Dodgers fans can totally sink Vin Scully’s career if they want to

18 Comments

I’ve talked about my love-hate relationship with T.J. Simers before. Sometimes he’s nasty, cheap and intolerable. Sometimes, though, he’s pretty funny. Today is a good day.

Seems the Dodgers have sent out fan surveys about their announcing crew. Which is pretty cool. Nothin’ wrong with getting fan feedback. Except, as Simers notes, it’s a bit awkward in that it includes Vin Scully.  And Vin Scully is not exactly a guy who is or should be subject to fan referendum at this point in his illustrious career.  Any negative feedback he receives is almost, by definition, insane. He’s the beloved tenured professor who isn’t gonna have anything bad happen to him if an undergrad says his exams were too hard during evaluations. But he’s on the survey anyway because it would probably make Charlie Steiner and Steve Lyons and those other guys feel bad if they were reminded so clearly that they are not the top dog.

Anyway, Simers fills out a survey for Scully and the results are funny, clever and have the enjoyable effect of slamming the McCourts even though this column isn’t really about them.  Can’t ask for much more.

Astros claim AL pennant with walk-off win against the Yankees

Astros
AP Images
20 Comments

Following a rollercoaster performance on Saturday, the Astros clinched the American League Championship Series with a decisive 6-4 walk-off win against the Yankees, claiming their second AL pennant and earning a well-deserved entrance to the World Series.

Both clubs decided to preserve possible Game 7 starters Luis Severino and Gerrit Cole, electing to have a “bullpen day” for a pivotal Game 6. Chad Green took the mound for the Yankees, tossing one inning before handing the ball off to a long line of relievers, while Brad Peacock‘s rare playoff start was capped at 1 2/3 innings. According to ESPN Stats & Info, that made it the first postseason game since 1999 in which neither starting pitcher lasted two innings or longer.

All told, the two clubs utilized a total of 13 pitchers to make it through nine innings. The Astros lost Ryan Pressly to a worrisome knee injury in the third, but were able to lean on José Urquidy for 2 2/3 innings of one-run, five-strikeout ball. Although Yankees’ bullpen fought back in every inning, they had considerable difficulty recovering from Yuli Gurriel‘s three-run homer off of Green in the bottom of the first:

Still, New York managed to get in a couple of knocks as well: first, with Gary Sanchez‘s RBI single in the second inning, then with Gio Urshela‘s 395-foot blast in the fourth inning — the second of his postseason career to date. That wasn’t enough to close the gap, however, and Alex Bregman‘s productive groundout in the sixth helped cushion the Astros’ lead as they headed toward the final few innings of the series.

That lead started to look a little shaky in the ninth. Only three outs away from a ticket to the World Series, Houston closer Roberto Osuna gave up a leadoff single to Urshela, which was quickly followed by a jaw-dropping, full-count, game-tying two-run shot from DJ LeMahieu that barely cleared the right field fence.

With the threat of extra innings and a potential loss looming, the Astros engineered a last-minute rally to regain the lead and stake their claim for the pennant. With two outs and no runners on, George Springer took a five-pitch walk from Aroldis Chapman. In the next at-bat, Houston pinned their hopes on José Altuve — and he didn’t disappoint, lifting a 2-1 slider out to left field for a 406-foot, two-RBI homer that confirmed the Astros’ series win.

The 2019 World Series will mark the third Fall Classic appearance for the Astros and the first for the Nationals. It all begins on Tuesday night.