Take me out to the ballgame

IUS Horizon

For people like me, there are only two seasons: winter and baseball season.
As a Hoosier, I will always have a passion for basketball, but my true love is baseball.

Even though the Super Bowl is probably the biggest event in all of sports, and football is arguably one of the most popular sports in the United States, baseball is still referred to as America’s pastime. Invented in 1839, it is still a very popular sport today. There are many reasons why this game is so popular, and in my mind, superior to any other sport.

One reason is because there is no time limit. Both teams have only nine innings and 27 outs. And because every out is precious to a team, it makes a team focus the entire game, instead for just the last five minutes or so.

And when you have paid good money to go someplace, don’t you hate that there is a time limit for how long you can be there?

Football makes me mad because the clock continues to run even when there is no play. In the 60 minutes of game clock that runs every game, I would say there is maybe 15 minutes of actual game play. You can’t stay focused. At least basketball has the time clock situation figured out.

Also, football teams play once a week. So if your team loses, you are most likely going to be depressed about it for an entire week and keep thinking of excuses on why the team lost, why the coach should be fired, etc.

But in baseball, teams play every single day. So, if your team loses, they get the chance to go back out the very next day and win.

Or if you are a Chicago Cubs fan like me, they go back out the next day and lose again— and then again the next day.

One of the greatest things about baseball is that more people have a chance to make it on a team. You do not have to be tall like you do in basketball, and you do not have be built like a freight train like you do in football.

In baseball, if you can hit well, there is a chance. If you cannot hit, but you have got a wicked curve ball, you have a chance. There are many chances on and off the field for someone to make it in baseball.

This is a great sport for statistic nerds. In football or basketball, you have a limited number of stats. But, in baseball you have stats for a player’s average, average with runners in scoring position, a strikeout to walk ratio and so much more.
You can even calculate stats that hitters have with a certain count. For example, a hitter may have a batting average of .289, but is hitting .176 with a 1-2 count. It’s absolute amazing how stats can be broken down in baseball.

Jonathan Cates, newscast producer, has always had a passion for baseball. Cates played for the Lanesville Jr./Sr. High School team.

Additionally, in every other sport, the dimensions of the field or court are the exact same. Football fields are 100 yards long, basketball courts are 94 feet long.
With baseball fields, the dimensions are endless. There is no ballpark that is exactly the same. This leaves things open for more character and beauty you can add to the stadium and field.

The most you can do on a basketball court is use different color wood, but with baseball, you can put ivy on the outfield wall like Wrigley Field in Chicago, or make your left field wall 37 ft., two inches tall like the “Green Monster” at Fenway Park in Boston.

The most important thing that makes baseball better than any sport is that it is friendly to the fans. In no other sport can you catch a ball in the stands and keep it. In no other sport is there a break where everyone gets to stand-up and sing along with a song like “Take Me Out To the Ballgame.”

It is a great way to spend the hot summer days with your family. There is no better time to enjoy things like cotton candy, snow cones, peanuts, and most importantly, beer.

Nothing is better than enjoying a nice, cold beer on a hot summer day while at the ballpark watching your favorite team play.

I cannot wait. Baseball is almost here. I can feel the heat, I can hear the vendors and the sounds of the crack or the bat, and the roars of the crowd after a great play.
Ladies and gentleman, play ball.

By JONATHAN CATES

Newscast Producer

jdcates@ius.edu