Do you realize that a few weeks from now, boxes upon boxes of shirts that say “Texas Rangers, World Series Champions” will be unloaded in some poor country, giving the needy much-needed clothing and, let’s face it, the coolest shirts they have ever owned.
In all seriousness, that’s pretty fucking cool.
Tonight, just like most of you, I watched my Texas Rangers lose the World Series. I watched Brian Wilson strike out Nellie and get mobbed on our mound. I watched Mitch Kramer tie up the AL MVP. I also heard a “Let’s Go Rangers” chant break out as the Giants celebrated.
And yet, I’m OK. Sure, it’s a bummer. But after getting past the Yankees, the World Series has felt way less stressful. Maybe the players felt that way too, and maybe that’s why their bats went silent. Hell, the Rangers got the monkey of their back (winning a playoff game and series) and exorcised their demons (beating the goddamn Yankees) all in one whirlwind month.
Being a Ranger fan for the past, oh, 18 years has taught me to enjoy the ride. For years, all I really had to look forward to was hoping guys like Kason Gabbard or John Koronka would put together a promising September with the Rangers 10 games out of first place, providing hope for spring.
Yeah, the Rangers looked bad in this series. Couldn’t hit worth a crap. Mitch Moreland was the only guy to consistently show up and the dude’s a rookie. Sure the bullpen had a meltdown and Cliff Lee lost twice (aside: to anyone calling Lee a “goat” for his performance in the Series is stupid. The guy just showed that he was human in Game 1 and made one bad pitch in Game 5. The offense is your goat, folks). But what the hell. We went so far above expectations against the Rays and Yanks that it seemed inevitable. And quite simply, the Giants out-Rangered us. If I’m going to lose a World Series, I’ll lose it to a team like San Francisco every time. I love the way their team plays and for all the jokes about Lincecum or Brian Wilson out there, I’d take either in a heartbeat.
But I’d also keep any of ours. This team was the most fun to watch in Ranger history. And all of the best parts are going to be back, even if Cliff is wearing pinstripes. We’ve got an owner with money, a young corps of suddenly playoff-tested players and a rejuvenated fan base. Next year should be fun.
Thanks for 2010, Rangers. Can’t wait for spring training.