Simers: Philly fans are "the ugliest in the country"

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Merely picking the Dodgers to win this series brought all manner of Philly fan out of the woodwork to yell at me for disrespecting the champs.  The Los Angeles Times’ T.J. Simers, takes things to an entirely new level:

As you know, Fox will be broadcasting the World Series and it likes to put the camera on the face of every single fan sitting in the stands, these fans as ugly as any in the country.

Nowhere in America are people more angry than those living here. During Game 3 they had their humorless furry mascot put on boxing gloves and take on someone who was supposed to be an L.A. fan, sunglasses, cellphone and all. The furry mascot punched him out, much to the delight of the folks here who love a dash of violence with their sports entertainment.

But this is considered entertainment here, the only bright spot if they draw the Yankees now, getting a look in the mirror at fans who might remind them of themselves.

Last week I questioned whether the Philly police were using their time and resources wisely when they drove Cole Hamels to the hospital for the birth of his son.  Today, it seems, that they’ll be paying overtime to protect the life and limb of a Los Angeles sportswriter.

Zack Cozart thinks the way the Rays have been using Sergio Romo is bad for baseball

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The Rays started Sergio Romo on back-to-back days and if that sounds weird to you, you’re not alone. Romo, of course, was the star closer for the Giants for a while, helping them win the World Series in 2012 and ’14. He’s been a full-time reliever dating back to 2006, when he was at Single-A.

In an effort to prevent lefty Ryan Yarbrough from facing the righty-heavy top of the Angels’ lineup (Zack Cozart, Mike Trout, Justin Upton), Romo started Saturday’s game, pitching the first inning before giving way to Yarbrough in the second. Romo struck out the side, in fact. The Rays went on to win 5-3.

The Rays did it again on Sunday afternoon, starting Romo. This time, he got four outs before giving way to Matt Andriese. Romo walked two without giving up a hit while striking out three. The Angels managed to win 5-2 however.

Despite Sunday’s win, Cozart wasn’t a happy camper with the way the Rays used Romo. Via Fabian Ardaya of The Athletic, Cozart said, “It was weird … It’s bad for baseball, in my opinion … It’s spring training. That’s the best way to explain it.”

It’s difficult to see merit in Cozart’s argument. It’s not like the Rays were making excessive amounts of pitching changes; they used five on Saturday and four on Sunday. The games lasted three hours and three hours, 15 minutes, respectively. The average game time is exactly three hours so far this season. I’m having trouble wondering how else Cozart might mean the strategy is bad for baseball.

It seems like the real issue is that Cozart is afraid of the sport changing around him. The Rays, like most small market teams, have to find their edges in slight ways. The Rays aren’t doing this blindly; the strategy makes sense based on their opponents’ starting lineup. The idea of valuing on-base percentage was scoffed at. Shifting was scoffed at and now every team employs them to some degree. Who knows if starting a reliever for the first three or four outs will become a trend, but it’s shortsighted to write it off at first glance.