From a recent Rob Neyer blog entry comes the most awesome and bizarre smack-down of the Dodgers ever:
The current Red Sox-Yankees series, aside from featuring the two best teams in the majors -- with apologies to the Dodgers, but let's be serious -- also features two of the game's great first basemen.
Let me imagine a conversation between me and Rob Neyer, based on an attempt to think like someone who got paid to write the above would think:
Me: But the Dodgers are 5 games ahead of the Yankees and Red Sox in the overall standings.
RN: The National League sucks!
Me: The Dodgers have a run differential---
RN: National League!
Me: Are you saying that a 0.500 team in the AL would win 94 in the---
RN: NL sucks!
Me: Yes, I see.
I do see. The National League is a disgrace and a blight upon the national pastime. In that spirit, I will present the most serious and correct power rankings ever devised.
The "But Let's Be Serious" Power Rankings:
1. New York Yankees. Why? Come on, it's New. York. City. They play in a brand new and very very expensive stadium. They have various Steinbrenners. And of course, they have the best record in the only division that matters in the only league that matters. (ODTMOLTM) They are one half of the only baseball rivalry that matters. They are the New York bleeping Yankees. It doesn't get any more serious than that.
2. Boston Red Stockings. ( Can't go with Sox, you see. Not serious enough. ) Why? Do you need to ask why? Just look into the eyes of any Red Stockings fan and you'll know why. Tied with the Yankees in the ODTMOLTM. They are the other half of the only baseball rivalry that matters. The Red Stockings are as serious as death. Along with the Yankees, the only team that seriously matters.
That's it. That's the power rankings. No other teams need apply. But they did, anyway, those spunky irrelevancies. So now we'll have the order in which the somber power rankings panel was least offended by their applications for the "But Let's Be Serious" Power Rankings.
1. Toronto Blue Jays. Pros: They play in the ODTMOLTM. Cons: A whole game and a half behind the Red Stockings and Yankees. A game and a half! Are you kidding me? Get that weak $%^& out of here, Toronto. You can't possibly be in the conversation with those teams. Come back when you're at least 3 games ahead of the Yankees or Sox, and not in Canada anymore, and then we'll talk.
2. Texas Rangers. Pros: They play in the only real league. Cons: Not in the AL east. Play in flyover country. A full game back of the Yankees and Red Stockings. May not be a real team.
3. Philadelphia Phillies. Pros: Won World Series last year. Are on east coast. Only fan base that can compete with Yankees and Red Stockings for being serious. Cons: Are National League team. Their NL record of 33-23 would be 10 games worse in the only league with real baseball teams. World Series win doesn't count because they didn't beat the Red Stockings or Yankees.
4. Detroit Tigers. Pros: They play in the only league that matters. Cons: Not really that good.
5. New York Mets. Pros: Are New York team. New York! That's some serious east coast seriousness. Breathe same air as Yankees. Cons: Kind of suck. Not worthy of breathing same air as Yankees. Also, National League!
Let's skip ahead to the Dodgers:
14. Los Angeles Dodgers. Pros: None, unless for some reason you want to be ignorant enough to count 40 wins in a vastly inferior league. Cons: Play on west coast, where everyone is too laid back and they don't care about winning or the playoffs. Play in National League West, the worst division ever, a division so bad the 1962 Mets would win 90 games in it. If the Yankees were in the NL West they would have 70 wins and negative 10 losses right now. That's thirty games better than the Dodgers! So please, let's be serious, and dispense with the idea that the Dodgers even belong in the conversation with the Yankees and Red Sox.
So, Dodger fans, next time you think maybe the Dodgers are the best team in the major league, imagine Rob Neyer shaking his head at you and saying, "But let's be serious." It's the reality check you needed.