Carlos Zambrano just pitched a no-no on the Astros. (Full story)
Carlos Zambrano pitched the first no-hitter for the Chicago Cubs in 36 years, returning from a sore rotator cuff to shut down the Houston Astros 5-0 Sunday night in a game relocated because of Hurricane Ike."I guess I'm back!" Zambrano hollered.
Sigh. Deep breath.
My condolences for the fans and people of Houston and Galveston TX. You've been blown three times this week, and not once in a good way. First, there's that damn Ike. Then Bud "gotta' go now" Selig's gracious last second decision to host the Astros and Cubs at his daughter's Milwaukee's Brewer's Miller Park. And now you've been blanked by Z in the first of those two games.
Now I'm not an Astros fan. Some of you know that I am on record as famously NOT being an Astros fan. As a non-Astros fan, my position on this matter may confuse some of you. However, I think this gives me a unique perspective to understand their frustration with the situation.
Old news: Due to Ike, The Chicago Cubs and Houston Astros ended their Hurricane Ike hiatus and played night game Sunday and a day game tomorrow on Monday at Miller Park in Milwaukee. The two teams will play the third game, if needed, on Sept. 29 in Houston, after the regular season is over. Please. We're all adults. There won't be a third game because you've given the first two to the Cubs.
Is it a conspiracy against the Astros? Perhaps just an opportunity for the Brewers to advance over Philly? Just a coincidence that Milwaukee has a retractable roof, which would guarantee the two games while the home team was on the road? And that Bud has left the lights on for them?
Sure, the choice to take the games to Milwaukee could be attributed to the roof - that could allow games to happen no mater what... the story looks pretty, but don't kick the tires. Bud was a used car salesman, after all.
Look at how long everyone in charge shuffled their feet. The decision to play at a "neutral" site only was decided late Friday night. This storm didn't form overnight. This issue was talked about for a week. Better leadership would have solved this problem earlier, and they could have even played the entire series out. They could have sold the chairs to charity - there is precedent for this exact situation. But, you see, better leadership is not something the MLB has.
In fact, it seems that at the literal 11th hour, the final decision was made to not play the games in Houston - much to the dismay of the Astros - which will have to refund 3 sold out games. There's an insurance policy for that. But there isn't for lost hot dog and beer revenue. I'm not crying for the Astros on that one. As such, that revenue loss and protesting to switch venues probably prevented a better decision in favor of the Astros in the first place.
However, once the late decision was made, it was Milwaukee. Wrigley Field North.
Cubby blue and Brew crew finally united against one singular entity of shared hatred: a hot Astros team in the middle of September. My contention is that the late "solution" to the Ike issue has only helped two teams: the Cubs and Brewers. It helps to keep the Astros from narrowing the Brewers' deficit in the NL Central race, and it does the same in the Wild Card.
The only way Bud could have helped more would been to allow the Cubs to bat last.
As for Z? He never seemed to labor for any of his 110 pitches and only walked one.