Our National Past-Time Forward!!

James HensonContributor IAugust 1, 2009

DYERSVILLE, IA - AUGUST 25: A 'ghost player' recreating the role of Chicago White Sox legend Shoeless Joe Jackson plays ball with a young tourist at the baseball field created for the motion picture 'Field of Dreams' on August 25, 1991 in Dyersville, Iowa. Rita and Al Ameskamp who, with Don and Becky Lansing, co-own the site have turned the cornfields and baseball diamond into a summertime tourist attraction, including 'ghost player' reenactments. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)


 In response to an article by Rory King  that i read today entitled " Is Baseball Even a Real Sport Anymore?"

 Well yes Baseball is a sport but a team sport ,you shouldn't even have to ask, that, just because we have a few cheaters and fallen heroes doesn't mean we have lost the  integrity of the game. Players like Joe Dimaggio , Ted Williams , Babe Ruth , Ty Cobb , and Cy Young , are still around with names like Ichiro Suzuki  ,  Joe Mauer , Derek Jeter , Carl Crawford , Chipper Jones ,  Albert Pujols  and Brian McCann , and with pitcher's like Tim Lincecum , Halladay , Jair Jerrjens , and Matt Cain to name a few  , of the more honest players out  there. Not to mention guys like  Hank Aaron  ( the True Homerun King) , Pete Rose  ,  Greg Maddux , Tom Glavine , John Smoltz , Randy Johnson , and Nolan Ryan to name  some of the living legends who have retired or about to retire, who gave their all with what they had and nothing more. 

  Cheaters like Barry Bonds , Manny Rameriz , David Ortiz , Alex Rodriguez , and Roger Clemens, to name a few, should and i believe when their careers are over with will be banded from the Hall of Fame for life, and also should have their records at the very least with an asterisk by them and listed in a seperate catagory not with the true players who gave it their all.

 But there is more to Baseball than one superstar , after all it is a team sport more so than say Football , or Basketball. In Baseball as you know if you are a fan of the game, if a team relays on one player for the whole season they fail. Take the 2001 Texas Rangers for an example .

  In 2001 the Rangers had a line-up of Alex Rodriguez , Rafeal Palmerio , Ruben Sierra , Ivan Rodriguez and Gabe Kapler , those  five players combined for a total of 164 homers for a team that had 246 total homers by seasons end, a pretty good lineup right ?

   Now lets take a look at their rotation that year 11 wins from Doug Davis , 12  from Rick Helling , 11 from Darren Oliver , 5 from kenny Rogers ,   and 5 wins from Rob Bell and 4 from Aaron Myette. for  a record of  73 wins and  89 losses , the team era was 5.71  but the team batting average was .275 . they scored 890 runs but the pitching staff gave up 968 total runs which brings the average score for a  Texas Ranger game that year to 14.7 for the rangers to 13.3 for opponents. Now my point here is this before the team broke for spring training that season the owner said in a conversation that he was really worried about his pitching because he had Alex Rodriguez and Rafeal Palmerio to make up for the weak pitching.

 You see the Rangers relied on two power hitters and they thought that if they could out slug every team they played they would make it to the Promise Land , but for 3 seasons from 2001 - 2003 the Rangers did  score alot of runs but their pitchers a group that amounted to a AAA farm team staff gave up more than the defense could handle, and for 3 seasons Texas was in the basement, but look at them now with an even amount of quality hitting and pitching , they are in the hunt.

 So when some one says baseball is finished as Americ's pastime i disagree , i mean it's Baseball it's our game it's what drives us to rise up and succeed , during the Great Depression it wasn't Football , or Basketball that the people turned to when times where bad , it was Baseball. During the times of war or hardship Baseball has always been there to bring us  a little shimmer of hope and a rest from the troubles of the world, Baseball after the attacks of 911 it was Baseball that brought a light of hope back to New York and the rest of the country and it will be Baseball that brings us together in this time of financial trouble and hardship , if not for 9 innings it's 9 innings or 2 and a half hours you didn't have to worry about  anything but your team winning.

 Every March i look forward to spring training cause i know i got  6 to 7 months of peace and enjoyment , there is nothing like stepping onto a field and smelling the fresh cut grass , taking in the sites and meeting the players before the game , there is  not any sport out there that can offer that feeling , not a one, so forget Obama, forget, the housing and bank collapses , forget the layoffs for 2 or 3 hours a day turn on your radio , your computer,  your T.V. or find a game near you and watch your troubles away.

Because without Baseball there is no Pastime.


This is just my thoughts on my favorite sport, please be nice and respectful in you comments, thank you.