Friday, October 22, 2004
Updated: May 31, 2:25 PM ET
Feeling chatty before the series
By Bill Simmons
Editor's Note: Before the World Series gets under way, Bill Simmons stopped by The Show to chat with some of the members of SportsNation on the Sox, the Celtics and the absence of the Rocket.
Bill Simmons: Hey everybody
Lucas (England): If the Sox win the Series, what are you going to do for the whole year with half your material now down the tubes?
Bill Simmons: Probably retire and write soft-core porn movies for Cinemax. I have this idea about a hard-drinking male detective who's tracking down a glamorous, sexy widower who may or may not be involved in a murder plot. Also, the guy's ex-wife is one of the other detectives - she broke up with him when he started drinking again. I think this could be a huge hit.
Gus: Lawrence, MA: I was just walking down the street and was so happy I did one of those old school "double heel click jumps". What have you been doing the last two days?
Bill Simmons: Just been walking around in a daze - i'm so overtired and worn out right now, I feel like Ricky Williams.
Tom (Kansas City, MO): Any NFL picks this week?
Bill Simmons: Coming later today on the SGW Page
Joe (Boston): Bill, has the Sox win actually "sunk in" for you yet? I still cant believe it.
Bill Simmons: Im still in disbelief. I talked to my buddy JackO yesterday, huge Yanks fan - listening to him gripe about the yanks and how bummed out he was, I felt like I was in Bizarro World.
Bill Simmons: Plus he's a big Republican - he said that if Kerry wins, he's going to move into a cabin in the middle of nowhere and become the next Ted Kaciznski.
Rafi (Austin, TX): Is the transcript for this chat going to be for Insiders only again, or can I go get something to eat? I'm starving.
Bill Simmons: No, we're running it on my page as a column
AC (Toronto): I am glad the Sox pulled it off, but what was going through your mind when Francona brought in Pedro the other night....did he feel that the crowd needed to get back in the game???
Bill Simmons: I was trying to talk myself into it, even though I knew that it was going to get the crowd into the game and I was dry-heaving at the time. At the time, I assumed Timlin was unavailable. But now we know he was. It was an inexplicable move. I don't even think Theo, Lucchino, henry and Werner know why that happened.
Joe (N. Dartmouth, MA): Hey Bill. Just wondering what your pick was for the World Series? team and how many games
Bill Simmons: Well, it has to go seven games because the Red Sox are involved and there's no other way. I'll take my chances with pedro in a Game 7. I keep telling myself this.
Sean (Coventry, RI): How do you feel about Ortiz playing 1b during games 3-5, just thinking about it gives me hives.
Bill Simmons: It's harrowing. That's the best adjective. This whole DH-no DH thing is idiotic. When I was talking about it with JackO yesterday when I was trying to convince him not to kill A-Rod because he would be thrown in jail and stuff, he compared it to the AFC using punters and the NFC using punters, and then they would have rotating Super Bowls where there would either be a punter or not. That's how dumb it is. The Cards get screwed as well - they have to use John Mabry as a DH. He sucks.
Bill Simmons: We should abolish the DH. Nobody is against this.
Bill Simmons: Plus, i like watching pitchers hit - always high comedy. Especially when they have to put the Majestic Athletic jacket on and run the baseas.
Phil (Cincinnati): Please tell me Francona will start Mirabelli in game 1. I wouldn't be surprised if he started Papi there and call it a genius move.
Bill Simmons: That's what he should do. It's the way he played it all season. Then again, Mirabelli should have entered Game 5 in the 14th and that didn't happen either.
Matt (San Francisco, CA): You have long been a critic of Francona's managing. How do you think he handled the ALCS, especially in the last 4 games (Pedro coming in for the 7th aside)?
Bill Simmons: I liked some of the stuff he did, didn't like some other stuff. He pulled Lowe too early in Game 4. Botched the Mirabelli move in Game 5 (although it didn't hurt them, Varitek can't catch Wakefield and was dead top begin with from all the innings he was logging). Thought he should have brought Myers in to pitch to Matsui in Game 7 in the 7th, then brought in Arroyo and avoided Pedro altogether. Thought he never should have pinch-run for Nixon with Kapler in Game 5 at 1st. Little stuff like that.
Bill Simmons: The biggest thing was the bunting: This team didn't bunt all year, and in Games 4 and 5 he was asking people to bunt in pressure situations. That's the biggest problem with the Theo-Billy Beane "get guys on-base and don't take chances" strategy - when you DO need to bunt in pressure games, the guys never look comfortable.
Bill Simmons: But you can't complain too much about the manager of a team that just came back from 3-0, so i'll shut up.
Alex (Dayton, OH): I'm a Cardinal fan and I'm curious how confident Red Sox nation is going into this series, as compared to the start of their series with the Yanks.
