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HAPPY OPENING DAY

 

To me, opening day is the most romantic day in all of sports.  It’s the only sport that is a treat for all five senses.  The taste of a cold beer, the smell of the fresh cut grass, the hot summer sun warming your skin, the quick sound of action on the field followed immediately by the long roar of the crowd, great athletes on the field and girls in summer clothes in the stands.

I only played one year of organized baseball in my entire life.  It was my senior year of High School and I needed something to do in the spring.  I somehow made the varsity, but to say I sucked would be the understatement of all understatements.  I pitched occasionally, but for the only time in my life I didn’t care about my playing time.  Every practice and every game was a vacation.  You get to throw a ball around with your friends for a few hours every day as Spring turned into Summer.  Then on game day I chewed sun flower seeds, worked on my tan, and cheered for my teammates.  It’s the most leisurely of the team sports.  It is still intense, but in a different way than hockey or football. Baseball is about extreme focus and patient aggression.  That season allowed me to understand the game on a different level.

Prior to playing baseball, I was a baseball fan nerd.  Loved stats, moneyball, I could rattle off the top 30 players in my favorite team’s minor league system, and I read everything I could get my hands on.  I don’t do any of that now.  Now I just sit back and take it in.  It’s not a science to me, but rather a romance.  It feels good to hope.  I love knowing that game largely hasn’t changed.  Football and hockey players of 100 years ago wouldn’t recognize the sport today.  That’s not  a bad thing, but there is something special about how in baseball is the same.  The field is the same, the rules are the same, the ball, the bat, and even some of the stadiums.  Baseball is the only sport that gives you a sense of community with history.  I love the idea going to Wrigley or Fenway, eating peanuts and drinking beer knowing that 100 years ago my great-grandfather could have had the exact same experience.

So enjoy and appreciate the day, because it is special and unique.  God Bless America.

 

PS: Striking someone out is the second greatest feeling in sports second only to scoring a goal in hockey.

PPS: I don’t know what getting a hit really feels like, but that’s probably cool too.

PPPS: Now back to your regularly programmed smut.

 

Follow me @WindyCitiSports 

 

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