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Heartbreak City September 30, 2007

Posted by fitsnews in Sports.

tom glavine2


FITSNews – September 30, 2007 – Forget Greg Norman at the 1996 Masters. Or the “Boston Massacre” that befell the Red Sox during the 1978 baseball season. Toss out the Detroit Red Wings’ historic collapse in the 1942 Stanley Cup finals, along with the Houston Oilers’ unprecedented playoff meltdown against the Buffalo Bills in 1992. Hell, forget Tin Cup, too.

Sports has a new all-time choke artist – and his name is Sic Willie.

With the coveted 2007 Great Santini Fantasy Baseball Championship all but in his grasp, Sic Willie’s FITS Fartknockers suffered a biblical fall from grace this afternoon that enabled the Charleston, S.C.-based “Crooners” to emerge with a wafer-thin lead in the critical WHIP (walks and hits per innings pitched) category. That miniscule margin resulted in a 4-4 tie in the Santini finals, with the tiebreaker (and the cup) going to the Crooners by virtue of their first-place regular season finish.

At the start of today’s action, the Fartknockers enjoyed a seemingly insurmountable 6-2 lead in the series, but things began to unravel almost immediately on an otherwise picture perfect Sunday afternoon on the last day of September. FITS’ final starter of the year, New York Mets’ ace Tom Glavine, was rocked for seven runs in only a third of an inning – resulting in an astronomical 189.00 ERA. Glavine’s performance cost FITS its ERA lead, but amazingly the Fartknockers still clung to 5-3 series lead thanks to a narrow advantage in the WHIP category, meaning all they had to do to claim their first-ever championship was simply avoid another pitching disaster.

But just as Hiroshima was followed by Nagasaki, tragically for FITS fans everywhere there were still bombs yet to be dropped on this day of destruction.

Chicago Cubs’ reliever Ryan Dempster, who has become something of a hero to the S.C. General Assembly (and other Sic Haters) for his frequent frustration of the Fartknockers’ fantasy ambitions, was inexplicably sent to the mound by Cubs’ manager Lou Piniella for a rare fourth-inning appearance in Cincinnati shortly after the Glavine meltdown in New York.

In one inning of work, Dempster gave up four runs on four hits to seal the Fartknockers’ fate and hand the Santini title over to the Crooners.

“It was like I was watching the Zapruder film out there today,” a dejected Sic Willie told reporters following the Dempster disaster. “You’re hit and you’re hurting but you’re thinking ‘God, I can make it, just get me to the hospital.’ Then comes the head shot.”

ESPN baseball analyst Peter Gammons called it “the greatest collapse ever … any league, any sport, any era. It’s unprecedented.”

“It was physically sickening to watch, even as an objective reporter,” Gammons said. “You can’t help but cringe when you see something like that happening.”

In a message posted on the official Great Santini League website, Sic Willie congratulated Crooners on their victory.

“Croonie truly had the best squad all season, and despite the biblical collapse of my pitching staff today, he didn’t back into anything, he won it fair and square. He earned the tiebreaker through one helluva regular season, and his pitching throughout the last three weeks was amazing.”

Still, fellow Santini owners couldn’t hide their shock at the sheer magnitude of the collapse.

“The horror, the horror,” one post noted. “Today’s performances by Glavine and Dempster will haunt FITS till next April.”

Sic Willie disagreed.

“We set out at the start of this season to win a playoff series and we did that,” he said. “Losing a championship this way hurts more than I can possibly say, but I’m proud of our ballclub and the resilience they showed all season. There’s no such thing as a moral victory, but we’re never going to stop clawing our way up the ladder. Full many a flower is born to blush unseen, and waste its sweetness on the desert air, but we’re going to taste that sweetness one day.”



1. Crooner - October 1, 2007

Congratulations on a wonderful season. You are a credit to The Great Santini League. Cal Ripken told me so himself.

2. Cal - October 1, 2007


John is right. Great year and I hope I speak for all of us when I say that at least Cameron didn’t win it (again). Watch out for the Orioles next year though. We’re waiting to pounce when you blow an early round pick on a reliever to “replace” Dempster.

Tony and I were joking last night – boy do we wish he had been around when we were playing.

Kelly, Rachel and Ryan all send you their best. Call me next time you are heading to town.


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