JWG (jwg) wrote,

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Pining for Baseball Season to start

Seeing fj wonder about tailgate parties and a lot of other things rekindled my pining for baseball (where we don't have tailgate parties). I just sent in exorbitant check for our season tickets (50 games, we may need another partner for some games since one of our seat-sharers hasn't committed yet). It is a long way away, but with the Winter meetings in progress where all the execs and managers cavort, wheel, and deal; with varying signing deadlines fast approaching it is hard to not have it reel around from the back to the front of my mind and back again. Spring training starts in two months (hmm, and winter hasn't even come here yet).

Seeing these well-built athletes in tight pants play on a beautiful green grass field in this very American traditional game is pretty special to me. It's a bit like watching an opera - there are stars and bit players, slowly unfolding drama, with a few very exciting moments and as Yogi Berra probably didn't actually say "It ain't over until the fat lady sings". I should watch the Ken Burns baseball video's again. I particularly liked the slow background music that gave the feeling of the lazy summer day sport.

Baseball is the only sport where you can obsess about every minute statistic (such as how this batter hits left handed pitchers with runners on base, day games, away, two outs....) and you can do it day by day, checking the net, reference books, etc, play-by-play, pitch-by pitch. The game goes slowly enough that there is time to think about offensive and defensive tactics before each pitch. Its best being there in a close game on a warm summer's night, but even April when I have to wear long underwear is OK. It's better technically to watch on TV and see replays and erudite (and dumb) commentary which sometimes explain what you don't understand when you are there. But being there amid the noisy crowd in the too-crowded Fenway seats eating the bad food (I don't drink the cat-piss beer they sell) is a pretty great experience.

At Fenway Park each game starts with the announcer saying something like "And now those words you have all been waiting for:" and a tiny little kid steps up to the mike on the field and screams "Play Ball".

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