Casualty of Capitalism

Exiled into Wilmington, Delaware by virtue of corporate layoffs. (Note: Unless otherwise stated, all photos on this blog are Copyright 2005, Michael Collins, and cannot be used without permission.)

Location: Wilmington, Delaware, United States

Graduate of University of Maryland School of Law; University of Maryland, College Park (Economics/Political Science).

Sunday, April 10, 2005

Question of the Day

Riding the Metro past RFK Stadium in DC last night, I got to thinking: as a fan of the Orioles for the past 18 years or so, but now a newly minted Washington Nationals fan (gotta support the hometown team) who has largely renounced the Orioles (particularly as long as Peter Angelos runs the club), what happens if the O's make the playoffs this season?

Let's be honest, the Nationals (3-3) will not make the playoffs this year. They don't have the pitching or the bats. The Orioles (3-3), on the other hand have the tools on offense to score runs (Mora, Tejada, Sosa, Palmeiro) and an intriguing, if unproven, pitching staff. Having just taken two of three from the Yankees (which never seems to happen anymore), let's just throw out this hypothetical: The Orioles win the Wild Card this season, while the Nationals spend the offseason on the golf course...would it be considered bangwagon jumping if I or any other former O's fan, put my O's hat back on in October?

Naturally, I am against bandwagon jumping. Bandwagon jumpers are the lowest form of fan: whichever team is the best, that is their team. You know, most Yankees and Duke basketball fans. But what if the O's have another Why Not? year this summer? In a season in which the Nationals are shiny and new and not expected to amount to much, is it OK to cheer for the team of my youth if they make the playoffs?

(I admit to being a Cubs fan while I lived in Chicago. I allowed myself this guilty pleasure because I lived within a half-block of Wrigley Field, and the Cubs are a National League team. And being loveable losers, they posed no threat to the Orioles, who were an American League team and also hapless. I still enjoy the Cubs because the culture of the Cub fan is so contagious, genuine, and old-fashioned. I'll probably be at least a low-level Cubs fan for life.)

But what do I do if a team I renounced, a team I was a fan of for 18 years, somehow becomes successful in the same season I'm trying to throw my loyalties behind a new, but history-free, hometown team? As unlikely as this is to happen in a division that includes both the Yankees and Red Sox (AL East), I need to be prepared if the O's pull off the miracle season. Any thoughts?


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