Sunday, July 29, 2012

Diamond Droughts

BY SCOTT MORGANROTH

There are droughts in all sports and the LA Kings just recently ended their 45-year dry spell by winning the franchises' first Stanley Cup Championship on June 11, 2012 defeating the New Jersey Devils in six games.

Because of Major League Baseball's long history, there are droughts that reach the 100-year mark or last many decades.

The Chicago Cubs championship drought currently stands at 103-years with their last title occurring in 1908. The Cubs are 5-5 in the last 10 games. At 42-58 they don't appear to be in a position to end this championship skid. Chicago trails division leading Cincinnati by 18.5 games in the National League Central Division.

The other two long droughts in baseball occurred when crosstown rival, the Chicago White Sox won their first title in 87-years as they captured the 2005 World Series.

A year-earlier, the Boston Red Sox ended the curse of Babe Ruth (The Bambino) by snapping an 85-year drought in 2004.

The Cubs hired Red Sox General Manager Theo Epstein this winter hoping to have the same fortune that gave Fenway Park a championship atmosphere that will transfer to Wrigley Field.

Droughts don't only have to be just championships.

The 2012 season has produced a pair of great pitching performances.

Johan Santana pitched the New York Mets first no-hitter with an 8-0 victory on June 1 over the defending World Series Champions St. Louis Cardinals at Citi Field.

The Mets went 8,020 games without a no-hitter and previously threw 35-one hitters. Their first no-hitter in their 50-years of baseball leaves the San Diego Padres as the only team left in MLB History to have not thrown a no-hitter.

During this span, Nolan Ryan, Tom Seaver and Dwight Gooden were unable to perform this for the Mets.

Twelve days later, another former New York based team made history at AT&T Park in San Francisco on June 13, 2012.

Matt Cain threw the 22nd perfect game in MLB History by striking out 14 Houston Astros in a 10-0 triumph for the San Francisco Giants. His 14 strikeouts tied an MLB mark with former Los Angles Dodger Sandy Koufax in 1965.

More importantly, this was the first perfect game in the 129-year history of the Giants franchise.

As former Los Angeles Dodgers Manager Tom Lasorda once told me, "Because God Delays Doesn't Mean That God Denies."

How true. How true.

I'll be curious to see what drought ends next. They are definitely historical when they happen especially in "The Great American Pastime."

Scott Morganroth can be reached at scottsports33@aol.com.

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