Dillon Giancola: Shaking off the baseball blues

dillon

Baseball used to be my number one sport; my ride or die, my one and only, and whatever other terms the kids use these days to describe their significant other. 

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I still like baseball, and it might well be my favourite sport, but it’s becoming harder and harder to maintain the same love and devotion of following the sport as I had for most of my life. 

Does anyone else feel this way? Do you too have the baseball blues? It’s moments like these we need to band together, lift each other up, and vow not to give up on our beloved pastime. 

Yes, we’ve all heard the doom and gloom surrounding the game — kids don’t play anymore and nobody under the age of 50 enjoys watching it on TV. While there’s truth to this, I also believe the sport will reclaim some sort of glory eventually, at least for a time. 

However, I’d feel more confident if I was doing my part, if I was loyally watching every game like I used to and keeping the fire burning. But I’m not. I want to watch the Blue Jays, but they’re not good, and aren’t trying to win games. I do think the future is bright, but we can only live in the present, and right now I’d rather watch Big Brother than see the Jays lose 11-5 to the Oakland A’s on a Tuesday night. 

Albert Pujols is one of the best players of all time. His return to St. Louis for the first time since leaving the Cardinals for a 10-year contract with the Angels was a special moment. It’s too bad nobody really cared, and most people either don’t know who Pujols is, or forget that he was basically Mike Trout before Trout himself. 

If you go to any park or camp site, you’re more likely to see father and son tossing a softball — the big, ugly green ones used in slow pitch — than you are a good old fashioned hardball. I’ll never stop being annoyed by this. Softballs are to only be used during slow pitch games because we have no choice, not because we prefer them to hardballs. 

This is the problem with loving baseball — you’re complaints fall on deaf ears, and you come across as an old man asking kids to get off his lawn. There’s nothing wrong with being old, and some would say I look it, but I’m not — yet. If it wasn’t for baseball, I’m pretty sure people would mistake me for being 25. 

Oh, how I long to debate the merits of the MLB ball changing, resulting in more home runs being hit this year than ever before. Unfortunately, the average person isn’t aware of this, and they surely don’t have a problem with more home runs. 

So, I ask you: Walk with me, fellow baseball enthusiasts. We can keep our fandom alive, and evangelize the joys of the sport to those who will listen. There is still hope. Together, I promise, we can make baseball great again. 

Dillon Giancola covers Peace Region sports for the Alaska Highway News. Email him at sports@ahnfsj.ca.

© Copyright Alaska Highway News

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