The Dodger X Factor was their starting pitchers, and tonight Clayton Kershaw was looking pretty good until the 5th inning. He ran out of gas or something, and issued walk after walk and when the inning was over, his team was down 5-1. The big blow was a three run homer by catcher Carlos Ruiz. Kershaw only gave up 4 hits in his 4.2 innings, but walked 5 and gave up the five earned runs. The Dodgers clearly had a shot in this game, because the Phils starter, San Diego's Cole Hamels was not on his game either. He gave up the two run homer to Manny (would and did) Ramirez to make it 5-4 after 5 innings.
The Dodgers normally reliable bullpen wasn't tonight, George Sherrill issued back to back walks in the 8th, and then Raul Ibanez launched the Phillies second 3 run homer of the game, to make it 8-4. Give the Dodgers credit though, they battled to try and get back into it and pulled to within 8-6 going to the 9th.
That's when the Phillies X Factor, Brad Lidge came in and closed it out. The Phils will go as far as he can take them in this series and in game one, Lidge got it done and saved the 8-6 win for the Phillies.
Game two comes up tomorrow afternoon at Dodger Stadium. Vicente Padilla for LA, against Pedro Martinez for the Phillies.
Boomer Wells mentioned in on the TBS Post Game show, and I was thinking the same thing during the game, that Torre really could have used Jeff Weaver in a game like tonight. Kershaw struggled, and Weaver could have eaten up some innings. Weaver was left off the roster after being sent home with flu-like symptoms along with a fever.
Former Padre, Dodger, etc, Chan Ho Park saved the bacon for the Phillies tonight, throwing a scoreless inning to pick up the rookie Antonio Bastardo. Park was blazing his fast ball at 96 MPH!
I didn't see it or hear it (thank goodness), but why, why, why, why, why, why, did Billy Ray Cyrus do the National Anthem tonight? "Achy Breaky Heart" was a hit in 1992, what has he done (besides father Miley Cyrus) to warrant a spotlight performance like that?
Speaking of the National Anthem, I read, that the Dodgers long time organist Nancy Bea is going to sign a 3 year deal to keep her tickling the ivories through 2012 which would be her 25th season with the Dodgers. I don't know about you, but I love hearing an organist at a ballpark. Not sure why they seemingly go hand in hand, but you can't beat it.
What a great pitching matchup in game one, CC Sabathia, a 19 game winner for the Yankees against John Lackey for the Angels. It's going to be a cold night in the Bronx (no joke) for the start of the first game of this series.
Sabathia has struggled in his career against the Angels, he's just 5-7, 4.72 in 14 games started. But this is a dominating pitcher, especially with the weather being what it will be. I still think the Angels will find a way to win this series, but it will be tough tomorrow against the big fella Sabathia.
More on the ALCS tomorrow after the game...
Pitch Trax is just killing the umpires in the post season. Randy Marsh, who many players consider one of the finest umps in the game, missed call after call after call in this one. His strike zone was erratic to say the least. I hope the umpires union contract won't be decided by an arbitrator, because all they'll have to show is the replays of these games with Pitch Trax.
Question. Is your fantasy football season over, when your team is 1-4 after the first 5 weeks? I'm getting the sinking feeling that my team is TOAST. No consistency and a bad draft really did me in this time around. I'm picking up players off the waiver wire as fast as anybody in the league, but it isn't helping. I enjoy playing and it gives me a great reason to camp out in front of the TV on Sunday's and watch more football than one human should be allowed.
Chargers/Broncos on Monday night at the "Q". Let's hope the Broncos leave the Padres '72 Jerseys in Denver. This is a "must" game for the Chargers. Denver has gotten off to a fantastic start behind Kyle Orton. But if push ever came to shove, I'd take Phillip Rivers every day, and twice on Sunday. The Bolts need to force the issue on defense, get some pressure on Orton and force him to throw short and to the running backs. I know there were a bunch of changes at Charger camp this week, so let's see how they work out. Early prediction is the Chargers rise to the occasion under the bright lights of Monday Night Football, and win the game 27-17.
There is no truth to the rumor that the Broncos are flying to town on that flying saucer thing the kid in Fort Collins let go from his back yard. How sad is it that I (along with probably many of you) sat and watched the CNN coverage of this Mylar (know more about that product now than I did before) Balloon traveling 60 miles from it's home? Thank goodness the 6 year old wasn't inside and is ok. Hey Falcon Henne and family, your 15 minute clock is ticking, and it's counting down by 5's.
That's it for now, have a great night!