Crying Over Baseball

Thank you, Doug Glanville, for your insider's perspective on the game of baseball and the sadness that comes from repeated assaults to its integrity.  His recent New York Times article sums up where I am with the game, and while I didn't play it as a career like he did, I share the same boyhood ties and the same disillusionment as its purity has been marred by various forms of cheating. 

(By the way, I completely agree with his line of thinking regarding Pete Rose.  The Hall of Fame is not the Hall of Saints, but neither can the game's highest honor be bestowed on people who did things to fundamentally compromise its authenticity.  Some may wonder how you can be comfortable honoring racists, violent men, and egoists, but not gamblers and PED users, but in my mind it's as Glanville says: the Hall is about the game of baseball, and if you cheat it, you don't deserve to be honored.)

Though my time is scarce so I have less invested in following the game, it still burns in me as the love of my youth.  And it feels colder and colder that the game I once knew with such innocence and grandeur is now marked by scandal after scandal.  In a sense, even worse than each cheater is wondering who the next cheater will be, worrying that it will be someone you idolize, resigning yourself that there is no more sacredness regardless of who is cheating and who isn't, and then trying to figure out if and how you can resolve all of this with your long-cultivated love for the game.

I'm not sure if I prefer this sad reality to looking the other way and naively assuming all is good in Mudville.  But I can tell you for sure that I can no longer look the other way.

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