Archive for August, 2012

I believe in the Church of Baseball

 

“In a year that has been so improbable, the impossible has happened.” – Vin Scully,

I suppose there’s a moment of truth in every great baseball story. Like the Cleveland Indians of ‘Major League’ having to face their demons against the New York Yankees for the pennant. Or Roy Hobbs coming to bat without his beloved ‘Wonder Boy’. We all want to believe in the magic of this game.

And as true baseball fans, we’ve seen the miracle happen the last two years with the World Series Championships of the 2010 Giants and the 2011 Cardinals. These aren’t fairytales and fiction we’re talking about. These real baseball legends happen. Stories that will be told to grandkids that aren’t even born yet.

There is a very slim chance that the 2012 Blue Jays will make the playoffs. Sometimes I wonder if they’ll even finish at .500 for the year. And as fans, true fans of baseball and the Blue Jays, it’s easy to get down right now and look at the water longingly while we think about jumping ship. I know I’ve spewed my share of vitriol right here.

But it’s time to decide if we’re going to get behind this team, and this vision. And here’s the thing, you’re already onboard and you know it. That’s why you’re so angry. Think about it, we didn’t jump ship when most of our rotation went down to the Tommy John Horror Picture Show. And we didn’t give up hope when our reigning two-time Home Run Champion went down. No, it took trading a prospect that never panned out for the Jays and who was given a lot of chances to succeed and a corresponding losing streak to test your faith. If you didn’t care, you’d have stopped watching weeks ago.

But we’re still here. You as a fan, and this team. Together, only 5 games out somehow. After all that terrible bullshit string of bad luck, the likes of which we’ll probably never see again in our Blue Jays following lifetimes. We’re only 5 out.

Crazier things have happened. And I know my logical brain says Amanda is injured so Buttermaker can’t pitch her, Jake Taylor’s knees are shot and David Freese is down to his last strike. The point is, it doesn’t matter where our team ends up. We have to decide if we’re gonna whine and moan and piss about all the bad luck that happened to us or how the ownership doesn’t seem to care.

Are we gonna get on board with this team?

Many years before the 1985 pennant-winning team, or the 1992 or 1993 World Series teams claimed their flags or rings, there was a moment of truth. It might’ve been a year or two before these periods, during a Tom Henke save situation or a Roberto Alomar at bat with the bases loaded. But at some point the fans decided they were going to cheer the guys in our pyjamas on and be faithful through the thick and thin. And they were rewarded in the years to come.

I think we’re at that time.

And I guess I’m saying I’m in. I suppose I always was and I just didn’t know it.

Under false pretenses

I was listening to the FAN 590 today and I was surprised to hear some actual slagging of Rogers on a Rogers-owned media outlet. It’s very rare on the FAN.

This caller had a very good point. He said, like a lot of people, that he’s disappointed in ownership and skeptical about the empty promises they’ve been making. But then he said something I never thought of. He said it was unfair to the current players. Yes, some of them asked AA for help which they didn’t get (in any real sense) and then pointed out that some of these players have signed long-term for possibly less than they could’ve gotten on the market. And Rogers is showing them they’re not committed to winning by not going for it more this year, considering they were only a few games out of the Wild Card for a long, long time. He said the players should feel disillusioned and that’s going to hurt the long-term good of the team.

If they were always going to wait for the kids down in A and Double-A to arrive, why did these players sign?

Word gets around. If they think ownership is full of it, good luck getting meaningful free agents here.

So AA can say all he wants that he wants to ‘make a big splash’ this winter on the free agent market, but the question is (even if Rogers miraculously spends money) why would a Free Agent want to come here?

I hope I’m wrong. I don’t feel right when I don’t like what’s happening with the Jays. It bothers me.