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October 27, 2002

America's Sport

Let me extend a hearty congratulations to the World Champion Anaheim Angels, who tonight won the World Series, defeating the San Francisco Giants 4-1 in Game 7. A most anti-climatic ending to a most anti-climatic sport. I always loved playing baseball when I was a kid—I still do, but seriously...watching it just ain't my thing. I started watching Game 7, and after the first inning, composed of many foul balls, some strikes, and a general lack of excitement, I must say, even World Series action cannot make the sport much more exciting than it is.

Sure, when you're standing at the plate, awaiting the pitch, it's fun as hell—I've been there. It's even fun when the batter pops it up, you get to rip off the face mask and catch the ball—but watching it? No way. Seriously! The last, determining game of the World Series, and how does it end, a fly out to center field. No bottom of the ninth, bases loaded, 3-2 count, down by three, two out bullshit. No! None of that! Just a fly out to center field and the fans go wild—without any reason!

On the other hand, seeing Priest Holmes (Running Back for the Kansas City Chiefs) break tackle after tackle making nominal gains and massive losses into first downs—THAT'S EXCITEMENT. That's a game to watch on TV. Or how about Robert Horry making a three pointer from way outside as the clock ticks down to win the game—THAT'S EXCITEMENT. Moreover, that's entertainment!

And isn't that what sports are all about?? Entertainment. Excitement. Deviation from routine and boredom of day-to-day life. How does baseball provide this excitement? It's about as exciting as watching golf. Again, nothing against golf—it's a really fun sport to play, but watching it? WHAT?! The biggest problem with baseball is the predictability of it. A batter hits a grounder and it's clearly not hard enough to leave the infield—that's an out. He might try to run to first base, but he won't be able to run 90 feet before the ball is thrown. Then there is the routine double play—short stop to second base to first base. Or maybe second base man to short stop to first base man. Or maybe if it's really exciting, first baseman to second baseman to pitcher (at first base). In football on the other hand, a guy gets a ball, starts to run it—maybe he will be crushed by the defensive line. OR MAYBE, he will break a few tackles and run for a touchdown. Much more likely than pro baseball players screwing up a routine grounder. So baseball has it's historical value, but I contest it's placement as America's sport in this day and age. Maybe once upon a time, but it no longer carries the caliber of the most popular sport with younger generations—and I couldn't agree more.


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