Whether you’re still on a high from the Chicago Cubs winning the World Series or hopeful the St. Louis Cardinals will pull themselves above their lifelong rival, there is an excitement in the air. Tomorrow is Opening Day for Major League Baseball.
The great thing about the 2017 season is that, in essence, it will be similar to every other Opening Day for the last 100 years. The essential colors of the brown dirt, the green grass and ivy on the walls, the white bases and baselines are the same as they have always been. And what Jon Lester does on the mound today is similar to what Cy Young did at the turn of the century.
There’s always possibility attached to every pitch; that’s why the game has to move at the pace it does.
People say baseball is boring, but when you realize the possibilities going through the heads of every player on the field during every single pitch, you will understand why baseball moves the way it does.
The batter is trying to figure out if the pitcher is going to try to fool him with the same pitch again. The pitcher is trying to figure out if he can fool the batter with the same pitch again. The catcher is trying to figure out which pitch to call. The third baseman is wondering if he should play up or deep because the batter might bunt or swing for the fences. The shortstop is thinking about fielding a line drive and covering second if they runner on first steals the base. And every player, from those on the field to those in the dugout, is trying to figure out what their role in any of the 100 possible events that may occur within the next minute.
The great thing is that a grandfather can take his 13-year old grandchild to a baseball game and have the same experience as he did in 1966. The only things that are different, really, is the loud music and the food options. Hopefully, in 50 years, that grandchild will be able to share that experience with his or her grandchild, too.
Because unlike many other things in this world, baseball is an oasis, if you let it be. It’s a place where you can almost go back in time and the rest of the world doesn’t really matter for those couple of hours.