Bill Simmons: The best comparison you can make is when USA beat the USSR in 1980... then they had to win the gold medal 2 days later. Everyone here is on such a natural high over these past 36 hours, it's easy to forget that there's still some work to be done. People are still drained. We'll rally though.
Rob (Floyds Knobs, IN): I know this is getting ahead of ourselves, but are there any adjustments to the "five year grace period" if the Sox win it all? I mean, after 86 years of frustration, someone's gotta throw us a bone. I figure an extra year for every decade past 50 years since a title. How's that sound?
Bill Simmons: If the Sox win the World Series, a special 10-year grace period goes into place.
Rob (Fredercksburg, VA): SG, I am real happy the Red Sox won not only because of my anti-Yankees stance, but every sports fan has to acknowledge what Shilling and Co. did has to rank as the to 2 or 3 greatest(gutsiest) of sports efforts of all time). It's why I watch sports. Hollywood can't write drama this good. I am worried about the La Russa vs. Francona matchup when they are in St. Louis. Do you have any comments? How much of more of an advantage do you give La Russa in games 3-5?
Bill Simmons: I just threw up.
Erik (Washington, DC): Are you relieved not to have to face Roger Clemens, or are you disappointed you don't get the chance at payback and complete burial of "the curse?"
Bill Simmons: Not at all... I wanted to play the Astros. Poo Holes scares the living hell out of me. And I really like Cardinals fans, I always thought they went above and beyond the call of duty for their team. One of my favorite fan bases around. So that part kinda stinks. I'd like to do the Mrs. Drago right now for all the Cardinals fans, like when she went up to Mrs. Creed before the exhibition match -- "Whatever happens, I hope we can remain friends."
Jeff: Are you still in Boston or are you back in Cali?
Bill Simmons: Are you kidding me? I'm still in Boston - there's an enormous exhibition game tonight between the Celtics and Nets at the Fleet Center. I wouldn't miss that for anything. The Atlantic Division crown could be decided tonight.
Hoppe (Brighton, MA): SG, Did you see today's herald, the girl from Emerson with her body all bloodied on Pages 1 and 4, it makes me so sick the paper could actually puplish that, and then Menino wants to outlaw alchol in the city. Whats going on?
Bill Simmons: I agree - that was the worst thing I've ever seen. Was reading the paper and having coffee this morning and did the lurch forward "Oh no!!!!!!" There should be rules against this stuff. What if her Dad was in a convenience store and saw that?
Luke (WI): What's your reaction to the news that they are remaking the Revenge of the Nerds movie....does this constitute a Kerrigan "WHYYYYY???"
Bill Simmons: As long as Larry B. Scott gets a cameo, I don't care.
Patrick (Atlanta GA): Any chance of Nomar throwing out the first pitch Saturday?
Bill Simmons: He's going to come out with Mia, let her throw it and then say, "Thanks, beautiful." And then we're going to shoot him in the head and put him out of his misery.
Nomar, Chicago: How depressed am I right now?
Bill Simmons: Very. You should have stood on the top step of the dugout that night with everyone else.
The Dude (CA): Your buddy JackO is both a yankees fan and a big republican... why are you friends with this guy?
Bill Simmons: I've been asking myself that for 15 years.
Drew (Shea Stadium): SG, last February my friend Bryan and I came up with the idea of the "Gluttony Curse", after the 200 million team got A-Rod for Soriano. I believed they were headed for their 80's, Bronx Zoo heyday. After this week, I think it has merit. What do you think?
Bill Simmons: I like it - you could throw the Snyder Skins and the post-Cup Rangers in there, plus the Angelos O's... absolutely...
Mike (Boston, MA): Bill, I'm disappointed you didn't watch game 7 with your dad. How come? Are you still excited about GP in Celtic Green?
Bill Simmons: My Stepmom was involved - I can't handle her during pressure games. The bases could be loaded in the bottom of the 9th and she would suddenly say, "Did you hear that Mary Kate may have had a another relapse?" We've been sending her to therapy for years for this but nothing seems to work.
Tim (Memphis): What are the chances of a "Who's your Daddy" chant when the Pats start to put away the Jets this Sunday?
Bill Simmons: About 100%. Speaking of chants, if the Sox do win it all, nothing in the history of chants will be better than the "YEAR TWO THOU-SAND!" chant at Fenway next year when the Yanks are in town. Just imagining this is one of the top-20 moments of my life as a sports fan. No, I'm not petty at all.
Chest Rockwell (Linden Lane): Bill are you ignoring the Ortiz D vs Ortiz bat arguement. This could be critical.
Bill Simmons: Not at all - Ortiz HAS to be in there. He's just a train wreck defensively. But you still need his bat.
