So Long and Good Riddance, MLB [OPINION]
Right now in the United States folks are grappling with the rising cost of pretty much everything, a labor shortage, supply chain issues, and, oh yeah, a pandemic.
Meanwhile, in Florida, millionaires are fighting with billionaires about how to divide up billions of dollars in our money for them to play baseball.
I grew up a HUGE baseball fan. I followed every Twins game from age six on, from the late 80s to the Target Field era. I suffered through the 1994 strike, the lowly late 90s for the team, the threat of contraction, and the con job where we paid for Target Field and watch the team stink for a majority of the 2010s.
Recently I had a conversation with baseball author and historian Peter Golenbock, who wrote the awesome book "Whispers of the Gods." In the course of our conversation, it dawned on me that Major League Baseball lost the plot.
Baseball was at its most popular in the 1940's right after World War II. This is not a coincidence. Not only were people excited to get back to "normal" after the war, but they were also excited to cheer on the players themselves because they themselves had just been FIGHTING in the war.
Baseball players were relatable then and that relatability lasted until the strike in 1994. That, in my opinion, was when the shark was jumped and it became apparent that the "national pastime" was nothing more than a big business like McDonald's, Target, or Best Buy.
Being an MLB fan is hard enough at this point with the way the game has devolved into a four-hour staring contest, but being a Twins fan is damn near impossible. Ownership has no interest in winning, just making the most profit possible on a year-to-year basis. It is perhaps the least rewarding team to follow in the state of Minnesota.
If there was one thing I learned during the pandemic, it was that sports are a fun distraction but they don't need to be something I plan my life around anymore. If I watch a game, fine. If not, I really don't care.