Baseball & the Stroke Survivor

Baseball brings people together.
If you are reading MLBlogs, then you already know this and the things I am going to tell you. Baseball, more than any other, is a family game. It’s the reason I like the All-Star game. For all the pageantry and plumage there is still camaraderie and joy, in the stands and on the field. And then there’s the new tradition of All-Stars Among Us. Sometimes those types of awards and ceremonies can be too moralistic or something else I can’t more accurately name. All-Stars Among Us is genuine and it’s the way baseball shows a mutual love for the fans
DSCN0727 (Large).JPGWhat prompted my writing today is local. More than local. In the living room of the house where I grew up, where I write this, my step-father(on right in photo) rests in a hospital bed. After a major stroke four months ago, he’s made tremendous progress, through rehab and physical therapy and incredible help from many nurses and doctors.

Here, two nights ago, his first night home, he wanted to watch the Yankees, his team of 60 years. Since the room wasn’t equipped for cable, I set up my computer with MLB Audio. I told him he had to enjoy the game the old fashioned way. And I also said that since he put on a Red Sox hat last year when my nephew was drafted, which I bought for him of course(see above), I would sit and listen to the Yankees with him. In jest, I say that, because I have been talking about the Yankees with him since the season started.Talking Yankees, though, always means talking Sox.

Whenever the subject was baseball, in the hospital and in the rehab center, his eyes grew brighter and the pain eased. It helped that we found a Yankee sticker for his helmet. He said he was greeted by many Yankee fans. He met, to his surprise, many Sox fans, too.

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It was the late west coast 10:00 start. He fell asleep in the 7th. King Felix was masterful. For many innings, so was Vazquez. Earlier in the game, Swisher’s home run made a memorable sound off the bat.I kept listening (and celebrated when Gomez hit that grand-slam off of Joba; after all I am a Sox fan). But Henry and I had the time to really listen to the game. After this major transition to home, he rested and the house seemed calmer than it had in a long time.



  1. raysrenegade

    Great post.
    I can remember sitting with my Father and his friend when we used to watch or listen to the old Saturday Afternoon games. Basebal has a magical power that seems to achieve harmony within families, cities and even communities as we have a common bond there to celebrate and talk about together.
    Glad he is recovering, and hope he can some day soon be able to take in the fresh air and delight of eating a hot dog at the ballpark. Funny how someone could be wearing the hat of your “enemy”, but you enage is a great conversation about the game, or aplay that just happened.
    Guess it is true that baseball transcends boundaries.

    Rays Renegade

  2. Jane Heller

    First of all, I’m so glad your step-father is recovering well. He sounds like a strong man who has worked hard to get his health back. No easy task. And how wonderful that you two can talk baseball together, made even more fun by The Rivalry. Baseball is a great healer! I know that for a fact!

  3. bklyntrolleyblogger

    A baseball game in 1976 (ALCS Chris Chambliss game) is still one of the singular most greatest moments in my entire life (still) on a very short list. That game was with Pop. I’m happy the game was comforting. I hope every day is better than the last for your step-dad. What I see in that picture is something very special my friend.

    Do I owe you a poem? These last two weeks have been forgettable for me. If I’m remembering correctly re-send me the details please? If you have no idea what I’m talking about…never mind LOL

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