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Edgar Renteria Named World Series MVP for Clutch Postseason

Giants shortstop Edgar Renteria came up huge for San Francisco in the World Series to earn MVP honors. He bashed a 3-run home run to break a scoreless Game 5 in the 7th inning. Cliff Lee had been relatively unhittable at the time, matching scoreless frames with Tim Lincecum until Renteria caught him with the big blast. He did it with two outs in the inning and after Pat Burrell struck out for the second of three times in his 0-for-4 game.

Renteria went 8-for-18 in the five game series with six RBIs. In addition to his monstrous Game 5 home run, Renteria also went 2-for-4 with 3 RBIs in Game 2, coming up with a solo home run to put them on the board in the 5th and a two-run single in the 8th. He went 1-for-3 in Game 1 with two runs scored and he even had three hits in the Game 4 win. Renteria’s final World Series stats was a .412 batting average, 1.209 OPS, two home runs, and six RBIs.

Who would have ever expected Edgar Renteria would end up as the World Series MVP for the Giants? Nobody could have guessed it, but now Giants fans will never forget him just like Marlins fans will always remember his 1997 World Series-winning hit.

Photo Credit: Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Major League Baseball Asks Teams to Cut Back on Champagne Celebrations

It’s about time.  I don’t mean to say I wanted MLB teams to cut back on champagne celebrations, but I was starting to wonder when baseball big wigs would start looking at them as a negative reflection on the league.  Looks like that time has come.

Maybe it was brought to light by Josh Hamilton’s ginger ale bath, but according to Hardball Talk MLB sent teams a memo prior to the World Series that provides them with some guidelines for celebrating.  Teams are supposed to “limit” the amount of champagne available for the players to celebrate with — whatever that means — as well as provide an alternative to spraying champagne everywhere, such as non-alcoholic champagne.  There will also be no beer or other types of alcoholic drinks allowed as part of the showers and players can’t bring alcohol onto the field during the celebration.

As much as people are going to hate it, this kind of makes sense.  Telling MLB teams to cut back on the boozing isn’t anywhere near as ridiculous as telling NBA players to turn their headbands right side up.  The showers are a tradition and they definitely make for some memorable moments for the fans, but there’s no arguing it sets a bad example for kids.

We all know how it works: little kids look up to the players and want to be just like them when they grow up.  When they see their idols pounding dozens of Bud Lights every time they clinch a series, you can likely see how that could become a problem.  When they’re dousing little kids in beer to include them in the celebration, you can definitely see how that could become a problem.  But let the backlash begin…

Pat Burrell Takes a World Series Golden Sombrero Against Rangers

If there’s any advice I can give the San Francisco Giants as they look to close out the World Series against the Rangers, it’s hire Mark Grace and have him find Pat Burrell a slump buster. The Giants outfielder went 0-for-4 in Game 3 of the World Series with four strikeouts. The spectacular performance allows Burrell membership into the extremely exclusive LBS Golden Sombrero club, though B-Peso earns special recognition for accomplishing the feat in the World Series.

In case you weren’t keeping track, Peso is now hitless in nine World Series at-bats with eight strikeouts. He has walked twice and scored a run, but he’s the only regular on either team who still has the same batting average as when he started the series. Burrell left two men on with his strikeout in the first, another man on in the 4th, and then he struck out to lead off the 7th and 9th.

At the rate he’s going, it wouldn’t be surprising to see manager Bruce Bochy put Burrell on the bench for Game 4. I probably wouldn’t make that move; Nate Schierholtz is your replacement and isn’t exactly an offensive threat. Burrell at least can get on base and score runs by walking, and he always has the potential to deliver a big-time home run. I would ride him out and hope he comes up with a big hit. Maybe Philly fans are still in his head.

Ozzie Guillen Says FOX Told Him to Drop an F-Bomb to Boost Ratings

Ozzie Guillen is an LBS Hall of Famer for his legendary contributions to the site. To get caught up if you don’t know what we mean, go here, here, here, and here and you’ll be laughing non-stop. Anyway, there was great news announced a few days ago that Ozzie would be joining the FOX pregame and post-game crew to help provide analysis. The natural reaction was jeers suggesting FOX better watch itself because Guillen might let loose with one of his legendary profanity-laced rants.

