Well then. If Philadelphia gets a win from Cole "Lynchpin Of Hope" Hamels tonight, they win the World Series. If Scott "Zambrano" Kazmir can act as the stopper, then the Rays move the Series back to Catwalkdome and continue to fight from the corner they've put themselves in. If Tennessee wins, you've got on the wrong game. Onward, 101st Jumpin' Infantry! * * *11:08 — SportsNet's rain delay programming: The fifth inning of Game 3. So to share the experience:
BOTTOM OF FIFTH INNING 11:40 - Fieldin Culbreth or Crispin Glover: better name? 11:41 - Matt Garza or Crispin Glover: crazier SOB after that walk to Ruiz? 11:42 - Jamie Moyer or Crispin Glover: worse bunter? 11:44 - Jimmy Rollins lines to second... crispinly? Crispinly. 11:48 - Gabe Gross makes the third out. A car/shoe commercial comes on. Again, we have to ask: who is that for? Phillies 2-1. By the way, the game has been legal for a half-inning. Bud's one helluva weatherman. Between Strikin/Walkin/Fieldin Fieldin and everyone's hurry to get back to their warm beds, this game could be ov...Rain Delay Entertainment I don't know what your goofy American pig-dog infidel network channels are showing; Canada's SportsNet is giving us — you better be sitting down for this — hockey highlights. So for my Yankee brethren, here's one of the best episodes of NewsRadio: Rain Delay 10:44 — Know what this broadcast needs? 'Til Death reruns. 10:41 — Good. Now that it's tied, we can stop play. Top 6th 10:39 — Longo only pawn in game of life. His fly to center finishes the sixth. 10:38 — Peña is legitimately in the groove with another hit. Upton canoes his way to home, and it's a tie game. We're going to a Game 8! 10:37 — Those white towels the fans are waving couldn't be damper if they were held under John Kruk's armpits after an 8-hour workday. 10:35 — Yes, that's two Willy Wonka references tonight. Room service didn't include dessert. 10:33 — That diamond is turning liquid so fast, it's killing Augustus Gloop that he can't run out and start drinking the infield. 10:31 — GROUND TO SHORT AGAIN. Only this time, Rollins can't dry the ball with a Persian towel, pirouette and toss to first quickly enough. 10:29 — Crawford's grounder skips three times. Make a wish. Sorry, you're still out. 10:28 — Oh look, beisbol! Iwamura falls victim to the infield strikeout rule. 10:24 — O'Brien lays it down like this: if they can't finish the game, they could technically call the game for the Phillies and they would win the championship. The last time a title was clinched so anticlimactically was the 1941 Quidditch World Cup finals when they realized the Belgian seeker had inadvertently swallowed the Golden Snitch a half hour ago. Right after the innin', Maddon barks at the first base ump asking why there was no infield fly rule called after the 1-out pop-up. You know what guys, I'm starting to believe the officiating in this Series is slightly scattershot. Bottom 5th 1
210:19 — Pop that bitch up, Ruiz. Peña labors a ton on tracking that ball in the rain. Or he's doing his best Stuart Scott impression. NOT FUNNY, CARLOS. HE'S VERY SENSITIVE ABOUT HIS EYE. 10:17 — Tastee Feliz pops up to Iwamura. In any other ballpark, that ball doesn't get rained on, because they'd have delayed the game by now. 10:15 — Victorino doesn't slip. He surfs out of the box. Crawford doesn't slip to make the catch. He teamglides toward it. 10:12 — This has to be comforting for Rays fans. Grant Balfour couldn't find the pitching mound rubber. The umpire kicked the dirt away for him. Leave him alone, it's his first day. 10:10 — Ah, they've solved the rain crisis. They're just going to rake the mud around in the infield, so as to not leave a single drop of dirt unquenched. Uniform slippage. Resume play. 10:06 — All right then. Kazzamatazz's sixth walk forces Flappy Maddon to switch him with a guy whose last name in no way insinuates walks will continue: Grant Balfour. 10:06 — Burrell fouls ANOTHER one into the stands. In any other ballpark, that's a touchback. 10:03 — Hold on, time out. Let's see if it stops raining. No? Things are just getting muddier and more dangerous for pitching and running and fieldering? All right, it's not stopping. Play ball! 9:59 — Ball four. Walk with p-r-r-r-r-ide, Mr. Howard. Top 5th 9:56 — Kazmir settles in and strikes out. 9:55 — Forget all errors. Did Utley tag Rocco? Did his throw to first get Jason Bartlett out? The answer is yes, yes to both, now stop asking questions, how did you get into my room? 9:53 — Baldelli's skying pop into the stratosphere ricochets off the ghost of Tug McGraw and discombobulates Rollins into dropping the ball. But Sutcliffe is haranguing Baldelli for not being on second base. Yes. This whole play was his fault. Bottom 4th 1
