That advice seems strange coming from me I know, but it is true. How could any of us be angry with this season and how it has played out? As I sat on my couch watching the first 3 innings of non-stop home runs, I realized that this was probably the last time I would get to watch this team play. Many of you already know that I have only missed 3 games this entire season (I have watched or listened to 159 regular season games and every playoff game) and so last night made me sad, if anything. Rather than allowing myself to become bitter and jaded, I decided to try and enjoy the last few innings of this edition of the Milwaukee Brewers.
Anger is a part of the grieving process and I know how easy it can be to let that anger fester up inside. But we all need to take a deep breath and realize that we would not feel this way unless the team was really good. How mad would you be if they missed the playoffs completely? Probably not at all, since most Brewers seasons end that way. It is hard to put a positive spin on such a horrible end to the season, but it was the greatest Brewers season in shy of 3 decades and that is worth something to me.
Twitter was blowing up last night with Brewers fans cursing Marcum and Ron Roenicke’s decision to start him last night. I did not agree with it either, but I am certainly not going to blast Marcum for it. At least not this time. This anger I understand, but I feel as if I need to defend it:
– The Brewers only made it to the playoffs because of the work of our starting rotation, which includes Marcum. The only reason to not start him, his horrible September and previous playoff disasters. That seems like fair evidence to me, but there is no reason to get upset about it. Even with his 4-run first inning, the team was within 1 run by the time the 2nd inning came to an end. Shaun Marcum is not the sole reason the team lost game 6, the entire pitching staff is to blame. Narveson and Loe did not fair any better against the Cardinals offense, so why just attack Marcum. It does not make sense, fellow Brew Crew nation members.
– If I was the skipper I would have started Gallardo on short rest and then thrown Wolf for Game 7. Why? On Sunday night there was no tomorrow for this team and Gallardo has been your best pitcher all season and into the playoffs. Who else should have been on the mound? Randy Wolf goes Game 7 because he is the only pitcher to hold the Cardinals under a dozen runs. Ron Roenicke refused to pitch Gallardo on short rest and he does not seem to have the confidence in Wolf that he does in Marcum. This is a judgement call, no need for anger.
The only thing that I still find my self angry about this morning, Kotsay ended the season with a strikeout. Of all the middle fingers this team got from the baseball gods during this NLCS, that is the one that I will have to deal with until next April.
Over the next few days, I will try to drown your anger with content. Now that the season is officially over we can begin to speculate about the future of Prince Fielder. We can also begin the debate over whether or not to bring Jerry Hairston Jr, Craig Counsell, and Mark Kotsay back for next season (I vote yes on JHJ, and no on the other two). Then we can talk about all of the amazing things this team accomplished this year, believe me it is an awfully long list.
Try to put a smile on your face today. Nobody likes a sore loser. The Cardinals were the better team this time around and we all need to move on from that. Someday we will beat them in the playoffs, it just was not this day.
What a season. I am sad to see it end. My hope is that this can be a learning experience, they grow from this series, and use those lessons next season.
I love being a Brewers fan. All I could think about last night as Prince Fielder took his final at-bat was this quote from Hamlet:
"Now cracks a noble heart. Good-night, sweet Prince; And flights of angels sing thee to thy rest."