Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Dave's Thoughts of the Day: October 2nd

Folks outside of Los Angeles might be wondering what  "Cool-a-Coo" is.  First of all, they made a comeback at Dodger Stadium and I think the customers are equally as excited as the vendors who sell them.  When I was young, I remember going to Dodger games with family and seeing the guy with the little cooler selling the cool-a-coos.  It was Cool-a-Coos, Malt Cups, Cotton Candy (don't see much of that anymore at DS), and peanuts.  Good times.  The Cool-a-Coo company then stopped making them around the year 2000, and for over a decade, the Cool-a-Coos went missing.  You couldn't find them anywhere, not even grocery stores.  In any case, the Cool-A-Coo is a chocolate covered ice cream sandwich, much like San Francisco's It's It sandwich.   Two oatmeal cookies, ice cream in the middle, then the dark chocolate coating.  It's no secret when I say it tastes fantastic!  Here's a photo.


Indeed, I was at Dodger Stadium last night for the game, and I have been avoiding all Dodger games since early August.  Typical Dodgers baseball -- wait until they're virtually eliminated and then start playing well.  I knew the Dodgers would do this.   You talk about a team that can't handle pressure, and the Dodgers are it.  That Boston trade will continue to be the bane of my existence.

There are two ways to look at this Dodgers 6 game winning streak:  one, the "oh everything is great!" positive, lollipops and gumdrops point of view and two, the realistic cynical "what a bunch of pretenders" point of view.  

As many of you know by now, I subscribe to point of view #2.   I don't think it's a coincidence the Dodgers started to beat other teams AFTER they fell 4.5 games out of a playoff spot.    Point of View #1 would argue that the Dodgers made a valiant effort to salvage the season by seeking within themselves and winning a bunch of games in a row, making the Wild Card race interesting between them and the Cardinals.

I don't buy it.   If the Dodgers were in this playoff race for real, they wouldn't have gone a month and a half, A MONTH AND ONE HALF without winning a playoff series.  This team's demeanor is atrocious.   Now they play loose after going behind the 8-ball.  Typical.  However, having said that there were a few observations from the game last night.

Number one, the Giants are absolutely half-assing it.   To pull Matt Cain after about 5 innings, even with him throwing so well, proves that manager Bruce Bochy was resting guys for the playoffs.   Interesting and sound strategy:  get the guys their usual starts and reps but don't over-extend any starters.  Why not?   Even the move to go with Santiago Casilla in the 9th inning with a tie game was an effective pseudo White Flag.  The Giants are not foolish enough to play a 19 inning game so close to the end of the regular season.

Number two, Dodger Manager Don Mattingly put a twist into the lineup that I'm surprised I hadn't thought of before -- moving Shane Victorino down to the 6th spot in the lineup.   It makes so much sense!  Victorino was notorious for grounding into double plays and his hitting overall took a dive.  Instead they have Mark Ellis leading off, then Ethier in the 2 spot (unusual, right?), then Kemp, then Gonzalez, THEN Ramirez...   That is much more consistent hitting 1-5.  It pretty much proves that Victorino has seen better days and it will be for the best when the Dodgers and he part ways this offseason.

Number three, the crowd at Dodger Stadium was remarkably subdued.  It was as if the fans too were eliminated from the playoffs.   Not even close to the energy I am used to at a Dodger Game.  HOWEVER, I do remember this kind of crowd a few years ago, about 2007 I believe, after the Dodgers were way out of it but had a late-September game against the Giants.   It happens -- that's baseball for you.

So with this much analysis of a meaningless baseball game, on to some other topics:

The Cowboys and Jerry Jones are a complete trainwreck.   They DO have the talent, I swear to you, but the Cowboys organization is so self absorbed with its image that they forgot about formulating a winning playoff team and a proper frame of mind.  Did they think they were just going to show up on the "star" and watch the Bears magically throw interceptions?   I didn't see much of the game last night as I was at the Dodger game, but from what I've read and heard in the media it was not pretty.  FIVE interceptions for Tony Romo?!    The Cowboys are extremely disorganized.

You know what else?  I have a theory as to why the Cowboys suck so much at home now.  I think a lot of it has to do with Jerry Jones.   Jerry Jones makes such a big presence there, even down to his presence ON THE SIDELINE near the end of games, that the team plays extremely tight whenever there's a big game there.  They don't seem to ever play confident football at the new Cowboys Stadium.  You look all around that building and you can practically FEEL Jerry Jones on every piece of brick, mortar, and glass inside.  The stadium is also too big... it must be hard to concentrate on anything as a player.   To pose an example... imagine your workday if your boss was in YOUR OFFICE staring at you the whole day?   There's no question any person would feel nervous in that spot.    Such is the Cowboys.

That's all for now.  Catch you all at this time tomorrow.

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