Daily Archive: 10/24/2013

Oct 24 2013

The Big Lie: The US Doesn’t Torture

The prisoners on trial before military tribunal at Guantanamo for their attacks on the United States are unable to present evidence that they were tortured by the CIA even though they are facing the death penalty. This is what has been happening:

On Tuesday, October 22, the lawyers for the September 11 accused argued that the Guantanamo military commissions’ protective order (pdf) violates the United Nations Convention Against Torture. The protective order states that the defendant’s “observations and experiences” of torture at CIA black sites are classified. Defense counsel say that this violates the Convention Against Torture’s requirement that victims of torture have “a right to complain” to authorities in the countries where they are tortured, and makes the commission into “a co-conspirator in hiding evidence of war crimes.”

It is not only the defendants’ lawyers who object to the protective order. The ACLU has called the restrictions on detainees’ testimony “chillingly Orwellian.” Earlier this year, the Constitution Project’s bipartisan, independent Task Force on Detainee Treatment (for which I served as staff investigator) found that the military commissions’ censorship of detainees’ descriptions of their own torture could not be justified on grounds of national security, and violated “the public’s First Amendment right of access to those proceedings, the detainees’ right to counsel, and counsel’s First Amendment rights.” This month, the European Parliament passed a resolution that called on the United States “to stop using draconian protective orders which prevent lawyers acting for Guantánamo Bay detainees from disclosing information regarding any detail of their secret detention in Europe.”

The reason the prisoners are being denies their rights to present the evidence of torture, even though they are facing the death penalty, is this:

In April 2009, over the CIA’s objections, Obama declassified four Office (pdf) of Legal (pdf) Counsel (pdf) (OLC) (pdf) opinions that described in graphic detail the brutal techniques that the CIA used against captives after September 11, because in his judgment their release was “required by the rule of law.”

But today, the administration takes the position (pdf) that the release of the OLC memos only declassified the CIA’s use of torturous interrogation techniques “in the abstract.” The details of any individual detainee’s treatment in CIA custody are still top secret. The CIA claims this is necessary because disclosures about individual interrogations would “provide future terrorists with a guidebook on how to evade such questioning,” and “provide ready-made ammunition for al-Qa’ida propaganda.”

The one thing that the defense lawyers, the prosecutors and the judges all agree on, President Barack Obama could fix this.

Biden: Mukasey Stance on Torture “Shocks My Conscience”

Paul Kiel – January 30, 2008, 4:12 PM EST

Sen. Joe Biden (D-DE) said that he’d been getting the impression that Mukasey really thought about torture in relative terms, and wanted to know if that was so. Is it OK to waterboard someone if a nuclear weapon was hidden — the Jack Bauer scenario — but not OK to waterboard someone for more pedestrian information?

Mukasey responded that it was “not simply a relative issue,” but there “is a statute where it is a relative issue,” he added, citing the Detainee Treatment Act. That law engages the “shocks the conscience” standard, he explained, and you have to “balance the value of doing something against the cost of doing it.”

What digby said:

So basically, while we “do not torture” we have admitted “in the abstract” that we did torture, but if any of those tortured reveal the details of that torture the terrorists of the future will know how we torture and learn how to evade it. So we’re obviously still torturing. Am I missing something?>

No, digby, you didn’t miss a thing.

Oct 24 2013

Punting the Pundits

“Punting the Pundits” is an Open Thread. It is a selection of editorials and opinions from around the news medium and the internet blogs. The intent is to provide a forum for your reactions and opinions, not just to the opinions presented, but to what ever you find important.

Thanks to ek hornbeck, click on the link and you can access all the past “Punting thea Pundits”.

Follow us on Twitter @StarsHollowGzt

Will Bunch: U.S. Government Tech: Lousy at Health Care, Great at Flying Death Robots

Hey, remember that time when the U.S. had a Predator drone hovering over a suspected terrorist’s house in Yemen for four hours, and nothing happened because the 20-year-old junior officer with the missile-firing joystick couldn’t log into the damn operating system? How the entire system of fighting al-Qaeda around the world with unmanned aerial vehicles — planned for years by the Obama administration — failed to come online? And all the folks over at Fox News laughing and whooping it up, saying all the drone glitches proved that Obama is a fraud as president and that “big government” can’t do anything right?

Of course you don’t… that never happened. The reality is that when it comes to the science of flying death robots, the United States is the world leader. Our drone systems may not be 100 percent perfect, but they rarely fail. When it comes to killing people remotely from the air, nobody does it better.

