Hi there, friends!
We did it! We’ve made it to September. Normally, once we hit September I get a little sad that baseball season is almost over. This year? I’m feeling a flood of relief that baseball season is almost over. The Twins have been so bad that I’m actually looking forward to baseball season being done so that my blood pressure can get back to normal.
Baseball is the one thing that is a constant over the summer. I know I can turn the TV on to find a game any night of the week. My family will head to the ballpark at least a couple of times per month to take in a game at Target Field. My kids play ball (both base and soft) most evenings from mid April - end of July and we seemingly never have an evening where we don’t get covered in sunscreen and field dirt, And when it’s all done? I’m not gonna lie, I get sad and bored and uneasy.
I’m not exaggerating, we spend nearly every summer night at either baseball, softball, or both.. or at Target Field.
Baseball is the reason my husband and I bonded on our first date. The majority of the vacations we’ve taken together over the 15+ years we’ve been together have been to various MLB ballparks (15 and counting). When baseball season is over, we have significantly less to talk about. Sure, there’s the kids and the house and work and friends and family or even the state of the world. But those things carry much more weight (both good and bad) and some days my brain would rather talk about light topics like baseball or some video from TikTok that might be so stupid that it’s hilarious.
Baseball is the one thing my (no longer with us) dad and I bonded over. My mom and sister didn’t share the love of the game and it was at the Metrodome and Target Field where my dad and I got to spend the best times together.
Baseball gave me some of my best childhood memories, like in 1987 when the Twins won their first world series. That summer, my cousin - who was basically my little brother - died and my world was sad and horrible. I was 8 and it was my first major loss and my little heart was broken. The joy that the Twins brought as they won the ALCS and ultimately the World Series helped distract me from the sadness I’d been feeling.
So in a year like this when baseball has been a major disappointment, I find myself a little relieved that the disappointment will soon be a distant memory. The Twins and their fans have suffered loss after loss after loss this year. Not just with their losing record, but losing players to trades and injury. Losing Nelson Cruz and Jose Berrios to other teams. Losing Royce Lewis before the season even started. Losing Buxton over and over to various injuries (though I can’t say I was surprised by that). Losing Mitch Garver for a while when he... well when he took a fastball to the Mitchballs. Losing Kenta Maeda to Tommy John surgery. Losing other players to injuries as well - so much so that we basically got to preview what our roster was supposed to look like in two-three years when all of our prospects had to suit up and take the field to replace our everyday guys.
Yet somehow despite all of the losing and disappointment, there have been some major bright spots that have made this season not suck:
- Jorge Polanco’s ridiculously good offense
- Buxton’s stellar MVP-worthy play when he is in the lineup
- Fans being back in the stands and able to buy a $12 beer and $7 hot dog rather than being holed up in our homes watching this suckfest at home drinking regularly priced beer and a eating a bland and healthy home cooked meal.
- Watching this losing team play spoiler to top-seated teams and reminding us that despite their horrific record, they’re actually a pretty damn good team
- Getting our prospects used to big league ball and knowing they would be able to make a pretty good team in 2022 and beyond.
- Joe Ryan’s hair
- Tortuga’s 40 mph pitches.. and his base running
So as we start settling into fall and all of the new excitement of football season and school starting and pumpkin spice everything, while winding down this baseball season and all of it’s disappointments, I am realizing I will miss it a little when it’s gone. I’ll be in my seats on Friday at Target Field, knowing that I’m almost out of tickets for the season. I’ll be taking in every last crack of the bat and every out. I’ll even deal with the fans around me getting their hair in my drink or manspreading into my seat (a little PSA, guys: STOP. THE. GOD. DAMN. MANSPREADING. Women do not like to be crunched into their seats by random strangers.)
Despite the awful record, and all of the expletives the Twins have made me utter all season, I’m be a little sad that this season is almost over because I know I’ll be missing all of this in January. And I know you all, dear readers, will be as well. So even with our boys having nothing to play for, enjoy this last few weeks of baseball season. You’re going to be missing it in January, too.