Hearty congratulations to the Boston Red Sox. Purely as a baseball organization, they've been through an awful lot since September 2011 between blowing that big lead, a season with Bobby Valentine (who I'm sure put a bullet through his television at about 11:15 PM), and having to completely gut their team that season and remake it in a completely different way under a new manager. It proves that if you have ownership that knows what the hell they're doing, you can rise from the ashes. I can think of another organization that blew two big leads and made a worse managerial hire who is still irrelevant even with their own network and a brand new ballpark. (An organization, I might add, that wants to follow this model even though they put themselves in a completely different situation.) But I digress.
The atmosphere in the ballpark jumped out through the television and strangled me. Not in a bad way. And I have to admit ... as much as this Mets fan loathes Shane Victorino, that many people singing "Three Little Birds" by Marley ... Victorino's at-bat music ... was damn cool. Part of me hopes that Mets fans do cool things like that (or like when Nationals fans sang A-Ha for Michael Morse) the next time our team is good. But then there's another part of me that thinks that the kind of fan that would be clever enough to do that was driven out by Wilpon mismanagement. And even if we do sing along to something, it'll probably be something terrible like "Call Me Maybe". But not only were these fans ready and at full throat, but did so with other things in their hearts. Perhaps the coolest thing I've seen all night:
Tear jerker! Fans flocking to Boylston to kiss the Boston Marathon finish line after the Red Sox win. Special. pic.twitter.com/GQdt5d8fW2— Brittney (@TheBwitTwit) October 31, 2013
That to me is a fitting way to end the night, and the baseball season.
I've been blogging for eight an a half years ... parts of nine baseball seasons (and boy are my arms tired). The one thing I think I can honestly say is that blogging has rekindled my love affair with baseball. How do I know this? I watched pretty much every single postseason game, or at least parts of all of them, this October. The easy answer to this is that I've been starved for good baseball, having seen very little of it since the last out at Shea Stadium. (Post season baseball makes going back and watching a Mets game seem like it's in slow motion.)
But things change for me as I grow older. Things I never appreciated before sidle up to me now and win me over. Not even big things ... for example: weekday afternoon games. It's something I've taken to enjoying more out of necessity than anything. And once the middle of September came and went, I realized that there would be no more until April. And even for a man in his mid 40's, that depresses the hell out of me. Or maybe it depresses me because I'm in my mid 40's. I'm not sure. But I know that although I've never been one to say that life is empty without baseball ... other sports and activities do fill my time in an enjoyable way ... I find I miss the hell out of baseball more and more every year. It's part the community I miss, it's part those weekday games, and it's part the baseball tinged road trips that I enjoy the hell out of. (I was lucky enough to do two this year ... Chicago, and one which was less talked about by me yet no less fun: Toronto.) And I'm sure there's other things in play that are significant only to me.
So forgive me if I'm a little bummed tonight as baseball season comes to a close. The 2013 season is done, and it seems like a child is leaving to make their way in the world (I write this analogy as "She's Leaving Home" by the Beatles plays on my iTunes.) Even though I root for a team whose last five seasons all seem like one long awful season, one bad dream, I still appreciate baseball. If my love for baseball doesn't last a lifetime after that, then I'll hate to experience what baseball will do to break us up.
Shane Victorino had the deciding hit in the deciding game of the World Series. And yet ... I still love this stupid game.
Jimmy Rollins spews nonsense for FOX Sports. And yet ... I still love this stupid game.
The Wilpons own my favorite team. And yet ... I still love this stupid game.
We're going to most likely be outbid for Stephen Drew after his home run in Game 6 of the World Series. And yet ... I still love this stupid game.
To all this, I raise a toast to baseball. You test me many times. But I still love you more than ever, you rascal. Until we meet again on March 30th, here's to you ... and all the relationships you cultivate and strengthen. You, baseball, are all right.no comments