By Daniel Johnson, Staff Writer
Published in print Apr. 8, 2015
Dear Diary, in this seventh week of the basketball apocalypse, where the only sport seen on sporting channels is the one created by Dr. James Naismith, I see hope that the nightmare is nearly finished.
Over the horizon, I heard the loud pop of circular yarn covered in cowhide against a wooden club. Upon further investigation, the smell of peanuts and cracker jacks mixed with Miller Lite was more evidence for my theory being correct.
The final piece of confirmation for my hypothesis involved walking upon a diamond-shaped field, where I was immediately tackled and escorted off by men in uniform.
As I was dragged away from the field, there was a volley of cheers over my detainment as those in attendance began to seemingly stretch in what I believed was the seventh inning. My theory was correct. The American Pastime was back.
A single tear fell from my eye— along with a little blood.
Dear Diary, hour one in jail.
Though my situation may seem bleak, I do not care.
The game of baseball has returned and it is projected to be one of the most interesting seasons in this millennium.
With the retirement of Derek Jeter from the Yankees and the return of Alex Rodriguez to the New York roster, arguably the most well known sporting team in the world now faces a season that would be more appropriate to be seen on TLC than ESPN due to the drama-filled relationship between Rodriguez and team brass.
The Detroit Tigers, who have been one of the most consistent teams in the past five years, come into the season with the same problem as before, a bullpen that would make the legendary Mariano Rivera cry.
The best teams in the American League coming into the season are the Cinderella team from last year: the Kansas City Royals.
Other notable clubs to watch out for as dark horse picks are the 2013 World Series champions, the Boston Red Soxs and the Seattle Mariners.
Dear Diary, hour two in jail.
After a conversation with my folks on the phone, I have determined it would be safer to spend the night in this cell and continue pondering about the upcoming MLB season.
While the competitive American League will seem to be a battle between two or three teams in each division, the National League is far more narrowed at the top.
With the moves accomplished by general managers and the returning rosters, the Senior Circuit is likely only a battle between three teams for the pennant.
In my current living space of cellblock D, I ask myself, “Do we really have to have a National League this year?” Almost every team in the NL has declined from last year. And this is coming out of the words of a fan of one of those teams, and I know is not going to be good.
The Washington Nationals are winning the East. There is not a single team in the East that can overtake the Nationals.
Give the New York Mets a few years with their young roster, than call me. The St. Louis Cardinals are winning the Central, and even if they do not, they are going to beat whoever won the division in the postseason.
The Cardinals are the Michigan State Spartans and San Antonio Spurs of baseball, they just need to get to the playoff dance and they will have a chance. The San Francisco Giants are winning the West. The Los Angeles Dodgers, the bitter rival of the Giants, have regressed since last year.
And you are not going to tell me that a team whose best off-season decision was signing a thirty-six year old shortstop will help them overtake the reigning World Series champions.
The San Diego Padres are a sexy pick in the NL West due to their acquisitions of big names such as James Shield, Matt Kemp, and Justin Upton. However, Upton would make Adam Dunn proud with his strikeout ratio, Kemp is aging- injury prone outfield, and Shield is good starter, but not on the level of pitchers like division workhorses Clayton Kershaw and Madison Bumgarner.
Dear Diary, now that the season is here, and Opening Day has past, I cannot help but think about the rest of the month.
The NBA and NHL playoffs begin this month, and the NFL Draft occurs. It also reminds myself that summer is soon to be here.
The Women’s FIFA World Cup will be kicking off in June. We have made it through March, and baseball is finally here.