Toronto Baseball Guys
Saturday, October 28, 2006
  Greatest. Prediction. Ever.
Here's to random chance! CARDS IN FIVE!

I haven't checked the entire internet, but I think this is the only Cards-in-five prediction in the whole world. Congraulations to the St.Louis Cardinals.

Discussion topic for the next 3 weeks: Pitchers' throwing errors
Monday, October 23, 2006
  WS Roundtable part 4
Predicting post-season matchups is difficult at best (see Yankees vs Tigers, ALDS 2006)

If anyone had a Cards-Tigers World Series at the start of the season, they're lying

In keeping with the unpredictable nature of this Series, I relied on my Dungeons and Dragons training to roll up a result. My two passions - D&D and blogging about baseball... sorry ladies I'm taken.

As overseen by the accounting firm of Cheryl & Liam I devised the following test:

roll 1d6 - even = Detroit, odd = St.Louis

result: 3 - victory for St.Louis!

roll 1d6 again (I can't find my bag of dice, the D&D nerd's nightmare)

1 = sweep, 2-3 = 5 games, 4-5 = 6 games, 6 = 7 games

result: 3 - 5 games

Now to justify the results...

Albert Pujols is the best hitter in baseball, and will dominate this series, aided by a healthy Jim Edmonds and Scott Rolen. Chris Carpenter and a red-hot Jeff Suppan will win their starts, and rookie closer Adam Wainwright's wicked curveball will confound the free-swinging Tigers hitters.

Here's to a home game sweep in the next three games...
  WS Roundtable, part 3
I just got into this "debate" with the Series tied 1-1. It's looks like the Tigers are still a little sleepy from their layoff, but Kenny Rogers and his pine tar ball have set them on the right track.

My prediction? Well, with every player at every position better for the Tigers (save for Pujols) you'd have to pick Tigers in 4 or 5. (Which the TBG did.) Of course, because the Cards stink so badly, have no chance at winning more than a Carpenter start, and is the worst team to ever play in a World Series, they'll probably win.

Cardinals in 7.
Sunday, October 22, 2006
  Tigers in Five
It's entirely understandable that the Tigers came out cold in game one; hell, they have been off since what, June? Don't expect it to last. 3 reasons:

1. A real m'f'er of a bullpen (save pumpkin boy), including one of the most lethal 7th/8th inning combos in ages in Rodney and Zumaya. All the stellar young starting staff has to do is get through the middling Cardinal's offence for 6 innings. Not too tall a task. (and Ledezma is looking damn sharp too).

2. The stellar young starting staff. What the hell are they feeding these kids. I haven't seen a staff with so many studs since I worked at chippendales in the early 80's. And Kenny. Who fixed Kenny?

3. Curtis Granderson. I love this kid. Sure he strikes out a lot, but he plays the game full out, never looks lost at the plate, runs well, plays a good CF, and loves wrestling. What more can you ask for in a young player? I also like Polanco, IRod, Monroe and Guillen. On the other side I like Pujols ('cause his name is Pujols, and I always wanted to blame my hard luck on Pujoles).

3 reasons. The Tigers will wake the fuck up tonight, and carry that momentum all the way to the title. Tigers in 5.
  World Series Roundtable Part 1
The following was written prior to Game 1 of the World Series, but there's never a computer around when you need one...

As the first one up, I can be the one to inform Sean that the Tigers only had to wait 34 years for revenge against St. Louis, and that they got it in the 1968 World Series. Hey, new babies can do that to you.

That series was a 7-gamer featuring two teams that combined for 200 wins, though it really wasn't much of a classic, as only one of the games was decided by 2 runs or less. In 2006, we have a resurgent Tigers team against the sorriest excuse for a World Series team in baseball history, the 83-win St. Louis Cardinals.

As a Blue Jays fan, it's going to be a little tough to watch a team that's clearly inferior to the Jays competing in the World Series. Sure, they have Pujols and Carpenter, but little else. The Tigers aren't outstanding at any one position, but they have no real weaknesses - ok, Sean Casey. I still fully expect Todd Jones to turn into a pumpkin given enough chances, but the games may not be all that close.

Tigers in four. (doh!)

Friday, October 20, 2006
The St. Louis Cardinals are the 2006 NL champs... usually I feel something, good or bad, about any team in the World Series, but the Cardinals? meh. Its hard to get excited about a team that would have finished well out of the post-season in any other division. There's a lot of things that bug me about this team:

- Chris Carpenter - I can hear the announcers now, talking about how the Blue Jays let him go... nothing against Carpenter at all, I just fully expect Fox announcers to be annoying

- Scott Spiezio, the Clutch God in this Jeter-less World Series. See above.

-Scott Spiezio's red soul patch. Dear God I don't need to see shot after shot of little old ladies with red merkins on their chin. Any excuse to work the word "merkin" into a baseball blog.

- Juan Encarnation, cleanup hitter

- Hearing about the 1934 World Series rematch, as if there are 90-year old Tigers fans who have been plotting their revenge for the last 72 years.

- Some broadcaster citing stats from the 1934 World Series as though they will help predict how a current in-game situation will play out. I love hearing about the history of the game, but since every single player from that Series has died let's not pretend that the teams' all-time batting average with runners in scoring position tells us anything.

All of that in mind, the Cardinals are a World Series team, and I'd like to try to get excited about them. Here goes:

1) St.Louis is a great baseball town, where the fans know the game and really support their team. This is not a Tampa Bay or Raleigh winnng the Stanley Cup sort of city.

2) The Cardinals last won the World Series in 1982, so a whole generation of those fans has never seen it happen

3) Albert Pujols, one of the best players of our time. Its not his fault he bats between Preston Wilson and Juan Encaration

4) So Taguchi. The guy is listed at 163lbs and he looks like a guy who rented a Cardinal's uniform for his office Halloween party. How can you not cheer for a guy like that?

