Thursday, October 27, 2016

Reflections on Game 2

My wife said I should do a quick blog post the day after each World Series game to kind of recap my feelings since there's no documentary crew following me around as the Cubs go for their first championship since 1908. So here we go on Game 2.

Well that was fun.

The Cubs won last night 5-1 and it turns out baseball is much more fun when your team is getting runners on base and scoring runs while simultaneously keeping the other team off base and not scoring runs.

The start time for the game was moved up an hour due to the threat of rain and "wintery mix" forecast in the Cleveland area, which means a nice 7 p.m. start time for me. There's no reason that every World Series game on weeknights couldn't start at 7, except for the fact that the television broadcasters who pay millions of dollars want it at 8 p.m., so games start then.

Fortunately for us, this game started earlier because it was a long one, even though it only went 9 innings. The Cubs saw nearly 200 pitches, which is a lot. The game went on for more than four hours, which I can see how it might drive away casual fans, but at best there are only five games left in the season so I'll take as much as I can get. It's even better that the Cubs won.

Even though the Cubs were comfortably ahead for most of the game, I found myself struggling to actually enjoy it. I'm more of a nervous fan who always worries about the worst. The Cubs' Jake Arietta had a no-hitter through five innings but I kept looking at his pitch count and was worried that he'd walked a few batters. With the Cubs up 5-1 in the eighth, Cleveland got two baserunners on and even though a home run still wouldn't have tied the game, I was terrified of a potential comeback.

This is a weird feeling to have for a team that is something like 71-4 when leading by four runs at any point in the game, but I get nervous that the worst could happen. It's not always a fun way to watch a game, which may be why I enjoy comeback victories more. I don't have to worry about the potential loss and can instead hope and dream on a comeback victory.

One of the Cubs writers I follow on Twitter said he's trying not to let the pressure exceed the pleasure of the playoffs and World Series. I can say that, after two games, I'm not succeeding at that.

But there's another game Friday night, so I get another chance to enjoy the game. Here's hoping it works.

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