When you've won only one playoff game in 39 years of baseball, there have been plenty of dark days. But Friday night at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington was one of those sparkling nights.
On the first official game day of the new Chuck Greenberg ownership era, he lowered prices on beer and parking before the Rangers staged their biggest comeback of the season in a scintillating 10-9, 11-inning victory over the Boston Red Sox before a delirious sellout crowd.
Nope, it don't get much better than that.
When we look back and plot on a graph how the Rangers won the American League West, August 13 will certainly be a bold bullet point.
First off, kudos to Greenberg for staying true to his common-man word. Back in January at a Jamey Newberg-constructed town hall meeting at Sherlock's in Dallas, Greenberg asked a modest gathering of rabid fans what he should do as owner.
First hand raised. First question.
"Could you lower the price of beer."
Above the guffaws, Greenberg said "Ya know, I promise you I'll seriously look into that." I'll be damned if he didn't come through. The new owner didn't have to lower any prices. Just sweeping Tom Hicks out of office was enough to make Greenberg a hero. But as a goodwill gesture, he sliced prices on everything from beer to parking to hot dogs, and even hot chocolate.
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Then, as the searing sun set, his team delivered a game for the ages.
Down 8-2, the Rangers clawed back behind an incredible performance by Josh Hamilton. This game alone should have sealed him the MVP. He produced four hits, scored four runs, made two game-changing catches in center field and brought the crowd to its feet by scoring from second base on a grounder to second in the bottom of the eighth to tie the game at 9-9.
On the first pitch in the bottom of the 11th, Nelson Cruz homered to punctuate the party.
After another win Sunday behind C.J. Wilson, the Rangers' Magic Number rests at 37. That, getting clearer by the day, is the finish line.