While reveling in the Yankees loss and the Rangers win last night, the most common retort I received was basically “At least the Yankees made it to the playoffs this year”.Â (As an aside, I don’t troll Yankees message boards.Â These responses came from folks who follow me on Twitter and those who chose to email me.)
And those people are absolutely right.Â I would have loved it had the Red Sox been in the post-season.Â The playoffs are almost always enjoyable anyway but nothing beats watching your team play in meaningful games in late October.Â The thing is, my Red Sox not making the post-season doesn’t take away, in any way, the joy I received from watching the Yankees lose last night.Â After steamrolling over the Minnesota Twins, the Yankees were a Ron Washington call to the bullpen in Game 1 away from being swept by the Texas Rangers.Â There are some non-Yankees fans out there today crowing about how the Yankees choked.Â They didn’t choke, they were outplayed by a superior team.Â Maybe not a team that was superior in the regular season (where they only won one out of the five games they played against New York) but they were superior when it counted.Â There is absolutely no argument to this.
The first person to say “The better team didn’t win” gets a kick in the shins.
How excited I am knowing I’ll be watching a World Series just hoping to see good baseball and not rooting against one of the teams.Â Granted, this will be made much easier if the Giants make it there as well, but as much as I’m sick of seeing the Phillies in the World Series, I don’t really hate them so their being there won’t immediately make me root against them.Â Yankees-free baseball being played in late October andÂ early November.Â Except for my own team being in the thick of it, this is all I can ask for.
Another aside:Â On October 27, 2004, the Boston Red Sox won the World Series after sweeping the St. Louis Cardinals (Woooo!!!! As a member of Red Sox Nation, I’m contractually obligated to yell “Woooo!!! whenever I write or say those words.Â Plus, it’s damn fun to do.).Â In 2010, the World Series will begin on October 27th.Â While part of me is tempted to complain that this is much too late for baseball to be played…baseball is being played!Â Why would any baseball fan complain about being able to see MORE baseball?Â I’ll take it.Â (Especially if it ends up being played in California and Texas.Â Weather for the win!)
Now I don’t mean to cheapen the Rangers’ win by focusing on the Yankees but, let’s be honest here, it wouldn’t have mattered to me which team was playing the Yankees, as long as the Yankees were beaten.Â I still don’t like Ron Washington or Josh Hamilton but if I have to wish them well (and, now, THANK THEM) it’s totally worth it coming at the expense of the Yankees.Â Now all I have to root for is good baseball.Â I think today all baseball fans (except for Yankees fans) are winners.
Since their team’s time in the playoffs is done, I now expect any anti-Yankees sentiments I articulate to be met with “At least our team will have Cliff Lee next year”.Â I’ll worry about that when the time comes.Â For now, I’m as giddy as can be.
Thank you, Rangers!