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Matchup/Game Thread Game # 56 vs. Reds

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Bronson Arroyo Andy Pettitte
6 - 2, 2.58 4 - 6, 5.65

If you take the time to come to this website, I don't have to tell you that last night's loss was a very difficult one. Anybody hardcore enough to check out this wayward blog surely understands the sense of betrayal, almost, that you feel when the team you've chosen, the team that you spend so much of your free time on, makes it so readily apparent that they are not ready to play a baseball game.

As you're watching, it DOES seem like a betrayal, never mind that the players could give you a thousand reasons for the crappy performance, and never get to anything resembling "violation of the fan's trust" or however you want to put it.

And the players, I'm sure, take the more balanced view; I'm sure they're the ones who have it right. A little bit of distance is probably beneficial, so that when the team goes into a 2 - 8 slide, you can just go away for a week and a half, come back when they've righted the ship.

The level of devotion, the amount of free time--and money--spent, never gets called into question when the team is one win away from the World Series. It's the 11-run losses that drop you below .500 in June that make you wonder whether there might be some more enjoyable pursuits for you. Maybe laser tag? Or online poker?

I know that I'm guilty of over-internalizing the Astros. On any particular day, how I feel is going to have some degree of relation to how the Astros did the night before. During the winning streaks, all of life is a little sweeter; during the slumps, all of life's little hardships seem that much more bleak.

It comes with the territory. It flows from being the hardcore fan. On consideration, it's probably not the most balanced way of assembling yourself, but at this point it's well beyond a matter of choice for me. I don't know what will become of this blog, or even my other Astros site, in ten years, but I know that I will be following the Astros, win or lose.

Though Lord knows, it goes better for me when they win.