Time to say a fond farewell to baseball at Great American Ballpark in 2011. And even in a disappointing season, it's fond. Because we like baseball and will miss it.
It's hard to know how to approach this kind of goodbye: baseball leaving town on a weekday while most everyone is at work or school, after a season of unfulfilled hopes. Catcher in the Rye - a book that loses its luster for a lot of readers post-adolescence - comes in handy here:
"What I was really hanging around for, I was trying to feel some kind of a good-bye. I mean I've left schools and places I didn't even know I was leaving them. I hate that. I don't care if it's a sad good-by or a bad good-by, but when I leave a place I like to know I'm leaving it. If you don't, you feel even worse."
Baseball hasn't lost its luster for me, though I'm sure I suffer from idealizing the memories I have of past enjoyment (2010). Like Holden, I'd like to know I'm leaving the 2011 season. The best way is probably for some good things to happen, especially from some faces of the future.
A few good things happened last night. Homer Bailey had a nice start (and brought his batting average just points away from .300). Mesoraco homered. Brandon Phillips crept within 2 of the 20 HRs I thought were unlikely just a few days a go. Francisco looked decent again at third. Don't call it barrel-scraping.
There's still a chance to go out on a high note, even for Bronson Arroyo in a day game; we're here on the edge of that cliff to Catch you. From Mt. Joseph to Mt. Washington. From Vandalia to Versailles.
Lineups after the jump.
|2011 - Bronson Arroyo||8-12||34||30||0||0||0||0||182.0||212||115||108||44||44||100||5.34||1.41|
|2011 - Wandy Rodriguez||11-10||28||28||0||0||0||0||177.2||170||77||70||24||64||160||3.55||1.32|
Brandon Phillips (R) 2B
Jordan Schafer (L) CF
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