Whatever happens in the World Series, Amarillo wins

When the 2023 season began on March 30, no one could have predicted that the Texas Rangers and Arizona Diamondbacks would face off in the World Series. However, these two teams will begin their best-of-seven series on Friday night.

Only two years ago, both teams suffered over 100 losses, but now they have fought their way to compete for a championship. For the Texas Rangers, this is their third World Series appearance, and a victory would be their first ever. It would also be Dallas’ first major sports title since the Mavericks’ NBA victory in 2011.

Arizona has previously appeared in the World Series in 2001, emerging as the champions. A win this year would mark their second men’s professional sports championship and Arizona’s first since the Mercury’s WNBA title in 2014.

Regardless of the outcome, the Texas Panhandle can claim a win. Even if you walk into a Walmart in the area and go to the sports gear section, you’ll find merchandise for the local teams like WT, Texas Tech, and the Cowboys. And of course, you’ll find gear for the Texas Rangers. Despite the success of the Astros in recent years, the Panhandle remains a stronghold of Rangers fans.

It’s not just the proximity to Dallas that makes the Rangers popular in the area. Josh Jung, a rising star and former Red Raider, played for Texas Tech from 2017-2019 before being drafted into the MLB. He has a strong following in Lubbock, and now fans in the Panhandle have another reason to root for Texas.

But even if the Diamondbacks come out on top, the Panhandle can still celebrate. Arizona’s Double-A minor league affiliate is none other than the Amarillo Sod Poodles. After winning the Texas League championship last month, many of the team’s former players are now in contention for a major league title.

Some of these players, including Brandon Pfadt, Corbin Carroll, Slade Cecconi, Andrew Saalfrank, Ryne Nelson, Jordan Lawlar, Geraldo Perdomo, and Alek Thomas, were all playing in Amarillo within the past three years. Having cheered for them as Soddies, the people of the Panhandle can now support them as members of the D-Backs.

The 2023 World Series is truly exciting. For the first time in seven years, neither the Astros nor the L.A. Dodgers are competing in it. The Rangers have been the hottest team in baseball, facing setbacks along the way, but ultimately making it to the championship game. The D-Backs have followed a similar path. Soon, one team will be crowned champions, and the other will walk away empty-handed.

Either way, the Panhandle emerges as the winner.

This article originally appeared on Amarillo Globe-News: Whether it’s the Rangers or D-backs, Amarillo wins the World Series


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