Very quietly, the San Fransisco Giants announced over the weekend that Barry Bonds will NOT be playing for them next year: while I understand their reservations, the fact is Bonds is the only reason they have drawn fans since 2002, when they went to the World Series. Some American League team is about to cash a check for the playoffs next year: the man is 400 years old, and STILL has hit 28 HR's in 337 AB's. The fact he's the poster boy for performance enhancing drugs doesn't bother me: the fact that I'm afraid some of my Red Sox players are going to be outed does. I don't fault the players: I fault Selig and the owners. They turned a blind eye for so many years, and now they are on the verge of reaping the whirlwind.
I wrote a few times this season about Josh Hamilton: unless you've been living in a cave, you've heard his story before, so I won't get into it again. But after all the crap we heard this year about the likes of Ankiel, Spezio, Bonds, etc.., following this young man's season was one of my favorite things to do. For the year, he has 19 HR's, 47 RBI's, and is hit .292 in 90 games: however, his season ended on 9-13-07 with a bad hammy. I'm not Bill James, but if you project those numbers over a 162 game season, he'd end up with around 35 HR's and 110 RBI's. Not bad for a guy in his FIRST full season of MLB ball. The bigger accomplishment? He's alive. Good for you kid: I'll be pulling for the Reds as my National League team next year.
Next up? Beckett: my first ever post at this train wreck of a blog was about him, and I got it right: yes, I'm fully aware that even a blind squirrel finds an acorn every now and then. But Joshua Patrick Beckett has epitomized the Boston Red Sox this year. Tough, ornery, and unflappable: if he doesn't win the AL Cy Young, I'm paying for Tex's plane ticket to New York so she can stand outside Selig's office with a sandwich board sign demanding a recount.
Forget his 20 wins for a second: as a fan, you LOVE to see your ace stomping and cursing around the mound when he makes a mistake, yet by the time he's ready to throw the next pitch he's forgotten about the screw up and is ready to go. You like to see that ace in the post game press conference take responsibility for a loss, yet praise his teammates for a win. Sure he may drop a few F bombs every now and then: at least you know he cares about what he does.
Finally, unless you are a member of the White Sox organization, Beckett forever endeared himself to the rest of MLB and all of RSN when he uttered the infamous "FYYO!" to A.J. Pierzynski this summer. Unless you root for the bad guy at the movies or think Donald Trump is a swell fella, you had to cheer this moment. Pierzynski, for those of you reading this who may not know, conjures up emotions in most people that cause you to go to confession.
I'm really glad today is the last off day of the season. I'm ready to finish it out, win the division, and start the march toward the World Series.
Mostly, I'm ready for a Sox game to write about: this took WAY too much thinking for me to get through it.