So baseball's Montreal Expos will vanish, to surface next spring
in Washington, D.C. with a new name and new uniforms.
Many profound diagnoses will be forthcoming about cause of death.
But, really, the most intelligent remorse is to accept the
team's departure as inevitable, and appreciate that the 37-year history
of the franchise has given some wonderful moments to Canadian
While many seize upon Toronto's World Series era as the
cradle of Canada's pro baseball lore, purists know it ain't
so. Years before Joe Carter hit his fabulous home run
over the left field fence, back when the Blue Jays
were a laughable expansion team, it was the Expos who
captured hearts and minds and magazine covers across the land.
The Expos introduced us to something wonderful and new, something
called baseball fever.
By the late 1970s and early'80s, fans watched in agony
and ecstasy as the Montreal franchise, then locally owned by
the Bronfmans, matured into a true contender. The red-and-blue were
no longer a joke; the bandwagon just got bigger and
more exciting. Steve Rogers, Tim Raines, Andre Dawson, Gary Carter
became schoolboy idols, household names, stoking a love affair with
a nation intrigued at seeing a Canadian-based team get ready
to win it all. Surely it must be only a
matter of time.
Besides a fixated national TV audience, the Expos routinely jammed
50,000 people into Olympic Stadium, dancing and singing Ob-la-di Ob-la-da
at the top of their lungs. It was a passion
never felt in Toronto, even in those trendy years of
maximum ticket sales at SkyDome. Source.