Four Major Leaguers have announced they will not be participating in the upcoming season. If there is one, of course, because -- Dr. Cox from Scrubs voice here -- it's a BIG IF. Each of them has their reasons for choosing safety over the unknown. The number could grow as things change. And they will, because our future rests on some rapidly-shifting sands. The bedrock has eroded.
Thoughtful baseball fans, who want nothing more than to see things play out smoothly, are going on record with their belief that there's simply no way a World Series happens this fall. More visceral fans can be understandably frustrated with multi-millionaires not playing a kids game for a tremendous amount of money.
The situation right now, hot on the heels of an ugly and tremendously unproductive public labor strife, sucks. There's no way around it. Most of this is because the world sucks right now.
Conducting professional sports and negotiating all the complicated moving parts has always seemed like pie-in-the-sky endeavors, regardless of the league. While the likelihood of actual games taking place may be greater than it was a few months ago, the inevitability that they'll be patchwork endeavors should be sinking in for the public at large.
At my kids' school they teach them a useful maxim: You get what you get and you don't get upset. Now, the kids aren't all that great at remembering and apply it, but it's a useful mental mindset. Especially for baseball fans, enthusiasts, and appreciators of acceptable risk.
If we get a season, it won't be perfect. Your star shortstop may sit out. Or be sidelined in quarantine after contracting the virus. Some reliever you've never heard of will blow a lead. The freaking Reds may have to forfeit a string of games. The playoffs could disappear and the whole project be abandoned.
We just don't know. We'll get what we get and choose to accept it or be upset. Sometimes it's harder to make the right call as an adult. Would it be great if things were different? Absolutely.
But baseball teaches us that sometimes you win, sometimes you lose, and sometimes it rains. The dark clouds and sketchy forecast aren't going anywhere. May as well enjoy the action while the tarp is off, because the grounds crew is just waiting for the call to move.