With all the Brett Favre to the Jets talk over the past several days, you probably missed out on the big “Brady Quinn goes to Chipotle story. Luckily, nothing gets past TheClevelandFan.com.
Vin is a Philly boy who shouldn't be invited into your house because he'll judge you on your book and music collection. He owns Dawkins, Utley, Iverson, and Lindros jerseys, which is all you really need to know about him. He can be reached at [email protected].
Now that Brett Favre has been traded to the NY Jets, the Favre-llatio has gotten out of control. Anyway, we’ve taken some quotes about Brett Favre and doctored them up, added in a few fake ones, and threw in one real quote. Can you figure out which one it is?
- “He gives the Jets their biggest star since Namath, gives the Jets their best chance to overcome Bill Belichick and Tom Brady, makes them a legitimate Super Bowl contender. And I’ll volunteer to take one for the team and give him his prostate exam for his physical… with strawberry jam…mmmmm… ” – Steve Serby, NY Post
- “He left after several days because he has more respect for the Packers than the Packers have for him. He will always have a special place in my pants… I mean heart.” – Gene Wojciechowski
- “The bottom line in all of this is playing football. I’ve always been committed to my job. I know people say I should put the personal issues aside, and I agree, but I couldn’t do that. Maybe they’ll finally appreciate me in New York and give me the attention I’ve always deserved.” -Brett Favre
- “Man, fuck Brett Favre” – Chad Pennington
- “I know how hard it is to play quarterback. It could be the toughest thing in sports. When you take a guy who does it as well as Brett Favre for as long as Brett Favre and then you take all those other things and just squish `em all up together you have a pretty special guy. And when you add in the fact that he always gives me the ‘warning tap’ even though he knows I swallow, well, that’s a gentleman and a scholar right there.” – John Madden
- “Hey Brett, tell me how my ass taste.” – Aaron Rodgers
- “And you know what? I don’t care whether people are Packers fans or whatever, I’ll reiterate what we said, rooting for Favre is like rooting for America. I think with Brett Favre, the smile that he still has, it must have been the same kid running around in Kiln, Mississippi, it’s still the same kid, except he’s going to be running around in the Meadowlands thrilling everybody. And you know what else? When he shoves his unit into my mouth, it’s even more thrilling!” – Chris Berman
- “The number one sight in football thus far has been Brett Favre running down the field into the arms of his receivers. It’s wonderful. America loves that. This team can play. Brett Favre is back. This guy has captured America.” – Bill Plaschke
Sadly, the real quote isn’t that far removed from the fake quotes. It’s Bill Plaschke falling all over himself, and elbowing Chris Berman out of the way, to fellate Favre.
The uneven bars get even
This is easily the most entertaining moment in the history of gymnastics.
Of course, second place goes to this couple.
Masters of the ALCS: It seems like 2004 all over again now that Boston has completed another improbable ALCS comeback. Down 3-1 to Cleveland, they crushed the Indians three straight times to reach the World Series. Boston was nearly untouchable as the series went on; in Game 7, there was little doubt they would win even when the game was close. Down by one in the 7th, the Indians has men on first and third with one out. Then Casey Blake grounded into a double play to end the inning, and the Red Sox scored a combined 8 runs the next two innings. Rafael Betancourt, who previously hadn’t allowed a run this postseason, was lit up for 7 runs. The Red Sox bullpen, which got two scoreless innings each from Hideki Okajima and Jonathan Papelbon, was nearly perfect by comparison.
Overall, this series seems similar to the Red Sox-Yankees ALCS in 2004, but there’s a major exception. While the games were all close as the Red Sox came back in the previous series, they blew the Indians out three times in a row, leaving the impression that they are clearly the best team. None of the games were even in doubt, as the Red Sox won the last three by a combined 30-5. They have been perfect in all phases of the game recently, with a balanced offense and dominant bullpen. Players like Kevin Youkilis and Dustin Pedrioa have played huge roles in the comeback, while the pen pitched seven scoreless innings in the final three games. Their starters excellent as well, with Josh Beckett taking home the ALCS MVP. Curt Schilling and Daisuke Matsuzaka redeemed themselves for poor starts earlier in the series by winning the last two games. Going into the series against the Rockies, the Red Sox seem like the clear favorite, but Colorado is well-rested and still on a roll. This World Series should be an interesting one, as it pits the preseason favorite against the one-in-a-million contender.
