Most baseball fans believe that Opening Day should be a national holiday. Typically taking place the first week of April, the first official day of the baseball season serves as a symbol of rebirth.
Many feel that the occasion represents a newness or a chance to forget last season, in that the 30 major league clubs and their millions of fans begin with 0–0 records.
Yup. Every team starts the year undefeated. There will be plenty of predictions about what will happen during the season but almost every year there is some team that comes out of nowhere to defy the odds. Hope is the whole point of hitting the reset button.
But Opening Day is a state of mind as well, with countless fans known to call in sick at work or be truant from school as they head to the ballpark for the first of 162 regular season games. There is a giddiness that accompanies the first pitch and crack of the bat (not to mention the first bite of a ballpark hotdog).
My Twitter stream is filled with good wishes for favorite teams and hopes for a pennant. For the first time in 60 years, both New York teams - the Mets and the Yankees - are hosting their home opener on the same day at the same time. And of course deep-seated rivalries are also heating up, especially between Yankees and Red Sox fans.
Los Angeles Dodgers right fielder Andre Ethier (16) at bat © David Hood/Cal Sport Media/ZUMAPRESS.com
Baseball fans in Los Angeles are enjoying a special kind of rebirth. After years of watching our beleagured team suffer the perils of the McCourts, the Dodgers are back under new ownership. A group that includes Laker Magic Johnson is entering its second season at the helm. The Dodgers take on the Giants this afternoon - a classic West Coast rivalry that has only intensified with San Francisco's rise to prominence in the National League West.
The identity of the first pitch thrower wasn't revealed beforehand, but given Sandy Koufax's renewed involvement with the club this season it wasn't a surprise when the big left-hander took the mound 50 years after winning his first Cy Young Award. Chills went through the stadium when Don Mattingly called for a pitching change and his replacement was Koufax.
That, along with a first look at the revamped Dodger stadium, should make Opening Day a treat for all. Apparently, new food stands and menus will also debut, although the famed Dodger Dog remains unchanged. Hall of Famer Vin Scully, 85, will also be back in the broadcast booth for his 64th season of Dodger baseball.
In addition, Monday's festivities included a pregame ceremony honoring the Dodger's 1963 and 1988 World Series champions and the team unveiled its "A Whole New Blue'' theme with a performance by the Blue Man Group.
#OpeningDayLA Gotta run. Who are you rooting for this season?
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