Friday, April 1, 2011

The Boys Are Back in Town

It was a great day yesterday. Major League Baseball got down to brass tacks, the teams pared their rosters down to 25 players, and stadiums across the nation rocked with fans eager to get back into the swing of things.
The Grapefruit League in Florida and the Cactus League in Arizona closed up camps and the trains, buses and airlines were packed with teams and players either moving to their respective MLB cities or minor league camps, or sadly, home.
I’ve never been to an MLB opening day game, the closest I’ve come is a team’s home opening. But the excitement was still there. Granted it wasn’t exciting as it might have been on opening day, but what the heck, it was great.
Yesterday, the hot dogs had been boiling for hours, their snappy casings fairly bursting. The field was immaculate, the crowd expectant. And the players were ready to finally get going on the season.
There were three games in a row on ESPN, enough for any rabid fan to overdose. I was primarily interested in what my beloved Atlanta Braves were doing … they were after all, playing the very first game of the day.
And what a day it was! The Cincinnati Reds won with a walk-off home run by Ramon Hernandez, the Yankees came from behind to win, San Diego held on to beat St. Louis in extra innings, and the Dodgers beat the Giants.
Jason Heyward
The best part of the day? Atlanta Braves outfielder Jason Heyward slammed a home run during his first at-bat of the day, duplicating his opening day feat last year. He is one of only two MLB players to hit a home run in his first at-bat of the year, for the first two years of his professional career.

The way the winning teams were jumping around and cheering and slapping hands, you'd have thought they'd won the seventh game of the World Series. I love it, I love baseball ... it grown men into little boys.
Life is good!

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