Skip to content

Who do you root for when your team is eliminated?

Sep 27, 2013, 11:31 AM EDT

Dodgers Fans

I’m going to root for my Barves as long as they’re still playing. Nothing will stop that. Not silly unwritten rules enforcement, not dumb “choptober” hashtags on Twitter, nothing. They’re my team and you root for your team until they’re eliminated. That’s how sports works. Even when they annoy you, they’re your guys.

But that doesn’t mean you can’t transfer allegiances if and when they’re eliminated. Or, if your team didn’t make the playoffs, that you can’t pick a playoff rooting interest. I do this every year to some degree. Indeed, being a Braves fan, changing one’s rooting interests in the middle of the playoffs has become something of a necessity over the years.

This is subject to change depending on what annoying playoff habits/chants/rituals any of these guys get into and drive me crazy, but for the moment my secondary rooting interests break down like this:

National League:

1. Dodgers: I love Kershaw and Greinke. I’m a slave to Puig-mania. I’ve come to respect what Don Mattingly has done this year. I also want Boston people who are convinced that Adrian Gonzalez and Carl Crawford are poison to have to explain how they can play on a World Series winning team. Lots of fun to be had here.

2. Pirates: Good story, Andrew McCutchen is a God. Pittsburgh deserves something to cheer for. My only reservation is that this bandwagon is going to be overflowing if the Pirates advance and I don’t want to be in that crowd.

3. Reds: Pattern here: I tend to like teams whose best player has skills I love to see. Joey Votto has the best batting eye in baseball and while a team full of guys like him make for long, boring games, I like to see him ply his trade. Plus: viva Ohio.

4. Cardinals: Eh, just not gonna happen. I don’t hate them. I don’t think there are any bad guys on this club. I just don’t like watching them for some reason. Maybe it’s a Buck/McCarver thing and the way their commentary gets when the Cardinals are involved. Maybe it’s the Best Fans in Baseball thing. But no, I can’t see myself cheering for the Cardinals at least until the World Series (I’m an NL guy) and maybe not even then.

American League:

1. Athletics: This is basically the “Major League” team here. Their owner is trying to move them and they play in a ballpark that is literally full of crap. I also want to see Bartolo Colon raise the AL Championship trophy while sucking on a BBQ rib bone or something. Plus: I’m covering the World Series again this year and I’d like to return to the Bay Area without being near death’s door due to that plague or whatever it was I had last year in San Francisco.

2. Tigers: Nostalgia. It will make my girlfriend happy and if my girlfriend is happy I’m happy. I’m not anything approaching a Tigers fan anymore, but I’ve met a lot in the past few years and I like them. Plus I know the fun places to go in Detroit now. Shut up, there are fun places in Detroit.

3. Indians: More viva Ohio. More comeuppance for the Boston scribes who thought Terry Francona was a problem (or who let the front office tell that story for a while without pushback). Chief Wahoo makes it hard, but I’ll get over it.

4. Rays: There is still some underdog appeal here and I’m a sucker for good starting pitching, but I feel like Joe Maddon’s Phil Jackson impression has worn thin and I really can’t root for a team that features a rapist, an anti-semite and a homophobe.

5. Red Sox: Eh, it’s been a nice turnaround and there are some likable players here, but non-Sox fans rooting for them is almost as bad as non-Yankees fans rooting for New York. They’re the classic overdog. Plus, they tend to play games that last until 1AM and I just can’t do that every October. The one saving grace is that I’ve never been to Fenway and now I possibly could. But I could also just fly there next summer if I want and not have to endure Sox October baseball.

So that’s how it breaks down for me. Lots of appealing options and a potential Red Sox-Cardinals series that may drive me back into being a football fan.

What’s your view on all of this? If your team tanks or has already been eliminated, who ya got?

Latest Posts
  1. And That Happened: Tuesday’s scores and highlights

    Apr 16, 2014, 6:38 AM EDT

    Night court

    I only watched a little baseball last night. Watched a lot of “Night Court” though.

  2. Mike Napoli suffers dislocated left ring finger

    Apr 16, 2014, 12:03 AM EDT

    mike napoli getty Getty Images

    From Tim Britton of the Providence Journal comes word that Red Sox first baseman Mike Napoli was removed from Tuesday night’s series-opener against the White Sox with a dislocation of his left ring finger. X-rays were negative, meaning he does not have a fracture.

  3. Josh Johnson to visit Dr. James Andrews … again

    Apr 15, 2014, 11:28 PM EDT

    josh johnson getty Getty Images

    Josh Johnson’s arm injury woes continue. According to Corey Brock of MLB.com, the right-handed starter is still being bothered by discomfort in his forearm and will be examined next week by Dr. James Andrews.

  4. Clayton Kershaw throws 26-pitch bullpen session

    Apr 15, 2014, 10:44 PM EDT

    clayton kershaw getty Getty Images

    Clayton Kershaw continued his recovery from a teres major muscle strain on Tuesday, throwing a bullpen session with improved fastball velocity.