Joe, Newton: Are you doing a Dr. Jack breakdown? We have to keep up the traditions. Don't jinx us.
Bill Simmons: I'm not only because I don't know anything about the Cardinals. I didn't even know there WAS a National league until about 20 minutes ago.
Casey (Long Island): I am in heaven. It's wonderful. Just one question for you. How come Jason Giambi was allowed in the Yankees dugout even though he wasn't on the playoff roster, but good ol Nelson De La Rosa isn't allowed anywhere near the Sox? Doesn't seem right to me.
Bill Simmons: Plus, Nelson has had all his shots.
Julie (Boston): Do you think Jeter does the fist pump everytime he disappoints a woman in bed? Or does he save it for when he's with A-Rod?
Bill Simmons: Whoops - I didn't mean to post that. Really, I didn't.
Chris (Arlington, VA): Bigger choke artist: A-Rod or Manning?
Bill Simmons: Jeez, sorry about that -- another accident. My mouse isn't dragging properly.
Janet (Miami): I don't get the YEAR TWO-THOU-SAND! chant... isn't it 2004? Don't Sox fans know this?
Bill Simmons: Okay, since you're a girl, I'll walk you thru this: The Yanks chant "1918!" during Red Sox games because we haven't won a World Series since 1918. So if we beat the Cardinals, that chant becomes moot. And since the Yanks haven't won a title since 2000, Sox fans would be returning the favor with a "YEAR TWO THOU-SAND" chant, hence, turning the tables on that 1918 chant and causing every Yankee fans to pull their mustaches in frustration.
Clay (Denver): What about the possibility of pulling the footbal-baseball double championship thing? Who did that last - Pittsburg? I don't think you could handle it.
Bill Simmons: Yup, it was Pittsburgh. The former City of Champions. They could be passing the torch in about 8 days. We should start calling Belichick "The Emperor Chazz Belichick"
Robbie, Regina (Canada): SG why are people saying the curse is over if they haven't won the world series yet? Is the Curse over to you?
Bill Simmons: Of course not. We need to win the World Series. The Yankees thing was different - that was all about destroying their franchise and sending the city into fullscale panic.
Jeff Suppan (St Louis): How did I manage to suck so much with Boston and somehow pitch a game 7 of the NLCS with St Louis? Can my team with such awful pitching take out the Red Sox?
Bill Simmons: That's an excellent question: You were absolutely beyond terrible with the Sox. Now you're an effective groundball pitcher with the Cards. It makes absolutely no sense. You didn't even make the playoff roster for us last year.
KDub (NY, NY): This is for the previous emailer mentioning Jeter's fist pump, Julie...Will you marry me? SG, please make it happen.
Bill Simmons: I feel like the Jumbotron right now.
Nick (Dallas): How have Jimmy and Adam adjusted to the BoSox victory? Has Adam provided his philosophy on this major event?
Bill Simmons: Adam is horrified because he has too many friends who like the Red Sox, so the longer this drags on, the longer he has to hear about baseball. Although he could probably spend a good 45 minutes complaining about the DH-no dh thing.
DS (Andover, MN): So, are you going to release the *director's cut* of your transcripts?!? What the editors make you delete, is why we enjoy your columns. You aren't afraid to tackle the tough subjects.
Bill Simmons: I'm planning on starting a website under an assumed name so I can complain about broadcasters. This is my new plan. One of the baseball announcers (I won't name him) drove me CRAZY this week. Crazier than I've ever been about an announcer. And I can't vent about it.
Joe (Quincy): Pat Sajak is on the Travel Channel right now wearing a Members Only jacket.
Bill Simmons: I'm sorry.
Peter (Regina, Canada): What's more bizarre, the Red Sox beating the Yankees for the pennant or Paris Hilton hosting The Teen Choice Awards
Bill Simmons: Paris Hilton.
Tom Lawrence (St. Louis): Will my boss fire me if he catches me reading your chat?
Bill Simmons: Probably.
Tim McCarver (The Booth): Bill -- Why the animosity towards me?
Bill Simmons: Because you were openly rooting for the Yankees. That's why.
Julie (Baltimore): How about Al Leiter? I was very impressed by him. He definitely has a career when his playing days are over.
Bill Simmons: I liked Al Leiter a lot - very balanced, very knowledgable.
Jaden (Columbia, SC): Bill, do you plan to watch House MD this fall?
Bill Simmons: Not unless there's a gun to my head.
Mark (Boston): How do you feel about having the WS broadcast by a play-by-play guy who works for the Cardinals, and a color guy who won 2 WS with the Cardinals??
Bill Simmons: Well, they were totally balanced during the ALCS, so I'm sure it won't be a problem here.
