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Out of Options

Posted By Greg Prince On June 1, 2005 @ 5:06 am In Main Page | Comments Disabled

I was gonna whine about losing, especially losing to the Diamondbacks. I went to a game last August against them just before we completely went sliding down the toilet and was amazed at how much worse the Diamondbacks looked than us. Kris Benson pitched carelessly that night [1] but still won handily.

Not so much Tuesday night. The Diamondbacks seem to be rebounding nicely in the post-Colangelo, post-Backman (sorry, Wally), post-Unit “TRADE ME” nonsense (hahahahahaha) era. Long way to go, but they look sharp and are contending in the West. Don't know that I'd want to root for them, though. Yes, they spent themselves to Nirvana immediately, so their world championship rings are 15 years shinier than ours — and won in most noble fashion — but a franchise that can wallow in Colangelo, Backman (sorry, Wally) and Unit “TRADE ME” nonsense (hahahahahaha) is not on solid ground.

[Sidebar: Listen to Randy Johnson next time he's interviewed after a lousy start, hopefully soon. Then try to remember what Will Ferrell sounded like when he did Janet Reno [2] on SNL. You won't be able to tell them apart.]

I wouldn't rather be a Diamondbacks fan than a Mets fan even if they did win a World Series four years ago. I wouldn't rather be an Angels fan than a Mets fan even if they did win a World Series three years ago (being very noble [3] along the way themselves). There's probably been no better era in which to be an Angels fan, pending Vlad's stay on the DL, but that whole Los Angeles at Anaheim thing would be too embarrassing to explain away to our Dodger fan enemies. “Yeah, well at least, we're, uh, pliable!”

I wouldn't rather be a Marlins fan than a Mets fan either. Sure they won two years ago (nobly!) [4]. And they're pretty good right now. But take a close look at Your Name Here Stadium next time the Mets are sentenced to a series down there. More sacks of Soilmaster sit in the dugout than Marlins fans sit in the stands. Therefore, if we were Marlins fans, we would barely exist.

Nothing could be trendier than being a Red Sox fan, but that wouldn't work either. Yes, they did the Lord's noble work and should always be celebrated for it [5]. Yes, they are defending world champions. Yes, there is that whole Red Sox thing that is quite charming and alluring. And yes they're a good team. But we're New Yorkers. New Yorkers who become Red Sox fans are Doris Kearns Goodwin.

I don't wanna be Doris Kearns Goodwin.

Those are the last four world champions. They are great excuses to become frontrunners. Each has won lately and each is in reasonable shape to make the playoffs again, perhaps this year. Three of them could win a World Series before too long, giving them (the Angels, the Marlins, the Red Sox) two to three trophies since we last won one.

But they're not for me or for us. We're better off being Mets fans. And if we're not gonna hop on a recently successful bandwagon, then whose?

We can't be Yankees fans. That's a given. First off, we'd die of shame. Secondly, if we didn't, our families would. And third, what kind of blog would Bluster and Blather in the Bronx be?

Despite losing in Kansas City tonight [6], I feel very full of myself. My team has won many, many world championships. It makes me a better person to root for this team. Next time I go to The Stadium, I will lick each monument in Monument Park with my tongue to prove what a good person I am. Then I will take my seat and yell expletives at our opponents. Then I will tell anybody who doesn't think my team is great that they are a loser. And I will lick another monument with my tongue if drunk enough to burst past security which should not be a problem. Then I will remind myself how great my team is and how many, many world championships they have won. My life is full.

Who're we kidding even bringing up the slo-pitch league? The only American League team we can root for is whoever's playing the Yankees. At the moment, we're Royals fans. Could we be Royals fans the moment the Yankees move on?

Not every club can hire a proven commodity like Buddy Bell [7] and maintain a straight face, but that alone wouldn't make us Royals fans. No, the entirety of the American League exists for the sole purpose of tripping up the Yankees in two-, three- or occasional four-game increments. Scientific research has proven it's impossible to care about the Orioles or Blue Jays outside of their potential to finish in front of the Yankees.

It's impossible to care about the Devil Rays at all.

OK, so A.L. — out, at least until we need you to do a job for us. Let's instead sort through the league where baseball gets played nine men to a side.

We can't be Braves fans. After the last decade, that's about as much a given as us not being Yankees fans, but there's a better reason than enmity:

You simply don't wanna see me wrapped inside a fanny pack.

We can't be Phillies fans. There aren't enough lemons to suck to get the face just right.

We can't be Nationals fans. They're owned by Major League Baseball. “Go Antitrust Violators!”? I don't think so.

East's out. Central? Cardinals? You kidding? We couldn't possibly be that cheerful.

Cubs? That's rich. True, they know how to laugh at themselves, but they also laugh a little too much at everybody else [8]. After 97 years of the big Without and maybe four good seasons in the past 30, wipe that smirk off your face, ivy boys.

Brewers? That would entail naming guys on the Brewers. Too much homework.

Reds? Embrace the proud tradition of Pete Rose, Marge Schott and D'Angelo Jimenez? Embrace this.

Astros? Cheer for Roger Clemens? Maybe cheer for a team that trades Roger Clemens because he's feeling a touch colicky over pitching for a lousy team? No, I'll stick with my own 1962 misfits.

Pirates? That I could almost see if only to sit anywhere I wanted in beautiful PNC Park [9], the best ballpark in the National League. But there's a reason I could sit anywhere I want in beautiful PNC Park, the best ballpark in the National League. It's the Pirates. Pass.

West? Padres are in first. Yeah, that'll last. Actually, they could very well win their division this year. They're good for a playoff season every now and then. Then they spend the next ten years selling off players and losing at two in the morning.

Dodgers? Reward a team that left Brooklyn? For Los Angeles?

Giants? Reward a team that left Manhattan? And not for Queens?

That leaves the Rockies. That's a bad idea at any elevation.

Sorry, Senior Circuit. We're not available. We're Mets fans.

So Mets, stop playing like you did against the Diamondbacks Tuesday. Because if you don't, we'll…we'll…

Well, there'll be no repercussions, because we've just determined we can't root for anybody but you, thus limiting our options to one, but there's no telling what kind of clever, cutting remark we'll post at the expense of your self-esteem next time you do play like that.

Consider yourselves on notice.


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URL to article: http://www.faithandfearinflushing.com/2005/06/01/out-of-options/

URLs in this post:

[1] Kris Benson pitched carelessly that night: http://retrosheet.org/boxesetc/B08130NYN2004.htm

[2] Janet Reno: http://planetwill.jt.org/media/transcripts/reno.html

[3] very noble: http://www.rallymonkey.com/021005.php

[4] (nobly!): http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/baseball/mlb/specials/postseason/2003/

[5] should always be celebrated for it: http://www.blohards.com/lugosong.html

[6] losing in Kansas City tonight: http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/recap?gameId=250531107

[7] Buddy Bell: http://www.baseball-reference.com/managers/bellbu01.shtml

[8] laugh a little too much at everybody else: http://theheckler.com/

[9] beautiful PNC Park: http://www.ballparksofbaseball.com/nl/PNCPark.htm

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