October is definitely sports season. Everywhere you turn, people are talking about this sport or that one because they all seem to be going on at the same time around this time of year. In fact, as I write this, I am preparing for Monday night football, the hockey season opener (go Lightening!), the 2011 MLB World Series games and if the NBA wasn’t in a lockout, there’d be that, too.

 

What does this have to do with social media? Social media has effectively made its mark on the world of sports and has become a vital part of the sports fan experience. It just makes sense. Why not root for your team online as well as in front of your TV? Why not show off your incredible ability to rattle off stats, or just spread your excitement and/or anger over the game? All of this can be done in the comfort of your own home, online, where you know others are watching the same game and following the same hashtag that you are. It’s brilliant! The better these sports teams get at integrating social media into their franchises, the more they will connect to their fans and build even stronger fanships.

 

The big upcoming event, and the one most sports fans are talking about right now, is the World Series, of course. Since I’m the baseball fan in an office of women who love sports, here is my guide to watching The 2011 World Series online!

 

The Teams: St. Louis Cardinals vs. Texas Rangers

 

You can follow them both on Facebook for some great behind the scenes pictures, join in on a caption contest or two and just engage in the community of almost 1,000,000 fans on either side.

 

St. Louis Cardinals on Facebook

Texas Rangers on Facebook

 

Facebook is fun to check pre, post or even during the game, but if you want in on the chatter from fans, sports writers, franchises and players themselves you’ve got to go to Twitter! So without further ado, here is the official Ballywho guide to all the Twitter handles and hashtags you will need and want to follow during the World Series (try not to let your eyes cross from all of the @s and #s):

 

The Main Twitter Handles:

@Rangers — Texas Rangers

@Cardinals — St. Louis Cardinals

@MLB — The official MLB handle will have tons of updates and articles

@MLBFanCave — Inside coverage and lots of humor, the MLB fan cave in the official social media hub for MLB

 

Players on Twitter:

@str8edgeracer –Texas starting pitcher C.J. Wilson)

@Dutch_Oven45 — Texas starting pitcher Derek Holland)

@southpawDO28 –Texas relief pitcher Darren Oliver)

@DODay56 — Texas relief pitcher Darren O’Day)

@dfreese23 — St. Louis 3rd baseman David Freese)

@jonjayU — St. Louis outfielder Jon Jay)

@DanielDescalso — St. Louis infielder Daniel Descalso)

@ESanchez52 (St. Louis – relief pitcher Eduardo Sanchez)

 

Great Media to Follow

@MLB_PR — tweets updates and pictures

@Buster_ESPN — Buster Olney of ESPN

@SI_JonHeyman — Jon Heyman of Sports Illustrated

@Jim Rome — sports talk radio host, Jim Rome

@RangerBlake – Rangers Executive Vice President of Communications

 

Fun Handles to Follow

@rwags614 — MLB Fan Cave guy Ryan Wags

@mikeyoh21 — MLB Fan Cave guy Mike O’Hara

@OzzieGuillen — The former White Sox coach, he will be at the games and is very entertaining on Twitter!

@TheMotteBeard — The unofficial twitter handle of Jason Motte’s beard

@Boomstick_NC17 — The unofficial twitter handle for Nelson Cruz’s bat – nicknamed his Boomstick

@TortyCraig – The St. Louis Cardinal Allen Craig’s pet tortoise

 

Hashtags

#WorldSeries

#2011WorldSeries

(The jury is still out between these two, we will see which one catches on.)

 

All hashtags being used for the Cardinals (we’ll see which one sticks more than the others):

#Cardinals

#CardinalNation

#stlcards

#STL

 

All hashtags being used for the Rangers (again, we’ll have to see which one sticks):

#txrangers

#Rangers

#GoRangers

#TEX

 

The Inside Scoop

#ItsTime — Last year’s hashtag for building momentum and cheering on the Rangers

#ThisTime — Meaning this time the Rangers will win… this one may or may not catch on but we encourage you to use because we love it!

#AskMichelle — Michelle Obama will be at Game 1 tonight and you can ask her questions using this hashtag

#BOOMSTICK — referring to Nelson Cruz and his incredible homeruns in the post season

#RallySquirrel — The hashtag used to rally the troops in St. Louis. This has been a Cardinals inside joke all season. In fact, they’ve even printed rally squirrel towels!

 

There it is! You won’t miss a beat this World Series if you follow our advice so tweet, cheer, Facebook – do whatever — just have fun and be social!