Cleveland leads ALCS 3-1: Since a team can no longer merely win anything but has to overcome decades of baggage that has little to do with the players who are actually, you know, playing and winning the games, get ready for plenty about The Curse of Rocky Colavito and Cleveland's tragical sports history over the next 48 hours.
Short synopsis: Sudden Sam McDowell loses his fastball in the bottom of a whiskey bottle, the Cuyahoga River catches fire, Ten Cent Beer Night, Red Right 88, John Elway, Earnest Byner, Craig Ehlo, Elway (again), Major League II gets greenlighted, that rotten Art Modell moves the real Browns to Baltimore, Jose Mesa blows the save in Game 7 of the '97 Series and the faux Browns draft Tim Couch when they could have had Donovan McNabb. Granted, everything looks bad if you remember it.
As far as the game goes, Ibid., see yesterday's post: The bottom-third boys, Casey Blake and Franklin Gutierrez, got the first couple hits in the seven-run fifth inning. Tim Wakefield's knuckleball flattened out -- kind of like the landscape shortly after you cross the border from Colorado ace Jeff Francis' native British Columbia into Alberta -- and that was that.
It's just as well the Red Sox are going out in Game 6 on Saturday. Any team that's so well-known that Mike O'Malley from Yes, Dear (like you never watched it) can get himself a gig for the playoffs as a celebrity blogger has clearly been tainting our collective unconscious for far, far too long.
(Remember who half-jokingly called a Cleveland-Colorado World Series matchup before the first round was even over. That was totally dumb luck. Now please don't let the Red Sox come back.)
Literary event listings: Feb. 20–26, 2017
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