09/24/2007

Let the Bodies Hit the Floor

The fit is hitting the shan in the CL as I type these words and my Hanshin Tigers are, very unfortunately, getting the worst of it at the moment with less than a week to go in the season. I fear that I, myself, may be partly responsible for Hanshins’ stumble down the stretch.

The reason?

The Boys in the Black and Gold were roaring through the upper ranks of the division for all of Aug. and much of Sept. - indeed slapping around the Dragons before prowling into Tokyo Dome and sweeping the hated Giants on their own turf before taking the first two of a three game set in Koshien- when I most hopefully and confidently visited Koshien for the finale of what I surely thought would be the completion of the 2nd consecutive sweep of the ready to be knocked out Yomiuri’s. Weds. the 21st was the date and I arrived at the park good and early and planted my seat in the choice seats at the very end of the left field foul pole, offering an excellent view of the action.

The action showed up in the top of the 2nd when the Giants loaded the bases then their 2nd baseman, Gonzales- who had a grand total of 1 HR on the year- stroked a shot just inside the foul pole and right past my nose. Score? G-4, T-0.

I put my jaw back into place and waited for the Tigers to begin to chip away at the lead.

In the top of the 3rd they needed an even bigger chisel as the Giants clubbed a 3 run shot making the score a crooked 7-0, bad guys.

And that was as close as my Tigers would ever get on this glum evening in Osaka.

Highlights for Hanshin? Hmmmm. Nope. Got nothing. Final brutally ugly score?
11-1 !

To further illustrate my point (and my possible culpability) when I arrived at Koshien on that 21st night of Sept. the Tigers were in 1st place- 1/2 game up on Chunichi, 1.5 ahead of the Giants- and streaking but now, as of this writing, are in a tailspin having lost 4 of their last 5 knocking them down to 3rd with Chunichi stuck in second and the Giants back on top.

The Good News?

The Tigers, Giants and Dragons are all a lock to make the CL Climax Series (Brand New J-land Playoff Format- TOP 3 ARE ALL IN!) no matter what position we find ourselves in the end.

So……….. crack a cold one……..strap yourself in and hold on tight ‘cuz we’re going to the Playoffs!

posted by Billy at 00:00 | BASEBALL!!
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