Tomorrow is the greatest of all days in any sport if you want my opinion. The aces are ready, the new cleats are laced up. The smell of pine tar, hot dogs, and beer will be in the air. With each team taking the field around a different Major League city tomorrow, new hope arrives in the top of the 1st.
The great thing about Opening Day is that everyone has that new hope. Anyone can go out and win the whole thing. We all enter tomorrow with this hope and the ability to see something new and exciting. We enter with the possibility to see anything.
For everyone, that everything represents something different. Some are more of a given, some are a distinct possibility. Some are long shots but they’re still possible.
Will the Yankees send out Yankee Stadium with a championship? Will this be the year we meet youngsters Jay Bruce and Evan Longoria and welcome them as future stars of the league? Prince Fielder could hit 60 home runs; clean. What young hopeful right-hander that scratched and clawed his way onto your squad in spring training will flirt with or perhaps throw a no-hitter? Who’s going to go after .400 until the second half of the season? Who’s going to chase down Joe Dimaggio? They’ve got 162 games to do it.
Will we see a new rivalry opened up with a brawl? Will Albert Pujols be Albert Pujols as he always is? Ken Griffey Jr. approaches 600 home runs. Will your team go after that big move because they’re in unexpected contention after the first few months into the season?
There’s a million storylines and as of now they’re all within the wonderful realm of possibility. That is what makes this day so great and what keeps people coming back through the turnstiles each year in a flock.
Wherever you choose to enjoy Opening Day, I hope it’s a day that builds a lifelong memory. For me, Opening Day will always have me thinking back to 2005; my senior year in college. Blowing off class after waking up to find a text message from my Uncle in Cincinnati that he’d landed us two tickets to see the Reds. Grabbing my frat brother and 12 tall boys and pounding them in a parking garage before we headed in to see the amazing new atmosphere of baseball. Adam Dunn homering off Pedro Martinez (of the mighty Mets) to break up the shutout and then off Braden Looper to tie the game and send it into extra innings. And of course little Joey Randa going walk-off in extras to win it.
Just remember tomorrow as the season truly begins: you could see anything.