Huddle up

Steve raises a scary thought in his “Moneyball” post. Imagine that potential World Series: Tampa Bay Rays vs. Florida Marlins. Fifty bucks to the first person who can name their home stadiums (and when I say $50 I mean a hearty congratulations).

The best part of all these surprise performances is watching the inevitable reaction of the so-called favourites. Yes, the “closed-door team meetings” have officially begun. The New York Yankees held one this week—hours after team owner Hank Steinbrenner slammed his high-paid horses in the press (like father, like son). The Seattle Mariners called a group meeting, too. Three in one week! And then there’s the over-hyped, underachieving Detroit Tigers, who, after two more embarrassing losses to the Kansas City Royals, gathered for a players-only chitchat in the visitors clubhouse yesterday morning. It didn’t quite work. Later that afternoon, the Tigers were down 5-1 by the second inning en route to an 8-4 loss.

I don’t have the stats handy (I have a day job, too) but I’m pretty convinced that most of the time, the whole team meeting thing is a bust. OK guys, let’s get together and try to think of the reasons why we’re over-thinking too much in the batter’s box.

John Lowe, the long-time Tigers beat writer at the Detroit Free Press, summed it up best last night: “The kind of team meeting the Tigers now need is the one at home plate, where a player who’s finishing his home-run trot is greeted by someone who has scored on the homer, as well as the next hitter. The Tigers haven’t had that kind of meeting in two weeks.” If anything, the Tigers should convene another team meeting to talk about how witty John Lowe is…

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