Sports

Miller: Fortunes can change quickly in baseball - just ask the Dodgers

Dodgers third baseman Justin Turner watches his seventh inning two-run home run leave the yard at Dodger Stadium Wednesday afternoon. Alas, it was an afterthought by the 14th inning. MICHAEL GOULDING, STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER

LOS ANGELES – Well, yeah, it’s easy to pick the Angels to win the World Series. Now.

All that’s required is the most rudimentary grasp of mathematics.

It’s the first week of September and the team with baseball’s best record is suddenly the top choice, the website Bovada placing the Angels’ odds at 5-1.

I don’t want to mock the folks at Bovada, in part because they have connections to gambling and, quite possibly, Las Vegas, a daily double that suggests they also might have other connections, if you know what I mean, and I’d like to keep my legs just the way they are – unbroken.

But where was Bovada five months ago, on the eve of opening day, when I picked the Angels to win the World Series?

And, come to think of it, why isn’t anyone chiding Bovada today like I was chided back then, one reader convinced I should be medicated and another alleging I was being paid by the Angels.

To be honest, the way Arte Moreno spends, the latter idea isn’t too farfetched. I certainly wouldn’t represent the team’s most glaring example of wasted money, not with Moreno today still paying Vernon Wells and Joe Blanton.

Yeah, fortunes can change dramatically in this sport.

They can change quickly, too, a concept reinforced Wednesday at Dodger Stadium, where the home team went from ahead to behind to almost certainly losing to somehow nearly winning – three separate times – to definitely losing to coming back again to finally going home defeated.

And none of this happened until the start of the seventh inning.

“Wild game,” said Justin Turner, after an 8-5 loss that took 14 innings and five hours, 34 minutes. Seriously, though, it didn’t feel like a minute longer than 5:30.

I’d provide more game details, but, frankly, by the end, I had forgotten most of them. I do know this much: The box score was so long that it came with a bookmark.

Both closers blew saves, Washington used a pitcher to pinch-hit and, in the fifth inning, Dodgers outfielder Scott Van Slyke had to leave because his wife went into labor, the couple’s second son among the many fans unwilling to wait around for this game to end.

“Overall, a lot of good things happened,” Manager Don Mattingly said, and you’d look for a silver lining, too, after 51/2 hours netted nothing but a lost opportunity.

And the Dodgers had all sorts of chances, Bovada’s second choice to win the World Series – at odds of 11-2 – failing to take advantage of an earlier loss by the San Francisco Giants.

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