Every baseball fan I talk to has some beautiful story about the first baseball game they went to and how it made them fall in love with the game. My story, not so much. But since it’s January and it’s been months since an MLB game, I feel the need to tell it.
It was the summer I was eight or nine years old and had relatives visiting from Europe, who wanted to get the all-American experience and go to a baseball game. A’s tickets were cheaper than Giants tickets and BART went straight to the Coliseum, so we chose Oakland. It was versus the Toronto Blue Jays. Trying to get nine people (five children, no less) anywhere isn’t easy and we got there late. It took a while to get tickets once there and the only block of nine seats was, you know, not an ideal place to sit. A.K.A., under an overhang where you couldn’t really see anything and it was freezing cold. We finally got up to our seats and everyone was cheering. Huh? Someone explained that there had been a leadoff home run. We got our hot dogs and settled in. Nothing happened. For a long, long time. It was a really, really, incredibly boring game. My parents decided to beat the crowds and leave early. We left before the bottom of the ninth and as we stood on the BART platform a man turned to us and asked, “Did you just leave the A’s game?” We told him we had. And he told us the A’s had just walked off. Bam. We missed the only runs of the game.
I did not go back to a baseball game for a several years come. I didn’t have a very favorable impression of Major League Baseball. Until… well, the rest is history.
So do you have a rosier story to tell about your first ballgame? Do share in the comments.