Tuesday, July 01, 2008

The Tortoise and the Hare

Game 85 – Red Sox

Devil Rays 5, Red Sox 4
Record: 50-35

Every morning after a Sox game, I scan the blogosphere to take the temperature of the assembled wackadoos and compare it to my own. I hit SoSH, Joy of Sox, Surviving Grady, and one or two others, seeking validation in numbers. Or at least seeking to waste 15-20 minutes.

Most seasons, a middling stretch like the one in which the Sox are currently enmeshed would be cause for great gnashing of teeth and self-flagellation from the faithful. This year, though, the Soxnoscenti are mourning the loss of Hazel Mae, promoting books, quibbling about Jacoby Ellsbury’s slump, and bemoaning Manny’s off-field behavior. In short, doing everything but panicking about the team’s chances.

The team seems to have the same vibe – a laissez faire, let it be backbeat supported by the notion that when the time comes, all they need to do is turn on the jets, concentrate for a few weeks, and they’ll coast into the postseason. That’s a dangerous game, boys and girls, played and lost by better teams than this one.


Whitney said...

I'm guessing it has loads more to do with the fact that it's the Tampa club giving them a run and not the Bronx one. It's still a nearly impossible task to take the Rays but so seriously as September contenders, even as they impress in both statistical and intangible formats in July.

I'd bet you a 12-pack the Rays are 7+ games back of the Sox at season's end, and I might even bet that both the Sox and Yankees will finish ahead of them in the standings. Don Orsillo proposed last night that the Tampa club stands as a symbol that "the system works," and I'm just not willing to concede that the system, i.e., MLB's pecuniary set-up, is a success story.

This, too, shall pass, says I of the Rays phenomenon.

And when the Yanks do make a run, that Nation teeth-gnashing will commence post-haste. This is not a kinder, gentler version of the Olde Towne fan base, but one still perched in the catbird's seat.

Soxlosophy said...

Sometimes it seems like the jerseys play the game; 'rays' and 'yanks' are only different by 'nkr', but that's enough to entirely change sox fans' response.

i'm reminded of prarie dogs, among other animals, who have different alerts for 'take notice, potential trouble nearby' and 'run away!'

regardless of the actual nature of the threat, we just haven't developed an evolutionary response to this new-fangled predator known as the ray.

rob said...

as steve irwin can attest, we ignore the ray at our own peril. whitney, you're on.