Not long ago, my soccer team was getting beat pretty bad in a game by a team that was all too happy to rub it in.
They showboated. They joked around. They talked smack.
It was frustrating. It was infuriating. It was even a little embarrassing.
It’s understandable why the Arizona Diamondbacks and their fans were disgusted by the sight of the Los Angeles Dodgers celebrating their NL West title by diving into the Chase Field pool. The last time we saw a team do that was the 2011 D-backs, and that was an incredibly joyful occasion. That method of celebration was property of the Arizona Diamondbacks.
But not anymore.
No, from now on the pool will also be a reminder of the Dodgers’ conquest, how they came back from the dead this season to overtake the D-backs and win the division crown. These are the same D-backs who did everything they could to position themselves as the Dodgers’ rival.
Remember the beginning of the season, when D-backs owner Ken Kendrick forced Dodgers fans to don D-backs gear if they were to sit behind home plate, even though they had paid for the seats?
Then there was that brawl in Los Angeles, which was due in large part because Ian Kennedy started throwing at anyone wearing blue.
Of course, shortly thereafter D-backs GM Kevin Towers, when discussing the fight, opined, “We’ve got more to lose than them; we’re in first place, they’re in last place right now.”
Or how about that time when Luis Gonazalez and D-backs nation became upset when Puig “disrespected” the World Series hero? Remember, it was back in July when the Dodgers were sweeping the D-backs at Chase Field and all the home team could do is complain about Puig’s attitude.
Hell, the D-backs even had the audacity to request, should the Dodgers clinch in Arizona, that they do not celebrate outside of the locker room. Really, telling your rival how it should celebrate?
The D-backs could do nothing to stop the Dodgers then, and they could do nothing to stop them Thursday. Talent trumped grit, and it led to the visitors claiming the division title as well as the Chase Field landmark. Naturally, they wanted to celebrate, and they deserved to do just that.
That they did so in a way that upset the Diamondbacks is not shocking, because this season pretty much anything the Dodgers did besides lose to Arizona upset the people in Sedona Red. And that’s because deep down, the D-backs knew they could not win.
At this point, the Dodgers are bullies. They have the most money, the most talent and the most animosity directed their way. They’ve spent the better part of the last three months picking on the Diamondbacks and the rest of the National League, and Thursday was their reward.
Did they take it a bit too far? Perhaps, but given what transpired this season, the D-backs were pretty much asking for it. Ultimately if the D-backs did not want to see the Dodgers celebrate, they should not have given them a reason to do so.
Just like my soccer team that night long ago, which put an end to the celebrating by coming back from a multi-goal deficit in the game’s final minutes to win.