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Wednesday Morning Quarterback: Bowling, Mechanical Bulls, Standings and Predictions
May 7th, 2008 by Dan

You’ve probably heard the saying that hindsight is 20/20 on Monday morning, so just imagine how well I can call ’em two days later on Wednesday. That’s right, it’s time for Wednesday Morning Quarterback, your weekly sports round-up.

Free bowling last night at the lanes in Helen Newman. I’ll be the first guy to say that I’m not a great bowler at all. I oftentimes don’t even break 100 in my score and last night was no different. It took me a while to find my bowling groove as I threw countless gutter balls in my 81 point first game, but once I figured out the best way for me to throw the ball (cannon it down the lane to give it less time to veer), I started doing a little better, finishing off the night with 96. The highlight of the night had to be Steph’s tenth frame turkey. She’s a little better than I am…

Another little quickie, the crew at Noyes brought some Moe’s food and a mechanical bull to the outdoor basketball courts this past Monday. My sore thighs will tell you that I got on that sucker three times, with a top time of 32 seconds before being bucked off. The highlight was, without a doubt, Nolan’s bull ride where he almost fell off and held on to the bull for at least ten seconds at about a 90 degree angle to the saddle. If you want to see some great pics of the bull, check out Facebook, there are a bunch up of us.

Almost as if to keep me from looking bad in this column this week, the Marlins have regained the first place position they lost during their series against the L.A. Dodgers. Their 3-0 win against the Brew-Crew pushed them into a two-way tie for first with the Phillies who lost last night to the phenomenally good Arizona Diamondbacks. Any time that NL East guys go to play the D-Backs I cheer for the inevitable losses they will suffer, but I know that these losses will probably hit the Marlins at some point soon, which almost makes them not count. Let’s not bother with that for now though, I’m just happy to keep seeing the Marlins near the top.

The American League exploded a week ago, with an unprecedented three-way tie between the Orioles, Rays, and Red Sox. Far from being the uncompetitive, under 0.500 team they have been since their beginnings in 1998, the Tampa Bay Rays are a game up on the Yankees and 3.5 back on the Red Sox in second place in the AL East.

AL Central has a surprising first place team in the Minnesota Twins, topping both the White Sox and Indians. The good ‘ol Tigers are still 3.5 games back, but are actually approaching the 0.500 no thanks to their abysmal April. AL West has the Angels on top with the Athletics right behind, light years ahead of the Rangers and Mariners who are both a pathetic 7.5 games back.

The National League is looking a bit more like what you’d expect it to look like (aside from the Fish tied for first in NL East) with the Diamondbacks a whole three games up on the Dodgers in NL West and the Cardinals 2.5 above the Cubbies in NL Central.

My standings predictions based on my limited baseball knowledge:

– The Cards and Cubs will keep competing for top in NL Central with only moderate competition from the Brewers
– The NL East will stay in a state of flux, at least until the All-Star break. If the Marlins are still holding strong even halfway through the season (Anibal Sanchez will be back!), it could stay tight until the Fall
– AL East will proceed in a more predictable fashion. Even under different management, the Yankees won’t be content in third for too much longer and the Red Sox will remain as dominant as they typically are. Tampa Bay and Baltimore will have to work their butts off to fight for second, unless the Red Sox and Yankees knock each other down the standings. Of course, this is what happened to the O’s and Rays when they were tied for first. The Rays are very hot though, I’d put my money on them over the Orioles at least until the All-Star break.
– AL Central has the potential to be the most exciting division of them all. The Tigers have finally found their game, the White Sox will put up a good fight, Cleveland will continue to be a strong team this year, and the Royals are under new, stronger management. The worst standings in the division (Tigers) are only 3.5 games back. This will make for an interesting year for AL Central fans unless one of the teams awakens into a dominant force and starts to control the division.
– AL West has all but been decided. The Angels and A’s will battle it out, but the A’s haven’t been a post-season team in God knows how long. No matter how well their season finishes, they just always collapse in October. Still, it’s definitely an impressive team. Hope that the Mariners and Rangers put something together, for Christ’s sake, or this will be the most boring division in baseball…
– The Diamondbacks will continue to be the best team in baseball for the foreseeable future. NL West is theirs to rule over as they see fit. San Francisco’s team is garbage with a weak offense and bad pitching :cough: Barry Zito :cough:, San Diego’s not gonna put up a fight, and the Rockies were a flash in the pan last post-season. The Dodgers are the only competition for the D-Backs, making this truly a one-sided division.

EDIT: I just wanted to add in that Micah Owning’s (a Diamondback and starting pitcher against the Phillies tonight) pinch hit home run last Wednesday was pretty sweet. Before you say “big deal,” remember one thing: Micah Owning is a PITCHER. There are even rumblings of including him in this year’s Home Run Derby

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