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Friday, Apr. 29, 2016

Basic Biittner: Who ARE these guys???

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

(Photo)
Though several people have assumed I lost interest in the baseball post season when a certain team from the Bronx took an early exit, I have, in fact, been following the League Championship Series in the American League and that other league.

It was difficult initially, because I felt like Butch and Sundance in my favorite movie. Watching Colorado, Arizona, and Cleveland, I kept asking myself : “Who ARE these guys?”

Well, I have since found out that “these guys” are some pretty good baseball players - pretty much initially unknown in New York or Boston, but I think that has changed.

The Indians have some of the best young talent in the American League, led by leadoff hitter and centerfielder Grady Sizemore, Travis Hafner’s not a bad bat to have in the lineup, either, and catcher Victor Martinez should be a star for years to come, barring injury. I mean, a good catcher who’s also a good - hitting switch hitter? Come on.

Then there’s third baseman Casey “Mountain Man” Blake, a Des Moines native, and a player with one of my new favorite names - Astrubal (?!) Cabrera. Pitcher C.C. Sabathia, one of the few Indian players with whom I had a passing knowledge, is a fireballing lefthander in the image of Mickey Lolich, if you know what I mean. And, of course, there is outfielder Kenny Lofton, who looks like he’s 15 years old, but who first played for the Indians, I believe, on their 1948 World Series champions - one of 32 major league teams for which he has toiled.

Anyway, the Indians are good, and if they end up beating the Red Sox to go to the World Series - well, let’s just say I’m more than okay with that.

As for the “other” league, Arizona was okay, but face it, the Colorado Rockies really seem to be a team of destiny. The team that finished in last place in their division - a bad division, no less - last season has defied all odds by going on a nearly month-long winning streak - the only way they could even get into the post season!

And since they got there, following Matt Holliday’s face-first slide into (or near?) home plate against San Diego, the Rockies seem to have some kind of magic surrounding them. They seemingly can’t lose anymore. It’s as if the Rockies made a deal with Mr. Applegate, the devil in “Damn Yankees.”

Anyway, I’m going to sit back and enjoy this “unofficial post season,” cheering for the player with my absolute favorite “new” name - Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzski. Although Yorvit Torrealba’s not a bad name, either. Go Rockies!

P.S. Don’t worry - my favorite team hasn’t changed... I’ll be back in the spring, no matter which players and manager are in the dugout.

Dan Whitney
Basic Biittner