4/1: For the Love of the Game

By Stephanie Calvano

Rogers Hornsby said, “People ask me what I do in winter when there’s no baseball.  I’ll tell you what I do.  I stare out the window and wait for spring.”  I share this sentiment with the legendary second baseman.

Stephanie Calvano

Stephanie Calvano

The Yankees take top honors among baseball fans nationally with 11% of those fans saying they support the Pinstripes.  In New York, 58% of the state’s registered voters who are baseball fans do the same.  As a person who shares this allegiance, I couldn’t have imagined a more picture-perfect ending to the 2009 season than a 27th World Series Championship, but with my elation came a sense of sadness.  Baseball season was over … now what?  I think A. Bartlett Giamatti put it perfectly… “It breaks your heart.  It is designed to break your heart.  The game begins in spring, when everything else begins again, and it blossoms in the summer, filling the afternoons and evenings, and then as soon as the chill rains come, it stops and leaves you to face the fall alone.”

Yeah, sure, I enjoy football season, and it gives me my sports fix through the winter, but it’s not the same.  I don’t watch football with the same knowledge and passion that I do with baseball.  I wait and wait for the day pitchers and catchers report to spring training.  It’s a signal that a new season (as well as a visit to Florida for spring training) is just around the corner!

To say the least, I can’t wait for Sunday!  No, not because it’s Easter, and I have an excuse to eat chocolate all day, but because its baseball’s opening night!  And, as if the start of the 2010 season wasn’t exciting enough for this baseball fan, the game is a marquee matchup between my Bronx Bombers and rival Boston Red Sox.  The baseball gods must really love me this year!!

As the 2010 season begins, and my quest to attend a game at every Major League Baseball stadium continues, I have one thing to say, “Play ball!!!”