Rockies rollin'

My tagline for the week:

Hey, I'm just happy I can start cheering for the Cubs whole-heartedly ...

Check this out and hear what Lou Piniella is saying.

More Cubs stuff ...
Chicago Tribune multimedia
99 things every real Cubs fan should know

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How about those Rockies!?!

How about that game last night!?!

Going into the game, I couldn't say I was rooting for one team more than the other; I barely knew anything about either team. But as the game went on, the Rockies, their exciting lineup and their exuberant fans started to win over my heart …And when the Padres came from behind to tie the game at six in the eighth, I was all but certain it signaled the beginning of the end for Denver’s run …

Then the Padres put two on the board in the top of the 13th and send Trevor Hoffman, arguably the greatest closer this game’s ever seen, to the mound. Seriously -- game over … Nope. Kaz Matsui doubled. Troy Tulowitzki doubled. Matt Holliday tripled and drove in the tying runs … all with no outs.

I was doing all I could to squelch my clapping and screams, and not wake Kates.

Then Jamey Carroll hit the sacrifice fly to right field that sent Holliday sprinting to home plate, planting his chin in the dirt as he skidded past Michael Barrett, clearly not touching home plate for the winning run.

The unfortunate part of it, though, is that we’re going to have to listen for the rest of the week to ESPN and all the other sports talkers berating the umpires' disputed calls and pushing for instant replay in baseball. If you ask me, Tim Kurkjan put it best immediately after the game -- It was a heckuva ballgame, you’ve got the Colorado fans going crazy and you can’t say, “Oh, wait a minute, we have to review this play.” Then you take 10 minutes to review it, find out he did or didn’t touch the plate and oh yeah, now you can celebrate …

Nope. The absence of instant replay is part of what makes baseball, for lack of another word, pure.

And seriously, how awful was TBS’ coverage!? … Ugh. Good thing I'm a huge baseball fan and the game was exciting ... First of all, the announcers were such no-names TBS could've pulled any guy from the street into the booth and we wouldn't have known the difference -- Any stories or insights they provided were about as exciting as a pair of college-aged amatuers auditioning for their first internships. Plus the graphics were too gimmicky and large to digest, and Cal Ripken, sitting in the studio, looked as though he was in just as much disblelief at the unintelligent questions his partner was tossing him ... The last straw was when I caught one of the analysts say something like “Barrett has done a great job since coming over from the Mets” (He was traded from the Cubs, you idiot! He‘s never played an inning for the Mets in his career …) Worse yet, the analyst never bothered to correct himself, which leads me to believe the researchers or producers working behind him weren't any more competent ...

And we have more several more games of dealing with this.

I miss Jeanne Zelasko, Joe Buck and Tim McCarver.

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Here’s what I’m thinking about the playoffs …

A couple weeks ago, I was saying Angels-Cubs.

But frankly, I’m not high on any of the National League teams right now …

I don’t believe the Phillies or the Diamondbacks are strong enough to advance, which leaves the Cubs and the Rockies. I’d like to think this could be the Cubs’ year, but c’mon it’s the Cubs, and they‘ve faded down the stretch.

The Rockies, however, are on a roll that’s going to be hard to stop -- check last night’s game as exhibit No. 1 -- They’ve won 14 of 15 games, and I would not be surprised if they blow through the postseason the same way last October’s Cardinals did … They're looking like a team of destiny.

In the American League, it’s the opposite. Angels-Red Sox, Yankees-Indians -- I could see any one of those teams taking it all … But injuries have slowed the Angels, and now I’m seeing the Red Sox rolling through the playoffs …

… And Yankees-Indians? Don’t even talk to me about the Yankees vaunted lineup and Mariano Rivera in the bullpen. At least the other three AL teams in the postseason have heart; the Yankees are robots. The Yankees have blown enough postseason games since 2001 (in addition to the fact they buy their pennants, rather than nurture players …) to lose their rights to be playing in October. It’s gonna be the Cleveland Indians in four games.

The Rockies will take the Cubs in five games; the Red Sox will beat the Indians in six.

Red Sox win the World Championship in a high-scoring seven-game series.

Baseball reads ...
a Burning questions: Race is over, now what?
a Here’s what the Sox need to get by the Angels
a Phillies celebration could be short-lived against a Rockies team of destiny

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