World Championships Step into Houston’s Redemption Story, Fans Say

A fan could get used to the kind of success the Astros had for Houston, but Robert McGuire echoed what many of the revelers at Minute Maid Park were thinking.

“Confident, but not overconfident,” said McGuire, 60. “Definitely not cocky. Houston is not conceited.”

On the verge of another World Championship win, with their sixth post-season and fourth chance, fans say this team embodies Houston by working hard and enjoying their success without letting it go into their heads. At times, this city can be daunting – exciting and hard to navigate – but with an optimistic outlook.

“Times have changed and this is America’s #1 baseball town,” said Glenn Garcia, 66, standing outside Minute Maid Park, wearing a rare 1926 Padron chain of cigars, aged 40. .

First, there is the issue of working status as a cheerleader. Jeremy Tillman, 45, of Angleton, learned some tips during this world championships. Arrive early to get a good spot only in the parking room. Avoid places where seated fans can stand and block your view.

Two hours before the first pitch, Tillman was standing at the railing on the central mezzanine floor of Minute Maid Park – the same spot he claimed during game two. His face is painted with the Astros logo – a white H and an orange star on a blue field.

“I got some tubes of grease makeup and it worked better,” Tillman said. From his position atop the court, Tillman said he is confident that the top of the Astros standings will carry the team to victory tonight.

However, history has been tough for Houston. The Astros have never won a Game 6 in the World Championships. That didn’t bother Jerry Sandoval, 47, the 11-year-old season ticket holder, who dyed his beard bright orange to support the team.

“We got it tonight,” Sandoval said. “Just like everyone was skeptical about Verlander, and he got a win, we will win. We are making history.”

Houston was a force before, but in basketball. Fans outside of Minute Maid said this felt different. Those Rockets were all about the long wait for a win, and the comfort of putting a final stamp on long-term success.

“We had Olajuwon and a team that you knew could make it happen,” said Reed Tinsley, 65.

But this time around, it feels like redemption, in the face of opposing fans cheering about cheating and hitting trash cans in 2017.

“I just want to silence people,” said Robert Torres, 46, of Houston. “That is why this is more important than the first. It will silence them.”

He admitted that he would not silence them all. Don’t forget the fans.

“It will silence them somewhat,” he said.

Astros fans cheer from the stands during the first rounds of Game 6 of the World Series at Minute Maid Park on Saturday, November 5, 2022 in Houston.
Astros fans cheer from the stands during the first rounds of Game 6 of the World Series at Minute Maid Park on Saturday, November 5, 2022 in Houston.Yi Chen Li / Staff Photographer

It would also mean a win for Houston’s critics couldn’t take away, said Chris Knutson, 61, of Houston.

“They deserved what they got but it’s over,” Knutson said.

In the meantime, Houston can continue to prove them wrong, from the stadium to the benches. Beverly Gill, 51, of Baytown, stood at the railing around the left field wall, to the right of the Crawford Boxes. She wore a World Cup-shaped tiara, lit up by orange LED lights. Banners surrounded an astronaut jumping on the moon. I made the hat for the fourth graders.

Jill said she had to go to the secondary market to get into the game — and she came with her co-worker because her husband had to work.

“We probably paid $900 each. “Don’t tell my husband,” Gil said. It may be better if her husband stays at home. He was in Game 1 when the Astros blew up a lead with five leads and made himself sick from the bad chance.

“I feel like we should win it tonight,” Jill said. “If we don’t it reminds me a lot of nats. And I just want to finish it tonight so I can party.”

Astros fans cheer from the stands during the first rounds of Game 6 of the World Series at Minute Maid Park on Saturday, November 5, 2022 in Houston.
Astros fans cheer from the stands during the first rounds of Game 6 of the World Series at Minute Maid Park on Saturday, November 5, 2022 in Houston.Yi Chen Li / Staff Photographer

In 2019, the Astros blew a 3-2 lead at the World Championships, losing Game 6 and 7 to the Washington Nationals.

Hubert Flores, 58, of Houston, painted his face blue, white, and orange, and was wearing a thick orange chain with an Astros medal on it. Flores had competed in two world championships before, in 2005 when the Astros lost to the White Sox and 2017, when they finally won their first championship. He said this year’s team felt like they were on the cusp of winning another team — and hoped that victory would finally sully the scandals of the previous tournament.

“Our organization today is different than it was two years ago,” Flores said. “We are making it happen. There is no one who can take it from us anymore.”

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