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Nursing The Off-Season Baseball Blues

Buy me some peanuts and cracker jacks – I’ve got the off-season baseball blues.

Buy me some peanuts and cracker jacks – I’ve got the off-season baseball blues.

I’m missing the boys of summer, y’all. The crack of the bat, the infield clay flying, even the banter of the announcers and the ubiquitous Just for Men ads. The absence of baseball on my telly every day is making me sad.

Don’t get me wrong – I’m still in sports girl mode. I love football, but it’s not played every day, although we are coming to that time of year when game times get spread out a bit over the week. But since my cable provider chooses not to “provide” the NFL Network, I’m a bit screwed when it comes to watching a Thursday night game. Anyhoo.

Still learning about hockey (more on that later!). Dig basketball, but my favorite team isn’t local.  And then there are my Gators… Please -- no wisecracks. My orange and blue heart is more black and blue these days.

It’s not like baseball’s not in the news right now. Trade rumors and names of players both coming and going from teams are flying fast and free like seagulls at the beach with a tropical storm in the Gulf. Madness. My Twitter feed is chalk full of speculation about moves the Rays may or may not make.  I blink and I miss something. Frankly, I can’t keep up with the conjecture and… that’s OK with me.

Yeah. It’s OK.

And no, contrary to an accusatory label someone threw at me, that doesn’t make me a bad fan.

It’s a given that the composition of the Rays is going to be very different next year. Carl Crawford will be off to another ball club, as will Rafael Soriano, along with a few more guys still to be determined.  Sure, I’ll miss them – they’re fun to watch and were an asset to the team. Will I mourn them when they’re gone – probably not.

I’m all about the team when it comes to my sports loyalties. And I’m all about moving forward when it comes to my sports teams, rather than dwelling on what was or might have been. Your millage may – and probably – does vary. That’s what makes being passionate sports fans great –- we all have our own unique way to look at things.

Who knows what the 2011 Rays will look like? At this point, I think the most likely answer to that rhetorical question is “no one.” Some may bemoan this, but it kind of excites me.  Right now, me, myself and I are happy to take a team with a bit of unknown potential with the ability to perhaps surprise to one with the weight of expectation bearing down on it.

So you numbers gurus and conjecture fans, have fun with the what-ifs and rumors. Enjoy the possibilities and general manager/player chess matches.  I’ll be over here, having a hot dog and a beer, watching football and basketball and trying to figure out hockey while I wait for pitchers and catchers to report.  Tick tick tick…

Photographs by, thelastminute, turtlemom nancy , fesek, kthypryn, justinwright, sue_elias, pointnshoot, and scrapstothefuture used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.