Believe it or not, it's even warmer and muggier in the Bronx tonight than it was last night. But there it is, strange things sometimes happen. Like Mark Kotsay's inside-the-park home run this afternoon in the A's, Twinkies game, or two Dodgers getting tagged out at the plate by fomer Dodger catcher Paul LoDuca (Yo, Paulie, you know, Paulie) in the course of about ten seconds. Kotsay hit a sinking line drive to center field. Torii Hunter charged the ball which took a late, vicious curve down and to the right--the TV analysts on ESPN said it "knuckled." Hunter, a highlight reel centerfielder and all-around infectiously aimable dude, dove and it got past him. Kotsay didn't get a great jump out of the box but when he saw the ball get past Hunter he started to book his ass off. After he scored easily, Kotsay popped up from his slide and thrust his fist in the air. Hilarious. As for the Dodgers, I still don't know what they were thinking there. One of the guys, especially the trail runner, J.D. Drew, has got to try and run LoDuca over. Still, I am pumped for Carlos Delgado, and I think it's great that CliFFFloyd hit a bomb.
In the bowels of Yankee Stadium there is a cafeteria for the writers. During the playoffs, the room is converted into the press room where the pre-and- post game interviews are conducted. Through the far end of the room is a door which leads to the downstairs press room, a large, windlowless concrete room lined with tables and chairs and lots of men (and some women) typing away on laptop comupters. The sound of all of all the fingers tapping away on keyboards sounds like the patter of gentle rain on a tin roof. It is extremely active this evening, three hours before the game. The Yankees are on the field taking bp. Reporters are writing their stories.
I go upstairs to the main press box. The first person I see after the security guard lets me in is a middle aged woman wearing a Yankee hat and a navy blue Yankee polo shirt. She is holding a clear plastic box of chocolate chip cookies. "Hey, you wanna cookie?" she says to me opening the box and holding it toward me. "Do I?" I say and grab a large, doughy cookie. I turn right and hit the head. As I'm peeing, I eat the cookie and I hear the woman out in the hallway offering everyone she sees a cookie, the same way she asked me. And they say nobody is nice a Yankee Stadium.
This would be a money game for the Yankees to win tonight. It's a Must game for the Tigers. Mike Mussina is a big ticket pitcher; he's expected to win these kind of games. I've always liked him, so you know I'm pulling for him to come up big. Justin Verlander is a very good young pitcher too. He struggled in the second half (he was awful in August), but had a couple of strong starts late in the year and you just got to love his stuff. He seems like he's going to be a real pitcher and not just a thrower. If the Tigers can get a two or three run lead going into the seventh, they can snake out a win for sure and then we've got ourselves a series. Part of me thinks the Yanks are going to continue the pound-a-thon and just roll, while the other part of me thinks that A Rod will blow and Sheffield will make a crucial error, Verlander and the pen will be great and the Tigers will find a way to win. I'm a twin, what can I tell you? I see both sides of the cern.
Yo, if they are going to hit dingers off Mussina, let's just hope nobody is on base when they do, that's all I'm saying.
Hope everyone enjoys the game but in order to do so you are going to have to wait around for awhile it seems. They played the anthem and the crowd waited for the Yankees to take the field. But they never did and the fans didn't know for why? Well, evidentally, there is threatening weather a-comin' this way with the quickness, or so says the doppler radar. The rain is supposed to hit between 8:15 and 8:30 and keep up for a good hour-and-a-half. Yikes. Luckily, I brought some good reading material. Too bad I forgot my gollaches. Kind of funny to see the game called before it starts to rain. People are just scratching their heads, going, oy. Call the babysitter, we're gunna be here awhile.
Irregardless, as they like to say in the Bronx, Let's Go Yan-Kees!