Baseball Straight Ahead. Why Am I Not Excited?

482805043Major league teams are now training at their stadiums with the start of the abbreviated 60 game season on July 23.

My Yankees will be playing the World Champion Washington Nationals in DC that evening. For those who haven’t been paying attention, the 60 game season will be comprised of 40 games against their own Division foes, and 20 games against the corresponding geographical division of the other league. There will be a DH for all this year, and henceforth probably forever.

From July 23 on there will be a 60-game regular season in 66 days ending on Sunday September 27 (as originally scheduled) followed by the playoffs with 5 teams per league. God knows I have watched enough Criminal Minds & Chicago PD reruns (both great programs), so some original programming of Yankees baseball will be welcomed.

So why aren’t I more excited?

1. I am unsure whether they will really play and I am girding myself for the cancellation of the season before it begins.

2. Every day I get a pit in my stomach when a player chooses not to play this year. I am expecting a greater number of players to “pass” and not play. Mike Trout sounds like he is going to pass soon.

3. If they do play, I am expecting players to test positive during the season. What then? Do whole teams forfeit their games for 2 weeks during self-quarantine?

4. Even if they begin, I think there’s a strong likelihood the season will be cancelled sometime mid-season

5. Even if they play the “whole season” (hah),  what kind of Championship is it? In football terms, a 60-game baseball season is a 6 game NFL season. Pretty lame, don’t you think? (BTW, don’t be so sure the NFL will play this year). Baseball is a spring & summer marathon with kudos to the team which wins the marathon. A 60 game season is like declaring a divisional champ on Memorial Day, when the season just starts to get in gear.

6. Based on the 60-game season where any team which starts strong could be champion, is the championship really legit?

7. I know I will want my Yankees to win, because I want them to win every year. They have a legit shot this year (as they do virtually every season). If they don’t win, or even make the playoffs, I will just rack it up to a bogus season. If they win, it’s still a hollow Championship. So where’s the joy?

Pre-COVID-19, I truly believed the Yankees were positioned well to win it all this year. Dodgers fans probably feel likewise. Would have loved a legit Yankees-Dodgers World Series.

But now, who knows? I love baseball. It’s the best professional sport and the Yankees are the best professional team of all time, as far as I am concerned.  But now, who really cares?

Play ball, I guess.

PS I saw a Yankees intra-squad game broadcast on YES Network this evening (7/6). I am always excited to see Yankees spring training games. But I was depressed watching this and underwhelmed. Big Stadium. No fans. No buzz. I did like seeing CC in a purple t shirt (and mask, thanks CC) behind home plate. But it’s not happening for me this year. Cancel the season please. Most importantly, let’s find a COVID-19 vaccine and start baseball again for real in 2021.

More Strumings


  1. Stuart K. Marvin says:

    Round peg, square hole. Lot’s of reasons why the excitement factor isn’t there, starting with COVID and the economy, the latter particularly poignant given the players and union’s seemingly huge disconnect w/ struggles facing the American public during negotiations to play or not to play. This is gonna blow up quickly, imo. Happy 4th Lonny!

    • Lonny Strum says:

      Thanks for the feedback Stuart. And Tanaka just got hit in the head by a Stanton line drive and was out cold for a few minutes. Ugh. It just isn’t happening for me this year for many reasons, much as I love the game and the Yankees. I’d be OK if they didn’t play at all, and started again next Spring training with a New President, a COVID vaccine, and an improving economy. Hope all is well.

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