angeles Dodgers (90-60) The Dodgers are starting to play better baseball again, but the the pitching situation is really a concern. Who will they use? Billingsley has been awful as of late, Kershaw and Kuroda are recovering from injuries and Garland and Padilla didn’t even start the season as Dodgers.

4. Los Angeles Angels (89-60) The Angels have to hate the fact that Boston will be coming in town again for the playoffs. The Sox seem to be in the Halos heads. Terry Francona’s bunch is Mike Scioscia’s kryptonite.

5. St Louis Cardinals (87-63) The Cards have fallen a game back of the Phillies, which is significant because finishing ahead of the Phillies means home field advantage against the wild card, while finishing behind them means starting in Los Angeles. Continue reading

Wacky Wednesday

September 16, 2000
Sammy Sosa joins Mark McGwire as the only players to record three consecutive 50 home run seasons.

September 15, 2004
Mike Lowell pulls off the hidden ball trick on Brian Schneider.

September 14, 2008
Carlos Zambrano throws a no-hitter against the Astros in Milwaukee. The game is moved to Milwaukee because of Hurricane Ike’s aftermath.

September 13, 2009
Ichiro records his 2,000th hit for the ninth straight season, the first player to ever accomplish such a feat.
September 13, 2005
Each Dodger outfielder makes an error in the six run second inning for the Padres.

September 11, 2009
Derek Jeter becomes the all-time hits leader in Yankee history.
September 11, 2006
The “Big Hurt” belts a home run in a sixth consecutive game.

September 10, 2008
The Halos clinch the playoffs on the earliest date ever for an AL West club.

Sober Rankings

1. New York Yankees (92-52) As if you needed someone else in that mighty Yankee lineup to fear. Hideki Matsui is returning to his old form hitting 28 RBI his last 24 games.

2. Los Angeles Angels (86-56) Even though Scott Kazmir is still searching for his first victory as a halo, he’s pitched very well in his three starts. He only has a 1.86 ERA with twice as many strikeouts to walks.

3. Los Angeles Dodgers (85-59) The Dodgers jump back up to the three spot behind Vicente Padilla, who has been dominant against the NL this season. He’s 5-0, 2.01 and may be the go-to pitcher the Dodgers need in the playoffs.

4. St Louis Cardinals (84-60) Chris Carpenter had two starts this week. One was really good – CG one hitter – one was really bad – 6 IP, 7 earned runs. Getting swept by the Braves wasn’t exactly what they were looking for considering they’re in a race for the best record in the NL with the Dodgers.

5. Boston Red Sox (84-58) Clay Buchholz has been dominant his last four outings. He’s recorded 3-0, 1.59 ERA with three times as many strikeouts (22) as walks (7.) Continue reading

Thursday… time for some picks

It’s Thursday, which means the first games of the week are starting, so that means it’s time to look forward to the weekend ahead. Here goes nothing… Continue reading

Wacky Wednesday

September 9, 2007
The Brew crew starts the game with a bang literally. They become the third team ever to hit three consecutive home runs to open a game against the Reds.
September 9, 1960
The American Football League plays its first ever game. Boston defeats Denver 13-10.

September 8, 2009
After defeating Radek Stepanek in quite easy fashion, Novak Djokovic looks for another challenger. John McEnroe gladly steps in…

September 8, 2008
The Red Sox break the consecutive sellout streak with their 456th straight sellout.
September 8, 2002
The Houston Texans win their inaugural game against the Dallas Cowboys. They become the second expansion team ever to win their first game.

September 6, 2009
Chris Young hits three home runs, but his team gets trounced by the Rockies 13-5.

September 5, 2002
Mike Maroth has the dubious honor of becoming the first pitcher since 1980 to record 20 losses in a single season.

September 4, 2002
The A’s record a record 20th straight win in front of 55,000 fans.
September 4, 1994
Dan Marino records his 18th game of four-or-more touchdowns, the most in the history of the NFL.

September 3, 2009
LeGarrette Blount of Oregon nails Boise State DE Byron Hout after a 19-8 loss on opening night of the college football season. Blount, some say the second best NFL prospect at tailback, gets suspended by Oregon for the rest of the season.
September 3, 2009
Jon Garland records a win for the Diamondbacks and a win against the Dbacks in a span of one week – the first time ever that’s happened.
September 3, 2006
The Fish work their way from 20 games under .500 all the way back. They become the first team since 1899 to reach .500 after falling 20 games under.

Sober Rankings

1. New York Yankees (87-50) Nobody has been better than the Yankees since the all-star break. The Yanks own an astounding 36-12 record, have the best team ERA in the AL and also have the most home runs and RBI in the majors.

2. Los Angeles Angels (81-54) Has anyone taken notice of Vladimir Guerrero’s exceptional August? Vladdy hit .337 with nine home runs and 17 RBI. What about Kendry Morales too? His numbers in August (.385, 10 homers and 33 RBI) even trump Vladdy’s.

3. St Louis Cardinals (81-57) The Cardinals only had a minimal 0.5 game lead in the NL Central on August 1, but now they hold an 11.5 game lead just over a month later. Everyone talks about the addition of all the hitters to their lineup, but the pitching has also excelled (3.06 team ERA in August.)

4. Boston Red Sox (79-57) Jon Lester set the Red Sox club record for the most strikeouts by a left-handed pitcher in a single season. Lester has already recorded 204 strikeouts so far.

