Column: Passion is the point
Published: Tuesday, October 15, 2013
Updated: Tuesday, October 15, 2013 23:10
The unwritten rules of baseball are ridiculous.
There, I said it.
Now let’s clarify: games shouldn’t suddenly become free-for-alls. No one likes to see a showboat after a solo shot in the third inning of a July game against the Astros.
We could all do without a sack dance or a first-down signal after every play in the NFL.
NBA players need not strike a pose after canning a three halfway through the first quarter.
Sportsmanship, like in every other game, should remain intact.
But the idea that players can’t celebrate a clutch hit, big-time strikeout or game-ending out is absurd.
After Game 3 of the NLCS Monday, Cardinals players started chirping that Yaisel Puig’s clapping after an RBI triple was classless. Adrian Gonzalez’s joy after a run-scoring double was met with equal scorn in the St. Louis clubhouse.
“Mickey Mouse stuff,” Adam Wainwright called it.
Apparently, the invisible rulebook that allegedly governs the game gets longer by the day.
What, exactly, is the reason for halting celebrations?
Sports are about excitement, joy and, believe it or not, Wainright, a little bit of fun to boot.
Without passion, fans and players alike may as well pack up their ponchos and bleacher backrests and go home.
For years now, baseball has come under scrutiny that it’s an old man’s game. Too slow for the modern crowd and too boring for young people to enjoy, the sport has slowly been losing its grip as America’s pasttime.
The lone redeeming quality on which the game can still rest its hat on is the drama that comes when the calendar turns to October.
So excuse us, Mr. Wainwright, if the chance at a World Series title gets the blood pumping a bit.
You’d think that an elite athlete, one built on competition and driven by winning, could understand the thrill that comes with a step toward victory.
But apparently that isn’t the case in the Cardinals’ locker room.
In Wainwright’s view, doubles, runs and strikeouts lead to nothing but stone faces.
Which is strange, considering the amount of celebrating he and his teammates did during the first two games of the series. You know, the games they won.
And that’s perfectly fine, there’s nothing wrong with showing a little emotion in the heat of the moment.
Heck, we’d all be a bit suspicious of a player that wasn’t ecstatic after an RBI knock in the NLCS.
The passion is what makes the game fun, St. Louis–lighten up a bit.
And besides, what did Mickey Mouse do to become the bad guy?