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Red Sox and Dodgers Lead Their LCS

Before both the Boston Red Sox and Los Angeles Dodgers won LCS games on Tuesday, they had played 9 times on the same day in LCS play, without both teams winning.

Now here are those numbers 9 and 11, as for two straight days both the Bo Sox and Dodgers won on the same day in LCS play and it is now likely, but far from certain, that the teams will meet in the World Series for the first time in 102 years.

Jackie Bradley Jr. has delivered big two out hits in all 3 Red Sox wins (games 2-4) vs Houston (Astros) and despite another “Mitch Williams type–walk people,” poor effort from Kimbrel, the Red Sox are on the precipice of their 4th World Series appearance in 15 seasons, in which they hope to emerge with a 4th title.

A tremendous play by Boston left fielder Andrew Benintendi on a “bid” by the tremendous Astros’ player Alex Bregman, saved Boston, but Kimbrel’s “arsonist by walking people not with matches act, “angers” another AB, this one me.

Meanwhile I do not call for an “overthrow” of Kimbrel and I did burn this morning’s coffee.

L.A. (do I hear Boston/L.A.– down the not too distant road perhaps Pats/Rams and past and maybe future Celtics/Lakers–Bruins/Kings anyone?) won game 4 when Cody Bellinger delivered the winning hit in the bottom of the 13th.

The last time the Dodgers won it all in ’88, they won a late, late #4 NLCS at New York, vs the Mets and a quick turn around day tilt in #5, before winning that LCS in #7, beating a very ineffective Ron Darling.

The Dodgers did the same in a quick turnaround #5 yesterday, with Clayton Kershaw winning the game.

 

The great Babe Ruth pitched great vs the Dodgers franchise, then in Brooklyn in the aforementioned 1916 World Series.

Joe DiMaggio Appears On What’s My Line

Few if any athletes were as great and celebrated as Joe DiMaggio.

He played with class, never without great effort. After all as he said, “someone might be watching me play for the first time.

Enjoy the great “Yankee Clipper” on a 1955 episode of the iconic television show, “What’s My Line.”

Click below to view Mr. DiMaggio on that 1955 episode of “What’s My Line.”

Whats My Line Joe DiMaggioClick to view

 

Left to right Dominic and Joe DiMaggio.

 

 

 

Simultaneous Games Notes

For the second straight night, the teams from the city/area with an LCS and NFL game being played virtually simultaneously, both won, in each case the football team “no covering” in a 3 point win.

In LCS play last night, the substantial Milwaukee Brewers went up 2 games to 1 with a game 3 victory for the first time ever in a post-season series, winning (4-0) in L.A. vs the Dodgers.

Meanwhile the Green Bay Packers, the Milwaukee area football team won (33-30) vs the S.F. 49ers, going off as 9 point favorites.

The night before, the 6 to 5 home underdog Boston Red Sox won #2 to get even vs the defending champion Astros while the New England Patriots also won “(3-0)” an even higher in the “basketball on turf NFL” (43-40), failing to cover the 3 plus points spread vs the now (5-1) Kansas City Chiefs.

 

League Championship Series Notes

For the first time since 2010, both LCS are tied at a game apiece after both L.A. (Dodgers on the road riding Justin Turner’s last scoring 2 run homer T8) and Boston (at home) won game 2. Houston (Astros) goes home vs Boston for games 3 through 5 while Milwaukee (Brewers) sojourns to L.A. (doubt on a “westbound 747” cue Albert Hammond) also for (3-5).

In a 20 year span (1998-2017), both LCS were tied at one game apiece just three times and this is just the twelfth time in 49 possibilities (’73,’77,’78, ’83, ’86,’91, ’96, ’97, ’03,’05,’10 and ’18) both LCS are deadlocked at one game apiece.

The Dodgers are (10-3) in game 2 of the NLCS, winning on the road in (’74, ’78, ’16 and ’18) and at home in (’77, ’83, ’85, ’88, ’09, and ’17), the last of which ended on a Justin Turner home run.

Four times in previous ALCS, Boston lost game 1 at home. In ’88 and ’90 vs Oakland A’s teams, that would lose as nice sized favorites in the subsequent World Series, the Red Sox were swept out in 4 games.

Twice they won game 2 and the series.

In 1986, dramatically vs the Angels only to lose in excruciating fashion to the New York Mets in the World Series and in ’13 when the great David Ortiz made Tigers’ manager Jim Leyland pay for not bringing in a left handed pitcher to face him. (see Joe Maddon doing so in #5, ’08 ALCS).

Boston went on to win the 2013 World Series.

Click below to view Albert Hammond perform “It Never Rains In Southern California.”

Albert Hammond – It Never Rains In Southern California (1973) HD 0815007

 

 

Remembering Football Great, Jim Taylor

Jim Taylor, a true great on four of the five Vince Lombardi coached Green Bay Packers’ title teams and the only other player to win a rushing title during Jim Brown’s 9 year NFL career, died yesterday, at the age of 83.

