Last night the Los Angeles Dodgers clinched their 7th consecutive National League West Division title by defeating the Baltimore Orioles 7-3. With the Arizona Diamondbacks also losing, the clinch was inevitable and the general outcome had been expected for quite some time. Following the game and during the celebration coverage fan reactions varied on social media. It was a mixed bag of celebratory or anti-celebratory tweets and posts.
For those saying teams shouldn’t celebrate division titles, and that the WS is the only thing worth celebrating, save it. These players, coaches & front office work tirelessly to achieve this. There is no guarantee it will happen again. Celebrate every step.
— Alanna Rizzo (@alannarizzo) September 11, 2019
It’s easy for fans to remember that the Dodgers have not won a World Series since 1988. That they have made it to the past two Fall Classics and both times, fallen short. That they have been the favorites to win it all, only to watch another team celebrate that final victory and later see the televised parade. I get it, it stings, and I’d be lying if I said this writer didn’t even shed a tear or two.
To fans, winning 7 consecutive NL West titles has spoiled us. We forget that it is the culmination of preparation and work that begins in mid-February. We don’t think about all the travel, jet lag, and hotel life. It’s easy to forget all time the players spend away from their families or the fact that they rarely get a day off, let alone something that would resemble a weekend. Most importantly, we don’t remember what its like not to watch baseball beyond September.
I don’t wish to tell anyone how to be a Dodger Fan. If I’ve learned anything about fellow fans, it’s that we ALL have Dr Jekyll/Mr Hyde sides that reveal themselves at various times throughout the season. Personally, I try to lean heavy on optimism, but that pessimist side will always find a way to show itself, most recently losing 1-0 to the Giants last Saturday and my 5 year old son further taunting me with, “Dad, remember when the Yankees beat the Dodgers?” before walking out of the room before I could even respond.
All that being said, I do think celebrating another NL West title is important for the team and is also for the fans.
Are you for or against celebrating every step of the way?
— Dodgers Nation (@DodgersNation) September 11, 2019
I love baseball, frankly, I selfishly wish the season was longer. However, I doubt I’d feel the same if the Dodgers were a bad team, I’d be constantly looking forward to the off-season when they could improve. These past 7 seasons, the Dodgers at minimum, have given this fan an extended season to watch and enjoy, at maximum, they’ve given all fans hope. Hope of making it to the World Series and the past 2 years, hope of winning it. To me, that hope, this 7th consecutive National League West Division title, is worth celebrating.