What a weird feeling. What a weird fucking feeling. As the 9th inning came to an end, the tarp started to rear it's ugly head, and a weather map that looked like it was straight out of 'The Day After Tomorrow' popped up on the screen, I finally had a moment to collect myself. It was in that moment that I realized that my heart was noticeably pounding, my ass had slid ever so close to the edge of the couch cushion, and I was experiencing the type of anxiety that I generally reserve for watching my own teams turn me into a borderline alcoholic. I don't know at what point of the game it happened, but I had become emotionally invested in a game between two teams I didn't particularly care about playing a sport I watch casually at best. It's as if it wasn't intriguing enough that it was winner-take-all duel between two franchises that don't know anything but losing, because the actual game itself was about as heart stopping as you could possibly hope for.
I mean, it quite literally had everything. A wealth of clutch at-bats and timely hitting. Questionable managerial decisions that wasted no time in looking like terrible managerial decisions. Ridiculously costly errors. Unbelievable base running that was about two tenths of a second away from being considered asinine base running. If you were looking for a flawless game of baseball then you can keep looking, but the amount of blunders made by the players and the coaches from both dugouts while a championship hung in the balance is what made last night what it was - which is one of the most entertaining sporting events I have ever watched.
Seeing as I'm not a still-drunk Cubs fan or a dangerously-depressed-for-the-forseeable-future Indians fans, I am not going to get into too many specifics, but if you want a glimpse at how surreal that game was then just take a look at David Ross' night. What's more improbable? A veteran catcher playing in his last game in the Major Leagues coming in to make a proven starting pitcher comfortable and immediately throwing away two runs to get the Indians back in the game, or that very same player following it up with a solo home run off the best reliever in baseball? That question doesn't even need to be answered because they both happened within about 5-10 minutes of each other. As symbolic as a sendoff can be, and we had still yet to hold our breaths through a game tying 8th inning home run, and a back and forth 10th inning that had to put the faint of heart in a hospital bed. Last night was the best thing that's happened for baseball in a long, long while, and all it costed was the collective soul of a entire fan base. Enjoy Cubbies faithful, and hit the hard stuff Tribe fans - there's always next year....and the subsequent 40-something years after that.