Writer’s Workshop: Take Me Out To The Ballgame

Dansby Swanson making the final out of the 2021 World Series

Kat, bless her, made one of this week’s prompts “Write a blog post inspired by the word: baseball.”

The 2022 Major League Baseball season is drawing to a close, and while I haven’t followed it as much as in years past, I do know that our Atlanta Braves are in second place in the National League East, trailing the New York Mets by two games. They are currently #1 in the Wild Card standings, so chances are good that they’ll have a shot as the Wild Card team. I haven’t followed my favorite American League team, the Chicago White Sox, as closely this season; right now they’re tied for second place with the Minnesota Twins in the American League Central, four games behind the newly-christened Cleveland Guardians, and also four games back in the Wild Card standings. If they make a good push, they might also make the playoffs.

About that “newly-christened” Cleveland team: they had been the Cleveland Indians for as long as I can remember (they had gone through a number of name changes in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, called the Blues, the Naps (after Napoleon Lajoie, one of their star players), the Bronchos, and the Lake Shores), but at the end of last year said they were abandoning the now politically-incorrect name “Indians” (it honored Louis Sockalexis, a Native American player who was with the team between 1894 and 1896) for the less-inflammatory Guardians. It’s just a matter of time before the Braves, who have had a good relationship with the Native Americans living in the Southeast (chiefly the Cherokee), will end up having to change their name as well. They could go back to one of the names they used in the past, including the Bees, the Rustlers, the Doves, the Red Caps, and my personal favorite, the Beaneaters, but I think they’ll opt to go with a new name, perhaps one of the names of the hockey teams that have left here (the Flames, the Knights, or the Thrashers). My idea is the Hammers, after Hammerin’ Hank Aaron, and also because Atlanta is the home of Home Depot, which I’m sure sells lots of hammers.

A week from today, the limit on players on the team (25) goes away, and teams can expand their rosters to as many as 40 players, calling up players from their minor league affiliates. Two rookie players have already made their mark here, outfielder Michael Harris II and infielder Vaughn Grissom, so who knows who else they’ll call up? Being in the middle of a pennant chase, any further callups might be limited and not get a lot of playing time. But you never know.

13 thoughts on “Writer’s Workshop: Take Me Out To The Ballgame

  1. I wonder how my Mariners held up this season! I didn’t realize the Indians were now named the Guardians and I think you’re right, the Braves will be next. Pat’s high school mascot was the Pinelads/Pinelasses in Lanai Hawaii. 🙂 I like that one!

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    1. Right now, the Mariners are a half game back of the Tampa Bay Rays for the AL Wild Card. If the season were to end today, the Mariners and Rays would play. They’re inn second place in the AL West, 11.5 games back…

      Lanai was where the Dole plantation is (or was), isn’t it?

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  2. When I think of baseball, I think of my brother who started playing when he was, maybe 7, and he is still playing but with bad knees. It will be a sad day when he finally can’t play baseball. To be honest, I think they should just keep the names they had and stop all of this. Now. Redskins….I do understand that but Indians? Nope. maybe people who read this will think I am a horrible person but we need to chill.

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    1. How old is your brother? I know guys in their 60’s and even their 70’s who are still playing softball in Chicago (the odd version I grew up playing, with a 16″ ball and no gloves).

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  3. Living most of my adult life with men (my husband and sons) I have been exposed to all types of sports and I enjoy watching most games. Baseball is my favorite and I’ll watch just about any game regardless of who’s playing. Very interesting post, John. Thanks for sharing!

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    1. I’m the same way. I was in Las Vegas once and found the sports book area at the Mandalay Bay, where they had TV’s showing all the Major League games. I was sitting there following two or three games at once.

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  4. I got a kick out hearing you mention an old name for the Braves – The Boston Bees! I remember them from my early years as a baseball fan. The White Sox have just had too many injuries; doubt they’ll make it this year.

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  5. I cheered on Rocky Colavito in many games in the mid sixties when he came back to Cleveland. I used to love baseball, but something changed – maybe it was the strike. My dad was a life-long Braves fan.

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    1. I remember that trade that brought himn back to Cleveland, because the White Sox and A’s were involved. The Sox walked away with Tommie Agee and Tommy John (who should be in the Hall of Fame if for no other reason than the elbow surgery he had that bears his name). The Rock spent half of ’67 with the Sox when they were chasing the pennant. That team broke my heart: they needed to win one game against the A’s to clinch, ended up losing both ends of a doubleheader, and that was that. To add insult to injury, the manager of the A’s was Luke Appling, one of the great names in White Sox history…

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  6. Let’s Go Mets! Yes, I bleed blue and orange. It has been an interesting season, but I think the Wirld Series this year will be in New York …I’m really looking forward to a Subway Series.

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