Well guess what? Apparently that’s exactly what they want him for!

Call it the Charles Barkley phenomenon, Ozzie explained in an interview with FOX Chicago News that the FOX CEO told him to drop one because they would get a lot of ratings. Ozzie says he won’t do it because he does not want to get fired:

All I know is F-Bomb or not, I’ll be watching. Anywhere you put Ozzie you get my eyeballs.

Josh Hamilton Says Giants Fans Were Smoking Weed in Center Field Seats

The same fanbase where people were offering top shelf marijuana in exchange for World Series tickets has provided us with another shocker. According to Rangers center fielder Josh Hamilton, who is a former drug addict, the smell of weed was prevalent from the outfield stands during Game 1 on Wednesday night.

In addition to smelling pot coming from the stands, Hamilton told the NY Post that he and his wife could smell someone smoking weed on the street with a cop 50 yards away. I’m not so sure why a man who used to sneak cocaine vials into his spring training locker while with the Devil Rays would be surprised by blatant drug use, but I guess that’s a product of being cleaned up. Maybe he’s just unfamiliar with NorCal in general because if he knew about Prop. 19, he probably would be less surprised.

By the way, could Tim Lincecum have found a better fit as the face of a franchise? And who said AT&T Park didn’t provide a family environment?

Vladimir Guerrero Out, David Murphy in for Texas in Game 2

Vladimir Guerrero served as the DH for Texas 140 times this year. It only took one game for him to prove to Ron Washington and fans everywhere why he’s best suited with a bat in his hands and not a glove. Vlad let a routine ball to fight field go past him in the 8th inning of Game 1 Wednesday night and he also mishandled another ball hit down the line that same inning. He had half of Texas’ season-high four errors in Game 1 and will be taking a seat for Game 2 after the dreadful performance.

David Murphy, who had a pinch hit RBI single in Game 1, will crack the starting lineup as the left fielder while Nelson Cruz moves over to right. Murphy played 82 games in left field and 51 more in right this year, so he’s used to playing the outfield. Murphy OPSd .806 in the regular season and is posting a .789 line in the post-season. Murphy’s offensive production was similar to Vlad’s in the regular season and David is hitting better in the playoffs, so the defensive upgrade is well worth the change. It is likely to be a low-scoring game, unlike the shocker in Game 1, so a defensive miscue can make the difference. Texas is wise to make the change, but we’ll still likely see Vlad pinch hit late in the game.

Cliff Lee Lets Rangers Down, Freddy Sanchez Lifts Giants Up

Cy Young Award winners Cliff Lee and Tim Lincecum were set to square off in Game 1 of the World Series between the Rangers and Giants. The matchup between the aces should have produced a 2-1 game with an over-under run total line of 4.5, and the wise better would have gone with the under. But that’s why they play games with bats, balls, and gloves and not pencils, papers, and Vegas oddsmakers.

Never in my baseball watching years could I have imagined that Cliff Lee would blow a 2-0 lead, throw over 100 pitches, and not make it out of the 5th inning against the Giants. The previously unbeatable strike-throwing robot as Alan Hull likes to call him gave up two runs in the 3rd and three more in the 5th (though he was charged with four). Freddy Sanchez, Cody Ross, and Aubrey Huff all hit him hard in the 5th inning, largely because Phifer wasn’t locating his pitches. Darren O’Day relieved Lee and gave up a three-run bomb to Juan Uribe which really seemed to seal the win. And it wasn’t even the pitching that let Texas down; they committed four errors in the game which was a season high.

Former batting champ Freddy Sanchez truly showed up. The Burbank boy went 4-for-5 with three doubles, three RBIs and two runs scored. His first double was an opposite field bloop job that was lucky to fall in fair territory, but every other hit after that was stung well. Aubrey Huff added three hits and knocked Lee out of the game with a line drive up the middle. If San Francisco could win the game many of us already handed to Texas then they’re in excellent shape to take it all. As someone who dislikes the Giants, I have to admit I’m worried. Where’s Dusty Baker to bring in Livan Hernandez when you need him?

Photo Credit: Ezra Shaw/Getty Images