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Tag Archives: 2008 NLCS

One can almost wish that the Dodgers would’ve just faded quietly into the night. Not unlike what they did in 2004 and 2006 — get into the postseason and then barely a whimper from them there on out. That way, it softens the inevitable blow once they lose. I just KNEW they had no chance those two years.

But this year was different. As bad as this team was (eight-game losing streak!) at times, they could also be equally dazzling. And when they polished off the Cubs in the manner they did, I for a second thought maybe they were a team of destiny, so to speak.

And when Manny’s multitude of homers helped get them off the mat, with that faint heartbeat of a playoff win still alive, there was a small part of me that thought they could somehow pull it off. But alas, Mighty Utley and company sank our dreams.

It’s tough to admit Dodger baseball is done for the year. It’s tougher yet knowing they were still in the four games, never getting blown out. And although fading away quietly would’ve been easier to stomach, going down fighting makes me that much more optimistic about next year.

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A Dodger win is a good thing. A Dodger win in the NLCS is even better. What isn’t any good is the ridiculous posturing, chest-thumping, and finger-pointing in last night’s game. Listen guys, I understand. Somebody throws a pitch that hits you, you get a little upset. Somebody buzzes you out of the batter’s box, you get a little upset. But you know what, it’s part of the game. Man up and take it instead of sniping at your teammates through Bill Freakin’ Plaschke of all people.

If Chad Billingsley’s teammates are upset that he didn’t buzz any Phillies hitters, then his teammates are a bunch of maroons. Hey guys, did you happen to notice he had trouble even retiring apparent Silver Slugger candidate Brett Myers? In the midst of one of his worst outings this year, you wanted Billingsley to uncork a pitch and put somebody else on base?

Worst yet was Joe Buck and Tim McCarver — and it is a stretch to juxtapose the phrase “worst yet” and Buck and McCarver’s names — continuously rehashing the incident as though there were any redeeming social value to it. They were continuously reinforcing the meme that Billingsley let down his teammates. Well, he did in that he couldn’t retire Brett Myers, not because he didn’t — whether or not he refused to is unknown — partake in the insanity of throwing beanballs. McCarver and Buck kept picking at the scab of an idea that perhaps there was more to come of this, and when Clay Condrey hit nailed Russell Martin again, you could almost see the wheels-a-turnin’ in their heads.

Not surprisingly, ESPN was all over this nonsense. Forgetting that Hiroki Kuroda snapped off a gem last night, and that the Dodgers finally had their offense firing on all cylinders, all the media could focus on was this nonsense. Even Shane Victorino, Kuroda’s would-be victim, seemed to be imploring the media hacks to cut it out. “It’s squashed,” he said. But do you really trust a media hack to leave well enough alone? I’m sure the brushback meme will continue to be discussed repeatedly later tonight.

This is the guy the beat the Dodgers last night, almost single-    handedly at that? Brett Myers? This guy accounted for five of the Phillies’ eight runs?

DUDE! Chad Billingsley, I know everyone has and off-game from time-to-time, but if you can’t figure out how to pitch to Brett Freakin’ Myers, you deserve to lose. If you had managed to keep Brett Freakin’ Myers off the basepaths, the Dodgers would’ve won 5-3. It wouldn’t have mattered that once again, Citizens Bank Park and its crazy walls robbed the Dodgers of home runs.

If there’s any positive coming from losing these two games, it’s that the Dodgers were never completely out of the games. Losing 3-2 to the opposing team’s ace is hardly a sound defeat, and it’s clear the Dodgers had chances to win even last night.

They get to play in front of their own fans on Sunday and Monday, and hopefully that’ll be the elixir to their malaise thus far.

Fellow Dodger fans, I know exactly how you feel!