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The Rebirth of Baseball Fandom

**Quick note, before we get to Kenny's article both Kenny and I want to say thanks for all the good folks who signed up for the 2nd Annual ETSF Fantasy Football Challenge. Be on the lookout for prizes and giveaways coming soon. Big shout outs to @WTFMoments, @TDSellars, @KleanKutt, @mrconcepts, @blewis09, @BlkSportsOnline, and @aliltwitofthis on Twitter for signing on! Ok, now back to our regularly scheduled programming.**

Well, I’m sure it was bound to happen one of these days. There’s so much down-time between the end of basketball season and the start of training camp, that something has to be done, in order for me to enjoy some kind of sporting activity, and to make my watching Sportscenter actually be worth a damn. Come to find out, the MLB All-Star festivities happened right on-time, and after watching the events of the last couple of days, I came to a startling conclusion:

I’m starting to like baseball again.

At the moment, this game is in the bottom of the ninth inning, and the AL is up 4-3. For starters, I love the fact that the All-Star Game actually has some significance. The winner gets home-field advantage in the World Series, and while some people think the idea is stupid, I absolutely LOVE IT. It lets me know the ass-grabbing (pause) will be at a minimum, if not absent altogether, since they know so much is at stake.

The second is the Home Run Derby. My only knock on the derby is its too damn long, but besides that, I love the fact that the best home-run hitters are pretty much in it every year. Even during the time where I severely disliked baseball, I always dug the fact the best home-run hitters were always in the derby. I certainly can’t say the same happens in basketball, and we won’t even get on football. Another thing that’s happened is I’ve gained a deeper appreciation for Albert Pujols. Last night, he was being interviewed during the derby, and listening to him break-down the science of hitting (hand-positioning and foot-positioning were just a couple of ways) was pretty damn fascinating. It may seem kind of corny to say that, but I enjoy athletes who are not only great, but are true students of the game.

*well, the AL won the game 4-3; back to the blog*

Anyone who watches enough sports knows what I mean between a player being a student of the game and just being a good player. For example, I could listen to Peyton Manning talk about dissecting a defense all day long; he’s not only great, but his preparation is remarkable. Besides, as Charles Barkley once said, “just because someone can play, it doesn’t mean they know what the hell they’re doing.” Listening to Pujols on Monday truly made me become a fan of his, and realize why people hold this dude in such high regard (yes Ed; the love-fest worked, because they converted me, of all people).

I’ll never refer to baseball as “America’s Pastime” again, simply because I think football has surpassed baseball, by far. What I will do is start paying attention again, and it won’t just be in October. On top of that, the Rangers are actually worth a damn this year, and the ballpark is literally ten minutes away from my apartment, and now that I have plenty of free time on my hands, I’ll make sure to take in a game (it’ll be during $1 Dog Night, of course).

Be easy.

-K. Masenda


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