Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Opening Day

Is it bad that after only 3.5 innings of real, live baseball in 2006, I was already hoping for a rainout?

Alright, so perhaps that's a BIT of an exaggeration, but after Scott Rolen knocked a grand slam out of the park to put the Cardinals up 10-0 on the Phillies in the home opener yesterday, I started to wonder if maybe it wouldn't be better to hope for a rainout before the end of the fifth so they'd have to play the game over again today. It was not to be, and the Cardinals won 13-5.

On the plus side though, it was baseball, and it counted, and it felt good. I consumed meats off the grill, drank beers in the parking lot, and watched the game with 44,000+ other fans. Despite the rain and the chill, it was still a good time.

Of course, leave it to the Phillies to destroy the moment by getting crushed so early. I mean seriously, it took them less than an hour to ruin what would otherwise have been the perfect day. In that sense, Opening Day '06 was sort of a microcosm of what the Phillies have been like the last few years: lots of talent, but no sense of the moment. When the chips are down and you absolutely, positively, NEED to have a win, the Phillies are guaranteed to lose.

But hey, Jimmy Rollins DID extend to his hitting streak to 37 games in the bottom of the 8th, and the place went nuts. There's always SOME reason to stick around until the bitter end.


LastBestAngryMan said...

You know, it was awfully impressive for Jimmy Rollins to end last season with a 36-game hitting streak. And it'd be just as impressive to start this one with a 20-game hitting streak? And while I know that, officially, he'd then hold a hitting streak record, are we really going to keep pretending that it's anywhere near as impressive as DiMaggio's 56-game hitting streak in the middle of the '41 season? I'm certainly no big defender of the Yankees or DiMaggio's legacy (anyone who knows me knows that) but aren't such things as winning streaks and hitting streaks really single-season records? A couple of years ago, when the Patriots were threaning the 'consecutive games won' streak of the '72 Dolphins I couldn't give half a rat's ass about it because the streak stretched across two seasons.

Now let me say again; Rollins is a fine player, quite possibly the best all-around SS in the NL right now and one of the best in MLB. Starting this season by hitting in 20 consecutive games would be a fabulous achievement in and of itself- as was the 36 game hitting streak of last season. But I keep wondering if they really add up to "one" streak.

Julie said...

I have also wrestled with the question of whether Rollins' possible hitting streak of 56 games would be better, worse, or the same as DiMaggio's. Stats are mathmatical, and therefore, they usually stand on their own. But recently, with talk of putting an asterisk next to Bonds' name for steroids and Rollins' possible hitting streak over two seasons instead of one, fans have come to question the meaning of the stats and records and wonder what does it all mean.

This is the best way I have come up to mathematically solve the Rollins' question: let's hypothesize that in this crazy world, Rollins continues his hitting streak throughout the 2006-2007 season and gets 162 hits for 162 games (we all know the Phillies are not making the playoffs, so let's not go there even in a hypothetical), then what is the final talley? Is it 162 or 198 (162+36)? If you can give a definite answer to that question, then I think you know your answer to the 36 and 20 question posed above.

My answer is 198, so I am of the opinion that he should be allowed to "break" DiMaggio's record.