10/03/2005: Thought for the Day:
If it is all right with David Ortiz, whose blessing we in Boston now seek in all things, it will be incumbent upon every unaffiliated baseball fan in America this holiday season to send a fruitcake to Eric Wedge and his glorious Cleveland Indians. This is not simply because the Indians have been the best story in the game for nearly three months now, what with their marvelously irrepressible rookies and the sudden emergence of C.C. Sabathia as the walking ghost of Bob Lemon. The Indians have done more than simply scare the daylights out of the Chicago White Sox. They also have helped to rescue the rest of baseball from revolving exclusively once again around the overly dramatic pole stars of the Yankees and the Red Sox.
As baseball rounds into a final weekend that may be spectacularly chaotic enough to make everyone forget briefly the embarrassing presence of the San Diego Padres in this year's playoffs, it is the Indians that pried open at least the possibility that either Boston or New York will miss the postseason entirely. The presence of a third team in the playoff hunt means that the master narrative of the climactic series at Fenway Park will at the very least have to acknowledge that baseball does occur west of Buffalo. In turn, this will spare us a revival of all the Athens-Sparta nonsense that was laid to rest during last year's American League Championship Series. On second thought, probably not.
--Charles P. Pierce
Len on 10.03.05 @ 06:19 AM CST