Baseball: America’s pastime

By Shane Evans
November 10, 2006

There are many things that are synonymous with the United States and American culture. Things like apple pie, Ford and Chevrolet, Coca-Cola and baseball. They are part of what makes us American and are things that many other cultures around the world try to emulate.

Well, in recent years, one of those things has fallen from the forefront of what’s most important to this country, and it’s not anything dietary or automotive.

Baseball, which for years has been known as “America’s Sport,” is drifting further and further into sporting meritocracy behind the new pass time that Americans devote their time, football.

The Super Bowl, which is the pinnacle of pro football in this country, has always been a spectacle in itself, which captured the eyes of millions across the nation. The commercials, the halftime show and yes, the game, have always been a thing in which Americans and people across the world have devoted one Sunday a year to partaking in.

But there are 19 other Sundays in a football season that in prior years that took a backseat to the endless summers of the baseball season.

Baseball has been part of our countries tradition for years. At the beginning of the last century, baseball was the dominant sport. That continued all the way through the great wars and onwards. The entire country was captivated by it’s majesty and eloquence of the game, something that wasn’t rivaled by any sport in the country.

Not only was baseball huge in this country, it was huge in the outlying nations around the U.S. Largely popular in the Caribbean and other islands, baseball players migrated to the U.S. with hopes of making it in the big leagues, as this country was and still is Mecca for professional play.

But lately, baseball has had trouble drawing the crowds it once did to the games. Had trouble keeping people entertained for 162 games. But most importantly, had trouble marketing America’s game.

All the while, the NFL slowly gained momentum and began to make its presence felt in the television ratings and in the advertising side of things, not to mention the fact that basically league-wide, the seats were filled every Sunday.

This was something that Major League Baseball couldn’t compete with, and still can’t. Under the crafty and extremely wise leadership of former commissioner Paul Tagliabue, the NFL has overtaken the MLB in basically all phases of popularity and has firmly planted itself as the most marketable and loved sport in this country.

Despite the history and the tradition that baseball brings to this country and all that it already has contributed, it’s name is being removed from the list of things that this country is known for.and football has taken it’s place.

The country is enamored by the fast paced and hostile showdowns that the 32 NFL teams have weekly from September until January, and that feeling will be in place for many years into the future, and the sport of baseball can only hope to keep the pace.

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Shane Evans

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