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Opening Day II: Less Ajar, More a Door This Time
The way I see it there are several “Opening Days” every baseball season, including but not limited to the first spring training game of the year, the first regular season game, the first regular season game at home, the first game after the All-Star Break, and, dare I say it, the first postseason game.
I didn’t mind the delay of the first Met game in the Steve Cohen era that counted. There was plenty of other baseball and UCLA-Gonzaga madness going on to occupy my time. I also needed a long weekend to wrap my smooth brain around the Mets signing Francisco Lindor to an honest-to-goodness large-as-hell contract. It still has not fully sunk in. We are a long way from Fred Wilpon claiming the Yankees’ economic model of actually paying players somewhere near what they are worth was “unsustainable” (it was only a little over three years ago.)
I do though mind the delay of a different Opening Day: the opening of — wait for it — the world after enough people get vaccinated.
Some Mets have been saying it is none of our business on whether or not they get the COVID-19 vaccine. Personally I think it would be nice to get a heads up on who is going to miss some time in the near future because they think everything is just fine and dandy.
Michael Conforto revealed he and his fiancée caught COVID-19 before spring training. Still, Scooter said his getting a jab or two was a “personal choice”. Conforto is the Mets player rep, so it’s likely he’s covering for some anti-vaxxer teammates, but lord this is frustrating.
Why would teams not make a fun off day out of it and go to the local CVS for a COVID shot and some ice cream? If 85 percent or higher of squads are vaccinated, they don’t have to be sequestered in hotel rooms on the road and stay away from each other outside of the office.
I can only think of three reasons:
1. The grown men are a-scared of the itty-bitty needle ooooo
2. They are convinced of one of the incredibly stupid conspiracy theories about the vaccine #microsoftrules
3. They are worried the vaccine combined with supplements they are putting into their body will cause health problems
As funny as #1 would be, I can only picture JD Davis (who also said it was a personal choice) as a needlephobe.
#2 is sad, ergo most likely to be the reason. Cubs infielder Eric Sogard’s wife Kaycee, the mother of his seven children, posted her feelings about the new MLB protocols in an Instagram story last week. She was upset at the league for pressuring Eric to get a vaccine that will almost 100 percent make him immune to a virus that has killed over 550,000 Americans. Other baseball spouses responded to her story to say they agree it is bullshit.
#3 is admittedly a hot take., but I stand by it. I’m not talking about your favorite player, or your second favorite player, if it helps.
I got my first vaccine on Saturday in a CVS in Queens. It was the Pfizer one. It was fine. Efficient. I got the shot 10 minutes earlier than scheduled! While waiting on line an old woman asked me what the line was for. I found it funny.
The doctor asked if I was nervous. I said no, because I got my anxiety attacks out of the way earlier in the week. (They were more about dealing with other human beings again for the first time in forever, not the vaccine). She said it would be okay if I screamed and would scream with me. I declined. Afterwards I asked if anyone has ever screamed. She said no. I found that funny too.
I was fatigued the rest of the day, but not too tired to fall asleep during the Final Four or SNL. My precious Saturday was not ruined in the least.
I’m scheduled to get my second shot on Monday the 26th. That day cannot come soon enough.
I was at Shea for Closing Day in 1997. After the victory over the Atlanta Baseball Team, they played a montage of the season’s highlights set to “We Belong” by Pat Benatar. It was great. But I’ll wrap this up with another Benatar banger.