I’m not a huge sports fan, but if I were to pick a favorite professional sport to watch it would be baseball and my team would definitely be the Oakland A's. No question.
Actually, I used to attend A's games all the time. I started going with my BFF and her family when we were in grammar school. We went fairly often throughout the '80s and '90s because her mom loved the A's. She’d take me along because bleacher seats were cheap. And it kept her daughter out of trouble for a few hours.
Like now, I was far from a fanatic, but there were a few players that always kept my attention. For example, Reggie Jackson. When he was up, the crowd went wild! I didn't know the extent of his career at the time. But I knew he had a mighty tasty candy bar and that was good enough for me.
Dennis Eckersley was my friend's mom's favorite. He was the closing pitcher for the A's and she would allways start chanting, "Bring in Eckersley!" whenever the score was not to her liking. (But secretly, I think she just liked him for his Magnum PI good looks: Eckersley & Tom Selleck.)
Back in the '80s and '90s, no one could get enough of The Bash Brothers: Jose Canseco and Mark McGwire. They hit a ton of home runs together and supposably Canseco even dated Madonna for a minute. Home run, Jose!
Remember now, this was way before all the steroid talk. Since then, McGwire has blown up like a Thanksgiving Day turkey. And Canseco? Blank stare. I don't know if was roids or if maybe he just got hit in the head harder than we thought. But ever since his tell-all book, he kinda went cray-cray.
I also remember catching a ball once. (Well, to be honest, I didn't catch it. It was a ball that was hit up into the bleachers, missed by many, rolled down the steps until I flung myself ontop of it.) I thought about keeping it, but being a second-hand fan, I ended up giving it to my friend's kid brother. Good move because he, in turn, got it signed by most of the players listed above.
Hey Eric, I changed my mind. I want that ball back now.
Every year Edison School holds a fundraiser entitled, "Night at the A's" and it's just that. Complete with tailgate party and a photo op with Stomper the A's Elephant. This year, my family and I decided to go with the rest of the Edison community and it was a blast! The A's treated us to home runs, bunt hits, even a broken bat.
Go to the A’s games once and awhile. Seriously, go. It's a nice alternitive to going to the movies and it costs about the same. And Oakland is a lot closer than San Jose! Now, I can’t promise you’ll catch a fly ball. But watching my kids share a warm bag of peanuts with their BFFs sure brought a smile to my face.