Take Me Out to the Ballgame

I grew up in Georgia, so for as long as I’ve been alive, I have been a Braves fan. But now I live in San Francisco, and I am struggling to find the appropriate way to support my local baseball team.

You see, the Giants have had a pretty good team in recent years, and so people in this city are very excited and pumped up about baseball. I have noticed that mentioning the Giants is a great way to start a conversation and going to games is a great way to bond with friends. So I have decided that I am going to support the Giants and keep up with the team as a way to connect and bond with folks in my new home.

I went to two games last week: one loss and one win, both exciting games. The first game came , the Giants were down by two and came by to tie in the bottom of the 9th, then they lost it in the 10th. The second time, they were ahead, let the opponent tie it, and then won it in the 11th inning with a walk-off single by Hector Sanchez.

Both of these games were incredibly exciting! Each time when the game got close, or it came down to one final strike, the entire stadium would rise to their feet and chant “LET’S GO JI-YUNTS!!” And if a player hit a homerun out into the bay (a splash hit) the crowd would go crazy!!

People of San Francisco love their Giants, and they wave their orange banners and sport their orange caps proudly. You can even catch a few fans wearing a fake beard in support of pitcher Brian Wilson (get well soon, man!). And even if a person is not a huge baseball fan, they still pour into the stadium and cheer on the team. Or maybe they go to the games simply for the 40,000-fan “Don’t Stop Believing” sing-along.

Since the stadium is right by the water, there is no surprise that the game is attended by a few seagulls. But the thing that I found surprising is the timing of their appearance: right at the bottom of the ninth. It’s as if somehow they know that the game is almost over and all the remnants of popcorn and hot dog will be available for munching. But how do they know the game is almost over?

So I write all of this to say that sometimes, it’s nice to join in the comaradary of a local sports team. And even if my heart still belongs to the Braves, and Chipper Jones will always be my homeboy, I choose to join in the San Francisco madness. I choose to Fear the Beard.

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