After last night's brutal loss to Oakland, the majority of the Angel fan base officially declared the season over for their beloved Halos. Don't worry if you missed it because it will probably happen again. After all, it was the fourth mass surrender from the Halo faithful this season by my count.
It was first over in late April when the Angels rode a five-game losing streak to a piss poor 6-14 record. Pay no mind to the fact that the Halos went on a 42-24 run from that point to take a three-game Wild Card lead into the All-Star break.
It was over again on August 2nd when the Bullpen of Perpetual Sorrow choked away consecutive games to the rival Rangers. Granted the Angels still were owning a WIld Card slot at that point, but overreaction was the order of the day, especially since the bullpen was so prominently involved.
The real pronouncement of the season's untimely demise came when the Angels were swept at home by the Rays, which included another epic bullpen meltdown. As you probably heard, the Angels, or perhaps we should begin calling them the Zombies, followed that up by rattling of 12 wins in their next 15 games to put themselves right back in the thick of the playoff hunt.
That brings us to today's declarations that the season is over seeing how the Angels just dropped three straight home games to the A's to fall 5.5 games behind Oakland for the top Wild Card and 3.5 games behind Baltimore for the second with a mere 19 games left to play. It is certainly understandable for one to think the Angels' season finally suffered its deathblow, but seeing how the Angels have already risen from the metaphorical grave three times already, why not hold out hope just a little while longer?
Getting caught up in big moment (be they good or bad) is what we fans do. This is why we overdramatize every "must-win" game and panic over every bad break. The hardest thing to do is maintain perspective. Like, for example, realizing that the Angels play the lowly Royals next, a team they could easily sweep. At the same time the Orioles and A's play each other, which means that one of them (preferable Baltimore) HAS to lose. Is it really so outlandish to think that the Angels could sweep KC while the A's sweep Baltimore? Because if it isn't, and I don't think it is, guess who could be just a half game back of the final playoff spot by the end of the weekend (or even half a game up if the Angels beat Oakland tonight and Tampa beats Baltimore)?
That's right, the Angels. The same Angel team that everyone thinks needs to start making golf reservations right now. The same Angel team that has been counted out several times before and proven everyone wrong.
You might say I'm the one being unrealistic now. Fair enough. I'm an optimist. I see that Coolstandings.com gives the Angels a 17.8% chance of making the playoffs and that Baseball Prospectus gives them a 24.6% chance and thinks that, while it isn't great, it is still plenty good enough. Maybe it is, maybe it isn't. All I know is until the Angels are actually eliminated, I'm going to keep on believing that they can pull this thing off. If you want to spend your time writing another premature eulogy for your favorite team, that's your problem.