So that was a disappointing end to an amazing season, I think we can all agree on that. But it’s important to focus on the ‘amazing’ more than the ‘disappointing’, because there was more of the former than the latter.
The reality is that the Dodgers should be stuck in the middle of a franchise downturn headed for a franchise re-tooling right now. Sort of like the situation the Phillies are currently in but worse because it came without a ring. However, Mark Walter helped pave over the sins of Frank McCourt and mistakes of Ned Colletti, and Colletti and Stan Kasten paired to remake the team with Walter’s money into a contender. A team that should have been headed for a 90-loss season under McCourt was turned around into one of the top squads in the league.
I’m not infuriated because it’s hard to feel that way in the context of everything that’s transpired. The fact that this franchise was on the brink of the World Series a year after a fan revolt and nothing but legal news to talk about is mind-boggling to me. And while I historically try to stay grounded (to a fault, at times), it’s hard not to end this year excited and optimistic about what the future holds rather than be crushed and depressed about falling short of a title.
All that TBS/ESPN bloviating? All the pathetic shots from ‘journalists’ of opposing teams? All the trolling? It all means the Dodgers are relevant again, and it’s for what happens on the field rather than in the courtroom. It’s a hell of a lot better than going through another dead, boring season as an anonymous team on the national scope.
Yasiel Puig is hated. The Dodgers are hated. And boy does it feel great.