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Home / Articles / Columnists / Sports Feature /  Searching For Eddets Field
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Friday, November 2,2018

Searching For Eddets Field

By Mark Tudino  

Sometimes, while thinking of stories to entertain the masses, you’ll stumble across an idea in the strangest of ways. So it was with this column. You see, as a person of a certain demographic group (it still creeps me out to have to check certain age boxes) I have not yet acceded to the idea of growing old. It’s as if I believe that if I can ignore the issue long enough, the reality of it will pass.

 

But it doesn’t. Know how you can tell? The culture – or more precisely, the changing culture. Go ahead, test yourself. See if you can fit into the same pair of jeans you wore when you were 25. Or if you can run as fast. Or read as closely without the assistance of glasses. It’s a fact of life, and the same is true of the sporting world.

The reality is, young people today (and I’m speaking of those under 30) have no idea what it’s like to not have a cell phone to check your team’s score. Or watch its highlights. Or even get the sports news they want, when they want it. It’s one of the reasons sports anthology shows like “SportsCenter,” and before it, “CNN Sports Tonight” either struggle to keep a core audience – or no longer exist.

The way we watch sports isn’t the only thing that’s been impacted in our lives. Currently we are in the midst of two football seasons; yes, the regular one for college and professional teams, but there’s also the fantasy football season. And before you dismiss it out of hand as a passing fad, look around and take note of the landscape. Entire websites, newsmagazines and television shows spend countless hours devoted to the failings of not the real leagues, but the make-believe ones. By one estimate, fantasy football is now a seven billion dollar business. Some pastime.

Yet it’s not just sports and sports delivery mechanisms that have changed – what we remember as being relevant sports milestones have also evolved; for those over a certain age, the terminology is no longer recognizable. In baseball, when your team won the pennant it signified a huge accomplishment. In its purest form, it meant your team won the league championship and with it, the right to compete in the World Series. Now, ask a younger fan what it means to win the pennant; or ask him or her even what is a pennant?

Their answers might surprise you (or depress you, depending on your frame of mind). Try to explain to that same fan that before 1969 there were no baseball playoffs, and that only two teams made the post-season, and you might as well be speaking Martian to Mongolians.

Therefore, the choice is yours my aging sports friend: Either learn how to adapt to the new standard, or be content to stare at old photographs of ballparks that no longer exist. The former may be intimidating, but the latter is obsolete. I choose the future. Now if only someone could teach me how to get the right ringtone for my phone – any volunteers?

 

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