Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
October 27, 2005
BASEBALL: Sox Sweep NL Central Team, Break Curse

Deja vu all over again. Congrats to the White Sox and their long-suffering fans.

You have to feel for the Astros, who fittingly went down 1-0 in the last game of a season where they struggled all year to score runs; after staging four of the toughest postseason games you will ever see, all anyone will rememeber within a few years is that they go swept. Let the record show that, unlike the 2005 Cardinals and 1999 Braves, this team did not go down easy. Instead, in a season when they lost Carlos Beltran and Jeff Kent, started without Lance Berkman and had to weather most of the season without Jeff Bagwell, they fought their way through some of the most epic postseason games in history and ended up going further than any Astros team ever has. Well played.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 9:28 AM | Baseball 2005 | Comments (10) | TrackBack (0)
Comments

Other than the Cubs, are the Astros now the "most cursed" team in baseball? They've had some pretty heartbreaking losses over the years (and I'd put last year and '86 as more heartbreaking than this year). And they're now, what, 0 fer all 44 of their years in existence? That's about as bad as the the streaks that the Indians and Giants are on...

Posted by: Al at October 27, 2005 9:49 AM

I'd say the Giants are "more cursed" than the Astros. Five outs away in '02. Haven't won since '54. Won 103 games in '93 and didn't make the playoffs. Losing Game 7 in 1962 1-0 when the winning run scored on a dp. But, it's close either way.

Posted by: Ryan at October 27, 2005 10:29 AM

The Astros didn't keep the Sox from scoring critical runs like they did against STL, so they lost. It was disappointing, to be sure, but I don't think anyone thought the Astros at any point this year was the best team in baseball all around...I certainly agree with Crank on this one...they overachieved, weathered a lot of storms, but didn't give up the fight. That makes them winners more than the scoreboard in my book. And the fact that Bidge and Bags got a taste of a World Series, even if in a loss, I feel the team delivered to them a trophy they will never forget.

So I thank the team, and salute the Sox for being better.

In reading the article from Larry Dierker about the Sox fans, though, and how they acted during their home games, it is hard for me to salute the general fans of the team too much. Bushleague. I was actually having arguments with Sox fans on another board who were trying to tell me the Astros didn't deserve to be in a World Series. Unbelievable. The Sox played just a little bit better than the Astros enough in each game to get a victory, but they certainly did not outclass them or embarrass them. Close games, extra innings, one run victories...exciting stuff. But the Astros have nothing to be embarrassed about, that's for sure.

Posted by: AstrosFan at October 27, 2005 11:26 AM
Losing Game 7 in 1962 1-0 when the winning run scored on a dp.

With the final out coming on a line drive with runners on second and third!

Posted by: Allah at October 27, 2005 12:36 PM

Question for the Crank re: the 1962 WS. Is that the only example of a World Series being decided by the final batter? Many Game Sevens have been won in the final at-bat, of course -- off the top of my head there's 1924, 1960, 1991, 1997 -- but all of those games were tied going to the bottom of inning. 1912 almost fits the bill, as the Red Sox trailed by one heading to the bottom of the 10th in Game Eight(!) and rallied for two runs off of Christy Mathewson(!) -- but the rally came with one out. For the Series to be decided by the final batter, (a) there would have to be two outs when he came to bat; (b) his team would still need to be trailing at the time; and (c) the Series-winning run would either have to be on base or at the plate.

Has this ever happened, except in 1962?

Posted by: Allah at October 27, 2005 12:54 PM

Just read that the Sox will be now be featured on the new Wheaties box with pitcher Mark Buehrle on the front and back of the box. This marks the first time the Sox appeared on a Wheaties box. Bound to be a collector's item! :)

Posted by: JD at October 27, 2005 4:27 PM

It's fun to look back:

http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?page=05expertpicks

Only one of ESPN's experts (Rob Neyer) picked the White Sox to make the playoffs. No one picked the Astros.

Hindsight is 20/20, and I guess this kind of unpredictability is part of what makes baseball so great.

Posted by: Cottgias at October 27, 2005 6:22 PM

I never imagined that my hitless wonder 'Stros would set the dubious record of losing 2 World Series games on the same date: another day that will live in infamy among Houston fans--October 26, 2005. Congratulations to the Chisox.

--Colt .45s/'Stros fan in Denver

Posted by: Mark Belt at October 27, 2005 8:25 PM

Biggio and Bagwell seem to be good guys and I've always liked them, but I won't root for the Astros as long as Roger "bat-chucker" Clemens is on the payroll. I have principles, and rooting for Clemens goes against them.

Some of the White Sox fans may suck, but for the most part, they remind me of Mets fans -- they root for the 2nd team in a 2-team town and get very little respect. I am happy for the fans, and very happy for a team that played exciting baseball pretty much all season.

Posted by: Anne at October 29, 2005 10:01 AM

PS...

If the Giants are cursed it's because they left NY. They never should have done that.

Posted by: Anne at October 29, 2005 10:02 AM
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