Its nearly that time of year. The one particular celebration that I get completely excited about. For me, there’s no other experience like it – nothing comes close. The excitement is dense and in the air – and I can literally feel the start of the tension in the air. No, its not the start of an annual Easter Egg Hunt….its the start of Major League Baseball’s season.
Yeah, I’ve heard tons about how the players are highly over-paid. The season’s too long. The game is too slow. There’s no excitement in the play. I hear that throughout the baseball season from my friends. Oddly enough, they hear the exact same thing from me about the National Football League’s season. Well, except the “slow” part. 🙂 I love the elegant nature of the baseball season. There’s no clear winner over a 162-game span. Plus there’s a moment-by-moment anticipation of what might happen. A batter can look the part of the hero in one at-bat, and become the goat in the next at-bat. Any player on the field can have a moment of glory with a single catch of a batted ball, only to have that single moment forgotten a few innings later – or forgotten the next day by the fans as he boots the next ball put in play near his position. Every moment offers a point of redemption for previous errors within the game. Each pitch becomes a moment of tactical play. Throw the ball in tight and down around the knees to back the hitter off the plate. Then come back with a fastball up around the height of the batter’s shoulders, but off the outside of the plate – just to change the hitter’s eye-level. Each pitch sets up the next pitch – but must be done within the context of three strikes or four balls. Each at-bat becomes a chess match of sorts – a battle of wills between hitter and pitcher. A ballet of desire – who wants that moment of glory more?
Yes, the start of a new baseball season brings hope. Hope for every fan of every team. No matter how good or bad you may think your team is – at the beginning of the season, there’s always the chance that your team can run the long run to the playoffs. That this will be the season that your team will over-achieve, play above their perceived talent level.
….if there was ever a redeeming quality to this time of year…yeah, Opening Day is right around the corner.