I don't want this to turn into another one of the zillion "now it's officially baseball season" lines that was going on around on Twitter last night. I'm an all-sports guy, so I'll actually be using the next few weeks to catch up on what I've been missing in the NBA, NHL, and college basketball. But make no mistake, the end of the Super Bowl and football season is definitely the time when baseball's return starts to feel really close and starts to get fun.
The date for Yankee pitchers and catchers to report is February 20th. That's 18 days away, less than 3 weeks. That's nothing. That time will pass before you even realize it and then baseball will officially be back.
Every minute of every hour of every day that passes over the next 18 days is bringing us closer to the return of baseball. Closer to seeing what Tanaka and Pineda and CC look like after an offseason to strengthen and condition their bodies to survive another long season. Closer to seeing if aging former stars like Teix and Beltran can rebound to provide the above-average offensive production the team desperately needs them to. Closer to getting our first looks at all the new pieces that were brought in this offseason. Closer to seeing if the young guys can start to establish themselves as key foundation pieces going forward. Closer to seeing if this team really is capable of over-performing its expectations again and making a run back to the postseason.
It's been too long since we've had the chance to see 9 guys in navy blue and white pinstripes take the field, too long since we've been able to talk about hitting and pitching and fielding and running instead of signing and scouting and payroll counting. That'll happen when your season ends at the end of September 2 years in a row. The end of football season brings baseball's return to our lives ever so close, 18 days and counting close, and I for one couldn't be more excited about that.