Technologically, that is.

Richard (RJ) Eskow: Negotiate the Budget — but Fight for the Role of Government, Too

Democrats in the White House are confronted with a dilemma. On the one hand, the clock’s ticking on their temporary budget deal with the Republicans. If it runs out and there’s no new agreement, we run the risk of a default and the government could shut down again. But the need to negotiate places them in a position where they might appear to legitimize the GOP’s extreme positions — positions which have been immortalized in a series of Republican budgets.

In the short term, Democrats need to negotiate. But in the longer term, we urgently need a real debate about the role of government in this country — a debate which highlights the ever-widening gulf in values between the Republican Party, as reflected in its budgets, and the American people.

It would be tragic if Democrats won a battle, but the nation continued to lose a war.

Robert Reich: The Triumph of the Right

Conservative Republicans have lost their fight over the shutdown and debt ceiling, and they probably won’t get major spending cuts in upcoming negotiations over the budget.

But they’re winning the big one: How the nation understands our biggest domestic problem.

They say the biggest problem is the size of government and the budget deficit.

In fact our biggest problem is the decline of the middle class and increasing ranks of the poor, while almost all the economic gains go to the top.

Robert Sheer: What Fine? Why JPMorgan Is Laughing All the Way to the Bank

“I am not a crook,” Jamie Dimon might as well have been insisting in his five telephone calls these past two weeks with U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, asking that a criminal investigation of JPMorgan Chase be dropped as part of a plea deal on what has turned out to be a $13 billion fine on civil charges.   [..]

Although the $13 billion fine on the civil charges, which includes $4 billion in direct assistance to swindled homeowners, mostly in depressed inner city neighborhoods, is to be applauded, it represents about half of the profit JPMorgan garnered last year. The company’s stock price, which has increased by 23 percent since January despite a barrage of crises and fines, has not been damaged by the latest settlement.

Eugene Robinson: Now Is a Time for Growth

It’s fine to talk-eventually-about chronic deficits and mounting debt. But now that our government is up and running again, the nation’s first priority should be economic growth.

Sorry if this gives conniptions to all you deficit hawks out there. Actually, I’m not that sorry, because it was the hawks’ over-the-top warnings of impending doom that provided intellectual cover for the meat-cleaver budget cuts we’re living with today. [..]

This is part of a trend. The deficit peaked at $1.4 trillion in 2009 and has been sliding ever since. I don’t mean to suggest that we don’t have a problem. But it’s clear at this point that the extraordinary deficits we saw at the height of the Great Recession were anomalous and that the flow of red ink is returning to normal. The CBO predicts that deficits will continue to fall through 2015.

What happens then? Actually, it’s too early to say.

Dylan Ratigan: Spock and the Art of Healthcare Overhaul

Our health care system is shaped by the question, “How much would you pay to not die?” This is what we have, and it is impossible to sustain. So what if the value proposition was equally simple but absolutely possible: Help me, my family and friends live long and prosper.

Generally speaking, there are only two ways to earn money.

1. Charge a fee for goods or services.

2. Charge a mutually agreed upon percentage based on a future outcome based on the newly created value. This percentage can be in the form of equity or commission.

As it stands, healthcare in America is based on the first model. This creates a system with many, high fees generated by acute and traumatic care. [..]

Oct 24 2013

On This Day In History October 24

This is your morning Open Thread. Pour your favorite beverage and review the past and comment on the future.

Find the past “On This Day in History” here.

October 24 is the 297th day of the year (298th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 68 days remaining until the end of the year.

On this day in 1901, a 63-year-old schoolteacher named Annie Edson Taylor becomes the first person to take the plunge over Niagara Falls in a barrel. After her husband died in the Civil War, the New York-born Taylor moved all over the U. S. before settling in Bay City, Michigan, around 1898. In July 1901, while reading an article about the Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo, she learned of the growing popularity of two enormous waterfalls located on the border of upstate New York and Canada. Strapped for cash and seeking fame, Taylor came up with the perfect attention-getting stunt: She would go over Niagara Falls in a barrel.

Desiring to secure her later years financially, she decided she would be the first person to ride Niagara Falls in a barrel. Taylor used a custom-made barrel for her trip, constructed of oak and iron and padded with a mattress. Several delays occurred in the launching of the barrel, particularly because no one wanted to be part of a potential suicide. Two days before Taylor’s own attempt, a domestic cat was sent over the Horseshoe Falls in her barrel to test its strength. Contrary to rumors at the time, the cat survived the plunge unharmed and later was posed with Taylor in photographs.

