Even though i'm watching the Monday Night game between the Colts and Dolphins ( a surprisingly good one at that)...my thoughts are more baseball centric.....mostly centered around the end of the Cecil Cooper era in Houston
Well it's definitely not been the best week to be Cecil Cooper. He leads the Astros into Brew Town last weekend, sees his team get swept and likely relegated to 4th place for the year. In the process, he watches Prince Fielder break his single-season team RBI record while he watches from the visitors bench. At this point he must be thinking how can it get any worse.......then he gets fired.....well that's baseball. The team's he managed in Houston were about as average as you could possibly get with Cooper finishing at a 171-170 record.
My most vivid (and nerve-racking) memory of the Cecil Cooper Astros came while the Brewers were chasing the wild card last year. I remember that they weren't even in the playoff discussion for much of the season. Around the same time that the Brewers and Mets were battling to see who could choke worse down the stretch....the Astros starting playing out of their mind winning games left and right getting to within a game or 2 of the wild card. I specifically remember at some point around mid-September where I was thinking to myself that the Astros scared me and had a sinking feeling they were pull a stunt similar to what the Rockies did in '07.
However, fate had other things in store for the Wild Card. Hurricane Ike hits Houston...they have to play a home game at Miller Park and get no-hit by Carlos Zambrano, the Astros go quietly into the night and I actually see the Brewers make it into the post-season.
While the Astros didn't quite pull off a run like that in '09 (in all fairness, one could argue that they've overachieved with what they have to even win 70 this year)...point being I wouldn't be surprised if Cooper gets another chance to next year (possibly in Milwaukee........it's not that Macha is a bad manager and this lost season can be entirely blamed on him......but I just get the gut feeling that he's not gonna be brought back).....whatever may happen hopefully all works out with Cecil Cooper.
To replace him (at least on an interim basis) is ex-player Dave Clark. I vaguely remember his playing career....wasn't as good as a player as Cecil Cooper but he did manage to stick around for about 12 years.
To put his playing career in context the two most similar active players to him are Wes Helms and Jason Michaels (who ironically will be playing for the Dave Clark Astros)
Don't know too much about Clark as a manager but for at least the next 13 games it won't make much of an impact as they (along with every other NL Central team not in St. Louis ain't playing any meaningful ball until 2010.