First, Pepsi and now this?
Back in 1991, I liked the Braves. I liked them a lot. Maybe it had something to do with the fact that in the depths of the Orioles' 1988 misery, I predicted that the O's and Braves would meet in the '91 World Series. The Game 1 starters were to be Steve Avery and Pete Harnisch. While the Braves lived up to their end of the bargain (and even had Avery on the mound to start Game 6) the Birds traded Harnisch in one of the most lopsided trades of all time (Harnisch, Curt Schilling, and Steve Finley for Glenn Davis) before the '91 season.
Plus the team had been so bad for so long and they were the lovable bunch of underdogs to root for. I rooted for them in the '91 and '92 postseasons. But by 1993, the tide had turned for me. Not that I hated the team per se, but I liked the Phillies more in '93 and the Indians more in '95. I hated the Tomahawk Chop, was annoyed by their increasingly complacent fans, and I hated Maddux and Glavine. I was sick of watching Mazzone rock back and forth. I hated the way they tormented the Mets from '98-2001. I hated Chipper Jones. I wanted to beat up that little bitch Andruw Jones.
But a funny thing has happened over the past few years - my hatred has abated. The Mets are no longer rivals with the Braves because the Mets haven't contended over the past four seasons. Maddux left. Glavine left for the Mets. (Ugh!) Mazzone amuses me more than he annoys me these days. Even Chipper Jones doesn't make my skin crawl anymore. Hell, how funny is it that he named his kid Shea after Shea Stadium because of all his success against the Mets?
The Braves have won an astounding fourteen consecutive division titles in a row. I don't think they get enough credit for this achievement because they have won only one World Series during their remarkable run. The fact that they have won only one championship makes me like them even more. They are the underdogs as well as being incredible winners. Also, they have continued this run while having a moderate payroll thus forcing them to look for bargains like the 47 year-old wunderkind Julio Franco.
This year's team has many young players that I enjoy watching. Plus, I have don't have anything against Tim Hudson and I love the fact that Hampton is out. Marcus Giles is a fun player to watch. I can live with Chipper, Andruw, and Furcal. Kyle Farnsworth needs a good pummeling though.
I thought that I was rooting for the Astros in this round. But now I'm not so sure. Yes, they have never made the World Series. Yes, if they win I will be spared having to hear the Tomahawk Chop in the next round. But everytime, I see Roger Clemens on the mound, I find it impossible to root for him. And when it comes down to it, who would I rather have be happy at the conclusion of this series - George Bush, Sr. or Jimmy Carter? Makes it an easy call, doesn't it?
Hide and Seek
2 days ago