In case you weren’t aware, the MLB playoffs are currently underway. Sadly, the Angels are not part of the October festivities. Equally as sad, the Dodgers ARE taking part in said festivities.
Battling in the NLCS, the Dodgers have made it to the pinnacle of the National League while the Angels ended the season third in their division, 14 games out of even wild card contention. Many Angels fans now face a decision that besets all fans without a playoff team: Which horse do you pick in the MLB playoffs race?
The idea of rooting for a cross-town rival may sicken fans, but it doesn’t have to be the vomit-inducing process some believe it to be. Here then, is a simple guide to rooting for the Dodgers.
DO – Listen to the radio
The SoCal sports stations are positively abuzz with everything Dodger blue. Even the music stations, from classic rock to Christian contemporary, are singing the praises of the boys in blue between playing a mix of the same top 40 crap ad nauseum. If you can stand listening to Imagine Dragons three or four times in under an hour, you might be able to call in and score playoff tickets. Even if you’re not a fan of the teams, you can appreciate the top-tier baseball being played.
DON’T – Buy a jersey
This is just plain wrong. You can watch the team and lend verbal support but buying a jersey is akin to making a rope out of the shredded remains of your Greinke jersey and letting the bandwagon drag you behind as it charges through the post-season. If you really REALLY want to show some Los Angeles support, you can get an Angels hat with the interlocking L-A logos from the 1960s, but that’s it. Anything else, and you’re a dirty, dirty bandwagoner and should be ashamed of yourself.
DO – Remind Dodger fans that Greinke was an Angel and Scioscia was a Dodger
If you’re throwing support behind another team, it’s important to note the similarities more than the differences. The Angels and Dodgers split wins this season, there’s no reason the two fanbases should fight now. If you can find no other common ground to kindle an interleague friendship, then you should learn to laugh at how slowly Jon Garland pitches a game.
DON’T – Try to pass the Angels off as LA’s other team.
I can’t believe this needs to be said, but apparently it does. Some people are trying to justify rooting for big blue by claiming that they “Just love LA.” No. Stop that. Would Yankees fans cheer for the Mets? Do you often see Rangers ballcaps at Astros games? Hell, you wouldn’t catch a die-hard Cubs fan rooting for the White Sox and Cubs fans have been so desperate for something to cheer for, that they want another Steve Bartman incident just to have an excuse for another curse-breaking party! You’re picking a playoff team. That’s all. You don’t have to justify it.
DO – Learn some key players.
There’s nothing wrong with learning a bit about the Dodgers superstars. You don’t need to be a team fan to appreciate watching Clayton Kershaw. And if you don’t see similarities between Mike Trout’s meteoric rookie rise and Yasiel Puig practically cementing NL Rookie of the Year before the All-Star break, then you’re just not trying hard enough. Buy a program and read up a little. Knowledge is power.
DON’T – Forget to talk a little trash.
Never forget, this is a playoff rental. There’s nothing wrong with supporting the team you’ve chosen, but you’ve got to let people know where your loyalties truly lie .
Even if those loyalties currently lie in a place where the stadium will be dark until March 2014.