In lower leagues, the Dans won last night in a great 3-0 game. Great pitching on both sides, DeKalb played some spectacular defense, and just enough offense. Really, that was everything I could ask for in a baseball game. Chicks might dig the long ball, but give me web gems any day.
Originally I just had a link to the old commercial, but that didn't feel like I was doing it justice. Here's Greg Maddux and Tom Glavine's greatest acting achievement in all its glory.
Now, as far as this proposed realignment scheme for MLB: it sucks. I've outlined my views on what the MLB ought to do for realignment in an earlier post. This new scheme, as I understand it, is basically the exact opposite of everything I would want to do. Here it is in a nutshell,* at least as I understand it. Forget about divisions, we'll just lump everybody into two leagues and take the top five from each to make the playoffs. On top of that, let's take the Astros (or somebody that would make some sort of sense in the AL West) and move them to the American League, so each as 15 teams.
*I can never really talk about putting something in a nutshell without thinking of Shakespeare. "Oh God, I could be bounded in a nutshell, and count myself a king of infinite space. . ." I'm not a Shakespeare guy, but Hamlet probably would be a favorite, and that would definitely be my favorite line of the play.
On paper, well, I see the logic behind it. But I hate it. First of all, this would expand interleague play, which it seems the majority of baseball people (at least the majority of people I know and hear on TV) seem to feel is played out, stale, and downright forced. I know I'm on that side of the fence. It only makes sense in about three cases: Cubs-White Sox, Yankees-Mets, and Giants-A's. And frankly, at least the Cubs, Yankees, and Giants have much better rivalries in their respective leagues (Cardinals, Red Sox, and Dodgers, respectively, for those not in the know). Everybody else just feels. . .artificial, I guess is the word I'm looking for. Having an odd number of teams in each league would mean somebody is playing an interleague series every day. And that is awful, awful, awful.
Now, about scrapping, or at least greatly de-emphasizing divisions.* If somebody were to ask what pro leagues have the worst, or at least most meaningless, regular season? The answer would almost universally be the NBA and NHL. And why is that? Because people feel it takes far too long to determine which teams will have the top eight records in each conference. Because there are way too many teams (over half!) that make the playoffs. And I totally buy all those arguments. Now, this proposed realignment would make baseball in almost the exact same mold as basketball and hockey. Those leagues do have divisions, but they are essentially meaningless. They somewhat matter for seeding, but typically it's no major advantage. Can you even name the divisions of the NBA? Probably not, and you'd probably have a hard time pegging some teams to the right division. Because they don't mean a thing. Whereas most people would be able to peg baseball or football teams to their division, because they mean quite a bit. Baseball's divisions make more sense geographically than football's (Indy in the south? Cincy in the north?), but football's divisions definitely matter.
*You know, even beyond the Wild Card, which I used to like, but have turned against in recent years for precisely this reason. See that earlier post I talked about.
I've also heard some sort of proposed "realign geographically" for this new scheme, and frankly, that makes no sense to me. As I just said, baseball is the king of divisions that actually give a damn about geography. I really don't understand what would change, as I think baseball's already got that as right as they possibly can.
Now that I've sufficiently made myself sound like a stuffy old man that hates change, let me say Go Canucks! And that Timmy Thomas is the MVP (and probably the Vezina Trophy winner, though I'm not entirely sure when that's voted on. Doesn't matter.) either way.