Proof That Alternate Universes Exist, And We Live in One

Because in this universe, the Phillies and the Rays are going to the World Series.

Come on, admit it. We’re way off the main sequence of possible universes, here. The Rays average 97 losses a year for the first ten years they exist, and then suddenly they win 97 and go to the series? And as for the Phillies, well. Losingest baseball team in the history of losing; took nearly a century to win their first Series, and that was 28 years ago. And the two of them are going to the World Series? At the same time? Madness.

We’re on the other side of the looking glass, people. I hope you enjoy your topsy-turvy freakadoodle world.

Also: Rays in six. Because, hell. If you’re living in an alternate universe, you might as well go all the way.

45 Comments on “Proof That Alternate Universes Exist, And We Live in One”

  1. I think one of Terry Pratchett’s characters said that our history was like a ‘blooper reel’– outtakes from the cutting room floor. The real history showed less mass murder and more enlightenment.

  2. I want the Phillies to win – if only because the bible belters are saying the Rays are winning because they dropped the “Devil” from their name.

    Also, I agree with the general philosophy of Philly Fans; it’s fun to boo, anybody and everybody.

  3. Once more I say unto ye, Yes!

    (The Rays are a model for how to build a team, mixing mostly excellent young talent with some key veteran acquisitions. Besides, anyone who beats the Red Sox needs to be cheered on — and doubly, if they’re looking to beat the Phillies, too. :-)

  4. I have … no idea whatsoever what this is about. I’m still looking for the alternate universe where organized sports are played only by tiny religious minorities in Siberia and Outer Mongolia, and the libraries of the world can be seen by astronauts on the Moon.

    Thus I predict that a freak outbreak of wood rot will snap everybody’s rackets at half-time, making the game a nil-all draw.

  5. Here’s another voice for the phillies. Down with the rays!

    Also, small error: the rays have not lost 97 games a year, I think 4 or 5 times they have been below that mark. They have lost 90 games each year.

  6. Er… Actually, John, with the BoSox losing their first elimination game after winning eight in a row (seems like 5 of ’em were against the D-Rays this series), I’m going with the odds were on the Rays. Also, Boston fans would be even more insufferable if they went to the Series again this year.

    And the odds are still on the Rays because of the Marlins paradigm. But don’t worry Phils fans, most of the Rays players can be picked up in the fire sale after the World Series for a song.

  7. Back in 2004 I joked that the Red Sox winning the series and GWB getting re-elected was proof that I was living in a dystopic alternate timeline that somebody needed to fix.

    Hopefully things will start to pick up…

  8. LA LA LA I can’t hear you.

    ::Nathan slips the time-space continuum into alternate universe #36478.97B where he is heard yelling “Go Red Sox! Red Sox for the Sweep”::

  9. Er, don’t teams change membership over time? And for members that aren’t from the same region or locale? That is, there is no “Rays.” There is only this /particular/ Rays defined by some number of co-ordinates.

    Really, we all root for a series of numbers every year. We just call them “The Rays” or “The Sox” because it’s easier than remembering the specific co-ordinates. Sort of like notational shorthand.

    So, technically, the universe changes every season. Given the quantum nature of wins/loses/ties, I guess the universe changes every game, or inning, or play.

    Hell, a player does or does not spit tobacco juice at a particularly sensitive point in their potential co-ordinate space may affect any number of potential futures.

    So, yes. Baseball /does/ stand in for a great number of larger conversations.

  10. And don’t forget, we (the Phillies) were the first team in American pro sports to reach 10,000 losses, which we accomplished last year.

  11. I’m of the mind that if it was the Cubs and Rays we’d be in an alternate Universe. My money’s on Philly just because the Rays knocked the White Sox out.

    Go Philly! ;)

  12. Losingest baseball team in the history of losing

    I think the Phillies are the losing team in the history of losing. There’s something about playing a hundred and fifty games a year (more than any other team sport) and doing it for a hundred years, and then, you know, stinking.

    Is there any other team in any other sport that has managed ten thousand losses?


  13. Vardibidian: To answer your question – no. The Phillies are the only major professional sports team in the US to achieve that distinction.

    Much as it pains me to say it – as a life-long Red Sox fan and a Phillies convert from my time living in the Mainline suburbs a few years ago – I don’t think anything’s stopping this Rays team this year. The real test for them was beating the Red Sox – the Series is almost going to be anticlimactic.

