Opening Day

>> Monday, April 6, 2009

It's Opening Day, baseball fans! This used to be a day where I would stay home from whatever I had to do and sit on the couch all day watching baseball games, but alas I have many things to do and so cannot give my whole day to it as I once did.

And, to be honest, I got a little burned out on baseball last season. (Gasp! I know!) I do love baseball, but it's almost too accessible these days, with the online and TV baseball packages that are available. I have to say too that playing fantasy baseball changed the way I watched baseball games. Maybe not in a bad way, but it did change the way I watched, and part of me longed for the days when I rooted for teams and watched the standings, rather than rooting for players and their individual stats.

So now, for the first time in a long time, I am fantasy-baseball-free as the season begins, have only an MLB online account to watch and listen to games (no Direct TV Extra Innings package, and no MLB TV!) and I am ready to renew my relationship with baseball. Let's call it a "renewal of vows." It's time to rediscover the love. (Perhaps baseball and I should go on a cruise together.)

My plan to get back to basics--and we'll see how long it lasts--is to start listening to radio broadcasts and reading newspaper accounts again, even when I could be watching games online. As a kid I could, on a good night, get AM giant 700WLW out of Cincinnati, and I would listen to Marty Brennaman and Joe Nuxhall cover Reds games. I loved those nights. Baseball games weren't all over TV, and I lived four hours from the nearest stadium. Broadcasts from Cincinnati might as well have been broadcasts from Mars--and they were just as exotic and enthralling to me. Later, as a teenager, I loved going in to my school's library every morning and checking the box scores in the newspaper. Now that almost every game played can be found on television somewhere, I miss those more personal connections to baseball, and I want to get them back.

But part of this radical transformation for me as a baseball fan has also been a transfer of allegiance from one team to another--something that I, like most sports fans, find anathema. Why I have abandoned the Cincinnati Reds after decades of fandom for a team that could not be farther away from my home and a city that could not be farther from my experience is probably best left for a rant of its own, but let us just say that it's a combination of mismanagement and inaccessiblity and leave it at that for now.

So tonight at 7:05 p.m. I may tune in to hear my new favorite team--the Los Angeles Dodgers--in their opener against Jake Peavy and the Padres.

Or, I may just read about it in tomorrow's newspaper.


Stephen,  April 6, 2009 at 11:15 AM  

I'm bummed because the Red Sox opener has been postponed until tomorrow due to the rain.

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