One of the only baseball blogs (to my knowledge) in the blogosphere that focuses on the Montreal Expos. Okay, mostly baseball in general, however with Montreal Expos references to be found within!

Friday, September 26, 2008

More rain woes?

Keeping with the rain theme from two mid September posts, looks like rain may play havoc yet again. The major threat is with the NL races. Rain is a possibility for New York, where the Mets host the Marlins. Rain may also affect the Boston New York games, however Boston have already clinched a playoff berth, so all that would matter is the division, and as soon as Tampa Bay win, it is theirs.

I'll keep this entry short, and let the MLB article do a better job. Rain threatens key NL matchups.

Walk off (to the postseason?)

Three interesting walk offs tonight with postseason implications. Starting with the most interesting.

That creepy guy in Milwaukee would have gone done that slide, as Ryan Braun hit a walk off grand slam to beat the Pirates 5-1 in the bottom of the tenth. Luckily people would have had something better to do, cheer as the Brewers remain tied for the NL Wildcard.

Next, possibly equal, or better, as far as importance goes, in that it moved them into the lead in the AL Central, the Twins topped a five run (down 6-1 at the end of the visiting half of the 4th) comeback with Alexi Casilla hitting a walk off single in the bottom of the 10th to take a 0.5 game lead. I was basing my decision on walk off hit, grand slam beating a single. Come to think of it, I should have chose this over Milwaukee, as I prefer the Twins, but oh well.

Finally, the Mets did it in the bottom of the 9th. Carlos Beltran singled on a line drive to right field, but not before being deflected by Micah Hoffpauir. So the Mets still have a chance at the division.

The Astros still have the slimmest of chance. At 3.5 games behind Milwaukee and New York, they'd have to win all four remaining games, while the Brewers and Mets would have to lose all three. The Astros have a rain delayed game on hand to play, if necessary (see my previous post).

So really all the teams are set save for either Minnesota and Chicago. And of course the match ups.

Kansas City visit the Twins for the final three games, while Cleveland visits the White Sox. The White Sox also have one game on hand, as they had one rain delayed game moved to the 29th as well (hosting Detroit).

So looks like the Los Angeles Angels will host Boston while the Rays will host either the White Sox or Twins. The Cubs will host the Brewers, Mets, or Phillies, and the Phillies or Mets could host the Dodgers.

So much for a brief post (as usual).

Sunday, September 14, 2008

The havoc of rain

Rain, the very rain as described in my last blog post played havoc once again for the White Sox. Their Saturday doubleheader will be today (Sunday) instead. That will leave one game unplayed between the White Sox and Tigers. They will make up the final game once the regular season is over, if necessary. Former Expo (Yankee and Diamondback) was set to start the first game of the doubleheader Saturday, but will instead do so today on four days rest, as opposed to three. He'll be up against Justin Verlander. Game 2 of the split doubleheader will be John Danks (10-8, 3.44) versus Kenny Rogers (9-13, 5.49). Both lefties.

The Houston Astros and Chicago Cubs are in a similar situation, however this is thanks to Hurricane Ike. The two (really three) postponed games will be played Sunday night and Monday afternoon in Milwaukee!

So the Astros will have travelled to Milwaukee from Houston. While it seems the Cubs never were in Houston. So they'll have had to travel from Chicago to Milwaukee. Which driving is only an hour and forty five minutes. The Cubs played in St. Louis Thursday, while Hosuton was at home hosting the Pirates.

Monday the Cubs go back to Chicago to host the Brewers and the Astros have to travel to Miami Gardens to play the Marlins.

The third makeup game of the series will be in Houston, Monday the 29th. The Astros will already be in town after six home games (three Cincinnati, three Atlanta), and the Cubs will travel from Milwaukee to Houston to end the regular season there.

This neutral site scenario reminds me of something similar that happened to the Expos in 2004. With the threat of Hurricane Ivan in September 2004, the Marlins hosted the Expos for two games at U.S. Cellular Field in Chicago. These games happened September 13 and 14. I remember it as the Cubs fans would have been rooting for the Expos, to keep the Marlins away from the wildcard, and the White Sox fans would have been rooting for the Marlins, for obvious reasons, so the Cubs wouldn't win. Thus it made for an interesting game, as it would have been populated by Chicagoan's, rooting for alternating teams that were not their main team. The White Sox fans Marlins prevailed, as they won both games, 6-3 and 8-6 respectively.

