SportsCrack Blog

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


The Tampa Bay Rays opened up the season in Las Vegas as a 200-to-1 long shot to win the World Series and here we are today and they are the 5-to-7 favorite to win the whole thing over the Philadelphia Phightin Phillies. The Rays are attempting to become the first team in Major League history to go from last place to winning the World Series (Braves almost accomplished the feat in 1991 but lost to the Twins in 7 games because Lonnie Smith is a dumb fuck who can't run the bases). The Phillies are attempting to become the first Philadelphia franchise in the 4 major market sports to win a Championship since the 1983 Sixers. It is a span of 100 combined seasons since any team among the Sixers, Phillies, Eagles, and Flyers won a championship.

Let's take a look at position by position breakdown and see who it favors if anybody...

I know I'm going to get a lot of shit from my Philly friends but I think Ryan Howard and Carlos Pena are even in this matchup. Howard carried the Phillies the last month of the season into the playoffs with a hot stick but hasn't done much in the actual playoffs. Carlos Pena might not put up the power numbers that Howard does but he plays better defense and he has come up huge for the Rays so far this postseason.


This one isn't even worth arguing about. Chase Utley is the premiere second baseman in the game right now and is a legitimate MVP candidate every year. Iwamura isn't too shabby himself but Utley is just head and shoulders above him in every facet of the game.


Jimmy Rollins is the returning MVP winner in the National League and is the spark plug for the Phillies lineup at the top of the order. Despite having somewhat of a down season this past year he has come up huge in the postseason with big homeruns in both the NLDS and NLCS. Jason Bartlett was an excellent pickup by the Rays this season and has a glove that is worthy of gold. He has come through with his bat this postseason also but he isn't the threat that Rollins is whether on the bases or the ability to hit a big home run.


No contest whatsoever at third. Evan Longoria will win the Rookie of the Year and has hit 6 postseason homeruns already. He is already a great one and is yet to complete a full season of MLB ball. Pedro Feliz is average at best.


Rays catcher Dioner Navarro is an All-Star and throws out nearly 40% of baserunners. Phillies catcher Carlos Ruiz is an underrated signal caller behind the plate and his bat is improving. Navarro is the better player but don't be surprised if Ruiz has a Mark Lemke-esque World Series.


Jayson Werth of the Phillies has been consistent all season having hit 24 HRs in his first full season as an everyday starter. The Rays don't have that consistency with Gabe Gross or Rocco Baldelli.


Surprisingly this one was the toughest position for me to call even over first base. On the one hand you have up and coming superstar B.J. Upton who is one home run away from breaking Barry Bonds postseason record but on the other hand you have the Phillies Shane Victorino who has played like a MVP this postseason with his bat and his glove. I know I'm going to get some shit from Rays fans (all 8 of them) about this but I think they are pretty much even at this point in the season.


I'm a big fan of Carl Crawford because he can do a little bit of everything unlike Pat Burrell. Crawford can steal bases, play excellent defense, and he can hit with the best of them. Burrell can hit towering home runs but I would pick Crawford over him in a heartbeat.


The Phillies have Matt Stairs (big HR against Dodgers) and Geoff Jenkins as a legitimate left handed power hitters who can come in late in the game to pinch hit for a pitcher or play some DH along with right handed hitter Greg Dobbs who has been hot of late. The Rays have veteran Cliff Floyd who will DH and be available for late pinch hitting opportunities but I think the Phillies have more options.


The Rays bullpen blew a 7 run lead against the Red Sox. The Phillies bullpen has been lights out all year with Brad Lidge who has yet to blow a save in a Phillies uniform. Rays rookie David Price looked awesome in Game 7 against the Sox so he could be closing out games for the Rays but I got to give the edge to the Phillies because of Lidge.


The Rays have a shitload of depth in the rotation unlike the Phillies. Cole Hamels and Scott Kazmir should cancel each other out in game 1 as both are wonderful young leftys. Matt Garza and Andy Sonnanstine are both better starters than Jamie "old man river" Moyer and Brett "smack my bitch" Myers so this isn't really close.


Coaching in baseball has always been overrated especially at the major league level. Maddon and Manuel both know what they are doing and know their team better than even the most fanatical of fans on both sides. And both of them beat out managers who supposedly had more playoff experience to get here so unless one guy makes a bone head move don't believe what the announcers are telling you. Players make great coaches.


Phillies fans are crazy and die hard and Rays fans have mohawks and love to ride the bandwagon. Fear alone you have to go with Phillies fans because they can make a trip up there intimidating for any visitor.


So by my inexact calculations I have the Phillies with the edge in 6 positions against the Rays 4. They are even at 3 positions so this should be a very close series. I think the biggest edge has to be starting rotation though and I love the Rays starters over the Phillies. Good pitching usually beats good hitting but then again I love the Phillies bullpen more than the Rays. This is honestly just too tough to call so I'm going with my gut and saying....


