Every year, after another season without playoffs, LA Angels fans are forced to decide who they want to root for in the World Series.
With the Nationals taking a 1-0 lead, the LA Angels fans watching should be ecstatic. Despite Houston having three of the four Angels left, the Nationals are the team for Angel Nation to be rooting for.
Sure, Martin Maldonado, Zack Greinke, and Joe Smith are all suiting up for the Astros. However, those three players combined didn’t have even close to the impact that Howie Kendrick had for the Angels. And as it just so happens, Kendrick will be starting for the Nationals in this series.
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This postseason has been one to remember for Howie, who was the Angels’ second baseman from 2006-2014. He has been an extra base hit machine, and was named as the National League Championship Series MVP because of it.
And as we surely all know, the Nationals were in the NLCS largely because of this absolute bomb from Howie to give the Nationals the lead over the Dodgers in Game 5 of the NL Divisional Series. Since then, Kendrick has been a vital part of the Nationals’ lineup and will loom to continue his dominance in the World Series, despite a poor Game One performance.
Furthermore, the Astros are our division rival! Every success they enjoy only magnifies the Angels’ shortcomings and while they aren’t the average Halo fans’ least favorite team, they should definitely be in this series.
If you still need more to sway you, the Astros as an organization are slimy (this piece by Ben Lindbergh of The Ringer is a must read). They’ve cheated consistently by going to extreme (and illegal) ways of stealing signs. Their assistant general manager made awful remarks touching on domestic violence to a group of female reporters after the Astros’ ALCS clincher.
Then, the organization made a statement attacking the reporter of the original story and discrediting them and Sports Illustrated. The next day, they admitted they were wrong but still did not apologize for their original statement.
Everything about this series makes it more and more obvious about which team to root for. For LA Angels fans, and fans across all of baseball, cheering for the Nationals to win their first World Series is an easy decision.