Saturday, June 27, 2009

Interleague continues to intrigue

As the interleague schedule wraps up before the first half of the season they saved some of the best for last as the border wars, subway series, and unfinished business, series continue through the weekend. The marquee matchups this week have to be the Yankee/Mets series but it’s a little tainted as the Metropolitans are going through a tough 4-6 stretch right now, and the most fervent matchup, the “windy city war” between the Cubs/Sox. Both teams are competing for their respective divisions, as the Obama backed ‘South siders’ are coming off a 2 out of 3 against the best team in baseball (Dodgers), and both teams are in 3rd place in their divisions and within striking distance. From the “we owe you one” department you can’t beat the Phillies/Jays matchup as the defending World Champs still think they should have another piece of jewelry in the box from the 93’ series and Mitch Williams still hasn’t come back for a cheesesteak. However the best “baseball” matchup was last week as the only matchup of division leaders took place when the Dodgers match up with Angeles in the I-5 series. The Dodgers kept their best record in tact (but the sox are close) in taking 2 of 3. Which of the interleague series most interest you? Which one would you like to see? Let us know here and in the MLB team rooms and chat rooms.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Mitchell wakes sleeping Tigers, leads them to 6th national championship

The Tigers won their sixth national championship Wednesday night, defeating Texas 11-4 in the deciding game of the College World Series championship series at Rosenblatt Stadium. It is the first national championship for LSU coach Paul Mainieri, a former Tigers player, who was hired in 2006 to return the program to prominence. LSU got out to an optimal start as Jared Mitchell hit a three-run homer in the first inning providing a cushion for the Tigers, taking the pressure off, and giving them the lead that they would not relinquish. Mr. Momentum did put on ‘burnt orange’ for a half an inning as Texas tied the score at 4 but the Tigers answered with a monster 5 in the top of the seventh to put the game out of reach and take the wind out of the Horns’ sails. Texas will have to dwell over the summer on game one where it had the opportunity to put the Tigers on ice and force them to win two straight rather than the reciprocal but didn’t get it done, instead they were watching the dog pile on the mound instead of participating in it. What does need to be noted is what a great series and tournament this was. College Baseball took a major step to bridging the gap between themselves and football/basketball as the CWS continues to improve in the ratings. Do you think the CWS will ever get on par with the NCAA Tournament or BCS? Let us know here and in the individual University Rooms or CWS Chat room.


Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Jungmann tames the Tiger bats, as the Horns force a final game

The Tigers played right into Texas’ horns in game two by only pushing one run across the plate during a 5-1 loss in game two of the College World Series. Texas who normally lives by paying 'smallball', as they led the NCAA with over 100 sacrifices during the course of the season, got a complete game from Jungmann who scattered five hits and allowed just one notch in the ‘S’ column. The fabled LSU sticks, known for putting up big numbers were silenced for the first time in the tournament while not lighting up the board past the 3rd inning. No one has been able to keep those bats silenced for two games in the row and I can‘t see it happening in game three despite the pressure. One could argue that Texas should have this thing wrapped up by now as they held a two run lead late in game one but now it becomes a 1-game series and the Horns have the Mo’, but I still like the Tigers to come back strong and take the prize. Who do you like in game 3? Let us know here and in the College World Series Chat room.

Hard to believe, but the All-Star game is around the corner and another 20-games have passed so the updated Smacchat Power Rankings are out and the Dodgers and Sox are still running 1 & 2. Check out the rankings here.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Tigers give the ‘Horns a taste of their own medicine

The LSU Tigers became the first team to beat the top-seed Texas Longhorns after trailing in the 8th with a 7-6 11th inning victory in game one of the best-of-three College World Series. The Tiger trailed by two and were two outs away from going down in the series 0-1 when they took advantage of a little wildness on the bump getting a couple of walks, and scoring two in the ninth to tie, and one in the 11th for the win. All of this despite Texas dropping five solo home runs by far their most this season as the Horns were known for their version of “small ball”, as they are only the fifth team to record more than 100 sacrifice bunts in a season. In the end it was the Tigers version of ‘small ball’ that got it done as they manufactured a three-hit rally in the 11th with the winning run coming on a base hit and scoring the winning run from second. After some many comebacks in this years’ tournament to get to this point do they have any left in the tank? Even if they do, you can’t like their chances to take two straight from the number 3 team in the country even though Fresno State pull the trick last year. A 25 inning win was impressive on the way to show but now they need another 18. Let us know what you think of their chances or are the Tigers ready to get another major NC trophy on the mantle? Let us know here and in the College World Series Chat room. Also view the stat page here.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Boys of summer take center stage, and it’s a great show if you take time to look

Now that the NBA and NHL have crowned their champions, baseball has the stage and when the nation’s eye’s focus they’ll recognize that one of the most competitive years is unfolding. As the newest steroid scandal rocked the baseball world this week, Sammy Sosa’s drug test from 2003 revealed a positive test and another of pillar of the game has toppled. Unfortunately, every time this season has gotten it’s just reward for great games, competitive division races, and excellent play, another negative story cast it’s shadow, and perhaps not without justification, so A-Rod, Manny, and Sosa aside, as the MLB season is a third of the way done, here’s who’s making positive waves.

Firstly, how nice are the defending champs for sitting atop the NL east after the hangover of a world championship wore off. They’ve opened up a little breathing room over the Mets and are beginning to come back to form. If they can manage to start winning a couple of games at home (13-17) the Phills will put the division to bed early. Will they have the stamina to make it all the way back to show?

Make a special note of ‘Big Unit’ reaching a milestone of his own with his 300th win, as you will not see a career like that, start to finish, in your lifetime. In the era of set up men, closers, and 5 man rotations, there simply aren’t enough opportunities to get it. Parlay that with short leash that pitchers have today and you understand how amazing his accomplishment was. What’s even more amazing is that most of his wins came after he was in his 30’s. Where does The Unit rank among top lefties in the history of the game?

This year may go down as the most competitive in history as five of the six division races have less than 2.5 games separating the top two clubs, also the AL East and NL Central with 5 teams within 5 games of each other. Unlike other seasons in the past, you won’t have half of the fans looking to football season for solace come July. There’s still 23 teams with a legitimate shot at waving a pennant come September so it’s way too early to start making reservations. Which of the current division leaders will be able to hang on to win their respective divisions? Let us know what you think here and in the MLB chat rooms and rooms and team rooms.
Also view the MLB Scoreboard.........MLB Schedule........MLB betting lines.
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