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. Adam Wainwright underwent elbow surgery

    Oct 24, 2014, 4:23 PM EDT

    adam wainwright getty Getty Images

    Earlier this week the Cardinals insisted there was nothing wrong with Adam Wainwright’s elbow and he wouldn’t require surgery.

  2. Ranking every baseball team’s “victory song”

    Oct 24, 2014, 4:00 PM EDT

    Screen Shot 2014-10-24 at 3.47.04 PM

    Needs more Pixies. I have no idea which song, but any list needs more Pixies.

  3. World Series, Game 3: Royals vs. Giants lineups

    Oct 24, 2014, 3:17 PM EDT

    Jeremy Guthrie AP

    Jeremy Guthrie vs. Tim Hudson.

  4. Friedman: Mattingly will manage the Dodgers in 2015

    Oct 24, 2014, 3:00 PM EDT

    Joe Maddon Getty Getty Images

    Way to spoil all of our silly speculation, dude.

  5. HBT Daily: How much of a home field advantage do the Giants have this weekend anyway?

    Oct 24, 2014, 2:00 PM EDT

    The conventional wisdom is that the good-defense, low-power Royals aren’t hurt all that much by playing in AT&T Park. I tend to disagree with that.

  6. Omar Infante is in some pain and is taking Toradol to treat it

    Oct 24, 2014, 11:51 AM EDT

    Omar Infante AP AP

    The powerful and controversial drug is allowing Game 2’s hero to battle through shoulder pain.

  7. Miguel Cabrera had surgery for bone spurs. And for a stress fracture in his foot.

    Oct 24, 2014, 10:39 AM EDT

    Division Series - Baltimore Orioles v Detroit Tigers - Game Three Getty Images

    For the second straight year we realize that Miguel Cabrera finished the season in way more pain than the Tigers had let on.

  8. “The San Francisco Giants are what the Yankees used to be”

    Oct 24, 2014, 9:40 AM EDT

    giants logo

    Quite the hot take from John McGrath of the Tacoma News-Tribune

  9. Hunter Strickland is “embarrassed”

    Oct 24, 2014, 9:08 AM EDT

    Hunter Strickland AP

    A day later, Strickland has a better handle on how he mishandled things on Wednesday night.

  10. “No one cares about baseball”

    Oct 24, 2014, 8:30 AM EDT

    Blodget Getty Images

    A man with a history of intentionally misstating the facts about stocks does so about baseball.

  11. World Series Reset: On to AT&T Park

    Oct 24, 2014, 7:13 AM EDT

    Screen Shot 2014-10-24 at 7.11.27 AM AP

    We’re tied 1-1. I guess that doesn’t make Game 3 “crucial.” Maybe it makes it “pivotal.” Not sure. Gonna have to consult my baseball cliche dictionary.

  12. After leaving Nationals, Bryan Minniti joins Diamondbacks as assistant general manager

    Oct 23, 2014, 9:58 PM EDT

    diamondbacks logo

    After stepping down as assistant general manager of the Nationals earlier this month, Bryan Minniti has accepted the same role with the Diamondbacks.

Featured video

When home-field advantage isn't so
Top 10 MLB Player Searches
  1. T. Lincecum (3033)
  2. M. Bumgarner (2748)
  3. J. Shields (2461)
  4. M. Morse (2354)
  5. Y. Cespedes (2064)
  1. T. Ishikawa (1712)
  2. U. Jimenez (1545)
  3. B. Roberts (1506)
  4. L. Cain (1488)
  5. H. Pence (1450)