August 2006

Down the Stretch

Here we are, coming down the stretch, and what a season it has been. We had an average April, a great May, slumped a bit before the trading deadline as Ned Colletti and his staff made some outstanding moves and now, as we hold a three game lead in the National League West going into September, are hotter than a Dominican trumpet player.

This really is an exciting time for the NL West, because there is still lots of baseball to play. There are no guarantees in our game, there are no awards handed out in August. You can still throw a blanket over our division, and over the NL Wild Card race. There is great competition in our division, and in the National League, and that?s what you like to see.

I again would like to commend Commissioner Selig for having the vision to implement the wild card in baseball. There were many critics, but I liked it from the get go because it is good for baseball, and it is good for the fans. Without the wild card, many teams know they are out of the race, and the fans stop supporting their team. They lose interest, they start thinking about fantasy Maddux_fans_1 football and Labor Day barbecues. But the wild card keeps teams in the playoff hunt. In fact, let?s not forget that three of the last four World Series winners qualified for the playoffs by winning the wild card. Part of the reason for that is in order to win the wild card, you have to face steep competition. You have to beat out eight to 10 teams to qualify, but in order to win your divisions you only have to beat out four to five teams.

I urge all of the readers of this blog to continue to support your team if, or if they aren?t, in the playoff hunt. Baseball is the greatest game in the world, especially for families. Here at Dodger Stadium, which I like to call Blue Heaven on Earth, a family of four can buy 4 tickets, 4 Dodger Dogs and 4 Cokes for just 52 bucks! Try going to an NFL game for that price, or an NBA game; you can barely park for that type of money. That?s why the Dodgers are coming close to drawing 4 million fans in attendance this season, because they come to Dodger Stadium to see baseball at its best!