Tuesday, October 31, 2006

I have a baseball hangover

I have a hangover. No, not that kind! Not today, anyway... What I do have is a baseball hangover.

Even though this blog is named in honor of the greatest, and the worst, coach in Lions history, there's been a huge baseball bias in my posting. But how could you not want to wrote about the best local story in years? As much as I hate to quote the dull Drew Sharp, I have to agree with him in that, as he put it, fall baseball leaves little oxygen for anything else. The Tigers have dominated the Detroit sports landscape since April, and the attention was ratcheted up several notches more during the stretch run and playoffs.

But now it's over. It'll be damn quiet on the baseball front till the hot stove fires up during the MLB winter meetings. Which will actually be quite an exciting time for the Tigers and their fans. Rumors are already starting that the Tigers will be very active in the off season. Till then, it's time to focus on the fall and winter sports. And I'm finding that I'm having a hard time getting fired up about it...

The Lions? Screw 'em. I said their season was over, for all intents and purposes, after week 2. I'm fed up, and not sure I give a shit. I'm to the point where I was towards the end of the Darryl Rogers era. That being, the more the Lions lose, the happier I am. Anything to help get Millen's ass out of the front office and back in the broadcast booth, where he should never have left.

I'll admit that I've paid next to no attention to the Red Wings. The problem there is that the NHL regular season is irrelevant. Even with the Wings not being the favorites in the Western Conference, let alone in their own division, all the regular season is going to do is determine their playoff seeding. Odds are that they'll be a middle of the pack seed, instead of the accustomed 1 or 2. But as the last few Red Wings playoff runs, or lack thereof, have shown, your playoff seed makes very little, if any, difference. It's all about who's playing well going into the Stanley Cup playoffs, and who has the hottest goalie.

Expecting me to get excited about the Red Wings this early in the season is asking too much. Christ, I'm still trying to figure out who's on the damn Red Wings roster. The NHL has too many teams playing too many meaningless games on a network I can't even find, let alone name.

The Pistons tip their season off tomorrow. Unfortunately, their regular season, like the Wings', is pretty much irrelevant. The playoffs are a given, so the fact that they'll win more than 50 games. Come on, they have 4 All-Stars in their starting 5. So we'll just have to sit through 82 mostly meaningless games to determine their seed, which I'm guessing could be anywhere between the number 1 and number 4. But the Pistons have some story lines worth keeping an eye on in the post Ben Wallace era.

Is Nazr Mohammed a solid replacement for Ben Wallace, or was his signing a panic move that did nothing more than add a warm body in the paint? When will 'Sheed blow his stack in defiance of the new rules cracking down on post whistle bitching? Will Carlos Delfino finally get some consistent PT? Will Joe Dumars sign the just released Jalen Rose, which would obviously piss off Delfino? Will Flip decide to develop his bench, or run the starters into the ground? Will the team buy into Flip's preference to play zone defense? Will the team buy into Flip, period?

Watching how those questions get answered will be fascinating, and ultimately determine how far the Pistons go in the playoffs. But don't ask me to get all fired up for much of the regular season. Hell, not even the players can do that... It turns into a grind for fan and player, alike.

Then we have the cluster going on in East Lansing. Crazy ass loon John L has done gone and slapped himself silly. The latest collapse has him on the verge of getting the ziggy. The Spartans have the look of a team that has given up, and is playing out the string. As expected, the vultures have come out of the woodwork. Those vultures, the George Perles' of the world, are now hovering over the football program, wanting their man to be put in charge. Replacements for John L are already being bandied about, such as Pat Shurmur and Steve Mariucci. In other words, it's standard operating procedure at Michigan State. Nothing, and I mean NOTHING, ever changes in EL.

The one team I've made the time to watch this fall is in damn fine shape. Obviously I'm talking about the 9-0 Michigan Wolverines. It's less than 3 weeks till this years "Game of the Century" with the bucknuts. But...We have a problem. We'll have to sit through games with Ball State and Indiana till college football armageddon arrives. At least I can watch them play the Hoosiers. If you get ESPNU, and will get to watch the BSU game, raise your hands. I didn't think I'd see any...

I'm sure I'll sit through the next 2 weeks with white knuckles, much as I did during the Northwestern game, just hoping that Michigan doesn't screw the pooch, and lose a game that they shouldn't. Indiana has me a little concerned. It has "Trap game" written all over it.

That just may be my inner demons as a cynical Wolverine fan coming out. Most seasons, you are expecting the worst, rather than hoping for the best. Then again, when you think about it, that bad loss that all Michigan fans expect would normally have already happened against the Minnesota Gophers of the world. Amazingly, that didn't happen. The Wolverines are still undefeated, just what more can you ask for? At this point, with the "Game of the Millenium" on the horizon, I don't care about style points anymore. Just win the Hell out. The BCS Championship is there for the taking.

A #2 Michigan vs. #1 tOSU? IT. WILL. BE. MASSIVE. I can't wait...

Oh yeah, one more thing. It's only been 4 days, and I already miss baseball...


  1. I agree with every word in this post.
    You do a great job!

  2. The Indiana game scares me a tad. Hardy can make plays and we're definitely going to be looking ahead to OSU... on offense. The one thing that is keeping me from going schizo is that our D has demolished everyone with the same brutal efficiency.

  3. Keep it up Big Al, great stuff! Can't wait for the #1 vs. #2 matchup!

  4. Big Al, you hit it dead on. I was trying to find the words to describe my state of malaise -- a baseball hangover, brilliant!

    Ten days after the Tigers demise, I'm still feeling sluggish. Can't watch Wings games, don't want to watch Lions games, forget to watch Pistons games.

    As you say, thankfully, we have UM/Ohio State on the radar.

    Keep 'er going.