29:49 — Utley (ŭt'-lē) adv.: 1. Of or pertaining to batting with two outs and the bases loaded. 2. Of or pertaining to hitting a ground ball into the shift. 3. Of or pertaining to things that pertain to or are of other things. 9:46 — Werth. Walk to first. NOW. 9:45 — Hamels stands on second, flexing that left hand that suffered the bunt foul. So far, no trainers have gone out to look at him. He should be fine. Until his first fastball of the top of the inning brings his thumb to home plate. 9:42 — Or, walk Rollins. Whatever works for you. 9:37 — Hamels fails to bunt by breaking his finger (according to Sutcliffe's gut instinct), then fails to bunt by not convincing Kazmir to throw to first instead of second. Plural Skywalkers is standing on first with the comfy red jacket. 9:37 — Ruiz is getting the most of that .219 average with a solid single. M-V-P! M-V-P! 9:35 — Feliz's strikeout puts Kazmir into a new category: "nuzzled in." 9:34 — I can tell from the comments that for some reason, the word "windage" was used in the Fox broadcast. To which I say: BWAHAHAHAHA, eh? [sips cup of gravy] Top 4th 9:31 — Groundout to short? You're soaking in it, Navarro! It's also a double play, so enjoy the one run you scored this half inning. Like Everlasting Gobstoppers, everybody gets one and one is enough for everybody. (Caveat: Philly gets two.) 9:28 — Double super whopper doppler jinx. Longoria gets HIS first hit and RBis in Tilde Deux. 9:27 — Jinxed by the '11 duo of Fred Snodgrass and Red Murray! Peña finally nails a hit from the cleanup spot. It's of the two-base genre. 9:26 — Amazingly fun fact: The Rays are the first World Series team since the 1911 New York Giants to go hitless in the 3- and 4-spots of the lineup. 9:24 — Christ, even Pavlov's dog couldn't be trained to hit this many balls to shortstop. One out Bottom 3rd 0
29:23 — Kazlo Toth is 64 percent "settled in," 22 percent "dialed in," and 14 percent "undecided." A nice clean inning for the losing-so-far pitcher. 9:19 — Yet another reason turf drools and grass rules. The camera implanted between the mound and home plate couldn't be used in Tropicana Field. And MLB didn't like Tampa's idea of strapping a camera to an invisible garden gnome. Top 3rd 9:16 — Iwamura singles but is lonely at first. Crawford fixes that by getting out, and Aki can now spend time with his friends in the dugout! Yay! 9:14 — Dave O'Brien explains to the international fans why the pitcher bats in the National League but doesn't in the American League. It's simple stuff like this they talk about which leads me to conclude all of our girlfriends should be watching the international feed. 9:14 — Scott Kazmir steps to the plate and ... hahahahaha. [wipes eye] HAHAHAHAHA. 9:13 — Every Tampa Bay batter seems to ground it to shortstop, resembling 90 percent of my golf swings. Bottom 2nd 0
29:08 — Longoria's hatflaps drown out the traumatic "Eva" chant from the other night snags Utley's pop up to finish out the second. 9:06 — Kazmir fails to get his team back in the game by allowing three straight solo home runs and instead records two straight outs at the expense of Hamels and Rollins Mr. Butterwerth, on the other hand, extends the inning with a base crack to left. Top 2nd 8:59 — Baldelli pops to second, which in any other ballpark is a foul ball straight back. 8:58 — Navarro sees twice the pitches thrown to Carlos and Evan combined, and as an unrelated reward walks to first. 8:55 — Secret lineup plan: THWARTED. Hamels spotted Peña and Longoria hiding in their new lineup cubbyholes, and outs both. Bottom 1st 0
28:51 — Just one more time when the Phillies leave the bases loaded. The unscored runs will be transformed into nutrient-rich goo to sustain the life of Don Zimmer. 8:50 — Another hit off Kazn't. Feliz turns the partially loaded bases into fully loaded bases with a base jab. 8:49 — Aloha means "two RBI single to left field." No idea how the natives keep track of all that word's definitions. 8:45 — Burrell Ives is also hitless in this Series, which is an example of how beneficial it is to just have good teammates who can do the work for you. Remaining hitless, he walks on a strike that is not a strike. Have they evened out all the bad calls yet? If you look at the number of lucky breaks on both sides, the tallies might resemble a double-overtime WAC football game. 8:44 — Ryan Howard strikes out instead of solo homering. Advantage: Philly. 