World Series Notions
What's with Chris Duncan? Does he know he looks like a big dumb ruminant? He looks like he ought to be hanging upsidedown by his claws in a banana tree, trying not to get eaten by a jaguar.
And why do Jeff Weaver and Kenny Rogers sneer while taking the signs from the catcher? Is that necessary? Can they not concentrate if they don't screw their faces up like that?
Ah, Kenny Rogers. I've always hated that guy, even when he was with Oakland. As he demonstrated last year he's a classic punk. And he's one of the biggest choke artists of the last 20 years, Mr. Disappear-in-September. He's had 10 or more victories at the all-star break a number of times (including this year, with 11) yet never won more than 18 games in a season (including this year, with 17). His career about blew up when he went to the Yankees; too much pressure. He's really the perfect Texas Ranger, a guy who will have some flashy numbers early in the season then fade late.
And then somehow he has this post season, 23 consecutive scoreless innings, at least 7 innings each against New York, Oakland, and Saint Louis, only four innings shy of the record for "most consecutive scoreless innings in a single postseason." That's a mouthful, isn't it? If he ends up breaking the record, set by Christy Mathewson of the New York Giants in the 1905 World Series, it will have taken him three series and almost three weeks to do it. Mathewson set it in a single series, in six days, with three complete game shutouts. How can the two of them even be compared?
That said, I can't get really excited about the pine tar, or whatever it is. I can't believe how much wind it's generated and I just don't see it as a big deal. Yeah, it's odd that a career choke artist like Rogers would suddenly put together a post-season like this, and doctored balls would go a long way toward explaining that, but he also pitched 7 ShO innings after cleaning his hands the other night. I think LaRussa handled it about right. Have him clean his hand, maybe get him to blow up, and if he was loading 'em up maybe he wouldn't be so effective after cleaning up, so don't try to get him booted. Didn't quite play out that way, but it was reasonable to believe it might.
Oh yeah, one more thing...
After Zumaya blew the throw to third, allowing two unearned runs to score, what does McCarver say?
"That was a bad play by Zumaya." Ya think?