The Spectacle Blog

Baseball’s Wild Nights

By on 10.6.15 | 7:29AM

Major League Baseball’s abbreviated wildcard round gets under way this evening when the Houston Astros come to the Bronx to play the New York Yankees (known to some as The Evil Empire). The Chicago Cubs travel to Pittsburgh to strap on the Pirates Wednesday. Both games are scheduled to start at 8:08. The winners of these two games move on to the league Division Series that begin Friday.

Baseball’s new wildcard format, which calls for a single game to sort the two non-division winners with the highest won-lost percentages in both Major Leagues, is peculiarly unsuited to the Grand Old Game. A team that has achieved over a 162-game season should not be sent home as the result of losing one of one.

Baseball is not a one-game game. Too much depends on how good a night teams’ pitchers are having in a single game. The longer series tell the story of which team is superior (though even these are not foolproof — look at the ’69 Mets or the ’88 Dodgers). Even the College World Series is double elimination.

Yankees Pitcher C.C. Sabathia to Miss Post-Season to Enter Alcohol Rehab

By on 10.5.15 | 8:03PM



I was saddened to read that New York Yankees pitcher C.C. Sabathia would be entering alcohol rehab and miss the post-season.

Obviously both Sabathia and the club must have determined that his condition was serious enough to warrant missing the playoffs. The Yankees don't have a very deep starting rotation. After Masahiro Tanaka (who will start tomorrow night's AL Wild Card game against the Astros) you've got Michael Pineda, Ivan Nova, Adam Warren and rookie Luis Severino. You never know what you're going to get with any of them. I suppose you could put Nathan Eovaldi into the mix, but he's been having elbow problems and hasn't pitched in a month. The Yankees do have an outstanding bullpen with Dellin Bettances and Andrew Miller, but it does help if your starting pitching can go deep. (Although the same could be said of the Kansas City Royals as well).

My 2015 MLB Post-Season Predictions

By on 10.5.15 | 4:41PM

The 2015 MLB post-season begins tomorrow night with the AL Wild Card game between the Houston Astros and the New York Yankees. Here are my predictions for that game and the rest of the 2015 post-season


AL Wild Card Game - Houston Astros vs. New York Yankees

Winner: New York Yankees


American League Division Series #1 (Best 3 out of 5): New York Yankees vs. Kansas City Royals

Winner: Yankees in four


American League Division Series #2 (Best 3 out of 5): Texas Rangers vs. Toronto Blue Jays

Winner: Rangers in five


American League Championship Series (Best 4 out of 7): New York Yankees vs. Texas Rangers

Winner: Rangers in six

ALCS MVP: Adrian Beltre, Texas Rangers



NL Wild Card Game - Chicago Cubs vs. Pittsburgh Pirates

Winner: Chicago Cubs


When Hillary Clinton is President, She’ll Use Her Pen and Phone…On Your Guns

By on 10.5.15 | 4:31PM

Hillary Clinton is desperate to get on the gun-grabbing bandwagon because its the only place she can feel truly to the left of Bernie Sanders (who has expressed support for gun rights in the past), for the moment anyway.

Aaron talked about it this morning, but suffice it to say, Hillary has been over herself all weekend, trying to prove to progressive that once she's fully minted in the position of Commander in Chief, her top priority will be grabbing the nation's guns and hosting a mass meltdown on the White House lawn. And if Congress won't help her because they're too far into the pockets of the NRA, well, she'll use her pen and her phone, and she'll take those guns by force, and by executive order

The proposal most likely to generate controversy is using executive action to close the so-called gun show loophole, if efforts to pass new measures in Congress do not succeed, according to a campaign aide to Mrs. Clinton, who asked for anonymity to lay out the plans before the candidate does…

Now That The Washington Nationals Have Fired Matt Williams as Manager, They Should Also Fire GM Mike Rizzo

By on 10.5.15 | 3:13PM

To the surprise of no one, the Washington Nationals have fired manager Matt Williams.

Widely expected not only to run away with the NL East, but a favorite to win the World Series, the Nationals went 83-79 in 2015 finishing 7 games back of the New York Mets.

After winning NL Manager of the Year in 2014, Williams began to come under fire for his use of the bullpen in the 2014 NLDS against the San Francisco Giants. He did not learn from those mistakes this season, was ineffective in communicating with his players and did not see reliever Jonathan Papelbon try to choke likely NL MVP Bryce Harper in the dugout just over a week ago.

McCarthy and Bush Tagged by Bad Quotes or Bad Journalism?

By on 10.5.15 | 1:56PM

Friday, everyone from the New Yorker to the White House was in a tizzy over comments Jeb Bush made about the Oregon community college shooting at a campaign event. Apparently, according to reporter Ryan Lizza, who was at the event, Jeb Bush . took a casual moment away from his campaign speech to address the tragic event with the words, "stuff happens."

Carly Fiorina Wastes Hillary Clinton in NBC News Iowa Poll

By on 10.5.15 | 1:03PM

This morning, Hillary Clinton asked reporters "who can be more of an outsider than a woman President?"

Apparently, voters agree, at least in Iowa. Just not with Hillary on which woman that is, exactly. Today's NBC News/WSJ/Marist poll shows Carly Fiorina . leading Hillary Clinton among likely voters in Iowa by a striking fourteen points

That bears strongly for Carly even amongst her Republican peers. A showing against Clinton makes her an asset for a final ticket even if her uptick fades. She's showing signs of staying in the race, and as a formidable opponent. 

Hillary Takes Shot at Bernie With Gun Control Proposals

By on 10.5.15 | 12:35PM

Hillary Clinton is expected to unveil a four point gun control plan today in New Hampshire. The proposals include a) take executive action if Congress fails to close the gun show and Internet sales loophole b) tighten existing background checks c) Bar domestic abusers from buying and possessing firearms and d) remove liability protection from gun manufacturers.

The final proposal is a specific dig at Bernie Sanders as he voted in favor of the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act in 2005 which gave gun manufacturers immunity from liability while then Senator Clinton voted against the bill.

Red Sox Bid Orsillo Adieu

By on 10.4.15 | 7:02PM

Although most of my attention was focused on the Angels-Rangers game, I did check into the Red Sox-Indians to hear Don Orsillo and Jerry Remy broadcast together for the last time. 

After Mookie Betts grounded out for the final out of the game (the Sox lost 3-1), the Red Sox came out of the dugout en masse to salute Orsillo who replied by putting his hand over his heart. He signed off by saying, "Don Orsillo rounding third and heading home." Meanwhile, RemDawg was too choked up to speak.

I don't understand why the Red Sox saw fit to break up RemDawg and Orsillo. Yes, the ratings were down. That's because the team sucked for most of the year. That's not the announcing team's fault. If anything, they made things bearable. They focused on the game, but gave us some laughs and put some smiles on our faces. What's wrong with that?