Monday, October 22, 2007


There's only one Choketober

The Valley View Bridge stands 212 feet above the ground and is just over three-quarters of a mile long. The Detroit-Superior Bridge is almost as high -- 196 feet above the Cuyahoga River -- but is only 3,112 feet long as it connects downtown to the near West Side of Cleveland. Just a couple hundred feet away stands the Lorain Carnegie Bridge -- also known as the Hope Memorial Bridge -- which starts downtown just across the street from Jacobs Field on Carnegie Avenue and deposits travelers in the heart of Ohio City at West 25th Street; it stands only 93 feet above the river but is more than a mile long. Then you've got the Innerbelt Bridge and the Main Avenue Bridge, which is Ohio's longest bridge at 8,000 feet.

That's at least three miles worth of Cleveland's biggest bridges, and don't be surprised if you can't go more than a few feet on any of them without seeing someone wearing an Indians cap sidling up to the edge and looking down, down, down.

For we were up 3-1 in the ALCS and when we wake up this morning we'll have nothing to show for it. Nothing at all thanks to the Boston Red Sox outscoring the Tribe 30-5 in the final three games of the series to hand the Indians their first three-game losing streak in two months and knocking them out of the playoffs.

Nothing save memories of The Skinner, the newest image to add to the Cleveland Sports Misery Pantheon. That's in honor of third-base coach Joel Skinner, who held Kenny Lofton at third base when Franklin Gutierrez roped a ball down the third base line that banged off the facing of the stands and landed 30 feet in front of Manny Ramirez. As Lofton rounded third and headed for home, Skinner threw a stop sign up in front of the fastest man in Indians history and prevented him from scoring the tying run in the seventh inning.

Next man up, Casey Blake, immediately banged into a double play. Ball game over. Series over.

Nothing save memories of Manny Ramirez, now officially a Red Sock, throwing Lofton out at second on an ill-fated attempt at a double (even though Lofton was safe). Nothing save memories of Jonathan Papelbon striking out Travis Hafner on three pitches with two on and no outs in the eighth.

It's not Tribe time now. It's nice try time now. The time where we hear about what a great season the Indians delivered, what a valiant effort they gave, what an enjoyable run we had.

We hear it too often. Wait til next year. We're still waiting.

Everything worked in the first four games of the season. The series in a microcosm: Tim Wakefield gets in the way of a double-play grounder from Asdrubal Cabrera and turns it into an infield hit in Game 4. In Game 7, Victor Martinez's hard grounder up the middle in the fourth bounces in and out of Daisuke Matsuzaka's glove and lands at his feet -- easy out at first.

Our aces had nothing up their sleeves. C.C. Sabathia and Fausto Carmona took losses, and then uberreliever Rafael Betancourt couldn't keep the Tribe in Game 7, giving up seven runs in the seventh and eighth. He turned Dustin Pedroia into Bucky F*king Dent in the seventh, turning a one-run deficit into a three-run deficit and getting the snowball rolling downhill.

The Indians turned not into a pumpkin but a tomato can in Game 7, as we took a punch in the stomach, a smack to the head, and an uncalled shot to the groin all in order. Down we go, crumpled in a heap, once again waiting for next year.

A next year that never comes. But tears that always do.

29 comments:

Anonymous said...

Why do we do it to ourselves?

Anonymous said...

cc should stand for Carsten Choke

AHP said...

It try to stop caring, but I love Cleveland too much. Great title for your blog. I have used that quote, "God Hates Cleveland..." on my blog a couple of times, including just now. Then I saw the referrers to my site and saw your site on Google blog search.

Atul
http://www.thingsivenoticed.com

Anonymous said...

Told you so a few blogs down.
God hates Cleveland sports.

Anonymous said...

Choking Wahoo

Anonymous said...

Byrd, poop. Good one!

On the up side, winning the series would've wreaked havoc with your site's premise.

And oh yeah. Not that it's all about me or anything. But the Tribe was doing fine until I shelled out the first $$ I spent all year on 'em. That's right---- Game 5 of the ALCS. It was all downhill from there.

sigh

Todd said...

As I said in an earlier posting, this series was over the moment Sabathia gave up a 1st inning HR in game #5.

Of course, this collapse only prevented Denver from inflicting another sports trauma to Cleveland fans.

The Tribe wasn't going to win. It was only a question of which team would beat them.

Nashville G-man said...

it's like watching a movie that you've already seen before

Anonymous said...

you could have saved all of america from the masshole infestation that threatens to overtake it. one victory. that's all you needed. in the end....you are still cleveland.

Anonymous said...

I can't wait to be let down when
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we lose by a field goal after
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I can't wait!

p dog said...

I feel like I blew it for everyone by writing an optimistic post last week.

It's hard not to be superstitious when you see weirdness like that first Red Sox hit last night that bounced wild off the edge of the infield. It was a bad sign.

Which library?

Chris said...

The layer of smug over Boston is thicker now than it ever has been

Anonymous said...

God hates Cleveland and so does Detroit. Good riddence to the Indians. At least you have those other titles to be proud of...What's that? You don't have any? Thats right, I forgot. Poor Cleveland, always chokes on a fat sausage. Tribe Time is over, now its Cry Time. Bunch of losers.

Brian said...

Came home to Cleveland Thursday night to see the Indians (presumably) close out the series at some point in the weekend with my fellow Clevelanders. Before my plane touched down, the score was 1-1. By the time I was off the plane, 2-1. At my car? 4-1. By the time I got to the bar it was 7-1 and pretty much over. I am the human curse. I even went to church to pray for a win. No luck. Awesome.

Narm said...

This loss feels like a bad break-up - and just to rub it in they let Pedroia hit it first.

Anonymous said...

When are we ever going to win? I am getting tired of this. We know the Browns will never win and the Cavs won't win because LeBron will move on to New York or LA. The Indians are our only hope. As long as we can keep our players and not have New York or Boston (Manny) take them away. At least Coco Crisp played the same way as he played in Cleveland.

Anonymous said...

I can answer that question. NEVER. When will you win? When the sun does not rise in the morning, thats when.

Mars Girl said...

Like a true Clevelander, I will never give up hope. So I am a fool. I have a feeling that I will be like my dad, whose in his 50s and has never seen the Indians win a World Series...

Anonymous said...

write something new, moron

Anonymous said...

I don't get it. Boston teams can win championships without breaking a sweat. What are the Clevebad teans doo-ing? Even Arizona D'backs-2001,Florida Marlins 1997-2003 won championships. Every-time a clevebad team gets into the playoffs be it football,baseball,basketball wondering how they are going to blow it this time?

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Doctor X said...

Wow.

I stumbled upon this researching "sports curses." Being a Boston fan, I am more than familiar with them.

All I can say, not that it matters, is a belated extension of sympathy which is probably not appreciated. This is a wonderful blog, and if Cleveland is not playing Boston, I will root for you. If it is any consolation, a major homer Boston radio personality/nut--Mike Adams--has declared his support for Cleveland after Labron [CENSORED--Ed.] you.

--J.D.

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