I want you to play the song below while reading this post. Try, as best you can, to not be distracted by the vicious, piercing irony of the chorus as it relates to the sports teams of Cleveland.
I know, it’s not going to be easy…especially after the events of last night rubbed even more salt into the (eternally?) tragically open wounds of an entire city’s fan base.
On the same that night that the last two Cy Young Award winners — both of whom were Indians when they won it — faced off in Game 1 of the 2009 World Series, the Cleveland Cavaliers and LeBron James dropped to 0-2.
You might think, well hey, at least Cleveland fans have the Browns game to look forward to this Sunday!
And this sentiment, of course, would be met either with hearty laughter or plaintive cries, all depending on one’s perspective, mood, and current level of sanity.
No, ladies and gentleman, sports in the city of Cleveland most certainly do not rock. Last night was simply further confirmation of this ever deepening and depressing truism.
But don’t take it from me. Scan the Cleveland sports blogosphere. It’s hard to wait for next year when you can barely make it from day to day this year.
Cavs/Raptors Reaction: Biff Goes Boom Again on Murder Mike — (Cleveland Frowns)
I’m beside myself about tonight’s Cavaliers loss in Toronto. In a town where Jhonny Peralta has been the starting shortstop for the better part of a decade and Brian Robiskie is a second round pick, it’s too much to bear yet another coach who’s too dumb to see what’s apparent to even the most casual of fans.
Tribe Fans Hide Your Eyes: D-Day is Here — (Waiting For Next Year)
Most Indians fans I know refuse to watch one second of it. I for one, will be glued to the TV. Will it make me sick? Absolutely. Seeing two former Indian aces face off against one another, knowing that just one year ago, they were in the same rotation in our city, is nausiating.
Note: to be fair, this post by WFNY does go onto say that the departures of C.C. and Cliff Lee were somewhat inevitable and that you can’t hold the feet of Indians’ management to the fire for too long as punishment.
Still, the fact remains, what other fan base has had to watch that?
Only in Cleveland.
Time-honored tradition of rooting against teams has arrived for Browns fans — (No Logo Needed)
After Mangini’s press conference on Monday where he stated he’s sticking with Derek Anderson and his 40.6 quarterback rating the Voice of Reason is officially throwing in the towel. I’m done, stop the fight. Bring out Zastudil and let him punt my fandom (and this season) out at the 5-yard line.
Cleveland Browns are how bad? — (Starting Blocks)
The Cleveland Browns are probably worse than their 1-6 record indicates.
In the Browns’ last two games, the Pittsburgh Steelers and Green Bay Packers have combined for 1,003 yards gained against the Browns porous defense.
The Browns’ inept offense has totaled 336 yards in the two games.
The Cleveland Browns have played 907 games, including playoffs, since they began as a franchise in the All-America Football Conference in 1946.
Never has the team had a worse two-game stretch in yardage differential. Pitrtsburgh and Green Bay outgained the Browns by a combined 667 yards.
For some reason the spelling error in this excerpt just seems appropriate. Hence, I left it. Why not? It fits the motif.
Meet the Snworb — (The Kardiac Kid)
The Browns’ lethargic, pathetic performance last week against the Packers summed up their last 10 years of futility. Fans and pundits call for the heads of Lerner, Kokinis, and Mangini, or argue that we should boycott the Browns. We could fire Mangini and Kokinis, but it would begin another rebuilding process. Lerner could sell the team, but who’s to say the new owner would be any better? And why should Browns fans boycott a team they love?
None of these solutions get us any closer to what Clevelanders really want: a competitive professional football team.
Cleveland fought hard for the Browns.
The new Browns franchise is unacceptable.
The City of Cleveland should take the name, colors, logos and legacy of the Cleveland Browns away from this franchise*.
I think that’s enough of the excerpting.
Point taken, right?
As far as the Indians are concerned, the meeting of C.C. and Cliff Lee was more the malevolence of circumstance than anything else. Yes, it sucks for Indians fans that the team couldn’t keep one or both of them, but the economics of Major League Baseball dictated their departure.
You see, C.C. ends up on the Yankees and Cliff Lee ends up on the Phillies…yet the Indians, nor any other club, ever once had a chance to bid on Derek Jeter, Mariano Rivera, Chase Utley, or Ryan Howard. Notice the glaring difference? (Note: this is not an original thought. I read it somewhere and cannot remember where to link back.)
As Rasheed Wallace once brilliantly said in a post-game interview: “it is what is is, and it do what it do.”
As far as the Cavs are concerned, I’m on record as saying that the Shaq experiment is a bad one. I just don’t see it working. Shaq of ten or even five years ago? Sure, it’s a good move. Rotund, immobile, uninspired Shaq of today?
I still have faith that LeBron can single-handedly make some sweet lemonade out of the lemons surrounding him, but I just really don’t see this team as being closer to an NBA championship this year than they were last year.
Time will tell, but the Cavs could not have had a more inauspicious start. to the season
And then there are the Browns.
Oh the Browns.
What is there really to say? As a commenter pointed out in the Starting Blocks post I linked to above, “somebody”predicted dire consequences if Eric Mangini were hired. We’re stuck with the current situation right now, so I’m trying to make the best of it, but games like last Sunday really make it difficult.
When my mom looked at these pictures, her first comment was, “Wow, these all people all just go there to get drunk, don’t they?”
Yes, I suppose technically that is true in most cases. But look around the sports landscape at what these people are forced to cheer for. They go there and to cope.
The lyrics to the song may say that “Cleveland rocks,” but unfortunately the only thing that ever gets rocked are the hopes, dreams, and wishes of Cleveland sports fans.
Game after game.
And I don’t think anyone can really blame them.
* – Browns fan photo credit: daniel1212 at PhotoBucket
* – Indians fans photo credit: Clemson Baseball Girl