Monday, July 19, 2010

Please Don't Take Me Out to the Ballgame

Last night I went to the Cubs game at Wrigley Field.  I don't go to many baseball games, mainly because baseball is about as exciting to me as watching paint dry.  But, every couple of years or so my friends or coworkers have an extra ticket, and it sounds like fun at the time, so I go.  And then I'm miserable and vow that I'm just not going to do it again.  I was in great company, Wrigley Field is always a treat, and it was fun to see my friends, but God is baseball boring.

Now, football I like, particularly NFL.  In football, at least every play doesn't seem exactly the same, the players move in unison down the field, there's potential for a sack, a fumble, a turnover, a defensive touchdown, a huge play.  Obviously in baseball every play isn't exactly the same, but it seems like that to me as a spectator.  All of the players, with the possible exception of three on base, are always in the same spot on the field.  The pitcher always sends the ball the same way.  Maybe he mixes up the pitches, but I can't tell.  The batter always swings or does not swing.  Maybe the batter makes contact.  Pop ups that go to the outfield are almost always caught.  Occasionally you get a homerun (in fact, there were three last night) or a foul ball that goes into the stands, but even that doesn't do a whole lot for me.  My friend K, who like most other men knows the stats and scores of every sport going back 30 years, tried to explain to me that baseball does involve strategy, but it is more like a chess game, where each player plays a part.  It's a quieter strategy than is evident in football.  He explained that a good left handed pitcher is the holy grail, since most batters are right handed, and that the shortstop is the most difficult position, and other factual tidbits.  I think part of the problem is that from the stands it's hard for me to decipher what the pitch did, due to the speed, or even to particularly appreciate what the batter does with it.  At least in football I can watch the ball, watch the pass or the throw, see the opening, groan when the QB misses the opening or gets intercepted. It's just easier to follow the details, be it on television or in the stands.  I don't know - maybe I just have to accept that I'm not a baseball person.  I'm happy the Cubs won and all, but I won't be going back for at least two more years.

And with that......26 days until NFL preseason...and Sundays in front of the old DirectTV NFL Sunday Ticket!   

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