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Saturday's struggles (September 16)
2006-09-16 04:00
by Bob Timmermann

Sixteen games scheduled for today. One team, the Mets, still sits one win or a Phillies loss, from clinching the NL East. And the Mariners bowed out of contention.

The Mets magic number is stuck at 1 after they lost to the Pirates while the Phillies beat the Astros. The Mets lead by 15 1/2 games in the Tug McGraw Division.

The Phillies (who trail San Diego by 1 1/2 games for the wild card) play first at 10:45 am PT in Houston (Cole Hamels vs. Jason Hirsh). The Mets play at Pittsburgh at 4:05 pm PT (Orlando Hernandez vs. Tom Gorzelanny). Note to Mets fans: Gorzelanny is a lefty.

St. Louis leads the Chick Hafey divison by 5 1/2 games over the Reds and the magic number is 11. The Cardinals are at home to play San Francisco at 1:05 pm PT (Matt Morris vs. Chris Carpenter). This game will mark Morris's first game in St. Louis as an opposing player. The Giants trail the Padres by 2 1/2 games for the wild card and the Dodgers by four in the West.

The Buddy Carlyle Division showdown is the last game of the day. The Dodgers, ahead of San Diego by 1 1/2, are at home to play their neighbors to the south at 7:10 pm PT (Woody Williams vs. Chad Billingsley). The Dodgers have a magic number of 15.

The NL wild card race, aka the Benito Santiago Division, also has Florida back in the mix as the Marlins are just 2 1/2 games behind the Padres now. The Marlins play at Atlanta at 4:05 pm PT (Anibal Sanchez vs. John Smoltz).

In the American League, the Yankees, leaders of the Wilcy Moore division by 11 1/2 games over the Red Sox, have a magic number of 6 and play Boston in a day-night doubleheader thingee where two games are played on the same play at Yankee Stadium. The first game is scheduled to go off at 10:20 am PT (Josh Beckett vs. Chien-Ming Wang). Game two should start at 5:05 pm PT (Julian Tavarez vs. Randy Johnson).

Detroit leads the Rusty Kuntz by two games over the Twins and four games over the White Sox. Detroit took advantage of a woeful Orioles pitching staff and picked up 17 runs. The Tigers host the Orioles again at 4:05 pm PT (Kris Benson vs. Nate Robertson). The Twins will play at Cleveland at the same time (Carlos Silva vs. C.C. Sabathia). The Twins still hold on to the wild card spot.

The White Sox will be playing at the home of the leaders of the Damon Mashore division, Oakland, at 1:05 pm PT (Javier Vazquez vs. Barry Zito). The Athletics lead the Angels by five games and have a magic number of 11. The Angels are at Texas at 5:05 pm PT (John Lackey vs. Adam Eaton).

They will also play (weather permitting):
Cincinnati at Chicago - Drunken frat boys debate whether or not to go to this game or go see Notre Dame play.
Tampa Bay at Toronto - Since July 1, the Devil Rays have won two road games.
Milwaukee at Washington - Chances are, some guy named Cordero will pitch in this one.
Seattle at Kansas City - The Royals missed a chance to get out of the AL cellar last night.
Colorado at Arizona - Coincidentally, Arizona State plays at Colorado the same day. This game will likely be viewed by fewer drunken frat boys.

2006-09-16 05:21:43
1.   Sam DC
"thingee" really adds to the point, I'd say.
2006-09-16 07:29:13
2.   Ken Arneson
Damon Mashore Division? many players played for all four teams in the AL West? Mark McLemore comes to mind.
2006-09-16 07:50:59
3.   Bob Timmermann
It's not playing for all four teams in the division. It's just playing for all the contending teams. In cases where that's a large group, I limited it to players who played just for the teams in question.

In addition to McLemore, Gene Nelson also pulled off the AL West foursome, although he stopped playing before it existed in its present form.

2006-09-16 09:08:30
4.   Greg Brock
It's always nice to see Rusty Kuntz get a mention. Great job, Mr. Timmermann
2006-09-16 11:03:38
5.   capdodger
Great names!!

But then I liked the old Adams, Patrick, Smythe, and Norris Divisions...

2006-09-16 11:28:21
6.   das411
How in the world did that Chick Hafey get into the Hall of Fame??? Maybe Bill Simmons has a point with that pyramid scheme of his...

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