For my entire childhood and development as an obsessed fan of the game of baseball, I was stuck watching Major League Baseball in that dark, god-forsaken dungeon known as the Metrodome. It wasn’t until I saw a game at Kauffman Stadium with my cute, intelligent and wonderful college girlfriend* that I gained a true appreciation for how great ML baseball is when played in an open air stadium. It didn’t hurt that the K is about as picturesque a setting for a game of baseball as there is, but I saw professional baseball in an entirely different light.
*I thank my lucky stars every day that she stuck around and became my wife. Not only does she passionately love baseball, she puts up with me AND constantly encourages me to keep writing about the sport we both love. Seriously she deserves an award or something because, and this may shock all of you, I can be a pretty big pain in the ass. I’m pretty moody too.
During yesterday’s game at Target Field, rain started to fall. The weather made it’s presence known and people from all walks of life readied their comments of how the Twins should have put a retractable roof on their new ballpark. People that don’t understand how much Minnesotans love the outdoors. People that didn’t spend the better part of three decades herded under a Teflon roof to watch the game they love in a stadium that lacked legroom, good sight-lines, comfort and amenities. The right field wall was a big trash bag. The left field wall, at least in the early years, looked like it belonged in a hockey arena. The Homer-Dome had it’s moments but they were a result of the team on the field and the dedicated fans who continued to put up with the less-than-ideal environment to watch their team and the game they love.
Oh my god it’s raining!
The comments were ready, the media had canned weather related articles ready to go, bloggers were at their keyboards frantically typing up their criticisms.
Then a funny thing happened. Actually several things happened. The fans in attendance didn’t melt. There was no screaming, no crying, and no gnashing of teeth. The earth’s rotation didn’t screech to a halt. Amazingly the game continued. Weather, and roof, be damned.
The fans getting wet?
They spontaneously erupted in chants of, ”Out-door base-ball.”
I moved to Kansas City ten years ago and I love this area with all my heart, but I am still a Minnesotean born and bred. Yesterday my fellow Minnesotans did me proud. Yesterday my fellow Minnesotans made me very homesick.
Chanting “out-door base-ball” in the rain?
Just as the Grinch failed to steal Christmas from the Whos’ down in Whoville, the weather (and critics) will fail in their efforts to prevent Twins fans from loving Target Field and outdoor baseball.
Bring on the snow, bring on the freezing temperatures, bring on the mosquitoes, bring it all on. It’s part of who we are and we’re damn proud of it.
(Wally Fish is the lead writer for Kings of Kauffman, Call to the Pen and is also FanSided’s MLB Director. You can keep up to date with all of his work by following him on Facebook, Twitter or by way of the Kings of Kauffman RSS feed.)