For the Milwaukee residents that decide to go see either or both games, it should be interesting in who they root for, as they are sandwiched between the Astros and Cubs.

Currently it looks like this:

NL Central

               W-L      %     GB
Chicago        88-58   .603
Milwaukee      83-65   .561   6.0
Houston        80-67   .544   8.5

NL Wildcard

               W-L      %     GB
Milwaukee      83-65   .561   
Philadelphia   81-67   .547   2.0
Houston        80-67   .544   2.5
St. Louis      78-70   .527   5.0

Since Milwaukee has the wildcard, they'll more than likely be rooting for the Cubs to keep the Astros away from the wildcard. Milwaukee plays the Cubs three more times, in Chicago, so they could still win the division. Therefore if they want to win the division, they'll root for the Astros.

The Brewers have 14 games remaining, the Cubs have 16, and the Astros have 15. While the Phillies still have a chance at the division or wildcard have 14 remaining.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Five rain delays (Two postponed)

Was watching a bit of the start of the Nationals at Marlins, as the Jays Red Sox game is rain delayed, and the announcer brought up all the rain delays. So I thought I'd write a brief post about it.

Minnesota at Baltimore (7:05)
St. Louis at Pittsburgh (7:05)
Tampa Bay at New York (7:05)
Toronto at Boston (7:05)
Atlanta at New York (7:10)

All of the above are rain delayed games, and below are the postponed games.

Milwaukee at Philadelphia (7:05) has been postponed
Chicago at Houston Friday and Saturday (7:05 CDT and 6:05 CDT) both postponed due to Ike.

Edit 2:25 AM EDT:

Of the five rain delayed games above, they were all postponed save for the Toronto at Boston game. It was delayed 41 minutes, and in said game rain came down steadily until the seventh or so. Toronto and Boston already has a doubleheader slated for Saturday, a makeup for an August 15 rain postponed game. The Tigers at White Sox (7:11 CDT) ended up being postponed as well.

Turns out it isn't quite a record:

It was the most major league postponements in one day since six games were wiped out on April 15, 2007. Prior to that, there hadn't been that many since April 12, 1997, when eight games were postponed, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.



It also set up an unusually full slate of games for Saturday. If the schedule holds, there will be 12 games in the American League for the first time since Aug. 8, 1985, and 20 games in the majors for the first time since Aug. 4, 1974, according to Elias.


In New York, both the Mets and Yankees were postponed, setting up two doubleheaders Saturday. According to Elias, only twice before have Mets and Yankees both played two games at home on same day - on Sept. 21, 1982, and April 13, 1997.

More for the baseball mind at said tsn link above.

Official MLB news pieces:

Rain drops fallin', onto doubleheaders
Six games postponed Friday; six twin bills set for Saturday (here)
Baseball reigns with 20-game day
Fifteen of the games will have postseason implications (here)

Friday, September 05, 2008

Quick words on the postseason

To be different, I'll start with a division that doesn't get talked about very much. At least compared to a certain right coast American League division.

NL West is a crapshoot, could be Arizona or Los Angeles. However only the division winner will make the postseason as .500 is not good enough for the wildcard.

NL Central, moving along, could very well be the Cubs (Completely Useless By September). They have started September well for said acronym (0-3). However at this rate two teams could make it from this division. Unless Philadelphia, St. Louis or Houston start gaining more ground. Looks like Houston may have a chance.

NL East will probably only have one postseason team, I think the Mets will probably hold on from what little I know about them recently.

AL West, Los Angeles is what's happening.

AL Central probably has the best race, as they are teams with better than .500 records. Despite that, looks like it will be only Minnesota or the White Sox, as .550 for the Twins amounts to 5.5 GB in the AL Wildcard

AL East, the division no one talks about, is Tampa Bay, Sox could challenge. I'd like to see the Twins gain in the wild card, so only the Rays are in from the AL East. I am sort of indifferent about the White Sox, since Orlando Cabrera is with them, then okay, but mostly I would not mind seeing them fall out of postseason contention, but that would mean the Yankees would have to win the wildcard, or the Jays. I'd rather see the White Sox in the postseason than the Yankees (and Red Sox). Jays (and Yankees) could still make the postseason, but would pretty much have to win every game, and hope Boston and Minnesota (or CWS) lost most.