Tuesday, November 03, 2015

Shake Your Booty

I'm with Tony Korhheiser on 'Pardon the Interruption', "If it weren't for gambling the NFL would be box lacrosse." 

It's a business that destroys its employees, redistributes billions to elite owners through public financing of play palaces, subverts the mission of American colleges and universities greedy for football money by using them as developmental leagues and feeds the notion of 'Empire' by linking every 'game' to the support of an expeditionary military, among its many other socially redeeming qualities 
Outside of that, and its tax exempt status, the NFL is a wholesome organization making wonderful contributions to the well-being of people everywhere, including providing gainful employment for an unusual number of domestic abusers and gun-toting posses. 
It is, however, compelling, violent theater, perfectly designed for television and the 21st century edition of the Roman Coliseum. 
Tailgate parties and shots of screaming, heavily costumed fans remind me of Mel Gibson's movie 'Braveheart' when the highlanders turn their backs, bend over, raise their kilts and wiggle their asses at the occupying English forces - while Al Michaels and Chris Hollingsworth (by far the best NFL broadcast team) do an insightful play-by-play call and diagram ass wiggling so all can understand and appreciate its many intricacies - while millions of 'football fans' are checking the status of their fantasy team players.
Now that's entertainment!

And in baseball...

The Mets defense was once again exposed as horrible but, just maybe,  all those calling for Terry Collins' head at the beginning of the season were on to something. Collins' performance in game five will be a proud member of the Boneheaded Managers Ring of Honor for, well, forever.
With the bases loaded and no outs, Yoenis Cespedes fouled a ball off of his kneecap. Collins allowed him to continue the at bat without requiring Cespedes to demonstrate that he could walk, no less run. Cespedes weakly fouled out to stifle a rally that might have staved off elimination and then had to be assisted off the field. Was the Mets bench so weak that Collins had no better option than a one-legged batter?

My Mom always said, "Two wrongs don't make a right." If Collins' Mom told him, he clearly forgot, sending Matt Harvey, who had already thrown over 100 pitches, out to start the 9th with the Amazin's up 2-0. A tired Harvey, who had begged Collins to give him the 9th, walked the leadoff batter who promptly stole second. After Eric Hosmer blasted a run scoring double Collins brought in his closer, Familia,  but it was too late. The Royals comeback and eventual win was on. 

If nothing else, the role of a manager is to give his team the best opportunity to win. Every closer in baseball is most comfortable and most effective when they can start a clean 9th inning. Collins knew that but his heart overruled his head in both the Cespedes and Harvey cases.

The 2015 World Series ended in five games.

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