On October 24, 1901, her 63rd birthday, the barrel was put over the side of a rowboat, and Taylor climbed in, along with her lucky heart-shaped pillow. After screwing down the lid, friends used a bicycle tire pump to compress the air in the barrel. The hole used for this was plugged with a cork, and Taylor was set adrift near the American shore, south of Goat Island.

The Niagara River currents carried the barrel toward the Canadian Horseshoe Falls, which has since been the site for all daredevil stunting at Niagara Falls. Rescuers reached her barrel shortly after the plunge. Taylor was discovered to be alive and relatively uninjured, save for a small gash on her head. The trip itself took less than twenty minutes, but it was some time before the barrel was actually opened. After the journey, Annie Taylor told the press:

If it was with my dying breath, I would caution anyone against attempting the feat… I would sooner walk up to the mouth of a cannon, knowing it was going to blow me to pieces than make another trip over the Fall.

She briefly earned money speaking about her experience, but was never able to build much wealth. Her manager, Frank M. Russell, decamped with her barrel, and most of her savings were used towards private detectives hired to find it. It was eventually located in Chicago, only to permanently disappear some time later.

Annie Taylor died on April 29, 1921, aged 82, at the Niagara County Infirmary in Lockport, New York. She is interred in the “Stunters Section” of Oakwood Cemetery in Niagara Falls, New York.

Oct 24 2013

The Murdoch of Italy

From ‘Bunga Bunga’ parties with under age sex slaves to tax evasion to abuse of his media empire for personal political gain and promoting conservative causes, it’s easy to forget among the mountain of corruption and scandal that former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi is not just the face of Fascism as surely as Benito Mussolini, but a pathetic weasel and bully.

Berlusconi ordered to stand trial for bribing senator

By Amalia De Simone, Reuters

Wed Oct 23, 2013 1:16pm EDT

Silvio Berlusconi was ordered to stand trial for corruption on Wednesday, in a fresh legal blow to the former Italian prime minister following his conviction for tax fraud in August and a string of other cases.

Naples prosecutors accuse Berlusconi of bribing Sergio De Gregorio, a former senator in the small Italy of Values party, to switch allegiance as part of an attempt to bring down the center-left government of former Prime Minister Romano Prodi in 2006.

De Gregorio, who has admitted receiving 3 million euros ($4.13 million) from Berlusconi and attempting to persuade other senators to change sides, was sentenced to 20 months in jail after plea bargaining.



Berlusconi’s legal battles have come close to destroying Italy’s fragile government of left and right, built around an unwieldy alliance between Prime Minister Enrico Letta’s center-left Democratic Party (PD) and Berlusconi’s PDL.

Letta survived a confidence motion earlier this month after center-right rebels forced Berlusconi to retreat from a bid to bring down the coalition, but tensions have continued between hardline Berlusconi loyalists and both the PD and PDL moderates who support the government.

The Senate is expected to vote on stripping Berlusconi of his seat in the upper house under a law banning convicted criminals from parliament.

It is not yet clear when that vote will be held and whether it will come before a separate court ruling banning Berlusconi from holding public office for two years takes effect.



As well as the tax fraud sentence and the latest trial, Berlusconi is also fighting a separate conviction for paying for sex with a minor and abuse of office in the now-notorious “bunga bunga” case involving former teenaged nightclub dancer Karima El Mahroug, alias “Ruby the Heartstealer”. He has appealed a seven year prison sentence handed down in June.

Oct 24 2013

The Police and the Mentally Ill

A recent rash of 911 calls for assistance for people with medical and mental health emergencies that resulted in the patient being shot and killed by the responding police has sparked lawsuits for ending the drone wars and concerns for how police are trained to deal with the emotional disturbed.

Police Brutality, Mental Illness and ‘The Memphis Model’

by Amy Goodman and Denis Moynihan, Democracy Now!

Elsa Cruz filed a federal lawsuit in New York this week, months after police shot her husband dead. Last May, Cruz called 911 asking for help with her husband, Samuel. She feared he hadn’t taken his medication while she was on vacation in her native country, the Philippines. Eight months, almost to the day, before Cruz was killed, not far away in Harlem, Hawa Bah called 911 to ask for medical help for her son, Mohamed. Rather than getting medical help, Mohamed Bah was confronted by the New York City Police Department. Within hours, he, too, was shot dead by police, hit eight times, once in the head. Mohamed’s sister, Oumou Bah, is suing the City of New York and unnamed police officers. While neither lawsuit will bring back the dead, they may prevent future deaths by forcing the New Rochelle Police Department and the NYPD to adopt an increasingly mainstream police practice for dealing with emotionally distressed people, called “The Memphis Model.”