Not so Fast: The Indians, one game shy of reaching the World Series, lost to Boston in what was a must-win game for the Red Sox. Boston won only because of the efforts of their best players, both on offense and pitching. Josh Beckett remained utterly fantastic this postseason. He had 11 strikeouts and allowed one run in eight innings, improving to 3-0 in this postseason. Beckett has become one of the best playoff pitchers not just in the game today but all-time. He has a 5-2 career record in the playoffs with a 1.78 ERA and is averaging 9 strikeouts per start. Unfortunately for the Red Sox, this is the last start they can get from Beckett this series, as Game 7 if played is slated for Sunday. But the Red Sox’s 7-1 victory was not just a solo effort. Manny Ramirez, the all-time playoff home run leader, went 2-4 with an RBI; playoff monster David Ortiz had two RBIs and kept his average over .400 this postseason. For the Indians, it was another shaky start for CC Sabathia, who has let down his team with a string a poor performances in the playoffs. Fausto Carmona, who tossed a shutout in the divisional series, is looking to bounce back from a subpar Game 2 effort as he pitches in Game 6 on Saturday. The Red Sox will send Curt Schilling to the mound as they return to Fenway Park, still needing two straight wins to reach the World Series.
Choosing to Walk Away: Joe Torre was not fired as expected by some, though he still won’t be returning to the Yankees next season. The legendary, sure-fire Hall of Fame manager turned down a contract offer from George Steinbrenner. He was offered a one year deal worth $5 million, less than he had been making yet still more than any other manager in baseball. For reasons unknown, Torre turned down the offer, ending a glorious 12-year run as Yankees manager. He won 4 World Series titles and ten division championships as manager of the Yankees. No matter who replaces Torre, they will likely never come close to his success.
One Win Away: We are one game away from the network’s worst nightmare-an Indians-Rockies World Series. After getting crushed in Game 1 by the seemingly invincible Red Sox, the Indians gave the series a huge momentum change by scoring 7 runs in the 11th inning of Game 2. Since then, Cleveland has been nearly unstoppable. They won Game 3 to take the series lead, and on Tuesday they beat the Red Sox with ease to extend their lead to a commanding 3-1. They won 7-3 after a great performance from Paul Byrd and a seven-run fifth inning. Tim Wakefield was charged with five runs in the inning after pitching very well at the start of the game. Now the Red Sox need to win another Beckett-Sabathia matchup on Thursday or they’ll be going home.
One of the reasons the Indians have gotten this far is the pitching of Byrd and Jake Westbrook, who have actually performed better than Sabathia and Fausto Carmona this series. But the best pitching by the Indians has come from the bullpen, especially the sensational Rafael Betancourt. Betancourt has shut opponents out in 7 innings of relief this postseason. Every time he has appeared, the Indians have won. On Tuesday Betancourt was perfect through two innings to seal the deal. The Red Sox now find themselves back where they were in 2004–desperately needing a win to stay alive. If they win game 5, the series will go back to Boston–though Cleveland has shown that they can win there as well. According to ESPN.com, in MLB history only 10 teams out of 65 have come back from a 3-1 deficit. 34 of those teams lost in five games, as I predict the Red Sox will do as Sabathia bounces back from a weak earlier performance this series.
Rocky Top: It doesn’t seem like anything can stop the Rockies, or at least anything the National League has to offer. They completed a sweep of the Diamondbacks to win their seventh straight game of this postseason. They joined the 1976 Reds as the only team to do this at the start of the postseason. Their 6-4 win to cap off the series was fueled by a six-run fourth. Matt Holliday’s three-run homerun, which helped earn him the NLCS MVP award, put a cap on the scoring for the Rockies.
The Rockies’ 21 wins in 22 games is perhaps the most dominant stretch by a team at the end of the season in history. Though nobody thought they would even make the playoffs with two weeks left, they have proved themselves as by far the National League’s best team. Because of their huge streak and extended rest, they should frighten the winner of the Red Sox-Indians series. The Rockies are miles ahead of last year’s World Series champion, the Cardinals, and they are one of the NL’s best World Series representatives in recent years.
