We have been dyed-in-the-wool Texas Rangers fans long before Al Gore invented the internet. In fact, we've been around for all of the past 40 years of Rangers baseball (though we were too young to remember the first few years).
We were there with Ferguson Jenkins, Mike Hargrove, Jeff Burroughs, Toby Harrah, Buddy Bell, Jim Sundberg. We remember Bump Wills, Odibe McDowell, Gary Gray*, Tom Grieve (as a player).
*Our first Rangers game attended was a double header against the Evil Empire. Gary Gray hit a walk-off (not yet a term at that point) homer in the bottom of the ninth of the first game.
While the teams of the Juan Gonzalez, Pudge Rodriguez, Kenny Rogers and Rusty Greer era, the first Rangers teams to make a playoff appearance, will always hold a special place in our hearts, the current cast of characters has spoiled Rangers fans who do not have the franchise's long record of futility to reflect upon.
What, you may be asking yourself, does this lesson in nostalgia have to do with CJ Wilson? That is a good question.
There has been plenty of vitriol spewed in Wilson's general direction by Ranger fans lately. Sure, a lot of it has to do with him signing with division rival Los Angeles California Angels of Anaheim California. Another good portion comes from his failures in the playoffs.
Let's get one thing straight: Without CJ Wilson, the Rangers are probably not two time defending American League Champions.
While Wilson is a bit "out there" and can rub people the wrong way, he was an integral part of the past two Ranger teams. Good-natured fun is one thing. Out and out hate is another.