It’s the best time of the year. Its early October, it’s getting a bit chilly outside, and the MLB postseason is in full effect. There are eight teams still alive, fighting for a World Series Championship. Odds are, your favorite team either didn’t make it to the postseason or has already been eliminated in a Wild Card game. So the real question is: what now? Do you hop on a bandwagon or just watch and root like a casual baseball fan?
This postseason is filled with some especially intriguing storylines. The Blue Jays returning to the playoffs for the first time since 1993, the Mets since 2006, and the Cubs winning their first playoff game since 2003. The Houston Astros, who have been the laughing stock of baseball in recent years, and their patience with their farm system finally paying off, making it past the Yankees and into the ALDS against the Royals. The Texas Rangers getting hot at the right time and winning the wild West; the Dodgers claiming yet another division title; the Royals dominating the central and taking home the best record in the AL. Then there are the Cardinals and their continued dominance they have been able to repeat over the last decade-plus.
With all of these stories, it’s hard not to pick someone to root for this year. There are many underdogs and teams who have not won a World Series in a while whose bandwagon is slowly filling up. There have been an increasingly large number of Astros and Cubs fans that have come out of nowhere. In addition, the Cardinals bandwagon has been growing since about mid-July. But is it fair to the franchises and their fan base to join them? I don’t think so. Let the real fans of the teams enjoy the taste of victory, and you should enjoy the postseason as a fan of baseball.
For many of these fan bases, they have endured long periods of suffering. Baseball is a beautiful game and can be enjoyed even if you’re favorite team isn’t playing anymore. Every single game this postseason is going to have a great storyline, and will be hard fought from the first pitch until the last out. The clutch hits, big pitching performances, and heart and determination being showed is something that you can’t find anywhere else in sports, and that’s what makes playoff baseball so special.
So if your favorite team is currently playing, then enjoy it. It’s a great time of year, and something that doesn’t come around too often for most franchises. However, if your favorite team has been eliminated, then just enjoy the games. These are the best group of baseball players in the world, playing the game the best it has been played in history, and it couldn’t be more exciting.
As a fan whose team lost in the Wild Card game already, I’m just sitting back and relaxing, watching this beautiful game being played by the best in the world. Don’t hop on a bandwagon, it only makes you look bad as a fan. Be a fan of baseball, not of the best team every year.