October 20, 2008

Thank You, Tampa Bay Rays

I never thought I'd be cheering for Matt Garza, not after what he did to the Blue Jays this season. Last night, I was Garza's biggest fan, and he didn't disappoint. What can I say? When I hop aboard a bandwagon, I go all out.

I'd like to take this opportunity to thank the Tampa Bay Rays. They are American League champions. They are off to the World Series, and the Boston Red Sox are not. At the end of the day, that's what's most important, my friends.

The Red Sox - much to the chagrin of this Masshole and much to the delight of, well, everyone else - will not repeat as World Series champions. As a die-hard Blue Jays fan born in 1982, the fact that Toronto won back-to-back titles is all I've got left on "Red Sox Nation." Do it two times in a row Massholes, then talk to me.

The city of Boston is in mourning today, and I'm pleased to say that David Ortiz and Jason Varitek are a big reason why. Ortiz hit only .154 over the course of the ALCS, managing just four hits, one home run, and four RsBI. He struck out nine times. 

As for Varitek, his ALCS numbers are downright laughable. He managed one (1!) hit in 20 at-bats for a whopping .050 batting average, and struck out eight times in six games. Attaboy, Tek. Way to lead the troops. If there was any doubt that Varitek's not done as an everyday catcher in the majors, there should be no more, because it's painfully obvious that he's finished. I think Tek might have struck out for the last time in a Boston uniform. 

No Masshole can argue that the better team lost. The Rays were better on the mound, and much better at the plate. B.J. Upton and Evan Longoria combined for 19 RsBI in the series, equalling the output of Ortiz, Varitek, Kevin Youkilis, Dustin Pedroia, and J.D. Drew combined. Guys like Willy Aybar stepped up for Tampa, while Red Sox youngsters Jacoby Ellsbury and Jed Lowrie didnt answer the bell.

How about that pitching performance last night by Matt Garza? Seven innings, two hits, one earned run off a solo home run, and nine strikeouts. The Red Sox were "Garzafied" twice in the series, and Garza was well-deserving of the MVP award.

And don't forget about David Price's four-out save. With the fate of the Tampa Bay organization, and Red Sox haters everywhere, resting on his young shoulders, Price struck out J.D. Drew with the based loaded in the bottom of the eighth inning. He took the mound again in the ninth and struck out two more, including Varitek (sweet), before getting Jed Lowrie to ground out to end the game. Talk about picking up your first career save in style, eh? Price, only 23 years young, and fresh out of the 2007 draft, has got to be on top of the world today. 

As J.P. Ricciardi is always preaching, pitching is what gets the job done in the AL East. Scott Kazmir was the only Tampa Bay ALCS starter to register an ERA higher than 4.00. For the Red Sox, none of their starting pitchers were able to crack the 4.00 ERA mark. Josh Beckett, who has got to be injured, finished with a nasty 9.64 ALCS ERA.

The Rays and Phillies World Series will get started on Wednesday. I'm not sure it's safe to hop off a moving Tampa Bay bandwagon, but I sure as hell wouldn't mind seeing Matt Stairs win a ring. It's a win-win situation, really. The Fall Classic will be Red Sox free, after all.

Somewhere, someplace, Manny Ramirez is smiling. That makes two of us.


The Ack said...

I don't know man, I don't know.

It's not that I disagree with you, necessarily, but.....I'm developing a healthy hatred for those pricks also.

On the one hand, it's nice to see the Sox go down, because you know, they're the Sox and we're programmed to hate them (relax, Massholia - I'm talking in a sports-rivalry type of way)....but on the other hand, now we have another group of fans who will instantly obtain their Douchebag cards.

At least Sox fans are dedicated, historically follow the team, and have EARNED their Douchebag cards. Now we'll have a whole new group of Johnny (Gomes) Come Lately Tampa Bay Ray fans coming out of the woodwork talking about their suffering coming to an end. Fuck off.

eyebleaf said...

I feel you, Ack. I do. You're right, a lot of assholes received their Douchebag cards last night, and that's never a good thing.

But a part of me was glad to see the genuine excitement that the Rays showed when they won last night. Carl Crawford was going ape shit running in from left. And Rocco's had such a crazy few years, I'm sure Lloyd the Barber was in tears last night. Even Upton, that leap he made onto the pile was great. And there's something refreshing about Joe Maddon. Dude's a rudey. It was just good to see someone other than the Sox win. It seems like they're just used to it now, and my hatred for Papelbon doesn't compare to any player on the Rays roster. It's not even close. Papelbon is the scum of the earth.

And, you're also right about Red Sox fans being passionate and dedicated. That they are. But, in defence of Tampa, even though they still couldn't draw crowds this season, I'm sure somewhere down in St. Pete there are a group of passionate Rays fans who suffered through some very pathetic years of this franchise. I'm talking dark, painful years, and this is sweet success for that small group of fans. All 11 of them.

And why is the most useless guy (ie. Hinske) always the one going the most ape shit? Johnny Gomes is a useless pile of shit. I'm sure he and Hinske are the best of friends.

Ian H. said...

Navin, I totally agree with your points on Varitek. A .053 average in the ALCS? This is supposed to be the "C"aptain of the Red Sox, and he could only muster up one (albeit, big) hit the entire series. Varitek is a waste of space, and needs to get that "C" ripped off his jersey. Congrats, Tampa.

