LOS ANGELES — Colorado Rockies fans can be forgiven if they turn away from the television tonight and try to forget there is a National League Wild Card game going on here in the City of Angels.
After all, TBS will carry in all of its glory a matchup between the St. Louis Cardinals, featuring Nolan Arenado, and the Los Angeles Dodgers. It’s a one game, winner-take-all matchup between two franchises that the Rockies faithful don’t exactly consider near and dear to their collective soul.
Here’s why Colorado Rockies fans will have a tough choice choosing between the St. Louis Cardinals and Los Angeles Dodgers in the National League Wild Card Game.
It’s easy to pick who you’re rooting for tonight, right Rockies fans? After all, you cheered for Arenado when he returned to Denver in July for the Cardinals’ regular-season matchup against the Rockies … and then you cheered again when Arenado took his customary place along the third base line as the National League starter in the All-Star Game.
But if you cheer for Arenado tonight at Chavez Ravine, then you’re rooting for the Cardinals as well. And there’s the rub for many in the Mountain time zone. While Interstate 70 connects Denver and St. Louis, that’s about as far as Rockies fans want things to go. When a sea of red comes to Coors Field every year for the Cardinals-Rockies series, we’ve read the gripes and heard the angst about the “Best Fans in Baseball” making their way to 20th and Blake.
So if you’re not cheering for the Cardinals, then are you pulling for the Dodgers? You know, that team who has been the division bully for as long as the Rockies have been in existence. That team who won Game 163 in this very stadium in 2018, putting an end to Colorado’s best chance to win the division.
And yes, Arenado remembers that. Here’s what he said during the press conference at Dodger Stadium on Tuesday.
"“This game reminds me of 163 in 2018 coming here,” Arenado said of a 5-2 loss where he went 1-for-4 and he scored a run. “My emotions will be fine. Played the Dodgers a lot. Lost a lot. I think if you’re going to go with a team to get to where you want to go, Dodgers are always going to be in the way.”"
The Dodgers are always going to be in the way of the Rockies … and the Cardinals … and everyone else in the National League. Arenado knows it. Rockies fans know it. These are, after all, the defending World Champions. Do you cheer for them to take another step toward repeating and hoisting another trophy?
If Colorado Rockies fans don’t like St. Louis fans filling Coors Field, they certainly don’t enjoy Dodger blue making up the majority. You know those attendance figures at Coors Field every season that are always so impressive. Part of that is thanks to out of town fans who see Denver as a destination or Colorado transplants who still cheer for “their home team” rather than the Rockies.
But which is worse, watching Arenado and the Cardinals advance after everything that happened in the offseason or seeing the Dodgers move ahead to meet the San Francisco Giants in the National League Division Series?
Neither is a tremendous option, but one will happen later tonight. So which do you choose, Colorado Rockies fans? Option A with the prom date who wanted to go to the dance with someone else, or Option B with the person who rarely let you walk into the prom?
And let’s not forget Option A drops subtle reminders that the current prom date is nothing but dreamy.
It’s one game in what will no doubt be a memorable offseason, yet it’s a convergence of emotions for Rockies fans tonight. Cheer for the Midwest or the West Coast. Who do you choose?