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by user Coreyisarealboy
I love baseball. I am convinced that fans of baseball are some of the most dedicated fans in all of sports. However, through observations of behaviors and idiosyncrasies of myself and others, I have noticed quite a few unhealthy habits and situations caused by being a die-hard fan. I have come up with a short list of Dos and Don'ts of Being a Baseball Fan (mostly "don'ts") to remedy these problems. Follow them and make baseball--and life in general--a happier place for the casual fan because, frankly, they're sick of your whining.
DON'T commit yourself to watching every game you can. West coast road trips will kill you. Two reasons: 1) It's late. Unless you're unemployed and out of school, you shouldn't be up till the wee hours of the morning watching baseball. If you fit into that category, do something with your life, you lazy slob. 2) A lot of teams are historically terrible on the west coast, which creates this little quandary: Stay up and go to bed pissed off or hit the sack and ruin your entire next day by checking the score when you wake up.
DON'T get too worried about a three-game losing streak in May. The season is 162 games long, and you are not one of the players. Suck it up. Exceptions: The streak was actually a sweep by the Pirates or you live on the north side of Chicago, in which case both could very well happen at the same time.
Unless you're a Yankees or Braves fan, DON'T expect your team to reach the playoffs, no matter what the experts say. This is what causes those aforementioned worrisome three-game May losing streaks. The term "worrisome three-game May losing streak" should be an oxymoron for anyone not paying undeserved attention to Joe Morgan. Hell, that's is any given series for the Royals. Appreciate the fact that it was only three games.
Use a little of your own common sense in these situations. When you're team is going up against more than four or five teams that you feel there's no way they can grab two of three from, you've just outdone any expert you'll ever listen to.
DON'T be afraid to use that remote or close that ESPN GameCast during routs. Behavior that allows you to continue watching can only be described as masochistic. I know, you're scared you're going to miss the next "Greatest Comeback in Sports History" a la the Red Sox vs. Yankees and Fever Pitch. Let's face it, coming from eight runs back to win only happens once in a lifetime, and this probably isn't the time. Although you're most likely not going to be missing it for sex with Drew Barrymore, you can no doubt find a much more effective way to spend your time than yelling through your television as your No. 3 hitter strikes out for the third time.
DON'T believe in curses. Middle-aged virgins aren't cursed, they're just lacking the necessary resources. This also most likely applies to your team.
DON'T play fantasy sports. It's one thing to be upset about Josh Towers' 0-7 start if you're a Blue Jay fan, but it's utterly ridiculous if it's only because he's costing you precious ERA points. However, if you are going to join a league, never pick players on your own favorite team; you're just setting yourself up for twice the disappointment.
DO resist the temptation to get tickets for Friday AND Saturday games when your girlfriend's college graduation is on that Saturday. "But it's [this player's] bobblehead doll night on Saturday." Does the bobblehead love you back? And no, you can't push his head for that answer.
When going to a game, DO view tailgating and drinking heavily as a positive. If your team loses, all you'll care about is the fact that they stopped serving beer after the seventh. If your team wins, you get to be the loud, highly charismatic guy high fiving everyone.
DO think of winter as winter, not just the Hot Stove season or "the eternity between the World Series and Spring Training." If you're sitting in your living room in December with your team gear on, praying in front of your television that news has broken about your team signing the offseason's biggest free agent, try kicking yourself in the head for awhile. It's a better way of passing time.
DO remember these simple rules of being a fan and do your part to make the baseball world a better, less depressing place because some, like myself, are probably too far gone and are simply awaiting the day Zoloft becomes the official sponsor of Major League Baseball.
Fri 05/12/06, 1:49 pm EST