Welcome to the Underdog World Series

October 27, 2010 | blog | By Mike Sullivan
Rangers ace Cliff Lee takes the mound for the Rangers in Game 1 of the 2010 World Series

There’s a reason people love underdogs. Actually, there are lots of them. Underdogs are scrappy. They’re hopeful. They fight hard. And above all, they believe. Tonight, all of those qualities will be on full display when the Texas Rangers take on the San Francisco Giants in Game 1 of the 2010 World Series.

When the Rangers started the season, their pitching rotation was shaky and looked nothing like it does now. They had three journeyman catchers who are no longer in rotation. They were a season removed from a .500 record and Cliff Lee was in Seattle. The Texas manager had just admitted to testing positive for Cocaine use a year earlier and within two months of opening day, the Rangers declared bankruptcy! Injuries hit. Trades happened. And for nearly three months, Nolan Ryan and Chuck Greenberg had to fight Major League Baseball and Mark Cuban to buy the team. You couldn’t write how this season has gone. Yet here we are. The Texas Rangers, a franchise more than 50 years old with only a few postseason games to their credit, will play tonight for their first ever World Series title.

Everyone would have understood had they caved to the pressure. They’d never won a playoff series. Ever. But they didn’t cave. They won. They beat the Tampa Bay Rays, the team with the second best record in baseball, three times in Florida and subsequently, rode that confidence into Yankee Stadium and the Ballpark in Arlington where they decimated the World Champion New York Yankees in the ALCS.

Out of 30 Major League baseball teams, the Yankees are the highest paid with a payroll that exceeds $208 million. The Rangers are 21st with a payroll just over $68 million. For underdogs, being small and outspent aren’t excuses. They’re motivators. Because in their hearts, underdogs understand those things aren’t what really matter. It’s not about being richer. It’s about being better.

The Rangers aren’t buying a title. They play smarter. They steal bases. They hit and run. Don’t make mistakes. Hit with men in scoring position and never get rattled. True underdogs just find a way. That’s why people love them. And it’s why tonight, millions of fans around the world will tune in to watch a team they know very little about. But one they’re about to fall completely in love with.

Let’s go boys! Drop the antlers on them. Drop the claw on them.

Mike Sullivan

President at LOOMIS, the country’s leading challenger brand advertising agency


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