Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Major League Baseball's Annual Holiday

By Terence Monroe

New Year’s day, Easter, Memorial Day, the Fourth of July, Labor Day, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. If you haven’t figured out by now, the list above just happens to be all the national holidays that are celebrated in the United States. But there are certain days that could get the holiday tag just like the others. One that just passed was Major League Baseball Opening Day that is already considered a holiday by most avid baseball fans. Every year usually around the first of April, baseball celebrates its Opening Day. It is very significant to some, most being sports fans. This is the first day of baseball season, when fanatics get to watch their beloved teams play ball. This is the day that signals the start of a new baseball season, one where everyone’s favorite team has the same chance to win the World Series. It’s only later in the season when fans of poor teams realize there team isn’t going to win the big one, but when opening day is here that thought doesn’t cross anyone’s mind. Opening day is usually when teams send out their best pitchers to face off against other teams best pitcher to try and get a heads up on their first win. True baseball fans will really enjoy the fact that aces will be set up across the board to battle each other, in what is known to baseball aficionados as a pitcher’s duel. Usually that means that it’s going to be a well-pitched game, with little to no scoring game. One where the suspense gradually builds up toward the ninth inning when the game is usually on the line, unless it’s a tie game and in that case the fans enjoy extra inning baseball.

The St. Louis Cardinals were guess to the Arizona Diamondbacks on opening day April 1. The Cardinals had their ace Adam Wainwright facing the Diamondbacks ace Ian Kennedy. It was a great duel, but eventually after nine innings the Cardinals were defeated. Even though Cardinals fans didn’t get to see there team win on opening night what they did see was a game of Cardinal baseball, something St. Louis fans have salivated for since the devastating series loss to the San Francisco Giants last fall. The regular season usually ends in September and if teams are lucky they go to the post-season, which is usually completed in late October after a team has been crowned World Series Champions. If you do the math that is roughly five months without baseball. Baseball is something that brings people together, to enjoy a game with one another. This is why baseball’s inaugural Opening day is a holiday to some. But what classifies the others as holidays and not this special day?

Normally, holidays bring people together and that is something that Opening day has in common with other holidays. Everyone wants to enjoy a game with family and friends around the television set, jumping, clapping and cheering, as if they where at the game when their team scored a run. Usually on holidays most people have the day off and to some extent the same can be said for Opening Day. On Opening day, especially home openers, fans take the day off. They even pull their kids out of school so that they can enjoy the day. This day is usually an all day event. The home teams have parades before the big game and other special events to get ready for the first pitch. If anyone is lucky to have gotten their hands on tickets then they have taken off work and are ready to celebrate for the day. Going to the ballpark on opening day is special; it’s the first time in months that you can enjoy an outside atmosphere. This day is usually accompanied by nice comfortable spring weather. Opening Day seems to have a lot in common with a national holiday.

With that being said there are other things that define what a holiday is, but are there really a set of rules that classify what a holiday is and what isn’t? If there is one I haven’t came across it. What needs to be said is that this day is a special day regardless of if it has that holiday tag or not. It’s something that only happens once a year and should be enjoyed. 

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