Never much cared for the White Sox, so seeing them get swept this weekend felt pretty darned good. I converted to Twins fandom in 2006, so I never knew A.J. Pierzynski as a Minnesota Twin. A Cubs fan painted a picture of him as a jerk, and I never really got convinced he wasn't. I went to the first White Sox game at Target Field just to boo him. Ozzie Guillen rubbed me the wrong way, too. If you need a team to be the bad guys, the White Sox seem tailor-made for your needs. It might not be rational, my gut reaction to this team, but they still get me riled up. Not even the Yankees get me as ornery as those White Sox.
What;'s weird is that I tend to like cheering for the bad guys. I collect autographs from actors who have played Jason Voorhees in Friday the 13th movies (If you have an "in" with Ari Lehman or Ken Kirzinger, get in touch with me). I like to wear black. I've seen My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult in concert 5 times, and it should've been six. I like my Batmen dark.
Being a Minnesota Twins fan is one of the most wholesome things about me. Because, even though it might be naive and cliched, I believe the fairy tale Twins story. A smaller team who gets it done the right way by playing good baseball and being smarter than the smarties and tougher than the toughies. Thank you, Scrooge McDuck, for that last one. I read enough comments and articles to realize not everyone feels this way, but I still choose to see my Twins as the good guys.
It's important to have good guys in your life. It helps. Life may not be filled with loathsome bad guys, but it often seems like there's a lack of heroes. Being a Twins fan doesn't automatically make you a hero, but maybe it makes small differences over time. I'd like to think someone in a Twins shirt is going to be a person who'd take the time to help you change a tire. Or give you a hug when you're down. Or spend some extra time playing catch with a child.
Here's the deal - I don't do any of these things, realistically. I:'d just like to THINK that I would. And today, maybe, I am more likely to. Why?
That man is playing so well right now that he makes me think superheroes exist. Once you picture him with a bright red cape, it's hard to picture him WITHOUT one. On Sunday's game, he granted the wishes of Twins fans who closed their eyes and wished please please PLEASE hit a home run. He did that TWICE. We would have accepted one time. Twice? Superhero.
Now, people say "I love you" in all sorts of different ways. Some people cheer louder at the games, or maybe bring in signs. Some people just can't stop talking about him. Some people's love language is numbers, and they recite a litany of data that attempts to paint a picture of Byron Buxton, the man who could be king. Right now, in some way, ALL of Twins Territory is talking Buxton in their own love language.
The hero defeats the villains.
And right now, it's cool to be the good guys.