Let’s face it. Winning is a wonderful inducement for sports fans. It brings out those who might otherwise decide to stay home rather than go to the ballpark for an afternoon (or evening) of entertainment.
I present to you the Amarillo Sod Poodles, who entered the Texas League this year and — in some instances — have taken the league by storm. Why and how? They’re winning a good bit more of their games than they’re losing.
The Sod Poodles existed previously as the San Antonio Missions. Then the Alamo City landed a AAA minor-league franchise that played ball previously in Colorado Springs. The Missions needed a new home to play AA hardball. They looked around. Amarillo came calling. The powers that be in the Panhandle pledged to build a new ballpark. They offered the franchise some financial inducements.
Then the team decided to relocate. They needed a new name and a new brand. They came up with the Sod Poodles.
However, this wasn’t a team built from scratch. I mean, the franchise infrastructure already was in place. They had an organization backing them, the National League San Diego Padres.
The Sod Poodles won the first half South Division title this year. They’re in first place so far in the second half of the season. They’ll be in the playoffs once the regular season concludes.
They’re playing before full houses at Hodgetown. The cheers have been loud and throaty from what I understand.
It fills me with joy to know that Amarillo is turning out to support this team with shouts and cheers.
I won’t speculate how the fans would react if the Sod Poodles weren’t winning more than half of their games. I just know that winning does have a way of ginning up support.
This baseball franchise is off to a smashing start.