Tonight is the last game of the 2016 Major League Baseball season.
For the past 112 years the world series has been played (other than in 1904 and 1994) to end the arguments regarding who the best team in baseball is. Of course, it can be argued (and will always be) that the “best” team has not always won. But that doesn’t change the end results of the championship flag that is hoisted on opening day the next season.
This year we have a magical world series – the Cleveland Indians, who were last champions 68 years ago and the Chicago Cubs who were last champions 108 years ago – are each playing to end a decades (or in the Cub’s case a century) quest for the opportunity to hoist that flag in April.
There is no sport in the world that has the drama of baseball.
Pitcher throwing to batter, catcher behind the batter to catch the ball should contact not occur, which is not always a simple task. There are seven players behind the pitcher who’s job is to catch the ball – again, not a simple task.
While the batter stands with only a vague idea of what pitch will be thrown and where – a pitch that averages around 90 miles per hour with gravitational movement. There is also the curve ball, slider, knuckle ball and others which can make the batter look as if he does not belong anywhere near a bat much less a baseball field. But then, magically, the next pitch hangs too long in the air (a microsecond) and the hitter, who just looked incompetent; hits it 450 feet for a home run. One pitch the hitter is a failure, the next he is at the apex of success.
Right now its the bottom of the 3rd inning – tie game. First and second for Cleveland, 2 balls and 0 strikes. Coach visit to the mound. 3 balls and 1 strike, fly ball out and now the cleanup hitter, Mike Napoli is up. Batting .200 in the series. Strike one, runners on first and second – tie ballgame and a foul tip – 0 balls and 2 strikes, 2 out. The pitch is outside, ball 1. Hendricks sets up, the pitch is lined…caught at 3rd. Inning is over.
Cleveland ties the game – signing off now to enjoy the final 6 innings of baseball for the 2016 season.
Pitchers and catchers report in 105 days.
There is a long winter ahead for us baseball fans who will endure basketball, football and hockey for the next one hundred fifty one days; when the world championship flag is hoisted and its, once again, Opening Day for Major League Baseball, 2017.