Let’s Rub It In Some More: Polling Our Miserable Philadelphians About The World Series
11:30 AM EDT on October 27, 2023
We all know how fashionable it is to slag the World Series because of its two off-brand participants, and few people outside the baseball beat have bothered to get too in-depth about either one of them because it is apparently uncool to Know A Ranger or Diamondback.
But just as nobody wants to spend a lot of time deep-diving Arizona or Texas, even fewer than nobody want to consider the landscape of this series from the view of the teams they beat. We at Sweatshop No. 947 have no inhabitants of the greater Houston area on staff, but we are lousy with Philadelphians, so we decided to poll that delegation on the Series, mostly to get their view of a party the bouncer wouldn’t let them enter, but in part to pour a bit of bleach in their still-gaping wounds. Come for the angst, stay for the gratuitous psychological cruelty. Your typist's observations in italics.
1. How much do you hate the World Series right now, with 1 being "I love it no matter who plays" and 10 being "I wish everyone on both teams could be jailed right now."
Kelsey McKinney: "5." At the risk of putting words in the comrade's mouth, this translates to "I'll flip back and forth between that and Flyers-Ducks."
Kathryn Xu: "A solid 6, mostly because the Rangers are a neutral-value team to me." A cowardly answer, as there is no such thing as a neutral-value team. Pick a lane, Junior.
Luis Paez-Pumar: "I'm at about a 7. Not because I have that much hate in my heart for either team, but because the concept of watching a World Series between Arizona and Texas, in their horrible ballparks that look like crap on TV, fills me with dread." Who ever thought we would have among us an architectural snob?
Dan McQuade: "3. I am a Philadelphia sports fan. I am 40. I have been a sportswriter here since I was, what, 17? Usually there is no one I hate more in sports than Philadelphia fans and athletes. Sometimes teams or their fans poke up and surpass that hatred: Cowboys, Celtics, the most annoying person on whichever team is playing against Penn basketball or the Sixers at that moment. But the Diamondbacks didn’t even play that well, and I don’t feel like they were particularly annoying. It’s a three because baseball is also kinda boring, even though they jazzed it up a little this year." In this context "3" translates to "It's either this or cleaning the garage."
2. When will you be over the Phillies' Game 7 loss? November? December? Opening Day next year? When hell is converted to a bowling alley and pet hospital?
KM: "I will relive the horrors of that game and how it felt until the minute I see them on the field again at which point I will forgive them and return to my delusions. I expect that date to be March 28, 2024." In case you wondered, that is indeed Opening Day against the Braves.
KX: "October 26 because I am built different and on vacation in good company, and I will not let the Phillies ruin it for me. Also, I am also trying to move away from anger/rage as an organizational philosophy." Moving away from anger/rage means she will never make it as a post-apocalyptic journalist.
LPP: "As I am not a Phillies fan, I'd like to say I was over it immediately after it happened, or even during the game, sometime around Ginkelmania. But I won't lie: I'm a bit bummed that I am not getting a Philly World Series right after moving here! So, I'll probably be mildly disappointed by that until the Series is over." GINKELMANIA!
DM: "Game 7 wasn’t even the worst loss, honestly. I’ll get over Game 7 before I get over Game 4. I’ll never get over Game 2 of the 2011 NLDS. Don’t get me started on Game 3 of the 2009 World Series." How about Game 4 of the 1950 Series while you're at it, Gramps?
3. How badly do you want Texas to beat Arizona, with 1 being "I have no rooting interest in either of these teams save having them both entombed in a rocket and careened into the sun" and 10 being "With more fervor than I would have for loving my favorite puppy?"
KM: "10. I grew up a Rangers fan, so I have affection for them. But I would prefer if the series went to seven games just so we can have some more baseball." This was logic she defiantly rejected when your typist wanted Arizona to win Game 6 of the LCS to extend that series, so we suspect this answer is closer to a seven, or "I prefer it to a dental cleaning, but not as much as a nice meal being paid for by someone else."
KX: "10. Not just because 'Fuck the Diamondbacks' (mitigating factors to that include the general pathetic-ness of the Diamondbacks which makes it feel a bit like punching down, etc.) but also because a team with low payroll making it into the World Series blows. Also, why is the Diamondbacks mascot not a snake with legs?" Comrade Xu will almost surely rue "A team with low payroll making it into the World Series blows" for years because we have decided to bring it up often and at inconvenient times.
LPP: "0, I do not acknowledge the Texas Rangers." That's the kind of thing we would expect from a Marlins fan.
4. How badly do you want Arizona to beat Texas, with 1 being "Not at all" and 10 being "Die in a cave-in for even suggesting it"?
KM: "9. I do not wish for you to die, Ray." A true Phillies fan would have no problem with the concept of slaughtered observers as collateral damage, so again we will have to adjust this down to a 7.
KX: "10. See above." Fair point, though a snake with legs is a lizard and nobody is buying tickets to see the Arizona Iguanas.
LPP: "I don't know where this falls in your number range, but Go Snakes." We may have underestimated the gentleman's Rangerophobia.
DM: "1. This math works, right?" It's the number one. You can't get around the math of the number one?
