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FROM THE NOSEBLEEDS

A TRUE FAN VIEW PRODUCTION

Baseball is in decline. The important numbers say so.  Football is king.

Let’s take the above as gospel.  I’m not here to debate the why or how.  Yesterday I sat with my wife and two young sons at Minute Maid Park. For those three and a half hours none of baseball’s issues mattered.

My family and 22 thousand diehard fans watched a very entertaining game that in the grand scheme of the season will mean nothing.  It had home runs, controversial calls and great plays. When the Astros bases loaded rally in the ninth fell just short you would have thought it was Game 7 of the World Series.

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We were at the game for the 1st Annual Astros Little League Day.  Kids in the area who play Little League were given a free ticket and parents were able to buy tickets at a discount.  The players and coaches were allowed to walk the field pre-game, and the kids got to run the bases afterwards. The smiles on the faces of those kids were priceless.  Kudos to the new Astros regime for starting this.

I watched my son and his buddies from our Little League team scream for autographs from players 99 percent of even hardcore baseball fans have never heard of and may never hear of.  I saw my three year old scream “CHARGE” and become mesmerized by the train atop the stadium when the Astros hit a home run.  My wife, whose interest in sports comes from watching our children play them always enjoys a day at the ballpark.

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Baseball is about nostalgia.  It lingers in all of us.  The sights, the sounds, the smells never leave us from the time we attended our first ballgame.  Every time I step in a baseball stadium I remember the great times I had as a kid at the Astrodome.  Walking up the ramp to look out from center field and see rainbow colored seats sprinkled throughout the ballpark.  Spending summer days with my buddy.  First to Astroworld, then to a “Business Man’s Special” game at the Dome for $1, then right back to Astroworld.

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Baseball is a sport linked to family and tradition.  You remember playing catch with your dad or brother as a kid.  You haven’t forgotten playing homerun derby with your friends.  You used all nine innings of those days at the ballpark to interrogate the unfortunate soul who decided to bring you along. Why did they bunt?  You think you could hit a home run?  Can I get some nachos?

Some argue baseball has too many games and they are probably right. I used that to my advantage and had a great day with my family.

I coach my son’s baseball teams today and see baseball is being passed down to another generation.  America’s Pastime isn’t dead just yet.

KMik

LP, TX

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