5) Scott Rolen. He was booed out of Philadelphia, where being a great 3rd baseman is enough to make people hate you (see Schmidt, Mike). St.Louis' win means he doesn't have to spend the rest of his life being the guy who's home run was caught by Endy Chavez

So, why cheer for Detroit?

1) They knocked the Yankees out of the playoffs

Good enough for me - go Tigers!
Thursday, October 19, 2006
  This ain't exactly Lolich vs. Gibson
Which injury-riddled NL squad will win the right to be trounced by Detroit? That question will be answered tonight in New York, and while all seventh games have a special air about them, this one figures to be a war of attrition.

Expect visits to the bullpen early and often. This is all that you need to know about the pitching matchup: The team that DOESN'T have Jeff Suppan starting probably wishes that they did. That thought has to make Blue Jay fans just a little wistful, as both the Mets and Cardinals would probably have killed for a healthy Gustavo Chacin in this series.

The Jays would have matched up well against either of these teams with a front three of Halladay, Burnett and Lilly. Add in the beaten-up lineups on both sides, what with Cliff Floyd, Albert Pujols, Scott Rolen and David Eckstein and it's enough to apply for a transfer to the NL.

As a fan with no deep rooting interest in either team, you hope that Game Seven isn't a blowout. Each one is, after all, a chance for the next great moment in baseball history. Look for New York to win, as St. Louis will regret not wrapping up the series in Game six with their ace on the mound. One key hit for Carlos Delgado and he'll be an easy choice for NLCS MVP. Not bad for a guy that Toronto writers chided for a lack of competitive spirit.

Oh, and a question for Tony LaRussa and his anemic offense: do you think So Taguchi has earned a start yet? Maybe drop the guy with the 2.750 slugging percentage into the lineup for a game. Just a thought.
Sunday, October 15, 2006
  And now, the comedy stylings of Steve Lyons...
One would think that in the year 2006, a broadcaster might have the good sense NOT to imply that all Spanish-speaking people are liable to steal your wallet. Particularly while on live TV. Not so with Fox analyst Steve "Psycho" Lyons, who apparently lost his mind while getting chummy with Lou Pinella during Game 3 of the ALCS.

The Good News is that Lyons will no longer be remembered as the Guy Who Dropped His Pants In Front of 35,000 People.

The Bad News is that he will now be remembered as the Guy Who Got Fired for the Stupid Racist Remarks. Not exactly an upgrade.

I doubt that Lyons is actually a racist. Rather this was just "witty newsdesk banter" of a kind that makes Ron Burgundy look like Walter Cronkite.

Watching tonight's broadcast, I see that Fox has added such stable personalities as A.J. Pierzynski and Eric Byrnes to their studio panel. Perhaps a 5-second tape delay is in order...
Thursday, October 12, 2006
  I blame Tim Keown
Well, poor Cory Lidle has gone and crashed himself into a Manhattan building. It's a shame really, and I don't want to turn this into a joke (too soon) but, might it be possible that he really did care about the loss to the Tigers...
I was reading about Sports Illustrated’s (note reading ABOUT, not reading—does anybody actually read Sports Illustrated anymore, let alone pay for the pleasure?) 100 hottest players of all-time (or whatever their latest ‘all-time’ fantasy BS is about) on this afternoon. ESPN was up in arms that neither Satchel or Clemente was on the list, but had no problem at all with Barry f’n Bonds being omitted; they even allowed some SI goon to freely state that it had NOTHING AT ALL TO DO WITH THE STEROID ALLEGATIONS (or the reporters they gave outlet to being in jail, etc.).


Listen fellas, I’ma gonna say something that you are not going to like...Barry Bonds is better than Mickey Mantle, he’s better than Stan the Man, better than Hank Aaron. Really. The only guy that should ever (and by ever I mean still never) bump Barry off of an all-time list is Albert Belle...just maybe the Bambino. Maybe. And that’s ‘cause he pitched.

Any 'all-time' list without Barry is like the ALDS without a latently homosexual Jeter-comment from Tim McCarver; satisfying for some, but just not right.
Wednesday, October 11, 2006
  Latest Jeter Mail
Here's the latest from the mailbag about everyone's favourite shortstop:

Before your list begins you state "He will one day be inducted into the baseball Hall of Fame." How will that happen? Is he going to quadruple his offensive statistics before he retires? The Earth will crash into the sun before Derek Jeter gets inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Much as I find him personally annoying, to be denied by Cooperstown, Jeter would have to sodomize Rudy Giuliani.

In Yankee Stadium.

While wearing an Osama Bin Laden T-shirt.

And placing online bets on baseball.

A shortstop with 2,000 hits and a .317 average is going to The Hall of Fame.
Tuesday, October 10, 2006
  TBG has gone to the Blogs
Much as we liked the old site format, it wasn't terribly conducive to regular updates, so we've decided to change things up a little bit.

The new design makes it easier for our writers to post, and it makes the site much more interactive, as visitors can now leave comments. Old articles are still available in the "Old School Archive." We've also made an easy-to-find permanent link to the ever growing "Little Baseball Glossary," and the Jeter List, which is how most of our recent visitors have found the site.

Using this format, we will still have longer, in-depth articles, such as Chris' feature on Albert Belle, but it will also allow for timely flash-posts whether we're talking about an off-season moves or analyzing the latest McCarverism (it is playoff time).
Discussion of all thing Blue Jays.

Christopher Casuccio
Sean Doyle
Rob Metcalfe
Matthew Graf
Yoni Grundland
Mark Rottmann
Jim Turner
Joel Williams


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