I am not about to claim to be a Texas Ranger Super Fan! The truth is, just like basketball, the season is too long to hold my attention. The truth is, for me, it’s more like, “Wake me up if they make the playoffs.” I’m like Hall of Fame Laker ‘Jabber,’ who was accused of only hustling in the playoffs. Not to compare myself to Jabber, but my comparison to basketball skills would be closer to Stanley from The Office.

All that said, I, like most in North Texas, have suddenly developed a case of Ranger fever. Was it expected at all? Pos, a new (REAL) general manager, was hired in 2020, Chris Young, a former player (attention Jerry). Then, just last year in October, future hall of famer Bruce Bochy came to lead this team on the field. The owner (Ray Davis), whom most people have never heard of, said, “I’m’ tired of losing.’ And he put his money where his mouth is, the saying goes.

That led to some significant changes, including bringing in more pitching. More importantly, the new skipper added an air of confidence to the room. Some big names are Corey Seager, Josh Jung, Evan Carter, and Semien. Pero, the close to record-setting (RBI) standout hero so far has been Adolis Garcia (AKA El Bombi). In what almost feels like a fairy tale season to some, Adolis has become the Dragon Slayer (or Astros) Slayer.

As I stated before, I’m not a huge baseball fan, so I only knew a little about the players, even Adolis. So, I decided to take a closer look at Señor Garcia. And I found out some things that I should have expected. First, I thought he was another Dominican player import. I was wrong; I hope that doesn’t make me racist. Pero, more surprising to me was he hailed from Cuba and had to defect from Cuba to make it over.

El Bombi was already a star player in Cuba when he decided to play in Japan, but that did not work for him. Then, according to published reports on the way back to Cuba, he decided to change planes and head to the Dominican Republic, so (I was kinda right) instead. Long story short, he established residency there and became an international free agent. Then, in 2017, he signed with St. Louis and stayed there till he was traded to Rangers in 2019.

Fast forward to October 26, 2023. Adolis stands on the edge of becoming a local sports legend like Pudge, Dirk, Troy, and Rodger. He is the ALCS MVP and, more importantly, the most hated man in Houston. We all know the story about the bench-clearing incident in game 5 when Bryan Abreu hit him, which resulted in his ejection from the game. Garcia has 20 RBI going into Friday’s World Series first game, and, by the way, to be played right here in good old Arlington. That puts him just one short of an MLB record, which should be a slam dunk to use a basketball reference. Garcia hit five home runs in the series in game 7. He homered twice, bringing in 5 runs, making him the undisputed MVP.

This brings me to the title I chose for this article, Señor Octubre, which is a slight nod to the great Reginald Martinez Jackson. More commonly known as Reggie Jackson of the Oakland A’s and Yankee fame, AKA Mr. October. And before I reference his playing record, I will note that his father was half Puerto Rican, thus Martinez in the name and his ability to speak Spanish. In addition, his former wife, whom he had a child with, is Mexican American, the former Jennie Campos.

Reggie helped Oakland win five consecutive ALW titles. He won four American East division pennants when he went to New York. He hit 563 career home runs and a large part of those in the playoffs, which earned him the nickname of Mr. October. For me, what I remember most about him is the three consecutive home runs he hit in the 1977 World Series in Yankee Stadium. There is much to say about Reggie, and I should tap the brakes on calling Adolis the Spanish version of Reggie’s nickname.

Pero if not now, when? After all, two seasons ago, our hometown heroes lost 102 games and had to struggle to make it into the playoffs this year. So, the time to brag and high-five is now; after all, being on The Big Show’ is nothing to take for granted. And if you don’t believe it, look at the other team in what is now the Ranger neighborhood. So, get your popcorn and your drink of choice ready. This TGIF is a special one. Go Rangers y Garcia!

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