Vlad Jr. ends the se­ries in style

Montreal Times - - News - By Kieron Yates mtl­times.ca

Sim­ply put; you could not have found a bet­ter way to end a ball game in Mon­treal than how things played out Tues­day night at the Olympic sta­dium.

The crowds were down in size from the mon­strous gath­er­ing that squeezed through the turn­stiles last year, but fair play - last year's pre­sea­son bat­tles took place on a week­end whereas this years con­tests had a home Habs game to con­tend with, and no mat­ter how aw­ful the Cana­di­ens are this year - and they are aw­ful, that is still the hottest ticket in town. Then con­sider that this sea­sons ap­pear­ances are in town on a Mon­day and a Tues­day night and peo­ple are se­ri­ously re­luc­tant to ven­ture away from their tele­vi­sion sets and iPhones this early into the week.With all data ac­cu­mu­lated and ac­counted for; get­ting twenty-five thou­sand fans into seats on backto-back nights is sort of a suc­cess.

But enough of that! Let's set the stage: we're in the bot­tom of the ninth and the Jays are at bat. It has been a tight three-up and three-down bat­tle all evening and the score is tied at nil. It's look­ing as if the night is go­ing to end in a dead­lock, see­ing as the pre-sea­son al­lows for no ex­tra in­nings. The Blue Jays bats are swing­ing and hit­ting but noth­ing of sub­stance has come from it. Base hits have been few and far be­tween for both squads, with the Car­di­nals com­ing clos­est, strand­ing a man on third. Like a fairy­tale or a child­hood school­yard fan­tasy, where the kid, ball in one hand and bat in the other, is telling him­self "It's the bot­tom of the night, two outs and up step­sVladimir to the plate". In this sce­nario, it is Vladimir Guer­rero Jr. that is up - son of the last true star and hero the Mon­treal Ex­pos ever had be­fore be­ing torn away from us in the nineties. With a thun­der­ous clap, wood meets leather and every­body in the sta­di­ums knows by the sound that ball is go­ing, go­ing, gone! Over the fence and far away. Like fa­ther like son - the games fi­nal pitch is blasted into or­bit by a mem­ber of the Guer­rero fam­ily in the city that so badly wants its team back. The only pos­si­ble way this yarn could have been bet­ter, is if the logo of the front of the winning jersey tonight, read Mon­treal.

On both nights, the peo­ple in the stands had a mes­sage to chant to whomever may be lis­ten­ing. Some­body. Any­body. The mes­sage as clear as fine crys­tal "We want Ex­pos". All th­ese years on - caps and shirts and flags still fly the col­ors of our de­funct ma­jor league team and the vox pop­uli is that we want it back. And we want it back now!

Photo: Kieron Yates

Vladimir Guer­rero Jr cel­e­brat­ing home after game winning home run

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