  5. Jose Reyes is on track to be activated Friday

    Apr 15, 2014, 9:59 PM EDT

    jose reyes getty Getty Images

    Blue Jays shortstop Jose Reyes was pulled from the club’s season-opener with tightness in his left hamstring. He is expected to return to action this Friday.

  6. White Sox don “Boston Strong, Sox Together” shirts before game Tuesday vs. Red Sox

    Apr 15, 2014, 9:05 PM EDT

    konerko boston

    On the one-year anniversary of the Boston Marathon bombings and with the Red Sox in town for a three-game series, the White Sox wore these “Boston Strong” shirts during pregame warmups Tuesday …

  7. Taijuan Walker scratched from rehab start at AAA Tacoma with more shoulder discomfort

    Apr 15, 2014, 8:23 PM EDT

    taijuan walker getty Getty Images

    Mariners top pitching prospect Taijuan Walker was scheduled to make one final rehab start on Tuesday at Triple-A Tacoma before joining the major league starting rotation. But that plan can now be torched.

  8. Curtis Granderson rocking “Thank You Jackie” cleats

    Apr 15, 2014, 7:41 PM EDT

    granderson cleats

    Curtis Granderson is not in the Mets’ starting lineup against the host Diamondbacks because of minor rib cage, forearm, and knee injuries that he sustained in a collision with the outfield wall on Monday, but he will be sporting these custom cleats on the bench …

  9. Wilson Ramos gets stitches removed from left hand

    Apr 15, 2014, 6:58 PM EDT

    wilson ramos getty Getty Images

    According to beat writer James Wagner of the Washington Post, Nationals catcher Wilson Ramos got the stitches removed from his surgically-repaired left hand on Tuesday afternoon and has now been cleared to begin basic rehab activities.

  10. Dustin Pedroia given cortisone injection for sore left wrist, aiming to return Wednesday

    Apr 15, 2014, 6:10 PM EDT

    dustin pedroia getty Getty Images

    Tests taken Monday on the sore left wrist of Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia ruled out any major structural damage. He is not in the starting lineup for Tuesday night’s series-opener against the White Sox at U.S. Cellular Field, but ESPN’s Gordon Edes says Pedroia is aiming to return on Wednesday.

  11. One study: teams named after Indians are costing themselves millions by NOT changing their mascots

    Apr 15, 2014, 5:03 PM EDT

    Chief Wahoo guy

    I can’t vouch for the study, but I do know this much: politics gets this stuff in the news, but money is what will ultimately change things.

  12. Darnell McDonald joins Cubs front office two weeks after retiring

    Apr 15, 2014, 4:40 PM EDT

    darnell mcdonald getty Getty Images

    Earlier this month journeyman outfielder Darnell McDonald announced his retirement via Instagram and he’s already landed a good post-playing gig in the Cubs’ front office as a baseball operations assistant.

  13. The Braves own the Nationals. It must be true, Wikipedia said so.

    Apr 15, 2014, 4:00 PM EDT

    nationals logo patch

    If it’s on the Internet, it must be true.

  14. Indians activate Michael Bourn, demote Nyjer Morgan

    Apr 15, 2014, 3:21 PM EDT

    michael bourn getty Getty Images

    Michael Bourn is back from the disabled list after being sidelined since the middle of spring training with a hamstring injury and to make room for his return the Indians optioned Nyjer Morgan back to Triple-A.

  15. HBT Daily: Jackie Robinson Day and the decline of U.S.-born blacks in baseball

    Apr 15, 2014, 3:00 PM EDT

    Jackie Robinson

    There are fewer U.S.-born blacks playing baseball today than there were 20-30 years ago. But how many fewer, and what can be done about it?

  16. Shockingly, Bill Plashcke’s take on the L.A. Magazine story about Yasiel Puig misses the point

    Apr 15, 2014, 2:30 PM EDT

    Yasiel Puig AP AP

    To some people, Yasiel Puig will always be a problem rather than a person.

  17. Yankees place Francisco Cervelli on the 60-day disabled list

    Apr 15, 2014, 2:14 PM EDT

    Baltimore Orioles v New York Yankees Baltimore Orioles v New York Yankees

    Francisco Cervelli injured his hamstring Sunday night and the Yankees have placed the backup catcher on the 60-day disabled list rather than the usual 15-day disabled list.

  18. Hank Aaron is getting vile racist hate mail in retaliation for pointing out that racism still exists

    Apr 15, 2014, 1:19 PM EDT

    Hank Aaron AP AP

    Thank God he didn’t suggest people still had the capacity for violence, or else the manner in which these idiots took offense might’ve been even worse.

  19. John Farrell to get fined for being critical of instant replay

    Apr 15, 2014, 1:00 PM EDT

    John Farrell AP

    MLB sends an odd message given how open they’ve been about instant replay being a work-in-progress.

Featured video

Jackie Robinson Day is bittersweet
Top 10 MLB Player Searches
  1. T. Wood (6498)
  2. J. Kubel (5798)
  3. I. Nova (4943)
  4. S. Kazmir (4595)
  5. M. Moore (3782)
  1. K. Uehara (3767)
  2. Z. Britton (3507)
  3. J. Johnson (3200)
  4. T. Walker (3053)
  5. J. Chavez (3012)