Conceptually speaking, the World Series is the closest thing in sports to Thanksgiving dinner. The spread takes forever to prepare. So many hands are involved in the process, yet when the meal is finally prepared and laid across the table, the end result all seems worth the wait. Unless your one auntie is allowed to cook the turkey which turns out dryer than the Sahara (in this case a four game sweep) thus ruining the exhilaration which is the “Fall Classic.” The 2011 World Series, for those bothering to pay attention, has unfolded into a championship slugfest with all the moments of desperation, heart and passion this stage normally provides. But it’s the drama, basically five main story lines, which have yours truly tuned in.
— Albert Pujols’ Game 3 was one of those moments in sports I’ll forever beat myself up over for missing in real time right alongside Ron Artest, Stephen Jackson and Jermaine O’Neal laying the hands of God on every Pistons fan that night in 2005. Granted, I had a great reason for doing so (drunk at my school’s homecoming), but anytime you witness a player do something only Reggie Jackson and Babe Ruth have ever done, you’re going to feel like crap. You know the chances of this ever happening again in my lifetime? It’s like the Hailey’s Comet of athletics. From this point on, I vow to never drink at homecoming again. And from this point forward, I vow to never follow through with that last sentence.
— With the Mavericks the NBA champions for the foreseeable future (*punches wall*) and the Rangers a win away from their own championship, the city of Dallas could pull off the unofficial double whammy. There’s something in the water in Dallas and my only hope is that Jerry Jones is passing that same bottle of water the Cowboys locker room. If the planets align, Obama gets the jobs bill passed, FOX News reports something unbiased and Romo and the guys somehow finds a way to win the Super Bowl, it’ll be the first three team city sweep since the Jets (January ’69), Mets (October ’69) and Knicks (April ’70) took home the triple crown. I’m investing in a rabbit’s foot, a wishbone and avoiding all cracks in pavement until further notice.
— Albert Pujols’ impending free agency is the elephant in the room and has been so since the start of training camp. But best believe as soon as the final out of Game 6 or 7 is recorded we’re looking a free agent gold rush (Jose Reyes, Prince Fielder, David Ortiz, possibly CC Sabathia and more) headlined by Albert. What are the chances ESPN gives him his own primetime TV show to announce it? Baseball needs that controversy. Look what it did for basketball last year.
— If the Rangers win, I’ve got six words for you. Ron. Washington. Post. Game. Press. Conference. It has the potential to be the best one since Ron Artest brought all of Queensbridge on stage with him following the 2010 Finals.
— Seriously, how emotional would the entire country get if the Rangers won and invited Cooper Stone out on the field with them to celebrate? There wouldn’t be a dry eye in America. Having his dad as he grows up is a gift he’ll never have the chance to experience. But winning the Series the same year his father passed? When a love for the Rangers was one of their strongest bonds? If that’s not a real life version of Angels In The Outfield, I’m not sure what is.
Still though, and it never seems to fail, the World Series always leaves an empty feeling from a fan’s standpoint. That sense of knowing you were cheated out of something truly legendary over the years, but it never happened for a variety of reasons (like what would a cross episode of Martin and Fresh Prince would have looked like?). That question you always pose during sports debates at the bar or barbershop. When it comes to baseball, there’s always one huge “what if” I keep in the back pocket mainly because I’ve spent countless nights and many a Octobers wondering this.
How amazing would it have been to see an in-his-prime Ken Griffey, Jr. play for a World Series?