Sunday, October 14, 2007

Sunday, Day of Rest

Wow. 5 hours and 14 minutes (plus) later, the Indians manage to win a game that was oh, so loseable. (is that a word?) Two games in Boston, the top #1/#2 starter tandem, and they lay two eggs. And yet the Tribe escapes with a split. Every Indians fan out there (and I wonder how many were there at Jacobs Field until 1:30 in the morning) should be extremely pleased with that. Facing Beckett and Schilling, it could have been worse, regardless of my predictions for Schilling. The Red Sox have to be a little deflated, at least. Well, exhausted at least. Hopefully the Tribe booked Sunday night hotel rooms!

Jhonny is the man. Betancourt is absolutely lights out. Trot Nixon (batting only because Travis Hafner--by the way who would have figured he could dunk a basketball--is slow) comes up huge with a hit that he'll never forget. The pile-on begins. And Franklin Gutierrez shows maybe why Wedge let him bat six times with an at bat that only a Volvo sign kept off Lansdowne Street (or maybe the Mass Pike.)

I feel, at this moment, the same way about the Buckeyes and the Indians. Excited and hopeful about where they are, yet entirely unsure about just how good they are.

After LSU and Cal lost today, the Bucks are sure to be #1 (and may have been regardless of the Cal game) when the BCS standings come out this week. But have they been tested? Will they be? How good (or bad) is the Big Ten?

Michigan State looked red-hot, then lost a good game to a good team Wisconsin. And then let Northwestern score 48 points on them. Not red-hot any more. Red-hot Wisconsin then lost to red-hot Illinois, and then lost again to Penn State. Michigan loses to a freakin' I-AA team and then gets killed by a pansy-ass Pac-10 team. Then proceeds to win five straight, including games over Penn State and (formerly) red-hot Purdue (who had already been beat by the hopefully great Buckeyes.) Illinois looks great, beats two top 25 teams, and then proceeds to lose to Iowa, who had lost eight (!) straight Big Ten games. So basically the Big Ten is either a group of pretty damn good teams who just beat up on each other, mediocre and inconsistent teams, or wildly inconsistent but always dangerous teams. All of which makes me think of the rest of Ohio State's schedule: "Huh??" But at least they control their destiny. After being in the midst of LSU fans this week, I started to panic about OSU being left out in the BCS cold.

The Indians return home and need HUGE offensive games in games 3 and 4, regardless of how good (or bad) Jake Westbrook or Paul Byrd hurl it. With some of the clutch hitting we saw all last series, and more than a little luck, we will get C.C. in a very important game Thursday for some redemption. And if that doesn't work, Fausto for some redemption. Do you sense a theme?

Oh yeah, speaking of mediocre, inconsistent, certainly not horrible, and quite possibly dangerous, the Browns face the winless Dolphins Sunday.