Thursday, June 14, 2007

The Battle for Missouri Supremacy

There is one thing you have to love about interleague play. You can beat it up for screwing with the team's records. You can knock it for forcing AL pitchers to hit. Heck, you can even take issue with the over-commercialized, we're-going-to-stuff-it-down-your-throat advertising. But you can't say a bad word about some of the great Interstate match ups that take place every year. And I'm not talking about the Subway series, or the freeway series, or any of that garbage. I'm talking about Florida v. Tampa Bay. And, new to this year, St. Louis v. Kansas City. What used to be serious three-day slaughterhouse is now a send-in-the-clowns matchup. We're talking about two of the worst teams in the game right now. And tonight, they're pitting off for the decisive game 3.

Royalscardspreview_1It's been a real rubber band series so far. Mark Teahen had a single, double, and a triple to lead the Royals to a Game 1 victory over the Cardinals, 8-1.  But the Cardinals came surging back to take Game 2, 7-3. And now Kip Wells faces Scott Elarton for the tie-breaker. How's this for a series-deciding matchup? I don't even know what to say. I mean, is Kip Wells the better pitcher because his ERA is a full point less than Elarton's, at 6.33? Or is Elarton the better pitcher because he only has 2 loses, and not 10? Seriously guys, this game could go either way. You can just see these two clubs battling it out on the diamond. Beating the heck out of one another. After all, winner is the best baseball team in Missouri, right? And who doesn't wake up every morning wanting exactly that? Are they even playing this game at a major league ballpark? Is anyone even going to show up? Does anyone even care?

And after this, the Royals play the Marlins. There's another interleague matchup we have all been dying to see. Two teams that, quite frankly, could pack up their tents tomorrow and go home, (or move to Las Vegas, I guess), and no one would notice. Who was the scheduling genius at MLB who decided, "hey, we've got this great marketing tool here with interleague play. It really gets the fans involved. Shows them something they've never seen before. And you know what the Missourians need to see? Another 100-loss team." Exactly. Maybe it will keep Royals fans from selling their loyalty on eBay when they realize, 'man, my fellow Marlins fan has got it even worse than I do. I think I'll hold on for one more year.' Don't hold your breath, brother. And by the way, once Dan Uggla comes crashing down from his turbo-orbit, that team is going to fall apart. Again. And it won't be Lou Piniella's fault this time, Curt.

"Relief for a Royal Pain" - May 5th, 2006, Yahoo Sports
"Those D-Rays and Red Sox" - May 1st, 2005, BHGM

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