It really hit hard me for the first time on this past Friday morning.
I miss baseball.
The crack of the bat. The pop of the mitt. The smell of fresh cut grass. All that jazz.
But I even miss the annoying things. When Twitter scouts the statline of a minor league pitcher and declares him a “future ace!” Second-guessing a manager’s decision within the game. Arguing about lineup construction or bullpen roles or the validity of statistics like ‘saves’ or ‘quality starts.’
I've been taking drives through county roads with my family on the weekends and we've walked miles upon miles around our neighborhood as we try to get out of the house as safely as possible. But another part of how I am dealing with these difficult days during the COVID-19 shutdown is by trying to stay connected to the game. Until something different is officially announced, the American Association and the Milkmen are preparing for a 2020 baseball season, so I’ve continued to do some video scouting work and look over statistics of potential targets for our roster. I’ve been working my through my OOTP franchise “redoing the dark days” of the Milwaukee Brewers. I have been thinking a lot about Kerry Wood lately for some reason and checking out highlights from his career. I haven’t played competitively since park & rec during my senior year of high school, but I have been watching videos and trying to learn how to throw different pitches. I’ve been in the yard playing catch with my kids.
How are you staying connected to the game? Are you out playing catch, like me and Christian Yelich? Are you watching classic Brewers games like the ones linked in this fanpost, or other MLB replays? Following our OOTP regular season sim, or the ones at Baseball-Reference or Baseball Prospectus? Are you creating your own video game dynasty? Reading any good baseball books? What else are you doing?
Baseball will be back, we know that in the back of our minds. But what we don’t know is how long this pandemic will last, nor do we know what the game and leagues — MLB, minors, and independent baseball — will look like when it’s time to play again.
We miss you baseball, and we’ll be here for you when the time is right.