18 Innings Of Fun


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All winter I eagerly waited for the baseball season to return. Relief from withdrawal began when I read that pitchers had reported for spring training and, a few days later, their teammates joined them. To feed my addiction, I caught a few spring training games on the radio and watched a couple when they were aired. My excitement grew when April arrived. I checked the schedule and expected to hit the Rogers Center on April 19. I mentioned my plan to BabyGirl who crushed me with: “I want you to wait until I can come too.” My heart fell. And it also rejoiced. During the previous season, she wouldn’t have cared, but now she was a fan. Creating a fan is hard work. Harder still the way the Blue Jays have been struggling the last two seasons. Never the less, we support our team.

Finally, today was The BIG Day! We attended our first ball game of the season and what a game. 18 innings. It was like a double-header. We got our pizza, our soft drinks, our popcorn and our ice cream. (No tummy aches. With 18 innings, we had plenty of time to pace ourselves.) We also got some new Blue Jays gear because, hey, new season, new merch, right?

Since it was Jr. Jays Saturday, there were loads of activities and prizes for BabyGirl: face painting, bracelets, Jr. Jays playbook, tattoos and a free photo of her in a Jays jersey against the Jays logo as a backdrop. It’s the third season she gets it done. I didn’t think she cared much for the photos until today when she said: “I can add this one to my collection.” That’s my Jr. Jay! And of course, she had to run the bases after the game.

And we both saw our first runner. The first swing Bautista took at the bottom of the 13th inning was a base hit. The crowd roared. Yes! We are going to win this! The Jays are going to come through! And that’s when the fan of the year decided to kill the momentum. Thanks dude, you’re a real sweetheart! *&^$#@ !((_-%#. I loved the way security and police tackled him. Too bad they couldn’t hurt him a little. Just a little. You know. Nothing serious. A bruise or two. Nothing that could be considered police brutally.

The grand finale was brought to us by Rajai Davis with a walk-off single. I could actually see and feel the relief in the crowd and the players when it dawned on all of us that the game was won. Unfortunately, I can’t embed it, but you gotta watch it to get a sense of what I mean.

What’s your favorite sport to watch? Would you have sat through 18 innings? How has your kid crushed you?

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