It’s not only amazing that the Rockies are winning; it’s how they’re winning. In the NLCS, they won with dominant pitching instead of their trademark slugging. The Diamondbacks only scored 8 runs in the entire series, baffled by the Rockies’ dominant bullpen. Manny Corpas, LaTroy Hawkins, and Matt Hedges among others have proved to be unstoppable in the late innings. The Indians and Red Sox both have great bullpens too, but I would take the Rockies’ relievers over anybody’s with the way they’re playing right now. At this point, it shouldn’t even be a surprise if the Rockies win the World Series.
Here Come the Indians: Prepare yourselves for an Indians-Rockies World Series, because that’s looking likely right now. The Indians, coming off Saturday’s 11-inning win, only needed nine innings to win Game 3. They beat the Red Sox 4-2 because of their superior starting pitching. Jake Westbrook was excellent, while Daisuke Matsuzaka faltered in his second straight postseason start, failing to make it out of the fifth inning again. Both team’s bullpens were near-perfect, giving the Indians the win. Right now a key for the Indians is closer Joe Borowski, who was shaky in the regular season but has a 1.80 ERA in five appearances in the postseason. Their offense is getting a key performance from at least one player each game, this time Kenny Lofton. Lofton, who hit a two-run homer to start the scoring for Cleveland, has been a surprisingly good in the playoffs so far. In what will be a do-or-die game for the Red Sox on Tuesday, Tim Wakefield will take on the Indians’ Paul Byrd.
1. Another Disappointment: Once again, the New York Yankees had a great regular season that ended in disappointment in the playoffs. For the third straight year, they won at least 94 games but lost in the first round of the playoffs. Their last playoff victory was back in the 2004 division playoffs. As usual, their hitters were great in the regular season but failed in the playoffs. They only hit .228 in their series against the Indians, compared with a .290 mark in the regular season. Their pitching wasn’t much better, as Chien-Ming Wang gave two awful starts that both resulted in losses. In the decisive Game 4, Wang allowed four runs in just one inning before being pulled. Mike Mussina, who was competent in relief of Wang, did not earn a start in the series despite an excellent performance in September. The Indians won Game 4 6-4, getting a lead early and then holding the Yankees off late in the game.
The loss could mark the end of an era for New York, as the entire franchise could be overhauled this offseason. The biggest question is whether Joe Torre will be fired. It is obvious at least to us that he shouldn’t, considering he has given the Yankees their best era of success since Casey Stengel in the 1950’s. Despite the fact that this move is obviously not wanted by the Yankee players, and that this season was perhaps Torre’s best in bringing the team out of a 21-29 hole to the playoffs, it still shouldn’t be surprising to anyone if he is canned. Also, it is likely Alex Rodriguez will leave the team via free agency and Roger Clemens will retire. If those players both don’t return for next season, it will give New York a lot of money they can spend on rebuilding their pitching staff.
2. It’s Showtime: Now is perhaps the best time of the year for baseball, as only the four best teams are left in contention. In the NLCS, the Rockies and Diamondbacks will be the matchup. This surprising meeting of division foes includes two teams fueled by youth. The Rockies have the obviously superior lineup, with breakout stars such as Matt Holliday, Brad Hawpe, and Troy Tulowitzki. The Diamondbacks lineup, which is carried by youth as well, has struggled throughout much of the season. However, they do improve in clutch situations. They rely on Brandon Webb and the bullpen, with the others starters average at best. The Rockies’ pitching staff is nothing to brag about, but if they can at least be effective, the Rockies should win this series. Prediction: Rockies in 6.
The other series matches up the best two teams in baseball during the regular season, the Indians and Red Sox. Both just beat very good teams very easily in the first round. Both are loaded at the top of the rotation, with Carmona and Sabathia for the Indians and Beckett, Schilling, and Matsuzaka for the Red Sox. If the series goes seven games, Boston’s big three will likely have six starts, giving them a reliable pitcher for every game. Both teams also have good bullpens and solid offenses, making this series very hard to predict. In the end, I think the Red Sox’s prior postseason experience will play a major role against the youthful Indians. They should be able to win close games, with experienced, clutch hitters in David Ortiz and Manny Ramirez as well as a superior closer. Prediction: Red Sox in 7.
