Well, THIS is going to be a fun post!
While I am starting to write this on Saturday afternoon, the 19th of July, it will not be published until mid to late Sunday or even Monday. Pay no attention to the 'startup' date and time shown when it actually does publish, OK? I'll type in the correct dates and times as I go, including those when I finally hit the "publish post" button.
[I am not nearly as computer-illiterate as I was prior to September of last year, but I still am not at all familiar with HTML, for one example, or how to add pictures or photographs to my site, for another. (Not that I have any to add or think that they might enhance a particular post, necessarily, I would just like to have the knowledge to do it!)
The one thing that continues to 'frost me' is that, when I hit the "pp" button, it is usually nowhere near the time that it was when I began writing it! Ordinarily that would not concern me, but this time it does, and so you will be seeing periodic updates in re dates and times in this post.]
OK. Let's start with Patrick, the inveterate tomahawk chopper. I must confess, Patrick, that I have not been following your team nearly as much as I did in years past. I do not have the 'vitriosity' (don't think that's a good word, but I like the possibility). Your team, as of this writing (4:12pm Houston time on Saturday), is 6.5 games out of first place in the National League's Eastern division. The poor Nationals are 17 games back, bless their hearts, and truly none of your concern.
Your team has now won three in a row. You're not that far back. Looks like kind of a tight division, actually -- at least for the top four teams. Certainly worth your continuing interest. Keep that tomahawk sharpened!
Let's move on. The only person that I know who is a Boston Red Sox 'fan' is DSL, my dreaded son-in-law. You should keep in mind that his rabid fan-ness only comes out during the World Series. Otherwise, it lies fairly dormant.
The Tampa Bay team, even tho he would never on this earth admit it, has driven his team to utter distraction! The two have been jockeying for first place for quite a while now. For one who normally has no interest whatsoever in the American League, I must say that this race has been kind of fun to watch.
Would it be sacrilegious of me to add that I much preferred to see the Yankees more at the bottom of that division rather than at the center? Probably. However, consider it added.
The Cubs? What can I say about the Cubbies other than that their record speaks for itself?!? To my utter amazement, the Astros beat the Cubs last night by one run -- that scored in the bottom of the 9th. It was a well-pitched and defensed game. The fact that the Astros' defense showed up should have been of no surprise to anyone who follows baseball, but the well-pitched game?? Surprising. In addition to the good pitching (which has been sporadic, at best), a couple of Astros' hitters who have been noticeably absent of late decided to make their appearance.
There is an Astros' fan in Houston that I would like to introduce you to. His name is Gerald Treece. He is a noted professor at the South Texas College of Law. (You will probably hear his name mentioned by me a time or two in subsequent posts on other subjects.)
Just this morning I heard him say on television, and I quote, "We're a second half team, and we began our real season last night. You Cubs are in big trouble."
I realize that the vast majority of you who are reading this have never even heard of Gerald Treece. He is perhaps ten years younger than I and is the most consistent Astros' fan that I am personally aware of.
For those of you who do not know my background as it pertains to being an Astros' fan, you should probably read this post.
[A 'by the way' here. The thermostat now reads 89. I don't think that's right. It really doesn't feel that hot in here to me. I'm putting off calling ARS again for a while. I think that I am probably 'in the market' for a new thermostat, what do you think?]
Back to Gerald Treece. He's a 'regular' on Channel 11, local television, on Saturday mornings around 8:45 for at least five minutes. He gives a legal opinion on the 'topic of the day' and then the phone lines open for callers' questions. It's a good show, and I try not to miss it.
Almost always, however, he concludes with, "Go, Astros!" This morning's signoff was just a touch different, and you have it above.
[It's going on 3am Sunday. I went to bed really early last night, I guess around 9:00. I tossed and turned, then tossed and turned some more. It was hot in here. I woke up freezing. The AC had decided to come on again. Anyway, I'm up for a little bit.]
The Braves lost last night, but so did the first place team in their division, so they're still 6.5 games back. Tampa Bay won and the Sox lost, so there's a game separation there.
As far as the Astros and Cubs go, we won again! The Cubs' pitcher, Carlos Zambrano, scored their only run as he hit a solo homer to right field. I kept looking for Wandy Rodriguez, our pitcher, to implode, but he didn't. Stayed solid through six and 2/3 innings. He was backed up by solid defense and timely hitting. My goodness! Now we're 'only' 11 games back. (Almost laughable, but not quite.)
[Now going on 5am. I'm shortly fixin' to hit the pillow again, but just a couple of thoughts before I do.]
The Astros played 52 games before the All-Star break on the road, did you know that? Was that the highest figure of 'on the road' games played before the break in the majors this year? I don't know, and I'm not going to look it up. You can, if you want to. Of our remaining games, there are only 29 on the road.
Another thing about the Astros' upcoming schedule intrigues me. We are about to play a bunch of games against our Central division foes. That should separate the wheat from the chaff!
While the Astros are certainly not in any sort of contention for 1st place, three teams are. The Cardinals continue to hang in there, and the Brewers are a force to be reckoned with (particularly in light of their recent acquisition).
Well, we just got our you-know-whats beat by the Cubs. Our third shutout of the year, I think. Atlanta's losing, Tampa Bay's being outscored, and Boston doesn't play until tonight. That's it for baseball today. It's going on 4pm Sunday afternoon, and I'm going to hit the "publish post" button before this machine melts. It's 90 degrees in here and rising.
PS. Nothing's melted yet. It's after 5:00 now, and will start cooling off shortly. (Actually, I think it's cooler outside than in here!) Just have a couple of things to add. Patrick, I hadn't realized that you guys were playing at home against the Nationals. A real bummer! What else? Oh, yeah! The Brewers made another acquisition today. They're serious! Chuck? Your team's schedule is no piece of cake in the next few weeks. Good luck, and fasten your seat belt!
PPS. Going on 4am Monday morning. Slept quite pleasantly last night with the window open and fan blowing in the bedroom. AC now completely nonexistent. Will have ARS over later today. The Red Sox lost again, so that division's top two are still the same. While Tampa Bay and Boston have both been busy losing, the Yankees have won three in a row and are now only 4.5 games back.