I’m a huge baseball fan. It’s something that defines me (seeing as Parkinson’s doesn’t), but I have to admit, I was never a San Francisco Giants fan. The Giants, to me, are what they are because of Barry Bonds (and I NEVER liked him – even before 2001 and 73), so they’re officially one of the baseball teams I can’t root for (just like the Braves, Mets, and most definitely the Yankees). Now, there’s probably no logic in disliking those other teams, though there always is for the Yankees, which goes without saying. However, I have recently had nice things to say about Derek Jeter, Mariano Rivera, and Aaron Judge. This shows just how much I’m changing.
Heck, when Judge broke Mark McGwire’s rookie home run record, I didn’t pout. I congratulated him, and went on with my life. When Bonds broke McGwire’s record, I was shattered (post 9/11 aided a lot to that), seeing as Big Mac was my favorite player.
That said, today I’ll be rooting against Judge and the Yankees because it’s the playoffs, and I won’t rest easily until the Yankees lose (though lack of tremor meds will tire me out quickly, so I will fall asleep). Personally, my allegiance to playoff teams this year is to the good things in baseball. Thus, it goes to Cleveland (wife’s home state / great team), Los Angeles (Kershaw) and Houston (hurricane rebuilding and Verlander / Altuve). I wouldn’t mind Chicago, Colorado, or Boston, but they’re not built to last. I don’t feel close to Arizona. Call it East Coast bias, but yeah. I won’t complain, but I don’t know them. At least Colorado has Charlie Blackmon. This kid knows what I’m saying.
But speaking of the Giants, and I promise you Giants fans that I did have reason to start with them. As each season ends, we see players get awards and go to free agency while others get traded in the hopes of rebuilding for next year. We also see once great players falter and retire. This year, we lost Matt Cain. Cain was amazing at the beginning of the Giants’ dynasty of 2010, 2012, and 2014. By the end, he like Tim Lincecum, was lost potential. However, even if we're not Giants fans (and in retirement, I can put that aside to remember his greatness), we can remember him for what he was, like this day with Batkid and as a tough competitor.
Memories like that will always be larger than the game, any game, and most lives of quiet desperation.
So the bigger questions here is how will you be remembered when it comes time to go off into the sunset? I can only hope that I'm half this class.
See also MAKE A WISH - they are awesome.