Today is Father’s Day in the United States, the day we set aside to recognize the men who raised us. For many of us, that recognition is inextricably tied to baseball. Sadly, there will be no new baseball games on today, as the players and the league still negotiate the terms of a potential 2020 season while still dealing with the reality of a global pandemic that is still very much alive.
MLB.com has a number of articles to commemorate Father’s Day, including an article about the best Father’s Day moment for each franchise. No surprise as to which Nolan Arenado related moment ends up as the winner for the Rockies.
Well, if that doesn’t make you miss baseball and love the Rockies a little bit more, I don’t know what will.
Kevin Henry of Roxpile published this a few days ago and I think it’s worth observing, not only because it touches upon the idea of memories and what it’s like to share them with our dads, but because he makes a point to acknowledge that Father’s Day isn’t always pleasant for many of us. It’s worth quoting him at length here:
Many of who you may be reading this didn’t have a father figure in your life. Maybe you celebrate your mom on Father’s Day as well because she was a single parent. Maybe you never knew your parents. Maybe this is your first Father’s Day without your dad. I don’t know your story, but I know we all have a common bond no matter the back story, and that’s baseball and what it has meant to us through the years.
I don’t mean for this article to be hurtful for anyone reading it, because I know not every family memory is pleasant. However, I also know there are plenty of you out there who have had a dad in your life and there is some kind of baseball memory involved with him.
Whatever your relationship with Father’s Day, whatever your relationship with your dad, I hope that today can hold some sort of special place for you. If you have a relationship with your father, I hope today is an opportunity for you to acknowledge and celebrate that. If today is wrapped up in pain for you, I hope that you find solace in the pain, or that you can celebrate some other man in your life who played a significant and positive role in your life.
Maybe there’s a coach, or teacher, or mentor from your past that you need to reach out to and thank for playing that role in your life when you were younger. Maybe you need to reconnect with your dad. Maybe you need to lay some flowers next to a headstone. Whatever your story, I encourage you to share it with us in the comments. And I pray that this can be a good place for us to come together and recognize the joys and sorrows of fatherhood.
One of the most famous father-son duos in Major League Baseball history is that of the Ken Griffeys. Ken Griffey Sr had a long and productive MLB career but he is, of course, most remembered for his Hall of Fame progeny. Ken Griffey Jr sat down via Zoom this week to discuss the MLB Network documentary about his life and career, the ways he sought to be a good father to his children over and above being a famous father, and his take on the current labor dispute and the experience of being a black baseball player and what that means for the current attention to racial justice in America. The documentary airs Sunday night at 6pm MT on MLB Network and we encourage everyone to tune in and recall just how very great Ken Griffey Jr’s career was.
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