Houston Astros reliever Ryan Pressly grew up cheering for the Texas Rangers in the Dallas area. He vividly recalls attending the 2010 ALCS as a fan. Now facing his boyhood team in the 2022 ALCS, Pressly calls it just another game, staying laser focused on pitching.
Pressly’s wife is handling ticket logistics for his hometown crowd attending in Arlington. He’s barred them from wearing Rangers gear in the Astros family section. Despite the special matchup, even-keeled Pressly is treating this like any other series.
Lifelong Houston Fan Jose Ruiz Relishes Recent Astros Success
In contrast, passionate Houston native Jose Ruiz eagerly anticipates facing Texas. Moving to Houston in 1980, he quickly adopted distaste for Dallas. Back then, Ruiz paid just $5 to watch the hapless Astros in an empty Astrodome.
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After decades of futility, Ruiz cherishes the Astros’ ascendance to prominence. His Dallas friends deride him as a cheater over Houston’s sign-stealing scandal, but Ruiz believes it’s the Astros against the world.
UT Professor Details Complex Houston-Dallas Rivalry History
UT history professor Walter Buenger provides fascinating context on the two cities’ complicated sports rivalry. Vying for supremacy in business, culture and more seeded divisions as far back as the 1890s.
Dallas claimed symbols like the cowboy, the State Fair, and Big Tex, contrasting diverse, oil-rich Houston. Mythology simplified complex realities, filtering history selectively. The baseball rivalry channels regional identities.
Twin Valets Joel and Jason Flores Reflect Houston Fans’ Passion
Twin valets Joel and Jason Flores witness fandom’s passion working downtown during Astros playoff games. The full parking garage and lively crowds reinforce Houston’s enthusiasm.
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As lifelong fans, they relish facing despised Dallas teams. Joel insists he’d never back the Rangers, even in a World Series. For him, it’s “Houston only.”
Diehard Rangers Fan Mark Espinoza Surprised by Texas’ Success
In contrast, diehard Rangers supporter Mark Espinoza is ecstatic after Texas took Game 2. Recalling past letdowns, he didn’t expect a deep playoff run but now sees a momentum shift.
Quiet Houston fans pass as Espinoza loudly celebrates near an Astros mural. Playing spoiler in Houston’s park is sweet for this surging Rangers squad.
Rivalry Showcases Contrasting Passion of Both Fan Bases
The heated ALCS pits Houston’s intense loyalty against surprising Texas success. The backdrop explores how sports spotlights a city’s identity.