The Boston Red Sox and the Atlanta Braves are terrible.
I don't mean terrible in the sense that the two teams are without the talent, the resources, and the mental capacity to be a quality baseball team. I mean that they are terrible in the sense that their performances over the month of September should be saved as case studies of pipes bursting under pressure, should be put into Webster's Dictionary under the term "folded", and should be penalized by lawmakers for how felonious their actions have been in the last four weeks.
If either one of these teams happen to make the playoffs by winning tonight, it will be a damn shame. The resolve of the St. Louis Cardinals and the Tampa Bay Rays to climbing that mountain has been quite impressive, but its a damn shame that they played as terrible as they have earlier in the season. I really wish none of these teams made the playoffs, I hate them all.
Bitter? Me? Never. I'm so jaded at this point that none of this phases me.
Here's the thing I hate about situations like these in sports.
I hate cliches.
They are by far the worst thing that has ever been given to us by athletes for sports fans. When they jam that microphone in the face of Chipper Jones, David Ortiz, Brian McCann, and Jonathan Papelbon, they all say the same thing...
"Tomorrow's just another game."
"Today they were the better team, we'll get 'em tomorrow."
"We had our chances but we let them slip away."
"They caught us on an off night."
"Not to take away anything from (insert opponent here), but we didn't play like we're capable of playing."
Those cliches do nothing but attempt to pacify us the sports fan. There's no weight to anything said other than we got our asses kicked and hopefully we won't goof it up again tomorrow. Don't fall for the trickery that the players are putting on for you, this isn't going to end well for anyone involved.
Here's the truth about Boston and Atlanta versus Tampa Bay and St. Louis as we had down to the last day. The teams that are already in the playoffs would love to see Boston and Atlanta make it. Their current lineups haven't been able to hit consistently for months, their pitching is bombed out and depleted (like Afghanistan), and their mental makeup is in disarray. Tampa Bay and St. Louis have their pitching in peak form right now, they're getting timely hitting, and they're hungry baseball teams.
Regardless if either the Red Sox or the Braves win or lose, they have ran through every possible strategy in preventing baseball's equivalent of a global thermonuclear war. Terrible lineup strategies, questionable use of the bullpen, and causing women and children to scream and shriek while men are drinking their lives away.
You damned right I tied in the movie War Games with the collapse of the Red Sox and the Braves. Yes, I'm a nerd. Leave me be.
Come on Atlanta...win this one for Bobby Cox, Dale Murphy, Charlie Leibrandt, the ghost of Lonnie Smith, and the slow gait of Sid "Vicious" Bream.