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View Full Version : What do you love about Baseball?


BadBobbyJenks
08-30-2010, 12:02 AM
I was heading down to St Louis on Friday and I have to say Bernstein and Spiegel engaged in some of the best sports radio I have ever listened to.
http://wscr.cbslocal.com/2010/08/27/the-danny-mac-show-full-podcast-5/

From about 11-noon they talked almost exclusively about the little things/nuances that you love about baseball. I highly recommend listening to this.

For me it is the no doubt about it homer you see live and instantly jump out of your seat, more specifically the Juan Uribe no doubter.

I also love the strike out on a change up. Something about a professional hitter looking so clueless on a change gets me every time.

Another one brought up was, the perfectly executed hit and run with a right hander up and hitting it where 2nd base used to be.

So what else do you love about baseball?

Carneyman14
08-30-2010, 12:13 AM
When a pitcher jellyleggs a batter on a curve and turns to walk around the mound almost when he lets it go almost as if saying, "yea aint no way hes hittin that"

double plays. specifically 4-6-3 gracefull as you can get in all of sport

chatter/sounds of the crowd

the sound of Sox fireworks!!!!

Noneck
08-30-2010, 01:13 AM
I enjoy seeing a slugger eyes wide open, jaw protruding as he awaits a knuckleball and then swings so hard as he misses that he goes down on one knee. As I saw Mickey Mantle do while facing Hoyt Wilhelm.

Crooked Number
08-30-2010, 01:36 AM
There are so many things that i love about baseball. I am finding it hard to narrow them down, so i will just pick out a few.

When watching a game live in the park:

The triple. When the guy kicks it into high gear half way in between first and second and you know he is going to go for it, that is just something i have always loved. The triple provides a unique crescendo in the crowd, just so exciting. I used to love watching One Dog burn it, he could smell 'em.

Inside the park grand slam. Man are these great. On 8/14 1990, i got to see Louis Polonia hit an inside the park grand slam at the Big A in Anaheim. Its one of the only non Whitesox baseball memories i have as a kid. Incidentally, later that month i got to see our own Ron Karkovice hit one (on tv). Then, Mike Greenwell hit one two days later for the Redsox.

No hitter. I got to see Buehrle toss the no-no in April 07. I am sure seeing the perfect game in person was better. However, when all the idiot cub fans who wore their Sosa jerseys starting cheering like crazy when Mark lost the perfecto by walking him...he picks him off. It was incredibly satisfying and just a great thing to witness.

Black Out game 163. I wasnt fortunate enough to score tickets to the World Series games in 05 (Game 2 of the WS would have been amazing to witness), so this game was hands down the most exciting live sporting event i have ever attended.

The rarest of the rare, a play in playoff game against your teams biggest rival. The sea of black, all die hards, all Whitesox fans (no corporate sit on the hands "fans" that alot of playoff tickets are saved for). It was quite possibly, the perfect baseball game. Pitchers duel, sea-saw battle. With the most improbable play at the plate out which produced the most incredible, exciting, loud eruption from a crowd ive ever seen/heard. Then a mammoth HR. Then the closer locks it down, not before the center fielder wins the division with a final out diving catch. That game defines baseball to me. It had everything.

Few other things that i love about baseball:

Long toss: as a kid i would watch in awe as these players would throw the ball further and further to each other, each time perfect, right at the chest.

Batting Stances / Pitching Windups: the most unique thing about the game in my opinion. Mickey Tettleton. Eric Davis. Frank Thomas. Alex Rios. Griffey. / Juan Marichal. Bob Gibson. Brett Saberhagen. Fernando Valenzuela. Jack McDowell. Fascinated me since i was 5 years old. Still does.

So many more things these are just a few...

Great thread!

soxfanatlanta
08-30-2010, 10:12 AM
The hit and run

The suicide squeeze

Watching the subtle defensive shifts in the field


Yesterday, I was at the Braves game where Josh Johnson was just incredible to watch; he gave up only three hits before he left the game at the end of the 7th inning. At that time, the Braves were down 6-1, and most people were writing the game off as a loss. As soon as the bullpen took over however, I knew the game was not out of reach. Long story short - Brian McCann hit a walk off home run in the 9th to send everybody home happy.

I love baseball because things like that happen.

doublem23
08-30-2010, 10:28 AM
I love that the game's not over until you get that 27th out. No kneeling or running down the clock. Got to get everyone.

