Baseball is fun. Losing sometimes muffles that part of the game. Winning amplifies it. But at the end of every game, win or lose, there is always a silver lining, there is always fun. Sometimes, as on Monday, when the Twins lost 20-6, the silver lining hits you over the head (Michael Cuddyer pitching!), and other times, when the Twins lose a heart breaker, it is harder to find (if the bullpen blows a late lead and you only manage 3 hits against Luke Hochevar, but Blackburn pitched 7 scoreless). Look hard, remember the ebb and flow that is baseball, and count your blessings.
The NFL ended a nearly 6 month long lock out earlier this week, and are dominating the sports headlines as player X agrees to terms with team Y during a fast and frenzied free agent signing period. There are a lot of people that will tell you that football is more popular than the baseball, that the NFL scores tremendous ratings during their Sunady broadcasts, and that fantasy football has gone places that the old Roto-league baseball games will never go. These same folks will tell you that football, not baseball, is America’s game.
Those people are wrong. Baseball is America’s game. Always has been, always will be.
The NFL is not fun. The NFL is loud. The NFL is obnoxious. The NFL is hype. The NFL is abrasive. I think everyone has an old college buddy, or a weird cousin that is like the NFL. This guy is often the life of a party, people gravitate towards him, he tells wild stories and he wants everyone to envy him. For a little while, you might. But you always tire of them. This person might be fun to hang around with once a week, but you certainly cannot handle them everyday. They are not your friend. They are just noise.
Imagine an NFL season with 182 games. Imagine all of that every day of the week for 6 months. How fast would you burn out. How many times could you watch 22 guys running around crashing into each other. How many 90 minute “2-minute warnings” could you make it through? How much of your life are you willing to give up as NFL referees review ANOTHER play? The NFL could not survive 182 games, certainly the players could not either.
I’m willing to admit that comparing the NFL and MLB is not apples to apples, but part of what makes baseball so great is that it IS everyday. It does not need a 24 hour news network to report on every player signing and every team meeting. The games are enough. The competition on the field is enough. The silver lining is enough.
The NFL might be back, but remember, baseball is fun.
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