You know this is always the case in every city, in every sport prior to a potential clinching game. You just don’t read about it very often:
Boxes of ALCS Championship T-shirts and caps marked “Hold for Rangers Clinch” sit waiting at Academy Sports + Outdoors stores, and employees hope to open them tonight with a Rangers’ win.
At the Academy on Arbrook Boulevard in Arlington, more than 100 big boxes wait in a locked back room, holding about 1,300 men’s and children’s T-shirts and up to 1,000 championship caps.
I know they’re supposed to be destroyed or sent to Haiti or something if things don’t pan out, but I would love to have a collection of losing team’s erroneous championship shirts. On Monday I’d wear Braves 1991 World Champs. On Tuesday, 1992 Champs. Later in the week I’d wear 1996. And 1999.
OK, now I’m just depressed.
For the past few weeks we’ve been previewing the 2017 season. Here, in handy one-stop-shopping form, is our package of previews from the National League West.
The Giants had the best record in all of baseball at the All-Star Break and the Dodgers lost the best pitcher in the world in Clayton Kershaw for a big chunk of the season. Yet, somehow, L.A. won the NL West by four games. The biggest culprit was the Giants’ suspect bullpen, which they put some real money toward fixing this winter. Is it enough? Or is a a Dodgers team with a healthy Kershaw just too talented for San Francisco to handle?
Below them is an intriguing Rockies team, though probably not a truly good Rockies team. The Dbacks have a lot of assorted talent but are nonetheless in reshuffle mode following a miserable 2016 campaign. The Padres, meanwhile, are in full-fledged rebuilding mode, but do possess some of the best minor league talent in the game.
Here are our previews of the 2017 NL West:
Los Angeles Dodgers
San Francisco Giants
San Diego Padres
For the past few weeks we’ve been previewing the 2017 season. Here, in handy one-stop-shopping form, is our package of previews from the American League West
There’s not a lot of separation between the top three teams in this division. Indeed, it would not be a surprise for either the Astros, Rangers or Mariners to end the year on top. Part of that is because none of these contenders are perfect, with all three facing some big challenges in putting together a strong rotation.
Meanwhile, the best baseball player in the universe toils in Anaheim, where he’ll most likely have to content himself to playing spoiler. Up the coast in Oakland . . . um, green is pretty?
Our 2017 AL West Previews:
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim