They have the rings, finally. Gaudy ones but classy at the same time, if that’s possible.
They’ll wear the uniforms and caps with the gold trim and the champions logo on the sleeve through the weekend. The huge flag with “2020 World Champions” now flies from one of the center field flagpoles. They’ve welcomed fans through the Dodger Stadium gates – including the brand new entrance in center field – for the first time in 19 months, appropriately socially distanced. And the organic sounds of real, live people Friday afternoon were and are a welcome change from last year’s canned crowd noise, which sometimes sounded as if it were coming from the bottom of a well.
Even longtime player agent and executive Dennis Gilbert being back in his seat behind home plate for real, rather than the cardboard cutout version of Dennis Gilbert, served notice that normalcy is near, that Dodger Stadium again feels like home.
And now it is finally, definitively, time for the home team to turn the page.
I suspect the Dodgers grasped that necessity long before now. A 6-2 record, following Friday’s 1-0 victory over Washington, certainly doesn’t suggest a team going through the motions or suffering from a World Series hangover, and in fact, more than one player has noted that the pandemic limits that prevented a mass civic celebration provided a ready-made motivation to repeat.
There should have been some closure Friday with the…