It’s so secret that I love baseball, and I feel stupid starting this post that way because it’s obvious. But that being said, I keep asking myself if I’m a bad baseball fan.
I started seriously following the MLB in high school after becoming an official Red Sox fan in middle school. (I knew about baseball as a whole when I was younger but didn’t pledge allegiance to a team until 2007.) During my junior and senior years of high school, I managed the varsity baseball team, and it was great to talk baseball with the guys.
I still watched and followed baseball in college, and I worked for three years in athletic communications in the sports information director’s office. (That covered all of the sports more than just baseball, but I did take pictures at a few games. They tried to teach me how to keep score on the computer, but I’m so much better with a book.) I cried when the Sox won the 2013 World Series, and I took a class called “Baseball and American Culture” as a sophomore. The summer before my junior year, I interned with a local collegiate summer baseball team and had MLB scouts come through my ticket gate during the All-Star game. (That was pretty cool, though, because some were so nonchalant about it while others were flashing their badges.)
I’ve only been to four Red Sox games. I went to Yankee Stadium once. I’ve been to a bunch of minor league games: the New Britain Rock Cats (used to be the double-A affiliate of the Twins), Pawtucket Red Sox (triple-A affiliate of the Sox), and the Hartford Yard Goats (double-A affiliate of the Rockies.)
I’m really the only one at either of my jobs that loves baseball. Everyone knows I love it, but I don’t have anyone to talk shop with. Thus why I turn to here and Twitter to yell about it. And my parents put up with me, too.
I patiently wait during the offseason for spring training and pitchers and catchers and all that fun stuff. I live for opening day, and I’ll watch really any baseball game, even if the Sox aren’t playing.
That being said, I can’t remember the last time I watched an entire baseball game this season. I get alerts on my phone for the games, so I’m somewhat aware of what’s going on, but I can’t seem to stay up past 9:30 p.m. I watch a few innings of the Sox game, but then I’ll end up watching shows in my DVR or on Netflix.
Does that make me a bad baseball fan?
Now, I know the Sox and NESN won’t declare bankruptcy if I don’t want a few games here and there. But part of me feels bad that I’m not fully supporting the team. Maybe it’s because I used to rely so much on the Sox and baseball in general when things were tough. I’d stay glued to the screen and follow everything because it gave me something to believe in that was bigger than me.
I’m still trying to figure out my life, so you’d think that I’d rely on baseball more for comfort. And I want to. But sometimes I’m just busy. I’m working two jobs, training for my 5k, and I’ve been reading more and floating in my pool. (When I was in grad school, though, I’d use the games as background noise while reading or writing papers.)
I know I’m always going to be a diehard Sox fan, and I love baseball overall. But will the team forgive you if you don’t rely on them for a little while and miss a few games? I think another part of me is still a little scarred from feeling like I had to prove myself in high school that I knew what I was talking about and I had to follow every little thing. Now most people who know me know I love baseball and leave it at that; I don’t have to prove myself anymore, which is nice.
I think this post is just word vomit of my guilt because I feel bad. I wish there was a world where it was just baseball, and nothing else existed outside of that bubble. But that’s not how this works, and I’m living in a different world while baseball is being played. People get busy. People have other things going on. But baseball goes on.
Which I guess is a good thing. It’s there when we need it, like old faithful. I want to be more proactive and conscience of what’s going on with the Sox and MLB. If I only didn’t have to be a functioning adult…