Spraying to all fields: Inaugural thoughts on exhausted Mexicans and such

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Hey there, I’m going to try something weekly in this space. Essentially it’s a collection of loosely connected ideas that run through my head at all times. Thanks for reading – @MRubio52

I never hated winter before this year. I always understood the need for a cooling off period of sorts to recharge myself. I can deal with the cold, I can deal with the shoveling, I can deal with digging my car out.

However, this is the year I became sick of winter’s shit.

It’s not just the temperature. Everything dies over the winter and my restless heart has taken note. My senses are begging for a more lively environment that is rich in greens, yellows and reds. Instead my eyes are depressingly saturated with whites and blues.

I can’t stand it much anymore. The sports that usually bridge me to warmer memories aren’t helping either. I fell out of love with football (the reasons are best saved for a drunken philosophical debate over the value of the individual). Roseless basketball is just pure agony and I could never really get into hockey despite a surprising amount of effort. I feel kind of lost right now.

That’s it really, the feel of baseball is absent and my body is confused without my daily companion. There is a comfort that is beyond the tangible in everyday baseball. The familiarity that I have with the players and the game itself isn’t one that can easily be replaced, and I find myself longing for the trivial events along with the notable ones. I just miss the way it feels to be watching a game in May.

I digress. Anyway, here are the five things that have made me miss the based ballz.

1. Dick’s Sporting Goods commercials

I don’t buy into commercials all that much. I do appreciate when some advertisers try to get clever, like the Kobe System commercials. For the most part I treat commercials as corporate noise. These two ads, however, struck a unique chord in me. The Glove ad is an emotionally manipulative spot, but I forgive it because it’s executed to perfection. Mini stories within ads are cool, IMO.

The “Every Pitch” ad, however, is just baseball pr0n. Everything about that ad stimulates the baseball senses, and it makes me want to lace em up right now and go take some cuts right the hell now. It’s manipulative, but not in an emotional way. This ad stimulates certain competitive glands in my brain, and it’s hard to ignore the call of the batter’s box. I desperately miss swinging a bat in games of importance.

2. Kevin Youkilis and PK abandoning their beards

yook-yank 775809_4272676212012_1016507724_oYou have to understand something about me, I love baseball facial hair. It’s the best kind of facial hair. It’s not mandated, the individual can do as he pleases with his facial hair, and you get to enjoy it every time they play. Youk and PK had two of the finest goatees in baseball history. When Kevin Youkilis managed to trim his it was magnificent, and PK’s salt and pepper combo was always highly underrated.

So, when they both shaved their goatees, a piece of me died inside and made me want the season to get here even sooner so I can latch onto another pair of facial hair teammates. Youk was expected, the Yankees like to think of themselves as the guiding light by which all baseball teams should model themselves. Thus they have some archaic bullshit rule about shaving any “unkempt” facial hair and maintaining a professional appearance at all times. I want to respect it on a level, but what they did to Youk is a crime against humanity. I understood it would happen, however. I can deal with the expected but the Paul Konerko bombshell was almost too much to bear.

I need a moment alone.

3. Mexico winning “El Serie del Caribe”

a_MexCelebraJuego1SerieDelCaribe576I was in a bar during one of the NFL playoff games. It was the Patriots and the Texans and when New EngGGGGAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHH LOOKIT VENEZUELAN BASEBALL CAN BE ON MY PHONE?!?!?!?!?!?

That’s essentially what happened. I was picking up a book that I had lent out at a football bar. I was trying to watch football again, but it wasn’t working out. I looked on twitter for a split second and then…

 


And then for the next 30 minutes I was watching the Venezuelan playoffs because I miss baseball. Caribbean baseball is fun baseball. There is a lot of dancing and generally the players look like they are having the damn time of their lives. It’s a good reminder that even though they get paid and it’s ultimately a business, these guys still have fun with the game. This point was driven home particularly hard when my father’s country, Mexico, won “El Serie del Caribe” over a high powered Dominican team in super extra innings.

And as I was watching on ESPN the exhausted Mexicans ran out onto the field, celebrated, jumped around, and looked to be having a most excellent time. Damn I miss fun.

4. Football season

Nothing quite drove the nail through the coffin for my football feelings quite like the whole Ray Lewis thing. Or the whole football thing in general. I find it hard to care about the sport these days, and so I’m leaving it. I suppose one could call me a non-football watching hipster. I do rock a beard, I watch soccer, but I’m not leaving football for counter culture reasons. Rather, the entire culture of football has rubbed me the wrong way for a long time, and I don’t have fun watching football with groups of people.

I don’t jive with the game anymore.

I didn’t watch the Super Bowl much, I tuned in for the blackout hilarity and then tuned right back out. Chicago sports coverage tends to over saturate football. A lot. It’s cool if you like it, but when your heart belongs somewhere else it creates a longing for the familiar. Football failed in bridging me to Spring Training.

5. Japanese Bat Flips

And finally, this is what made me miss the based ballz the most.

Seriously I can watch this on loop for days.

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