Which makes baseball the very best at championship-winning moments. There's that unified moment of celebration that is just amazing that no other sport can replicate as consistently. You know in football and basketball generally speaking there is a point when a lead becomes too great to lose. So there's all the celebration can get started and while therre is a burst of joy at 0:00, it's not like baseball where everyone sits on their hands and the edge of their seat waiting for the last out to be recorded. I remember when the Phillies won the World Series in 2008, FOX kept replaying the final out, each time focused on a different player's reaction. Very moving stuff, actually.

Railsplitter
08-30-2010, 10:28 AM
No time clock.

LongLiveFisk
08-30-2010, 10:48 AM
No time clock.

I will second that.

Also I love a perfectly executed bunt.

Opposite field hits.

Watching left-handers pitch.

The dimensions of the field that add to the game's strategy. Strongest arm should go to right field, fastest guy in centerfield, etc.

TheOldRoman
08-30-2010, 11:00 AM
I love that the game's not over until you get that 27th out. No kneeling or running down the clock. Got to get everyone.

Which makes baseball the very best at championship-winning moments. There's that unified moment of celebration that is just amazing that no other sport can replicate as consistently. You know in football and basketball generally speaking there is a point when a lead becomes too great to lose. So there's all the celebration can get started and while therre is a burst of joy at 0:00, it's not like baseball where everyone sits on their hands and the edge of their seat waiting for the last out to be recorded. I remember when the Phillies won the World Series in 2008, FOX kept replaying the final out, each time focused on a different player's reaction. Very moving stuff, actually.I agree. Fox did the same thing in 2005. They had a camera on each individual player and one on the dugout. We know that the Super Bowl sucks about half of the time (though the games have been great lately), but it is even worse to see guys on the sideliness wearing Super Bowl champions caps and shirts with 5 minutes left in a blowout game.

delben91
08-30-2010, 11:06 AM
A play at the plate, especially when you know the runner and ball will arrive at the same time and you brace yourself for the collision.

A perfectly executed cut-off play.

A suicide squeeze.

Walking from the shade of the concourse, out the tunnel, and being slapped in the face with bright sunshine on a gorgeous green field. Talk about from the darkness into the light (True of the upper deck at the Cell, but most dramatic for me was seeing it in old Yankee Stadium. Say what you will about the structure, but that field is something, and you can just feel the history wash over you, it's palpable).

Bottom of the 9th with 2 out and the whole crowd rising to their feet to cheer.

Stealing 3rd or on that rare occasion now-a-days, stealing home. Especially with a lefty on the mound, where everyone in the park knows he's going and it's a race between the runner and the pitch.

soxfan43
08-30-2010, 11:07 AM
Great thread. I love everything mentioned so far but I also enjoy the base stealing battle of a speed guy on first base vs the Catcher and Pitcher. Being in the crowd for an amazing fielding play and seeing everyone turning to the guy next to them in disbelief. The first time you come up through the tunnel or the stairs and enter the concourse or field level of a stadium. Love the sounds and smells of a ballpark. Watching an at bat like the other night where Chris Sale blew three straight 99mph fastballs by a lefty. Love that.

RedHeadPaleHoser
08-30-2010, 12:27 PM
It's human - people making plays against one person with a wooden bat using only their legs, their arms, and their knowledge.

3-4 men charged with calling the plays without the use of televisions to determine if they're right or wrong (and I know IR is in, but I wish it wasn't).

The game can be riding on a breaking ball with a 3-2 count, or on the shoulders of the batter at the plate with the tying/winning run 90 ft away.

The smells - the grass, the sand, the grills.

While hitters are better, so are pitchers, and so are defenses.

That anyone on the roster has a chance to be the hero.

Oblong
08-30-2010, 01:14 PM
The simple things, not related to specific events but can be in any ballpark:

When your home team is winning and there's 2 outs in the top of the 9th. The Scoreboard says "Get on your feet" and everybody starts to get up before it says that. No matter what the standings are, I still get that charge when the closer gets the final out.

An average runner hits an average ground ball to a SS with an average arm and every time he's out by half a step.

The anticipation when the home team's about to win a playoff series in the top of the 9th. Outside of overtime wins, in other sports there reaches that point when the team wins before the game's over. In basketball or football the clock is winding down, the players start to enter the field/court and shaking hands... opposing coaches hug each other, you get the gatorade dump... but the game's not over! In baseball they have to wait until the last out. Then you get the burst of excitement when it finally happened.