    Rays in 4. Sorry, Philly.

  14. 16 Surely there are cricket sides that have, because everyone is a loser in cricket (and playing just proves it).

    Generally And the same goes for baseball, which is a communist conspiracy to sap the general physical fitness, team spirit, and sportsmanship of America’s youth. Either that, or a poor excuse for learning to throw grenades at an early age (which, interestingly enough, was formally acknowledged by military training experts in both the US and Germany during the 1940s).

  15. One thing is for sure — FOX is crying over not getting the BoSox/Dodgers matchup they really wanted. What’s the over/under on ratings share for a Rays/Phillies Series?

  16. I don’t just mean in the US–I mean anywhere. And even if everyone who plays cricket is a loser, it takes them five days to lose, so there’s no way you could rack up ten thousand losses, even going back to the founding of the universities.


  17. Hell, I’m just as happy the Dodgers aren’t in the series. I’m from Northern California; the Dodgers are the enemy and the Giants are the one true baseball team.

    Too bad the Giants sucked this year. :P

    Anyway, the Rays have nothing on the Mets. From ugly to World Series champions in seven years. The Rays haven’t won this one yet. I’ll admit, I’m rooting for the Rays now, as I’ve been since the frickin’ Dodgers took the Cubs out.


  18. What you want, Scalvi, is irrelevant.

    This town (Philly) has been waiting for a team, ANY team, to actually WIN for a long, long time. In fact, the Rays should be thrilled to be going up against the Phillies…teams from this town have a long history of making it to the big games and CHOKING. World Series, Stanley Cup, Super Bowl? The song remains the same: always a bridesmaid, never a bride.

  19. I was born and raised in Philly and lovely South Jersey, and I even own a Phillies hat. But now I live in Central Florida, which makes the Rays my home team (and all of my friends are now fairweather fans).

    I’m torn, but I have to go with the Phils. In 6. No sense buying another hat!

  20. The Rays have had great talent for years, they just finally put it together. With top pick David Price to joining Shields, Kazmir, and Sonnanstine they should be competitive for years.

  21. Rays vs. Phillies? This is excellent news for McCain!

    (In this alternate universe, blogs collide: Atrios is busy taping bacon to his cat.)

  22. As a NY Yankees fan, this is a great match-up – perennial enemy Red Sox lose and Manny-being-Manny not in the series.

    The real alternate universe would be the Cubbies in the series and winning.

  23. Didn’t I read this post back in 1997, when the Marlins faced the Indians in the World Series? Or maybe it was in 2005, when the White Sox faced the Astros?

    I was sad to see the Red Sox go out, but they just had too many injuries to overcome this time around. Alas.

    I think the Rays are going to demolish the Phillies, but then, I think the AL teams are just way better than the NL teams these days. The Phillies will be lucky to push it to Game 6.

    Anyway. The Rays are basically reaping the rewards of getting high draft picks for years on end and now having a front office that knows what it’s doing. Look at their contracts and it looks like they may be running over the league for years to come. The really interesting question is whether it will lead to a loyal fan base, or if Florida just isn’t a baseball state.

  24. “I wanted Dodgers – Red Sox, personally. And for the Dodgers to kill.”

    I wanted Dodgers – Red Sox, but would have been torn.

    I grew up in Maine, and learned to root for the Red Sox at my grandmother’s knee. (I only ever heard her speak ill of two people: Bucky Dent and Jack Tatum.)

    My mother had grown up in Los Angeles, and rooted for the Dodgers. My wife, also, grew up in Los Angeles, and roots for the Dodgers.

    And, as a Yankee hater (I root for the Red Sox and Dodgers, it’s required), having the Dodgers make it to – much less win – the World Series after Hank Steinbrenner saying they didn’t belong there…well, that would have been glorious to see in and of itself.

    So I would have rooted for the Red Sox, but not been upset had the Dodgers won it.

    On the plus side, think of the poor Fox Sports execs who are looking at the lost opportunities. A Sox-Dodgers series would bring in much, much better ratings than this one.

  25. I like a good man-bites-dog story, and we’ve already got one. Sad to see the tired old men of Boston hang it up for the season, but at least I’ll get more writing done. They would have gotten away with it if it hadn’t been for those meddling kids. I think the Rays have this one. According to the usual math youth only gets you halfway there. You also need skills. The Rays proved they have both, and are therefore unstoppable.

