This is Pastor Tim’s article that appeared in the Evening Leader on Monday, June 22, 2020
In this time of great turmoil, lets talk about something we can all agree on. Baseball! I’m ready to follow the Reds and Indians, sing take me out to the ball game, and have something in the news cycle that doesn’t either upset or infuriate me. I’m ready to get politics and viruses out of spotlight and hear about something that is fun.
Right now, there is a bone of contention delaying the start of the season and even if you aren’t following the story, you can guess what it is: money. The players don’t think they are getting paid enough of it and owners don’t think they get to keep enough of it.
The reason that there is a discrepancy is because there is a belief that the crowds won’t be as large because people won’t be able (crowd size restrictions) or willing (fear of COVID-19) to come out to the games. With the diminished revenue, owners are trying to get the players union too agree to a prorated salary season at a percentage reduction to cover the lost revenue from unsold tickets. To no one’s surprise, this proposal is not accepted. From what I read and hear from those in the know, management is going to force the players to play this season and that will lead to a strike next season.
Have any of you started to wonder if there will ever be anything in our world that is easy ever again? This is baseball, the sport that used to be known as America’s Past Time. Do you know how nice it would be to be able to pay attention to something other than disaster when I go home at night? I don’t want to see players kneeling at the anthem, I don’t want to hear political statements from athletes who repeat what the powers that be tell them to say, and I want to be able to have conversations about meaningless things and baseball would certainly qualify as that.
I know that no one in the MLB cares what this pastor from the heart of the country has to say about anything, but for goodness sakes, lets have opening weekend. I want to hear the crack of the bat and hear the sound of a baseball caught in a glove, one of the greatest sounds on earth. It would do so much good for our country if we started hating each other over team affiliation rather than political affiliation because at the end of the day, no one really cares what team you root for. It is just something we can all laugh about together and that is exactly what we need.
I am not now nor have I ever been a baseball player. I know nothing about the game, I don’t follow teams and most years I couldn’t care any less about who winning and who isn’t. But since everything fun in our world has been shutdown and all of the stuff that isn’t fun has been kicked into high gear, we need something to unite around and baseball just might be it. No more life and death struggle, just something to enjoy. Literally, what is the downside?
Again, I have little belief that this article is going to change anything, but we all have to do our part. I want a reason to cheer and this year, maybe baseball will be what does it for me.
I know that there is nothing we can do to help this process along, so all we can do is hope that the two sides will get together and agree so that we can finally have something else to focus on than what these past three months have been.
While we may not be able to literally “take me out to the ball game”, it sure would be nice to know that somewhere something is happening that we can all gather around.