When runners tag from 3rd on fly balls to the OF and they throw him out. It's almost like a penalty shot in hockey, everybody senses he's going to run so the excitement builds up.
I love any outfield assist.

BadBobbyJenks
08-30-2010, 01:30 PM
I will add the Lance Johnson jump at 2nd base, but the camera angle allows you see it happen live. Something amazing about a guy getting such a good feel for a pitcher he can take third standing up.

LITTLE NELL
08-30-2010, 01:34 PM
Everything but player salaries and ticket prices.

Whitesox029
08-30-2010, 06:02 PM
-It's so quantifiable. There are so many different ways a player can help his team, and for every one of them, there's a statistic.
-The structure and the mechanics of the game. Games like basketball, hockey, and soccer can be very chaotic and jumbled up when you're watching them, but baseball is so choreographed and aesthetically beautiful. The best examples are watching all the fielders and runners moving on a ball in the gap with men on base, or seeing a guy go from 1st to 3rd on a hard single, or as a lot of people have already said, seeing a suicide squeeze, especially a game-winning one.
-The lines are all very precise, and the distances are all just right. If 1st base were 89 or 91 feet instead of 90, the game's competitive balance would be thrown off.
-It's the only sport that lends itself to the tradition of fans keeping score. Having a record of a game you attended in your own handwriting is a souvenir unique to baseball, and it can be especially meaningful if something historic happens. I have a scorecard from the day Bobby Jenks tied the all-time record for consecutive hitters retired, for example.
-Each and every time two teams take the field, something amazing can happen. No-hitters, perfect games, cycles, etc. are always possible, and the very idea is unique to baseball. A perfect game for a hockey goalie is a shutout, and it happens way too often to be particularly exciting. On the other end of the spectrum, a 'perfect game' in basketball (assumedly also a shutout) would never happen at the highest level of competition. On that same note, a game between two teams playing at the same level of competition, though one team may be obviously better, fairly often results in an upset, even in the most extreme cases (the Orioles do have 2 wins in 12 games vs. the Yankees this year, and 3 in 12 vs. the Rays). On the other end of the spectrum, why would anyone rooting for the Rams even bother watching a game against the Colts when the odds against an upset in a given game are so astronomical?

hi im skot
08-30-2010, 10:34 PM
Even a guy like Brent Lillibridge can be a hero from time to time.

CWSpalehoseCWS
08-30-2010, 10:52 PM
No lead is safe. A team can be up by 8 runs and end up losing. Rare, but it has happened.

Fenway
08-31-2010, 06:33 AM
I love that the game's not over until you get that 27th out. No kneeling or running down the clock. Got to get everyone.

Which makes baseball the very best at championship-winning moments. There's that unified moment of celebration that is just amazing that no other sport can replicate as consistently. You know in football and basketball generally speaking there is a point when a lead becomes too great to lose. So there's all the celebration can get started and while therre is a burst of joy at 0:00, it's not like baseball where everyone sits on their hands and the edge of their seat waiting for the last out to be recorded. I remember when the Phillies won the World Series in 2008, FOX kept replaying the final out, each time focused on a different player's reaction. Very moving stuff, actually.

As Yogi says 'It's not over til it's over' :)

My signature pic represents the highs and lows of the game.

When that pic was taken in the 9th inning of the 2004 ALCS I was sitting at a mostly empty Fenway with my then 12 year old son, heartbroken, furious and just beside myself thinking how much they had to be laughing in New York. NYY would almost certainly dance at Fenway the next night.

For pure baseball drama you are hard pressed to beat Games 4 and 5 of that LCS. When Dave Roberts pitch ran in the 9th EVERYBODY knew he would try to steal second - and as he slid into second Fenway went from pure bedlam to dead silence for a split second just watching the umpire as it was that close.... You know the rest of the story :)

Another great thing about the game is you can relive a game decades later - all the other sports you remember key plays but baseball you remember EVERYTHING. How many here still replay Game 3 of the 83 ALCS in their heads?

PaleHoser
08-31-2010, 10:44 AM
I love baseball because it's played outdoors.

I love the fact that physical attributes are not as magnified as they are in other team sports. Someone as large as Frank Thomas or as slight as Ozzie Smith can excel.

That great athletes don't always make great baseball players. Bo Jackson and Michael Jordan were great athletes. They were not good baseball players.

That Mark Buehrle can throw a perfect game without breaking 87 on a gun, but Paul Konerko can hit a home run on a pitch registering 100 MPH.

