You want to know the problem? People have lousy memories. That’s the problem.

Every April they say things like, “Yes, the Cleveland Indians will win the World Series.” And by October, it has become, “Yes, the Kansas City Royals will win the World Series.”

And their friends smile and congratulate them for being so smart, because most people can’t even remember last night, let alone last April.

Except for newspaper readers.

Newspaper readers have clip-and-send memories. They clip each prediction you get wrong, and send it back with rotten tomatoes and a note like: “Yep, these looked good a few months ago, too.”

Print is a trap. You realize that early. Like when you tell someone, “I never predicted Yogi Berra to win Manager of the Year. Only an idiot would do that. Only a complete moron. I– huh?”

And the guy is holding your Yogi column.

If only others had this problem. If only . . .

Wait a minute. I got it. Ho. You’re in trouble now. Look: Your own baseball prediction column.

We did this once last year. But that was easy. You only had to be funny. Now you have to be correct. Go ahead. Make my day. Fill it out. Mail it back. Then once a month I’ll run the best and the worst predictions, along with the names.

And the best column by season’s end will win a special prize. What? I don’t know yet.

You like tomatoes?

I Told You So
(Draw your face)

The 1986 season? Here’s how it goes:

In April, the —————— are the fastest team out of the blocks, winning —– straight. —————- is the new sensation.

By May, the Tigers are in ———– place, thanks to
——————— bat and Sparky Anderson’s ——————–. The fans react wildly. Meanwhile, in St. Louis, ——————— is swallowed by a tarp.

By June, people are drinking ———- at Tiger Stadium because the team is so —————-. Jack Morris is ——————-. And newcomer Dave LaPoint makes headlines when he lands a part on the ——————- show, as a ————.

July is feverish. The season’s biggest trade is —————— for
————–. “We wuz robbed,” say the ————– fans. Kirk Gibson proves he ——– worth his new money by ———————– 13 games in a row. He then says, “———- ——————!” Sparky says he has no comment. He then comments, “——————–!

August! Amazing! ——- ————- is fired as manager. Then rehired. Lance Parrish makes the cover of Rolling Stone, dressed as a —————-. A plane flies over Tiger Stadium and drops —————- on —
—————‘s head. The Mike Laga fan club ————. And ———– gains 100 pounds and quits to become a pro wrestler.

September! The pennant races! It’s neck and neck between
—————— and —- ————–. The pitching world is shocked when Dwight Gooden throws a —————. The next day, —— —————–

hits his 50th home run. Wow! The Yankees meet the Tigers and the
—————– flies. Willie Hernandez is heard to say, “—- ——–
——— ——-!” In Spanish, of course.

October. The Tigers ———- their division and go ———-. The World Series is between —————- and —————-. It goes —— games. Pitcher —————- challenges umpire Don Denkinger to a 12-round heavyweight bout. And loses. ————— hits a dramatic home run. And
—————- is swallowed by a tarp, then spit back.

Naturally, the Series winner is ————.

Got it? Good. My name is ——- —— ——–. Unless I’m wrong. In which case, you may call me ——————-.

Send to I Told You So, in care of Mitch Albom, Sports Department, Detroit Free Press, 321 W. Lafayette, Detroit 48231.

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