For the Love of Baseball

Baseball has been a lifelong love, ever since my dad took me to Shea Stadium for the first time in 1973 — a season which should have prepared me for a lifetime of “heartbreak”, as the Mets were awful, then went on an awesome streak to make the playoffs and then the World Series in the most unlikely fashion, only to lose in the seventh game.  As a further bit of “about me” background, then, here are a few “video collages” I’ve put together of baseball scenes near and dear to my heart:

There Used To Be A Ballpark: Saying Good Bye to Shea Stadium, 2008
Shea might have been a “dump” (in large part, it really was) — but it was “our dump”, and so will always have a special place in the hearts of Mets fans.

A New Day Dawns: Saying Hello to Citi Field, 2009

Trying To Be Fair and Balanced: Scenes From the New Yankee Stadium, 2009
It is said (and I agree with it, in general) that a true Mets fan can’t root for the Yankees (and vice versa).  As a bit of a “mental reservation,” though, we tell ourselves, “I don’t like the Yankees — but I do root for Jeter, Mariano, Joe Torre (in days past), etc.”  So, in that “ecumenical” spirit, this is my nod to the powerhouse in the Bronx.

A Special Year for Phillies Fans, 2008
I work in an office of Phillies fans, so I can’t leave them out of this.  I put this video together for a special friend who is a long-suffering Phils fan and who, after losing her dad suddenly, found great healing in “rooting along with him” as they won the World Series in 2008 the season after his passing.

Epilogue

Ebbetts Field

Inheriting a love of the old Brooklyn Dodgers from my mom’s family and stories that they used to tell about the glory days in Flatbush in the ’50′s (the “Boys of Summer” of Duke Snider, Pee Wee Reese, Jackie Robinson, Gil Hodges, and all the rest), I’ve always had a special feeling for the older Dodger teams (even though they moved away from Brooklyn 9 years before I was even born).  The world moves forward, though, and sometimes we realize things that help us move on, too.  I had such a revelation not too long ago, myself: if the Dodgers had never left Brooklyn, the Mets never would have been born (and my “memories of Shea” never would have happened).

Maybe it’s a “circle of life” thing, but this actually helped me “tuck away” those Brooklyn Dodger reveries and live more in the current baseball moment — though, ironically enough, the Mets’ new ballpark (Citi Field) was designed in large part as an ode to the Dodgers’ old Ebbetts Field home, as the Mets owner grew up a fervent Dodgers fan.  And, of course, the Mets’ most celebrated manager, Gil Hodges (who led them to the “miracle” World Series win in ’69) was a centerpiece of those old Dodger teams.  So, I guess it all comes together at a certain point!

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