It's a Red Sox v Yankee weekend
Let's get it on
Let's get it on
Big weekend ahead. The two power-houses of the AL East go head to head for the first time this year. That's New York and Boston, by the by. As I said before, if any upstart Blue Jay fan gets all 'up in your face' about the Blue Jays chances, just giggle and mutter 'Tomo Ohka' and that should end any discussion on the matter.
If this was a heavyweight boxing match then this weekends showdown between the Sox and Yanks would be the first few seconds of the first round. The two opponents would be jabbing at each other trying to figure out the others game plan. The 'card' for the weekend?
Friday night 7:05 US time 12:05 am Irish time
NYY: Pettitte (1-0, 1.50 ERA)
BOS: Schilling (2-1, 2.84 ERA)
Saturday 3:35pm US time 8:35 in the evening Irish time
NYY: Karstens (0-0, 0.00 ERA)
BOS: Beckett (3-0, 1.50 ERA)
Sunday 8:05 US time - 1:05 am Irish time (ouch!)
NYY: Wright (1-0, 5.40 ERA)
BOS: Matsuzaka (1-2, 2.70 ERA)
Again, it is early days yet, but it will be very interesting to see how the games pan-out. You have to think the Red Sox have the advantage with the way the pitching will work out for the weekend. Pettite and Schilling are a wash but Beckett and Matsuzaka are streets ahead of their respective rivals. Karstens is coming off injury whilst Wright is a rookie with a 5.40 era going into hostile Fenway park to pitch to Big Pappi and Manny. And yet still the major US sports media outlets all have the Yankees as the team to beat in the AL East.
On that note, I would love to know who compiles the odds for Paddy Powers, the biggest Irish bookmakers. Taking a step back for a second, if you are reading this in the States, yes, there are walk in shops, or 'bookies' that you can stroll into in Dublin and place a bet on pretty much any sporting event in the universe. Admittedly, we can't buy guns in Ireland, however, we can place a considered wager as an adult in a regulated, controlled environment, for entertainment. I believe it's the other way round in the States?
I digress. So, who on earth is working in Paddy Power and placing the Red Sox at, wait for it, NINE to one to win the World Series? This would not be as glaring a transgression if it were not for where they have some of the other teams. Take Anaheim for example. Are Paddy Powers actually watching any of the games? Anaheim are experiencing an offensive drought that would make the Kansas Royals of last season shudder. They have scored five runs in their last three games!! Five runs in three games! Yet, the rocket scientist who compiles Paddy Powers odds actually moved them in from 12-1 to 9-1. Amazing.
Meanwhile, the Yankees are still favourites, even though their rotation is an absolute shambles. Admittedly they are still scoring runs, however it is pitching, pitching and more pitching that gets you through the playoffs, everyone knows that.
This could all change on the weekend naturally. Maybe the Yanks will take 2 out of 3 to justify their tag as early favourites. Maybe Boston will take 2 or 3 and that guy in Paddy Powers will wake up to the sound of alarms blaring as punters lump in heavily on the ridiculous value that is 9-1.
The latter part of this piece was all relevant only because you can place a wager in a bookmaker and sit back and enjoy the game as an adult. We can do that here in Ireland, did I mention that?
Someone needs to explain to me why you can buy an automatic weapon over the counter in the States but you can't place a bet on a professional sporting event. I am sitting here shaking my head and I need clarification.