By Josh (9 Inning Know It All):
During my lunch break at work I took a few moments to check on recent baseball stories and the scores of the playoff game being played. Instantly a few things stood out to me. So here they are.
Nolan Ryan’s Comments
Nolan Ryan released a statement saying that he disapproved of Josh Hamilton’s decision to give up smokeless tobacco because he did it during the season and it affected his on field performance. I understand that Ryan’s job is to put the best team he can on the field to win a World Series, but when did someone making a decision to better their health and stop using a substance that is not good for them more important then baseball? Ryan says that Hamilton needed to find a better time to try and quit his addiction. My opinion is that any time is a good time to stop an addiction that will result in being a healthier person. I have no problem with Ryan wanting his players to be at their best, but once again not at the expense of someones health. Baseball is a game and Nolan Ryan either forgot that or he has his priorities way out of whack.
I’ve noticed that the playoffs this year are really exciting. A walk off home run by former Mariner, current Yankee, Raul Ibanez is a great story. However, what is maybe a bigger story is that he was pinch hitting for Alex Rodriguez. A-Rod was once one of the five most feared hitters in baseball and now he is pinch hit for by an aging veteran. Don’t get me wrong I am a HUGE Ibanez fan and hope he gets as many at bats in the playoffs as he can, but A-Rod is still a legitimate Hall of Fame Candidate. Say what you want about steroids but the reality is at some point these guys are going to get in. People always say that they player is the last one to realize when he should retire, well A-Rod may want to consider that retirement isn’t the worst decision he could make.
San Francisco Giants
When the Cincinnati Reds were up two games to none I half jokingly said that I felt the Giants were destined to face the Detroit Tigers in the World Series. I honestly said it because I really want to see another World Series trophy come to the Salem-Keizer Volcanoes stadium again, but I knew that the odds of that happening were slim to none. Well I guess slim to none is the new 100% guarantee because the Giants just won three straight to knock out the Reds. Suddenly I don’t feel so stupid about my comment. Now I can say I’m an expert because I saw it coming.
They may not win the World Series, and heck they may not even win the ALDS series against the Tigers, but I am still impressed with what they did this season. I was really hoping that the AL West would be done a little in 2013 with the addition of the Astros but with the Rangers still playing well, the Angels being a solid team, and the A’s being a lot better then I expected I’m not so positive about the 2013 season for my Seattle Mariners.
The Wild Card
I’m not sure if I like or hate the Wild Card format this year but what I do know is that it was exciting. For the first time in a long time everyone was talking about the baseball playoffs. I remember years where no one would even mention the playoffs until the World Series started. Even the final two weeks of the regular season had more excitement in my opinion even with the casual baseball fan. The one thing that really sticks out in my mind though is this- I HAVEN’T EVEN WATCHED ONE PLAYOFF GAME BECAUSE I DON’T HAVE THE RIGHT CHANNELS!!!!
I also just want to mention that today I learned that Joe Girardi’s father passed away and I want to wish him and his family the strength and support that they need to get through this time.
I also want to mention the passing of Beano Cook, one of the great college football writers I’ve ever seen.
RIP to both men.