After eight seasons: One excitingly bizarre (First season, the playoff possibility combined with having a baseball team for the first time ever.), one decent, three bad, two incredibly godawful tortuous nightmares who were tolerable only by actually cheering for losses in September for two reasons, Strasburg and Harper. Then this year... this whole year has seemed surreal. Logically I know we've been in first forever, but it never really sunk in. It was surreal.
So for the Nats, this concept of winning and being awesome doesn't feel real. All year, it just felt like all the others. Right now, it still hasn't fully dawned just how magical, how special this is. 24 hours and we'll have played and won our first playoff game. crap, my parents are almost 70. They had the Senators for almost 30 years, never saw this. The Expos were around before the Senators left the last time, and they never saw this. Sorry, the strike shortened playoff appearance doesn't count for me since it wasn't a "real" appearance from playing a 162 game season. Would they have made it? Yeah, prolly. But they also could have collapsed, and so a playoff appearance with an asterisk just ain't the same thing.
All that combines to mean that for over 80 seasons the three teams never have had this, Senators before Minnesota, Senators before Texas, Expos and now Nats. It still doesn't seem real, the enormity of this not yet accepted by my mind. Tomorrow brings the start of something great, an October to go down in DC history. We'll kick the Cardinals asses, then the Reds. Then either the Yankees or Os. Man, playing Baltimore would be... damn. We all could drive to every WS game, still sleep in our own beds? Kicking Angelos' demonic butt as a bonus? Damn.
I just wish we started at home. Not even for my whining about the 2-3 format, but it won't be real 'til Wednesday, to see it in person, to be a part of it. To be a part of something we could go our entire lives and never see again. We won't, this is just the start of a new empire of greatness. But... That five year old born in 1928 who died aged 84 might have said the same thing. This is something majestic, possibly once in a lifetime. Realizing that makes this all the more sweet. Tomorrow will be great... But Wednesday will be indescribable, no words exist to fully express the joyousness and rarity, the prestige and greatness it both displays and heralds that which is yet to come.
It's the f***ing playoffs, baby! October, here we are!