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Conclusions at the beginning

Justin Tardiff | Tuesday, April 27, 2004

My last weeks and experiences at ND could easily have been the topics of this article.

For instance I could have said: useless campus buildings are being erected at a rapid pace, the career center is my favorite group, Martin’s ovenable meals rock, hard alcohol is clearly the root of all dorm problems, tuition in 25 years at a 4.5 percent rate increase will be $114,000 a year, my kids will not go here because of the last fact and there are places other than Chicago to live after college.

However, I want to speak to you about my conclusions at the beginning of something far more important – baseball season.

2004 begins with the notions that the Cubs and Red Sox will ultimately meet in the Series. There has certainly been no other season in recent history that has started with such hope for these teams.

I am here to respect and question this notion. As a Phillies fan, I approach the season with pessimism and disbelief at every loss and each win.

Philadelphia has a love/hate affair with its teams that no city can match. Cubs’ fans supported their pathetic team during the 1900’s as did Phillies fans with one glaring difference. Cubs’ fans cheer no matter what, Phillies fans boo no matter what. Players know when they fail in Philly, they’re coddled in Chicago.

Thus, in this circular logic, I have reached my conclusion that by supporting failure, the Cubs shall fall victim to the Astros and their superior pitching. Mark Prior DL till 2005, I say. Wild card? It’s Phillies territory after falling short to Florida.

As for the Red Sox, we all know deep down that the deep pockets of the Yankees will not fall victim to the Sox.

I don’t support the Yankees in any way, but I also don’t despise them. They have a $180 million payroll because Steinbrenner WANTS to win. The Royals owner has more money than George, but he chooses not to spend it.

The argument that the Yankees are ruining baseball because they spend and win is completely ignorant.

Briefly, I leave you with this. Playoffs in baseball bring the best eight teams, not the best 16 teams (The NBA has losing teams in the playoffs). Baseball is a game of strategy that requires extra years of experience that basketball and hockey (in my mind) don’t possess. That leaves football and baseball, and I pick baseball because I can.