Friday, May 28, 2010

Baseball in New York City

How they love baseball in New York City! The best sign of this is how often it is played by people in sandlots and parks all over the city. Every other place I have ever lived, kids have tended to resort to soccer or football or basketball or Lacrosse or whatever. But in New York, the game of choice still seems to be baseball, as it was 50 or 70 or 90 years ago. Of course, major league baseball has always been big in New York. Many of the greatest teams and many of the most important and most exciting games have been played here. And whole historical periods have focused on New York teams. In the early days of the 20th century, it was the Giants of John McGraw. In the twenties it was Ruth and the Yankees. In the thirties, the Yankees of Gehrig and DiMaggio caught the country's attention. In the forties and fifties, all three New York teams were simultaneously great. But what amazes me is how many kids and adults play baseball all through the year in New York, especially in the summer, of course. Central Park encompasses an incredible number of fields, but they are constantly occupied by baseball players of all ages and abilities. If you love baseball, this fact makes you feel at home in the city. It gives you that strong sense of belonging to a place where the greatest of all games is appreciated and enjoyed by thousands. It is still one more reason to love and appreciate New York.

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