October baseball is upon us. With the official commencement of the playoffs comes the opening of the floodgates when it comes to all the various narratives and storylines for each of the contenders. For many a writer, these storylines take a higher precedence than the actual games themselves. Like it or not, you are about to beaten over the head with these narratives for the rest of the month. To help you prepare for the deluge, here is a sneak peak at the narrative surrounding each team that you will soon grow tired of hearing.
Pittsburgh Pirates – Did you know the Pirates are underdogs and that they haven't won anything in a long, long, long time? Well, did you? Did you? DID YOU? Even if you did know, you sure as heck are going to hear a lot about it because you simply must love the Pirates. They are the most loveably loveable underdogs that ever underdogged. So much underdogginess, you guys. If you don't root for them, you have no heart and should probably just spend the post-season drowning puppies and kittens instead of watching baseball.
Cincinnati Reds – Bunt. Bunt. Bunty, bunt, bunt. Need to move a runner over? That's a bunt. Need to score a run? That's bunt. Need to get on base? You know that's a bunt. All of Dusty Baker and his smallball idiosyncrasies are going to drive a certain segment of baseball writers insane. Just wait to see how they then flip their lids the first time Joey Votto gets criticized for drawing a walk instead of swinging the bat with a runner in scoring position in a high leverage situation.
Tampa Bay Rays – How do the Rays keep doing it? They have so little money, such a bad park and such small crowds, yet they keep winning. It's crazy!
Cleveland Indians – Oh noes, the Indians don't have a closer! Chris Perez melted down in the final month of the season and now he is out of a job. Whatever shall the Indians do? Do they promote one of their unproved middle relievers like Cody Allen? Do they let a semi-healthy Justin Masterson take over the role? Do they just give Chris Perez another try and hope that he isn't their 2013 equivalent of Jose Mesa? Inquiring minds want to know.
Atlanta Braves – Do you feel that? Do you feel that breeze? All those whiffs. Man, does this team strikeout a lot or what? I mean, what is with all the strikeouts? You can't win if you can't hit the ball. C'mon, Barves, quit Barving it up and start making some contact otherwise Clayton Kershaw is going to strikeout like 30 guys in a game. That's not even possible, but that's how much the Braves strike out.
Los Angeles Dodgers – That dastardly Yasiel Puig and his showboating antics are going to be the death of Western civilization (assuming Obamacare doesn't bring about the end times first). One of these games, Puig is going to overthrow the cut-off man or get thrown out trying to stretch a single into a double and the Dodgers will lose the entire series right then and then probably get relegated to the PCL for their insolence. Such brash, pool-urinating behavior must be dealt with severely.
St. Louis Cardinals – The best run organization in baseball, nay all of sports, nay in the world, nay the history of the known universe! Ye best not dare impugn the infallible Cardinal franchise nor their totally not all bigoted fans who are the undisputed Best Fans in BaseballTM. Let the non-stop ballwashing begin!
Detroit Tigers – Let the hand-wringing begin over noted PED-sinner Jhonny Peralta being allowed to play in the post-season. He cheated, served his punishment, made his apologies and that no good rotten cheater is still going to be allowed to play in the playoffs. No wonder this country is going to hell in a handbasket. It is so enraging that it has somehow managed to downgrade Miguel Cabrera's recent health woes to a secondary storyline.
Oakland Athletics – Fire up the Moneyball machine… so that it can fail the playoffs again. Those nerds and their numbers think they are so smart, but what have they won with their computer machines? Not a dang thing. Pfft, they couldn't even win the World Series in the movie about the A's. Maybe that is why nobody goes to any of their games.
Boston Red Sox – The idiots are back and this time… THEY HAVE BEARDS!!!! Look at those beards. Those beards are magical. They are like the incarnation of the recaptured team chemistry of the Red Sox. Maybe they should just be renamed the Boston Beard Sox, amirite?