Back in the U-S-S-A

With a nod to John, Paul, George, and Ringo, the whole SF clan has returned from a wonderful holiday overseas.  While we were gone, it looks like the Yankees figured out that they aren’t that bad, the Sox figured out that they aren’t good at the West Coast, and Tino Martinez figured out how to smuggle clean urine samples into closed medical offices.  A few observations while across the pond and upon return:

  • Nobody outside the US (or at least in England) cares a whit about the Sox and Yanks.  The only visible paraphenalia related to the teams was espied in JFK, and it was a Sox hat.  In England, the daily results are relegated to the 5th page of the tabloids’ sports sections, next to Motocross in a box titled "Other Results".  I can only imagine where the scores appear in Le Monde.  Humbling.
  • Relegation, a concept unthinkable in American sports, is an amazing phenomenon.  We were in England over the final Saturday and Sunday of the Premiership season, and four teams battled it out on the last day for the rights to "stay up" in the highest league, with three teams of those four relegated to the "Championship", (or First Division, in simplistic terms the Triple-A of English football).  The tension is thick during these games, fought between the EPL equivalents of Kansas City and Pittsburgh.  At stake is a massive amount of money, exposure, and prestige.  Meritocracy is alive in the Premiership, even if the league is splintered by economic inequities similar to MLB’s.  We only wish there was more at stake for the lowly clubs in baseball – the relegation system keeps the season heated even as teams sputter at the bottom of the table.
  • The closer you get to Dublin, the better the Guinness. 
  • YF was more interesting when the Yankees stunk.

More later, when the cobwebs clear.

12 comments… add one
  • SF, no offense intended, but please go back to England. The Yanks cannot play when you’re near.

    Nick May 17, 2005, 12:51 pm
  • Not back 24 hours and already SF is back into bile! So typical. So sad. Perhaps he’s afraid his slumping Sox are due for a relegation in the AL East by those surging Yanks.
    And ashamed—ashamed!—he should be to smear our dear Tino. Had he been here he would know that most of the Player of the Week’s homer’s have been of the line drive, and not obviously steroid-fueled bomb, variety. Anyway, we hope to see a few more tonight.

    YF May 17, 2005, 5:14 pm
  • Ha! Bile-filled? Where do you come up with that? Your unimaginative and ad hominem attack in this comment simply re-confirms my final bullet point, which was not an insult but merely a reasonable criticism based on a sizable sample of your recent work in my absence.
    (Also, I have it on reliable sources, not my own, that a certain non-benched first baseman can fit a 500cl beaker where the sun don’t shine, if you get my drift. Don’t shoot the messenger.)

    SF May 17, 2005, 6:00 pm
  • So bitter. So sad for you. The truth is we have little to trouble us. The sun shines. The Yanks win. Tino bombs. Derek bangs. Oh, but for the glory that is spring!

    YF May 17, 2005, 7:06 pm
  • SF are you serious on the Tino deal, or joking? I take it you’re serious, but I’m just curious here. I’d like to this Tino surge is right out of a Robert Redford film, and not juice-fueled.

    JeremyM May 17, 2005, 9:43 pm
  • 10 in a row. 2 out of 3 in Seattle. BTW, wasn’t this a team that took 2 out of 3 in Boston? Just checking. Oh, and Pavano shut them down with 130+ picthes.

    Joe May 18, 2005, 12:47 am
  • I am totally serious – I have numerous sources who tell me that Tino shoves lab-grade glassware into his a**.
    Of course it’s a joke.

    SF May 18, 2005, 7:00 am
  • As a Yankee fan here in England I’d like to say that the baseball fanclub is growing and whilst it still isn’t at the level of the NFL, which is very well catered for with weekly double-headers and then the late Sunday and Monday Night games live, baseball is slowly moving forward.
    We get two live games on terrestrial tv ESPN’s Sunday Night game and a Wednesday game but also there is a new extra channel on SKY, NASN that shows 10-15 live games each week.
    England will never embrace baseball but it is slowly becoming luke warm to it. I see it as a lot like Cricket over the pond, most folk just don’t get it. Anyways just wanted to say that there are some baseball fans over here :)

    Neil May 18, 2005, 8:24 am
  • Glad to have you Neil! By the way, what is an “over”? I was watching some cricket in England last week and was trying to decode the scoring system, but just couldn’t crack it. My guess is that an over is a bundle of “pitches” (or whatever they are called in the game), but I was having a difficult time figuring out when the over ends, and what it means.

    SF May 18, 2005, 9:08 am
  • This is a baseball site folks! If you wanna talk about wicked googlies and the relative merits of Sachin Tedulkar, take it off line!

    YF May 18, 2005, 9:43 am
  • An over is six deliveries or balls, after six balls a different bowler will bowl from the other end for six balls and then the whole process repeats itself. There are three varieties of cricket, 20-20 which is a fast hitting game with only 20 overs a side, the more traditional 50 over a team game and then the longer games which are allocated four or five days, and this this we’ll see the first ever six-day test match.
    However I doubt many people will care too much about cricket here, more important is the pedro has been pushed back to Sunday because of a cortizone shot in his hip, meaning we’ll get Victor Zambrano on Friday who seemed to have our # last year :s

    Neil May 18, 2005, 1:33 pm
  • Really? Zambrano? The “stuff” guru? If they Yanks don’t win that one after he walks ten or eleven, it’s a sad day in NY. Not as sad as David Wells, but sad nonetheless.

    Brad-SF May 18, 2005, 11:16 pm

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