Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Lessons From A Rough Start

Even though every year I swear I'm going to figure out a way to plan things so they don't all pop up in April, it always turns out to be the busiest month of the school year. There a lot of extracurricular stuff going on in addition to the planning, the marking, and so on.

It's also the start of baseball season!

However, my beloved Toronto Blue Jays are off to a rough start. As of this writing, they are 6-13 and that's actually a bit better than it was a few days ago.

No lie: I was feeling down about this and actually stopped watching a few games. My sports therapy wasn't very theraputic. But then there were a couple of games that brought me complete and utter joy, despite the hovering spectre of 13 losses and being in last place. (Not to mention four injured players on the DL.)

On Sunday, Marcus Stroman pitched a wonderful complete game against the Angels. For awhile, the game was actually quite dismal: a ridiculous call by the umpire lead the Angels scoring one run, and for a long time it looked like that was all there was going to be, and lack of offense was going to sink an amazing pitching job.

But then! A trio of homeruns by Travis, Pillar and Goins cemented a healthy lead and Stroman got a complete game win! I had fun watching a baseball game again! It was glorious.

Last night, the Jays were in St. Louis, which is my second favourite ball park after home. The lineup was released a few hours before the game, and Russell Martin (my favourite player and everyday catcher) was slotted at third base. What in the world?? It was confusing, but strangely delightful.

The game went up and down with Jays continuing to lose the lead. But there was a moment of baseball magic: Chris Coghlan dove over the catcher at home plate to score a run. Despite that, the game had to go into extra innings. In the 11th, Marcus Stroman, a pitcher (!!!) was put in to pinch hit and got a double that would win the game. In it was a night of the strange being magical.

I am recapping these two games because they've taught me a lot. Yes, times can get rough, and even if they are mostly down, you really have to hold onto those moments of joy and light to keep you going.

I think I've fallen for baseball so hard because it's a game where there is always almost tomorrow, and you can hope for better. You also know there will be more losses, no matter who you are; but even so, you end up losing with your friends by your side and in the end, it's the teamwork that counts more than the win anyway.

(Note: tonight's game was rained out.)

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