October 29, 2007

We Landed, But the Rockies Crashed

Getting game 5 World Series tickets shouldn't have been that much of a risk, especially considering the home team for game 5 had won 21 of 22 games to wrap up the regular season and breeze through the first two rounds of the playoffs. Yet, as the Red Sox staked out a 2-0 series lead, and later extended it to 3-0, we saw our chances of attending the World Series grow increasingly slim.

Last night, as we flew eastward from San Jose to Denver, I listened in to the game on channel 9 of the airline's audio system, updating my wife with the score of the game throughout the trip by hand signals, flashing two fingers and then making a circle, to show the Rockies trailed 2-0. Later, I tapped her and said it was 3-0, followed by scores of 3-1 and finally, 4-1. Though the radio quality was poor, and I could make out only 60% of the words, I did my best to follow along, contemplating the miracle that would have to happen to make our Monday tickets worth anything.

As the pilot asked the flight attendants to prepare for landing, and our wheels extended toward the runway, the Rockies hit a two run home run, closing the gap to 4-3, and giving us hope. As other passengers filed out of the plane, I stayed connected to the seat, not wanting to miss an at bat. Then, we rushed forward and into the terminal, and joined the dozens of other passengers who had stopped to gawk at the sports bar's coverage of the game, as we watched the Rockies flail at Jonathan Papelbon and go down swinging in the 8th.

After getting our luggage, and jumping on the rental car shuttle, I turned on my Blackberry and "watched" the game update via ESPN.com. Already, there was one out and it was still 4-3, Boston. Then, quickly, there were two away, and my wife and I had to hope for the impossible. But it was not meant to be. The last batter came and went, and the game was declared final. Our trip immediately darkened, and much potential joy was lost. Now, instead of finding out how to stay warm among a sellout Rockies crowd tonight, I'm faced with the prospect of learning the ins and outs of StubHub's refund policy. It better be good.

Regardless, we're here, above 5,000 feet, where the air is thin and the clocks are all an hour ahead of where I'd like to be. Maybe someday, as one friend commented on this site, our A's will return again, and we'll get to experience the World Series "the right way".

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