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Saturday's samplings (September 9)
2006-09-09 04:00
by Bob Timmermann

A full day of action starts at 10:10 am PT and the last game doesn't get underway until 7:05 pm PT.

Two divisional leaders meet to start the day in the early game. The NL West leading Dodgers will be at Shea Stadium to take on the Mets as Greg Maddux faces Orlando Hernandez. Expect to hear the word "savvy" a lot. The Mets failed to come closer to clinching the East after losing to the Dodgers Friday night while the Phillies won. The Mets lead their division by 15 1/2 games with a magic number of 7. The Dodgers lead the Padres by 1 1/2 games with a magic number of 21.

The Central leading Cardinals also failed to get any closer to clinching after losing in Arizona while second place Cincinnati won. The Cardinals lead is now 5 1/2 games over the Reds and 6 over Houston. St. Louis has a magic number of 17. The Cardinals play at Arizona at 6:40 pm PT (Jason Marquis vs. Brandon Webb).

The wild card race involves five teams, more or less. The Padres lead the Phillies by 1 1/2 games, the Giants by 2 1/2, and the Marlins and Reds by 3 1/2. This leads to the question, who will the only man to play all for all five of those franchises, root for? Conveniently, four of the five teams are matched up against each other Saturday. San Diego is at San Francisco at 1:05 pm PT (David Wells vs. Jason Schmidt). Philadelphia will be at Florida at 3:05 pm PT (Brett Myers vs. Brian Moehler), and Cincinnati draws the Pirates at home at 3:10 pm PT (Paul Maholm vs. Aaron Harang).

In the American League, there is a lot of bunching up. The team with the best record, Central-leading Detroit, leads the wild card team, Minnesota by four games. East-leading New York is just 1 1/2 games behind Detroit. West-leading Oakland has the same record as Minnesota. Chicago is just 1/2 game in back of Minnesota.

The Yankees, leading Boston by nine games with a magic number of 14, play first at 1:35 in Baltimore (Chien-Ming Wang vs. Adam Loewen). An Orioles loss eliminates them from playoff contention if both Minnesota and Chicago win as well.

The White Sox are the next team up at 4:05 pm PT. The Indians and White Sox took turns blowing ninth inning leads Friday. Since the White Sox were the home team, they won. Tonight, it will be Fausto Carmona against Jon Garland.

Detroit will be at Minnesota at 4:10 pm PT. The Tigers hope to increase their four game lead in the Central and lower their magic number of 18. Nate Robertson will face Boof Bonser.

Oakland, leading the Angels by 5 1/2 games, plays at Tampa Bay at 4:15 pm PT (Esteban Loaiza vs. J.P. Howell). The Angels play host to Toronto in the final game of the day at 7:05 pm PT (Gustavo Chacin vs. Kelvim Escobar). The Angels are also 5 1/2 games in back of Minnesota for the wild card and have three games left with Chicago, although none with Minnesota.

They will also play:
Chicago at Atlanta - Atlanta's streak of division titles could end Sunday. The Cubs could be completely eliminated by Sunday.
Houston at Milwaukee - If the Astros can sweep the Brewers, they could become relevant. But they probably won't.
Kansas City at Boston - Terry Francona is asking Buddy Bell for advice on how to handle a struggling bullpen
Washington at Colorado - Last night, these teams combined for 19 runs, 22 hits, 8 errors, 3 blown saves, and 11 walks.
Texas at Seattle - Richie Sexson (5) is just one behind Travis Hafner (6) in the grand slam home run chase.

2006-09-09 07:37:29
1.   Eric Enders
Are we 100% certain the Dodger game is at 10:10? The reason I ask is because the programming guide in my DVR box is telling me it's on at 4:00 PT., meanwhile, has the 10:10 time.

The box is also telling me there's no Saturday baseball at all on big FOX today -- presumably because of college football? Does that mean the Dodger game won't be televised anywhere at all, or are the blackout restrictions lifted when big FOX opts not to show any games?

2006-09-09 07:48:12
2.   Travis
The Dodger game is on at 10:10 and should be available on Extra Innings (channel 1) and MLB.TV. With no FOX game last week, however, they forgot to turn off the blackout restrictions on MLB.TV until late in the game.
2006-09-09 07:56:19
3.   Sam DC
From what I understand, the CIA is already shipping copies of that Nats/Roxgame overseas for use under the new Alternative Interrogation guidelines. Blackwater USA is also interested in the tape for use in US corporate security matters. Apparently, 50 year old American executives can be brought to mewling shrieks in a matter of minutes with that footage. And it leaves no marks.
2006-09-09 08:28:15
4.   Greg Brock
3 Sorry Sam, but I think McCain's crusade against waterboarding and torture contains a provision regarding Rox/Nats games.

Lousy human rights.

2006-09-09 09:33:34
5.   Bob Timmermann
For the record, I use the times listed on
2006-09-09 11:06:52
6.   Linkmeister
The Dodgers game is on FSNPT out here. After the ESPN blackout the other night, I'm pleased.
2006-09-09 18:20:57
7.   das411
Benito for President(e)!!!

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