Alex Massie

When Morons Attack

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It's the baseball play-offs. Hurrah. Let's Go Yankees! But that also means it's time for America's sportswriters to be even dumber than is customarily the case. For the sake of your sanity as well as for proper hilarity, trot on over to the lads at Fire Joe Morgan. Recent highlights include: how your mother probably has a better understanding of the value of "wins" than the average Hall of Fame voter, why yes of course you'd be better off packing your team with people who aren't very good at baseball come the play-offs because, hey, they're plucky! And gusty! and, today, yet another welcome takedown of America's worst gasbag, Mr William Plaschke who is still, mystifyingly, employed by The Los Angeles Times and who thinks Vladimir Guerrero has some 'splaining to do [bold, in what follows in Plaschke, regular type the FJM commentary]:

Guerrero just keeps smiling and swinging and disappearing.

This is just an odd way to talk about a guy who has carried the Angels' offense on his back for so many years now. I mean, come on. I know Plaschke's talking about the playoffs, but honestly: Vlad's EqAs with the Angels over the past few seasons are .327, .318 .335 and .334. He's a yearly MVP candidate. Now you're angry that he smiles too much in the playoffs? You're a pretty dicked up guy, Bill.

It happened again in the Angels' 4-0 loss to the Boston Red Sox on Wednesday in the first game of the division series.

Would like to take this opportunity to remind everyone that what Josh Beckett did two days ago was one of the best post-season pitching performances by anyone, ever. 19 straight retired. No extra-base hits. No walks. And that doesn't even begin to convey his utter dominance.

Guerrero hacked at 11 of 14 pitches and managed two singles. Even though that was half of his team's output against Josh Beckett, it wasn't enough to make a dent in Guerrero's October angst.

You're criticizing a guy for going 2-4 in the face of one of the all-time great playoff games by a pitcher. Think for just one goddamn second about that.

In four seasons since joining the Angels, he has dragged them into three postseasons, but stumbled once they arrived.

In 14 postseason games, he has one extra-base hit. He has driven in runs on exactly three hits. He has twice as many double-play grounders (two) as home runs (one).

He has a career .204 postseason average, more than 100 points lower than the October average of former Angels hero Troy Glaus, whose void he needs to replace for the Angels to return to that glory.

His playoff numbers are atrocious. They also represent 54 at bats. In his other 1701 at bats as an Angel, he has been splendiferous, wonderbarfuelous, and a whole bunch of other made-up words. Which do you trust more? Don't answer that. I know what you're going to say because you are an insane person. He is one gajillion times the player Troy Glaus is (unless we're talking about super-roided up Glaus).

Written byAlex Massie

Alex Massie is Scotland Editor of The Spectator. He also writes a column for The Times and is a regular contributor to the Scottish Daily Mail, The Scotsman and other publications.

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