I Have Been Awake Since 4 a.m.

© The Baseball Bloggess

I have been awake since 4 a.m.

It is Opening Day.

For this one brief moment, I can see summer spread out before me like outfield grass. Outfield grass that’s been so meticulously tended, sculpted, fed … loved … that it makes you squint hard for a second as you adjust to its blinding greenness.

Summer is a mile long, a mile wide. It reaches as far as the eye can see.

There is only baseball.

It is all I can see.

I have been awake since 4 a.m.

Thinking of twirlers with arms of smoked steel.

Bats overflowing with bingles, loopers, and skitterers, and lusty home run wallops.

And, bunts. Don’t forget the bunts.

Thinking of stolen bases. And, the 4-6-3.

And, late-in-the-game outfielders floating at the wall and stretching and lifting higher and higher – and gravity is beyond my understanding and I guess beyond theirs too, because they float much higher than any other human possibly can – and with one final reach, one last elastic, impossible stretch, their glove barely, just barely, just just just …

… barely corrals that demon ball that saves the run that gives your team one more chance.

I have been awake since 4 a.m.

It is Opening Day.

The day when you don’t think of the World Series, because the World Series signals the end … when baseball disappears again. It is a million-million miles away.

It doesn’t matter. Summer lasts forever.

I have been awake since 4 a.m.

It is Opening Day.

To prove just how over-the-top giddy I am right now and because all teams are wonderful on Opening Day … tell me who your team is in the comments below and I will tell you why your team is wonderful. And, I will mean it.

______

9 a.m. Update — It is Opening Day, except when it’s not. Rain has postponed the Orioles/Red Sox game. But, summer lasts forever … and there’s always tomorrow.

30 thoughts on “I Have Been Awake Since 4 a.m.

    • Wendy, Happy Opening Day! The Milwaukee Brewers are wonderful and I mean it! How can one not love a team that has given us Robin Yount, Bob Uecker, and not only Bernie Brewer sliding into a mug of beer, but Racing Sausages? (I have a Milwaukee Racing Sausages tee-shirt … and I treasure it.)

    • The Dodgers are wonderful and I mean it! My dad was a Dodgers fan. When we lived in California and I was a toddler, I knew my dad’s boss was named Don. I called him “DonDrysdale” (all one word) because that was the only Don I had ever heard of. And every Christmas I would get a present and a card from him and he always signed the card “DonDrysdale”.

      Jackie Robinson … Sandy Koufax … Mookie Betts. And, Vin Scully.

      (This is not a day to think of a World Series that the Dodgers may have lost, only the ones they have won. And, there are seven of those, including the last one.)

  1. It’s a National Holiday…OR SHOULD BE! Twins are indoors in Milwaukee with 5 Cy Young arms, or so I’m told, who will prosper from a deadened baseball. Just wish ESPN could find another market other than New York. I recall when Riverfront Stadium was Opening Day, Hank Aaron smashing 714 off Jack Billingham; my Dad and me at The Met, where Rich Gossage 2-hit the Twins; Bugs Bunny burrowing into Chavez Ravine, etc. We must be drinking the same coffee.

    • Happy Opening Day, Jim! The Twins are wonderful … and I mean it! Who wouldn’t love a team that brought us the joy of Kirby Puckett and has proven, with Nelson Cruz, that age is just a number? Harmon Killebrew. Rod Carew. Tony Oliva.

      And, The Baseball Project wrote a song about them … making them even more wonderful.

      • Happy Opening Day to you Bloggess! The Twins open in less than half an hour in Milwaukee’s beautiful venue. And it’s sunny, if cool, in St. Paul. Also wishing the best for the O’s!

        • There’s one more thing that makes the Twins wonderful that I must mention. Cesar Tovar who, while with the Twins in 1968, played all nine on-field positions in the same game (only the second player in baseball to do that). He had a hit, too. And, stole a base.

          (Fun Fact and because baseball is magical … the first batter Tovar faced while pitching that game? Bert Campaneris, who, in 1965, became the first player to play all nine on-field positions in the same game.)

    • Happy Opening Day, Ken! (I rely on college ball to fill my bunt cravings.)

      The Mets are wonderful and I mean it! That World Series in 1969 still makes my heart ache, I admit, but not the one in 1986. How can you not love a team that gave us Mookie Wilson?

      And, that there is both a Mr. Met and a Mrs. Met. How can you not love a team that gives their mascot a spouse?

    • Happy Opening Day, Becky! The Angels are wonderful and I mean it! Whether they’re the California Angels, the Anaheim Angels, the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, or the Los Angeles Angels. Whatever you call ’em, I deem them wonderful!

      How can a team that gives us Mike Trout, (possibly) Matt Thaiss, AND the Rally Monkey not be wonderful?

      (And I hope Dylan Bundy scratches out a “W” for you.)

    • Happy Opening Day, Gary! The Cubs are wonderful … and I mean it!

      They used to have Spring Training in Catalina. How cool is that? And, those hallowed ivy walls of Wrigley are just beautiful. Ernie Banks alone makes the Cubs wonderful. And, Eddie Vedder wrote them a song …

  2. My Giants are nothing but potential this year, Jackie- although I wish people would stop talking about how great they’re going to be next year. Night game opener, out of town, but…It’s Opening Day!
    So sorry about the rainout, but rainouts are part of the game that is- yes- starting for real, today. Anticipation is part of the pleasure, right? Enjoy!

    • Ahhh, the Giants! The Giants are wonderful … and I mean it. When I was small and living outside the Bay Area, the Giants were my everything. (And, they still have a place in my heart.)

      They are wonderful for many reasons, but I really need only mention one. Willie Mays. The greatest of all.

      But, as long as I’m typing, I’ll mention Willie McCovey, too.

      Only a wonderful team could have two greats named Willie.

      Happy Opening Day, John! (And, I haven’t forgotten that you have Jon Miller, too … and Kruk and Kuip!)

    • The Cubs are wonderful, GN … and I mean it. And, while I mentioned a few reasons why earlier, I have plenty more.

      Hack Wilson, for one, whose 191 RBIs for the Cubs in 1930 was a major league record. Correction: still IS the major league record. (Though shouldn’t it be RsBI?)

    • I missed this comment on its first go-round … apologies for the delay. Your White Sox are wonderful, Dutch Lion … and I mean it. Now that we have a few weeks of the season under our belts, I can confirm the White Sox greatness in just four words: Carlos Rodón No Hitter.

  3. Pingback: The week gone by — April 4 – A Silly Place

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