The Yankees are averaging nearly 40,000 fans for each home game with 30 games remaining in the season, proving once again that New York loves its baseball.
The Yankees, once again, will draw more than 3 million fans to Yankee Stadium. It is as much a tribute to New York City as it is to the team the Yankees are fielding this year.
For most Yankees fans, or at least the ones who apply a touch of honesty, a glance at the standings brings about a feeling of accomplishment and anticipation regarding what lies ahead for the team.
And the fact that it’s been a bumpy ride and not a walk in the park has only added to the excitement surrounding the team.
And while many of us lament having to work on these bright and sunny days of summer, the Yankees await our return from work with a plethora of young athletic talent to fill our nights.
And whether you are sitting on the back deck listening to Ma and Pa Sterling, catching a few innings on TV, or following each bat on a laptop or iPhone, the Yankees remain with us as a way to relax and enjoy the last months of summer nights and before Fall is upon us.
Baseball is the only sport that can do that. The NFL brings us oversized men whose sole intention is to bash somebody’s head in before it happens to them and they wind up in the league’s next CTE study.
Basketball is an endless stream of very long men running up and down a court for 46 minutes trading baskets until the final two minutes come about in a game that is not a runaway, only to have those two minutes take thirty minutes to play.
Let’s talk about “Action”
Naysayers of baseball have their issues with the sport, too. But my experience with those folks is they don’t have a thorough understanding of the game, and that accounts for the game being boring and not having enough “action.”
Baseball, it has been said, is a cerebral game that involves intellect more than brute force
And just for those folks, someday I’m going to watch a football game, a game of action, with a stopwatch in hand. And I’m going to show them just how much “action” there is in a game that takes three hours to play with sixty minutes on the game clock.
And in between the huddle and the amount of time it takes to set and run a play, accounting for nearly 40 seconds that expire on the clock to set all that up, I’d be surprised if there are more than twenty minutes of so-called action on the field.
Baseball, it has been said, is a cerebral game that involves intellect more than brute force. Take last night’s contest between the Yankees Sonny Gray and Cleveland’s Corey Kluber. In a game that took only 2:28 to play, both pitchers excelled in a game of dodgeball, keeping hitters off balance and the ball off their bats.
Unfortunately for Yankees fans, Kluber was the better of the two on this one night, and the Yankees fell to two games behind the Red Sox in the 5-1 loss.
There is undoubtedly a core of Yankees fans who will and do watch every inning of every game, regardless of whether a no-hitter is in progress, or the game is an eight-run blowout.
But most fans, myself included, are just as content to watch a few innings before retiring for the night in preparation for the next day’s work. But in most any ballgame, that’s all you need to get a feel of how the team is doing and whether or not a win is in sight.
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Last night for instance, when I saw those three errors that greeted Gray in his Yankees debut, I sensed this was not going to be the Bomber’s night.
And that feeling was sealed as soon as I saw Gary Sanchez waving at one of Kluber’s sliders a foot outside, I knew it was time to start writing my column for the next day.
The Yankees may have a brief case of the Summertime Blues, having lost four of their last five games, but baseball doesn’t suffer from the same illness. Baseball shines and thrives because it is a deserving game which has captured the attention of the American citizenry for 140 years.
Baseball was the sole for recreation for troops on both sides during the Civil War. And it was the outlet that brought about a sense of security and life returning to normal following 9/11.
A sport reinventing itself
It’s our National Pastime, nothing more and nothing less. It is also a sport that is blooming with young talent everywhere, a few of who have become rock stars in their own right. From the best all-around talent in baseball, Jose Altuve, to Corey Seager and Cody Bellinger, the Dodger’s Rookie of the Year in 2016 and the 2017 likely award winner.
And on to the outspoken and brilliant talent on the Nationals, Bryce Harper, to everyone’s favorite this season, Aaron Judge of the Yankees, baseball will draw more fans at games this year than ever before, beating the record set in 2016.
Behold! There is a respite from the dog days of summer. And if you haven’t found the Yankees yet, now is the perfect time to join in as they seek their first Division Title since 2012.
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