Friday, April 1, 2011

Opening Day 2011

It’s Opening Day for Major League Baseball, or at least for “my” team the Minnesota Twins.

Baseball has lots of traditions, and I have one of my own that is specific to this time of year.  

Once each spring I sit down and watch a favorite baseball movie.

In times past I was coaching Little League, so Field of Dreams was the go to choice.  Most of the on field action was a low key scrimmage that duplicates the early going for my youngsters, and the final scene with a father and son playing catch was iconic.

But in later years I have favored Bull Durham.  It’s a somewhat racier flick, and I am told a fairly accurate depiction of life in the minors.  And I love the ending.  Instead of the usual Hollywood treacle we have the main character Crash Davis getting cut from the team, finishing his career in obscurity and then turning up on Annie's front porch in cold driving rain to talk about growing old.

A projected sequel never got made, so I am free to imagine Crash managing in the minors, and enjoying a highly entertaining life with Annie.

This year for the first time in 25 years I will actually be getting the Twins games on cable.  We had been resisting getting anything interesting on cable for so long, operating on the shop worn theory that kids will glue themselves to the television and get lousy algebra grades if given anything appealing to watch.

Of course our remaining nest dweller has done a technological end run on us and spends way too much time engaged with internet based entertainment.

Regards those kids, I should mention that in the naming process my wife got veto authority on first names, but I got to pick the middle names.  Here’s what I proposed:

For the first son, Harmon, after Harmon Killebrew Hall of Famer and all around nice guy.

Harmon in his playing days.  Currently fighting a cancer diagnosis.

For the third son, Halsey, after Halsey Hall,  Old School sports writer, raconteur extraordinaire and long time Twins broadcaster.

Mr. Hall, inspiration for our son's writing and radio careers?

I had the second son penciled in as Griffith, after Calvin Griffith the infamously cheapskate Twins owner, but was persuaded that this would not be an asset in life for him.  But he has ended up being quite frugal anyway, so all’s well that ends well.
Calvin Griffith.  Looks like he just found a penny on the ground.

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