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Saturday, July 9, 2011

Baseball Fans

I have gone to a gazillion baseball games (or at least it feels that way) and I have noticed that fans come in all different types. This is not a bash on ANYONE that is on any of the boys' teams. This is actually just an observation from the game I went to last night from the opposing teams stands and what I have seen over the years (I included Leo and me in two of them because...well...if the shoe fits...

The fan that talks the whole time: This is me. If you thought I didn't know...I know. This is the mom (I haven't seen many dads that do this) that knows there is a game going on and sees some of it only to ask the people next to her who are actually watching the game, "What just happened?" I can't speak for all of us but I know I talk because of a combination that I am nervous for my kid and bored to death. Baseball just isn't fast moving and there is a lot of waiting around for your kid to do anything. I used to love baseball games.  My dad played and coached and then watched constantly, I dated a baseball player in high school and if I wasn't watching one of his games, I was watching it on TV or listening to him talk about it, Leo has coached it since Nico was 5 and watches it on TV, Nico has played since he was 5, and now Tommy has played for the last 4 years. I am BASEBALLED OUT! Plus...I don't get out much these days so I look forward to seeing the other moms I am friends with. So if you are reading this and you are at a game with me, sorry.

The fan that coaches his kid from the stands: This is the fan that yells constantly at his son to tell him what he is supposed to be doing. I think this fan only watches his son because he doesn't yell anything to anyone else. This fan can also be seen taking his son aside to talk to him after a play. On some level I don't pay attention too much to this fan (unless he embarrasses his kid by yelling at him...these are not the majors and they are only 13 and 9) because he is not yelling at my kid.

The fan that is normally a coach but is not coaching this team: I think Leo falls under this one. It has to be hard to sit on the sides when you are so used to being in the dugout. It's even harder when you know the players so well. This fan yells things to everyone. This fan is not negative...just loud. I'm sure the coaches don't appreciate it but it does help the rest of us know what everyone else is supposed to be doing. The only frustrating thing about this one is when he is yelling for your son to do something when the coach is yelling something else.

The quiet die-hard: This fan never misses a game. He or she just sits in his/her chair and watches the game. This fan never says a word but I bet knows all the stats of all the games. I am betting that the fan that talks through the whole game bugs this fan.

The talkative die-hard: This fan never misses a game either but let's you know when a great play happens or lets you know that an error was made because you can hear them either swearing or yelling. This fan has no problem telling the people around him that the shortstop, second baseman, pitcher...whatever really botched that play. Nevermind that the people around him are the parents of the shortstop, second baseman, or pitcher.

The fan that paces while his/her kid is pitching or up to bat: Again, this is me. I give my boys a lot of credit. It would make me crazy to have everyone watching me. One time, I took Nico to the batting cages and I got in thinking it would be fun. I didn't hit the ball once. I didn't even see it! The kids definitely make it look easier than it is. Pitching just makes me want to throw up. Both the boys love it but's great when they strike someone out but when the other kids hits the ball and there are errors in the field, it is torture. I just feel like there is so much pressure on the pitcher. But I am ruled by emotions so what do I know?

The encouraging fan: This happened during our "in house" season. I was busy walking around with Gia and I heard a parent from the other team yelling encouraging things to her son. Things like, "You can do it! Keep your head in the game! Put your glove on the right way! Stop picking grass! Pay attention!" That poor kid looked like he wanted to be anywhere else but on that baseball field. I'd love to do a poll to see how many kids are playing because they are super competitive and have more than an ounce of talent and have a need to be the best, because they love baseball and are having fun playing or are playing because their parents want them to.

The excited fan: This fan has been known to yell every time something good happens and ignores the errors. This fan has been known to leap out of chairs and yell, "Nice hit!" Funny that this fan has also been known to yell, "Run!" after a ball has been hit even though the kids at this level of baseball pretty much know to run after they hit the ball.

The old men muppets fans: Remember the old men from The Muppets? They sat in the balcony and watched the show and made comments the whole time. Not to anyone but each other. They sat on the sidelines mumbling to each other so no one else would hear. We've had a couple of guys like that on teams the boys have been on. One of my favorites passed away over a year ago and to this day, watching baseball games (even though Nico doesn't play with his son anymore) makes me think of the laughs we shared with me telling him he reminded me of the old men in The Muppets. Leo is usually one of the old men with this type. If you have sat at a baseball game with him, guess what? You are the other old man.

The Ump Negotiator: This is the fan that doesn't mind arguing with the ump. He yells things. He asks things loudly. I don't know if he is trying to make the ump mad or kiss up to him but he has no problem telling the ump how to do his job. This fan is the reason why I never want Nico to be an umpire.

The faraway fan: This is a fan you are not sure was even at the game because they sit so far away. This fan can be seen down the first base line or third base line or in centerfield. They sit far from everyone else so they can say whatever they want without stepping on toes or having anyone hear them.

The concession stand fans: These are usually the siblings of the players and they don't see a minute of the game. They are too busy at the concession stand spending all of their parents' money on ring pops, pixie sticks, and laffy taffy. They can be seen running around like crazy from a sugar high or crying in a corner or to their mothers from the sugar crash.

We once played a team where the coach encouraged his team to yell things and taunt  the pitcher. For instance, the pitcher would wind up and as he released the WHOLE team would scream or yell. Worst sportsmanship ever! This is not really a fan type but an irritation under the baseball umbrella.

Last but not least, The Cowbell Fan: I will start by saying that if you have a cowbell and you use it at games, I hope we never play you. I...hate...the...cowbell! I don't see why we need a cowbell at the game. Isn't yelling good enough? It is jarring to the ears (everyone's ears) and obnoxious! We played a team that didn't ring the thing after something good happened on their team but when our players were pitching or batting. SO ANNOYING!!!

So these are my opinions of the different types of baseball fans and that is all they are. They are not based on anyone in particular, just a conglomeration of fans I have seen over the years. I'm sure there are more but I am writing this in the half hour between baseball games.


At July 10, 2011 at 6:46 AM , Blogger Rochelle said...

HAHA! I'd have to say I fall under the "excited" fan. I have no idea what's going on half the time, nor do I understand half the rules. I will cheer for my team until someone tells me "ummm, that was actually an error" which I will yell out," that's ok bud, you'll get 'em next time!"

At July 10, 2011 at 9:16 AM , Blogger AnnMarie said...

This is hilarious!! I think we'd be fun at games if we were ever on the same team. :)


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