Friday, August 29, 2003

Jab and Move - A Series of Smaller Blows

Got a great email from Jeremy Heit yesterday about the Sexson-Abreu runs scored/rbi totals. He pointed out that the on base percentages for Milwaukee's top two hitters were slightly higher than for Philly's, possibly accounting for Abreu's lower RBI totals than Sexson's. But we also both noticed that his OPS in the third hole, for whatever reason, was 200 points lower than in the four spot, and was propped up by a lot of walks, which don't often knock in baserunners. You would think that hitting in front of Jim Thome would be the optimal position for any hitter, especially seeing that Thome has been blistering as a cleanup hitter, but that hasn't been the case. Here's the link for Jeremy's site:Jeremy Heit's Blog

Larry Bird's firing of Isaiah Thomas is the last great victory of those 1980s Celtics teams over a hated enemy, the Detroit Pistons. With Bird, Kevin McHale, and Danny Ainge in power positions, and with Isaiah unemployed, Bill Laimbeer coaching a girls team, and Dennis Rodman now just a dated joke, we've shown them who's boss. Yeah. Sadly, this what an old-time C's fan has been reduced to.

Earlier this summer, I was running an NBA Police Blotter, keeping on top of the legal difficulties of the world's best basketball players, but college basketball is starting to make the NBA look like Sesame Street. Yesterday, Patrick Feeney, a sophomore at the University of New Mexico, hung himself. UNM was also the original school of Patrick Dennehy, who was shot to death this summer. Feeney, 20 years old, was a transfer from Portland State University, my alma mater.

I haven't heard it phrased this way anywhere yet, which doesn't mean it hasn't been said, but this could be the greatest baseball season ever. EVER. There are currently five teams tied for the NL wild card spot, with three other teams no more than a game and a half back. With only a month left in the season, this is bound to be the craziest playoff race anyone has ever seen. There will be head-to-head matchups every single night until October involving any two of Montreal, Philly, Florida, St Louis, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, and Arizona - a baseball lover's dream. What a perfect season to have the Extra Innings Package. And this is just the National League! One question: Does anyone know the playoff tiebreaker if more than two teams are involved?

At first glance, Maryland's loss to Northern Illinois last night was a season killer. But NI is a little better than their public image, coming into that game as only an 8 point underdog. A loss in overtime on the road, under ECF Rules, is only a Half-Acceptable Loss. Other teams last night had much worse evenings. Louisiana Tech, Akron, and Middle Tennessee State all lost at home, and Utah State lost by 20 at arch-rival Utah. Protected by the Three Weeks Rule, all of these team must now have perfect seasons in order to qualify for the ECF Championship. In other ECF News, Georgia Tech suffered an Acceptable Loss, losing 24-13 at BYU.

Tune in tomorrow morning for An ECF preview of the day's college football action. I know GameDay is on, but hey, you can read Eisenberg Sports during commercials. For the ECF Rules, look for the link on the right.

Dave's Email


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