His 1,474 yards gained rushing that 1962 season gave Taylor his lone rushing title and more important it was Taylor that led the Green Bay offense (along with 3 field goals by Jerry Kramer, the latter finally allowed in the NFL Hall of Fame this year, after he was disgracefully kept out so long) that frigid day at New York’s Yankee Stadium, when the Pack prevailed (16-7) defeating the New York Giants for the second straight season, in the NFL Title game.

Two more regarding Mr.Taylor, who teamed with greats Paul Hornung and Bart Starr in the Green Bay backfield.

It was the second game of the 1966 season, “G.B.” is at Cleveland, the team they beat in each team’s last game, the ’65 Title game.

The Packers are facing a 4th and goal at the 9, a win or lose play and Taylor avoids 4 potential tacklers and scores the winning touchdown.

It is an all time great clutch play, in an eventual title season, by a relatively unsung all time player.

The other story involves the all-time runner, if not player, Jim Brown and Jim Taylor winning a made for television bowling competition resulting in Mr. Brown’s high praise for all that is/was Jim Taylor.

Now this determined man moves on, his work, drive and greatness a reminder of what could be done, as we must move forward.

 

Left to right, Paul Hornung and Jim Taylor

Milwaukee Brewers Notes

The Milwaukee Brewers, who have won 12 straight games–the last 8 “reg” which includes an ‘offs tilt win at Chi, vs the Cubs, to gain the National League “1” seed and 4 in post-season, “opened” L.A. last night, winning (6-5), for a (1-0) NLCS lead.

In just their third LCS in this the 49th possibility, (the franchise began and played one year as the Seattle Pilots, that in 1969, the first year of LCS play) and third best of seven series–the Brewers have never won a best of seven series and only twice in seven previous post-season series, did they win both the opening game and said series (2011 division series vs Arizona with Nyjer Morgan striking the series ending hit, in the decisive fifth game and in this year’s 3 game sweep of the Colorado Rockies).

Twice before, in #1 ’82 World Series when the great player Paul Molitor went 5 for 5 and the 2011 NLCS, both vs the St.Louis Cardinals, Milwaukee won a best of seven series opener, only to lose the series.

The Brewers, hoping to join the Houston Astros, who are decent sized favorites vs the Red Sox to be there again, as the only teams to represent both major leagues in the World Series, did win an ALCS best of 5 vs star crossed manager, Gene Mauch and the Angels in 1982.

That game and I believe the clincher vs Arizona in ’11 were on Kol Nidre, the holiest night in the Jewish religion.

Cecil Cooper, a tremendous player had the big, “go ahead to stay,” 2 rbi single in that tilt.

 

Cecil Cooper, pictured above.

Late in the 1974 baseball season I reached Cecil at the New York hotel in which his team, the Red Sox were staying.

He knew that his Red Sox had all but faded from the A.L. East race and I asked his opinion as to whether “Balti” or the Yankees would win the then, had to finish first, one quarter division.

I believe he correctly predicted Baltimore, however I KNOW he said “if we can FOOL AROUND and win” I think it was 9 of 10, we still have a chance.

I have never forgotten that terminology, his not giving up despite the circumstance and I should have cited first, that he was so friendly and made 18 year plus old me, feel very good.

LCS Notes

Tonight the 49th LCS commence with a National League game 1 between the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Milwaukee Brewers. Tomorrow afternoon, those teams play game 2 while tomorrow night, Boston (Red Sox) hosts the Houston Astros in game 1 of their ALCS.

Houston defeated Los Angeles in 7 games to win last year’s World Series.

This is just the fifth time in 49 possibilities (LCS play began in 1969 and there was no post-season baseball in 1994), that both of the previous season’s World Series participants have advanced as far as the LCS/baseball semi-finals.

The other times were 1973 (Oakland A’s and Cincinnati Reds), 1978 (New York Yankees and Los Angeles Dodgers), 1993 (Toronto Blue Jays and Atlanta Braves) and 2010 (New York Yankees and Philadelphia Phillies).

Above in parenthesis, I listed the previous year’s winning World Series teams (I will do so again the A’s, Yankees, Blue Jays, and Yankees).

Three of those teams the ’73 A’s, ’78 Yankees (vs the Dodgers again) and ’93 Blue Jays repeated as World Series winners. In ’10 both the Yankees and Phillies lost in the NLCS. In ’73 the Reds lost in the NLCS as did the Braves in ’93.

 

The Yankees have won the World Series 5 times in years ending in “8.” They did so in 1928,1938,1958,1978 and 1998.

In ’58 Bob Turley’s brilliant pitching denied a then Milwaukee team, the Braves, a second straight crown.