White Sox even it up; Angels fume
This otherwise normal postseason had a second memorable game this evening, as a questionable umpire call allowed White Sock (?) A.J. Pierzynski to run to first after Angels catcher Bengie Molina trapped the ball on the third strike and then tossed it away. FOX commentator Kevin Kennedy said it was clear that Molina caught it before it hit the ground, but I don't think many umpires would call a line drive caught that way an out. True, the home plate umpire did not make a clear enough indication that the ball was in play after he called strike three, and if I were Mike Scoscia, I'd be pretty furious, too. The fans at The Cell were ecstatic when Joe Crede lined a double into the left field corner, allowing the pinch runner to score. The White Sox probably wish they hadn't won that way, because the Angels will be fightin' mad when the series resumes in Anaheim on Friday. But if your team hasn't won a championship since before your grandfather was born, you're probably thinking, "A win's a win!"
Cardinals take game one
In St. Louis, the superlative Cardinals dominated the Astros for most of the game, handing Andy Pettitte (note: FOUR T's) his first loss in his last seven starts. Veteran Reggie Sanders got the momentum going in favor of the home team when he blasted a towering homer over the left field bull pen in the [first] inning. The rest of the Cardinals' sluggers (with the notable exception of Jim Edmonds) got hits at crucial moments as the game progressed, enabling them to score five runs on just eight total hits. [Houston made comeback attempts, scoring in the seventh and ninth innings, but came up short, 5-3.] I've always had a mildly favorable view of the Cardinals, in spite of 1964, and I was happy when they managed to beat the Astros last year, but now I'm thinking it's time that frustrated bunch of space cowboys from way down south caught a break and won the NL pennant for the first time.
After getting hardly any e-mail messages from baseball fans last week, I've received quite a few in the past couple days, some of which will require a thoughtful response. Thanks for your patience.