But none of this really addresses the central fact of Jason Marquis' player card on ESPN.com which is that it says "Pitcher" at all?! Huh. Who knew? ... Uh-oh, I just get out of trouble with Ray's mom and now I go looking for a beating from Jason's. What's my problem?
Michael: Your problem is your mean streak. It's subtle, but it's there. It shows up every time somebody puts the words "Dodgers" and "last year" in the same sentence. In this case, you did it to yourself. So let's try some therapy. Let's accentuate the positive. Can we give a little love to Sir Roy Oswalt tonight?
Eric: Amen on Roy. Here's a guy with two 20-win seasons in a row, and an ERA on the downside of 3, a WHIP of like 1.18 career, a dancing fastball, and a curveball that kisses the girls and makes them cry, if you know what I'm saying and I think you do. Roger Clemens was the story in Houston this year, but Oswalt is a very close second. If this guy pitched in NYC, or even Chicago, people would be naming their struggling punk bands and squawling babies after him. He and Jake Peavy are the two best pitchers nobody ever talks about, and it just ain't right.
He owned the Cards tonight, carried them around in his saddle bags like so many pieces of cured pork rind. And now the Series has turned (especially if Reggie Sanders is out of Game 3) in Houston's favor in a pretty big way. Roger in Game 3? Back to Andy Pettitte at home in Game 4? I'll say it right now: The good people of Houston can start setting up the aluminum-framed lawn chairs outside the ticket window at Minute Maid. They're about to go Classic. Fall Classic, that is.
Michael: I'm with you, brother. I'm already working the angles on which country music stars will be singing the national anthem at the World Series games in Houston the week after next. (For the record, MLB will miss the boat if it passes up on Charlie Robison, but the early money is on that already-has-been Gretchen Wilson.)
Oswalt was a monster tonight. You made the comment earlier in the evening that it's a shame the Cardinals had to waste their time coming out to the yard. You were right. Their nights would've been more productive if they'd stayed home to watch a documentary on the history of cardboard. Sir Roy's heater was doing some sort of strange and wonderful dance in those last 15 or 20 feet before it reached the plate.
Eric: That documentary on the history of cardboard is good, I hear. Not as good as the one Scorcese did on Dylan, though. Now there's a possibility: Dylan sings the national anthem to open the series ... Unless, of course, Oswalt wants to. Because after tonight, if I'm Garner, I don't deny him anything.
Previous Second Guesses
• Oct. 12: So who's REALLY to blame?