DY: In Just a Few Words (#105)
Wow! Just wow!
NOTE: I wrote this week’s blog before the Guardians’ loss to the Yankees in Game 4 and last night’s postponement of Game 5 to this afternoon. It doesn’t matter. This blog is about Game 3.
For me, the ninth inning comeback Saturday night was the single greatest baseball moment in the 60-plus years I have lived in Cleveland. I was in bed just getting ready to nod off when the bat of Oscar Gonzalez woke me up like a bolt of lightning. I was waiting for another in a long series of disappointments when he had an historic hit and the sellout crowd joined him to celebrate on the field. It was pandemonium. On the field, but also - I suspect - in living rooms and bedrooms all over town.
Years of fan frustration evaporated in an instant. It wasn’t much of a hit, but neither are lots of hits by this team. It was a typical Guardians hit and, once again, our guys had scratched out an impossible win. But, this was no plain vanilla win. It was a win for the ages.
It was a gift for nearly four million Indians fans who created 455 consecutive sellouts at the Jake. And, it was a gift for this first year of the Guardians and their Progressive Field fans who never, ever gave up all season, regardless of circumstances.
It was a gift for rock-steady ownership and management who have demonstrated through thoughtful actions that a small market team can compete with the big guys. The Guardians have invested in player development wisely, not some one-year, headline-grabbing fix. And, Saturday, they got their reward.
I don’t know what the future holds, but I do know Saturday was nothing short of magical. It was what’s called a moment. Our son, Denny, was right behind the Guardians’ dugout with his school friend of many years, Tom. Lifelong baseball fans.
Of all professional sports, baseball is the one where any team can get hot and beat any other team. That’s the reason they play the games.
Something that makes moments special is that they don’t last forever. Take it in. Enjoy it.
Maybe we need to immortalize this one by re-naming the intersection at the ballpark’s front gate. Instead of Carnegie and Ontario, what would you think of Focus and Hope? That’s what this team is all about - Focus and Hope. Ultimately, that pays off. And, it sure did Saturday.
Thank you, Dolan family. Thank you, front office and those staffers scattered around the country for player development. Thank you, Guardians manager Terry Francona and his coaches. Thank you, players, for listening and learning.
The Guardians can play with anybody - even the guys from the bright lights.
Moments like this are known for everyone claiming they were there in person. We were all there, even those of us in our bedrooms. One community. Focused and full of hope. Proving once again baseball is the best team game ever invented.
As fans of the old Brooklyn Dodgers used to say, Wait Till Next Year.
DY: In Just a Few Words is a blog that comes out when something needs to be said or every Tuesday - whichever comes first. Davis Young is a communications professional who adds 50+ years of experience and perspective to issues of the day. His emphasis in DY: In Just a Few Words will be humor (a touch of sarcasm here, a pinch of facetiousness there...). Once in a while, he will touch on something a bit more serious - but hopefully not too deep or depressing.
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