For starters, I despise using the word "epic"—it's way too trendy for me.
But as I rolled through my inner thesaurus, epic fit. It fit so much that it outweighed the negative overtones that come with using such an overdone word.
Since the word has been so blurred and demeaned and been used to describe nouns from breakfast burritos to ankle socks, I feel it necessary to define the word of the day.
Epic is heroic; majestic; impressively great or of unusually great size or extent.
It is not potatoes with cheese wrapped in a tortilla, nor comfort and warmth for your feet.
The Rangers 2011 Opening Day will be of unusually great size. I never remember the team having to raffle off tickets for Opening Day. The words "lottery" and "Rangers tickets" rarely meet in the same story, nonetheless in the same sentence.
The playoff games were big, but its possible this will be bigger—and dare I say, epic.
I am in no way saying this game will mean more.
It won't. It's game one of 162 of the regular season.
But if you are lucky enough to go, it will be just as memorable and majestic.
Here's five reasons the first game of 2011 will be epic for the Texas Rangers.
Even when the Rangers were down, everyone would still make it out to see the Red Sox beat up on the Rangers.
Having a marquee matchup on such a majestic day amplifies the excitement that much more.
I'm sure the Rangers would prefer to play the Orioles so they can guarantee sell-outs later in the year for Boston that they probably won't for Baltimore.
It also decreases the chance of sending the home fans out happy. That is nothing the Rangers can control nor care to control.
They are the defending American League Champs and are ready to defend their crown and turf.
The Opening Day crowd will consist of fans with new Rangers gear dated to their appearance on the bandwagon.
Some other fans will sport faded, possibly tattered Rangers apparel, personifying the tumultuous ride as a lengthy Rangers fan.
However, the common theme between most everybody in attendance is that they will not allow a "LET'S GO RED SOX" chant in the ballpark. We all know that Josh Hamilton is the real ripped guy with tattoos.
It will be the melting pot of Rangers fans rekindling, renewing and reinvesting in the local ballclub.
Seriously. Chills every time I see that image.
Seriously, can you think of any previous season in which the Rangers could wave an image from the preceding season that immediately makes you want to be at the Ballpark?
Yeah, me either.
Kenny Rogers' perfect game? Nope. Garry Matthews' crazy catch on the center-field wall? Nope.
A-Rod winning an MVP?
Just kidding—most anything he does drives people away from the park.
In most seasons Opening Day for the Rangers is more of a reminder that "baseball is back and we should all be there to welcome it back."
The Rangers have won us to the park in 2011. We want to be there to attach ourselves to winning baseball, not welcome it back only to see our passion fade with losses into the summer heat.
We're all in now.
That should be this year's slogan, but from what I've seen, it's actually "My Texas. My Rangers" in 2011.
They've reeled us in with winning baseball. We we're all waiting for the house of cards to collapse on us again, not really believing that this team could make it to the World Series.
But they proved us wrong and Nolan has got us buying what he's selling, which is Texas winning baseball.
As fans actually go all-in with season tickets and the like, we also invest our hope that ballooned over the offseason as it set in that the Rangers—our Rangers—made it all the way to the World Series.
Scepticism as been replaced with pride and hope at the Ballpark.
Let's hope it continues in this direction, instead of a dark turn back as the wool is yet again pulled over our eyes.
In Nolan we trust. Right?
The Rangers were the surprise team by all accounts in 2010.
This year they will sneak up on no one, including the local fan base.
We got Cliff Lee (once). We won a playoff series. We beat the Yankees. And we have shirts that have "Rangers" and "World Series" next to each other that weren't doctored.
And we will win again in 2011.
Opening Day is typically a day when the Rangers are closest to the top of the standings. Now, it means it's the closest we will be to the bottom of the standings.
It's a weird thought, but it's where we are now as Rangers fans. We expect to win in 2011—including April 1st.