Posted at 2:40 PM on April 25, 2005
by Bob Collins
Between my Twins fan friends and my Indians fan friends, there's a lot of badmouthing the Chicago White Sox. Call it wishful thinking but it goes something like this: "The White Sox stink and it wouldn't surprise me to see them going 0-81 after the All Star break."
The White Sox, in case you've been busy calculating the effect of a .15 percent tax on a hot dog at the game, have baseball's best record at 15-4, good for a four-game lead in the American League Central.
Among my exclusive crew of wishful thinkers, err...analysts, we calculated that 91-92 wins would be enough to take the Central Division this year. Part of this had to do with figuring the Twins would drop back a bit (hey, we didn't think Santana could be this good again!).
We didn't expect a 15-4 start by the Chicago Sox. But they did it; those games are over and they count. For the sake of argument, let's assume that 91, 92 games will win the division. The White Sox could play .500 the rest of the way and they'll win 87 games, just four or five shy of our "clinching" number.
Think the ChiSox can play .500 the rest of the way? A bit over? Or a bit under. If you want the playoffs in Minnesota this year, better hope for the latter. If you're a betting person, don't bank on it.
With today's 6-4 loss, at the hands of the Tigers, the Twins have fallen 4.5 off the pace. Hazarding a guess, I'd say that's the furthest the Twins have been out of first place since the 2001 season. Anybody?
Dear Mr. Collins,
I have APBA card sets (originals) dating back to 1975--other sets besides. All is in sorage. I no longer play, and I can't eat them. Maybe I should sell them. Do you know anybody who might be interested? I once played a 160 game season by mail with some great guys. The Fargo Flashes went to game seven of our world series, lost on a wild pitch by Jim Kern--A*XY, no Z. Robert L.
Jim Kern? Yeah, figures. Indians pitchers are good -- really good -- and breaking hearts in Game 7s.
You know, I THINK, I've got some of those sets hanging around too, from my days playing in CMBA. Occasionally I'll find them around the house, like when I move some couch to give it its once-a-decade vacuuming underneath. Usually the vacuum will cough it up and die on a Billy Sample or Rudy Law card.
I guess these things are selling on E*Bay but, you know, back then we'd carefully preserve these things, visions of the 1952 set dancing in our head (it went for something like $10 gazillion). I happened to check some E*Bay prices on APBA sets a few weeks ago and around $19 was the most I saw offered.
$19 is fine, mind you. But it ain't $10 gazillion in my neck of the woods and probably barely keeps pace with inflation.
Alternately, there's a YahooGroups site for APBA you can join and try to sell them there, although most of those folks are trying to dump theirs too.
Must be spring cleaning time.
160-game season by mail? Yeah, those were the days.