One writer’s baseball valentine: The love of the game
by Zhila Aghili | Posted on Monday, February 14th, 2011| 860 baseball fanatics read this article
Valentine’s Day is a time for heart shaped boxes filled with candy and greeting cards full of loving sentiments. In the spirit of the holiday, I would like to express my love and adoration for the great game of baseball. Here are few things about this remarkable sport that makes my heart skip a beat.
Before he was the spokesman for Slim Fast, Tommy Lasorda was manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers. From 1976 to 1996, Lasorda’s passion for the game resulted in 8 National West Titles, 4 Pennants, 2 World Series and the United States’ first Gold Medal win in baseball at the 2000, Olympics in Sydney Australia. A media favorite, Mr. Lasorda was never at a loss for words. His heart always on his sleeve, the Hall of Fame manager at one point opined on his tenure in baseball-stating,”Guys ask me, don’t I get burned out? How can you get burned out doing something you love? I ask you, have you ever got tired of kissing a pretty girl?”Love him or hate him, Tommy Lasorda has left a major mark on baseball.
The Squeeze Play
Other than holding a hand of 21 at a Black Jack table, the squeeze play is one of the few things that take my breath away. In the course of a game, when a team is in need of a tie or a go-ahead run, the squeeze play is set in motion when there are less than two outs and a runner at third . When successful, this masterpiece of strategy is almost impossible to defend. A rare occurrence, the squeeze play is a truly a lost art.
Built in 1914, “The Friendly Confines” has been the home of the Chicago Cubs for 95 years. Originally, known as Weeghman Park, Wrigley Field is the second oldest park in the Major Leagues. With its ivy strung walls and the tradition of guest singers who croon “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” at the 7th inning stretch, Wrigley Field is an unique experience for the Harry Caray in all of us.
Red Sox /Yankees Rivalry
Love them or hate them, the New York Yankees versus the Boston Red Sox has been a battle of titanic proportions for over 100 years. Through the course of this battle royal, the teams have combined to win 33 World Series Titles and 51 American League Pennants. Until their next meeting on April 8th 2011, fans will have to wait to renew their dislike for the other in hopes of keeping the dream of their mutual destruction alive and well.
A position played behind six other members of a team, the role of the outfielder goes above and beyond catching fly balls. Players such as Seattle Mariners’ 10 time Gold Glove winner Ichiro Suzuki and the Baltimore O’s standout right fielder Nick Markakis keep the game interesting with their Spiderman leaps and their top gun arms that bullet through the infield in order to fend off potential runs. Who needs Circus Soleil when you have athletes that practically hurdle over 300 ft wall?.