By Ken Reed

Yes, there’s a lot of greed in Major League Baseball. There’s also a lot of win-at-all-costs thinking that zaps the spirit out of what is a great game at its essence.

But there’s also a lot of good stuff.

One of the best parts about baseball is the game’s ability to forge strong, lasting relationships with family members and friends. It also might be the best sport going for strengthening bonds across generations.

Benjamin Hochman of The Denver Post recently wrote an excellent feature article on the power of baseball to connect people — often for life.

Hochman writes about how a love of baseball, expressed in handwritten letters to and from his parents, helped a soldier endure a military stint in Afghanistan.

“So many of our parents taught us to love baseball, to believe in baseball,” writes Hochman.

“But today, more than ever, families split apart, with the children living far from home. As such, the text message, the instant message on Gmail and even the handwritten letter, these are what keep our bond stitched, like a Rawlings.”

Hochman went on to write about the baseball bond between a daughter and her father that’s lasted for decades. And he provides a glimpse of a mother and son’s love of everything related to the San Francisco Giants.

But he ends with a touching and powerful portrait of his relationship with his own dad, and the important role baseball has played in maintaining and enhancing that relationship.

“This is our 15th summer in different cities, Dad and me,” wrote Hochman.

“But over the years, we’ve texted about baseball on flip phones and iPhones, and we’ve instant messaged on America Online and Gmail.

“Baseball just does something to Dad and me. It’s our thing. We’re baseball guys. We’re romantics. We allow this game to overtake us. We give it unlimited access to our hearts and souls, acknowledging that there are indeed going to be some downs — but if we make it through those, it’ll just make the ups seem that much higher.”

That’s cool.

When sport is driven by the soul instead of the ego, it can be good, very good.

Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans


Comments are closed.

Set your Twitter account name in your settings to use the TwitterBar Section.