If you needed more evidence that baseball is part of America’s heartbeat, then these past few weeks gave you that.
Armando Galarraga, a pitcher with the Detroit Tigers, was one out from what has only been done twenty times in the past hundred years or so. A perfect game. He had one batter to go, light hitting Jason Donald. Galarraga stared in for his catcher’s sign, got it, wound up and threw. Donald hit a slower grounder to first and Galarraga took off to cover the bag. The ball landed in his glove steps before Donald got there.
In some respects, being an athlete is one of the hardest things a person can do. Sure there are those days when you hit a winning a shot or when you hit a walk off homer or when you throw a pass into the end zone that they will play on Sports Center for the rest of time. On those days, the game comes easy and the fans love you. You enjoy waking up every morning and playing five games in a row because you are in a groove.
The money is certainly good too for even the guys that sit the bench. For instance, in baseball, the minimum salary for a player is $400,000. That is a lot of cash for most people. It is life changing kind of cash. And these players make it in one year.
Every year the baseball season starts with a homerun from someone. It doesn’t always come in the first at bat, nor is it always the first hit. But in some stadium across the United States (and a few times in Puerto Rico or Japan) there is that inevitable moment when someone hits the first homerun of the new season.
That’s the thing in sports, there is always a new season. The New York Yankees won the World Series last year, and while that was a lot of fun when it happened and there were parades and lots of media attention and a World Series’ ring to show for it, a new season came. A new season always comes. Players have to lace up their cleats and pick up their bats and run out on the diamond all over again. It’s a fact of life; champions can never rest comfortably.
Reggie Jackson once said, “God do I love to hit that little round son-of-a-bitch out of the park and make ‘em say ‘Wow!’” Home runs have the propensity to wow us. Baseball is America’s sport no matter what football fans try to argue. There are 162 baseball games a year(more games in a season than [...]
I am breathing a sigh of delight every time I think about it. Baseball season has started. I have been a baseball fan since the first time I dug my sneakers into the dirt around first base so many years ago. I remember the thrill of standing out there, smacking my glove and waiting for [...]
I remember being eight years old and loving basketball. I loved it not because I particularly enjoyed the game, but because at eight I couldn’t sit still for any length of time. I lived in snow country, where the snow piles up to the windows and higher during winter. I had to do something with [...]
Waiting. Just the mention of the word conjures up feelings of frustration. Picture this: It’s Saturday and the kids have tired you out with a soccer game in the morning and in the afternoon shopping for supplies for a school project. But it’s evening now and they are off at a friend’s for the night [...]
In recent years, I get terribly excited as summer ends. I love summer, the long days, the warm weather, the relaxed, vacation feel the days have. But summer is just an appetizer to the time of year that really excites me. Hunting season. For me, hunting season starts at the beginning of September and lasts [...]
The grass was green, the infield slightly pebbly. I had been staring at that field for weeks. I had run onto to it to play first base, but I had never run around the bases. Not even to one. I was eight years old and I was still waiting for my first hit in little [...]
Back in 1999, Josh Hamilton was the top pick in the baseball draft. Number one. He had all the tools to be one of the best players ever. He had speed, power, great fielding skills, and an incredible eye at the plate. He had a bright future. Then he became addicted to crack and saw [...]