At times, I feel like I’ve crashed a funeral. Every article I read about this upcoming season, there are the same words whispered over and over again in somber tones.
“The collapse” “Last September” “2011”
It’s a spooky repetition. There’s a shadow over the start of this season and for someone who’s just now entering the story, it’s ominous. I hear snippets of information. Players talking about those dark times. Hanging their heads. Others are angry. There are those who aren’t there anymore. who paid the price for what happened and who didn’t want to be a part of it anymore.
To me, after ingesting 160 years of baseball history in two months and from an academic distance, I see it as one bad season out of 100. While I know what happened, in general if not in detail, I didn’t experience it. I don’t know the regret and the sadness of the fans who had been following the team all season. Everyone else actually experienced it and felt it.
It’s the difference between studying the game and actually following it. It’s ab0ut becoming emotionally invested in a team. This emotional distance is a large part of the reason why I’ve decided to do my best to watch as many of the Spring Training games as I can.
The Red Sox and I need to have a bonding experience.