Thankful for the Game


The Cleveland Indians are a special thing for me, a place of peace and quiet in the frustration and noise that this life has become.

Maybe I’m ascribing too much importance to a gathering of man-children (man-childs? Men-children?) in fancy pajamas and spiky shoes, but all the same I’m thankful to them for filling my summer days with roller coasters of emotion and my winters with passing intrigue. Perhaps later in life I’ll become some kind of clandestine operative and my time will be too full with heart pounding feats of stealth and strength and high flying adventure to give that old school game any time. But right now? Why not have a sit in the sunshine. Old guys can’t have all the fun.

Besides, I gotta rest my heart for infiltrating the KGB.

It’s more than just watching the ball bop about the field though. It’s those long, nothing conversations with my dad about Miguel Cabrera’s “athleticism” or the Yankees impending trade of Dylan Betances and Brett Gardner for Felix Hernandez. Or even about how special Adam Dunn is.

That’s why I’m so thankful this game exists – it’s a bridge to another generation, a constant glimpse to our past and it gives a rudder of sorts for the future. That sounds a little high handed, sure, it’s just a game after all. But I do value the game’s decision not to rush, especially with how the world is always trying for instant gratification and constant entertainment. Sure it would be nice if the umpire would make the pitcher pick up the pace like he’s supposed to, but outside of that I like the standing around. They’re in a park, dammit, that’s what you’re supposed to do. Shoot, I’m not in a hurry, and Satchel Paige wasn’t either.

It’s just a game, sure, and the Indians are just a bunch of millionaires blessed by genetics, but I’m thankful they’re just there. Otherwise I’d have to pay attention to politics or some garbage. And that’s a fate worse than death.

Oct 8, 2013; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; A detail shot of the bases before game four of the American League divisional series between the Boston Red Sox and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports