Final Score in Anaheim: Angels 3, Rangers 4 ... Rangers Magic Number is 32 - And I am not posting that to jinx you, Arlington, you're actually closer than that considering the ineptitude, gutlessness and frazzled roster of your primary division opponent.
When Vernon Wells was at bat in the 9th inning with nobody out and the tying run in the person of Mark Trumbo on base, I got excited. And the thought crossed my mind: This might be the last time I have any hope this season. Trumbo moved to 2B on a Wells grounder and the hope that Alberto Callaspo could line drive a single to score Trumbo went through my head. Only natural, right? Being a good fan, believing, right? And then I thought... This might be the last time I have any hope this season. Sure, there are 38 more game and I will get hopeful that Hank Conger works some wicked CERA magic to impress Lyle Spencer's math wizardry and hopeful that Mike Trout learns to call off Torii Hunter from a flyball, but I had hope that we could climb back in this thing and compete for the West on a run, a hotstreak, a clutch thirty days and nights of baseball.
Callaspo grounded out but Trumbo made it to 3B. Erick Aybar is up now and I say "This may be it. This may be the last time I am hopeful for the 2011 season. And I am good with that. It would be nice if they stay in the race, but if they don't, there is some good that will come with the soul searching ahead and a lot of the core players who can turn this team around in 2012 are all here." But I really wanted a passed ball, a wild pitch to the backstop or a basehit by Aybar (walkoff homer never even crossing my mind). Knowing this was it, I gave it my all, I hooped and hollered and stood up an clapped and clinched my fists and yeled "Come On". And Aybar popped it to right field for the final out. Of the game. Of consequence for 2011.
We're heading out to the game tomorrow night and it should be a great time. But the core hope from my season seat will be for the future beyond this October. Will yours?
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