My feelings on the sport of baseball are a bit conflicted right now. There is disappointment that we still don’t have an announcement about the start of the 2020 season. I still expect there to be a season, but the harsh words and mistrust between Major League Baseball owners and players are pretty strong right now.
But, I’d like to take a moment away from that. I’d like to take a lot of moments away, really. I’m trying to remember today what makes baseball great for me. It is not as easy to do, I find, in this current situation.
But here are a few random things I love about baseball, and maybe we all need to try to remember a few things right now:
* A pitchers’ duel.
* Our in-game blog each night.
* As part of my job, getting to know a player when he’s in the minors and later watching him walk into the O’s clubhouse for the first time. This never gets old.
* The great personalities in the game that make us laugh, like Caleb Joseph.
* Brooks Robinson.
* The feeling we all get watching a pitcher chase a no-hitter in the late innings.
* Remembering the excitement I had as a kid seeing Memorial Stadium emerge in all its glory as we drove around Lake Montebello on the way to the game.
* Listening to Chuck Thompson and Bill O’Donnell.
* Smiling when I think about Cooperstown trips to see Brooks, Earl Weaver and Cal Ripken Jr.
* Knowing the game is filled with so many classy players, like Trey Mancini and Nelson Cruz, to name just two.
* Watching a game at any O’s affiliate. Getting to know some wonderful people who work for those teams. I miss the minors. too!
* Sitting in Section 34.
* The energy before a game along Eutaw Street.
* Getting to interact every day here with Orioles fans.
* Remembering the thrill it was for me, a kid from the Baltimore area, to first make it back on the airwaves here in 1998 and getting to host pregame and postgame shows from Camden Yards. That was a career highlight and completely thrilling, and I can still remember how it felt.
I could go on and on and keep listing things for an hour, probably. Maybe more. There is so much I love about baseball. Some of this seems far away right now. I’m not sure watching a game in a stadium without fans will bring back the same feelings. But it’s a start.
So get it together, baseball.
What about the negotiations?: What negotiations? They don’t seem to talk much or give much, either the players or the owners. But the latest is the owners said they would not counter-offer the players union, which is seeking to have 70 games played at full prorated salary. The owners are stuck on 60. Click here for this from USA Today.
“This needs to be over,” commissioner Rob Manfred said.
Truer words were never spoken.