Today, the San Diego Padres and Colorado Rockies square off in a one-game wild-card playoff. Winner gets the National League wild card berth and a matchup with the Phillies. Loser gets an extra day of meal money and shame. Let's see how they match up:
Real World seasons
Real World San Diego had six arrests, an unpublicized, untelevised rape investigation, and a cast member with cystic fibrosis who claimed she was "too punk rock" to be on the show. Standouts were future Challenge all-star Brad, and Early Morning Stoner White Washed Asian Girl Jamie Chung.
Real World Denver had fewer arrests (just one, for public urination), the depressing spectacle of alcoholic cast members teaching Katrina refugees to climb mountains, and, most importantly, Martinez native Jenn Grijalva, who liked to yell "Rock star!", hooked up with two housemates, and was drinking at Farrington's after midnight on Christmas Eve last year. (Excerpt from Farrington's review: "This place sucks. I almost wanna give it 5 stars for how bad it sucks. There's a line outside where people fight and smoke cigarettes and buy coke while waiting for people to leave so they can go in.")
Jerry Maguire's client is the top prospect in the NFL draft, deciding between two teams at the top of the draft - San Diego and Denver. While Cush expresses his willingness to either "surf or ski", he ultimately opts for surfing in San Diego, after firing his Scientologist agent.
Advantage: San Diego.
Jake Peavy, the odds-on favorite for the NL Cy Young award, starts for the Padres, hoping for his 20th win. Josh Fogg, the odds-on favorite for a non-roster invitation to Rockies spring training next year, is hoping to find 20 dollars in a forgotten jacket pocket. Peavy led the league in wins, ERA, and strikeouts. Fogg was fifth in the league in hit batsmen. However, his name is better for punny post-game headlines.
Advantage: San Diego.
San Diego saved Peavy for this tiebreaker game, rather than start him in the season finale. After losing said finale, Padres players waited in the locker room to see if Colorado would force the tie by beating Arizona. Here's an excerpt from the Mlb.com story:
Once the Rockies-Diamondbacks game ended Sunday, players lifted themselves off the plush couches in the visiting clubhouse and scurried off to the shower or to grab some dinner before the bus left the stadium for the airport.
Not only were the Padres luxuriating on soft furniture while the Rockies battled for their playoff lives, many players were sitting on the plush couches, filthy and sweaty, not bothering to shower before plopping down on Milwaukee's couches. Nor did they eat, which I took to mean they were delaying, so as not to spoil their appetites for champagne.
Big Advantage: Colorado.
Controversial stadium sponsors
The Rockies play at Coors Field, named after the Coors family and their brewing company. The Coors family has come under fire for its support of support of the Heritage Foundation and the John Birch Society. More offensive than that is the presence of creepily overtanned Pete Coors in their TV ads.
Colorado: LaTroy Hawkins, Yorvit Torrealba, Matt Herges
San Diego: Brett Tomko.
Advantage: San Diego
Players With Torn Anterior Cruciate Ligaments From Being Thrown To The Ground By Their Own Manager
San Diego: Milton Bradley.
A purple triceratops named Dinger.
Advantage: Colorado, by default.
Tiebreaker Challenge: Who Is Mom Rooting For?
Mom: "I hate the Padres now. To me, they're just another Southern California team. Anything south of Fresno, it's all the same. Hate 'em."
So there you have it. By a narrow margin of 5-4, the Rockies edge out the Padres, and are my pick to win. Of course, this means you can expect San Diego to win by a score of something like 10-2, delighting the residents of Pomona, Escondido, Valencia, Riverside, and San Bernardino - they're all the same to Mom, after all.