5. How many teams in how many sports would you root for instead of Arizona? A: every team that has ever existed; B, every team except the Yankees; C: every team except the Patriots; D: every team except the House of Representatives; E: none of the above, as my grief does not permit me to root for anyone.
KX: "B through D." This is St. Louis Browns erasure, pure and simple.
LPP: "I will not name any teams, but I'd put Arizona somewhere around like 15th in MLB when it comes to teams I would root for in a World Series, so I hope that answers it." It doesn't.
DM: "The only way I could see rooting for Arizona in this series is if the Diamondbacks were playing the Cowboys, the Celtics, or the Canadian women’s soccer team. I also have a friend who is a Rangers fan, and I really liked Dallas the one time I visited. We stayed in Lower Greenville and liked it very much. But I believe the Rangers ballpark is in Hell, a Dallas suburb." Let's talk about that Canadian women's soccer thing for a minute, Scooter.
6. Who is your favorite Diamondback? A: Kevin Ginkel; B: Ketel Marte; C: Randy Johnson; D: an actual diamondback; E: too soon, you heartless monster.
KM: "D. Diamondbacks the snakes are cool." Very Imbleresque.
KX: "F: getting run over by a bus." Driven by B and carrying A, C, and D.
LPP: "Luis Gonzalez. I spent many days of my youth trying to replicate that awful batting stance." You are right to suddenly feel sad about his youth.
DM: "C. I hate birds." You would.
7. Who is your favorite Ranger? A: Nate Eovaldi; B: Adolis Garcia; C: Corey Seager; D: Bruce Bochy; E: I do not recognize the American League as a viable part of the baseball diaspora.
KM: "B. Adolis Garcia is one of My Guys." Good taste is its own reward.
KX: "F, Ranger Suárez." That's why she went to an Ivy, kids. Always using the noodle.
DM: "My answer is Phillies legend Travis Jankowski. It rules that he got 247 at-bats for a team that made the World Series." That's not an option we had considered at any point in the making of this quiz.
8. How many forms of entertainment would you rather partake in than Game 1, with 1 being "Binge-watching the Golden Bachelor" and 10 being "A mudslide through my favorite bar at happy hour?"
KM: "8." Translates to "my local library closed and converted into a hardware store."
KX: "5, communing with nature in Point Reyes and leaving my scorebook at home." Why would anyone commune with nature without their scorebook?
LPP: "I will be at dinner at the beach for Game 1, and then I will probably watch Great British Baking Show when I get back home. I'm really rooting for Dan this season!" Seems like a 3 from here. Somewhere, Noel Fielding weeps.
DM: "I think it’s interesting that More to Love (created, like The Bachelor, by Mike Fleiss) aired in 2009, while it took until 2023 for Golden Bachelor to become a thing. However, Old Bachelor is on the same network as The Bachelor. Fat Bachelor had to go to Fox, which as we know will take basically anything. What does this say about our society, or our media landscape? Anyway I’d rather ponder this question than watch the World Series, but I will probably end up doing both at the same time." Ladies and gentlemen, the edibles have kicked in.
9. How many forms of entertainment would you rather partake in than watch Game 7, with 1 being "I like baseball, so I'd be moderately curious" and 10 being "Being abandoned in a graveyard"?
KM: "Assuming this is Game 7 of the World Series, and not the misery I just experienced, 3." It is indeed Game 7 of the World Series, so we will take it on faith that if it were Game 7 of the NLCS her answer would be "10b: being abandoned in a graveyard during an elk stampede."
KX: "1. Once again, I am built different." Which is to say she is not yet old enough to be properly and correctly embittered by the decaying crematorium we call humanity.
LPP: "I would watch Game 7, sure. But then again, I even watch hockey Game 7s. I am a sap for Game 7s. Games 7." The Heat lost the NBA Finals in five games; explains quite a lot, really.
DM: "3. I like the graveyard idea, too, though." In honesty, who doesn't?
10. How do you feel about the Phillies right now, with 1 being "They are my children and I will love them unconditionally for the rest of time," 5 being "I will hate them until Game 5, and then I will get over it and love them again because I am a tragic yet deeply loyal figure," and 10 being "Go Marlins, because I will never give my heart to a team again."
KM: "Unfortunately 1." She needs a Phillies jacket with "Team Mom" on the back.
KX: "5, and I'll add that hardship breeds character." Hardship builds a fondness for gin poured over breakfast cereal and added to cold brew, nothing more.
LPP: " Right now, I am saddened that these idiot himbos blew it. Come Opening Day, I hope they eat shit at least 19 times, or how many ever times they play the Marlins." Twelve actually, plus two spring training games; hey, either you care or you're just bullshitting.
DM: "9? They were in prime position for back-to-back pennants and the main thing that’s making me feel better about it is knowing that the players must feel even worse than I do." No, the players are already on a private beach in Martinique with a daiquiri in each hand and telling the tourists they're hedge fund bankers beating IRS pigs. They won't pretend to feel bad about this until spring training when they lie to the writers about how much time they spent all winter longing to get back to work to right the October wrong.
There. We hope that cleared up the World Series for you. Or not. Whatever.