Yes, the opening of the World Series kicked up a storm of questions, especially with the ICC World Cup betting scandal from the previous year, from “Is this Sox team the greatest World Series offense of all time?” to “Is calling Jeff Francis an ace like calling Subway a delicacy?” That’s all well and good, and at the end of the day the team that wins four games latest in October earns the right to all the glory the sporting world can bestow.
But go back to Cleveland. Despite my sick Red Sox fever, I can’t help but feel pangs of regret for the losing diehards, the Cuyahoga crazies, consigned and resigned to another snowy winter of woe. It’s going to be the 49th consecutive year where family members’ holiday conversations will center on we-need-to-improves rather than here’s-how-to-defends. After twenty seasons, you begin to lose count; after forty, you simply can’t forget. Every year, new Clevelanders reach that twenty year mark, and hope drains from them like blood out a cut fish.
This season is especially brutal. The Indians scratched and clawed their way to a 3-1 series lead, punctuated with a seven run fifth inning in a 7-3 beatdown over Boston. The Indians, boasting a powerful lineup with Grady Sizemore, Travis Hafner, and Victor Martinez, and anchored by two solid aces in Fausto Carmona and C.C. Sabathia, were knocking on the pennant’s doorstep.
Then the other shoe fell. Read More