Opening Day – smorgasboard for the masses

In Uncategorized on March 31, 2010 at 12:44 pm

Well another baseball season is just around the corner. How I used to look forward to Opening Day and the traditional matinée between the Cincinnati Reds and Atlanta Braves.  That game used to be the only game played on Opening Day while all the other major league teams went into action on the following day.  The Reds-Braves opener had all the sacredness of National Holiday.  Just as Thanksgiving falls on the last Thursday in November, so the Reds-Braves contest was held on the first Monday in April.  That the opening game was never nationally televised – not even when Hank Aaron opened the 1974 season one home run shy of Babe Ruth’s record – but simply played for the enjoyment of the sun-soaked denizens of Crosley Field or Riverfront Stadium gave it a decidedly small town feel – an echo of baseball’s origins in Cincinnati.

But things have changed under the shrewd commisionership of Bud Selig.  This year, for example, on the same day the Yanks and Bosox meet in the season opener – a Sunday night game slotted for a prime time national broadcast – the Giants will be playing the Mariners in the last exhibition game of the Cactus League season.  A few years ago,  the Yanks and Red Sox opened the season – in Tokyo of all places – while a week of spring training games back home was still on the schedule. This is sheer lunacy.  Why does the league have to tinker with every sacred tradition ? The reason of course is money.   I just hope the next commissioner of Baseball – hopefully someone along the lines of Bart Giamatti ( pictured in his early days at Yale) or Fay Vincent, two individuals who never would have even thought to tinker with the Braves- Reds  opening day tradition  –  will put an end to this madness.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: