Say that phrase to yourself. Roll it around your mouth, let it dangle on the tip of your tongue. The season depends on Vicente Padilla beating Pedro Martinez. It’s so absurd that it doesn’t even seem to make sense, at first. What would that have meant to you three months ago?
“Uh, the Rangers are playing San Pedro de Macoris?”
“Dear god, the Dodgers really did sign Pedro?! And… we’re playing Texas in the World Series?!”
“What season is that? Is there some sort of off-season shuffleboard tournament?”
In an October filled with top-line aces (Cliff Lee, C.C. Sabathia) and a multitude of incredibly talented starters both young and old (Clayton Kershaw, Cole Hamels, John Lackey, A.J. Burnett, etc.) the Dodger season hinges on… Vicente Padilla vs. Pedro Martinez. A Pedro Martinez who hasn’t even pitched since in over two weeks, since Sept. 30.
No, losing today and being down 2-0 isn’t completely insurmountable, but I don’t think I really need to go look up the history to tell you that teams which drop the first 2 games (at home!) don’t have a great legacy of coming back to win. So, yes, the season does depend on today’s game.
I think the real question is, is it sadder that our Game 2 starter is Vicente Padilla… or that the best the Phillies can come up with is Pedro Martinez?
Battle of the Titans, indeed.