James Shields, Our Only Hope Against Bean Town

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Ah, the Card of the Week. Is there any greater proof that another Friday has finally come to our fair city? If there is, I certainly don't want to know about it.

What we have here, in this particular CoTW, is a rallying cry, and a plea for salvation. What we have here is a 2007 James Shields rookie card by Topps. Autographed by the man himself, even.

Ladies and gentlemen, this may be the single most important Card of the Week of the entire season. Why, you ask? Well, you see, James Shields is going to pitch in the biggest game of his life on Saturday night, as the Tampa Bay Rays and the Boston Red Sox return to the Trop in Tampa for games six and seven of the ALCS.

Shields will face Josh Beckett, one of the greatest post-season pitchers ever. If the series goes to seven, the Sawx will send Jon Lester to the mound against -- you know what? It doesn't matter who the Rays would pitch in game seven. Guys like Lester, guys who come back from having cancer don't lose in playoff clinching games. I've seen damn near every sports movie ever made, and if there's one thing I've learned from them, it's to never bet against the survivor of a horrible disease ten minutes before the credits are set to roll.

In short, James Shields is all that stands between us and continued Boston hegemony.

James Shields, I need you more than I've ever needed a pitcher before.

Save us, James Shields! Please, save us! I can't take any more of this!

Luckily for us, James Shields is certainly up to the task. James Shields is not afraid of the Red Sox. James Shields is not afraid of anyone. James Shields eats pieces of shit like the Red Sox for breakfast. No, wait, that's not right. James Shields doesn't eat pieces of shit. Never mind. James Shields can, however, convert all of Chuck Norris' blood into dust with only a single glance.

You know, I really wish more athletes would do the whole third person perspective, using both names when they speak thing. Rickey Henderson was one of my favorite players, and it was mostly because of his constant speaking in the third person.

"Hello, Mr. Mozeliak. This is Rickey. Rickey is calling you, Mr. Mo, because Rickey wants to play ball again. Rickey's still got it, and Rickey's gonna show it. Please call Rickey back at 555-1992 when you get this message. Rickey will be home all day tomorrow and on Thursday, but Rickey has to grocery shop on Friday, so Rickey may not be home if you call Rickey then."

But enough about Rickey. We're talking about James Shields here. James Shields, who is our last, best hope to avoid watching the Red Sox murderize and murderate the Philadelphia Phillies in the World Series. Please, James Shields, this is your time. A new era is dawning, and the era will be known as the era of James Shields. All that James Shields has to do is reach out and take it.

Godspeed, James Shields. Godspeed.

Also, those are some goofy looking sideburns he's got in that picture, aren't they?

- Aaron Schafer

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