5. Los Angeles Dodgers (81-57) The Dodgers have seen their lead all but disappear in the west. The lead has now fallen to 3.5 games, and is only playing .500 ball since the all-star break. It seems like Ned Colletti doesn’t know what to do with himself. He is seemingly has no idea what to do to get the Dodgers over the hump and is freaking out by making a bunch of moves. Continue reading

LITTLE 11 Rant #1

Now that we’ve had time to completely digest week 1 of the college football season, it’s time to discuss…

The Little 11 continues to be the most overrated conference in the history of rankings. Remember how they went 1-6 during last year’s bowl season? It’s quite ironic that the one team who actually won a bowl game, Iowa, struggled mightily just to beat a 1-AA team, yes you guys can disguise yourselves as the FCS, but you’re still 1-AA to me. I hate nothing more than a NCAA Division 1 team who schedules a 1-AA program (I’m talking to you Florida too.) Every time it happens, I just pray for a Virginia-like outcome, or the outcome that should have happened in Iowa. Continue reading

Pac-10 Football Preview

1. USC Trojans – Forget Pete Carroll’s infamous meltdown after Mark Sanchez left for greener pastures. Forget the fact that the Trojans are starting their first true Freshman at quarterback in the history of the program. Forget that the Trojans go on the road to play every seemingly important game this year. The Men of Troy are still poised to win the Pac-10 for an eighth consecutive time behind the strength of the usc olinegreatest offensive line in all of college football. All five starters from last season return in the trenches looking to pummel their opposition into submission (as usual). The fearsome five average a 6’5″ 292lb frame that is tailor-made for protecting QB Matt Barkley. With that gargantuan line, Barkley may not even get hit once all season long. If Barkley can settle in early and stay comfortable in the pocket, he should perform on the highest level. The Gatorade Player of the Year has all the tools to be a future Heisman Trophy winner – and even Mel Kiper Jr. said he would be the first overall pick in the 2012 draft. Most importantly this season, the o-line must re-shift its focus from last year’s all-out aerial attack with Mark Sanchez to controlling the line of scrimmage this year, allowing USC to return to their roots as “Tailback U”. The Trojans legitimately go six deep – yes six deep, I know it’s sick, right? – at the running back position starting with the elusive Joe McKnight. McKnight’s electricity is unmatched, but hopefully Pete has taught him two things this offseason: 1. he needs to hang on to the football at all costs – that pigskin is gold, don’t ever let it hit the ground. 2. McKnight is possibly the shiftiest slasher in college, but that still doesn’t mean he’s on the same level as Reggie Bush. He’s a close second, but sometimes McKnight has the problem of thinking he is actually Reggie himself. McKnight needs to realize that he can’t run the entire width of the field, juke seven players out, and blaze by the safety like he’s not even moving as he did in high school. He needs to be willing to put his head down and pick up the extra two yards when there’s isn’t a hole as opposed to juking like crazy, losing yardage and carelessly handling the ball. Stafon Johnson should also be prominently featured as a short yardage, inside runner, while C.J. Gable looks to spell McKnight. You also can’t forget about fullback Stanley Havili, who is a great lead blocker and a deceptively great receiver out of the backfield. Defensively, the Trojans lost eight starters including four on first day of the draft. The front seven has undergone a complete revamping, but if any team can send out seven more blue-chippers, it’s USC. The secondary looks good and is very experienced, led by two-time All-American Taylor Mays, who most thought would turn pro last season. USC does the unthinkable – they go 12-0 with a Freshman quarterback to setup an epic showdown with the Gators at the Rose Bowl. Continue reading

Wacky Wednesday

Wacky stats from August 27-September 2 (the greatest day of the year) aka: Sober Day

September 2, 2006
The Devil Rays record a triple play without the ball even getting hit. The play is recorded 2-6-2 when Raul Ibanez strikes out, Dioner Navarro throws Adrian Beltre out at second, and Ben Zobrist throws it back to Navarro recording the third out. Also in 2006, the Pirates – one of my favorite teams EVER, lose their 14th consecutive game.
September 2, 1986
I’m born… pretty good day… the Sober Rankings begin…

September 1, 2008
Stephen Drew and Adrian Beltre both hit for the cycle. Meanwhile, C.C. Sabathia has a controversial one-hitter. Many people scrutinize official scorer Bob Webb’s call saying the one hit should have been an error.
September 1, 2007
Clay Buchholz records a no-hitter in his second career start.
September 1, 2002
The A’s win their 18th consecutive game in dramatic fashion with a walkoff home run by Miguel Tejada.

August 31, 2002
The Mets complete the worst August home record of all time. Speaking of terrible, you don’t have to go to far to find another worst. The Yanks lose 22-0 that day, tying a major league record for biggest lost of all time.
August 31, 1997
Eddie George rushes for 216 yards on 35 carries as the Titans win their first game in Tennessee against the Raiders. Could you imagine any running back getting the rock 35 times in ’09?

August 30, 2002
Bud Selig reaches an agreement with the players union and MLB owners. The settlement means there will be no strike.

August 28, 2008
The Cubs vs. Phillies game is the first ever game to use instant replay.
August 28, 2007
Even a squirrel wants to take in that nutty Red Sox-Yankee rivalry. The squirrel hangs out on the foul pole, where he gets a good look of the biggest rivalry in sports.