Ten NCAA Football picks for this Weekend

Andrew Cheese Whistle Mcstink's Picks-

1. Oklahoma St. @ Texas: Texas is a well oiled machine right now and will win this game.

2. Alabama @ Tennessee: The Vols suck this year and will get killed.

3. Penn State @ Ohio State: Penn State will win this one.

4. Oklahoma @ Kansas State: I think the Spooners will destroy K-State.

5. USC @ Arizona: I’m going with the upset on this one. I still think USC is overrated.

6. UGA @ LSU: Go Dawgs!! This game is do or die for Georgia.

7. Texas Tech @ Kansas: Texas Tech is the real deal this year.

8. Kentucky @ Florida: Kentucky has been tough this year, but Florida will squeak by.

9. Auburn @ West Virginia: Both teams are pretty bad, but I have to go with the SEC.

10. Virginia @ Georgia Tech: Should be a close game, but Georgia Tech will continue to pick up steam.

Matt Fairchild's Picks-

1. Oklahoma St. @ Texas: The Longhorns are just too good for Okie State.

2. Alabama @ Tennessee: If the Vols had two Eric Berry's then I would take them but they don't so I got to go with Bama in a close game.

3. Penn State @ Ohio State: I'm 50/50 on this one. Penn State has been playing lights out and the Buckeyes look like they finally hit their stride last week against Michigan State. Buckeyes win home games especially with a healthy Beanie Wells so I'm going with them.

4. Oklahoma @ Kansas State: Oklahoma will score at will.

5. USC @ Arizona: USC is just too loaded but I think the game will be a lot closer than what people think.

6. UGA @ LSU: Mark Richt and the Dawgs have to win this game to stay in the SEC and BCS Title talk.

7. Texas Tech @ Kansas: I'm going homefield with this matchup. It should be a close one decided in the final minutes.

8. Kentucky @ Florida: The popular thought is the Gators might be caught looking ahead to next week's matchup with Georgia and slip up. Tim Tebow will have a big game and the Gators will roll by double digits.

9. Auburn @ West Virginia: Auburn has not played well at all this season but I think they turn it on in the second half with a big win in Morgantown.

10. Virginia @ Georgia Tech: I will be at this game getting my full tailgate on. The Yellow Jackets defense gets better every week and should dominate this game.

Top 10 Funniest Athlete Names

First off I’d like to say that this has probably been done several times already online, but I came across some funny names this morning while surfing the net, and I had the idea of creating a top ten list of funny sports star names. I could have made a top 50, or even a list of 100 names, but I narrowed it down to my personal favorites. Feel free to reply to this and leave some of your favorite names.

10. Dick Butkus: (Da Bears) When I was a kid I really thought his name was Dick Buttkiss. I’m sure he took shit from nearly all his opponents, but I’m also sure he probably leveled their ass two seconds later.

9. Skeets Quinlan: (RB LA Rams) According to, the word skeet means, “ To shoot your man juice up on your bitch.” Looks like Papa Quinlan forgot to skeet all over Mama Quinlan.

8. Dick Trickle: (Stock Car Racer) Not only does this name bring about crude imagery, it is also a perfect name for a redneck’s sport, I mean, game.

7. Ben Gay: (RB NFL) This guy got screwed twice with his name. On one hand he is named after a popular sports medicine cream, and on the other hand his name is just plain gay. I am a firm believer that names have a big influence on how that person’s life ends up. This guy has been bogged down in crime, and had a very shitty 1 season career after being dubbed “The Legend.”

6. Craphonso Thorpe: (WR Colts etc…) What a crappy name!

5. Natalie Titcum: (Olympic Softballer) I had to have a woman make the list, and this name is an Australian classic.

4. Harry Colon: (DB Detroit Lions) I’ve heard of a hairy ass, but a hairy colon? Ugh!

3. Rusty Kuntz: (MLB player) A little known fact: Rusty Kuntz was on the 1984 World Series winning Detroit Tigers team. He was also the inventor of the popular sex act, “The Rusty Trombone.”

2. Johnny Dickshot: (MLB Player) Good ole Johnny Dickshot was a quick coming outfielder for several teams from 1936-1945. In the bedroom Johnny was infamous for his Dickshots! I hear he used to hang out with the Quinlan family quite a bit.

1. Ron Tugnutt (NHL Goalie) and Lucious Pusey (NCAA Football): Okay, Okay, I know this is supposed to be a top 10 list, but I couldn’t decide between these 2 classic names. You know Ron Tugnutt heard a lot of smack talk about his name on the ice, but it seems Pusey let it get to him, as he changed his name to Lucious Seymour. He should have changed his name to Seymour Pusey. At least then he could have gotten in to porn after his illustrious career at Eastern Illinois.


Chinese Democracy - Guns N Roses
I like it! It's great to hear Axl Rose back with Guns N Roses and hearing his patented scream, or squeal if you want to call it, which has been gone for 17 fucking years. Can you believe that? It's been 17 long years since Guns N Roses put out their last album Use Your Illusions. Today they released their first single, Chinese Democracy, which is also the title of their new album which will be available for download and in Best Buy stores exclusively starting on November 25th.

So what do you guys think? I like it a lot. I use to jam GNR all the time when I was in middle school and high school and this song kind of brings back childhood memories. I haven't heard any rumors of them touring but if they do you know their concerts would sell out almost immediately. Hell, I'm almost 30 and I would wait in line to get tickets. Oh yeah, it's 2008! Wait on the computer I guess.