You are the sucker.
While I am intimidated by the task of matching the quality work that has been done here before, I am comforted by the reality that I won't reach that level much.
I am an optimistic and ambitious person by nature. While I might not reach the level of writing you have seen here over the past seven years, that won't keep me from working to reach that level. Optimism is what gets your heart stomped flat. Ambition is what gets you rings that you can trade for tattoos and cars in Columbus, Ohio.
In that vein, the Diamond Dawgs' run in Hoover makes me think of the power of optimism. After the loss to Vandy in the opening game of the SEC Baseball Tournament, I thought Perno was in trouble. Putting aside the level of the competition, not showing up for that game, after losing two of three in such heartbreaking fashion the weekend before, was a killer.
However, the heart and fight of the Diamond Dawgs showed optimism, even in the face of long odds, is worth getting your heart stomped flat over. Coach Perno's use of his pitching staff yesterday was masterful. You could say it was out of necessity, but it was masterful. Of course, timely hitting and strong defense makes all coaches look good.
Will the Diamond Dawgs get a bid to play in the regional? I don't know. The selection committee has shown that tough scheduling in a tough conference gets you selected, if you are eligible. The Dawgs got eligible with the run in Hoover. More importantly, they beat top rated teams and played with heart in the second game yesterday. That should get them in.
Do they have enough to make it to Omaha? If they can beat South Carolina and Florida and give Florida all they can handle in the second game of the day, they can beat anyone, anywhere. Seeding and placement is key. Oh yeah, a rain out that gives Palazzone three chances to pitch wouldn't hurt either.
And it looks like Paul has found the sucker.