Jeff (Cleveland): When Mike Myers comes in on October 31st, to face Jim Edmonds, will the moon turn the color of A-Rod's lips?
Bill Simmons: Ever since I found out that Game 7 was on Halloween... I mean... and this was like 2 months ago... I even wrote about it ... I mean ...
Mike (Memphis): You know the actor who play's House will inexplicably show up behind third base for a game in St. Louis, or at least be superimposed in a seat.
Bill Simmons: I can't wait for that. I'm also looking forward to seeing Jason priestley and Elisa Dushku sitting next to a suicidal Zack Galafanakis.
Ian Berg (Philly): Which T-Shirt are you looking forward to more at Fenway next season: "$200 million choke job"; "a-fraud"; "choke-rod"; other?
Bill Simmons: I'm excited for "The Anti-Babe" with A-Rod's number 13
Dennis (Worcester): Bill, My wife and I are due with our first child on Oct. 31st. If the series gets to game 7 and she goes into labor that day ... what the heck do I do???
Bill Simmons: Hire a stand-in to be in the hospital room. Your wife is going to be in excruciating labor for about 15 hours, she won't even know who's in the room.
Paul (Portland, OR): Maybe they can get Jamie Lee Curtis to throw out the first pitch in Game 7!
Bill Simmons: I like this idea... although it might rattle Mike Myers.
Dave: For Dennis from Worcester: You can have more kids. The Sox may not make it to the Series again.
Hank (Dover): I thought Nomar was throughing out the first pitch?
Bill Simmons: That would be VERY interesting. No way he does it though. Too much bitterness towards Team Henry.
Brian (Mount Vernon): Bird poop shirt status please
Bill Simmons: Still haven't washed it, still hidden from the Sports Gal.
Dr. Heimlich (Boston, MA): Bill- where's this loss in your 13 levels of losing?
Bill Simmons: The Yankees loss? I would say there would be a new level between the top level (That Game) and the second level (the one with the Byner fumble, Norwood and all those other ones).
Sean (Durham): Do you think Qyntell's pit bull wouldnt fight for him because it got into the stuff in Damon Stoudamire's gym bag and mellowed out too much?
Bill Simmons: There's a very good chance. By the way, why don't I have any friends who accidentally leave pot in my travel bags? I think I need new friends.
Matt (Choke City): SG, What are you hoping Steinbrenner does in the offseason?
Bill Simmons: In order: 1) Overreact and push Torre out. 2) Overspend for Beltran by about $60 million. 3) Keep A-Rod. 4) Overpay Pedro.
Will (N.Y.): You are over-rating the loss's impact on Yankee fans. As a group, we're much more upset over the World Series losses. This loss goes on par with other ALCS losses like Kansas City in 1980. I know it was a superhuman win for Boston, but don't assume it had the same effect on Yankee fans.
Bill Simmons: Your team just had the greatest collapse in the history of sports - I'm glad you were able to shrug it off so casually.
Luke (New York): YOU'RE RISKING A PATIENT'S LIFE!
Bill Simmons: The patient has rights!
Brian (Syracuse, NY): Did you see Schilling on Letterman last night. He did the "Top Ten" while wearing a Larry Bird jersey. If they do win a title, is he in the Bird-Orr-Brady pantheon, or is he more like Walton in '86?
Bill Simmons: I would say a much more memorable version of Walton in 86... Ortiz is the one who could be entering the Pantheon with a couple more big hits. Right now he's above Hendu, which almost seems impossible.
Jeff (NY): Say what you want about New York/New Yorkers, but we seem to have the only city that does not turn into Fallujah after our teams win championships
Bill Simmons: That's a very good point. The reaction in Boston on Wednesday was a little disappointing... just kids being idiots. Hopefully we will deal with the next celebration a little bit better.
JT (Southeastern, MA): Bill, who has the bigger series? Manny/Ortiz or Pujols/Rolen?
Bill Simmons: I think this is the key to the series. I'm not sure that the Sox can win another seven-game series with Manny being as quiet as he was... especially with those 3 NL games where you lose Millar's bat. Then again, Manny has always been streaky, and he really hasn't gotten into one of those Manny grooves in awhile. So who knows?
Dave (Portland, ME): Do you think Isringhausen is the weak spot in the Cardinals armor?
Bill Simmons: I don't like their starters at all... I think that's a bigger problem for them.
Mark Bellhorn (Boston, Mass): Are you going to apologize to me?
Bill Simmons: I'm sorry
Matt (Kennewick, WA): Predict the Yanks payroll entering '05 ...
Bill Simmons: $215 million
Jeremy (NY, NY): You think you're going to break to 2-hour chat mark barrier today?
Bill Simmons: Actually, it's time for me to go -- I want to take a nap before the big Celtics game tonight. Enjoy the weekend everybody.