Thursday, February 14, 2008

An Ode to Spring Training

Pitchers and Catchers report today. Many people wonder why I am so excited about the fact that Pitchers and Catchers are heading to their respective warm weather climate to throw for a few hours per day. Well today the hopes officially start anew, and as a Cubs fan whose liftime motto has been wait till next year, Pitchers and Catchers lacing up officially means it's next year. It's not just hope for the fans but for the players. This could be the year they win their first championship, or their 3rd, or for some a chance to make an impact. It's a time for Champions to defend their titles and a time for rookies to finally get a chance to, as Crash Davis put it, "hit white balls during batting practice". It is also the time in the year when chemistry, which is essential in a locker room is formed. These guys are spending hours together hanging out, having a good time, making jokes, playing pranks, and building their working friendships. Once the season rolls around the pressure mounts over records, steroids, hit streaks, batting slumps, and interviews. The game stops being about fun and it becomes work. Not to say their job is harder than ours in our respective cubicles, but it's a time for grown men to relish the fact that they get to play a kids game because they were good enough and worked hard enough at it. Not to mention the fact that on the 18th the rest of the team shows up to get ready for Spring and in the not to distant future...Baseball will be played on warm sunny days in Arizona and Florida. Not too far down the road from here is opening day in April, which signifies a new year of baseball. I know that 4Real and I are excited, while discussing catching an upcoming game at Hi Corbett (Tucson) he said "I'm down, I'll wear pajamas and race people barefoot" I missed the obvious Major League/Willy Mays Hayes reference, and when he informed me of my egregious error I said, "Damn, I whiffed on that one like the Allstate guy trying to hit a curveball" (A Valid Major League counter-reference/recovery). There are many (BC) who don't care about baseball, but there are those of us who love the game because it's more than just "a simple game, you throw the ball, you hit the ball, you catch the ball, sometimes you win, sometimes you lose, and sometimes it rains". Think about that for awhile.