  26. As a D’Backs fan, I admit that after watching the Sox deal Manny to LA at the last chance they had to fix their season, watching both of them fall on their face in the post season was kinda fun.

    I’m gonna pick Rays in 6. Got to root for the new guys.

  27. I agree with jp@17 — the Rays in 4. The AL has been kicking the NL’s butt pretty thoroughly the past decade (barring minor exceptions,) and the Rays are pumped up and fresh from a tough battle against the Red Sox. The Phillies have been sitting on their duffs for most of a week, getting softer and colder. Tough to get worked up for the first few games when you’ve been twiddling your thumbs for a week.

    Not to mention that the Rays are the winningest (is that a word? Word!) team at home this season, and they’ve got home field advantage.

    Rays in 4.

  28. I was hoping for a Dodgers/Red Sox series, too. Now, no one outside of Pennsylvania will be watching the World Series. Clearly no one in Florida has any interest. I mean, during the season when the Rays had the best record in baseball, they were getting 6-7,000 fans into the stadium for home games.

    Come to think of it, I may watch the games from Tampa Bay, just to see what a World Series game that’s only 50% sold looks like on television.

  29. I cannot explain the Rays but the explanation for the Phillies is their General Manager Pat Gillick, who beat the Phillies the last time they were in the World Series in 1993 when he was running the Toronto Blue Jays.

    The man knows his baseball.

  30. My little brother is saying Phillies win in 5.

    I’m rooting for the underdogs… but no predictions from me!

  31. I’m just fine living in some freaky alternate universe. In fact, I’ll bet this is the EVIL universe since I have a goatee.

    However, if the Cubs ever win, I’ll flip out.

  32. Heh, I’m a contrarian.

    That means I was rooting, not for the Red Sox, but for Wakefield; and not for the Cubs, but for Wrigley Field.

    Of course, one of the issues with being a contrarian is that you almost never get what you wanted…

  33. I actually care most about Baseball among all sports. I have reverted to being a Dodgers fan (now L.A. Dodgers, having been a Brooklyn Dodgers fan in boyhood). And added Red Sox, for the same Massachusetts-based reason as I added the Patriots and Boston Celtics. My father did graduate Harvard, cum laude. My brother Andy did graduate Boston University and marry in Cambridge, Mass.

    Oh, and an Angels fan when I was Adjunct Professor of Astronomy at Cypress College in Orange County. I completely resceduled exams to avoid conflict with that amazing World Series where the Anaheim Angels of Los Angeles (?!) took wing. Angels, Devil Rays… all too theological.

    It is ironic that I, as a born 3rd generation New Yorker, should ever have been rooting for New England, just as strange as my ultimate New Yorker father, in his final years in Rhode Island, rooting for the Red Sox. But that’s part of the American Dream, that you can reinvent
    yourself and change your affiliation, home, party, ideology, and Class.

    As Yogi Berra (my father’s father was a Yankee fan)said: “It’s tough to make predictions, especially about the future.” But I am an actual professional Futurist (as in my 2 cover articles in Omni Magazine, where I boldly and correctly forecast things such as that we’d find a giant black hole in the center of our Milky Way galaxy; and that there would be [I coined the phrase] “Cybernetic War” [now shortened to Cyberwar]; and that future soldiers would have surgical radio implants [cf. RFID]; and that there would be an anti-ballistic missile defense debate and then implemented
    system [now called “Star Wars”]; and in Focus (BSFA) that there would be Methane Snow on Pluto, and interactive web TV). But I boldly make predictions in public, admit that I’m wrong if I’m wrong, and boast if
    I’m right. For example, SuperBowl 42, I was very very wrong, except that the difference between winner and loser would be 3 points.

    So…. Rays in 7. Walkoff home run.

  34. I am a long-time Phillies fan, now stranded in Brewers country (hey, at least the Brewers joined the Baseball League a while ago and stopped playing softball. There are 9 players on a baseball team, 10 on a softball team.) Given the scars on my psyche from years of cheering for various Philadelphia teams, I really don’t expect them to win it this time either.

    But it would be really sweet to be wrong.

  35. My ability to jinx any team I root for has been proven once again…

    If there are any desperate Phillies fans with loose cash, I’d be happy to continue to root for the Rays (for the right, ah, _reasons_ if you get my drift…)

    Would you believe, the Rays in 5? :-D

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