George Hale’s Perspective on Sports

Updated 2 years ago

HOPE SPRINGS ETERNAL.AND SINCE IT’S SPRING, GEORGE HALE IS *HOPING* FOR THE RED SOX TO RULE THE ROOST, BUT ISN’T COUNTING ON IT. WELCOME BACK, GEORGE.IT’S NICE TO BE BACK WITH YOU AFTER MY ANNUAL WINTER BREAK.SOME EARLY SEASON BASEBALL FEVER BROKE OUT WITH THE UNSEASONABLE WEATHER OF LAST WEEK.THIS IS THE TIME OF YEAR I’M USUALLY ALL FIRED UP FOR THE RED SOX BASEBALL SEASON TO BEGIN.TO BE COMPLETELY HONEST THE TASTE IN MY MOUTH OF THE COLLAPSE OF LAST SEPTEMBER IS STILL THERE.I’M GETTING BETTER BUT THE MEMORY OF THE TALENT LADEN 2011 SOX TEAM FALLING FROM GRACE HAS BEEN HARD TO GET RID OF.WITH THE COMING OF SPRING AND THE ADDITION OF BOBBY VALENTINE HOPE BEGINS AGAIN BUT WITH A LOT OF SKEPTICISM THROWN IN.LAST YEAR AT THIS TIME VARIOUS SPORTS REPORTERS WERE PREDICTING CLOSE TO 100 WINS FOR THE POWERHOUSE CLUB.ONLY THE VERY BRAVE WOULD VENTURE THAT KIND OF GUESS THIS SEASON.I THINK THE REAL QUESTION IS WHETHER OR NOT RED SOX NATION IS HEADING TO HEARTBREAK AND DISAPPOINTMENT AGAIN.NEW MANAGER VALENTINE BELIEVES THE RED SOX WILL RETURN TO OCTOBER BASEBALL THIS SEASON. WHAT ELSE COULD HE POSSIBLY SAY?THE NEW SKIPPER SAID THIS WEEK HE EXPECTS TO MAKE THE PLAYOFFS.CONSIDERING THAT BOSTON HAS NOT MADE THE POST-SEASON FOR TWO YEARS THAT IS A BOLD PREDICTION.SO WITH THAT IN MIND I SAT DOWN THIS WEEK WITH MY ANNUAL PRE-SEASON PICKS IN THE DIVISION.I DO SO WITH THE FULL KNOWLEDGE I HAVE BEEN WRONG FOR THE PAST TWO SEASONS.LET’S START WITH THE FACT THAT MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL WILL GO TO A NEW PLAYOFF SYSTEM THAT HAS THE NON-DIVISION WINNING TEAMS BATTLE FOR A WILD-CARD SLOT.YOU MAY OR MAY NOT LIKE THAT BUT IT’S WHAT IS GOING TO BE THE RULE.SO NOW TEAMS LIKE BALTIMORE AND TORONTO ARE IN THE MIX.LET’S GO IN REVERSE.WHILE THE FORMAT IS MORE FAVORABLE I STILL THINK BALTIMORE WILL END UP AS THE DOORMAT FOR THE POWERHOUSE TEAMS IN THE DIVISION.PITCHING, PITCHING AND MORE PITCHING IS WHAT YOU NEED AND AND THE ORIOLES DON’T HAVE ENOUGH.SOME YOUNG ARMS COULD DEVELOP BUT DON’T BET THE HOUSE ON IT.IN FOURTH SPOT COMES TORONTO.EVERY SEASON SOMEONE TRIES TO SELL ME ON THE JAYS AND EVERY YEAR THEY FIND WAYS TO LOSE.OK THEY WILL HIT A TON OF BOMBS AND FANS WILL LOVE IT.JOSE BAUTISTA IS AWESOME AND COLBY RASMUS WITH BRETT LAWRIE SHOULD PROVIDE PLENTY OF FIREPOWER.PITCHING FOR THE JAYS WILL BE BETTER AND THEY WILL BE A DANGEROUS CLUB TO OVERLOOK, HOWEVER, TORONTO ALWAYS SEEMS TO FIND WAYS TO FADE IN THE STRETCH.THEY LOOK LIKE A FOURTH PLACE TEAM TO ME BUT WITH POTENTIAL.THE THIRD PLACE TEAM IN THE DIVISION IS LIKELY TO BE THE RED SOX.YES, BOSTON IS A LOT OF THINGS BUT LET’S NOT PUT OUR EMOTIONS IN PLACE OF COMMON SENSE.WE ALL KNOW THE PITCHING NAMES. IF THEY ARE CLICKING THEN THE WINS FALL INTO PLACE. BUT WILL THEY?PAPELBON IS GONE AND TO ME THAT LOSS WILL COME BACK TO BITE THE TEAM MANY DAYS IN SUMMER.BIG PAPI’S DEMISE IS ALWAYS PREDICTED BUT I’M NOT READY TO DO IT. WE DO NEED KEVIN YOUKILIS TO HAVE A BETTER SEASON AND JACOBY ELLSBURY TO REPEAT.WITH THIS CLUB YOU CAN REALLY GET EXCITED OR HORRIBLY DISAPPOINTED.I HAVE TO THINK THIRD IN THE EAST AT THIS POINT, PAINFUL AS IT IS THE YANKEES WILL STAKE A CLAIM TO A POST-SEASON SPOT.THERE WERE NO BIG NAME SIGNINGS FOR THE PINSTRIPES THIS TIME.BUT, THE TEAM FROM THE BRONX IS SOLID.I DON’T KNOW IF THE RETURN OF ANDY PETITE IS REAL BUT AFTER A YEAR OFF I KIND OF DOUBT IT.THE LINEUP IS POTENT AND, GUESS WHAT, NEW YORK WILL BE CALLING ON MARIANO RIVERA TO CLOSE THINGS OUT AGAIN.THE YANKEES ARE A LOCK TO BE FIRST OR SECOND THIS TIME AROUND.THE WORST BASEBALL CITY IN AMERICA WITH THE BEST MANAGER WILL LIKELY WIN THE DIVISION.THE TAMPA BAY RAYS COMEBACK A YEAR AGO IS STILL IMPRESSIVE.JOE MADDON IS THE GLUE THAT TAKES THIS FRANCHISE TO HIGH LEVELS.SADLY, THEIR BAD BALLPARK IS HALF EMPTY UNLESS THE SOX OR YANKEES ARE IN TOWN.THE RAYS HAVE A GREAT OFFENSE AND YOU HAVE TO LOVE EVAN LONGORIA AT THIRD BASE.THE DOME STADIUM GIVES THE OFFENSE PLENTY OF JOY.ADD TO IT SOME GOOD YOUNG ARMS AND, UNTIL SOMEONE PROVES OTHERWISE, TAMPA BAY IS THE TEAM TO BEAT IN THE AMERICAN LEAGUE EAST.NOT EVERY TEAM IS SET COMING OUT OF SPRING TRAINING AND IT TAKES TIME TO SORT THINGS OUT.THE ONE MYSTERY QUESTION IS INJURIES AND NO ONE CAN PREDICT THAT.SO THERE IS IT IS:TAMPA BAYNEW YORKBOSTONTORONTOBALTIMORE.NOW IF YOU WANT I WILL GIVE YOU THE WINNING NUMBERS FOR MEGA MILLIONS TONIGHT.ON SECOND THOUGHT, I JUST MIGHT KEEP THOSE FOR MYSELF.THIS IS GEORGE HALE WITH MY PERSPECTIVE ON SPORTS


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