Chicago Cubs outfielder Marlon Byrd said it's been tough watching his former teammates on the Texas Rangers lose the first two games of the World Series, but Byrd doesn't feel guilty that he played a role in securing home-field advantage for the San Francisco Giants.
Byrd's defensive play in the All-Star Game, when he gunned down the Boston Red Sox's David Ortiz at second base for the second out in the bottom of the ninth, helped the National League hang on for a 3-1 victory.
"I'm going to tell you one thing, I am very proud of that, that we were able to get the National League home-field advantage," Byrd said Friday on "The Waddle & Silvy Show" on ESPN 1000. "At the same time, I didn't know it was the Rangers who were going to be there. I was thinking [the Cubs] were going to be in the World Series, and it was going to help us.
"It makes it a little tougher on the Rangers, because they like playing at home. But again, NL is more important."
Byrd played three seasons in Texas before signing with the Cubs as a free agent last year.
"It's been fun watching [the Rangers]," Byrd said. "They're a team that I still feel is like my family. I was there for three years, and I'm still close with a lot of guys on the team, very close with Ron Washington and Jon Daniels, so I'm very happy for them.
"It's tough watching them lose. It's a lot easier watching them win, like they've been doing. But these past few days have been very difficult watching them lose, and I'm hoping they take it all the way."
Byrd didn't want to jinx his ex-mates while they were winning, so he kept his distance. But after the two losses, superstition no longer is a factor.
"I didn't want to talk to anybody while they're winning," Byrd said. "I'm a routine guy, and I try to say I don't believe in jinxes, but I didn't want to jinx them while they were winning, so I tried to stay away from any phone calls or anything.