During this postseason, I've rooted against the Cardinals. Tonight I'm rooting against the Yankees. For as long as they survive and skip Pedro Martinez, I'll be rooting against the Phillies. But this afternoon I rooted for the Angels and, for the first time in a while where my positive baseball affinity is concerned, I've been rewarded.
The Angels have been my Second Team since 2002 (with my auxiliary appreciation since 1986). It's an admittedly light affiliation, but it's tangible enough for me to sincerely enjoy their bouts of success when I'm not otherwise immersed in my First Team. Thus, I was quite delighted when erstwhile nemesis Bobby Abreu and all-time favorite opponent Vladimir Guerrero pooled their combined talents to slay the annoying closer of Red Sox Nation (an inning after our erstwhile Sandman made like an Orange County alarm clock and helped awaken the sleeping Angel bats). Most pleasant game of the postseason thus far. No ballpark looks better on television that Fenway on a puffy, cumulus Sunday. I guess we won't have that pleasure anymore in 2009, but it's not like they were going to schedule a lot of day games in the next round.
Then there's the matter of the Angels having been the only consistent American League thorn in another team's side since 1996. That can't hurt our larger postseason cause, whenever our cause becomes official (presumably a few hours hence in Minnesota). The recent past doesn't make the Angels any kind of ALCS lock, but I'll take my chances with them. I'll take my chances with any version of Not the Yankees, mind you, but these chances may actually have some hope in them.
Whether you call 'em California or Los Angeles of Anaheim, I'm calling the Angels the only team I've got at the moment.