In an exclusive interview Tuesday on the “Democracy Now!” news hour, I had the chance to interview Hawa Bah and Elsa Cruz. They were meeting each other in our studios for the first time.[..]

This is where “The Memphis Model” comes in. Maj. Sam Cochran is a retired officer with the Memphis, Tenn., police. In 1987, police responded to a man who was harming himself, and threatening others, with a knife. The police killed the man. Community outcry prompted the mayor to call for a solution. They developed the Crisis Intervention Team. Sam Cochran explained to me, “It’s a community program [with] three main partnerships: law enforcement, local mental-health services providers and also advocacy.” CITs put a trained officer or mental-health professional on the scene, to de-escalate a situation. Since its inception in Memphis, it has been adopted in more than 2,500 communities in 40 states, as well as internationally.

Oct 24 2013

2013 Major League Baseball Championship Game 1: Cardinals @ Red Sox

Yup.  That’s what Harry Frazee traded the Bambino for.

Now at 90+ minutes that’s a little bit long even for a World Series game where they’ll dust the plate after every pitch so that everyone gets their TV time so I’m in the market for some kind of short and snappy YouTube vignette to symbolize the BoSox.  You know, something like this-

The story behind the Rally Squirrel is this-

Rally Squirrel is the name given to an American gray squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis) which appeared on the field and ran across home plate at Busch Stadium during a 2011 National League Division Series (NLDS) Major League Baseball game between the Philadelphia Phillies and St. Louis Cardinals on October 5, 2011. The squirrel captured American media attention, and was adopted as an unofficial mascot by the Cardinals and the populace of St. Louis. The Cardinals would go on to win the 2011 World Series.

On October 4, a gray squirrel appeared in the outfield during Game 3 of the Phillies-Cardinals National League Division Series, causing an interruption in play.

During the fifth inning of Game 4 on October 5, a squirrel again appeared on the field. Play was not interrupted, but the squirrel caused considerable confusion, running across home plate as Phillies pitcher Roy Oswalt was delivering a pitch to Skip Schumaker. The squirrel then jumped into the stands. Umpire Ángel Hernández called the pitch a ball; Oswalt and Philadelphia manager Charlie Manuel argued, unsuccessfully, that Oswalt had been distracted by the squirrel and that “no pitch” should be called. Manuel later avowed that, if he had a firearm, he would have shot the obstreperous rodent. Some commentators speculated that the October 4 and October 5 squirrels were the same animal, but this was not proven.

Now I’ll not be rooting for the Sox much I think, though I really have nothing against them except that the game they play is not Baseball but some kind of weenie contest where Pitchers hide in the dugout instead of standing at the plate and their at bats are given to overpaid has beens who are no longer good enough to take the field.  Connecticut has always been a battleground between those who hate the Yankees with the burning white hot passion of a thousand suns and people who like their Baseball easy and are willing to let someone else bankroll it.  Of course there is no arguing with the results- 25% of all Championships in the last hundred years or so.

The Cardinal program is kind of like the Senior League version of that.

St Louis Cardinals: the nicest fans in baseball?

David Lengel, The Guardian

Tuesday 22 October 2013 11.41 EDT

Maybe it’s best for them to stay in groups whilst away from St Louis, because Cardinals fans are under unprecedented fire lately. Why? For being Cardinals fans. What’s the perception driving detractors of St Louis’ fans? That they’re a sickly-sweet group of do-gooding polite Midwesterners that refuse to get upset with their own players even when they suck. That sometimes, they even have the nerve to applaud the opposition! (See this blog on Deadspin and this on Bloomberg). This hatred is exacerbated when the Cards crush you season after season of course, to the tune of 19 pennants and 11 World Series titles. Yes, outsiders are starting to notice such dominating play, and the Yankees, long the premier public enemy for baseball fans, may soon have company.

Some selected stories for your attention-

Red Sox vs Cardinals: an old time World Series with a new spin

Harry J Enten, The Guardian

Wednesday 23 October 2013 08.55 EDT

(I)t hasn’t been since 1999 in which the teams with the leagues’ best records competed against each other in the World Series. For an old-time baseball fan like my father, who can’t quite figure out what a wild card is exactly, this World Series offers a respite to those who believe the regular season should count for a lot more than it currently does.

