I think the 2017 season started for me when the 2016 season ended. I just didn’t realize it until just now.
I’m a sports fan. I love the beginning of each season of whatever sport it is at the moment, from football to hockey to soccer.
But baseball… it never stops. Even before I started playing table top sports again back in 2014, I’d always have some kind of baseball game on one of my game consoles, and play a game or two, shortly after the season ended. I’d monitor what was going on with the Giants and Mets during the Winter Meetings.
And right now, I’m watching MLB Network, having started with a show about the first Hall of Fame class in 1939, then a round table show about this year’s Hall of Fame candidates (Tom Verducci is still a jerk), and now watching a show about Mike Piazza.
Piazza started his career as a Dodger, so of course I hated him. Him being a Dodger *catcher* made me hate him more.
*glares at Mike Scioscia*
When he became a Met, I still hated him. Until that day we were gaming at Glenn’s house while a NASCAR race was on. Jeff Gordon was back deep in the pack, and I said that if he won the race, I’d start rooting for Mike Piazza as a Met. Gordon went on to win, and I reluctantly started rooting for Piazza.
Then came the Clemens beaning. I was never a big fan of Rocket Roger, so when he hit Piazza in the head, and then later threw a shard of a bat at him in the World Series, I became a huge Piazza fan.
What truly cemented me as a fan was September 21, 2001. The home run Piazza hit against the Braves. They just showed it on TV, and I got chills and started crying again. It was one of the best moments I’ve experienced as a baseball fan.
I say ‘one of’ because, as I had that epiphany that I mentioned at the start of this, so too do I realize that there will never be one ‘best’ moment as a fan.
- watching a rookie named Dwight Gooden pitch in his first All-Star Game
- all the milestone home runs Barry Bonds hit, many of them in person
- Willie McCovey’s last game, sitting with my grandpa
- the last out of the 2010 World Series
- Johan Santana pitching the first Mets no-hitter
- attending World Series games with my long-time childhood friend
- having my aunt take me out of school to attend Opening Day with her and my grandpa
- the Sunday doubleheaders with the family, in General Admission, Section 28
- attending the first Star Wars Day at AT&T Park with my nephew
The list goes on and on.
I’ve seen so many ‘best moments’, and will probably see more in the seasons to come.