Josh’s Note: When I first started this blog in July 2011 I wanted it to be not only an outlet for me but to also be a way for me to promote people and baseball here in the Northwest. One of my first posts was called What Baseball Brings. It was written at a time when the Yakima Bears were trying to move to Vancouver, WA. I wanted to line out reasons why baseball is more important that then the average person realizes. When the blog was just starting I didn’t have very many readers and that is why I want to repost that blog but with some updates.
When I tell people that I write a baseball blog the reactions I get usually fall into three categories. The first is the ‘That is Awesome’ response. These are usually guys who like me love baseball. The second response is the ‘Well that’s cool.’ usually from others who have tried blogging and failed but still enjoy sports and respect those who are successful at blogging. The final response I have received is the “Why would you waste time blogging about baseball?’ At first my response was, why wouldn’t I blog about baseball but over the two years of writing for my blog I’ve realized there is a deeper reason why I blog about the greatest sport on earth.
Having lived in Salem for the past seven years I have had the opportunity to attend quite a few of the Salem-Keizer Volcanoes’ baseball games, and although I love baseball I have found that there is so much more about going to the stadium that I have also enjoyed. I have had the opportunity to meet numerous people, I’ve been able to spend time with family and friends, and I’ve even been lucky enough to make new friends at the ball park.
Baseball games are not just a place for baseball fans. It is a place where anyone can come and spend time with others. Its an excuse to go outside and enjoy the sun (which we don’t see much of in this area it seems).
It is at baseball games that families can spend time together with out sitting on a couch in front of a TV. Baseball games are where children are able to go and dream about their future, hoping to some day wear the uniform of the team they support.
Sports, including baseball, have also been instrumental in the strengthening and at times the healing of communities.
Baseball games are also a place where people can be honored.
For the past three years I have gotten the amazing opportunity to attend Volcanoes games while numerous veterans were being honored for their service. At one Volcanoes game the Oregon Paralyzed Veterans of America were in attendance to interact with the fans and to inform fans about that amazing organization.
Baseball is an opportunity for people to come together and for a few hours during the summer just forget their struggles and instead smile and cheer for their home team.
When people ask me ‘why baseball’ I now tell them the truth. Baseball has been one of the greatest ways my dad and I have bonded. Baseball has given me memories with my daughter that are more special to me than I can put into words. Baseball has allowed me to meet amazing new friends. Most importantly, baseball has taught me what it means to love, to respect, to be happy, to be sad, and to enjoy life.