Thursday, March 19, 2020
Copyrighted by Sarah Morris, 2020
Tomorrow is the first day of spring. My usual spring revolves Dodger baseball, but nothing about the 2020 season is usual.
Since the Los Angeles Dodgers won their 106th game of the 2019 season, nothing has gone the Dodger way. No one expected the Dodgers to bow out of the 2019 postseason during the NLDS.
During the off-season, the Dodgers could not lure a highly coveted free agent to Los Angeles. Most Dodger fans thought their favorite organization was being cheap, drawing unmerciful criticism. Though this unmerciful criticizing was undeserved, the loud-mouth Dodger fans kept complaining.
I can guarantee every Dodger employee wants to win a world championship. These employees get tired hearing, “It’s been 32 years since the Dodgers have won a world championship.” Everyone associated with the Dodgers wants to and works hard to bring another world championship.
In November, two well-respected baseball journalists broke the news that the Houston Astros had stolen signs electronically for three seasons, which was illegal. The article sparked a two-month MLB investigation to see if the Astros cheated from 2017-2019. Since the Dodgers lost to the Astros in seven games in the 2017 World Series, most Dodger fans had a great interest in the results of the investigation.
When MLB announced its findings that the Astros indeed cheated, including during the 2017 World Series, most Dodgers and their fans were mad, especially when none of the players, who requested the sign-stealing scheme, were suspended. Whereas the Dodger management and players handled their supreme disappointment and the feeling of being cheated out of something they had earned with class, most fans on social media were nasty toward the Astro organization. Although I was angry to find out the Astros used technology illegally to gain an unfair advantage, I did not want to destroy any Astro player’s career because of his misjudgment.
I thought we could get past the Astros’ betrayal when the Dodgers began playing meaningful games. I could not wait for spring training to start, especially after the Dodgers obtained Mookie Betts and David Price from the Boston Red Sox and Brusdar Graterol from the Minnesota Twins.
I did not miss a single exhibition game this spring, and the Dodgers looked great. They had not suffered a major injury to a player. While other pundits were writing about the Dodgers had the best lineup in franchise history, I profiled each player on the Dodger 40-man roster because I like to take a humble approach to my reporting on Dodger baseball. I think I can gloat after they won a world championship. In the back of my mind, it was too perfect; something was going to dreadfully wrong. Nothing comes easy to the Dodgers. This might be the reason I love them so much.
A week from today, I was late for an exhibition game, so I did not check the Internet news before turning on my Roku where I watch my MLB.TV. I was not too stunned when I saw the Dodger game was canceled. After all, I knew the Phoenix area was expecting rain all the rest of the week. It was odd.
Then, I hopped on the internet and went to espn.com/mlb. I saw MLB had delayed Opening Day for at least two weeks because of the Coronavirus. I was not shocked by this since the Coronavirus was causing a pandemic. To stop the spread the illness is to limit person-to-person contact. While other baseball fans bellyached how bored they are without baseball, I found something else to do. Although baseball is my livelihood, I think public safety is far more important than providing public entertainment.
Of course, I miss baseball. I am saddened when I hear the best case scenario is Opening Day will be during the Memorial Day weekend. I cannot change it so that I do not gripe about it.
Coronavirus is something that the world has not dealt with before. No one knows when baseball will return. However, I am confident that we will have a regular season at some point during 2020. Until then, I must satisfy myself with my baseball memories.