In football, the adage used to be that defense wins championships. In baseball, it has been that pitching wins titles. I do not believe that will be the case this year. Not with the Boston Red Sox and the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Dodgers led the National League in runs and home runs this year. The Red Sox’s lineup is even scarier. They led all of baseball in runs, batting average, on-base percentage, slugging, and total bases. With this much offense on the field, I have a feeling the Series may come down to the bull pens. It was thought that relief pitching would be Boston’s lone weakness. And closer Craig Kimbrel has been shaky.
But set-up men Matt Barnes, Ryan Brasier and Joe Kelly have allowed only two runs in 18 and two-third’s innings in October and Alex Cora’s use of starters Rick Porcello, Chris Sale and Nathan Eovaldi in relief has actually made it a strength. The Dodgers’ bullpen has been a strength for years. It held up over the seven-game series win over Milwaukee. Los Angeles relievers combined for a 1.45 ERA over 31 innings in those seven games. I also think the Dodgers have a slight advantage in starting pitching.
But that will not mean much against the potent Boston lineup. I can see this series going seven games and Boston coming out on top.
Ohio State lost to Purdue last weekend. Check that, the Buckeyes got blown out at Purdue last weekend. I read multiple newspapers from the state of Ohio after the 49-20 setback against the previous 2-3 Boilermakers. It is quite clear that some panic has set in within “The Ohio State” nation. Panic because Purdue was clearly the better team on the field Saturday night. Panic because it was a nationally televised game. And the summer-long controversy regarding head coach Urban Meyer and his three game suspension is still entrenched in the minds of the Ohio State faithful.
One has to wonder about the morale within the coaching staff, especially after the release of the school’s investigation following the Zach Smith, (an assistant coach of Meyer’s,) domestic violence story came into public view. The investigation questioned, among many other things, Meyer’s managerial ability in regards to hiring assistant coaches.
Ohio State football is known annually for netting one of the top-five recruiting classes nationally. Yet, Purdue had the best player on the field last Saturday in true freshman Rondale Moore. The Boilermaker wide receiver went off against Ohio State, catching 12 passes for 170 yards and two touchdowns. He also picked up another 24 yards rushing, as well as 58 return yards on kicks and punts.
Here are some other stats on Moore, who may find himself in the talk for a Heisman Trophy in the very near future. The 5-9, 175 pounder can lift three times his body weight.
If you YouTube Rondale Moore, you can check out his highlight package that includes a remarkable touchdown run in the Ohio State game and a video of him squatting 600 pounds. Hence, the missed tackles.
Photo: Rondale Moore on the job