September 15, 2008

Until 2009

First of all, fuck you, Dustin Pedroia.

Look at that smug little grin on his face. What an asshole. I'm off Pedroia. Huge.

My apologies, but I had to get that out of the way.

Well, it's all over for the 2008 edition of

our Toronto Blue Jays. We went into Boston needing to take at least three of four, and we got only one. My dream of a Jays' playoff berth has been stored away in its regular place - the depths of my soul - for another winter.

It was a most disappointing weekend, but I'm not going to shit on my team. I'm not going to shit on the offence, or the bullpen - especially my man crush Scott Downs. I'm not going to complain that the Jays, as a team, weren't able to get it done when it mattered most. Instead, I'm going to focus on the positives, and the fact that this team, left for dead so long ago, had me on the edge of my seat watching meaningful baseball in mid September.

I will, however, shit all over the umpires, and Bartolo Colon.

Shitting All Over the Umpires, and Bartolo Colon

I don't know about you, but I thought David Ortiz's slide in the 7th inning of Saturday night's game - a crushing and demoralizing defeat in which the Jays blew a 5-2 lead and lost 7-5 - was bush league. He went cleats up dangerously into Marco Scutaro's leg on what was easily a double play ball. Scoot, obviously, wasn't able to make the play and the Red Sox scored a huge run in the process. Where was the interference call? Where was Ortiz's ejection for his reckless slide? Where was the mother fucking umpire? If that wasn't interference, I'm not sure what is. Oh, and fuck you, Big Papi.

In yesterday's game, Lyle Overbay was robbed of a double in the 9th inning when he was called out by the douchebag second base umpire, whose name I'm too lazy to look up. As you can see in the picture above by the vein ready to explode in Overbay's neck, and the incredibly homosexual smile on Pedroia's face, Overbay was safely in there, and replays proved it. Overbay would have been on third base with only one out in the inning had the correct call been made. Of course, we ended up losing the game by just a run. Fuck you, douchebag second base umpire.

And, seriously, how much of a fatty is Bartolo Colon? His neck has its own zip postal code. Motha sucka clearly has never heard of a stationary bike, or a treadmill.

The Positives

The starting pitching was pretty dope all weekend. David Purcey battled on Friday night, without his best stuff. Jesse Litsch started on three days rest and gave it his all on Saturday night, giving up three earned runs in five and a third innings. The kids were alright, man, and I'm proud of 'em.

If A.J. Burnett does walk as a free agent this summer, and he most surely will, Saturday afternoon is how I want to remember him. Pitching on three days rest the night after the Jays lost the series opener, Burnett was filthy. As The Ack so aptly put it with only a picture, "Nails."

Travis. Mother. Fuckin. Snider. He homered and doubled on Saturday afternoon, driving in five runs, and added another RBI in the nightcap. He gave notice to the Red Sox and their fans that he has, at only 20 years old, arrived, and is for real. As I like to say, Travis Snider is the truth. For guys like Adam Lind and Sniderman (hat tip to the The Ack, who coined that awesome nickname), the future is tremendously bright.

Some jackass in the comments section over at The Tao of Stieb, who doesn't even have the balls to leave his name, made the utterly foolish assertion that because Roy Halladay lost to the White Sox on Wednesday and to the Red Sox yesterday, "he is not a big game pitcher." It gets better: "Right now, Lester is the better pitcher and beat Halladay."

Doc gave up six hits and two earned runs in seven innings against the defending World Series champions, in Fenway Park. He struck out five and didn't walk a batter. But he's not a big game pitcher. And Jon Lester is better than him. You see, this is the type of nonsensical bullshit we have to put up with here in Toronto. I hate to use the word retarded, you know, for politically correct reasons, but that anonymous commenter over at The Tao of Stieb is, well, retarded.

In Defense of Downs

Watching Scott Downs fall flat on his face while the Red Sox scored the winning run on Saturday night, and essentially silenced our faint playoff hopes in the process, was gut-wrenching. He was tagged for three runs, and the loss, in the type of game he's been money in all year long.

The bullpen has been so strong all year, with Downs leading the charge. Saturday night was one lead they couldn't hold on to, and I can't find it in me to be down on the guys. No way. The pen is one of the main reasons why the Jays were able to make something of this season, and they deserve better than a public flogging from me.

As for Downs, it turns out he didn't heed the advice of trainers and doctors when he rolled his ankle a month ago on August 13th. Since his return from a week off after the injury, Downs has struggled, and it was the same ankle that led to his most inopportune, and embarrassing, fielding mishap. But I'm going to give props to Downs for playing hurt. He wanted to be out there for his team, and I can't be mad at him for that. I still have mad man love for Scotty Downs.

Looking Forward

With only 12 games left on the schedule, and an 80-70 record, the Jays need to finish strong and look to 2009. Selfishly, I want 90 wins. Ten out of twelve. It's a tall order, but I've got faith in these guys. They've proved over the last two months that they can play with anybody in the American League. 90 wins won't be enough to quiet the J.P. Ricciardi haters out there but, really, how do you fire the general manager of a team with 90 wins in the AL East? I don't think you do. Stay tuned, a Ricciardi inspired post entitled "One More Year" is coming down the pipe.

With twelve games left to play, both Burnett and Halladay will get at least two more starts. They've both got 18 wins, and it would be quite a way for A.J. to go out if both he and Doc can get to 20 wins. They've been the best one-two punch in the American League this year and I'll always be left to wonder just how scary their combination would have looked in a playoff series. For shame.

I'll be watching the final twelve games of the season with interest because this is a good baseball team. A playoff team. I truly believe that. As Mike Wilner was so kind enough to point out, the Jays' fate was determined not this weekend, but in April and June, when they went a combined 21-33. For the rest of the season, the Blue Jays sport an impressive record of 59-37. So when you hear or read someone say that Doc isn't a big-game pitcher, or that the Jays choked, take it for what it is: bullshit. This season was not lost when we couldn't close the gap in the wild card race to 7.5 games with 12 games left to play. It was lost early on in the year, when we couldn't beat the Royals, Mariners, Indians and Athletics of the baseball world.

In the end, the hole the Jays dug themselves was simply too deep to climb out of. But it was exciting as fuck to watch them do everything they could to try.

See you in 2009, with bells on, Massholes.


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