They came so very, very close! After four years of season-long disappointment and mediocrity, my Twins were blessed with, literally, a winning season. Last Sunday they ended the 2015 season with a record of 83-79 (.512) — four games above the .500 mark!
The Post-Season ship left the dock on Tuesday; my Twins were not on board, but they only barely missed having a berth. It wasn’t until the penultimate game last Saturday they knew the ship would sail without them. They were in the hunt that long!
So thanks for a fun season, Twins! (And an even better one next year!)
It’s officially fall, the season named after what the leaves are doing now (at least in places where they came up with the word, “fall”). Did you ever notice how the two seasons of transition both are named after action verbs? Or how appropriate those verbs are to the cycle of life happening in those transitions? Life springs forth to sunny summer and falls asleep to weather winter.
The autumnal equinox was at 08:21 UTC. Here in middle America, by a standard we call “Central,” summer fell at 3:21 AM. I slept through it, so I didn’t hear any noise it might have made. (Sometimes you can hear a distant thud, but that might be a whole bunch of leaves coincidentally all falling at once.)
Today also marks the final dozen (exciting!) games for my Minnesota Twins!
Congratulations to the San Francisco Giants, winners of the 2014 World Series! This is the eighth win overall and their third win on consecutive even-numbered years (2010, 2012 & 2014). On the flip side, until 2010 they hadn’t won since 1954 when they were the New York Giants — that’s a 56-year drought!
They did get to the ball in 1962 (lost to the Yankees) and 1989 (swept by their neighbors, the Athletics) and 2002 (lost to the Angels). Given them credit for taking the 1962 and 2002 Series to seven games.
I was tempted to call this Sports Thoughts, which would have been a great title, but which also would have implied a connection to the previous four posts. And there isn’t one. At all.
Instead, this one ties back to a post from last June: Digital & Analog Sports (which, obviously, you should go read now). That one mainly explored how sports can be grouped in terms of continuous (“analog”) versus interrupted (“digital”) play. It also touched on how sports can be viewed in terms of their MacGuffin (often some type of ball, but sometimes a puck or “birdie” or some other object), and it considered their field of play (location, size, configuration).
This time I’ll explore sports in terms of opponents and teams.
Given that these are both Wildcard teams that fought their way through a do-or-die Wildcard game, a League Division Series and a League Championship series, it’s kind of double-plus cool!
Wow! Kansas City Royals — the wildcard team — take the Los Angeles Angels (the best team in baseball this year) three-zip in the ALDS. And that after an amazing wildcard game against the Oakland Athletics. The game last night — their fourth post-season game — was the first to go only nine innings and featured their biggest win so far: 8-3!
It’s hard to separate my rooting for them to win from how objectively great all four games have been, but I think anyone would agree these were great games. The Royals have been so much fun to watch. Their running game alone is a joy to behold.
Blue beat green in one and red in three; now they go after orange best of seven!
Yesterday featured, not one, not two, not three, but four MLB baseball games to watch. Normally there is nothing unusual about four baseball games in a day. During the regular season, when all 30 MLB teams play (which happens most days), there are 15 games on the day. The big difference yesterday was that these were post-season playoff games, and all four were televised in national markets at times that almost didn’t overlap.
And how about them Royals?! First they give the Tigers fits during the season after fighting their way above the pack — even taking first place in the Division for 30 days late in the season. Then they make it to the playoffs as a wildcard and have played amazing baseball in the three games so far. Quite a story; I hope they go all the way!
Plus, I’ve realized what really annoys me about NCIS: Los Angeles.
Congrats to the Kansas City Royals for winning the MLB American League Wildcard game!!
And what an awesome game it was — an amazing kickoff to the 2014 post-season. Oakland off to a quick start with two runs at the top of the first and Kansas City answering immediately with one in the bottom. Royals take the lead in the third only to lose it in what seemed a game-losing pitching change in the sixth. By the time the dust settles Oakland drives in five runs. Royals get three back in the eighth, tie it up in the ninth, and we’re off to extra innings.
The A’s finally get a run in the twelfth, the Royals tie it up again and then a walk-off hit by catcher Salvador Perez (who has a .167 batting average) wins the game for Kansas City!
Good going guys!! Party like it’s 1985! Go Royals! Go all the way!!
Addendum (later that day): With the Royals win, I’m 1-for-1 on hopes. If the Pirates win tonight, I’ll be 2-for-2! I’ve decided I want to see a “Central Hoedown Showdown!” Pirates take the Giants tonight (and another Bay Area team goes home); Royals somehow beat the Angels; Pirates somehow beat the Nationals; Tigers take the Orioles; Cardinals take the Dodgers (I’m iffy on that; not a Cards fan). Ultimately it comes down to Royals and Pirates with the Royals taking home the bacon.
Yeah, I know. It’s more likely to end up Nats and Tigers (or maybe Nats and O’s), but I can dream!