So man, it's certainly been awhile since I've shown my face on this blog. Where can I even begin? My Rays!! Oh man, despite the bittersweet finish to the World Series, I could not have been more happy with the way the season worked out in the end. Who would have ever picked us to win 97 games last year? Absolutely ridiculous...that was too awesome for words. And I have to say, I would not be surprised in the least if that one season just made me a Rays fan for life. I have so many memories already attached to the team and experienced so much joy from this past season, I can't see myself ever rooting for another team.
At the same time, though, I don't know if I could ever limit myself to simply rooting for one team for the rest of my life. The way I see it, I was a huge fan of the Yankees back in the late 90s, but I jumped ship once I lost faith in the way that they were running their franchise. Now, I like to think that I won't do that again if the Rays ever start heading in the wrong direction, but I can't say for sure. I do know that at this point, I would find it very, very tough to root for a team whose front-office philosophy does not match my own. If the Rays ownership ever changes hands and start to import expensive talent like the Yankees are constantly doing, I very well might jump ship again.
I feel like this is an interesting question: do you root hardcore for your favorite team forever and ever, 'til death do you part, regardless of the direction and philosophy of the franchise? Are there any strings attached to your fan-dom? Could ever a hypothetical situation arise where you cut ties with your current favorite and pick up another? I must say, I have and incredible amount of respect for those people that can continue to root for teams like the Kansas City Royals despite the fact that their on-the-field product is horrible and their front office has an atrocious philosophy towards building a team. I respect them, but I can't ever imagine being the same way.
Maybe it makes me less of a "true fan", but I feel that like in any good relationship, both sides need to be able to get something out of the deal. Why should I pay you money if you refuse to even try to build a winning team? Also, I'm not about to stick around in a relationship with a team that I cannot connect to - a team that I do not hold the same values as. Does that make sense? I'm probably being a bit overly dramatic with this whole analogy, since I'm basically comparing rooting for a sports team to marriage, but I feel like the analogy holds true and does have something to it. There's a lot of time and money and emotion put into rooting for a team, so why root for a team that you don't have anything in common with and that doesn't care about you? It doesn't make sense in a relationship...it doesn't make sense as a fan.
Anyway, that was a long tangent, but I like the concept. For now, though, I'm totally loving the Rays - I love their current team of players and I love their front-office philosophy. It's a good match. Go Rays!