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Sports Watching and Wondering

African American news from Pasadena - Sports - Baseball and pro footballALL HAIL THE DODGERS!

This baseball season for the Dodgers has been the nightmare that turned into a dream. The beginning of this season was disastrous. The team was losing on a regular basis, but it did not seem to matter to them. Kemp and Eithier were supposed to be the stars of the team, but neither of them were playing well.

Manager Don Mattingly was only one click away from being fired. This was not a happy situation. Then, along came Puig. He had defected from Cuba and he had a funny first name, and a weird last one. He is 22 years old, as strong as a bull, and he runs like the wind. He loves to play baseball, and he infected the team with his spirit.

His play and enthusiasm inspired them, and suddenly the team started to win. Puig made many mistakes along the way, but he made most of them because he was trying too hard. The Dodgers went on a long winning streak, and they erased records that had been set by the New York Yankees, and the Big Red Machine from Cincinnati. Both of those teams had several future Hall of Fame Players on them. At this time the only possibility for that honor seems to be Clayton Kershaw.

They were talking a good game, but this team feared the Atlanta Braves. During the regular season, the Braves won more games than the Dodgers, and thus they had the home-court advantage. However, miracle of miracles, they split in Atlanta, and the Dodgers won the next two games at home.

Now, the team is waiting to play the winner of the Playoff between the Pittsburgh Pirates and the St. Louis Cardinals. Each of them has won two games, and the deciding game will be played Wednesday in St. Louis. Do the Dodgers have a preference? If so, they are not saying. The TV Moguls are hoping that the Cardinals win, since they have a much larger fan base.

The Dream of the Dodgers is to win The NL Championship and then to play the Boston Red Sox in the World Series. If that does happen, they will play before the largest worldwide audience in the history of the sport. Also, to maximize the exposure and the income, they would like to defeat the Red Sox in seven games.

It was a bad week for African American Major League Baseball Managers. The Cincinnati Reds, managed by Dusty Baker, lost their playoff game to the Pittsburgh Pirates. The Texas Rangers, managed by Ron Washington, lost their playoff game to the Tampa Bay Rays. It must be an awful feeling to have your season come down to a single game, but that is the way it is with the Wild Cards.

Subsequent to the loss by the Reds, Dusty Baker was fired by them. He had been the Manager of the team for five years, and they had earned a spot in the Playoffs each year. The management of that team might've been more prudent and waited to see how far the Pirates advanced. If they win the National League Championship, and then the World Series, should the losing managers of those teams also be fired? You may recall that the San Diego Chargers fired Marty Schottenheimer after he lost the Super Bowl to the New England Patriots. His won-loss record was 14-2. San Diego has never played again as well as they did that year. As a matter of fact, last year's coach was fired, after having another losing year

GENO the HERO - The New York Jets are not a very good football team. They do not have a good head coach, and they do not have a good running back. The fans in New York have been suffering from loss after loss. Former USC star Mark Sanchez had a couple of promising seasons, but it appears that he has permanently lost his Mojo. Head coach Rex Ryan is so bad that he is almost a caricature of what a real coach should be like.

Please keep that in mind as the Jets were trailing the Falcons by a score of 28-27 with one minute and 58 seconds remaining. The Jets quarterback was rookie Geno Smith. There seemed to be very little hope for the New Yorkers. All he did was to drive his team down the field by completing six straight passes. He got them close enough so that their kicker could kick the winning field goal. As far as the Jets are concerned, "happy days are here again".

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