Each morning during the playoffs, we'll attempt to answer some questions about the playoff games that absolutely nobody asked. This could be helpful and fun or this could be painful and uninformative. Either way, it's another listicle in the listicle-ful sportsblogosphere.
- How did we end up with that suspended game because of rain? Blame the television networks. FOX and the other folks who pay baseball for the right to broadcast games have the league grasped firmly around the nuts. If Bud Selig and his people were so sure that Philadelphia was getting torrential downpours last night (and they must have been, because even dolts like me knew it) then they should have moved the start time of the game up a couple hours. No chance, because they don't control what happens in baseball games during the postseason. FOX is in control, and they say when the games start, how long the commercial breaks are between innings, and even what horrible jacket Jeanne Zelasko must wear during the pregame coverage.
- Which team has the upper hand tonight when Game Five resumes? It's a tie game, but the Phillies have two distinct advantages. One, they know exactly which pitcher they will be facing in the bottom of the sixth, Grant Balfour. Cole Hamels was due up to bat first, but he'll be replaced by a Phillies hitter of Charlie Manuel's choice. The only two Phillies players to collect hits off Balfour are Carlos Ruiz and Jayson Werth, both in the starting lineup, so they're out. Matt Stairs has a .861 career OPS against righties, so he's probably a good choice. Greg Dobbs had 9 tater tots in 217 at-bats against righties, so he's another good choice.
- How mad would Rays fans have been had they not scored in the sixth? Nobody wants to see a World Series clinching game called after five-and-a-half innings, but maybe that would have been the most fair way to decide it. Sure, the Rays would have lost three more opportunities to tie up the game, but for anyone to question the dominance of the Phillies in the series up until that point of the game would have been wrong. The Rays had been held to just
eightthirteen runs in 41 innings up until Carlos Pena's game-tying RBI; that's fewer than twothree runs for every nine innings played. To question the authority of a World Championship decided on a game called due to rain would be short-sighted when one team has simply been outplayed.
- How pissed are folks gonna be when they find out "House" was pre-empted? I don't know, and I don't care.
- Will you come back promptly at 8PM tonight to continue our glogging? Thanks in advance. We had a great time last night and would welcome new commenters and readers with open arms.