1. That was easy: The Red Sox dismantled the Angels, one of the league’s best teams during the regular season, completing a 3-0 sweep on Sunday. They became the third team to win by a sweep in the first round of these playoffs. Boston outscored Los Angeles 19-4 in the series, with three great pitching performances. Curt Schilling, who has a career 1.93 ERA in the postseason including the 2001 co-World Series MVP, pitched seven shutout innings in game 3. He followed up solid efforts from Dice-K and Josh Beckett, who when combined form the best pitching trio left in the playoffs. Their dominance of the Angels was surprising, especially considering the Angels had three great starters of their own. However, their bullpen was disappointing, and their offense couldn’t continue their success from the regular season. The Red Sox, who have been widely considered the best team since the start of the season, proved once again that they are with this overwhelming effort against a good team. David Ortiz and Manny Ramirez, who both weren’t their usual selves for most of the regular season, had a dominant series. Ramirez hit the game-winning home run in game 2, while Ortiz had two long balls and hit .714 for the series. As things stand right now, if the World Series results in anything but a Red Sox victory it will be a surprise.
2. You’re (Almost) Fired: There were reports that George Steinbrenner might fire manager Joe Torre if the Yankees don’t win their series against the Indians. After losing the first two games, the Yankees might have saved their manager’s job with an 8-4 win in Game 3 at Yankee Stadium. The fact that Torre’s job may be in jeopardy is absolutely ridiculous. He has taken the Yankees to the playoffs every year since joining the team, brought four World Series titles to New York, and did an excellent job this season in turning a losing team through the first half of the season into a force. Regardless of whether this would have happened, the Yankees did pull of a much-needed win over the Tribe. Roger Clemens was pulled in the third after allowing three runs, the Yankees scored seven combined runs in the fifth and sixth innings and never looked back. Johnny Damon had four RBIs including a three-run homerun. Phil Hughes and the bullpen were great in relief of Clemens. Even A-Rod cranked out two hits, his first of the series. Now the Yankees need to win game 4 on Monday to force a decisive game 5 in Cleveland.
The Full Count: NL West Rules
1. Rocky Road: The Colorado Rockies, with their second straight win in Philadelphia, have virtually locked up a series victory over the Phils. After winning with pitching in Game 1, the offense took over in Game 2. Matt Holliday homered for the second straight game, and Kaz Matsui hit a key grand slam that helped Colorado to a 10-5 victory. The Rockies have been so good the first two games that they have established themselves as the team to beat in the National League. If they close out the series against the Phillies (which they will do as the series goes to Colorado on Saturday), then the Rockies will have by far the best offense left in the NL playoffs. Their pitching staff isn’t bad either, particularly the bullpen. The Rockies’ relievers had six innings pitched in Game 2 and only one earned run. For the Phillies, sluggers Jimmy Rollins and Ryan Howard each bounced back from an unproductive Game 1 with homeruns. However, their awful pitching sent the Phillies into a hole they won’t be able to overcome.
2. Amazing Arizona: The Rockies-Diamondbacks is now the probable NLCS matchup, as Arizona also gained a 2-0 series advantage with another win over the still-cursed Cubs. Chicago starter Ted Lilly got lit up for six runs, starting with a three-run shot by Chris Young. Arizona’s Doug Davis got his first career playoff win, with four runs allowed but eight strikeouts. The Diamondbacks, though far from a formidable team, have proved that they are the class of the National League this year, with its best regular-season record and the almost-clinched NLCS berth. However, they will have to top the red-hot Rockies, which may be more than anyone can handle right now.
3. Pitching Kills: Of all the teams in the MLB playoffs, it seems the Cleveland Indians went it the quietest. However, with a 12-3 statement win over the Yankees in Game 1, they proved they are a team to be feared. This game came down mainly to pitching. Cleveland starter CC Sabathia, though he walked six, allowed only three runs and was credited with the win. Then the bullpen was near-perfect in his relief. The Yankees’ pitchers looked as bad as they were in April. Chien-Ming Wang allowed eight runs, and the bullpen wasn’t any better as the Indians’ lineup dominated. Kenny Lofton went 3-4 with two RBIs, and Travis Hafner and Victor Martinez both homered for the Tribe. This series is far from over, but the Yankees need a Game 2 victory. That will be hard to get, as they face Fausto Carmona, who was just as good (if not better) than Sabathia this year. With those two at the top of the rotation, the Indians have a weapon not a lot of teams can come close to matching.