by Mack Williams
5 October 2015
I. Media Matters
Hey, it’s October and we’re going to be talking a lot of baseball, but first here’s a story of some William Paterson U. football players. Glad this was publicized…because it certainly would have been had these young men been thieves.
II. Then Fall, Caesar
The Philadelphia Phillies ruled the National League East for the better part of ten years, winning the World Series in 2008 and returning the following year, only to lose to the Yankees. The front office architect for much of their run of success was the recently-fired general manager Ruben Amaro, who has my sympathy now at year’s end. Certainly upper management directed him to blow it up and discard the remnants of their wildly successful years, and now after having followed orders, he gets the boot for having a young and inexperienced rebuilding team on the field.
III. While Feeling Sorry…
As the New York Mets prepare for their first post-Madoff playoff series, I am also feeling sorry for Jose Reyes, the best shortstop and the only batting champion in the franchise’s 54-year history. Reyes was a member of the AL East champion Toronto Blue Jays until a mid-summer shortstop for shortstop trade for Troy Tulowitski landed him in Colorado…which now means that Reyes – a witness to so much collective futility in New York – misses the postseason again.
IV. Clean Up The 7 Line
The Twitter accounts of the public transportation systems of New York and Los Angeles have gone back and forth at each other, most humorously, in anticipation of the Mets-Dodgers playoff series, with the LA system urging the MTA to clean up the 7 line which runs to Citi Field. Perhaps they haven’t seen the new 34th St Hudson Yards station, quite possibly the cleanest station I’ve seen among several cities and two countries.
On the field, the Mets cleaned up their act, making the playoffs for the first time since 2006…and as much as I have bashed GM Sandy Alderson for their aforementioned futility and his penny-pinching with one of the most valuable franchises in the game, I must congratulate him for keeping their young pitching core together and on point. Offense gets you on the highlight shows, but pitching and defense wins rings. Assuming general good health, I see a real possibility for a ring for the Mets inside the next 3-4 years.
V. The Omen
For you Met fans discouraged at the team’s being no-hit yet again last week, take heart – the 1969 Mets were also no-hit during the last weeks of the season…and look what happened then.
Then again, there’s a good omen for the Yankees as well, who basically backed into the postseason, losers of 7 of their last ten games. The 2000 Yanks lost their last seven, but recovered to win the World Series. As for the Blue Jays, they haven’t seen the playoffs since 1993…but they did win the World Series when there in 1992 & 1993.
VI. An A-Bomb…by A-Rod
Who would have known, pre-April, that Yankee broadcaster John Sterling would have 33 occasions to give his famous home run call…or 31 occasions for a “Tex Message” call after a Mark Teixeira home run? It’ll never happen, but these two guys should share Comeback Player of the Year. As for how their team will do, my predictions are as follows:
Wild card round:
Yankees over Astros, Pirates over Cubs.
Yankees over Royals, Blue Jays over Rangers, Pirates over Cardinals, Dodgers over Mets.
League Championship Series:
Blue Jays over Yankees, Dodgers over Pirates.
Dodgers over Blue Jays.
VII. Worst Persons In The World
The bad news is that Alabama is closing motor vehicle offices in numerous counties where African-Americans comprise large majorities, potentially making it difficult for those residents to get a driver license, which is an acceptable voter ID in Alabama.
However, the worse news for Alabama Republicans may be that they seem to have failed to read the paper or at least phone a friend. As the 2012 election approached, Republicans tried all kinds of methods to suppress the African-American vote in several states. Had the Alabama Republicans checked the Internet they would have found that not only did such efforts fail to achieve the desired results, they backfired greatly, as African-Americans in those areas were outraged and voted in large numbers despite the barriers placed in their way.
The worst news for Republicans is that they don’t have winning strategies with respect to communities of color outside of cheating.
(With the election season in effect…miss you on the air, Keith.)