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As a life long White Sox fan, this has been very fun to watch!! I'm also a realist...they have a hard time playing the West coast teams. When the Angels were in town last, they swept the Sox in 3. When the Sox played them earlier on the West coast, the Angels were missing key players. They have to have that in the back of their minds, as I do believe the Yankees aren't going to make the ALCS. With that said...

The rainout this weekend in NY is going to make setting a starting pitching rotation for the next team difficult...plus any other position players with nagging injuries, or just plain old fatigue will take a toll. The Sox on the other hand have time to figure out who will start the next series (and drop Damaso Marte and/or Jose Vizcaino & let Brandon McCarthy pitch)...it's John Garland's turn to pitch in the rotation, but the way Contreras is pitching, I'd have a difficult time deciding...do I give Garland the ball, and keep the rust off, or go with Contreras and ride the hot hand? If Contreras pitches, there's an opportunity to pitch him 3x, if needed. HHHmmm...no matter who pitches though, I have the Sox in 6. One of the other teams is going to be coming up against a well rested buzz saw!!

Can we say Manager of the Year for Ozzie?

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Just so we can set the record straight:

NY Yankees- 26 World Championships.

Boston- I may be wrong, but I do think the have 1 in the last 86 years.

Chicago White Sox- Hummm..I do believe that haven't been to a world series since the 1900's!

Several current Yankee players have more rings on their hands then both the Red & White Sox together in their history!!!

And just one more item Jim, Pedro pitched pretty good for 'the other' NY team. You guys coulda really used him this year.

Darren

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I think when baseball finally gets a salary cap the Yankees many championships will be regarded somewhat the same way as the recent home run records are now...on the books, but historically tainted by the conditions under which they were obtained. Among reporters, announcers, and fans the phrase "...but that was before the salary cap" will become a fixture when discussing the dominance of the small handful of teams that are at the top of both the league and the salary stats every year. Does anyone doubt that Steinbrenner will set yet another new payroll record next season? When will they level the playing field for the loyal fans of all of the teams who cannot possibly spend with the handful of "haves"?

Brian G.

Hoping I Live To See the Day [:-basebal

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Brian,

Let's look at it this way;

Your state has passed a home inspection license law. In that law, it limits you to the amount you can charge a client. Is that fair?

General George has a business plan. His plan is to put a good product on the field. As a result, the fans (over 4 million this year) come to watch his product. Those fans allow him to pay over 200M in salary.

Now, on the down side to George's pocket; MLB has said, OK, because your payroll is so large, we will tax you. They take about 50M from him and give that money to the smaller markets. I keep reading those smaller markets are just pocketing the payroll tax instead of spending it on payroll.

George is happy, he owns a winning team; the other teams are happy because they get free money.

Darren

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Originally posted by Darren

Your state has passed a home inspection license law. In that law, it limits you to the amount you can charge a client. Is that fair?

I think comparing pro sports leagues with just about any other sort of business will mean a lot is lost in the translation. Besides, it's a limit on what can be spent on a specific part of the business, not on income or rates.

General George has a business plan. His plan is to put a good product on the field. As a result, the fans (over 4 million this year) come to watch his product. Those fans allow him to pay over 200M in salary.

Unfortunately just about the only method he knows for assuring a trip to the post season every year is to buy-up and stockpile free agent talent, far in excess of what almost anyone else can do. That isn't skillful or shrewd, it's unfair.

Now, on the down side to George's pocket; MLB has said, OK, because your payroll is so large, we will tax you. They take about 50M from him and give that money to the smaller markets. I keep reading those smaller markets are just pocketing the payroll tax instead of spending it on payroll.

If true, and I don't doubt it's happening in some cases, the owners of those teams are selling out their fans. Salary caps, profit sharing, etc. do not guarantee success, only an equal opportunity for all.

George is happy, he owns a winning team; the other teams are happy because they get free money.

Not all of the teams are happy with the status quo, and for sure the fans of smaller market teams aren't.

Anyone who knows much about baseball can tell you right now who will play in post season next year without being wrong about more than 1 or 2 teams, and for the most part the annual list would be the same teams over and over. That's a shame. It means the "competition" in MLB is largely phony.

Gordon, I'd definitely pick Ozzie as the AL Manager of the Year. If Bobby Cox isn't the NL pick they should stop giving out the award.

Brian G.

Coming Someday...Pittsburg vs. Tampa Bay in the World Series

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Hey Brian...I agree with you, Bobby should get the NL manager of the year nod. It seems in the last few years, the prognisticators (not "The Great Prognisticator", mind you) have all claimed to have this team in a rebuilding stage, and all Bobby does is motivate them to win!!! And since the basis of Manager of the Year is the regular season, I have a hard time looking elsewhere. I'm sure there are those out there that would root for Phil Garner, and an argument could be made for him. But with his pitching staff, he was also picked as the wild card by many. The slow start was an anomally for that team, and it's only because age is catching up to those hitters. Otherwise, Roger Clemens would be heavily favored for the Cy Young. I don't believe Larussa should even be honorarily mentioned, as his team was picked this year by many to win the championship, and he has them right on track to make it back there.

And speaking of awards...as much as I love Frank Thomas, he became much more of a DH. And DH's in my humble opinion, shouldn't receive the MVP. It should go to the best "player", not just "hitter". A.Rod...take a bow!!!

And last but not least...it's good history to be able to say your team won that many championships. Hell...here in Chicago-land, we have bragging rights for the best basketball team ever ('96 Bulls, 72-10). But sports is more defined by this statement..."What have you done for me lately?". The Yankees should have won their division without having wait until the end of the season for any dramatics. They were built precisely for that. But the bottom line is, you still have to play that game...and money doesn't mean you have a big heart-just a big bankroll!!! Say all you want about the 26 World Series championships...I'm looking forward to this one!!!

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A tip of my hat to the Angles.

The meat of the Yankees order took an early vacation (A-Rod, Sheffield and Matsusi).

Already on sports talk radio the Yankee haters (and there are lots of them in the NY area) are calling with glee while the Yankee fans are throwing A-Rod under the bus. A-Rod stood up like a man when he said "the past five games I've played like a DOG!

The Fox network is not too happy with the two largest markets out (I can assume they'll be pulling for the SOX).

Personally, Astros & Sox with, dare I say, the Sox on top.

Oh well, like the BoSox have been saying for 86 of the last 87 years...wait till next year!

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It's not Manny they're after, it Jesus (Johnny Damon). A BIG mistake if you ask me. I don't think Damon is that good, but thats me talking.

The other NY team (Mets) were considering Manny. If Boston lets Manny go (I don't know if he's a free agent or not), they have not protection for "Big Poppy", who, again in my opinion, well never mind. (All season long he killed the Yanks, and not 1 Yankee pitcher put him on his ass. If ever there was a need to knock somebody down, Randy should have done that SEVERAL times. Look what BoSox did to Matsusi last year, after he got knocked down in the playoff, not a wimper)

Darren

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Once again great minds think alike. The DH is a crime against the soul of all sports, right along with the long putter in golf. If you can't run, throw, or field RETIRE and make room for some hungry young guy who can. If you can't putt get off of the PROFESSIONAL golf tour. So there. [^]

Brian G.

Frustrated Sports Columnist [:-irked]

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