*What do you think the 2002 Cleveland Indians are thinking this postseason, watching CC Sabathia go up against Cliff Lee & Charlie Manuel?
*Despite the late start and imminent potential for another rain-soaked World Series, this will be a banner Fall Classic. The lineups are too strong on both sides, and as the Phillies proved – they can hit with any American League team. UCLA alum Ben Francisco (and his 15 hr/15sb in 300+ AB this year) will most likely get the nod in Left, starting aside fellow Bruin Chase Utley and thusly allowing Raul Ibanes to do what he does best – focus on hitting.
*Speaking of UCLA alumnus, anybody notice Spencer Havner, former UCLA middle-linebacker, catch & run for a spectacular touchdown as a tight end for the Green Bay Packers this weekend?
*In Bruin football ‘rivalry’ news, the Pete-Carrol led USC Trojans won again and bounced up to #5 in the recent BCS Standings, below Iowa, who looks to be the Ohio State of 2009.
*Hanging around in downtown Los Angeles, Anze Kopitar leads the NHL in goals as the Kings are suprising the league with their hot start. First place at this juncture was well ahead of the preseason conjecture and kudos to those true fans who kept believing in Terry Murray and Dean Lombardi. If this holds, L.A. may not need Gretzky to actually revel in being a hockey town. . .
*Playing in the same building as those soon-to-be-champion Kings is a little team called the Lakers, who are subleasing to some junior league team, apparently called ‘The Clippers’ or something of that ilk.
*Tipoff (and ring ceremony) tomorrow night at Staples, and in all seriousness – the Clippers have one of the best young nuclei in the league with Griffin/Gordon/Thornton/Davis/Camby/Kaman.
*Down the I-5 a little bit, Angels fans need to be smarting at Mike Scioscia once again worried his way through the Playoffs, and kept his reputation as inexplicably tightening up AFTER winning a World Series. If there is another manager or head coach in any sport with his track record of success that so consistently causes his teams to shrivel in big appearances, let me know. The Angels are one of the most fundamentally sound baseball teams in the League during the season, yet somehow find ways to bonehead mistake their way to losses when it counts most. Perhaps his self-imposed gag order on the media and his unwillingness to even discuss the playoffs during the season has his players feeling constrained, thus speeding the game up when they really need to just focus on playing their normal, solid baseball.
*I’m curious to see the TV Ratings from last night; we know that the NFL is now the national pasttime, but a Yankees-Angels Sunday night telecast had to at least compete with Goodell’s league, which is becoming more-and-more international each season.
*Lastly, Trojan alum Mark McGwire resurfaced this weekend, being named hitting coach of Tony LaRussa’s Cardinals. Good move on both fronts – LaRussa is almost a Tony Dungy-esque figure within baseball circles, and though McGwire has intentionally stayed away from the game in the aftermath of his Andro/early retirement/link to PED’s, he is always a beloved figure, and let’s be honest – the game needs Paul Bunyan. If McGwire handles the media with something other than a refusal to discuss the past, he will be embraced yet again.
*And let’s go Clinton Portis tonight in MNF, who only needs five touchdowns and 300+ yards for my team to mount a comeback victory. I mean, Sherm Lewis is calling plays now, so who’s to doubt that will happen?
Thanks again for the feedback – keep it coming.