Since I haven’t done any postseason blogging yet, I should acknowledge that my annual reverse hedge bet with Howard was of course lost this year with the Yankees missing the postseason, so I will be making a donation to Planned Parenthood on his behalf. I would have to say the odds favor Howard next year as well.
To move on to the playoffs, I was disappointed to see the Pirates lose in the division series, since it leaves an NLCS between a team I hate and I team I’m sick of seeing. However, one player I’m not sick of seeing is Carlos Beltran. Going into today’s game (which involved a game-tying double) Beltran is hitting 345/453/761 in 172 postseason ABs. (If he was a 5’10 white guy from South Carolina his face would be carved on to Mount Rushmore.) What’s especially remarkable about this is that many Mets fans — and not just talk-radio goobers but people up to and including the goddamned owner of the team, and doesn’t that say it all — have tried to make the position player equivalent of Mariano Rivera the goat of the 2006 NLCS because he didn’t swing at one unhittable curveball. It’s absurd — Beltran hit .296 with 3 homers in that series — that Beltran got the blame that properly belonged o the likes of Steve “Blood on the” Trachsel and Aaron Heilman. But it’s very Mets. Beltran was one of Wilpon’s best ever signings, and Wilpon instead apparently sees him as a reason never to spend money again.
The Cardinals, on the other hand, know exactly what they’re doing. When they let Pujols walk, they were able to acquire another Hall of Fame caliber player for a fraction of the price. I hope Beltran helps hit them into the World Series.
…eh, he’ll never have the clutchy grititude of a Paul LoDuca or Daniel Murphy.