Second, it is fitting that such a series would take place in Boston and St. Louis. Both teams played in their respective leagues and respective cities when the American League was founded in 1901. Only 16 of the now 30 major league franchises were actually in existence 112 years ago.

The percentage dips even lower when you consider teams that were playing in the cities they do now. Only four American League teams – the Indians, Red Sox, Tigers, and White Sox – and five National League teams – the Cardinals, Cubs, Reds, Phillies, and Pirates – were in their current cities when the current Major League alignment came into existence.



(I)t wasn’t until the 1920s when the Yankees began their run of World Series victories. One could argue that the Boston Red Sox were the American League team of the first quarter of the 20th century. The Yankees weren’t even the best team in New York, as that honor fell to the National League New York Giants.

This World Series promises to reset the dial to a non-Yankee ruled world. Both the Cardinals and Red Sox have won two World Series in this century, tied with the Yankees. The winning team will have won the most World Series in the 21st century and ever so slightly knock the Yankees back.

Red Sox 2013 have many parallels to 2004 World Series winners

Hunter Felt, The Guardian

Monday 21 October 2013 12.00 EDT

It could be argued that no team had ever had an unlikelier road to the World Series than the 2004 Red Sox, to the point where the World Series itself ended up being entirely anticlimactic. The 2004 St Louis Cardinals, who had won 105 games in the regular season and had, in Albert Pujols, the Greatest Player In Baseball Not Named Barry Bonds, barely put up a fight during the four-game sweep. The Cardinals were just on the wrong side of history. When asked if St Louis would have done better in the World Series if they had home field advantage, which the wild card winning Red Sox only held because the American League had won that year’s all-star game, manager Tony La Russa would sarcastically offer that maybe his team would have actually won a single game.

Boston Red Sox vs St Louis Cardinals: position by position guide

David Lengel, The Guardian

Tuesday 22 October 2013 14.45 EDT

Overall prediction

I learned my lesson last time after picking against St Louis in the past… Cardinals in seven games.

A Rematch Red All Over (Except the Green Monster)

By TYLER KEPNER, The New York Times

Published: October 22, 2013

THEY LOVE L.A. This World Series matchup very well would not have happened without the local cable contracts in Southern California. The Angels, flush with cash from a deal with Fox, showered $240 million on the Cardinals’ Albert Pujols after the 2011 season. The Cardinals chose Michael Wacha with their compensatory draft pick, and they parceled out the savings from Pujols’s rejection to re-sign Yadier Molina and Adam Wainwright and sign Carlos Beltran. Seeking stars for their new TV deal, the Dodgers bailed out the Red Sox in August 2012 by trading for Josh Beckett, Carl Crawford and Adrian Gonzalez, three stars with sinkhole contracts who had grown miserable in Boston. With more than $260 million off their books in one deal, the Red Sox reset their roster by signing seven free agents (Ryan Dempster, Stephen Drew, Jonny Gomes, Mike Napoli, David Ross, Koji Uehara and Shane Victorino) without committing more than $39 million to any of them.

RUNNING GAME Only three teams stole more bases than the Red Sox, who succeeded on 123 of 142 attempts in the regular season. They just kept running through the playoffs, swiping 11 bases in 13 attempts. But Yadier Molina is probably the best in the majors at shutting down the running game. Opponents attempted just three steals (two successfully) in the playoffs off Molina.

STYLISH BIRDS As they seek another World Series victory, the Cardinals have already claimed one crown this year: Uni Watch ranked their uniforms first among all teams in baseball, the N.F.L., the N.B.A. and the N.H.L. “M.L.B.’s best-looking team looks even better this season,” wrote Paul Lukas, “thanks to the addition of that great retro-style alternate jersey.” The Cardinals wear the alternate “St. Louis” jerseys on home Saturdays, which means they should wear them for Game 3. The best-dressed of all is the veteran reliever Randy Choate, who wears old-style striped stirrups to accentuate the Cardinals’ classic look.

Up Close, Fenway’s Green Monster Not So Green

By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

Published: October 23, 2013 at 10:31 AM ET

Up close, Fenway Park’s famous left-field Wall is pocked with thousands of dents and white scuff marks left from decades of doubles that banged off of its facade. Some of the spots are so well-defined that you can even make out the red stitches from the baseball, the Rawlings logo or the Major League Baseball insignia left behind on the green background.

“All those dents out there, you can’t help but realize who put them there. That’s history,” Red Sox left fielder Jonny Gomes said Tuesday on workout day for the World Series. “I come to work every single day in a museum. It’s not a baseball field, it’s a museum.”

