This is a preview of the Joe Sheehan Baseball Newsletter, an e-mail newsletter about all things baseball, featuring analysis and opinion about the game on and off the field from the perspective of the informed outsider. Joe Sheehan is a founding member of Baseball Prospectus and a contributor to Sports Illustrated and Baseball America. He has been writing about baseball for nearly 25 years.
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"Sports fandom has become nationalized, with a talking head from Dallas sitting in a studio in Los Angeles screaming about a basketball team in New York, the same dozen voices chewing over the same dozen topics day after day. Baseball fandom, however, remains local. Molina matters to Cardinals fans. Zimmerman matters to Nationals fans. Kiermaier matters to the Rays fan. That these players have played their careers for one team doesn’t make them better people than the players who have moved on; it does, however, create a connection with the local fans that is greater than, say, what Astros fans might feel for Gerrit Cole, Yankees fans for D.J. Lemahieu.
"Moments like yesterday’s are better because the hero is, was, and has always been your guy. That matters. A playoff win that staves off elimination is a gift no matter who is responsible. The players at the center of the action yesterday just make that gift a little sweeter."