Congratulations Texas Rangers And Their Fans

Steve O Speak

Normally I don’t care much that surrounds a team after a championship victory or a Super Bowl title. Maybe I don’t care because it isn’t my team, maybe because years of losing by the O’s, Nats and Redskins have left me bitter, or maybe its just because they turn into Academy Award acceptance speeches and I’m just praying for the music to start playing to cut them off. For whatever reason I felt differently watching the Rangers celebrate their victory with their fans last night, that will send them to their first ever World Series. I was transfixed by proceedings before me, and it wasn’t just on account of Craig Sager’s outfit.

The Rangers won, the Rangers won. Even when that last pitch was thrown I couldn’t believe it. I never in a million years, thought back in April the Rangers could win the American League. Sure they were a good team with, plenty of hitting. But their pitching didn’t seem likely to hold up this year. Well pitchers like Colby Lewis, and C.J. Wilson had huge years, and when the Rangers needed to go out and acquire a front of the rotation starter, they dipped into their deep prospect well and landed a big fish, Cliff Lee. Lee was only a rental player, and the Rangers financial situation was so bad that they needed the Mariners to pick up part of the tab, but Texas went for the gusto anyways. And for every cautionary tale of why you don’t trade away your prospects for an All-Star, Lee is the reason that you do. At the time it seemed crazy, Lee might help Texas get to the postseason (though the Angels collapse took care of that), but he wasn’t going to be able to pitch every game of the playoffs. Even once they got to the postseason, I asked myself if the Rangers did the right thing, they had to face the Tampa Bay Rays and the New York Yankees. And since Lee had to close out the Rays series, he wouldn’t be able to go until Game 3, but it didn’t matter, and wouldn’t pitch again until Game 7. But it didn’t matter because Texas dominated this series. With the exception of Game 5, the Rangers were in control of every single game. They might have ended up losing Game 1, but they sent a message they were legit.

While their season is far from over (though for me knocking off the Yankees is like the World Series), but the Rangers and their fans should celebrate what they have accomplished. This was no small feat, as Texas heads to their first World Series. We might think in terms of World Series titles, but winning American League pennants are impressive in their own right. Texas and their fans know what it is like to lose and not even be a contender, so to know that you are no worse than the 2nd best team in baseball, is a phenomenal turn around. The road ahead could bring even greater victory or stunning defeat, but either way the Rangers are a true winner in my book. They give hope to all sports teams and their fan bases, that no matter what your history, if built right you can overcome that and become winners.

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