I recently engaged a discussion with a fellow White Sox fan about the widening gap of revenue between small-market and large-market teams in Major League Baseball. The video clip attached, while being one of my favorite movie mini-speeches about our National Pastime, is also as true today as it has ever been. Baseball has and will continue to survive, economy be damned. Teams will compete, fans will come out to watch, and time will march along for centuries to come, just as it has for centuries before us. The corruption that exists in baseball, whether in the form of greed, or cheating, gambling, what have you…will never bring down the game itself…it just adds flavor to the meal.
“Ray, people will come Ray. They’ll come to Iowa for reasons they can’t even fathom. They’ll turn up your driveway not knowing for sure why they’re doing it. They’ll arrive at your door as innocent as children, longing for the past. Of course, we won’t mind if you look around, you’ll say. It’s only $20 per person. They’ll pass over the money without even thinking about it: for it is money they have and peace they lack. And they’ll walk out to the bleachers; sit in shirtsleeves on a perfect afternoon. They’ll find they have reserved seats somewhere along one of the baselines, where they sat when they were children and cheered their heroes. And they’ll watch the game and it’ll be as if they dipped themselves in magic waters. The memories will be so thick they’ll have to brush them away from their faces. People will come Ray. The one constant through all the years, Ray, has been baseball. America has rolled by like an army of steamrollers. It has been erased like a blackboard, rebuilt and erased again. But baseball has marked the time. This field, this game: it’s a part of our past, Ray. It reminds of us of all that once was good and it could be again. Oh… people will come Ray. People will most definitely come.”
I guess the real question if you’ve read this post, and considered the discussion, is….Will you still “come” this season?