It’s so close, you can feel it. The finish line to this long grueling marathon is in sight.
But like in those B-movies, the more you run toward the escape door, the more it seems to get further away every time they cut back to the scene.
That’s what this final stretch of season feels like.
Two games back, then three games back, then two games back, then three games back. That prize is right there, but it’s so elusive.
Being a Rangers fan the last few years has been heartbreaking. In September of 2012, they had a five-game lead in the A.L. West with just nine games to go, and the wheels fell off. They lost first place. Then they lost the Wild Card Game.
2013 was a repeat performance. The Rangers were in first in mid-August, then the wheels fell off again and they dropped twelve games in the standings in one month. Then they lost the tie-breaker game.
Then there was last year. I won’t drudge that up, that would be considered cruel and unusual punishment.
Then, it started again this year. Slowly but surely, however, the worm turned. A tweak here, a tweak there, an addition here, a subtraction there, and all of a sudden it’s September and the Rangers have a legitimate shot.
And there is hope.
It’s the first September in four seasons that the Rangers are in the playoff chase on an upswing, not falling off a cliff clinging to a branch.
So, forgive Rangers fans for being edgy. There is a lot of pent up anxiety bubbling over now. Three and a half seasons of worth, in fact.
We’ve invested so much time and energy into running this marathon. We’re tired, our legs are burning, our feet are blistered, we have to dig down deep and find something to keep us going, and getting traction is getting harder.
Forgive Rangers fans for being frustrated when obstacles seems to get in the way of reaching that elusive finish line. We are all aiming for the same destination, even if we see different routes to get there.
The end of four seasons worth of frustration is so close.