Friday, October 28, 2011

Watching the World Series

I don't normally watch much baseball.  I don't necessarily dislike it, I just don't usually watch it.  It seems there is always something else to do that I prefer.

I've been watching the World Series pretty closely though.  Yes, I admit it's because the Texas Rangers are in it.  I am watching Game 7 right now.  It is the bottom of the 7th and the score is St. Louis 5, Texas 2.  There is 1 out and the count is 3-1.

I grew up with baseball.  My dad absolutely loved the sport.  He always coached -- everything from Pee-Wee to Little League to Jr. Babe Ruth to Senior Babe Ruth.  He was frequently the league President in our little town.  He worked hard to keep the sport alive, even when it seemed to elicit little interest from many of the parents who were so self-absorbed they didn't take the time to encourage their kids to become involved.  They would rather have their own fun and let the kids hang out and watch them.

If it wasn't for Dad, baseball in our little town might have died.  However, we spent hours working to get the ball parks in shape.  Dad took a lot of pride in making sure everything was perfect.  The parks in our little town became well-known for the quality of the facilities and the program.  Enough so that our little town hosted the state Senior Babe Ruth Tournament.

I wasn't a particularly gifted athlete.  Small, slow and less-than-perfect eyes generally relegated me to the bench.  But, I could keep score.  If we got way ahead I might get into right field for half of an inning.  That was about it.  But, I knew the game.  I knew the rules and I could kee score.

Many times I ended up as the official score keeper or as the announcer -- not when my team was playing, but, when someone else played I often went to the press box -- or, scorekeeper/announcer's box in our little town. 

I never grew to love the sport as Dad did but, as I sit here watching the Rangers, I realize that deep down, a little of that love for the sport must have permeated my bones. 

Last year my little home town honored Dad by admitting him into their baseball hall of fame.  They gave him a nice plaque and took his photo.  It was truly a gift to him. 

He still loves the game.  He doesn't get around like he used to so he sits in his chair and watches it on television.  It's one of the few things that engages him now.  It is a rare contact with the present.

Well, the 7th is finally over.  The score is now 6 to 2.  I have to watch but, I must admit that my feelings about this one resemble a sinking pitch on the outside corner. 

No comments: