I cringed when Dan's column appeared yesterday, worried that it portended three (or four) straight overwrought pieces on the Yankees-Red Sox series this week.
Thankfully, he didn't write today (maybe there is a God), thus sparing all of us from the episodic narcolepsy his work brings on.
Yesterdays' column was his usual pre-series rundown of all the mindless stats comparing the two teams. Simply mind-numbing.
Just as predictably, he dragged out all the side stories between the teams over the past few years, plus a few that had nothing to do with the rivalry.
Pursuant to the latter, for example, he recalled "Theo Epstein's Machiavellian power play," as if Theo sat around conjuring up ways to trick John Henry into handing his the reins to the ballclub ("I bet if I quit my job, John Henry would have to make me the GM. Wouldn't that be clever? ... [A few months later] ... Oh wait, I already was the GM. Oops!") Is Shaughnessy really Geraldo Rivera with makeup and a perm?
And there was the obligatory discussion of Johnny Damon's departure: "Damon last winter became ... the latest in a century-long line of Red Sox stars who went to New York searching for fame, fortune, and a championship ring." Somehow it escapes The CHB that Damon already had all of that.
It's getting harder and harder to stick up for the guy.
Fuzzy math watch: "New York's lineup is simply spectacular (Bernie Williams batting ninth?)" Over the past two seasons (161 games, 545 at-bats) Williams is hitting a collective .246 with 13 homeruns and an OBP of .317. Yeah, he's another Babe Ruth.) On April 1 last year, The CHB called Williams "decaying," adding, "We expect poor Bernie to calcify in mid-stride sometime this season, much like Artis Gilmore in his final days." Wonder what changed?
Spoke-too-soon watch: "The Red Sox, meanwhile, appear vulnerable, never more than when Josh Bard tries to catch Tim Wakefield's knuckler, as he will tonight." Bard was traded before the game for Doug Mirabelli, who fielded the position flawlessly last night.