It seems that only last week I was watching the Twins fight and scratch their way to a couple of late season victories to avoid a 100 loss season. I know that 63-99 is only about six tenths of 1 percent better than 62-100, but mentally they are worlds apart. And even though the memory of those 99 losses is fresh in my head there is hope on the horizon. Spring training has arrived. There is baseball being played in America, Major League Baseball has returned. Yes, I admit, the wins and losses this spring are meaningless (except for the Mayor’s Cup Games), and yes the numbers the players put up in Florida will tell us very little about the year ahead, but once again there is hope, and it has been a long time since HOPE has shown up in the hearts and faces of Minnesota sports fans. (Unless, of course, you are talking about Ricky Rubio, who has become a fan favorite in Minnesota and even had his face put on a Diamond Centric shirt. But I don’t “do” the NBA, so I’ve been fairly hopeless since mid-July)
Baseball is BACK. Those of you who follow me on twitter (@baseballpirate) know that I spent a good deal of time during my off-season waiting for the return of baseball season. How many times did I visit www.isitspringtrainingyet.com? At least several times a week, and that’s a modest estimate. And when the site changed from NO! to ALMOST! I was just about the happiest guy around. And then it happened. YES! Finally spring training has arrived.
Baseball, my friends, is back. No more watching grainy pseudo-illegal video feeds of Caribbean games. No more re-plays of the 1987 and 1991 playoffs. No more waiting. And while for many casual baseball fans spring training will begin to lose it’s magic, and will begin to call for “meaningful” games to be played, I could live in this world of hope and excitement for months on end. Today, and everyday this spring, the Twins have hope for the upcoming season. My cup runnith over with hope and my belly is full. Baseball is back in America and hope springs eternal in Minnesota once again.