Monday, July 6, 2009

The Beautiful Game of Baseball

My friend Chad arranged for some guys to go a ballgame this Saturday. All hail Chad!

Green grass, slow moving game punctuated by strategic moments of excitement, beer and peanuts. Maybe a hot dog filled with nitrates...bliss.

And not any old baseball game, but a game here in New York City. For most people, that evokes the excitement of the new Yankees Stadium or Citifield (the new version of Shea Stadium where this Phillies fan from childhood's hated Mets call home).

But it's not the new stadiums that cost hundreds of millions, or the roster of major leaguers who all earn seven figures that we're going to see. It's minor league ball. YES!

The Brooklyn Cyclones, while a farm team for the Mets I guess, are still a minor league team. And thus there will be no airs of superstardom like A-Rod or even Johnny Damon (who I like from his days on the Red Sox). Just some guys hungry to make it to the big leagues who play hard each night because their stats don't relate to whether they get a performance bonus they might not really need or care about. Rather, they are playing their heart out or they won't play at all. Somehow, the whole atmosphere is all a bit friendlier even with that in mind.

At least it has been at minor league games I've attended in the past. I occasionally don my New Britan Rock Cats cap, enjoying the "who are they?" questions from my conversation partner.

What about you --- are you a minor league or major league fan --- for watching a game live, taking into account all the factors of cost, hassle, crowd and such?

Incidentally, the Phillies Phanatic (picture) is the greatest mascot in baseball, don't you think? I do, as I dressed up in a homemade Phanatic costume as a kid one October...Check out this dual between the Phanatic and an arch-enemy...

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