by Maria Christoforidis
NEW YORK, NY – Two games, two different outcomes – one more to go. After the Mets won Game 1 of this series against the Phillies, a true Met fan could not help but feel the superfluous excitement that followed outstanding closer Francisco Rodriguezâ€™s save on Tuesday night. Philly fans felt that same excitement after their four-run comeback in Game 2 last night at Citifield. I heard them.
The point is that any baseball fan – regardless of the team you root for – knows that certain tense emotion; the one composed of fear, excitement and eagerness that engages you to hope for a big win. You are so focused and hypnotized by the game, that you drown out any and every sound surrounding your captivated self. It’s an intoxication without the intox – or something like that.
Watching your team play this game while investing so much of your heart and love in every pitch they throw, every base they steal and every win accomplished, you canâ€™t help but feel an overwhelming emotion in the bottom of your stomach that makes you appreciate this baseball thing even more than you already do. And what better way to capture the essence of that shared sensation than to go back and revisit the passionate words of some of the greatest names ever affiliated with it?
“Baseball? It’s just a game – as simple as a ball and a bat. Yet, as complex as the American spirit it symbolizes. It’s a sport, business – and sometimes even religion.â€ â€“ Ernie Harwell (sportscaster)
“In order to excel, you must be completely dedicated to your chosen sport. You must also be prepared to work hard and be willing to accept constructive criticism. Without one-hundred percent dedication, you won’t be able to do this.” – Willie Mays
“I am the best in baseball.” – Reggie Jackson
“All managers are losers, they are the most expendable pieces of furniture on the face of the Earth.” – Ted Williams (directed at Jerry Manuel???)
“If it wasn’t for baseball, I’d be in either the penitentiary or the cemetery.” – Babe Ruth
“People ask me what I do in winter when there’s no baseball. I’ll tell you what I do. I stare out the window and wait for spring.” – Rogers Hornsby
“The great trouble with baseball today is that most of the players are in the game for the money and that’s it, not for the love of it, the excitement of it, the thrill of it.” -Ty Cobb
“I never smile when I have a bat in my hands. That’s when you’ve got to be serious. When I get out on the field, nothing’s a joke to me. I don’t feel like I should walk around with a smile on my face.” – Hank Aaron
“I’d walk through hell in a gasoline suit to play baseball.”- Pete Rose
“A ball player’s got to be kept hungry to become a big-leaguer. That’s why no boy from a rich family ever made the big leagues.” – Joe DiMaggio
“The ballplayer who loses his head, who can’t keep his cool, is worse than no ballplayer at all.” – Lou Gehrig
“I could have played another year, but I would have been playing for the money, and baseball deserves better than that.” – George Brett
And my favorite:
“Never let the odds keep you from pursuing what you know in your heart you were mean to do.” – Satchel Paige
Kisses, Maria At Bat