And so it begins! After a quasi-opening day last night when we travelled 45 minutes south to play an exhibition game against our California League affiliate, the Stockton Ports, it’s finally time for the season to begin. For me Opening Day is like Christmas – it’s the only other day of the year I’ll lose sleep the night before due to excitement. Last night was no different. So after being in Arizona since the middle of February, we finally get to lace ’em up and take the field in one that actually counts.
For me, Opening Day’s have been particularly cruel – even dating back to my days in college prior to pro ball. I think I get a little too excited, a little too amped up. Typically, I’ll scuffle in the opener and then settle right back into my groove the following night. I’m hoping that I got some of the jitters out last night in Stockton – just playing under the lights, in front of fans, in a River Cats uniform was enough to get the adrenaline going. I’m looking forward to the game tonight, playing in front of the fans here in Sacramento. I’ve heard nothing but good things – so I guess it’s no surprise that they’ve lead the minor leagues in attendence every year they’ve been in existance.
On a heavier note – I’m sure you’ve all heard about the passing of Angels’ RHP Nick Adenhart. I grew up playing on showcase teams in the Northern Virginia-Southern Maryland area when we were both in high school. People in that area talked about him as if he were a legend. He made a lot of people – especially in that area – very proud. He was so good that coming out of high school, needed Tommy John on his elbow, the Angels’ still drafted him despite his commitment to UNC-Chapel Hill. Maybe it’s because that he’s my age – we were the same high school year – that it’s that much more of a reminder. Baseball’s only temporary, and as much as we lose sight of it at times, there are things that are more important. He will be missed by the entire baseball community.