I mentioned here on Friday that I would have something for today about the Phillies and Giants and the National League Championship Series, and sure enough, I watched the first game on Saturday, a thrilling 4-3 victory for San Francisco.
Here’s my confession: It was the first baseball game I’ve watched all year.
It’s funny to admit this, seeing as I probably spend at least 10-15 hours each week reading, writing, and talking about baseball, imploring others to be as passionate about its history as I am. For some reason, I just don’t care that much to watch games on television.
I have a few ideas why this is.
- I have a limited attention span: Baseball is a slow game, and I’m not always patient. I’m someone who will sit down to read a book and want to do something else after a page or two. The thought of sitting for 2-3 hours and watching a game seems impossible sometimes.
- My friends aren’t fans: I often tell friends or acquaintances I have a baseball blog, and their response is typically something like, “That’s nice. I’m not really into baseball.” Thus I usually have the prospect of watching games alone or trekking to a sports bar, neither of which much appeals to me.
- Television issues: My favorite team’s the Giants, most of their games air on cable, and I canceled my service long ago for financial reasons. And ever since the mandated digital conversion, I’ve had crappy, pixelated reception on regular channels, so if I were to watch a game, it means that the picture might cut out at a key play. Occasionally, I’ll listen to part of a game on the radio, but that generally doesn’t do it for me, either.
- Steroids: Maybe I’m being unfair to baseball, but I still wonder how many players are on steroids or on HGH. It’s hard to marvel at players I suspect may be chemically-enhanced. I doubt I’m the only fan who feels this way.
- I prefer watching baseball in person, and I’m broke: I love going to ballparks. For me, sitting in a seat is an almost spiritual experience. It soothes my soul, and I even like going alone. If I had the money, I think I’d have gone to at least a couple A’s or Giants games this year, but the economy still sucks, and I’m working odd jobs to make ends meet.
- Maybe I’m just not that into baseball: I’ve begun to think that more than being a baseball fan, I’m a history fan, and baseball is what I know the history of. It could be this way about the military or classic cars– anything really– provided I started reading about it at a young age as voraciously as I did with baseball. After all these years and so many thousands of pages, I think I like the story of baseball more than the game itself.
I’m glad I broke rank on Saturday to get together with a group of guys and watch San Francisco triumph over Philadephia. It was the best game I’ve seen in years, even if I haven’t taken in that many. Here’s hoping I watch a few more games the rest of the postseason.