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    Wednesday, September 17, 2008

    Still Exciting Even Without Red Sox/Yankees

    I used to think that the Red Sox/Yankees rivalry was saving Major League Baseball after all there really isn’t much interest in a Toronto Blue Jays/Tampa Bay Rays ALCS. This season may have me changing my tune a bit. I am thinking that the last two or three weeks has been some of the most exciting baseball that has happened since the 2004 ALCS.

    First and foremost, there is the race between the Rays and the Red Sox. Nobody thought after the Rays had opened up a five game lead on the Red Sox with a little over a month to go that the Red Sox would catch them. The Rays were on a tear and it looked like the Red Sox were falling firmly into the Wild Card slot, but then something happened.In late August and early September the Rays ran into the Yankees and the Blue Jays and the Red Sox managed to rattle of some wins against the Rangers and the Orioles. All of a sudden it was a battle to the finish.

    Now nothing will ever match the intensity that is Red Sox v. Yankees in September/October, but if it weren’t for this battle for first place that is heating up the AL East would not only be one of the toughest divisions in baseball, it would also be one of the most boring divisions. But, on the bats of Youklis and Pedroia and a cast of characters too numerous to name, the Red Sox charged towards the top spot and now sit one game back. It will truly come down to the final outs of the 2008 season and the pennant may even be decided at a game against the Yankees at Fenway Park.

    Sidebar: With the Yankees not in the playoffs who will the Fox commentators root for? Oh I guess Joe Torre, he’s the closest thing going.

    What else is making this final push to the playoffs a compelling thing to watch? How about, yet another NY Mets collapse? It just may happen. The Mets who stand just a half game back of the NL East lead and have a slim half game lead over the Brewers in the wild card chase are poised to see their playoff hopes dashed at the last minute once again. After losing four of their last five games, Mets fans are holding their collective breaths as their beloved team has blown it’s 3 ½ game lead in the division.

    That’s nothing but good times for Red Sox fans. Suffer dear Mets fans suffer.

    There is something exciting happening in the Chicago area to keep the fans there happy and that of course is Carlos Zambrano’s no-hitter the other night for the Cubbies which rejuvenated the Chi-town teams’ hopes at World Series glory. Now a Red Sox/Cubs World Series would be the most watched series ever. Yes even more then the Red Sox/Rockies series, everybody watched that one.

    Finally, this is the final year of Yankee stadium. Thankfully the rest of the country will be spared huge vignettes of the greatest moments in that stadiums history during every last post-season game shown on Fox because the Yankees are so terrible they won’t be in the playoffs. That being said, it deserves a mention as one of the most venerable ballparks in the MLB and it will be, if not missed, remembered.

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    Anonymous New England Sports Blog said...

    I will bring the "Yankees Suck" Slogan to my grave...

    September 18, 2008 at 6:49 AM  

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