Taking a break from our usual oeuvre, The League is talking baseball!
Contrary to popular belief I do have hobbies beyond Legos, Star Trek, or The Walking Dead. Baseball has been a big part of my life, being born in Pittsburgh I many of my early memories were spent cheering on the “Outfield of Dreams” consisting of Barry Bonds, Bobby Bonilla, and Andy Van Slyke (who remains my favorite Pirate of all time).
I vividly remember the 1992 NLCS where 40 year old Sid Bream scored from second, simultaneously sending the Braves to the World Series and ushering in a new era of shitty Pirates baseball. I remember my father screaming a cavalcade of expletives at the television and kicking the coffee table as my mother ushered me out of the house. She figured it would be best if we left the house for a while after that.
Through my pre-teen years and into early adulthood, I continued to root for the Pirates despite living in Philadelphia. My father and I would pick up cheap tickets for Pirates/Phillies games at Veterans Stadium full well knowing that we would be berated mercilessly for 3+ hours straight.
When I started at Temple University, I became more of a Phillies guy, despite my father’s protests. In 2002 when I started dating my wife, I found out she was a huge Phillies fan. A good bit of the first summer was listening, watching or attending Phillies games. On one of our first Phillies game together, she asked for a scorecard. I figured she would wanted a souvenir from our date, and when we made it to our seats (they were somewhere in the 500 level) she sat down and kept score. I was not expecting that in the least, and Phillies games became a big part of our relationship.
Over the years we traveled across the country, visiting stadiums and collecting baseballs. At our wedding reception in 2008 we split our 26 tables into National and American Leagues, each with their respective pennant and coordinating floral arrangement. Our wedding favors were peanuts and cracker jacks.
I endured some truly mediocre Phillies teams in that time, back during the doldrums of 2004-05 when Citizens Bank Park wouldn’t be sold out every game like they have been the last two seasons. During the 2008 World Series run, I was sitting 11 rows behind home plate when Shane Victorino hit a grand slam off of CC Sabathia in Game 2 of the NLDS.
I was one of the half million fans that called out sick to line Broad Street for the Phillies World Series Parade. It was such an electric experience that I’ll never forget, and I was there to share it with my wife. In 2010 we bought a partial season ticket plan for the Phillies, and have kept it ever since. And yes, on the occasion that I make it to a Phils/Pirates game … I do wear my Pirates jersey.
Check out other members of the League, and their take on this weeks topic:
The Lair of The Dork Horde talks about baseball ice cream helmets!
Cavalcade of Awesome assembled a pop culture fantasy baseball team. I appreciate the inclusion of Jimmy Dugan.
Team Hellions broke out some Avengers Annuals from 1987 featuring America’s pastime.