With the situation of the Astros jumping from the NL to the AL as part of the sale process to Jim Crane still very much on my mind, on Saturday I penned a column where I wondered if the issue of moving a large chunk of games into a later start time was being overblown. As I wrote, the move to the AL, and with it, the snub to 50 years of National League history is wrong for the fans, but what else was making this such an incredibly burning issue? As I wrote up-front, I was a bit baffled.
Social media, specifically Twitter, can be an outstanding resource for such matters. Comments came flooding in. With one lone exception, fans spelled out their frustrations with the league, as opposed to me. I wanted to be educated. I got it.
It’s not one thing. It’s many. Yes, it’s the later starts for games played with AL West partners Mariners, Angels, and A’s, but when adding the move from the National League, well…. it’s the straw that broke the camel’s back.
It’s Bud Adams and the dissolving of the Houston Oilers history into a footnote. It’s September of 2008 and Hurricane Ike that bore down on Houston, and with it, moving a “home” game series against the Cubs to Milwaukee where proximity to Chicago turned the game into a Cubs “home” game series. For those that don’t remember, the two games were crucial for the Astros. What happened in those two games that make them stick out to Astros fans? Carlos Zambrano threw a no-hitter in Game 1 in a 5-0 rout, and Ted Lilly nearly did likewise in Game 2. Ouch.
What fans seems to be saying is that the fourth largest market in the nation is Rodney Dangerfield: they just don’t get respect.
Who am I to argue with this?
But, what more than one said was all of the history aside, the most important thing to them was getting the team back into winning ways. That is what they hope Jim Crane can deliver on. If that happens, the pain of all of it, might be somehow lessened.
You can’t change Bud Adams. You can’t replay the game in Milwaukee. What can happen is a feeling of abuse. Selig is going to get it for the move to the AL West when coupled to that 2008 “home” game.
To use an oft used cliché, Houston, we have a problem.
Maury Brown is the Founder and President of the Business of Sports Network, which includes The Biz of Baseball, The Biz of Football, The Biz of Basketball and The Biz of Hockey, and is a contributor to Forbes SportsMoney blog.. He is available as a freelance writer. Brown's full bio is here. He looks forward to your comments via email and can be contacted through the Business of Sports Network (select his name in the dropdown provided).
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