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September 28, 2011 - Seth Staskey
It's hard to imagine that 162 games might not be a long enough regular season for baseball. I don't mean that the regular season should be extended, but when you think about that many games and here we are on the final night of the regular season and four team are still coming to the ballpark unsure if they'll be heading for golf courses or the postseason, it's amazing.
It's almost hard to fathom because there are so many ups and downs throughout the baseball season. Whether it's a blown save or a late error to a walk off home run, so many different plays comes through the course of the 6-month season and to think that if one of those events goes the other way, everything is settled.
I had an area native Tweet me on Wednesday evening and point out the Braves might not be in the position they are if Jerry Meals hadn't botched the call at home plate against the Pirates in the 19th inning in July. That is the call that many Pirates' fans believe sent the Buccos into their late-season tail spin. I don't buy either point that the Braves are fortunate or that's what cost the Pirates. Braves have won 14 games in extra innings. They're built for late game victories. As for the Pirates, they went south because of injuries. Whether it was Jose Tabata, Kevin Correia, Alex Presley, Evan Meek, they just couldn't overcome the injury bug.
Anyway, the point I am trying to make is that there are countless plays on both sides of the equation over the course of a long season that you can pinpoint. It's just hard to fathom that when a team like Boston gets off to the slow start it did in April and people are talking, "well, it's only April." That's true, there is a lot of season to go, but looking back on it, a little better out of the gate and the Red Sox aren't being talked about as a team that blew such a hefty wild card lead.
Anyway, I still like the Yankees to win the World Series. I think they're going to defeat the Phillies and Cliff Lee, who spurned them last winter in seven games. From there, Posada retires and maybe Mariano, too.
Let the playoffs begin.
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