"Hell may have no fury like a woman scorned but heaven hath no sweetness like a sports fan vindicated." - Samcat

Saturday, October 08, 2005

You Win Some, You Lose Some

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Welp...guess that's it then, isn't it?

And you know what? It's okay. I mean, it's not OKAY. I'm not gonna pretend like I wasn't screaming my fool head off when Tek struck out for the eleventy billionth time this year on the high fastball or that I wasn't mainlining Corona in an effort to recapture summer or that I wasn't screaming curse words in front of my parents' friends. But even with all that, it's okay.

The thing is, as someone pointed out, had this happened last year, I would have been furious because I KNEW the Red Sox were a better team than that? I KNEW it. This year? I knew no such thing. The White Sox were clearly a better team. And good for them.

Their catcher and manager aside, I've got no beef with the White Sox. Yes, I would have preferred that we not be swept, and I would have preferred that we not lose in our house and see our field sullied by an opposing team's celebration but you know what? Maybe it is their time.

Doesn't mean I didn't want to win. Doesn't mean I don't want to win them all. But them's the breaks.

Here's how I look at it: prior to last year's World Series, everyone with a computer or a microphone kept talking about how, if the Red Sox won, their fans would lose the passion that had made them famous and they'd cease caring so much about their team. No, Bill Simmons argued, that's not it at all. People think Red Sox fans delight in our suffering when really, we just want to be like everyone else. And now, we are. Sure, other baseball fans of other teams are hurt and angered when their team either loses, misses the playoffs or is eliminated. But then they get over it, and they move on, focusing on next year. Red Sox fans can do that now. We can say, "Next year..." without the twinge of sadness and desperation that's plagued us for the past 8 decades. Because we remember. And the future does look bright. We're finally just like everyone else. And I'm okay with that.

And as for that future, it does look bright indeed. Yeah, a healthy Schilling and Foulke and blah, blah, blah. But what I'm really excited about is the new blood. I'm positively giddy about Papelbon and Manny El Camino has the potential to be dangerous. And if Craig Hansen can focus his brain behind his fastball, he'll be deadly.

Then there's Hanley and hopefully a better year from Edgar and Tek will still be here, leading the charge.

In the end, there is much to look forward to.

So yes, I'm upset. But I'm not surprised. I had such a fantastic time this season, following every pitch with my SG peeps and drinking far, far, far too much, that I'm left with an overwhelmingly positive experience. So while the team may have exited a little earlier than I'd have liked, I wouldn't change anything. Call this a love letter to the team if you want, but I think it's more a love letter to the people who love baseball. You know who you are.

And hey, it's already October. Spring training is only four months away.