Obama isn’t going to sign with the Dodgers. I was just being provocative, although our last middle-aged experiment Eric Milton just hit the DL for the rest of the season, I figure signing a veteren southpaw with 30mph heat sounds like a move the Dodgers might jump at.
All teasing aside, last night was a reminder that baseball is different from other sports. The president must always hold a special place for our pasttime, because this game, more than any other is in our collective consciousness as a nation. That is why steroids were such a big deal to baseball and its fans. In football, no one cares. Football is not for everyone. Maybe to watch it is, but children grow up oiling their mitts and playing catch with their fathers. Everyone plays Little League at some point. It is a place we can’t stomach treachery. Steroids in many ways felt like tagging a Norman Rockwell with Krylon.
So as our nation claws its way back out of the huge hole we’ve dug ourselves, it was good to see the President out under the St. Louis Gateway being a part of the pasttime. Although George Bush had a better fastball, Obama lobbed the ball straight, cringed like we all do when we almost mess up, and then pumped his fist and went with the moment.
I appreciated his wearing a Chicago White Sox jacket. We all knew he was a fan. It would have been false to wear a Cardinals jersey just for the hometown team. I think everyone had to respect that. Nothing is so frusterating as when politicians pander via sports teams to the local constituancy. In a nation obsessed with flip-flopping being the ultimate politcal sin (as if changing your mind was bad), isn’t it nice to see a guy who won’t fink on his team?
I mean, could you trust someone from the Windy City that didn’t love their hometown teams? Not me. Not in my America.
So the pitch could have been better, the National League could have done better, our pitchers in the NL West could have done a lot better (although part of me enjoyed Tim Lincecum giving up 2 of our 4 runs), but the night as a whole was good. So goes baseball, so goes America and this evening, baseball looked good.
I will say this. Obama may not have much of a fastball and the All Star Game might not be his best event. I look forward to the NBA All Star Game, where the odds are, Obama will come off the bench for the Eastern Conference and throw down 12 points, 3 boards and 6 assists.
That’s his sport. He’ll tell you himself.