Welcome to the refreshed Purple Row! To celebrate the new look and feel of our sports communities, we’re sharing stories of how and why we became fans of our favorite teams. If you’d like to share your story, head over to the FanPosts to write your own post. Each FanPost will be entered into a drawing to win a $500 Fanatics gift card [contest rules]. We’re collecting all of the stories here and featuring the best ones across our network as well. Come Fan With Us!
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I’ve been a Rockies fan before I knew what the Rockies were. I was but a wee tot when Denver was awarded a franchise and my parents went all in to support the team, from buying officially licensed baby clothes for me to securing two season tickets. They had lived 30+ years as baseball fans in a minor league city, and they weren’t going to miss the opportunity to pass on fandom to their kids.
My earliest memories not just of baseball but of life are from walking through the gates into old Mile High Stadium with my dad to watch games, sitting out rain delays with my mom at Coors Field, and watching games on TV with my sisters. In the early 2000’s, the first “Dark Age” of Rockies history, we had to scale back and give up our season ticket package. We still made it to 15-25 games a year though.
As a distractable teenager, my fervor for the Rockies faded a bit but the trek to 20th and Blake was still a treat we had to indulge in regularly. In 2005, I missed my last home opener, a Clint Barmes walk off. Two years later, my dad and I snuck downtown and managed to get last minute tickets on the first base side as the flyover went overhead (don’t even try to pull that off today). Since then Opening Day has become a cherished tradition in the Peterson family, a holiday rivaled only by Christmas.
Baseball, especially Rockies baseball, has come to mean family for me. It’s what kept me connected to my dad during those first lonely months of college in the Rocktober run to the World Series. It’s what gave me an excuse to leave Boulder and spend time with my parents in Denver on the weekends. It’s what provided the connection point between me and my now wife when we first met. It’s what gave me common ground in those first awkward conversations with my in-laws. It’s what I’m looking forward to passing onto my newborn son like an heirloom.
There was a lot of bad baseball that we were forced to endure during that time. Now that the team is winning all that meaning only gets infused with even more fun. Remembering the rainouts, the blowouts, the gaffes, the collapses with the people who were next to me for all of them only drive the point home further: family sticks with you through good times and bad, just like we’ve stuck with the Rockies all this time.
Now I’m far from Denver, far from home, far from family. Since I moved five years ago my appetite for baseball has only grown to levels that could politely be considered an obsession. I’ve turned it into a rather active writing hobby, which sometimes makes it hard to remember how I came to love baseball so much. Then I remember holding my dad’s hand as we walked into old Migh High Stadium, toasting Opening Day at Wynkoop Brewery with my parents and sisters, sitting next to my wife as I keep score. Then I look at my son. I can’t wait to give him the game, and all the connections that come with it.
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