Karen: A new baseball season has started, which means anything is possible. Every fan can hope that this will be the year their team runs away with it all, despite any predictions or past performance to the contrary. That's the beauty of sports in general -it can surprise you. Last year, my Oakland A's were picked by nearly every prognosticator to be the worst team in baseball. So what did they do? Despite having a horrible ownership, and no big names, they worked their tails off in the second half and came back to win the AL West championship in the last game of the season!
Doug: The advent of baseball season brings that sense of renewal, doesn't it? While I've cooled on the Chicago Cubs since the last time I had my heart ripped out (2003), going to Wrigley Field is ever a treat. I'm not one of those Chicago fans who has to hate the White Sox, though -- I've been to U.S. Cellular Field many a'time, and always have a blast when I'm there. I've said before that my family makes it a priority to take in a Major League Baseball game whenever we can on our vacations. I don't know that we'll get that done this summer, as the boys are really busy and my wife and I will be celebrating our 25th anniversary. But I'm sure somewhere along the line we'll get a call that someone has tickets available -- and more than likely we'll take the offer!
Doug: I should also say that there is a definite melancholy around our family this spring, as it's the first baseball season since 1996 that one of our sons has not been playing. I was fortunate enough to coach their Little League teams from 2003-07 and those are treasured memories. In 2004 the boys' team finished undefeated, the only time in the 60-year history of our league that a team has done that. That same year our oldest's 12-year old all-star team finished as runners-up in the Illinois state tournament. Great times. My wife in particular has been a little down, as we loved watching them compete -- it's one of life's pages that's turned.
Karen: So all you BABsters that are baseball fans: tell us about your team and what you hope to see this year, or just talk about baseball in general. Despite all the turmoil in the sport in recent years, let's not forget just how thrilling watching a good game can really be.