That Mark Buehrle can make it to The Show as a 38th round draft pick, but the Sox can go 10+ years without an impact 1st round draft pick.

Cold beer at McCuddy's after a hot Sunday afternoon game.

The nuances - the bunt, the stolen base, the double-play pivot, a perfect relay, going from first to third on a single, hustle. "What do you throw him here with this count in this situation? Will he chase?"

That in golf everyone has to be quiet when someone is hitting a round ball lying perfectly still with a flat headed club, but a 50+ plus crowd can scream like crazy while a hitter is trying to square up a round ball that's breaking, moving 90+ MPH with a round bat.

That it's what your team can do with 27 outs that the other team can't.

Frontman
08-31-2010, 10:50 AM
The pace of the game. It isn't slick and quick paced. It's the type of game you can relax while watching. But at the same time; it can be completely exciting and edge-of-your-seat viewing. It's a game that remains the same, generation after generation. Oh sure; players might throw faster or hit the ball harder; but its still 9 guys on the field; versus one at the plate.

And with any throw of the ball, any swing of the bat; it can be a memory that lasts forever. We'll all remember where we were when "the catch" was made; or when we heard, "and the White Sox have won the world series." But we'll all remember that day we saw our first game, or if we've forgotten; we'll remember the moment our son or daughter saw theirs. Who hit the first home run for your kid to see that scoreboard light up.

We'll remember the moments of silence for the fallen; the cheers for the victorious, and the magic of singing "Hey hey hey.....goodbye."

Simply put, baseball is the National Pastime for a reason.

MeteorsSox4367
08-31-2010, 01:23 PM
Your 2005 World Champion Chicago White Sox

That my father introduced his son to his favorite sport and favorite team

That in January when it's cold as heck outside, I'm asking around in the bookstores and convenience stores to see if the baseball preseason magazines are out yet

That the smell of bubble gum from Topps cards brings back the Sox in red pinstripes

That on my way to and from work every day, I pass by the Cell

That no matter how long or busy my workday was, a Sox game on TV makes things a lot better

That my nephews are really good ballplayers, love the game as much as I do and still think it's cool to play catch with their uncle

That even though my Little League team was 2-19 back in 1979, playing on that team was one of my fondest childhood memories

That my birthday and Opening Day are usually days apart or sometimes even the same day

That I was able to attend the CWS in Omaha twice

No time limit - "Just sit back, relax and strap it down"

Going to other cities and planning my trips around visiting ballparks

Plays at the plate

Nancy's first few notes of "Na, Na, Hey, Hey, Goodbye"

That the Sox are set at second base for the next 12-15 years

The Sox jerseys (tired of the black ones, would like the vests to come back)

That more than half of my personal library revolves around baseball

hawkjt
08-31-2010, 01:27 PM
I love the view from behind the pitcher on the centerfield camera which allows you to see exactly how the pitch moves,and where the ump is calling strikes and balls.

I will always remember a day we were at the ballpark,with Cal Eldred pitching...he threw a 2 hit shutout vs the O's I believe...his curve ball from our seats right behind home plate was simply amazing,untouchable.
Never forget that game.

The Blackout Game,as was mentioned, could be about the most perfect game I have ever watched as a Sox fan.

The next blackout game vs the Rays at home was good also.

The arc of the perfectly struck ball that goes off the bat at a 45 degree angle,and just keeps soaring out into the dark of the nite. At a rare Cubs game once I saw Brett Boone hit one like that,and it stuck with me...have seen Frank and Thome hit those also...sweet meat!.

I love pennant races, if the Sox are alive,and while watching the Sox at the park, keeping one eye on the Twins game on the scolling scoreboard.

I love the fall shadows on the ballfield,which touches some place deep in my consciousness,always invoking Sandy Koufax and the Dodgers vs Zoilo Versailles and the Twins in the 1965 World Series. The shadows are long,the sunlight is amazing in October.

I even love the melancholy feel of the last game of the year at Soxpark. We always try to make that game. Bittersweet,indeed, but just being out there with the rest of the diehards is its own reward,somehow.

g0g0
08-31-2010, 01:30 PM
Definitely the atmosphere. It just feels right. Other sports have crazy, in your face fans (football); chanting and singing (soccer); promotion and production blitzes (basketball) - all of which are well and good. But baseball is different. Everyone settles in and you can almost feel a calming come over the stadium. Maybe the fans know to pace themselves as baseball action can come in spurts. Either way I love it!