Houston Astros and Texas Rangers: A Rivalry in the Making?

The Houston Astros are moving to the American League in 2013. The Texas Rangers dominate baseball in the state of Texas. The Rangers dominate in the American League. However, with a shift from the National League to the American, will a new rivalry be created between the Astros and the Rangers? Depending on what the new Astros ownership does, and how the AL Central shapes up, the answer is maybe.

Fernando Nieve with the Houston Astros.
Image via Wikipedia

The potential for a new rivalry in baseball got me thinking, what are the best rivalries currently in baseball?

To answer this question, the New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox obviously come to mind first. Now, fans outside the Northeast may be sick and tired of the New York-Boston talk, but strictly from the game perspective the geography and the history between these clubs speaks for themselves. That being said, let us briefly discuss another rivalry excluding the Yankees-Red Sox feud.

Excluding New York-Boston, my thoughts moved West. The San Francisco Giants and the Los Angeles Dodgers exhibit a rivalry that, well rivals, New York and Boston. Aside from occupying California real estate, the Giants-Dodgers rivalry brings history from the days of the Polo Grounds and Ebbets Field. Names like Willie Mays, Duke Snider, and Jackie Robinson echo in the sunny outfield’s of Dodger Stadium and AT&T Park. The competition between these clubs is as fierce today as it was when they shared a city with the Yankees. The rivalry between the Dodgers and Giants began in 1901. As balanced a win-loss record as one can find historically, this rivalry represented cultural conflict as much as it was who was the better team. Fans of both teams were passionate about their clubs and the neighborhoods they represented.

Today, there is excitement surrounding any meeting between the clubs. The turmoil surrounding the Dodger’s recently is tragic for baseball. However, on the field Clayton Kershaw and Matt Kemp give Dodger fans hope. Under the leadership of Manager Don Mattingly, the Dodgers seemingly have nowhere to go but up.

 As a fan of the game, a rivalry is more than simple geography. The teams need to share a history. I only say this based on the brief example I cite above. This is not to say the Rangers and the Astros can’t develop into a rivalry, but this takes time. We shall wait and see.
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3 thoughts on “Houston Astros and Texas Rangers: A Rivalry in the Making?

    • Interleague play was designed, I believe, with the hopes of creating more rivalries. Yankees-Mets, White Sox-Cubs for example. The problem with this is both teams need to be somewhat decent. The Subway Series in 2000 exemplified this. Until the Cubbies, and I believe all baseball fans are secretly hoping for the Cubs, win a World Series there is no great rivalry in Chicago. Sports rivalries have national appeal. College football is full of such matchups is another example.

      Thanks for the response. I apologize for the delay, to much triptofan (spelling?)

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