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Thursday, October 07, 2010

  Why Can't We Get Players Like That?

Long-time Boston sports reporter and anchor Bob Lobel had a little thing he did when reporting on outstanding accomplishments by athletes who once played in New England and then moved on to achieve great things elsewhere. After describing the notable feat, he concluded with the rhetorical question, "Why can't we get players like that?"

I suspect many a Torontonian said something similar upon hearing of last night's gem by erstwhile Blue Jay and current Phillies ace Roy Halladay. In game 1 of the divisional series against the Cincinnati Reds, the newly christened Doctober threw only the second no-hit game in Major League Baseball playoff history. Only a full-count walk to Cincy shortstop Jimmy Rollins in the fifth inning separated Halladay from the only player to have a perfect postseason game, the less exceptional Don Larsen, who might or might not have been hungover at the beginning of his perfect game for the Yankees against Brooklyn in the 1956 World Series. I presume Halladay was cold sober last night. He was also a bit more experienced than Larsen at this no-hit thing, having thrown his own perfect game on a hot southeast Florida day earlier this season against the Marlins.

Not bad for a guy who spent 11 major league seasons languishing in a Blue Jays uniform during a period when the team wasn't good enough to even mention their consecutive World Series championships almost two decades ago.

As Bob Lobel and his fellow Boston sports fans will attest, it sucks to be stuck on the outside looking in when someone you cheered for all those years gets it done for someone else. It is with that knowledge that I say it must suck large to be a Toronto fan this morning. But to look on the bright side, at least until tonight, the Leafs are tied for first place.

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