Sunday, October 19, 2008

Here's to the Rays

I used to live in Tampa, so hooray for the Rays and their win of the American League pennant! Their win tonight over the Boston Red Sox, an aggregation that has become almost as repulsive in my mind as the New York Yankees, was a thriller. The very best kind of a game: a nail-biting pitcher's duel with few runs for either side. (Another account of the game is here.)

As is the case with so many other things, I seem to be a throwback to some sort of mossy old past that makes little sense to the current generation of baseball fans. I'd much rather see a 1-0 game than a slugfest with a bunch of home runs. One of these days I'm going to write a little something about everything that's wrong with baseball. For the moment, though, I'll just lift a glass of bubbly to the Tampa Bay Rays and start praying for their victory over the Philadelphia Phillies, a deserving team from that other league.

The Rays now have the opportunity of being the first team ever to go from last place to World Series. Since their entry into the American League in 1998, they have averaged 97 losses a season. They finished last in the division every year but one before this magical season. In a word, this team was terrible. Their achievement thus gives hope to the hopeless. So while we're at it, another glass high for the Texas Rangers, my hapless team. In the league now since 1971 (1961 if you count their time as the expansion Washington Senators), they've yet to win a pennant. I'd say if the Rays can do it in 10 years, it's way past time that the Rangers do it, too.
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