Fenway itself is 101 years old, but the 37-foot Wall was added in 1934, first painted green in 1947 and rebuilt in 1976, when it was covered in a hard plastic that is repainted before opening day every spring. Dubbed the Green Monster because, just 310 feet from home plate down the line, it’s a scary sight for pitchers, it runs from the left-field grandstands to the 379-foot mark in left-center.

And, every couple of inches, there is a ding or a streak from a ball that bounced off it. It could be a Red Sox batter or an opponent. Maybe it was in batting practice, or maybe in a game. Some were fly balls that would have been caught in another park, and others would have been home runs elsewhere turned into a Fenway single or double.

What impresses you most about Fenway is how small it is (some would say intimate, but let’s call a spade (♠) a card symbol that looks like a shovel if you turn it upside down).  Thus the ‘Green Monster’.  The other side is a street and without the height it’s just too damn easy to knock one out of the park.  The only intimidation is in your mind as a batter and as a fielder you get used to playing it like a jai-lai backstop.

The Great God Citgo looms over all and even by drunken triangulation with the Pru(dential Tower) gives you a rough idea if you’re puking above or below Kenmore Square or are even on the right side of the Charles.

Thanks for holding my hair.

And finally-

24-0 and Pitching in Japan’s World Series

By DAVID WALDSTEIN, The New York Times

Published: October 23, 2013

Unless the typhoon season disrupts the schedule of the Nippon Series, Masahiro Tanaka will take the ball for the Pacific League’s Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles in Game 1 Saturday night, looking to continue one of the most remarkable runs by a pitcher in professional baseball, and doing it in a region desperate for positive events in the years after a devastating earthquake and tsunami.

So far, nothing has been able to disrupt Tanaka, who finished the regular season 24-0 with a 1.27 earned run average and a save, then was 1-0 with a shutout and a save in the playoffs after Rakuten won its first Pacific League title. In the regular season he faced 822 batters and gave up only 6 home runs. Incredibly, his performance came in a season marked by a juiced ball controversy: Wladimir Balentien of the Tokyo Yakult Swallows hit 60 home runs to shatter Sadaharu Oh’s cherished record of 55 homers, set in 1964.



According to Jim Small, Major League Baseball’s vice president for Asia, the success of Japanese players in the United States, combined with the popularity in Japan of the World Baseball Classic, has brought a more open, international approach to their game, and Balentien, who is from Curaçao, was generally embraced for his feat.

“I think there was genuine excitement and happiness here (at least from Swallows fans) to see him break the record,” Small wrote in an e-mail message. “Japan has changed a lot in the last 10 years.”

Small, who has lived in Japan for 10 years, also said the success that Tanaka has brought to Rakuten is measured in more than just his unblemished record. Rakuten plays in Sendai, a city devastated by the 2011 earthquake and tsunami that damaged their stadium. The area has not recovered fully, but its underdog team, led by Tanaka, is looking to overthrow the popular and mighty Yomiuri Giants of the Central League in the Nippon Series.

“You have to put what he did in context because of what that team did,” Small said in the e-mail. “It was their first league title and has absolutely galvanized that region. Tens of thousands of people are still in shelters and more than 100,000 had to leave the area to find work elsewhere. It is a seriously depressed area. Tanaka and the Eagles have given people there so much to be happy about. It is truly amazing.”

“World” Series is kind of a misnomer.  I prefer ‘Major League Baseball Championship’ or ‘Fall Classic’.

The Matchups-

  • Wednesday 10/23 Game One: Jon Lester (15 – 8, 3.75 ERA L) vs Adam Wainwright (19 – 9, 2.94 ERA R)
  • Thursday 10/24 Game Two: John Lackey (10 – 13, 3.52 ERA R) vs Michael Wacha (4 – 1, 2.78 ERA R)
  • Saturday 10/26 Game Three: Joe Kelly (10 – 5, 2.69 ERA R) vs Clay Buchholz (12 – 1, 1.74 ERA R)
  • Sunday 10/27 Game Four: Lance Lynn (15 – 10, 3.97 ERA R) vs Jake Peavy (12 – 5, 4.17 ERA R)

Jon Lester is 2 – 1 in the post-season 16 hits and 5 runs in 16 and a 3rd innings pitched for an ERA of 2.33.  Adam Wainwright is also 2 – 1 with 17 hits and 4 runs in 23 innings pitched for an ERA of 1.57.  Advantage, St. Louis.