Opening Day a welcome part of the year

Michael Guido, Managing & Sports Editor

Every spring, as the trees begin to blossom and birds begin to sing, fans across North America flock to ballparks and prepare for a time-honored tradition: opening day.

Growing up, I knew the sign that the winter weather was on its way out was when opening day rolled around.

My hometown team, the Pittsburgh Pirates, were never great while I was growing up, and opening day didn’t always net a strong start to the season.

However, it was what it represented, culturally and symbolically, that always made it one of my favorite sporting events of the year.

Walking into the ballpark on a sunny spring day, with the smell of ballpark food and fresh grass are things you simply don’t forget about and even years after, I can still smell and see the images of walking into it all.

From a cultural standpoint, it’s one of the few days during the school year where kids have an excuse to skip school and hang out with their friends; I may have been guilty of that once or twice.

It’s a chance to open up the porch, so to speak, put the summer furniture out and pull out the radio, all while envisioning a successful season for the boys on the field.

As for my Buccos, it’s shaping up to be another rough season in the basement.

The Pirates are in a rebuilding phase, which I know is a shocking thing to hear if you’re a close follower of professional baseball.

Yet, not all is lost, as the Pirates will feature a lot of youth on the opening day roster and will have a chance to begin establishing the foundation needed to carry the franchise back to the greatness it experienced from 2013-2015.

Guys like Bryan Reynolds, Ke’Bryan Hayes, Mitch Keller, Diego Castillo and eventually Oneil Cruz will get a chance to show their star power, and minus Cruz, who will start the season in Triple A Indianapolis, it all starts Thursday.

If you can, take the day off, skip classes, find the nearest radio or TV, and relish in the fact that America’s summer pastime is back.



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