August baseball

Any hope for the Cubs the rest of this season is futile.

So I'm ramping up my attention to the teams that are going to matter the rest of the way. My desired World Series: The Texas Rangers vs. the Philadelphia Phillies.

The Phillies, through my eyes, have gone from one of baseball's most boring contenders a couple years ago to an awesome collection of talent and finesse. And now they've got Roy Halladay and Roy Oswalt ...

The Rangers, meanwhile, have been bubbling toward the top of the AL West for a couple years. After plucking pitching coach Mike Maddux from the Brewers, acquiring Cliff Lee and now getting Nolan Ryan as their owner -- not to mention their World Series-less history and the adversity they've faced this season -- I like them as a team of destiny in the AL.

Last night, in my search for a baseball escape, I stumbled onto the Yankees-Rangers game and got rewarded with a thriller. For the first time in the longest time, I refused to go to bed so I could watch the end of a baseball game ... To my dismay, the Rangers wasted a lead-off triple in the ninth and left the tying run on third base as the meat of their lineup went 1-2-3.

Aside from the drama on the field, it was amusing to watch Nolan Ryan sitting in the front row and conversing with George and Laura Bush. And to see the pans of the ballpark and think, I've sung the national anthem there. Good times.

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