The Wait Is Over

1 Oct

Well, the day has finally come.

The day we have all been waiting and hoping for ever since that infamous night last October when Ryan Howard’s took a called third strike.

Ever since Cliff Lee stunned the baseball world by returning to the Phillies last December.

Ever since the trade deadline when the acquisition of Hunter Pence seemed to be the final piece of the Phillies puzzle.

Ever since the Phillies clinched the NL East a a couple of weeks ago.

And especially since they clinched home field throughout the playoffs a couple of days after that.

The wait is finally over.

Today at 5:07, the Philadelphia Phillies will take the field against the St. Louis Cardinals to begin the quest for their second World Series title in four years.

But it will not be easy.

If the Phillies are to win it all, they will have to do it with the certainty that everyone else will be gunning for them.

They will have to do it with the world rooting against them.

They will have to do it despite the added pressure of being the prohibitive favorites.

And that is not my “favorite” place to be.

I’d much rather be the scrappy underdog not given a chance by anyone.

The “Cinderella” team that captures the hearts of sports fans everywhere.

The little “team that could” and does win it all.

But that is not to be.

So I’ve made an important decision, one I will share with those of you who also suffer from my “hate being the favorites” affliction.

I’ve decided that I’m not going to fight it any more.

I’m not going to worry about all those statistics that the best team never wins it all.

I’m not going to listen to all those jealous fans hoping that the Phillies will be like the Miami Heat all over again.

And I’m certainly not going to listen to all the analysts and their smug upset predictions.

Starting today I will wear my “favorites” badge proudly.

Starting today I will root fearlessly for my team.

I will root for Roy Halladay and Cliff Lee, who despite all their individual achievements, still don’t have what they want the most, a World Series ring.

For Jimmy Rollins, Brad Lidge and my man Raul Ibanez who could be playing their last games wearing Phillies red.

I will root for Chase Utley, the stoic second baseman whose body has betrayed him far too soon

and for Ryan Howard, the big man with a bad memory he hopes to finally put behind him.

That’s the team I will root for.

So if the Phillies are the favorites, so be it.  I think I can learn to live with that.

As long as those favorites go out today and kick the Cardinals’ “baseball heaven” butts.  (Sorry.  It’s getting close to game time.)

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3 Responses to “The Wait Is Over”

  1. geetie cohen October 1, 2011 at 11:54 am #

    Stomach queezy, check
    Rally towel ready, check
    Anxiety level high, check
    Now what do I do ’til game time???

  2. Ray October 1, 2011 at 3:31 pm #

    Lets go Phillies !!!!!!!!!!!!

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