As you can see from the pictures below, I spent an entire Red Sox game last night wearing a Yankee hat.
(Sox defeat Orioles, 10-1)
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In no particular order, here are some comments, thoughts, observations, and perhaps even an occasional insight at this point in the 2015 baseball season: ** For those of you who can remember back to preseason, I wrote about the new baseball rules for shortening games and predicted they’d work (see: It’s Gonna Work – Betcha). At the All Star break this year, roughly the halfway mark of the season, the average length of the games was down almost exactly 10 minutes. The rule about batters having to keep one foot in the batter’s box accounted for half of the reduction in game time. Calling for a play challenge from the dugout and limiting the time between innings, probably make up the other half. Recently, however, the game time has crept up a bit. (It seems to me that batters are staying out of the box more now than they did at the beginning of the season, perhaps because MLB and the Players Union agreed not to use the financial penalties that were supposed to kick in in May?) ** If you think there are more no-hitters this year than last, you’re right (six already versus five for all of last year). And there were 33 no ‘hitters’ thru 6 innings (better than all of last year), 17 through 7 innings and 10 through 8 innings. But pitchers on the whole are doing worse than last year. The ERA of all the Major League teams is up over 2014, from 3.74 (full season) to 3.82 (thru 8/31/15). Batters are doing better (makes sense if ERA is up) in all categories: Ave. – 254/.251, OBP – .315/.314, SLG. – .402/.386, and OPS – .718/.700. Fielding PCT is virtually unchanged (.985/.984). ** What’s up with the Sox? They have been out of it for most of the season, largely because of weak pitching and weak hitting. (Outgoing GM Cherrington should’ve listened to me when I said stay away from Hanley Ramirez). They have done well over the past several weeks as they have settled into what is likely to be an outstanding outfield — Bradley, Betts, and Castillo (photo below) — for next year and beyond, tho it’s not clear yet which position each will play in that outfield. Their hitting is up and so is their starting pitching; relief pitching, however, has worsened, especially with the loss of Uehara for the remainder of the season. They have a modest chance of avoiding last place if they continue at their present pace. Everyone is on their toes trying to prove to their new president of baseball operations Dombrowski that they deserve to play next year.
Caylor Arnold/USA Today Sports
If the Nats win it all, the Millers stand to win $1,040.
As you can see from the two pictures above, on Jan. 6, 2012, when no one was predicting the Washington Nationals would make the playoffs, yours truly was in Las Vegas with younger daughter Elizabeth. As any good father would do, I purchased some Pennant and World Series bets.
Actually, I purchased four tickets, two for Elizabeth and two for myself.
So, if the Nats win the NL Pennant, both Elizabeth and myself will each collect $160.
Then, tho unlikely, if the Nats win the World Series, we each stand to win an additional $360.
Total between us would be $1,040, $520 each.
If you subtract the cost of the tickets, that’s a ‘profit’ of $1,000.
Additionally, I bought a World Series tickets for both my Atlanta nephews, and they stand to win $200 each should the Braves make it from the Wild Card spot all the way to winning the WS.
Then, I threw in another $10 to buy my so-called Baltimore O’s friend a WS bet/ticket. I don’t know how much he stands to win if they go from their Wild Card spot all the way to win the WS. But it probably doesn’t matter. It seems NR (true initials) can’t find his ticket. Typical O’s fan, I guess.
(Full Disclosure: Because I am a loyal Red Sox fan, I also made bets for then AL favorites, two for the Sox winning the AL Pennant and two for them winning the WS. That was $40 down the drain.)
Anyway, my total outlay?