Gut punches and September Baseball

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I sit here in the dark hours of the night after one of the rougher regular season losses in recent memory trying to make something out of the mess of a game that was played Tuesday night. My heart aches almost as badly as my feet which I bloodied trying to break in new shoes to impress all the pretty girls on my first day of class. To try to numb the pain, I’m re-watching classic episodes of ‘Scrubs’ on Netflix while eating tortillas and Chips Ahoy and trying to forget the cruel sting that comes with some late season losses.

Throughout all my classes today I was looking forward to watching the game and it would be easy to sit here and whine about how much of a crotch kick last night was but I’d rather not do that. The main reason I looked forward to the game all day and all the games for the rest of the season is because these games mean something.

In 2013 the Rangers were playing meaningful games late in the year like they are this year. Back then I was still at school in Alabama studying Finance with my older brother still living under the same roof as me and my best friend still living in the same city as me. There has been a lot of change in my life since the last time the Rangers sniffed the post season and there has also been a great deal of change for the Rangers organization in that time period. They went out and got Cole Hamels and a new skipper. They appear to have found a lead off man. A big fella with an even bigger bat came to town and took away a polarizing fan favorite second baseman; then the team home grew another edgy second baseman with more moxie than the last one. This team brought back its golden boy Josh Hamilton much to the detriment of their division rival and also endured one of the most unexpectedly bad seasons of a sports team in recent memory.

It’s been two years since the Rangers were playing meaningful baseball this late in the year and I’m just happy to be watching games in which I’m so emotionally invested that I might definitely will terrify my roommates with the loud noises I make while watching these games. September games are fun because they carry a great deal of weight. The calendar hasn’t flipped to the ninth month yet but Rangers die hards are living and dying and reacting heavily to every single game and I frickin love it. Times like these remind us all of how exhilarating it is to be a fan of a winning baseball team. This just feels like a year that the Rangers might do something special. Call it premonition if you want but I think it’s just a gut feel I’ve had since July. I had the same feeling in 2010 and I was completely right about that so basically I’m the Nostradamus of predicting improbable Texas Rangers playoff runs.

Last night sucked. There’s no if’s, and’s, or butt’s about it. But it did make you feel something. It made me feel something about baseball that I hadn’t felt in a while. A feeling that I needed returned to my life. Last night isn’t the end of the road though. Today is a new day and the great thing about baseball is that after a rough game you can have your palate cleansed by a dominant win 24 hours later. David Price is on the hill for those sapphire slugging song birds but Colby Lewis takes the ball for those Texas Rangers. I’m ready to be talking this time tomorrow about how much of a beast Colby was tonight but for now I have to go be a student. There are 38 games left for the Rangers this season. No matter what happens in any of them the Rangers will be playing in October because the regular season ends October 4th. I sure can’t wait to see them in October but I really can’t wait to watch them in November assuming they don’t sweep the Mets in four games. I don’t know what the future holds but I do know this: the next month or so will be a heck of a ride. Let’s just sit back and enjoy the show!

Brice Paterik
Brice is a Junior Journalism major at Texas Tech University in pursuit of a career in Sports Journalism. Growing up in Dallas his whole life, Brice has been a Rangers fan since before he batted against a machine. He's a sucker for a high ceiling athletic prospect without a hit tool or 20 year olds who throw 100 mph and can't hit the zone. He over values every prospect and is a hopeless romantic for baseball. She's broken his heart a million times but he will always come back for more.

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