More Than Baseball

Reader alert:  although I am extremely happy that Major League Baseball’s regular season has returned, that will not be the crux of this piece.  Without using the same old clichés, I will just say that the season is long and I will have plenty to write about.  Today’s entry is personal, an item I have thought about writing for quite some time but was just looking for the perfect time to compose it.  Easter was less than three days ago, Spring is finally around the corner and there are 161 games left in the season.  Therefore, this is the perfect opportunity for me to get this out there.

Mr. Met is great but he is not family.  Image:  espn.com

Mr. Met is great but he is not family. Image: espn.com

I have been writing this blog for about a year and a half now; I have been a part of venomstrikes.com covering the D’backs for almost the same amount of time.  My hope was and still is that I will be able to earn a little extra money on the side for combining two of my favorite passions:  writing and baseball.  So far, it has not materialized although my D’back work is featured on si.com as part of the partnership the Fansided series of blogs enjoys with the site.  At times, I would put enormous pressure on myself to get as much material as possible online in the hopes that someone who has clout in the industry can contact me for some sort of part-time gig.  Because of constraints, be it work and/or family, I never have gotten the amount of blogging time that I would have liked or felt was needed in order to gain additional exposure to my sites.  I was uncomfortable with that feeling with the thought no one would want to give me a look if I was inconsistent with my writing.  Then I decided to stop worrying and just enjoy the writing because let’s face it, there is something much more important in my life.

My family.

Now, this doesn’t mean I am done with blogging.  Far from it.  And it doesn’t mean that my family is suddenly more important.  They always have been.  It’s just that I want to stop worrying about whether or not I have the writing skills that could earn some money.  The days are longer, the sun is warmer and frankly I would rather be outside with my wife and three kids at a park, at the movies, anywhere rather than worry about if I think the Miami Marlins will lose 100 games this year (I don’t).  In fact, right now, I don’t want to be put in a position where my job, even if it is writing about Major League Baseball, interferes with my family.  Two out of the past three Sundays, I couldn’t have asked for a better time seeing a whole bunch a people I don’t see very often.   One of those Sundays happened to be my youngest son’s 2nd birthday party.   I can’t imagine not being there for that occasion; it would  give me such pangs of guilt and despair.  It’s a birthday party I can’t get back.  That is why I admire all of those people who spend so much time away from home.   I may agree with nothing these guys and gals write about but I feel sorry for them because family memories especially with kids can’t be replicated.  Everything could be going smoothly in your life and it can all be changed in an instant; a drunk driver, a doctor’s unfortunate news or a senseless act of violence can take it all away.

I have heard many adults say that baseball bonded them together with their mother or their father or both.  My parents didn’t take me to very many ball games when I was younger  but they came to the most important ones:  mine.  That is just one of many things they have done for me and continue to do for me even to this day.  There is no end to their kindness and generosity.  There is no way I would enjoy this amount of happiness if it wasn’t for them.  Thanks Mom and Dad.  I love you.  I hope I make you proud.  To my wife, well I don’t think a couple of lines in a blog that is about baseball can properly express my feelings for you.  I’ll start with the fact that you have given me the three best children on God’s Green Earth.  The reason why they are so good, so cheerful and so smart is because of you.   There is no way any of this means anything without you and the kids in my life.  I hope I make you as happy and as proud of me as I am of you.  And to you three kids:  you are in good hands with Mom.  Keep up the good work.

Finally to you, my readers:  thank you for taking a little bit of time to read this and all of my posts.  Even if I never make a penny off my writing, just knowing that you show an interest in my work gives me more incentive to keep on writing.  I hope you have had as much enjoyment reading as I have enjoyed writing.  From now on, I will end each post with a thank you as a show of gratitude for sticking by me.

Many thanks.  I’ll be in touch soon.

Follow me on Twitter @ltj41 and covering the Arizona Diamondbacks at http://venomstrikes.com

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2 comments

  1. Manny

    Tom, very nice post yesterday. While you wrote this I was thinking of not just the writers you mention in your article but all the sports people (athletes, managers, trainers, support staff, referees, etc). And I think that is probably part of the reason they demand so much money in their contract negotiations.

    I to have a child and I can’t imagine having to be on the road, let’s say in baseball’s case, 6-8 months a year. Being that my son was born in June I’d be lucky if I was at half his birthdays as he grows up. Then I think, “well if I’m going to miss all that it better be for a darn good reason… like lots of cash”. Then even when they are home they are on pretty strict routines: workouts, eating, therapy, conditioning, etc. So even when they ARE home they still miss a lot.

    With that said I wish the people in sports would say thank you more often. I understand they give up big portions of their life to entertain us and that they and their families suffer for that. BUT remember this sports world… if it wasn’t for us, the fans, you wouldn’t get reimbursed for that time spent away from your families. You wouldn’t get the attention that you “require”… so for heavens sake say “THANK YOU!” to the fans more often. Sign a few more autographs…

    and let’s all remember that FAMILY is #1… work, etc is #2. and #2 is something you step in… but when it’s bad you wash off your shoes and keep walking. #1 is not something you just wash off and keep going. and if you don’t live that way… #1 will wash itself of you and you’ll be #0.

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