Baseball reminds me of times with dad

Published 6:12 pm Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Like most sports fans, I love this time of year. It’s the start of the baseball season, March Madness is coming to a close, and The Masters golf tournament is just mere weeks away.

However, if I had to pick the one sport that I enjoy the most, it would have to be the one that’s played on a diamond. The start of baseball is not just the beginning of spring, but it also brings back a lot of great memories.
My dad was also a huge baseball fan. He made sure that we spent at least one game each year, going over to either Atlanta Fulton County Stadium, or later Turner Field, to cheer on our beloved Atlanta Braves.

I can’t remember the final scores of the games, or who hit the big home runs. But I do remember sitting in the stands with my dad, sharing peanuts, hot dogs and Cokes, and having a grand old time watching the game together. Yes, we even enjoyed some of those silly scoreboard tricks like the Home Depot Tool Race. My dad always had an uncanny knack for picking the tool that would win the race.

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I really started getting into sports around the fifth grade, which also happened to be the time that the Braves were starting to shine as one of the National League’s premier teams. I vaguely remember my parents listening to baseball games on the radio, or watching college football games on TV, but when I was younger it really wasn’t anything I was interested in.

For some reason, that all seemed to change around fifth grade, when I began to follow sports with a passion. It all began with baseball, and I think the reason was because I realized that there was a lot of math and numbers in sports. At that time, I was a huge math nerd, so I thought it was fun to compute batting averages, or ERA, and other statistics like that. My dad eventually taught me how to keep score at a baseball game, and that was yet another way I found to make the game fun.

Eventually, though, I learned to just love the sport for itself, rather than the math or the strategy or anything like that. I would have never enjoyed baseball nearly as much, though, if I hadn’t been also able to spend it as time together with my dad.

Unfortunately, my father now lives in Missouri, and our streak of attending Braves games each season eventually came to an end. However, I’m still lucky enough to be able to go to a Braves game every now and then, and I still enjoy them. Although, I’d have a better time if my dad was there to enjoy them with me.

I hope that I never feel like I’m too old to enjoy a day at the ballpark with my favorite sports fan — my dad.