Wednesday, February 13, 2013
SPRING TRAINING & NEW OPPORTUNITIES
As soon as the scribes for legendary Punxsutawney Phil uttered the exciting words,
“And so ye faithful,
there is no shadow to see
An early Spring for you and me,”
Now baseball has been hit hard over the last year with the endless debates of PEDs, lists, accusations, injuries and an absence of Hall of Fame inductees. But for our sport, the one we love, spring training brings hope and possibilities.
“Stephen Strasburg told ESPN on Monday that the 2013 season presents a "great opportunity" for him with no restrictions on how many innings he's allowed to pitch, and he hopes to become the Washington Nationals' "workhorse in the rotation.”” (Read HERE) We need young guys in baseball talking positive like this, wanting to be workhorses, wanting to take it to another level. The Red Sox are certainly ramped up for a good season with Big Papi at the helm. I look forward to the rivalry to be reborn this season- just what our sport needs- a revitalized Sox-Yanks blood battle.
Derek Jeter is right on track to start opening day according to reporters. According to Buster Olney reporting for ESPN, you want to see Jeter and Mariano Rivera both play well. It is critical frankly because of lack of moves for the team in the off-season. From the young workhorses to our faithful veterans, we need energy and will to succeed. And maybe the Yankees battle for second and third place in the early months of the season, so what, it will make us stronger. And battling game by game is nothing new for us Bronx Bombers. We are used to it.
The Yankees have new possibilities at third base with Kevin Youkilis, and new possibilities in the outfield, with Brett Gardner back in business for 2013. According to the New York Daily News (HERE), “The presence of both Ichiro Suzuki and Brett Gardner in the outfield might prompt Girardi to manage differently at times, trying to manufacture runs rather than relying on the long ball.” That kind of thinking gets me excited as a fan- quick extra base hits, runners in the scoring position and a new management style that reflects the 2013 evolving Yankee team.
Although the MLB isn’t the top watched sport on television, more and more fans continue to pack the parks and that’s never going to stop. “Right now, mass viewership occurs primarily via TV; down the road it may be via tablets, mobile devices or some other form of technology that is yet to be invented. It does not matter; whatever the viewing platform, baseball will still be boring in comparison to other sports that have the physical space and healthy number of live-action participants necessary to evolve,” states the New York Times article (HERE) “Football, Baseball and the Evolving Tastes of Fans.” We Yankee fans love the sport- sure we all wish we could sit in box seats in the Bronx every game, but we will catch the game anyway we can and that’s not going away. In fact, our farm fans in Scranton/Wilkes-Barre couldn’t wait to add “their signatures to the last steel beam that will be erected during the $43.3 million reconstruction of PNC Field,” home of our Triple-A team.
A Yankee fan is a Yankee fan for life- whether we make a trip to the Staten Island Yankees or the Trenton Thunder or our major league New York Yankees in the Bronx, we can’t get enough and there is always the possibility of winning- it’s our tradition and surely that’s enough to get excited for spring to begin.
--Suzie Pinstripe, BYB Opinion Columnist
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