Writer, Church leader, Eccentric Nut, Marketer

I'm Church Leader, Writer, Speaker, Marketer, Kindness Project Founder, Broadcaster and Superhero. But most important I'm a Husband, Father and a worshiper of Jesus.

20 October 2009

Fall Ball

As much as I love summer baseball... I love fall ball more. Storylines in fall ball seem to ebb and flow just a little more drastically. In a game where man cannot succeed on brawn alone, fall ball can expose the weak-minded or under-prepared... and can make heroes of those who overcome.

I remember what having MY team playing fall ball felt like. In an admittedly somewhat Uncle Rico fashion, every couple days in the fall my friends and I will shoot "I miss 92 and 93" messages to each other. Do you remember what it felt like? Barbers and Burger flippers. Basketball teams and Bus drivers... they all knew who was pitching that night. Electricity.

Saturday October 24th 1992; Game 6. I set the VHS player at home knowing I could see history that night and I wanted to capture it for all eternity (because "tape" is forever right?). We went for a family dinner at my Grandmother's house... but nobody ate around the table. 25 of us were crammed in den... huddled like a Normal Rockwell painting around a glowing TV. In the 7th inning, we decided to hurriedly get in the car and drive home to see the end... only to arrive to a dead VCR! I called my friend who was in a tizzy. The north end of town had missed a great portion of the game while on the south side we were sitting pretty! About a half hour of intensity... Otis Nixon chose to bunt a Mike Timlin ball weakly back to the mound. Cue Joe Carter's (who was playing 1st in the National League park) jumping exhibition.

Southern Ontario went nuts. It was beautiful.

October 23rd 1993; Game 6. I was in a friend's basement pacing as Mitch "Wild Thing" Williams peered down to Dutch Daulton through the greasy strands of his long icky mullet. Curt Schilling sat in the dugout with a towel over his head (as he'd been doing for months now in late inning scenarios) nearly knowing what was about to happen. All of a sudden... Joe was jumping again. And so was I. And so was Brantford. We got in my friend's mom's little sports car, took the roof off and I stood on my feet as we drove up and down Colborne and Dalhousie street honking our horns and waving towels along with thousand of others. It was a collective euphoria. Like a massive endorphin release that a nation experienced together... two falls in a row.

Baseball is calming to me. It would be a part of any ideal day I could sketch out. What I love about fall ball... is that as the stakes get higher... the game slows even more. Pitchers consider what pitch they are about to throw just a little bit longer. You can see the wheels spinning in the psyche of a batsman as he decides on whether the long season and cold eastern seaboard evening will still allow him to take a mighty wallop... or if all he has left is enough for a slap hit to right.

Great is baseball.

"Enjoy life a little. Let us go forth a while and get better air in our lungs. Let us leave our close rooms. The game of ball is glorious."
Walt Whitman

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