Hello Baseball, My Old Friend…

It’s been a while, and words cannot describe the sense of relief at seeing this pop into my inbox after the game was over on the radio today:

It feels like it’s been forever!

The Mariners played what sounded like a very exciting game on a windy but sunny and warm day in Arizona today. Five home runs peppered the Oakland A’s, the first of which came from Michael Saunders, who it is looking more and more like will be getting the center field job while Franklin Gutierrez heals.

Spring Training games are thought of as meaningless practices, but they mean something to me. If you follow me on Twitter, you would have seen a panicked tweet about misplacing the little portable radio that I have and can attach to headphones at work. I was so upset about my temporary lack of radio that I texted Matt Pitman to find out if it would be streaming (I downloaded the 710 ESPN application on my iPhone, thinking I could listen to it there), and debated at a friend’s suggestion running up to the Bartell’s on 4th and shelling out money for a device I already own. But as I was sitting in another room away from my desk working with our letter folding machine, it occurred to me that I did in fact have the radio; I had just randomly put it in another pocket in my bag. And oh, the joy was thick in the air when I was able to grab a massive salad from the place downstairs, sit at my desk, eat my lunch and after months of dutifully suffering through football, listen to a nice Mariners game.

And the homers. Oh, the HOMERS! Pure uncut insanity from Michael Saunders, Carlos Peguero, Jesus Montero, Johermyn Chavez (yes, I had to look that spelling up – pesky minor leaguers), and Luis Rodriguez. Sure, the boys were hitting these pitches from the Oakland A’s, and by the looks of the names in that article, not even the Oakland A’s major league staff (outside of poor Grant Balfour), but there is nothing like hearing the guys on the radio call those dingers when you’ve been starved for your game for an entire winter. It was like getting some air after holding your breath for too long, or that point after taking a pain reliever when your headache suddenly just vanishes. Such a sense of relief and comfort.

Jesus Montero took a few balls to the face (yes, I’m 12), but appears to be fine, from all reports I’ve heard. I am terribly thankful for catcher’s masks. I’m not sure if this says something about the A’s pitching staff, or Montero’s inability to keep his glove up to defend himself, I’m just glad we aren’t starting the year off with two injuries. One is all I can handle right now.

Blake Beavan got the win, even though he was only able to go 2+ frames rather than the three our manager and company wanted to see; I guess his pitch count got a little ahead of him.

Other than that, while I listen at work, I do have to concentrate on what I’m doing, so a lot of the intricacies of the game escaped me, but even when I wasn’t able to apply 100% of my attention to the action, I could always tell that good things were afoot by the tone of Rick Rizzs’ voice. It even gave me a bit of bounce to my step at work, made me a little more chipper in spite of the rough start to my day. I usually can sum up some impassioned paragraphs about how happy I am about any given thing, but not this time. Suffice to say, I’m so glad baseball is back.

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