Happy Thursday everyone, here's my Top 5 for October 4, 2012 from Len Berman at www.ThatsSports.com.
1. Quick Hits
- Oakland completes an amazing comeback and wins the AL West. The Yankees win the AL East.
- Detroit's Miguel Cabrera is the first the Triple Crown in 45 years. He hit .330 with 44 homers and 139 RBIs, leading the American League in all three categories.
- A heartbreaking tweet from A's reliever Pat Neshek: "Please pray for my family. Tonight my wife and I lost our first and only son 23 hours after he was born with no explanation."
- The new NBA anti-flopping rule will start with an after-the-game warning, and then escalating fines starting at 5,000. The players union is challenging it.
- With the addition of 38-year-old Rasheed Wallace, the average age of the Knicks is nearly 33, the oldest in NBA history.
2. The Second Season
It's a whole new ballgame. How's that for a cliche? Tomorrow night there will be one game playoffs in both leagues. Who figured that the two-time American League champion Texas Rangers would be caught by the payroll impaired Oakland A's? Who had the defending world champs St. Louis in the National League wild card playoff game? And I'll bet nobody had the Baltimore Orioles playing tomorrow night. And I saved a slew of preseason predictions. The most common prediction had the Phillies meeting the Angels in the World Series. Need I tell you both of those teams are done for the year. I know the conventional wisdom says that the NFL has buried Major League Baseball. Not in my mind. I can't wait to see how this postseason plays out. Now about that A's/Nats World Series?
3. The Triple Crown
I think people should be making more of a fuss over the Tigers Miguel Cabrera, baseball's first Triple Crown winner since 1967. Some legendary names have done it. Among them, Ty Cobb, Rogers Hornsby, Lou Gehrig, Joe Medwick, Ted Williams, Mickey Mantle, Frank Robinson and the last one to do it Carl Yastrzemski. How come more hasn't been made of his quest? He's not "legendary" enough? He's had drinking problems? Whatever the reason it's not fair. And it certainly isn't right that some sportswriters aren't sure he should win the American League MVP award. Are you kidding?
4. Let Teddy Win
The long national nightmare is over. Teddy Roosevelt has finally won the president's race at a Washington Nationals game. He had lost every race for seven years. And finally, at the last game of the regular season, Teddy breaks into the win column. I guess the web site "Let Teddy Win" can now find something else useful to do.
5. The Time Machine
I'm sure you'll immediately pick up on the irony. In 1955 the seventh game of the World Series was played on this date. Half a century later, they've yet to begin the postseason. Were the good old days really good? Or do they just seem that way thanks to the memories and the warm black and white images of the Boys of Summer? And while you're pondering that, how will things will be different a half century from now? The December Classic?
Happy Birthday: Giants and Redskins linebacking great Sam Huff. 78.
Bonus Birthday: Actress Susan Sarandon. 66.
Today in Sports: Da Bums win their one and only World Series while playing in Brooklyn. 1955.
Bonus Event: The Soviets launch Sputnik, the first man-made satellite to orbit the Earth. 1957.
Hey Brooklyn! I'll be at Boulevard Books and Cafe this evening at 7:00 p.m. signing copies of my new book. They're located at 7518 13th Avenue.
For night owls, I'll be on Jim Bohannon's national radio show tonight at 11 p.m. Eastern. Check local listings.
To sign up for Len's free daily Top 5 email click here.
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