#10 – Jim Thome
He is older than Tim McCarver. He is slower than Buck Showalter’s walk to the mound. But boy is it fun to watch him try to squeeze out one more at-bat. Reach for a ring one more time ol' fella.
#9 – The Tim McCarver Drinking Game
Every time he states an obvious point, take a drink.
#8 – Big Red Machine
I can’t wait to see what happens to the Reds.
Dusty Baker lost with Barry Bonds’ bat.
Dusty Baker lost with Mark Prior and Kerry Wood’s arms.
Dusty Baker has both hitting and pitching this year with a tremendous Reds team. They have the easiest path from the National League side. How will Dusty blow it?
Personal note – two months ago, I laid a bet for a repeat of the 1990 World Series, so I’m in his corner. He’s due, right?
#7 – Time Can Be Paused
When Chipper Jones came up for his last at-bat, he was able to take a bow. The pitcher just stepped off the mound and let time come to a stop. Football and basketball don’t always have the luxury of stopping the game flow to appreciate a milestone. Only baseball can stop the clock like that.
#6 – The Under the Radar teams
The Detroit Tigers and San Francisco Giants are the least talked about teams in the playoffs. In a weird twist, they are both the #3 seeds and get to sit back and wait for things to come their way. Everyone’s focus is on the other teams. Me? I think they snuck into the playoffs thanks to weaker divisions.
I’m imagining Buster Posey going into a Chinese Buffet and coming out Pablo Sandoval.
#5 – Curses… and the Nationals
I’m looking forward to a curse I see brewing.
The Cubs’ Curse of the Billy Goat started at the World Series after the usher ejected a man his odorous goat.
The White Sox threw the World Series and had a curse placed upon them, denying any more championships.
I bring all this up because the Washington Nationals finally let Teddy Roosevelt win the 7th Inning “Presidential Race” on the last game of the season. It was his first victory in the rigged race, ever. The Nationals are tempting the Baseball Gods with this move. As Crash Davis said, “you don’t mess with a streak.” The Nats were doing too good this season to change things up.
Consider yourselves warned D.C.
#4 – Hoping for the Yankees to Lose
Who doesn’t love rooting against the Evil Empire?
(Those in NYC and girls in pink Jeter shirts exempted, of course)
#3 – Legends Are More than your Usual Nicknames
Claw and Antler in ‘10
The Idiots of ‘04
Don’t Stop Believin’ in ‘05
The Rally Monkey in ‘02
The Rally Squirrel in ‘12
What will we hear this year?
#2 – March Madness
Two automatic one-and-done games at the beginning of the playoffs lived up to the hype. It is instant excitement, drama and must-watch television. For too long, MLB and fans had to hope for too many pieces having to fall into place for this to happen. I haven’t been this glued to my TV since the cable company messed up and gave me free porn.
#1 – The Hope of All Things Possible
Every spring, everyone opines about the hope of new possibilities. Every fan talks about how their team just needs this or a little bit of that and they can go all the way. When last we saw snow, just about everyone in the world had assumed the Oakland A’s were destined for a long, boring season. They had a team for 2014 and only hope for 2014. Watching the all-rookie pitching staff and a bench filled with young guys who don’t know enough to give up is amazing to watch
Add magic to hope and you have excitement.
Brian Reddoch is a CraveOnline reporter and rabid fan of all teams Seattle. You can follow him on Twitter @ReddReddoch and at www.facebookcom/craveonlinesports.com.
Photo Credit: Getty