Saturday, July 26, 2008

An Open Letter to the Cleveland Indians

Okay, so the season is more than half over and the Tribe has only managed 45 wins. And C. C. Sabathia is gone and Casey Blake is gone. And Victor Martinez is out and Pronk is out and Jake Westbrook is out and Josh Barfield is out. And we are struggling to stay out of last place behind the lowly Kansas City Royals. So, yeah, it looks bleak.

But please, please, please, do not give up.

In this proud land we grew up strong
We were wanted all along
I was taught to fight, taught to win
I never thought I could fail

While I was not among the 35,000 or so fans who trekked to Progressive Field tonight to watch Fausto retake the mound, I was one of the tens of thousands at home listening to the radio. And I heard Tom Hamilton tell all who were listening: "Basically it's all practice for next year from here on out."

Really? It's all over? You've thrown in the towel with 61 games yet to be played? Where's the hope? Where's the faith? Where's the love?

No fight left or so it seems
I am a man whose dreams have all deserted
I've changed my face, I've changed my name
But no one wants you when you lose

I'm not blaming Hammy either. He's a great announcer and a great fan and apparently a realist. But as a fan, I have to believe that anything is possible. And I have to cling to the hope that the team feels the same way.

Look, no one gave the Giants a chance at the Super Bowl this year, and no one figured Appalachian State to hold on to beat Michigan. And who knew that Fresno State's baseball team could take down Georgia in the College World Series? You know who knew? Homers like me.

Listen, last year my brother Denny (who knows a ton more about sports than I do) bet me that Brady Quinn would be playing in the pros long before Troy Smith ever got his first shot. I argued that Troy had the same chance as Brady. I told him anything was possible. And I won the bet.

Dont give up
Cause you have friends
Dont give up
You're not beaten yet
Dont give up
I know you can make it good

Please, clap your hands. Clap your hands and say, "I do believe in miracles."

This season is not over yet, not by a long shot. Or as Yogi Berra so eloquently put it: "It ain't over till it's over."

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