In the Cards

Well, it’s official: the Cardinals made me sound smart. As I pointed out in my last post, a few weekends ago I blurted out "Cardinals over Tigers in six" on the Fan590 in Toronto when asked what my World Series prediction was. Naturally, I’ve been pulling for the Cards this week because my credibility was at stake! OK, so they won it in five games — close enough.

Anyway, congrats to St. Louis for an improbable World Series victory. They were underdogs coming in to the playoffs and the general consensus was that any AL team in the Series would dominate whichever NL team limped to the finish line. Well, it was the Tigers doing the limping.

As soon as the game ended, I left a voicemail on one of my friend’s phones (he is a HUGE Tigers fan), saying, "After 24 years of rooting for the Chicago Cubs, I have four simple words of advice: ‘Wait ’til next year.’" And, yes, as a person who grew up living and dying with every pitch on the North Side of Chicago, it was a little hard to see the Cubbies’ biggest rival — the Cards — celebrating yet another Series win. Ah well, Chicago’s time is coming — maybe they’ll win in 2008, when it’ll be 100 years since their last crown.

OTHER BITS AND PIECES:

–Because a lot of our MLB.com staff were swamped with World Series coverage, and I was one of the few who drew the short straw as far as covering the playoffs this year, I was asked to do a tough assignment last night. I got a call from my editor and was asked if I could write a tribute piece on pitcher Joe Niekro, who passed away on Friday (click the link there to read it). So while my wife and my dog chilled on the couch and watched the World Series, I was busy piecing together a story on Niekro. I knew much more about his older brother Phil, as do most people, so last night was sort of a crash course of Joe’s life for me. I found his career to be pretty interesting and was happy to be the writer tabbed with that assignment.

–Players can start filing for free agency, so in the next week or so you could see Ted Lilly, Justin Speier, Bengie Molina, Gregg Zaun, and Frank Catalanotto filing the proper paperwork. Stay tuned for more in that department.

–I am going on vacation from Nov. 1-7 with my wife, so the blog will likely be dorment during that period. If any Jays news happens while I’m away, I have people filling in for me and I’ll comment on any moves or news when I get back to Toronto.

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