Golden moment

Nothing — and I mean, NOTHING — comes before the game at hand for Tony La Russa. The man is absolutely obsessive about winning today’s (or tonight’s game). He’s relaxed, relieved and wiped out after a win, and bordering on unbearable to be around after a loss.

It is, I’m convinced, part of his success. Friends don’t want to be around him after even a regular-season loss, and I’ve heard plenty of stories of TLR breaking/skipping dinner engagements with old friends after a loss to the Pirates in May.

But on Friday, something else won out. Something was actually bigger.

We reporters walked in his office after the game just as the 100M butterfly final was about to start. Literally, we step in the office as they’re showing the lane assignments. And there’s not even a conversation. None is needed.

He’s faced away from us, looking at the TV, and he doesn’t even make a pretense of looking up at us. And none of us even thinks about asking a question. We watch the race. We watch the amazing race, the dazzling display of truly historic sports brilliance. A cheer goes up in all parts of the clubhouse — they’re clearly watching it in the main clubhouse, and in the lounge, and anywhere else where there’s a TV.

We all watch a couple of replays. We look at each other. We marvel. We all grin.

And then the interview starts.

-M.

(PS: About halfway through the interview, someone asks him what he thinks of Phelps, and here’s the response:

“I was nervous throughout our game. The first game of the series is very important. But I was more nervous during that almost a minute of that race than I was at any point in our game. and that’s saying something, because I almost vomited a couple of times during our game.
Phenomenal, to be able to close like that.”

Hear, hear.)

16 Comments

Phelps has just been a great story for sports in general. It’s great to see him being able to just unite the nation like that. Here’s hoping he gets to number 8 next.

Phelps is really amazing. I hope he gets the 9 he’s aiming for. And is anyone else confused about the 25 man active roster right now? It says that Felipe Lopez is an outfielder, and that Brian Barton has no major league experience and is a pitcher…?

Michael Phelps is the talk of the NATION!! It’s absolutely amazing how he has captivated sports fans of all ages. And he’s a SWIMMER! His chase of Mark Spitz’s record has been followed closely by many in this great country. The only thing close to this I have ever seen is when McGwire was chasing Maris. It seemed that everyone wanted to see this record broken, not only in their lifetime, but they wanted to see it happen. I thought he had lost last night. To the naked eye, it looked like he had been beaten. But man, what a finish!! 7 down, 1 to go. WOW!!!

It’s a cool idea to know we were all captivated in the same way at the same time as TLR. He’s always been a paragon of class; my perception of that classiness only gets more and more refined with the addition of anecdotes like these.
–Jeff
http://redstatebluestate.mlblogs.com/

Now that Phelps has won on the road, its time for us to start winning at HOME! -Just win baby. PS It looked like Dana Torres touched first in her race and I kept replaying it, did anyone see an underwater replay, and if not, why not??? I know there are sensors, but it just looked weird to me.

Are any of you watching the appropriately nicknamed “Redeem” Team? Apparently LeBron and Kobe are big fans of Michael Phelps, too. And vice versa. They showed Phelps in the stands watching the game against Germany. It was pretty awesome to see him just relaxed and having fun watching Dewayne Wade dunk on folks. He is having the time of his life. What I wouldn’t give…

Congrats to Mr. Phelps and I hope our lady V-B players can take the gold along with the Redeem Team…Maybe one day gymnastics will figure it out so that our ladies stop getting screwed over!

Bitter sweet end of the season for Izzy.
–Jeff
http://redstatebluestate.mlblogs.com/

I have noticed very few comments lately. Is anyone else thinking about next year besides me? Honestly, I don’t think this Cardinals team deserves to be in the playoffs. The Brewers have played better baseball pretty much all season, AND they made moves to improve their chances. They deserve to get their shot. What they do with it, obviously, is up to them. But part of me is pulling for them to take the wildcard.
M, sorry to “h-word” your blog, but there’s nothing else to talk about on here. Not much else can be said about Mr. Phelps. The guy is a phenominal athlete, and he deserves all the accolades he gets. In the water the dude looks like a giant tadpole with arms. He’s awesome!

Baseball’s a crazy sport. We still have a bit more than a month left to play, teams can get hot and others can collapse. I’m willing to let the season play out at this point and in the end say that if we make the playoffs to get our selves title 11, and if we don’t, start looking ahead to 09. The team that deserves to be in the playoffs will make the playoffs.

The lack of postings indicate the lack of news. Nothing new about Izzy, nothng about Yadi’s ankle, nothing working in the way of a deal anywhere, nothing coming out of the front office, leaving M with little to blog about. Looks like the Cards management is hiding in a cave somewhere.

Would like to see or hear what the club does about the supposed loss of Izzy and anything else that concerns building up the bullpen. If the season were a lost cause, I would like to see a bullpen of mostly rookies, let them gain some experience, sort themselves out a bit, but the club is certainly in reach of the wild card slot and that is all the opportunity they need to dominate post season with a hopefully healthy Carp and WW to bolster the pitching.

well there are currently 3 rookies in the pen. Looks good for the future.
Josh Kinney might be back in September. That could help.
If Carp and WW are healthy and back in the rotation someone might get bumped or traded or just kept on the 40 man roster for long relief.
Too bad about Izzy. Wonder if the Cards will bring him back? It would be nice to see him the 300th save as a Card but it depends on his health and the $$$.

Why would we have to bump or trade anyone? If we wait until September 1st to bring back Carpenter, we won’t have to release or trade anyone, because the rosters expand.

NOW THATS A STARTER!! Great to see Wainright back in action! Attention Management: LEAVE HIM THERE, he is and ACE not a Closer…show the young kid you have confidence in him and let Perez do his thing!

I’m not a baseball expert by any means and am still wondering how Piniero got a save out of last night’s work?
Any answers?

It’s because the save is the most broken stat in baseball. A pitcher can throw the last 3 innings of a game and get the save as long as his team remains in the lead for those 3 innings.

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