April 01, 2002

Time begins on Opening Day. Ah, it was a beautiful thing to finally see real baseball, even if only on television. And while I don't care too much for day baseball (since it would pretty much keep me from watching or attending games the majority of the time), for me Opening Day pretty much has to involve sunshine, as well as a home team victory. There's few things sadder in baseball than a big O.D. crowd watching their team get smacked around, and that didn't happen this year. Seven of the ten home teams won, and the three that lost didn't lose by more than two runs. Unfortunately, one of the three hometown losers was my Mariners, which made me only slightly less jealous of my old roommates Murph and Juli for getting to be there.

Speaking of old, I have to admit I felt a bit old when I watched a bit of the Cardinals-Rockies game and saw that Jose Oquendo was coaching third base for St. Louis. I know I haven't been following the N.L. too closely in recent years, but I have to admit that I thought he was still playing somewhere (a quick check of the record showed me how wrong I was; he hasn't played in about five years). Anyway, it's a little jarring for me to see players like Lee Mazzilli, Alan Trammell and Robby Thompson patrolling the lines, but the following lines from Rob Neyer's Opening Day diary made me feel a little better:
For me, the highlight of Opening Day 2002 was hearing Rickey Henderson had finally put his "John Henry" on a major-league contract and that Tim Raines made the Marlins' roster. As long as those two old leadoff men are still playing, I'll consider myself a young man.
As long as Rickey's still being Rickey there's a little hope for all of us.
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