Dheeraj Vaswani said...

Thank you Tampa Bay. Thank you for finally getting the massholes to shut the hell up. It was a pleasure watching the Rays beat the Red Sox. I hate the Red Sox. I really do, I LOATH the Boston Red Sox. They give off a foul and unpleasant odor.

Marvelous Win said...

I don't know guy i kinda have a soft spot for the sox, I think it's cuz of my passion for asian players, and they do have two of the best asian pitchers out there. So I guess, now i have to go start cheering for the ray, i think they are the team that still has someone asian on them. AND YOU ALL KNOW WHAT THAT MEANS, the world series champ will be Philly and you can bet on that shit.

eyebleaf said...

@ Ian: I'd love to rip off the "C" from Varitek's jersey, like Newman ripping the Post Office logo off his own jacket that Jerry was wearing. JV sucks.

@ Deaner: +1 on the Seinfeld reference.

@ Marvelous: Iwomura turned out to be a pretty deft signing by the Rays. He's a pretty good player. And, yes, now that you're cheering for Tampa, their run is officially over.

fantasybaseballmacbookpro said...

Marvelous Win - If you love asian players make sure to take a look at Yu Darvish. He is absolutely nuts! Unless you already knew about him. I had a chance to watch him play a week ago.

eyebleaf said...

Fantasy, what position does this Yu fellow play, and is there any chance he might become a Blue Jay? We need to dip into the Japanese free agent pool.

fantasybaseballmacbookpro said...

eyebleaf - This kid, Japanese people just call him Darvish, is a pitcher playing for the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters of the Japan League.

He has a moving mid-to-high 90's fastball, dirty slider, curve,and according to some of my inside sources (fellow workers who live and breathe baseball) he has the ability to "change" diapers.

The only problem with this kid is he is young and since he plays in Japan he won't be available for free agency for another 5-6 years, unless he goes through the posting system like Ichiro and Daisuke went through. Reports from MLB scouts and Japan news have reported that he would fetch a fee higher than Daisuke ($51.1 million) did back in 2006.

Also, Darvish in the past stated that he has no intentions of moving over to the MLB. But in my eyes, the best always want to compete against the best. Also, add in the $$$$$$$$ MLB players make and the luxurious life they are given, Davrish might suddenly change his mind. In my eyes, Darvish might only just be saying these things just to be a hero/icon in Japan. Basically, just more PR crap.

This guy will come over to the MLB if he continues his current growth as a pitcher. The only question is when.

Hope this info helps.

PS. Unless the Jays find a stash of cash, you will not be seeing Darvish in a Jays uniform.

Marvelous Win said...

@fantasy -I actually knew about him, what is interesting as Eyebleaf and Lab rat knows he is the exact type of player i like. He is the a huge tabloid star, he is in underwear ads, he even got in trouble for publicly smoking. he is half asian and half persian, and he broke all of Dice - k's records. I have to say i am excited to see him come to the MLB.

fantasybaseballmacbookpro said...

marvelous - yeah, i was laughing when i read all his antics as a teenager...smoking and playing pachinko while underage.

did i mention him getting a girl pregnant? but atleast he married her.

but just like canada/america, as long as you are winning on the field you can do what ever you want because you are above the law.

The Ack said...

^^ not to get off topic, but come on, how can you say athletes are still treated as "above the law" in this day and age.

Half the headlines on any sports site these days are about arrests, charges, etc....DUI's, spitting a drink on a lady, assaults, dogfighting, drugs, speeding tickets, paternity suits, etc.....if anything, I think it's shifted the other way.

eyebleaf said...

@ Marvelous: Is "Escaped Lab Rat" Ryan? What a rude boy screen name.

@ Fantasy: I love how you said, re: Darvish getting the girl pregnant, "at least he married her." hahahahh. what a good guy.

@ Ack: I think you've got a point. Athletes are way too much in the spotlight these days and their extra-curricular activities get way too much attention. I personally don't care what these guys do away from the field/rink, etc. In the case of Michael Vick, dude's just an idiot. Straight up. But my unborn kids won't be looking up to athletes as their role models. Because athletes aren't role models. They're just athletes.

Ian H. said...

Any time that Seinfeld can be referenced, it's a great day.

Escaped Lab Rat said...

Given the choice I've gotta give the slight cheering edge to the Phillies--despite their being based in Philly.

1. Matt Stairs
2. Charlie Manuel's mom (RIP)
3. I still feel bad for Lidge and that Pujols HR
4. Mitch Williams gave us Jay fans so much, I will cheer for him and his franchise this time around.

Plus I can't get around the fact the Devil Rays are still hated AL Easterners (I still wish Delgado had kicked Crawford's butt oh so many years ago) and it's tough to root for a team that only draws 10,000. And also, how bad does it make us Jay fans feel if everybody in our division wins but us? The AL East has 4 of the top 8 teams in baseball I think.

eyebleaf said...

Lab Rat, you've inspired a post. I'm hopping off the Rays' bandwagon. They served their purpose, and defeated the Boston Red Sox.

fantasybaseballmacbookpro said...

Idiot athletes who are in the news after being arrested for dumb ass stuff like Joba for a DUI, are usually found in the headlines when it happens but I almost guarantee when push comes to shove their penalty is usually a fine or some community educational outings.