Your Rooting Guide to the 2010 Baseball Playoffs, NL
The AL half ran yesterday. Check it out here.
Considering they won it all in 2008, the Philadelphia Phillies might be pretty far down on your list of teams to root for in the playoffs. But, this is the fifth largest MSA in the U.S. and it has a total of two championships for the Phillies (also 1980) and hasn’t won in another sport since 1983 (76ers.) That’s a total of three championships since 1980. The Eagles last championship was 1960 and the Flyers last one was 1975. Think of the comparable success of New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Dallas since 1980. (Well, maybe not so much Dallas.)
Why you should root for them: Roy Halladay and Roy Oswalt, two great pitchers named Roy, both in the top fifteen of major league pitchers in WAR this year and in the top 30 of all pitchers in WAR since 1980 for their careers, who have never won the World Series.
Why you should really root for them: Would you want the most successful Roys to be Halladay and Oswalt or some combination of Rogers, Orbison, Clark or Siegfried and?
Best Looking “Phillie”: Rachel Alexandra. Ok, instead of a play on words, there’s also former Survivor contestant, Heidi Strobel who’s married to the other member of their big three of pitchers, Cole Hamels.
The easiest storylines for the San Francisco Giants would be the idea of putting Barry Bonds and those steroid fueled seasons behind them with a team built around pitching instead of one mighty player, or the fact that the Giants have never won a World Series while in San Francisco. But as a fan and resident of California, what makes the Giants great is the fact that their stadium is entirely privately financed. Because $121 million of that private financing came from naming rights, I can live with the non-alliterative AT&T Park.
Why you should root for them: If you like your pitchers young, unlike the elder Roys of the Phillies (both 33), you’ll love the young core of the Giants, with Tim Linecum (26), Matt Cain (26), Jonathan Sanchez (27) and Madison Bumgarner (21).
Why you should really root for them: Have you seen Timmy and Bus? It’s just plain awesome.
Best Looking Giants: Giant Women!
With the Atlanta Braves, it comes down to two words: Bobby Cox. This is his last season as a manager, and though he did win the World Series back in 1995, that’s not much when you consider that the Braves made the playoffs for 14 years in a row. He currently stands fourth all-time in managerial wins, behind Hall of Famers Connie Mack and John McGraw and current St. Louis Cardinals manager Tony LaRussa.
Why you should root for them: The best story starting the year was Jason Heyward, the 21-year-old rookie who hit a three run home run in his first ever AB in the major leagues, and book ended that success with an RBI and the 8th run scored in a 8-7 win over the Phillies on the last day of the year to guarantee at least a playoff game to get into the postseason.
Why you should really root for them: As far as names that are offensive to Native Americans, the Braves are not as bad as the Redskins.
Best Looking Girl Associated with the word Brave: Jessica Biel, star of “Home of the Brave.”
Lastly, the Cincinnati Reds who are the absolutely worst team to ever make the playoffs, ever. (Editor’s note: That’s wrong.) But, on the plus side, Walt Jocketty has assembled some great St. Louis Cardinals of the past like Jim Edmonds and Scott Rolen to help the young up and coming stars of the Reds to win the division.
Why you should root for them: Well, you shouldn’t root for them, ever. Look at all the other stories above that are so much better. Still want to root for them? Fine. They haven’t been to the playoffs since 1995, the longest time of any of the participants. Hopefully it won’t be for another 14 years.
Why you should really root for them: If you love the Rockettes, and who doesn’t love pretty ladies with legs that go on forever, then you’ll love the Reds, who also love to kick and kick and kick. (I’m looking at you Johnny Cueto.)
Best Looking Girl Associated with the Reds: Marge Schott or Brandon Phillips, take your pick.
(Ed. Note: It shouldn’t surprise you that the author is a Cardinals fan and obviously still upset with his team being referred to as “bitches.”)
One final note, if the San Diego Padres would have won, maybe there would have been a celebratory masturbation tape from former “Pad Squad” member Carrie Prejean. Well, you have something to root for next year. (Before you lose all interest in Prejean for something other than her politics, trust me, “Pad Squad” sounds better spoken aloud than it looks written.)
About Jason McClain Jason is an aspiring novelist, which means there is a lot of time to put off writing and watch baseball or go fly-fishing, hiking and traveling. By "a lot of time", Jason means "procrastination."