8:41 — Wait. Wait. WAIT. MLB International's Key to the Game: "GIVE UP A SOLO HR." They have different rules in South Africa, evidently. Instead of following Sutcliffe's advice to Werth and Utley, Kazmir instead lets them both reach base. 8:39 — Punishment for assuming the umpire has a consistent strike zone: full count flyout. Jimmy Rollins learns a hard lesson on an all new Full House. 8:38 — Either Navarro's glove is broken or he drank too much SUUUUuuUUuuuUUUURGE. Top 1st 8:33 — Upton just plum grounds out. No error or lack of hustle. 8:32 — Crawford, sucked up by the hustle black hole of the No. 2 spot, doesn't get a burst out of the batter's box and therefore can outrun Jimmy Rollinsberger's bobble. 8:31 — Aki-Iwa flies out to deep left. In any other park, that's a pop-up to third. Telecast 8:29 — On the international feed they have all the players say their name, position, and country of origin. Can you guess what Shane Victorino says, for 10 Gawkerpoints? (Hint: It has to do with an island.) 8:29 — Yes, if you haven't noticed, they moved Upton/Peña/Longoria down one spot each. This will fix everything and throw off Hamels. 8:27 — Room service. Baked lasagna. Outstanding stuff. It's as if they cooked them using Garfield's tears. 8:23 — The first pitch is thrown out by former Philly pitcher and current Kentucky senator Jim Bunning. It bounces in front of home plate, but nevertheless Carlos Peña missed it by several feet. 8:19 — Or IS Rick Sutcliffe better? I know what he meant, but: "I think whoever wins tonight will win the World Series." Moreover, the key to tonight's game: runs. 8:14 — Look! It's Hall & Oates' better half! They got John Oates to sing the national anthem because they really really really want it to be 1980 again. That way, Tampa Bay will instantly vanish and the Philbins will win by default. Too bad tonight wasn't 3D Specs Night. 8:13 — All the hope in the history of the franchise is on Scott Kazmir He's the "all time franchise leader in wins IP strikeouts, quality starts, and ERA." Somewhere, Tanyon Sturtze throws a bottle at his TV. Fun fact: the TV used to own to Ryan Rupe. Record In Deadspin Live Blogs Philadelphia: 8-1 Tampa Bay: 2-4 Philadelphia 1. SS Jimmy "Jelly Roll" Rollins 2. RF Jayson "Spellcheck Hates Me" Werth 3. 2B Chase "Gritmill" Utley 4. 1B Ryan "Slumpwich" Howard 5. LF Pat "Free Agent" Burrell 6. CF Shane "Hustlepineapple" Victorino 7. 3B Pedro "Not Hawaiian" Feliz 8. C Carlos "Not Darren Daulton" Ruiz 9. P Cole Hamels, which when pronounced backwards, is Hebrew for "unicorn sperm." Tampa Bay 1. 2B Akinori "Sprouts" Iwamura 2. LF Carl "Cambot, Gypsy, Tom Servo" Crawford 3. CF B.J. "Dillydally" Upton 4. 1B Carlos "You're Ruining Christmas" Peña 5. 3B Evan "Slumpwich" Longoria 6. C Dioner "Lotus Crouch" Navarro 7. RF Rocco "Golgi Bodies" Baldelli 8. SS Jason "Gopher" Bartlett 9. P Scott Kazmir, who will no doubt be pulled if they have a 7-0 lead in the 5th inning
Pre-Game Babble I've done it. I've figured out the secret to keeping one's sanity. 1. Move to Canada. 2. Watch World Series Result: Joe Buck and Tim McCarver are no longer on your screen. What they don't tell you is that the announcing tandem of Buck and McCarver is this nation's punishment for all the bad things they've done, from legalizing abortion to letting women vote. The rest of the nations of this world, however, instead watch the game through the MLB International Feed, where the broadcasters are the much more tolerable Dave O'Brien and Rick Sutcliffe. Moreover, there's no Caliendo! No drinkability! No Routan Boom! So while the rest of you diligent readers and commenters are jamming bananas into your ears, I'll be heading over and O'Briening/Sutcliffing that thing for tonight. Which brings us to a new and strange Bingo Dilemma. Should the game sheet be used for Buck and McCarver? Should it be for O'Brien and Sutcliffe? Or should it be for both? While I was sitting back in my beanbag loveseat, I pondered these questions, then remembered that I made the game so I make the rules. Therefore the quest is yours and yours alone to fill out the sheet.
By the way, how about giving a 24-hour delay standing ovation to Brave Sir Tuffy for live blogging Games 3 and 4 while I was trekking to Canada? Somehow they were fantastic despite the fact that I didn't understand half of what he said. It was the live blog equivalent of the The Electric Company.