I was born into a family of passionate baseball fans, and my Godmother taught me from a young age to love the New York Yankees.
The team was something that my family and I bonded over as I was growing up.
It was something my older cousins were into that I got to be a part of, even as a little kid.
It was something that I got to share with my own younger cousins as I grew older.
Being a baseball fan shaped my childhood and a lot of my favorite memories are centered around the sport.
Since my Godmother passed away last year, baseball and the Yankees are more special to me than ever, because they help me feel connected to her even though she isn’t here anymore.
I will never forget attending the 1998 Yankees parade with her when I was just 8 years old. It was, and forever will be, one of the most special days of my life.
Regardless of how long you’ve been into the sport, what special memories it holds for you, or who your team is, I think there are many common things that bring all baseball lovers together and get us excited when Opening Day rolls around each year.
In honor of Opening Day 2019, here are some of my personal favorite things about baseball season.
1. Warm weather is just around the corner
Every year I go to a baseball game on opening weekend, and every year I sit in the stands wrapped in a blanket and shivering!
But, even with cooler temperature still hanging around at the end of March/early April, I know that the start of baseball season means Spring weather will be here soon.
When I think about going to baseball games, I think of hot afternoons and heavenly breezes flowing through the bleacher seats.
I think about the cool summer nights spent under those bright stadium lights, and the beautiful sight of a home run ball as it soars through an indigo sky.
2. Baseball games are fun to attend
A baseball game is a great excuse to get together with a group of friends and share some drinks, on a weeknight or weekend.
I also personally LOVE baseball game dates. Even if you’re going on a first or second date to a game, it’s the perfect situation because there will always be something for you to watch or to talk about in case you don’t know what to say.
Baseball games are also great ways to bond with family. I have gone to lots of games with my cousins, and had a great time at the Subway Series game with my husband, my parents, my sister, and her fiancé.
If you haven’t gone to a live game you should definitely put it on your to-do list for this summer.
Pretty much every team has cheap tickets available throughout the season, and sitting in the bleachers or high up above home plate are two fun, inexpensive areas to experience the game from.
3. Stadium food is getting better and better
Have you seen some of the food items available at stadiums these days? It’s insane!
I just saw an article that showed some pretty crazy looking milkshakes that will be at Yankee Stadium this year.
The latest trend foods and popular restaurants (such as Buffalo Wild Wings and Shake Shack) are making their way into different stadiums across the country, and it’s kind of awesome.
Of course, if you go to games frequently you may want to pack some food with you once in a while because most of the options are not healthy, but sampling new and cool food that’s available at the games you go to is just another way to make your game outing exciting.
4. It’s the great American pastime
Baseball has always been a favorite in this country for a reason, and although we may be divided based on who were cheering for at teams, I always feel a strong sense of community and patriotism at baseball games.
Looking around and seeing everyone take off their hats for the anthem, hearing God Bless America blare through the speakers during the 7th inning stretch, signing along to Take Me Out to the Ballgame, and sharing a collective laugh at an adorable child busting a move on the Megatron are really special moments that bring everyone together at live games.
It’s a great reminder that, no matter how crazy the world gets or how separated we may feel from others, there are still common interests and passions we have that can bring us together.
5. There’s always something to watch on TV
There are a ton of baseball games throughout each season, which is great because baseball fans don’t ever have to worry about not having something to watch.
Most weeknights and weekend afternoons you can turn not he TV and see your favorite team hit the field.
As I mentioned, baseball is very popular with my family, so most of my Sunday afternoons during the season are spent not he couch at my parents’ house, watching whatever game is on with my parents and my grandmother.
These lazy days are special to me because I get to spend time with my family and, again, am brought closer to others by my favorite sport.
6. You get to see your favorite players again
…and you get to see what the rookies show what they can do.
As a lifelong Yankee fan, I’ve seen a lot of amazing players come and go.
It seems like there are new promising prospects every season, but I hold true to my few favorites.
Seeing Brett Gardner leading the roster is something I look forward to every year.
Greg Bird is another player who I love to watch play—especially when he’s proving others wrong in terms of what he can do.
Every baseball fan has those few players that they deeply respect and just love to watch play each year.
I could go on naming Yankees but I’m trying to keep this as neutral as possible, plus I’d probably just end up listing out their entire roster.
7. A World Series title is as possible as ever
Regardless of who you root for or what their record was in years past, everyone starts the new season with a clean slate.
It’s an opportunity to get excited for the year that lies ahead and the possibility of your team going all the way.
Even if the team itself isn’t as dynamite as you might be hoping, the beauty of a new season’s beginning is that anything can happen.
It’s the first page of a brand new story that’s sure to one entertaining and unpredictable.
7. There’s nothing like the rush of watching your team crush it
As I write this, notifications are popping up on my phone about balls being hit and runs being batted in.
There’s nothing like that happy feeling seeing MLB notifications blowing up my lock screen again.
Seeing your team bring home a win on TV is such a fulfilling feeling, and contributing to the ear-shattering roar of the crowd when you’re there in person to witness a homer is such an incredible thing to be a part of.
Just like in anything competitive, winning isn’t everything…but it sure is sweet when your team is the one doing the winning.
8. Despite what some people think, it is an incredibly exciting sport
Whenever I talk to someone who doesn’t like baseball, they give me the same reason.
“It’s so boring,” they say. Or, “it’s so slow…nothing is ever happening.”
I can see why some people might think that, but I still completely disagree.
Sure, there isn’t typically violence happening during the game. There isn’t a whole lot of drama, and most of the time the focus is on two main players—the guy on the pitcher’s mound and the guy up at bat.
But even so, I can’t tell you how many at-bats have had me on the edge of my seat and holding my breath in anticipation of what would happen. I can’t begin to count how many times I’ve leapt up out of my seat, yelling at the top of my lungs, as I watched my team steal a base or watched an incredibly skilled player turn a full count into a scoring opportunity.
Baseball, like anything else, is completely mesmerizing if you truly give it your attention.
It’s more than a bunch of guys tossing around a ball and running around a diamond, it’s a true art form and it’s something that I will always be grateful to have as such a big part of my life.