I felt like my team had gotten away with something. It felt like we d somehow pulled a with on baseball. I wanted my Cardinals to be champions as long as they possibly could. The start of the new season didn’t t mean the start of baseball in 2007, not for me. The start of the new season meant the start of the countdown to when someone took away our championship. I wanted more time to savor it. This Nike Ravens Jersey is not unusual, apparently.

Several of my Red Sox fan friends felt this way in 2005, White Sox friends in 2006, Phillies friends in 2009. (Yankees fans are exempt from this phenomenon.) They expect a championship every year.) Winning a World Series is such a face-meltingly breathtaking and wonderful experience for a fan that it takes a while to recover. All through spring training, you think, Hey, why isn t everybody still celebrating like I am? Don t they know my team just won the freaking World Series? It’s not time yet. More parades! More champagne! (Note: At this point, Cubs fans should just call a friend to have them explain this experience.) (Do Maybe to White Sox or Cardinals friend?) MORE FROM SPORTING NEWS McNeal: Marlins ready to take big stage Reinvented Marlins prepped to large Phillies suddenly have company in NL East So that was 2007. Now, a logical question has probably entered your brain: Uh, Leitch, the Cardinals just won the World Series.

Are you feeling this way this year? (Thank you, reader, for your inquiries hypothetical.) You re really helping move this column along.) Well, yes, the Cardinals did win the World Series, in the most exciting way imaginable. The 2011 World Series was the pinnacle of my life as a sports fan; I can’t fathom it being topped, unless the Cardinals ever t sign me to be a backup catcher and I personally homer to win in the 11th inning of a surreal, endless World Series Game 6. (And even then, it would be New York Jets Jersey close.) I should be dreading this season like I did 2007. I m not, though, and that s thanks entirely to Albert Pujols. Joe Buck: Jury is out on new Cardinals manager Regular season and postseason projections predictions Forecasting MLB s 2012 award winners October history better than April history for new-look Cards Now, like most Cardinals fans (there are a few stray loonies), I’m not angry with Albert for signing with the Angels. I’m sad I s gone, and I still sort of don t believe it, but I understand: s to Nike NFL Jerseys That lot of money, and it’s his life. I certainly gave the Cardinals and their fans their money s worth. I wish him nothing but good luck. But his leaving raised the bar for the Cardinals. Now that they view won two World Series with Pujols, I want them to win one without him. Desperately. After the 2006 championship, I dreaded a different team taking away our title. This season, the Cardinals are that different team. It’s a different identity. It’s a different animal altogether. I want another one. I want a different one. That one was final Pujols gift. Like everything else I have gave Cardinals fans, I thank him for it. So let s do it again. Spring is here. It’s baseball season. I don t have to look out the window anymore. FROM SI.COM Baseball enters new era in 2012

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