Monday, March 29, 2010

Runner's High... or Low?

There is less than one week until Red Sox opening day at Fenway, but unlike most pinkhats and bluehats I am not dusting off my cap. The pinkhat inside me wants to guess what song each player has chosen for his saunter up to bat. The slowly emerging bluehat in me is excited that I'll recognize many of the players by sight and know what position they play.*

This year I am immune to the elation mounting in Red Sox Nation, whether it be for peanuts, beer, fantasy team expectations, a particular player, or just a general love of the sport. Instead I'm dreading this commitment I've made to watch or listen to every game this season.

Sure the first few games will be fun. It will be great not to flinch when someone requests the count; this year I'll know that balls come before strikes (3 and 2 is a full count). I'll know the difference between a no-hitter and a perfect game (no hits vs. nobody gets on base, so no hits, walks, etc.) and why the catcher scrambles for the ball if he fails to catch a strike (the batter becomes a runner if there is no one on first or if there are two outs).

Most of all I'll know that it is possible to learn baseball. I used to give up on following a game the first time players tagged up on a caught ball. Now I understand the rule (tag up if there is no force play)... sort of.

But what about after the start-of-the-race feel of watching and learning the sport wears off? Like after game three or four? Sometime after the gun goes off this season I'm sure the fatigue will set in. I'll be ready to tune back into my reality television and empty my purse of the baseball reference materials I carry everywhere now. Game five or six?

In honor of the pain I anticipate this project will cause me, I was going to blog about the Infield Fly Rule and other scary topics suggested in the comments section (and pass the pain on to the reader). Instead, I am going to save those topics until I witness them in a game.

That will give me something to look forward to and maybe maintain the "runners high" a little longer. Game seven or eight?

*Thus avoiding the somewhat faulty method I have for impressing Dave who often doesn't notice when this information is flashed on the TV screen.

1 comment:

  1. Baseball, unlike many of the other pro sports, is a true test of wills and determination as the season is so very long with so many games to be played. And that is for the fans let alone the players. 162 games would be a daunting task for even the most die-hard of a blue hat (play-offs not included). But by watching all the games, you will start to focus not so much on the rules as the subtleties of the game. Why did pitcher A throw that pitch with that count? Why did player A throw to that base on that play? It will be like anything else in life. If you love it, it won't be hard. If it is something you do just for the sake of doing it, it will be very difficult. Good luck.