Despite not getting to see a single pitch of Texas' game today, a disappointing 2-1 loss to St. John's in Houston, I do have some analysis to offer:
This Kirk Bohls commentary on the game is the worst column I've read in a long time.
While Kyle Russell notes that he's focused and steady after the loss, and Augie Garrido says that the teams played pretty evenly but it didn't go our way today, Kirk Bohls - who has been writing about sports for thirty years - pens a column making sweeping conclusions based on one baseball game. Starting with the headline: "Texas' talk didn't help against better team"
Really? St. John's is "better" because they won one game? Bullsh--. If St. John's is a better team than Texas, it can't be because of one game. Not in freaking baseball, where the world champion Boston Red Sox lost 66 games last season. And where NCAA champion Oregon State dropped a 13-7 game to Virginia during last season's championship NCAA tourney run. Does that make the Cavaliers the "better" team, Kirk?
Equally maddening was Bohls' retreat to the fluff of columnist blather to make his point:
Of course, Texas can win if it begins playing more relaxedly and trusting its abilities and does the little things that win games.
If you just threw up, you're not alone.
Bohls would have been fine if he'd tried to talk about Texas' problems on a macro scale, without making so much of the particulars of this one game. As is, he's perpetuating the lazy (and boring) practice of glorifying storytelling over actual analysis. His mistake is thinking the cute theme writing makes it a good column. It's precisely what makes it so worthless.
Texas is in a terrible position now, but that's baseball. Good teams lose all the time. For that matter, so do relaxed teams. And teams which trust their abilities. And all that meaningless crap. Had Texas managed a 2-1 win over the Johnnies today, it wouldn't have made the Longhorns the "better" team either. Just the team that won today. No doubt some columnist in New York would be writing about how "St. Johns just didn't play with enough fire and urgency, depending far too much on hope that the little things would somehow add up to a win."
Personally, I'm rather glad I missed watching Texas drop this game today, frustrating as it appears to have been. But I am glad to see the post-game reaction from Kyle Russell which Kirk Bohls so flippantly dismissed:
"It's not the end of the world," Russell said. "It's over with. We lost one game. Big whoop. I think we're in good position. I'm fine."
Wait... That doesn't sound so good. Maybe Bohls has a point.
Or, maybe he butchered the quote to serve his point. Here's what Russell actually said:
It’s not the end of the world. It’s not over with. If you think about it we’re in the regional. You have to lose two games to get out of here. I think we’re in a good position because our backs are against the wall, what are we going to do about it? It’s do-or-die now, and I’m fine. I think with the team that we have and the talent we have and knowing how we can play baseball we’re going to do alright. We’re going to fight as much as we possibly can. We fought hard today, you have to tip your hat to their pitcher because he was a darn good pitcher. Tomorrow is a brand new day and that’s the great thing about baseball you can start fresh, you can start new and hopefully get a win tomorrow.
Damn straight, son. Especially in baseball, you better have a short memory.
Here's to hoping I can forget to read Bohls' next column on baseball... This one disgusts me to no end.
Now let's go win tomorrow. We need four in a row. One at a time.