It’s the color.
The brilliant blue sky towers over a canvas of green. Smooth brown infields with pristine chalk baselines serve as barriers on a plateau of the divine. The lines stretch across the great outfield, some marked by a grid of green and darker green, some without pattern, emerald and vast and begging the ageless to run forever, tracking some fleeting fly ball.
It’s the sound.
The hum of a crowd at any given moment, vendors calling goods, hecklers heckling. A chant breaks out, a slow rhythmic clap as the pitcher comes set. The organ calls for charge. The bat when it connects has many sounds, and they are all beautiful, but some more so. At present, one such crack sends an electric charge into the sea of spectators who find themselves on their feet as part of ritual without thought or delay. This crowd started with a hum, and the crowd ends it with a roar as a tiny speck of white bounces to the wall, its deliverer racing to third base. The throw is late, and the roar reaches a crescendo and holds. The ball returns to its origin on the tiny brown circle where all madness began, and the tense hum, the hecklers, the chant, and the rhythmic beat of the clapping hands begins anew.
It’s the majesty.
How high the ball soars. How fast it travels. How grand the stadium.
It’s the language.
Turn two. Paint the corner. Steal. Hit and Run. Diving stop. Deep fly ball. The ball had eyes. It’s a gapper. Bases loaded. The pitcher is dealing. Bullpen. Working the count. Caught looking. Full count. Frozen rope. Grand slam. Knuckleball. No-no. Rubber match. World Series. Runners in Scoring position. Slugger. Suicide squeeze. Chin music. Flashing the signs. Upper Decker. Playing catch. Walk-off home run.
Let’s Play Two.
It’s the history.
Scandal and glory. Statistics and records. Champions and goats and curses and streaks. Hallowed halls and infinite debates. Black and white video of the fall classic. Ballplayers in 1880’s uniforms and mustaches. Pinstripes and rivalries and the boys of summer.
It’s Opening Day!