After a long and especially arduous winter that was filled with lots of inactivity from plenty of teams all over baseball, the day that we’ve all been waiting for has finally arrived. They’re two words that are a sweet symphony to any baseball fan’s ears: Opening Day.
This year’s edition of Opening Day is the earliest in the history of Major League Baseball, and it was slated to be especially big since all 30 teams were scheduled to be in action — though those plans were altered by Mother Nature, forcing the Cincinnati Reds to postpone their opener with the Washington Nationals. Even with the postponement, there are none of those staggered starts that we’ve seen over the past few years. Instead, we’re seeing (almost) everybody start on the same day on the same continent. It’s a celebration of baseball, and that’s why the celebration of America’s pastime should become a holiday.
If you’re ever going to give the country a sports-related holiday, this is the sport to do it for. Normally, you hear this from the crowd who figures that the day after the Super Bowl should be a holiday. Admittedly, it would be nice to have the Monday after the Super Bowl off in order to have time to recover from a day of eating, drinking, and either being merry after a victory or sorrowful after a loss. However, the point is that the main event happens on a Sunday — aka the last day of the weekend.
Meanwhile, Opening Day normally takes place during the week. That’s when holidays are normally observed, so this point is really just a matter of logistics. This year, Opening Day falls on a Thursday. Wouldn’t it be nice if you could rest easy knowing that you don’t have to clock in or think about taking time off since it was already built in to the calendar as a holiday? Either you can plan your whole day hanging around at the ballpark, or you can spend it at home or anywhere else that has a TV with the game on. Plus, if you’re already going to do this anyway, you can enjoy the day of baseball without having the guilty conscience of playing hooky.
In fact, that’s another good reason for Opening Day to be a holiday. As it stands, tens of thousands of baseballs fans will be forced to clock in to work (or show up to class) while their favorite teams are finally taking the field, emerging from the cold to welcome spring. Instead of enjoying the ballpark and watching their teams on the marvelous green glass under the splendor of the blue sky and that warm sun that’s been waiting until March 29 to finally peek out from behind the clouds, fans are stuck doing work. Being forced to work on such a lovely day like this is just plain wrong. Knowing that the first day of any particular baseball season is a holiday would be so liberating for fans mind state, wouldn’t it? Of course it.
Then there’s just the idea of adding another fun holiday to the calendar. If Memorial Day marks the unofficial start of summer, Labor Day marks the unofficial start of fall and the transition from Thanksgiving to the first week of December is the unofficial start of winter, then why not use baseball’s Opening Day as the unofficial start of spring? Even if you aren’t a huge baseball fan, I’m sure you’re a big fan of just being able to leave the house and enjoy the fresh air after being stuck inside during the coldest part of the year.
Plus, this is America. We really don’t need a super solid excuse to take a day off from the mundane side of things. However, being able to plan an entire weekday around the annual return of America’s pastime would be undoubtedly pleasant. It’s baseball, it’s fun and it deserves an official day of celebration on the calendar here.
Of course, this will probably never happen during our lifetimes, but maybe we’ll see it happen when the New York Mets actually make the move to space and become the Mercury Mets. Until then, the idea of Opening Day being an impossible dream will continue to be just. However, if the 1967 Boston Red Sox could turn their impossible dream into a reality, then it’s still fun for us to dream about something like this happening, right?