Quid Rides? De te Fabula Narratur

What are you laughing at? The joke's on you.

The Real Boys of Summer

Posted by Anthony on April 7, 2009

By Anthony J. Aschettino

The month of April has finally arrived, and with it one of the great holidays in all of America. It is a time of re-birth, a time of taking into account the mistakes one made in the past year and rejoicing in the new life that is given to those who desire it. It is a tale of sacrifice and renewal, a day when all lives once more find meaning and purpose for the coming year. It may not be the most celebrated of holidays, but it is certainly of the utmost importance.

It is Opening Day for Major League Baseball.

Baseball, America’s game, is a national past-time unlike any other. It is no great coincidence that the beginning of each new season takes place during the spring, that time of year when all life in the planet begins anew. At the onset of each season, every team starts from the same place, a veritable tabula rasa upon which to write the deeds to come. There is no first place or last place; there is no unbeatable team nor is there anyone who does not have a chance at the championship. There is only the hope that springs eternal in each man’s heart, the hope that this year will be different from last year (unless you play for the Philadelphia Phillies, in which case you hope that this year is exactly the same as last year).

In reality, there are only a handful of teams who actually have a shot at winning anything this year. There are the usual suspects: the Yankees, Red Sox, Mets, Phillies, Dodgers, White Sox, Cardinals, and Angels, any of whom have a decent chance at making a legitimate run for the World Series. There are some fringe teams, such as the Diamondbacks, Athletics, Marlins, Twins, Cubs, Blue Jays, and Rays, all of whom could mount a serious challenge but will most likely fall short in the long run. Then there are those teams for whom Opening Day will be the only day of the year to celebrate: the Pirates, Orioles, Senators, Padres, Mariners, Tigers, Indians, and others.

Baseball is a business, it is true, but it is a business where those who are willing to spend the time and money to cultivate a winning franchise reap the benefits of that patience, while those who are either overeager to achieve (by signing aging free-agents) or in a state of perpetual rebuilding (Pittsburgh) tend never to amount to much but an occasional flash in the proverbial pan.

We here at Quid Rides will be, as has been the case for the past few decades, supporting the Pittsburgh Pirates once again as they make their Quixotic effort to restore a semblance of glory to the land of the three-rivers. It has been a long time, almost two-decades, since there has been a winning season for the Pirates faithful and it does not appear as if this year will bring any change to that sad state of affairs. Despite having one of the most beautiful stadiums in America, and a long-suffering yet loyal fan base, the powers that be in Pittsburgh have allowed this once great franchise to become the laughing-stock of Major League Baseball.

Having said that, there is nothing certain in Baseball: as the great Yogi Berra once said, “It aint over till it’s over”, and the season is only beginning. Just as all humans would love to have a reset or redo button, baseball provides one such opportunity every year at this time. Come Opening Day, there will be no difference between the Pirates and the Yankees, Red Sox, Phillies, or Dodgers. They will all be equal, and they will all dream dreams of glory to come. If this is not a microcosm of the human experience, certainly it is close enough to warrant an honorable mention.

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