How I Helped the Houston Astros Beat the New York Yankees in the 2017 ALCS
Key play: Bird clipped in the 5th. As The Wire‘s Omar said, “Just Bird to me.”
I can’t lie. I couldn't watch Game 7.
Yesterday, Saturday, we had plans to see the Andrew Wyeth exhibit at the Seattle Art Museum with our friends Vinny and LoLo and we stayed until around 5:00 (gametime), and then we went out for drinks and dinner until around 7:30. I could‘ve watched then. But I didn’t. I didn't even go online. I left my phone off. Like all the way off. The day before a friend, who was a Yankees fan, texted me some snide comment mid-game, and I didn't want to know, so I turned the whole thing off that night and the next night. I didn't want to jinx it.
This is partly the result of what happened Tuesday night. Patricia and I were on our way to dinner before seeing “Ragtime” at the 5th Avenue Theater (full disclosure: it's rare when we get out this much), and beforehand I checked the score on ESPN.com: 4-0, Astros, in the 7th. Great! They'd be up three games to one with one more to win. But then I saw something on Twitter. Something about how someone, Joe Musgrove or someone, was supposed to be the Astros' Andrew Miller and it hadn't happened. I went back to ESPN.com with an awful feeling in my stomach. Yep. It was now 4-3 in the bottom of the 8th, one out, and the Yankees had runners on first and third. Then it was 4-4 in the bottom of the 8th, one out, and the Yankees had runners on first and third. Then it was 6-4, Yankees. Then it was over and the series was tied, 2-2, and the Yankees had momentum.
All because I'd checked the score on ESPN.com.
I don't know why baseball fans are like this but some part of me was thinking that. No, not thinking. Feeling. Stupidly feeling. I just had that awful feeling in the pit of my stomach. So when the games went back to Houston, with the Yankees up 3-2, I decided not to watch. I didn't want to jinx anything. Last night, when P and I got home, I suggested we watch “Minority Report,” which I hadn't seen since it was released, and which some people feel is a great movie. (It's not.) Before then, Patricia wanted to show me a video of something someone shared on Facebook, something about corgis, and I told her no, not going to look. Couldn't risk it. Couldn't risk even that proximity to social media. Instead the movie. We watched half of it, before I grew tired, got in bed, read a bit of “The Snowman,” fell asleep with Jellybean on my chest. Woke up, fed Jellybean, made coffee, brushed my teeth while listening to NPR, and in the midst of the usual horrid Trump news, they gave us their World Series announcement.
They took their sweet time getting there, but even that was a good sign. If the Yankees had won, after all, that would be the lead. Yankees Yankees Yankees. Instead, they announced that the World Series would begin on Tuesday evening (right...) with the Los Angeles Dodgers representing the National League (OK...) and representing the American League (c'mon already...) ... the Houston Astros, who beat ...
It was all I could do, at 6 AM in our condo on First Hill in Seattle, not to scream for joy.
This is what that means. Instead of the New York Yankees winning their 41st pennant (second-best team has 20) and having the opportunity to win their 28th World Series (second-best team has 11), the Houston Astros won their second pennant and have the opportunity to win their first World Series.
Meaning, on this Sunday morning, in this awful Trump era, in this awful year of 2017, there is a little justice in the world.
Thank you, Astros.