Say, hey. I’m jumping on the bandwagon.
From here on, I will root for the San Francisco Giants, the baseball team whose most-famous player, Willie Mays, was known as The Say Hey Kid.
It’s time to move on.
Since the summer before my senior year in college, I have rooted for the Chicago Cubs. That summer I lived rent free, house sitting for one of my professors. And I worked at my first real job as a reporter at a radio station in Sioux City, Iowa, where I went to college.
Most afternoons, my schedule was wide open, so I spent them lounging on my professor’s sofa, drinking cheap beer and watching the Cubs with one of my roommates.
But that was 24 years ago. In the years since, the Cubs have won 2,018 games. winning their division four times. They have lost 2,130 games. In 2012, they lost 101 games, the most losses in a season in the years I have, root, root, rooted for the Cubbies.
Enough is enough.
This has been a year of change for me. I am still working to leave behind a full-time newspaper career that runs roughly parallel to the years I have followed the Cubs. The newspaper business abandoned me. And, I guess, I am abandoning my baseball team.
So why the Giants?
This summer, since I had extra time on my hands, I have done a lot of reading. I have become a fan of writer John Lescroart’s novels, which are set in San Francisco. I’ve read six of them so far and they’re good enough to make even an unrepentant Iowa farm boy admire the City by the Bay.
Add to this the fact that the Cubs haven’t won a World Series since 1908, which makes the 24 years I’ve cheered them on seem like the blink of an eye. They have played in the World Series once in my mother’s lifetime — when she was a 2-year-old.
In the years since my mother’s birth, meanwhile, the hated St. Louis Cardinals have won the National League 12 times. And in seven of those seasons, the Cardinals went on to win the World Series.
But thanks to my newly beloved Giants, the Cardinals won’t be adding any hardware to their overflowing trophy case in 2012. The Giants defeated the Cardinals in this year’s National League Championship Series, 3 games to 4. This included a 9-0 win Monday in the seventh game of the series. The Giants will play the Detroit Tigers in the World Series.
I’ll be rooting for the Giants.
Looking back on it, I started following the Cubs because of the fondness for beer that I think I shared at the time with Harry Caray, the team’s play-by-play man from 1981-1997.
And that doesn’t seem any sillier than my reasons for joining the Giants’ bandwagon. Everyone likes a winner. And I also like Lescroart’s primary protagonists: Dismas Hardy and Abe Glitsky. They root for the Giants.
And so will I from now on.