Thursday, October 14, 2010

continuing my baseball conversion.

So. The Texas Rangers. How about it?

Man, I never would have thought I would be here. A week ago, I was certain they were going to roll, three days ago, I was afraid for my friend's long-term well-being and then, magically, last night it all came together. The Texas Rangers beat the Tampa Bay Rays in a best of 5 series, without winning a single game. (This, somewhat ironically, makes them still without a home playoff win in their entire existence.)

Now, they embark on the journey that all Davids must undergo if they want to take baseball's ultimate crown: to take down the perpetual Goliath, the New York Yankees.

As previously mentioned, as a baseball hater, when October inevitably arrives each year, I usually turn my rooting interests the way of the Yankees. They're usually pretty good, they win a good percentage of the time, and they're at least somewhat entertaining, especially given their links to Jay-Z.

Now, however, on Friday night, I'll have to route against my pseudo-team. And I'll be happy to do so. Despite any trolling comments online, the Texas Rangers' story only gets better and better to me. Turns out, when they clinched game five, they celebrated with ginger ale before breaking out the champagne. Why? Josh Hamilton is an alcoholic. Plenty of smart-mouthed sports fans seemed to have some kind of negative comment about that in the last 24 hours, but imagine being him and seeing your teammates holding back on their celebration, out of respect for you. My fandom of the Rangers begins at that noble point.

Count Cliff Lee, their pitcher extraordinaire, as one of the other reasons, as well. With an ERA of 3.18, he ranked sixth in the American League this year. He's been in the league a mere eight years, and made it to the World Series in 2009 with the Philadelphia Phillies, only to fall to the New York Yankees. Adding intrigue to an already-interesting storyline? Count me in.

Last but not least, I default to the somewhat bizarre case of the sad luck of the Rangers. Having made it to the playoffs only three times before this year, they've always been eliminated by, you guessed it, the New York Yankees. Now, with a chance to get back at the bully in the American League Championship Series, there's a lot to root for. Game 1 of the ALCS will be played on Friday night at 6 PM MST. The game will be shown on TBS. Find a comfy spot and root for the little guy.

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